"First Steps" by Vincent Van Gogh. Via Wikimedia Commons.

Living Presently to Experience Christ

In light of "Morality: Memory and Desire," Sami embarks on an effort to help her husband live fully, but in so doing, she discovers a profound love for her own life.

I’ve continued to be amazed at how often Morality: Memory and Desire refers to the need to simply give our yes and to keep responding to what is in front of us.

Some of the rotations that Jake, my husband, has to do have been more difficult than others. Some days are super hard and when he comes home I can tell his heart is heavy. My desire for him is to have happiness, regardless of what his day entails. So, my first reaction is to shake him, try to wake him up, recite quotes that I remember, hoping that something I say will reawaken and attract him. But this never works. Last week, through trying to “fix” Jake and make him happy, I began to notice that my life wasn’t as vibrant either. I was not living a life that was searching for something, just as I saw in Jake. The more I desired this life for Jake, the more attractive it became to me and I began to desire it for myself as well.

Morality: Memory and Desire has been a beautiful reminder of how the saints lived; so simply. They kept responding and giving their yes. Last week I realized that the only thing that I can do in hopes to help Jake is to live presently. Nothing I say to him can change him. He needs to experience Christ. I wanted him to see beauty, to feel alive, to have hope in all things. I wanted it so badly for him, that I began to really want it for myself. I started to want to start my days in prayer, or to pray randomly throughout the day. I really wanted to use my time well, and not find things to simply occupy and pass the time. I was wanting something more for myself. I began to desire to go to daily mass or go to confession. I normally end up partaking in those sacraments because I should, but I actually wanted it because I knew I needed it.

This has been beautiful for me because this is the first time I noticeably experienced caring about Jake’s destiny, happiness, desires more than my own. The surprise has been that I care so much for him, that it has reawakened me. The saints’ lives seem to be so simple. I cannot be perfect. I cannot fix Jake or be his source of happiness. But I can keep living in the present moment, giving my yes to what is in front of me. I can only hope that me being alive has him desire the same for his life. But even if it doesn’t, I know that for me to be present, to keep responding, helps me to better stay in front of Jake.

Sami, Minnesota, USA