Posted by: ritagone | June 7, 2017

“I Didn’t Know That!”

 

We’ve been married 47 years, or it will be 47 years on October 3, close enough to call it 47 years, I’d say.

You’d think I’d know everything there was to know about the man.

And yet, when he preached at a wonderful Hollywood church two weeks ago, he mentioned in passing, so briefly that I thought maybe I hadn’t heard right, that he had held various jobs on the periphery of the entertainment industry that I never knew he had held.  He cleaned film?  Really?  How could I not have known that?

Our son posted on Instagram that Michael’s talk revealed some things that he as his son also didn’t know about his dad.  Well, that’s pretty normal, isn’t it?  I think there’s a lot about our parents that we don’t know, mainly because we don’t bother to ask, or we assume

 

that their lives only started when we came along, that before we were born, their lives were blank slates.  Who hasn’t had that attitude about their parents, if we’re being honest.  Their lives were shaped by our existence, for the most part.  We were shocked to find out that anything interesting or substantive went on before we came along.

But for me, as his wife, to not know things about him after knowing him for 48 + years is amazing, impossible, weird.  How can that be?  Haven’t we talked and talked and talked over the years about our stories, both about what was happening to us before we met and what has been going on since we have known one another?  Haven’t we shared and shared the deepest thoughts and recesses of our hearts and minds?  Doesn’t he know everything there is to know about me?

No!

When I stop to think about it – really think – I realize that there’s no way, even sharing for as many years as we have, even trying to keep as few secrets as you can, that one human being can ever truly know another from the time they were born until the present.  Why not?  Because we’re just too complex, there is just too much history, too much has happened, too many conversations and events and stimuli and actions that can just never be shared or told.  If we were really going to reveal or unveil everything about ourselves to someone else, I think it would literally be a full-time endeavor, a constant sharing and talking, and that would wear us down, exhaust us, be both frustrating and ultimately useless.

 

 

Where’s the mystery?  Where’s the allure of being able to find out something new a year from now?  Five years from now?  That would be over and done with.

Besides, different personalities react differently to sharing, don’t they?  I’m pretty much an open book.  My daughter’s the same way.  You don’t even have to ask us; we’ll tell all.  Probably more than you wanted to know.  You might not ask another question the next time we have a conversation, for fear that you’ll get too much information again.  Michael, on the other hand, releases information like gold nuggets.  Like the proverbial pulling of teeth.  He figures you really don’t need to know, don’t want to hear about every minute detail of his life, so why bother?  So it’s truly like dental extraction to find out anything, especially anything that happened more than a few years ago.  It’s the past; why dig it up?  That’s his philosophy, and he’s sticking to it.  Which makes unearthing information really, really difficult, if not impossible.  And so the mystery of the man remains hidden behind a very thick veil.

Why is this human trait so surprising?  On a much grander scale, the realization finally hit Job thousands of years ago that he was kidding himself to think that he knew God as well as he first thought he did.  After losing everything that he held dear, after much action and introspection, after being harangued and beleaguered by his “miserable comforters” and so-called friends, Job gets to the end of the book named after him and says, with great insight and a symbolic shaking of the head that you can almost see as he speaks: “I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know…I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You.  Therefore I abhor myself, And repent in dust and ashes” (42:3;5-6).

In other words: “God, I didn’t know so much about You that I am ashamed to think of how arrogant my thinking was.”  I thought I knew You when I hadn’t even skimmed the surface of who You are.  And that’s both frightening and awesome and exciting.

I didn’t know a few things about my husband when I heard his talk at the church.

What fun!

It means I still have more to learn about him in the years left to our marriage!!!

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Responses

  1. You can ramble about your life anytime–it’s interesting and opening my eyes to things I should consider. Thanks, Cathy


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