Lightning bugs dance in the fading summer light. Explosions echo through the neighborhood. For many, it’s a game. Light the fuse, watch it explode. I never got very excited over the idea of fireworks, but in my defense, I’m not a very excitable person. I used to go to the shows just to spend time with the people I loved. I grew up where lighting your own is illegal… and so I haven’t really become adjusted to the sounds filling the land around this time of year.
For some, the booms, bangs, and crackles are a trigger – a reminder of the war zone they spent too much time in. To an extent, I can understand this. It is a bit unnerving even if you haven’t spent time in a war zone – not to mention, impossible to fall asleep. But there is a point where you must assimilate and let go. Stop clinging to things in the past and move on.
Thus my lack of empathy is becoming apparent.
Fighting a traumatic memory that occurred in a war zone five or ten years ago is one thing… But continually bringing up events that happened in your life 20 years ago?!? Get the BLEEP over it! I personally don’t care. It was 20 years ago! You can’t change it. There is absolutely nothing you can do about things that happened 20 years ago…
UNLESS… maybe you started knitting a blanket, put it in a box, forgot about it and just found it. I mean that, that you can change. You can finish knitting the damn blanket.
But events… things with people… relationships from 20 years ago… you can’t change. These people aren’t even in your life anymore.
Instead of watching lightning bugs and listening to the pre-holiday festivities, you brood over things that are 20 years past. Then you think up all the ways I don’t fulfill your expectations… list out all the ways I don’t make you feel like a man… and then tell me how I messed up. Finally, this week, you let the biggest bomb drop – the only way you ever feel close to me is through sex.
Ladies and gentlemen! The end of the show. In three years, nothing – NOTHING… absolutely nothing has changed. I am not good enough for you. Everything I do – or don’t do is documented on some list running through your head so that you can tell me later how I was wrong. While I’m wrong about everything, the only way you can “connect” to me is through sex.
Wow. There is something so wrong with that. Maybe it explains the chasm between me empathy and your unfortunate history.