RDP Tuesday: Connect
late Middle English (in the sense ‘be united physically’; rare before the 18th century): from Latin connectere, from con- ‘together’ + nectere ‘bind.’
As so often happens, once I look at the history behind a word, my original idea for the post is quickly replaced.
I didn’t know that the word connect had a sense of “being united physically.”
In our wedding ceremony, my dad was the officiating pastor as well as the one who, of course, walked me down the aisle to Terry. He read from the passage including Genesis 2:24, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”
I understand it a lot better now, after nearly 50 years. In a good marriage, the couple becomes so closely united that they operate as if they were one body, one mind, one heart, one soul. One flesh. That is not to say there is never a disagreement. Nobody’s perfect. But the overall relationship is one of unity.
I had a friend some years ago who was in his 80’s when I met him. His wife had died of leukemia, and he was still grieving. He said to me one time, “Linda, I never understood the one flesh principle the way I did the day my wife died. I felt like half my body had been cut off.”
I heard him, of course, but I was still in my late 30’s then, and I didn’t really hear his heart the way I do now, in my memory. It is a wonderful thing to have that sort of marriage.
I have it.
Is it worth the the pain when one partner leaves before the other?
Oh yes. Even though it hasn’t happened to us yet, I will grieve, and I will miss him terribly. But I will not for one moment regret all the years we had together just because never having that relationship would have spared me the pain of loss.
All relationships come packaged with possible loss. That’s life. If we cut ourselves off from relationships in order to avoid pain, we may as well go live in a cave in the desert and contemplate our toenails until we die.
No, thank you. My life is rich with family, friends, people I work with and people I haven’t even met yet.
Connection with a faithful spouse is the picture of that wonderful one-flesh principle. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
2 thoughts on “One Flesh”
Great definition of this word. I love it. That one flesh idea, though, is not and has never been for me. I never believed that one person plus one person makes… one person. When “connecting” with a male friend/partner I often feel the other person wants to “possess” me and I hate that feeling. Have I missed something about “connecting”?!
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I don’t know, Frankie. I do believe that the one-flesh principle takes a stronger hold the longer a couple is together, when there is mutual trust and respect. Terry and I have had our share of STRONG disagreements, but in the end, we are one. It is not being owned by another person; it is being mutually connected by choice, for the long haul.
And I don’t believe that the only road to happiness is through that one-flesh relationship. It’s not for everyone, any more than chocolate chip ice cream is everyone’s favorite choice.