First Posted 20-Apr-2015
Here I am, in my house, in the daylight before my next shift as a rideshare driver. I’ve made a good thing, a mostly stable life living in a rented house, with the inventory that many in the world would call wealth. I have good friends I hang out with. Life is good. The groove I’m in is one I could happily run to its end.
Love Disrupts. It takes our comfortable rhthym and syncopates it. All our habits, hangups, hurts, all these become ingredients in a new stew called a relationship. We are not only ourselves. We become an “us”. Some of our old, our before, dies to be reborn anew as that “us”. She comes over to cook dinner and in the process, rearranges the kitchen. You have been buying Sauer’s spices for years. You grew up with them. She arrives with stuff from Simply Organic she’s been buying lately because it’s Non-GMO and hypoallergenic. You love her so now you love her spices. You’ve always thought you were an autumn. At least, the last girlfriend said that. Your closet is filled with burnt umber, black, tan, and maroon.
She shows up and says it’s fine. But you hear how she says it’s fine and start buying graphic t-shirts from thrift stores. The next date you wear one and she’s all smiles all of a sudden. She says you look good. Your heart swells. Bourbon neat, that’s you. She’s Mai Tai’s in a young coconut. She’s grasshoppers and white wine. She likes this thing called a Foggy Bottom that is kind of a Mai Tai but they serve it in a little crock that has dried ice and water in the bottom so it bubbles fog out of it. You rediscover your love of Pinot Gris. Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey starts to be a plan.
You can’t be in love and remain the same. It’s what’s difficult and wonderful about it. In the two, in the surrender to the new “us” you discover things you never knew. It changes you. If you follow it through to marriage and parenthood the changes are dramatic and permanent. Things about you die so that new things about you can live. I’ve been a bachelor longer than I’ve been married or in a relationship. I have this pathological difficulty getting beyond the first awkward kiss. I hunger for love, for the beauty of a woman, for every way in which she’ll disrupt my quiet life. It has avoided me for most of my life. I can’t say why. Only that I’d rather have her, have the ways in which love disrupts, than remain alone in my quiet house.