Jessica and I ended up having an unplanned couch date last night.
Little kids were in bed, big kids were headed in that direction, and Jessica and I snuggled up and watched an episode of Call the Midwife (great show – we give it the highest recommendation). Part of what we love about that show is that it most often leads to deep and vulnerable conversations. Even though we were tired, we connected intimately, enjoying each other’s presence, intellect, depth of soul and emotion, and physical touch. The kind of intimacy that is so often sought after with dates (or with sex) and so often missed as we focus not on each other but on the experience we’re having along with the other person.
I’m not saying that those experiences are fake. They’re not, and they are very important bonding moments too. But they shouldn’t be a replacement for true intimacy, where the point isn’t the movie/show/event/experience/orgasm, but the vulnerable and deep connection that you share together.
Intimacy isn’t restricted to specific events though. It can be as simple as an affectionate touch, a kind word, shared coffee, sharing anything for that matter, a look, a message, an offer to help so that you can be together – these things can all be done in a detached way, going through the motions, or getting the job done; but if the intent is to draw nearer to each other, simple gestures become intimacy.
Intimacy requires intent.
I say that and realize that I started this post stating that our intimate couch date last night was unplanned, which means there wasn’t a pre-planned intention to share an intimate moment. And that’s true. But we did intentionally cuddle up, got real close, and when it was over, instead of calling it a night, we deliberately stayed in the moment together, choosing to savor the connection, intentionally baring our souls to one another. The show just created the opportunity. We had to go for it.
I believe that those moments of intimacy where we allow time to suspend and our only goal is to wade deeper and deeper and then immerse ourselves in the other are what has kept us in love for nearly 20 years now.