I have a bad cold. I had a fever last night, and had to leave work. I don't have time for this! I have to work late tonight, start early tomorrow, work an evening shift tomorrow night, then Chuck and I leave for California on Friday morning.
I have managed to get myself tied up on knots, emotionally, over a simple cold. I thought I should tell Chuck to stay away from me, so I don't make him sick. I didn't want him to have to wait on me. On the other hand, I felt lousy; and although I was pretty sure that I could get home and nose-dive into bed, I wasn't sure that I could haul myself around to make tea or feed myself anything.
So, of course, I bull-headedly texted Chuck and told him NOT to come to my place tonight. I'm sick! He'll catch it! I'll snore! And I also thought that maybe he needed to work on the car he's fixing up for our trip and shouldn't take the time out to look after me.
Well, OK... If I insist...
Then I was sad. See? Just goes to show! He doesn't love me anymore.
[Cue the laugh-track]
Yes, yes. I realized I was being dumb. Hey, at least I KNEW, right? Uuuugggh. After feeling miserable for a bit, I thought, "Oh for Pete's sake! You are doing this to YOURSELF!" I texted him back and said that I was just being proud; and that it wasn't true that I didn't need him. I did need him.
At that point, he wisely ignored further texts; but he was waiting for me when I got home. He literally tucked me up into bed; made chicken soup, and Lem-Sip with whiskey; scolded me every time I got out of bed to do anything for myself; carried the TV into the bedroom and rigged it so I could watch a movie without getting up; he read aloud to me from my book for an hour or so.
I know! He's an angel. I'm very lucky. I told him so.
He's gone now; off to a morning meeting. He blew me a kiss and was out the door. I'm getting a slow start this morning because I still don't feel great; and because I can't run today. I am feeling vaguely depressed, despite the fact that I have a cup of tea and some Girl Scout cookies beside me. I think it is the same old shit.
I tend to see relationships on a continuum: at one end is romance and eroticism. At the other end is intimacy. In other words, as you get closer and closer to a person, you slowly see their hidden corners; but they become less intriguing to you. They are no longer objects of wonderment and discovery. There is a beauty in the depths of this knowledge, it's true. Lots of people slide down this continuum with ease. They leave behind all the... surprise! The WOW! The inability to keep their hands off each other. The long, sweet conversations. It's inevitable: you realize that your adored one snores; farts; bleeds. He wipes out on his motorcycle and she picks his bandages off. She gets her period unexpectedly and he washes the sheets. He gets a sinus infection. She catches cold. His car breaks down and she picks him up. She crashes her car and he comes to get her.
I can't stand it. It kills me. I want him to think I'm magic. I want to beat the shit out of the ordinary.
But only in one direction. I love it when he needs me. I can see him ill and miserable today, and still adore and desire him tomorrow. I know that the double standard is ridiculous. Sometimes I say to myself: imagine that he feels exactly the same about you that you feel about him. That is a great feeling. But I struggle to hold onto it.
So what's my problem? Why do I continue to obsess about this? And how do I make it stop?
Maybe I'm scared because of my past. Oooops. I hit on something - my eyes are welling. I tried so hard to find affection, romance and adventure within my 19-year marriage; and I sucked at it. I have no confidence that I can build or sustain any of that; because I tried and failed. Intimacy? Hell, yeah. Si saw me naked and pregnant; watched my squeeze two babies into the world; I gave him shots in his belly; he saw me when I only had one boob. I've seen him hallucinating so badly that he called himself the king of fucking Ireland. The part where the couple takes care of each other? I can do all that.
This is why I'm so insecure with the idea that I am capable of being pretty, or sexy, or a stimulating person to talk to, or the kind of person who deserves flowers for no reason. I think, "There's no way I can keep a man's interest. I didn't keep Si's." Worse? I don't think I ever really HAD Si's interest.
I have tried to talk to Chuck about this, but he dismisses it, saying simply that he's happy and that there is nothing to worry about. That I will realize that, myself, after a while. He has no anxieties or unhappiness about our relationship. Other things in his life? Yes. Me? No. I sigh in exasperation. With myself. Something is broken and needs to heal. I've always been impatient with healing of any kind.
So I popped right up out of bed this morning, declared myself cured.
Fever down. Self-reproach up.