>”Marriage is a f***ing Marathon…”*

My husband used to do triathlons; he would swim, then bike, then run, as I quietly analyzed what sort of mental disorder would make him actually want to do all of that.

It wasn’t the actual competition, but the preparation that most intrigued me. As much as physical training, you had to have a plan – How will I support my body to endure what my heart most wishes to do?! This usually involved some personal combination of hydration, salt tablets, and these tiny packets of a sludgy substance called “gu” that one could ingest while in motion. Gu… more like EW!!!

These are just people like you and me, who deeply (though inexplicably) desire to SwimBikeRun through life, and have to listen and respond to their bodies under strenuous conditions, so that they can live that life.

And marriage is like that – it’s an endurance event; the part right up to “Happily Ever After” is only the short race; now, who does the dishes ‘ever after’? Who works harder, longer hours so that the other can go to school/ raise the children/ undergo chemo? Sickness and health, baby. Sickness and health.

To keep it healthy, we need to ‘feed’ our relationship constantly. We need to listen to our bodies, to each other, and respond effectively, or we’re in for a LOT more pain than there needs to be.

Your heart desires closeness; what does your body need to support that desire? What sort of ‘nutrition’ does it crave, to build a supportive relationship?

Sometimes we slip; we shut down or distract ourselves when we feel disconnected, because no one else talks about it; so of course you think something is terribly wrong, and you don’t want to feel like ‘the crazy one’. Again. So you ignore it and hope it will go away.  I get it. But it doesn’t get better on its own… not in the long run; not in the endurance event.

Decide right now what it is you want in your relationship – let your heart feel that desire you may have already given up. Now ask your body what it needs to make that a reality – what are you willing to do to make your relationship fit that desire, that vision? Then share this with your partner; (Tip: Think about how you would want to be spoken to, and use that voice). Be kind, but say what’s  on your mind. Chances are, your partner will have a few things to share as well.

Rediscover desire. Sounds like a great weekend project.

*Borrowed, totally without permission, from the film, The Kids are Alright







2 responses to “>”Marriage is a f***ing Marathon…”*”

  1. WonderWoman

    Great thoughts, Maggie- but what if my husband won’t listen?! It seems like we end up fighting whenever we try to talk!

    1. maggie

      Thanks, WonderWoman-
      Sometimes the space between us becomes so volatile that it really doesn’t feel safe to even approach each other.even saying something NICE feels risky! It’s like trying to feed cake to someone with a broken jaw- we have to heal a bit to take it in, no matter how sweet it is.
      If this sounds like you, it’s a great time to seek out some support, like a therapist trained in couples work, to help you clear away some of that nasty stuff so that you can start to “feed” your relationship again.

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