My Real Desire

I’ve been looking for things to glue onto my dream board. During my search, something struck me: nothing I’m looking for or interested in involves my fellow human beings.

A week ago, I went to a friend’s place. She left to go help another friend and left me alone with her cat. I finished the coffee and pet the cat until it was almost comatose. She was sleeping on the floor when I left.

However, while there alone with the cat, it was dark and quiet. The TV was not on. There was pure silence. It felt soooooooo good. I realized that I never get that because Barry always has the TV on. To be alone (no humans) in the silence was wonderful.

That’s what I want and need: silence and solitude. Of course, my ability to obtain those things is limited, but at least I know what the goal is now.

I can get it by spraying chemicals on my driveway or working on a project for the women’s center on my computer and letting Barry watch TV.

I realized that my confusion was simply a mask for the knowledge that what I truly want is not socially acceptable in my current situation. It is easier to believe that I just don’t know what I want than to be honest with myself. I’m sure that if you had asked Jeffrey Dahmer what he wanted when he was twenty, he probably wouldn’t have said, “What I really want  to do is to eat people.” He either would have lied to you (assuming he knew the truth) or he would have lied to himself, living in confusion. Women, in particular, live lives of confusion, not because we don’t know what we want so much as that there is no social support for the level of intra-personal honesty that men get praised for. Women are not honest with ourselves because it is unrewarded and sometimes unsafe to be so.

My single friends would be mystified because they are alone by default. They have to seek out companionship. To me, solitude is a luxury single people take completely for granted. Perhaps ten years after Barry dies, I will feel differently. However, even if he died tomorrow, I would probably still spend more of my adult years married than single. This November will be our 28th anniversary and I am 48 now. You can see how loneliness is not on my radar this minute.

It’s weird because I feel free now. Not that anything has changed, but I, at least, know what I want.


About cdhoagpurple

I live in Michigan. I was Greek Orthodox (and previously Protestant), but now am more Buddhist than anything. I am single now (through the till-death-do-you-part clause of the marriage contract). My husband Barry was a good man and celebrated 30 years in AA. I am overly educated, with an MBA. My life felt terminally in-limbo while caring for a sick husband, but I am free now. I see all things as being in transition. Impermanence is the ultimate fact of life. Nothing remains the same, good or bad.

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