Signs of Spring on my way to and from work.
Most of the blogs I subscribe to are from the northern hemisphere. Their writers have said goodbye to Summer and have braced themselves for the cold months ahead. They speak of spiced pumpkin lattes, cute sweaters and the onset of the festive season (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas / Hannukkah / Kwanzaa).
I, on the other hand, have spent my Winter months studiously bookmarking all the Spring- and Summer-celebratory posts. Cocktail recipes, cotton dresses and icy-cold desserts galore are temptingly twinkling in my “saved for later” list, begging me to open and make use of them. Spring has most definitely sprung here in Western Australia. After a few false starts, temperature ranges across the State from less than -6 degrees Celsius to more than 45 degrees Celsius and Perth’s wettest September for 40 years, we are now about to bid Spring goodbye and are gearing up for Summer.
Although just over 6 months into marriage is a little early to be touting the new beginnings that Spring signifies, it is a good time to take stock and reflect.
I am thankful for having someone who loves me so unconditionally. We may have our not infrequent sharp words, but they quickly blow over, leaving no trace. I am comfortable in my skin with Boy Robin. However, sometimes I think I am so comfortable, I am selfish and I need to be mindful of not unthinkingly lashing out at Boy Robin as proxy for something else that is bothering me just because he makes me feel so comfortable in my skin. It is something I need to work on, as the infinitely shared “Marriage Isn’t For You” suggests.
Admittedly, I do not completely agree with the article. If you are suffering within yourself, it will affect your relationship, no matter how happy the other person is. In fact, it can be even more disruptive to your relationship.
I found that to be true before we were married, when I was working in a job that made me completely miserable. That misery was exacerbated as I saw Boy Robin happily excelling in his career, leaving me wondering what was wrong with me. Maybe if I tried a little harder and worked a little longer, then I too would excel and be happy. (Spoiler: I did not and was not.) Ultimately, my misery overflowed into our relationship, sparking arguments about things completely unrelated to my job, but stemming from my innate unhappiness.
I disagree with the inflexible premise that “a true marriage (and true love) is never about you.” I needed to “selfishly” reflect on my job and “what’s in it for me?” Once I realised there was nothing of value for me if I stayed in that job, I decided to resign.
However, I also agree with the premise that a true marriage (and true love) “is about the person you love – their wants, their needs, their hopes and their dreams.” Boy Robin supported for my decision to resign, giving me the courage to carry out that decision, despite not having a new job lined up.
As much as Boy Robin supported me, I had to ask myself what made me happy and make that change for myself, not just revel in Boy Robin’s happiness and hope for the best for my own happiness. And so I think a true marriage (and true love) is about both people as equal partners, figuring out what makes themselves happy and unselfishly supporting each other in their quest for happiness, especially when life throws misery in the other’s path. Not so much a focus on directly making them happy (although, surprising Boy Robin with dessert and seeing his happiness also inspires joy in my heart), but by ensuring that you do not selfishly make them unhappy. You do not selfishly lash out at their happiness as a remedy to your own unhappiness.