Ever find that the moments when you are captivated by wonder are some of the moments you cherish the most?
I visit the Redwood Forest with my family often. It is my husband's version of "an outdoor cathedral", where he feels most refreshed, rejuvenated, and often becomes speechless, completely in awe of the majesty surrounding us. I find myself in the same position when in the presence of the ocean, where the vast display of a simple matter of nature perfectly embraces me. Perhaps you feel the same when sitting beneath a starry sky, where the infinite space encloses you in its splendor with so much we have yet to know about it. Or holding an infant, pacing his breath with yours. Maybe you experience a sense of awe and wonder during sports events, spiritual practices, religious ceremonies, or you may find wonder in art, dancing, music, or poetry.
Imagine now, translating that wonder toward how you experience life with your partner.
Rewind time for a moment and remember the first moments with your partner. Consider the emotional connection that was fueled by passion, curiosity, and hormones in overdrive. That wonder potentially fueled your desire to move your relationship toward a commitment of some level.
Wonder can also often include an element of surprise: a task done out of love rather than obligation, a gift given without any particular reason or holiday, or well-thought compliment or accolade, an impromptu date or spontaneous trip...each of these opportunities include an element of unpredictable yet endearing connection.
Wonder is also quite synonymous with curiosity. "I wonder how that works?" or "I wonder if he feels the same thing I do when we are together?" Learning about each other and sharing dreams, fears, expectations, and worries with each other help couples deepen their connection and can breathe new life into what once may have been a static or distressed relationship.
So then, how can you intentionally create and maintain a level of wonder in your relationship? Especially if you've been with your partner for an extended period of time...even unpredictability can be predictable in some cases.
Any couple can discover wonder.
1. Take a moment to embrace the curious side of wonder and consider what drew you to your partner, what compelled you toward each other, or what your relationship means.
2. Find the awe in your partner by looking at your partner or your relationship with fresh eyes, perhaps seeing her as if you've never seen her before or experiencing your relationship as an outside observer or curious scientist. What do you see? What is different than any other relationship you've encountered? What is unique about your partner or your relationship?
3. Find ways to express this discovery. The expression can be accomplished in many ways, actions, times, words, gifts, behaviors, touches from the simple to the extravagant. But the discovery doesn't fully count unless you find a way to express it and make it known.
Once you begin this process commit to discovering and expressing this wonder toward your partner regularly. Find the surprise again, embrace curiosity, and find intentional ways to express these findings to your partner and with your partner.