When a Heart makes a Marriage
If I had to walk alone, I know I could.
If you were gone tomorrow, I would manage.
If you left for work one morning, and never returned, I believe I could muddle through.
If you drove out our driveway one evening, never driving back in, I think I would pick up the pieces.
If illness came and swept you away, I know I could be strong and learn to keep going.
The problem is, my heart would not understand any of this. My heart would be lost without yours, because it is your heart that actually helps mine keep beating. It gives mine the courage and the determination to walk, to crawl, to fumble along, muddle through, to keep going.
The truth is that my heart knows the real me, the me that needs your love in order to feel alive. It knows that my mind plays tricks when it feels threatened by my heart. Although my mind is skilled at creating vague images of a life without you in it when pushed to venture to those thoughts out of fear, pride or anger; my heart, on the other hand, is quite specific. Its honest about what it needs, how to get it, and how to keep it- so it can literally keep beating, every second of this life with you. Even when my mind tries to convince me in a moment of weakness disguised as strength, that somehow I could manage, my heart would protest. Because without yours, mine would inevitably stop, unable to continue as the only survivor in a design for two. You must know this. My heart, is far superior to my mind in matters of itself. It would try tirelessly to find a way back to yours.
So I confess to you, sometimes I use my mind, and ignore my heart-
When I say with my words in the heat of the moment that I am perfectly capable without you, know that my heart is calling me a liar.
when I do hurtful, spiteful things to prove a stupid point, know that my heart slows a little at the idea of losing you.
When I act like I am just fine when you are not around, know that my heart is longing to be reunited with yours.
If love is guided only by very strong-willed, independent minds, the outcome is controlled indignation to potential and endless imaginary escape routes. Miraculously, our marriage is held together by a mutually even stronger-willed, hopelessly love struck, fiercely protective, unashamed of its dependence upon being a part of a whole, pair of needing hearts.
Our hearts are constantly monitoring our vitals in order to keep our marriage beating strong. This is what mine sees in yours-
My heart loves the way you kiss our children in public, at bedtime, when they are having a tantrum and when they are sleeping. Your unafraid commitment to being affectionate in fatherhood gives my heart flutters.
My heart loves the way your heart lets me, without complaint, put my freezing cold feet
and buns up against you as I settle in as the little spoon in our nightly ritual. Your sweetness makes my heart melt.
My heart loves the way you pack the car on family road trips. So detailed, so thoughtful. So precise. And then unpack the car when we return home, no matter how late, or how delirious, every bag back inside, so that we all have what we need handy in the morning. Your ability to be a caretaker makes my heart feel loved.
My heart loves the times you come home from work with a cherry Pepsi on ice, a yummy treat for each of us, and a Redbox movie, that isn’t another version of the Transporter with that dude Jason Statham, just because you wanted to. Your thoughtfulness gives my heart the reminder to be thoughtful too.
My heart loves when you spend a whole day organizing our garage full of our hodge podge of fun and memories, only to tear it apart again when you need to find something for one of us.. and then reorganize it again at the thought of having me park the car outside since the temperatures call for overnight freeze and your heart doesn’t want me scraping windows on already busy school mornings.
My heart appreciates that yours gets you up every single morning for work, an hour and forty minutes before the rest of your house of sleepy hearts. You never complain, and your goodbye kiss kick starts my heart each and every morning of my life.
My heart longs to hear your heart’s laugh. To watch your eyes squint into that handsome smile, see that dimple in your cheek appear, as you bellow out a hearty laugh so infectious, my heart wants to leap out of my chest and join you. I especially love when this happens in a crowded movie theater or restaurant. You have no idea how my heart sings at your confidence and unabashed joy.
My heart searches for ways to soothe yours when you are hurting. To grab your hand and sit
mostly quietly, or rub your back, (especially focusing on the back of the thighs like you like,) just to see and hear the tension in your voice and the stress in your heart melt away.
My heart beats faster when it watches yours play the drums, snowboard down a mountain, ride a bike on a track or a quad in the sand. Watching you explore your passions exhilarates my heart.
You see its always been my heart that understands so much clearer than my mind that a marriage is not fully lived, if it is trapped in vague imagery and in the capability of moving on, conjured up in times of what ifs.
It’s my heart that innately believes, searching out daily, what marriage actually is: a creation of two hearts sustained in the complicated, intricate, delicate working parts of the day to day, pieced together carefully and purposefully; to make a working, functional life-giving kind of love.
You are the other half to my heart.