I went away for the week-end to visit a girlfriend.

I was SO excited about going; even the three hour drive was inviting.

A chance to be alone, clear my head, take care of no one’s needs but my own.

I was sure I would come home feeing invigorated and rejuvenated.

But I guess it’s kind of like a “three day pass” when you’re serving on the front line of a war.

“Invigorated” and “rejuvinated” for what?

The time with my friend was lovely.

And as a not-so-incidental side note, I think her husband is an alcoholic.

She and I met a few years ago at a state-wide soccer tournament our kids were playing in. We hit it off the minute we realized we could make fun of all the uber-soccer moms! Since then our friendship has been more phone (yes, the generation who communicates via that thing where you actually speak to one another) then actually person to person but it’s blossomed non-the-less. I’ve suspected for some time that her husband is an alcoholic. I have quite the alcoholic-meter. As in, I can spot an alcoholic-husband a “mile away.” With my friend, the first thing that sent my meter rising is her marriage is a lot (A LOT!) like mine! There is this emotional absense of her husband that I recognized right away. For example, right now something quite significant is going on with one of her sons and she hasn’t even discussed it with her husband!! Then there are the “he came in to get a beer” or “he was getting a beer” statements peppered in our conversations. Not all the time and not as a complaint but when any sort of comment or mention of alcohol is made – more than once and when it has no relevance to the story – click, click goes the meter. And finally, her words, he is from a family of “raging alcoholics.” So there ya go.

Anyway, so my sadness and melencholy today isn’t the result of spending the week end with a loving, caring couple. I didn’t spend the whole time looking at them and thinking of how much there isn’t to my marriage. In fact, much as if a friend came to my house, I rarely saw her husband. No, I’m sad today because the week end away and the six hours of driving there and back gave me time to think about how really, really bad my marriage is.

And yet I have so many good things in my life.

That’s the real tragedy of life with an alcoholic.

You can have wonderful children, good friends, a cute dog and food on the table every night but it all (ALL!) gets poisoned by the alcoholic.

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