Saturday, 19 May 2012

Virgil is sad

Virgil is sad. For the first time in a long time it occurs to me that he might actually be feeling sadder than I do. He has too much work but it's the wrong kind of work. He is harried by his employers who have him to a punishing schedule. No play is making him dull. Sarah... well, who knows about Sarah. Virgil looks miserable and dark under the eyes. He is often unshaven and his hair, which he is growing, hangs greasily around his face.
 
I feel sorry for him. I also worry about being the cause of some of his misery. I want to cheer him up. I think he feels trapped - by work, by money (because until he starts getting paid for this project he hasn't any) and by me. He has started to express a dislike for where we live: the buzz and noise of a fashionable, heavily populated district. In some respects this is good: I have wanted to move for ages. We talk about moving further into the city, of areas where, when the workers leave, only the office blocks and the elements are left behind.

Today I linger long after I should have left for work. I drop small kisses on his cheek and cuddle him. He looks as though he's going to cry. I say, 'When I am very sad do you worry that you are making me sad and do you worry that you are unable to make me happy?' Virgil says: 'No. Well, yes I do a bit when you are sad because we have different needs, but I don't think you can make someone else happy. I think people have to make themselves happy.'

We have been talking about me and my anger. He tells me how unhappy he is with my explosions of temper and shouting. I apologise again and promise without much conviction in my ability to do better.

Seeing Virgil so vulnerable reminds me that I'm not the only one with problems. I remember that he needs my help as he tries to be happy. I can't be responsible for it, but I should try to support rather than hinder him. I think about what it means to love someone in a way that goes beyond the purely selfish and narcissistic. I should do this more often. I experience a moment of wanting to set him free.

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