Just when I feel I’ve turned a corner, and just maybe things will be a bit easier for me (not easy, just easier), I’m yanked backwards by some unseen force, much like an invisible rubber band that allows me to get only so far before snapping back, and I can almost hear an evil cackle in my ear and voice saying “not yet… I’m not done with you yet…”
This morning on my commute, a couple of songs I heard back-to-back on the radio brought me to my emotional knees – “Still the One” by Orleans and “In Case You Didn’t Know” by Brett Young. Despite my previous protestations that breaking down in the car on the highway was something I didn’t do, it was unavoidable this morning, and I was grateful that there’s always a box of tissues riding shotgun. (I was also grateful that I failed to put on make-up this morning as it would have been wasted effort.)
Of course, I had been feeling a bit sensitive already; sleep has been somewhat elusive and erratic lately and we all know how important good rest is to one’s mental state. This morning, I was having a bit of a pity party in the shower, thinking back on some of the arguments A and I had through the years, and mentally berating myself for any of them I started.
I know it’s normal to regret even the smallest of disagreements when you lose someone. Every moment that was wasted in hurt or anger comes back to haunt you, and this morning I was regretting every minute that didn’t treasure with my husband. Although it’s foolish (and unhealthy, and pointless, etc.) to think like that, it happens anyway.
So, after my music-induced meltdown in the car, I started thinking. It occurred to me that our relationship (and most others) was much like an airplane. Each of us was an engine, he the right and I the left, and our relationship itself was the fuselage. Whenever one of us had a moment where we were just unable to give our all to the relationship (we were angry, distracted, hurt, busy – there are so many reasons why a relationship isn’t a top priority in one’s life at any given time), the other took over and kept it in the air until the troubled engine sputtered to life again and a major crisis was averted. Had both of us failed at the same time, we may have crashed and burned.
The same holds true had one of us been carrying the relationship on our own for too long. Without both engines focused on their job of keeping the plane in the air, without both partners focused on their marriage, it would be nearly impossible to sustain flight long term. You simply cannot keep a relationship together if both partners aren’t fully committed to it for the long haul.
What A and I had wasn’t perfect. We weren’t perfect. But we loved each other. Yet my circumstances have changed, and now I’m here flying solo; I’ve got to compensate for my lost engine long enough to make a safe landing. I’ve issued my distress call and I do my best to remain calm. I’m thankful for the friends and family who hear my mayday and try to talk me through the panic, while guiding me toward a place to land.
Better yet, maybe instead of landing, I’ll learn to do whatever it takes to remain airborne on my own for awhile. Because maybe his love has given me wings… I’ll never known until I try.
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