4/13/15

Soul Mates . . .

Rest in peace, lovers.
At my first wedding, my then-new-wife and I danced to one of my favorite songs ever . . . Ben Folds' "The Luckiest" (yep, I just linked you to a clip from The Queen Latifah Show). The song is about a life that is improved by love and a person saved for the grace of a soulmate he didn't expect.

I should clarify that I do NOT believe in soulmates. It is a beautiful gesture but - come on already. The point is that HE believes in them and, on one's wedding day, it is maybe customary for you to believe to but that is NOT the point. The point is that deep in the third verse there is this . . .

"Next door there's an old man who lived to his 90s then, one day, passed away in his sleep. And his wife she stayed for a couple of days then passed away."

Now THIS is something we can all get beyond - the crushing, heartache and loss of losing your life partner. Enter the story of a Kentucky couple, both deep in the throws of Alzheimers who had not been together in years (separate nursing homes) and yet - they died within just a few minutes of each other. What a beautiful notion, right?

Love and co-dependence have so many, nuanced layers and I think I'm more okay with the idea that there are those who don't want to live without the person that, for so long, was the core of their life. Not because they CANNOT but because they don't want to.

Consider Brandi Carlile's "I Belong to You"



Carlile chooses to "belong" to her lover in the sense that she wants to have a singular identity including gathering and giving her partner all her yesterday's and then vowing "I'm going to die the exact same day as you . . . and I ain't scared because I'm never going to miss you."

The narrator is so in love and tied to her partner that she doesn't want to live without them because of, well, the pain of missing and longing. She COULD do it - but why?

I don't love many people in this world. I struggle at real, impactful, and meaningful relationships and bonds. It is my own thing and it is a curse and burden that not only I carry but anyone silly enough to care for me has to carry, too because - well - I'm never going to promise to die the same exact day as anyone (except MAYBE the Fast & Furious franchise).

Not because I don't want to love. Not because I don't want to need and desire and covet and feel urges to fold my life in to someone else's. Truth be told there are tons of people in this world, including CHIEF AMONG THEM a very, very special one who lays next to me every night, that I would love to say was my soulmate. That I would want, very much, to vow to die on the same day as them, that I would be able to see my life inside theirs and theirs inside mine.

Alas - I worry that the "couple of days" that I stayed past her or anyone else would be just enough to remind me that the garbage has to get to the curb, there is a "to-do" list on my desk at work and the dog needs to be fed and let out to poop. The pain, however overwhelming, has to be considered against all the other things and obligations in my life.

One more thing about "The Luckiest" . . . the song is not exactly ruined for me. As the lyrics also point out (begin) - "I don't get many things right the first time, in fact, I am told that a lot. Now I know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls that brought me here."

So, yeah, there is hope for another day and another love and to maybe - at the end of the long, long journey - the proverbial "luckiest". There is always a chance that, in time, I will become open enough to fit in the safe nook of my lover's arm and the ample cleavage of her bosom (jussayin). There is always that hope. There is always that chance. Viva la chance.