Last night my husband told me I was precious to him. I know he feels this way I suppose but he’s a man of few words, so he rarely says things like this. It got me thinking about how relationships develop over time. We get comfortable with each other, sometimes forgetting the need for attention or some reassurance that the love is still there.
As we move closer to parenthood (I suppose we are parents already), I’m really aware of the pressure a baby will put on our relationship. So I think it’s important that we try to prepare as best we can. Reading A Cup of Jo this morning about taking a romantic walk made me think about some of the things we do that are special to our relationship that nurture and help it to thrive. For us, it is simple things that work. It isn’t expensive gifts or expensive holidays. It is those things that cost nothing that matter most.
Every couple has certain rituals or things they do together that go unspoken. For Ben and I, these include watching Grand Designs, eating Nandos, making coffee for each other, taking our dogs for a walk and him making me a hot chocolate before bed. These things happen often without a great deal of conversation or discussion. Nurturing these, by engaging in them often, helps our relationship as it gives it stability.
But on the other hand, doing things out of the ordinary is important for a relationship to grow. Over our nearly 6 years together, we have struggled at times to be spontaneous. We’ve built a house, renovated another one, been through medical struggles, but now we’ve come out the other side. But in less than 7 weeks, life will change again. Dramatically. While this turbulence may make us stronger, it means we haven’t had a long period of just enjoying life to reflect on. For some, that’s more important than it is for others. Having a bucket list of activities you want to do as a couple is a helpful way to be spontaneous in our busy world.
Simplifying life has become something we both long for; reducing our debt, reducing our possessions and consumption. We both care about the environment and so we are actively trying to reduce our plastic consumption, it’s hard!
At the end of the day, when I lie in bed before falling asleep, I realise our relationship is built on strong foundations. We have our ups and downs like any couple, but what makes it precious is the way we agree on the fundamentals.