The other day, I was watching my husband and my little one playing on the floor. It was so touching and adorable. My thoughts drifted towards the future and I saw us doing the very same thing- still laughing together and enjoying an afternoon. I began to wonder what my life would be like if I had married anyone else. It was a bit hard to imagine with my daughter there in front of me, thinking how strange if that exact little person would not have come into my life but I did and it was a bit strange. I wondered if my husband ever did the same thing. So, I asked him. "Do you ever wonder what your life would be like if you had married someone else- your ex for instance?"
"I just can't imagine life NOT being the three of us, especially her," as he gestured to our baby.
So, we were both on the same page. And as I sat there trying to picture my life with someone else, I realized I wasn't anywhere else but there because of choices.
Some people like to think they were destined to be together. That life, in all its mystical and cosmic glory, conspired to bring them together. While I do believe in this a little, I don't think this is the whole story. You make choices. Every morning when I wake up I make a choice to be here for my family and to love them. It's fueled in part by the grace of Spirit and in part by me stepping on the gas.
My husband and I are both very aware of this. We are not under some silly delusion that when we decided to marry each other, we magically erased 30 years of prior experiences and memories and became a new single entity. No, no! In fact, if he or I were to ever have thought that, we would have never gotten to this point. It is because of our individual commitments to freedom and honesty that come into play in our togetherness that allows us to see each other with new eyes every day and keep choosing each other over and over. Both of us know we can leave at any moment. And because of that very detachment, we stay and we love each other that much more for knowing that in this whole humongous world, we are here because we want to be and for no other reason. And we know that change is inevitable. And one day change might even change us apart. But today... NOW... we are here.
In fact, not only do we ask each other things like what I mentioned above, we are comfortable talking about pretty much anything. Even the things most people consider as the "don't go there" category. One of the key moments of our relationship came when we both were frustrated and angry regarding past relationships- we had things we had wanted to say but couldn't and never had closure with those people in particular. We talked about how we felt very openly and we were both very visibly hurt by these feelings. I guess most people would feel threatened. I felt enlightened! I realized this was what I wanted from a relationship my whole life. I wanted to be able to be myself in every way and have someone share my life with me that was the fullest expression of themselves as well. No jealousy, no insecurities. And I had found it. Even in the midst of our talking about our feelings regarding other people, we grew closer and understood each other more. I wouldn't have it any other way.
It was so revolutionary to me to have had that conversation with him. I never thought a guy could be capable of hearing about someone else... of being so aware of me and so attentive as to want to listen to EVERYTHING I have to say. And vice versa. Most men are so insecure and become enraged at even the mention of their partner's past relationships. Like, what... she didn't exist before you came along, buddy? I think it's so constricting to live that way. And women do it too. It's so liberating to let all that go and to have your partner realize you still have memories, you still have passion inside, you still have a pulse for crying out loud! While driving the other day on the freeway, he mentioned he wanted to contact an ex girlfriend that some girl on a billboard we had just passed reminded him of, to see how she was doing and resolve a few things. My response: "What are you waiting for?" Of course, the me of ten years ago would have judo-chopped him in the ribs, kicked him out of the car and left him maimed on the side of the road as I drove away. But hooray for spiritual and personal evolution. :)
Osho's "Love, Freedom, Aloneness" is so excellent. It's like a manual of how to love and still stay you in every way. One of the things that I most love about the book is that he keeps saying if we are strangers to ourselves and if we try to keep ourselves in a box, our relationship and the other person in it will be stranger in a box as well. I personally like my husband real and all over the place, not some cookie cutter version of some ideal guy on TV. And I like that he likes me all over the place too. It's the biggest paradox ever, but because we are free is the very reason we stay.