Turning 'Me' Into 'We'

By
Industry Observer with CDK Global

My Fiance and I spend a lot of time talking. About all kinds of stuff. Politics, work, and our journey to get where we are. You'll see a bunch of these tandom posts in my blog in the months and years to come. Our first discusses how each of us see our role in becoming a loving couple capable of lasting.  His POV will be frst....then you'll be graced with my opinion....yet again.  haha.

 

Erin Oertli and Bob StewartBob: I can be a real piece of work; And not in a good way. 

In more of a 'how can this benefit me' kind of way. It took me 37 years to finally find someone that would make me want to take a hard look in the mirror.

I don't know where along the line I became so selfish in my relationships. I'm sure my therapist will eventually uncover that it had something to do with my parent's divorce when I was 8 (but not until session #187, whereby my insurance will have made her a small fortune, which of course, since we live in the bay area means she could buy a one bedroom condo). But that's a copout, right? Surely as an adult I can make decisions that are in my own best interest and the best interest of those I love (this is a statement, not a question).

It does in fact matter, only so much as I use the origins of why I would act that way, to ensure I become a better partner in the future. Or so my son doesn't repeat the same pattern.

And then I really met her. 

I'd been with her for a year already. A seflish, manipulative year.  A year of which I'm not proud.  A year where I let my past have more impact on my future than my present.  A year to be embarrassed about. A year to forget.

And even in the worst of times, she was there. She would allow for one final chance. One chance to be committed. One chance to match the effort she had put into us. One chance to prove that I deserve someone like her.  

And I would never be the same. 


In the year+ since then, I have committed to being a better partner. (I still have light years to go). She is the definition of committed. She is the kind of partner you'd want with you in a dark alley (Seriously, I would take my girlfriend in a dark alley brawl over almost every one of my friends). She is smart (smarter than me, which is hard to admit. In fact, if she's reading this, sentence should self-destruct!). She is driven. She is a freaking knock out! (Like turn heads in the mall beautiful). And lucky for me, she is forgiving. 

And not only has she made me desire to be a better partner, she's made me a better person. At this age (How did I get to be 37 already? What happened?) you have to make a conscious decision to be better. That's why we work as a couple. Erin made me realize I need to consciously decide to be a better partner. We work because she's supported me to become a better partner. 

Erin likes to talk to her parents on speaker phone. I imagine that she wants me to get to know them better. I love that about her. Last night, her dad was telling her how proud he is of her for the new job she's getting ready to start. And all I could think the whole time was 'he has every reason to be proud.'

We work because I'm proud of her. We will continue to work as long as she knows it. I can only hope that I make her as proud in the years ahead. 

Our blog will share our journey with you. It will be about us as a couple, and also us as individuals. We'll talk about our family, our work, our relationship and probably a healthy dose of craziness in the world. We hope you'll read along and let us know what you think.

 


 


(
And Here Is My take)

 

Erin: Turning Me to We.

You could say I grew up in a very modern household, where marriage isn’t the key to life, kids aren’t the reason for happiness, and ‘soul mate’ is a bullshit term used to create a false sense of self.   My parents never badgered me to have children and never allowed me to believe things like marriage or kids happened by mistake.  It was engrained in me that I always have a choice.  My parents, although divorced, have never wavered on my role in a relationship~ equal partner, equal bread winner, equal respect, and best friend.   Sometimes I wish I had been raised to be a ‘trophy wife’; I believe I would have really excelled in that role too ☺.

I met Bob at a strange time in our lives.  He was going through a separation/divorce, and I was headed to California for a new job with my company.  This wasn’t your fairy tale beginning, to say the least, but it taught me a lot about love, life and choices we make every day.   I learned that it’s not about how it looks to the public, or how whimsical the start of a relationship is or how intense the honeymoon period is;  It’s centered around how we resolve conflict, how we support each other, and how we learn to dance with each other in some of life’s day-to-day minutia.  People who say relationships should be easy are full of shit, and need to get their head out of their ass- it’s not a hat.  Love is a choice and we can all choose to exercise it or not, on a daily basis.  It isn’t some god given power that has no will.  Instead of praying for a miracle, Bob and I make the choice every day to love and respect each other, and work toward a stronger future for our relationship.

Bob Stewart and Erin OertliWe have endured some of the hardships and adversity that many couples face later in their relationship.  The growing pains we faced early were blessings in disguise (I hate this term, but every once in a while, I try to be optimistic).  We are now aware of how we both resolve conflict, before marriage.

Bobby and I work because we have the utmost respect for each other.   We admire each other to no end, and we believe in each other.  We are equals in this relationship, our opinions matter to each other, and we meet each other halfway on an intellectual level.   We understand that mistakes are made, relationships of any kind take work and determination, that life isn’t perfect, and we aren’t perfect.  

 

Aside from all this, we work because we both laugh.  A lot.  For us, laughter is a big part of who we are as a couple:  I’m funny, he laughs ;).  As this blog unfolds, my sarcasm may surprise you, my relentless cursing will offend you, but I will promise you this.  I do not discriminate.  I am an equal opportunity offender, so sorry in advance.

Comments (1)

Mark Loewenberg
KW of the Palm Beaches - Palm Beach Gardens, FL
KW 561-214-0370

congrats

Jan 16, 2015 10:01 AM