Posted in Personal, Relationships

I believe in Happy Endings

I have been married to my husband for 8 years and just like many wives, I too wish to have a lasting marriage.

However, I will admit to you that there were times when I thought that I made a mistake in choosing the right husband for me. There were times when I hated him more than I love him. There were times when I thought about leaving him because I didn’t feel loved and appreciated… but I THANK GOD THAT I DID NOT.

So, is there really a “lived happily ever after” when two lovers get married?

I know 8 years of being married is not long enough to be such an expert person in the subject matter of relationship and love- and I must admit, I am always learning. But please let me share with you what I have learned on how to make relationships work and I hope that these would be helpful to you too.

1. Once the feeling of being-in love is gone, real love begins.

What do I mean with this? After the period of cheesy, mushy, heavenly feeling of falling and feeling in love with someone, you will start to see the things that you do not necessarily like with the other person.

The girlfriend you appreciated for looking good when you go out on a date is now the annoying wife who takes hours in the bathroom to get herself fixed.

The boyfriend you were proud of for being smart and dependable is now the irritating husband who always nags when he sees something that is out of tune.

I believe this true to every relationship. After the heightened emotion of being in-love is over, we get back to reality. And the reality is that you and your partner are not perfect. But we need to accept this fact, otherwise, we only jump from one relationship to another. And so we need to decide and commit to stay in love.

I realize that Love is not a feeling, but rather, Love is hard work. When I come to accept this, it became easier for me to deal and worked on the imperfections of our relationship.

2. You need to discover the love language of your partner to be able to show love.

This is probably the biggest relationship-changer for me. You see, I was like other people. I thought that the way I want to be loved is also how my husband want to be loved. Was I ever so wrong in my life.

According to Dr. Gary Chapman, there are 5 Languages of Love. These 5 languages are different ways to show love to a person, and each person has their own primary love language- the way for them to feel that they are loved.

The 5 languages of love are:
1. Words of Affirmation
2. Quality Time
3. Receiving Gifts
4. Acts of Service
5. Physical Touch

A person who has Words of Affirmation as love language will feel very much loved when he is always told “I love You”, “I appreciate what you do”, “You’re doing a great Job!”, “I love how you did this…”, “Thank you for doing this..”

A person who has Quality Time as language of love may appreciate these words of affirmation, but may not necessarily feel loved when his spouse is not spending time talking to him, or when they aren’t going out on a date. He feels much more loved when he is in the company of his loved one with undivided attention.

You see,  for years  I and my husband have been showing love in the wrong language. I didn’t know that his love language is “Acts of Service” and he didn’t know that mine is “Quality Time”.

Since I go to work, I leave most of the house chore to our helper so I could spend more time taking care of our daughter when I’m at home. I didn’t know that I could show my husband that I love him if I just make him his coffee, prepare his meals, or trim his nails (now please don’t judge, I have a different love language!) I did little act of service for him. I could just imagine how little love he must have felt from me.

At the same time, I didn’t feel that much appreciated and loved too since we seldom go on dates- just the two of us. We always go out as a whole family. We go out of town to visit relatives or be with friends, but not alone together as couple. He showed love thru the language he knows- he washes the dishes when the helper is not around, he fixes our bed, he pays the bills- but all these things didn’t speak love to me. Perhaps now you see the disaster! We both love each other and express it in ways that do not speak love to us!

I shared this discovery to my husband and we made adjustments almost instantly. Now we feel much more loved by each other and we are happier definitely! 🙂

3. Love is a choice.
We are humans and we make mistakes. Our partners may do or say things that hurt us. We may fall short of expectations. We may disappoint one another. And we may even hate each other sometimes. But we always have a choice. We can choose to forgive and move on or dwell in past failures and allow hurt to continue to wound us. We can choose to listen and see things in our partners’ perspectives to be able to understand, or refuse to seek understanding. We may choose to stick thru thick and thin, or leave when the going gets tough.

I choose LOVE. I choose to love my imperfect husband like he chooses to love his imperfect wife. I will choose to always forgive him. I will choose to always have hope for him. Just like Jesus loves and forgives us. Together we will do our best to make sure that our marriage will have the “Happily Ever After” ending.

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Posted in Psychology, Relationships

Why Falling In Love is Not Real Love

If I were to be asked the best thing that could happen to a person, my answer would be to feel loved. I bet many of us have enjoyed the experience of falling in love. But what if I tell you falling in love is not real love ?

Before I tell you why. Let us see what Falling In Love is…

  • Falling in love comes naturally.

