How long? That’s my question today. How long after the good stuff goes bad do you give up and walk away? How much time do you give something? How many chances? How much effort and worry do you expend? How long before saying that’s enough is a conscious and wise decision and not just running away from the problem.
Do I have something specific on my mind? Well, yes, but really this question could apply to any number of things: a failing relationship, a friendship, a job, family ties… whatever. We all have these types of things in our lives. I’m sure something that at one point in time was good SO good. It added to your life made you feel… happy, proud, safe, secure, loved, needed. If you’re lucky, all of those neatly tied up with a pretty ribbon. Perhaps gave you a reason to get up in the morning. For sure something to smile about…
Change – it happens to us all, and try as you might you can’t avoid it. Some changes are sudden, dramatic, turning points in our lives that we all can recognize as times of distress for the person concerned; times when they may need extra support and understanding. Moving house, getting married, breaking up, becoming parents, illness, losing a loved one. Society accepts these times of weakness in a person life because we understand them. We’ve been there and it’s HARD. We empathize and we do all we can even if that doesn’t amount to much. Its ok – almost accepted that you will reach out and ask for support.
Other times support is harder to find. Of course I knew that other women were experiencing the same devastating heartbreak as me when I first heard that word infertile. I knew I wasn’t the only one but it sure felt like it. I didn’t know anyone who was in that situation and to be honest even if I had I couldn’t really bring myself to talk to them or admit what felt like MY failure. I wish I had found the online community sooner. I wish someone had been there to show me. Maybe I would have pulled myself together a little faster who knows. Hey, at least I’m here now.
I’m wondering about that slow progressive change: the one that sneaks up on you the one you don’t notice the little changes you let slide because they are no big deal until they all add up to a change that suddenly you don’t like something anymore and you can’t put your finger on when or how. Sometimes even WHAT exactly HAS changed. It’s just a feeling you get that something is missing, something that was so good, tastes bitter. Maybe you feel stuck in a rut at work… or you find that you don’t want to open up to that friend in a way you once did, your family is no longer a place of support and nurture and instead a place of restraint and little squabbles. Things are not awful: they are just not… right. Nobody has done anything wrong you’re just not as comfortable as you once were.
Before you know it “not comfortable” has slipped into actually UNcomfortable and what was a source of joy turns to worry and longing, terrible longing for things to be fixed. Confusion “but this used to work so well” the more you try to make it work. The more you notice how much effort something that was so natural has become… an the downward spiral starts towards quitting that job, seeing less of that friend and putting a little geographical distance between you and family … is this just me ?
What I want to know is how do you stop? How do you rebuild something when your not sure how it got broken? Can it even be done? But most of all: How long do you let something stay in your life that’s causing you so much aggravation? How long do you cling to the hope that one day things will be as fantastic as they ever were and you’ll look back on this time as a distant memory?
I’m guessing the more you care, the longer the amount of time. But on the other hand, if its true that the more you care the greater the pain then where is that breaking point? When is enough enough? I just don’t know.
As with many things we care about I suspect there are no easy answers.