On a long, late night drive, I was trying to think of things to talk about with Mr. Hall. We had three hours to go and the kids were fast asleep. We had been married about 6 years at that point. All told, eight years together.
I usually try to play 'word association' but this is no good. My husband traffics in logic and concrete connections. There is no looseness to his thoughts. Silliness maybe, but no looseness.
So I asked him to tell me something he had never told me before. He agreed on the condition that I go first. This was really hard. I talk a lot (surprise) and really hold nothing back in terms of my personal stuff (even bigger surprise). I had to dig super deep to find anything he didn't already know.
I can tell you what I said, but if you wait long enough, I am sure it will come out here, in the blog.
Then, he proceeded to tell me a secret. And I was gobsmacked!
Turns out, Mr. Hall has all sorts of private things he doesn't tell me. It's not for the lack of asking mind you, I ask him all sorts of things. He kind of filters his own information, decides what he wants to verbally communicate and what he can express in other ways. This is not a conscious process.
Everything he feels or experiences doesn't always translate into words. Or maybe they are held in a holding tank, waiting to be turned into words, then diverted to other areas in his body. Either way, all of this leads to secrets he has from me.
Which is crazy really. I mean, I am his wife. We have been married over eight years at this point. It drives me a little crazy thinking there are pockets of him I do not know about. And I know crazy.
Then I realize.
I know all about him, I can tell what he is thinking by the way he is breathing. Even with my eyes closed.
He demands so little of me to make him happy. Words are just small part. There are so many non verbal ways to affect him. I practiced this on Sunday.
He was crankily and tiredly eating his lunch while the kids were crankily and tiredly eating theirs. I was cranky and annoyed. We had been stuck in the house, all getting ready for a nap.
I felt an overwhelming urge to change his mood. I wanted him happy. No amount of pleading, chanting or gentle cheerleading would make a dent. But, he did end up feeling very chipper very soon after. All accomplished without words.