Remember when you first met your spouse? For many people it was love at first sight. Remember going out on dates with him/her and feeling all sorts of funny butterflies in your stomach? In my case, we were inseperable. All I ever wanted to do was to hang out with my then boyfriend (who is now my husband). It was like I could think of no one else. Why is it that after so many years of marriage, tons of couples seem to lose that butterfly feeling? It is probably safe to say that many couples do not feel the flutter in their stomachs when they see their beloved walk through the door after a long day at work. How do you go back to that puppy love feeling? Now, I have to say because you feel butterflies in your stomach and you cannot stop thinking about someone, does not actually mean you love them. I believe there is a difference between being in lust, being in love, and loving someone.
Lust is self explanatory. It is a superficial craving for someone. Lust will wear off quickly once the other person’s appearance or simple circumstances change. Being in love often entails liking someone and having this overhwelming feeling (or butterfly effect) when you see or think about the person. People can fall out of love as fast as they can fall in love. I think it is simply a temporary feeling. But real love does surpass everything else. Love is the action. It is wanting to stand by a person’s side even though they irritate the freaking crap out of you. It is wanting to call off work to tend to your feverish partner. It is knowing all their dirty little secrets (and filthy filthy habits) but still being able to overlook them. It is wanting to grow old and grey with this flawed annoying human being. It is wanting to share your secrets, wanting to forgive that person when he/she wrongs you and wanting to make it right when you know you are at fault. That my friends, is my definition of love.
Now every marriage needs a healthy dose of lust, being in love and of loving. But how do we get back to the butterfly effect? I think it is staying open with one another, making sure each person is getting exactly what he or she needs from the relationship and trying to figure out why you fell in love all those years ago. If we can keep those magical moments in mind at all times and remember what used to make our tummies turn and tickle, then we are set. The magic can stay lit if we can continue to excite the other spiritually, intellectually and otherwise. The magic will grow when we continue to remember how to talk to the other with respect, kindness and overlook insignificant foolishness. I like to say, “Treat your husband like he is a man you are trying to date and treat your wife like a hot girl you are still trying to get.” This wonderful cat and mouse game should never end. Know each other’s buttons and stay away from them. Go on adventures together, solve arguments as fast as possible. Apologise even if it means biting your tongue off. Make him smile for no reason at all. Buy her gifts and do cute things just because.
The bottom line is this. Love is an action and true love is hard work. You must fight each day to maintain the love. Nurture it like a plant. If you water it, it will grow and become fruitful. Now go out there and make your connection a lasting one.
Loving Thinking Momma