Eeks!!! After some heavy consideration – and hoping not to cheapen my posts – I reviewed Days 9, 10 and 11’s challenges and they seem to mesh together so it was a better idea to actually combine them. My responses were about the same in note. So, after my return from my trip, I did stay true to dedicating a whole day to the challenges. Just felt, in writing them out, it would be better as a consecutive read.
Day 9’s challenge is: THINK OF A WAY TO GREET YOUR SPOUSE TODAY TO RELECT YOUR LOVE FOR THEM, AND THEN DO IT WITH A SMILE AND ENTHUSIAM.
From my journal (separate from my blog):
I’ve mostly done this since we’ve met. There were periods of time though that I couldn’t even look at him without wanting to yank him by the ear. However, with time, I’m in a better standing of what it means to in act love even when I felt contempt. Nowadays, it’s easy to smile and greet him with a “good morning” and kiss [him] plus a long hug too.
Obviously, not everyone is loveable everyday. Good grief, there were times where it was unbearable sitting in the same space as him, because he could be so darn aggravating. I call it, “growing pains”. Reflecting back, I had attempted to do The Love Dare many years ago. But it was really, really, REALLY hard to do things from a point of “love” especially when I felt like I wasn’t receiving it back. I meant, THAT’S the point of these challenges but I don’t think I truly understood what “Love” actually meant back then. I mean, I had a scarce idea, but not to the extent of what I understand it as today. Over the years, I had to unlearn a lot about “Love” and rebuild from God’s perspective. It took awhile but I can say now, if anyone wants to rebuild their relationships, it’s completely doable.
Which brings me to Day 10’s challenge: DO SOMETHING OUT OF THE ORDINARY TODAY FOR YOUR SPOUSE.
This was one of those things that made me wonder why the heck I was doing in this challenge. Like, why did this idea pop into my head and why I committed to participating in it. Was this “out of the ordinary”? — You bet it is!
Initially doing Day 10’s challenge, I came up with a very basic response.
From my journal:
I let him take over my lunch period. This means I went to cuddle in the room for a little bit. This helps him sleep. Sort of like a comfort blanket. My husband’s primary love language is physical touch so just having me nearby gives him comfort. Also, since he’s been complaining about his back + Valentine’s day around the corner, he will be getting a body pillow to support him while he sleeps. P.S.: [Today] He bought lobster tails and my smoothie mixes!
Day 9’s challenge should be something that we do anyway to set the tone for the day. I think I mentioned this in a separate post but if not, 2021 is my year of “INTENT”. Being intentional with everything that I do this year. In connection with Day 10’s challenge, while it was “out of the ordinary” but not specifically scheduled into a month of my calendar — I did intend to do things better in my relationship. By doing so, I am giving myself a different perspective to operate out of – a strategy. I firmly believe in continuous learning and self-development which requires me to learn and unlearn a lot of habits and thoughts. I am constantly absorbing the world around me and growing a more refined mindset. So, the “out of the ordinary” was committing to a challenge that served my spouse but ultimately, I also hoped to reveal things to myself that I could figure out what else or continue to work on. If you want to make it work, you absolutely CAN!
As I continued through the next day’s challenge, Day 11’s challenge was: WHAT NEED DOES YOUR SPOUSE HAVE THAT YOU COULD MEET TODAY?
From my journal:
Sleep. Honestly, was working most of the day so I didn’t have any time to address today’s challenge with attention + intent. He came home late, took care of the dogs and after winding down — [he] completely nodded off for the rest of the morning and [half the] afternoon. He ran errands [at] lunch, took a short break and then got ready for work. He also packed lunch for himself. If anything, he wanted me by while he slept and that’s what I did.
I found this day’s challenge as relevant to the other two day’s as they required a “need” to be met. Opening myself to look for opportunities where I could serve, even in the smallest way.
I use to naively think that love was a grand display of “extravagance”. Back when we started dating, social media was barely getting started. Therefore, any ideas of what a relationship I had imagined were quite “fairytale” like (per Disney); a night in shining armor — you get the idea. And then, when social media was in full effect, it was a TOTALLY different ballgame! Because, now, there are “real life” people displaying relationship statuses on FB and IG, and matched photos to such romantic ideologies that it seemed the “fairytale” idea could be manifested/attained. Back then, if you didn’t have a “relationship status” matched with all the mushy-gushy PDA pictures, then your relationship was “unworthy”. So, when it didn’t look like I was getting the spill of opulence – whether just going on dates, being “shown off” in a sense, him being (nauseatingly) sweet – my relationship was not meeting my imaginary expectations. It made me quite insecure that I wasn’t “living the dream”. (I mean, we started VERY young and I had yet to develop a sense of self-worth and identity.)
In contrast, I have learned that those false ideas and expectations no longer matter in the true core of a relationship. Because, once all that stuff (as in, the imaginary expectations) gets stripped away — what remains in the center of it all? I think we each must find a reason that gives such high importance to the continued mission and work of staying in a relationship so it can work; being intentional in operating this whole thing so that we’re maintaining it properly. Otherwise, the relationship will end because no one is putting in the effort. So, a small gesture is just as mighty as the biggest gesture. Don’t take those small efforts for granted.
In retrospect, I did feel like I accomplished these challenges well. Maybe a little too easy these last couple of challenges but hey, I didn’t write them. I’m just participating.
Tomorrow, I begin from challenge Day 12 and dedicate the entire day to it. Hopefully, I can manage the blog to go along with! Haha. Stay tuned!!!!
No one asked but I’m here and I hope this has been entertaining thus far. Find me on Instagram & Pinterest. Email too! @shesgoodcompany on IG and Pinterest. Email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Subscribe to mailing so to not miss out on the next post when it’s hot off the press, I’d appreciate it a lot. 😊