Monday, June 04, 2007

My Good Choice

One of my good friends that I've known for almost 10 years came over to visit last night. I love and care about this friend, and through the years, we've had several "heart to heart" conversations, as they say -- about life, disappointments, failures, yearnings, etc. My friend has been through a lot in his life, is divorced and trying to move forward. I love my friend. He has a big spirit and deep questions and he tries hard to be honest with himself.

So...when we've always had our deep conversations in the past, we usually have just talked over the phone. He's never really had the opportunity to get to know my husband. When he headed over last night, I wasn't sure how this would go down, if he'd feel comfortable opening up to someone that he virtually didn't know. It was neat for me to sit back and watch my friend and my husband that I love get to know each other, and neat to watch my friend open up with both of us. We put camp chairs out on our front lawn and enjoyed good conversation amidst the busy traffic of our street. It was like being enclosed, feeling quaint and quiet despite the noise. We snacked on pretzels and red vines and chatted about good books we've read and life experiences. It was so nice.

But, as a result of that little gathering, I've been thinking last night and today about some of the things that I most love about my husband. My friend was talking about how, in his former marital relationship, he felt very threatened by his ex's former boyfriends (romantic interests or otherwise), acknowledging that this was primarily because he didn't feel secure enough about he and his wife, something that he feels he would like to do differently if there's ever another time around. I realized something, again, that I love about Scott. Since we've been married, he's never been threatened by my keeping in contact with old guy friends -- even if the past held romantic interests with those people. I can talk openly with him about conversations I have with them now, past loves, past feelings, and it's really great because he isn't threatened by those things. And I love that. The really cool thing was that as I thought of this thing I love, I also came up with a bunch of other things that have grown in value since I married Scott -- things that I really appreciate about him. So, please excuse the personal reflection, but that's what a blog's about, right? Here's what I came up with:
  • He doesn't tell me how to live my life; rather, he encourages me to be my own person, to be who I want to be

  • He is never threatened by my opinions
  • He has taken my friends as his own and gotten to know all of them, even coming in as the outsider
  • Anything I want to do, he wants me to do it

  • He is my best friend
  • Going on with that, we can talk for ever and ever about tons of things. (That's another thing we talked about last night -- how it is/was imperative for all of us to be with someone that likes to philosophize and talk about ideas and concepts and loves good intellectual discussion -- this is a must for me! This was one of the biggest reasons why I was attracted to Scott -- it was what our relationship was based on...talking and talking about anything and everything and becoming familiar with who he was and what he thought about life and what his philosophies were. This has only richened since we've gotten married and we both love to read and discuss things and see what the other thinks about stuff. He has become more interesting to me that way.)

  • I like that he will listen to me, for however long it takes, with all of my tangents included, never teasing me about it or making me feel dumb for sometimes taking forever to get to a point...he genuinely cares and wants to know.
  • He has brought lots of new things to my life that have enriched it and made me think beyond my own box

  • He loves books and ideas and family and adrenaline, another thing I love. Just this past Saturday I was out for a run with a friend and was talking about how that's another thing that attracted me to him...that he had UMPH!, that he loved adrenaline, that he's a "man's man." But at the same time, he'll do stuff like watch "Pride & Prejudice" with me, or "Anne of Green Gables," or any other type of movie like that with me (we just watched "Sense & Sensibility" the other night). He watches them with me with no complaints, and actually likes them. I love that. I have the best of both worlds.
  • He's willing to do things totally different or try completely new things and he's happy with it. He's really adaptable and puts up with just about anything -- nothing is a BIG deal, it's mostly water off a duck's back. One example: I was raised without a TV. As a young girl, we'd try to head to the neighbors to catch favorite shows or go to Grandma's. Sometimes I really thought I wanted one as a young girl (kind of felt cheated), until an experience that made me realize otherwise -- but that's a whole 'nother post. BUT, that being said, as I approached adulthood, I was grateful to my parents for raising us without one and I felt that I wanted to do the same thing with my future family/children. But, of course, that was contingent upon what the guy that I married thought. Scott, on the other hand, was raised with a TV, and had experienced a lot more than I had, in many, many ways. (He was much more introduced to the world and open to different ideas and people and experiences -- way more accepting and just, well, OPEN. I guess that's the best way tot put it.) BUT, back to the TV -- after talking about it he was open to not having a TV if I didn't want one. And, as it turns out, I think he prefers not having one now, too. He doesn't miss it, and he loves all the quality time that we get together without it (not that you can't have it WITH a TV -- I'm not arguing that -- just that this has worked well for us). I could say other things -- the way that he embraced the more cultural aspects of how I'd been raised, though they were foreign to him at the time: classical music and art, etc. He had never really listened much to classical music or had any exposure to it, but he still listened (and loved) to Bach's St. Matthew Passion (which, in addition to being a 3-hour, fantastic classical work, is also in German, so you have to follow a translation to the text if you want to understand what it says unless you speak German -- which we don't). I loved that! This has only richened as well...we both love this stuff and love talking about art (ie. we pull out our big art textbook and we're both sitting right next to each other, totally enthralled, talking about different artists and artwork and the time that it came from, the ideas from the culture, etc. -- it's awesome!) or anything else that's cultural. It's so much fun.

  • And one more gush: He has a HUGE spirit. I love basking in it. He loves life, and it is a joy to be with someone like that.

So, I'm really glad my friend came over. I've missed our chats and I love the times we get to have together.

But I'm really glad my friend came over because it led to this lovely recounting, for me, of why my husband is so cool and why I love him so much, the things I really value about our relationship. This is good to do because sometimes I forget all of these things when things are rough and I find myself forgetting why my choice was such a good one when I made it, and how those things have only gotten better with time.

I'm excited to see how much better it can get.

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