Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Being Selfish

Staring at this blank page now, wondering what to write here... how to unravel what's going on in my brain.
I love Ark. I really do... but... after the trauma of yesterday, and having a chance to sleep on it... Hell, I fell apart on him last night. I just wasn't ready, after only two months, to let what we have go. I'm still not ready.

Last night he told me he'd keep coming back to SL for me. Keep being my partner. My lover. My husband and my friend. And assured me that it wasn't out of a sense of obligation because he knows how badly it's going to hurt me when he's gone... but because he wants to be here with me and the thought of losing me hurts him just as badly.

But he's struggling and I know it. He's torn between what he has with me and what he has in the real world and the guilt is tearing him apart. And, yes, he let me know today that he was still going to try to log in less than he already does... which is minimal at best. Any less and I honestly don't know how we can make it work. When we're both online... it's so rare that we don't have time to build anything outside the world of just the two of us. We don't go out, we don't hang out with friends, we don't explore.
I would be short-changing myself to settle for that and I promised myself after the last fiasco I wasn't going to do that to myself again. I want it all. I wasn't going to settle for anything less.

I love him. That's not in doubt. If love was all that mattered, it'd be great. But, unfortunately, one can't live on love alone.

I struggle... I've struggled all along... with being a wife and being in an open relationship. Not so much because of jealousy or anything like that. It's the thought of that awkward moment when he logs on and I'm fucking someone else. Or I log on and he's fucking someone else. Our time together is so limited I feel like I owe it to him to be available when he can be online. Is that fair to me?
Maybe if I knew when he was going to be online... If I could say I'm going to set aside these hours for Ark and the rest of the time is mine to act like I'm a single woman. Even though he doesn't mind, and even encourages me, to get out and do what I want, I'm still always sort of looking over my shoulder in case he logs on. And what to do when he does? Leave whoever I'm with to spend time with my husband? Have him come watch/join us? I just feel like that would be weird for all three of us. Tell my husband, "Sorry, babe... I know we haven't seen each other in a few days, but I can't see you right now... I'm fucking someone else"? None of those seem like very good options. And he doesn't have the luxury of knowing ahead of time when he's going to be available, anyway.

There have been many times in the last two months when I've gone out and met men I'm attracted to... and just when things start getting heated, I pull back because I can't devote my full attention to them because I'm never sure when Ark is going to be on. Hell, it's obvious from this blog and my Flickr that I haven't been having the sex with others. There have been a few encounters with men who don't want to be blogged about, or the photos just weren't good enough to publish, but for the most part... I'm just hanging out on the edges. My life isn't much different than before Ark... other than the beautiful set of rings on my finger.
Am I in love, or in love with being in love? The tears I shed last night would suggest I'm in love. Or am I just scared to be alone again? I honestly don't know the answer.

Am I fighting a losing battle? Struggling to hold on to someone who desperately needs to let go? Why am I fighting to hold on to something that is almost nonexistent? Because I love him and love the way I feel when we're together.

There's no rush... no decisions have to be made today. The thing about SL is anything and everything can change at the drop of a dime, and often does. You can be sailing along with everything seemingly perfect and have the rug ripped right out from underneath you. Or everything can be bloody miserable and then something wonderful happens, like when this amazing man came along and swept me off my feet.
To survive in SL, you have have to be able to roll with the punches, just like in the real world. You can't force another person or another avatar to do what you want them to, and they can't force you.

For right now... I'm still with my husband. But I'm not going to hold back on my... explorations... anymore. He has to understand that if he wants to continue to be with me, I have to get out and live. Make friends. Lovers. And if he logs on in the middle of my... exploring... we'll just have to deal with that. I can't put things on hold on the off chance I'm going to see him.

It's going to be hard to do... My instinct is to keep myself free so if he does log on, there's no awkwardness. I'm a nurturer... a giver and somewhat submissive. He is my husband, and I feel that I should always put him first. The strong, independent side of me says that if I put him first, I should expect to come first for him, too. But, realistically, I know that's just not possible. He has to keep the two worlds very separate whereas I'm free to blend them however I want.
Second Life always has to come second to real life. For all of us. But the emotions carry from one world into the other. As a person... both SL Beth and RL Beth, I don't like coming second to anyone... not when it comes to my partner. I understand it, I accept it, but I don't like it. Maybe if he was an old married man... but he isn't. I absolutely cannot tell him how to live his real life. I have opinions, and I've shared them with him, but in the end... the choices are his. He's young, and I'm scared for what his future holds... but I'm also not sure if I'm scared of that because I know I won't be a part of it, or if it's because I've been around the block a few more times than he has and can see his future in the lives of other men who made choices that seemed right at the time and have led to being stuck in a situation where they aren't happy.

Hindsight is 20/20. And part of growing up... and just growing in general... is making mistakes and learning from them. But there are a shit ton of married men in their 30s, 40s and older on SL that are there because of choices they made in their 20s. Do they love their wives and children? Yes, for the most part. There are some men who only resent their wives, but most of them truly love their spouses. But are they happy? No. Are their wives happy? I doubt it.

I dunno... I'm a bitter old woman and I don't have much respect for marriage. Almost every man I know, in or out of SL, is cheating... or wants to cheat but it too afraid. When that's happening even before you tie the knot? Shouldn't that be a clue that something isn't right?
It's easy for me to make judgments from behind the safety of my computer... to think I know what other people should do and what is right for them. I'm not the one who has to live with those decisions and choices.

Life is about choices. Turn left, or turn right? Go to the movies, or stay home? Get married, or stay single? I have no plans to change my own personal situation. If he were suddenly free, would I go visit him? Yes, absolutely. Would I be packing my bags and preparing to move? No. I'm meant to be a single woman. That's the decision I've made. I'm too old and set in my ways now to bring another human into my life. I'm far too selfish (and, yes, scared) to share my space with anyone.

I'm a shitty person for judging his situation and thinking I know what's best for him.

There are too many obstacles, aren't there? I need to bless and release, don't I?
We're both stubborn people. I'm not ready to let go yet. I know I need to... I know I should... but damn it, I'm just not ready yet.

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