My Fitness

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Entering Motherhood



I can remember when I was a small child and even a teenager how I fantasized about being a wife and mommy. That's all I wanted to do. Even with society pressuring women to be feminists and climb corporate ladders, I didn't care. I wasn't standing up to them, necessarily, I just didn't desire those things. I just wanted to be that perfect June Cleaver who vacuumed and sewed buttons and ironed all while being beautiful and putting out a gorgeous dinner.

I realize that Mrs. Cleaver is fictional and much of her perfection is also quite fake. So many women seem to think, though, that since it isn't ALL possible then they won't even try.
I've been married for just a few months now (since June 20, 2009). I've heard people tell me that marriage is 50-50. It's a partnership. Each member is equal and should put in just as much work. But I think our marriage is more than that, and (for us) it will be a mutual submission of desires. We won't be a 50-50 marriage, but instead we will be a 100-100 marriage. My theory is that when each couple gives 50-50, then when one falters you won't add to 100. But when I falter, my husband has enough to cover both of us because that's what he's expecting from the beginning to have to do. When my husband doesn't have the strength to give 100 (or even 50%) then I have enough to make up for that lack.
Maybe when people say 50-50 they mean the same thing. But I know of at least one girl who says that if her husband isn't giving everything then she doesn't need to either. This breaks my heart. I don't love my husband because of what he can do for me. I love him because of what I desire to do for him. We have a Christ-based love. We try to emulate Christ's example of sacrificial love by giving everything even when the other person is sorely lacking. We both lack. And by God's grace we both give.
I enjoy vacuuming. And this is an easy task for me to do to show my husband that I love him. My husband enjoys cooking; and it is more than his delight to show his love for me by cooking. I do not enjoy ironing. But the amount of love I have for my husband makes even ironing an enjoyable experience just because I know that by simply ironing (and it is simple) I can show him I love him - it is such a practical way to show him I love him. Why wouldn't I iron for him?
Well, I continually try to find more and better ways to love my husband. By bettering myself, keeping my mind sharp, keeping my physical shape, and numerous other tasks I show him that I love him. What's wonderful is that he doesn't need me to do these things, he doesn't ask me to do these things, he doesn't push his will on me, and he even does a lot of chores before I get to them. He doesn't care if I do them or not. But he does feel loved whenever I do do these simple tasks.
There have been times (like during my first trimester) that even getting my own glass of water was difficult. And he was so loving to do EVERYTHING! I didn't ask. He just sees a need and fills it. I don't think he even thought about it. He swept. He did the laundry. He cleaned the bathroom. He did the dishes. And he would continue to do them today if I wasn't doing them. But I love him so much that I want to do those things. It's like a fun competition to see who can clean things first.
We both work. It's been hard on me to work and be pregnant - to those of you who do it successfully, I admire you! I'm a high school algebra teacher and this is not an experience (teaching) that I want to replicate ever again. Maybe your job is less stressful?? Maybe I just don't manage my stress well?? I'm not sure. My husband wants me to never have to work again. I want to be June Cleaver. Once this baby comes, I'm a stay-at-home mommy just like I've always wanted to be!
This next part seems to make many of our friends uncomfortable. But I think it's just our culture. My husband and I (and little Caleb whenever he comes; due May5) are moving back with my in-laws while my husband completes his PhD. They have this little suite of sorts with a room for us, a nursery and a bathroom in-between them. It seems perfect. In most cultures this is normal to have several generations in one household. At first I wasn't completely comfortable with it. But when I saw how excited they were and how comfortable they were with it, it really eased my mind. Then, it started reminding me of how Jesus has gone to prepare for us a room at his Father's house. SO it seemed that even Jesus was comfortable with it.
update: turns out moving in with them was not good and we moved out shortly after moving in.

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