Some thoughts on love and marriage

Have you ever felt like you wanted to give birth to someone and then die in their arms? Well, that’s the way I feel about George.  Maybe I just have strong emotions and fantastical sensations, but that is the love I feel for this man. Perhaps that is what love is.  After all, God gave us life and takes our lives away. Also, the Son of God, who is also God, died for us and through Him we are given new life.  We are born again by accepting Christ, who died for us.

The Online Etymological dictionary tells us the origin of the Modern English ‘life’ is Old English life (dative lif), meaning “animated corporeal existence; lifetime, period between birth and death; the history of an individual from birth to death, written account of a person’s life; way of life (good or bad) condition of being a living being; opposite of death; spiritual existence imparted by God, through Christ, to the believer” from Proto-Germanic libam (source also of Old Norse lif “life, body,” Old Frisian, Old Saxon lif “life, person, body,” Dutch lijf “body,” Old High German lib “life” German leib “body”), properly “continuance, perseverance,” from Proto IndoEuropean leip-“to remain,  persevere, continue, stick, adhere.”

That makes me think of birth and death as being the gateways of this life. These are the bookends of our bodily existence.  So the way I feel about George seems to be a complete love of his whole being.  Although George is 74 years old this year, 2016, I don’t just see him as an old man, but I see him as a boy and a man, including the aged and experienced man I see before me.  I met him near the end of his bodily existence on this earth.

His body still continues at this time, but its existence will be temporary in its present form.  All our bodies are temporary in their present existence.  They will stop functioning at some point as if there were an internal timepiece inside, perhaps in large part controlled by our genes, which at some point will signal our end.  Then our bodies will be decomposed and become part of the rest of the matter on this earth.  Other life forms will gain sustenance from our flesh perhaps.  For example, the bacteria that are in our intestines continue to live after we have died and will consume our dying cells. All that will be left will be the mineral deposits of our bones.  This is the end of our mortal bodies in this world.

But, what of the immaterial essence, what we call the soul?  Does this continue on? Well, most people of the earth believe that it will continue in some way. In my belief system, the soul will go to the world of spirits, a different dimension from this one, and will wait upon the end times when it will eventually be resurrected and reunited with its body in an immortal state this time and stand to be judged by God.  This is possible through the redemption wrought out by Jesus Christ, who was the first to rise from the dead according to Christian testament.

According to physicists, matter deep down is basically electrically charged particles. Everything seems to be connected somehow, just organized into different forms, which are mostly temporary on this earth.  But God, the being who organized matter, is able to reorganize it in the way He pleases.  We are subject to His will, but are generally allowed and encouraged to use what free will we have to think and move and do according to our wills, but will ultimately be judged of our actions.

Back to my original thought.  I have a great interest in this being of George.  The being that I have experienced is an organization of matter and intelligence that my mind and spirit and body find very desirable.  I find immense pleasure from his existence and wish to entwine my being with his. Evidently, I want union with him.  I desire his companionship and desire to become one with him.  This would seem to be a desire for marriage with him, marriage being a union of two people for the purpose of building a unit on which to then base a family.

But, the problem is both of us are broken parts from previous marriages.  If a marriage is like a joined unit, then we have each been broken from those bodies or units of marriage. We are like broken bits looking to each other for repair and healing.

George, however, is more than just part of a broken marriage.  He also has children which he has created from that marriage and so is a part of a family that he started.  Is he broken then from this family? Has he come from a broken and separated family unit?  It would appear so.  But his children each have created their own unions and families. So the missing link is the two parents who have separated and severed their relationship with each other, thus mangling their relationship with their offspring.

And yet, I stand here, loving and wanting to claim this individual who has been broken from this family and is yet still a part of its essence.  How can I possibly do that?  What place would I have if I tried to form a union with this man?  What would be the result?  Is it a lost cause? A misplaced desire?

What should he do?  Should he try to repair a broken relationship which caused him so much dissatisfaction and unhappiness? Or should he seek to find a new relationship that would individually give him pleasure and affirmation?  Is that ok?  Can he just let his children live their own lives now that they are grown and seek now for his own pleasure?  Or should he try to repair something that is broken?  Should he seek to bring back together the point from which this polygon of a family was created? Is it necessary?  Should he sacrifice his desires for the good of the unit?  I don’t know the answers to these questions.  I cannot judge how to solve this problem.  I have to leave it to him and God above.  But I do know I have felt a love for him that is very powerful, a sensation I have not  previously experienced to this level.

