Sunday, May 11, 2008

Who's on your list?

I've often wondered, when I hear husbands or wives complaining about their spouse. You know we joke about our "list" the 5 people who, if we ever actually met them, we could , you know, shag or something, and we couldn't get mad at the person.

But, seriously, to keep our relationship strong and healthy through the trials and tribulations of modern life, we are #1 on each other's lists. And we have fun with it. If we didn't (and there've been those times too) then we each suffer for it. My list of priorities got really switched around after Ellie was born. I was homeschooling her brother (which had already changed my list) but then DS became #1, followed by Ellie, and then came Alex and homeschooling, and then cooking and bills, then the house, somewhere in there I needed some sleep, and somewhere after that was my husband. He felt it too, and it drove a wedge in there. Eventually we talked a lot, and I rearranged my priorities and got some respite care for ellie and stopped homeschooling Alex, and started dating my husband again. I took time to make myself look as pretty as he always knew I was, and that made me feel better about myself too. Later I started working out again, and that really made me feel better, and look even better. That helped my hubby know in a concrete way that he was #1 too.

We stopped feeling like room mates and started feeling like lovers again. Although we couldn't recreate the beginnings of our relationship again, we could take it to new levels. The excitement you can have when there's a level of trust and committment that years of marriage bring to your relationship allows you to try anything. It's almost like having that new relationship excitement all over again.

I have to wonder, when I hear someone repeatedly complaining about their spouse. Have they mixed up their lists? I think if people worked even half as hard at keeping each other #1 where they started out, then there'd be more happy marriages. My mom used to tell me that marriage was hard work. Until we went through those times, I didn't quite understand. I wish more people would communicate with their spouses. We have such a great marriage now, and so much fun together, because we talked about those hard times and feelings. Forgiving each other allowed us to move forward. The fact that we don't entirely forget what we did and didn't do, keeps us honest and encourages us to work at keeping the right person at #1.

Of course we still have those other lists. So, if Captain Jack Harkness (from BBC's Torchwood) ever shows up on my door step ..... :)

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