Friday, August 25, 2006

A Week with the Wife

Last night, Jeanine made a request of my blog.

Can you please say something nice about me?

I’ve said nice things.

No, you haven’t.

Listen, I took out the line about you and the computer that you asked me to…

I know, but that’s not true anymore. You know that’s changed. And the blog is current. You can’t write something that isn’t current. It gives me no incentive to work on this.

And I took it out.

You just always sound like you’re ready to kick me to the curb.

I am not ready to kick you to the curb! Did you read Trash Day? It was mostly about me getting my head out of my ass, me doing work, and me recognizing that starting over would be pointless because unless I did the work, I’d end up in the same place.

You know, there really aren’t that many computers…

Let’s no go there.

Okay, okay, but can you say something nice about me?

I have spent most of the last week with Jeanine. Just the two of us. She did have to work, some, and so did I. Calling myself out on that one- I did agree to do work on my vacation, something I always rail on Jeanine about.

And for what, she asked, a cookie?

Okay, I did ask for a cookie- acknowledgement that I was going above and beyond for my job- but I also asked for more vacation time, too. I actually like my job, I tell her. She rolls her eyes. I have always liked my job, she says.

Back to the week, away from the old stuff. We get so caught in old stuff sometimes. And to what end? We’re both right, neither of us is right. Emotional house cleaning, I keep thinking. Sweep it out and let it go.

We had a week sans children. We talked. We played golf together. We went out to dinner. We sat out on the deck and shared one of our wedding cigars. (The smoking police can stop in their tracks- never in front of the kids. one or two a year. And we always feel green enough after we split one it’s another six months before we even think about it again.) And talked.

Okay, we did a lot of other things after the cigar and the dinners out but it’s not going to pass the Weezie Meter. But then, we’ve always done that.

And there I realize, is something nice I can say about Jeanine. She is beautiful. The first time I met her I was unable to speak because she was so beautiful, I was dumbstruck. And I still am. Even after all these years. Where she can’t really express her feelings in words, she can certainly express them … uh… non-verbally. Really, really well.

Really well.

During one of our roughest times early this summer, and friend said to me, you still have great sex after 15 years and you’re thinking about leaving? What the hell is wrong with you? Are you outta your goddamn mind? Hire someone to do the laundry and figure the rest out, for god’s sake.

It’s true. We look around at friends and wonder who else is still having sex regularly in long-term relationships. As lesbians, we certainly have the bed-death role model, living like flora and fauna, intertwined and yet no longer sexual.

What the hell is the point of that? Jeanine asked me the other night.

I have no idea.

We don’t get to see images flashed in front of us in the media on a daily basis of people staying together, committed, loving, embracing. For a long time, the only literature out there was about falling in love and then killing yourself because you fell in love with another woman. Not much to look forward to. Even on the L Word, the newest hope of lesbians to see some hot sex that doesn’t involve men, the one long-term couple breaks up. And one goes back to a man. Great. I’d rather look forward to killing myself.

No role models. Most of the long-term relationships are still relatively closeted. Our counterparts from our parent’s generation quietly lived their lives as ‘friends’ or ‘roommates,’ as unidentifiable as possible. It’s up to us to provide images of long term relationships- working, not working, struggling, breaking through, breaking up- honest evaluations for the next generation. No one should stay married in an abusive relationship that is clear. Gays and Lesbians will get divorced- trying to live up to an unrealistic standard is another blog. But how do we remain intimate, connected and sexual?

Everyone raved about “Brokeback Mountain” last year. I, personally, am sick of the dying, miserable, someone getting killed for being queer movies. It was a great movie, yes. Beautiful, yes. But can someone out there please give me a happily ever after movie where two gay men or two lesbians end up in love no one dies? Throw in some great sex, too? It doesn’t have to win an Oscar; it doesn’t even have to be that great. Just something, anything, that supports our relationships instead of reminding us, once again, how hard it is to be queer in this culture. We know.

So there you have it. Something nice about Jeanine. Something to remind us that sex can be wonderful, too, after 15 years. Yes, we struggle. And we’re working on it. No kicking to the curb is going to happen, hopefully not ever. Let’s face it. She rocks my world.

I’d be out of my goddamn mind.


Blogger womynno1 said...

My gosh - our relationships sound a lot alike -we've been together 8 years - many of the same issues, except instead of computers, it's stuff that my partner, Dee, brings home from job sites (she's a carpenter who does custom built homes, additions and renos) like granite counter tops (we're in a new house - where are these going to go exactly? oh, of course, the basement for when we actually get it finished and a little mini-bar/kitchen area in there!). To be honest, to your point about hiring someone to do the laundry - our lives have improved so much - live in nanny who watches the kids (well the youngest as the others are in school) and cleans the house, does laundry etc - if it makes sense for the two of you, I say go for it!

Anyway - love your blog - a friend of mine, Jill, referred me to it saying what a fantastic writer you are - she was right.

4:31 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

Thank you!

My only problem with hiring someone to do the laundry is that I end up with one more person to manage. And it feels like a loss of privacy.

But with three boys, I really don't have any privacy! I need to get over it.

9:02 AM  
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