IT’S TRULY AMAZING WHAT YOU CAN LEARN ABOUT your relationship in the most unlikely of places and situations. Removing furniture during a home move or cleaning windows, floors and mowing lawns seem innocuous enough, but I found myself receiving from my wife what I can only term as a ‘peck check,’ a way of her ascertaining how I was going—by way of attitude or mood. The peck check is her motioning a kiss to me (the peck) to elicit the same response from me—if I kiss back, all is okay (the check).
I’m no different to most people, I suppose; I don’t mind hard work but if it can be avoided I’m just as interested. I found this was the reason for the peck check—to check my emotional status, probably because at several moments I was fighting frustration.
How perceptive are our mates? They know us that well they (and we in return) use an unspoken language, a gesture here, a gesture there... a whole compendium of meaning is received and transmitted.
This is a good thing, this language of the relationship’s heart.
One identifies with the other and vice versa, especially when things get a little hot and pressures begin to mount.
It’s good to be aware of the little behavioural cues we give off, exhibit or respond to in our relationships; these are many and varied. Being attuned to these says something very positive about our relationships. But, these gestures can also be negative; we can make assumptions and then blame the person giving us these cues if things turn pear-shaped because we saw an intent that wasn’t there.
For me, my wife’s peck check was a very consistently delivered gesture that she gives me when she’s worried about me. It is of some real comfort to me to recognise this, because I’m in a position to do a great deal to assuage her worries—I’m in direct control of that, as it pertains to me. My response was to identify with her concern, kiss back instinctively, and then review my attitude to ensure it could be congruent with my kiss back to her i.e. ‘all is good.’
Picking up on others’ gestures and cues to us is hence a great thing to be aware of; to confirm receipt of the right message and respond the best way we can, both in a gesture of response and the behaviour that necessarily follows.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.