I don’t know why I’m so surprised by marriage skills and dating/relationship skills being entirely different, but they are. For one, I feel like when you are dating and your partner really hurts your feelings, annoys you or angers you, you can pull way back, especially when you don’t live together. You could just become really busy for a week and focus on your friends, work or even take off on vacation. If you live together you could consider moving out, or even threaten it. Neither of these things get to the root of the problem but you’d feel better, you’d feel free. You could fight or flight and the stakes aren’t that high. You could have a zillion ridiculous “deal breakers” and stick to them. Maybe I played the “picky” card too well.
You can’t really do that when you are married, unless you actually feel comfortable with getting a divorce and really ending it. I’m not there and I hope with everything I am, never to be. You have to dig in deeper even in the moments when you don’t want to. I don’t always think marriage is awesome but I do always care deeply for my husband and know that he is a really good man. I DO adore the person he is and love parenting with him, I think we are incredible partners. I’m in this.’I DO’ but sometimes ‘I don’t wanna.’
The permanence of marriage surprised me. I know that is an absurd statement, but it did. As in, those days when you aren’t connecting with your spouse the way you assumed you would, you think “man…forever huh?” And then this ridiculous cycle of worse case scenario spins in your head until you stop it and I mean that. You have to stop it. It has to be you that reigns you in. You didn’t marry “perfect” and he didn’t either. You likely didn’t even marry perfect for you. Some people married their soul mate and some people didn’t and from where I’m standing, none of this means anything. Like really, it doesn’t. We all have different ways of communicating love and totally different needs and sometimes they merge and sometimes they don’t. What matters is whether or not you married someone who is going to stick by you and continually learn how to grow your love. Which, I did.
Marriage isn’t about connecting in the same way on the same day every day, as that’s tough to do. Some days I’m going to be super lovey dove and he is going to be totally stressed when he gets home from work. Or he might be looking to have a stimulating, intellectual conversation and I might be tired and braindead from running after a toddler all day. Or my favorite, I managed to shave my legs, lotion my entire body, paint my nails, do my hair all with a toddler watching me only to realize that today is the day that my husband ate something that made him feel gassy. Our days aren’t perfectly synced and so our minds and hearts might be moving at different speeds. And that’s okay. You may already know this but I write for me.
Lately, I’ve allowed myself to embrace the beauty that lies in the commitment to love. We chose each other and must continually seek to find new reasons to choose each other again today.
I also think it’s important to know your contributing role in developing and growing your love over time. What I’ve realized recently is that I’m almost 3 years into marriage with a toddler and another baby on the way and I still haven’t surrendered to the idea of my husband loving me “forever”. I’m still protecting myself, I still have walls up. I’m still defiantly emotionally independent. Once this all dawned on me, it didn’t take long to know why. I remember vividly what it’s like to have someone you trust and love pull the rug out from you. I remember the me that couldn’t eat for days and couldn’t laugh for a year. The me that refused romantic movies for 3 years. The me that lost my footing, my grounding, my hopeful, fearlessly loving spirit. I still hurt for her and I’m still protecting her.
What if? What if my gut instinct betrayed me again and I was left a fool, again? My spirit says, that I can’t ever let that happen. But my mind says, if you don’t open yourself up to losing the love, you don’t open yourself up to receiving it.
So, how do I tear down this wall Gorbachev?
When I experience heartbreak, I sit with it, I contemplate, I cry. Then I write, play music, dance, stretch. I do everything I can to get it out of me and for years, I’ve assumed it was out. But I think it’s safe to say, it’s all still inside of me.
I discovered a type of therapy that believes that emotional trauma DOES stay inside of us. It manifests itself in a physical place within our body. This therapy uses our body much like a human lie detector test that guides us to the origin of our pain and then by naming it, calling attention to it, visually reliving it and physically adjusting ourselves through acupressure/ meridian points, removing it. How is this possible? Honestly, I don’t fully understand it but I’m quickly becoming a believer. It’s called Neuro Emotional Technique Therapy or N.E.T. therapy. I’ve only had two sessions, one with a chiropractor and one with a psycho therapist. But I’m totally blown away by the specific things that can be found within our emotional core and how easily they are accessed through something that NET practitioners call “muscle testing”. Here is more info for you, you can even find someone who does this near you. https://www.netmindbody.com/more-information/an-introduction-to-net. Here is more info in regards to the specific areas that our pain may reside in our body.
Feel free to share your best advice on how to knock down walls that have no place in your life. This is my latest. 😉
Love to you,