Our Book Club

Up Reading

OMG, so first of all, i ADORE the movie Up, from which this pic was taken. i love how Carl and Ellie loved each other and took care of each other. And i know it is a cartoon, but i always connected with the love and friendship and devotion they had for each other. So when i discovered this image when looking for something to use in this blog, i nearly teared up!

Maximus had a busy travel week, actually He’s had several busy travel weeks, with some extremely important corporate meetings. Generally, when He travels, He works on the plane, but He mentioned to me before He left that He was going to use this trip to read The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts by Gary Chapman that i had blogged about in Translation!! Shhh, don’t tell anyone, but we share the same Kindle account so we can share books with each other! i hadn’t asked Him to do that and i really appreciated that He wanted to use His time on something for us.

When He landed after the first flight, He texted, “Wow. Read most of the book. It nailed us. Amazing. Thanks so much for sharing this. Have lots to talk about regarding the book. Lots of questions.” i was very excited about this! He nearly finished the rest of the book during his second flight and made a point to stay up very late, given the time zone differences between us, so we could discuss it. He had highlighted passages all throughout the book and i was able to follow along as He went through it section by section as His highlights showed up on my Kindle too!

Here are some of the passages Maximus connected with and some of our discussion about them:

We cannot erase the past, but we can accept it as history. We can choose to live today free from the failures of yesterday. Forgiveness is not a feeling; it is a commitment…I am amazed by how many individuals mess up every new day with yesterday.

We discussed letting bygones be bygones, both in experiences with previous relationships and in past resolved issues we have had with each other.

By “quality time,” I mean giving someone your undivided attention…When I sit with my wife and give her twenty minutes of my undivided attention and she does the same for me, we are giving each other twenty minutes of life. We will never have those twenty minutes again; we are giving our lives to each other. It is a powerful emotional communicator of love. It isn’t enough to just be in the same room with someone… A key ingredient in giving your spouse quality time is giving them focused attention…

Maximus made a commitment to better about not multi-tasking while we are talking, whether it be in person, over the phone, or via Skype. He does feel He does a good job at juggling other tasks while talking, but i feel He is distracted or that feels our discussion isn’t important enough to give His undivided attention to.

i also shared that when we are traveling, while we are sitting in an airplane at the gate or on the tarmac waiting to depart, i would prefer that He not play games or surf Twitter, etc., rather use the time to sit and talk. i’d not mentioned this to Him previously, but it has been something that’s bothered me when we’ve traveled together. i figured it was just habit from His frequent flying for work, and He concurred–it hadn’t even crossed His mind.

Recent research has indicated that the average individual listens for only seventeen seconds before interrupting.

We chuckled about this one. Maximus is learning to count seconds! And i’m paying more attention to not interrupting as well.

The “Babbling Brook.” For this personality, whatever enters into the eye gate or the ear gate comes out the mouth gate and there are seldom sixty seconds between the two. Whatever they see, whatever they hear, they tell.

Maximus is the poster child for the “Babbling Brook.” This is an area where we have had communication problems, in that He thinks aloud while talking in a conversation and i have gone along thinking a decision was made or a thought process completed and acted or responded accordingly, only to find that those were just thoughts and ideas, not the final product! i take things in and process them and then communicate final decisions or crafted responses–it is why i love writing so much, as i can dump ideas and then edit and move them around and fine tune them into a final product. Maximus is learning not to verbally dump, rather be more articulate, and i am learning to ask whether or not something is a thought in process or a final decision.

…establish a daily sharing time in which each of you will talk about three things that happened to you that day and how you feel about them.

i have learned that Maximus really, really values hearing about my day and sharing all the things that he did during His. i have misunderstood the meaning of Maximus’ daily recounting–i took it as reasons He was too busy to talk. And many times, in addition, Maximus has been such a Babbling Brook about His day that by the time He’s gotten around to ask about mine, i’m just so overwhelmed by all His words that i minimize my response to a few sentences. We are both working to improve in this area.

Quality activities may include anything in which one or both of you have an interest. The emphasis is not on what you are doing but on why you are doing it. The purpose is to experience something together, to walk away from it feeling, “He cares about me. He was willing to do something with me that I enjoy, and he did it with a positive attitude.” That is love, and for some people it is love’s loudest voice…The essential ingredients in a quality activity are: (1) at least one of you wants to do it,(2) the other is willing to do it, and (3) both of you know why you are doing it–to express love by being together. One of the by-products of quality activities is that they provide a memory from which to draw in the years ahead.

