Whether you call it an exit plan, a safety net, or whatever..we are all the same.
We just do it differently as tattered individuals.
I watch Law and Order SVU a lot. One of the things that resonated with me was in an episode where Olivia Benson is having a “coming to Jesus” conversations (otherwise known as Candor by my Mentor Jack Welch).
However, besides all the shameless name-dropping!!
–Olivia confronts the woman who was acting out like a vigilante (a rape victim who researched, investigated her predator, and was relentless in her multi-year pursuit for personal justice – but also to prevent the harm of other potential victims).
Olivia said this, “Do you still sleep with your tennis shoes on”?
That stopped me in my tracks.
On many different levels.
Olivia made clear to people like me (who watch this show for our own reasons) a simple, visual, and real wake up call to ourselves – if we are stuck in a rut of self-pity or on the other end of the spectrum – of needing to escape – that one sentence was and is brilliant.
Believe me, my husband and I are both scarred.
We both have our separate Plan B’s and an attitude of “one-foot out the door” of this marriage every day.
That is the nature of who we are at our “fight or flight” core – so we instinctfuly are preparing for the worst.
We are both preoccupied with avoiding – at any cost – that feeling of loss that we felt at that one moment in our childhood and every moment thereafter.
We both naturally seek ways to fix that ongoing feeling that lingers for the remainder of our lives. You may know the one…
The feeling that stays with us.
That we lost our sense of safety, security, and been violated in the worst of ways. nowhere was safe anymore and neither was anyone. The only one you could trust was yourself – because no one else shows up to save you.
We become another version of ourselves that we didn’t ask for, didn’t know existed, and certainly did not ever want.
But that doesn’t work anymore either.
Like I told my best friend PT, “It’s cute to be a drunk girl for awhile, but you don’t want to turn into the barfly.”
He said, “So there was a specific window of time!”
And I said, “definitely”!
We all need to get our shit together.
That is Plan A and Plan B!
By the way – I didn’t lose track of my marital storytelling. My husband and I have been friends since we were little kids.
He drives me crazy. In all the best of ways and irritating of ways.
What’s new? Time moves on.
And love is still the greatest and most powerful force of all.
He is the love of my life. He always has been and always will be.