You see the other person, you get attracted- you heart beats fast, you can think of nothing else but him or her. You’ve got butterflies on your stomach. You’re on cloud-nine whenever you’re together. You don’t decide when and to whom. You just feel it. Sometimes we even fall in love to the person we least expect to fall in love with. Moreover, you also cannot force your self to fall in love. No matter how much you want, you cannot just make it happen.

  • Falling in love is effortless.

Whatever we do when we fall in love is not difficult to do. Sometimes, we spend money on dates, but it’s okay as long as we’re having dinner with our beloved. We fly to the other side of the world, but it’s okay as long as we could be with our partner even if it’s only for a few hours. You may skip basketball games with your peers because you have to go with her on a tree planting activity. OR you will pass on salon day with your best friend because you will watch him play baseball. ALL these things will be effortless. It doesn’t require much will-power.

  • Falling in love is finding your perfect match, and feeling in love forever.

You finally meet the perfect guy or girl who completes you. He/she is everything you’re looking for in a partner. You just know the he/she is THE ONE for you. You will never look at another person again.

Falling in love is an experience of temporary emotional high. It will not last long enough to sustain a happy relationship.

LOVE will. So, if falling in love is not real love. What is Real LOVE?

As a matter of fact, Real Love requires what is not present in falling in love.

  • Real Love requires Decision.

Sometimes, we hate the person we love but does it mean we stop loving them? No. You still make coffee for your husband in the morning even if you’re mad at him for not mowing the lawn. You still drive your wife to work even if you’re pissed because she forgot to pay the electric bill. Love is a Choice.

  • Real Love requires Effort.

Sometimes, we don’t want to do things but because we love, we exert effort and still do them.

A tired and sleepy mom would still wake up in the middle to the night to feed their baby. A father who worked overnight will still wake up very early in the morning to drive the children in school. You don’t know how to cook but your spouse loves home-cooked meal so you learn the art of cooking and be the best food engineer! That is love.

  • Real Love requires Commitment.

The person you love may hurt you, annoy you, make you angry, make you jealous, belittle you, or disrespect you…but if you’re committed, you will always remind your self to love them in spite and despite of. Does it mean you have to just take in and tolerate the negatives? Nope… there is a thing called Tough Love!

In addition, there will always be a time when you will find another person who is better than your spouse or partner in one or more criteria. Again, we have to remind ourselves to be committed & choose to stay in our relationships.

LOVE works with Hard Work in order to survive obstacles. Loving is simple BUT it is not always easy. Nonetheless, the reward is always worth 10 times more the effort! 🙂

nina-feb

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Posted in Life & Wellness, Positive Thinking, Relationships

Life is good when there is Love

“Where there is Love, there is Life”- Mahatma Ghandi

There are many things in life that I simply love.

I love reading a good book… I love listening to soothing music… I love coloring my book… I love drinking coffee… I love cooking for my family… I love my movie dates and dinners with hubby… I love stargazing and cloud-watching with my daughter… I love hugs and flowers… I love going out of town…I love a lot more other things…

BUT I made a discovery and found out another thing that I love which for is really sweet and gives me so much more satisfaction. It is something that really melts my heart and you would not guess what it is.

I love combing my mom’s hair.

Yes, it’s downright simple happiness for me.

As I gently comb my mom’s hair, I feel nothing but great love and respect for her. I know more than 30 years ago, she was the one combing my hair with such great care.

My mom loves me and my 3 other siblings very much and I know she does up until now that we have our own family. Her love and care for us never ceased. In fact, she also shows the same affection to her grandkids and treat our spouses like her own children.

So every time I do an act of service for her, my heart delights on it- every second of it!

Whenever we get the chance to be together as family, I realize how my mom and my dad are also getting older… That’s a reality that I can do nothing about. I can’t freeze time and wish that we could all just stay as we are at this present time. No- that is impossible. BUT LIFE IS GOOD.

Life is good because we have a technology that allow us to see each other as if we’re in the same place. Everyday they get to see their grandkids grow up. No matter the distance, we can be there for each other when we need to. We do not feel that we’re alone.

Life is good simply because every day is an opportunity to make people in our lives happy. Every day, I get the chance to tell them that I love them. Life is good because there is LOVE.

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Posted in Inspirational, Life & Wellness, Relationships

Oldies but Goodies!

Hello Everyone,

This week is a very busy week for me. It’s my daughter’s quarter exam week at school, my mom’s here with us for a visit, and it’s the time at work again when I have to do my month-end reports…

Anyways, I still don’t want to leave you guys with nothing on my blog. So here are some of my older posts (written during my first months of blogging) that I would like to share with you again especially that it fits my theme for this month of February. Enjoy!…and I am still  interested on what think of the posts 🙂

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Posted in Inspirational, Relationships

Happiness…want some?

