Monday, July 9, 2012

relationships

Sometimes it seems kind of funny to me how well suited Noah and I are for one another. I think about this mostly in comparison to the other men I have lived with: Uncle Bob, Tom, Puppy, Steve. No other man had an appreciable day-to-day influence at any point. It's kind of interesting to think about how I have gone about trying out different lives. I tried to be who they wanted.

Uncle Bob wanted a meekness I never displayed. I was supposed to be grateful and I wasn't. I was never grateful for anything throughout my later childhood and teenage years. Well, that's not true. I was quite nice about presents and such. But I didn't act like a beneficiary of charity. I worked hard for Auntie. I did my best to ensure that my presence impacted them negatively as little as possible. I started working at fifteen, as soon as someone would hire me. I paid my room and board. Didn't I owe them for taking me in when I was a pitiful little girl? Fuck off and die. Oh wait. He did die. And I didn't get to say goodbye. They didn't tell me it was time. He died with a wedge between us. I'm sorry, Uncle Bob. I am grateful. I am. You did your best. I'm sorry that your best was so far from what I needed that I could never have the relationship you wanted. I could never look up to you. I could never treat you like my protector. You didn't protect me. Not even a little bit. Not even at all. I suppose you prevented me from living in a car. You prevented me from going hungry. I am grateful that you helped me when I was otherwise helpless.

I tried to be what Tom wanted. I looked at his picture files and I dressed how he wanted and I wore shoes how he wanted and I mostly kept my mouth shut like he wanted. He was quite into gags. I have a lot of pictures of me tied up with a variety of gags in my mouth. I don't look at the pictures much. Mostly what I see when I look at them is how sad my eyes seem. I wanted to be what he wanted. I tried hard. The dream of children was far more important to me than making him happy. That was the right choice. Thank goodness it worked out.

Puppy was a mistake. On paper he had similar attributes to Tom and I thought he was close enough that I could make it work. He wasn't Tom. He wasn't at all as close to wanted as I thought. I will never know for sure but I think he was lying to me from fairly early on. He told me what I wanted to hear. I'm not sure why. Oh well. He was always very jealous of Noah. Oh dear me. Now iTunes has provided me with the Heart classic "Alone" and it's kind of funny timing.

Steve wasn't the right fit for me. He was very submissive and vanilla sexually. He was repulsed by most of the "crazy" things I wanted to talk about during sex. Leaving that relationship was smart. I wish I hadn't pushed it as far as I did. I thought he was my only way out. He wasn't. But he was my first step.

Noah makes me feel comfortable. Noah makes me feel right. The way I want to do things is fine and should be mostly catered to. Occasionally he has a different preference and he's willing to negotiate. I don't feel like my voice is onerous. I don't feel annoying. It is such a sharp contrast to how I feel when I am in the room with anyone else that it hurts. Why can't I believe that anyone else really likes me? Given that most of the people who spend time with me go through great efforts to do so I know it is completely illogical to act like they don't like me. Yet here I go. Every time.

I fucked up this weekend. We were invited to a brunch. I read that email at least four times. I put it on the calendar for the wrong day. Uhm. That's embarrassing. These are people that Noah knows and I don't really know them well. I have enjoyed all of the interactions I have had. The wife in question was quite pleasant and welcomed us into the house and we had a pleasant visit. Except for me wandering off to "find the bathroom" when I couldn't control my crying because I felt so bad and stupid and wrong because I came on the wrong day and inconvenienced her. She didn't seem inconvenienced terribly. It seemed like a nice surprise. Yet I couldn't enjoy it. I felt horrible anxiety and stomach pain. I felt like I was on the verge of puking on the floor for most of the hour or so we sat there and talked.

I get really irrational about food at times like that. I don't (can't) eat a lot but I get very fussy about only wanting to eat real food and not snack food. I get bitey and pissy and fierce. All of a sudden what I eat is something where I get an idea in the back of my head and I latch on to it and I am like a starving dog defending my bowl.

