I suppose that it’s not so terrible a thing to take a couple of days off from time to time. I’ve had a lot going on recently, and it was nice to be able to catch up on a little sleep. I just wish that I didn’t keep waking up in the Twilight Zone. It used to happen with more frequency about a decade and a half ago, but from time to time it appears that I am still vulnerable to a shift between dimensions. Before I fall asleep, everything is normal. but upon opening my eyes, I find that I’ve been transported to a realm which appears in almost every way identical to the one with which I have been living, aside from one minor detail: In this new reality, my wife and I apparently do not get along. It probably has something to with the fact that I’m a massive pain in the ass, but what really kills me is that tonal shift never occurs until after I have fallen asleep. At least I’m fairly well-rested when we get into the thick of it, although I would much rather wake to find that I have been transported to a universe where everyone agrees with me and defers to my authority. Of course, I would then face the problem of never truly believing that I’d woken up.
It could be that I’ve just gotten used to a certain baseline of misery, but I seem to always be able to find just the thing to say or do to make everybody angry. It could also be that, after having ridden atop a wave of brightly burning mania, I am now crashing back to earth, wings melted and streaking down my back. I just hate it when I argue with my wife. I love her more than I ever thought possible, and have come to rely upon her in those moments when mere apathy and anger are simply not enough to get me through the day. I just wish that I could convince her that I actually know what I’m doing, instead of having to wait half a year for everybody to catch up to me. For me, it’s enough to know that she is there, standing by my side, a pillar of perfection in the jumbled chaos of my life. But I can see how sometimes it can be hard to keep your head held high when you’re just trying to keep it above water.
I’ve always landed on my feet. That doesn’t mean that I haven’t seen some dark days, just that I’ve always managed to escape them more or less intact. But it has been a little harder to navigate the streams of uncertainty with a wife and child. It’s not like the three of us (and all our stuff) can fit comfortably on someone’s couch until we get our feet beneath us once again. I’ve learned to keep it at a distance, all this uncertainty and self-doubt. I know just how fragile everything can be, but I also know that all that worry will only tie me into knots. That’s not to say that I don’t know how to really sink myself into a pit of things I cannot change, just that I also keep in mind that things have a tendency to work out for the best. My wife, however, is not familiar with this crippling level of worry. She is an amazingly capable human being who consistently puts me to shame on any number of issues, but when it comes to surviving stress-wound muscles, erupting heartburn, and the sinking feeling that the world is falling down around you, I totally have her beat.
Money doesn’t fix everything, but it sure helps to mitigate the worries. I understand why she is worried, as I’m bound to fall on my face one of these days. Most people would love to see me on that day, as the deflating of an ego so large is something of a spectacle. But should it ever come to pass that my luck actually runs out, my wife will wind up being punished for the crime of having believed in me. I know that everything is going to be okay, and apparently the universe is on my side (although, who knows how it will work in this parallel reality?). I don’t want to get into a lot of details, but every time I think that time has just run out, I’m granted an extension at the perfect time, like a second chance unfolding through infinity until I’m ready to get it all just right. Yeah, okay, I can see how that could look a little crazy. I suppose that if someone else unloaded all of that on me, at the very least, I’d be a little skeptical. It’s a good thing to be in the driver’s seat of your own insanity.
I just wish that she would relax. She runs around, putting out the fires, all the while getting singed around the edges. At the end of the day, the fire’s still burning strong, but it helps her to feel that something’s been accomplished. Meanwhile,my focus has been on how my jeans have been shrinking. We don’t have a scale in the apartment, but I’m certain that I haven’t packed away enough to outgrown all of my pants. I know that I could handle losing a couple dozen of them (pounds, not pants), but to have grown so… large… that I cannot even wear the jeans that I don’t care for… What is this world coming to?
That right there is a perfect comparison of the two of us: She’s focused on the all the things we need to do to keep from going under, and I’m shedding internet tears regarding my descent into flabbery. I just wish that she would accept my assurances that everything is going to work out fine, but she’s too much of a perfectionist to take me at my word, and I’m too tired to argue anymore with her. I feel like something dead, barely registering above room temperature.