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52 Stories #7—Finding A Spouse

Last week I wrote about how my parents and grandparents found their spouses. This week I will tell how I found mine.

As teenagers, my friends and I often thought about our future marriages. Even in those “Women’s Lib” days, I think most of us wanted to find a Prince Charming–someone tall and handsome. Beyond that, I wanted a guy who was smart, responsible, nice, Lutheran, and a non-smoker.

Looking back, my odds probably would have been better had I attended a Lutheran college. Unfortunately, those institutions were all far away from my small, Wyoming town, and they cost more than the state schools did. So I dutifully went off to the University of Wyoming and hoped for the best. After all, I thought, my parents had met there.

Before long, I, too, had found the almost-perfect person to marry. He was an engineering student, a couple of years older than me. Mutual friends introduced us.

Our first date presented some difficulties. When he first called me and suggested going out, I already had an out-of-town trip planned for that day. Luckily, he called again and suggested another time, which I happily accepted. Then I got sick. Not wanting to postpone again and risk losing him forever, I skipped classes that day in hopes of getting better fast.

That evening, still not feeling great and probably contagious, I went out with him anyway. As the evening progresses, we talked non-stop and found we had so much in common. Same home town. Norwegian heritage. Mothers who were teachers from Minnesota. Interests in music and the outdoors. We even learned that I already knew several of his cousins.

There was only one problem. He was Roman Catholic. This would be a deal-breaker for me. I have always felt families should attend church together, but there is no way I could convert in good conscience to Catholicism and subscribe to some of their beliefs.

Luckily for me, he was not all that committed to the Roman faith himself; in fact, his father’s family was Lutheran. My true love was willing to leave the Catholic Church and embrace his paternal Lutheran religion. And he did.

Yes! Now he truly was perfect, and we married in the Lutheran Church a couple of years later. We still belong to a local Lutheran congregation. Activities there constitute much of our life together. This year we will travel with the church choir to the Land of Luther to see all the German sites associated with our Lutheran heritage.

To this day, my spouse fits the bill—tall, handsome, smart, responsible, nice, and a Lutheran!



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