ARTICLE: The very first time my husband and I decided to enroll in Marriage Education classes I was so clear that there were some “issues” he needed to work on and I was just waiting for his “Aha!” moment to come so he could let go of some of his baggage and stop working my nerves. Yup, that was my thinking— pretty arrogant, right? Well, as each week passed what became clearer and clearer to me was the fact that I might be a bit “touched” too meaning I had some bags I needed to put down myself. As a matter of fact I learned that I had a whole lot of baggage but I just didn’t realize it because I had been carrying it most of my life. So, I simply didn’t notice it. It was so much a part of me I couldn’t distinguish what part of me was the “real” me and what part was the “contrived” me, if you will.
You see, I believe we all have our real selves and our contrived selves. Our real selves are our most authentic and true selves. Our contrived selves are the person we’ve created (subconsciously most of the time) to show to the world and yes even to our spouses. So how might this look in our relationships? Check out VIDEO commentary: “Are You Keepin It Real?” .
Getting back to my original point…(ya’ll will soon learn—I can jump all around at times!), a real shift occurred in my mind, heart, and soul when I finally began to understand that the marriage God blessed me with, the relationship that I say is most important (after my relationship with The Most High) was not given to me for me to spend most of my time complaining about all of my spouse’s imperfections. Our relationships are not the place for us to let all of our stuff hang out with no regard for how that stuff is weighing us, our partner, and our relationship down. Our relationships are definitely not the place for us to revisit childhood and think that we should get everything our way. One of the biggest challenges I’ve noticed in doing work with couples is the difficulty we have with abandoning our individual agendas and moving towards what’s going to work best for the marriage. Typically, we’re so busy focusing on what our spouse is or isn’t doing that we don’t realize the part we play in perpetuating the problems we want to get rid of!
Marriage is one of the best places to grow and work on YOU if you’re up for it. Marriage is the place where 2 people can come together and pull and push eachother in love to be the best that God created them to be. Marriage is a place where one partner can model for the partner that just doesn’t seem to get it through your actions and not just your words. Marriage is a place where a brand new you can be born if we would just stop looking at our spouse, the next couple, and everywhere else outside of ourselves. Marriage can be a great place to work on SELF. Marriage is for grown folks!
Question: Why do you think people enter into marriage thinking it’s going to be nothing but a romantic cake walk?