My husband is a very easy-going, laid-back man and, in most instances, that is a wonderful thing. I can typically get what I want without much argument and I can get him to do what I need almost always. Typically I am the one who chooses where we go to eat, when we go out to eat, what we plan to do on a weekend, the trips we take, etc. I rarely have to argue my point or even explain why I want to do something – he just goes along for the ride. Most women would agree that I have a pretty good set-up. But lately, I had started to grow weary of it. It felt too much like being a cruise director in our relationship and the pressure mounted within me fearing that somewhere down the road he would regret not having made any of the decisions. He didn’t even seem to have an OPINION in most cases. It was frustrating and started to become a chore for me – I felt like I was in it alone and not working with my helpmate to create the best life for us.
His complaint was that if he did choose something I often disagreed with his decision and then we would fight. I argued that if I let him pick our meals we’d never eat anything except pizza. He demurely, with a smirk, agreed. I wanted him to step outside the box. I wanted him to dare to try something new. So our Pastor suggested that I give John one dinner a month that he had to pick and that I had to agree to NO MATTER WHAT. I wasn’t even allowed to know ahead of time where we were going so I had no chance to complain or disagree. We did all agreed it could never be a pizza place.
So this past Saturday I had indicated to John that it would be his decision day. To be honest, I think my Pastor thought it would be harder for me to give up the control of the planning, but I actually find great rest, peace and relief in it. I have faith enough in my husband that he can pick a place for us to eat – he does have a Master’s Degree after all – and it gives my brain a weekend rest from the decision making.
This past Saturday he really surprised me though by taking us to the Front Street Station in Northumberland. If you’ve never been there you should go at least once to experience the ambiance of this place. It is an old train station made into a very nice restaurant. The walls are covered in old train photos and memorabilia and you feel like you’re in a dining car in an old time travel excursion.
This time around we were seated on the second floor, which is kind of balcony around the outer edge and you can see down into the main dining area. Our table also had an old window on one side that looked out onto the train tracks. We spent the evening watching the sun set outside and the hustle and bustle of the restaurant staff inside. On the balcony you feel like you’re apart from the hub-bub of everything and there is an intimacy that you would not get downstairs with all the waiters coming to and fro. We did not feel estranged from the activity, but instead like we were watching a show and intermittently intertwined with the action. Our waiter and the food was absolutely wonderful. Just as we were about to leave, a train slowly made it’s way up the tracks, topping off our dining experience.
I admit in the past few months I had forgotten our arrangement and had not made John pick any place himself. I do often just go all ‘gung-ho’ on him and plan things before he even has a chance to say his peace. After this Saturday I’m thinking I need to step back more often and let him take over. I was treated to a wonderful, peaceful meal with the love of my life and the ‘surprise’ of the date made it even more special.
Watch out, honey. You’ll be doing more of this.