I could not stop hurting. My ego was so brittle; I simply could not let it go. My husband had said something which hurt me, and then a flurry of texts ensued. I can not even remember what started it, but I do recall this… After hours of festering, even after he cried, I could not let it go.
Then he called me to inquire,”My love, will you recover for me?”
My first marriage lasted 26 years and was quite different than the one I have now. First time around I fell in love with a boy that was a man. We were only 22 and learned to become adults together, living our 20’s and entering our 30’s with a thriving career in the entertainment industry. We climbed to a family of six, and it was the very core of our joy.
Our union faltered through grieving that’s more extreme than you can imagine.
My husband said,”It is just too painful. We can not be together anymore.”
And yet I still loved himand I knew he loved me. However much I struggled to hold onto what we had, he simply could not bear it… and left.
Afterward, he died, two years later. A heart attack took him at 54, and I know for certain it started the day we lost our lovely boy.
Love the next time around
My union today is very different from my first. We had met briefly in New York when I was only 16, and he was 20, but he remembered me all these years later.
We fell in love immediately. It was his personality and ability to convey that struck me. Mutual friends would talk of it, also. They would say, You have got an outstanding man, Sandy. And I understood it.
It’s Hard mixing two complete lives into one
Learning about love the next time around is not straightforward. We’d built our adult lives, each with our own companies and finances, our unique houses, and different communities of friends. We both had years of life challenges and experiences. Some we climbed stronger from, and a few still festered now and then.
And then there were my kids. He had none, but embraced mine with good affection, always respectful of the memories of the father who birthed them.
We both had a huge library of background to our names, and we understood it doesn’t erase with fresh marriage vows. Instead, we needed to honor it.
We have been married for seven decades and still reside in two distinct states because of family and work obligations. We’re collectively several weeks at a time, then aside. We lean heavily on our tech devices to keep our relationship.
When we talk on the telephone, we do not have the daily gift of touch, nor are we able to find out what’s happening in each other’s eyes.
We also have a text connection and texting has a tone, as your own voice. It’s even more important to know about your tone in texting since there’s no emotion except what you create inside your words and emojis. We’re both keenly conscious of how one miss-interpreted text may spoil a perfectly beautiful day.
What’s the key to making it work?
I didn’t develop this guy, as I witnessed with my husband.
I discovered there is a process to an argument. It begins with a trigger. Learning how to diffuse it’s much more challenging. It was crucial for me to learn a more effective method of communicating with words.
And then there is this one…”I’m so in love with you.” When that one comes through either by text, email, or telephone, it is a complete and total fusion of the love we share. It is like a warm embrace, a long look into each other’s eyes, followed by a kiss that does not need to end.
And one more…“I’m passionately in love with you. I wish to feel you.” Well…. You can imagine.
Despite the fact that we have been together for nearly a decade now, sometimes words expressed while aside still feel a tad bit vulnerable, even as it requires complete surrender of ego and affirming a deep and lasting commitment to each other even when we can not look into each other’s eyes.
And it’s well worth it. I am not afraid to show vulnerability. I could be real.
Finding your voice now around
In this Second Act union, I have discovered I have a more powerful voice; not because I never needed it in my first marriage, but am a more confident girl than I was then. I am able to offer my opinion to my husband and hope it’ll be well received… all the time.
We’re more are secure in who we are and what we’ve achieved. We did not”grow up” together, we came together, forging a new love, and constructing a bridge joining two powerful foundations.
My husband says I was “forged by fire.” He understands I loved deeply and lost. He knows my heart still aches for my lovely child and the life I once had. He knows my life comprises a deep and loyal love for my children that I raised in my own because the time their dad left.
But There’s a sense of urgency
I know that individuals may leave this earth at any moment and it compels me to live more in the present. I don’t often use the word”someday,” since it doesn’t actually exist.
This afternoon is what we have. This afternoon we could live life to the fullest. No day ought to be wasted. We set goals and have fantasies, but we have learned to make plans for the close future, because our”somedays” are now.
People are happier having experiences instead of things.
In the best selling book, Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor, he says people are more happy by having adventures instead of having items .
Life continues to get lumps, and surprises I do not always expect, but I have proven to myself that I’ve weathered each one and bounced back from even the darkest times. I guess you’ve got those times, also.
Not long ago, my husband and I would not have had the choice to text or ready to generate a video call. We look forward daily to our morning hellos through text and frequently meet for a glass of wine in the evening.
We”check in” numerous times during our day. We all know how each other’s company is going, what we need for lunch, and what we’re studying or binge-watching on tv.
We’re sharing our thoughts after every episode of Outlander since the personalities, Jamie and Claire, are split, also, but not by distance. They’re sometimes centuries apart.
She was a British Army nurse in World War II who had been hauled back in time to 1743 where she meets with a Scottish Highland warrior, embroiled in the Jacobite rebellions of the moment.
And so does ours. Our love grows stronger, more loyal, and endures even when we are in two distinct states. It isn’t always ideal or effortless. We must diffuse disagreements quickly. I can not simply walk into his arms and kiss him and say I am sorry.
When my husband says,”My love, will you recover for me” I know he is not saying I should not be hurt or that I do not have a right to my opinions. We disagree sometimes, and one isn’t more right than another… we just have a back history of independent lives to draw from, and they frequently don’t agree.
The Same as Jamie and Claire. They have very different viewpoints, coming from various centuries, but they’re joined together in love and respect for the lives they understand and the marriage they want to hold sacred.
“Can you recover for me?”
I didn’t expect these words to touch me so deeply.
I began to cry.
Sometimes I resist unbinding my deliberate ego, but I am learning how to release the pain brought on by words which are sometimes misinterpreted through our existing communication devices.
My union is worth every bit of settling my wounded feelings and recovering… I understand every minute with my husband is precious.
I have loved and lost; he understands that. We can not waste time on things that actually have to be put to rest.
Of course I’d recover for him, for our relationship, for our life together. There was no need to prolong unhappiness when two words, said in the truest manner could return us to love.
“I am sorry,” I said.
You can not see anything correctly while your eyes are blurred with tears.” –CS Lewis
My husband and I may be in two distinct states, but we’re a gorgeous partnership bound by a deep and passionate love for one another.
Discovering new words and new ways to convey is an experience unto itself. It keeps our love living and active, and every morning we grow knowing we are loved.
A version of the post was previously published on Moderate and is republished here with permission from the author.
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