1. They're a Team- He has the vision, she brings the labor. In the house project he had lots of cool ideas that they put into action. However if my mom had not been there I think my dad may have talked about the projects for weeks before actually doing things. My mom: less talking more action. My dad: more talk less action. It works though.
2. They keep it real with each other: They say exactly what they're thinking ("that's not a good idea" "that looks terrible" "no way I'm not even going to consider that"). No sugar coating here! They don't even fake laugh at each other's jokes. I realized that I put a lot of fluffiness around things I try to say to Harrison when really all I need to say is "nope this isn't ok". Things would be a lot easier if I just got straight to the point like they do.
3. They know their limits: When we were working together they would hit a point where one would say "ok I'm done for the day" so they would help each other clean up, pop open some Bud Lights, eat some dinner, and hang out for the rest of the night. I usually get so wrapped up in projects that we WILL get it done no MATTER WHAT. This makes me have zero patience and snap on everyone. They don't even let it get to that point.
4. Work hard and play hard together: These two are workhorses. I've never seen anything like it. During the house project they would work for 15 straight hours, practically building a house, then drink a case of beer together over pizza. They also live in a super social neighborhood and are really socially active, so they have a lot of fun sometimes together and sometimes separately.
5. They have each other's backs: Sometimes I'm convinced one of them has totally lost it or is crazy (or in the case of high school, convinced one of them was always trying to ruin my life), but no matter what they've never talked about each other to the kids. They keep it real about things being tough sometimes, but those are situations or issues, they never say anything bad about the actual person.
6. They are unwavering in their shared values: God and family are the top for both of them. They always go to church together, weekly couples Bible study, and pray together. They would both do anything for our family, and I think when those are the top two things in life decisions are pretty easy to make.
7. They talk all the time about everything: During the home reno stuff, my dad would come up by himself during the week and stay with us. He called my mom every night (and sometimes a few times during the day) and told her every little detail of his day. At one point I was like there is no way my mom is still listening to this, I'm pretty sure my dad was explaining how many steps he took on the sidewalk. But she was actively listening and asking questions! So besides talking, they also both listen. Usually.
8. They laugh. A lot. My dad is a universally funny, Daily Show kinda guy but somehow he finds my mom's preschool teacher sense of humor hilarious, and her preschool teacher sense of humor finds his Daily Show sense of humor hilarious. When I was little I thought they were SO annoying because their laughing would wake me up at night, and sometimes sitting in church one of them would whisper something to the other that would set them into a giggle fit (talk about humiliating/totally gross for a teenager to sit next to).
9. Not being together is NOT an option: I have never once in my life heard either of my parents threaten to leave or threaten the D word. They've had some hard times but they got through them, which has shown me that relationships aren't all glitter and rainbows. I remember one time trying to explain my theory on this to Harrison and it went like this (keep in mind, I can articulate in writing, speaking really isn't my thing):
Me: I mean things get hard, relationships are like a roller coaster. You have to go up that long hill really slowly before you get to the drop and the upside down part. If you just jumped off when it got boring or wasn't what you wanted to be doing you would literally die. Plus you would miss a lot of the fun stuff10. They forgive: For some reason this one memory is engrained in my head- I was probably 10 years old and I was sitting in the kitchen eating Froot Loops (isn't it crazy the things that stick with us?) and my parents got into a really heated argument with both of them raising their voices and then storming off. They never raise their voices so I was scared, plus when my mom is angry it is top 5 scariest things in the world. Before I took my last bite of cereal (granted I am an incredibly slow eater), my mom returned to the kitchen to do something at the sink. My dad came in behind her, hugged her, they kissed (sick) and he said he was sorry and she said it's ok and they had an incredibly civilized conversation about why they were frustrated. Even at the age of 10 I was completely baffled. But I guess when you go by #9, there really isn't a point in staying mad at each other.
Harrison: So you're saying if we broke up you believe I would actually die?
Ok now just look at these cuties, and that tux! Oh that tux!
Tell me- what do YOU think makes relationships last? What do you hope to take into your relationships?