considering others



~2 min read


318 words

My wife and I were crossing the street this afternoon to wait for an Uber to arrive when I noticed a shady spot a little ways off to the right. I looked to see if any cars were coming, and, noticing none, began to angle myself toward it directly. I pulled up short and instead continued along the expected path (staying within the crosswalk). The change may have saved a few seconds, but it would have meant cutting off my wife’s path as I hadn’t communicated the new plan.

There are so many wonderful lessons that I’ve learned about being a better partner and person through marriage. This is just one among many, however, it’s one that has a history in our relationship.

Before this week, I hadn’t been on a run in approximately six years. Not since my wife and I, early in our relationship, tried to go on a run together. I have never been much of a runner and always have taken a laissez faire approach to where I run, allowing the route to emerge — turning where I needed to avoid stopping, crossing streets on a whim, and never vocalizing or in any meaningful way communicating my intentions. And why would I? I was running alone.

What our last run proved was that this is a terrible way to run with someone. It’s just that it’s the way I’d always run. I’d always run that way, it turns out, because I’d always run alone. I never had to worry about others. I never had to consider others. I don’t think I was particularly selfish before, but I was self-centered.

Being in a partnership, however, means always thinking about others and pausing before acting. So, today, instead of shaving off those few feet to reach my destination a few seconds earlier, I continued merrily along, relishing the moment and my company. Life is so rich.

Hi there and thanks for reading! My name's Stephen. I live in Chicago with my wife, Kate, and dog, Finn. Want more? See about and get in touch!