Early on in our relationship I realized that I would need to but brutally honest and come clean about my rather odd collection of pet peeves. Most all of the things irked me grew out of things I once found difficult to understand or do. However, after years of meditation and trying I was able to over these things. I figured that everyone else in the world ought to be able to do so as well. Some of these vexing topics got to be me so bad I would grow upset and angry. For example, people that changed lines while driving irritated me to no end. I saw this as careless and neglectful driving. On longer trips, this behavior, combined with my many other triggers, would result in a case of road rage. I never struck anyone, but I certainly found myself cursing the other drivers.
The day that I told her about the collection of things that upset me, she just smiled and said it was no big deal. Honesty. I thought. I had been dreadfully nervous about opening up to my wife and telling her about my triggers. But, she didn’t mind at all. She smiled, took my arm and walked with me. She held me extra close and extra tight that entire day.
I couldn’t move from my seat to join her. I wanted to, I wanted desperately to join my love in dance. Even though our relationship had begun with a remarkable burst of firsts, I found it hard to continue this trend. So I watched her dance and sway from afar. I observed her happiness and grin. I watched the moments tick by and melt away as the clocks ran out of space. Before I knew it, the night was over and the next day would be starting soon. All of this unfolded without me dancing with my wife or uttering a word to my new family members.
Near the end of the night my wife sat down with me and begged me to join her for one more dance.
“Just one more,” she said in an impossibly cute voice. I frown at her and sighed. Already on our wedding night I was disappointing her. Where would this lead to? My mind erupted and drew up horrible situations where I continually failed my wife.
She sat there, next to me as I thought. Her arms were laced around me as she whispered that I didn’t have to venture onto the dance floor.
“But I want to,” I said. “I want to do things with you. I want to be like you.”
“But you mustn’t!” She said quickly. “You must never become someone like me. You must stay yourself.”
“Then how am I to spend time with you and participate in your adventures?” I inquired.
“You won’t. I will participate in yours. I will convert myself to your ways,” She smiled.
“But why sacrifice what you love?” I asked.
“Because you are my love,” she said.
This struck me. In all of my schooling and readings I had never considered such a simple reason. I had over looked this perfectly logical and basic reason to drop all that you fear. I scolded myself for missing this idea. I cursed myself for it. But now I knew how to correct all of my misspent time. I knew exactly how to participate in our life.
Without an ounce hesitation, I seized my wife’s hand and headed for the dance floor. My heart pounded in its irregular fashion as I braved new ground. This moment was to be the first of many new and exciting moments, I thought.
The first step promoted her to giggle and laugh. I recalled the first time I heard her laugh. Before I drove out to her house, we exchanged short video messages. I’ll never forget the first of these messages. Her hair was tied back, deluding her natural curls. Her face was joyful and her cheeks were stained red from blushing. She giggled, rather than utter any words. In that moment I knew that she was a special girl.
It was a tease almost. She was slowly allowing me glimpse her and get to know her in pieces. With each piece she revealed I was able to sow another photograph to that quilt in my mind. Before she even knew it, she was helping me look into our future and piece it together. Her shy giggle narrated what was to become her place in my heart. It carved out the bad experiences and slashed away the heart ache.
By the second and third steps she was next to me. We walked in stride, step for step.
“This is where I’ll always be,” she said over the music.
“And this is where I belong,” I responded. She blushed again, just as she did all those years ago.
The entire walk out to the dance floor lasted less than twelve seconds and it was equally life changing as the walk to her front door. Back then I had conquered an ancient fear when I walked up to her front door. I had always been reluctant to meet new people, especially ones that intimidated me with their unique personality and beauty. From the beginning, and seemingly without her knowing, she has been helping me eradicate my deepest fears.
And now, here we are, dancing slowly to our song, on our wedding night, the tension and stress that once resided in my chest are gone. The upsetting notions I associated with so many mundane events in life were gone. The uneasy feelings I held about dancing and marriage all melted with the warmth of her touch and the kindness in her voice. The strength of her arms had carried me this far. She carried me to the dance floor, to a new city and to a world of bliss I had never considered possible.