You know how you’ve been doing something for so long that you don’t give it a second thought—you think, Doesn’t everybody do this? Then you remember the time when you didn’t do it and how that thing has changed your life.
Hopefully, we all have many things we have incorporated into our lives that have changed us for the better. A few days ago it occurred to me something Gene and I do in our marriage that nurtures our relationship.
I’m sure I have shared this before, but it is worth revisiting.
Gene and I have teatime when he gets home from work. Pretty simple, right?
I borrowed this idea from Susan Alexander Yates when she spoke at Hearts at Home about a hundred years ago. At the time all the girls were little. The house was always full of noise and kids running around. Since Gene has always started his workday early, he used to get home in the late afternoon. When he came home the two of us would have coffee, iced tea, or (his favorite) skim milk and talk about our days. The kids were allowed in the room but no talking. Our teatime lasted about twenty minutes. After that I got back to the kids and supper.
Even in our empty nest we continue the tradition.
This brief time of connecting at the end of the workday catches us up with each other’s days, a problem that needs discussing, or the latest situation with the kids. We both feel rejuvenated and grounded. Our daily discussions keep the small stuff small—for the most part.
There is something about feeling heard that draws us close to each other, no matter how trivial the details of the conversation. Author David Augsburger’s quote speaks my heart, “Being heard is so close to being loved that for the average person, they are almost indistinguishable.
You may be thinking of a dozen reasons why you and your man can’t do this. If you feel it’s important you will find a way. It doesn’t need to be at the same time or same way that Gene and I do. Years ago the husband of one of my friends traveled often for work. They set a time to talk each night. After the kids were in bed and his meetings were finished, they talked on the phone no matter where in the country he was located. This daily talk time kept them connected even when he was away.
Our teatime is one little way we have kept our marriage thriving for almost thirty-three years.
It truly it the little things. . .
BTW–In the pic I am laughing at one of Gene’s one liners. The kids thought the joke corny and I was silly for laughing at it. One more thing that makes our marriage work. . .
Brenda Garrison is an author and speaker who empowers women with the confidence to live their calling. Brenda is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ministry Leadership with a Concentration in Women’s Ministry at Moody Bible Institute. She and her husband, Gene, are the parents of three young adult daughters and live near Metamora, IL.