Marriage has been surprisingly good.
Surprisingly? Did I think it was going to be bad?
No, not really. But I didn’t think it’d be this good. Actually, to compare “good” vs. “bad” is, quite honestly, overly simplistic. Black or white, down or up, in or out, dead or alive…this dichotomies serve as great literary devices, but they fail to capture the nuances of real life.
Marriage hasn’t been all cherries and cream. There have been many pits and sourness too…even in our 6 months (wow, 6 months already). I’m not going to lay out our dirty laundry, because that is neither appropriate nor necessary because the point is not the sourness, nor the sweetness, but the careful blending of the two. In Vanilla Sky, Tom Cruise’s best friend tells him that he can’t enjoy the sweet without the sour.
The goodness that I’ve experienced with my wife is a very rich and deep sort of goodness. It is good not because of the absence of arguments, tension, and periods of angry silence. It is good because it has been a journey well traveled. The weaving of hatred and love, tears and laughter, boredom and excitement has not only kept our marriage interesting, but is what has made it genuinely good.
I am unable to keep from returning to God’s comparison between marriage and our spiritual life. I find that in relating to God, there are many times of frustration, silence, and anger. But when these sad times are mixed with hope, victory, and love, I find that I come out with real faith.
Similarly, on this marital journey, my wife and I are experiencing real goodness and real love. For many couples, adversity will draw them apart. But for us, we find them inextricably linked to our happiness and joy. In God’s writing of our story, we find that adversity does not always draw us closer, but it does draw us deeper into each other. And it is in this dark-chocolate-sort-of-depth that we are finding a surprising sort of marital goodness.