I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, good or bad. Your parents, childhood, life experiences all help to shape and mold you. I have had some crappy experiences happen to me but I have also had some amazing life changing experiences happen to me. I have chosen to not let the crappy experiences define who I am. I am a reflective person so when I look back on certain situation in my life I can find purpose. I chose to learn from the situations in some way.
How has this affected my marriage and my journey to submission? My parents did not have a happy marriage when they were together. They fought a lot and my dad escaped by drinking. My mother chose to blame all her marital problems on alcoholism instead of looking at the real issues. Her thought was if my father would just admit he was an alcoholic then life would be great. Knowing what I know now it was so much more than that. My mother didn’t like to cook, the house was always dirty, laundry was never done, and my mother was still attached to her mother by the umbilical cord. These things caused a lot of strife in their marriage. My father was married to his wife but also my grandmother in a lot of ways. I love my grandmother but she was an opinionated lady and had no problem telling you exactly what she thought. She often made it known to my father that he was less than adequate as a father and husband. My mother would just stand back and allow it. In fact she loved that my grandmother would put my father in his place.
My father left when I was 9 years old. Even though they were separated he visited often and was always their when we needed him. I can remember him coming over and my parents still going over bills and discussing things. During this time my mother shut down. My father leaving sent her into a depression. She literally could only drank milkshakes and my brother and I grew up on fast food from this point forward. We couldn’t go anywhere in the evening until my father had called. She knew he was living with another woman and acted as if she didn’t know. When my father would leave after visiting, my mother and I would jump in the car and follow him home. He never knew it. I became sick of it and started to get angry. My father was done with the marriage but was trapped because my mother would absolutely loose her mind if my father mentioned divorce. So since she accepted her life the way it was he left things the way they were for the sake of my brother and I. My mother was still married so she refused to date, even when she had men that were interested in her. My father controlled our lives in many ways, especially emotionally even though he was not present in our lives on a daily basis. My parents lived this way for 15 years. I’m not saying my father was a blameless but for the sake of my journey I’m just showing my mother’s side because that’s what mostly shaped my vision of who I wanted to be as a wife.
When I started dating I knew a few things about what I wanted and what I didn’t want. I knew I would never let a man control me. I knew I would not allow him to tell me what I could and couldn’t do. I would never allow him to play mind games with me. I do remember our first fight. I had called my brother, who is 4 years older than me a very unsavory name. My boyfriend, now husband was not happy about my words and let me know. I flew off the handle at him. Essentially telling him I wouldn’t apologize, it’s how I felt, and just because he was my boyfriend he couldn’t control my thoughts feelings and emotions. He backed off and I silently celebrated my victory. Another defining moment in our relationship. I knew that I did want to be respected and cherished. It was extremely important that I walked into my marriage sexually pure. I knew that if he could respect my values and we could restrain ourselves then that was one of the highest levels of respect he could show me. It also showed that he cherished me. I wanted to feel like my feelings and thoughts mattered. I also wanted for him to make most of the decision, except when I disagreed and then I wanted him to do things my way. 🙂 This worked for the most part, especially in the beginning. Most of all I wanted to be able to trust him with everything I had. I never wanted to doubt his love and faithfulness to me.
He won my heart and after 3 years of dating we married and began our lives as husband and wife. Our beginning was easy for us. Transitioning into married life was easy for the most part.