Last night, the Proms saw an absolutely wonderful concert to make the 80th birthday of arguably the greatest living composer and lyricist, Stephen Sondheim. For those who’ve not come across him, his most famous work is probably the musical of ‘Sweeny Todd’.
One of the songs last night was all about the risks of relationships and intimacy. It’s no secret, thanks to TractorGirl(!) that I’m thinking of proposing soon. It’s a big decision, and listening at the same time to a friend who has been turned away by someone they really liked has made me think about relationships. Sometimes, when we’ve had big rows or something has gone wrong, I’ve caught myself wondering about whether being single wouldn’t be easier. This song from Sondheim catches the risks, which I’ve come to the conclusion are more than worth taking, as while loving involves getting hurt, sometimes deeply, it can (and does with TractorGirl 😀 ) bring so much goodness and wholeness:
I see there is much discussion about who will be the next person to take up the now-infamous See of Southwark, following the retirement of Dr Tom Butler, who I met with my banana after a rather bizarre lecture on science and faith. These rows about homosexuality in the Church of England make me very sad. Jeffrey John (pray for him – it cannot be easy being a political football. I ‘ve met him briefly and he seemed lovely) is celibate but in a committed, loving relationship. Why should gay people have to be lonely and miserable, Mr Sugdon? It makes me glad I am not in the ordination process, if even abiding by the rules of ‘Issues in Human Sexuality’ is not enough for some people, but living a lie and the subsequent damage to one’s mental health is perfectly fine. Sigh! I don’t want to get on my soapbox today, mostly because I feel slightly fragile and need a hug, not a row, but it has done me a great deal of good to be honest about my sexual orientation, both to myself and those I care about, and being with TractorGirl makes me feel alive, whole, complete in a way that being with a man, however lovely, could never do. Being told this is wrong hurts – it feels to me like this life in all its fullness that Jesus talked about…
Anyway, on a lighter note, the weekend was somewhat interesting, as TractorGirl’s post explains. I was actually really glad to be able to be there for both TG and Third Party, and hope it goes some way to demonstrating to the latter that I do care and am going to be a trustworthy and reliable presence in her life, and not there to take mum away. I’ve found the ‘compartmentalisation’ very hard, because I really do care about TP, and want to build a good relationship, so I hope this can be the start of that 🙂