Tag Archives: relationships

M’s quirks.

I’ve had a collection of quirks and funny things I love about M swirling in my mind and I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorites, as little snippets into who he is and the little things he does that makes me love him just so very much. (some other of my favorites about M can be found here and here!)

He tries so hard to be helpful in the kitchen. He offers to chop up veggies for dinner but then either a) chops up like, half an onion and two brussels sprouts (which, as a veggie hoarder, we know that will not be NEARLY enough for just *me* for dinner, let alone him!) or b) chops them up and half of it falls on the floor. Hello, messes and me don’t mix 😉 OR, he will unload the dishwasher and forget he’s doing it and leave half the stuff on the counter (or still IN the dishwasher), or put everything in weird spots. cups where plates go, bowls where cups go, etc.  (and he also loves to leave random cabinet doors open, which is a ‘new’ one for him. I swear I told him that Scott does it, my brother in law, and ever since, he’s started doing it!)

He is full of random information. Like, did you know if 1 wasp was in a fight with 8 bees, the wasp would wind? No? Me either. Apparently wasps have ‘armour’ that they can suffocate bees with. AND they don’t die when they sting! (note to self: stay away from wasps!!)

He can be very ‘formal’ with people. 9 times out of 10, when we hang with my sister Jess and Scott, he shakes Scott’s hand and says ‘hi Scott, how are you doing? it’s nice to see you again!’ and then goes to Jess and I swear, ALMOST shakes her hand too. Um, really? We hang out, like EVERY weekend together. This isn’t a hand-shaking, how-have-you-been kind of group. But it’s an endearing and polite quality that I also LOVE about him. It was probably actually one of the biggest things I fell in love with him for, actually…when he met my grandparents, he was so respectful, engaging and conversational, yet also very polite. *swoon*. I just crack up when he goes into that ‘mode’ in situations where he doesn’t need to (Samantha knows all about this one heehee!)

His ratio of meat and potatoes to vegetables is highly off. If it were up to him, he’d eat potatoes (and call them a vegetable, even though I call them a starch! technically a veggie, but not REALLY IMHO!) and meat or fish. Anytime he cooks dinner (and he’s a GOOD cook, mind you), he will (to my point above about chopping veggies!) literally saute a few mushrooms and onions and call that ‘enough.’ (he clearly still doesn’t realize my love affair with mounds of veggies – at least 2/3 of my plate, to meat and potato ratio!).

His love of peanut butter rivals mine AND Jess’ combined. Seriously. We go through at LEAST one jar per week of peanut butter (with the amount of oatmeal I make for both of us, plus the amount he dumps into his protein shakes, it’s alarming!).

He loves the History Channel. Dude. G-e-e-k. Really? 😉

He can’t sit still. He honestly does not know what to do with himself now that his dissertation is over. He used to not be able to sleep because he’d be thinking of his paper, or his patients’ from the work day, but now, he beats himself up silently for not ‘doing’ anything after work. (it’s been all of what, a week?!) His next projects in mind? Writing a book (swoon, love that he writes!), blogging more, and working on his semi-defunct web site.

He is, by far, the funniest man I have ever met. And we laugh at the most inane things, and always at the most random times. Like, in the shower (because yes – TMI – but we shower together just about every day. Helps that we have a huge garden-style tub, so there’s lots of room in there! It’s sort of our ‘us time’ each morning before we start our workdays, where we chat, laugh and cuddle), we have had some of the most hilarious conversations I have ever heard.

He tells me he loves me, that I am beautiful, and that he is the luckiest man alive just about every day. Enough said. This is a quirk that will.never.get.old. ❤

~~

This was a really fun and special post for me…because sometimes, the collection of random thoughts and little things we love about our partners are some of the most important, yet seemingly innocuous things. I may very well have just fallen in love with him a little bit more, just by writing this (write one about your partner and you’ll see what I mean!). <–serious mush-ville alert, I realize. ❤

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On marriage: never sliding into complacency

**The third in my mini-series on marriage. I am exploring why I want it (or trying to), what goes into a successful marriage, and snippets of conversations M and I have had on this very topic**

I think one of my biggest fears when it comes to marriage is sliding into complacency. Looking back on my previous marriage, I think that is ultimately what did us in. It’s like a silent ‘killer’ of sorts, that isn’t easily seen until it’s (sometimes) too late. So now, I am hyper aware to it, almost too hyper aware to it, in a way. Overanalyzing my (or M’s actions) and worrying about getting too comfortable and worse, complacent.

