This morning I woke up in a fort. I’m 29-years-old and have zero regrets about it – in fact, I’m proud of it; I’m proud to have created a life where my significant other not only had the same idea when we took our blankets out from the wash, but also that she went out of her way to get a string of princess lights to make the place look “cute” (10-year-old me would never forgive me for this). A cozier wake-up is hard to imagine, especially after we brought coffee to bed and read as the sun began to rise.
No day can maintain this level of tranquility and it was but a few minutes after returning from my shower that Heather said, “I’d like to have a business meeting,” sending my warm welcoming morning out into the cold wintry wind. The truth is, I haven’t been pulling my weight the last couple months and after a couple of pet emergencies we are cutting it a little too close for comfort. I’m definitely an “everything-will-work-out” kind of guy, while Heather is more of the “things-work-out-because-I-make-them-work-out” kind of girl. There’s no doubt in either of our minds that I can and should be doing better.
What was beautiful about this difficult conversation was that we both worked through our knee-jerk, defensive reactions, engaged with how we were feeling head-on and communicated our emotions to the best of our abilities. We both came close to throwing that low blow, that thing the angel on your shoulder knows that you shouldn’t say, but instead we practiced patience and put room between our words so that our thoughts could breathe. All it takes is a little patience in these difficult moments to not make bad decisions or spew out hurtful words. Because once you let your devil speak there’s no going back and it just shows the other person you don’t care how your actions affect them, and that may not necessarily be true on the whole, but it is true in this instant.
Everybody makes mistakes and lets their tongue or fists fly, but being patient, honest with yourself, and courageous enough to try to communicate what your feeling can make your life a whole lot easier in the long run. I remember times where I was weak and I took the easy way out, lying through my teeth because all I wanted to do was avoid the pain of reality and truth. But the reality is, those lies, that pain I was running from may’ve been avoided momentarily, but just like energy that cannot be created or destroyed, that pain latches on somewhere, somewhere deep like your conscience or some shit.
The point is, the reason we’re so happy waking up in a fort is because we aren’t afraid to be honest with our pitfalls, our devils and our angels, and it just so happens that our angels sometimes manifest themselves into things that made us happy in our childhoods. We have no shame because we know we have the courage to take on the difficult sides of ourselves in some moments, while opening up opportunities for the wacky, weird children inside of us to take the wheel in the others. There are times to be serious, there are times to play, but you should always try to be honest and communicate to your significant other the best way to drape a blanket to make a fort.