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Thursday, September 9, 2010

Yearning for " private intimacy" A Book Review and post...

                                  Flowers for my last birthday on August 22nd...beautiful, eh?

I just finished reading Elizabeth Gilbert's "Committed - A Skeptic Makes Peace With Marriage"

I have to say that I really enjoyed it though it started off a bit slow for me. And maybe I was a little bit sarcastic, as in: Well, she found the love of her life, now what can she possibly want to say?

I also have to say I really like Ms. Gilbert though of course I've never met her. But I watched her on TED.com and she was absolutely lovely. To me that means humble, sweet and very funny and intelligent. I also love her face, it really shines at me from the cover of her latest book. So I stuck with it.

Well, I really think for me it was an important book to read, as a not-yet-formally-divorced-but-separated- for-many-years-woman. She really goes deep into the subject of Matrimony. As deep as anyone who (as she herself says) is not a psychologist or anthropologist, can. This word is oddly, and I never noticed this before she pointed it out, made from the word Matriarch funny ah? Not Patriarch! Anyway she really goes into marriage and divorce from many different perspectives including her own family lineage. Beautifully written , there were pieces in it that were an actual relief for me to read and see that , wow, here is someone who's articulated something for me. For example:

"Part of what makes the experience of divorce so dreadful is the emotional ambivalence. It can be difficult, if not impossible for divorced people ever to rest in a state of pure grief, pure anger, or pure relief when it comes to feelings about one's ex-spouse. Instead the emotions often remain mixed up together in an uncomfortable raw stew of contradictions for many years. This is how we end up missing our ex-husband at the same time as resenting him."

As I write these words I get a phone call from my ex. Is it because we are not legally divorced yet, which is an issue I need to address, or because we share two relatively young children and are in constant contact with each other which I find at sometimes suffocating- for whatever reason I get terribly triggered by things he says and see how we never really divorce entirely. Even Ms. Gilbert writes how her ex haunts her dreams and probably always will.

And it brings up the question, am I really free to get into a new relationship? All this hoohaw around my ex lover being not free for me, well,  AM I FREE? And then all my self judgments at how I react or how I am in relationships come up, including, why try at all?

So why, REALLY?

Ms. Gilbert sums it up towards the end of her book, saying, because

" We yearn for private intimacy even though it's emotionally risky, we yearn for private intimacy even when we suck at it "

So here I am, at yet another post-relationship stop at the road, still not able to put full closure on my old one....yearning...


  1. I shall be rushing out to the shops tomorrow to buy this .... thanks Yael :)

  2. Hope I get percentage from Ms.Gilbert...(-:
    Thanks Jackie!