Today I felt like I was vibrating with anxiety pretty much all day. Thankfully the neighbor and I seem to be passing the kids back and forth now. They tend to spend two or so hours at one place then trade off all day. Sometimes both girls go over there and play. It's useful. It means that I can sit very still and stare at one point and calm down without the kids present in between volleys of screaming.

I keep telling myself that I am not working this hard on my tone of voice and attitude all the time because I am worried about her liking me today. I'm worried about how she will talk to me and remember me in twenty years. I can correct her, and I should--I am her mother, but I don't need to be a bitch. Ever. I don't know very many happy people. I feel like a liar.

I feel like Noah knows more about me than anyone. He understands a lot of my moods. He helps me figure out what triggers my mood swings because he stares at me so hard he knows when I have subtle shifts. It's kind of weird to live with. But it makes me feel good. I feel important. I feel special.

I think I still participate on MDC (mothering.com) because hearing other women talk about the shitty things their husbands do makes me feel so much better about my marriage. I am reminded to be grateful. I feel fairly uncomfortable with how grateful I feel sometimes. I feel rather awkward about the fact that the intensity of emotion I feel for Noah is what I associate with the same feeling of thinking about G-d. It's not an all the time thing. I couldn't function that way. But when I stop to think about how grateful I am for what he has done for my life--yeah. I cry. I choke. How could anyone want me enough to change my life the way Noah has? How could I possibly be worth how much effort he has put into me? What have I done to deserve this?

I feel guilty that I am being supported. I feel like I must be taking advantage of him. Using him. What I offer in return is so meager, so little. I cannot possibly be earning my keep. But I'm so tired from working as hard as I can. I can never be enough. I can never do enough.

I try to figure out what it is that Noah wants me to be. To do. He's a cagey fucker and he won't give me any instructions at this juncture in time. Probably for the best. I don't think children should have to deal with a power imbalanced relationship. I have to be responsible for me. It's quite frustrating. I'd kind of like to relax into being chattel right about now. Then at least I wouldn't have to wonder if I was doing enough. If I wasn't told to do more I'm fine. It's a system.

It's hard to talk to Noah about my perception of isolation and loneliness. He works in an office and is required to talk to people quite a bit during the day. He's just having an entirely different experience of life. It's hard to make him understand how I see things. I don't explain very well and I get frustrated and irrational quite easily. Luckily he's patient and lets me control the flow of conversation a lot of the time. I can be testy and stop talking for a while and he doesn't react much. Stoic. That's really the word for him.

I worry about what I do to Noah. I worry about how I have changed him. Will change him. I feel guilty for my mercurial lashing out. He seems to think it is tolerable.

I've been reading a very long winded book series. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. I haven't read it since before I had kids. I think the last time was when I was on bed rest when I was pregnant with Shanna. I reread everything.

I have a different perspective on the comfort of a partner now. In a couple of months Noah and I will have been married for six years. That is far longer than I have consecutively lived with anyone else in my life. I think I only lost about a year and a half of time with my mom over the eighteen years of my childhood. But it was splotchy in pieces. It will be a while before Noah is the person I have lived with absolutely the longest. I think I have lived with him for more time than any of my siblings.

I live with people who like me. It fucking freaks me out. It must be because I am playing the right role right now. I had better not fuck this up. I hope they don't find out I am bad.

When I was pregnant with Shanna a close friend told me that someone like me (meaning with my mental health issues) had no business becoming a parent. I couldn't do a good job. I feel haunted by that prediction. Is it a prophecy? I'm aware that the baby shit is convenient for people to focus on. It's this weird, isolated, obsessive part of life. Everything Feels So Important! Until it's your third kid. Then you need to move on with your fucking life and things are more relaxed. Anyway.

I have felt very actively depressed all day. I am swimming through molasses. This week is action packed for us. I should probably go to bed. I have to get up and run as early as possible. Taylor is coming tomorrow night and I would like Noah to come home from work early-ish. But I procrastinate. Because I'm too busy singing along with The Verve Pipe and those stupid "Freshman".

D- I think of you. And that stupid boy we dated. Scott. We can't be held responsible. We fell in love in the first place. It's kind of funny that the boy turned out to not be worth it at all but I kept you. I'm glad I have you.

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