Love Doesn’t Hurt

March 27th, 2015

In mid-70’s a group called Nazereth had a hit song:  Love Hurts:

Love hurts – love scars
Love wounds and mars
Any heart not tough
Or strong enough
To take a lot of pain
Take a lot of pain
Love is like the clouds
Holds a lot of rain
Love hurts

These lovely depressing lyrics were so perfect if one wanted to wallow in depression!  Oh my, this song was a heartbreak anthem and I loved it so much.  It was so full of angst and agony which fit where I was in my life when it came out.  Mega down on love and life and very unhappy. And I either believed or lived all those lyrics.

And you know what?  Those lyrics are absolutely NOT true.

If it hurts, scars, wounds, and mars, it isn’t love.  If it has conditions, it isn’t love.  If it demands its own way, it isn’t love.  If it says, “If you love me, you will _______ (fill in the blank)” – nope, not love!

If it says “I love you but…” it isn’t love because using the word “but” means every word that came before it, is erased.  “I love you but you need to change” means that “but” erases the “I love you” and the truth is “you need to change” – “for me” being the implication!

Real love is unconditional and while it should be nurtured and protected, it does not “love with expectations.”  You don’t do something special for your loved one, expecting a thank you or an atta-boy or some sort of expectation.  You do something simply because you love them.

baggage

Alpha Hubby excels at unconditional love.  He loves me.  Period.  End of sentence. He had a lot of patience while helping me unpack the baggage – issues – I brought to the marriage. It took a while. He stuck around and he helped me work through fear and lack of trust.  He gave me total unconditional, complete love.

He taught me that love doesn’t hurt, either physically or emotionally.  He taught me that there is no “I love you because you do this for me” or “I love you ‘cause you are purtier than a speckled pup” or “If you do this, I’ll be your best friend…” err, oh! Sorry, that was high school.

So I just want the world to know – I love this man.  Every year we are married, the more I realize what a treasure I have in Alpha Hubby.  I thought I knew that in the beginning but honestly, each year I realize more about all his good points, his goodness, positive things about him, I know more than ever that this is one amazing man.

HisArm1a

His Arm

I love how he takes care of himself, working out, looking sharp.  He goes to the gym but also does a lot of physical labor around the ranch and I’m shallow – I love his arms – and not just because they are strong and manly man arms (although that is a good reason, smile).

avatar

It is why I like my signature avatar so much – a man holding the woman with one arm.  The implied strength in this dance move reminds me of Alpha Hubby.  We’re going to duplicate this picture someday soon. He’ll even give up his cowboy boots for this – that’s true love.

His arms will wrap around me and hold me in a slow dance in the kitchen.  Or they will gentle and hold me if I just need a hug.  Or as a prelude to *bleepity bleep* which is always good!  Always!  I can depend on his strength.

I do love how I can trust him to always be the same.  Unless he is very, very, very tired – very – Alpha Hubby’s even temperament is almost always the same, smooth and laid back.  Oh, there have been some voices-raised discussions about really dumb stuff (and usually my fault for being a terrier who won’t let the bone go), but on the whole, I can count on him to be the calm voice of reason.  That is an incredible and amazing “good point” about him.

Leland Closeup cropped lightened

Stop taking my picture!!

BUT, on the other hand, if he is short-tempered, then I know he is either hungry or very, very tired from working too hard (pretty much two full-time jobs between his cattle and day job) so that is still the same thing. I know it isn’t personal and that he just needs a break and to eat or get sleep.

Honor

I love that Alpha Hubby is a man of Honor.  To him, when he spoke his marriage vows, they were forever.  He is a man of his word and means what he says.  He will not and does not change (which has more to do with God than me, which is a very good thing).

His word being good is very important to him, as is his name.  His name is synonymous with integrity, and people know that.  When he says something, people can trust that word.

There are no hidden or sudden surprises.  I don’t really like surprises, or should I say, being caught off guard.  With Alpha Hubby, I always know where I stand – firmly in his heart, totally loved.

And that is a wonderful place to live.