And I think complacency can mean several things.

Complacency in showing each other love. Whether this is intimacy, a touch, a hug, a kiss. It’s easy to just go through the motions, rather than to stop whatever you are doing in that moment and focus on just them. Just that hug. Just that kiss. Nothing else matters. Back to the very first touch or kiss or hug. The magic of it. Keeping that alive, while hard to do all the time, at a minimum, being present in the moment of a loving gesture goes a thousand miles further than a kiss out of habit. (it goes back to can’t-wait-ing too…not rush, rush, rush through it all. Focus. BE. Presence.).

Complacency in fostering your relationship. As I said in a previous post, marriage (and any longstanding relationship for that matter!) is not ‘set it and forget it.’ It takes work. It takes dedication. It takes commitment. And most of all, it takes time. When things are going smoothly, it’s REALLY easy to just go with that. And for it to feel good and normal. But I challenge you…is normal *good?* Or is it borderline complacency? I tend to think it borders complacency. Our relationships should always be challenging and growing and (re)freshed. It should never be the same. This is what I want my marriage to look like. A challenge. (in a good way)

Complacency in spoken words of love. M is very good at spoken words of love. And I am not. I show, he speaks (and shows!). I tell him that I love him all the time but he is just so good at the unexpected words of love when I need it most (like the other day!). It’s something I am working on and something I think is so very important. To tell them him that I love that he always compliments me at moments I need it most, or that he calmly takes the trash out even when I pile it high (and I get the eye roll) and that he makes a mean scrambled egg. The #littlethings that he does. In addition to the big ones. I just assume that he knows. But why should I assume and why should he just know? I know I love to hear it, and I think he does too. But it’s easy to fall back into the habit of showing, not saying. Complacency. I’m working on it.

Complacency. This is a huge one for me. And I think being hyper aware of it helps, but doesn’t mean I still don’t catch myself falling into it sometimes.

What about you? What do you think complacency means in a marriage or relationship?

Parallels.

I’ve been thinking about whether or not I wanted to write this post, but I feel as though I want to, because I think it shows a different layer to my relationship with M, beyond the puppies and rainbows of love, to the realities of our past marriages and habits.

So, here goes.

I notice some parallels to our pasts that I wonder if these challenges fall more under ‘victims of circumstance’ or if they are truly challenges specific to just M and just me. (that will hopefully make sense in a minute).

For example, one thing M said contributed to the downfall of his marriage was his job.  Meaning, his hours, the demanding schedule, weekends being on-call (every 6 weeks or so, not every weekend, thankfully), and the mental toll his job takes on him.

Sometimes his mind isn’t ‘in the moment’ but thinking back to a patient he diagnosed earlier in the day (from ‘did I do the right thing’ to ‘I can’t believe a patient paged me at 3 am to have a prescription refilled!’). Sometimes these things make him anxious or stressed or annoyed. And once in awhile, that means I actually see him get short with me or be overly cynical at times and that’s hard to watch.

It happened this weekend. He got paged incessantly. More than I’ve ever seen. All night Friday, all day Saturday, several times last night. By Saturday afternoon, he was reaching his limit. And he got short with me when I called over to him to tell him his phone was ringing again (he was in the bathroom, I told him twice. He came out and said ‘I heard it!” and turns out, he already said that but I hadn’t heard him. Regardless, his annoyance was palatable, not that I could blame him.) What frustrated me was that his annoyance was rubbing off on me and he was allowing the fact that he was on-call ruin his mood. I let him be for an hour or so and then he asked if I was mad at him.

This is where my own past parallel comes in.

I instinctively said no.

Rather than tell him that I was frustrated that he was allowing work to put a damper on the weekend and our ‘making the best of it’ since we couldn’t go to Maine together since he was on-call, I kept my mouth shut.

That was a big downfall in my marriage, for me. Stewing. Not being honest with what was bothering me. It is something I work at constantly now, and perhaps not always in a good way…meaning, I then tend to overcommunicate sometimes and/or overreact when something bothers me, than to let it simmer and then regroup.

I realized what I was doing and as my mind was going wild wondering if this parallel – his job coming between him and his relationship in the past – was starting to surface with me – and my parallel – keeping my mouth shut when I should just lay it out there – was starting to surface as well.

