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By Toni Tiu of Wifely Steps

It’s been tough for us lately. My husband and I have been working like crazy. In between multiple work commitments, we would have to see to household tasks. There’s laundry to sort, a grocery list to tick off, the occasional broken toy of our son’s that needs to be repaired. We’ve been kicking our days off pre-occupied with the tasks for the day ahead. It’s a shame to admit it, but the first thing we seem to do in the morning is check our own mobile phones. What should we accomplish today? By when should we do it? It’s become a crazy cycle, one that has taken a toll on spending quality time together.

So when joint free time comes up, like a rare Saturday morning when our son is sleeping in or our son spending a day at the mall with his grandparents, we seize it. What do we do? Where should we go? How long do we have? We begin cramming that precious free time with an activity outside the home, eager to make up for lost time. Let’s go watch this movie! Let’s visit that date place we haven’t gone back to in ages! Let’s paint a masterpiece together!

Some dates were successful (eating in places we like but we know our son dislikes). Some weren’t (We couldn’t agree on what movie to watch so we ended up roaming the mall… separately). Overall though, it got tiring. We got tired chasing time. We got tired trying to cram things we could do together in a limited amount of time. We got tired arguing about where we could go together — each of us had our own idea of quality free time which the other didn’t agree with. So most times, we ended up at home.

Tired with no agenda. Tired with the need to breathe separately, but together.

That’s when things began to look up.

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Finding Joy in Quiet Togetherness

We realized we could still spend time together without doing anything together. Being together was enough. That was what mattered the most.

We would be in the bedroom together – I would be reading a book while he would be putting a model figure together. There was no joint activity, and that was okay. There was love in the air even if we weren’t holding hands. We quietly revelled in each other’s presence. We were grateful for the quiet time we both needed to recharge individually, but still with each other.

On cool afternoons, we would walk around the neighborhood. There would be no need to fill in the quiet with conversations. Walking down the street, hand in hand, doing nothing else — that was enough.

When driving to the grocery or to the laundromat, we would sometimes just be quiet in the car. He would be concentrating on the road. I would be gazing out the window. But our hands would be together – his right hand on my left, and that would be enough. We knew we were headed to a place where chores would be our priority for that time. But at that very moment in the car, we were grateful to be together. We found joy in our quiet togetherness, made even more blissful knowing we were headed in the same direction together.

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Bliss can be found in doing nothing together, in simply enjoying the moment of quiet togetherness. Have you also experienced this kind of quiet joy in your relationships? Come share your thoughts and stories in the comments!