Conclusion & Continuation….

GoodbyeSo, in the end, I posted some of my most well kept secrets. Things I haven’t discussed with anyone, except for myself and my husband, at times.

My goal with the information I’ve shared on this blog is to take it and turn it into a guide. Not a self-help book, because I don’t have all of the answers. I’m still learning, like many of us are. But I at least want to offer a guide for new wives who don’t know where to turn or where to start. It can be extremely difficult when you think you have to figure it all out on your own. Well, I’m here to say you don’t.

Truth be told, I was “forced” to start this blog for a marketing course I’m taking while I complete my MBA. I haven’t even come close to finishing my book, but all of the support and feedback from the blog and other sites I’ve posted on have given me the nudge I needed to push forward. So THANK YOU!

Please be on the look out for My New Life as a New Wife to hit stores by 2018 and I hope you will continue to provide support….Be Blessed!

P.S. I hope I get an A on my assignment as well!

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Love & War: Fighting Fair

Hi. My name is Nicole. I know how to verbally fight. I know how to verbally fight very well. I know how to articulate my anger into words and aim those words at people with the intention to hurt their soul. I don’t know how to apologize for using my words inappropriately. I don’t know how to stop myself once I get started. And this is my downfall. Does this sound familiar? Maybe yes, maybe no. But for me this was my reality. I didn’t fight fair.

I found that my husband is not a talker when he’s angry and I am. I want to get everything off of my chest and let him know, all while using large words how upset I am with the situation or his actions. Then I would go for the jugular. I would become so mean that I would find myself yelling, saying mean things, not knowing when to stop and losing the ability to control myself. In the end we would be so angry with each other because he would respond to my rants and I would realize that I said some stuff that couldn’t be taken back even if I tried. But why?

The reason why I lashed out on a verbal attack when my husband and I would fight was because I felt the need to be heard. In my past relationship, I was never heard and was physically silenced and abused. This time around, my husband wasn’t physically abusive, but I had adopted a defense mechanism of being verbally abusive and refusing to be silenced. And took every bit of anger out on him. I would lose it.

It took for me getting so angry that I threw something at my husband and realized that I almost hurt him. I realized that I was going to lose my husband and he would have every right to leave me. Abuse should be tolerated by either party.  I had to help myself heal. My hurt and anger wasn’t his issue and he deserved better.

Hurt People, HURT people

We have all heard it before. If you’ve been hurt, then you have a disposition to make others feel the pain that you have. I was hurt and had yet to deal with it. I needed for someone to tell me that my past didn’t belong in my present, nor the future. I also needed someone to stop me and say “go easy” because it just wasn’t that serious. Understand that when an argument ensues, we have to check our anger at the door. We as women are crafty with our words and can easily spit some of the most venomous filled rants that a man may have no recourse for. So check the reason why you’re angry, check who is the real recipient of your anger and relax. It’s so much easier.

Agreeing to Disagree…Ain’t Easy

I am not the one to apologize, or at least if I truly believe that I’m right. But I had to learn how to agree to disagree. When my husband and I would argue, and I felt that he was wrong about something, I’d take it so far as to go to Google TM  to prove him all the way wrong. I had to show him who was right. Me! WRONG, wrong, wrong on so many levels. Me trying to always be right didn’t help with anything. It helped continue the tension and the anger, but didn’t resolve the issue at all. So I began to learn that it’s okay for me to be wrong. Its okay for him to be right. But more importantly, I learned that we can disagree and still remain in love. We can disagree and coexist without unnecessary tension. Simply put, and I’ll say it AGAIN its okay to let it go.

Love & War: Independent WOMAN

Have you been working since high school? Check. Maintained your own home? Check. Purchased and maintained your own car? Check. Buy your own clothes? Check. Fix your own problems? Check. Well, hell, then why do you need a man? Check, Check, Check-Mate! Many of us walk into a relationship out of a relationship with ourselves. The relationship with the independent woman. It is a beautiful thing to be independent. Your parents raised you to depend on yourself and no one else. Many of us grew up in households in which you only had an independent woman (or women) as our role models. As we progress into womanhood and decided that marriage was for us, we forget to leave our independence at the door. We take it with us through our relationships. Always ready for the “let-down” and ready to remind ourselves who or what we don’t need. Reminding ourselves of this independence operates as a shield for our hearts. Then in walked your prince charming. Your husband. He was (and is) everything you could want in a man. He seeks your dependence, he lives for it. Have you given it to him?

