Monday, April 03, 2006

THE PREFERRED SPOUSE
There are some thoughts, some stories, some secrets that are so personal, they are shared only with one or two people in your whole life. Either that, or they are written about ad nauseum in a blog you are sending out to the universe.
My friend, Kathleen, is the one in this world that is the safeguard of my inner life. She knows all the places my "restless mind", as one doctor called it, goes. She patiently listens as my life spills out to her on our many walks together. Our lives are so rich with stories, our walking became marathon training. We walk with such pupose, such speed, we consider ourselves the walking winners of not one, but two Portland Marathons.
It is only on a walk, away from the rest of the world's ears, without the ability to look one another squarely in the eye, that our past, present and hopes for the future have all been laid out. We spend between 3-4 hours a week together, walking, exercising both our bodies and souls. My husband and I don't have that kind of uninterrupted time together during a typical week, unless you count after the kids got to bed, and I don't.
I tease that she is my "P.S." - preferred spouse. Her opinions, observations, and recommendations tremendously matter to me. When I ask for her advice, I am highly likely to do what she suggests, perhaps even using her words, verbatim. I know she has everyone's best interest at heart, especially mine.
Because she does have my heart in hers, she recently was swayed by my highly charged feelings, when making a decision of her own. She did not follow her own moral compass, but instead, followed mine. I'm sure this is the risk best friends inherently take, that the line between them blurs, for better or for worse. I am both honored and deeply ashamed that I have the power to dissuade, as well as persuade her. I will take this lesson to heart. I will learn from this experience that the weight of my "voice" has the power to build or destroy. I will tread a little more softly than before, careful to respond, and not merely to react.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born." Anais Nin

It looks as if a new world opens up to you each time Kathleen walks into your life....lucky you.

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