This is a female perspective on the difficulties and growing opportunities of marriage: catholicexchange.com This is a nice counter part (similar article) to the previous thread: "Marriage is great, but it rocked everything I knew."
A few snippets:
"During a particularly intense session of our required premarital counseling, our pastor took me aside for a little one-on-one. He seemed mildly concerned that I might not have a firm grasp on the realities of married life.
Did I understand that for all it’s unparalleled joy, our marriage would surely go through times of aridity; that marriages were ever growing and changing; and that truly great marriages were the ones comprised of two people who embraced sacrificial love? In an Academy Award worthy performance, I assured him I did. Secretly though? Well, it seemed to me that such things were perfectly fine for inferior couples but wouldn’t be necessary for a pair as in-sync as we were. I couldn’t help but wonder how this astute man of the cloth couldn’t see that, too. A story for the ages, we’d be remembered right alongside Scarlett and Rhett."
"But by the simple, passive act of staying, I learned what wiser and more experienced couples could have told me but which I would have refused to believe until I’d experienced it myself: marriage is not always fun; there aren’t always rewards for your gifts of love; and ultimately profound self-sacrifice is the name of the game. While my younger self, cheeks pinked with the fresh blooms of love, would have been terribly disillusioned by that proposition, over time I came to see that the valleys, rather than being valueless experiences we can only ever grit our teeth through, are gifts. Without these moments of marital aridity we’d never have the opportunity to choose love."
"It’s easy to serve my husband when I’m overwhelmed with love for him. The challenge is to do so when we’ve been bickering, or barely speaking at all, for days, or even months, on end. But thanks to those trials I learn to pour my very self out for another—when all I really want to do is pour out myself for me; to serve others—when every bone in my body wants to balk; and to stay—when I so want to run and hide."
I found it so interesting what her expectations were before marriage, even after the priest spoke with her. I also liked how she said that even though the valley can be dark and scary, it is temporary.
Any other thoughts on her perspective and experience?