Something broke in me last night. I was doing fine until yesterday, but everything just started adding up: The constant noise. The lack of alone time. The 24-7 family fun.
But I broke at the photos. Already, I hate getting my picture taken in the first place. But when the photo guy went around the table, taking pictures of each of the couples, I just sat dumbly in my corner while everybody else posed with their respective spouse. Then the family decided that more pictures were needed, so we posed for a group shot near the staircase. Naturally, it was decided that that the men should stand behind their spouses. So again, I sat dumbly on the outside. Eventually, people realized this would probably look off, and we rearranged ourselves accordingly. I don't know if the rearranging made me feel better or worse, but now we have photographic evidence of how shitty I felt at that moment.
This trip is not all about me and how crappy I feel about things in general. I really am having a good time. But when the feeling of loneliness strikes, it hits me really, really hard, almost as if I got the wind knocked out of me. Last night was one of those moments.
I know it seems stupid that I care so much about this whole couple business. Really, were it a one-time deal I could probably be fine with it. But each time I come home, it gets worse. I hate that we play cards and I upset the balance. I hate that people have to make an effort to include me. I hate that I can feel that either people make that effort because they feel sorry for me or they just don't think to make the effort at all. Mostly, though, I hate that I actually let this shitty feeling get to me.
I'm realizing that much as I love my man, most likely he will never be able to come on family vacations with us, will never be home for Christmas, will never get in on family fun. I feel like I'm being pulled in two directions, and I'm not entirely happy either way. In one direction, I sacrifice my family. In the other, I sacrifice my relationship. Added into the equation are questions of career and my future and what I really want out of life, and in the end I am just left feeling confused and surprisingly frightened.
I got really grumpy and angry with my family last night, but none of this is their fault. They just happen to be the people around. Instead of being a snappy bitch (which I might be anyway), I usually try to just retreat in these situations. The trouble is, I can't seem to retreat. Every time I go back to the room, someone knocks on the door. Today, I decided I would go to lunch a little while after everyone else so that I could spend some time alone while everybody was eating, and mom made some comment about how she's 'worried I'm not eating enough.' Believe me, that is the last thing she should be worried about. I snapped at her, which I shouldn't have, but I'm tired of not being able to be upset when I want to, to go away when I want to, and to be alone when I want to. I really, really don't think people realize how hard this has been on me. Everything feels like it is coming into question at once: where do I want to live? Do I really want to upset my life as I know it right now in order to maybe simplify it in the future? Where exactly DOES The Boy fit in my life? And am I ready to make the kinds of sacrifices it takes to stay with him? Or am I ready to make even scarier sacrifices and not be with him at all? I can't imagine the repercussions to any of the answers of these questions, and they keep running through my brain all day, every day. I just feel alone, and lost, and really freaking anxious to get off this boat and try to sort some of this shit out.