From the time our hormones kick in (13 for me) we are propelled into this allusive game of chase. Do we or don't we? Do we meet the cutest boy you ever set eyes on after school or do we glance his way, smile casually and keep on walking?
For me I had a bit of a wild streak. I so related to my beloved horse books where the untamed colt refused to be stifled, her spirit unbroken by all who attempted to reign her in. I like to think of it as pre-Thelma and Louise for girls.
That way of thinking followed me into my twenties. I liked to be caught for a bit but then would soon tire of the same old pasture. Not so much because of who attempted to own me but for the simple fact that my heart wanted bigger terrain. The sad, strange thing was that even though I would bristle at first under the saddle, I eventually would be lulled into a relaxed state.
I would get comfortable. I would forget the whiff of adventure in the far off breeze. I would settle in. I would want to please. I wouldn't kick up a fuss. How remarkable that on one side I was the demure girl, on the other, the racy you -better -run -if -you -corner -me -girl. Both roles made me well, uneasy. I didn't wear either coat particularly well. Inevitably I would be in a corner quietly pulling at loose threads or attempting to rip the damn thing off me.
I remember my Mother saying to me she thought I always did better without a man, I was more "myself." I never quite knew what she was trying to say to me intellectually, but I got it in my gut. Alone I stood taller, had a handshake that would make grown men wince and liked being a person who was up for anything, no requirements please. To this day one of the most treasured things ever said to me was being compared to an orchid--"beautiful and a little wild." I hold onto that when I am doing laundry. When I am in line at the grocery store, when I am so fatigued from giving giving giving I feel like I am going to crack;
I silently say to myself like a prayer, I am a wild beautiful orchid.
'Yeah right', the little voice in my head says. 'In your dreams cutie pie.'
When do we get to the point where we run to the harness instead of away from it? When do we say to ourselves we are ready for the capture as long as we have a view to look to? As long as we have our moments racing down the highway, sun blazing, hair flying, feeling the invincibility of 16?
I like to think that the right capture is the one that lets air under the saddle. The one that understands there will forever be a person inside us that wants to be encompassed by love but also has it within to flee in the middle of the night.
The right capture lets us exhale fully, lets us become who we are meant to. The right capture has us smile heartily and fall hard when we need it.
We hope we can do the same for them.
We hope we don't pinch them into doting versions of some 1950's TV show.
We hope they feel they can yell they hate us, even though they don't.
We hope they can be swept away and live, wringing every last moment out of their existence, not just seeing a quote on a fridge about it but LIVING damn it, to do what they are meant to do without ever saying "I wish I could but..."
Knowing fully this wicked-wild crazy ride of stepping in and outside of lines; only for the bold of heart, only for the ones who really want it, only for the ones who capture us; our hearts, our spirits- they are the ones who are deserving to own all of us; every last sticky, flawed, wonderful, messy, ecstatic, frightening part of us.
I can tell you I wanted nothing less. I can also tell you I fell hard trying to get it. I failed. I was stupid, reckless, beneath myself, foolish. I was quiet, delusional, childish, selfish, broken. I spoke love but only knew a shadow of it.
When I finally see, the glimmer, the too bright light that you politely ask to turn down please, it's giving me a headache, it's giving me vision, it's giving me a momentary flicker of what could be and dear God I don't know if this bravado girl can handle it.
I don't know if the dead on look I give strangers will hold when I look into my future husband's eyes.
I don't know why when I say my vows to him I am barely a whisper, so profound, so humble is my offering.
The man who captures me takes it; cups my burnt offering in his hands and with kindness scatters the ashes around to show me what they all add up to.
How they swirl and stick to my eyelids, words, the parts of my life. He welcomes to our table the two versions of me; the warrior and the little girl. He wraps them in, folding tight with his own fragility, recklessness, strength. I see that the view is there. All at once I look to him and I look outward. I put the harness on gladly, completely, with honor. I wander and I dream. I come home.
The light is always on.