i imagine it in my mind as a theme park, of a kind.

it’s full of couples. and couple-themed things. like married couple double dates and a rolodex full of names like “JohnandCourtney” or “SpencerandIlene.” it’s a fun environment, and it fits pretty well, but every once in a while, you realize that you feel a bit out of place. that’s usually accompanied by one of the wildest rides in the place, the “OHMYGOSHwho’shavingababy?” rollercoaster.  when you find out that it’s someone you’ve known for a long time and recall conversations about how they didn’t really want to have kids (or if they did…it would be a LONG time), the ride gets even wilder.

before we got married, the bff and i were in a church congregation (for future reference these are called wards) exclusively for young single adults. while my age sort of pushed that “young” boundary a bit, i had been in that congregation for the entirety of my time in florida, so once it was pretty apparent that i was leaving, one way or another, they let me stay. what do these congregations consist of? young single adults. no kids. no families. just a bunch of single people your own age (or close to it), most of whom are going to school and doing their thing like you are.

it’s an incredibly interesting and engaging environment.

and when people meet, date, and get married, they leave and go to family wards.  because now they are their own families. when you’re single, you laugh and joke and tell that they are dead to you.  because usually? you don’t see those people much anymore.  for obvious reasons their priorities change and, often, they just don’t do the same things that they used to do.

i think it’s a good system overall. but i’ve never been on the other side of it.

when the bff and i went to our new ward last sunday, it was good. people were so genuinely kind, and it thrilled me a bit to introduce myself with a new last name and to be considered a family.  that was the first time that we’d done that, and it was lovely.

but a lot of the couples that i’d known or we’d known weren’t there for some reason (vacation, probably–it was the last weekend before summer classes began).  so we were sort of making it on our own as the new kids.  it was fine, but it was a little lonely.

this past sunday, it was remarkably different. suddenly there were all of these people that we knew.  tons of them.  and i was surrounded by other wives. and it was like i was part of the group.  and they were giving me all kinds of advice and suddenly i was struck with a moment of “wait a minute.  i’m a wife.”

sometimes it still hits me like that and feels strange. but most of the time i slip into it like it’s a position made just for me.  i don’t feel a lot of pressure to be someone that i’m not.  i try to do things that i think wives do and try to do the things that i need to do and, somehow, i’m figuring out what it is to fill this role.  it’s good. it’s easy, somewhat.  if you listen to those around you, it won’t be easy for long.  i am not sure how i feel about that advice, but i understand it.

i’m finding my way in this new world.  it’s a good world. i love it.

it’s sort of odd to realize that my identity is somewhat defined by the fact that i am half of an awesome team.  i pretty much love that.  i’ve had a long time to figure out who i am.  i am so excited to build up who we are.

One Response to “coupleland.”

  1. I kind of threw up a little reading this.

    no, that was mostly a joke.

    sometimes when I have to explain singles wards to people they stare at me like “you must be tripping”. and really, they are in fact kind of bizarre and strange and maybe sometimes occasionally creepy.

    I went to a family ward last sunday. I couldn’t think. I think the reason people have kids quickly is because they realize that the only reason nobody else in sacrament meeting is about to pull their hair our from all the noise is because all those other people have kids to distract them. Once you have a baby to worry about you don’t notice all the other babies screaming. You become tuned to just the frequency of your own baby’s screams and so others no longer drive you batty. This is my theory and I’m sticking with it.

    In the meantime, thank goodness for singles wards.

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