Thursday, September 1, 2011
Working on love
After the walk we went for a sail. I haven't just sailed to be sailing about for a while. Generally, there is a destination. But I think that having a few hours every Wednesday, regardless of weather, to go sailing is a good idea. It was a lovely breezy day, making the whole experience a delight. After that we cooked dinner on the boat and then headed home. We were both asleep by 10:30 PM which is early for me.
I don't think that we could have gotten through the day without a lot of angry words a few years ago. Although we still have a long way to go, I think that our love has deepened over time. I can see progress in trusting, not isolating, not blaming, and knowing how to express our feelings. I still want to draw her closer when she withdraws.
I understand though that there has to be balance in a relationship. I can see that we are becoming more balanced and that emotional detachment doesn't scare me as much as it used to. Some of us are capable of great, fierce love. Others love the only way that they know how. I have learned that my insecurities about how to love and being loved don't have to be a struggle.
I hear a friend tell me that he is starving for love. He loves his wife but cannot take the emotional withdrawal and self-absorption of the dry drunk alcoholic. Their views of love don't match. He believes his wife loves him but doesn't know how to express love in a mature way. He wants balance in the relationship and an equally loving partner. It may or may not happen.
Living with an alcoholic can be so lonely. My choice was to take care of myself and not try to make the other person fulfill all my emotional needs. The most important question for me became, "Do I love myself?" I am still working on that.