Universal Truce

"Bullhorn" by Duchamp, Creative Commons/Flikr

The Universe has been speaking to me this weekend, and I don’t think I like what it’s telling me. Not only that, it appears to be coming at me through a cosmic bullhorn, loud and clear. I guess nobody ever likes what The Universe has to say, huh? I mean, if you can’t figure something out for yourself and The Universe actually has to intervene, it must be pretty stinking bad.

By now you know that I’m afflicted with a sickness that involves constant movement and mental activity, even to the point of complete exhaustion and self-inflicted immune system shutdown. I tend to procrastinate just long enough that I am required to work straight through to madness, until I experience the emotional blue screen of death. And yet I continue to be suprised. To the average onlooker this appears to be insanity – repeating my actions and expecting a different result. But to those who don’t see my procrastination, it just appears as if I’m trying to do everything and be everything to everyone. That’s really not it, guys. I swear.

I’m really much more self-absorbed than that.

All I’m trying to do is figure out what it is that I want. That’s all. And this weekend several different people, none of whom know each other, told me (in varying degrees of directness) that I need to figure out what it is that I WANT. Well, okay – alrighty then. So why is that so damn hard?

I’m sure it’s because I don’t want to pick. I’m sure it’s because I’m so very talented. I’m sure it’s because I want ALL of the things that I want, and I want to be the one to do them all myself. All of them.

It couldn’t be because I’m afraid.

See, there are lots of things that are changing. My daily life and my mind are morphing at breakneck speed. My kids are maturing, and relate to me differently than they did just a few months ago. My job is evolving, in a good way. My body is freaking out on me, in a bad way (let’s not even go there). I care about things I never cared about before. My friendships are changing. My interests are not what they once were. My confidence is waning in some areas, expanding in others. My perspectives on pretty heavy subjects are being enriched. I’m growing.

Without Husband.

And I just can’t do that. He’s been here every other time. I remember the day I wanted out of my financial job and contemplated law school, and he was there. He said, “You can do this. You can be a lawyer if you want to. Is that what you want?” And I did. I wanted it. I remember being half way through law school, and realizing that it was hard – harder than I thought. I was not one of those people who was naturally smart. I didn’t always “get it.” I had to work quite hard. I remember the day I sat on the floor and cried, and told him that I had made a huge mistake. He was there, and he didn’t mince words. I thought he was coming in to scoop me off the floor, but he didn’t. He looked at me and he said, “If it was easy, everyone would do it. You can do it – if you really want to.” And suddently, I did. And then I remember the day we sat parked in our car on a rainy weekend, looking out at the water. I remember when he said he wanted to start a family.

I cried, because I didn’t know what I wanted. I was so gripped by fear, that it came out as anger. I remember being so very afraid. And I remember how he yelled, “I will be there, if you want to! I want to!” And I remember the silence that fell over us, as I cried, and he stared. And I remember hearing the rain, and thinking about how he always knew what he wanted. And then I remember not being scared any more.

So here I am, trying to figure out what I want, but he’s not here. I’m stretching and growing without him. I’m getting over fears without him, and this time, he’s not here. What will happen if he comes back and I’ve changed? What will happen if HE has changed? What if he comes back and I don’t need him to say it anymore? What if I don’t need him to say, “You can do it, if you want to?”


Well, you can forget it. I’m going to stagnate, that much I’ve already decided. I’m going to un-grow.  I’m going to just sit here in the mosquito-infested mud and pretend to be completely oblivious to the blood-sucking stings of change.

I will just refuse to learn something new, that’s all.  I’ll just start caring about idiotic things again like the best waterproof mascara money can buy, and I will focus on that. I’ll be filled with righteous indignation at the condition of my unmanicured toes. I’ll worry about the number of tacos I can order without having to go incognito at the drive through. I will have angry outbursts at Elmo DVD’s and people who suggest that I need to change.

