Liz Heywood

My Boyfriend-Husband’s Black Boots

A few years ago, my husband and I were driving over to go have dinner at our friends’ house across town. As we were on our way, my guy noticed a man walking beside the road. The man looked very determined as he made his way by the roadside; like he had an important goal in mind. The only thing that was weird was the man wasn’t wearing any shoes. It was beginning to get dark and cold as night was falling. My man was very concerned that this man we saw didn’t have any shoes. He immediately stopped the car and got out to talk to the man. As I watched from the car, I witnessed an amazing thing happen. My man began to take off his own boots and socks and give them to the stranger. I have to admit I was shocked as I had saved and shopped to give these particular awesome boots to my man for Christmas. He LOVED these boots! This stranger it turned out was a homeless man set on walking from our city to Sacramento; 100 miles away! I’m glad I didn’t protest this spontaneous act of charity on my man’s part. It probably was the best thing he could ever do, to just share what he had with a man who had nothing. It made me admire my man even more for the compassion he showed. No matter that he showed up to a special dinner in his bare feet! I decided to forget all the shopping and saving and to experience the honor of a man doing the right thing. Let us as women encourage our men to be better and to think of others before themselves. We’ll all benefit from such acts of charity and our own relationships will become richer for it.


“LOVE is a borderless country
Made for those who won’t stop running
A place with no citizens
But refugees are welcome.”

NJ Heywood

It’s Okay to not be Perfect

Being an amazing Girlfriend-Wife doesn’t mean you have to be perfect. It’s okay to fail. It’s okay to be human. The actress Lake Bell says, “to be imperfect is to be honorable.” To be human is to give your very presence here on this earth…authenticity. I’ll tell you right now, my Boyfriend-Husband doesn’t love me because he thinks I’m perfect. The other night it was my turn to make dinner after work. We had a lot of interruptions going on with our garage door repairman coming in and out. Bottom line; I burned the chicken. My guy came up to me after dinner and told me quite honestly, “Babe, I loved the asparagus and the salad. But your chicken was literally inedible.” To this remark, I simply burst out laughing! He was just trying to be honest. If I had been a new bride, I might have been devastated. However, I’m secure in who I am & I already know I am loved. My value has nothing to do with CHICKEN!! I just thought how funny it all was and it didn’t upset me in the least. It’s just LIFE!! We just try again and love each other for WHO we are, NOT for what we DO. There’s great freedom in that. As someone once said, “Failure isn’t something not working out… We only fail if we let fear rule us… If we let ourselves go unknown…unloved.”

Good Wife, Good Fight!

In any good relationship, it is important to fight “well!”  WHAT, you say?  Yes, great love stories always involve conflict.  So if you want to keep growing and knowing well your boyfriend-husband, you need to be able to communicate the hard things without destroying the love and trust you have built.  As the great columnist Ann Landers once said, “All married couples should learn the art of battle as they should learn the art of making love.  Good battle is objective and honest— never vicious or cruel.  Good  battle is healthy and constructive and brings to a marriage the principle of EQUAL PARTNERSHIP.”  The key to fighting well is to understand that you and your man ARE ON THE SAME TEAM!!!  Know that as you disagree on topics, both big and small; your mate is NOT your Adversary…your mate is your ADVOCATE, as you are his! This is a huge part of getting through a conflict and being capable of ending up on solid ground…TOGETHER.  In marriage, it’s not about WHO will win the argument. It’s about sharing and talking out each person’s opinion and feelings until an agreement is reached or a conclusion is respected.  Yes, you and your guy can AGREE TO DISAGREE!  That’s totally okay.  It’s more interesting anyway.  As long as you both decide that in any conflict…we either BOTH lose or we BOTH WIN!! Love matters most.

