Author Paulo Coelho recently tweeted, the first symptom of the process of killing our dreams is when we say: "I'm very busy now." The dreams for a deeply rich emotional connection in marriage are no exception. Without spending unhurried time together intimacy will not be built.
I remember counseling a couple. They were saying they wanted to work on their marriage. They were making a little time to see me. They worked opposite shifts and weren't really seeing one another. When I mentioned to them that to build more closeness it would take an eventual shift in their schedules neither was willing to budge. "Oh yeah, Ben...um, right, that uh that is a good idea. But you see..." I understand that sometimes opposite shifts for a time can be a necessity, but this couple really didn't want to put in the effort to build closeness.
To build that closeness a couple needs to spend time having fun and spend time sharing meaningful activities together. Ann and I went to see a movie tonight. We didn't talk much but it was fun being out. If that is all we did it wouldn't be enough. Generally, we're in a pretty good spot now so it was fine.
I've been running some. Ann hates running (slowly anyway) like a Tiger hates fire. So I'll go get my run in and she'll meet me at the end of it and we'll walk and talk together. There is much grace for us in finding a rhythm that gives us time we both enjoy.
We also have meaningful time together with friends, and helping other couples. There are times when we counsel couples and Ann shares her heart or sees something significant to share with the couple where I am amazed that I get to be married to her. Inside I literally, really I do, say, "Wow! You are a great counselor and an amazing woman and you are my wife. Cool."