Her love sets me on fire, and yet, the only parts of me that ever get burned are the ones I am ready to do away with and release. She is ever-encouraging and enthusiastic about my creative endeavors, and all the while busy with her own. It's a new thing for me, and it still takes me by surprise sometimes, although we have been together for sixteen months now. We are each the other's biggest cheerleader, delighting in each success, no matter how big or small. There is never even a hint of jealousy or competition. Just pure joy and support.
It is one thing to love your partner unconditionally, a blessing in and of itself, but when you add to that an additional layer of mutual interests and purpose... wow.
The fun just keeps ramping up. We come from very different backgrounds, with different sorts of families. We have very different writing styles and personal styles. My writing is oftentimes gritty and blunt, hers is more flowing and beautiful. I approach my closet as though every day is a costume party or a play, and as though I am deciding which part of myself to be. She approaches hers with an eye towards comfort and practicality. We are just different enough to keep things interesting, and thank goodness. If I wanted a clone I would just take myself on dates and go home afterwards and masturbate.
My life is so much richer with her differences. I gain new perspectives and vantage points. We balance each other out in many ways. The differences highlight that we are whole and complete on our own, separate beings bound by choice. It is so much hotter to know that you are chosen for your completeness, rather than as a completion. The latter is a form of desperation. The former is an inspiration.
Somehow, in the midst of so many differences, the things that matter as core components of a healthy relationship match up seamlessly. We value our children and family life in very similar ways. We have dorky senses of humor. We both know that on some level we die away without adequate time alone. We both need to write as much as we need to breathe. When we daydream about what our lives will look like when we live together and age together, those dreams are so inseparably the same that sometimes when one is talking, the other will interrupt with, "Hey! That's exactly what I want!" Even the smaller, sillier details, like home decor align. A quick spin through an antique shop or flip through Pinterest, and we laugh with relief, because there won't be any big disagreements about paint colors or furniture. For two people who couldn't be more different in some ways, in many more, we are so much alike that it sometimes seems like a wide awake dream.
I get to be amazed time and time again by how this goes. And the way it goes is this: We both take responsibility for expressing our own needs and cultivating our own happiness. And in doing so, we find that we are no longer alone. We are met. Each finds the needs of the other to be reasonable, sane, and of high priority. No permission is needed, and yet it is offered freely. I always have full confidence that she has my back and is happy to see me do what I need to do for myself, and it is my pleasure and honor to provide the same for her. We have both had enough hard, and are committed to our relationship being a soft place to land.
The one thing we do bicker about on a regular basis is who got the best end of this deal. We settle that by taking turns on who gets to win. We both win. Every single time. No one should ever be the tapped out, always giving, never receiving, holding it all together, loser in love. It is circuitous, flowing without beginning or end. The giving and receiving are the same, and the differences rest easy with that knowledge.
My faith in her is unshakeable, my trust is vast, and my respect and admiration grow deeper and root firmly in who I know her to be. She calls out the best parts of me, and I am my highest self in her presence. Probably in part because she has never even once insinuated I was lacking or needed to change in any way. And that changes everything.