Because of the onslaught of holidays in the fall, we haven’t had the opportunity to meet with our rabbi on a weekly basis. This time has given us the opportunity to navigate some very difficult aspects of relationships, including balancing our relationship with family issues and other responsibilities.
As our schedule and lives have somewhat fallen apart, along with our house (literally — anyone know a good plumber and contractor?), we’ve had to lean on each other more than ever, as the only thing that has remained consistent is each other. That has forced us to ask ourselves if, at the end of the day, that’s enough.
As long as we have each other, will everything be okay?
This is a tough question to ask at any point in a relationship, but I’m glad we’ve been forced to confront it now, before we’re married. We’ve had to ask and answer some tough questions about ourselves and each other. And I believe that through this experience, we will come out stronger on the other side. That doesn’t make it easy in the moment, though.
As a result of not having our weekly meetings, I’ve turned to the Internet for some good old Jewish marriage advice and haven’t really found a whole lot. One thing that does resonate is the concept of the bashert or soulmate.
While I understand the threat that intermarriage poses to the future of the Jewish religion, if the concept of the bashert is true, why would G-d choose a non-Jewish soulmate for a Jewish person? If marrying a non-Jew is technically a prohibited class of marriage, why would G-d allow it at all?
While I cannot imagine not having the guise of choice in choosing a partner (i.e. an arranged marriage), there is some comfort in the idea behind destiny, fate and the idea that who we are meant to be with was pre-ordained long before we even started looking for them.
Some of us end up wasting a lot of time trying to find the person with whom we are meant to be. So, it’s nice to know that maybe those frogs were a means to an end of finding a prince. It makes all the heartbreak worth it. It makes all the uncertainty of thinking that maybe I’d be alone forever or maybe I was meant to be alone, a little less uncertain.
I know our journey into marriage is just beginning. I know there will be bumps along the way, and that just because we are bashert, doesn’t mean that our marriage will be problem free. No marriage is perfect, and no person is without flaws. As I’ve learned recently, nothing in life comes easy, but the most important things are worth fighting for or fighting over.
At least we don’t have to fight about whose family we’re going to for the High Holidays.