A Love Not Ordinary

March 18th, 2015

I got to thinking about the power of True Love.  It really isn’t magic but when you see it, it looks and feels like magic.  My parents were a perfect example of True Love.

Ordinary, no – really don’t think so
Not a love this true
Common destiny – we were meant to be
Me and you

They didn’t marry until 12 years after high school, but my mom says she fell in love with him the minute she saw him.  Dad used to joke that he ran for 12 years and finally gave up – but he would say it with a special secret smile they gave one another when he said that.  The pix below are years apart (hers in 1944; his in 1966).

Dad cropped twice mom cropped

They were romantic, often breaking out in dances when my brother and I were growing up.  I loved watching my dad’s face when they were slow dancing and he dipped her.  There was never a doubt in my mind they were a romantic, madly in love couple even after (then) 55 years of marriage.  I thought all parents were like my parents.

Like a perfect scene – from a movie screen
We’re a dream come true
Suited perfectly – for eternity
Me and you

After both my parents died, I was going through their effects and discovered each had saved romantic cards they’d received from each other over the years.  What surprised me is that the best ones (and most) were given later in their marriage.  Their love truly did get better and stronger as time went by, as evidenced by the little notes they hand-wrote in or with a card.  I felt I was a Peeping Tom looking at something so intimate.

Pam Eric  pamela and eric

Contrary to all the negativity out there in the world, many couples are forever couples like my friends Pamela and Eric (above). They work very hard to keep the romance and intimacy protected in their relationship.  They learned the secret that, while it takes work to protect that intimacy, it is well worth it.

Hunk and me stephmike2

Some people even get married right out of high school like my friend Steph and her hubby Mike (above) and years later, are still madly in love and creating a wonderful life together. They learned to work through trials and loss, ups and downs, keeping the reminder that they are in this together, not apart.

Josh LieghAnn Motorcycle2  Josh LieghAnn 2015 Josh Lieghann

Or like my son and his wife LeighAnn – after 9 years, together 4 years then married in 2010 in Vegas by Elvis thankyouverymuch.  They have so much fun together.  They play.  They laugh.  They fit like a hand and glove! They even took a work out and weight-loss challenge together and didn’t kill one another.  THAT’S true love.

Alpha Hubby and I made a solemn promise to one another right after we married.  We promised not to become roommates.  We promised to keep the honeymoon going.  We promised that we would never allow what we had to fade and become stale.  We are fierce in protecting our marriage.

Sometimes we have to slap our own faces and remind ourselves to put the other first, to keep that intimacy going, but it truly does just keep getting better and better.

Everyday I live – try my best to give
All I have to you
Thank the stars above – that we share this love
Me and you

Alpha Hubby is incredibly adept at romantic gestures.  He wants to stop and dance, all the time.  He loves dancing with me.  He is always giving of himself for and to me.  He has learned a Language of Love that blesses me to hear.  Even after 21 years of marriage, he is able to take my breath away by how he feels and what he says.

He truly loves me and everything he does is for me and for us.

The power of True Love is not just romantic gestures like sending flowers.  It is:

constantly letting one another know “you are so loved.”
–It is believing in one another.
–It is getting caught bragging about each other.
–It is speaking words of life, positive words, over one another rather than pointing out each other’s faults, especially to other people.
–It is promising to fight fair and never dirty, mean and ugly.
–It is in seeing that person as valuable and precious to you.
–It is in keeping promises.
–It is in not taking each other for granted.

True Love is far too rare to waste.

Ordinary, no – really don’t think so
Just a precious few – ever make it last
Get as lucky as
Me and you

Life is about True Tove.  It means you put your love for one another first and putting yourselves ahead of everything else.  Then you arrange everything else around that precious love.  Everything else will work out from that point.

Never put anything else first ahead of each other – not children, not careers, not hobbies, not others, especially girlfriends or male buds.  The only thing more important than your love for one another is your love for God.

You must nurture True Love.  Learn that rule.  Then go forth and Enjoy It.

