Some people have observed how very different Dean and I are (aside from sharing basic humanity and love for God). It's true. Here is just a short list to give you a taste:
1. He has a mild allergy to sunlight and is quite uncomfortable in the summer heat (I have seen him break out in hives from lack of air conditioning).
2. I have something nicknamed "winter itch," a form of dermatitis (mild skin condition) that only shows up in a cold and dry climate. Expose me to some summer sun and moist air and it clears up nicely.
3. Dean loves meat and is a card-carrying carnivore.
4. I am mostly vegetarian, living on fruit, vegetables, cheese, and popcorn.
5. Dean prefers action movies, science fiction television shows, and video games for his recreational activities.
6. I would rather take a walk outside or read a book.
7. Dean can listen to the radio, watch something on his ipod, be playing a game on the computer, talk on the phone, and be researching something online all at the same time.
8. I am a fabulous mono-tasker and work best in total silence.
I could go on about Dean's allergy to scents and my attraction to strong men's colognes, or the hard/soft bed issue, even our love of and lack of athleticism, and how we deal with conflict (run towards or away from), but I think you get the idea.
Some people have marvelled that we are still together. Smaller things have torn many couples apart. I will admit that we have our disagreements, but on the whole, life is interesting and enjoyable together. Why?
Because love will go the farthest distance and bridge the largest gap. It does not require someone to come to it; love goes where it is needed. The more differences we have, the greater opportunity for us to let love into those places. I do not want to change Dean into another version of me; in fact, I love being able to experience a whole other world through him. But I also know that love is not something I can conjure up from inside of me, dispensing it when necessary. It is only present to the degree that I am humble enough to accept it from the Divine Lover of my own quirky soul. When I surrender to Love, that is when I suddenly (or many times, over the long haul) find myself able to love well, cover the huge distances with grace and joy, and never grow tired in it.
The shortest distance between two points may be a straight line, but the longest distances between two people can only be navigated by love. Nothing else will build a strong enough and lasting link.
This is a picture of me and Dean in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue a few years ago. Photo credit to Andy Winmill.