Sunday, 26 October 2014

Sunday Morning Sadness

I spent another relaxing morning at Tasha's today, reading the paper, drinking coffee, just being calm with myself. It's a chilly day, so no happy warm sunshine today.  But I still enjoyed just being for a while. Part of me wondered whether Berlin would show up, but heard nothing from him at all. Oh well.

As I was driving home, I cast my mind over the years that I have been doing that ritual. It actually wasn't my first choice of how to spend a Sunday morning.  I always imagined Sunday mornings as lie-in intimate days. For years I kept hoping I could entice my husband to stay with me in bed on Sundays. Read the Sunday paper. Drink coffee. Have breakfast in bed. Snooze. Wake up. Make love. Talk. Snooze again.

But husband had a different view of what Sundays are for.  They were either for just sleeping in, or they were for 'doing' stuff.  I remember Sunday after Sunday where I would wake up earlyish, and he would still be fast asleep.  The boys would come in for their snuggles and then head off to their computers and settle in for Sunday morning computer games. I would reach for my book or phone and read for hours, waiting for him to wake up. And I remember him waking eventually, and I would hope he would want to turn to me. But he never did. He would wake up, get up without even kissing me good morning, and head for the shower and off to do whatever tasks he thought were super important for the day.  I'd be left in my bed, alone, swallowing again my bitter disappointment.

If I ever raised the issue with him, he would become angry: I was clearly ungrateful about all the stuff he 'did' around the house. He would reel off lists of activities and tasks that needed doing, and make it obvious that he just didn't have time to lie about in bed with me 'doing nothing'. I couldn't really argue. Running a house and a family does require a lot of stuff to be done. And he really did pick up the lion's share of that stuff. And so I found my protest just disappearing into the air. It couldn't be heard. It couldn't be recreated. I would just have to accept the status quo and change my expectations.

So eventually I started getting up when I woke up, instead of waiting around for him. I'd shower and dress quietly, and then take myself off to Tasha's to read and be for a couple of hours. It was a way of escaping that disappointing Sunday morning rejection moment, and replacing it with something that soothed me a bit. Sometimes friends of mine would join me. Even husband would join me occasionally, if he woke up and texted me when he found me 'missing'. But mostly I would spend the time quietly, alone. And then I would come home a couple of hours later and he'd either still be asleep, not having noticed I was gone, or already busy in his workshop, not really noticing my return.

As I forced myself to live with my sadness and find new ways of being inside myself, our intimacy slowly died. It was replaced by a sad and bitter feeling of loneliness, loss and neglect that I haven't really ever been able to shake since then. Invisible Neglect.

And then, for too short a time, John-the-Narc and I would find loving time in bed on Sunday mornings. Just briefly I was able to live out the fantasy of joyful loving Sundays where the man I loved would wake up and delight in having my naked body next to him in his bed. We would make love, have coffee, read the paper, make love again, watch the sun rising and the guinea fowl running past our bedroom window, talk, snooze... Just for a while it felt safe and happy and beautiful.

And then it was over - he shared that view and time and space with other women too. And my heart was too broken to ever be able to go back there again.

And so I'm back at Tasha's. Reading the Sunday paper. Drinking coffee. Finding a way to be peaceful and gentle with myself. Hoping that one day I will be able to find a different, loving way to be on Sunday mornings.

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