Sacrifice the Self
Sex is always on the table, stipulation number one. Phone sex does not count, stipulation number two. Pretty basic rules for our game, but why even play the game?
Sex always being on the table takes the wonder out of the night, for me (Christina), this curbs my anxiety to be ready for the night, mentally and physically. I know it is coming so being prepared becomes a part of my evening routine. Being prepared for the end of the night has taken on different forms; from planning ahead so I have enough energy to give my husband, to keeping on an especially cute outfit longer into the evening instead of changing into my pajamas. Sometimes just putting forth the effort to remember our nightly tryst was “planning” my energy level for the night in our early stages of this streak. Although, quite frankly, we often tease about my usual choice to wear something comfy come seven or eight o’clock. Several years ago a movie called Extract came out. The poor, unsatisfied husband would do all he could to make it home before his wife pulled on and tightly cinched up her unflattering sweatpants, signifying no fun for the rest of the night. Even though we have never been that couple, I do often make a wholehearted attempt to look good for my husband.
But not just for him. For me too, and for us together.
When I put forth the effort in my appearance I feel more like being connected with my husband.
Men are visual, women are emotional. I have to remember to speak his visual language from time to time, to move and behave in a way that he appreciates, not just to expect reciprocal behavior but to show my love to him. Our streak has become many small lessons in listening to my husband’s desires to show him the love I know he wants and deserves. It also makes me more emotionally healthy to look and feel good about myself.
Getting physically and mentally prepared each day has not shackled me to all the negative connotations “Prettying myself up for a man” has. It is more a state of being and acknowledgement of who we need to be for each other not a loss of self for the randy-ness of a man. I started holding myself to a higher standard for being in a relationship than I had for being single. Not in a “Keeping up with the Jones’” kind of way but in a keeping-up-with-what-God-wants-for-my-marriage kind of way.
This behavior choice started primarily with my home. Every time a guest comes over to visit I make sure the house is clean and smells nice. I de-cat hair the furniture, pick up clutter and air out the house. Food and drinks are often offered and the children tend to be occupied during our visit. I don’t do all that to say to our guest, “See, my house is better than yours”. I do it for the comfort of the guest I’ve asked into my home. This ensures their visit ceases to be about me and becomes about them.
It’s self-sacrifice and a time for others.
As this streak moved into and beyond days 100, 200 and so on I continue to carry this self-sacrificing, do-for-others mentality with me. Not always and not consistently, especially in the early stages of our streak, but with each passing night the desire to do and be for another human being, especially my husband whom I vowed to love the most, grows and grows.
Some nights my preparation does come in the form of extra primping and preening but more often than not my state of mind, ready for action, is more beautiful to him than clothing choice, extra make-up and knee high leather (okay pleather) boots. He tells me quite often I am “hot” when I dress up but tells me I am “beautiful” (even after 620 nights) when he sees me wear my readiness and confidence.
Hotness is a nice-to-experience-fleeting- superficiality, while beautiful is a peaceful home.
How can you be self-sacrificing for your spouse today?