Rectification & Reconciliation

The Bard (the one who likes peare shakes, not the playable character class) once made a cleverly worded statement in As You Like It (Act II Scene VII for you weirdos):

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

If all life is a stage, sometimes you have to ask that inevitable question: “…line?”

As time stomps onward, some parts of life are so baffling that you just have to give up trying to figure them out.

The last few posts here were oriented towards the idea of the two of us hashing out life all by ourselves, and it’s been a frazzling and deconstructive month since then. Among its tomfoolery and argle-bargle:

  • Vicky and I moved to Riverside, a town 25 miles closer to my work and 23 miles further away from hers, netting a 2 mile commuting gain
  • In that move, we’ve downsized significantly, though she did get a fancy scorpion-ridden art room out of the new arrangement
  • I’ve had a massive reawakening and restructuring of thoughts regarding my career, life orientation, purpose, meaning, and other fun existential ideas
  • That initial plan to have a wedding reception in the park has been scratched now that my parents made an offer for us to use their home

Our move was one of the most seamless ever, largely due to the fact that we’ve both started to develop a disdain for STUFF (Stupid Things U Fear Forfeiting).

We finally got rid of some furniture from the aftermath of the downsizing that was costing us money to store and not use. I can’t understand how some people make a habit of keeping things that cause them more stress. Maybe they like being unhappy.

My career has moved to a strange self-satisfaction. One of the folks I follow for inspiration and thoughts posted this blog post, and it has really gotten me thinking differently about career and ambition.

In short, there is no benefit to desiring what isn’t present, and the only true happiness comes from wanting a reasonable positive change that you’ve created in the environment you are currently in. This is far less ambitious than the residual effects of the self-esteem movement tripe I was given as an uncouth and adorable child of the Seinfeld Era.

The practical application of this is profound. I’ve given up thinking about anything beyond the wedding until we’re done with the wedding, and any new things that come up will be thought of as they come up.

The reason I’m focusing on myself here is simple: everything I do affects my wife. If I’m unhappy she gets unhappy, and vice versa. Granted, since I possess half of the X chromosomes that she does, I also happen to have half of the emotional intensity of her, meaning that my days are either moderately productive or moderately unproductive.

Being a woman is difficult, especially in a male-deprecating society. Biologically women are weaker, they’re more intense emotionally, more driven by security than by challenge, and typically find all of these things offensive to be stated by a non-female. Unfortunately, with all of the confusion, men aren’t allowed to be manly if it risks implying they’re more manly than women, which means the remaining family roles really don’t fit their need to self-actualize.

 

This family role situation is just the start of what will be a long and arduous audit of our identities. As it stands, our current challenge is to get past this wedding situation, and that manifests in how we treat my parents.

My parents are nothing if not tenacious/stubborn. Even though in the past I’ve expressed my views of them in blogging that their internet-challenged Gen-X lives find revoltingly public, they are reaching out to mend and improve relations with Vicky and I, and it is a large step of faith for them to be willing to host our wedding celebration.

Though I’m sure that a piece of it is tied to our capacity for fertility (Proverbs 17:6) I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt that they are looking to salvage a relationship that made bad situations worse through misinformation and reactive behavior despite good intentions.

This family mending is extremely good for everyone involved, and my hunch is that they will soon enough see a baby that looks like 1/8th of each of them soiling their carpet if they continue at what’s been happening.

Unfortunately, on the other genealogical side, we have the depressing train wreck of Vicky’s family. Though her mom is no longer physically present in her life, every week presents a new Hard-To-Pronounce Syndrome (HTPS) she has to deal with from the aftermath of her mom’s mind games and manipulation, which brings out another HTPS in myself that needs working on. This scenario is actually very common, though the roles usually get reversed and other past relationships come into the picture. We’ve been blessed with merely having a dumb upbringing and being social retards.

Our issues come and go based on lunar cycles and weather patterns, but the general pattern of our specific cycle is as follows:

  1. I do something with all the sensitive tenderness of a drunken bear
  2. She is triggered by something a bit indirectly related to the current situation
  3. She under-reacts and I try to fix the situation like a 4-year-old with a nailgun, usually causing more triggers
  4. If provoked enough, she over-reacts and I put up distance from my issues, triggering other issues
  5. The problem lingers for days until she remembers that I’m not her mom or her dad

This whole issue comes around from a lot of emotional STUFF on both ends, but as I said earlier this is par for the course.

One major improvement from before is that the severity has come down a bit, but anyone who likes to think that marriage is easy should probably stop being single before saying that.

One of the biggest ways to keep going is to stay positive. Usually going for your partner’s throat is just a misconstrued means of self-defense, and the way things go down can always be improved by an affirmation and chocolate.

Besides, it can always be worse. You remember that annoying kid in school you couldn’t stand because they smelled funny and were mean? You could be married to that.

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