Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Art Of Conversation

This past long weekend, we spent the 4th of July holiday with some of my friends from Auburn, their husbands, parents, siblings, and friends! It was a great time to unplug, getaway, spend time together, and be with friends. It was a great balance because there were times with just the two of us, reading in the still of the morning before everyone had gotten up - as we sipped on coffee and rocked in the chairs overlooking the lake...and then there were times when the boys could be boys and play “spike ball” and admit to the fact that they like any competition or game where there are ‘winners and losers’!! During those times, the girls would play with the babies, take pictures, laugh and eat cherries!
Breathtaking view of the lake!!
One night, a bunch of us were are circled in the living room talking. The mom in the group was sharing the story of how she and her husband dated for two weeks and then got engaged. Everyone was all ears...well, all of the girls at least! I do remember there being a baseball game on TV and the boys were watching a little of that and listening to some of the story. After her story was over, I remember she looked at me and asked, “Whitney, how long did you and Brandon date?” [This is when the marriage moment occurred]

Sweet fellowship in this circle!
I proceeded to tell her that Brandon officially asked me to “be his girlfriend” at the end of February and then proposed on April 28th. Then I went in to a bit of the background details which included the part of the story where Brandon and I met at the Passion conference in January 2007, saw each other for the second time ever in November 2007 at the Auburn vs. Alabama football game (and I mentioned the part about emailing once a month in between January and November), then Brandon started calling and we would talk a few times a week starting in January 2008, then Brandon and his brother came up to Nashville for a visit in January for a men’s hunting and fellowship weekend, and then we met in Birmingham (!!) for our first date towards the end of January...and about that time is where Brandon started squeezing my hand tightly to get my attention and playfully said, “Babe...she just asked how long we dated!!!” [In other words, I had already given way too many details according to him and it was time to wrap it up] After everyone had gotten a little giggle out of B’s comment to me, our story was wrapped up and now it was time to move along in the circle to ask the next person some questions about them. You can imagine the wheels that were turning in my head and there would obviously be an end to this conversation - with B and I - later on when it’s just the two of us!!
Blast from the past pic from the day I became B's girlfriend!!
Later that night, we talked through both points of view of the previous conversation. My point was that I never really feel like we have a cut and dry answer on how long we dated because there’s so much more to the story then just saying we “technically” dated for two months. I asked Brandon how he would have worded the answer to the question I was asked and he said that he would have said, “We started dating in January, got engaged in April, and got married in September”. He was also saying that people are always welcome to ask more questions - but we don’t just need to automatically give them all the details when that’s not what they asked for. As a girl, I see it from the point of view that the details are helpful in putting everything in perspective and that the details give a more well-rounded view of the entire story. I did listen to Brandon and see where he was coming from and even got asked a similar question the following day and was able to put my “new answer” into practice! This marriage moment was all about learning to keep it short and sweet. This doesn’t mean that it will always have to be short and sweet - each situation is different. Brandon acknowledged that as well. It all depends on the setting, the timing, the people, etc. This was a good lesson for us to learn! We got quite a kick out of the stark difference in our communication styles. 
Closing statement from the man of the house: “As you can see from this story, Whit and I talk differently. Sometimes that can be difficult when we’re in the same conversation because we see things from a different perspective. After talking it through, we were able to see the strengths and weaknesses in each person’s point of view and come together to a place that we agreed upon. No wonder people always say ‘communication is key in marriage’...Whit and I totally agree on that!!”


  1. This is so great, Whit!! It is so funny (and sometimes not funny at all :P) how differently men and women communicate! I figure that's the beauty of marriage, so we can learn from each other! :)

  2. Oh glory - Rusty and I have these conversations all the time! LOL! And it goes the other way too - I get frustrated sometimes with him for not explaining things well enough. I am learning to take his advice on keeping things shorter and trying to be more "self aware" - but I completely agree with you that (in my head) some stories just don't make sense without enough details/backstory! Just rest assured whenever you tell ME a story, to tell me all the details Whit! ;)