I Have No Idea Who I Married
There came a point during our honeymoon when I looked at my brand new wife and asked myself, “What did we just do?”
When we started dating, it was all about getting to know her, the individual. We got engaged and began to know each other in the context of “us” as a couple. By the time we got married, it seemed as if some of the mystery surrounding this beautiful woman had been fading. But my experience after our wedding and honeymoon has shown me how wrong I was to think that her mystery had died away. I realize now that Sara is far more complex and beautiful than I had ever imagined. I also realize that we have just begun to scratch the surface of each other’s personalities.
Sara likes to say that when we were dating we were interacting with each other’s “personal assistants.” I certainly remember staying on my best behavior back then as I tried to woo and impress her. It’s not that we were dishonest with each other, but there were certain flaws or personality quirks that we tried to downplay. When we each went home after spending time together, we could let our hair down again, so to speak.
Now that we are married, our down time is still at home, but home is with each other. Our “best behavior” is not something that either of us can or wish to sustain indefinitely. We have to be able to see and accept each other’s good days, bad days, imperfections and even mundane moments. I will not venture to say that after only four weeks of marriage we have seen each other’s best or worst, but I can say that being married is a whole lot different than dating. There are areas where we will grow. There will be little sacrifices – a lot of them, daily opportunities to put the other’s desires before our own.
Time, patience, and grace will bring us closer. One day, I will look back on our engagement and laugh that I ever thought that I knew Sara back then. I barely know her now. And that’s OK because we are people who are complex and who will change. The woman I met two years ago is not the same as the woman standing in our kitchen making dinner as I write this. And in twenty years, she will not be the same as the woman I know now. God reveals our friends to us slowly, and He calls us to have love (charity) for them as we come to know them, little by little, in His divine plan.
I don’t know the woman I married, but I love her as best I can, and I am always learning.