One of the books that has been the most influential to our relationship is called “A Severe Mercy”. It is a true story of a couple who fell deeply in love, and since they weren’t Christians, didn’t know anything to live for besides their love. Because their love for one another was the most incredible thing either had ever encountered, they devised plans and executed practices to specifically protect their love for one another. Later in the story they encounter Christ- with the help of C.S. Lewis, no less- (really it’s a very interesting read). An untimely death was the only thing that finally “defeated” their love. ((But can love ever really be defeated??))
There were several practices and nuances that Josh and I adapted into our relationship that were inspired by this couple. Some of which are private to us so they’ll never get posted on a blog. But some of them are worth sharing: and I think our “You ‘aight?” Day is one of those things.
The couple we read about would take a monthly inventory of their relationship. A check up, if you will. So do we. The first Sunday of every month is called “You ‘aight? Day” It’s an open opportunity to discuss our relationship, our hearts, how we are really, truly doing. Are you alright? It’s a simple but important question. Anyhow, just recently we decided to take it very, very seriously- so we devised a list of questions… questions that really aren’t that easy to talk about. Questions that could stir up some mixed emotions and maybe cause hurt feelings. But we honestly believe that it is better to be proactive about the “little things” then to waste away… not talking about the small, but vastly important longings, desires, dislikes, and likes of our hearts.
Anyway… here it is :-)
“You Aight? Day” Questions:
- Have I been fulfilling your emotional needs?/ Do you feel like I have been? (Give examples)
- What have I done in the last month that has made you feel loved?
- Is there anything I have done in the last month that made you feel unloved, disrespected, or unappreciated?
- Have you noticed and/or have I begun any habits that annoy you?
- Have we had enough sex to fulfill each other physically and emotionally? Are you sexually satisfied?
- Is there anything that I don’t do enough of? Or that you would like my help doing?
- Have we shared in enough adventures?
- Have we shared in enough romantic moments?
- Do you feel like I am handling our money well?
- Have you noticed any negative changes in me, my personality, or my habits?
- Am I giving you enough alone time?
- Have you felt a sense of “creeping separateness”?
- Is there anything at all that you would like to say to me or discuss- that you just haven’t been able to bring up?
- Have you been struggling with any temptations that I’m unaware of?
- Do you felt that we have communicated well? (Fought fairly, conversed freely and frequently, known each others hearts?)
- What do you love about me?
- What are good things that you have seen in me lately?
- Have you noticed any positive changes in me?
Going through these questions has been easy so far. We are greatly enjoying each other and being married. But I know that as life progresses and our circumstances change, these questions may become difficult. They’ll stir things up. But I am convinced that communication… and being proactive about the things that destroy love and “in love” feelings… is really going to preserve our “Honeymoon phase”.