Today was a lazy day. I didn’t used to do lazy days. Up at the crack of dawn for a race. Free weekend? Lets get out of here for a show. Never just sat around. The last two mornings I have just cherished the simple fact I am waking up with Samantha. I usually come to, check out what time it is and then just curl up with her. Eventually she rolls over and puts her head on my shoulder and then I doze back off. Today we finally pulled ourselves out of bed around 11:30 and then ended up on the couch downstairs to watch some romantic comedies on TV. It was pretty peaceful and I wish I had done more days like this before. The first one on was some movie about Cameron Diaz and Ashton whatever the hell in Las Vegas getting a sham marriage and hating each other but eventually at the end they realize they actually care about one another, happily ever after. Great day with the wife, lots of just mutual love and affection and cuddling. Everything happy right. We have a plan. Lets make this work. That would mean this is all real though, and its not. Who’s the fool? Me or him? No. I will tell you who the fool is. Her. I don’t understand after the time, the weekend, the future family plans…I just cannot function like this. We are MARRIED. Here are my options, apparently. Keep playing dumb to this shit going on behind my back, right under my nose – or say enough is enough I don’t care how “perfect” everything seems right now, I won’t be in a relationship in which I am told everything is grand and wonderful while some prick is getting your affection and attention on the side. This shit just doesn’t make any fucking sense. I get the real genuine feelings, I am with her every single day. My life is an open book, there are zero closed doors to her. There is nothing to hide. Its just agonizing because I am doing the things I desired with her so much. I guess I have a choice to make. I hope I am strong enough to make the correct one and hold on to whatever is left of my heart and mind.
Archives for June 2013
When the grass is cut, the snakes will show.
The dog in this photo is named Miracle. He was hit by several cars in an accident last week while he was wandering around a neighborhood. They don’t know if he will make it. But they do know he has been declared dead three times already, and each time risen back and continues to try and walk among us. The dogs I see at PAWS are all like Miracle. Each trying to stave off the end game, and run and play one last time until, hopefully, someone rescues them from this hell. It hurts to see these creatures on the brink like this, but the genuine excitement and happiness in their demeanor when we take them out to walk and exercise is pretty much a cure all to whatever bullshit is going wrong in your day. I feel like I am at that point in my marriage struggle where all that can be said and done on my end has been put out in the open and acted upon in a very positive manner. The road to joy and endless fulfillment has been shone down upon. The choice is easy yet at the same time difficult.
I learned today that canoeing just doesn’t come naturally to me. The entire first half of the trip I was worried about getting the two of them impaled by all the branches and logs I was crashing into. We drove about an hour to a little town called Vernon, north of Panama City. Samm had sent me a text message last weekend with all these photos of the fresh water springs up there. At first I had thought it was some tropical place in South America because of how blue and exotic the water looked. When I learned that it was so close to where we lived, I suggested we take a day trip sometime to check it out. We weren’t disappointed. Although chilly, the water was crystal clear, and even baby blue in some deep spots. The farther the river wound, the more obstacles we seemed to encounter. So my canoe skills had no choice but to improve if we wanted any chance at getting back in one piece. After a few trials and errors, I got it. Going in unison with Samm and pushing the paddle forward against the current to get us to slow down or turn ended up making this a lot easier. Amazingly enough, we made it back to shore about a minute before a torrential downpour began. Our day trip was saved.
A marriage is a lot like this canoeing experience. We have to work together and and in harmony in order to get where we want to go together. If not, we will just spend our time speeding out of control and crashing into things. We have a plan, and as long as we both are on the same page and working together honestly, we can make this work. Finally I feel like I am getting the reassurances I need in order to feel comfortable in this relationship again. The attentiveness, sweetness, and genuine love I felt from my wife today was what I have been longing for, for a long time.
When your life turns into these trials that challenge you every single day, the days that follow after “good” days are sometimes hard to take emotionally. You just finally had something to cherish and inspire you, so what happens next is going to struggle to measure up. Today was one of those days and its almost like it is chemical, the effects this is having on my brain and body. I woke up next to my beautiful wife. It was like pulling teeth to force myself to leave her side. I guess when your day begins with you literally laying next to the thing you want the most, your brain is going to be scrambling to keep itself grounded. The thing that has to be remembered on days like this, is that there are two other people involved in this family equation. Obviously, my soulmate next to me had to wake up and probably encounter the same things I did. We have both gone through so many ups and so many more downs lately that it would be selfish of me to only think that I was going through all of these kinds of feelings. The other person is much more defenseless and requires both of us to sweep these struggles aside so that she is taken care of: Cali. She wanted to make pancakes. She wanted to jump into the pool. She doesn’t understand daddy and ema doing this dance ritual of confusion every single day, nor should she at her age. She loves us both. So it was time to whip up some flapjacks and jump into that damn pool with a smile on my face, and that is exactly how we spent this morning. Later on we went back over to my wife’s place to go with her to the doctors. This event showed me some very unexpected emotions. Not unexpected in the fact that I care about my wife’s health and any doctor visit should come with a little bit of worry, but I wasn’t prepared to be so overwhelmed with concern while I was in that doctors office. I almost freaked out to be honest. When we were walking to the car afterwards, it was her holding my hand and giving me the hug to let me know things would be fine. I guess I learned today just how helpless you can feel in that sort of situation when your loved ones are going up against something as serious as health. Luckily, the person I was going with to support was strong enough to support me too.
