I want to stare at him while his sunflower eyes shine.
I want to plant my gaze and take root.
We are at a concert listening to magic drip from a torrent of sound and I love the way joy carves his face into a trail of growing light.
Lucky for me, I can pull this off without being creepy.
I'm his wife.
This afternoon he laid with me in bed while I curled into a little ball of fear and frustration. When I impulsively told him, "You don't need to hang out in my sad spiral, it's not going to change." He replied, "I'm not trying to change anything. I'm just being with you. Deal with it."
I tried to repress my desire to smile.
He's modeling what I'm learning to do for myself, I thought. I'm learning to witness my emotions without shutting them off or changing their name. I'm learning to be with myself steadfastly while I navigate the transformation that is born from loving attention.
Partnership can and should help us heal limited concepts of self love.
We model how we want our partner to be treated by the sharper edges of their own psyche, so they can see it, feel it, know it.
All kinds of relationships have the potential to offer this type of soul mending.
We are pieces that have been cut away from the same whole and we keep the memory safe for each other.
We offer it up in reflection.
Through Love we are singing a song of great remembrance. We are helping each other return to our strong and tender wholeness.
When the concert is done I place my hand on my husband's cheek and notice that his irises have the texture of a wheat field and his gaze is the soft sway of wind.
New beauty blooms beside the act of witnessing.
Sometimes I get very small and proclaim my weakness with contradictory gusto. I am grateful to have my self worth mirrored by the patience and presence of my partner. It tugs me away from the seductive grip of separation, self-judgement and pity.
It invites me, without force or agenda, to dig my hands into the bigger work of Love and learn the secret that's not a secret:
Love summons Love.
It calls us to remind others how worthy they are of their own sensitivity.
We have the opportunity every day to fan the flame of truth for all the perfect, broken pieces of our one heart. As the heat grows, so does the desire for unity.
One by one, we will find our way back together.
I am a Portland, Oregon based writer, filmmaker and choreographer. I believe stories dissolve the grip of isolation and return us to each other.