Q. How would you describe your relationship with Rich Mullins in one word?
A: There have been many times I thought Richard was such a creative genius, that he invented a new category of relationship just for us. There does not seem to be a term that can encompass all of it. Friend? Really, much more than that. Girlfriend? Both less and more. Fiancee? No, that's someone else. Inamorata? It's an uncommon word, but perhaps. But like many descriptive terms for love, it may imply physical intimacy. Those who search for one word to describe the relationship between Richard and me need look no farther than "transcendent."
1) of, relating to, or being part of a reality beyond the observable physical universe
2) being so extraordinary or abnormal as to suggest powers which violate the laws of nature
-- definition by Merriam-Webster
From FAQ about Singing from Silence:
Q: You refuse to describe yourself as Richard's fiancee. Why would I want to know more about a relationship that was never defined, never resolved, and never resulted in marriage or children?
A: The intensity of a relationship which cannot be described in simple words breathes in our hopes, inhabits our dreams, and takes flight in our songs, our poetry, and literature.
You could argue that fulfilled marriage is the only significant relationship between a man and a woman, but you would be arguing against several millennia of songwriting tradition, starting with the Song of Solomon--written about love between a couple who have yet to consummate their marriage. The Song of Songs offers the metaphor of God's love for his intended bride, humanity--suggesting love is a mystical journey which permits the lover and the beloved to experience the love of God through even unfulfilled and imperfect human relationships.
If you know Richard died unmarried, you already know what our relationship was not.
The mystery remains in what it was; hence the book, Singing from Silence.