This process of reconnecting with self while at the same time, trying to find the connection with husband, oftentimes feels like two steps forward, a hundred steps back. The connections to husband are like rusty prongs which no longer fit the holes they once did, and no matter how I try to needle them in, they just won’t go.
Often, I’ll wonder if I will love him the same way. In those moments, I really need to pay attention to the voice that says, “No, you won’t. How can you?” The old way was mothering; a trap I fell into, a trap many women fall into, though this was no fault of my own.
So, I guess I’m learning how to be a wife to my husband, and it feels a bit like the USS Enterprise saucer separation, which is an odd analogy, but consider this: two months ago, I felt an absolute separation, as if all parts of me fled. But perhaps they didn’t, perhaps they simply ran for cover when the reality of what I was saying sunk in.
He and I have had some frank conversations lately about sex, usually when we are drunk and/or stoned, which has led to things I truly was unsure about doing. I know now that I am definitely not ready for that; it’s like running before you can walk.
So, how do we move forward? Slowly. Patiently. Cognizant of the others’ triggers. Not as mother and husband, but as husband and wife, as friends, as partners.
Of course, there’s the child in me that is quite petulant. Her arms her arms crossed, and she is pouty faced. She is stubborn and still thinks that she’s better off alone. That no matter the changes in him, no matter the work they are doing, she cannot see the point.
She is the one who hears his I Love You but clamps the mouth shut in response. She is the one that gets irritated when he walks on eggshells, or looks at her in that way that I can’t describe in words. She is the one who balks, indignant at the thought of discovering him sexually. Why should she have to find out about him? She’s the one that’s done the work for all these years; she’s not willing to put in the effort.
It’s a constant conflict between the child and the adult. I am somewhere in between, muddling through. Trying to reconcile, trying to connect with him sometimes and other times, not. Working on not being niggly, trying to be aware of what I’m feeling or thinking and expressing them, if need be. I’m not very good at the awareness thing because the child is still very much a wounded creature. This will take extra focus.
Finding my way back to a cohesive, loving partnership seems like a nice goal. With fifteen years of backlog, we both have to remember to be patient with each other.