Today’s revised post is one I wrote a few years ago. It’s some humorous memories about my feeble attempts to be a perfect newlywed wife. And I’m not sure even Pinterest and HGTV could have helped me! Hope you enjoy!
Today Jim and I are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary (insert happy dance and “whoo hoooo” here!). Life has just been crazy this last year, so no big trip or extravagant gifts planned. Just keeping things simple and enjoying just being together sounds like the perfect evening.
Low key and easy. Definitely not what newlywed Beth ever pictured as ideal. Wow, did I have some unreal expectations!
I had in mind what the “perfect” wife should be. Fabulous cook. Spotless house. A master at multi-tasking.
Reality check, please
The one time I fixed meatloaf was the last time I fixed meatloaf. I vaguely remember numerous trips to the bathroom. One of us may or may not have thrown up. Good times.
And then there was the curtain disaster. I proudly hung a new set, complete with the poofy 90s style valance in the middle, just in time for our first dinner party. Then a guest whispered, “I think you have those up backwards.” Awesome.
There was my attempt at making a wreath. I was scarred for life from glue gun burns. I mean, who needs feeling in your left pinky-tip anyway, right?
And let’s just say never have vegetable oil and Murphy’s Oil together on the kitchen counter. Because the brownies you make for your couples Bible study could taste funky. If they don’t combust in the oven first. Or kill you by poisonous fumes.
But I pushed through, determined to be the wife I thought God and Jim wanted me to be. Until the Saturday I ironed a dozen dress shirts. Let me tell you – those babies hung in the closet like starched domestic masterpieces.
I thought so, anyway. Then Jim mentioned I had done all the collars wrong.
(To any guys reading this: Do not try this at home. Trust me.)
He had to be kidding! I had spent my one day off on these shirts, only to hear I had not done them correctly.
I cried. He sighed. Then came the words all wives must be hardwired to say.
“WHY DID YOU EVER MARRY ME? I CAN’T DO ANYTHING RIGHT!”
What Jim said next was probably out of sheer desperation to end my meltdown, but I know the Holy Spirit gave him the words I needed to hear.
“Honey, I didn’t marry you just to do things for me. I married you because I want you to do things with me.”
Definitely a lightbulb moment.
“For” had become a legalistic to-do list of unreal expectations. “With” could become a to-do life of real experiences.
I needed to choose which I wanted for our marriage.
Fast forward to 2015. If you come for coffee, five loads of unfolded laundry might be on the couch. The bathroom will likely need deep cleaned (and peek behind the shower curtain at your own risk). Feel free to write you name in the dust. It’s an acceptable form of a guest book.
Those things always get done. But given the choice, I’ll pick being with my husband over an immaculate house.
Because perfect homes and perfect marriages don’t exist.
Memories. Good times and tough times. Happy days and sad days. Together.
That’s what is real. And breathes life into marriage.
Newlyweds (and those still learning) ~ go live life as one. Pray faithfully. Serve the Lord fully. Forgive quickly.
Be passionate. Embrace each day. Laugh a lot. Don’t be afraid to hurt. Take chances.
Together, with God’s help, you can do this marriage thing.
Just be careful with the brownies, okay?
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