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Questions (1) - "Unchangingness"
February 28, 2004
4:56 pm
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Katkeyper
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Questions (1) by Donald Hall (1928-?) (Questions (2) for another post!)

Why do you love her?

She loves me. I have never felt so valuable.

Why do you love her?

Her body is tender, like the color yellow.

Why do you love her?

I am with her, so totally. She teaches me about feelings. One day she suddenly covered her eyes with her hands, "what color are they?" They are light blue. I know her eyes. I begin to see through them. She sees into mine. Never before has inside spoken to inside. We talk. We talk.

Where?

In the place we go to. It has flowers in it. On our trip together, we talked all day and all night, sleeping and waking.

What is the trouble between you?

The remainders of our lives. My expectations. Her changeableness. My unchangingness.

February 28, 2004
6:14 pm
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Katkeyper
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I thought I'd share this...poem...after reading posts on charmers/abusers, codependency, anger/contolling men...it seemed appropriate.

The last lines I found rather profound. I always keep coming back to this poem because of it. Women seem more apt to want to change themselves from within for the better, while men are afraid...and maintain their "unchangingness". When only one person is doing the changing and growing...the relationship often stagnates. "We grew apart" is so common and so true. And then...well, life gets in the way.

I'm interested in hearing the additional insights anyone might have into this poem...for the sake of understanding our respective dilemmas, the opposite sex, ourselves and personal growth through experiences.

February 28, 2004
9:56 pm
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pc girl
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I love this poem. To me (because this is much my personality & or my codependency)...the last line is basically "trying to fix something that isn't broken"...fearing the unknown, the not-yet-lived to the point of spoiling the present. (ME, ME, ME! do it all the time!) Is that part of this codependency? I wouldn't have been aware of the "changeableness" of women vs. the "unchangingness" of men...but now that you mention it, guess that is true. I think -for today, at least :)- my situation is me finally being willing to learn & grow, and to "catch up" to my sig. other...so, feeling hopeful about that!! The days I can say I feel hopeful are the best days! 🙂 Thanks for sharing the poem!!

February 28, 2004
10:54 pm
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Katkeyper
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Great insights! I also wonder about his first answers on "Why do you love her?" It's not her personality or humor, it's the way she looks and that she loves HIM. Does he love her BECAUSE she loves him? If she didn't, would he still lover her?

"The not-yet-lived to the point of spoiling the present" - the unknown, the potential, the possibilities. Love it.

I also relate this to Ex #2 (more appropriately named than you know...). He was a great friend I never should have married. It was the every day stuff (and the fact he was manic depressive - not on medication), "the remainder of our lives" - that got in the way. I see the "remainder" in my case - being the other realities you don't normally fit into the scheme of things when you take a relationship to the next level. Who does the cooking, the dishes, takes out the garbage, pays the bills, separate or one checking account...and the expectations of all that. Then you realize he's a lazy slob and he doesn't want to do any of it without being nagged...his 'unchangingness" just becomes a pain in the ass!

I also think it paints a picture of how when we are in love, sometimes we are actually infatuated...which goes back to someone's recent post of "what does love look like?" That's one reason I thought this poem was so spectacular...I had to go hunt for it to share. Glad someone took the challenge!

What's your story, PC Girl?

February 29, 2004
8:20 pm
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pc girl
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Well, yes, I must say that first line of him loving her simply because she loves him did strike me as odd. I'm not sure I could keep loving someone for very long for the simple fact that they loved me...nothing else. Hhmmm...but the rest about inside seeing inside & talking - that sounds like love. I havent read the "what does love look like" post, but I'll look for it.
My story...hmmm...Began searching for info on codependency a few days ago (which brought me to this site). I have been unhappy, discontent, sometimes (as in recent past) down-right miserable. Controlling, passive-agressive, never satisfied, needy, lonely, seeking happiness from outside sources to the point of pushing loved ones away, always having the other persons needs & desires ahead of my own. Having sought councel from friends, loved ones, therapists who all say - "Do what makes YOU happy". Well, darn it...I have no idea how to do that! (am learning much from info I've been gathering)...but I'm just worn down from being unhappy. And looking over my life realizing that I have probably been codependent on some level for my whole adulthood. Some relationships more than others - but I really want to start taking care of ME. I mean, outwardly, I do. It's the in-ward. Standing up for myself, being concerned with MY serenity, MY peace, MY life. There's alot of powerful messages on here that help me.
"The remainder of our lives"...to me that's not so much about the day to day details - groceries, cleaning, bills, although I totally see your point of how those things can be overlooked until you are LIVING that "day to day" with someone - THEN you realize how important those things can be to the overall content of the relationship. To me, the "remainder" & the "unchangingness" is: can I live the rest of my life repeating these same old hurts, because they won't change (or can't or don't). Am I strong enough to make changes for myself? Or, in the end will I cave & keep on playing the old familiar roll? Know what I mean?? Just learning about these things...takin' it day by day. This weekend was over-all good for me. Hope for you as well!!

