Mark called me and—referring to his wife—said, “Nancy’s been distant lately. Cold. Doesn’t talk unless I talk to her first.”
“How many times in the last two days have you touched her tenderly?” I asked. “Or looked into her eyes as you’re talking? Or asked about how she’s feeling?”
“Well . . .”
“So, none, right?”
“And it’s not like those things come naturally to you, right? Even before the past two days?”
“Not really. I have been really busy at work lately, though, so I’ve been tired when I get home.”
I suggested that Mark simply be aware over the next two days of behaviors that would be loving toward Nancy—like some of the things I mentioned. He called two days later, and after sighing, he said, “Okay, you were right. I did what you suggested, and she’s not distant at all. I was making excuses, and I was making it about her, but I simply wasn’t connecting with her regularly or in a tender way.”
Relationships—like nearly everything of beauty and worth—require attention. Mark discovered this, and he said it didn’t take more than a few minutes to make all the difference. He had simply become neglectful, and their relationship paid the price.
When we’re driving a car safely, it’s rarely hard work. We just have to pay attention. There are certain things we simply must do, or the price is too high. We have to keep our eyes on the road, watch our speed, look out for other drivers, and more. If we don’t, the results can be catastrophic. Mark learned to keep his eyes on the road. We’ll all be happier if we do the same.
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