The balance of relationships and work life are a funny thing.
You see, the problem I am attempting to conquer as of late is the fact that while I am 100% committed to and in love with my fiancé, I also feel the same way, to a certain degree, about writing.
No, I do not want to kiss my keyboard, but you get what I am saying.
The problem lies, instead, in the fact that, since I have really begun to pursue writing, I have lost the balance in my life. I have unknowingly pushed aside my fiancé, Dan, and chosen my writing. I traded late-night movies for late-night writing, direct eye contact while talking for talking and staring at a computer screen, and hugs and kisses for, “Honey, I really need to finish this.”
The other day Dan was leaving for work and I was sitting at the computer, — getting two more words typed before I stood to say goodbye to him — when he told me he was “not happy with us lately.”
And that jolted me right out of cyberspace. His words hit me hard. And the feeling sucked.
That “I feel disconnected’ statement has always been a cue between the two of us that something is really wrong.
When he left, I cried.
I had been completely immersed in my writing which is a good (great!) thing. But the problem is that I had become so submerged in a sea of words I was beginning to not notice everything that was happening above ground. Being loving, in addition to being playful and brushing my teeth, had become secondary.
I was reading an article in the February 2008 issue of Glamour magazine this morning called, “How A Man Feels When His Marriage Falls Apart” by Anthony Swofford, the author of Jarhead. In the article, the author talks about the path that lead to the end of his two-year marriage to his wife whom he had once been sure was his life partner.
He says, “We’d locked down into a cycle, and neither of us could see the damage the cycle was doing.”
Doesn’t that sound so familiar?
So many people I know who have ended a relationship with a spouse or boyfriend express those same feelings:
“We got too comfortable.”
“I don’t know how it happened.”
“Life just took over.”
I don’t want this to be me. And I am so glad that it is not. I am so happy to have recognized the imbalance before everything got so off-kilter I ended up alone — just my computer and me.
My mother always says that one cannot have children in an effort to “fix” her relationship “because when everyone is grown and gone, you are once again left with just the two of you. And all of your problems? Well, they are still there.”
Perhaps, this is something I need to understand about work, too. In the end, I am not growing old and wrinkly with my computer. And while that passion for writing is oh-so-important, so is the man who loves me completely.
And for that, I am brushing my teeth today.