Me and Matt at Yellowstone National Park circa 2012

Map of New England and New Brunswick, where this child bride will celebrate her 30th anniversaryMy odometer hasn’t turned over in eight weeks.

Why? I’ve been blessed with a great deal of client work AND have been writing the first draft of my new book, Life Lessons from the Road: Riding Deep into the Soul. The book needs to sit and steep for a few weeks while I renew my relationship with the road. I’ll put the kickstandĀ upĀ this afternoon.

Speaking of relationships, my long-suffering spouse will join me in southern Massachusetts for Labor Day weekend to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary. Of course I’m NOT OLD ENOUGH to be married that long, but there it is, child bride and all that.

I was a child bride

Seriously, Matt and I married right out of college. Even by 1984 standards we were rather young to make a lifetime commitment. Keeping that commitment is statistically extraordinary.

In a sense, we’ve grown up together, which has been a crucible for forging our characters. Crucible?

Yes, a crucible is a vessel that goes into the furnace, subjecting the base metals it contains to extraordinary temperatures that will melt away impurities. Matt and I have faced the melting point several times in 30 years, some of which I share in my TEDx talk and some of which I’ll share in Life Lessons from the Road.

The alchemy of marriage

Life is embedded hardships designed to forge our characters, isn’t it? Sometimes I’m Matt’s hardship and other times he’s mine, but we always have each other’s back.

It’s been helpful for me to see marriage as a alchemical process of the soul instead believing that if I could only find my “true soul mate” all my life’s troubles would melt away. Thomas Moore writes about the alchemy of marriage in his profound book, Dark Nights of the Soul; recommended reading.

People often ask how I “get away with” traveling so much and how Matt deals with it. In truth, he wishes I did something more conventional and closer to home, but in a marriage that’s lasted 30 years, we’ve both learned to give each other the room we need to be our true selves.

I’m not an easy person to make a life with. Thanks for giving me a reason to come home, Matt. Happy anniversary.