A young woman held her lover by the hand and reached up on her tip-toes.”Do you remember at the beginning of our relationship when I told you that I’ve always wanted a cow teapot?” She stroked (yes, caressed) the ugliest tea pot I’ve ever seen. It was in the shape of a Holstein cow, with it’s tail curled as a handle.
I immediately felt emotional pain for the young man. Who on earth cares about a cow-shaped tea-pot? What on earth would possess anyone to reveal that to someone at the beginning of a relationship other than recreational drugs and too much tequila?
At first my thought was, ‘this is over the top’. Who cares? Who really freaking cares about your tea-pot darling?
The reality is we all do.
It’s about the need to connect. That’s what the tea-pot is about. Our need to connect is even more powerful than any numbing agent out there; prescription drugs, booze, therapy or any other obsessive behavior. As human beings we have a great need to connect with one, special person who gets us. Who loves us no matter our penchant for weird kitsch like cow tea-pots and Jimmy Buffett costumes.
The evening I overheard this little nugget of ‘please remember me’, I was having dinner with a friend. Most of the dinner was about girl-stuff; being mothers, wives, and our loss of who we are in the middle of all of that (I’m not a wife, I’m currently hanging out with a gem who thinks commitment is letting me know where he is sometimes). We talked about our children, our work, the details of our personal lives, and we considered the quality of our romantic partnerships.
Feeling taken for granted is the biggest killer of joy on the planet.
Cow Tea-Pots matter. How you take your coffee and tea matter. What your favourite section of the newspaper is matters. How you feel matters.
I’m sure I’m not alone when I say I have a man who has no idea how I take my coffee or tea. With sugar right? No darling. Not for the past 42 years, but thanks for caring. If your partner would rather be on the golf course than in bed, and planning anything romantic is beyond their grasp, but planning social events for a dozen people is nothing, give the whole thing some serious consideration.
I’ve suggested setting a goal of hiking the Bruce Trail as a couple-something new, active and with a common goal in mind, but I know that it will never happen with my partner. I will have plenty of time for that however when he’s off on his own. Cow-teapots? Pul-eaze. Not even close.
Cow-tea pots matter. Because it means they listen, they care enough about why on earth that damn ugly tea-pot means so much to you, and they listened not just to the words of your story, but to your connection to it all.
When you are with a man who, doesn’t have a clue what kind of perfume you wear or a thousand other things, I have some advice for you. As much as it breaks your heart to think that your lover does not love you, but takes you for granted instead; wear the red dress and go to dinner with friends on your own (they will love your teapot stories), hike the trail (who knows who you might meet), buy the lingerie, and don’t ever make your time a priority for someone who takes yours for granted.
Go for the person who knows all about your cow teapot, or in my case, the pin-ball machine.