The Beach Happiness illusion I can't shake off

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The Beach Happiness illusion I can't shake off

Post by Mariposa » Sun Jul 30, 2017 8:49 pm

I had a horrible Saturday, a really upsetting trip to the beach that failed miserably. Sunday morning I'm still upset, deeply depressed.

The most embarrassing part is that it's quite a first world problem. I am physically fine, I haven't really lost anything of importance and yet I am in pain, deep emotional pain over not being able to actually get to the beach, that state of bliss under the sun, that feeling of freedom, everything I seem to have associated with the experience of being at the beach. I feel like there's something wrong with me, how could anybody get this upset over something like this? It seems like a sign of a bigger problem.

I have been working at a call center for the past 2 months, it's a commute of 45 to 50 minutes, 9 hours plus commute, it's 11 hours everyday that I have to sacrifice in order to get money. It's summer time, and I've been escaping from the call center every time I get a break, just to be outside in the sun and get a glimpse of joy. Sitting at the bench enjoying the warmth of the sun on my skin, I've been wishing to be able to be in a bikini at the beach, with my husband and my two little dogs. We went a month ago. This desire has been stronger than I even realized and it seems to have been masking a great pain I have been carrying.

My husband has been amazing to me, so supportive and helpful with meal preparations and dog care while I've been working, mainly because he's not working since he decided to leave his job, which was causing him the very same kind of unhappiness I am now experiencing myself. A few days ago while sitting outside of the call center during my 15 minute break in the sunshine, I messaged my husband asking if we could go to the beach on Saturday. We have a history with the beach, and the car, the dogs. It creates a lot of stress for him to prepare and drive to the beach with our dogs, to him it seems like work, he is a very responsible guy, and I tend to delegate everything on him, leaving him with a sense of burden. Yet he really wanted to make me happy and take us to the beach, so he began the plans, went grocery shopping, planed our meal, and started organizing how our morning would go. I could already sense his strict plan becoming stressful and tried to ask him to make this a relaxing experience for us instead of a big event that needs to be perfect. His fear? No parking. This beach is in a lake within the mountains one hour away, it takes quite a hike to get there and there's a small parking area that gets full very quickly, after which people start parking on the side of the dirt road, further and further form the beginning of the trail that leads to the beach. He really wanted to get there early and be able to park close, so we wouldn't have to walk so far with our backpacks, our chairs, and dogs. He wanted for us to plan everything the night before including lunch, backpacks so we could get up, have breakfast and leave early Saturday morning, but after working all week, I was too tired to help with preparations and wanted to leave it for the next day. I went to sleep thinking we would leave at 9. I wake up to a 7 am alarm, not remembering setting that up, thinking it must have been from a week ago when I had a doctors appointment to go to. My dad had messaged me the night before because he wanted to talk, but he lives back where we're from 4 hours ahead, so he had gone to sleep before I could see the message and then it was too late. Since I was up so early I decided to text him and he could talk so we spent some time talking. My husband kept sleeping past 9 which already frustrated me because I thought we were leaving at 9 to get to the beach at 10, why wasn't he helping? Later I found out he had actually set up the alarm for me to wake up and do everything so he could wake up and just go. The salad I made was no good for him, so even though I was preparing a lunch for us, it didn't help, he wouldn't eat it. There was tension, we ended up leaving at 1 or 2 pm, and were going to get there for 3 pm. Parking would be difficult. After a sunny drive there, we start seeing the line of cars all the way down the dirt road, obviously it was too late to get a good parking spot. I can be very stubborn and always think "positive" so I wanted to still go to the parking lot and see if somebody wasn't just leaving and could open up a spot for us. Obviously there was no room, and we had to turn around and find a spot on the side of the road where it says "No parking" but everybody parks anyway. Not too far I see a spot and tell my husband we can park there, he notices the spot is tight and won't work, but I was still being stubborn and told him we could make it work, pressuring him to stop, he tells me "Okay, give me instructions" so I get out of the car to help him with the maneuver, when he finally decides it's not going to happen and drives away.

Leaving me standing next to this empty parking spot where I was really hoping we could park.

I see the car driving away. He left me there. The line of car going down the road is endless, where would he end up? How was I supposed to just walk there? Why did he not ask me to get back into the car before driving away to keep looking for a place to park? He just left me there?

