I need a psychiatric plumber.
WHERE IS THE SHUT OFF VALVE?
Eric was very clear, "Do not put words in my mouth and do not overthink what I've said."
He's gone; his regular weekend shift, but this time it is extended for a three day company retreat. We talked it through. He did all of his best reassuring things. I promised I was fine. Then the emotional overthinking valve in my head cracked.
Eric has not been happy at this branch for some time now, I tell myself. His boss, who he has worked for more than 30 years, wants him to permanently stay in the Northern Office, I tell myself. Rather than come home tomorrow, they will be at a three day conference together. Eric needs this break. He was so unhappy last week, he actually talked about quitting (For a second when someone really pushed him at the office). He was so angry last week, he actually talked about WWIII (Because he wasn't going to do something that made no sense, even if he had to go to battle over it). He was so sick last week, he actually went to a doctor. (That's right, a MAN voluntarily went to a DOCTOR!) I know how much he needs this break and I genuinely want it for him so I was truly supportive.
Why then, just 24 hours in, does the darn valve in my head turn me into Crazy Daisy?!
It started like this:
I want to lose 13 pounds and everything around me today is sunny and melting. Perfect time for a ten mile hike. It's gorgeous outside. I'm dying to tell Eric about it because he would love being out there with me, holding hands and enjoying the babbling brooks, moss covered trees and beautiful surroundings. Then, I start thinking about what Eric must be doing. The story I tell myself is his boss will be spending three days trying to convince him to quit this branch, which would destroy our relationship. The boss' points will include: Eric will make double the money, and he's into money. He will have half the stress, and he hates stress. He will be closer to all of his favorite people to work with, and he is a social guy. He loves the Northern Office, he has history at the Northern Office. His travel time will be drastically reduced. HE WILL BE HAPPIER.
Half way through my walk, the valve has completely broken and flooded my head to the point that the boss (who may or may not be having this conversation with him) has me convinced it's the best thing for him. I can't move and go to the Northern Office (a fact). So, the story I tell myself is, it's not fair that I hold Eric back. Now he's stuck at this branch because of me and I'm holding him back from the happy life he's spent his entire career creating and pretty soon I'll just be a burden to him and he'll resent me and wish we'd never met and the only way I can keep that from happening is to save him from this mess and push him away so he can enjoy his life rather than have it ruined by me.
Mind you, Eric never said he was looking forward to a break from me (on the contrary, he said he loves me and will be dreaming about me the whole time he is gone) or that he wants to move (we both want to move but he has always said he will wait until my schooling is done). He merely said work shouldn't shorten his lifespan so it was a good time to step away from the Southern Office for three days.
Nearing the end of the trail, I'd convinced myself that not only is the story in my head accurate, but that Eric always does what's best for everyone else, leaving himself off the list. Since I actually KNOW what is best for everyone, it is my job to step in and show him how much better his life is without me. I picture myself saying, "I hate it when I'm always right but I do know what is best for you." (Ironic when I'm always wrong about this crap floating around in just MY head.)
Why on earth do I do this to myself?! It's not like the guy can't make up his own mind. He's the HOH for goodness sake. He can make up both of our minds!
I'm writing blogland because I'm trying to fight this - I want to STOP overthinking and freaking myself out over something that most likely isn't even happening. (I can hear his voice right now, "Stop it AMY.")
The last thing Eric said to me before he left was, "When I walk in the door after my trip, if your mind has gone haywire again, I expect the strap to be in the entry where I take off my shoes. That will be how you tell me every time you start down that path. We are putting an end to this pattern." He's not playing around. He is being totally serious.
I'm pleading with you to help me stop this insanity. How do you turn the darn valve off? I keep telling myself this is a story but I must be an incredible story teller because I am convinced Eric will be completely different when he comes back, will have changed his mind about how he feels about us and I'll be all alone again. Ugh!
I really don't want to put that strap on the table.
Eric comes back on Thursday. It's only Sunday.
Tell me there is a shut off valve that doesn't involve Eric tanning my ass.