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Category Archives for "Romance"

A Man with a Toothache Cannot Be in Love

By Dustin | Romance

Love Through Pain

Have you heard the title quote before?  The first time I came across it was this week, and it really hit home.  I believe the words “A Man with a Toothache Cannot Be in Love” originated with Shakespeare, but I’ve also seen the phrase attributed to Sigmund Freud in some internet searches.  Regardless, I thought it was a cool quote with a potentially deep meaning.

So why did I notice these particular words when I read them?  Well, I have been in pain this week.  Nothing super-serious, but for almost an entire week, I have had some pretty intense pains in my neck and upper back.

As my wife would be quick to point out, this pain is self-inflicted as it originated after spending several days sleeping in a camper by night and bowhunting by day.  I’m not sure exactly what I did, but it hurts and there is no good way to get neck pain out of your mind.

OK, so I have pain and I obviously have a low tolerance for it.  Now you must be thinking, “Quit the whining and make a point about how this affects me and my relationships.”  Thanks for asking!

Pain Can Overshadow Love

As the title quote implies, we can sometimes allow our pain to overshadow other, more important aspects of our lives.  This pain could be acute and physical like a throbbing toothache or a migraine.  It could also be the spiritual pain of loss or grief.  Or it may be the stress of financial difficulty, job loss or a difficult child.

My wife actually told me this week during one of our 15-minute discussions that I hadn’t been doing a very good job being romantic or helpful lately.  And especially not in light of the fact that I was gone the previous weekend on my “guys trip.”

That’s when I saw the Shakespeare/Freud quote and it hit me like an Epiphany.  I was allowing my own pain to overshadow my responsibilities to my wife and family.  Not good.

Show Your Love Through the Pain

There are many distractions in life that can affect our ability to properly prioritize our time and show love to those who are most important to us.  However, we simply cannot allow this to happen.  Our marriage comes first, and selfless love requires sacrifice even in the face of pain.

Of course, we are partners for a reason.  When we are experiencing pain, whether it be physical or emotional, it is vital that we let our spouse know about it.  I’m not talking about whining and complaining (though I’m good at that).  I’m talking about reaching out for help when we need it.  Whether it’s a simple neck rub or a late-night heart-to-heart about a career change, it is our spouse that we must be able to depend on in our times of pain.

Lessons Learned Through Love & Pain

It’s been a long week, but I have learned a lot.  I have learned that I need to get in better shape so I’m not so susceptible to nagging injuries.  I’ve learned that I can easily slip into a mode of selfishness where I let my own pain distort my priorities and let the romance in our marriage fade.  And I have reaffirmed the fact that I have a fantastic wife who is understanding, open and forgiving.

Above all, I’ve learned that Shakespeare or Freud were wrong.  Not only can a man with a toothache be in love, but he should be able to depend on his caring wife to help and support him.  And he should buy her some flowers, hold her hand and let her know how much her love helps to ease his pain.

Photo by dannotti

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Take 15 Minutes Each Day to Just be a Couple

By Dustin | Romance

Trust me, I know how busy your life as a married couple can be.Take 15 Minutes Each Day to Just be a Couple

With work, family, extracurricular activities, exercise, kids, cooking, household chores and all of the other tasks we have to complete each day, it seems like there’s no time for anything else.

Well, I’m here to tell you that you must make time for one more thing…fortunately, just 15 minutes each day will do the trick.

That’s only 1% of the time you have available each day, so you know it’s realistic.

Couple Time is a Must

You need to make some time each day to be a couple instead of parents, employees and whatever other roles you play each day.

Your marriage is more important than your children or your career, so you need to start nourishing it.

Your marriage must come second (just behind your relationship with God if you share that belief), and it cannot be allowed to slide to any less priority in your everyday life.

15 Minutes, Really?

Find just 15 minutes each day to sit without distractions and talk to your spouse about your day, your thoughts, your dreams and whatever else you feel like sharing as long as you are engaged in an intimate conversation.

And please be sure that your conversation doesn’t revolve around things that need to be done around the house, the kids’ school activities or any other “responsible” meeting topics.

This time is for you to talk about your individual thoughts and your desires as a couple.

Find the Time

The first step in this fun little adventure in romance is to identify where you’ll find your 15 minutes.

Well, it starts with the right perspective.

What if you found out that you had to spend 15 minutes each day getting a medical treatment that you needed to survive?

Less dramatically, what if you could voluntarily give this time to help your spouse achieve a great deal of happiness? Or pump up your own happiness, get rid of stress and feel fulfilled?

You can find the time. After all, we are literally only talking about 1% of your day here!

To get you started, here are some areas where you might be able to cut back a bit:

  • Watch less television (this should do it for most of us)
  • Cut out 15 minutes of mindless web surfing (this should take care of the rest)
  • Check Facebook less often or update your Pinboards a bit less frequently
  • Focus at work so you can leave a bit earlier
  • Only check your email twice per day (this can be a HUGE time saver)
  • Cut down on video games
  • Exercise at home instead of driving to the gym
  • Put the kids to bed 15 minutes early
  • Wake up 15 minutes early
  • Quit reading Engaged Marriage – this is an absolute last resort and is not recommended! 🙂

When we decided to make this 15 minutes of “couple time” a priority in our marriage, we simply made sure the kids were in bed at a consistent time each evening and spent our time together before we did anything else.

We found that all of our other responsibilities can easily wait for a measly 15 minutes.

This is our sacred time for each other and the key to staying engaged in our marriage – and we wouldn’t trade it for the world!

Beyond Daily Time

While 15 minutes per day should do the trick, I further encourage you to schedule a date night once every week or two. It doesn’t have to be an expensive or elaborate outing.

While it is preferable to get away from the house and all of the “to-do’s” it represents, you don’t necessarily even have to go out.  Your date night can be as simple as cooking dinner together and sharing a bottle of wine, or just watching a movie together after the kids go to bed.

The important thing is that you are engaged in your relationship and focused on appreciating each other as a couple for at least a short time each week.

There you have it:  spend a measly 15 minutes being a couple each day, and you’ll feel closer than ever.  Throw in a fun date night just once per week and you will be on your way to having an awesome marriage for life.

See, it’s not hard to be Romantic after all!

Need Some Ideas for the Best Way to Spend Your 15 Minutes?

Click here to learn how you can refresh your marriage and rock your communication, romance, sex life and finances in just 15 minutes a day…

15 Minute Marriage Makeover

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