My Mt. Everest | March 2006 Newsletter

My Mount Everest: March, 2006
Merle M. Singer, Founder


Eudora Welty

It takes a lot of Mt. Everests (whatever Mt. Everest is for you) to develop the courage to confront the really big decisions in your life.

As a coach of career transitions using my non-linear approach, I am very sensitive to the difference between not always choosing a linear path to decision-making and being just plain scattered. I’ve done both; there is a difference. Non-linear decision-making is the result of the freedom to allow yourself to be lead by your creativity, spirit, research, intuition (any and all, in any combination). But when it comes to specific tasks, ‘linear’ leads the way. Paying bills, answering e-mails are pretty direct activities. You lead yourself, one step straight in front of the other. That’s where focus is king.

Linear does the heavy lifting, gets the job done, but non-linear helps us decide which jobs to linearly get done. Freely choosing non-linear tangents has the surprises and fun for us. It’s what makes our life interesting. It challenges our preconceptions.

I was speaking to a friend of mine last month. We hadn’t talked in a while so we caught up a bit (Reader’s Digest style) on our lives. I told Roxana about my ‘e-letter,’ and Rox told me about her marriage. She mentioned that her recent marriage has brought different feelings, that she hadn’t anticipated. I asked her to elucidate. She expressed it so clearly; and I found it candid and interesting. I’m sure you will too:

You asked for my thoughts about how I feel about marriage. Has it changed my view of my relationship? It has.

I’ve been married about a year and a half, and was living with my guy for about 3 years before that. I wasn’t particularly motivated to marry. It didn’t seem necessary, and I had a sort of knee-jerk anti-establishment view about the institution: why do I need the State to validate my love-relationship? Why do I want to participate in an institution that is closed to my gay friends? Etc.

Jesse, my husband, really wanted it, though. And after a while I realized that my objections were not as deep as his desire to go forward.

We got married in my sister’s backyard. Jackie Goldberg officiated, and was fantastic, by the way. It was a lovely day.

I wasn’t expecting any major change to follow, though. And I was really wrong about that. Agreeing to marry involved a big leap of faith for me. My political reservations were, at least in part, masking a deeper fear about what it would mean to really accept that someone wanted to love me, for life.

Now that we are married, our relationship is much deeper. I feel a real sense of safety and security. We can fight without it being the end of the world. I know he’s not going anywhere. I feel that I can be more vulnerable. I like needing him, and I like that we belong to each other. We’re nicer to each other than we were before. It’s altogether great, and altogether unexpected. Marriage isn’t for everyone, but it definitely suits me.

Roxana Tynan
LAANE LA Alliance for a New Economy
Accountable Development Director

Some of our best thinking, the thinking that most influences the direction of our lives is the result of gathering information in the sweeping glances of the primitive gatherers of food and not the narrow focused attention of the hunter. But that’s another analogy for another issue.