Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Finding Superman

I know what you are thinking. You are thinking that this is going to be about how I met my husband or about guys I dated or how to find the perfect guy. Sorry to disappoint you. While those are all interesting and may come up at some point, that is not what I am writing about today.

Today, I am writing about how to find your superman. Again, you may be thinking, "Well, I am already married to this guy. What good will this do me?" And that would be the point. Did you ever wonder why Lois Lane never realized that Clark Kent was really Superman? Was Clark really that undesirable?  Is it possible to be that blind? Maybe it is?

I used to dream elaborate dreams about what my life would be like when I got married. I had all kinds of hopes and fantasies about the romantic moments and happy memories, the secret codes we would use to talk to each other, the interests and talents we would share. We would be so perfect together. It was a wonderful life.

Then I actually got married.

I am not saying that to be cruel or critical about my husband. He is just... human. NOT a figment of my imagination but a living, breathing, thinking, feeling, moody, normal person. And, amazingly enough, I am just as normal as he is! I had thought I was prepared for the "real" side of life with a "real" person. I like to think of myself as an optimistic realist. But reality was not what I expected.

It hasn't been all bad. Not by a long shot. Our life together has just been...real. We have had arguments and differences of opinion. There are things each of us enjoys that the other finds mind-numbingly boring. We have had times when we struggled financially, spiritually, physically, emotionally. The military life doesn't make it any easier. I guess what I am trying to say is that after all the years of daydreaming and imagining the very best, the real thing was sort of...dull.

Again, I am not trying to be critical of my husband. He has many wonderful qualities. My point is that when you know someone REALLY well, it can be hard to have the right perspective.

I learned early on that I wasn't the only woman who feels this way on occasion. I remember when a friend of ours was called as a counselor in the Bishopric, his wife's reaction was "MY husband? Are you sure?!?!?" Of course, we all might have reacted that way in the same situation. At the same time, I thought her husband was perfect for the job.

This experience and a few others caused me to reflect about my perceptions of people in my life. I realized that if the Bishop asked me to do something or the Stake President gave me his opinion about how something should be done, I would take it seriously. I would not argue or say I would do it and then ignore what they told me. They are priesthood leaders. They have the authority from God to receive inspiration regarding those in their stewardship and they should be respected. I wondered how I would view my husband if he were in one of those positions as a priesthood leader? Wasn't he actually in one already?

I was always taught that the man presides over the home and acts as the priesthood leader of the family. I thought about my husband as the priesthood authority in our home. Did I have the same kind of respect for him as I did for the Bishop? How many times had he made a suggestion and I ignored it? Rolled my eyes? Ended up in an argument because I didn't like what he had to say?

I realized that too often I focused on my husband's weaknesses instead of his strengths. That wasn't fair to him and it wasn't doing our family any good.  I can't say that I never notice his flaws or that I always focus on his strengths. I am not perfect either. But when I try to see him as I should, those flaws become trivial. I see through the disguise and find my superman.


Amy said...

Thanks again for a great post! I have been thinking the same thing alot lately. If we have an eternal perspective, all of the little annoyances don't matter anymore!

Diann R. said...

So true, perspective is everything and I so remember those wonderful dreams of marriage and family. Sometimes it's really tricky to keep your perspective in the right place. But hopefully when we look back on life and all of our kids are grown, we will think, you know I had the best life for me and it's only going to get better from here. I found my superman, flaws and all. Every super hero has a weakness of somekind. But in the eternal scheme of things, we should all be better than super heroes. We will be like unto our Heavenly Father, who, as you know is perfect in every way. =D (sorry, that was kind of a long comment) Love your perspective and sure miss those long talks that we used to have on the temple grounds. <3

Sommer Family said...

I really like the question about Loise Lane. How much do we miss when we are looking for a fantasy instead getting to know the everyday "super heros" around us. Thanks, Amy!

Greg, Rebecca & Timothy Neslen said...

You have a way with words and perspective. Thank you for your insight!!! I think when we thrown out the expectation of a superhero, then we can more easily enjoy the real person we really have, faults and strengths. It must be a constant focus, for it is easy to always expect way too much and then never be satisfied. But, life is much nicer the other way.