Have you ever thought to yourself, “I want to remember this moment always,” and then you took a mental snapshot of the scene to “store” in your brain? For most of us, memories are as graphic as photos. They’re the visual scenes that played together, make up the movie of a relationship. To rekindle your romance, press your memory’s rewind button and replay those scenes!
Recalling memorable moments in their romance worked wonder for Karen and Jon when their marriage reached a low point. “We were like zombies,” Karen remembers. “The magic had totally evaporated. We no longer ‘dated’ acted silly or made love all night. As we drifted further apart I felt Jon was becoming a stranger.”
Karen was right– Jon wasn’t the same man. Individuals do grow and change– but for a marriage to work, spouses must retain their identity as lovers. Karen and Jon had let that go. So their passion lay buried like diamonds left hidden in an abandoned mine site.
“Just as the seasons change, so does a relationship,” says couples counselor “When couples reconnect with the powerful emotions that brought them together, their relationship can be renewed.”
Link Arms and Walk into the Past — The Past You Share
In a last-ditch attempt to inspire Jon, Karen planned a trip down memory lane. She gathered mementos from their courtship– photos, books, ticket stubs, cards, and their wedding album. She dressed in the outfit she’d worn the day Jon proposed and sat him down with a glass of amaretto.
As they pored through their mementos, Karen asked Jon to describe his feelings on their first date, first lovemaking session, their wedding day. “The more Jon remembered, the more passionate he got and I did, too!” Karen says. “It was like memories were freed and they refueled our feelings of love.”
The couple made love most of that night. And the following weekend they were still on memory lane– and cloud nine. When Karen noticed the starry-eyed, teenage way Jon was staring at her– “just like the crush he had on me when we met”—she knew they were back on track.
Recall of the Wild
You don’t have to wait until your marriage hits a crisis point to take your stroll down memory lane. Try these tactics:
– Dress nostalgically. He’ll love seeing you in a memorable outfit and smelling your old perfume. You may feel silly but he won’t.
– Play “your song.” Get up and dance.
– Haul out the albums. A picture is worth a thousand words– or kisses.
– Exchange stories. Laugh about your unforgettable dates, trips, and bed sessions.
– Revisit lover’s lane. Why criminals are frequently caught when they revisit “the scene of the crime”? No place is more conducive to emotional reconnections. You and your husband are bound to feel closer as soon as you enter the movie theater you went to on your first date, the stretch of sand where you first made out or the restaurant where he proposed.
When to Press “ERASE”
Obviously, happy times co-exist with bad moments. But painful memories shouldn’t be stored in a couple’s memory bank. It’s better to forgive and forget– the flake-outs, the fights, the recriminations and the jealousies. One marriage counselor says, “Let go of old grievances. These aren’t the memories you’ll want to cherish and recall.” One counselor suggests you symbolically erase these bad memories by writing them down and then tearing up the paper.
Remember that comfort replaces wild passion as a relationship matures and that you two have something that new lovers don’t: A shared history that you both collect and guard and sharing in your day-to-day lives. One way to ensure the survival of your relationship is to give it a life, for example, tapes, magazine horoscope for both her and James on the bathroom mirror each month. Jeannie and Glenn keep a memo pad near the front door, where they leave each other loving messages. Mary Ann and Ken keep their framed baby pictures atop the TV.
Create memories by recording your relationship in photos and scrapbooks. Beth, married seven years ago, already has a shelf full of albums recording things that she and David have done together– a shelf full of romantic memories that she and David can replay again and again.