Marriage was never something I was programmed for. It was something I knew I wanted, but unlike most of my peers, I wasn’t really built for it.
I grew up in a majority Mormon population in which teenagers married sometime between 1 and 2 days after high school graduation. Children usually came along 9 months and 1 or 2 days after graduation. Okay, okay…that is an exaggeration, but only a slight one.
Imagine a single twenty-seven year old in that kind of culture that chose not to date. I was either a spinster or a lesbian. It was very awkward. Fortunately I was more than confident in myself and mostly chuckled. It was actually when I was 27 that I knew with every fiber of my being that I was going to be married, and soon. You can read more about that here.
While I don’t believe in “the one” or “soulmates” or anything like that, I do believe God will provide if we let Him. What we do with that provision is up to us to and sometimes we screw it up beyond repair.
Finally that day came when a stranger knocked on my door and to my surprise he turned out to be a man I would choose not to live without. It was kind of crazy how fast I knew that I was going to marry this dude. In a sense the stars aligned because the woman who was not built for it was ready for it.
After four months we were engaged and a year later we were married. First came love, then came marriage…and hate. There were times when every fiber of my being rejected this guy and this marital condition. It wasn’t for me. My very essence cried out for divorce. I hated not the person, but his habits, his shortcomings, his parents, his upbringing, and the problems all that created for me. I hated having to deal with any of it. Just get through the first year I told myself. Then the first year terminated and my soul still cried out for divorce. This was the part where we take that provision and either embrace it or destroy it. I wanted nothing to do with it. I wanted out.
Thank God this stay at home dog mom doesn’t have a penny to her name. With hate in my heart, I still needed him to pay the bills. You can read more about that here. And so I coped.
Now it’s not fair to say that every moment of every day was awful. I mean I was still absolutely in love with the person. I was in love with the boyfriend that I spent hours talking to getting to know, that devoted himself to my furbabies, that believed in my dreams, and desired to provide for me. It just so happened that that person became a faint memory.
Not too long ago tragedy struck our family. I lost my job as a result of a family emergency. I needed to be with my family and to support my husband. I needed to cope with and accept a new reality. With 600 miles between us I needed a couple of days.
Losing my job was soul crushing. Being home and feeling like a failure took a real emotional toll. I felt like a stranger in my life and a financial burden to my husband. But great crisis brought a unity I couldn’t have expected. I spent massive amounts of time with my husband. In making up for lost time and coping, we started dating. We went to movies, and out to dinner, we cuddled our dogs way more, and spent a lot of time talking, loving and supporting each other. We have to rethink some things given our current situation, and that involves some married people talk, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that my feelings were changing. I took great delight in this man. It felt like it did three years ago. It felt so right. It still does. And so I told my husband that I am in love with my boyfriend.
I know this will all change again as life is full of mountains and valleys. I like to think that I have adjusted to being married. It was something I always wanted, it just didn’t come natural to me. That’s okay. Making the adjustment is what matters. I’m sure as we settle back into our lives my boyfriend will disappear again leaving only my husband, but I am hopeful that having adjusted to the institution will make the future easier.