Last week, Average Joe recommended a book to me on Twitter. I was sitting in a coffee shop, waiting for the loan broker to show up and talk about numbers with zeros (so many zeros!) so I thought I’d check into it.
It was a penny on Amazon, and the shipping brought my total to four dollars. Usually I don’t hem and haw about whether to buy a milkshake, so at the milkshake price, I bought it. Amazon makes it VERY easy to spend money, even when you’re on your “smart” phone.
The book he recommended is absolutely not one I’d pick up in any store. It has a picture of a wedding ring in front of some clouds, says something about it being a wonderful love story, all of that would turn me off at a physical bookstore. Thank goodness I didn’t let that stop me.
It’s called The Bridge Across Forever, and it’s about a man in search of a soulmate.
I’m not sure I believe there is one soulmate for every person — I believe there’s something like 3500 potential soulmates for each of us, but that didn’t stop me from loving this book. Honestly, it’s worth a penny. It’s worth a lot of pennies. It’s just so lovely. I lent my copy to a good friend and bought a copy for another across the country.
The passage below brought me to tears, and for no other reason than wanting to come back here and refer to this from time to time, I’m posting it in its entirety below:
With this one person I saw that intense intimacy and joy were possible for me. I used to think these were my own specials needs, my personal signs of a soulmate. Now I think they may be everyone’s, but that we despair of finding them, we settle for less. How dare we ask for intimacy and joy when a lukewarm lover and mild happiness are the best we can find?
Yet in our hearts we know that lukewarm will turn cold; mild happiness will become a kind of nameless sadness, nagging questions: is this the love of my life, is this all there is, is this why I’m here? In our hearts we know there must be more, and we long for the one we never found.
So often half a couple is trying to go up, the other half is dragging down. One walks forward, the other makes sure that for every two steps ahead they take three steps back. Better to learn happiness alone, I thought, love my friends and my cat, better wait for a soulmate who never comes than to make that dull compromise.
A soulmate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks our truer selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are, we can be loved for who we are and not for who we’re pretending to be. Each unveils the best part of the other. No matter what else goes wrong about us, with that one person we’re safe in our own paradise. Our soulmate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction. When we’re two balloons and together our direction is up chances are that we’ve found the right person. Our soulmate is the one who makes life come to life.