The Lover’s Stroll

I know we all like/try to exercise!  Physical accomplishments with jogging, running, hiking are all the rage in our fast-paced culture.  However, as Gwyn Thomas reminds us, “But the beauty is in the walking…we are betrayed by destinations.”  How about taking a stroll with your boyfriend-husband once in a while?  To stroll is to meander, to roam or to wander.  Some of our best talks or problem-solving have occured when my man and I go for a “stroll” together.  It seems when we are most relaxed and are not trying to get a certain number of miles accomplished; we tend to do our best “talking” and sharing of the heart.  We like to go out into a “world where (one) is free to think:  walking articulates both physical and mental freedom,” recommends Rebecca Solnit.  It seems as though we almost receive a “gift” after such a stroll with no particular goal in mind. As a couple who is slammed with a lot of “have to’s” with our jobs; it is a rare jewel to have a “meeting of the mind and heart” with no other distractions around us.  All of sudden, it’s just “us” in the world…together…like it was when we started to know each other and fall in love.  Nothing else matters.  As our overloaded minds start to clear, we engage in meaningful conversation that bonds us even deeper.  Taking a Lover’s Stroll is just another way to experience our love for one another.  As Jarod Kintz once stated, “Patience and wisdom walk hand in hand, like two one-armed lovers.”

Finding the AMAZING in the MAZE of Marriage

“She’s got gaps and I got gaps, and between the two of us, our gaps meet and we sort of fill each other in.”  –Rocky Balboa
Sometimes the girlfriend-wife is confused by her man’s gaps in his personality.  As you are getting to know your guy, it feels like you are inside a maze or an intricate network of pathways that feel like barricades that involve a lot of twisting and turning.
There’s good news and bad news…
The bad news is that finding your way through the labyrinth of your man’s heart can be confusing and hard work.
The good news is twofold:  First, what girlfriend-wife doesn’t like a challenge?? Your boyfriend-husband is like finding your way through an elaborate puzzle that requires you to use your memory and skill to get through.
A good marriage is not for the faint at heart.  Like all worthwhile things in life; it takes patience, love and determination.  As you employ these qualities, a woman can make her way successfully through the maze of her husband’s heart to the mountain top where the view is downright AMAZING!
As you discover and see things in him that just don’t make sense, chose to understand; not to judge that which mystifies you.  When you start to understand him is where the “AMAZING”  breaks through.  That point of understanding makes your heart beat faster and causes your heart to melt. When you find your way to your husband’s heart it is wonderful beyond words, astonishing, surprising, stunning and breathtaking!

Riding Tandem

I have found that a successful marriage is kind of like riding a tandem bike!  Marriage can be compared to a bicycle-built-for-two.  It takes two riders; one behind the other.  The word, “tandem” is defined as “together at the same time.”  In other languages “tandem” is a pair or means the chemistry of two people.  My boyfriend-husband and I rented a tandem bike in Golden Gate Park once in San Francisco.  My guy is about a foot taller than me and rode in the front…with me, primarily screaming all the way in the back!  My man loves to go fast in anything that moves and enjoys taking risks…me, not so much!  It was a fun adventure to say the least and I basically laughed and screamed the whole entire time!  Recently I ran into a woman who rode a tandem bike through-out Europe.  She said her tour guide’s one rule was, “Always listen to the captain,” the person riding in front.  Great advice if you want to get where you are going in one piece.  It’s like a famous quote I once heard, “Victory is about self…unity is about relationship.”

Use the Giraffe Idea… It Works!

I attended a beautiful wedding in a park last summer.  My niece looked amazing as she gave her vows to her man.  Between them on their little marriage table sat a stuffed giraffe.  Curious to those of us watching yet made so much sense in the end.  Skilled at “Conflict Resolution,” this dedicated couple used the symbol of the GIRAFFE to solve their challenges.  If you google “Giraffe” you will discover that it is the tallest land animal.  What makes it unique is its NECK and its HEART.  A giraffe’s neck is 6-feet tall (272 kilograms, weighing in at about 600 pounds).  The heart of a giraffe is 2 feet (0.6 meters) long and weighs approximately 25 pounds.  In a healthy relationship, a smart girlfriend-wife needs her neck AND her heart.  Like the giraffe, she needs to “stick her neck out” and take the risk of letting her guy know how she REALLY feels.  Men tend to live in a world of logic so they respect honesty.  As John Mayer sings in his song, “Say what you need to say.”  A woman also needs to excerise her heart and care enough to CONNECT with her man.  Girlfriends…speak the truth in love and keep current with how you feel.  Remember…”any time that is not spent on love is wasted.”  Torquato Tasso

