Hang my locket around your neck,
wear my ring on your finger.
Love is invincible facing danger and death.
Passion laughs at the terrors of hell.
The fire of love stops at nothing,
It sweeps everything before it.
Flood waters can’t drown love,
Torrents of rain can’t put it out.
Love can’t be bought, love can’t be sold.
Song of Solomon 8:6-8 The Message
You may or may not share our Christian faith, or exercise any faith at all. Please don’t allow my strong reference to our beliefs and spiritual experiences put you off. If I didn’t include these testimonials that underpin the personal foundation for our lives, our marriage and vocation, I would only be telling half the story. It is essential to make certain everyone understands the vast polarisation between the very wonderful and the very rueful expressions of my husbands’ two characters was actually possible.
There was no doubt in my mind that he was the one I would spend the rest of my life with. We were compatible in many ways, but opposite when it came to football, rugby, cricket, sewing, knitting and crochet.
I was so in love with this man, I trusted him completely. I knew he could take over from my parents to defend my wellbeing!
The biggest contribution I brought into our marriage was my want of him. My knight in shining armour, the answer to all my uncertaintanties. I would never have to walk alone in the dark ever again. The dark being one of my fears as a young woman.
My childlike expectation was that we would enjoy a long, happy and exciting marriage. Any troubles and challenges we faced would be insignificant compared with our happiness together. It would be his primary responsibility to make sure his future family were provided for and protected. It was my responsibility alongside part time jobs when necessary, to make a home that would create an environment for refuge, nurture, love, comfort and safety. This was the eighties and I was more than delighted to be the primary homemaker.
Our combined weaknesses and flaws were already set up to fail each other, as I had the gullible vulnerability that would provide the ever expanding allowances for the wilful indiscretions my loved one needed, to satisfy his troubled mind.
We were a perfect storm! I needed him, he needed a secret keeper!
As I look back I remember that nothing was too much for my husband to do for me. He ‘pandered’ to my every whim. Of course I wasn’t intentionally expecting this of him. What I interpreted as him being romantic and hopelessly in love with me, was combined with his want to please and possibly earn my love as a probable result of the neglect he suffered as an infant. He didn’t believe he had a choice, his default was set to give me every pleasure he could, to please me in every way possible. Making him the answer to the surfacing of my insecurities, to compensate for them, to step in when I wavered, or felt overwhelmed.
Subtly, it was the unseen child in him that subsequently perpetuated my dependancies. It must have been tiresome, the constant pressure to please. Neither of us recognised the precedent we were setting. The wheels buckled under the pressure occasionally, without realisation we were navigating our own ruin. Never imagining one day the tandum would completely fall apart.
The needs of the child in me was met with the needs of the child in him. Heaven help us if he ever became intimately obligated to another women!
I cannot explain how i have I managed to astride the double life of Reverend Grey that we sustained for over thirty years. I can only invite you into our story at the very beginning of our marriage and describe the backdrop. The backstage, wings and props behind every scene and what unfolded behind the public presentation of our ‘Perfect Life’.
I was in character, dressed for the role I was born for and knew I would love. Setting aside promising hopes, dreams and expectations of how I imagined our story would evolve. There were no rehearsals, we were given no lines to learn and neither of us had any experience of the expectations that lay before us. There was only going to be one take of the ‘Drama’ of our life.
Lights – Camera – Action. We’re on!
It’s the opening scene of the very real life presentation called
I assumed my character ~ I did my best for the audience of Mr and Mrs Public.