1.) I'm still young and healthy.
I'm 30. By general human standards I'm in pretty good shape. By fatass lazy American standards I'm pretty much Adonis. (-: I have no chronic health problems. I can do things like lifting weights and hiking and rollerblading, things that feel good and are good for me. I've learned to shop healthy and cook healthy so that I can eat healthy. And I've got a good enough natural metabolism that I can even cheat a little bit now and then without blowing the whole thing.
2.) I've got a decent job and no debt.
If I had things to do over again, I would've done them differently career-wise. Specifically, I would've chosen a career instead of getting a worthless liberal arts degree and futzing around in a half-dozen go-nowhere crap jobs during my twenties.
Still, things could be worse. And in this economy, a LOT worse. I took a new job last spring, I get forty hours a week Mon-Fri, weekends off, full benefits, paid vacation, paid sick leave, all that good stuff. They're grooming me for a promotion when one of my coworkers retires in the next few years that will be even better. Do I wish I made more? Sure. But I can't complain about what I have either. I'm supporting myself and pulling my own weight, with enough left over to have a little fun.
3.) I'm surrounded by family and friends.
I've got a nice little safety net for myself here, both pragmatically and emotionally. If my apartment caught on fire and I were homeless tomorrow, I can think of a half-dozen places just off the top of my head where I could crash until I got back on my feet. When I'm going through some heavy shit, as I have been the last little while and will continue to be for the next little while, there are plenty of places I can turn for a sympathetic ear. Not everyone can say that.
4.) I have no kids.
I know this is pretty funny to say considering that I'm the guy who wants kids so bad he's currently screwing up his courage to end a nine-year relationship over it, but there is something to be said for the luxury of being able to put myself first.
5.) I have the last nine years under my belt.
Again, pretty funny to say considering that I'm talking about leaving it all behind, but as hard as it got sometimes, I can't bring myself to regret a thing about those years. They're what made me the man I am today, and I happen to kind of like that man.
And the hell of it is, until I dropped the kids bomb on things, following Athol Kay's MMSL blog and books and running the MAP really was doing a pretty nice job turning things around sexwise. This summer was pretty much the happiest we've ever been together, certainly since we moved in together. And I can't help but think that if I managed to cut through all the hangups (not just hers, either, not by a long shot) that were holding us back-- with some help and direction from the occasional Kiwi sex guru, of course-- then I can do anything.
All right. That's my optimism-bomb for myself. Tonight is our last couples' counseling session together. I've run the conversation through my head a dozen different ways, and I don't see any way that it ends with us still together. And I don't mean that in a Phase 5 "physically present but checked out" way, but in a Phase 7 "my Dad has the spare bedroom ready while I look for a one-person apartment" way. This is going to suck. Wish me luck.