Jan 13, 2008

The Pre-TTC Years

Ah, wedded bliss! Is there anything better? Is there anything more satisfying, more comfortable, and more fun? (Wait, are we talking about chocolate again?) Actually, the first year of our marriage was a little rough. We were both still dealing with some leftover arguments from the dating days as well as our separate independence issues, and, as any longtime married couple will tell you, your days of independence are over. It wasn't as hard for me in my early 20s (ok, I was 20) as it was for my new husband in his late 30s. (Did I mention our union was somewhat scandalous?) I was barely out of my parents' house and into the real world when we married and I moved back in with a real "adult". For Ty, who had been a bachelor for 15+ years, it was a bit of a switch. Suddenly there was another person in his space, messing up his bedroom (I'm a reformed slob), and needing food. I wanted to be a good wife, but wasn't sure how at first.

My mother perfected being a housewife, so you would think I would have had a great role model. She raised 7 kids, even home schooling most of us. Our house was always clean due to her strict dictation, and meals were always at home, cooked with love by dear mom. But I wasn't interested in any of that, try as she did to teach me. I hated cooking, I hated cleaning, and I especially hated my Midnight curfew. I LOVED being an adult! I loved not being told what to do, where to be, and how to act! There was only one problem: I had married a rare form of man, one who regularly cooked his own meals, kept a clean house, and preferred to stay in at night. I distinctly remember an argument a few months after we married, one where I was receiving an honest frustration from a man talking to a grown child: He was doing all the work, I needed to step up. Ok, I accepted that. It hurt, but I could see his point. I was still in college, working towards a degree in Pyschology, but I didn't have a job, so there was plenty of time to work on being a better wife.

Enter church. Ty had for a few years been going to a relatively new church in the area. Later it would go on to become a megachurch, but for now it was just a regular, large church. We didn't go regularly by any stretch of the imagination, but we did manage to catch a crucial series. For three weeks, we were drawn in by our pastor's teachings on marriage. He made some excellent points that stick with me still.

  • Don't put each other down, even if you're teasing, and especially in public.
  • The man is the head of the household, and he'll be better at it with your support, wives.
  • The Bible says, Women, honor your husbands, Men, love your wives. Men don't need love from their wives, they need respect, obedience, and honor from their wives. Men's mental make-up thrives better on those three things than on love. They need their women to adore them, trust them, and to need them. They don't need romancing, they need respect. Women, on the flip side, aren't as caught up in that side of the ego. We need love, we need romance, we need to hear that they only think of us, and that they couldn't live without us. We don't care as much about their obedience or respect, we care that we're being worshiped and adored.
That last one really hit home with me. For a long time I rebelled against a lot of the teachings with the Bible. That's the first verse that I had long-time hated that finally made sense to me. As a Psychology major, it intrigued me, and rang true. I decided to give that a shot in our home. I let Ty call the shots, make the decisions, and praised him every chance I could find.

It made a huge difference! It made me more motivated to please him, and to pick up the slack that I was causing. I loved the changes it made in me, and I could tell he loved it too.

I hadn't come across this book at this point, but if you're at this point in your marriage, then I highly recommend it:

Created To Be His Help Meet, by Debi Pearl. Check out the Pearl's website!, they have tons of amazing resources for all areas in your life! Sign up for their free newsletter!

Stayed tuned (or, rather, log back on...) for blogs on the TTC years!

1 comment:

juvalee and bru said...

Hello Chelsea...absolutely LOVE hearing your poetic writing and learning more things about the early years. I feel like I'm getting an insight into your book that you're going to compose...right?! :)