Tuesday, September 06, 2005

childish dreams breed grown-up nightmares

Last night I had a disturbingly vivid dream about my ex-husband. This is not unusual, unfortunately; I seem to have dreams about him when I’m stressed out. But I’m not stressed out right now, so it’s rather odd. And I hate it.

Anyway, the one last night made an impact because I had more clarity than I usually do while IN the dream. I dreamed, as usual, that he and I were back together. We were living in the same house together, and as usual, he was “into” the reunion more than I was (by “as usual”, I mean in the dreams, not in real life; I wouldn’t be surprised if he has nightmares about being married to me again, either…). Nothing significant happened, it was more just the feeling of guilt I had, and unease, knowing this wasn’t really what I wanted and how the HELL had this happened, by the way?? Last night, the issue was Christmas. I love it, he hated it. Rather, he loved getting presents, hated everything else about it (in fact, on our first Christmas as a married couple, he sat on the couch and pretended to read a hunting magazine while I tried to string our huge, “real” tree that I made him help me pick out, with lights. He pretended not to be watching as I struggled, and moved the stepstool all around the tree, and cursed, and got poked by pine needles, until the very end, when I realized I had strung the lights UPSIDE DOWN and the plug was at the TOP of the tree. At which point I started sobbing and he finally put down the magazine, said “Good LORD,” and fixed it for me. Happy happy memories of Christmas as a young, hopeful newlywed.). Ahem. Anyway. So in this dream I was decorating for Christmas and he was not helping, and all the while I was thinking “WHY am I DOING this?? I hate this about him, that he scorns all holidays… what am I DOING?”

Then I had an IN-DREAM epiphany, which is the unusual part for me. I realized that maybe this was what being in a long-term relationship was, giving up your “silly fantasies” about finding the “perfect” guy and just settling for someone who didn’t drive you completely mad (in which case, I had failed on both counts). Maybe in order to have stability, you had to give up excitement and joy. Then I woke up to a crushing depression. Don’t get me wrong, I was very glad to realize it was just a dream, but I was also very depressed to think that maybe what I “realized” in the dream was correct. That you can’t have it all. It’s either a crazy, sexy attraction with sparks and fireworks, or stability and longevity where you’ve squelched your “fantasies” of ever being truly happy. GAH! This can’t be true, can it??? And if it is, or rather if I really believe that? Then that explains why I’m still single, and why the thought of being married again is so unappealing at this point in my life.

I know that intoxicating “in love” feeling is fleeting, and addictive, and cannot stay the same forever. I know, intellectually, that settling into a comfy “love” can also be rewarding. But. I have never made it to that point. All my relationships, except maybe one, have been sparks and fireworks, then disappointment and anger. Then, over. I have no basis for comparison. The thought of “forever”, which is so comforting to some people, freaks my shit out. I cannot even IMAGINE being with the same person for longer than a few years. I have this innate fear that the moment I actually get comfortable and relax in a relationship, it will blow up in my face. I don’t really trust anything or anyone NOT to just disappear one day, with no explanation.

So now, today, post-bad-dream, I’m left wondering, am I defective? Am I being unreasonable? Have I set myself up for imminent failure? Do I sabotage relationships that might have long-term merit because I’d rather do that than let them dwindle to the mundane? (gosh, but the people that might have been long-term were so booorrriiinnngggg…..). Or am I drawn to meaningless, yet exciting, relationships because I can handle that and there’s no expectation to grow or change? (but there was a time when I wanted said meaningless, yet exciting, relationship to grow and change…it just never did…and I’m ok with that now…) But I don’t think I avoid meaningful relationships. I have to believe that I simply haven’t yet met the “right guy”. However, that goes back to the “perfect guy” myth, which I truly believe is a myth. AAACK!

That’s it, I’m going shopping.


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...
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Lisabell said...

Does it mean I've gone "big time" now that I'm getting spam disguised as blog comments??

Anonymous said...
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Crazy MomCat said...

I've been noticing some on blogger who have password sites that get rid of these spam commenters. You have to enter a newly generated code of letters and numbers. Check in Blogger and see if they have that now. I need to do that too, but I'm not big time enough yet to get any. (grin)

As for your dream, and your realization, I can see why you might think those things. Actually, we're quite opposite in terms of the kind of relationships we've had and I've never thought of that before. I'll have to email you more on this in a bit...no need to reveal more than I already do about myself on my blog, eh? Ha!

Dipu said...

I've noticed I don't seem to get these spam comments anymore now that I've delisted my blog from Blogger's public listings. I believe "CMC" discovered this connection awhile back...

Anonymous said...

Okay, well, I don't have any advice about spammers on your blog, but I do have a comment on the single real relationship that I have ever had.

Boredom doesn't have to be your destiny. When you find the right person, there WILL be boring days, no mistake about it. But the thing about having the right person, is that you don't MIND being bored with them. How do I explain this. I'm not so good at it as Lisa. :)

What I'm trying to say is that you reach a place where you realize that this other person isn't really another person. You become extensions of each other. When you can simply sit next to each other, without saying a word, and just know that life is good because this other person exists and is here with you. That may seem boring, but that is what it is about. And then you and that person find things to do together, like going to Alaska, that makes life fun and interesting, and you realize that you want to try new things, but only if you can try them with this other person and share all those experiences with them.
And you realize that every time something good happens, they are the first person that you want to tell. And that you can't wait to see them at the end of the day, not because you want to jump them, but simply because seeing them puts you at peace, in a way that you don't even understand.

It's not perfect happiness, because that doesn't exist. There are times that my lovely wife just drives me absolutely up the wall. And I know there are times that she would have liked to gut me and string my entrails from the tree in the backyard.

But when I look at her, I realize that I love her more today than I did yesterday, and I will love her even more tomorrow, and I would gladly die or endure any pain to protect her.

That's what it's about.

True, sometimes it's boring.

But occasionally, you get sparks.