Sorry I’m late. Last night got a little crazy and I still haven’t set up things on my phone. But without further ado, here is Day 7. And wow what a wonderful day it was. I guess anyone following this day to day probably thinks after my last post things might have been strained at best between my wife and I. For whatever reason, we have always been drawn close when things are in the most danger of falling completely apart for good. Its a wall I hope we don’t have to hit in the future. Pretty much the minute I posted that and walked out of my lab to go home, things started to happen. She texted me to tell me she was coming over to talk after work, that she didn’t want to lose me. At that point, I had nothing to lose by hearing her out so I said why not. Things just finally kind of melted down the moment she walked into the door. She smiled. I smiled. “What am I going to do with you?”, I asked as I drew her in for a hug. There were some final barriers we had to cross together, and to show one another we were maturing past the blow ups we had become accustomed to. The old Chris? Yeah the house would have been a wreck and he would have been running around spitting nails. I can talk about things now. I can listen now. Anger doesn’t dictate my actions past an unhealthy point of no return. It was a toxic way to live, and I am never going back to that.
So carrying over into the next day were these positive vibes of progress. I had always planned on getting her these pretty diamond earrings that she liked, I just kept putting it off until the time seemed right. Well it was feeling like this was a different day. Blind of faith, just do it. I ended up getting the pair bigger than the ones I had intended to get her. As I was driving out of the mall parking lot, she called me, and said something that made me proud to be her husband. I won’t get into the details, but it shows how far we have both come to get to a point where she can trust me with anything and everything, and opening up to me really let me know that I was doing the right thing. These earrings are just “things” but every once in a while its good to do something nice to put a smile on her face. And when its the most beautiful smile in the world, who wouldn’t want more of those?
Ok so here are the guidelines for doing the most romantic thing of all time, which is what I did. We met at the dog park to let Maple play, and when we walked towards the coffee shop I stopped her in front of a window and asked her to tell me what she saw in the reflection. “Us”, she told me. I asked her to close her eyes and put my phone on the table in front of her and pushed play on a video I always keep of us saying “I do” and walking down the aisle at our wedding. “Even when things go out of sight, just know that I love you”, I whispered into her ear. I put my arms around her, opened the box with the earrings, and told her to open her eyes. The look of absolute shock, then elation, was worth everything I had gone through. Sometimes we all just need to be swept off of our feet.
We ended up getting coffee and talking some more about what was going on, and I finally got some closure. We could go forward. Finally. That night was the perfect ending for our day as we spent it with some good friends that we have had since we met, it really restored some normalcy I felt like. And the coolest thing about all of it was that we fell back into each other like we had never been apart. Things wen’t well into the night and early morning, which I guess means I will have to talk about it on my next day. Adios.
There comes a point when you just have to put up walls. You want to protect yourself, and your child, from the choices that others are making that aren’t in anyone’s best interests. I went to see our marriage counselor today, alone, because she was feeling nausea for some reason. Guess martinis and sushi aren’t the winning combo we all thought it was. It ended up being a very beneficial meeting, and I though a lot of things were starting to make sense in all of this, but one challenge remained, and still remains, in my life. When am I going to say I that I am walking away? Not out of spite or malice, but for love of my child, myself, and ultimately my spouse. I can’t be an enabler. I don’t agree with this separation at this point because I see it being counter productive. And not for the reasons previously listed. I do LOVE the time we spend together as a couple and as a family. Photos speak a thousand words, and anyone and everyone can see how happy we all are together. Its been wonderful lately. But unfortunately, there are things going on behind the scenes that are inhibiting us from taking the next step towards reconciliation and reuniting for good. I was in the bathroom talking about how I could help out with some financials during our time apart, which of course I am more than willing to do to a point, when the most heartbreaking bullshit happened. DING. A text message arrives on her cell phone and I just happen to be standing right next to it. Something to the effect of “Hey babe I love you”. What?
Ok. Its time to put up a chain link fence. You can see me. I can see you. You can talk to me. I can talk to you. But this is my space, my child lives in my space, and I have been extremely hurt by what has been going on. This fence is up to protect me. You cannot come into this space, I need to heal.
