Do you remember the last time you went on a long trip together as a family? At the beginning of the trip, everyone is singing, “The wheels on the car go round and round!” Parents and children alike are laughing and smiling and excited to begin the voyage. But by the end of the trip, no one is excited anymore; everyone just wants to get to the destination. Children start asking, “Are we there yet? How much longer?”
To me, being newly married is a lot like starting a trip. You’re excited about your marriage — the newness, the beauty of your young bride, the excitement of starting life together. But as the trip of marriage goes on, it’s easy to forget where you’re going. The excitement begins to fade, and sometimes you can’t even remember why you started.
Along the way, it’s nice to have billboards with messages that get us excited again about the journey, like seeing the signs for Disney World three or four hours before you get there. Those messages spark feelings of excitement within us again so that we’re energized. We start getting ideas about where we want to eat, what we want to see, little side trips to take along the way. Everyone starts singing, “It’s a Small World,” and forgets about the small car they’ve been traveling in.
As a newlywed, my wife and I are still in the blissful stage of singing the songs, laughing, and having a great time. So as billboards of encouragement to you, I have some fresh ideas for your marriage that might help bring back that lovin’ feeling you felt when you first started your trip together. Here are some simple things that bring the excitement of romance into our lives:
Learn to ballroom dance with your wife. Believe me, ballroom dancing is something I never thought I would get into. Before I met my wife, Sabrina, she was teaching dancing lessons to a group of my friends. I turned my nose up at every invitation to learn dancing with them for a long time. Finally, their persistence paid off, and I reluctantly agreed to attend one lesson. To my astonishment, I loved it! Ballroom dancing is fun, challenging, and a great form of exercise.
What I love most about ballroom dancing is that it is something you can do together even into your old age. We went dancing not too long ago, and I saw an elderly couple dancing together. They were in their nicest clothes, dressed up especially to go out on the town together. They moved slowly on the dance floor, certainly not as sharp as they once were. But they were having a wonderful, romantic time. They were smiling at each other and holding hands as they danced closely. Despite their wrinkles, they had a youthfulness to their faces. And isn’t that what we all want — to love each other like young newlyweds?
Maybe ballroom dancing isn’t your thing. There are countless other activities you can learn to do together. For some people it might be hiking, mountain biking, golfing, or an endless list of other hobbies. The important thing is to find something active that you both enjoy doing together.
Learn to enjoy the arts. Go to the theater…and I’m not talking about a blood ‘n’ guts Arnold Schwarzenegger action movie, guys. I mean the live theater with live actors and actresses. Go watch plays. Go to the symphony. Go to the opera. The important thing is that it’s a dress up occasion, not blue jeans and an untucked t-shirt. Women love to dress up and go out for the evening. Take your wife somewhere where she can fix her makeup and hair, wear that evening dress and new shoes, and put on her grandmother’s jewelry. She loves those things because they make her feel beautiful. She wants to be Cinderella going to the ball.
Tell her she’s beautiful, and tell her that you love her. As a husband, you know you love your wife. But she needs to hear you say it. Have you ever heard a wife complain about her husband who said he loved her too many times? Or have you ever heard a wife complain that he said too often that she was beautiful? Probably not. However, you will hear them say that their husbands don’t say those things often enough.
Guys, we have a bad reputation for not being thoughtful. We need to learn to take the focus off of ourselves and think about our wife’s needs. It’s easy to do. Kiss her without any reason. Look into her eyes and tell her that she is beautiful, even when she is not dressed up. Sneak up behind her and wrap her up in a bear hug and kiss her without expecting anything in return.
Go on weekend trips together. This doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or expensive. It can be anything from a nice bed and breakfast to camping in a tent. The important thing is to get away from town and away from the responsibilities that consume our time.
This is especially important when you have children. When you do go on a trip together, don’t bring the kids, so you can focus on each other. Your attention shouldn’t be divided. Women love it when you spend time with them one-on-one. This kind of time away together recharges your romantic batteries and refocuses your attention on your marriage. Getting away helps you reprioritize your life to the things that are most important — like your wife!
If she says she loves cats, get her two of them. I have never liked cats; I’ve always been a dog person. But when I married my wife, she wanted a cat. So for our first Christmas together, I surprised her with a little kitten. I wanted to make her happy, so I set aside my own personal feelings, and made a little sacrifice. Now we have two cats (the first one had to have a friend). Seeing how much my wife loves them really brings me a lot of joy and satisfaction, knowing that I did something that she appreciates and loves. It fulfills her, and that pleases me.
There is nothing especially magical about these five tips for romancing your wife. The bottom line is putting her desires in front of your own. Being thoughtful shows your wife that you love and appreciate her, and that is what creates the romance. Follow this one simple rule, and you will make her fall in love with you all over again.
Taken from familylife.com by David Beasley. Copyright © 2006 FamilyLife. All rights reserved. Used by permission.