Are you the Wings or the Wind?


In every relationship there is one person that is the wings of the relationship, and the partner that is the wind.  You all have heard the song made famous by Bette Midler on the soundtrack of the movie Beaches, “You Are the Wind Beneath My Wings”.  So true is this analogy in most relationships.  One partner is usually more outgoing, or possibly has the more distinguished or noticeable career.  While the other partner is content to stay in the background, providing support and being the wind necessary to enable the wings to take flight and soar.  And while the wings are who you see and take notice of, it is usually the wind that makes it all possible. 

Consider any politician that has had a successful career.  For that matter, consider any President that this United States has seen.  For every one, there has been a strong female standing by their side, supporting them, pushing them to achieve the greatness they know they are capable of.  Not only giving them the support they need, but also, taking care of things at home, so that the wings can focus their full attention on the tasks at hand.  Most successful men will quickly admit that they could not have achieved the things they did, had they not had their wife inspiring them and whispering in their ear, “Honey, I know you can do this.”

Look at any famous personality, whether it is in the sports world, in the entertainment arena or in the music world.  Most successful personalities have what some have called, that “strong backbone” at home holding everything together and putting the pieces in place.  Often times it is the man that stands out front, and the woman that is in the background, but not always.  It simply depends on the personalities, hopes, dreams and aspirations of the two parties involved. 

This being said, several questions come to mind.  Is it possible for two wings to work?  Through my experiences I have learned that if you live long enough you realize that pretty much anything is possible.  However, how successful a situation is truly depends on each party’s idea of what makes success.  While it’s true that there are couples that both have high powered jobs, what are they giving up in time spent together to maintain those jobs?  What happens when children are brought into the picture?  Often times it is this decision that determines who is truly the wings and who now becomes the wind. 

What happens when the wings and wind switch positions?  Can the wind step up and become wings?  Would they want to?  It happens all the time.  A couple has had distinct roles for most of the years of their marriage.  Each knows their jobs and has grown comfortable with their responsibilities in the marriage.  So what happens when, because of  illness, injury or divorce, the tables are suddenly turned?  How difficult is it to take on this new role and be successful at it?  Again, the answer lies in the person involved.  For some, they come to realize they were always wings underneath and had simply not had the opportunity to spread them and realize their potential in that capacity.  For others, it can be very difficult.  They can feel let down, overwhelmed, confused about their new responsibilities and can sometimes fall into depression at how their lives have changed. 

We all have some idea of how we would like, or even expect our lives to turn out.  We all know that although things may not be exactly like we’d envisioned, they will probably fall somewhere within a certain range of our expectations.  So how then do you deal with the realization that your life is not at all the way you thought it would be at that point in it.  Some cry, others scream, still others pray.  But for most, you wake up the next morning, and get about the business of living.  After all, what choice do you have?  You can’t shrivel up and die, although you may wish that that were a viable option at the time.  And most likely, there are others that still depend on you.  So you pull yourself up by your bootstraps and move on.  While this may not be an easy task, it is one that is doable, and you will find your way through it.