The forecast called for rain and thunderstorms. Instead, God split the clouds and allowed a little blue sky and sunshine through to give my husband a rather lovely introduction to his new home city. His flight schedule bounced around quite a bit thanks to yours truly. He was scheduled to arrive Friday afternoon but got in on Thursday (that’s a long and chaotic story) and my family was excellent about rescheduling… several times. My mom and stepdad got a dog sitter a day early and threw the suitcase in the car to hurry down from Canada in time. My stepmom took the day off of work to have time to prepare a meal for 10, and my grandparents managed to bake 3 lovely pies on the fly (one small one just for me and my husband to take home). A few church family members came to the airport to take photos and video for us.
I was bouncing up and down, literally, while I waited for him. When I finally saw him walking toward me, a smile as wide as the world he crossed to see me, the only thing I could think was, it’s over. All of the waiting, the long distance messages on Voxer, being at the mercy of strangers with a stack of papers to determine our future, the video chats with minimal connectivity broken up by repeated statements like, “Are you there?” “Can you hear me now?” “I can see you but I can’t hear you.” “Are you still there?”…. dropped call… unable to connect…
It was over.
I managed to wait until both of his feet stepped over the giant red line with a “do not cross” sign in front of it before I bolted across the airport and threw my arms around his neck. In the Middle East I would have greeted him with a quick hug and a smile – anything more would have been improper. Thankfully, this is America. I proudly and happily kissed my husband in front of God and everyone. Anyone who says romance is gone in a marriage isn’t doing it right.
The last few days I prayed for how our reunion would be. That God would honor the way we stayed faithful, emotionally and physically, to one another in the midst of our separation. I prayed we’d fit like a couple of puzzle pieces and it’d be better than it was before we parted. I’m not so naïve to think marriage is a walk in the park. Nothing in life fits that description. However, I believe when hearts and minds strive to honor God he can and does change hearts and minds to do just that.
At the airport, as family and friends chatted with my husband, I couldn’t stop smiling. Someone asked me, “How does it feel to hear his voice behind you? To know your husband is finally here?” I was grateful to be able to smile and say, “Like putting on my favorite pair of jeans for the first time in a long time.” Even when we sat at my parent’s dinner table with my family around us, it wasn’t weird or unbalanced at all. It was like he’d somehow been there all along. He fit. When we came home, he fit there too. It was like everything inside the house had been built around him just waiting for his arrival to complete the picture. Sitting with him at the breakfast table I felt as though a weight had been taken off of my shoulders.
Months ago I stopped praying God would help me be the wife my husband deserves, and I started praying God would help me be the wife he designed me to be. A wife who’s thoughts, words and actions are not contingent on my husband’s character and behavior, but on the example I’m given in Christ. I’m as prepared as I can be for a challenging road ahead! But I don't have to walk that road alone.
My husband is home.