If you know anything about me from my writing, or from talking to me over time, or from being around me, it is this: I love my wife.
Loving someone with your whole heart is terrifying. You don't know in the early stages whether it is safe to dive in, and once you're in and comfortable, you have to guard against taking it for granted. When I met my lovely bride, it was like a beam of sunlight parted my fog, and I did dive. At some point, amongst all of the moving, failing, growing, and changing, we began to take things for granted.
Over the last few years, I've learned why people are so very terrified of love. I've learned the hard way that our love has faded, and she has made it clear that she no longer wants to be married. Not to me.
If you know anything else about me - and I leave evidence of this quirk of my personality lying around on the Internet - you know I tend to speak my mind. I speak truth to power, I share my opinions, and I object loudly when I run across a situation which strikes me as wrong. I don't fancy myself as a fading flower who holds back when someone deserves to be told off.
And I have been wronged.
But I haven't talked about this as openly as you might expect. Some of you know the whole story; it's not like I'm hiding anything. If you ask me privately, I may tell you. I just don't want to broadcast details all over the web. I don't want to say things that my children will see. And deep down, I want to keep alive the hope that when the dust - or this new patch of fog - clears, I'll be able to reclaim my bride.
So I keep broadcasting the one thing I do want you all to know. I tell you all with no reservation that when she is ready, I will still be here with my whole heart - cracked, but intact - ready to cry out passionately to the heavens what has been true since the day I dove head first into her life.
Loving someone with your whole heart is terrifying - and no less so when you are taking that risk for the second time. When you already know what you stand to gain, and what you are missing, it is no less tempting to wonder if you should make the leap. No less so when you have good reason to expect the worst. Or when you're making the leap without knowing for sure that you will land safely. Diving into turbulent waters and realizing how close you are to the rocks beneath - seeing them rush up at you...
If I have misjudged, and if I am headed for the rocks, let my cry be this:
I love my wife. Whole Hearted, Full Throated.
And I am not even putting my hands out to break my fall.