I am beginning to think early morning phone calls are an omen of good times. I was in the shower when the phone rang. It was her. Things had cooled down since yesterday and we made sure the focus of things (after some apologies of course) were turned to our daughter. A few pancakes and a Dogasaurus walk later, we were on our way to see her. She of course looked dropped dead gorgeous, and I begrudgingly left Cal with her and set off for work. Which is a challenge in itself. Just concentrating on reading my emails is a hurculean task these days I am so distracted. I was hoping that I could eventually dive into my work and just take my mind off of this emotional hurricane that has taken over my life, but to be honest, that hasn’t happened. So it was back to the grind to force myself to stay gainfully employed despite everything going on. Luckily, today had a good surprise in store for me. Early morning phone calls folks, I’m telling you. She took me out to lunch, which was awesome. Just to top it all off, she had her nails done with baby blue polish…just..the..way..I…love it. Ahhhhhhhhhhh! Let me tell you something, there is one surefire way to get sparks shooting out of my ears, lasers shooting out of my eyes, and my tongue rolling out of my mouth onto the ground. Baby blue. Anything. First week we dated she bought herself and baby blue bikini that drives me crazy. So seeing her little hand with those nails pretty much blew my face off. I’m trying to stay grounded in reality so there are other things I am trying to take from today that are of substance and value. She took really good care of our daughter and spent a few hours with her at the doctors, and I could tell Cal was really enjoying her time together when I saw them. It was a good day. A good day to get better.
It was fitting that our boat plans got ruined by a thunderstorm. At first we didn’t mind, laying in each others arms while the rain pounded on the windows. I finally drug myself from my mate’s embrace and went downstairs to take care of the pups and our daughter. 20 mins later I was back upstairs, balancing a plate full of fruit and pancakes, a hot coffee cup and a cup of OJ. Breakfast in bed, a nice surprise well worth the bright eyed smile on her face when I popped back into the room. It was something that I guess seemed like a pipe dream just a few weeks ago. Ten minutes later that’s all it was, and we were fighting over something that certainly didn’t deserve to ruin our perfect day. I wont get into the details, and I am sure it is just a product of anxiety, but never the less, it left me with tears and despair. We should have been out on our boat laughing and smiling. Instead, we were exchanging solemn kisses goodbye under a downpour. You can only do so much before it comes to the point where the other person has to show they are fully committed to what it is you are trying to accomplish. Now its 9:24 PM and after a few pointless text messages earlier in the day probably sent just to make sure I was still even willing to speak, I am sitting in my office second guessing myself and worried about my better half. Is she upset? Is she sad? Depressed? At this point everything that needed to be said has already been spoken. If anything, I just wish I could give her a hug. My daughter asked if her ema (Estonian for “mother”) is going to come sleep in her bed with her tonight. I left the downstairs light on. Come home Samm. Your family needs you. And whether you know it or not, you are going to need them too.
I went to volunteer orientation at the Panhandle Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) today. My wife volunteers here and used to go quite often. She found a rescue dog she fell in love with, who of course is our lovable little dog Maple. She always talked about how good it made her feel coming up there and helping the animals and making sure they were getting enough love and attention. She is an animal lover and sometimes she cried because seeing some of the animals suffering made her absolutely devastated. I used to give her grief for going so often when she could have been working and making money. I didn’t care about all of the great work she was doing and couldn’t appreciate her reasoning for going. Sounds like a real jerk doesn’t it? I look back at that and wow do I feel revolted at the thought of how I used to be. Not only towards my beautiful kind wife, but just in general. Doing things for other people or other living things is one of the most rewarding things we can do. And yes of course we all need a paycheck to accomplish some of the things we are trying to do, but when that becomes our driving motivation for everything then wow have we lost sight of things. There were several couples there volunteering together and it made me kind of depressed honestly. That should have been us. Samm was pretty surprised when I told her I was doing this yesterday. She asked if I was doing it for her, or for myself. I guess its the latter, but I chose to do this at PAWS because yes I know how much this place has meant to her and of course I want her to see my changes applied to something she holds dear. It certainly wont stop there though. The days half done but when you FINALLY get to wake up next to your wife, child, and two dogs, then you are going to accomplish something worthwhile.
I woke up randomly at 5:23 AM for some strange reason. I literally looked at the clock and said out loud ‘why am I awake?”. I had my answer about 30 seconds later. My phone went off with a text message. Without even looking at the phone, I knew it was her. In tune. An early morning moment. We would go on to spend the entire day together, and as I look to my left, there she is reading our daughter a bedtime story by Dr Seuss. Beautiful. It was an amazingly unexpected day, and I guess that is where the beauty lies. We can just pick up together, yet its all different now. Its not the same, and we still haven’t reached the level romantically but that is not the point. Its about building, not necessarily rebuilding. Its a slow steady process, but with days like these, its hard to complain. Its a sunflower field with the twilight streaming through the stalks, and a wonderful little girl jumping into a woman’s arms care free and happy. That is life. That is family. And that is true happiness.
Dear friends in Estonian – head jaanipäeva!