In my 20’s, I got a hold of a book called I’m Okay, You’re Okay by Dr. T. Harris. Transactional Analysis was the basis of the book – it was all about how you relate to others in your and their different emotional modes, whether it be in a childlike manner – peer – or super ego/parent type of mode. Struggling with some relationships at the time, and a college drop out, I thought it was life’s answers to all my problems. I was so moved, I bought copies for all my siblings and parents, mailed it to their homes throughout the U.S. with notes that they must read this book.
Strange thing I noticed going through my divorce was this: If I was Okay, he was Okay – if I wasn’t he wasn’t. An example: I’d say some cutting remark after something was being negotiated, like – if you don’t give me this then I’m not giving you that. The hurt look on his face, or tone of voice over the phone let me feel I had got the better of the situation.
But as the day went on, I continued into a growing funk.I hated how attached that was. It was so weird how even now almost divorced – things go well if we’re “on the same page,” and don’t if we’re not.
As much as I’ve moved on to a new chapter, I know there’s always going to be some ethereal connection regarding each of our well being. I thought of how I could make things fairer – and it wasn’t until I renegotiated with dignity and respect in my voice that he felt better, and consequently me.
So yesterday I bought him discount tickets to an amusement park because they are only available during the day – and I get off during business hours. Kind of like when I used to pick up dry cleaning. I’ll ask him life advise, briefly, and he really helps me. Tokens are advanced towards peace, and I figure that’s all good, especially since the divorce isn’t what he wanted.
Call it “pay it forward”, or “frenemy” tactic – things are just better when we’re both okay and at peace. And that’s okay.