The Secret to Being Lucky in Love Is Investing in the Relationship You Have

I once dated a guy who freaked out when I baked him a banana bread. He stared at the foil covered loaf as if it were a small nuclear bomb. "You can't bring me stuff like this," he said, not touching it. Could he be allergic to bananas? No - but he was definitely allergic to the idea that I'd tried to do something special for him. "You made too much of an investment," he said nervously. I'd spent only a couple of bucks on the ingredients and I hadn't buried a diamond ring in the batter, but he was right that I'd invested too much time and attention in thinking about what he might like. Usually that's a scenario for getting lucky in love, but if it was more than he could handle, it was time to take my banana bread and go.

The real luck of a marriage develops once you decide that you're going to trust each other and stick around.

Not long after "banana bread guy," I met a man named Ron. One weekend, he took me to Vermont for a weekend of hiking, and I remember admiring the cows in the fields and the beauty of the scenery. Just before my birthday a month later, he drove the four hours back to Vermont without telling me in search of a painting by a local artist he thought I might like. I loved the painting, but even more, I loved that he was happy to put effort, energy, and thoughtfulness into our relationship. We could do things for each other. I could bake him banana bread, and he'd be happy to get it.

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