Sticking it Out: How much is it worth?

Posted on June 27, 2010 in Specials

I faced a reality today. Not an entirely welcome reality. But probably not an unexpected one. When two people spend a long time with each other, they get into the habit of doing small things for each other that they don’t even realize they’re doing. When these small things cease to happen, cutting that, possibly, last chord of communication between the two involved, there seems to be hardly any time left before two convergent paths diverge. Two lives, entwined through promises and blessings, begin to see each other as unrecognizable, different, entities. Some call it a mid life crisis. In my opinion, the reason for this is the re-emergence of the awareness of the self. You started off, academically and professionally pursuing a goal, that comes to a halt in the process of spending a decade or two enjoying marital bliss and raising a family. But what after? Once a certain milestone is crossed, the sense of regret, however unwanted, passes the mind. Of what is, what could have been and what still could be. A change is priorities, activities, routines, lifestyles all align themselves towards the achievement of this new “still could be”.

Sometimes, the couple involves makes it, through all of the craziness, not being able to stand each other, realizing too much time has gone by, realizing that they’re completely different people as compared to when they’d started out. Sometimes, unfortunately, they don’t. Today, the reality faced made a fear arise within, of maybe facing the future outside of my comfort zone. Of watching things, as I know them, disintegrate. But then I realized that there is no point in the fear. Nature takes its own course, things change. This may be in contrast to my core belief system that we shape our own destinies, but sometimes, I find it just helps to console the restlessness in my heart. The fear of things happening which might affect me indirectly is not worth losing sleep over.

Coming to the main question, a lot of people find sticking it out rewarding, as do I. But it is rewarding at a large cost. Is the cost of sticking it out fair? Honestly, I find that the time, energy, dignity, understanding and focus required to sustain a strained relationship is extremely draining. Is it really all that worth it? We are evolutionary beings. We might as well have spent the resources enriching ourselves rather than possibly draining ourselves of the energy required to do so. But, again being the annoying devil’s advocate I am, I wonder isn’t interaction and sustaining relationships all that it’s about. We’re here to get beaten down, thrown around and worn in order to learn lessons. These experiences cumulatively make up LIFE, in essence. Is sticking it out worth every ounce of your self respect though? Of happiness? Or even plain everyday joys? What is the cost of Sticking it Out? I want to know.