To be honest, I think I was overthinking a bit on work coming between us. I firmly believe that we both have a good work/life/relationship balance and that we are nowhere near trainwrecksville when it comes to this parallel. I do, however, think that it is something M still has to work on, falling into old habits, as do I.

I also think this ties in so closely with allowing. Allowing M to find his path and his voice when it comes to saying no, and doing for him to find his happiness.

I can’t do it for him. I can only support him through it as he finds his path.

So, we aren’t perfect. Neither of us. Together, we fit so damn well. We really do. And the love is…just there. All around us. And I know that we can face these parallels head-on and work together to make sure we form a union that has that right mix of give-and-take, communication, balance, love and happiness. I sense our next challenge approach as we move in together in about 6 weeks, but I also sense the next phase of our love…and it will be epic.

This is all about exploration. Redefining. Moving past old habits. Making new ones. Figuring each other out. It’s a love-in-progress at its finest.

And I’m as committed as ever to put in the effort…because more than ever, this man is the man for me. In so many, many ways.

~~

PS – check me out!

I’m over at Divorced Before 30, talking about how divorce made me stronger. Emma is taking submissions for a variety of topics, so divorced (or soon to be!) friends, take a look and submit your stories!

I’m also at the barre n9ne studio blog, talking about why the barre n9ne challenge changed my perspective (and my life)!

On compromise and confessions.

As much as I wax on about balance and happy mediums and saying no when you need to…I have a confession.

That I am almost ashamed of.

When it comes to compromise to make those things happen?

I’m really shitty at it.

I am far more stubborn than I ever thought and as much as I used to hate when my sister Jess would tell me I am so ‘my way or the highway’ about certain stuff, I hated it because she is right. (hear that, sis?!) I am.

And I hate that I am that way, because I never really saw it until recently. As I ‘let my hair down’ more and more around M, as we continue to open the honesty and open communication floodgates, I am far more honest with him than I ever was with my ex (which is a whole other story for another time! all in good ways of course.), and sometimes that also means that my stubbornness and ‘my way or the highway’ tendencies come out.

And M, the easygoing, laidback M, goes with the flow. Reason #853 why I love him. He’s far more calm and relaxed about stuff than I am. I am a planner. He is not. I am type A. He is not. (some good ‘opposites attract’ qualities here)

So, last night, as we were discussing this upcoming weekend (a planned trip upta camp!), it turns out that he is on-call. All weekend. This is rare. He usually is on-call for one night (or sometimes two) every 5-6 weeks or so. Just so happens to be this weekend. And, my sister invited another couple up to join us (who I know relatively well, but M has met twice). So when I mentioned this to M, after he informed me of being on-call, his mood shifted entirely. He was not comfortable going up for the weekend with more than just family (side note: I love that he considers my sister and BIL family now, that means so much!), with his pager going off at all hours of the night. (not that I blame him) So, in a culmination of factors – on-call-ness and additional people coming up to the lake – he said he would prefer that we don’t go (or that I go by myself).

This led to a conversation about trying to see if we could skirt around it and still go. For one night, not two. For just the day. Any option I tried, he was still uncomfortable with (again, not that I can really blame him) and he would suggest a different alternative. Meanwhile, I was duly upset that my sister had invited friends up (I had forgotten, honestly, that she had even mentioned it, in her defense) and now with the premise that we would not go if others were there, she was still going ahead with her plan (hello, mememe factor/’my way or the highway’ in effect). Tears flowed. Frustration grew.

I ended up more upset at the entire situation…my sister ‘choosing’ her friends, M not bending or compromising. But honestly? I was the one not compromising. I wanted it my way. But sometimes you need to step back, see the bigger picture and realize that sometimes the most well-intentioned plans don’t pan out and you need to consider plan B versus causing an unnecessary rift.

So this is me…confessing. To at this moment, feeling like a shitty sister and a shitty girlfriend. I was being selfish. It wasn’t either M or my sister’s fault. For that, I am sorry. Jess, I am sorry. I love you and you didn’t deserve my selfishness. To M (who I will see tonight, unplugging and unwinding with on a rare barre n9ne day off), I will say exactly the same thing.

And to this coming weekend? We’ll enjoy every minute of it regardless of where we are or who we’re with. Because that’s how we roll.

 

Random things I love about M.

I’ve slowly been collecting random things I absolutely love about M. Things that make me smile, laugh hysterically, or make me want to hug him and never let go.

Random voicemails.

