This handout picture given by the Italian cultural ministry shows a pair of human skeletons embracing at a Neolithic tomb in Valdaro-S.Giorgio near Mantova. I'm going to tell their story.
The story of She and He has just as tragic of a beginning as it does an ending. She married He when She was very young. She had hopes. She had plans. She had dreams. She had good intentions. She had desires to go far beyond her humble beginnings and absorb as much of the world as She could. She never got too far.
He was the man She married. She saw him as the start of a new life. The first step on the road to who She always wanted to be. She was going to explore. She was going to learn. She was going to live and She was going to do it with a carefree attitude like she'd never been able to know in the small, confining world She was born into. She wanted to spread her wings and fly far away from the confinement of small town life that insisted She put down roots instead.
He was a humble man. He was a Root Bearer, not a Wing Spreader and She found that out too late. She ached and yearned to experience new things in life, see different places and different faces. She wanted to be something. More than She could ever be where She was.
He was content providing for She. He came from a working background of poverty that left no room for imagination. His childhood was too hard to imagine anything, but working to rise above and beyond that which was his heritage - poverty. His only goal in life was to provide for his family in a way that his father was never able to. To have done that, in his eyes, was to have succeeded.
He's father was a tired man, broken from years of hard work for nothing. Life's struggles had taken all emotion, except bitterness and anger, out of his life and that's all he had left for He. A child learns what he lives and He learned to have no emotion. He learned to be strong. He learned that a man works and that's all he does and there's no time for nonsense like goals, hopes, and dreams. He was content to have what he needed, for that was all He ever wanted.
He's contentment and She's discontent became the driving wedge in the marriage. She felt cheated. He felt frustrated. She needed more and He couldn't understand why having what She needed wasn't enough. She began to feel like She was suffocating. He began to distance himself from She. The days dragged on and the years stretched out behind them and, pretty soon, She decided that She could not go on.
She went to bed. She had come to the conclusion that, if this was her lot in life, she wanted no more of it. So She slept. But before She slept, She said:
"I'm not living anyway. What does it matter if I die? So much of me has died over the years from not being nurtured and cultivated that just a mere shell remains. Could death be any different that just existing? No. It couldn't. If I can't hurry up and live, let me hurry up and die."
And so She did.
Lying there in bed.
He laid down beside her. He could not go on. In She's death, He found his voice. He found his emotion. He found the words He should have told She years ago. He said:
"I never talked because I didn't know what to say. You were versed in so many things that I never had the capacity or the chance to learn. You talked, I listened. It's not because I wasn't interested in what you were saying, it's because I was. I was learning and wanted to absorb. I had nothing to add. All I could do was listen.
I never had an opinion about things you wanted to do because I knew my words couldn't stop you. You were strong willed and determined and would not be swayed by my protest. I protested anyway because I am a man. You thought that I was against you in all of it, but I was behind you. Letting you lead the way because I knew you wouldn't follow me.
I never showed you affection because of how many times you pushed me away. Not showing my love for you was a way of protecting my fragile ego, not a means to hurt or punish you. You never made any attempt to show me yours, but I was alway there. Not against you. Or apart from you or ahead of you, but behind you.
Right behind you.
I never encouraged you or showed any support for the things in life that you wanted to do because you didn't need any. I couldn't stop you, if I wanted to. I never wanted to. I wanted to be a part of what you were doing, not a spectator, but you were the star of your own show and never let me shine. Even then, I didn't walk away from you, I walked behind you.
You always thought that work was my life and all I cared about. You believed I put everything before you. You felt like you were second to everything and everybody and that only my life mattered.
What you wanted to hear so many times, but rarely did is - you were right. Only my life did matter.
She, you were my life.
Where you led, I always followed.
I'm still behind you.
Right behind you."
And He died.
Right behind She.