I just couldn't accept this, and became extremely mad. Since the road is on a hill that goes up, I could still eventually see the car stop and park about a block and a half away from where I stood. I immediately expected him to walk back to me from there because I was offended he made me walk, I would stand there until he walked over to me with the two dogs, the two backpacks, the two chairs. Until I realized he really wasn't going to do that, he would need my help and I would have to walk all the way there. As my punishment to him I decided to walk extremely slow, building up more and more anger. He was already outside of the car with our dogs when I get there with a mad look on my face, I notice he also had a mad look on his face. What does he have to get mad about? He drove away, he left me. Immediately he asks if I have a mental problem, implying I'm stupid or retarded for just standing there. I replied I was punishing him for leaving me behind (since he made me walk, I made him wait). I yelled "Why did you drive away?!" which to him was causing a scene in public and aggravated him to no end. There were maybe two people getting out of their car to go to the beach and nobody else around, just car after car after car and some cars driving by. He was really embarrassed and went back inside the car. Which made me more mad because all I wanted was to start the hike to the beach, which takes about 25 minutes. But he didn't want to do that until we could resolve the argument, because he didn't want to keep arguing in public. The more I yelled "Let's go" the more he would say "We're going home". He was inside of the car with closed windows, apparently I made him insanely angry and he needed to talk inside of the car, which I couldn't see as productive in any way, so I asked "How are we gonna resolve this?", I wouldn't get in the car just to talk, at one point he even threw the dogs back into the car, he was undoing everything that meant going to the beach until we could resolve this argument between us. I was blinded by my incredibly strong drive to just physically be at the beach, as if that meant it would all be well again. I took the dogs out of the car again, I took the two backpacks, the two chairs from the trunk, I would carry everything myself until he followed me, but he wouldn't. I walked away just a few steps before realizing I couldn't just go without him, I wanted him there, so I froze in anger, as he sat inside the car. I had left the trunk door open because there was one more thing there that he would need to go to the beach, his sandals, he had to change his shoes, so I left it open on purpose. He gets out of the car to close the trunk, and as he closes the trunk, the car door closes leaving the keys in the ignition. I was watching the whole thing from across the dirt road and knew the moment our day at the beach was completely ruined. This area is so deserted, there is no cellphone signal. We couldn't call for help. We had to watch our car because anybody could break in and drive it away. That was it. I still had hope we could go to the beach after getting the car keys but slowly I realized it was over. My precious weekend time, the only time for me to feel happy and free under the sun with my husband and my dogs was gone. I started crying. The pain that this caused me was like the pain a child feels when what the really want is taken away. We sat next to our car, I knew my husband would obviously blame me for this, because when he gets mad it's always my fault. So I ruined our Saturday, I ruined everything with my outburst, my anger and my attitude. I caused him to leave the keys inside of the car. I caused my own day at the beach to come to an end before even starting. I was forced to sit in our chairs with our two dogs by the car as my husband walked to see where he could find signal. He walked towards the beach where he once did have signal, he ended up finding park rangers who could call for help but there was an emergency that took priority over our silly situation so we waited and waited and waited in the shade in a beautiful forest road watching cars drive by and people walk towards the beach where I couldn't get to. My husband came back, without even talking to me, fire trucks came, ambulances, everybody came to assist the medical emergency (drunk girl jumping off a cliff into the lake) and nobody would call for help. Hours later my husband finally gets to call for help while I wait alone by the car, and about 4 and a half hours later a specialist comes and unlocks our car door like it's nothing, we get in our car and drive home, the afternoon was over, the sun was down. This was one of the stupidest things that has ever happened to us and the misery it gave me was just out of this world. My husband wanted to break up with me, we were in a horrible mood for hours, we got home and I was able to sleep for two hours but I really needed to talk it through. He needed to write it all down so I had to wait and wait and wait until he was ready to talk about this, but in the end he just let me read his feelings and thoughts. Reading the pages he wrote make me cry so hard, knowing how hurt he was by my behavior, he thought I don't appreciate him and all the work he did to prepare everything the day before so we could go to the beach, he really wanted to make me happy and was really hurt by my desire to punish him for driving away and leaving me behind. I still wish I could be validated by somebody, anyone, in my anger caused by him driving away and leaving me behind, because that's the moment it all went to hell. But to him it was MY reaction that ruined everything, my desire to punish him for what he did to me, that's what really hurt him, because he felt completely underappreciated for all the work he put into taking me to the beach, he was doing it for me. Even after crying a lot and talking about how this new job is making me feel trapped, and the only joy I get out of life is going to the beach, even after coming to an understanding and being able to open our hearts to each other and make up, we went to sleep back in love but this morning I woke up still feeling the pain of loosing a day. Loosing that opportunity to feel free and happy at the beach. We were so close! I don't know if we'll ever go to the beach again, I don't know if I can go through it again, I can't ever be anywhere with no cellphone signal where we could be left stranded for hours. It feels like a traumatic experience and somehow I resent the cement of the city. Still having this idea that the beach holds this possibility for me to feel free. This is not the first time we argue over going to the beach, or parking or driving anywhere. My husband has been meaning to sell our car to save money and I wouldn't let him because it's summer and I just want to drive to the beach with our dogs. It's the one thing that I want the most that we actually CAN do. It's an idea. I can't let it go. I can't WAKE UP from it, even when I know the Eckhart Tolle teachings, the Buddhist teaching, I know DESIRE is an illusion but I only know it intellectually. Emotionally I am still a complete baby. The rest of my everyday life seems like a punishment for something I don't even know I did, I hold this victim identity because I have to work for money and I can't just be free. I need money but I just want my time so much more, I want to own my time and go to the beach. I just want to feel completely free of obligations, enjoy nature, enjoy my dogs, enjoy my husband, feel the sunshine, I just want to be a child again. I hate being an adult, even when I thought I was getting closer to adulthood, I still feel just miserable. Miserable knowing I have to go back to work tomorrow, and I can't just go to the beach while it's summer time. I have to be in a crowd of people inside the train, listen to customers from a telecommunications company complain because they had their TV suspended because they didn't pay their bills, I have to be nice to them and ask them for money. What is the point of being alive?

That's how badly I wanted to go the beach on Saturday.

Thank you for reading and I truly hope you don't ever have to feel this way.

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Re: The Beach Happiness illusion I can't shake off

Post by kiki » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:29 am

Mariposa, your readers will be more inclined to read your long post if you go back and put in paragraph breaks in those large blocks of text.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd

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Rob X
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Re: The Beach Happiness illusion I can't shake off

Post by Rob X » Mon Jul 31, 2017 3:28 pm

Mariposa wrote:I had a horrible Saturday, a really upsetting trip to the beach that failed miserably. Sunday morning I'm still upset, deeply depressed.
Mariposa. It sounds like a dreadful day. We’ve all had days like that - it happens. Circumstances were obviously against you. You'll feel better in a couple of days.

Next time have the firm resolve that if you can’t set off by 9 am then you won’t go. Instead have a picnic in the park or do something closer to home. You don’t need a beach in order to get a sense of playfulness and freedom.

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