Whenever M calls me and if I miss the call, he always leaves a voicemail (which, in itself, I think is really thoughtful, especially as I’m a ‘missed call’ type of girl, assuming if I call, he’ll see it was missed, and call me back), and half the time, they are soooo random, and they make me laugh. For starters, he always says who it is (as if I don’t know, right?), and then launches into something like this:

“Hi babe, it’s M. Just calling to say hi and to tell you that I love you. Hope you’re having fun whatever you’re doing right now….*this next part trails off, as he starts going into random chatty mode* Soooo anywayyyy, I’m leaving work now…going to go hommmme, make some dinnnnerrrrr, do some homework, and ummm, not sure what else. Anywayyy, call me later, when you get a chance.”

Just cute. I dunno why, but I love it.

Impersonations.

He is hilarious at impersonating people. Especially his boss. Or anyone that’s annoying him. He goes into the ‘voice’ or whoever he’s impersonating, scrunches up his face into a ‘doi, I’m stupid’ look, and launches right into it. I can’t explain it, it’s just funny.

He eats supremely slow.

As in, it takes f-o-r-e-v-e-r (read this to find out why). This has really tested my own ability to slow down when I eat, because I am a self-professed fast eater. And it’s SO hard to slow down, because it’s just who I am. But I am finding that I have slowed down much more in the last 6 months and even though I always finish first, at least I’m not like, steamrolling him in the eating department (how embarrassing). Though I always put my arms in the air and say “I win!” <–hehe, might as well make it fun, right?

Some of the funniest Facebook status updates I’ve ever read.

Such as:

Just finished my taxes and now I know why people become…republicans!

They should rename Rainforest Cafe to Baby carriage parking lot.

I’ve been known to hide things so well that not even I can find them. Like tax forms, for example. I’m pretty sure they’re somewhere in the 4th dimension!

Had to spatula myself out of bed today. Is it Friday yet?

What do you get when you combine vegetables, chicken, homemade curry and all four burners going? If you guessed a day with my upstairs neighbor, you guessed wrong. It’s in fact, a three alarm fire.

Oh no, Usher and Justin Bieber in the same place at the same time?! That ranks right up there with Locusts and Boils in the biblical signs of the apocolypyse!

Clearly, I could go on and on, but seriously, he’s just so funny. Like, all the time.

He has no concept of how much oil is enough or how high the burners need to go.

Okay, this one is a slight peeve 😉 He seriously doesn’t know the concept of just a ‘dab’ of oil in the pan is needed to make sure stuff doesn’t stick to it (and a non-stick pan no less!). He just dumps the stuff in if I am not looking 😉 He’s getting better with it, and it’s just the way he cooks, but it no longer makes a meal healthy if it’s drowning in oil. Just sayin. (and the burner thing? He just puts them so high and then the house smells. That’s my peeve. I hate when my house smells like food, like four days later!)

When you ask him a question or engaged in conversation, he gives you his undivided attention.

That may sound like a no-brainer, but I love that he really does pay attention, he doesn’t give half his attention if the TV is on, and is focused on you, and only you. (and if he ever catches himself on his Droid as you ask him something, he puts it down and apologies. I have learned to do the same, because I know it’s rude, even if it’s a bad habit of mine!)

He’s always thinking. Always.

He’ll bring me flowers on a random Tuesday. Or a pound of Starbucks coffee (the new Tribute blend!), just because. Those little surprises never get old. Or unnoticed. Ever.

I could probably go on and on, but given I’ve collected this many so far, I’m sure there could be a part two to this post in the future. He’s been an amazing partner for the past 6 months and I really consider myself blessed to have met him. He’s who I was meant to meet, when I was meant to meet him. And I’ll never lose sight of that.

**Update: I forgot one!

Being completely innapropriate.

Saying random things at the worst possible time (ya know that saying? “There’s the line, and then you just stepped over it?” Well, M usually pole-vaults over it!).

For example, we’ve been watching “Chopped” on Food Network, and we try to come up what random stuff we’d put in the baskets for them to create meals from, and his are always so innapropriate (if you aren’t familiar with the show, click on the link. Basically, they have to create apps, meals and desserts out of random ingredients). Such as: elephant ear, dung, and the last dodo bird, split in four pieces. Or, polish jalapenos (wtf, are those even real?!), a used diaper, a muffler, and used hypodermic needles (LOL, so bad).

(yes, I just wrote this as we just chatted. Clearly, I’m cracking up…)