Our Secret: Living Passionately
Being happy in a marriage is all about knowing and living by your passions and those of your partner. Have you asked yourself (and your partner) what your passions are? The following is a story about an evening when I asked my wife about living passionately, an investigation into the overlapping interests that we live by together.
Myself – Figuring Thinks Out
This evening I asked my wife Jackie, if you had to list my three passions in life, what would they be? The first and second she didn’t have to think too much about. Our family and reading/acquiring knowledge. These are what I spend most of my free time doing. The third she had to think about longer. I took a seat. She said it may be more abstract, but I do a lot of things (she listed some hobbies) just to figure things out.
I was pleased with the answers in the way one must be when your wife or husband gives you an image of yourself that is almost in total harmony with what you already believed. I also find it intriguing that the first two answers came without effort, but that the third and more interesting answer took some introspection. In fact, when she asked me the same question, I went through the same process.
I told her first and foremost our family. Second would be a passion for harmony in our every day lives. She is, to her core, someone who seeks structure for our children, facilitating their success now and setting them up to be happy and healthy adults.
My Wife – The Dream Fulfillment Expert
The last answer was also harder for me to express, but it came from more of a feeling I get when I think about our experiences together over the past decade, so I tried my best to express those feelings in words. Through our relationship, first through graduate school, and then when we moved two-thousand miles from our friends and families to pursue my academic career, Jax has shown an ability to create concrete dreams, to set on a path to accomplish them, and inevitably, to see them through (in spite of all the obstacles life has thrown her way). She is driven by a passion to make it happen.
we succeed because our passions are in sync and so deeply in accord with each other as to make us one person working toward the same goals.
After thinking through (and writing about) her answers and mine, I realized a truth at the basis of ours–and perhaps most long-term relationships, where people battle the world and their selves together– that we make it, that we succeed because our passions are in sync and so deeply in accord with each other as to make us one person working toward the same goals. Now, I’m not saying you have to have the same goals as your husband or wife, only that we should work together in tandem. We in long-term relationships are in the position to be the cheerleader and supporter of our significant other through good times and bad. Jackie is my responsibility just as much as I am hers.
After I told her my reflection on her passions, she smiled and said, well, we really seem to know each other. And it’s true, we know each other pretty well, but I also know we’ll change over the years and we’ll keep getting to know each other, time and time again.