First of all, thank you for your candid comments to my last post. People responded all over the Internet to the question Heather posed, Wednesday and each response was an eye-opener for me. I got to really thinking about marriage and why I struggled so hard early on.
I was also taken aback by a commenter questioning my love for Hal because I'll admit to a wandering eye, to struggling with the idea of monogamy (sexually as well as intellectually and spiritually.) I happen to be very honest with myself when it comes to love and the reality of relationships and I've never believed that one person can or should complete me. I certainly don't "complete" Hal or anyone else. Nor do I aim to. Faaaar too much pressure and besides? We are complex individuals with complex needs extending beyond our families and spouses at times.
It wasn't until Hal and I became honest with each other about our fears and the pressures or married life that we became happy and really honestly fell in love with one another. True story.
I resented Hal in the beginning of our marriage because I thought he wanted to keep me from my life, taking away my open road and replacing it with a culdesac. No outlet. I resented him far more than I resented Archer for making me a mother. Being a wife was the reason I felt so alone.
But my loneliness, it seemed was a construct of my own fear. One day I spoke up and everything changed. I had been wrong to feel trapped. I was in nobody's cage but my own. A cage I had likely spent my life and every serious relationship building and breaking down, afraid I might fall under someone's spell. Belong.
No woman should ever feel trapped in her marriage just like no man should ever feel trapped in his. Our lives are precious, full of opportunities that at times, we must seek out. Otherwise it's too easy to resent our partners, our children and families. I was resenting Hal for the parts of myself I had to sacrifice in order to be with him. The day trips and the daydreams I could no longer pursue... But I could. I can. I know that now. And in retrospect it was insane of me to think otherwise. But I was young and I had never been bound by law to any person and I was scared. Intimidated by "forever."
Over the last two years I've realized that forever means nothing .... that I'm with the man I want to be with as long as our forever lasts. Whether that means five months or five decades. A marriage where windows remain open no matter the weather, and culdesacs are bulldozed through. Where in order to stay true to each other we must first be true to ourselves. Where a healthy love depends on our mutual respect for each other's independence . No cages. No clipped-wings.
By having no expectations when it comes to happily ever after... We have found true happiness.