As I write this my wife, Lori, and I are driving to Philadelphia from our home in Massachusetts. We are taking part in a weekend-long holistic expo where I’m offering Akashic Records readings and she’ll be doing energy healings. Quite a long way from the alcohol-fueled road trips that I thought relationships were built on. Lori loves to drive so I get chauffeured around most of the times we travel together.
Often people meet us, see that we are both coaches and energy workers, so they assume we met that way. We actually met long before either of us were involved with any sort of personal growth or spiritual practices. Probably before we knew anyone who was crazy enough to even call themselves an energy worker. Back then I would have bet all I had that we’d never do what we are doing these days. Mutual friends originally set us up at a time when I was just hoping to meet someone normal. I had finally ended a long-running, drama- and chaos-filled relationship with a married woman. It was off and on for years. We even lived together at one point, but it was in secret. It wasn’t healthy for anyone as we literally lived a lie every day. Lori must have been hoping to meet someone abnormal, as that is how I saw myself.
Lori was warned that I was a sensitive guy before meeting me. Nobody told me that for quite a while, which is a good thing because I was not a fan of that label. Being called sensitive is not something I enjoyed hearing. It made me think I was damaged goods. People had to be warned that I was sensitive because men aren’t supposed to be sensitive. I also saw it as code for, “he’s tried to kill himself.” We met and I thought nothing of it as I wasn’t aware we were being set up at all. A few weeks later we met again at a party and hit it off. Days later on our first real date, I knew she was the one for me. I still remember holding her hand across the table at a restaurant after dinner, and knowing we were going to be married. We were married about two years after meeting.
Despite often trying to convince her that I was a mess and she was better off without me. Despite my saying and believing I was better off dead at times. She never wavered. I know I’ve caused her great pain at times. She’s been more that a best friend and partner. She’s been my biggest fan and supporter. She’s been at my side for anything I’ve asked her to, and also during those dark times when I insisted she go away. I thank God constantly that she didn’t listen to me.
As I dove into personal growth and my own spirituality she went to events too; mostly to keep an eye on me. Eventually, she saw the changes and improvements in me and saw that she could improve her life too. You didn’t need to hit low points like I had to benefit from some self-exploration. Personal growth isn’t only for a depressed and suicidal mess like I was. Nobody called me that by the way, except for myself.
Referring to your wife as your best friend is one of those clichés that I thought was nonsense. I believed a best friend/wife was as possible as spotting a leprechaun riding a unicorn. It was something I might glance at on the cover of Cosmopolitan while checking out at the grocery store. I saw it as a sign of a whipped or weak man. It isn’t. I am comfortable enough to rely on and appreciate her. Twenty years strong. There needs to be a better word for it. Wife/best friend/partner. We both discovered the world of energy work. She embraced all my “tests” while dating – namely going to Kiss and Metallica concerts. She’s now seen both bands multiple times. We’ve discovered so many common interests and experiences from movies to adventure travel, amusement parks to trippy, mystical experiences. We are both still excited to see each other and to tell each other our happiest news or biggest disappointments.
So my wife is my best friend. It is another thing that I didn’t believe was a possibility as a younger man. I’ve grown to really enjoy being wrong about things.
We just visited a rest area in Connecticut and inside the song, , was playing. It’s a classic 80s song that always makes me think of being a heartbroken teenager. I’m almost moved to tears as I think of how lucky and grateful I am. We’ve had an amazing run together. I love the synchronicity of starting to write this post in the car, then stumbling into this song. I love finding once again that proof, or validation, that I am with the person I am meant to be with. I step outside of the cramped snack bar full of construction guys grabbing snacks to have one of those odd moments of being on the verge of tears and also laughing at myself.
Yup, I guess that warning 20-odd years ago about me being sensitive was right on. But maybe it wasn’t a warning after all? Perhaps it was a welcoming.
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