love what they love

I’m going back to my week 2 topic. If you didn’t read compassion at home, home church in action, as they are because they are I think you should. It’s a great primer for this week. I’m going to talk about how we live a life of compassion with our family, with our home church and with our community. So let’s start at home.

If you know me, it won’t be a surprise that I really enjoy video games. It’s probably a little more than a hobby for me and it takes up a lot more time than I’d like to admit. Never the less they are great and I have loads of fun playing.

Sarah……not such a fan.

She has no problem with me playing them but she could not care less. It’s the same glazed sort of look when I talk about fantasy sports or try to explain why this particular basketball play is so exciting.

I start talking about fantasy baseball numbers and my strategy and she is just gone.

But to her credit she has tried with video games. She’s said “do you have a game we could play together” and I usually answer “nope”.

I make it so easy for her don’t I?

But on Friday night I was downloading a load of demos for some new games and picked one a co-worker plays with her husband. Maybe it’d work for Sarah and I too.

We had a BLAST Saturday night. It was just the right balance of silly game play, easy goals and not hard to play at all. It was so much fun we’re going to buy the full game and play together more. We laughed the entire time and stayed up WAY to late playing. It was fabulous.

There are two things I want to pull out of this really normal seeming exchange.

The first and biggest is Sarah.

She was and has been for a while trying to invest in what matters to me. Be it video games or actually watching a quarter of a football game Sarah is trying to care about things that matter to me even if they are small or not really important.

Are video games important? No. Do I care about them? Yes, so Sarah is trying to care about them and in turn connect with me.

But I haven’t made it easy. I didn’t make myself and my interests accessible to her. I didn’t find a game she could play or one that I thought we’d both enjoy. I just kept playing games I knew she’d hate.

It took both of us and that’s the second thing. It took Sarah trying and me making my interests accessible to her. We both had to be invested in this. It’s not one sided. I can’t sit back upset or frustrated that Sarah doesn’t love what I love when I don’t allow her a way to begin to understand and engage with what matters to me.

I think when we talk about compassion at home we’re talking about finding more and more ways to love our family. We are finding more ways to connect and be connected to each other and shared experiences are a fantastic way to connect. Sharing our interests is such and easy way for us to grow our loving relationship.

This week try to care about what your family cares about. Learn about their interests, listen to them talk about their passion but really listen, try to understand it not just hear about it.

Or maybe you make your interests accessible to your family so they CAN care about what you care about. Find a way that it will be engaging for everyone.

Create space for shared interests so that you can have more shared experience and in turn experience greater connection. Love what your family loves this week.

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