Week 74: Keeping Things Under Wraps
Why it’s good to have your cover blown in marriage sometimes…
Each Sunday, my wife and I cook and eat a meal together — intentionally. Every Friday, I’ll be sharing our experience here in this space. I want to see the growth that will come in our marriage because of this. I hope you enjoy our story. You can find last week’s post here.
Hey, everyone! Quick interjection. Aaron launched his personal writing website this week! It’s something he’s been thinking about for a while, and we’re so excited to see it come together. If you want to connect with his other writing, join in on the latest movie discussion, or simply say hi, click on the link below.
I am a writer from Indiana, where I live with my beautiful wife, Sarah. I seek to follow Christ daily with my life by…
Thank you so much! Ok, back to this week’s post.
We all have covers. Those are the faces we put on to make people think we’re feeling different than we really are. We all are good at putting up covers. At least, we think we are.
In nearly two years of marriage, I’ve learned something very quickly — it’s very hard for me to successfully put up a cover for my wife. She sees right through it. She knows me too well. She sees that something is going on under the surface. But there are those times when I “successfully” hide what I’m really feeling inside. Those are the times that blow up in my face. Like this particular Sunday when we made chicken salad wraps.
The Right Brand
Before I went to the store, Sarah had given me one request — don’t get the brand of gluten-free wraps that I had gotten before. Look for a different kind. Right when she said it, the following thought went through my head:
“Last time I went, they didn’t have the brand she wants. I got this particular kind because it says gluten free, and that’s what she needs.”
Right there, the beginnings of a wall had been built. As Sarah continued talking, I put up a cover. Maybe she noticed, maybe she didn’t. But I was setting myself up for disaster.
I went to the store and went through the entire list. The last thing was gluten-free wraps. I went to the aisle with the tortillas. Sure enough, the kind Sarah wanted were not there. However, the other brand that I had previously gotten her was sitting back in the gluten-free section.
Inside, I began to fume.
It’s not fair that she sends me into lose-lose situations like this, I thought.
She’ll be angry if I come back with nothing, I surmised.
If I come back with something, it has to say gluten-free, I reasoned.
What I should have done was to pick up my phone and call Sarah to talk through the situation. Instead, I self-righteously bypassed her one request and got the other brand.
Not long after I got home with the groceries, the choice came into the light. Sarah was…not pleased. We had a fight. A big one. Over what brand of wraps I bought? No, that’s not what the fight was about. As is so often the case, a seemingly small thing is really only the cover for something larger happening underneath.
What came unwrapped was that I wasn’t caring enough for my wife.
I could easily have called and had a conversation about the situation with my wife. Instead, I focused on myself and my view of how unfair the situation was. In my shroud of self-pity, I lost sight of my main goal — loving my wife in the way she wants to be loved.
Marriage is such a great teaching ground. These lessons are hard, and they’re painful in the moment. But Sarah and I have experienced so much growth by walking through them together.
We prepared the chicken salad, and we put it in the fridge to cool. Later that day, we went to a different store together. We found another brand of gluten-free wraps, and we went home and enjoyed a tasty dinner.
For all the married couples out there, take heart. Don’t put up the covers. Invite each other into conversations and truly share life with one another. For those who aren’t married, pour into other family relationships and friendships. In those relationships, too, covers can be damaging. Be authentic, and walk through life with those you love. These lessons may seem simple, but they can have a profound impact.