My wife and I knew each other before getting married, we talked, we shared the same values, we had love and respect of each other, but the details were a mystery. How did I know when she felt uncomfortable somewhere? How did she know when I had a bad day at work? How did we know when the other was upset about something? How did I know she was excited and happy even when she didn’t express it?

We learned those things the hard way, we just waited and hoped the other would notice something or ask. What happens in these situations is one partner doesn’t know that the other is suffering or not feeling good about a situation, and just goes on like life is normal. This makes the other partner feel like they are being ignored or that their partner doesn’t care about them.

After several hard moments and arguments we created a rule to help us deal with these situations, we call it “nothing under the rug”. There is a saying that when you just let a problem pass by you sweep it under the rug like nothing happened rather than talk about it, learn from it and understand each other more because of it.

Today if one of us feels a certain way about a situation we say it, if we feel upset about something we talk about it, if one of us feels uncomfortable we say why, if we feel amazing we let them know, we don’t ignore our feelings, we share them.

Through that rule we now express ourselves openly and have learned so much about each other. Today my wife doesn’t have to say she is upset for me to realize she is upset, I know, I don’t have to tell my wife that I had a hard day at work for her to see that something is wrong with me the moment I walk in the door, it is even harder for me to surprise her on a special occasion because she always knows when I am up to something.

These are the little details that we notice about each other that make us feel like one. I now notice she always adjusts her headscarf before she opens up the camera app, how she taps the screen twice before she takes a picture, or how your eyes light up with a little smile when she knows she got the perfect shot. That is what I am smiling at, how far we have come together.