We had a pretty rough Christmas break in 2012. December started with everyone in the family getting colds, which, with 4 kids is a fairly regular event, nothing new. We all got over it, except my wife. Hers persisted for weeks. She went to the doctor after the first couple of weeks, was told it’s just a cough and cold, you’ll get over it.
A few weeks later with no improvement, she went back. Turns out she had bronchitis. So, she went on the medication, which made her feel worse than ever. Finally, by mid-January, she’s pretty much back to normal.
So, what does this have to do with Sex Within Marriage? Well, basically, our sex life tanked during this sickness. Now, our marriage is pretty solid, and we can weather dry spells like this these days. I’ll admit, after a while, I do get a bit cranky, but I’m not feeling depressed or wondering if my wife still loves me like I used to.
But, after a week or two of our frequency being back up near normal, I have noticed quite a few things that are different that I didn’t really notice during the month. Now, I always knew that I performed better in life when we’re having regular sex, but I didn’t realize how much.
Now, my weight has been a struggle since I was a teenager. I was shocked to find I gained about 10-15 lbs during December and the beginning of January. Now, granted, it’s Christmas and New Years’, but we didn’t really do anything for New Years’, and we didn’t eat that much during Christmas. Not enough to account for that sort of weight gain anyways. But I was snacking constantly, I couldn’t get enough, and it shows.
By contrast, now that we’re connecting more often, I find I have a renewed desire to get it under control. Yesterday I did a water fast (eat and drink nothing but water) to kick off my new eating lifestyle. I’m not a fan of diets, I think small consistent changes over time to your lifestyle are what make the biggest impact. Anyways, the water-fast went well, wasn’t even that hungry. Today I’m going to try only fruit during the day, I’m not sure what my wife has planned for supper. I’m sure I can lose these 10-15 lbs easily to get back to my prior low and try to hit a new record for myself. A week ago my wife and I bought new running shoes, and I have the blisters to prove I went running in them (I hate breaking in new shoes).
During December, sleep was hard to come by some nights since my wife was often up coughing, but generally, I function fairly well on low sleep or interrupted sleep (lots of practice from 4 kids being up during the night). This month was hard though, I was constantly in a fog, ready to sleep at any moment, all I wanted to do was close my eyes.
I haven’t really gotten any more or better sleep lately. Our 8 month old refuses to sleep through the night, she’s up multiple times to eat, and while I can’t help much (she’s breastfed), it still interrupts my sleep. But, I’m no longer exhausted, I feel good and I have the energy I need when I need it.
As I said, December was a fog, not just from exhaustion, but I couldn’t get my head to wrap around the concepts I needed to. I’m a software engineer by profession, so my job involves a lot of thinking and solution building. I usually love my job, but during December, I hated it. I wasn’t getting anything done, I was constantly worried about projects slipping timelines, but couldn’t muster up the ambition to dive into them. All I wanted to do was escape into computer games. I feel like I put more hours into games than hours I was actually productive at work. I spent a lot of time just sitting at my desk flipping through email and tasks trying to figure out what I had the ambition to tackle. I also sat down half a dozen times to write a blog post and didn’t really get very far. You’ll notice that December and the first half of January were pretty unproductive weeks here as well. I also completely dropped all the reading I usually do. I was very lucky to get an extension on a writing project I had promised. I would have managed, but it wouldn’t have been my best work.
Now, things are good. I’ve sworn off the game I was playing for 2 weeks to get myself back on track. My projects are back on schedule, I’ve completed some major ones and things are looking good. I’m looking at ways to streamline some of my new tasks and learn how to handle others better. I’ve also started writing posts again, and just in time, because I have a guest post due for Hot, Holy and Humorous soon, but I already have a topic, know what direction I’m taking and have started writing.
During December, I spent more and more time at work (except for Christmas break). I notice I do this when we’re not having regular sex. I don’t mean to, it’s not intentional, but somehow things always come up to keep me at work longer.
Now, I can’t wait to be home, and not because I’m expecting sex when I come in the door. In 11 years of marriage, that has never happened. But I like seeing the kids, playing with them, talking to my wife, all those things. Something about sex makes you want to be home more.
It’s a little embarrassing to admit that my spiritual life is affected by my sexual life, but it is. I don’t think it should be, but this is my current reality. Each of the past 2 years I have committed to reading the entire bible. This time I finished and never picked it up again. Oh, was reading things here and there, but no devotional life. My prayer life suffered as well, and I fell back into a lot of old habits (like computer games and eating). It’s all connected you see?
Well, I’m back. I’ll admit, I haven’t picked out what I’m going to do for devotions yet, but I have been reading. I’ve also decided to learn Hebrew in an attempt to increase my understanding of the Old Testament. I’m hoping to re-write the Bible in Hebrew (word for word) to help me practice my writing letters and understanding. If I can get through the Old Testament in a year, great, but I’m not going to push it. Next, I plan to tackle Greek, but Greek is pretty English-like, so I can manage with an interlinear Bible. Hebrew is so alien though that I wanted to tackle it now. I’m loving it, it is my new obsession, and it’s causing me to learn and reflect more on God.
Now, I’m not going to say all of this is because of sex. They are all connected. When you eat bad food, you feel bad and foggy, and less productive, and you sleep less. When you sleep less, you feel bad and foggy and less productive and your willpower is diminished, so you eat badly. When you’re less productive, you don’t feel as good, etc, etc. When you fail to connect with God, everything falls apart.
But, it is a part of it, and I think a big part of it.
Anyways, that’s my revelation. I share in the hopes that it might help someone, and to clarify the thoughts in my head.