May 29, 2009

His Words Make Me...

Musings of A Beautiful Mess
...want to strangle him, sometimes.
My husband, whom I dearly love, has a way with words that makes me see red, sometimes. My first reaction is to wrap my hands around his neck. Usually when this happens I'm in full fledged PMS mode, so I take a deep breath and think twice about it. Since he is still alive, I am fairly good about keeping those PMS emotions in check *YAY* go me!

The last time this happened, it took me awhile to overcome the "if you don't shut your mouth and step away from me right NOW I will not be accountable for my actions" emotion that bubbled to the surface right away. I had just got done watching the Farah Fawcett Story and was thinking it over. I choked up a bit because DAMN it was sad, but I truly wasn't putting myself in anyone's place. I was just watching the show. I didn't put myself in her son's place. I didn't ever think once "damn, dude I know how ya feel" or "been there done THAT". Yes, I was just coming off a HUGE emotional tidal wave, but I really was OK with watching that movie. It didn't make me any more sad then I already was. I get that Husband is concerned and I appreciate that. I also get that he is a matter of fact type of guy. I appreciate that, as well. There is no way for one not to know how my husband feels about them. He's generally more sensitive with people's feelings if he loves them, like me and my feelings. Occasionally he does say things a bit too gruff for my overly sensitive self. Which he did do that night. He told me I needed to stop "wallowing" in my misery. Yeah, I didn't take it so well either.

He explained to me that it's hard for him to see me so sad and hurt and he does want to help me, but he doesn't know how when I blanket myself with sadness. He said that after a full 5 minutes of the "Death Glare" and silence. After that 5 minutes, I got what he was saying. I sat there and thought about the past few weeks and thought about how I have been acting and what I was doing. And DAMMIT! He was right. Which pissed me off even more. It's true that I do/did feel more comfortable surrounding myself with sadness because I can relate to that! If my heart is already broken and I'm in pain, there's no way I can be hurt MORE if I am surrounding myself with more pain and suffering. It's my safety net. If I allow myself to be happy, then the fall is going to hurt THAT much more. But if I'm sad and read/watch sad things, then when the inevitable does happen, well no harm no foul, I'm already there.

The problem with this thinking and way of life, is that I'm dwelling on all the pain. Not just in my life but EVERYWHERE! I'm turning into a sad, sad person. I am not seeing the happiness. I'm not seeing joy that life is. I'm a downer and then I become pissy and bitchy. That's no way to live life. Whatever happened to all the rainbows and sunshine? They couldn't have died with my mom. Life HAS to go on and it has to actually be a life. Not a fake life full of fake happiness. My mom's memory deserves better then that. I deserve better then that! If I were to put myself in her place, would I want my children not to be happy? Hell no! I would want them to be happy and actually LIVE their lives.

As much as I hate to admit this, and trust me I really do! My husband was right *sigh* He possibly could have said it a different way, but then again, he wouldn't be who he was if he did. But he was and is right. SHIT!

Since that conversation, things have been better for me, on the inside. I think I struggled a lot with moving on. Not just facing reality per se, but actually moving on. Not being bitter, not being snide, and not staying home because it's "safe". I've let ago a lot of the resentment I held about how I was treated by certain people since my mom died. I realized that there are people who "get it" and there are people who just don't. And that is OK. I stopped kicking myself for shutting down and taking three years to FINALLY grieve. I'm looking into the future. I'm allowing myself to grow and I'm allowing people around me to grow. I'm offering support when needed because I want to, not because it's the right thing to do and I would expect it if the tables were turned.

It feels good. It feels refreshing! It feels good to share in the good news. It feels good to offer support for the bad news, but not let it become me. I am not defined by the bad things that have happened or that happen in my life. I am defined by who I am and who I choose to surround myself with.

16 friends have commented:

Sunny on May 29, 2009 at 2:14 PM said...

What a profound realization! Sorry that DH isn't a little more sensitive in sharing his observations, but he obviously cares for you a lot and has some good insights.

I have not lost a parent, so I can't even imagine what you must be going through. But I'm sorry about your mom, and I hope you can find a healthy place for the grief so you can continue enjoying life.

Kristina on May 29, 2009 at 2:27 PM said...

OMG, I can so totally relate to this post that it scares me. My husband is also on the "matter of fact" side, but most of the time, he is spot-on right, and it PISSES ME OFF. But I've learned to start listening to his message, and maybe not so much the tone, or the exact words he uses. Sometimes, I can't see through my grief, and I need some harsh words to bring me out of it.

I'm so happy you're trying to move on and be happy. I'm starting to realize this too. My "aha!" moment came during counseling, when my counselor said something about letting my brother go. I got pissed, started crying and said I could never do that. She said, "Ok, then let his DEATH go." Those words stopped me in my tracks. I don't have to let him go, and I never will, but I can let his death go, accept it for what it is, and embrace all of the good things he gave me, in spite of the things I'm missing.

Good for you!!

MAK-now on May 29, 2009 at 3:10 PM said...

Men don't always express themselves the way we'd like them to but I think his intent is good. I'm really sorry.

p.s. I know you JUST did Crazy 8's and prob aren't in the mood to do this but I started my own game o'tag, called Lucky 7's & I've tagged you. I tagged you before reading today's post so I'll understand if you want to wait to participate.

eden on May 29, 2009 at 3:56 PM said...

