We all say that the “spark” has to be there before we commit. We all make a big deal about the “it” factor and do we “mesh” and “click”. All of these are just silly words we have appropriated to define what we think is the “perfect” relationship. These words sound more appropriate for describing a home remodeling project than a lifelong loving relationship.
So, when all of it finally lines up perfectly, the stars in the sky have aligned, why do we give up?
That’s the problem with all those fancy words, they eliminate the need for effort on our part. When we require a relationship to come fully bundled with all the nice accessories, what are we doing to make it real and ours. What we are really asking is that a version of perfection be handed to us. Let’s be honest, we want it all to feel right and look right because we just don’t have the energy to work on the relationship every single day.
When it feels right and looks right and we’ve made the commitment to be with this person for the rest of our lives, what happens in the morning when the party is over and all that’s left is us…
I think the wonderful part is that that is when we all get the chance to shine. If I get to wake up next to this human being, that also happens to be wonderful and funny and good, well all the better. Because the words were fine but the reality has to be even better, not on the outside maybe and definitely not every day, but in the long run and for ever.
But if I’m being really and truly and utterly honest, there does have to be something to begin with, otherwise why go on another day with this person who has absolutely no interest in our collection of frog figurines and pot holders. There has to be some commonality and some attraction. The problem is that even with that, if there is no work there will be problems. And not only that but have you noticed how when you first meet someone everything about them is interesting, even frog figurines, and then two years in, you’re like, “what was I thinking, this person is a little silly.” (And that’s putting it nicely.)
Yet, here we are basically stuck with them for the rest of our lives. How can that sort of relationship last? And this is where the effort part of the relationship truly comes in. Instead of throwing it all away because it doesn’t feel “right”, you hunker down and fight for this potentially beautiful thing to work.
There’s that word again, work, it keeps coming up because having it “work out” is not something that just happens. It is something that you actively participate in, when it is worthwhile enough to keep. I looked up alternatives to the word ‘work’ in order to find something a little more appealing, peruse the following and see which one you would prefer. It’s not always pretty. WORK labor, chore, daily grind, drudge, effort, elbow grease, endeavor, exertion, industry, job, obligation, servitude, striving, struggle, task, toil, travail, trial, undertaking
Don’t get depressed quite yet. See the moments of perfection are only few and far between because perfection means not eating saucy spaghetti and not caring if a little stays on your chin, perfection means not laughing with your mouth so wide no camera angle would make it look good, perfection means not being able to dance your special dance when your kids want to throw a living room party. Basically, perfection can get boring. And the things we value most in life anyway, are the things we worked for.
So, yes, I want it to feel good and right and I’d like most days to not be too difficult. But some days will be, and I have to not only be okay with that, but “strive” and “toil” and “labor” for it.