After the powerfully surreal whirlwind that is a wedding and a honeymoon, lessons in Now That You’re Married 101 begin: Packing (and unpacking and repacking). Waiting to be able to move to North Dakota. Deleting Facebook. Merging bank accounts. Making joint decisions. Running errands. Sleeping in the same bed. Finding an apartment. Determining and communicating known and unknown expectations. Changing my name. Figuring out car insurance (okay, Josh definitely did all the work on that). Realizing Josh and I prefer to operate on very different schedules (I’m an early bird, he’s a night owl). Coming to grips with my own selfishness. Being together from sunrise to sunset and into the next sunrise. Despite all our differences, trying to be one in mind, spirit and body.

Mike Mason (who I am bound to quote often from his book The Mystery of Marriage) describes the above experience concisely: A marriage is not a joining of two worlds, but an abandoning of two worlds in order that one new one might be formed . . . . Marriage involves nothing more than a lifelong commitment to love just one person – to do, whatever else one does, a good, thorough job of loving one person,” (p. 103, 112).

Some days it all feels completely natural, and others I wake up and can hardly believe that I’ve crossed into this completely unexplored territory called marriage. I have no idea what I’m doing and some days it is extremely taxing and frustrating, even in this “honeymoon” time. I’m learning so much about myself, about Josh and how we communicate.

And while it’s surprisingly tough, it is the most wonderful thing. Love uncovers the deepest and darkest sins, and though this process proves painful it is love is that makes me want to change. I have to change for this to work, I have to surrender. I’m not good at it yet, and I put up a good fight some days,  but I see the love and the patience in my husband’s eyes and it is worth it. I will try again. I am determined to love my husband thoroughly.

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