Connecting…

June 9, 2011 in Life, Relationships

intimacies

Intimacies by Cambiodefractal

 

Doesn’t this picture give you the warm and fuzzies? Doesn’t it make you daydream back to that time, perhaps when you just met or were first dating, when you and your then boyfriend or girlfriend, spent hours (or all day perhaps?) laughing and enjoying being in close proximity to each others physical bodies for a stretch of time? Maybe you were discussing your future, discussing what you want to name your first child, or their first restaurant perhaps. The endorphins, the feeling connected, the glow….

Most likely those moments occurred on a semi- regular basis… despite his long hours and cold pillow on the other side of the bed when you went to sleep at night. You found yourself craving these intimate moments as a part of your week, a way of not just physically and sexually checking in but to emotionally connect. Thus began your investigation into the growing feelings you had for your man (or woman), your future, and your decision that this person who you are now sharing not just your bed with, but your life with, is to be your partner, your mate.

There are, I bet’cha, at any given time, a handful of these moments burned into your mind. Let’s give them a moment of silence as we let them flood our minds…..

Very Nice.

So, It is no wonder that most of us have (I’d predict 90% of us), at one point or another deal with the separation anxiety (and frustration) that settling into a routine, that usually involves passing through the night (and weekend) typically brings. It’s these times when we aren’t connecting, whether it be physically (and by that I mean sexually) or emotionally, that can create great stress in a relationship. Days or weeks of  both literal and emotional “dry spells” when one day you realize that  besides not connecting sexually, you haven’t sat down to have a conversation with your restaurant man/woman (face to face), haven’t shared a meal or the time to share a long and lingering kiss that you might begin to question what the heck is going on.

If this is something you are going thru – I assure you, you are NOT the only one.

I have received quite a handful of messages from you that this is one constant source of tension and anxiety. It stirs our deepest, inner fears of being desired (wanted) and is always poking at our worthiness. It’s one topic that is in our undertone of most everything we watch, it’s the purpose of many media publications, and it’s the plot of so many movies.. it’s how we look at ourselves in the mirror when we’re buying clothes. With this constant invasion of our souls desire to feel free and untethered.. it’s a daily reminder when we find ourselves in the ‘day in and day out’ of passing through the night, just how much we might not be keeping up with the expectations put upon us from outside sources.

It’s challenging to say the least, when he or she gets home, you’re sleeping and when you wake up they are sleeping. This isn’t just an physical need.. (okay sometimes it is) but more than that..it’s a desire to connect. It’s the yearning to be seen, to be heard… a moment when your partner looks in your eyes and says, “you matter to me.” When we sense the distance that being in this type of relationship brings, it pulls on us and in the end, we take it as a lack on either ourselves or our partners parts. Usually “What’s wrong with me?  What’s wrong with him/her or.. What’s wrong with us?” are regular statements in our minds. It’s EASY to see how this quandry.. this stirring to know WHY we aren’t connecting will do a doosy on the foundation of any relationship.

Here’s the thing my lovelies… How can you expect to have the same sort of regular connection when the parameters of your loves work legitimately keep him or her away when most people are available. Part of the ‘Pain’ of being in the restaurant industry is what your experiencing. When they get off of work, they just gave their energy, their time and perhaps their body to their craft. I’m sure you can attest your other halfs passion to their job as almost mad scientist-esque. Working tirelessly to answer the questions that he or she have burning in their minds, only to stop when physical fatigue or what they’ve been working on has been solved.

I assure you it’s not that you’re not important.. that they don’t see you there, it’s the midnight oil burning in their heart that sometimes (okay most of the time) creates short sighted moments in your other half.

Here’s the thing… there is something YOU can do. Right here and right now.

For we, the tribe of the other halves, it STARTS with us. An awareness. And this time.. this awareness is about unlearning the ways in which we do not meet up to expectations compared to others that are not on this schedule and situation, it’s about learning about what Intimacy really is to you, what it feels like and when to recognize it as a way of feeding the need to connect.

So I ask, What is intimacy to you?

I can only say for me, that it’s those moments when I do see and spend time with my husband.. Intimacy is when we smile and joke around with each other, our inside jokes and pranks that most who hear or see them, have no idea what we’re up to. It’s putting a cup of coffee on his nightstand as I leave for work, only to cool down enough by the time he wakes (usually) … it’s the messages he sends me on my blackberry messenger mid-day, that he’s thinking of me and he loves me (we communicate during the day via messenger because he’s not able to get out of the kitchen (or off the line) long enough) It’s Sundays when he’s off, going to Home Depot together and shopping for our new grill and outdoor furniture, laughing and bickering the whole way (we’re bickerers by nature). It’s the Monday nite dinner and a movie that we both look forward to, that have become sacred – sitting together on the couch with our bodies close, that I know I am loved.

When I find myself asking those same questions (and I do) “What’s wrong with me?” What’s wrong with us?”,  I attempt to remember all those really beautiful moments that I do consider intimate, those moments when my husband looks over at me from his truck, from wherever we’re going to, and I can tell by the way he’s looking over at me.. that he really loves me. In that moment I feel seen… I feel heard… I feel exposed and vulnerable and open to whatever is next on our journey. True, it’s not what everyone else has… regular nite romps in the hay, but in some ways.. what I have is more.

