Tuesday, December 4, 2007

getting what you deserve

I've been thinking a lot about Niobe's comments to yesterday's post. I actually agree with her. What does that mean, getting what you deserve? Often, that phrase is used for someone who has done something bad, as a wish that they'd suffer because of something they've done.

I do think you get what you get, and it's up to you to decide what to do with that. I could say I deserve to be sitting at home with a 4 month old right now, planning to go back to work (or not). I can say I deserve better than a cheating husband.

Or maybe I don't. From a karma perspective, maybe this life is exactly what I deserve. While in general I like to think of myself as a decent, moral person, I'm no saint. I've hurt people, I've made bad decisions. I've mostly come out on top in life. Maybe it's my time to have some things not work out the way I'd hoped.

When I was in college, my group of friends used to say I lived a "rose colored life." Things always worked out for me. Often they called me lucky, which actually kind of pissed me off. I worked hard for things I achieved. I "made my own luck" in lots of ways. I have always been a good student in the sense of learning coming easily to me. So I did study, but not as much as others - enough for me to get a decent grade. But I had no romantic life, and wasn't really attractive. But I had - have - a natural resilience that always let me bounce back, see the positive, believe that things happened for a reason and things always, always worked out.

In contrast, my husband's friends in college called him the "king of pain." If there was a way for something not to work out for him, it happened. He also was a dateless dork, a late bloomer, and he suffered through that. Always assumed the worst, and expected the worst.

I thought we made a good pair - the rose-colored life marrying the king of pain.

This year has tested my rose-colored life. The baby. The marriage. The (current) job. My dad. But at the same time, I've been offered an awesome job. My daughter grows more amazing and fun by the day. My dad came through triple by pass. My friends have rallied around me to help during this marriage crisis.

Life could be worse, though it sure as hell could be better.

Last night we had a long talk. Well, he talked, and I mostly listened. He said many things. He's found places to live, he's had leases in hand, and been unable to sign them. He doesn't want to leave our daughter. Thanksgiving was the loneliest week of his life. He said maybe he could wait to move out until after the holiday.

I said he needed to decide. I was close to saying he had to move out now. He couldn't just dangle moving out over my head. And if/when he moved out, he wasn't moving back in. He needed to decide what kind of person he was, one who left or one who stayed, and he needed to own that decision.

I thought a couple of times he came close to saying he wanted to stay. And a few times I thought, oh, this is it, he's going to leave.

Then he said, well, that was everything, he had said it all. I said, no, not all. I still didn't understand - given all that was pulling him to stay, what was preventing him? He said, essentially, he just felt nothing for me. Nothing at all. I said well, you'll never feel anything if you don't try - if you walk away. But maybe, if we spend time together, if we do things, if we try, you might find there are still feelings there. I said marriage is WORK. And that's what he rejected. He just doesn't believe a relationship should involve work. It should be easier, and more natural. I said it's not all rainbows and unicorns and wine and roses. He said that wasn't what he meant, or what he needed. He needed to want to be in the relationship, and he just doesn't.

We left it at that. We're both coming down with colds, we're both overtired, he had more work to do.

This morning he had a counseling session. Tomorrow we have a joint session. I just don't know what to expect tomorrow. He came home with another book by Kushner - When All you've Ever Wanted Isn't Enough, given to him by our counselor.

Did his session today firm his resolve to leave? Open up the possibility of staying? I just don't know. He's gone out to pick up take out. Do we talk tonight? Do I ask? Or do I wait? Our session is 12.5 hours away.


meg said...

I can see a lot of my own life in the way you describe yours. Things always worked out for me in the past. I never "failed" at anything and I have had anything bad happen to me. I had faith that things would always work out for me.

I don't have that kind of faith anymore. But I am so glad to see that you haven't completely lost yours, as I have. I think that will help a lot in the months to come.

niobe said...

Wow. I'm very flattered that you were thinking about my comments.