Hanging by a thread?

woven-heart-basket-valentines-day-craft-step4-photo-150-FF0204CLICKA09The overworked joke of marriage is the metaphor of the ball and chain that speaks of restriction, captivity, loss of freedom… and yet as I reflect on the last 30 years of marriage, I think its less about constriction and more about connection.  However the connecting is not the cold steal of a chain but rather the rather fragile sense of a thread, hundreds and hundreds of threads, that together create a web of connection which has incredible strength.

What are these threads?  The time when that “blue line” appeared that changed our lives, the months of sickness, the turbulence of childbirth (four times), the career moves, the exams, the cups of tea (made just the way we like it),  the shared jokes, the shared tears, the worry over family illnesses, bereavement, the chaos of having a puppy and kitten at the same time as four children under 10 and a house extension taboo!  the arguments resolved…eventually, the misunderstandings, the hurt, the making up, the holidays.  Those “table manner” rules we tried to enforce but ended up breaking ourselves, our repeated attempts to hammer out a “family mission statement” without the children cottoning on (I think we managed it eventually).  The time we stayed up until the early hours making a batman outfit for one of the children just because we knew how much it would mean (and the frustration when we couldn’t get the logo right).  The time we tried to broaden our children’s educational experience by taking them to a classical concert at the Royal Albert Hall, and it all went horribly wrong as we ended up with four resentful children (one of whom was missing a friends party to come), all those birthday parties that we somehow endured and then as they got older the clearing up of the beer bottles and washing of sticky floors, the famous party that involved the local police (just two days before I joined them as staff),  the list goes on.


Maybe at times you may feel that your marriage is “hanging by a thread”, but just pause to consider just how many threads there are, how many connections have been forged, and then consider the possibility that these threads create connections of a different kind, they still have the fragility of a thread, but they also have the strength and capacity of  something much more intricate and enduring.


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