There is so little we really know about those we love. In the course of a day, we can learn an unknown and revealing tidbit from the past that jolts us, be surprised at an insight shared that helps us see our loved one from another perspective, become puzzled and sometimes hurt by an act we did not expect to come from someone we love. Sometimes it is silly stuff to which we react. Sometimes it goes far deeper. The truth we see and our reaction to it seems so real at the time. A couple of breaths later, our reality takes on a different shape. The issue we thought so important becomes blurred, not so significant.
The truth is if we expect perfect sailing in life, where our assumptions never get challenged or shattered, we will be deeply disappointed. Also true, humanity in all its colors is far more interesting than perfection. You can love an illusion but if you don’t recognize it as such, that love is not really valuable. Loving each other with all our perceived and actual faults takes a far deeper kind of tenacity.
I am reminded daily that I don’t always have it together, despite my best intentions. I also realize that this truth extends to those I love as well. Love in its first blush is so wildly romantic and full of promise, but love that bears the test of time, that steps up and sees beyond failings, that embraces the beauty that imparts from every angle of a human heart, is a love worth knowing and a love worth expressing. Consider a beautiful painting and all its colors and angles. Contrast gives it strength. Contrasts in a relationship, specifically those appreciated, also give it strength.
It is fall in Merlin’s Garden. You can see it and you can feel it. It is not as lush as spring in its first bloom, but it is a life that is rooted and is rooting. You do not see the potential of the bloom, but its possibility is recharging in the earth, finding its strength for its next show of color.
A relationship requires the same recharging. It needs time to be quiet, time to nourish, before it again expresses a new bloom. Life will never go smoothly, but its ups and downs are relevant because they teach us how to see the gifts that live in the shadows waiting for spring. Take time to appreciate what you have. It is the ultimate purpose of Thanksgiving.