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first year: HERstory

i’m not really sure where to begin because the last year has been full of love and lessons. am i thankful for each one? absolutely. do i wish things were different? nope. however, there are some things i’m sure could have been avoided had i been a different person, but i wasnt LOL 🙂

so, im sure everyone knows the story of the inception of this marriage, but im not sure if you know how quickly it happened. when i say QUICK, i mean quick. my husband and i began dating in late june of 2018, got engaged in december of the same year, and married shortly after on february 28, 2019. why? we thought we needed to. our original plan would have brought about some conviction, pain, craziness, etc. so, we were advised to just get married. we did not see anything wrong with it (there is STILL nothing wrong with our decision of course), but we were moving off emotions. there was a lot going on with me and my physical health and we were in a place where we wanted to deal with it alone. we allowed our circumstances to drive us into marriage without really knowing what would go into it.

well. it happened. we set a date for our ceremony (june 1st) which meant me being the excited girl i was, i got our marriage certificate super early. it worked out, simply because we were set to use it, unknowingly, a month later. i remember being really sick the week prior to the day we got married, and howard came over and made sure i was taking medicine and sleeping as much as i could, so i was not in the best space mentally. this same week, we must have had a church service that put fire up our behinds and we decided to get rid of a few habits in hopes that God would answer prayers about my so called “permanent” physical condition. (i skipped this part but we were apartment hunting to move in together in april). We found an apartment and the landlords loved us and decided to let us move in whenever we needed, therefore, we had a big decision to make. we sought our bishop’s opinion/advice which ended in us getting married two days later.

what. a. week. okay? i mean, talk about emotional. crying every day in disbelief that i was marrying the man i loved. packing my entire room while working and having grad classes every day… and sleep? well, that wasnt even a thing at this point. we talked all day and night up until the moment howard came and picked me up to go tie the knot.

i think this backstory was somewhat necessary because i really need to get this through folks heads once and for all: this was not planned. we did not know.

but what did this lack of planning mean for us? lots of “the first year is so hard, but worth it” from our parents who knew we were getting married, but we thought we were invincible. we thought getting married would be the answer to most, if not all of our problems.

sadly, we were mistaken.

don’t get me wrong. looking back, i loved every minute of being able to say “i married my best friend” but i can admit that it was hard to actually be married to my best friend… so so hard. mostly, because of me.

there were some outside factors that obviously caused some issues in our marriage that sometimes made coming home every day a task. it made effective communication one of the hardest things to grasp, and it created day to day tension that we did not choose to deal with until month 10. you read that right. month. 10. in december, things got real. like i said earlier, i thought we were invincible and i was on the “that’ll never happen to me” wave, but it did, and i honestly did not know how to were going to work through it. did i want to give up? not in deed, but definitely through word. however, this was the turning point.

it was not until our 10th month of marriage that we learned how to love each other. it was not until the 10th month of marriage that we learned to respect each other as husband and wife, and not just friends as we were once upon a time. it was not until our 10th month of marriage that we decided to seek our resources that would help us through this tough time in our marriage, and just our marriage in general. we found a bible plan on our Bible YouVersion app that helped us with *insert scandalous music* sex and understanding how it is so substantial to any covenant marriage and how to honor God through it. that led us to reading a book called “Love and Respect” by by Emerson Eggerichs that taught us more in a month of reading and studying marriage from a biblical perspective than we’ve learned prior. we shared a ton of intimate moments, physical and emotional, and talked about things i never knew we hadnt talked about before. lots of laughing and crying, but most of all, learning and restoration.

unfortunately, the situation brought us to that point BUT thank God it did. howard and i have been best friends for 3 years now, and of course i never thought anything would cause us to be closer than what we’ve already gone through together, but this did.

this taught me love. i love howard as he is, but now i love him as my husband. learning to respect him as my leader and provider was not easy, especially being raised the way i was. but through reading, studying, and application, its become something i want to do.

it taught me patience. we are a lot alike, but we’re also very different. taking two people and placing them into the same home with the same resources, bills, etc. can create some tension and problems if you dont know how to combat them. its us versus the problem, not each other. thank God for that teaching.

it showed me who God made me to be as if wife. i thought this meant looking good on his arm, posting the good pics of us with the cute scripture based captions, but i had to do some inner work. i had to find out who I was in God so that He could show me who I was supposed to be within my marriage. there is still work to do, and i know there will always be work to do, but im not where i was. i’m not the same anymore and i’m happy about it (i know howard is too). all of this work has led to a different outlook on life, and even on situations with others. its crazy how God will fix one part of your life and it permeates to everything else.

with that said,

i’m so excited to be celebrating 1 year of marriage in a little less than two weeks and i wouldnt trade marrying him for anything else in the world.

howard,

thank you for loving me and staying with me on this journey. thank you for teaching me and leading me, even when i did not want to be lead or taught. thank you for accepting me for who i was, and placing yourself on the back-burner while we figured everything out. thank you for taking my hand in marriage. thank you for choosing me every single day. i love this life with you.

your bride.

You picked me up every time

You saw my broken pieces

The ones I didn’t care for

And helped me mold them

Back into what I am today

You loved me in the moments

Something was telling me not

To love myself any longer

You stayed with me through

The deepest darkest nights

You were alongside me through

The pain and guided me

Every step of the way

And I crumble at the thought

Of you seeing this kind of

Pain too.

Let me.

From dust

Some know what it’s like

To be born and bred from an

Independent and strong

black women who instilled

The same into your brain

From the very moment you

Came into this world

Some know that it gives

Certain benefits and allows

Whoever he or she is to

Do certain things certain ways

To take care of this

And to take care of that

In the midst of finding

A moment in the day

To figure things out

On your own.

But what about fear?

What about the fear it brings

The voice that tells you

You’re not good there yet

The fear that says you’re not

Working hard enough and not

In the way she did

Or the fear that you’ll be left

With nothing because you

Allowed someone else to carry

What you should have carried

All along

Or the fear that they’ll leave

Soaking up every piece of

Your heart and leave you with

Nothing

Or the fear that you’ll have to be

Like this forever and that’s

Not what you wanted

That’s not the life you wanted

This isn’t the life you wanted

This isn’t the life you wanted…

“You shall reap what you sow

And everything you sow will be yours

And yours alone”

But this wasn’t my garden

And I didn’t plant my seeds

I was fed from someone else’s crop

And now I’m here

Trying to be thankful for

This very thing.

In this very moment

I feel love running through

My veins

Deeper than it has in some time

Which means there is

Some sort of restoration

Taking place in my spirit

And the spirit connected

To mine

Grateful

Thankful

Understatements.