How he came to be my husbandJanuary 15, 2007 at 4:54 pm | Posted in charity knitting, country living, dating, faith, family, free knitting patterns, Habitat for Humanity, Holidays, knitting, marriage, photography, relationships, romance, volunteerism | 21 Comments
Winter, this winter, has been a temporary visitor here and there. She would stop by briefly, tease us a bit, then leave. Her snow and the cozy promises it presented would melt quickly each time and disappears altogether. She was ethereal and mysterious. We loved her and never scorned her visits, but did long for her to stay a bit longer, maybe settle in for a while and work her magic on the earth and roots and various other essential elements of the eco-system here. We also selfishly, I admit, wanted her presence with us for our own enjoyment and pleasure.
In the wee hours of the morning on Saturday, she came by and this time she stayed. Sleet turned to snow sometime between five and seven in the morning on Saturday. The snowfall was measurable and it has not gone away.
I tromped around in the snow for a while taking photos of things I found as I explored. I have learned the art of bundling up now so that I can go out for a long time with the camera and stay warm the entire time. Back in the house as I handled emails or worked at my easel, in every direction I looked from within the house, I could see the snow of our outside world.
My husband and a couple of his friends went up to Toronto on Saturday to an annual boat show up there, and I stayed home working on some photography for a while, then oil painting much of the day, and other activities that kept me happily creative and occupied for twelve hours or so … listening to music much of the time.
It was a beautiful day indeed.
It has been nearly one year now since my husband and I first made contact via email … January 29th of last year he wrote to introduce himself to me after reading my profile online. Bless him and bless me and bless the circumstances that led to him writing that initial email.
I promised a while back to tell the rest of the story, the part that follows How I Met My Husband. Today is a good day to give you more.
From when the we first met, we wrote long emails to each other every day. No communication went unanswered or unacknowledged. At the time I was still a bit confused about my experience with the Viking, so I didn’t realize I was talking to this new fellow (my now husband) for the purpose of possibly getting together. I was confused. My heart was still stinging, and my “vision” was a bit impaired.
Lots of other men were writing to me at the same time, but this new fellow … his emails stood out clear and vibrant. It was almost as if I was in a dream, standing in a place that was very crowded, feeling a bit stifled by the press of the crowd. Looking urgently into the crowd for someone I thought I knew (the Viking) but had lost track of, to the side a voice called out to me and caused me to look their way. And when I did, the confusion started settling out, an opening between us formed, and I was able to reach my hand toward this new voice and face and then there was contact as his hand touched mine and he pulled me to safety, out and away from the crowd.
And my initial response was something along the lines of, “Wait a minute, (shake my head a bit) … what?”
That’s what it is like when you come out of confusion sometimes. It can be a bit unsettling to suddenly not feel confused anymore.
We had so many strange and little things in common as well as the big things, it was astounding. Similar eating habits and patterns, same favorite author, same book on the bedside table for years, same enjoyment of pirate talk and things nautical, photography, graphic arts, making and creating and repairing things out of whatever you have on hand, barns, rural life, sense of humor, wit, irony, faith.
A couple of weeks after the daily emails started, we added a weekly phone call to the mix. Oh, how I loved his voice. I had never been affected by a voice that way before. For some reason I felt as if I could listen to that voice forever. Perhaps it was just a part of knowing on some level what the future held. I don’t know, but I did love his voice.
As we continued getting to know each other by email and by phone, we brought up all kinds of subjects and issues. We both felt very strongly that open, direct, and honest communication was key in what we were doing. If we could communicate openly and frankly with each other, there was a chance of creating a lasting relationship. Neither of us wanted a relationship that was empty … if I was going to remarry it was going to be real and for him, if he was going to marry at all, it was going to be real. Not a compromise just to escape being alone.
Less than a month after we first started emailing we got to the subject of faith. Faith is huge. And it was huge for him and huge for me.
I knew it could be problematic also, because we did not come from the same religious background. Could we find commonality in faith itself, even if the specifics of religious doctrine were quite different? Were we similarly tolerant … I hoped we were. I hope so with all of my heart.
The wonderful thing was that with him I felt safe in communicating fully and openly on the subject. There was a particular day when our emails shot back and forth all day long on that subject. Questions were posed, solutions were proposed. I told him at one point that while I valued our open discussion, I also trembled. I trembled because I was in deep enough by that time that if things blew up in our faces it was going to hurt.
I researched this issue online to find out how others deal with religious differences when establishing a relationship or a marriage. There are many approahces, but from what I found the solution that the majority of people adopted was that each person would maintain their own religion and faith and that attempts to convert one another were strictly off limits.
Hmm. Well, I could see how that might work. But I also felt that if we tried that approach it would put an artificial barrier between us that would violate the basic premise that we operated under, that open and direct communication was the healthiest thing to strive for.
I proposed to him that we should both acknowledge the fact that “conversion” is a natural responsibility in any religion and that we could say we were each fair game as long as there were no hidden intentions or expectations. That if I was accepting him as a man of whatever his faith was, that I would not have a hidden agenda of intending to change him to what I really wanted later down the road. I think people do that kind of thing to each other all the time, and I don’t think it is right.
He agreed with my concept, and we also agreed that we would each participate in each other’s religions and always speak openly with each other on the subject.
The fact that we could address such an emotionally charged issue analytically and respectfully and come up with a workable way of integrating our differences into each others lives created a profound affect on me. From that day I no longer felt alone. It was remarkable. We had not agreed to be a couple or a team, and yet we had shared such deep a personal communication on such a vital subject and worked it out as if we were a couple.
For me, we became a couple that evening, on the phone and have been ever since. That was less than one month after we first made contact.
That was a Friday evening. Within three days we started talking on the phone every night for four or five hours, without fail. We couldn’t stop ourselves. All we wanted to do was talk to each other. Hear each other’s voices, be together even though we were more than 3,000 miles apart.
It was magic and powerful.
The daily emails continued along with the phone calls.
Life changed completely, pretty much overnight.
And here I am today, less than a year later … on this farm more than 3,000 miles from where I was last year at this time.
And there is beautiful white snow on the ground and my husband is at work only a few miles away.
And I am happy.
I hope you are too. If not, I hope you find such happiness as this as soon as you can … or something close to it.
Have a beautiful day,