Friday, December 27, 2013

Talking

We talk a lot, my husband and I. We talk about our life together. Our lives before each other. Our hurts and struggles. Our children and work and the future. People tell us we communicate well, better than most couples.

So why are there still those "hot buttons" that we can't resolve or at least make a treaty to handle?

We talked with someone new last night. Between the two of us, we bring quite a bit of baggage and history to the table. We don't keep secrets, and we don't yell and scream, but we get separated by fear and expectations.

The new person listened and asked questions. There was no judgment, which was really good for both of us. It was a long, yet positive hour of reflection. 

Afterwards we went out to dinner and talked some more. At one point, he said, "It amazes me that you can access your emotions so easily." I reminded him I've been learning about it for years . . . and years. And I'm a woman. We wear our feelings on our sleeves. Men, on the other hand, are taught from the beginning to stuff them down. 

Deep intimacy is a difficult thing to maintain. Society tells us that true love comes and is followed by "happily ever after". That is a lie. True love grows and develops if you are willing to work at it and stay the course. And "happily ever after" only happens in Disney fairy tales. Read the real fairy tales and they are full of reality. Just like marriage. I love my husband every day and he loves me, but the liking can be difficult to maintain at times. 

No one warned me about the work of marriage. I went into this expecting sunshine and flowers and white picket fences. What I've gotten is a lot of work, tears, frustration, and moments of pure joy and acceptance. And maybe I shouldn't be surprised by that because anything worthwhile takes effort, and anyone who tells you differently is selling something.

Blessings.

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