I have a confession to make.
Sometimes I am so not sure about this whole marriage thing.
I mean, some days it seems like it is the most magical, wonderful, amazing invention that was ever created in the entire universe.
Other days, well, not so much.
I have finally figured out the perfect analogy to our marriage. It’s like the Saturn V or the space shuttle….It takes so much energy to even get it off the ground. So much fire to get it climbing and then it has to break through the gravity of earth and the barrier of the atmosphere…and if it doesn’t keep going up and up and up the fire will consume it and then it will explode.
But if it doesn’t…if everything goes well and all the energy and fire go in the right places, well then…it’s perfection. It’s touching the face of God. It’s soaring to heights that poets cannot even describe. It’s everything. And it’s breathtaking.
So, yeah. Sometimes we get there and sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we explode and have to rebuild from the ashes. And sometimes it’s breathtaking…breathtaking in a this-is-absolutely-incredible-but-there-is-nothing-between-us-and-certain-death-but-a-bucket-of-bolts-and-a-few-thousand-prayers kind of way.
And sometimes, it’s like a dance. I can’t dance, so that’s probably not a good analogy. So maybe it’s more like a song.
Yes, that’s better.
It’s a song, and sometimes I know the words and sometimes he does and sometimes we both do and sometimes we are both lost and trying to find the melody and harmony and sometimes we are off key and…and sometimes it’s scary, because we both know that eventually we need to surrender to the song in order to know our parts.
Surrender is scary, because then we have to give up the idea that either of us is leading, and that’s not fun. It is terrifying to realize that we don’t know what we are doing and that, in the end, our only hope is to surrender to that song.
And I think we have both always known that anytime we surrender to that song, it would sometimes take us to pain. Well, who are we kidding? A lot of the time it takes us to pain. Pain that hurts and sears and aches so much that the only thing that could purify it is something even greater.
Something that burns brighter.
That something is the intense, burning love that makes it breathtaking. And sometimes that’s the scariest part. To get to the breathtaking, you risk everything. And you always lose something.
Jeffrey R. Holland said, “Love is what you go through together,” and John and I know it.
And sometimes I think we are afraid of it.
I think sometimes we would rather drown out the song that calls us to go through Something Else because the Something Else is probably going to be thrilling and terrifying and painful and beautiful and everything else.
But, the song is strong and we are passionate and we really do love each other and we think it’s worth the pain and the going through it.
And we get to a place where we don’t care anymore about the “what ifs” or if it’s our “fault” or if we could have done something more or different or better. It’s where we realize that together letting the song lead us makes none of those things that usually stress a marriage that relevant anymore because we surrender all of those feelings to the song.
And if we can just do that…well, then we are in a place where we are free of all the worrying and fear and loneliness from feeling misunderstood and “what about me?” or “what about you?” because it isn’t about me or you anymore, it’s about us. Us.
Letting go and following the music wherever it leads us.
And, sometimes, I have to be honest…we stall. We bicker and quarrel and get annoyed and irritated because we are stalling. Waiting. Because if we really follow “our song” we really do lose everything. All this mortal baggage we pick up and the comfort of carrying it with us. We lose it all and then…we are kind of afraid of what lies beyond that.
And what lies beyond it?
Everything. Everything that matters.
Everything that is breathtaking and so amazing that there aren’t words in any language on earth. Everything that is beyond what tethers us here to all our mortal cares and worries. Everything that transcends our childish need to be validated. All of a sudden, none of that matters anymore.
Right now, we have liftoff. We hear our song and we are afraid, but we will follow it anyway.
And, yes, we will even dance.
Because, somehow, even though I really didn’t think I could, somehow–when we let go and let the music lead us–I remember how to dance.