I love the Catholic Church. I just came home from a refreshing dinner with my Bible Study. Our group meets in the fall and spring, so I have been looking forward to this mid-summer reunion for months now and I’m … Continue reading
When I was a freshman at Benedictine, my friend Allison and I were discussing what it takes to be “Mrs. Right.” I’m not sure what her source was, but she gave me a list of qualifications that seem to fit the bill. According to this list, “Mrs. Right” must possess the following:
1) a strong relationship with Christ
2) a positive self-image
3) She should be generally happy and have a positive outlook on life
5) financial carefulness
6) good friendships and relationships
7) she should be nurturing and a good mother (if there are indeed children present)
8) she should be supportive and encouraging
9) she should have dreams and goals that her husband can help her fulfill
10) and she should enjoy hobbies and be adventurous
By no means an exhaustive list, but pretty close. When I first read this list, the only thing that I thought to improve was #1 – #1 can always use improvement; we can never be close enough to Christ. I’m much more self-aware now than I was as an 18 year old – I examine each item in relation to my own soul and I shake my head in disbelief at how not together I am.
These days #2 has been on my mind more often – I admire women who have positive self-images and am disheartened at those who never cease to pick at themselves. I know so many women who have insatiable appetites for looking good and getting noticed; but there’s a keen difference between constantly seeking to be put on a pedestal and having a positive self-image; even now, I feel as if I’m just starting to grasp the concept, and it’s definitely a reality check. Catholic wives should work toward having a positive self-image, grounded in #1. A good relationship with Christ can’t help but yield good self-perception – it’s the most effective beautification, for sure. And look what it gets you – if you feel good about yourself, that you’re beautiful because of God’s love, it manifests itself in how you present yourself to others – confident, happy, grounded – certainly admirable, noticeable qualities in a woman.
A woman who thinks more often of being adored than of adoring Christ can never, will never be satisfied. “A Catholic wife should step off the platform of a goddess” to assume the humility and honor of her role as a wife. I don’t really think that this applies to just wifehood either – women in general should realize the beauty in holy femininity and chase it! In the linked page, there’s another quotation that I think nails it – A goddess wants to be adored, a humble wife loves her family with all her might. Behold: the secret of life, though admittedly all her might is a pretty hefty phrase – a pretty intimidating mountain to scale, but isn’t that where true joy is to be found? It doesn’t matter whether some stranger thinks that I have pretty blue eyes or if everyone thinks that I’m just so sweet. What matters at the end of the day is whether or not I’m loving God and Drew.
I think if goddesses put as much energy into continuing to attract their husbands as they do the general public, they’d be much happier. A man commented in Dr. Laura’s book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands, (subject of a future post, for sure!) that he found it discouraging when his wife stopped trying to impress him after they tied the knot. When you’re dating you spend forever getting ready and making yourself all cute, but when you get married and he comes home from work, you’re sloppy in sweats. I read that St. Elizabeth of Hungary would dress as a widow when her husband was away, and when he came home, she would dress in her best and brightest clothes to pretty herself up for him. It seems like such a simple concept, but I am so inspired by it! to impress the man after you’re married!
And thus is the end of catholic wifehood, and so the essence of happiness: to pursue the love of Christ and husband with all your might.