Friday, May 13, 2011

on being alone. {part one}

Two nights ago, when the air was warm and the sun had gone down just over the horizon and there was that delicious pre-summer smell all around, I sat out on my deck and stared off into the distance. I like to do that on nights like that one. The world feels peaceful and safe and ready for me to just be in it in that way. And when my heart feels heavy and my mind feels cluttered, the air seems to calm it all down. And I needed that. I sat there, thinking. Really mulling over some things in my life that have been weighing on my heart. 

I had to say goodbye to someone last night. I'm not good at saying goodbye. I never have been. There's something so permanent about it. So life-shifting. And that terrifies me, change. When you grow up in a home with a schizophrenic mother, nothing is stable. That has had a huge impact on my adult life. All I long for is stability. Sameness. Predictability. But there was something inside of me that told me that saying goodbye was the right thing to do, even though it was so hard. I'd been praying about it {because, well, you know that's how I roll} and also just sort of feeling my way through it. 

Being with someone in a relationship is really hard. We know this about life and people and being together. What's so funny is that I think I don't know how to be in a relationship. I run. When things get hard or scary or out of my control, I simply run. I can't deal. Yet, I'm this person who raves about connection, raves about trusting and loving and extending kindness to one another. I'm all people need each other, we should be fighting for each other, we should love and give and dive in and open up to one another! But when it comes to my own life, I feel completely unable follow any of my suggestions.

I said goodbye to him because I didn't feel close to him. After 7 months. I couldn't fight for us, dive in, open up. I felt like I couldn't be myself, like I couldn't let down all the walls that have built up around me since that fateful day when someone else had leveled my heart. Those walls, they are made of steel, not stone.  They will not crumble like stone. They must be taken down manually. And I don't have the strength or trust to do that. Besides, there is something behind those walls that will not go away. Something that has been there for several years. A part of me that I cannot seem to let go of. A part of me that takes up so much room that I'm almost certain it's a huge reason why I couldn't get close during those 7 months.

Damn those walls...

I joked all the time that he was a robot, because he doesn't emote like I do. But in the end, I am the robot. Unable to really be fully human and vulnerable. Unable to be Laura.

He said to me last night, "You say I'm the robot, but you don't even open up to me." Because it's true. I can't open up. I can't be the real me. I can't let anyone in anymore. Oh, those walls. They are such fortresses, impenetrable and solid.  He said to me last night, "Relationships take work." And it's true. They do. But I am weak right now.  

I said goodbye to him. And I cried. Of course, I cried. He was respectful (frustrated and disappointed, yes, but also respectful). He even hugged me and kissed me goodbye. I buried my face in his neck, the warm salty tears running down his skin and seeping back into mine. He is a good man.  But my heart could not connect.

And now I am alone.

2 lovely bits o' feedback.:

Akirah said...

I just wrote a post about vulnerability because I have really been thinking a lot about it lately. It's funny how vulnerability is such a difficult thing to practice, yet so necessary in our close relationships. Your walls make complete sense, so I won't tell you to change. In fact, I am glad you are aware of your limitations and ended things with him in order to be fair. Life is a hard thing...and it's hard to adjust to being alone. I struggle with it most days. But you will get thru this and learn a lot. And I will be praying for you.

Andy said...

You're not alone. More than most, you should know that.

And I mean that in a constructive, "feel better"-sorta way.