Week 1: Communication

This last week, we started a new sequence of engagement prep classes…each week is a different topic and a different couple. So we set aside and hour and a half to learn how to communicate.

Rob & Jodie jumped right into it. Well, Rob did at least. A small-framed man with big impact expressions and a tendency to jump up on his tip-toes mid-speech, he sure kept us entertained. He had diagrams, props, the works. We were in a room with only twelve people, a nice contrast from our last group of sixty. We each had to go around the room and say how we met. The couple next to us met on the internet; myspace, actually. The couple behind us? Her mother belonged to a Christian motorcycle bikers club with a dude who she later introduced to her daughter…and now they’re getting married.
But the great part was that Rob would go on and on, turn around to Jodie, and ask if she had anything to add. At one point, she actually said ‘well, I’ve thought of about 20 things, but…’ Rob brazed over it and kept going. Occasionally, Jodie would open her mouth and then shut it. Once she even got a little bug-eyed after exhausting her failed intents to speak. I kept thinking about the irony of this situation. And when he noticed he was running out of time, he paced back and fourth frantically and made me more cognizant of the time than I ever would have been in the first place.
And there were several group questions that garnered some interesting answers. Like, for instance, the very purpose of marriage? One couple volunteered that it was to make it last. Really? Am I really walking down the aisle with the end goal [purpose] of my marriage being just not to get divorced? Another couple volunteered that our sole reason for marriage was procreation. I dare to believe that there is something more than both of these reasons, and our answer reflected such. So we were the only people in the class eating the ‘free’ snacks, relaxing, and just praising God that he has a master plan behind all of this!
A long time ago I was in a group therapy session and I remember taking from it this one fact: if you ever think you are weird, just go to a group therapy session. I once watched a girl do an entire choreographed (and quite scandalous) dance routine to no music in the middle of our circle of chairs to show us how she copes during moments when she considered taking her life or hurting someone else. I was the only one biting back laughter at the craziness of that thought. Same goes for these classes. I wish they had 5, 10, and 20 year reunions to see who made it go the distance, because most of the time I’m just left laughing and scratching my head!

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