Fin in a Waste of Waters

"These moments of escape are not to be despised. They come too seldom....Leaning over this parapet I see far out a waste of water. A fin turns....I note under 'F.,' therefore, 'Fin in a waste of waters.' I, who am perpetually making notes in the margin of my mind for some final statement, make this mark, waiting for some winter's evening." (from Woolf's THE WAVES)

21 July 2006

Disservice to society

Rasheed & I have broken up. It's mutual, and I know that for the future, this is for the best. It was friendly (no fight), which is good, since I'll still be here, living with him, sharing his tiny studio flat and the couch/bed for another two weeks until I leave for D.C. (this is slightly weird, I have to admit). It's also slightly weird being here, because other than him, I'm basically on my own. My friends were his friends first. He has friends outside of those I know. He claims that he has "nowhere to go" to hang out, but he has no idea. (I have, however, made a couple of slightly neurotic phone calls to a former high school teacher who will go unnamed but whom I can always trust to make me laugh and who now no longer needs Elimidate as a guilty pleasure because his former student is making the drama. I have also called a friend/professor who lovingly [mostly] calls her husband her "oldest and least cute child" to complain; lucky for me, she was pissed at him, and he throws the same kind of tantrums that Rasheed does ["I never get any work done and it's all your fault" tantrums], so we had a good bitch-fest and then made plans to visit and do girly stuff when I'm in the area. And this, I think, was the longest aside I've ever written.)

We've broken up partly because he cannot deal with my "condition": the drugs, the doctors, the seizures on a daily basis. Though he put it somewhat more dramatically - overdramatically, perhaps - by claiming that it's taking over his life. Amazing, that. I don't think I could say it's taken over my OWN life, let alone another person's. True, it makes things suck pretty damn hard sometimes, these last couple of weeks being a particularly good example of that, but taking over? Never. And this is perhaps selfish of me, but I feel that regardless of this "taking over" my illness has contracted over his life, he hasn't been able to take care of me, that I've taken more care of him than he of me. It's only stupid little things, like cooking meals and then cleaning up after them, things like that, but still. With these recent medicine switches and seizures, I think I just wore myself out and snapped. He grew up verrrrry spoiled by his parents, particularly his mother (Indian immigrants to the U.S. who made phenomenally well for themselves and therefore will give anything unquestioningly to their sons), and I think I just realized that I was filling in for that role he'd been missing while living alone here: now I was here to "mother" him and take care of him and spoil him. Fine and good, but when you've had three seizures in one night...I wanted someone to take care of ME. Beyond holding me while I was actually having it, and then patting my shoulder - "Poor little penguin" - when it was done and then being over with it.

But now I'm complaining. He obviously is a good kid, if a little immature still, if I stayed with him this long. And he did make me very, very happy. A giddy, unadulterated happy that I hadn't felt since before the year of the tumor. My strongest memory of the spring we fell in love is of the color - just clear, white light; the white light that was coming through my window and reflecting on my white sheets the first morning I woke up next to him and my head was cradled on his chest, and he was already awake, and reading. And we read Rumi together on those mornings, and then Hafiz. He made me settled again.

Before that, it had been a few years of jumping from boy to boy, never committing to anyone. I broke a lot of hearts, I think. I did a great disservice to, well, men. I was terrified. I was living alone in so many senses of the word, but I didn't pity myself - I liked alone. I revelled in alone.

I hope that this has not unleashed that onto the world again.


At 8:30 PM, Anonymous Holly said...

As far as unleashing some lovely woman that will be a disservice to men; blah. They can handle it and I think you've learned a great deal about compassion through your seizure experiences. If you had not, you would not recognize the lack of it in Rasheed.

Mutual breakups are generally about the mutual need to move on, but, and not to defend Rasheed here, being frightened makes it difficult to be what your partner might need. Both my husband and daughter are epileptic (as you know :-)) and I can tell you that dealing with, living with someone that struggles with seizures is at the very least, a scary thing. Also, the sense of helplessness can make you useless. Sometimes making it somehow less than it is can be the only way to deal with it.
Love and hugs to you.


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