March 1, 2004
10:07 pm
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Katkeyper
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Hey PCgirl...just back from skiing...totally exhausted. Want to respond more...but for now, yeah, I hear ya...I came here Friday night looking to confirm what I already knew and to boost my confidence to break up with Roundup. Did it. I have a long way to go...I have no idea how to make ME happy either. We'll talk more...now, I'm headed for my pillow...my eyes are crossing!

March 2, 2004
12:37 pm
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acj
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I really liked that poem....

As far as getting yourself where you need to be, something that really helped me to see myself for who I am and what I want out of life is a journal. I haven't been writing typical journal stuff, like how my day went and such. I have a bunch of lists in it. One list is "Things I want to accomplish before I die". This is to keep me focused on the future. One is "Things I've done that I'm proud of". This helps me to forgive my past. Another is "What I must have in a lifelong partner". This one helps me weed out the ones that just won't work quickly. I've already decided that these qualities are essential. I will not compromise on any of them and none are unreasonable. None are anything that I wouldn't give wholeheartedly to a relationship.

When I'm feeling worthless, I look back on the things I've accomplished in my life. My daughter is number one. When I read back on these, I see how much I truly have accomplished and how much richer I am because of it. It helps to keep things in perspective when my mind is saying negative things.

When I'm feeling hopeless, I look at the "to do" list and see how much I still have to accomplish. It gives me more drive and a feeling of determination in getting these things accomplished. Whether or not I get off my butt and do them, it's all up to me....

I hope this helps someone....

acj

March 2, 2004
6:20 pm
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Katkeyper
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Hey PCGirl-

"...can I live the rest of my life repeating these same old hurts, because they won't change (or can't or don't). Am I strong enough to make changes for myself? Or, in the end will I cave & keep on playing the old familiar roll?"

YES, I know what you mean! I think that's what I came up against...a wall of repeats...and as much as Roundup says he'll change...will do whatever...he doesn't. He gets wrapped up in him and can't see beyond it, intentional or not...and it hurts me...brings out old hurts as much as I try not to live in the past, he's always digging it up by repeating it...then I'm in repeat mode and it becomes a vicious cycle...then both of you are unchanging when together...but me, I'm changing when we're a part...out of survival. I guess it comes down to figuring out...do I repeat it for survival for us, him, me, or do I find a new mantra to start chanting...a new ritual...a new start...a new cycle...without the repeats?

March 2, 2004
6:23 pm
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Katkeyper
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acj- yes, I've kept a journal for years...sometimes more times than others...sometimes there are gaps. Lately, I opted not to do the diary thing and recount all the hideous things...I decided to write what I call bad poetry therapy. I start with feelings or a situation, I put it to prose. Sometimes I pull out a decent work...other times, it's just rambling garbage....but it helps to sort things out by putting them down. I suggest it to everyone - particulary if you are starting a relationship! It's amazing what you can learn about yourself and your mate by keeping one and NOT forgetting to go back and read it periodically.

I also used journaling when I taught English...to use the info for various types of creative writing.

March 2, 2004
6:23 pm
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Katkeyper
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acj- yes, I've kept a journal for years...sometimes more times than others...sometimes there are gaps. Lately, I opted not to do the diary thing and recount all the hideous things...I decided to write what I call bad poetry therapy. I start with feelings or a situation, I put it to prose. Sometimes I pull out a decent work...other times, it's just rambling garbage....but it helps to sort things out by putting them down. I suggest it to everyone - particulary if you are starting a relationship! It's amazing what you can learn about yourself and your mate by keeping one and NOT forgetting to go back and read it periodically.

I also used journaling when I taught English...to use the info for various types of creative writing.

March 3, 2004
10:05 pm
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pc girl
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katkeyper...I wonder are you a cat keeper?? I love kitties! But, not much time tonight only wanted to say thanks for the words of being able to relate!! Yes, a "new mantra"....would be nice! Read some of your other posts on your break up. how are you holding? Take care of yourself 🙂

March 3, 2004
10:33 pm
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Katkeyper
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PCgirl...I have a seven-year-old long-haired tabby named Abby. She's beautiful with lots of personality...very funny. Growing up at my grandparents, we had 12 cats, a dog, several aquariums of fish/salamanders and a turkey. Abby is what I have instead of children! And I don't plan to have any of those! Oh yeah...and Cats Rule, Dogs Drool. Cat person all the way!

How are you doing? You sound drained...long day? What's going on in your world?

I appreciate you thinking about me...I got an email from him...I sent one back saying I was working on a response...then emailed the big on. He called me before reading it, didn't know it was sent. He said, "you know, there are two people in this relationship" - I advised him to READ the email. I've not heard from him since...that might mean he's on his way over. Let's hope not. Maybe he's finally taken the pill I've forcefed down his throat and gotten the big picture that it's over...that there is no relationship with only one person in the picture.

Keep in touch!

March 4, 2004
2:45 pm
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sixfootblonde
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katkeyper, thanks for that poem. It's beautiful!

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