While I handled my hangover with zero grace last Saturday Z was at a portable saw mill getting lumber manufactured from reclaimed and felled wood for his class and the shop at school. The weather was snowy and freezing and he was out in it for hours. Every time we spoke on the phone I’d apologize for being such a useless idiot. And he’d tell me there was nothing to apologize for-it happens.
Back at home he took a look at me on the sofa and started laughing. He said that the next time this happened we needed to get me doing some strenuous physical activity. “You’ve got to sweat out the hangover so you feel better quickly!” he said.
Here is what I heard: “You are lazy and pathetic for having a hangover. Anyone else would be strong enough to soldier through, but you are a worthless princess who thinks she is special and who gets to just do nothing all day. I want a divorce.”
I feel wretched. What I hear, what my anxiety tells me is completely unfair to Z. He does not speak to me that way. In fact, one of the biggest refrains of our marriage is him telling me, “I’m on your side.” He doesn’t just say it, he shows it. We go to couple’s therapy. He encourages me to take time to myself. When I said I couldn’t take a class this semester because it met twice a week during the day he promised that we would figure it out. And he followed through-he picks up T from school twice a week while I’m in class. He is currently begging me to work with him on figuring out how we can have a date night once a week. He is an engaged and amazing Dad.
Z is a doer, a fixer. When I’m at home with the kids I barely get dinner made and baskets of laundry he’s asked me to take care of collect dust for days. When he’s alone with the the kids I come home to a reorganized pantry. He can’t sit still. For him relaxing is making something. A friend of ours once told me he thought there were actually two Zs because one person couldn’t possibly accomplish everything he does.
Even if the anxiety didn’t paralyze me I would be passive. My favorite activity is reading. Closely followed by napping. I could spend all day watching TV. I don’t like group activities, I don’t like parties. I do like going out to dinner, but I want to get there at 5pm right when the restaurant opens so it will be nice and empty.
Opposites do attract, and it is hella complicated. Especially when you throw mental illness into the mix.
I look at all he does and think that I will never ever be enough. Why would he fall in love with a couch potato? Why would he stay in love? Why wouldn’t he leave? If I struggle to love myself how can anyone else possibly love me?
It’s the anxiety. She is attempting to undermine him-how can he say anything to me at all if my illness twists it around completely? The bitch pushes him away when I need him the most.
And I am not trying to sell him as the perfect person. Perfection would be boring, anyway. He is as flawed as the next guy. That said, he it a good man. And a good father. And a great husband. But when my anxiety is bad, and she’s been horrid this week, I don’t know how to let him help me. I don’t know how to hear what he is really saying. I don’t know how to stop hating myself.
Damn that bitch. She wins another round.
I love him. I want to let him help me.
Found a hint of spring in the yard yesterday. It is currently covered in the inch or two of snow that fell last night…
He loves being outside even if it is cold.
How did this one get to be so grown up looking?