Loving my wife introduced me to my inner woman.
By Caleb Moody
Yes, loving my wife introduced me to my inner woman, and it’s made me more of a man.
I grew up in Texas during the 80s. The husband/wife dynamics modeled for me both in my own family and in the culture I grew up in were very traditional. Men would chat and watch football, women would cook in the kitchen and serve food. Each member seemed to be in somewhat separate worlds which didn’t often overlap.
As I grew into adolescence and began forming my own ideas about relationships, I remember realizing that I wasn’t looking for someone to wait on me, to wash my laundry, to buy my clothes. I didn’t want a motherly subordinate, I wanted a strong independent person who would challenge me and walk with me through our life together as an equal partner.
I remember so vividly the day I met my wife. We met at a garage sale. Along
with my acting pursuits, I had a furniture delivery business and was asked by friends to bring a truck to their sale. I remember seeing her from a distance and being drawn to her. I asked a friend about her and he was shocked we had not met. “Caleb, let me introduce you to your future wife.” Yes, he really said that. I remember a warm familiar feeling when we said hello for the first time. It felt safe. It felt like finding a missing piece of myself by accident and knowing I would never be the same. Later that evening I met up with the same group of friends and ended up talking to my future wife for hours. I was struck by not only the instant connection we had, but also its depth. I was able to see her and allow her to see me on a level I had never experienced before. We were two souls connecting on an intensely spiritual and honest level.
To this day our love and connection continues to strengthen. We have our arguments and get on each other’s nerves, and say things we don’t mean, but we always come back to balance. We always come back to a loving place of accepting one another. We always come back to being one.
We play somewhat traditional roles in our family. I work and Kameron is a full time mom. My job is easier, but I didn’t always feel that way. As I mentioned I spent the first several years of our marriage pursuing a career in acting and operating my own business. It was wonderful and afforded me the opportunity to be at home rather than in an office. Early on as our children were born instead of meetings and business trips, I found myself washing out bottles, changing diapers, helping out with twilight feedings and sharing in the household responsibilities of keeping our home clean and organized.
Initially my ego resisted these experiences. “What am I doing this for? I need to be out earning more money. I just cleaned this up, I shouldn’t have to again. I don’t feel like going to the grocery store for baby food right now!”
Slowly I began to take responsibility for these “chores” and realized they were privileges. God had lavished me with the blessings of a wonderful marriage and two precious children. I washed our dishes not because I was nagged to do it, but because they were our dishes and they needed to be cleaned. My wife always championed my efforts and expressed constantly how much she appreciated my help and how much it meant to her. That made me feel ten feet tall. I learned I didn’t need a board room and a million dollars to be a husband. I could simply love my wife and show her my support by helping out around our home, and that was enough. This helped me discover value in the nurturing, sensitive, feminine side of my personality and it informed the way I approached the more “masculine” duties I also had. Helping with our family removed a significant amount of ego and showed me that the two worlds I saw growing up should overlap. The lines drawn around man’s work and woman’s work needed to be blurred to allow for a deeper appreciation of a fifty-fifty partnership toward marriage and home building.
It’s challenging these days to hold binary views of gender specific roles, and that is a good thing. I believe both men and women were created in the image of God. I believe God is love. Love so pure and powerful that it transcends our human understanding of sexual gender. I have felt a strong masculine love from God. It has brought me strength, provided direction, and protected me. I have also felt an equally strong feminine love from God. A motherly love that has brought me comfort, held me like a child, provided wisdom and understanding with a gentleness that can only be described as Divine. With this dual context of God’s love we now have a different lens to view not only God’s love, but how we reflect God’s love with each other.
Ultimately my journey as a husband and a father has brought fourth lessons in acceptance, not only for myself but for others as well. It’s exciting to see evolutionary attitudes toward the LGBTQIA community. Seeing lines blurred and being open to all of God’s creations has allowed me to love those whom I once judged.
Richard Rohr says it so eloquently: “Even as we acknowledge the sacredness of gender and sex, we also need to realize that there’s something deeper than our gender, anatomy, or physical passion: our ontological self, who we are forever in Christ. You are beyond the metaphor of male and female; you are a child of the Resurrection, a creature of Eternal Life. As Paul courageously puts it, “There is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). Those who have already begun to experience their divine union will usually find it very easy to be compassionate toward all “Two Spirit” people because they know they share the same ontological, essential self that is “hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3).
For all of the beauty and power of sexuality, it is still under the rubric of the floating or passing self, rather than the Self eternally anchored in God. I believe our gender is going to pass away when we do. I think that’s exactly what Jesus is referring to when he says, “the children of this world take wives and husbands . . . but in heaven there will be no marriage or giving in marriage” (see all of Luke 20:34-37). In the end, there is only universal love where “God will be God in all.” (1 Corinthians 15:28)
It’s exciting to be alive for a time such as this. I’ve learned I can still exercise my masculine manners by opening the door for my wife and standing when she leaves the table. I can also bathe our children at night, do a load of laundry, and serve her breakfast in bed. Participating in all of this equal love for our relationship has made me whole and yes, more of a man.