I had the strangest dream this week. It was like a romantic comedy I’d never seen before, and my husband and I were the lead roles. Of course, as dreams often go, we weren’t married. In the dream we were just friends with some kind of romantic attempt in our past that didn’t quite work out. You know how dreams are – I knew all of this without it being explicitly explained. Anyway, at some point, after a failed attempt at another relationship, Dan surprised me with a video montage of our lifetime of friendship. In the video he had all our friends and family members speaking on camera (aka, an Oprah special) about why we belonged together and how perfectly we were matched for each other.
I woke up with that satisfied feeling you have after watching a circular Hollywood love potion. It was a cute movie (in my dream mind). I also woke up with a new crush on my husband. It was the opposite of that icky feeling you have after waking up from a nightmare and you can’t really tell for a little bit if someone really did just fill your room with snakes or if that was probably just a dream.
Nothing in our relationship actually changed. For all I know, I went to bed frustrated with him for some stupid reason or another, but in the morning I woke up different. The only thing that had changed was the way I had been thinking about him.
This is the power of emotions to maintain passion in a committed relationship. My sister says I have an uncanny ability to have movie-like dreams with subjects of my own choosing. I did manage to have some pretty sweet dreams about me and Kirk Cameron back in the day, but I didn’t plan this one about Dan. And channeling my emotions of good doesn’t have to be about a dream. It could be about a conscious decision to remember the feelings I had when Dan and I first met. Or about the choice to write him a love note even when I don’t feel necessarily loving. When I make the decision, my emotions start to follow.
My little sister got married here at this park in St. Joseph. Isn’t it beautiful? For Christmas I printed copies of this picture and put it in a nice frame. My thought was that every time she walked by it, even though it is just a landscape, she would remember the feelings of that gorgeous August day. It would stir the emotions of new love even when her love grows older. I know it makes a difference. My grandpa has never failed, in over 60 years of marriage, to take my grandmother out to dinner on their anniversary, even if it is just cold sandwiches at a diner. Decisions make a difference and the strength of our marriages (or other committed relationships) will be the beneficiaries. Dream on, sisters!