Two of my favorite Albert Einstein quotes:
“Imagination is more important than knowledge.”
“I am not especially clever nor especially gifted. I am only very, very curious.”
So, what does Einstein have to do with relationships? Is there some quantum physics related to successful relationships? I really don’t know the answer to that, but wouldn’t that be crazy if there were?
What I do believe is that imagination and curiosity are essential ingredients to long lasting relationships.
This past Saturday we attended a wedding – my husband’s niece.
Beautiful bride, beautiful ceremony, beautiful setting. Out of doors under two-hundred-year old white oak trees, they formed their perfect union surrounded by loving friends and family. Even with overcast skies it felt like the sun shone down on everyone. Stories shared; prayers offered.
The minister said something I’ve heard before, but this time landed in a new way. That this particular group of people gathered together would likely never come together again exactly in this configuration. And yet, we were there. Each of us was there to bear witness and support their successful marriage.
That struck me. Sitting in a sea of witnesses, I felt anonymous in a pretty diverse group that had driven or flown in from across the country. I wondered if other wedding guests were thinking what I was thinking. How can I support them if I don’t see them? How do I support them without meddling in their lives?
He then said that even though today was joyful,
‘Hard times are coming – lack of money, joblessness, illness, depression, isolation – they come to everyone’
Then he read from Ecclesiastes 4:12, ‘And though one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.’ Or as the easy to read version says, ‘An enemy might be able to defeat one person, but two people can stand back-to-back to defend each other. And three people are even stronger. They are like a rope that has three parts wrapped together—it is very hard to break.’
The cord of three strands: “God’s Knot” that symbolizes the joining of two people, and God into a marriage relationship. It is thought by keeping God at the center of your marriage, His love will continue to bind you together as one throughout your marriage.
Beautiful thought, and still pretty ambiguous.
In the recovery world members of various anonymous groups talk about God as their Higher Power. It can be God, your sponsor, the group, whatever resonates with you. The message is clear regardless of where you place your faith. The important thing to remember is, you can’t do it alone. You need to have something bigger than yourself to walk along-side you as your expert companion.
At dinner (it was a 5:30 wedding with dinner and dancing after) I found myself at a table with a couple who had been married fifty-some years. I asked them how they did it. The husband got me laughing as he quipped ‘Thirty-four of those years were great, the other sixteen were terrible.’
What was their secret? Honestly, I couldn’t hear over the sound of the band and banter. What I loved about them was the obvious friendship and affection they had for each other. And obvious fun they must have together. Before I knew it, they were out on the dance floor cutting the rug with the youngest there.
So, what is the secret sauce?
I believe there are many factors that make the difference in whether or not two people make it in a relationship. Balance of power, love & friendship, support, a sense of humor, affection, and imagination & curiosity.
A willingness to look under rocks to find out what the truth is.
Imagination to break free from getting into a rut, whereby we ‘Do the same things over and over again expecting different results.’
Curiosity to ask more questions instead of making assumptions about what someone thinks, feels, or wants.
Openness to new ways of being and doing things.
Afterall, we live a heck of a long time today. People change and grow. How can we embrace change in each other?
And my prayer for our niece and her new husband – what do I want for them as they begin their new life together?
May you allow imagination and curiosity to be your constant companions.
May you embrace what comes with courage, faith, and affection.
May you laugh, love, and live with glorious abandon, enjoy every good thing,
and share generously with everyone you meet.
I hope each of you is blessed with these very same things in your relationships. It’s not easy. We create so much of what happens to and for us in our lives. Many of us did not have good relationship models; don’t have a “relationship template” to follow or guide us. If you are struggling, I am here to help. Let’s chat. Just follow this link to book your discovery session. https://www.dianeweekley.com/booking/
The first step is always the hardest.
The next is easier.
Make your appointment today.