Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Everything

He said, “Meeting her changed my life. Made me a better person. A good person.”

“You weren’t a good person before?” Someone asked.

“No… It’s just that… Nothing was right before. Nothing fit. I thought I was happy but I wasn’t. She changed everything for me. She’s my everything. She quite possibly saved my life.”

*****

The above conversation went on in that manner for several minutes. I wasn’t directly involved in it, instead I was chatting about college with TheBoy’s niece, but we both stopped to listen. By the time he finished, with a kiss to his wife, there wasn’t a dry female eye on the boat. As he was speaking I had to will myself not to look at TheBoy, certain I wouldn’t be able to keep the tears at bay, hating myself for the ache of longing that was spreading through my stomach.

I think all women want THAT kind of love. To think that they’ve made a significant impact on the lives of their man. To feel desired, wanted, needed. Important somehow. Like, if we were gone we’d be missed. It’s why we crave compliments. Why we’re constantly dissecting their actions for hidden meanings… We want to be someone's everything.

I’m of the school of thought that men are MUCH simpler than that. There are no hidden meanings behind their actions. They either do something or they don’t. Because they want to or they don’t. And lately? That thinking is making me sad.

Everything?

9 comments:

Michele said...

That is so sweet!

I think you are right that men are simple and straight forward, but that doesn't mean someone can't be their everything.

Liz said...

I would be in tears too, I think we all want to be somebodies everything.

Shawn said...

You know Tiff I read this a couple of hours ago and just wasn't sure how I wanted to remark on it. I do agree for the most part that us menfolk are fairly simple even though we have learned how to play games from the womenfolk. We're no where near as good at it as you all are. Yes I know that's a bad generalization to make but you get the idea, please don't flame me. :) However I can also say that I have felt that way about someone, and while I don't know how much Liz and Michele have talked about her to you, they'll know who I'm referring to. I wish the way I felt was returned because it could have been something wonderful but it wasn't. I still wonder if someday she'll feel the loss I felt when she grows up a bit and notices that nice guys don't grow on trees.

We do like making you (women) happy it's just that sometimes we don't know how. Subtle hints that you say you give us are maybe just a little to subtle. Occasionally we can make that leap and figure it out but frequently square peg into square hole and round peg into round hole work best.

When you said that you think all women want THAT kind of love, I'm not so sure about that. I think once they've grown up and realize some of the more important things in life maybe, but for the most part I think women in your peer group don't know what love is about. *another generalization not specifically directed at the few I know that'll read this.

OK, this doesn't need to turn into a blog within a post so I'll stop my rambles... :) Again Tiff, one of your posts has made me think a lot about myself, you're good at doing that.

*until everyone's account is migrated over to Google I'm being forced to use the OLD blog.

Tiffany said...

"I think once they've grown up and realize some of the more important things in life maybe, but for the most part I think women in your peer group don't know what love is about."


Shawn - I think this is what is making me sad... Not to over share here but... I think as I get older I realize that I do want more of those things. To feel valued, special. To have the compliments, to feel like someone is going out of their way for me. Like I matter more than anything in the world - to one person.

Not my mother. :)

I've spent my whole relationship reveling in the fact that "we" don't need that mushy stuff. I'm not a romantic kind of girl right? Or wait a minute? Am I? And crap! I can't be changing now right? That's not effing fair!

Shawn said...

as we bare our souls to the world... :)

It's funny because while I've always been the 'nice guy' I haven't always been the mushy romantic. I was with her and I really enjoyed being like that. Yeah sure she got a few nice gifts, I'll always be the one that gave her her first nice blue box but it was things like the sappy little folded up notes in a pocket that mattered. It was fun seeing how I could surprise her with just a little reminder that I was thinking of her, even if she didn't find it for a week or two - she never knew when something from me would pop up. It was fun and it was something she did for me too for a while. During one of the hundreds of conversations we had regarding our supposed relationship I found out that she had never been with someone that 'outdid' her in that regard and she felt inadequate, like she wasn't doing enough for me. She couldn't have been farther from the truth during the time we were actually together but still, try getting someone to believe that when the doubts come from within. I was a better person in so many ways when I was with her, not for any specific thing she did, it was just how I responded to feeling like she helped me feel. It has long since been over between her and I but thanks to her I know I want that feeling again. Finding someone that brings that out in me is the hardest part though...

