So the story goes . . . we were in the midst of our second argument (the first happened in Venezuela in a field). And I could feel that we were too focused on the emotion, and that it was escalating where it did not need to . . . so I invited Andrew to a game of Stratego. He completely did not understand. I had never tried this technique before. We agreed to put aside the argument, play a game and then we would talk about it after.
And I mean long term results. We do not argue a lot. We have continued to play games.
I worked with teens for over two decades. I am good at playing games. Apparently when we were in Venezuela, playing Egyptian Rat (which is what they are doing above), I made a comment that I would not date someone who could not beat me in a game. Andrew took that very seriously.
Backgammon became our game of choice early on. It is portable and we still carry it with us in the car for a time when we are out just the two of us.
For two years Andrew and I worked full time and were in school. We would have dinner and then do school work. When we had earned our degrees we found ourselves with extra time and we went back to playing a game. It became a time to unwind after dinner.
With the arrival of Cole we took a hiatus from game playing. Attention has been focused on our little guy. But in recent months we have brought back the games. We will put Cole to bed, make some tea, and sit down to play a game.
And to me it is the perfect little date.
It is time with Andrew. We are not focused on Colton, though he is close by sleeping and content. We are not concerned about being productive. We are connected to each other. The room is peaceful and cozy and comfortable. It never matters who wins. The goal is to laugh, enjoy one another and have fun.