Baby, a few white hairs later, a lot of laughs, fun, joy, happiness, and True Love:

Every day I need you even more
And the nighttime too
There’s no way I could ever let you go
Even if I wanted to

And trust me, I don’t want to.  Ever.

Leland08 Head shot2 Nan long

Gee Baby, Ain’t I Good To You?

March 10th, 2015

Alpha Hubby is always telling me how good I treat him.

I always reply, “Yeah, but I could do better.”

He always seems a bit confused and says, “Umm, no?”

But the truth of the matter is that with the loved ones in our lives, we can ALWAYS do better.  We can be more patient.  More understanding.  More giving.  More thoughtful.  More loving.  More like we were when we first fell in love with them.  More about them and less about ourselves.

I never feel I do enough for him because this guy is ALWAYS giving.   I have never been treated the way he treats me.   He really is good to me!  If every man on earth learned Alpha Hubby Tricks of The Trade, his ways, his sneakiness in fighting …

…we have our moments.  To those of you who think I only share the good in our marriage, that I’m not being honest about our relationship, I offer this sordid and sad tale.

I got upset awhile back because he interrupted me AGAIN and missed my point altogether.  Not that I’ve EVAH done that to him, nope.  Maybe only the first 3/4ths of our marriage.

drama queen

Drama Queen

I was running my mouth, “Oh my gosh, you are getting worse!”  Of course he was headed to bed and nothing better get in the way of his bedtime.  He gets a bit… shall we say touchy?  Whiney?  Gripey?  Mouthy?  Growly?  I never hear the end of it when he gets to bed late.  But my point was valid even though my timing was lousy.

He said, “Get over yourself.  You are such an onion girl!”

Hey, I know I have layers.  However, I would prefer to be called Parfait Girl.  Parfaits have much better layers.

He muttered on, oh so dramatically.  Mutter, mutter, mutter.

I said, “Oh, quit being such a Drama King.”

“Onion girl!”

“Drama King!!”

Kittens at play

Oh yeah, we’re in a smack down now!!

Then, of course, in order to win, HE CHEATS.  He stomps over and says, “Kiss me!”

“NO NO,” I yell, “NO kissing.  I’m not kissing you.  Go away, there are no good-night kisses for you!”

Yes, we are a very mature couple.  Why do you ask?

He uses brute strength, grabbing my head trying to kiss me.  I keep my lips closed, keeping that kiss from happening.  I have standards, you know.  I can’t give him his way.  That would just be wrong.

“Stop it! NO NO NO! No kissing, no kissing!”

He just laughs that evil laugh.  Then, he wins.  Cheating, of course.  He licks me.  On the lips. Like a dog.

Ewwwww – I hate lip licking.  HATE being licked.  Blech.

I give up, especially since I’m wiping my lips on his shirt and laughing so hard, I can’t win.  I kiss him.

*Sigh*  I know.  It is minus-1 for the female team.

But for some reason, I can’t help but not really care.

There you have it.  He’s good to me.  I’m good to him.  This is the truth of our marriage – immature fighting and major mature making up!

Oh yeah baby, you are good to me!

kiss sensual

Romancing in Real Life

March 1st, 2015

Tango wet cropped

It’s kind of funny to feel like a very romantic couple, to post little tidbits of romance like you know what you’re talking about, to be held up as a standard by some, to be told “you guys help me know what real love is” – and then to have nothing to say during the “romance month”!  It’s like (*horrors*) – I have no romance left in me!

Say it ain’t so, Joe!!

Well, first of all, my name is not Joe, it’s Nan. But OK, it ain’t so. Truth is, Alpha Hubby is out of town and I’m just blech. Meh. Missing him.

woman screaming

And then sometimes I think people just have to be tired of me talking about our affair or romantic things I’ve learned.  You know? Like “GAG ME?” meant both ways?  As in, “Look Nan, gag me! I’m puke sick of reading about you-you-you” or “Put a gag on Nan, you’re boring me!”

