By John Murray
After 29 failed attempts at constructing this post and accelerating the erosion of my backspace key, I have decided to write my wife a letter. In the past year I have watched her create, and open the doors to, our own yoga studio, Lyons Den Power Yoga, and defy all naysayers with strength, gratitude, and drive. (Read more about Lyons Den here.) I cannot say that I am qualified to instruct other fine gentlemen on the art of how best to support the powerhouse woman in their lives. I, however, am positive I can articulate to mine, the experience of being with her.
Dec 17, 2014
Before ever meeting you, I had heard the legend. “Bethany is hardcore,” our friend Andy told me. “She has eaten men alive. She is hot, tough, and you have no chance.”
I told Andy you sounded like my kind of woman, and I received a blank stare and mocking laughter. Later that summer, I told Andy I would find a way to make you my girlfriend. Strength excites me.
When I did finally see you, I knew who you were not from a visual memory, but the way in which every available eye in the room moved in your direction. And when my eyes followed suit to meet the force that had just entered the room, I was lost in your beauty and had immediately begun constructing a plan for removing the man who was before me at your side. Exactly one year later I convinced you to date me.
On that day and every day since, I can sense and feel your powerful presence within every part of my being. I refuse to shrink in that presence, and it is amazing to feel the love and warmth of standing tall in it.
And after being your lover, friend, sometimes enemy combatant-stupid boyfriend, business partner, husband, and biggest fan for the majority of my adult life, I can tell you there is no other woman I have met who inspires me in the way that you do.
It is not easy being your lover, husband, and business partner, and that makes loving you rewarding beyond measure. The fire and passion you bring to every aspect of your life demands that I also offer the best I have to give. In times when I am lazy or lack integrity, you are the fire that burns out that impurity in what sometimes seems to be an incinerating flash of heat leaving me in charred remains. And through our commitment to making us great, I am constantly reborn in your fire that burns my skin of doubt and inauthenticity.
As we enter into the latter half of our first decade of marriage, I believe I have learned a few things about what you, the powerhouse woman I am madly in love with, need from your man. I commit to being the following for you.
To be a solid foundation, standing strong enough in your presence so that you can trust that at any moment, you can be at your fullest expression without fear I will wilt or adjust my viewpoint on the fly to “accommodate you.” You seek authentic and meaningful dialogue — push back if needed, and affirmation if warranted — and I trust and know that you believe strength to be empowering and sexy.
To support you and celebrate you, without stealing the spotlight and blocking out the sun. On your road to accomplishing greatness, I am ready to fill in the blanks and be your eyes in the blind spots, doing this by staying in connection and alignment with your vision and without a need for public recognition. The only acknowledgement to be given is the kiss you give me at the end of a successful journey, and it’s our secret the depths at which we had to travel.
To be strength when you need space. As a woman who inspires and leads others every day, sometimes your batteries recharge by being alone. I understand, and my recognition of this space tells you I am here now, and I will be here always. There is no convenient circumstance for how I share and show my love for you, nor do you need to BE anything. As you are is exactly how I want you.
To show up, as I commit to. You need a partner and a lover you can count on. I will be the person who, when all the world seems to let you down and you don’t know up from down, will be your compass and your true north when you need it most.
Building Lyons Den Power Yoga, and watching this community grow and seeing your vision come to life has been one of the greatest and most fulfilling parts of my life. Co-creating it with you and by your side makes me stand tall and proud to be your man. And while I have committed to you that in all things Lyons Den, you are the boss, I look to a woman who I know you respect, for hope I shall retain a measure of influence…
“If you can make a girl laugh, you can make her do anything” -Marilyn Monroe
I love you.
John Murray, co-founder of Lyons Den Power Yoga, brings a wealth of business experience to the mat. At just 22 years old, he became General Manager of the original Lucky Strike Lanes in downtown Hollywood, and went on to successfully establish several locations across the country. On the East Coast, John has run some of New York City’s biggest restaurant/entertainment properties including Blue Fin, Dos Caminos, and Bowlmor in Times Square. John is currently the Chief Operating Officer for the David Burke Restaurant Group. As an eleven-year veteran of the hospitality industry, he is excited to bring his leadership experience to making BIG things happen at Lyons Den Power Yoga. John is happy that Bethany introduced him to this powerful practice. He has taught business leaders for many years and with the opening of “The Den” now gets to teach leadership through yoga. He has practiced with his wife for the past three years, attended Level One Teacher Training with Baron Baptiste in 2012, Level Two in 2013, and Art of Assisting in 2014.