Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Space is Not Just a Place for Stars

I guess that I've come to a sort of conclusion. Unfortunately, the conclusion is that I cannot come to a conclusion.

As a couple of you commented, maybe space is what I need. I actually know that it's what I need (and something that has been in terrifyingly short supply over the last 6 months or so), and I'm coming to a decision about how to get it.

PC and I are leaving Ohio on Saturday, July 26. There will then be 3 or 4 weeks until I am to start a new job in another city, which I will be spending in Montana with my family. During this time, PC and I are negotiating a way to spend some significant time apart. I'm hoping for two weeks to process and get a chance to get some perspective.

Maybe I sound foolish, but I feel like I can't fully make an informed and rational decision on the future of this relationship (or lack thereof), without getting a chance to truly reflect on my own thoughts and feelings. I just can't get that with PC giving me puppy dog eyes and insisting that we're perfect for each other every moment of every day. He means well, but he just doesn't know how to drop it.

So there's limbo right now. Waiting and seeing.

Lyrics of the Day

"I'm starting to feel we stay together out of fear of dying alone." Death Cab For Cutie You Can Do Better Than Me

* Special thanks to Chris for the link to the Gibbard song - and a Death Cab lyric today as a bit of an ode!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Ugly Update

I'm not sure that now is the time to write, but I feel the need to reach out and it's getting to a point where it's now or never.

I disappeared because my grandfather died. My grandfather was an amazing man and the ever-present and dearly-loved patriarch of my family. He was 87 years old and we never really believed that anything could beat him, but nature eventually did. This was a much harder thing for me to digest than I really ever wanted to admit that it would be. Even now I'm crying. It's just not something that I will ever be ready for, even though it's over and done. My dad is also sick. He's been tentatively diagnosed with a disease that is progressive and eventually fatal. Only 50% of people diagnosed with this disease survive 3 years after diagnosis. My dad has always been invincible to me (to everyone else and himself as well) and this is something that I still can't truly digest most days. I've been with him recently and I've seen the changes and I know that it's true - but I still can't believe it.

The worst thing is that in the middle of all of this my relationship, and the smoldering rubble that is has become, has been more of a focus of my waking thoughts than my family. That mere fact makes me so angry and has spurred more than one long, middle-of-the-night fight. The money troubles never cleared up. PC tried, sort of, and the money trickled in. Of course, while it was trickling in, I was still paying for the groceries and the nights out and the cell phone bill (not to mention that the rent is part of my compensation). There were things that PC could have done to change the situation that he was in (or that we were in), but he didn't (wouldn't). Instead of addressing the problems and improving the situation, he clung to me. He suffocated me. He depended completely on me.

There were times that it seemed like things were looking up, or like it was going to be okay, but I think that I was just ignoring my own feelings and ignoring the problems as much as PC was. But it gets exhausting to be so miserable all of the time. Last time I posted, I was trying to blame some of it on my job. And some of it was that - but more of it was him. I should have gotten the warning signs earlier when I would leave work feeling alright, but do a 180 after getting into the car with PC. Then, somewhere in the last two weeks, everything went to hell.

Part of me wants to write that I'm sure it was my fault, because I have been picking fights at least once or twice a week, but then I think that I've been picking the fights because I've been so unhappy and because he always swore that things were going to change and still nothing has. And that's the crux of the matter - it's not the situation (the broke-ness, the money struggles) that is the true problem - it's how PC has handled it. He's procrastinated, he's made excuses for himself and for everyone involved in his difficulty making and getting money, he's allowed himself to be walked on - all the while allowing me to pick up the slack but still expecting me to feel that we are on equal footing. The purpose (aside from accommodating my schedule) of staying in Ohio for so long was so that we (he) could catch up and start fresh and try a life together and that purpose has not been fulfilled by any stretch of the imagination. We're almost exactly where we were 4 months ago when I was less than a centimeter from breaking up with him. Truth be told, I would have broken up with him by now if it wasn't for the fact that we're stuck in Ohio with one car and it's almost more difficult to get rid of him than it is to stay with him.

He promised me when we were in Montana that things were going to change. He promised me on the drive out here that things were going to change. He promised me 3 months ago when I was extending my job here that things were going to change. And here I am months later, feeling cheated of my own security and aspirations, being asked to believe him as he promises me that this time things are going to change. What evidence do I have to help me to believe that this is even a possibility?

This is the hard part. This is what I don't want to admit, but I have to if I want to receive any feedback at all that could be helpful to me. I have these feelings now, and they're involuntary. I don't want to kiss him. I don't want to be affectionate. I don't want to have sex. I don't want to be close or intimate or cuddle at night. When he tells me he loves me (as he assures and reminds me twenty times a day, as if that could change the past), I can't say it back. I say, "I know. Have a good night at work." I say, "I know. I'll call you at lunch." I say, "I know. It doesn't change anything." I say, "I know, but it's not enough."

It isn't. In a perfect world, love would be enough. But it's not. You have to live with someone, you have to be able to make a life, and how can you do that when only one person is living and the other is behaving like an emotional parasite.

Part of me thinks about the other kinds of guys that I could be with, the other types of relationships that I could have. Part of me never wants to be in another relationship - ever. Part of me can't really see leaving him. Part of me wants to believe that it could work out, even though most of me can't imagine that it will.

I remember once relating some of the story of The Ex to a co-worker. At the time the wounds were still a little raw (though it may have been a full year after the catastrophe, which is freakin' pathetic), and it was tough for me to talk about how I had felt he had started to back away from me and treat me poorly because he couldn't handle the idea of having real feelings for someone (after having been cheated on by the love of his life). My co-worker asked how he treated me like crap - did he hit me? Did he cheat on me? And at the time I almost felt like my hurt feelings didn't mean much, since he wasn't actually abusive or anything. Even though he did manage to rip my heart out and step on it as he walked away.

No, PC did not cheat on me. No he didn't hit me. No, he didn't actually steal money from me or wreck my car or gamble the rent check away. But I've been so unhappy for so long that I can't just say, "Well this is just part of being in a relationship." Because it shouldn't be. At least not this far in. We haven't even been together for a year and a half. PC abused my trust and my good intentions and my willingness to give him chance after chance to make things right.

So do I give him one more chance? Or do I drop him off on my way back home in three and a half weeks and start over?

Lyrics of the Day

"Some things don't work out like they should. Bang my head against your walls, but it ain't no good. 'Cause I'm screamin' at you, but you're screamin' at me, 'bout what I think you should do or how you wish I could be. 'Bout what I think you should do or how you wish I could be." Joe Purdy Some Things Don't Work Out