Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Great Expectations Part 1

I have some great expectations.  I have always, always, for as long as I can remember supposed that I would get married.  I believed that I was called to be a wife and mother.  I imagined that I would marry at the age of 19.  I would be done with high school by then.  I had no plans for college.  Why would I need to go to college?  I wouldn’t need a career because my husband would be our bread-winner.  My career would be “stay-at-home-mom.”  There are no courses to be taken in How to be a Good Wife,”  “Raising Children to Serve God 101,” “Homeschooling Your Children” or “Housekeeping for Dummies.”  Everything I needed to know I learned at home from my mother.  I learned to cook and clean.  I helped my little brothers and sisters with their school work.  I didn’t date because I knew that God would bring me my perfect match so why should I fool around with fate? 

                    My “great expectation” to be married at 19 did not happen.  Ok, so 19 is a little young.  I’ll concede that.  Then, I planned on getting married at 20… and then 21… and then 22… and so on.  It’s been quite a few years since 19.  But, I wonder what expectations we all have about our princes and marriage in general.  Here’s a couple of scenario’s for you.

                    It’s a beautiful summer day, the flowers are blooming and the sun is shining.  The time is late afternoon; you’re in your bright, sunny kitchen preparing dinner for your family.  The children are playing sweetly outside on the swing set, their laughter floats to you on the breeze that is whispering at the open window and dancing with the curtains.  You smile and hum to yourself as you chop home-grown vegetables and dump them into the frying pan..  Any moment your husband will walk in the door, he’ll toss the boys in the air and hug the girls.  But first, he’ll have a kiss for you.  When dinner is ready, you’ll all sit down to a wonderful candle-lit meal, served up on those adorable dishes you ordered from Crate and Barrel.  You’ll all laugh together as you talk about your day.  Later, after the children are bathed and tucked into bed with a story and a kiss, you and your husband sit outside under the stars, and just talk.  Just enjoy each other’s company…

                   We all have great expectations.  Reality is often another story.  Here’s another scenario.

                  It’s still a beautiful summer day, but you’re too tired and hot to notice.  The air conditioning is broken and you’ve spent the whole afternoon trying to fix it.  Frustrated, you finally give up and go inside.  The children are climbing the walls, crying, they just want your attention, but you don’t have time.  Your husband will be home any minute and you haven’t even thought about what to make for dinner.  You pop a video into the VCR (the DVD player is broken) and set the kids in front of the TV.   What to do for dinner?  There are no homegrown vegetables to glean from the garden, because there is no garden.  You’re not allowed to grow anything on your rental property.  The fridge is almost empty, you haven’t been to the grocery store yet this week, in fact you haven’t been out of the house at all because you only have one car and your husband takes it to work.  You grab a jar of Prego out of the cupboard (the last one) and a box of pasta.  Meatless spaghetti.  Again.  Your husband comes home from a long day at work.  He’s hoping to sit down to a steak dinner, but instead he gets a dirty house, crying kids, a cranky wife and meatless spaghetti.  Again.

Part 2 Coming Tomorrow....


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