Someone else wanted me to explain more about how I think I found Mark and found love. And, why not? But this will be my last journal post for a while after this. I promise!!
You know, it really was that I just looked for true love. I know that sounds ridiculously and impossibly simple, but…it’s the truth.
Let me explain more about what I mean by that though since I think people often have a tendency to dismiss as false or silly things they just don’t actually understand. I choose my words carefully and, to avoid being patronizing, there’s often a meaning behind them that can be missed by a prejudiced or shallow reader (or ear).
You know, I fell in love with men after Mark and before him. We were separated twice and I did date two other guys when we were first together because Mark was dating a lot of ladies at first (he was a “playboy” from about his freshman year of college until about six or seven months into our relationship, believe it or not) and he somewhat encouraged me to see other people too. It was part of his life philosophy back then.
Remember? I’ve written about this before.
And on occasion those men in my life were…special. Meaning, if I had met them under other circumstances I might have found something more permanent with them. Or very permanent. Or I met them before Mark but we didn’t work out (like the ex I described). …But anyway…after a life of depending on reason as the sole source of truth (even in regard to how I apply my faith), over the last few years I’ve started to believe in what can best be described as a kind of fatalism (still may be explained by reason though I suppose) – a beautiful, at times tragic, but certainly powerful fate.
I truly think certain things are meant or bound to happen in life, and I think certain people are…drawn to each other…for reasons that go so far beyond the here and now. And even if you can love someone else deeply and sincerely there are some people who are just meant for us because of the makeup of our souls. And those people are the ones we never forget because we actually will be missing something very important if we dont find ourselves with them.
The men I fell for as I was dating Mark and the ones I felt something for when we were struggling and separated were not of the same…level…of love as Mark. I suppose one of them might have become that, but I don’t think…he was ready to be in a serious relationship with me. He was also in a very bad place in his marriage (the marriage has since ended). He also had kids he worried about. And he was ready to find real love and some security with the right person again. We seemed to understand each other without having to explain a lot. It was nice. But frankly I don’t know that I felt the same sort of drawing, and love for him, that I felt for Mark and I suspect he might say the same thing about me. Or maybe not? And again, I suppose I could have fallen more deeply for him, but…he didn’t pursue it and I let it go because it seemed like a potential disaster waiting to happen for both of us. Our hearts just weren’t in a place to make something more transpire and perhaps that’s because…it wouldn’t have been worth it for either of us, to be brutal and blunt. He lacked the right sort of love and so did I. Basically, I just can’t help but think that what I have with my husband is very…powerful…for lack of a better word. And I hope he can find that too if he hasn’t already.
Are you still with me? Ha!
See, when I first met my husband I recall thinking he was the most handsome man I’d ever seen in my life. No, I’m not exaggerating. He had this…way about him that was almost tragically handsome.
At that time Mark was running full marathons every year and his thick, curly hair was a honey golden color as it was naturally sun bleached from all the running outdoors that he did. He was also in great shape in general. He worked out beyond running. Actually he resembled Micalangelo’s David. I kid you not. Above his manly, broad and yet elegant shoulders and under his amazing hair were two cutting, magnetic and handsome blue eyes. He had a sort of insouciant, brilliant certainty about him too. Some called it a swagger. But he lacked an off-putting boldness so much as having something that caught you and carried you with it. It was almost as if I didn’t have a choice but to fall for him. Fate.
I thought he was basically perfect.
So I gave him my phone number on a piece of paper that I casually slipped him (I was at work at the coffee shop he frequented) and I suggested on that paper that we go out for lunch sometime. He asked me out the next time he saw me. We had a lovely lunch and I recall thinking afterwards that there was something about him that had been missing from my entire life (and not in an addictive, negative way but as if I was going home). It scared me too because my heart was probably already far gone for him without any sort of warning. And as time went on it became clearer to me that he was the kind of person that I couldn’t…get over. I would be able to genuinely move on if I truly had to, but there wouldn’t be anything I could do that would genuinely end things between us, for me at least… It was as if a piece of him was already permanently there in my soul somehow and it was only in being with him that I felt at home in my own skin in certain lovely ways. I had missed him before I even knew him. And mind you, it wasn’t that I “gave myself to him” and that’s why I felt the way I did. It was something curious. After our first date (where we only chatted, ate lunch and briefly hugged) I truly felt like I was reclaiming a part of my own essence and eternal being when I was with him. His being spoke to me (romantically) in a way that precious few people, or nobody else alive, ever has or probably ever will. I was at peace with letting him go if I had to, but gosh I didn’t want to. At all.
