They say that distance makes the heart grow fonder (They: “Distance Makes the Heart Grow Fonder” P.1). Is that true? I understand the statement and agree with the concept. When you miss someone, your heart aches when you are not with them. You think of things that you might not think of when they are near.
In Portuguese, there is a word that has no single word translation in English for when you miss someone. “Saudades” are feelings you have when you feel home sick, or miss the one you love. It can also be used to describe missing a place or a time that is an important part of your life.
What if distance made the heart grow farther apart? Is that possible? Absolutely! I am happily married and have been for nearly 17 years. I have left home for a new job 3 times now while my family stayed behind to prepare to come join me. All three times were very difficult on both ends of the line. Unfortunately, I admit that I was the one causing the distance.
Loneliness is one of the most common triggers for addiction and self medicating. If a person has not learned to deal with their feelings in a healthy way, they will medicate with unhealthy means of comfort. These are distractions that block the connections and feelings of love that create a stronger bond even from a distance. We must be anxiously engaged in a good cause, feed our minds and hearts with positive thoughts and emotions and keep focused on things that will bind hearts together over the miles.
Call your loved one every night and have an in depth conversation that digs at the root of your life together. Text them during the day or message them on Facebook. Ask more than how their day was. Ask them what they thought about or felt anxiety over during their day. Validate their feelings and express your joy or sorrow over the things they tell you. Use your best empathic listening skills to truly hear what is being communicated(Stephen R. Covey: “Seven habits of Highly Effective People” Habit 5 Seek first to Understand, then to be Understood).
When was the last time you courted your spouse? When did you do something that they weren’t expecting that made them quiver with delight? Courting creates endorphins that brings that story book feeling back to your marriage. You must know what makes your spouse delighted. If a dozen roses generates the question, “How much did these cost?” you chose the wrong surprise. A dozen roses are perfect in the right place and at the right time but if you surprise your wife by creating a bounced check you might be in the dog house instead of the tunnel of love!
Distance doesn’t have to be measured in miles. Have you ever rode in a car somewhere with your spouse and not said a word? This is your best friend, or it should be, and you don’t have anything to say? Yeah, I am guilty. How can you create that spark of new things to talk about. After 17 years there are a lot of subjects you have already covered. You might think you know her opinions, theories, and ideas already but don’t ass u me. Every day, make an effort to learn something new. Read a book or an article that you could share with your spouse and ask them their opinion. Watch an educational show or something you both know nothing about and talk about it. There are so many things to talk about and sometimes it takes effort.
Please don’t confuse this as a textbook for marriage. To be honest, I am talking to myself here. Blogging is something that I have learned makes me dig deep into the chasms of my cerebral carcass and identify who I am, who I want to be and who I will become. Please join me on my journey and if you ever have something I can learn, please share. Especially you Erin, the love of my life.