I was sitting at this very desk a few nights ago attempting to add precious words to my work in progress. After a long, wearying Wednesday, the love of my life was unwinding in the other room reading the newspaper.
Deep into Chapter 12 of the first draft of my next manuscript, I didn’t realize he’d gone into the kitchen until he stopped at my desk and handed me a dessert plate and a fork. On my plate sat the chocolate outsides of a Klondike bar. On his plate was the vanilla ice cream center. “I thought you might want that,” he said over his shoulder as he returned to his chair in the living room. At those offhand words, my heart melted just as surely as the chocolate on my plate.
In that instant it dawned on me why we are still, after all these years, made for each other.
He can’t eat the chocolate (if you ask me that sad fact alone makes him as tortured and swoonworthy as any romance novel hero). As for me, chocolate is at the top of my three main food groups (the other two being coffee and red wine depending on whether it’s 9 am or 9 pm.) Chocolate, for me, is as versatile as a DVF wrap dress. It’s my go-to any time of day essential.
I eschewed the fork and scarfed down the chocolate like a three-year old. As I licked the final bits off my fingers (no need to get my keyboard all sticky), I realized that the true meeting of minds in love has a lot more to do with complementary traits than similar personalities. Similar personalities can bring out the worst in each other. Think Bonnie & Clyde.
We are complementary to the max. In looks, brown eyes versus blue, in personality introvert versus extrovert, and in other ways significant and small. One telling moment was when I quoted the serenity prayer which says in part “to accept the things I cannot change” and my husband looked at me with a puzzled expression and said, “well I change the things I can’t accept.”
Complementary couples may have the same goals in life but they have just enough difference in personality and style to keep it interesting and keep them balanced.
Let’s face it, without the Klondike connection in our home, there would be a criminal waste of chocolate. I can’t think of anything worse.