Growing up, my family dined out at the following three restaurants 97% of the time, or more: Golden Corral (or as my mom likes to call it, the Grab ‘n Growl), Pizza Hut, and Sandpiper (a seafood restaurant). My culinary world was very small to say the least. In middle school, I was introduced to the wondrous flavors of a Chinese buffet. It was a big step for me. My godmother told me not to eat the little red pepper on my plate, so what did I do as soon as she left the table? In true know-it-all kid fashion, I gobbled it up and then feverishly sucked down water looking for sweet relief. I imagine I attracted some attention from fellow diners. ~smile~
Then Eric came along – adventurous, a lover of good food, and a hard person to say “no” to. If I had been less of a follower by nature, I may not have allowed him to drag me all over town to different restaurants. But, to be with my man, I have eaten Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Indian, Ethiopian, Peruvian, Vietnamese, German, Irish, Italian, and Korean. There are probably others, but you get the idea. ~smile~ As a little kid, I would not even eat a burger and fries, so the idea that I grew up and married a culinary explorer who loves the Food Network and whose dream vacation is to travel somewhere with scores of ethnic restaurants is truly priceless.
Recently, my mom told me she thought Eric had been good for me. He has opened my eyes up to a bigger world than I knew a decade ago. Not only speaking of food (and I do now love almost all the genres of food I listed above), Eric has opened my eyes to a different way to live. Believe me; never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be working with my husband in our own business. My plan was for my husband to work a job, for me to work outside the home until we had kids, and then for us to determine if I needed to return to the workforce when the kids were older. It sounded like a great and familiar plan to me! So, when we got married and Eric started showing his entrepreneurial side, it freaked me out! ~smile~ No! Wait! This is not what I’m used to! It must live how I’m used to living! However, in retrospect I must hand it to him. I am currently working at home in my pajamas, so maybe he was on to something after all! ~smile~ (Though, we don’t meet our clients while wearing pajamas. lol)
Recently, Eric and I went to see Ender’s Game on its last night in our dollar theater. Living near a university does have its perks and cheap entertainment is one of them! Let me tell you, science fiction is not my passion. It has never been my passion and it probably never will be my passion. When this movie came out, Eric told me I did not have to go with him, but I found that I wanted to. He read the book when he was a teenager and loved it, so I wanted to share the experience with him. Plus, he works so hard it is a rare treat for him to go to a movie. ~smile~ Guess what? I loved it! It was so interesting! And it was great being able to discuss the plot and twist later – a connecting experience I would have missed if I had written the movie off because of its genre.
If the movie had come out when we were newlyweds, I’m not sure that I would have been so quick to go. After all, it was science fiction – and I hated science fiction. But the last several years have taught me something. Almost every time I have stepped out of my comfort zone to do something Eric wants to do, I have been pleasantly surprised. Hopefully that statement won’t come back to haunt me. ~smile~
Superhero movies? Thought I hated them. Nope! I love ém! Games? Love them too! Currently, I would love some Ethiopian food, but we have no such restaurant around here. ~frown~
Choosing to connect with someone means making occasional sacrifices. Unless you and your honey are extremely similar, there are going to be times he or she wants to do something that does not thrill you. If you do it and hate it, the day is still not wasted. After all, you were together and you tried something new! But, chances are you won’t hate it. Chances are you will discover something new about yourself. You may uncover new hobbies and new passions. Your world will probably expand like mine has over these last ten “Eric” years.
When you choose to connect with your sweetie, even when it requires stepping out of your comfort zone, you will likely grow from the experience – if you allow it.
What new worlds has your sweetie opened up for you?