One of the things that we contended with during our engagement was the Mr’s processing of the whole idea of being a husband, questioning whether he had what it takes to be a good husband. I think it’s a normal question to ask: “Hey, can I really do what I’m committing to doing?” We feel that being able to ask (and answer) the hard questions was what made it possible for us to feel so free of anxiety on our wedding day.
Fast forward two months post-wedding:
I was laying in bed one morning enjoying some snuggly time with my Mr. Between snoozes I thought about what a wonderful husband he is: “wow, I am so lucky to wake up with this man holding me…. Thank you, God, that even in the frustrating things we are experiencing that he cares about me/us and hasn’t withdrawn… Oh, that was so great of him to….” Then that rude, jarring, sleep-murdering alarm went off inside me: “oh crap! I’m a wife!” For some reason in processing all things wedding and marriage, I never thought about if I have what it takes to be a good wife. I mean, I thought about it, but suddenly it was all reality and I felt a moment of slight panic as I wondered how I was measuring up… and what was the measure? What is a good wife??? I was lost.
I have vague notion of what a good wife is, but I have a much clearer picture of what it isn’t. Through growing up watching my parents and other families, through counseling and doing couples workshops, I mostly took notes on what not to do: yelling, hitting, belittling, ignoring, deceiving, playing power games, …
I could make a whole list of things that I hate (and love) to see in marriages. Books have given me general guidelines of what is good behavior but honestly I think every woman (and man) would have a differing opinion about what makes a wife “good.” I have no desire to debate the religious or cultural expectations of wives. A good debate can be fun, but what holds greatest value is what he and I (with God in the mix) determine to be good in our home.
Now, I’m on a mission to discover what my Mr experiences as good. What is the good that he desires to experience from me, the Mrs?