being awake

I used to wake up hours before she did, and lay awake. I would lay there trying not to disturb her, but not wanting to be anywhere else but beside her. After hours, when she finally woke up, I’d be so ready to get up; but she would want to cuddle and stay in bed. She once said that I should cuddle her when I wake up, but, she’s sleeping and I didn’t want to wake her. I was trying to let her sleep because she would always complain about not getting enough sleep. So, I was caught between being awake and her stated need for sleep, or at least the sure knowledge that she complained about not sleeping enough.

It seems like there were so many times when I was stuck between choices in that kind of dilemma. There seem to have been so many times that I would make silent sacrifices and be the one to think of those things, like letting her sleep because she complained about not getting enough or being the one to say it was time to go to bed because she would complain about not going to bed early enough. I felt I was caught constantly between the thing she wanted to do and the complaint she would have after. And, not the least of which was the dilemma of wanting her to stay but feeling like I had to make it easy for her to leave me.

I wanted to spend my life with her, but I kept making it easy for her to leave. She never made plans for a future with me. She never seemed to be willing to talk about that. She would tell me that she didn’t think she’d ever get married, that she didn’t want kids. She would tell me that she would stay with me “at least until I graduated.” So there were always messages that it would end, but never messages that she wanted it to keep going, that she … no, there was at least one time she said she thought we would be together. No, not just once, but there were so many mixed signals. Like a dilemma, I constantly felt like I had to figure out the balance between what she said and what she would complain about later. She did say that she wasn’t leaving me, on occasion. But, I’m not sure I heard that as being real, like I felt it was something I couldn’t trust or something that the words couldn’t change.

I would be hurt by things she said, but she would tell me that she would never say things to hurt me. But, I was hurt. And, couldn’t figure out if I was just imagining it all or not. I constantly internalized, but couldn’t seem to change, the causes.

What would be different that would make it so I could trust? Was it something I sensed or felt from her or was it completely my own existential horror? And through it all, it feels like if only for some thing I just couldn’t understand, it all would have been perfect. It’s like the joy and bliss were there, but I just couldn’t taste it. I was tantalized by the perfect relationship with an amazing partner, but even though I was there … I missed it. And, now it’s gone, like a dream. But, not a dream. It feels like the real to which I couldn’t seem to wake.

It felt like all I had to do was wake up, but I couldn’t find the energy to shake myself awake. I couldn’t manage the energy to raise my arm to hold her sometimes, and how fucked up is that? As if I were dying of hunger at a dinner table and couldn’t even reach out to the food; I was so unable to wake myself that I sleepwalked through my precious time with her.

I wasted the time I had with her sleeping while she lay beside me waiting, hoping and wishing that I’d wake up.