How can you find those intimate moments with your love, appreciate and remember them when you find yourself asking those questions.. “What’s wrong with us?”  I feel I would be of no help to offer some Sex Tips (you can find enough of those in Cosmopolitan magazine) as I am still working out this topic as you are, but I can offer a reminder of what you DO have…

You DO have the freedom to pursue your own dreams, without the guilt of always needing to be available when most 9-5’rs are, you DO have the first row seat to watching someone fully present in their passion, you DO have back stage access to that world that most people have NO idea about. You DO have an occasional VIP pass when you step out to a new restaurant or gastropub.. You hopefully DO know the value that you bring to their life, if no other way than how you bring balance and grounding to them, the one who keeps them tethered to the ground. Yes, you have a handful of things that might be considered the ‘PAIN’ of your relationship.. and one of them involves some creative scheduling (wink wink)… but the feeling and the emotion BEHIND that sort of connecting… you receive in SO many other ways…

What are some of yours?

Connecting…

8 Comments

    1. Elizabeth says:

      I gotta say everything you said was said perfectly…this post is exactly what Robbie and I have been going through this week (no joke!) and on top of feeling not connected to one another we’ve had to deal with 2 deaths in our families and found out about 2 more people who are about to pass so we have been dealing with the emotions and the stress of that as well…on top of not feeling connected….but we’ve sat down and had a long talk and both of us kept saying why do we keep arguing theres no issue between us we no problem with each other…and we did realize we need to learn to put time aside for “us” not just on his days off..so both us are putting in extra effort so when he gets home from work to have a little conversation, to kiss, to cuddle, not to just say hey im taking a shower and I’m like okay goodnight! and thats it until the next night comes…

      • Hey Liz! So glad that you and your other half realized what’s really going on.. what’s BEHIND the message you both are telling yourselves! How do you want to feel when you make this little adjustment to create more of these intimate moments between you? What would your intention be for deciding to have more “us” time?

    2. Couldn’t have said it better!
      My hubby is also the type that doesn’t like to talk about his feelings, so I definitely had to recognize and cherish those little ‘us’ moments.

      • Hey there lady! I’m so glad it resonated with you! What could you do to remind yourself what those moments are… when those “what’s wrong with us?” questions come up?

    3. Laura says:

      There is no doubt that I am loved by my husband and the sames goes for him. it’s the text messages that he sends religiously every day (as with you Kerilyn we mostly communicate by text message) to cooking tea on his days off. But still the ‘what is wrong with us’ question keeps popping up and when I talk to my husband about it he seem’s t o think that nothing is wrong. At the moment it is how to maintain the connection with each other (sexually i hate to say) when I am going to bed as he is getting home. It can get frustrating and I start to question if he does love me/desires me still, but I have to tell my self that we are not a normal couple. It is so good to be able to read over everybodys ideas and know that I can talk to people who know what we deal with as partners of chef’s.

      • Hey Laura – Thanks for commenting! So glad I’m not the only one who communicates all day via text! You are not alone in asking yourself ‘what’s wrong with us”. I’m sure every single restaurant relationship has thought this at one point or another. It’s COMMON for us to feel like we’re missing something. The rub is that we’re not in a COMMON type of relationship, so it’s a little bit about reframing the parameters. How would you feel if, every time you had that ‘what’s wrong with us?” feeling, you glanced down at the list you create that reminds you of all the reasons why you both are RIGHT. There most likely is a long list of what’s right in your relationship, and sometimes it takes VIGILANT focus to remember what those things are. It’s SO easy to become lax in our rituals, when our busy lives seem to take over. How can you set aside some special time to connect on his days off and then making a team effort to keep that time as sacred? Thinking of ya!

    4. […] to regularly have sex. They’re working all these different hours, and you never can ‘connect‘ and he/she NEVER seem like it’s a priority to them. (uh, […]

    5. Tabitha says:

      I appreciate this post – I stumbled upon it looking for ways to make an opposite shift work. We aren’t in the food industry — I work 1st shift, he works 3rd shift. He leaves when the kids go to bed and doesn’t get home until after we’re all gone for the day. I’m getting to the point where I feel neglected – he has his hobbies that seem to take his Saturday’s away from us lately, and when we are together we fight. I’m managing the kids, the laundry, cooking, cleaning and work. He isn’t getting the sleep he needs during the day (only at this shift for 4 months now), and tends to gravitate to the couch when he is awake in the evening. He needs to feel connected sexually, however that is the last thing on my mind (even I wanted to, where is the time?!). I’m at a breaking point — I just don’t know what to do, where to turn and how to make it work. I’ve brought it up, cried my eyes out — he’s admitted to being selfish and lazy, but just because you admit it doesn’t change the actions. Actions speak louder than words — I’m waiting, but becoming extremely impatient 🙁

      • Hi there Tabitha – I’m glad this post resonated with you. It definitely can be challenging to find the sacred time to connect in a relationship where it seems you are always passing through the night. More important challenge is to NOT interpret his absence as something you’ve done or his not wanting to connect with you. I just heard a great phrase.. “At the end of the day, you can focus on what’s tearing you apart or what’s keeping you together” We have been conditioned to focus on the bad things, so it makes sense that anyone who isn’t regularly connecting with their other half, would feel like it’s something they did or their love thinks is wrong.

        Hmm, these hobbies on Saturday. How possible is it to negotiate some time, dedicating to connecting?

        I know there is no clear answer here, but I’d be curious why it’s EASIER for him to just admit that he’s selfish and lazy than to do anything about it? What is behind his action of inaction? And in turn, if he shows action… so will you (wink wink).

        Most of us have been instructed by a promise of a reward. Maybe that’s what you both need to implement (and see it as a game maybe) in order to have both your needs met.

        Finally, a question – Do you feel like you are taking life, your relationship too seriously? Where is time for FUN in your life? Sometimes we get so caught up in the serious-ness, that we miss out on opportunities to have fun, and in turn get what we need.

        Thinking of you.

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