Gee, I didn't realise we were sharing THE SAME HUSBAND.

You know what I hate, Beautifullest Mess in all the land?? The fact that we can admit that our hubbies are possibly right. Dave would NEVER admit that what I say is right. Ahem.

But well done you for realising this. It's icky, looking deep in yourself like that, but you did and you do. You are doing MAGNIFICO. Well frickin done.


PS I just had to call Dave up and apologise for what I shouted at him this morning. My "apology" was: "Even though you're a prick, I hope you have a nice day."


Stacie on May 29, 2009 at 4:57 PM said...

I think I have your husband, too.

Paradigm shifts like this seem so obvious after the fact, but they make a huge impact in your life. Sending love your way...

Jaymee on May 29, 2009 at 6:08 PM said...

wow!!! i am on the other side of the grief and depression, but i know right where you are. that place where the pain and sadness is just easier, and every time it starts to creep back up i get so scared. being in the happy moments, not that every day is happy go lucky, is just so much easier. not that anyone could have told me that at the time.

how my husband has kept his head is a mystery!! love the man with every fiber of my being but i am suprised he is still here.

the healing is a process. it will happen. HUGS

Anonymous said...

Ack! I hate those moments--when someone says something in the exact WAY that you hate, and they are exactly right. Ack.

Ok, but I have a reframe for you...I think that it is precisely BECAUSE you allowed yourself to grieve so fully, to "wallow," so to speak, that you were able to hear him say this and admit that he was right. Perhaps, as you say, you had lain a little long in the shadows, but who hasn't? Grief can be awfully sneaky that way...after a while, it's mighty comfortable.

I'm so proud of you for so many reasons...most of all as these other women have said, admitting that he was right--no small feat!

Hugs, kisses, and lots of love.

Kristin on May 29, 2009 at 7:27 PM said...

I am so proud of you Dani!

Dora on May 29, 2009 at 9:05 PM said...

Wow! I'm having trouble keeping my eyes open, and must go to sleep right now, so I hope this comes out okay. This is an enormous breakthrough moment for you. I'm so happy for you, even though hubby could have put it more sensitively. Although, maybe it wouldn't have penetrated if he hadn't been so blunt. Your mom would want you to be happy. What mother doesn't want their child to be happy? She'd also want her grandchildren to have a happy mom.

You honor her love for you by finding the joy in life.

Big hug, girlfriend!! xoxo

WiseGuy on May 29, 2009 at 9:57 PM said...

Oh your DH...well appears to be a near cousin of my DH....LOLOL...they believe that saying it like it is the best thing that they can do to us, you know.

It is like, you have to see the sun...come on, if you refuse to open your eyes, it does not mean that sun has not come up yet...

Infusing a little sensitivity on the other side, and a small round of laughing gas on yours!

Take Care!

JamieD on May 30, 2009 at 5:36 AM said...

I know just what you mean - if you continue to wrap yourself in pain and sorrow, the pain and sorrow can't come out of left field and drag you back down again when you don't expect it. I think that is a normal coping mechanism.

I am proud of you as well. Not only for admitting your Hubby was right (and on the internet, no less!) because we all know how difficult that can be! But also for taking the necessary steps to pull yourself out of that hole. I can't believe how incredibly difficult those first few steps are.

And now - assvice from someone who has never been in your shoes. Sorry, I really hate to do it! But I heard something once that has always stuck with me. When losing a loved one, live your life celebrating their life, not mourning their death. Easier said than done, I'm sure but I know your Mom left you with so much love.


A Mom in Jacksonville, FL on May 30, 2009 at 7:11 AM said...

Dani----SO thrilled for you! Glad that you've finally some found peace with yourself.

Thinking of you as you continue your journey.


Jules on May 30, 2009 at 8:17 AM said...

I am so sorry about your mom. I think every DH needs to be more sensitive in everything they do. I would also like to say thank you for blogging me. I really look forward to venting more and hopefully healing my heart from all the disappointment of infertility. Thanks again for your warm welcome.

Anonymous said...

there must be a mad scientist somewhere with the original dna, because i have your husband, too! and i hear you on sadness being a safe, somehow.

and while your husband made sense, your heart was open enough to hear him. and that your heart is so open is a result of all your hard work in facing and moving with/through your grief. what a powerful post!

and early congratulations on your 16th wedding anniversary!

SS on June 1, 2009 at 6:31 AM said...

This is a an A-ha moment for you I think? I particularly like when you say that you wouldn't want your children to be sad all the time if you were gone. I think that is the best perspective on thsi difficult situation. I hope things turn around soon!

I won't even get into my husband, and his communication style!

Deathstar on June 2, 2009 at 9:18 AM said...

Who are all these women who have my husband?! I can't imagine losing my mum the way you did - having a friend who lost her mum to cancer - I know it can change you forever. It's just that way. Life is never quite the same, but having said that, you're right. Life does go on. I think you're genuinely an optimistic person, there's nothing wrong with grieving or being depressed. You'll come out of it, patience is the key. And practising enjoying life is a habit that needs to be developed. Like my Buddhist practice, you learn a little bit every day how to view life in hope.

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