Archive for September, 2010

Mentor

September 13, 2010

Many of us have had a mentor… someone who has helped shape who we are and helped us to realize our full potential. For Maureen and I, one of our greatest mentors has been Hedy Schleifer, a brilliant couples therapist and teacher to many worldwide.

We invite you to experience Hedy by watching the clip below. In this lecture, taped in Tel Aviv in April 2010, she sums of 35-years of working with couples by saying that the key point we all need to remember is to cross the bridge over the space between us so that we can fully encounter one another. ENJOY!!!!

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Markers… Yours, Mine and Ours

September 6, 2010

Flickr / ornellaswouldgo

Why mark important events?

What markers are worth marking?

How should they be marked?

Some dates we mark because we love to celebrate happy times; some because we are grieving a loss; and some we feel we must acknowledge even if we don’t really want to (certain birthdays come to mind when I think about the latter! I had one of those this year and let’s just say it remains unmentionable). But back to relationship markers…

The marker that I feel most proud of, my greatest achievement of late is my 25th anniversary with my life partner Sarah. In gay years that’s actually 175 years because it is said that a gay year is like a dog year – you get 7 years for a straight folk’s 1 year because it is so damn hard. Well we have made it this far and wow have we been marking it BIG! 75 or 25 it doesn’t much matter it’s a LONG time believe me!

First off we went to Maui for 2 weeks with no kids. What a paradise: sun, beauty, beaches and pineapples galore. What a place to reconnect and remember what’s important. We had lots of dialogues about little and big stuff. We had tons of fun. We watched the sunset every night and walked the beach every day. We ate, we drank, we rested. It was just what we needed to mark our time together.

It’s been a summer of marking the time….. dinners with friends and family; many indulgences; we keep remarking a few times a week things like, “wow can you believe it’s been 25 years?!” or, “the time has sure gone by fast” or, “wow, feels like a lifetime time moves so slow!” or, “you know I still really like you”.

Let’s be honest. It has not been a bed of roses, sweetness and good moods. OH NO, not at all.

It’s been more like a constant sea of change. Like a wave: there’s the high of course, the crest which is the best part and then just when it seems as if it is going to last, crash we are at the low point only to build up again and the cycle continues. I guess after all these years I’ve learned that’s just life.

Way back when, in the beginning, of course it was wonderful. We were so young and actually had no idea about anything let alone relationships. Determined, in love, confident, conflict avoiders; pleasure seekers, — that was us.

Then a few years later add a dog, mortgage, a renovation, separate careers and 2 kids to the mix…all of sudden we had lots to disagree about!  That was just about the time we found Imago. Goodness knows what would have happened if we hadn’t.

So how have we completed 25 years with grace? I’d say our recipe was  about 3000 dialogues (ok, maybe 500), tons of humour, countless date nights, some serious setbacks and a whole lotta  trying. At the time, we didn’t know it was our recipe. No magic, just a lot of plodding and more commitment to”us” than I would ever have imagined possible.

There is one more key dynamic that I am still learning about and am far from perfecting. As we mark 25 years, I realize we are both continuing to mature to the point where we can delight in the other partner being who they really are, not who we want the other to be (this is another blog entry unto itself so stay tuned.)

I can say I am truly happy and grateful for all the work we have done that has taken us to this point.

Oh yeah, one more thing, happy markers are a great excuse for a party!!

Dare ya –

Mark something about your relationship you are proud of…anything. Contact us and tell us about it!

Yours truly,

T at 25!