I fell in love with my partner 5 years ago. Six months after our first date we found out we were pregnant and nine months after that we had our first child. Three years after that we had our second.
He would bring me chocolate at work, surprise me and take me on adventures. He would play songs on the Piano that would make me feel like I was in deep space. It was not planned, but what is.
In our community we would often perform together, hold workshops, healing spaces and both of us were very devoted to our work with the plant medicines and being on the path of healing.
We were not a main stream couple that worked a 9-5 job, picked our kids up from daycare and went to soccer games on the weekend. No we did not have a mortgage. And in one year we moved houses 4 times. We would spend time in tipis. Listening to elders teachings, journey in ceremonies. We would often dance together in the morning as a practice. We lived in the country surrounded by nature. We married each other on top of Mount Shasta, just the two of us, and committed with the stars as our witness to always choose truth, to always choose love, and be married to our souls purpose first and marry each other second. He gave me a ring from the ocean. We laughed a lot, wrestled and would go for walks.
And everywhere we went people told us that we were such a cool family and that we were an inspiration.
But here is something people don’t talk much about when your falling in love. Marriage is hard and it takes effort and work and takes that commitment to get through the hard parts. Because in your life you will go through hard parts. Maybe you’ll feel lost sometimes, or confused or depressed, or upset, and if you are with someone long enough, they will walk beside you during those difficult times.
And if you marry someone. Very likely you will go through a phase where you wonder if you made the right choice.
And sometimes you didn’t. We all have those friends who should leave their partners, but don’t. But either way its a choice.
And then all of a sudden, years later, there I was wondering if I had made the right choice, the babies cried and the bills seemed never ending and that river of love that seemed to always be there was dried up. And the build up of resentment had built a mansion around us. Each of us locked in a room and story that was as heavy as a pile of bricks. After a thousand choices of choosing something else over each other and not making the effort to practice the verb love, the space between us started to feel empty. I mean really empty.
I realized the wall between us was so big that it would have taken a big stickof dynamite to break it down. We were at a stale mate, stressed out, tired, and uninspired.
“We have to get out of here” I said, “This is killing us !”
“Ya, I know.”
After a long pause of deafening silence.
“Ok Lets do it. Lets get out of here.” !
We smiled at each other and hugged.
So that’s we did. If there was anything that I could call personal dynamite it would be the incredible plant medicine Ayahuasca.
David Deida talks about the third stage relationship. A relationship that is choosing to be together every moment. A relationship that is devoted to the highest love, a commitment to ones personal journey and evolution and having someone walk beside you to support you in your deepest truth.
So often we get stuck on the relationship, on the other person. But the is relationship begins with ourselves.
And the beauty of working with plant medicines is you cant hide. You are forced to move to that third stage, or ship out.
We began our more than 2 month dieta, which involved fasting from food and water and ayahuasca ceremonies every other night and living in the jungle where poisonous snakes, mosquitoes, and giant cockroaches were an every day reality.
We dieted the tree of light, an incredible spirit that is so benevolent and demanding at the same time. With no space for compromise.
What can I put into words, a wordless experience. But all I have to say is it remedied us good. Why? Because we both changed.
To me this is a true relationship. Two people changing and transforming and going through the shit together and coming out the other side, stronger. For us, being who we are, we went on a deep inner journey together with our family in the amazon working with ancient plant medicines and healers. Yes I understand its not for everyone. For others, it could be as simple as a retreat 20 minutes away. But investment is not just a economics term in business. Its a foundation that all relationships need to thrive.
In investing in my own healing,I fell in love. I fell in love with life again. With my relationship to life and the Great Mystery. I fell in love with the flowers and how butterflies kiss the world with their wings. And through my deep love affair with the universe, I began to love my family in a way I had forgotten.
But I have always believed that love is as much a gift from life, it often comes to a point where there is a choice. It is a verb, an action that gets better with practice. Its not a feeling, but a commitment to Love in its essence. To the Great love. Not a habit. Not a codependent story, of staying together because its been so long and you have been through so much together, or out of fear of being alone, or for the kids. A choice to let love be a river flowing between two souls, learning on earth for a while.
The great marriage and sacred partnership is not between you and another human being. But between you and God.
Forgive. Let go of resentment and respect the process. Stay together or don’t stay together. Its actually not that big a deal. Your soul is climbing mountains, traveling oceans, flying to the stars and back and learning how to love.
So here I am now. Watching Jeremy do the dishes, while cooking Quinua. And I love him with all my heart and soul. And its a choice. An everyday one. It seems much more romantic to me, to choose my partnership everyday then to just stay together because we said we would.
And so today, another day, I choose to love him. To raise my head to the mountains that surround me. To offer my tobacco to the earth and say my prayers of gratitude and healing.
Today I choose love. I choose to make love to my life. To be in the romance of friendship and sharing. Of moments unfolding. Of walks in the dirt and sun on my back.
Thank God for love. Because whatever is happening to each of us human beings. Whether we believe it or not. Love exists. And its calling us onto her. All of us. To choose. To commit to her. To marry her. And if you take her hand and dance with her, if you let her break you open and caress your deepest parts. Your cup will always be more than full.