Thursday, October 23, 2008

Confusion


I've been having a hard time for a while now. My happiness and ability to deal with life has been up and down, but lately a bit more down than up.

I am so tired of waking up nervous, throwing up, and then gagging down my breakfast like I've been doing for 3 weeks now. (And no, I'm not pregnant. It's just nerves.) I'm tired of not being able to concentrate and accomplish much during my planning time at school. I'm tired of blaming myself for every little thing...

Yesterday I went through a horrible guilty phase. I feel guilty about asking Scott to get up early (he is SO not a morning person) to make my lunch for me because I feel too sick to do it myself. I feel guilty about never wanting to plan or make dinner. I feel guilty about having Scott feed pills to my cat twice a day, from which he now has a few scratches and gashes; a cat he doesn't even want and never really wanted in the first place. I feel guilty that I am so hard to live with, so emotional and unhappy and anxious and dependent. Guilty that every night I need a bedtime snack and ask Scott to make me a smoothie or something. Guilty that I put him through so much, and with all that, he still doesn't have the reward of living with someone that he can feel fully attracted to and emotionally connected to like he quietly longs for.

Now I feel guilty because he is worried that he is the cause of my unhappiness. He longs for me to be happy and to truly understand and believe how much he DOES love me.

I have always been an emotional person, prone to guilt and anxiety. He's always wished that he could find a way to help me be happier.

Today he asked me if certain things he blogs or talks to me about or shows me make me weird. He seemed very sad when he asked. I told him I didn't know. I don't know if it is his being gay, or his talking to me about such things, or Proposition 8, or my struggles with student behavior at school this year, or day-in, day-out struggles with raising children and remembering everything that needs done, like homework and lessons and scout meetings, and making sure everything that needs laundered gets laundered in time for soccer or school or whatever. And making the house payment and the car payment and tithing and...

I told him that I think it is everything.

Everything piling on and making me feel like I just can't do it anymore. I was barely surviving the kids and work and church jobs and finances in my life last year, now add to that new information about my marriage and the choice not to agree with the leaders of the church, and everything else that has come from the gay thing, and it is just too much!

I think I need to stay away from the blogs for a while, but I can't. I come home from work and find Scott blogging and chatting. He is so consumed with all of this, and I think he is doing a lot of good for others. I'm grateful that he has made friends and found acceptance and is helping others do the same, but because he can't stay away from it, neither can I.

I know that some people who read our blogs think things are perfect for us and that maybe they want what we have. But, oh, I caution you to know that it is not easy, that the reason we are getting by is because we are such good friends. But it is still so confusing and uncertain at times.

I was so strong in July and August when everything happened. Scott and I both marveled at my strength (because we both know how weak I am). We realized that I was getting help from beyond, from my Heavenly Father and perhaps from Scott's deceased mother.

But now as I look back on the summer, I remember some of the hard days and that brings back some of the thoughts and emotions I was having at the time, only now I am weak instead of strong, and I am not handling them very well.

A conversation with a student about the movie "Wall-E" reminded me of the feelings I was going through the day after Scott came out to me. In an effort to distract ourselves from the life-changing event, we took our kids to the movie. Not a good time for a cute little romantic entertainment.

I'm so confused and sometimes I just want to go back to last year and forget that any of this ever happened...

But then I see the good that is coming from it too: the help and advice we can give others, the opportunity to educate our families, and especially our children, about tolerance and understanding. I have actually been elated today with glimpses into how this is giving us the opportunity to help others.

But oh, it is hard, and I am just so confused right now about how to pull myself together and accomplish what I need to accomplish.

Meanwhile, I keep pondering another statement from my patriarchal blessing, trying to figure out how to do it..."You will find joy in living, for happiness comes from within."

I think I just want to let Scott hold me for a while.

5 comments:

Scott said...

What's the emoticon for someone who's trying not to cry because their heart is aching so much?

If I thought it would make things better I'd yell "April fools!" and go back in my closet and never again mention the g-word.

All I can say is that we'll get through this together, like we've gotten through every other struggle and difficulty, because we love each other and are here for each other.

(For the record, I enjoy our time in the mornings while I'm packing your lunch and I don't mind making your smoothies. I can't say I enjoy planning dinner, but I usually don't really mind it all that much. And I feel bad that the cat is sick and I know that nobody else can handle him well enough to get his pills in him, so I'll accept that job, too (even though I'm really not a cat person... or a pet person at all, really).

I've told you all of this before, but maybe putting it in writing will make it more real?

I love you! And I'm going to stop blogging now so I can hold you for a while.

Carter Niven said...

I feel so much for you... I hate the idea that my orientation affects our marriage so much. I long for Claire's happiness each day of my life, and it pains me to think that I (or really the dynamics of our situation) causes that deep hurt.

You both are very much in the thick of things. Claire would have died if I suggested we start blogging about our lives within a couple of months of me coming out to her. We are two years since that revelation, and we are still not comfortable revealing our identities.

Like you, we have been very concerned about happiness and authenticity. I have found a couple of resources that I have really enjoyed and brought a great deal of perspective. This first is "The Happiness Hypotheses" by Jonathan Haidt - It is absolutely fantastic and helping understand the mechanisms behind our pursuit of happiness and that we are generally looking for it in all the wrong places. This, above all other books, has convinced me that what I have is true happiness and joy. I could go looking elsewhere, but I would probably never find what I have - especially if that was the reason that I went looking.

The second resource is called "The How of Happiness" by Sonja Lyubomirsky. Haidt's book lays the foundation for me, but Lyubomirsky's book charts out practical suggestions for finding happiness.

Claire suggests "Simple Abundance" by Sarah Ban Breathnach - it is a daily devotional for women.

I feel for you. I am so sorry that you have to be going through what you are.

Damon In CO said...

Hi Serendipity-

I'm sorry to know you're struggling. It's coincidental...before I read your post I was writing a post that I haven't published yet about happiness...you'll see it in a couple of days maybe.

As I was preparing to come out to my family I decided to start seeing a therapist. Mostly I needed someone for support and an objective person I could bounce ideas and thoughts off of.

That was two years ago and I am still seeing her. It's only once a month, but I find myself energized and excited about my life and goals in my life when I leave her office.

Everyone is different and we all struggle with our own crosses.

It seems like you're taking on too much ownership and responsibility about things.

And you know sometimes we all need to get away from the drudgery of every day. Perhaps you need a weekend to escape reality...to just relax and refill your reserves.

I don't have any answers, Serendipity! I wish I did. But I want you to know I will pray for you and you will be in my thoughts.

We all struggle and have low points. It's a natural part of life. There must be opposition in all things or we can never appreciate the good times.

I sound like a lump of cliches! I am sorry. I wish I had something better to tell you. I just want you to know that you have a friend in your corner...and I'm standing right there by Scott, too!

Hang in there it will get better!

Love ya!

Damon

Scott said...

It seems like you're taking on too much ownership and responsibility about things.

You know in The Princess Bride, when Íñigo Montoya is chasing Count Rugen through the castle and the Count tells Íñigo "You have an overdeveloped sense of vengeance. It's going to get you in trouble one of these days."?

Replace "vengeance" with "responsibility" and that's Serendipity. :)

Serendipity said...

Yes, Scott reminds me all the time of my overdeveloped sense of responsibility. I can't even skip out on ward choir practice without feeling guilty!

:)