And I’ll just stay right here. Exactly the same. And I’ll wait.

Afterall, that’s what I want. Isn’t it?


10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Qwrgrl
    Apr 19, 2011 @ 11:41:16

    I stumbled across your blog while searching about heavens only know what 🙂 I cannot tell you how incredibly powerful an effect it has had upon me. Although I am not part of a military family, my significant other previously worked at sea and now works out of town. So much of your experiences ring so absolutely true for me. At times I wonder if the struggle would be easier if I had children to take my mind off of myself yet when I find myself asking what I want I realize I’m still so absolutely self-centered and indulged 🙂

    Thank you very much for the continued posts and humor!


    • wittylittlesecret
      Apr 19, 2011 @ 22:19:28

      Oh, I just love it when people stumble in here, and I love to hear how they relate. There are lots of lonely people out there, and lots of strong people like yourself out there, who understand these feelings, military or not! Hope you were able to catch a laugh. 🙂


  2. Trackback: I can do this. « Witty Little Secret
  3. Sarah Roberts
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 22:01:02

    Dude – people are commenting because that was a really good one! You know, the kind of post where you make us feel what you’re experiencing, not just watch you from a safe distance…. and what’s that dopey ol’ saying: the only thing that’s constant is change… yea, whether we like it or not we’re always changing… I love Dogboy’s word for it.. evolving… sounds more civilized… sounds like something you’d almost WANT to do as opposed to something you just HAVE to do…. either way, last I looked you ARE doing it! 🙂


  4. courtney
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 13:27:13

    Funny………as a single person who has been making EVERY decision alone for the past 20 years and thought I would be married with kids by now – I can’t figure out what I WANT – because I WANT a husband and children but have to wait for that to happen. So how do I decide what ELSE I want…………or plan for the future ALONE? Ideally I too will have a husband right about the time your husband comes home. But in the meantime I’m in the same spot you are. 🙂


  5. Mom
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 11:08:47

    I so remember being right where you are and I remember being afraid. I don’t know who Sugah is, but whoever they are, they said exactly the right thing. I’d love to be able to impart some wonderful words of wisdom, but it’s so different for everyone, you have to find your own way. Not the answer you’d like, I’m sure, but true nonetheless. And pffft – you couldn’t possibly shut down and sit still if you tried. So forge ahead at your own pace, keep thinking, don’t run away from the problem, and it will all come around right. We all think we’ve made a mistake when the going gets tough…it’s just human. And hubby will always be there and so happy and proud to be a part of whatever life you chose to live. He loves you mightily. You have to love and trust yourself just as much.

    Love, Mom


  6. DogBoy
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 06:56:33

    It’s not change, it is evolution. Change would be an admission of error. Change underwear, that is all.


  7. doggirlknits
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 05:46:01

    I SO LOVE reading your posts. I think when you’re done sitting on your *ss, you should WRITE! When you want to, that is. And I’m SO glad that I’m not the only one with unkept toes!

    Love you, Lorrior!


  8. Sugah
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 02:36:25

    So what if he comes back and you’ve both changed? It won’t be the worst thing that ever happens to you. You may be more self-reliant, but that does not make him obsolete and you will still need each other. Free to be needed in different ways. Change is inevitable. Change is a given.

    And why MUST you decide right now, this very second, what you want? Mid-life crisis cuts a very wide swath in the scheme of things. It’s as much a need to reconnect to who we were as much as who we will be. It doesn’t happen at the same time for everyone, despite what you’ve heard. You have time. More than you think. Allow yourself to see things unfold. Nothing has to be “chosen” until you are ready. Ignore the people who push you. Maybe they are threatened by your boldness, by your wanting more. It’s okay to want to find your spirit in the midst of being a wife, mom and professional.

    Some decisions may become clear before he gets back. Some won’t. You may not need him to tell you “you can do it, if you want to,” but I bet you will want him to be part of your decisions in some way or another.


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