“What do you think about going away? Take a break and go somewhere warm.” Your suggestion is very appealing. I knew that something’s going on since you invited me to lunch although you’re very busy with your new project. Normally you eat in your office when you’re working on a new project, especially if it’s such an important one.
“A weekend break sounds interesting.” I would love to go away from everything and everyone. I’m under such a huge pressure here. I have to pretend that everything’s fine all the time because you’re the only one who knows about my condition and I don’t want anyone else to know. And you being aware that I’m not ok isn’t helpful. You’re always breathing down my neck and I know you’re worried and you want to help me but you’re choking me. You’re calling me all the time and sending me text messages when we’re not together. Maybe a relaxing weekend would calm you down a bit.
“I was thinking about taking a longer break. Till the middle of January would be perfect.” That’s a mad idea. Who’s crazy here? The doctors say it’s me not you. Is something wrong with the steak you’re eating? Is it poisoned? Or maybe something’s wrong with my salad and I'm not hearing right. But something’s definitively wrong. I should order a strong liquor instead of water, it would clear my mind.
“That’s more than two months. We can’t leave for such a long time. We both have jobs and you’ve just been promoted. We can’t just leave.” I don’t know what’s going on in your mind. I don’t want to turn your offer down and hurt your feelings.
“I have to utilize my leave and I’m sure that my boss wouldn’t mind. And you don’t have to go back to work anymore. It’s very stressful and you don’t need that right now. We can manage on my salary. A nice raise came along with my promotion, remember?” Your ideas are becoming crazier and crazier. I love my job and I love what I do. I can’t just leave my job and go somewhere warm. What would I do if I wouldn’t work? Sit at home and watch TV all the time?
“I love my job.” I’m so shocked I can’t get anything else out of my mouth. And why the hell are you making these crazy plans without talking to me first? It seems to me that you’ve already planned everything.
“I know you do, but you’re in no condition to work right now. You have to take care of yourself, get better and then think about work and other things.”
“And you think I’ll get better by doing nothing? When I’m working I don’t think about my problems. That’s the only time I can disconnect myself and forget about everything.” Why do you want to take this away from me? You know how much I’ve worked to get where I am. I didn’t get my position at this company easily, I’ve worked very hard.
“Forgetting your problems isn’t a solution. You have to think about things and find a way to get better.” And you know how I’ll get better? Are you a damn shrink or what? I have to go away from here. I can’t breathe.
I get up and leave without saying anything. I see your face in the mirror. You’re shocked. You didn’t expect me to react like this. But what am I supposed to do? You’re trying to arrange my life. I didn’t sign up for this. I have to get a cigarette, there’s a store.
“Why did you leave like this? We have to talk!” You seem angry. I can’t blame you. I just left you sitting at the restaurant like a fool. This wasn’t my intention but I can’t think clearly right now.
“I’m sorry, I need some time to think.” I really do. Who wouldn’t? Can you blame me? We’re already at the counter. I’m sure you won’t like me buying cigarettes. “Cigarettes please.” The cashier looks at me angrily. “Which ones?” She could be nicer. It’s not my fault if she’s unhappy with her job and with her life. I also have problems but I don’t lash out at people. “Marlboro lights please.” I really don’t care which ones, I just need a damn cigarette. “Are you smoking again?” You’re surprised face makes the cashier laugh and you seem to get angrier. I pay and we’re leaving the store. “I need a cigarette, that’s all.” I don’t have to explain my actions to you, you’re not my mother and I’m an adult. I light a cigarette and it feels so good. I feel a bit better.
“Do whatever you want to. I have to go back to work.” I’m not surprised you don’t want to be with me right now. I probably hurt your feelings but I think you understand. I have to think things through and clear my mind.