DB's need to plans things to the nth degree drives me crazy. Similarly, my completely random ideas on what we can do at the spur of the moment stress him out. For instance, he will like to plan a three day vacation months in advance with every last detail accounted for - nothing left to chance. I on the other hand will find out on a Thursday, that I have a day off on Monday and will pick a random place in a two to three hundred mile radius and tell him "Let's go there".
In the past, DB has responded to these arbitrary requests with a complete meltdown and I with anger at him for raining on our parade. This weekend has been the first time that fire met ice in a way that magic was made. We were able to take a sudden vacation to a small beach town we had never heard of. We took long walks on the beach as long as the temperature allowed, J and I collected seashells that held potential as jewelry - DB offered help and critique in equal measure. For the first time, J tried shellfish and loved it. We drove around the quaint neighborhoods, checked out a beautiful aquarium and an island. We did not have the days planned - we slept in, started late, walked, ate local or cooked, walked some more and returned to the home we had rented.
When I first suggested taking off somewhere, DB got stressed as he is wont to do and I clammed up and told him to "Forget it". That is exactly how things have been thus far. This time, DB made an effort to work with me and when I saw him try to work out of his comfort zone, I came forward to help him plan like he needs to. He told he that he loved my spontaneity and was glad I asked to go at short notice and that he'd love to do this more often. Thanks to observing how DB does things, I have a much greater appreciation for the virtues of planning ahead - something that simply does not come to me naturally.
I realized this weekend that DB and I may have married because we are ice and fire. We argued passionately after we got together because we are so different and we were not able to negotiate our own space in the relationship without feeling displaced and dominated by the other person. It does not help that we are both fiercely independent and don't like giving up things that are important to us. Almost a year into the marriage we are beginning to learn how we can meet each other half way and nurture our marriage with the qualities that drew us together in the first place instead of allowing our differences to become the flints with which to strike disagreement and discord.