Sunday, November 10, 2013 – Day Three: Love is Not Selfish
When I saw what day 3 was about, I knew that I would benefit. As much as one tries to think of others, and put others first, it is certainly not our first thought or our default way of being. We are naturally geared towards focusing on our own wants, needs, desires, wishes, hopes and dreams. Those take precedence because they are things that are important to us. We will fight to get what we want. It takes a lot of effort to put someone else before you. That means we need to learn to surrender OUR wants and OUR needs and OUR desire and OUR wishes and OUR hopes and OUR dreams at times, in order to put someone else’s wants, needs, desires, wishes, hopes, and dreams first. That is not an easy thing to do.
The world we live in today is a selfish world. Everyone focuses on themselves, bettering themselves, and attaining their own happiness. We work to better our appearance, make more money for ourselves, attain more possessions for ourselves, trying to find our own happiness. So it’s only natural that this would carry over into relationships, as well. Yet being selfish in a relationship is not going to allow for a happy or successful marriage. I can see just how selfishness, on both my part and my husbands, has contributed to our problems. We both are very stubborn and find it hard to be the first to give in, or to acquiesce. But that stubbornness and focus on our own preferences has done no good for us.
The Love Dare mentions some wonderful points. It states that “While love asks us to deny ourselves for the sake of someone else, selfishness compels us to focus on ourselves at their expense. Selfishness is like a disease that suffocates our capacity to love.” When we make the choice to get married, we surrender our ability to focus on only ourselves. We take that responsibility upon ourselves to now work to put the other person ahead of ourselves. But putting the other before ourself can be of benefit to us, as well. If you are selfless, you feel good about it, you feel good about how you are able to do something for the other person’s wellbeing. There is a positive pay-off that comes from putting the other person first.
The dare for day three:
Again, with task at hand for the day, I found myself thinking of what in the world I could get for him to let him know that I was thinking of him. Women are easy, you can buy them flowers and be pretty set! 😛 It’s a little harder, in the spur of the moment, to try and come up with something that would fit the bill. I had to go grocery shopping anyway, so while at the store I just took a leisurely stroll throughout the store. Giving thought to different things Scott likes, could use, would want, etc. I knew he talked about getting some movies/tv shows on DVD to take with him on his trip this week since he is leaving Monday (by car!) to head out to Pennsylvania for a work trip. He’s fortunate and doesn’t have to drive, so he can entertain himself during the long (probably almost 13 hours!) car ride. So I swung by the dvd section. Then I found it.
Breaking Bad. (There’s more to it than it just being Breaking Bad, trust me.) While Scott and I were out in Ohio over Labor Day Weekend at his uncle’s place, we caught one episode of Breaking Bad on Netflix. We had heard good things about it and wanted to give it a shot. After watching the first episode, we both felt it was really different and were curious about how the show would progress. We had talked about trying to get it from our local library to give the first season a shot. Well, after returning home from that trip, it was within two weeks that Scott told me he wanted a divorce, so watching Breaking Bad together obviously didn’t happen.
While I could have just waited and rented the first season from the library (because it does have it available) I decided to take a chance and buy it. We may end up loving it….or we may end up hating it. But to me, it was worth the chance. When I was younger, I did something similar. I would often go to the store and buy CDs that I knew absolutely nothing about. I’d take a chance. Maybe I heard about the artist, maybe I didn’t. Maybe I was familiar with one song on the CD, or maybe I wasn’t. I did this a lot. Was there a risk? Sure. I could have spent my money on something that I absolutely hated. But was there a potential for a pay off? Yes. I could find a new artist, or a new CD that I absolutely loved. The overall success rate? Almost all of the CDs I ended up buying, I loved. There were maybe one or two I can remember buying that I didn’t really like. But one or two, out of a whole bunch of winners, is nothing.
The point of me buying this DVD set has several purposes. Yes, I got him something because I was thinking of him. I will let him know that he can start watching it without me on his trip with one condition. He has to be willing to watch from the beginning with me again. Why? Because this DVD purchase is me telling him that I am vested in our relationship. I want to watch the whole first season with him, so I plan on us staying together, no separating, for a while. But it also has another meaning or bit of significance.
It’s symbolic, too. For what, you might ask? Just as I am taking a risk in buying the first season without knowing if we’ll really like it, I am also taking a risk in my relationship with Scott. After having everything completely fall apart like it has, and having him ready to give up entirely, I am giving 150% again. I am trying to wipe the slate clean and not let all of our problems and issues or the uncertainty of if our marriage will last or not, hold me back from giving every.single.thing that I have to give. I have accepted this love dare, giving every thing I have to give…holding nothing back. Is there a risk? Yes. A great one. I could be giving 150%, fully committing to doing whatever it takes, taking each dare and seriously challenging myself, and it could have no change to Scott’s desire to stay with me. Things could still end up falling apart and our marriage may still end. I have considered that possibility. Yet the risk is worth it to me. The potential pay-off is worth the risk I am taking. There is the possibility that our marriage CAN succeed, that we can make our marriage a success. That hope is worth any risk to me.
So I bundled it all up for him. Then I sat down and wrote him what turned into a pretty lengthy note. I explained the dual purpose that Breaking Bad had and made him fully aware of my desire to give every.single.thing I have to this relationship and that I will fight with everything I have to make this marriage a success.
So the questions for the end of the day were: What did you choose as the gift for your spouse? What happened when you gave it to them? What was their response?
Well we are aware of what I got him. He was surprised when I gave it to him! He was over with a friend of mine in the evening and I gave it to him before he left, telling him to open it later. A few minutes after he left, the front door opened, he came running in and told me thank you and how awesome it was! He gave me a big hug and said that he was looking for the EXACT thing that afternoon and couldn’t find it! All they had were seasons 2 and 3 available…so he was overjoyed that I got it for him. After reading my note when he got home, I texted me and told me again how he appreciated it. 🙂
Oh and also a little something that made me happy earlier today, he gave me this little note today when we were at church. We sat together 🙂 He ripped this off and handed it to me.
Sorry for the poor picture quality. It says “I’m glad you are here with me.” 🙂
I can’t think of a better, more marvelous way to hook up with Katie this week for Marvelous in My Monday. Marvelous is fighting for my marriage and giving 150%.
Day 3 down, 37 to go!