We both feel that this is an area where we perform very well. We will use this as a springboard to improve other areas that need work.

A gift is something you can hold in your hand and say, “Look, he was thinking of me,” or “She remembered me.” You must be thinking of someone to give him a gift. The gift itself is a symbol of that thought. It doesn’t matter whether it costs money. What is important is that you thought of him. And it is not the thought implanted only in the mind that counts but the thought expressed in actually securing the gift and giving it as the expression of love.

…symbols have emotional value...If receiving gifts is my primary love language, I will place great value on the [wedding] ring you have given me and I will wear it with great pride. I will also be greatly moved emotionally by other gifts that you give through the years. I will see them as expressions of love. Without gifts as visual symbols, I may question your love.

Gifts come in all sizes, colors, and shapes. Some are expensive, and others are free. To the individual whose primary love language is receiving gifts. the cost of the gift will matter little, unless it is greatly out of line with what you can afford. If a millionaire gives only one-dollar gifts regular, the spouse may question whether that is an expression of love. but when family finances are limited, a one-dollar gift may speak a million dollars’ worth of love…For the man who can afford it, you can purchase a beautiful card for less than five dollars. For the man who cannot, you can make one for free…If receiving gifts is his/her primary love language, almost anything you give will be received as an expression of love…You are investing in your relationship and filling your spouse’s emotional love tank, and with a full love tank, he or she will likely reciprocate emotional love to you in a language you will understand.

We had a lot of discussion about gifts, as it is my primary love language, and an area we have been miscommunicating in. i truly connect with the feeling that a gift shows that someone what thinking about you. This has been a topic of several discussions, disagreements, and dialogues, in that i just felt forgotten by Maximus. Most times, the gift i most wanted was a text that He was thinking about me, as simple as that. Other times, Maximus has mentioned He was going out to look for a gift for me, but then no gift ever appeared and it left me wondering what i had done to not deserve the gift He said He was shopping for. Or moreover, He would send me pictures of gifts that i never received. It was very confusing to me and i have felt hurt many times over it.

i did not understand my feelings about desiring gifts until i read this book. Because of this, i was embarrassed by wanting symbols or tokens of affection, thinking it would make me appear materialistic, which i absolutely am not. So, to temper this, i have told Maximus not to buy me expensive gifts, that i didn’t want them. But then i resented that i did not get anything! It’s not that i need expensive gifts, i just feel special and thought of when i receive a token of affection. It makes me feel special, and it’s ok to acknowledge that. Maximus has wanted nothing more than to give me gifts, but i have communicated to Him not to. He is excited to be able to follow His instinct now.

As my love language is gifts, i have been communicating my love Maximus by giving gifts to Him–but that is His least desired love language! So the ring i gave Him, meant the world to me, a symbol of my love for Him to wear, but did not have the same impact on Him. He now understands why i found it so devastating when He’d removed the ring after my last rage event–i was crushed by the symbolism that told me He no longer loved me, which was not the case at all. To Him, it was a ring. To me, it was my heart.

Physical presence in a time of crisis is the most powerful gift you can give if your souse’s primary love language is receiving gifts. Your body becomes the symbol of your love. Remove the symbol and the sense of love evaporates.

Huge revelation here for Maximus! One of my rage events stemmed around Maximus’ decision to come be with me after my grandmother passed away. He never thought for a minute about not going, but His Babbling Brook communication led me to believe that He was questioning going and was too busy to take the time to be there for me. This was a big eye-opener for Him.

Acts of service…doing things you know your spouse would like you to do. You seek to please her by serving her, to express your love for her by doing things for her.

This is Maximus’ primary love language. Now, i have been communicating to Maximus in what i thought were gifts: making meals, sewing a quilt, redecorating His home, painting, but it turns out, those really aren’t gifts, those are acts of service. To me, it was a gift of my time, energy, and expertise–to Him, they were actions that showed true love.

What is very interesting is that my submission in our D/s relationship is an act of service! Maximus feel immense love from this. What’s even more interesting is that i have felt it was my gift to Him–it’s even reflected in the name of my blog!

We really had a great conversation about this book. In fact, it met both of our primary love languages…a gift of His time to go through the book and share passages of meaning, quality “us” time, and an act of service from me to find something that would be so helpful for Him in our relationship. We have talked a lot about the information in this book and have employed a lot of the techniques and suggestions in it. And i got flowers delivered–the first time EVER any man has sent me flowers! It was heavenly and i’m still walking on air about them! Talk about a full love tank!

Categories: BDSM relationship, communication, relationship, relationship needs, The 5 Love Languages, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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