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Dropping the Bomb

[This post was written almost a year ago, but not posted for some unknown reason.  Here it is, in stark contrast to my new post from tonight.  What a refreshing read.]

So this summer, like many other American couples, David and I celebrated our wedding anniversary.  This year there has been a marked shift in the way David feels and acts towards me, for the better.  He is more culturally Korean than I am, so I had to lay down just about all of my American romantic ideals I brought into our relationship/ marriage.  And over the years, I learned that his quiet ways of serving me and our children, and choosing the direction of our family in wisdom and faith, were actually far preferable to showy, public demonstrations of emotional love which I admittedly craved, but didn’t truly need.  The knowing I had in my heart, mind and spirit that he loves me and our family was unmistakable, and it ran very deep.

The shift this past year has been more emotional eros love on David’s part than I have ever felt in the course of our marriage.  He spontaneously expresses his love for me verbally out of the blue, in ways I craved when we were first married, but honestly which throw me off now.  I’m usually in the middle of something and quite distracted.  But I’m learning to take a step back in those moments, and take in his compliments, his verbal expressions of love.  I choose to remember how much I used to want this, and allow that portion of my heart to open up again, receive his expression, and return my affections in the moment.  And while I hold it loosely, I can’t deny his verbal love and proclamations of my beauty nourish my soul and build me up like nothing else.

This recent development is the fruit (I believe) of me choosing to love and support who he really is (vs. my projected image of what I thought he SHOULD be), and encourage him to pursue the dreams of his heart.

But I digress.  This post isn’t for analyzing why we are doing well right now.  The point is, we are doing well.  Our emotional intimacy has never run this close, and I feel for those married who have not tasted this level of safety, trust, and simply knowing and being known.  It’s amazing, whenever I stop a moment to think about it.

And then, it all disappeared in one moment.


David chose to tell a group of new friends his story, and I was not able to be part of the conversation.  I could not control their reactions.  I could not qualify statements that may be misunderstood.  And I was not there to watch and analyze their reactions and nonverbal signals to gauge their comfort levels with our story.

My brain raced to think what could I do to convince them we are doing well.  Ways to pepper our conversations with tidbits about our marriage.  Ways to publicly show physical affection more than usual (we both definitely carry the typically Asian behavior of saving our physical affection for private contexts rather than in public).

And I was reminded of when Michael Jackson was married to Lisa Marie Presley, and they made out on stage and made that one music video together.  It was so showy, it made you question the relationship more than if they kept that to themselves.

For me, I had to do a double take on myself.  How could my take on our marriage go from most secure EVER to completely insecure and uncertain in one instant?  I am reminded of the power of what other people think, and challenged to let it go.  These are our friends, new as they may be.  They are safe people.  If there are areas of misunderstanding, if we continue on in relationship, they will probably see their questions answered simply by the depth of our character, who we are, rather than how we behave with one another at any given moment. And if some misunderstand?  It’s okay.  How many people have I misunderstood over the years?  When my perception was wrong, it would correct itself over time.  If the person I misunderstood was defensive about my opinion, it only lowered my opinion of them even more.

So here I am, asking for courage and faith to let it go, and cling to what is good.

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