have a confession. I have a tendency to be what some might call a stick in the mud. Webster’s defines that as “a person who is dull and unadventurous and who resists change.” Maybe not completely me, but I have some tendencies for sure. A lot of it is rooted in my issues with anxiety. I’d usually rather stay home than go out. I like to play it safe.

Jess, on the other hand, has an extra helping of what we’ve come to call “sparkle”. It’s a beautiful zest for life. An adventurousness combined with an easy-going up-for-almost-anything kind of personality. I adore that about her, and it’s a big part of what drew me to her in the first place. The smallest things make her happy, and she wants to share all of that with me.

Just the other night, she came into our bedroom with clean sheets fresh from the dryer. She practically bounced up to me excitedly so I could smell them. I normally love that smell, but I was in the middle of something on my computer, so I took a half-hearted sniff and said, “nice” without even breaking eye contact with my screen. Her excitement went away quickly, and she went on with what she was doing.

The Realization

A bit later, I realized what I had done. She had something that she was so excited to share with me (which I normally get excited about too) and I squished it instead of embracing it and sharing the moment with her. Not good.

How sad it must be to get excited and want to share with your spouse only to be dismissed. Crushing.

I’ve done this enough that we’ve come to call this “crushing the sparkle”.

If it has a nickname, it’s probably a problem…

So what to do about it?

As I played this over in my head, I thought of a few ways that those like me can avoid “crushing the sparkle”:

  1. Pay attention to what your spouse gets excited about

  2. It can be the simplest things like a hot cup of coffee, a sunset, or the smell of clean sheets. Just make it a point to notice just how happy those things make them.

  3. Get excited with them

  4. When they want to share something with you, get excited with them. Even if only because they’re happy. If you don’t normally get excited about a sunset, then change perspective and get excited because you care so much about their happiness and something has made them really happy!

  5. Appreciate who God made them to be

  6. If something as small as the smell of clean sheets can make my wife really happy, then it’s a great thing! God gives us the small things in life, and when we focus on those small beauties, it makes life happier

  7. If they’re happy, it’s a good thing, no matter why. Embrace it!

  8. Enjoy it! Share with them. Encourage it and get excited.

  9. Once you know what they get excited about, use it!

  10. If a cup of hot coffee makes your mate happy, then bring them a cup of coffee when they seem down. Get excited about it for them, and they’ll probably perk up a bit too!

There are so many beautiful things about how God made your spouse. Take the time to appreciate them. If, for only a moment, something lets us embrace the tiniest portion of the childlike wonder with which we’re supposed to receive the kingdom of heaven (Luke 18:17) then it’s worth chasing.

“There are so many beautiful things about how God made your spouse. Take the time to appreciate them.”

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I’d like to think there are clean sheets in heaven…

What things do you love about your spouse? Tell us in the comments below…

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