Today, during my two-mile power walk, I thought about all of the great things I have in my life. You see, my mother-in-law died today after a bout with dementia and old age, so as most people do during a time of loss, I reflected. I cherish my family, the fact that I live in a free country (even if it is dominated by the religious), that I have a great home and that I own a successful business.
What I cherish most in this world is my wife, who is beyond remarkable. She is my rock; she is strong, compassionate, generous, loving and beautiful. She makes me a better person and she makes me want to be that better person.
Someone once told me she was my soulmate, that god made sure she crossed my path. And while on a day like this I don't want to be negative or bitter, as I walked and remembered these words, I couldn't help but wonder what that person would say if I told them we are both atheists, that my wife has been married before and according to their god we are both living in sin and have eternity in hellfire in store for us. Did god really guide our paths, knowing we were sinners who committed adultery and one day would apply rational thought to our lives and arrive at the conclusion he doesn't exist? Silly theists.
I obviously don't believe in soulmates, and not just because I don't believe in souls or an afterlife. On a planet of seven billion people, can a person really believe the one true person they were meant to find lived a few miles from them? It's a preposterous concept. Relationships take work, and I give ourselves the credit for recognizing personalities and traits we are attracted to when we finally find that special someone.
My in-laws both had failed marriages before they met each other; my wife is the wonderful product of that final union, and for that I am very grateful. I am so sorry my MIL is gone, that my wife (and all of our family) has to experience this pain, but I am thankful for her life because she produced my wife, my partner and my best friend.
I'll never forget my second mom and I'll always appreciate and love her.