This week, we’ve talked birthing babies, businesses and ideas. But we haven’t talked much about love. When Christina and I decided to explore birth in it’s many incarnations, I suggested the birth of a relationship. Equally as terrifying as birthing an idea, (though perhaps not a baby), the birth of a relationship is that moment when you both decide it’s something more.
Before this moment, it’s all crumpled sheets, messy hair, 2 AM conversations, long drives to nowhere and hours staring into each other’s eyes. It’s magical and wonderful and uncomplicated and unknown. It’s the first honeymoon the two of you will ever take and the memory of it will always bring a smile to mind. But to me, none of this is the birth of the relationship. Birth, as we’ve learned this week, takes time, and work, and love.
For Michael and I, the birth of our relationship was when I moved to Atlanta to be with him for a Summer. He was working at a theater there, performing Titus Andronicus and Midsummer Night’s Dream in rep. I was bored in Wales and totally in love. It seemed like it would be all Georgia peaches and reading Shakespeare in the shade.
But actually, it was hell. It was hot, we didn’t have a car, we didn’t have AC, I didn’t have a job and Michael hated his. We slept on a mattress on the floor. We hemorrhaged money. We got lost all the time. There were, literally, no peaches. (But we did read Shakespeare in the shade of Piedmont Park.)
Ask either of us about Atlanta and we will recall terrible car rentals, unfriendly bosses and excruciating heat. But we will also agree, Atlanta made us. It was difficult, but we stayed, we labored, and by the end of that Summer, there was no going back. There were no more questions. I knew I loved him. Even when all the lovely circumstances of college and New York were taken away. And I knew he loved me. Even when I freaked out at an Enterprise Rent-A-Car.
Five years later, we both think of Atlanta as THE WORST CITY EVER (no offense Atlanta, this is purely circumstantial). But we’re so thankful to one and other for getting through it, for working on it, and for creating the incredible relationship we have today.