Jesus Gywnnie, you don't stir up much of a conversation do ya? *squeeze*
This is gonna touch on probably every topic brought up by everyone else already, and I don't know if it will answer your questions, but though it's just part o'my story, it's all I know.
I'm still a newbie to this marriage deal, our first anniversary is coming up next month. This question you pose, as old as Marquess of Queensbury rules, hinges on the posit that there must be only
one, in order to be, 'the one'. I'm just saying that to get the polygamist arguments out of the way. I know a few who have that lifestyle, and they're just as confused as the rest of us. It's never "Oh, can I just, only, be
with one person only?" It's usually more like, "Oh hell, does X love Y more than me tonight? Or did Y just say that because X wanted to sleep with Q yesterday?!?"
And you think the straights have it bad.
My dad died when i was one or two. I don't remember him. I was raised by my mother and grandmother, much to the chagrin of much of the rest of the family. They were sure this steady influence of women (not to mention grandma's sisters and my aunt) would surely turn this only child gay. Apparently, they still thought that in the 70's in Appalachia suburbia.
Regardless, i grew with a healthy appetite for the opposite sex and, let's just say that I understood exactly what Harlan meant when he wrote that perhaps the search for love, in the form of sex and relationships, is what drives this beast Mankind. I had a lot of girlfriends. I had a lot
of sex, girlfriends or lone wolf. It took me no time at all to know that I was a good boyfriend; i was smart, clean, respectful, a strong shoulder and a tender comforter and learning something about how to please a woman every day. But what i didn't realize until much later, my mid 20's, which would have been my fourth or so REAL relationship (as real as they can be when you've been practicing for so long), was what I had become. I never heard the phrase until a few years ago, but what I was, was a starter boyfriend
. I could talk the talk and walk the walk, but when it came to time and commitment, forget it. What I loved was the Supersonic jet climb of romance, the fireworks of new passion, the steady knowledge that I was THE ONE for someone. Once the relationship hit the apex, it was done. It didn't dawn on me until later, that I didn't care much if they were the one for me, because there was always someone else who held a different fascination. Someone smarter, quicker of wit.
This could be said to be standard Business as Usual for any teen-aged/twenty-something guy, but it wasn't, quite. I never cheated on any girlfriend. If I was in a relationship, and I met someone else, I would say, "I'm sorry, but I've met someone else." And that was it. I was ready to be a new boyfriend. I know the names for it, and what the pathology says, but that was me at that time. Certainly none of these women/girls were what I would have called 'marriage material', and if they were, I wouldn't have recognized it anyway.
All that as antecedent to meeting Kathy. I'm not blowing smoke, hell she likes hearing about you guys, but she can't take the voluminous posts, so it's not like she's checking up on me here
but there was a sea change when I met her. Yes, I admit, it could have been a one-night-stand (to me), but it seemed like she was a culmination of all the things I had looked for in the women/girls of my past. Now, this was great for dating, maybe even a relationship, but marriage? Never. I had swore off that horse years before. I had been having a hard enough time trying to learn to be a dad. Difficult, when I'd had no formal role models in the area, and Kirin's mom and I had tried to live together twice, with worse results each than before. Any and all actual relationships I tried to have got shorter in lifespan and died a more vicious death than the last. I was getting set in my 30's, and I was determined to continue to live life to the fullest, no encumberances, no hassles, no ball and chains. I'll drink what I want, do what
I want with who
I want, and if that's a problem, then you just don't want to love me for who I am, who you thought I was. The very act of being just a 'boyfriend' meant I could control the outcome, which would inevitably, obviously, end in my girlfriend not wanting to be with me anymore, therefore I could call it quits. Marriage? A no-way-out scenario? Forget it.
I didn't see the spectre of selfishness that had lain its coat over the puddle for me.
Kat and I became an item, fast. This went on for a bit and then something happened. Long-story-short, we had a major falling-out, much bad cess, most all of it my fault. We didn't see each other again for almost a year and a half. Now here's where it starts. We slowly got back together, having lunch, spending nights together. Terrible things happened in her life during that time, and I should have been there. That was the first realization. Yes, i missed her when she was gone, and I hadn't realized how much I missed her until I saw her again, but the fact that I felt I had disappointed her, that I wasn't there when she needed me, hit me like a brickbat. I had not, ever
felt that way before, not for anyone. Friends and some family, yes, the 'wish i'd been there' scenario shows up a lot, but not to this degree. I felt I should have been there. I could
have been there. But I had chose not to, and that was a very bad decision. I thought I could make no bad decisions. Now I knew I was wrong, and what I felt with her felt right. That's simplistic, but I think you get my drift.
