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An Interesting Thing About Marriage...

An Interesting Thing About Marriage...

My husband recently celebrated a birthday, and I kind of went all out for it.  Despite the fact that this was sort of a milestone birthday for him, I tend to have a grand view of birthdays overall.  We've been together for 5 years and married for a little over 2 years now, and around this time of year we seem to have the same "discussion/disagreement" - how to celebrate his birthday.  He is someone that will tell you the one specific thing (and a birthday card) he wants for his birthday, but I am just the opposite.  For my birthday I always tell him, "I want an experience."  It never fails - he will often give me some basic gift idea and I will turn up my nose and plead my case for why we need to do more for his birthday!  He will in turn argue me down about why there is no need to do the most for his birthday - just get him a card and his basic present.  On my birthday, he struggles to decode my request for "an experience".  And the carousel goes round and round and round.

You see, because we have differing opinions about what we want for our birthdays, we tend to hit unnecessary roadblocks by doing for the other person what we really want for ourselves.  In my case, I decided to get him his basic gift and give an experience.  He will give an experience but also a gift.  Although we are both ultimately grateful, we both end up feeling some type of way about the other person's execution.

Him: "You didn't really have to fill the entire room with balloons and do a scavenger hunt" (true story). 
Me: "I don't need another pair of earrings - I just want to go to the spa and then I want you to make dinner and rub my feet."

This year we finally had a heart to heart about our differing views on how to celebrate a birthday, and I actually learned something about marriage.  Sometimes the best way to honor the other person is to listen and not try to impose your own way of doing things on them.  And while we are always thankful for the support, love and sentiment the other person shows, there is something to be said about loving and celebrating that person in the way that will resonate best with them.  It's a part of marriage that we are both learning how to embrace - the shift to seeing things from the other person's perspective and not resisting it.

What do you do for your significant other's birthday? Do you have this similar discussion?

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