Lately it seems difficult to find things “romantic” to apply to our marriage, things romance-related.  To find something DIFFERENT  that is romantic.  You know like all the magazines suggest, “Keep your sex life and the romance kindled and hot-hot-hot!”  Blech.  We are limited in choices.

couple, bored

Bored Couple

Those people in that pix don’t live in the boonies.  Living in the boonies means you can’t dress up and go to the opera.  You can’t take a carriage ride.  You can’t even find an up-scale restaurant right around the corner…

…(you know, the kind with linen tablecloths and CLOTH napkins, real silver, candles, and waiters that DO NOT introduce themselves to you with a, “Hello, my name is Bubba and I’ll be your waiter tonight and since I’m working so I can buy a big gun for deer camp and really need the money for my jacked up truck, I am going to interrupt you many, many times tonight to make sure you know I’m here and will leave a good tip.”).

pumpkin carriage

You get the picture.  We have no place to go unless we want to go to the movies or we want to drive over an hour plus to get to a nice restaurant… which sort of stifles the romance when you also have to drive back home late at night without a limo and chauffeur so you can mess around in the back seat.

The lack of choices produces an unbearable ennui sometimes. Sometimes the most exciting thing in the boonies is to watch the bug zapper in the back yard.  OK, OK, I know, grossssss. It is so exhausting to search for different ways to be romantic.  It means you have to THINK.

It is so bad that before Valentine’s Day I asked Alpha Hubby, “What are we going to do for Valentine’s Day?”

He says, “I don’t know.  What do you have in mind?”

I say, ‘I got nothing. I’m not sure I want to do anything.  I mean, I don’t want to waste money when there are so many places we can’t eat.  And I don’t want us to spend money on each other. You KNOW what happened that *time you tried to get me flowers.”

Growl. He says, “Yeah, yeah, $11,000 flowers. ”

Then I began whining, “Oh my gosh is the romance dead here?  Have we finally lost the honeymoon period after 20 years?  Are we doooomed?”

He snickered, “Drama Queen.  We could go to the Swiss restaurant if you want.  I would be glad to take you if you want to go.”

I reply, “Ugh.  It’s okay but it is really not a romantic restaurant.”

He says, “Well, it’s just a thought.  At least I thought of something.”

I say, “I can pick up something and bring it home so we can eat here, on our beautiful table (that he made me), with candles and such.”  (Altho truth tell I am thinking, “That is not romantic.

He says, “No, that’s work on you and not romantic.”

Silence ensures.

I say, “Well, fine then.  Then we’ll do the usual.  Just come home, candles, share a glass, romantic music, maybe dance a little, and then, of course, have wild, hawt sex.”

He says, “Works for me.”

And they say romance is dead!

heart cc Flickr photo seyed mostafa zamani

*********************

*He’d pulled into the Wal*art parking lot in his Hummer to get me flowers. The front end of the Hummer made it hard to see low to the ground in front of it. He was looking for a parking place easy to get into and turned left at the end of the parking row. BANG! He hit the concrete that was wrapped around the light pole. It was hard to see it.  It cost $11,000 in repairs to fix the front end. He vowed never to go to Wal*mart again.

Barbie, Ken and GI Joe: Truth Comes Out

February 17th, 2015

Oh so very long ago, like most women, I was drawn to the classic… bad boy.  It started when I was in high school and found out the really cute leather-jacket-wearing dude liked me.  Nothing ever happened with that but still.  I remember thinking how cool it was that THE James Dean-bad boy in school liked me.  So shoot me, I was young.

James Dean

James Dean

Don’t know what made him the bad boy – the leather jacket?  The tousled hair?  He was probably a perfectly normal guy who’d been put in the bad boy clique simply because of that leather jacket.  That just wasn’t done back then when we still had rules about how short our skirts could be.

