Love. Fidelity. Commitment. People often ask what’s our secret. When I met Jeff I was just a few months shy of thirty. I felt old because I felt trapped. I felt trapped in my own head and in what I believed people expected of me. Their expectations of perfection and identity. I felt that life – real life, the life I wanted – was locked away somewhere that I couldn’t find.
Jeff told me he didn’t expect perfection- perfection was simply a myth. What he did expect was to share a happy life. Happiness. Jeff believed in happiness. And he believed that it was something we could find and have together.
Jeff allowed me to be myself. Being with Jeff and loved by him, gave my life meaning. I didn’t have to be someone else’s idea of Eddie, I could be my own. All Jeff wanted was for me to be myself, because that’s that man he loved. Me, Eddie. Insecurities, Indiana twang, and all.
Washington DC 1989
I can’t imagine a bigger feeling of accomplishment than knowing you’ve shared an authentic, happy life with the person you love. That your life together has an unbreakable bond. That you have been faithful to that love and rejoiced in it. Being happy doesn’t seem like much of an accomplishment if you compare it to landing on the moon, or discovering a cure for cancer. But in the everyday life that most of us have, there is no greater human accomplishment than simple happiness with the person you choose, who – by some crazy, beautiful chance – also chooses you.