a love story: where the heart is
Before our wedding day, my daddy told me that “when you first marry, you love him, but you don’t share blood with him. Only certain things can make your blood one and the same. You can have a husband, but it takes a while to become kin.”
When Seth and I first married, after a honeymoon that lasted a weekend, we were not at home. We worked for a church in a strange land called Oklahoma, and I only said “home” in reference to Alabama, where folks would grab you by the shoulders after church and say, “The sweet tea’s made, and we’ve got a roast on. Y’all are eating lunch with us.”
Our apartment was a clumsy mess. If you twitched big, you might accidentally end up in another room. We fought once because I didn’t give him a receipt for a Snicker’s Bar. I had medical bills, and Seth had to sell a guitar. We counted a 90 hour work week and figured he made about $0.95 an hour. There were times I thought I could make a home if we just had more money.
Seth started writing music and traveling to lead worship, and I mostly enjoyed staying alone, skipping church, and treating myself to candy bars, but it wasn’t until his trip to Mexico that I felt it.
Being kindred means you come from the same people, and though he said “prawlines,” and I said “praylines,” I hadn’t recognized it in him until he had been gone for 21 days.
The church bus pulled into Houston after winding out of the mountains and crossing the border, and he called me, and I sat in the living room for a day. I waited. I fumbled with the remote. I stared at the birdless limbs off the balcony. It turned a long moonless dark.
He walked in and put his bags on the floor, and we didn’t talk till the morning. He was my kindred, and when he was finally home, I was finally home, too.