Like Words Together Reflections from the deep end of Practice.


Considering Each Choice

I'm feeling really tired out tonight. It has been a couple of big emotional talks, both with AM and CK, sandwiched around a very full day of yoga teacher training and my teaching Sunday. Also ended up getting my new mobile phone sorted out (about 90 minutes inside of Lloyd Center... ick). I feel pretty drained now, but not awful.

With AM and I it was really one too many "little things" the past week. Stuff just not being taken care of, feeling like my requests are set aside again and again. It all just came to a point where, in response to his enthusiastic input to an idea I'm working on for a yoga website, I found myself telling him that I felt as though he had many other priorities to attend to rather than get distracted by my project ideas. After we had talked a little more I finally said that more than anything my trust in our relationship had eroded over the past few years, to the point I was feeling rather hopeless.

Today I finally admitted to CK just how shaky I've been feeling about my relationship with AM. I also shared how I'd talked with AM on Friday, letting him know how tenuous I felt. How tight things are financially, which felt terrifying to share. How scared and upset, on top of all the icky shame stuff, I've been feeling.

I had been trying to tell her small bits, but afraid to share the whole with her. By the time the weekend rolled around I really had started to feel like both relationships were crumbling away. She talked more with me too and it was helpful to really learn from her what she was feeling rather than always trying to make it out via the underlying tension. We both agreed that although these truths are difficult, that we still need to reveal them together.

AM and I spoke further back at the house later. I commented that I still felt like he was my best friend, but that I also just felt like all my tricks for coping with being unhappy with how things have been are used up. He commented back that he felt like he had, worst of all, disrespected a friend in how he's treated me. He wants to show me that he can actually be the person he says he is.

I was trying to keep in the back of my mind something HB said this past week during a dharma talk. That our only way is to do the skillful, ethical thing in each situation as it arises. We cannot predict what we'll do next year, we can only approach each choice that is presented to us as it comes and in that moment make the choice that best embodies the precepts.

In this exact moment it feels right to continue talking to AM and giving him some time. He has noted that he knows he has to start showing me he really is intent on changing, doing what I need to feel more supported. I feel like it honors the relationship we have shared, the regard & love we have for one another. To honestly acknowledge what I need and provide space to see if those needs can be met. That's this moment.

I honestly don't know if there will be a change. I'd like there to be one. I'd like to believe my best friend can be who he says he is, especially in being a real partner to me. It would make my whole path more clear if changes did occur and it entirely fits with my real deep feeling for the precept that guides us to see the good in others. But I honestly cannot predict that changes will happen or not.

I feel profoundly grateful that CK reminds me of her love for me, that she doesn't plan to leave me. It kicks up the shameful feelings, the need to hear her say it leaves me feeling weak. This is scary, big stuff and sometimes I feel cut off from her by it. I can feel my body, my tense breath, but I cannot sense her sometimes.

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