The Heart Matters

Someone once said, “The heart matters in the matters of the heart.”  If your heart isn’t fully into your man…your best intentions will crumble.  At the heart of every woman is the desire to have an amazing relationship.  We all strive after affection, understanding, and intimacy.  If your heart is out of whack…or backed up on old resentments, unforgiveness or regrets…it won’t be capable of truly connecting with your Boyfriend-Husband! Give yourself a HEART CHECK from time to time.  Stay current with your feelings so that your love can flow freely.  It has been said that “the heart is the center of the  universe.” A wise king once commented, “Guard your heart, for out of it flows the wellspring of life.”  Yes, the heart matters.  Use it, keep it well oiled  and running properly with love, and you will be better equipped to reach the heart of your man!

Keeping Score

Have you ever met a competitive couple?  They compete with each other for attention and try to out-impress everybody they meet.  They often take this competition and thread it way deep into their relationship.  The wise girlfriend-wife wants a man to love her, not to compete with her.  The “I owe you, You owe me” mentality doesn’t usually go anywhere productive.  A couple who truly loves each other turns competition into a “Giving Game.”  Some years ago, my husband and I met just such a couple.  They were serious about loving each other in real ways.  They played a little game between
them each day to see who could OUTGIVE who in their marriage.  They played for keeps.  They went over the day’s happenings each evening to discover WHO WAS THE BIGGEST GIVER that given day.  It really took a lot of heat off the relationship and lightened it up to a magical level.  If you strive to OUTGIVE one another, you end up  building a solid foundation.  That foundation of giving will keep you strong when the challenges of life come your way.  A wise man once said, “Nobody owes me anything.” If you live by that motto you never have to entertain bitterness.  Resentment can’t land
on you and make you hard and unable to keep giving.  Be smart, and adopt that  mindset.  It will set you free to become or continue to be a good giver and not a competitor.  In the long run, “There is only one happiness in this life, to love and to be loved.”  George Sand

Be the Oasis

Everybody’s talking about the big drought going on around where we live.  Water is becoming a precious commodity.  People who live in arid climates or desert environments just live for the moment that they come to an Oasis.  An Oasis is a watering place in a dry land where the area becomes starkly different from what is the norm surrounding it.  With miles of desert around you, here at the oasis is a lush, green, shaded spot where refreshment can be taken in.  In a healthy, beautiful relationship, the girlfriend-wife can seek to become an Oasis for her man.  She can purpose to be an Oasis from the noise and the stress of the outside world.  As a smart woman who values her guy, you can decide to become your husband’s Oasis by creating a refuge of safety, a haven, and his very own hideaway with your actions.  You can be delighted to see him, you can create a pleasurable environment when he comes home, you can make sure you smell good and you look good and present him a peaceful contenance.  You can be his guardian angel to bring him comfort…for as Louise Nevelson says, “true strength is delicate.”  I met a woman recently who when her husband entered the room, he just lit up when he saw her!  She definitely has communicated to him that she is a safe place, an oasis where he can’t wait to hang out in.  When my children were small, I would set the timer 30 minutes before my husband got home and fixed up my appearance, sprayed on some fresh perfume and got the kids to pitch in and straighten the place up.  It was always a BIG DEAL when my man came home and we all rushed to greet him.  Make your guy want to come home and be his personal Oasis!  As K. Sunde once said,
“to love is to receive a glimpse of heaven.”