krikketgirl: (Kiss)
What I Have to Put Up With

#5: He puts up with me (mostly).

Let's face it, if I had to live with me--you know what I mean--I would drive me crazy. And I would probably be snappish about it, too. Oh, I have my good days. And then I have the days where I take pictures of Chris every five minutes. Or grouse about having to do actual work. Or forget things like, five seconds after he told me.

And Chris puts up with it. We have our little "discussions" every once in a while, but I feel so safe and secure with him because I know that we will always come back together. Because he puts up with me so well!
krikketgirl: (Love)
chris flower

#3: He's quasi-romantic.

I can't, with all honesty, claim that Chris is a true romantic. He's not much for flowery phrases and sweep-her-off-her-feet poetry. But when he does make a romantic gesture, it's a masterpiece. The picture is from an anniversary trip to Quebec that he planned for us. Every single element of the trip was planned with an eye toward something I would enjoy, and he was right on the mark. So while it would be nice to get flowers, candy, and occasional paeans about my beauty, I have something better: someone who knows me so well that he knows what I like even better than I know it...and then makes plans to bring that about. And how romantic is that?
krikketgirl: (Love)
June 11, 2009

He is earnest.

Merriam Webster defines being earnest as "characterized by or proceeding from an intense and serious state of mind." I'm a goofy sort of gal, but goofy only gets you so far. I really treasure knowledge and ability, things that are not typically garnered with anything but earnestness of purpose. When Chris decides to do something or say something, it's thought out, purposeful, and done for a reason--whether that something is buying a piece of land or deciding to rate and review Reubens. Is Chris fun and goofy? Absolutely (more on that in the coming days). But one of the things I value is the fact that there is some serious ratiocination going on under that handsome exterior.

Counting Up

Jul. 1st, 2010 03:02 pm
krikketgirl: (Love Chris)
July is always exciting for me, because it's our wedding anniversary month. Now, Chris tends to celebrate the day itself, but I feel like one should get as much celebration mileage as possible out of a month, so I start feeling all celebratory on July 1st. This year's anniversary is super-cool because it will be the 15th on the 15th.

I thought it would be nice to post something I love about Chris every day until then. So here goes!

January 14, 2007

#1: He tries hard not to make himself hard to love.

See, here's the thing: all of us have our hard-to-love days. Sometimes, I don't even want to live with myself, and I feel sorry for the people who do. But what I love about Chris is that he tries really hard to make loving him easy to do, not harder to do. He works so hard to get along with people, to make relationships peaceful and pleasant. How can I not love that?
krikketgirl: (Friends LJ)
It's so easy to draw lines that divide. Even children do it--my sister and I once tried to divide our bedroom in half, based on where our beds were located. This didn't work well, given that the closet was on her side and the door to the hall on my side. After intense negotiations regarding right of way and fair usage, we lapsed back into glaring at one another from the sanctity of our respective beds.

It's easy to see this principle at work in wartime, or even every day in the political cartoons. It's so easy to draw "us" and "them" boxes, and then label the "them" box as ridiculous, laughable, wrong, misguided, even evil. We interpret actions, label the actions, and then presume to know why that person took that action--all within seconds or minutes. We then base our own actions and feelings on the slender reed of our own understanding of that other person--a person we now feel no need to truly understand at all.

I have people like that in my life (I talk big, don't I, for someone who has the same problem?). You do, too, I'm willing to bet. But let me tell you about these misguided, wrong-headed people.

They're worried that they should be eating better, but don't have time to think about it. They wonder, 'Should I be more focused on my weight? Less? How much does it matter?'

They hope their kids are going to cope well with changing schools. They hope their kids will get better grades. They hope tonight's math homework isn't as tricky for a parent with rusty math skills. They hope they have the answers when their kids ask questions about their relationships and their beliefs.

They have a difficult relative. They are loyal to their family and friends. They feel stretched too thin. They wonder if they're in a rut. They wonder whether they've sold out--or what that even means if you're not a musician. What that means if you are a musician. They wonder why the music they listened to as a teenager is now on the oldies station. They wonder whether they've accomplished what they wanted to accomplish.

They'd like to travel more. They'd like their boss to get off their back. They'd like to spend more time on their work and less in meetings. They wonder whether it would make more sense to fix their old car again or whether it would be better to get a new car or even a "new to them" car and whether they can even afford that.

They worry that they'll lose their jobs. They worry that they'll lose their spouse. They worry that their best friend seems distant these days and what that means. They wonder whether they should have said that one thing, should have written that e-mail, should have majored in something else in college.

They're like me. They're like you. Right now, we're not getting along...but in different circumstances, we probably would. Like us, they're likely more to be pitied than censured. How often would we have done something differently had we only known? It is so easy to explain ourselves away, and so hard to explain someone else away.

But when we reduce people to one example of their actions, we remove the dignity of the fact that they are a person, a whole person...a person that has worries and concerns and happinesses that we can only guess at. Forget the stars...our "enemies"? They're just like us.
krikketgirl: (Mail Call)
"The essence of true friendship is to make allowances for another's little lapses."
-David Storey

I've read in a few places that 2/3 of the disagreements within happily married couples are disagreements with no resolution...disagreements that are based not on changeable behaviors, but rather on fundamental aspects of personality.

I'll use as examples the fact that Chris is more likely to make up a funny parody of a song rather than a romantic ballad, or the fact that I can't find my way across a crowded room without turn-by-turn directions and a hand-drawn map on a napkin. I'm sure that Chris would love it if roads and directions were as simple, clear, and intoxicating to me as they are to him, while there are certain pieces of my heart that--while recognizing Chris's fantastic qualities as a husband--yearn for more poetry and flowers.

These are things that neither one of us can help. There's not a class in the world that is going to make maps and roads suddenly make sense to me. Likewise, Chris just isn't going to become "romantic." The things that give him all the wonderful qualities that I prize are the same things that mean he's not going to bust out the ballads and roses. Some things just are the way they are.

This is true in more places than just in marriage, of course. I'm not a person who's comfortable making phone calls. I try to make them (and need to try harder) to stay in touch with friends, but I'm more comfortable behind the written word or in face-to-face conversation. Others are far less interested in writing; for them, the phone is the go-to form of communication. Can this friendship be saved? Absolutely...IF the two of us can find a way to make allowances for each other.

It is the grace of these "little lapses" that allows us to build relationships at all. Etiquette is a lovely thing, a social buffer that allows us to live together without bumping too many hard edges against one another; but even etiquette falls down and requires us to develop some grace towards each other. Lapses aren't necessarily bad things, or offenses; they're the ways in which we aren't perfectly like one another, the things that drive us crazy for no specific reason other than that they aren't us.

When it comes to "little lapses," I have a choice: I can decide that they're beyond all reason and more than I should bear...or I can choose to extend the grace of knowing that this is just how things are, just a part of the package of the person that I love. Both love and sanity call for the latter--and are, in fact, what I desire of others. I want that cushioning effect when others realize that I forgot their birthday (again) or that I am rarely the caller but often the callee--or that I am too light or too intense or too serious. Love demands that I try to call more often, try to remember birthdays, try to meet my loved ones where they are...but love also demands that they cut me some slack when inevitably I fall short. Love recognizes the "little lapses," smiles, and says, "That's okay."


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