24 hours before this picture was taken we weren’t speaking to each other. Just after this picture was taken, we topped off an already perfect date night with a late movie – and by late I mean 9:30,and not before running by the house to switch from lipstick, dress & heels to no make-up, sweats, fuzzy socks and hair clip so that I could go straight to bed when we got home. We saw Book Club and we danced and laughed and had FUN together. But not before we repaired a tear.
Last Friday I asked my husband out on a date. It had been a while and he hadn’t asked in a while – because yes, even my husband who I believe is the best person on the planet – needs to be reminded once in a while.
Sidenote- If you need a date ASK FOR IT! Hard as it actually may be, even ask without resentment that he didn’t do it first. That’s one of the enemy’s oldest tricks, don’t give him a window to climb into. If you have to, ask again. And again. Then plan it yourself. If that’s the worst problem you have in your marriage, count it all joy!
Anyhoo, we went on our date and the first hour or so was great… and the rest was crap. I don’t even know exactly the point where it went to crap, but it did. I’m sure he said something I took the wrong way or I said something he took the wrong way or we were both just tired and came at one another with empty tanks but we totally botched the date from some point. Some days I’m good at the come back, other days he is, but this night neither of us were budging. As I look back, it had been a hard week after a hard week after a really hard week and we are kind of in recovery mode so I for sure reverted to my good old go-to -> shut down/the silent treatment , and before we know it we are both stonewalling. Neither of us had any desire to give the mental and emotional energy to come back. Even the few small attempts we made failed. Come backs are WORK, y’all. Mostly the kind of work that chisels away at our pride – which is a good, good thing, and excruciating at times.
I tell our couples that to have a great marriage we have to be great at comebacks. I know this because I’m forever working on it. Chris is way better at this than me. He doesn’t hold on to stuff like AT ALL, but I’m pretty much an expert at that sort of thing.
James 1:19 is like inner wifey surgery sometimes, or maybe daily, and some days hourly.
Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.
Easier said than done.
“Be quick with the comeback,” has become one of my inner wifey mantras.
Well, this time I was not so quick with my comeback. It took a good 20ish hours and a couple times of my telling the Holy Spirt, “Nope. I will not. Him first.” until I finally gave in to the surgery and forced a comeback out of my clenching jaws.
“I would like a date do-over.”
He giggled. Because he holds on to nothing, like I said.
His giggle irritated me.
Later, as we headed out the door for dinner, he dubbed the night “Date Night 2.0” and I’m pretty sure that’ll preach forever.
A great quote from Chuck Swindoll says, “Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond to it.” That little R word – response – can make or break a marriage. (Also, parenting, but that’s for another day.)
Here’s another R word for ya: REPAIR. This is a term from Dr. Gottman that he uses to describe our attempts for those comebacks. You can head over to the link below to check out a GREAT list of repair examples. It’s GOLD, y’all. My recommendation is to PRINT THIS OUT. I’m printing 2 today – one for my refrigerator and one for my prayer & meditation notebook. My next recommendation is that while you’re there go ahead and LIKE the Gottman page on fb and insta and twitter so that their awesome marriage tips are in your feed daily. We can never have too much marriage encouragement in our lives and staying teachable keeps our comeback-killing pride at bay.
A couple screensavers for the day:
Also, in case you’re wondering – we killed it at Date Night 2.0. Truly one of my favorite dates we’ve ever had. To think we would have missed that life-giving night together had I held on to my pride. The moments stack up, guys.
Happy Wifey Wednesday!