One of my favorite questions to ask married friends of mine is, “What’s been the most suprising thing about marriage?” The answers are delightful. Here are some of my favorites.
“I think, maybe, the biggest surprise is how easy it’s been. We’ve had to deal with a lot of hard things, but the marriage hasn’t been hard. I think it was C.S. Lewis who said something about marriage being as comfortable as an old sweater or your favorite slippers. And it really is.”
“How much FUN it was.” — married almost 50 years.
“I don’t think I’m allowed to publish that answer.” — a newlywed. “And, how much I still really, really, really want some of my independence.”
“Loneliness.” — facing terminal illness.
“The sacrifice. That said, I like him more now than I did the day I married him.”
“Oh yeah, that you can love someone so, so very much more than you did when you married them, because, and not in spite of, all the difficulties.”
“I’m really surprised that after almost 20 years we’re not tired of each other. I’m also surprised how much we both have changed over the years. I think we’ve both become better people with each other’s help.”
“That we loved our similarities when we were dating and now we love our differences.”
“Apparently it is totally normal to fight for a month straight when you first get married.” — another newlywed.
“The things that surprised me most in my first marriage were that someone who loved you and had pledged his life and heart to you could be so cruel. And that you could keep loving him and keep hoping things would change, for far longer than you’d have imagined possible. And that you could hide so much from other people.”
“Just how often we have to apologize and ask one another for forgiveness.”
“The things I thought would be easy were the hardest and the hardest things have been bearable because we faced them together.”
“I’m a harder person to live with than I ever thought before marriage.”
“My husband doesn’t open up like he did when we were dating. He’s more guarded with his emotions. Also, he’s a furnace at night, so we have to have a fan every night all year long.”
“That he forgives me so often.”
“How selfish I am.”
“We’ve had plenty of difficulties over the years. Life, you know? It happens. But our marriage has been the place to face life from together. And I can’t think of any place I’d rather be.”
“Touching feet might not make all the hurt feelings of the disagreement go away but there is stability and love in the little things that reaffirm you’re going to get through this together.”