Great relationships don't happen on their own, nor do they happen overnight. I am by no means saying our relationship is excellent. But after a decade, we've learned a thing or two about each other. It takes time, growth, pain, accountability, humility, trust, conditional love and constant commitment and recommitment.
We were fortunate to find each other; truthfully, we didn't even know how much we needed each other when we had our first date. I was 2 hours late, and bless Mon, she arranged Heston Blumenthal's The Hinds Head. We got to the restaurant, and they couldn't seat us. It was our first date, and I should have known on that rainy winter night in pizza express we would be together for a long time. If you don't know, Mon is crazy, and she's neurotic about punctuality and time. Her attention to the little details that induce a level of euphoria is incredible. Her values in life are grounded in compassion and empathy. The date lasted until nearly 2am. We laughed and chatted about our cultural fit, two soca-loving island girls. I later realised her love language was quality time.
Quality time isn't just moments with each other, going out for dinner, sitting in silence on our phones, or watching a Netflix show.
For Mon, it sits central to how she understands and experiences the world in the here and now. Time equals moments shared together where love, compassion and value is offered. Giving of herself is giving of her time and her energy. It demonstrates her fierce commitment and unbounded love.
Time is a currency in our relationship that is never taken for granted or abused. So often in intimate relationships, after spending years of time together, we can forget what it feels like when time pools, when we pause and step away from the hustle and bustle of life and spend time refocusing and replenishing our energies.
Quality time with Mon is a daily ritual in our relationship; it keeps us connected to each other in a way that cultivates harmony, satisfaction and security. It's having best friend corner at 6am every morning where we get ready together, have our morning tonic followed by a discussion of some kind while we shower and get ready for the day. Let me tell you, we put the world to rights with a sprinkle of gossip, of course. If only her workmates knew!
Time didn't fly with us; time afforded us the chance to become better human beings. We lost many friendships over the years for various reasons, one of which was our unapologetic commitment to each other.
We didn't get the unicorns and all things wonderful type of start to our relationship. It was challenge after challenge after challenge. No matter the challenge, we were steadfast in our commitment to each other.
We both discovered that the key to a successful relationship is not jumping ship or throwing in the towel when life gets challenging. Or blaming the other person for not living up to the expectations and fantasies we create for them in our minds. Instead, it required us to exercise empathy and self-discovery, make space for one another and our idiosyncratic ways, and above all, show up for each other every single day.
Don't get me wrong, there is allatta island spice, and pepper sprinkled on top, but love alone isn't enough to sustain a relationship.
Happy 8th Wedding Anniversary to the Wives 🖤
With Love Always