A Failed Marriage?

The autumn days are getting shorter, but miraculously, here in Santa Cruz, the Indian Summer temperatures are actually warmer than during summertime, and I’ve been so enjoying swimming in the ocean a few more times before the water gets too cold.
Maybe because the school year starts in the fall, to me, now feels like the time of new beginnings.  It’s also the harvest time, and the time of letting go, when the leaves begin to die and fall from the trees.  These natural rhythms are just as real in our lifecycle as they are in the plant world, and in that spirit I would ask you to take a moment and answer the questions:
What are you harvesting?  What are you letting fall away?
As for me, what I am letting go of is my marriage to Kim-Elisha.  Or more specifically, since we separated in June, what I am now letting go of is the part of my identity that was intertwined with hers.  It has taken me a season of tears and grieving to come to this place.  Releasing our shared dreams and shared love, and letting go of the part of me that embodied that love and those dreams, has been lonely, and painful, and difficult.
And though our relationship only lasted 4 years, I don’t actually view it as a failure.  It was a hugely transformative time in both of our lives, and I am grateful for how she showed up for me, and I am proud of how I showed up for her, and how we loved each other all out until the end.
What I’m harvesting now is a sense of wholeness and self-love that I didn’t have when I met her, and that I wouldn’t have now if she hadn’t gone.  And from this place, the story and the details don’t matter.
As for the new beginnings, I’ll leave that for next time.
What about you?  What are you harvesting?  What are you letting fall away?  Hit me with a quick email reply—I’d love to hear.

What’s the difference between “love” and “in love”?

Do you remember the last time you said to a friend “I’m in love!”
It feels so good to be in love and you probably couldn’t help but share all the details about your last date and how wonderful and alive you felt.  It’s true, all those yummy love hormones make us feel giddy and happy. It’s a high we all crave, that new relationship energy (NRE) that makes the world more vibrant and puts an extra bounce in our step.
We all know that (sadly) NRE fades over time as “stable relationship” hormones take over.  So, is “in love” even a real thing?  And if so, what helps make it last?
Last week, I had the opportunity to be interviewed by Doug Llewelyn on CUTV News Radio. It was fun being on air and talking about my Intimacy Makeover programs. During our time this topic of “love” versus “in love” came up. I’m glad it did because I think it’s an important one in relationship.
We’ve all heard somebody say, “I love my partner, but we aren’t in love anymore.”
We all know what love is: acceptance, appreciation, admiration, support, commitment, trust, availability, presence, giving and receiving, (add your own ingredients…) and it’s the same whether it’s love for your friends, or your spouse, or your grandmother.
But the secret sauce that creates that “in love” feeling is this: The romanticized projections of good times in the future.  The anticipation of… how great it will be when we move in together.  Or build our dream house.  Or travel to Tuscany and drink red wine over dinner in a quaint piazza.
In a new relationship, the “in love” feeling even creates a romanticized projection of who our partner actually is (and how amazing they are).  When the NRE hormones wear off, we are left with a sinking feeling of “Oh, no, is this all there is?”  This is the inevitable downside of relying on biology and sexual chemistry as the drivers of relationship.
That being said, the feeling of “in love” is a real thing and it can be created after NRE is gone. The trick: having an exciting shared vision of where the relationship is going, and what will keep it growing.  NRE is the spark of life, the magic juice that turns a seed into a seedling; staying “in love” requires the on-going imagining and dreaming and visioning of the garden you want to bring to flower in the future.
Want to learn more? Listen to a replay of my interview on cutvnews.
During the interview, I gave listeners a gift that I’d love to extend to you. For a limited time, get access to my Intimacy Makeover intro package, two coaching sessions with me for $147, normally a $500 value.