the love couple

IMG_0996Rudy and I are sitting at the dining room table, talking. Talking about the ups and downs of a relationship. The hard knocks. The soothing moments. The tension, and the good times.

He’s holding the ceramic statue of a man and a woman embracing. Rudy holds the Kish Sculpture while telling me how important the symbolism of the Love Couple is, for them.

This African art piece symbolizes commitment to each other at all times, he reads off the still-tied-on description-label.

The Love Couple is leaning into each other. Their bodies do not touch, the woman’s and the man’s right cheeks gently, yet firmly, press into each other, heads slightly bowed. Their arms cross at the elbow, on both sides of their bodies, each of them resting their hands on the other’s hips. The couple is standing toe-to-toe.

I relate to the stance of the statue. Rudy and I have embraced in a similar connection – time, and again.

I had bought him the sculpture, as a truce, to get over an unnecessary argument we had had seven-plus years ago.

Now, much later, as we sit at the table, I peer at the few cracks the statue owns. Cracks from an unexpected fall.

I reminisce about how after I had given it to Rudy he placed the Love Couple in the bay window, in our kitchen. A focal point. A simple, yet important gesture.

Several days later, as he was reaching for the cord to open the white slated blinds, his wrist grazed the sculpture, knocking it over, breaking off and chipping the top portion – namely, their heads. Rudy handed it to me, his eyes wide. But, I didn’t panic.  I simply glued the pieces back together, as streamlined as possible.

“Even the cracks are us, you and me, our relationship. Nothing is perfect. All we can do is move forward, fractures and all,” Rudy said as he looked at the Love Couple, at the hairline fissures it endured.

I nod, knowing that’s all we can do. Move forward.

Life’s Lessons

So many obstacles
have been carefully placed
in the path of our relationship.
Yet,
Rudy and I
have managed to challenge them
and have either quickly jumped,
or slowly crawled,
over them
using
our last bit of strength
until
finally
we
land
standing
together
hand in hand.

Most times
the lessons learned
take a while to understand,
to help us grow
just a bit more,
tightening the vow
we are both
committed to uphold.
We have had to
dig deep
within our souls
to consider
what is important
in life.

We know.
We understand.

Obstacles
aren’t meant
to
raze
our relationship,
but rather
they are
nudges
to build
upon
an
already
solid
foundation.

28 years of….. Life.

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As Rudy and I celebrate our 28th wedding anniversary, I begin to reflect.

There was a tupperware party, a yellow VW Bug, and a kiss.

A phone call, Magic Mountain, holding hands, and a smooch.

Followed by a major make-out session.

Weekly phone calls.

Dates.

Youthful days.

Walking and talking inside the lobby of the Anaheim Hilton.

The love letter.

The hug.

The one bedroom apartment.

Commitment.

Engagement.

Vows.

A daughter.

Diapers.

Breasts.

And bottles.

An education.

Sleepless nights.

Graveyard shift.

A son.

A scratched nose.

Family photo.

A credential.

Another son.

The return of pinned cloth on a dry bottom.

More sleepless nights.

Exhausting days.

Arguing.

Crying.

Laughing.

Holding hands.

Talking.

Consoling.

Bonding.

Growing.

Aging.

Enjoying.

Altogether, loving.