Tuesday and Wednesday morning of this week my mom and I cleaned and organized the house down in Charlotte. We left late Monday afternoon with a U-Haul trailer full of hand-me-down furniture (many thanks to Uncle Joe, Aunt Kristin and Mr. and Mrs. Crist!) and boxes full of household stuff-- gifts from bridal showers, and things I've picked up or been given along the way. My brothers could not believe I had so much stuff. :) We arrived very late, slept in, and then tackled the main rooms of the house.
After we did the deep cleaning, and cleared out the clutter (I discovered I am marrying a pack-rat), a couple guys from church helped Daniel move in the big furniture, but it was left to the two of us to arrange it as we wanted it.
In the midst of moving the couches I discovered another lovable quality about my husband-to-be. We were left alone to pull the finishing touches together Tuesday evening, and decided to try to move one of the smaller couches to our room, in hopes of using it for private devotions, or reading together at night. We made it through the long hall way and up the first short flight of stairs, and then quickly realized the couch was much too long to make it around the corner and up the next staircase. My arms were already burning, and my hands were aching from the weight of the couch, and there was no possible way to set it down where we had it.
"I'm not strong enough for this Daniel!"
His voice was patient and tender when he replied, and asked me if I could just try to lift the couch over my head, so he could get it over the banister.
It was as if his strength gave me strength, and though not with perfect ease, I lifted the couch over my head and held it there while he pushed it over the banister.
Getting it up the rest of the stairs wasn't out of the ordinary. Then, as we were setting it down at the top of the stairs, he looked at me and smiled, "You know, you look really beautiful right now."
I was in his hoodie with second-day hair pulled into a messy bun on the back of my head, with only mascara on, and certainly didn't feel it, but he gave me butterflies anyway.
I cannot imagine, looking back, how awful it would have been to have him yelling at me, "Just hold it up! Don't set it down! Stop whining!" Instead he was patient. He was a good leader, and the response of my heart at that moment was to help him. It was all I wanted to do, no matter how hard it was. I told him later it was as if our wills had become one; and as minuscule as the project was, together we got a glimpse of the power we will have as a couple when he selflessly leads, and I joyfully submit.
And it was beautiful. Period.