Reading the last entry, this now seems inevitable.  But it didn't seem that way to me at the time.

I asked Diana to marry me, and she said yes almost before I had finished the question.

We aren't telling anyone for a few weeks.  Partly to get used to the idea.  But we did tell Diana's parents, who were tickled pink.  We don't have anything figured out.  When.  Where.  Where we will live.  What we will do with our current houses.  How to break it to he kids.

Plus, my daughter and her boyfriend are close to announcing their engagement, too.  I really don't want to rain on her parade.  And don't even think of a double wedding!  So I've got to talk to he, privately, before we can make many of these decisions.  Various people I care about, including my ex-wife, will be upset.  My kids and stepkids will take careful handling.

My stepdaughter was engaged for almost three years before they set the date.  I think that was a good thing--they got to try out the idea of being committed to each other before reaching the point of painful return.  But they are very young, compared to Diana and me.  Still, some time to let this sink in is a good thing, I think.

The strangest thing is how I am feeling about this.  My mind is nattering like a rat running around in a cage.  "You fool, you aren't ready, she has this, that, and the other nasty trait/habit, you don't really want to be a stepfather to teenage boys, do you?  You are like an addict falling off the wagon!  etc. etc."

And I am just watching this pat of my mind, thinking "What negativity!  How bizarre."  I'm not getting hooked.  In large part because my heart knows this is the right thing.  And, in consort with most of the really important decisions of my life, if I'm terrified I must be doing the right thing!

Actually, I think it's a very good sign that I'm so aware of my negativity before getting married.  In my first two marriages, I was convinced I was marrying perfection, and this perfectly suited my needs and tastes.  I was wrong on both counts, for both marriages!  With Diana, my mind has no trouble listing all sots of terrible things, and my heart says "So?"  It doesn't matter.

Jung said we marry our shadow--someone who manifests parts of our psyche that we don't want to own, but also crave contact with.  For my fist two marriages, I now see clearly how that was true.  I married women that had many traits I admired, and wished were in me (or feared that they were not).  And because I could admire these traits in my wife, I could keep them at a distance, and not face the fears that led me to disown them in the fist place.

Diana feels a bit different.  In part because I feel much moer self sufficient now--I enjoy living alone, in many ways, and don't feel as much of a "need" to be with he.  She surely has traits that I respect and enjoy and don't see much of in myself (such as her artistic creativity).  But I'm not feeling that she "completes" me in any major way I'm aware of.  I just have a hell of a lot of fun when I'm with he, and we have woven a web of experiences and associations that I delight in and don't want to give up, rather to deepen and extend.

And, without going into details, the best sex of my life doesn't hut one bit either.  Yum.

Thank you for reading.

Copyright © 2001 Pete Stevens. All rights reserved.