This Note is from “Notes To Stephanie: Middle Aged Love Letters And Life Stories”. It is a tale of a new year – in terms of our anniversary – and some continued troubles with our grown kids which I allude to. It uses some obvious metaphors for what was going on then a few years ago.
Another year for us now begins, or will on Wednesday depending on how we count the days my dear. Certainly, we could start the new married year from last Saturday when we renewed our vows, and thus married each other again with the good Reverend Roach once more officiating for us. Maybe this year will feature less emotional angst from the family side of our lives; it feels like we have never had much of a break from those trials since we wed 363 days ago. It seems like no one is ever pleased with what we do, yet we never publicly criticize their actions for the most part or question their right to have their own life and choice of existence.
And why is this happening to us? Is it just because we dared to marry and love one another without their permission? I really am not sure. Of course, we have talked about the many currents flowing in this raging emotional river, and it is true that there are many reasons for all of this angst and outright anger. But the causative agents for this series of out of control relationship reactions are still baffling and almost incomprehensible from the standpoint of simple logic and of course the obvious reality of their sources which we both can see. But at some point, I simply have to say enough is enough. I sort of did that Sunday, did I not? Someday soon, this boil has to be burst and the pressure relieved. I do not really want to not have contact with our kin, but sometimes that harsh and simplistic remedy has a certain appeal to me, and to you too as well it seems.
So once more, our special day together was followed by someone in the family laying all blame on our doorstep for their own and other’s behavior. And certainly no one asked us how our little occasion went did they? Maybe that says it all. Our behavior, which is pretty innocent, seems to always be questioned while the action of others is accepted without question or query. This constant conflict will most likely have no real end and will be a permanent part of our life I am afraid. If this prediction is correct, our only sure course of action to simply keep our distance in a sense.
We shall offer up our love, communication, and time to be together in fellowship, but at the same time we will not beg for the reciprocation of others. The invitation will be made, but if none accepts it that will be the way it is. We will have to preserve our life together against the feelings of others that are not at all positive to us.
In this rough sea of family tides, we will simply have to make for a safe harbor in each other’s arms and in our home. I do not want us to behave like our home is a fortress that only protects us against flights of angry arrows fired upon us, I want it instead to be a place where all of the family is welcome and sees that our life together is a good thing and that our love is true and not a threat to them.
But again, many winds blow against our ship’s sails from more than one quarter and it is hard for us to steer clear around the sometimes deadly shoals to calmer waters. But steer clear we must, we have the right to chart our own course as everyone else seems to be doing with the ships of their own lives. Having our own voyage through life is our due, as it is theirs. But we don’t have to chart our course with maps and navigation of their sole choosing. Certainly we wish no one else a rough journey, far from it. We want all of our kin, whether they are ours through blood or by our marriage, to also reach a calm sea to sail upon to their own chosen port of call. We simply want to do that too, and thus we two will be together as shipmates on our lifetime cruise to an island paradise of love, to a peaceful beach of belonging to one another under a blue sky free from storms and gales.
Jeff To Stephanie, October 29, 2007