I’ve had the idea for this post for a while. I didn’t know when to post it and then this week happened. Too many events, emotions, and words packed like an over-stuffed suitcase into seven small days. They cascade like cool, briny waves over the thick skin of the prized blue marlin Hemingway wrote of before he did what he did to end what he had, yes that’s an allusion to his suicide.
This week is Valentine’s Day, and the Leaver’s birthday, it’s ten months alone… On top of all that bittersweet it’s more compliments from boys and men than I’ve had in years, and the sweetest possibility of a blind date by guys I know and implicitly trust, and a touch I have longed for and a profession of interest in more than what I’m capable of giving at this time in my life.
Since I started dating I’ve had no lack of suitors but they’ve all kept their words of endearment to themselves. This week though, the words were out of control. I got attention, admiration and arms around me like I’m not used to. I think it’s Valentine’s Day. I think the gentlemen of this world, of my world, are as romantic and wistful with the Day of Love on the horizon as ladies are. Today I heard what I was waiting for. It’s time to write it all out the only way I can say it.
Like any romantic I want to find love, like in the romance novels. I want enduring love that will last a lifetime. But I am not desperate for it... I know, like dawn comes after dark, that it won’t be long until love comes calling… and I answer. When I was finishing Gia’s Secrets, the first book in my next trilogy, she felt like a marlin on the line. I wanted her! She was terrible and wonderful. I was aware of the pain she would bring but also of the message she would carry to the world. I was the Old Man. I was ready to fight for her. And I did and I will. And I got her in the boat. She is a monstrous beauty. I will tell the tale of the work that went into her for the rest of my life. I wanted her that bad.
And I want to be wanted that badly.
Not only am I the Old Man, fighting every day for my dream, this thing that drives me, this thing I believe God put me on the earth to do; I am also the prized blue marlin the man who will have me seeks.
But I do not belong to him, or to any fisherman yet.
I am free. I am a bright, beautiful, glorious beast of a thing swimming wild and unruly in an ocean of wide open spaces where only a few brave fishermen are ready to travel to and willing to put their lines in and see if I’ll bite.
Right now, I go where I will, doing what I want. Aimless and free. Capable and content. But also this marlin answers to her Maker and He calls me to the Old Man. If I stay in the ocean, I die in the ocean. If I go to him, the Old Man, who will brave the sun and sweat and waves and blisters, blood and time and pain and potential loss to win me, I will forever be the story he tells with a twinkle in his eyes and a skipped beat of his heart. I will adorn his life. I will be the catch he fought for, the prize he won. He will ever look to me with pride even when the dust settles on my mounted frame (sorry I couldn’t help it) and the years have dulled the shine my skin once knew.
I will be the one he fought for, the one he wanted, or the one that got away but, man, what a fun fight I was while I was hooked! I will belong to no man but one; the one who is ready, who is willing, who is strong enough, patient enough, stubborn enough and wise enough to know when to give me slack, when to pull me tight, when to reel hard and gain feet, and prepared to let the boat tilt instead of letting me go. He’ll never let me go… ever! He’ll treasure me forever. And maybe, I’ll never admit it, but maybe, his determination, grit and steadfastness to stick with me will be the very thing I need to trust him enough to let him catch me.
There’s a lot between now, when I swim free amongst the few men who are out to find me, and then, when I find the bait I take. And even when I take the bait there’s no guarantee. I might not be the catch the Old man seeks. He might cut his line and I will be left with a hook in my mouth but free to swim again. Or he might not have what it takes to haul me in to his boat and I’ll snap his line and look for another. Maybe I’m the one, no other will do. Maybe he’ll watch and wait and figure out exactly what I bite and how strong his line ought to be, and how big the boat, to insure the catch. Maybe he gets lucky but he’s good and pulls me in.
I don’t know who he is, but I’m pretty sure he has strong arms to hold me fast (that maybe he flexes for my benefit), a heart that is bright as the sun, a life devoted to the One who gives and takes away, and a determination to prove to me that he’ll never leave no matter how hard I fight to believe it.
Also, he’s in the boat!!! He’s not on the shore hoping a trophy catch jumps into his arms. He’s out there, he’s studied, prepared, bought or at least chartered his boat and he’s all in for the catch. He’s got a lure that I’m gonna bite. He didn’t throw a worm on a hook and expect me to take that. He’s in, he’s trying and he’s prepared, win or lose, to get a story he can tell his buddies for the rest of his life. Yeah, I’m that kind of catch, or release, or one that got away.
I’m not a picky marlin, I’m a prized blue marlin of the deep blue sea. I’ll not be taken easy but oh how I’ll be adored when I’m finally brought in!
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