Eleven years ago today, under the full moon, my love and I were wed. Even though we chose Dias de los Muertos to be our anniversary we chose not to say the words 'til death do us part" in our vows. Eleven years ago it was simply that seperation through death didn't resonate and neither one of us believed in the idea of a jail sentence.
I mean no offense to anyone who says these words in their marriage vows and I understand the meaning behind it for many. What I mean when I say jail sentence is yes, on our wedding day we were deeply in love and our intention was to share and build a life together, but we also loved each other enough to know that if one of us ever decided we were happier outside the marriage that the other would let them go in peace. It may sound strange but marriage for us felt more like stepping into freedom, not a contract, a place where we could make up the rules as we went along without trying to predict the future or write the ending.
Today I find that til death do us part holds deeper meaning than what I originally thought. Jimmy and I have been together fifteen years now and with time comes transition. What I have learned in my marriage so far is that as an evolving human being - one who makes mistakes, isn't perfect and has shed many layers through the years - is that when we take the literal shadow meaning of inevitable death out of the picture, the metaphor becomes one for growth, expansion, new life.
As two humans walking on different spiritual paths of personal growth Jimmy and I have both died a hundred deaths I imagine throughout our marriage and if that meant we were to part each time transition took place, we would be in serious trouble.
I don't believe marriage is about becoming one, we are already connected. I don't believe in the idea of "you complete me" in all it's Hollywood romance. I believe resentment arises when we try to write the story and the script for our partners in such a way that they aren't able to act it out according to our vision - I've tried that method, it doesn't work.
I believe any romantic relationship is a partnership where each person takes self responsibility for what they bring to it. I believe that a partner who can hold the space for transition and change without holding a deep sorrow or mourning for what "once was" and feel safe to be who they are is an honest and beautiful honoring of that love. I also believe in some marriages that letting go is the best way to honor a love that once was.
In our marriage, when we are able to hold space for each other, free from judgement and safe to share truth without taking it personal is where we find ourselves in harmony. It's what allows us to choose trust daily and laugh deeply often. It's not always easy and there was a time where we both questioned if we had come to the end our our road. Thankfully the answer to that question was no, there is so much more for us to explore together, and I happily celebrate today, so proud of us and our journey so far and am grateful for the whole of it. We have grown together and individually, we have brought forth two beautiful girls and continue the work of partnering and building a life we love living... together. Met with love. Rooted in gratitude. Allowed to bend. Free to grow.
Fifteen years ago yesterday I met Jimmy at a Halloween party. Some part of my soul recognized him instantly and shortly after our meeting he gave me a card with an illustration of a magical ship that was flying over the sea. He said it reminded him of us.
Over time that ship has collected many treasured sun-kissed skies, traveled far and wide and weathered a few severely stormy seas over the years. Through it all I am happy to say we remain anchored in love.
I love you, Jimmy. I'm so grateful to have you as my shipmate on this incredible adventure we are continuously navigating together.