A Newlywed’s View on Marriage

If I could tell my younger self that I would be happily married at 32, I’m sure my younger self would roundhouse kick me like this:

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I would never believe it. Not only that, but being married to someone younger than me? Who would have thought? So where do I start? How’s married life, Marisa? What are the pros and cons? What’s the tea? Well, what’s your tea about marriage? Let’s start off by me saying that my husband is an angel on earth. He is unlike any man I’ve ever encountered and is the most kindhearted person I’ve ever met. I say that a lot, but its true. 😎

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The sum of our marriage 😄

So…

Marriage is a lifelong journey, that’s not for the faint or weak hearted. Although I’ve embarked on 6 months, I’ve learned the true meaning of patience and grace, lol. Trust me, I’m still learning. And I’m ready to go another 6 months and so on! Talk to any married couple. They’ll say its hard work, but rewarding. Our favorite married couples happens to be my Bishop Barry Mitchell and his wife First Lady Janice, my uncle Bill and aunt Joan, our friends Pastor Theo and First Lady Patrice, my sister-in-law Kaycie and my big brother Jonathan and a plethora of other couples. We love taking advice from couples who give sound wisdom who doesn’t take sides. With that being said, there are sacrifices that we make for each other, a whole set of other feelings to consider, and someone who we can take on the world with, with God by our side. Yes, we’re a couple who believes and loves on JESUS and He is REQUIRED not only in our marriage but in our daily lives.

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You know, I left home at 18, became completely domesticated and independent that I spend the next few years with this attitude that I didn’t need anyone, not even God. That’s how arrogant I was. I went though life and it completely changed me. I had to take care of myself, fend for myself because no one else would. I became tough and I looked at people like, “get over your feelings and keep moving.” I had no sympathy or empathy. Throughout that I learned quite a bit about finances, how to survive, how to live on my own, pay bills, etc. I was the epitome of self-sufficient. Sometimes, that can be a flaw too. If you’re like me, and you meet your future husband, its not his job to break that wall you build up. Its God’s job. And yours. “Well, that’s how I am and whoever marry me will have to put up with me.” LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING! If you think like that, you will NEVER be married. Throw that arrogance away. Throw that mentality that you don’t need anyone. Get rid of the anti-sympathy. When you’re married, you’re no longer alone. I’m learning that.

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I would not let Benjamin do anything. Take out the trash? I was doing that way before I met him. Putting the groceries in the house? I use to carry 20 bags of groceries up 6 flight of stairs. Pump gas? Move boxes? ANYTHING! I can do and therefore I didn’t need him. That puts a dent in your man’s confidence. To feel like you’re not needed? Then why get married? I had to learn to step back and let Benjamin take the lead. I didn’t have to do these things by myself! But as an independent woman, yes it can be difficult to relinquish control a little bit and give it to your husband. But the amount of weight that is lifted is like no other.

What about this whole wives submit to your husband?

Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it. Ephesians 5:25 (KJV)

Guys, read that scripture. Our husbands should love US like Christ loved the church so much that he died for the church. Which means, Benjamin has to be good and ready to take a bullet for me. That’s a lot of love first of all. Submission, if you don’t understand, is yielding your will to your husband’s will. For example,  I may want seafood for dinner but hubby wants steak, so we’re gonna go to Longhorn. But because my husband LOVES me so much, he’s gonna say, “babe, let’s get seafood!”

Benjamin is the head of the household. He is the leader and provider and I am his helpmate. For me, this is very challenging for someone who is use to complete control and makes the decisions. But I will tell you, it is refreshing for someone who you trust to make decisions that’s best for the both of you. Now that’s not to say that Benjamin doesn’t ask me my opinion because he does but I enjoy letting him take over.

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Control your tongue

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” Proverbs 18:21 (KJV)

We women, especially us black women , we are very sharp-tongue, vocal women. We say what we mean and mean what we say and sometimes the tone can go left-field. Our tone can be callous and harsh if we’re not careful. When we get upset, we say any and everything to our man, no matter hurtful it is. We may bring up the past, or break his confidence or just make him feel the lowest of the low. Men are very sensitive creatures. They may not act like it, but they are and we know how to hurt them. Therefore, we must be careful to their feelings. So when I’m angry, I stay quiet to refrain from saying something I may regret. I learn to speak life into my husband, speak positivity into our marriage.

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31: 11-12 (KJV)

I’m just gonna leave that right there guys. I learned to be a peacemaker in our home and marriage. I bring out his strengths, I pray to God to learn how I can help Benjamin where he’s weak, I don’t bring up his insecurities in his face and if I see a need, I fill it. After all, Benjamin is my #1 after my relationship with God. God is my super #1 because without him, I can’t be the wife I’m supposed to be.

I may have mentioned this in my wedding day post, but when I met Benjamin, I knew he was younger than me. We’re six years apart. There are some areas when I’m more experienced than he is and vice verse but one thing about my husband, is he’s willing to learn. Everything. And sometimes that can be challenging because the things he is trying to learn, I already know and sometimes in my mind I’m like…..”why can’t you get it.” But patience goes a long way and being with my husband has taught me to be more patient, kind and graceful. I learned to give him the benefit of the doubt and I make sure to acknowledge him for his great work.

We tend to judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their actions.

You ever got in an argument and someone did something to you and the first thing they say is “I didn’t mean it?” And then you say, “but you did it!” Yeah, that. “Honey, I was trying to get to the laundry but I couldn’t get to it.” For me, I had to take a step back and not judge Benjamin one-sided because if I intended to do something and I didn’t, would it be fair for him to be angry at me? Satan is always looking for ways to convince you that your spouse is terrible. But guess what? There’s this thing called grace that you have to give and to learn to let it go. After all, God gives us grace everyday, even when we don’t deserve it. Who am I that I don’t extend the same to my husband?

