I’m puzzled I don’t attend church more regularly, because I always come away inspired each time I do get my butt outta bed on Sunday mornings.
Recently I visited my parents in Cincinnati to attend a Bengals game (they won in an amazing come-from-behind fashion, yeah!) First we went to church and the sermon was about happiness in marriage. In romance, do we only look out only for our own happiness or do we focus on the happiness of our partner?
Like most things in life, I believe there needs to be a balance between our happiness and our partner’s happiness. If we focus solely on ourselves, we won’t have partners for long! If we focus solely on our partners, we get lost in the relationship. We become spineless, wet noodles.
A folktale I read in Eating in the Light of the Moon demonstrates this balance nicely. The story is about an eel and a lobster working together. On the ocean floor, a lobster sits at the mouth of a dark cave, and an eel lives inside. The cave’s opening is an ideal place to attract food for both the lobster and the eel. However, eels EAT lobsters. So, Ms. Lobster needs to keep one antenna pointed out the cave to sense incoming food, and one antenna pointed behind her into the cave to sense an oncoming attack by hungry gobble-gobble Ms. Eel.
What a wonderful metaphor for successful human relationships. We need to point our antennae both inward and outward, sensing our own needs but also cognizant of the needs of others. When those needs differ, that’s where communication and conflict resolution skills come in. Hopefully we can avoid the “claws” coming out or a shocking attack from behind, hee hee.
What do you think about focusing on your happiness vs. your partner’s, in life or fiction? One aspect I disliked about Twilight was how selfless Bella was, but many readers seemed to love her character.
Time for the Meet an Author Monday Blog Hop, which will run through the month of October and then fade away into the blogosphere. Thank you to Lisa Sanchez for hosting the hop all these months! Check out her blog for instructions.