Wednesday, May 16, 2007
It's All About Choices - Part 3...
Michael was an avid reader, a talented carpenter, electrician,
plumber. He could build a house. Re-build an engine.
He taught himself to repair antique clocks.
He had, in my eyes, the potential to be successful and happy.
Yet, with all of that, his attitude was reflected in his
favorite phrase, "Life sucks and then you die."
He made that true... for him.
To this day, I cringe whenever I hear anyone make that
In his eyes, nothing was ever enough. Nothing was ever quite
right. But, he wanted all he wanted without effort.
He wanted easy. He wore me down.
I wore myself down trying to create a life that needed two
people participating equally.
Finally, I realized that I was disappearing.
I had allowed myself to become almost completely absorbed
by him. I had no goals or dreams for myself. I existed entirely
to nurture him and his life.
I knew then that if I continued living that way, that I would
eventually fade away... and die.
My self would be gone forever. I would cease to exist.
I had to leave.
Anyone who knows me well, knows that there are very few
things I do quickly. I am a planner. I am an analyzer.
I am becoming more spontaneous... slowly.
But, eleven years ago, I wanted to be as prepared as possible.
I spent the next year saving money. Michael was unemployed
for the first nine months of that year.
February 1, 1997 I rented a small apartment about five miles
north of where we lived.
Michael and I were working opposite shifts, so I was able to
move small loads to the apartment while he was at work.
I was a nervous wreck.
March 1, 1997 I told Michael that I was moving out.
He said nothing, but I could see the muscles in his jaw
contracting. He wouldn't look at me. He kept staring at
the television. I asked him if he had anything to say, if he
wanted to talk. Almost in a whisper, he finally replied,
"What's to talk about? Your mind's made up."
I spent that night in a fitful sleep on the couch.
The next morning I loaded more of my things in my car
and drove to my apartment.
I don't remember my first night there.