“This sends me over the edge!”

photo by Karen Alexander, August 2017 (2)

My beloved Pontheolla is a dreamer and a doer,
an original ideator and implementer,
a quintessential “tree shaker” and “jelly maker”

apple tree

She can get the not just low-hanging fruit
of the first or easily-conceived notion
to fall from the mind’s tree
and then, whate’er the aspiration,
turn it into the envisioned jam or jelly.

jars of jam

(Here, I must digress,
for in my experience, it seems
most folk, are better at one or the other;
able to dream, but not build
or build, but not dream.

I, for one, am “a tree shaker,”
but not, well, really, rarely “a jelly maker.”)

And she, as an off-the-charts Myers-Briggs “judger,”
has a decided inclination to make decisions
(the quicker, the better!).


Thus, frequent are the clashes with my off-the-charts Myers-Briggs “perceiver”
who loves to continue to consider a question
beyond the point of making (ever!) a decision!

Therefore, she is quite skillful, even willful
(that is, proficient and deliberate)
when I, typically, thinking out loud, give voice to a nascent idea,
in taking up the end of my ellipsis of open-ended contemplation,
tagging on one or two (three or four or more) things I could, should do
(taking my A beyond B, aye, to Z!)
bringing my airy reflection to its logical conclusion!

And she, as an ideator and implementer,
is the truest practitioner of the relational principle of interdependence
(that essential, inescapable mutual dependence of all things and persons).
Thus, what one thing or person does or doesn’t do
inexorably affects what another thing or person can do.

Hence, for example, when I do what I said I would do,
allowing her to do what she said she would do,
she is happiest.
And when I don’t, then she can’t,
leading her, most dismayed, to say,
“This sends me over the edge!”

(“The edge” being, in language proverbial,
“the end of the rope” when her patience is lessened,
her exasperation heightened
or her “tipping point” when my non-action,
making the goal remote and, potentially, unreachable,
is the catalyst or friction sparking her internal upheaval.)

I wonder.
As we, each and all, have “ends of ropes” and “tipping points”:
What sends you over the edge?

4 thoughts on ““This sends me over the edge!”

  1. Paul,
    You captured the essence of Pontheolla so well, but then how could you not given the length of time the two of you have been together.

    To answer your question what sends me over the edge is similar to what you’ve already mentioned. What sends me over the edge is when people promise me they are going to do something, then don’t do it. I’ve needed help from others over the last 3 years, an though it’s not be a lot of help, when I need it… I really need it. As time has gone on, it’s become even more difficult for me to ask people for anything, beause at this point I’m sure they will let me down. Almost every part of my home renovation illustrated this for me, and every time it sent me over the edge. If I’m paying for services, why can’t I get what I paid for??? or will have to paid for? I know life isn’t fair, but it hurts when you depend on others and they let you down. One of the most important thing for me in your post is the realization that we are very interdependent on others for it to be possible for other things to happen. One of the things I’ve already planned to do in 2020 is to ensure I’m doing my part to ensure others do theirs…. Interdependence is the key!

    much love, and thanks for writing this!


  2. Loretta, this business (aye, truth, reality or so I believe) of relational interdependence manifests itself constantly and in so many ways (every way). Sadly, I feel, it oft is apparent in its absence, that is, when things don’t operate and when folk don’t do as we’d hoped. In such instances, I suppose, if we could, it would work better for us (indeed, be saner for us) to do whatever it is we wanted or needed done ourselves. But, as often, that’s not possible, for others possess the gifts or skills that we want or need. I also suppose, in this same vein of doing it ourselves (if we could!), we could strive to be independent and, thus, rely less (or, in some cases, not at all) on others. But then, I think and feel, how small of a life and existence that would prove to be for us.

    So, we humans are stuck with the necessity of our interdependency. In this, we pray, that most of the time others will do their parts. And it also seems to me that you approach, striving to be dependable that others know that they can rely on you, is what each of us is called to do. That’s a resolution that works for any new year and all year of any year!



  3. I have been married for 54 years to someone with whom I have NOT ONE LETTER in common. As a certified MBTI practitioner, I (we) have had plenty of opportunity to practice this form of communication and understanding. What puts me over the edge is when an introvert takes so darned much time to think over the options. But when I remember to give him that time willingly, he comes up with astonishing willingness to work together.


  4. My dearest Anne, loving you and your honesty, know that, with Pontheolla and me, we can and echo your sentiments. For different, exceedingly, we have been, are, and, doubtless, will remain. And, as you and Bob, we’ve found a way – our way – through and to each other so to celebrate (at least, some of the times!) our differences. Love


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