Fighting with my husband last night, I noticed the moment when I thought “I don’t want to be fighting like this”.  And then, rather than pursuing self-righteous resentment towards him for the fact that we were fighting, instead I let go into a deep knowing that I could stop the fight.  How?  What words did I need to say?  I didn’t know.  I sat with that thought for a little while, alone and naked in the dark living room after having stormed out of our bedroom screaming “You’re delusional!”.  I sat in the purgatory of releasing my claim on rightness, without knowing how to move forward.

That limbo of the unknown was uncomfortable, but not scary, like it used to be.  I’d been there enough times before that I had faith that we’d get through it, that a way would open and we’d get to the other side on a different path than one of us winning and the other losing.  That faith is different than “knowing”.  I still couldn’t see the answer, the right thing to do or say that would clearly solve the problem.  But I felt a release from the fear that we wouldn’t solve it, or that we’d only solve it if I gave up and gave in.  And with that release from fear, I felt peaceful, and strong, and capable of moving forward.

I got up and walked back to our dark bedroom, and climbed in under the covers next to him.  I didn’t have a plan for what to say, and I wasn’t worried about that.  I put my head on his shoulder and my hand on his chest, and we lay there silently.   In the dark, in the silence, in the beingness of just being together, an understanding rose up in me of what I hadn’t seen before of what was true for him in all of this, what my ego defensiveness and need to be right had blocked me from seeing.

I opened my mouth and spoke before the thought was even fully formed, letting it unfold from my heart instead of my from my mind.  He responded gently, and we started saying what we had been trying to say all along that had gotten lost in the act of fighting.  We worked through it easily and compassionately, and went to sleep in the bliss of love.

We’re 9 years in to our relationship.  We’ve been working this out a long time.  And we still go to that place of complete separation and ultimate frustration and not knowing how to move forward.  I still scream and run out of the bedroom.  The magic, though, is that we know there’s a net to catch us if we let go of that ego vine we’ve been swinging on like screaming monkeys.  Instead of ME ME ME ME I’M RIGHT YOU’RE WRONG, we drop into noticing each other and ourselves on equal footing, as part of a complicated and connected web of experience.  We let go of that vine, and realize we’re supported by an unseen power.  We’re Indiana Jones on the invisible bridge.

invisible bridge

Our egos keep us separate, when what we really want is to be connected, but we hold on because we think they keep us safe, powerful, and strong.  I’m learning that faith is letting go of the ego without fear of loosing the fight.  Faith is knowing that I win when we win together, when we enter into the experience of love that we can only access when we let go of our individual power, and surrender to the power of (insert your word for the connectedness of all things here).