thoughts inspired by ‘breaking dawn’

Okay, so I caved. I succumbed to the “Twilight” series by Stephenie Meyer and have been ravenously devouring the novels since I started them last weekend. I ordinarily don’t read fiction, but these are so well-written and contain so compelling a storyline that I simply can’t resist.

Regardless, I find the way Meyer discusses the purity and passion of the love (and marriage) of the two main characters to be refreshing. She’s not explicit in describing their sexual union, but she is explicit in describing the passionate level of their love for each other and how it consumes them.

From that, I found one particular passage to be mentally stimulating (and, if I’m honest, emotionally stimulating as well). The first-person of the passage below is the main character, Bella, and she’s recently arrived at her honeymoon destination with her husband, Edward. They are both virgins, although one is human and the other is … not. (I refuse to wreck the storyline for future readers)

And I wasn’t freaking out because I thought we were making a mistake. Not at all. I was freaking out because I had no idea how to do this, and I was afraid to walk out of this room and face the unknown. …

How did people do this — swallow all their fears and trust someone else so implicitly with every imperfection and fear they had — with less than the absolute commitment Edward had given me? If it weren’t Edward out there, if I didn’t know in every cell of my body that he loved me as much as I loved him — unconditionally and irrevocably and, to be honest, irrationally — I’d never be able to get up off this floor.

As I read this section, I found myself welling up and choking up. Because this is *exactly* what I remember feeling on our honeymoon. Precisely. It’s almost as if Meyer found a way to read my memories and fears and then had the audacity to write them down — except that she ended the chapter in a beautiful way that I was unable to muster at that time in my life.

As I read the portions to my husband (he hasn’t read the books and probably won’t), I looked up at him and through a thick voice said, “That was me all those years ago.” He nodded and agreed and I went on, “But it took me more than a dozen years to get past it.” He smiled and told me how glad he was that I had moved past it, but there was more in my head than just that.

So much of what I think about in our marriage anymore hearkens back to the idea of soul nakedness that I wrote about a few weeks back. I didn’t have the needed trust in my husband that he would love me, flaws and all. As I read these books, I’m struck by the ability that Bella has to know that Edward will love her, flaws and all, but it’s fiction. It’s easy to write that in to a novel. It’s not so easy to work out in real life.

I don’t think I’ve managed to bury all of my flaws (or any of them, really), and I’m absolutely as critical of myself as I used to be. Age has mellowed me somewhat in that I don’t brutalize myself with my thoughts and words as often as I used to, and that’s a good thing, but I think the major thing that has changed in me is my ability to love fiercely, ferociously, and completely. And to trust my husband’s heart. Because when it all comes down to it, Bella can put aside her fears because she trusts Edward’s heart towards her. And I can move past my flaws and “issues” because I trust my husband’s heart towards me.

His heart has changed quite a bit in the course of our relationship; no question about that. But he would say that he loved me as much on our honeymoon when I was scared spit-less as he does now. Except that now, I know his heart is completely mine and isn’t elsewhere (in his addiction), and that has permitted me to give my heart completely to him and move past my fears and flaws.

And as I consider that, I realize that this has been instrumental in what my friend Sensuous Wife has to say about experiencing the best of the best in your marriage bed: if you can give yourself over and embrace the God-given gift of your sensuality and commit to giving yourself 100% to your spouse, you can experience an amazing bond, a rockin’ good time, and the type of holy (yes, holy) connection that God intends sex to be for a married couple.

Who would’ve thought that some escapist-fiction could spawn such a deep realization in me? Seriously.

His and his,

This entry was posted on 112132H Oct 2008 and is filed under Marriage Building, Path to Healing. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

  • Sensuous Wife

    It comes as no surprise to me, dear friend that reading a work of fiction could move you the way that it did. Some of my most precious aha moments of self-realization have come after being immersed in a story told by novel or film.

    Charlie Peacock said it best, “What are we, but our stories?”

    Whether we’re reading a work of fiction or reading someone’s life story told in their blog, there’s something so deeply human and moving when we use our mind’s eye to enter into their story and see the world from their point of view. Our empathizing with the story teller gives us permission to feel our own feelings to remember our own story. The healing and beauty of character’s story can be contagious to us…in a beautiful redemptive way.

    This is why I write.

    And thank you darling for reminding me.

  • cori

    My pleasure, my dear friend. As much as Meyer does *not* resemble you (she’s LDS, you’re not; she’s writing what is considered “Young Adult Fiction,” you’re not; etc.), I couldn’t help but thinking of you as I read. Your ability to turn a phrase or craft a sentence is similar to hers in that I’m captivated by the words and the “how does she do that?” in my head. Because my writing is so clearly *not* fiction and I’m not sure I could do what you do at all. 😉

    Good fiction is compelling, and I’d honestly forgotten that in my fiction-less reading in the last few years. So it’s a good reminder and (once again) Charlie Peacock nailed it. :)

    His and his,

  • Sensuous Wife