Thursday, November 1, 2012


With the hullabaloo of Halloween fading away, my mind can turn even more to my present and future hopes and plans. I awoke this morning overjoyed to be in November - although I loved October well - and found the world wrapped in cool, soft mist to carry in the season.

It is such a relief to wake up happy and not anxious or depressed. Just calm, and a bit curious to see how the day unfolds. I still have plenty of errands and such to occupy me, but work is pretty slow right now, which I think is a blessing, all things considered. I know I haven't had much dedication or focus lately, but I also haven't screwed up with any clients thanks to the lull.

My husband and I have found time for some good talks, as we work out what all my new-found freedom means. He's just slightly apprehensive, and understandably so. For the first time in 15 years, I do not HAVE to stay married to him! He asked me the other day, "So you're not going to run off and start a new relationship, are you?" in an only slightly joking manner.

"No, honey, I am not going to run away to a new life. I like this life - and you - and I'm going to stay here."

While the fanatasy of fleeing everything and all may sometimes be a comforting emotional concept, in real life, I have never seen that work well for anyone involved! Relationships have a way of holding on to people, and not being so easy to escape.

I went on to restate my preference. "All I want now is just a good friendship with D. I mean, in effect, we already are friends. But I'd prefer it that all three of us shared a friendship in a good, healthy way."

And my husband looked at me and said, "You keep talking about friendship. But you have to understand something. I have no idea what you mean by that. I mean, think about it Marie. I don't have any other friends -- all I have is you."

And that floored me. It is absolutely true. My husband really doesn't know how to have and keep a friend. Sure he has co-workers that he is friendly with, and he has my friends, and the girls' friends' parents. But the longer term people in his life -- his parents, his relatives, his old friends -- they have all faded away. Wow.

He continued, "Besides D and I really were friends. Once."

Poor guy. I forget that he's not me. Lost in my own head, it's easy to overlook that he is quite a different kind of person.

But friends. Friends are the seasoning that add flavor to life's meals. Friends are the people you can count on long term to care for you and to give and take with you. To be a friend is no small mark of honor and shows tremendous trust. In the past, for D and me, we could never figure out a way to be what the other wanted and needed, what the other deserved. Trying to do so was only crazy-making and painful. But a friendship celebrates the long term relationship between two people; it honors their care for each other. It recognizes that there are simply people in the world to whom you have entrusted a part of your heart, and that you believe that you hold some portion of theirs as well.

So you try to hold it carefully. And with good intent.

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