Wednesday, August 3, 2011

How we got our groove back.

And no, not 'groove' like you're thinking. Or maybe you aren't thinking that way at all. Ha. But anyways, this post is about how Rusty and I got back into the groove of our marriage post wedding-pregnancy-baby-colickybaby-maternityleave-backtowork-quitmyjob-sleeplessnights-alloftheabove life changes.

I'm honest about these things. (I wonder how long it'll take Rusty to read this post and be like, 'Did you really write about that?') We had a rough time of it. We had a lot of things happen in our life all at once. (Update: He just read over my shoulder and said, 'I don't want you writing about this on the internet.' To which I replied, 'It could be helpful for someone. I'm writing it.') We had lots of conversations about how to better communicate and get on the same page. How to establish some household routines that would make life easier for both of us. We sometimes seemed to be talking in circles. But, through all of this, one thing remained constant - we both wanted it to work and we'd work at it. We'd do what it takes to get our groove back.

Randomly, one day, I was emailing with a close friend about how marriage changes with the addition of babies. She mentioned that some of her friends were going to a counselor and had found the book The Five Love Languages to be very helpful. Of course, I immediately googled it and 'take the love language quiz' popped up on the official website. I read the instructions and took the quiz for wives.

In short (aka Kira's summary), the basis of the book is that everyone communicates in one of five love languages. Different people prefer to show their love and receive love in these languages. So, for example, if your husband prefers to be shown love in one language and you're operating in another, that causes issues. After working through the quiz, I realized it kind of made sense. And, my love language was 'acts of service'. Bingo! Yes! I felt most loved when Rusty did laundry or something like that without my asking. Not romantic at all, I know. But, hey, it's how I operate. A close second language was 'receiving gifts', which didn't necessarily mean monetary gifts, just thoughtful surprises. Bingo again! And dead last on my language list was 'physical touch'. Sounded about right considering where we were at in our lives.

I immediately messaged Rusty and urged him to take the husband quiz. And bless him, he did. Turns out, his main language of love is 'physical touch'. We chatted about both of our results and how right on they seemed.

In the weeks that followed, I had my BFF and her husb take the quiz. It was right on for them. I had my mom and dad take the quiz. Again, spot on. It seemed like such a simple concept, but somehow the quiz and the conversations that followed seemed to be a turning point in our home.

Here are a few examples. (If you're still reading and interested in this at all. Ha.)

We were riding home from somewhere. It had been a long day. Rusty was driving. So, I reached over like I used to do when we were dating and rubbed his neck and temples. He thanked me for that and said, "This is making me want to think of an act of service I can do for you." It was hilarious. But so true. My reaching over and touching him showed him my love. Simple as that.

Then, another day we were packing to go somewhere. And I was stressed because we were leaving Asher at home without us for the first time overnight. I was paranoid about having all of the light socket protectors in everywhere before we left. I found a lone plug just waiting for his little fingers upstairs. I yelled down, "Rusty, please remind me to come back up and put a socket cover up here before we leave." (Realizing that'll probably never happen and I need to add that to my to do list.) Then, I walked down the stairs after putting Asher in bed and there, sitting on the third step was a socket cover. A. He went and found where I stored them. B. He remembered. C. He stopped what he was doing and brought it to where I'd see it (without disturbing our bedtime upstairs). D. He realized I was stressed and tried to help.

I got a huge smile on my face. Grabbed the cover, inserted it in the wall. Ran downstairs and gave him a big hug and kiss. Act of service = physical touch = love.

Oh, and then when we went to Florida on vacation. He brought along a little surprise from Bailey's Jewelers. He was so determined to surprise me that he hid the little box in a kleenex box in his suitcase. How freaking precious is that?

So, all of this to say that something so simple helped us so much. Rusty is such a huge help around the house and with Asher. He's an awesome dad and husband. Thankfully, we were able to get through all the little bumps in the road and come out on the other side appreciating and understanding each other more. Cue: thankfulness.

(Rusty, if you're reading this. Love you, babe. Sorry, had to write it.)

1 comment:

Emily Kate said...

The Love Language stuff is sooo interesting and really explains a lot!

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