Thursday, February 4, 2010

Walking in Circles: Strengthen your Relationship!

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Every time I go to a bridal shower and am asked to give advice to the newlyweds, I always say:

Go for long walks together.

My husband and I have been doing this for as long as we've known each other. Our first date was roller skating (Hey! We were going around in circles even then!) but since we first got acquainted in the spring and summer we often went hiking on our “dates”. It was cheap, fun, and we got to talk and talk all we wanted without interference.....which cannot be done in a movie theater! What a great way to get to know one another.

We continued going for long walks even after we married and started having a family. Babies and toddlers can be sooooo demanding, but we discovered to our delight that if we put them in a backpack, or stroller, or wagon and started walking..... they were QUIET and we got to talk all we wanted. It was “almost” like being alone.... and we didn't have to pay a babysitter, which we couldn't afford anyway. This was very therapeutic for us as new parents. It might have been the biggest reason we stayed sane and were therefore brave enough to continue having more children! Through the years whenever we could work it into the day, we have gotten outside to go for a walk. Sometimes kids came along with us and sometimes they didn't. Our walks might have been 30 minutes long, or even up to an hour if we had the time to spare.

One great thing about going for a walk was that there were no TV shows or phone calls to interrupt our time together. (This was way before cell phones!) We shared hopes and dreams, made plans, discussed the children, our work, our church assignments and solved numerous problems along the way. Ken pointed out that when we got to have these discussions before bedtime, he enjoyed being able to fall asleep quicker at night! Another bonus was that we both stayed fit and healthy and strong. (You need that when you're raising kids.) We are Empty Nester's now, but we still get outside several times a week just to walk, even though we have an entire house all to ourselves.

Whether you are married or not, I recommend that you take the hand of your significant other and go for a walk. Get away from all the household chores, the media, and even your cell phone. Turn off the ringer! Unless it is the babysitter or your child,

you do not need to answer that call (or Text)!!

Whoever is trying to reach you can wait until you get home.

Remember, walking in circles means you don't have to have a destination. Just start walking, and when half of your allotted time is up, turn around and head back home. Take different routes. Get to know your neighborhood or go find a new one to explore. It doesn't even have to be a fast fitness-type walk. Just stroll. Hold hands. Enjoy the time together.

When we were younger, we sometimes saw elderly couples walking together holding hands, and we'd say, “I hope we will be like that someday”. Well, we're not exactly elderly yet, but we are in our mid-fifties and so far we are just “like that”. It's wonderful. Talk it over with your BEST buddy and make plans today to start walking together. You won't regret it. :)

Across the years
I will walk with you
in deep green forests;
on shores of sand;
and when our time
on earth is through,
in heaven, too,
you will have
my hand.


Kathy Haynie said...

Ahhhhh....what a peaceful way to begin a busy day. Thank you! Mark and I have a "play day" coming up this weekend, and even though rain is in the forecast, I'm sure our weekend will include a walk or two.

Katie said...

Such sound marriage (and dating) advice. Every so often I put the big O in the stroller and we walk to campus to meet Bryan. Now that we only have about a year left here I keep thinking how lucky I am that Bryan studies and works within walking distance. I hope that can always be the case.

Lisa Lou said...

I love this advice! It's great to have a walking buddy. (Now I just need to find a "significant other!")

The Jessee Journal said...

I totally agree! My favorite thing to do with my husband is take a walk along "our route" in beautiful weather. The kids usually fall asleep in the stroller(s) and we always have our BEST conversations then :)

ali said...

i appreciate the phone comment. i hate it when you're with someone and talking and they suddenly start texting. it's so RUDE! :)

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