“The grand essentials to happiness in this life are Something To Do, Something To Love, and Something to Hope for.”- George Washington Burnap

I love George’s essentials to Happiness. I agree with him 100%. According to him, people are happy when they have these 3 things:
1. Something to Do.

Whenever my mom comes to visit us (my family or my sisters’), she is always “on the move”. She cooks for us, she feeds my daughter, she does whatever household chore she could do in our home and I don’t stop her- okay, I help her instead :). Why do I allow her to do the things she does? Because it makes her happy to do so.

The reason is obvious. When we have something to do, we have a purpose. It gives us the feeling that we are useful and needed. It gives us a sense of fulfillment.

2. Someone to Love.

Show me a person in a healthy loving relationship and I’ll show you a happy person. Show me someone who lives selfishly alone and I’ll show you one miserable being.

Everybody needs to love and be loved. That is how we are designed by our Creator. The fish is designed to live in the water- take it from the water and it dies. A bird is designed to fly in the air. Put it in the water and it dies. When God created man, He said that “it is not good for man to be alone.” (Genesis 2:18). We are designed to be with someone to share the gift of love. Take love away from us and we die too.

3. Something to Hope for.

If we have something to look forward to everyday, it excites us. For some, it gives them a sense of direction in life- a goal to strive for.

It is lonely when life is just a pattern of “waking up- eating- going to work- going home- sleeping”… Surely there must be something more about life that we could hope for.

So my dear friends, if you want to live happier, you know what to look for. They are definitely out there somewhere for us to discover! 🙂

nina-feb

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Posted in Life & Wellness, Relationships

Relationship Drifts

“The best thing to hold onto in life is each other.”- Audrey Hepburn

When we talk about broken or failed relationships, what comes to mind first is that someone probably cheated. And then there are the other reasons such as incompatibility or irreconcilable differences; physical or verbal abuse; possessiveness, jealousy, & trust-issues that lead to fighting, etc.

But I tell you what, there is another MAJOR culprit why relationships fail. I would bet that this one probably have not cross the minds of most of us because unlike the reasons mentioned earlier, this particular one is not obvious. It works like a cancer- you’ll only realize that you have it when you’re already experiencing the damage on the relationship. Most often than not, either it is too late, or it will require a “major treatment” for the relationship to be restored.

This silent relationship-killer I am talking about is called Relationship Drift. It is like people staying on different boats that are slowly being drifted away by the water current. If they don’t exert effort to paddle and stay close together, the boats will be separated away from each other.

The sad thing is that Relationship Drifts don’t just happen overnight. It’s a long on-going process that we fail to notice and it could happen to any relationship. It could be between spouses, parents and children, in-laws, and friends. It’s when we lose spark or interest to one another. This is when conversations are no longer interesting or on a deeper level. It is when we no longer miss the other person. It is when we no longer care what the other person is doing. It is when we no longer care what they think or feel about us. It is when we no longer feel anything or when we become indifferent.

I would like to think that drifts in relationships is brought about by the absence of 3-A’s: Affection, Attention, and Affirmation. And so to avoid it, we need to ensure that we always have these 3-A’s present in our relationships.

  • Affection.
    When we love someone, we have to show them our affection. Love is not just a word or a feeling. There has to be an action. Kissing and hugging are most popular, but there are other ways too. We can give simple gifts, tap on the shoulder, helping out, or even calling or texting just to say you’re thinking of the person or you appreciate something that he or she did for you.
  • Attention.
    Set a time to bond. Try to schedule separate dates with your spouses or partner, children, in-laws and friends. Be mindful of the moment and communicate. Share your thoughts and experiences. Ask how each other is doing, and be interested to not only what’s happening in their lives, but also with their dreams and aspirations. Celebrate a lot- not just birthdays and holidays. Make reasons for celebrations like when your son top the exam or your daughter learned to play a new instrument. Creating moments with your loved ones is what makes a great relationship.
  • Affirmation.
    We need to show encouragement and support when needed. Even if we don’t feel like doing it, we have to let people feel and believe that we will always be here for them. The lack of assurance that you will be there no matter what cripples relationships. Being said that, let’s try hard not to judge but be understanding even if we do not tolerate a certain behavior. Good and open communication is always a key.

I know that doing all these is not easy. It is hard and that is why most relationships don’t work out. Trust me when I say that it is better to work hard now, than suffer and regret the consequences of not having to do all these later.

Happy weekend everybody! May God bless the relationships in your lives!

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