I’ve always carried with me an impression of my true partner. I like to think of him as an evolved Harlequin romance character—tall and brooding and generous with bear hugs. I’ve never given up hope that he and I would be reunited someday. He is not a ‘type’ or a list of traits. He’s more like the faint outline of a person I’ve known intimately from a long time ago. He has no particular face, no particular appearance at all. He comes to me like a multi-sensory dream, leaning in and around me until I can feel the warmth coming off his musky chest, and his breath on my face. When he’s present a wave of safety washes through me. Next to him I am utterly known. And when I am with him I am not just standing next to him, but stepping into him and he into me. I have carried around this person in the back of my heart since I was a little girl. I’ve carried him like a torch, like a call to press on and not give up, no matter how many frogs I kiss or toads I marry. He’s not the perfect man. He’s just my man.
Whenever I exit a relationship with a boyfriend or a husband (I have been divorced twice), I always go running back to this man, my man. He smiles and assures me that if I can just hold on a little longer we will be reunited. I wonder if we’re apart because I have not yet achieved that elusive sense of wholeness in myself. I examine my insecurities and flaws and vow to work harder on them, so I can finally be with him.
Recently, after a gut-tying argument with my ex-husband that left both of us with stomach aches, I found myself in that familiar dark cloud of confusion and depression. Often times, I’ll admit, I’m so desperate to stop the pain that I reach for a glass of wine to numb it into submission. But on this particular day I found some micro-speck of courage, pulled on my big-girl panties and walked away from the bottle of wine. I put my son down for a nap and then lay in bed next to him to attempt to meditate my way out of the pain.
My body was so exhausted that I immediately let go of the physical world and found myself adrift between dimensions. Gently, my man came to me again and I was lulled further into comfortable depths of trance. But this time something different happened. He showed me his face. He didn’t have just one face, but many faces, hundreds of faces. Each of them was as familiar to me as my own. I began to realize that I wasn’t looking at my soul mate’s face, but my own reflection in a hall of mirrors. I was reviewing all of the times I had incarnated into a man’s body while on this Earth plane. All of my bodies and attached personas flew by in front of me like I was paging through pictures in a book. Then they folded in on themselves like a scene from a science fiction movie, and merged into my body. It was like an accordion collapsing time into the single point of now. I had poured all of my selves into myself.
Blissed and tortured in one breath, I realized that this man, my man, whom I had carried with me like a blue ribbon at the end of a finish line of failed relationships, was actually just a memory of myself. I was betrayed and amazed at once. Well, of course he knew me so well! Of course I felt at home in his arms, dammit! We weren’t finishing each other’s sentences. We weren’t complimenting each other like peanut butter and jelly. We were me, and I was still alone.
And then the lightness occurred. I shifted into weightlessness, stepped into the rocket ship of surrender, and let my sense of betrayal fall back to Earth while I lifted off into Godspace. What a tremendous relief! He doesn’t exist in the flesh. He never will. I can stop hoping and looking ahead to some Holy Grail of a partner. There is no one out there waiting for me to improve myself enough to attract him, in all his glory and perfection. There is no one on the Earth but a sea of imperfect men who are vastly and wonderfully different than me.
So where does that leave me? This memory of a soul mate which I have carried with me for so long is actually not anyone out there on Earth I can meet and shake hands with, and hug and kiss and make love to. I am sad by this fact, but also liberated. The memory of myself as a man was perfectly compatible to my experience of myself as a woman. But no human man can fill his shoes. I can finally stop holding the guys I meet to such an impossible standard of compatibility.
As I steered my rocket-ship back to the Earth plane, I could feel that my man was also more than just a collection of memories. He is the other half of my Self in the Highest Dimension. As close to Source as I can let myself remember, he and I together are wholeness, the great I am, the violet flame of spiraling opposites into nothingness, into All.
For decades I’ve been comforted and in love with my own self? Egotistical or Evolved? While still planted in the realm of duality, I decided it was beautifully both. I was closer to that elusive wholeness than I had thought.
Now I no longer pine for one man to sweep me off my feet and save the day. I’ve let them all off the hook. I see the Divine Male archetype express itself in a myriad of styles, in every man I’ve ever had the honor and pleasure of loving.