And I think that that is what you look for.
You can find people to have a short term something with at the grocery store. It’s not that hard to find people if you look around and know what you find attractive.
You can find people to date when you drop off your dry cleaning. The guy who cuts your hair might have a great friend who could be a real partner to you. I’m serious. There are “available” people all over the place.
But you want to look for that…person who takes your breath away. And there might be more than one of them and maybe they are all some sort of soulmate but not your absolute best match, or maybe one of them actually is a person God has set aside for you as something much more profound. But however you look at it, you don’t want to mess around with anything less than that. You don’t want to settle.
Of course, I’m also of the opinion that fidelty and loyalty are important and I suppose if I was in a decent marriage that wasn’t so meaningful I might stay and of course be faithful for reasons I’ve discussed before. It’s soo complicated. Please don’t try to boil what I’m saying down to something different than what I mean.
…You see, Mark was a playboy, as I said, and he put me through a lot at first, in that regard. It was very ugly, painful and complicated. …And finally my friends told me that I should tell him that I wasn’t happy and that unless he committed to only me I would have to end things. So I did. And he got scared of losing me and committed, but it was only when he did his usual (going off somewhere and being alone or with buddies) and went on a solo trip to London, that was supposed to last a month, that he really realized how much he loved me. He wrote me from there and told me that he had never felt as in love with anyone the way he was with me. He said that it was catching him off-guard. And I knew he was sincere in that at least, because he wasn’t one to say things with that much commitment or be that serious or emotionally charged when he didn’t mean it. He didn’t just go around telling people how passionately in love with them he was… Although, I did believe for a long time that although he had never truly fallen in love with anyone else that it wasn’t enough and that he could love someone else even more. I thought he loved me to a point…
But once, on his solo vacation, he even walked around London until his feet were killing him to find a place to call me (he was staying with a friend who lived there). And because I missed him so terribly and he missed me he came back to the US two weeks early and apologized for leaving without me in the first place. Our relationship became much more serious after that. We were married in 2011. Our son was born in 2013 and now we’re expecting our second.
But we still had problems to be sorted out. And…it’s taken until the last year to seemingly find our way to something where we’re both consciously and admittedly in love and know that the other loves too – deeply loves.
The thing is though, that force, that beauty, that power…drove us together from the start and made it incredibly difficult (if not impossible) for either of us to totally give up. (i.e. He didn’t plan to necessarily marry and then I became someone he longed to be with, alone, forever.)
Call it fate in a world where not all is yet explained by science. Call it the hand of God; a blessing from God. But I truly believe some people are meant to be together in certain ways in life. Sometimes it’s a friendship. Sometimes it’s a bussiness partnership. And other times it’s as a mate. And those relationships aren’t always easy, although they shouldn’t be destructive (or despite it all you need to leave if they are). Sometimes those relationships require growth and healing in order to function in a healthy way, although they shouldn’t be abusive or dangerous (and if they are that bad, leave). And while they require brutal honesty and discernment to perceive and pick out accurately from the rest, they are there and waiting.
I know some people find them and I’d like to think everyone can if they are honest enough with themselves. It might take time, but it’s about realizing that it’s possible and not losing hope or forgetting the real possibility of it, even if that means taking that hope to the grave.
Remember how I wrote about that woman who was the mother of my roomate and how she told me that my ex didn’t love me while we were all at lunch? Well, the following words from her rang true and always will: “I mean, you don’t want to be in a marriage where your husband finds someone else who he can love in a way that he can’t love you. Because that happens. You stay with someone for years only to hear one night, when he comes home late, that he is falling in love with someone he just met. And the love he has for her is so much more than anything he ever felt for you. It happens. No, you want someone who loves you that much.”
You want someone who needs you and no, I don’t mean needs you for something (like sex, money or etc.) but someone who needs you in their life – who needs your soul because they love you that much. I’ll never forget when Mark first told me that. “I need you.” he simply said. I didn’t know then that he really meant it that deeply or that he meant it in a way that was good, but I think I can now say that I know he did.