I was married before.  I found a man, Wilson Charles, that I thought I could build my life with.  I found a man that I thought would accept me for who I was and love me.  But from the beginning our marriage was fraught with disagreements, anger, frustration, mistrust, and a lack of true satisfaction and passion on my part.  It was a union that logically should have worked.  We were both in similar life stages.  We were at first both members of the same Church.  I thought we shared similar beliefs.  But I learned later that his values were a bit different from mine and his feelings about religion were different from mine.

I believe he did learn to love me, although the attraction was not immediate for either of us.  He took me out on a first date only because he was bugged by some elderly missionaries to do so.  I was not initially attracted to him much either.  I did find him interesting based on his unique way of teaching lessons in Church.  He was legally blind and of African/French Haitian descent.  I found his ethnic background to be exotic and exciting.  I enjoyed his intellectual take on things.  His blindness was an asset to me because my body is not genetically well-formed and so I felt relief that I did not have to deal with the issue of physical appearance with him.

These things were all binding forces for us.  But although I enjoyed helping him and being taken out and served by him, I realized early on that I did not feel the initial romantic attraction or chemical magnetism that I expected to feel for someone I would be romantically involved with.  I wished for these dopamine-based feelings because it would make the situation more pleasurable and satisfying for me.  I wanted to feel the euphoria of desire and obsession that I had felt for a few men and boys in my past.  But I didn’t quite feel that.  I felt comfortable with Wilson, my first husband, and we were friends.  But there was something missing there, a foundation that I desired but didn’t have.

Then came the problems arising from my own personal flaws and frailties and his lack of patience.  Wilson was someone with high ambitions and standards of excellence.  He also had many needs, being visually impaired as much as he is.  I could not step up to this level and could not quite be what he wanted me to be.  I could not quite fill his needs and he filled many of my needs, but not all.  He became angry with me many times and this led him to do hurtful things to me and threaten to leave me many times.  I also hurt him with my carelessness and lack of self-discipline and my lack of passion and devotion.  My lack of satisfaction and the storminess of our marriage led me to start becoming attracted to other men and I even found myself strongly attracted to a few acquaintances, almost what I would call “falling in love.”  I know these were just my heart reaching for something that it lacked.

I found George at a time when the marriage between Wilson and me was functionally over.  I knew I had to get a job in order to support myself because Wilson had basically told me that he couldn’t take it anymore and I knew we were likely to be separated. I needed a way to support myself to feel secure.  I was called up randomly by a manager at an LDS Employment Center offering me a temporary job and support in finding another job.  I took the offer to build an ESL program there and teach English to job seekers.

It is there that I met George.  I saw him initially as an interesting older man who looked a bit standoffish.  But he reached out to me.  It seems like I was on his list of people to help, he being a volunteer there.  Over time we developed a pleasant acquaintanceship.  As I got to know him more I started to feel a stronger interest and attraction to him.  He was a retired civil engineer and thought and acted in ways I had not experienced before.  He seemed miraculous to me, professing a photographic memory and having a vision of things from an atomic level.  His tone of voice I found very pleasing and he was very verbal, talking to himself often and was very social and congenial with the people around him.  I found myself falling in love with this at that time 72-year old man.  I learned later that he was divorced.  It seemed his wife had left him.  I wondered how that could be. I had to find a way to not lose him.  So I asked that he give me German lessons since he was a German immigrant at the age of 10.  He agreed and we started meeting after my teaching appointment at the LDS Employment Center to have German lessons.  Once I was gone from the LDS Employment Center with a new job, I continued to meet with him.  Meanwhile, my husband and I agreed to get a divorce and we split up in September, both of us moving to different apartments.

Once my divorce was final, I told George about it and we began to get closer.  We started what I could call ‘dating’.  He started to hold my hand and we went square dancing together, he being my mentor and dance partner.  I found the sensation of being in his arms very satisfying and warm.  When holding my hand, he would stroke it with his finger, turning me on sexually.

Every moment with George felt like magic and wonder.  I liked having German lessons with him in Ronald Bog park, by a serene pond.  We went to movies together and the movie was more fantastic with him by my side.  I felt like George motivated my mind to expand and I struggled to be better with numbers and increase my learning and capacity.

George’s European heritage and impeccable manners were very charming.  He did feel like a prince Charming or Romeo.  The romance was like a fairy tale.  It was what I had always wanted and he was actually reciprocating my feelings!  It seemed and still seems like an impossible dream.  It feels impossible because I know he is so above me in many ways, including genetic fitness, intelligence, and age and experience.  He also is, like I mentioned, a divorced husband and father of three.  This makes things complicated and uncertain.  I want him more than I have ever wanted anyone, but the circumstances are as usual, not ideal.  What to do in this idealistic fantasy?  Where and how do I implement reality?  Is there a reality there?  Or is it something beyond my worldview?

Questions abound and answers are elusive.

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