Monday, June 21, 2010

Finding Forty, Day 26; Deep End Swimming

This morning, I woke up and the house was still quiet. I haven't been happy with how I look or feel for some time now, so I donned a swimsuit and decided to swim laps in my sister's pool.

The water was warm and welcoming and I eased in happily. It's been a long time, far too long, since I've worked out. I think when my heart is broken, rather than working out to expel the demons, I turn inward and mope and become a vegetable. Funny how that's not really working out so great for me.

The stroke I chose was the freestyle, which makes me chuckle, because it seems that as I glide through life, I freestyle or at least long to. Everything I do seems to be against the grain, sort of different from anyone else I know.

Last night I asked Dallas (I'll just start calling her that from now on, even though she doesn't live in Dallas proper) why I can't just BE happy with how things are. I texted her, "Why can't I just be in my marriage and make nice? Like S and so many others we know?"

Her response was spot on when she said, "Because they have no hope, intention or want of more. They have made their bed and are content to lie in it."

"Okay", I shot back as I let what she'd said sink in.

She followed with, "Well, they desire more but are not willing or want to take steps to change what mostly works."

It makes sense to me, even if it doesn't make me feel any better about being dumped by S for "mostly works". But how can I compete with that? How can I top "good enough"? Yeah, it makes sense, but it hurts like hell.

And why is it that mostly works just isn't good enough for me at this point in my life?

Yesterday, A reminded me of a quote by Teddy Roosevelt that I once sent him.

"It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat."

"Citizenship in a Republic,"
Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910

I can't remember ever sending it to him, but even as I read it now, it resonates with and through me. I'm tired of being a dreamer. I'm ready to be a doer.

After I finished swimming my laps, I played around in the deep end of the pool for a while. S never liked me playing in the deep end, I suppose it made him feel uncomfortable, maybe even challenged? It always bothered me that he rarely swam out to the deep end to frolic with me. You know, you can have fun in the deep end too? Possibly even more fun.

In the deep end today, the sunshine shone through the water and made shimmering reflections along the surface of the pool. My shadow danced alongside me and I felt perfectly alone, exceedingly happy. My movements were graceful and smooth and there was no one around to hurt me or better yet, for me to hurt or disappoint. It was divine.

Swimming reminds me that there's another swimming analogy S once used to describe how he felt about me, but I'll save that one for another day.


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