Breakups sure suck. But at least they get you to do some serious personal inventory and figure out what you really want… or DON’T want. Did I mention how bad breakups suck?
Recently, as I was doing some reflecting on what kind of partner I want, I was cruising through my everlasting Instagram feed and stumbled across this killer tiny home. I’m quasi addicted to scoping out creative designs for funky homes and found this killer little pad and thought, I wonder if I could use this sweet little home as a metaphor for my perfect catch… the ultimate partner. So, I did.
To give a little bit of context, I was married to my late wife for almost 17 years and got remarried / divorced shortly after… and as of 3 months ago I am a full-time empty-nester and I’m finding this lifestyle of having no kids and crazy amounts of freedom a little lonely actually. I do love my life which consists of piles of mountain biking, skateboarding, wake surfing, wicked friends, coaching, soccer, rock climbing, playing music, video production, design… and I really miss having someone to spoil. Someone to love.
I realize that having a solid, longterm, committed partner is not the answer to this gap… however, here are some of my dreams and reflections on the kind of partner I dream about. Maybe this will inspire you to do some reflection or digging into what you really want. If you’re up for the challenge, find a kickass house online that inspires you and use it as a metaphor to dream about your perfect catch.
The ultimate catch is someone who feels like home… something like this home.
LIKE THE FRONT PORCH
It’s a place of safety. Safe from the elements. Contained. Yet also looking out to the future and aware of what’s going on. I think this speaks of growth as a couple where we can learn from eachother but also learn by watching other people.
LIKE THE LIVING ROOM & KITCHEN
It’s comfy and open to laughs and hard conversations. It’s open to guests and welcome to people who are hurting and need some extra love. There are always tissues an arms reach away because that’s what we do… we are here to help release some of those poisons from the body and sometimes we are the ones with the poison that needs to be shed. It’s a place full of grace and learning and understanding and growth and belly laughs and parties and loud music and stupid dancing and inappropriate jokes and sometimes way too many adult beverages.
LIKE THE STAIRS UP TO THE BEDROOM
It’s full of creativity and constantly inspiring people. It’s setting an example for the kids. It recycles the old stuff and makes something beautiful from it. It takes the old patterns / hurts / experiences / longings and instead of burning them in the fireplace, we make stairs to new places and opportunities. We can laugh about where we were and where the boards came from. We can laugh together at our mistakes of the past and creatively make something beautiful and useful from them.
LIKE THE SWINGING BRIDGE
There is risk. There’s life. There are always new experiences and adventures and opportunities we look for. Stuff that scares us… and sometimes those times are for us to do alone (individually) with our own friends… or solo trips… but there’s no jealousy or anxiety around that. There’s a deep trust that THAT is what your person needs for that moment… and when they come back, the meal will be served so we can celebrate what happened and hear the stories (while we perhaps roll our eyes at each other).
LIKE THE BEDROOM
Intimacy… it even smells good like wood! Those walls of cedar or whatever they are. They feel safe. They create protection. It’s private. It stays here. This is where our own secrets of togetherness are created that nobody will ever know about. This is where we learn to give ourselves more and more. To trust each other with our naked bodies. It’s exciting and builds connection. It’s never used as a manipulative tool but always a place of service to the other person. There’s grace and patience and passion and adventure and ecstacy and creativity here and it is a big priority.
Here are a couple of articles and tips I’ve found helpful if you’re bored / interested in checking them out:
When you’re pissed at each other, USE A SOFT APPROACH (Gottman)
Take a test to see what your apology language is (there are 5).
Seek to constantly hear rather than be heard.