i used to be very grumpy in the morning. when erica and i were first dating she tried
to wake me up to go to work; she was being very sweet, talking in a gentle voice,
saying it was getting late and i needed to get ready. i responded with six words that
not only weren’t true, but unfortunately became part of our relationship contract;
“i can take care of myself”.
i’ve tried to take it back, but it doesn’t work.
milan kundera writes about the phenomenon in “the book of laughter and forgetting”:
Every love relationship is based upon unwritten conventions rashly agreed upon by
the lovers in the first weeks of their love. They are still in a kind of dream but at
the same time, without realizing it, are drawing up, like uncompromising lawyers, the
detailed clauses of their contract.
maybe in the long run it was good for me to be left to fend for myself, but i can’t
help wondering what i might have missed out on by making that remark.