Okay, so here is the truth, I never imagined I would be a married woman (12 years going strong), a former Army wife, a mother of four children, a caregiver to my mother with dementia and now, an earner of a Master's Degree in Professional Counseling. More over, I never imagined that I would have the marriage that I have or be safe and secure in my identity as a woman. As a little girl, I could never have dreamed up the love story that my husband and I have created. Who would of thought that a girl like me would have ever been swept up into the arms of a man who had been in love with her since the 10th grade. Not me, I have never thought of myself as anyone special, a skinny little thing with braces in my junior year of high school. Yet, I became the woman who one man desired so much that he was certain that he would never get married unless it was to me. I had love notes and sweet words whispered into my ear when we were around each other. Before my husband went to the middle east for the first time, he vowed that he would marry me (even though I was in a sticky situation at the time). I was the mother of a little boy by that time, but my husband looked at me like I was a goddess. He built me up so high that when he washed the vision I had of my prince charming, I tumbled down, hitting every jagged edge I could on the way. I thought I was the beautiful goddess that this man could not live without. Truth was, there were many times that I was never sure if he was my knight in shining armor or the dragon himself. I began to hang on to the desire to be loved, adored, followed, touched and caressed like there was nothing in the world that would or could ever come between us. In the midst of hanging on to my fairy tale, I lost who I was. Ha, let's be honest here, I never knew who I was to begin with and now my identity was wrapped up into a dream that I was holding tightly to, knuckles clench.
Now, this is not another tale of how my husband let me down throughout our marriage. Let's face it, I have not always been a charming damsel myself. I was part of our love story too and I had to make some choices on who I wanted to be. I earned an associates when my husband toured the second time, I gained my bachelors when he was away for school and now, I have earned my Master's degree. Little by little I began to make my connections to God. Yes, I said it, I am putting my faith right into this post. I am nothing without my faith, without my relationship with Jesus Christ and my mental health thanks me for it on a daily basis. I began to piece together the person I wanted to be and allow God to guide me down his path instead of fighting helplessly to go down my own.
My husband is not perfect, read other post and you will get an idea of what I am talking about. Truth is, I am far from perfect myself. I had to stand on my own two feet and make decisions about my life and where I wanted it to go. I LOVE our love story because it is truly is a testament on how a man loves and woman and how a woman returns this by deeply respecting her husband. Yes, respect. I gave my husband respect even when he did not deserve it, much like God gives out love even though we do not deserve it. Little by little as I began to flourish in who I was, my husband began to respond to me in different ways. He began looking at me like I was something special again, a ray of sunshine that he cannot live without. I have gone through hell. I have wept in agony with a broken heart too many times to count now. All along the way I began to remember that I am not along. Now when I weep over loosing my mother, over the pain I feel in my body and well, any other things that a woman might weep about, there is my husband.
Moral of the story: LADIES AND GENTLEMAN you have to form an identity for yourself. I know, it's said over and over again "love yourself first" and this is true, but I am not talking about loving yourself. I am talking about loving and trusting in God to help build and shape your identity. How do you know what you'll stand for in your marriage without your identity? How can you hold to the promises you make without your own identity? How do you know what you even want or deserve from others in the world if you DO NOT KNOW what you stand for?
Stepping off my soap box now. I never imagined as a little girl that I would be happily married to the man of my dreams. I never thought I would have a master's degree or be the mother of 4 amazing children. I never thought I would attend church on a regular basis and love it as much as I do. There are so many never that add up to a whole lotta good stuff that I never thought would be in my world.
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