Doesn’t matter – my point is that women seem to be trained to be drawn to the bad boy and to scoff at the good one.  The good one is boring and the bad one… wowzers.   Is it that the good guy is known and bland?  Is it that the bad guy was forbidden and exciting?  The good guy a wuss and the bad guy the manly man?  Were we young and stupid? Well yes, but…

barbie ken gi joe

Ken Barbie GI Joe

Could it be as simple as this hysterical 1996 Nissan television commercial – that sums it all up just fine: Barbie, Ken & GI Joe:

Poor Ken-wannabe. So helpless in his sweater around the neck, buffed nails and plastic-coifed hair way.   Can’t keep his woman.  How can he compete against a guy who came out of the jaws of a dinosaur?  A manly man?  Just looking at Ken you’d think, “That wuss!  He couldn’t protect me against a herd of baseballs!”  (Private joke)

In this case I think GI Joe seemed to represent excitement.  He exuded confidence and strength. She thinks he can take care of her AND thrill her.

By the time I met Alpha Hubby at work, I’d had my gut full of bad boys and was NOT interested in going that route again.  I did not plan to ever marry again much less trust my heart to any guy, bad or good.

And here was Alpha Hubby – he was such a nice guy – an engineer working at the nuclear plant, raising healthy beef on the side, very precise and, ummm, shall we say – anal??  Good with attention to details – which is really nice when applied to some situations like… *ahem* …be that as it may…

He was a nice guy and so nice to me – can you imagine that?  Like that was a sin or something?  Being nice to me?  I even told him – now remember we’d only known one another 7 weeks before we got married so we didn’t know one another THAT well.  But while we didn’t know each other’s favorite type movie or food choices, we knew one another’s heart.  So I told him, truthfully, that I’d never dated a nice guy before and wasn’t sure how I’d handle it.

I love looking back and remembering some of the dog-goned stupid things I said to him back then.  All in the name of protecting my heart from being crushed again.  Duh duh duh du-mb.

Leland Closeup cropped lightened

Stop taking my picture!!

So after we married, we spent many nights sitting up and talking, to get to know one another.  The more we talked, the more I realized I’d not married a nice guy after all; I had married a reformed bad boy.

It’s kind of funny because he was probably a bad, bad boy but he swears to me, like Jessica Rabbit in “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”:  “I’m not bad.  I’m just drawn that way.”

Jessica Rabbit

Jessica Rabbit

I have the benefit now of a bit of wisdom that can come with time passing – there is the fact that there are no real bad boys or good boys.  There are simply men and males.  A Man. A Male.

gangster crop

Gangster Type

Males take no responsibility, cheat and who are all about “me first” running at the first sign of trouble.  No way a male will help around the house or take on the tough jobs (like dealing with bill collectors).  Males get their confidence by the number of notches on their bedpost.  Males couldn’t care less how badly they treat their women because women don’t matter; there’s always another one.  Males believe women are only useful for one thing.

firefighter

Hero Type

A man is the total opposite to the point he is honorable in a world that has forgotten what that word means.  A man will put his family and loved ones first, protecting to the point of death.  A man knows the woman is capable and can take care of herself, and like that about her.  A man will walk in integrity and his word is always good.  A man takes responsibility for their actions and you can trust your life – and heart – with a real man.

man's hands with heart

I married a real man.  There is security in what he calls “predictable”.  He doesn’t have his nails polished (mainly because after work, he’s mucking with cows and bulls), and fights me tooth and nail about protecting his skin from the sun.   He doesn’t have an feminine side – he tells me I am his only feminine side and that’s that.   I can tell him and tell him that I’d love him in a cowboy hat but no.  Not yet, anyway.

John Wayne

John Wayne

He is all man, believes in God, America,  true love, hard work, and honesty.  He’s not John Wayne – what most people think of as manly but who actually played some very chavunistic characters.  Alpha Hubby isn’t a man’s man, per se; he’s just my man.  He is masculine to the point that it doesn’t take much to push him over into the over-dominating stage; but he doesn’t scare me.  He may be an alpha and growl at me sometimes, but he would never hurt me.

So in a world where the choice is Ken or GI Joe?  Give me a GI Joe anytime!  Nah, forget that, give me Alpha Hubby.  He’s gifted to be my mate. He’s GI Joe enough for me!

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