So…are they any cons?

Nope! There are no cons…just changes and challenges. Marriage is what you make it. If you want a peaceful and happy marriage, then you work towards it. Marriage is 100/100. You put your all into it. We stood before God, family, friends and a couple of people we don’t like and made promises to each other. Know that your spouse isn’t perfect, neither are you. And that’s okay! Some days they will disappoint you, upset you, do something you don’t like, but you make sure you know that communication is key. Talk about everything in a respectful manner. Have you seen the Red Table Talk with Will Smith? He and Jada mentions how important it is to be respectful and loving with your spouse and if you can’t at that moment, take a minute alone to get your act together. Your spouse doesn’t deserve your “wrath”.

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I look like a creeper, lol

Please understand that marriage is not perfect. Don’t marry a person thinking it’s going to be lollipops and candy canes and that it’s going to be sunny everyday. You’re going to struggle. Life will throw some stinking curve balls at you. You may be broke, your lights might cut off, your car may break down, you may have to live off ramen noodles for a couple of weeks. Guys, I knew Benjamin was really the one for me when we spent one evening on our honeymoon eating ramen noodles and hot dogs at the dinner table and we just talked nonstop. 😅😅

A wise human being told us, and I think it was our bishop, that it’s us versus the problem. You guys versus the devil. You and him versus them. Your spouse is above all, EXCEPT your relationship with God, okay? Know that your spouse comes before your mommy, ya daddy, ya siblings, ya friends, etc. If you have kids, even your kids. We learned that in counseling from a couple who has kids. Think of marriage as one of those big promises that you made to God that you can’t take back, until you die. Keep your marriage tight-knit, seek WISE counsel, and never invite strangers into your marriage, and that includes family. Never display your issues for the world and keep God smack dab in the middle!

After all, what do I know? I’m just a newlywed.🤭

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Annoying Remarks During My Natural Hair Journey

“What did you put on your hair to make it look like that?”

If you’ve been natural for a while, I’m sure you had plenty people coming to you barking questions and comments that supposedly mean well, but can really sound rude and disrespectful, right? I’ve had my fair share of comments and questions so I thought I’d share my experience with you and have a little laugh.

When I first decided to go natural, it wasn’t a huge thing like it is today. I made the transition in 2009 and big chop my hair 6 months after transitioning. It wasn’t easy to decide to stop using chemicals and embrace your natural texture back then. You would think the people that looked like you would be supportive. But they were the worse. I’ve heard comments from people that sound like this:

“So…….you’re not getting a relaxer anymore? You do know your hair will just get nappier.”

“Why would you do that?” ” You should comb your hair. I don’t like your hair like that. Its too peasy.”

I would get strange stares ranging from confusion and disgust and I would get the Macy Gray reference remark. Then I would get these passive aggressive remarks like…

“ohhhh your hair cute or whatever. It fits you.” “You don’t have that n***a-nappy hair.”  Or I would get “Well you mixed, so you got that good people hair.” Then my favorites…

“Oh I didn’t expect your hair to be this soft. It feels like a pillow. Wow, your hair smells good. I wasn’t expecting it to smell like flowers.”

“What’s wrong with your hair?”

“Comb your hair!”

How rude is that? The sad thing is, is all these comments came from family members or so called friends. Am I the only one that went through this?

When your hair is flourishing beautifully and now they wanna go natural.

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I can’t stand this part with a passion. So I went through all phases of deciding to go natural. I went through the horrible TWA phase (when I didn’t know how to style short hair), then I went through the awkward length stage, and the dry phase when I couldn’t keep my hair moisturized. When I got better at taking care of my hair, it started to flourish! Then you would hear comments like these…

“Your hair look good. I’m glad you grew out of that awkward stage. But why does your hair stand up? Why won’t it lay down?”

What do you put on your hair to make it look like that? What kind of products do you use? Can you recommend anything for my hair? I’m trying to go natural.”

“I need help with my hair. Can you help me?”

“How much do you spend on products?”

When you color your hair….

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You’re not natural anymore! Natural is when you don’t put anything in your hair! No chemicals.” Girl, shampoo is chemical, shut up.

“You do realize that your hair is going to fall out.”

“If you bleached your hair, you aren’t natural anymore.”

I think they missed the definition of “going natural.” It means to go back to your original hair texture. You know, the texture that grows out of your scalp? Okay.

Then I would get….

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I wish I could go natural, but I’m scared. My hair won’t look like yours. My hair too peasy. “I don’t think I could cut all my hair off like you did. I’m not that bold.”

“Can I touch your hair? (you politely decline) “Why can’t I touch it? You have a problem with people touching your hair? Why you gotta act like that? Its just hair, it ain’t all that. You’re not the only one that got natural hair.”

“She think she all that because her hair long and curly.”

“Now that your hair looks longer are you going to put a relaxer in it? Will you blow it out to see how long it really is?” (You tell them you’re never getting a relaxer and you have no plans to straighten i anytime soon just to satisfy their curiosity) “So you’re not going to straighten it?”

I’m sure you’ve experienced more than I did or even worse than me, but the one thing that I loved about myself throughout this entire journey since 2009, is that I stayed true to myself and I didn’t let anyone affect me because I knew that one day, I would see them trying to do what I did years ago and you know what? THEY DID! How bout that?

Although I’m glad that we are finally embracing our natural hair, but if you were ever one of those (points above to the comments I wrote earlier), shame on you. God made us beautiful and our hair beautiful. Those comments gave me so much confidence and I was feeling myself even on bad hair days! Let’s talk about it! What’s your favorite/worse comment you endured whilst being natural?

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