I've borrowed the title because it is appropriate, and it was actually a fascinating way to see other people, through what they say they believe. There are things a person can know, they are true or not and don't involve an element of uncertainty. To say you believe something, on the other hand, requires that you have a certain amount of faith, or at least that you have gone through a process to be convinced. You know things, generally, that have been or can be somehow proven or shown to you. You believe things, often, in spite of there being no possibility of the thing being proven or provable. Believing is stronger than thinking, or hoping; it means you have left the doubt and uncertainty about the thing behind.
It has been a year since we started this particular journey. I still couldn't tell someone what the compulsion was to change things so much in our marriage, but I asked, he agreed, and we have. I have had a lot of insecurities about things having to do with those changes over that time. One of the most fundamental difficulties for me has been wondering to what extent he is in this because he really wants to be, rather than to humor me or because he is afraid he would lose me otherwise.
It goes beyond irony to come to someone and say, in essence, I want you to be in charge, and here is how I would like you to do it. It twists the mind around - If he had come to me to say that he wanted to take control, and wanted me to submit to him, I'm pretty sure I would have told him to take a flying leap. So how would I expect him to react to my out-of-the-blue proposal. In my mind, the most likely response would be, "I'll play along until it blows over or she moves on to some other cute little idea."
I also worried that he felt trapped into complying - again, out of line with of the intention of his being in charge. Around the time I came to him with these ideas, friends of ours were in the middle of a hateful and cruel divorce. She had hit mid-life, lost some weight, dolled up, and decided her husband was no longer good enough. He either couldn't or didn't change to meet her new wishes, so she left. It was very, very ugly. I wondered and worried that my husband entertained my request out of fear of me doing the same.
A lot has happened in a year, and we have both learned and developed. I know we will keep moving, changing, learning and growing. I have come to believe a lot of things I had doubted, and I think the most significant one is that I believe he truly wants this too.