A letter to my husband:
He once told you that I feel trapped. And I feel like it’s the biggest disservice he ever did us.
There was never ever going to be me convincing you otherwise because his word was gospel. So while I never argue the point, I never agreed with it either. I know at the time I said I didn’t agree, but any time you’ve brought it up since, I’ve let it be. It felt too big a thing to put my energy against. Because that’s what it was. Energy against. And not energy into.
Pouring energy into something is positive and constructive. Pouring energy against something is just…insanity.
So I let it be.
This morning a wave of depression crashed upon me. Yesterday was more than I could take after last week. Then this morning when the tire pressure light came on again and I was driving on empty it all got really big. I still went about life anyway. Kids needed to be taken to school. Dishes needed to be done. Life goes on.
But just now as I was washing the dishes, a snapshot of a text conversation flashed in my mind. I was in the basement doing laundry. There was a suggestion to do something fun because it was my birthday. The insinuation that I could go elsewhere with elseothers. “Go out and do karaoke.” I would like that, I had replied. “So go now with Chris.” It’s not the same, I replied.
It’s not the same.
That one line. That one line caused someone else to form the belief that I felt trapped.
He told you I felt trapped. The assumption was always that it was about you and our children. That was the lie I haven’t been able to undo.
I see it clearly now. As I stand here with half-washed dishes behind me. Because this just couldn’t wait. I had to type this out right away. Because I couldn’t squander this moment of clarity. This opportunity of having all the right words.
I said it wouldn’t be the same doing karaoke with you. It wasn’t a slight against you. It wasn’t because I felt trapped by you. I felt trapped within myself.
It wasn’t until just right now, while I stood under a shroud of heavy depression that I could better recall that night. A night filled with depression. Months of depression. And when I said I would love to go out, it was the image of escaping me that filled my head.
I would never go somewhere and sing in front of people. That sounds terrible. But I wanted to be the person who could do that and think of it as fun, just so I could get away from me.
I wanted an escape from me, for just a moment. The thought of a physical escape from being trapped inside myself was appealing. Desperately appealing. For just that moment I needed the illusion of escape.
If anything real existed in that illusion, it would break. So, if you–the most real thing in my life–came, it wouldn’t be the same. You would have broken the illusion.
I never felt trapped in this life with you. I felt trapped in my own head. He didn’t think to differentiate.
I’m sorry I didn’t have the words until now. I’m sorry I felt so small and that that conversation gave way to a misunderstanding that was so big. I don’t feel small like that anymore, not even today under the weight of…all the things. I don’t feel trapped inside myself. It would mean everything if you’d believe me that I never felt trapped by you. It would be everything to heal this part.