The muse strikes and Steven Lake examines the razor-sharp challenges of being in a relationship.
Being in a relationship is like living in a cement mixer; constantly churned around, inside and out, mixed up in a constant and never ending slurry of experience.
Being in a relationship is never knowing when the unexpected will happen. It demands flexibility and responsiveness. Responding rather than reacting is the sutra I practice, learning to be like bamboo bending in the winds of change, rather than being the stiff and resistant oak that snaps when my partner’s fury is unleashed.
Being in a relationship is the counterpoint for my ego to see that its survival is a hindrance and not the end goal it supposes. Seeing the possibility of a way of being beyond what I can imagine is the purpose.
Being in a relationship defies the laws of logic. Does it support genetics and cultural imperatives? Are these two concepts at odds, or is one just a manifestation of the other?
Being in a relationship forces me to consider another person every day we are together (and even when apart). Kids do this too.
Being in a relationship demands change if the partnership is to succeed. To grow is to change, cell by cell, reaching for the sun, shedding old ways of being and basking in her radiance with smug awareness knowing that I can learn, grow, and change.
Being in a relationship opens my eyes to see the world from another point of view. So different than mine, it glides over facts and focuses on feeling, sliding between meaning and metaphor, always looking for the light of creation. I am humbled.
Being in a relationship makes me cry with anguish as my limitations become apparent and laugh with delight as I rock and roll with witticisms that etch laugh lines on her face.
Being in a relationship gives me a partner to dance with in the kitchen, the living room, and in bed. To feel my body in relationship to another even as we grow older and our movements change with time.
Being in a relationship makes me gasp in pain, delight, joy, anger, desire, and love. I feel everything with more intensity and shudder as the mathematics of one plus one equals three – you, me and us.
Being in a relationship is a 10,000 piece puzzle with missing pieces. No one is complete, yet we create a new puzzle even more beautiful than the one on the box cover.
Being in a relationship brings out the best and the worst in me. I change to enhance my qualities and erode my weaknesses, bit by bit, like waves lapping or crashing – constantly changing the landscape of our relationship with unending attempts. Tidal energies rising and falling in response to you, the moon.
Being in a relationship helps me see myself. You are a mirror held before and behind, no angle left unseen. Embarrassing at times to see the flab of my idiosyncrasies – faux pas, jest, and joke that hang limp in the air, waiting for a change in attitude, or is that altitude.
Being in a relationship is a process like the unfolding of the universe. It starts with a big bang and in the quantum millionths of a second energies are unleashed that defy true understanding. We make hypotheses to explain the inexplicable hoping to understand and exert control over forces that are beyond reckoning as the cosmos expands beyond time and space into infinity itself – incomprehensible and ever-changing.
Being in a relationship has taught me that to resist change is to fight nature. And nature always wins. I can go with change and try to direct the flow or fight it and die drowning in a slow death. Our biggest obstacle to change is our ego-mind and as George Bernard Shaw once said, “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
Being in a relationship has shown me that to be happy, I must be the change I wish to see (thank you Mahatma even though I heard you too had difficulty in relationship).
Also by Steven Lake
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