Who do you count on when things get tough?
Who binds your wounds, holds you, listens to your hopes,
your fears, and loves you when your sick and irritable?
If you're lucky, you have a critique partner that will do that,
but most of us rely on a spouse at two in the morning.
That's a ton to expect from the most important person in our life.
How much time do we put into that relationship?
The national average is twenty-seven minutes of one-on-one conversation per week.
Gasp and groan all you like, but that didn't count:
Chores (who is picking up dinner)
Watching TV in the same room
You writing as your spouse does something else in the same room
Both being home, but not talking.
Time spent with kids or others.
I'll give you a moment. I know you want to make your own tally.
Not so good is it?
What ever the number is for the week, does it feel like enough?
It might be a great time for you to jot down that number in your journal,
and how you currently feel about your mate,
and your marriage or relationship.
How can you tell if you're putting in enough face time?
Do you feel close to your spouse,
or do you share more with your writing group?
It should be your mate.
If not, there's work to do.
You need more bonding time.
Having fun, talking about your hopes, dreams, your plans for the future.
Remember when you did that on dates?
Time to revisit that experience.
No complaining allowed.
I know that for some couples given that stipulation,
they'd be reduce to slack-jawed stares over the kitchen table,
as they each tried to find something to say.
But not you. You write!
Never at a loss for words,
you engage in witty repartee at all hours.
For some reason, when face to face with the one person,
who has the power to devastate us,we become buffoons,
unable to string a coherent phrase together filled with honest emotion.
But if you want a loving, supportive relationship,
you must feed it with emotion and time.
We feed our plants, our pets, and the parking meter.
Put your relationship at the top of that list.
If you've been together for a very long time,
(Thirty-four years this month for me)
You may need a nudge to recall just what you did back when you dated.
Date each other
Make it special. (A walk can be special holding hands)
Get a haircut
Put on perfume or cologne
Do your nails
Give honest compliments
Look at each other
Do it all with anticipation for being together.
Those embers aren't dead,
just in need of some fanning to reignite.
Go out once a week and hold that date as sacred.
This is the most important relationship in your life.
Treat it that way.
Your relationship will only be,
as loving and supportive as the nurturing you give it.
No feeding = Starvation.
And we all know what happens when we're starving emotionally.
That ugly dumpster diver shows up resulting in destructive behavior, arguments, affairs, divorce.
Feed your marriage and you nurture your self.
Smiles all around.
Jot down fun date ideas in your journal and schedule them.
Schedule making love if you need to.
After a few weeks, journal how this has changed your relationship and your feelings.
Please comment with your fun date ideas.
We can all use them.