You know, all I had to do was read the title of Day 7 of the Love Dare and I cringed. I can believe the best about pretty much anyone. Anyone but men who are close to me. My experience says that men have an agenda and I can only believe the best “so far”.
Enter Fred who seems entirely different than any men I’ve had as an intimate part of my life. He’s one of the good guys. He’s attentive, and sweet, and kind, and gentle in spirit. My list can go on and on (and it will in a bit), but…but, little things have happened consistently over the course of our relationship that have led me away from always believing the best. We’re working on it.
Believing the best, at least for me, also involves a certain amount of trust. I trust anyone, until I can’t. Lose trust with me, have a fun time trying to get it back. Especially if you’re the man in my life. It’s an uphill battle. That’s what happens when you date a woman who’s had nothing but hurt and disappointment from the men in her life.
With all of that delightful stuff out of the way, let’s discuss chapter 7. Today the authors talk about two rooms in our hearts. One is the appreciation room. The room where when we met the person we love, we wrote all kinds of wonderful things on the walls of that room about that person.
So like I mentioned above, “Awww he really loves his kids”, “He’s so attentive and texts me so much”, “What a sweet heart for God”, and so on. Those are all very true things and only scratching the surface of the things I wrote on the appreciation room wall about Fred.
Then there’s room two. That room is the depreciation room. This is the room where we write the not so great stuff about our loved one. “Why can’t he keep track of his schedule?” “Why can’t he remember what’s important to me?” “He’s so inconsiderate of my needs” and on and on. The problem is, I can visit this room more often than the appreciation room.
Oh, and if he’s totally ticked me off, I’ll hang out in the depreciation room for quite some time. Looking around at all of the things written on the walls and fortifying my feelings. This room reminds me of how “right” I am and how “wrong” he is. It also reminds me of all the other things he’s done or not done or how he thinks and it helps bolster my resolve to stay in that cruddy place.
On a different personal note about this room, this room is comfortable for me. It’s a false protection for me. In this room I’m safe. This room helps me to build walls that keep “hurtful” people out. This can be my unhealthy comfort zone.
If I spend too much time in the appreciation room, someone, like Fred, could get one over on me. They have the potential of getting too close and hurting me in the same way I’ve been hurt before. I feel naïve in that room, vulnerable.
The thing is, the appreciation room is true about Fred and others, too. People aren’t only a depreciation room. I wouldn’t have fallen in love with Fred if all he was, was all of the bad things. I just lose site of those things when I’m hurt. When things build up, when he does the same thing over and over again, I disregard the appreciation room and all of the good things I know about Fred.
We’re encouraged to move into the appreciation room. We have to make that decision. Trust me, it won’t be an easy decision for me. I’m going to have to be intentional. I like that the authors, and God, understand that the depreciation room exists. It’s there. For all of us. We just need to focus on the positive. Spend more time appreciating instead of depreciating. Easier said than done. I know.
So, my task now is to make two lists. One is about all of the positive things about Fred and one about all of the negative things. After I write my list, I’m supposed to put the lists away for a future Day in this journey.
Where do you spend the most time? The Appreciation or Depreciation Room?