Immediately the word “relationship” came to my mind when I read this week’s theme. As the dictionary defines, the word together means “into or in relationship, association, business, or agreement, as two or more persons.” (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Together). Its definition is so succinct, it reminded me of the book about marriage by Shannon Ethridge, which I am currently reading. Not that I need any coaching (according to my husband), but the book was a gift from a friend who has an excellent taste when it comes to good reads.
Long before saying my most awaited “I dos” with my husband, not only did I spend researching for my MA thesis why today’s marriages collapse, but I also read tons of books about what really goes on inside a man’s head. It’s not really curiosity, believe me. My interest in the study of man-woman relationship is prompted out of fear to duplicate a catastrophic affair. Definitely, I want to avoid the valley trod by those brave souls whose relationships led to a sour grapes and a bitter conclusion. I must admit, letting go and moving on intellectually is not one of my best fortes. You might be surprised that I am a little bit stubborn.
So, what makes a couple stick TOGETHER through thick and thin? In my opinion, it entails more than love. I have seen a lot of people who ardently professed their undying love for each other in a lavish ceremony, and yet after a few years and 1.5 children they part ways at the end. Does this mean, they no longer love each other? Not necessarily. Some of them are still crazy about each other, but just can’t stand being TOGETHER. So, the question is, how can we keep the passion in our relationship always burning?
Admittedly, I have read enough theories about relationship to sink a battleship, but I am still an apprentice in reality. I am still in the honeymoon stage, so to speak. However, from my reading Shannon’s Ethridge’s book on connecting with our partner, I have learned that the key to make a marriage fulfilling is to spice up our love for our special someone with other important ingredients such as generosity and consideration. Ms. Ethridge describes it by displaying a certain COMMITMENT to maintain balance between our needs and our partner’s needs, and recognize how they all work together in order to create synergy in the relationship.
According to Ethridge, to uphold the “stickiness” in our relationship with our husband/wife we need to learn to connect intimately with him/her, not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. She explained that, “When our husband takes the time to look past the externals of what we look like, to look beyond what we can do for him, and to recognize who are we as a beautiful person created in the image of God, that is when we feel valued and cherished. The same is true in how a wife looks at a husband. He wants you to think he’s eye candy and wants you to appreciate all he does for you, but his greatest desire is for you to respect who he is in the CORE of his being. I definitely agree with Ethridge that when we experience deep spiritual connection and indescribable euphoria in our soul over and over in our marriage, it fulfills us in a way that nothing and no one else possibly can.
“Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking TOGETHER in the same direction. “ – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
* This picture was taken at Serengeti Plain, Busch Garden.
*I dedicate this blog to my beautiful SOTC sisters. Mrs. Rogers, thank you for sharing your book with me.