Could you please start talking about couplehood, too? Yes, dear reader, of course. (any other topics y’all would like covered? email me let me know!)
Sooo… Couplehood at my house. Recently, it looked like this.
Lovely, isn’t it? Wait til you see the close-up.
Here is the story. The tall grasses that had been planted last summer, had reproduced like, well, nothing I had seen before. They were everywhere. (remember, I’m not so good at keeping plants alive, so thriving plants? that always comes as a surprise).
In fact, they had grown so well and so prolifically, you couldn’t see much of anything else. They had taken over the landscape–reaching up to the windows and covering all of the other plants. We clearly needed to trim them back.
It has been one of those casual ships-passing-in-the-night-
But what we had agreed to were slightly different things.
I was thinking: thin them.
He thought: mow them down.
He, being much faster at getting to the to-do list than I am, got to the project first. And so, one afternoon I pulled into the driveway to the butchered stalks of every grass plant. Not a single one was still standing.
I was utterly shocked. I audibly gasped. I smiled (although it probably looked more like I was gritting my teeth). My friend, sitting next to me, wanted to know what was wrong. I explained the whole thing.
She looked at me, eyes a bit narrowed and asked–why aren’t you angry? Well, to begin with, neither of our visions was right or wrong. They were just different. Next, given how crazily they grew before, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll grow right back. And finally, look at that top picture again. That’s the ‘after’ shot. It doesn’t look like anything is missing, does it?
Those are all good reasons. But they are not the reason.
Years ago when we were young and childless and had time to read every inch of the newspaper, we tripped across a column about relationships. The author’s main point was that, above all else, couples needed to act as if they cherished one another.
We laughed. We snickered. As if. Of course we cherish each other. We are young and in love. But as much as we made fun of the columnist, his advice stuck. And we still laugh about it. And we still follow it. We each act accordingly. And we each assume that the actions of the other comes from the best of intentions.
That was the reason.
It’s the funniest little thing. It’s nothing that makes headlines. It isn’t big or flashy or obvious. It’s this tiny little change, that changes everything.
love the love note? you can pin it!
I wasn’t angry, because there wasn’t anything to be angry about. We had talked. He had acted. The tall grasses were no longer everywhere. And I was cherished.
When we practice thinking that way, responding that way, acting that way, the best flows back to us. Try it. Assume the best. With your partner. With your child. With a friend. What happens? We each have a story. I’d love to hear yours.