Calvins & Motorbikes
Looking back on my high school years, I have some funny and fond memories. When it comes to relationships I remember the time I sat down with my group of close girlfriends and I wrote out a list of what our dream guy would be.
I vividly remember what I wrote down...
MY DREAM GUY
Had blond hair
- Wore Calvin Klein undies (TY David Beckham)
Rode a motorbike (TY Matt McConaughey from how to lose a girl in 10 days)
Had a good work ethic
Had lots of friends
Had good style
Didn’t have Bad B.O (body odour)
Played the acoustic guitar
These were the things that I thought were most important. That if I had a guy who ticked all these boxes I would be the happiest girl in the world. However, 10 years down the track, when I look at this list now, it reveals to me the sort of person I was in high school. I was someone who was insecure, that wanted to be with the “cool guy” because then that would mean I was cool. I was looking for validation and approval by the person I was dating. This theme carried out all through my late teens, only being attracted to people that were somebody’s cause I was sick of being a nobody.
What I have learnt from relationships is that the heart is a fragile & precious gift! Not only mine but also my partners. Sometimes without even realising you can start to give little pieces of your heart to someone and before you know it you are fully invested in a person. When a relationship is built on the wrong foundations it slowly starts to fall to pieces. Why? Because you aren’t really getting what you need. You may be getting what you want, (the Calvin’s & the motorbike) but those are not stable things to sustain and build a relationship from. What I am trying to say is that sometimes we can get so focused on attributes and status of people that we forget about what foundations we need to build upon.
What I believe to be important foundations of a relationship:
1. Friendship– friendship is an important foundation because you need to love spending time with your partner, being able to have goofy & serious conversations with them. When you have a foundation of friendship you are able to argue with each other and then move on, you're able to be your complete self and you are able to see their true self. I was friends with my boyfriend for 5 years before we dated. In those 5 years, we had argued, done some tough seasons of life and had been able grown up. Today I am so thankful for the years we spent just being friends, as we have really gotten to know each other naturally without any unnecessary pressure.
2. Mutual values + priorities– Your values are important, they determine what you spend your time, money and effort towards. When you and your partner's values do not line up there becomes conflict and unwanted tension. I’m not talking about interests or hobbies, I’m talking about the things that deeply and really matter to you. When you and your partner have different values you are put in a position of compromise. You can start to give up and those things that really matter to you, such as family, work ethic, purity, your commitment to church.... but when you build a relationship upon mutual values you can build a life together in harmony rather than unwanted tension.
3. Kindness– Often as girls we can accept treatment and behaviour that is below what we deserve. We allow the men in our lives to treat us second best! But the way someone treats and speaks to others and yourself says a lot about who they really are. To me people are important and every person deserves to be treated kindly. Kindness as a foundation means that you are never afraid to make a mistake, you are not afraid to annoy your partner, you can trust them to build you up, you can trust them with your most inner world. Kindness makes my partner a safe place.
4. Loves God– Above all what is most important to me is found within the answer to this next question, are they committed to God? Have I seen them navigate a tough season? Have they ever had to fight for their faith? For me personally, It is important that my partner loves God and the Church through every season of life. That when life is hard they lean into God, when life is a breeze they lean into God. When God is the foundation of our life he keeps us stable, on course and whole.
Relationships are beautiful when done right, there is nothing wrong with wanting the Calvin’s and motorbike, those things are what add to the attraction of your partner. But one lesson I have learnt is that the foundations of any relationship determine the capacity and intimacy that the relationship will reach. The stronger the foundation the greater the building. Build upon things that matter and watch your relationship grow onwards and upwards.