Let there be spaces in your togetherness…
Strange how some realisations just comes to one when you’re in silence. Sitting at a local resort in awe of the mountain range and instrumental rainfall, I realise how much I have changed. I have looked forward to this break in a few months – a time spent with my husband and son before the arrival of our new addition.
After spending a good few months on my own prior to my current four year marriage, I had become comfortable with my own company. Being alone was then something I would look forward to as I never had to answer, justify or expect anyone to entertain me. It had become habitual to do whatever I wanted, when I wanted and with whom. But time past, I met someone phenomenal and we became a unit. Within this new family unit I had become aware of my past, what we had committed to in this new context and I remember how who my partner is slowly impacted on how I questioned my role in this new relationship.
I confess to not being too confident because now, I was constantly aware of whether and when I was out of line or not, whether what I was doing or being was impacting my partner and whether who I am is sufficient at times. You see, my Shoukey is one of those guys who often set off into his own world. He would have no justification nor would it be anything personal that I did. Still, I would question whether I had a role is his going off into his own mental fantasy. Initially it bothered me immensely because I felt as though I was being punished for something I was unconscious of. But it never was about me and as the months…years continued I learned quickly. I now realize that there are certain things worth discussing/debating and other things you need to integrate in order to expand as a soul and to bury ones past.
Here I sit on an a mini vacation with more than a few days where my husband drifts off to his favourite place. I find myself making light of it as I take advantage of his ‘absence’ to take a nap or to simply unwind. Being a guy, he is often entwined in his sport and I find myself simply retreating to read my book or listening to Mozart only to find that after a while he would check on me, strikes up a conversation about something or joins me for a cuddle.
A few years ago I would probably have felt offended, unloved, not cared for or even lonely. Now, I sit here typing away while glaring at him watching his soccer. He catches me and remarks with an odd ‘I know what you’re up to’ look, “Watch your fingers, quit staring into my eyes” and I know….I know that we have past the place of discomfort but have reached a place of comfortably knowing that even though we are together having family time, we maintain our individuality, we are still connected, still one even though we spend time within our silence….our personal space.
We pray together, play together, meditate together and sometimes apart but we always seek an opportunity to grow – and this happens even while we are together….even in our silence….
“You were born together, and together you shall be forevermore.
You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.
Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow”.
Kahlil Gibran – On Marriage