If you are indeed changing ever so slightly towards the romantic stuff, it's going to be up to you to let TheBoy know you appreciate that stuff now and to encourage his creativity in showing you what you mean to him. The ME TARZAN, YOU JANE routine might have worked in the past but making an alteration to the dynamics of the relationship isn't something you can just cross your arms and bounce your hair to change - it'll take work and probably some frustration on both of your parts. There are an infinite number of ways to express your feelings towards a person, we each have our own little quirks as to what tickles our fancy more, find yours and help him find ways to tickle you. Odds are, he'll surprise you in ways you never thought would matter to you.

It all goes back to teaching a guy what is desired and what isn't. Some are better at some things then others but since nobody is perfect you have to look at the whole package and be thankful for what you have.

Laurie said...

I don't mean to impose myself here on a conversation that may mean to be exclusive, but I can't help it...

There's a difference between being a mushy romantic just for the sake of romance, and giving a woman what she wants. (By the way, I'm not throwing any stones or supposing anything about anyone's relationships here in the comments...I'm talking about myself.) There's a wonderful man in my past who used to leave little notes for me all over my car, my house. He picked me flowers, sent me flowers. He bought me jewelry for no reason, and gifts were never reserved for holidays. On the teeny-tiny budget he had (he was a cadet at West Point living on roughly $200-$300 a month), he lavished me with everything he possibly could. He overdrew his account trying to make me happy.

And he did. He really loved me, and his expressions of affection communicated it flawlessly. But we weren't right for eachother. We were too young, too different, too desperate to find marriage. We broke up, and though it was sad, it was the best decision for both of us.

I would've given anything to have my next boyfriend do those things for me. He didn't. But he fixed my car when I needed it, made me mix CDs, helped me when I couldn't do something by myself. All the while, though, something was lacking. He was emotionally unavailable, he wasn't telling me about our future together, he wasn't reminding me that I was the one he'd been searching for forever. Four years after we began, we ended.

And now, I'm with a guy who isn't overly romantic, but is the furtherst thing "emotionally unavailable" that I can think of. He balances it all out by doing the little things. He brings me coffee in bed on my day off, he sends me text messages just to say hi, he looks at me and tells me I'm beautiful for no reason.

Women aren't that tough to figure out. Grand gestures get old...fast. We're not dying to walk into a room filled to the gills with flowers, we're not searching for a man who will sky-write a marriage proposal. Those things are great, but you can't do those every day. And *BROAD GENERALIZATION AHEAD* women are emotionally high-maintenance. We need something everyday. And it's the little things we need. We need to know we make a difference in the lives of the men we love, we need to know they think we're smart, funny, beautiful. We need to know he's there all the time, not just when the situation is dire. We need to know we're needed, loved, cared for, valued.

Huge romantic moves do that for the short term, but little things? The little things last so much longer than flowers could ever hope to. Saying "She's my everything" is a little thing to do, but its impact is bigger than any romantic gesture could communicate.

Tiffany said...

First off - Laurie you're always welcome to join a conversation! Shawn doesn't mind. ;) He's family around these parts.

Also, can I pay you to just write out the thoughts in my head? They sound much better when you write them than when I try to get them out into coherent sentences!

I don't mean to come across as some snotty whiny woman either you know? I mean, TheBoy does loads and loads of things for me and I appreciate all of it. I do. I'm just... missing the little things.

How exactly does one go about ASKING for a compliment? And does it really mean the same thing if I have to TELL him to call me his everything?

I'm just saying is all...

Michele said...

I think Shawn is right that you need to let TheBoy know what it is you need and want. It is perfectly normal for those things to have changed over time. But you can't expect him to be a mind reader. You don't have to ask for a compliment, or tell him to call you his everything.

Maybe he just needs to know that you are missing the little things as you said. What's the alternative? I am sure he'd hate to know he could have been doing some tiny little things along the way to make you happier, if only he had known. He loves you. Tell him what you need.

Shawn said...

Laurie even though this is Tiff's blog and she already welcomed you, I do too. I will also admit to having looked at your blog from time to time and agree with Tiff in saying that you have a way with words.

It is the little things that matter, money doesn't count for squat when it comes to being 'romantic' or just showing someone you care. It's actions that matter, from just a simple "Hey how ya doing, I'm thinking of you", a neck rub, a note, yes flowers and other things are nice OCCASIONALLY but it's not something you can buy. It IS something that comes from the heart and when someone means a lot to you, well it's not difficult to find little ways to express that. Changing oil, coffee in bed, you name it, they all are nice ways to say, you matter to me. Letting the other person know that they matter is what is all about. It's a good feeling to know someone feels that way about you and it's even more special when it's mutual.