She asked me, told me, she wanted me to come with her to Austin. I was knocked out. I finally knew in my heart that this was someone with whom I would love to spend my time with, who says she wants the same with me. Me? My self-esteem wasn't up for that. I was used to making the decisions, and now here she was making the BIG decision, one that took control out of my hands, and placed it into ours
. That's how I knew I was loved. She wanted us to be US, together.
I knew that I loved her, and that she loved me. We did things that complimented each others abilities. We fit. We were able to do the things the other couldn't; a team. And even so, all the while, that juvenile part of me couldn't help but wonder what would happen if it ended. That was another big giveaway- I found myself thinking about spending my life without her. Not what I would do, all footloose and fancy-free, but of all the things we said we'd do together that we'd never get to do, together. It made me sick to my stomach. I'd never cared about anyone enough to miss them so much when they were still right there.
We started to talk about marriage. Pros/cons, whys and why nots. Gwynn, even and up to
the day of our wedding, I still wondered if this was a good idea. Being a writer, I'm a procrastinator. I tend to think about things for quite a long time, mulling my options over. It took me three weeks to pick a pair of frames that I actually liked for my glasses. The thing is, is that once I make up my mind, it is a done deal, irrevocable, 100% concrete topped with broken glass unchangeable. I went through the process of tux renting, banquet hall reservations, all that, still wondering, what would we do when it was over, when she realized I wasn't the knight she thought I was?
The morning of the wedding, I was shaving. I was thinking all this and more. Then it hit me, an epiphany. That proverbial bolt out of the blue (not really a proverb, but go with me, i'm on a roll). It came with such utter clarity, it was as though, literally, a weight had been removed from my shoulders. And it was this:
This woman, the love of my life, apple of my eye, cream in my coffee, and everything in my world, this woman who has known me for over five years, lived with me for three years, she still
wants to marry me. She knows exactly
who and what I am. She knows i am no knight and why would i deign to put words in her mouth or thoughts in her head? How dare
I condescend her intellect and second-guess the future she has decided, not just for her life, but for ours
? Of course
she knows what she's getting into, we've talked about it a thousand times. We know what we want for the future, our jobs, our families. She knows me so well... that she knows how I think, that I'd be thinking these thoughts, today. And she TRUSTS me, that I've made up my mind, that it must be what I want. I'd never go through with it if it wasn't. She knows that if I've finally made up my mind, it must be what I want.
She knew that my mind was made up before I did.
That's how I know, and why I don't want to be without her, and how I can trust and depend on her and say, "She's the one."
I don't know about soul mate stuff. I used to think about it, but ... no, not really. That's just stuff we say when we don't want to acknowledge what we do to each other. It's fluff.
She makes me want to be a better person, and accepts me for who I am anyway.
We have plenty of differences, but what we have in common is ours and ours alone. It could never be replicated with another.
Or, i guess I could put it this way: Kat has been sick for a while. Mostly allergies, but of a particularly violent strain, mixed with a wicked side dish of onset cold/flu. More than anything else, she loves for me to be in bed with her, just to be there... you know.
She will be sore at me for being this late in coming to bed, mostly because I told her I'd be there 2 hours ago. She may even wake up with a lonely angst, angry about being able to lay down with me for barely 3 hours before she has to go to work, still sicky.
And I will forgive her for being mad at me and i'll tell her about what I wrote, and she'll be mad until she reads this, at which point she will forgive me for being so late, but we'll both know that I should've be next to her anyway, but I got caught up.
And that's what we do.
See where I went? Selfishness to realization, reasoned arguments to leap of love? I knew it would come round sooner or later.
Truly, never had much problem on the trans-cultural front. She's Mexican-Italian, I'm a Saxon/Celt mutt. We're both too hard-headed for our own good. No religion enough to speak of. I barely talk to most of my family and as long as she is happy, I think her kin are happy.
Shit-zuu, I had no idea it was so late. Probably much more extraneous info than you needed, sorry. Hope something makes sense.
Is the definition of love the finding of what you want or the acceptance of what you've got?
I have a quote i'd love to share, but i'd have to go digging for it, and I shan't right now. G'nite for the nonce.
The medium is the message.