I was not ready to relinquish those rights just yet when I got married. I had been independent for so long, especially as a single mother, that it was a large adjustment folding my husband into “my life”. That’s right, I said MY LIFE. My life allowed me the independence that I wanted. I knew what I liked to do, where I liked to shop, how I liked to spend my money, and what I needed to do to ensure I was able to maintain a quality of life. My husband was not going to change my ways. Well with this attitude, I almost found my independent self very much single again. Why? Because I wanted to be the man, woman, and almighty and would not allow myself to be dependent on my husband. I wouldn’t allow him to serve the purpose he was destined to serve in my life. I wouldn’t let him be my man.

As a wife, its is no longer simply about you and you alone. The two shall now become one and thats how it shall remain. B

Let Go and Let Man Lead

Like many people say “Let Go and Let God” in your marriage you have to let go of your independence and let your man lead. Allow yourself to become dependent in his ability to care for and protect you. If your own instincts wont let you trust in his abilities, then you need to express this to your husband as this is a burden you should not bear. Your independence may be an attractive trait and you should always have your own goals & desires, but don’t let those goals & desires push your husband away. Your dependence on your husband will only allow for your independence as a unit to grow stronger.

You Chose Marriage

Don ’t walk around like someone stole your independence. You chose to be married. You said “Yes” when he proposed and you said “I-Do” when you got married. When we act like our husbands have stole our lives away because you discuss your choices, whereabouts, and actions with him it only implies that he is a burden. If independence is your goal, there are many ways to retain your independence in marriage. Retain your likes and dislikes. Ensure you’re spending time with your friends doing things that give you life. But remember that marriage is about dependence. Depending on the love that you know your husband has for you (and you for him) will always be there waiting for you.

Let your marriage love you back…sometimes its okay to let GO!

Love & War: No one warned me

Love HurtsSo how come no one told me? I mean no one let me in on the realness of what marriage would, could, and should (in certain instances) be. There are so many secrets to marriage that we don’t get to see. Those marriages that I hoped mine would be like, they had inner secrets that you didn’t see. These are the things that all of the beautiful dresses, perfect family portraits, pristine dinner parties, and classic home with a picket fence cover up. The realness of how the goods times may not trump the bad. How sometimes it looks like there is no way to fix it. I just wish the answers would have been provided to me before I said “I-Do”.

All of these secrets I’ve experienced in my marriage. I walked into this relationship not understanding where to draw the line and when not to cross existing ones. I had to re-train myself on how to operate as a unit. How to present myself as a wife and not a single woman. How to resolve issues and not let our dirt & dust show to the world.

Many of us have had an argument with our husband at some point in time. If you haven’t, I would say you are lucky, but find it odd as well. We will come back to this. For me, I have chosen to argue about some of the most idiotic things I can think of. As I’ve grown, I can now look back and laugh, but when we were arguing, it damn sure wasn’t funny. But I would never want anyone else to know we argue.

I never wanted anyone else to see in our closets, drag out our bones, and prance them around for everyone to see and judge. But its needed. Its needed because the past continually repeats itself until we learn to do better. My anger was where I needed to “do better”. The littlest things set me off and it was no stopping me from there. I’m okay with exposing my faults so they don’t become your faults. If anything, you learn how to prevent my mistakes from becoming your shortcomings.

If I could go back in time, I would ask for an older, married woman to sit me down and tell me “there will be days like this”. Not to discourage me from marriage, but to give me a real life picture into the future. We have the “sex” talk, the “drug” talk, the “love” talk, but never the marriage talk. Let’s change this and provide our kids with the realness of love.

What I’ve come to learn is that real love isn’t always pretty. It hurts sometimes. It hurts because you would give anything and everything for this person, but when you feel undervalued or not appreciated for all that you’ve given, done, or said, it cuts like a knife in your back. You want to shout, kick, and throw things to demonstrate how angry love has made you.

I wanted a red light, a siren, a warning of some sort to let me know that there would be the moments that felt “unfixable”, the times where I wanted to walk away but needed to stay, and for some of us the moment where you knew things had gone too far. I do realize that many are scared to admit their faults because failure isn’t attractive to most, but it is the truth. We all fail.

So in the end, I have to be honest…my marriage hasn’t failed. Not by any means, but we’ve had our rough patches. So for my next few posts, I’ll open myself up to you. If you’ve experienced it, then you feel my pain, if not, then learn from mistakes, but either way I hope you receive something from the pain and lessons I’ve felt & learned.

He’s Just Right…FOR ME!

Hes Perfect For Me

As a new wife, I had to be sure to reflect on what my husband does well. I had to gauge his progress in both our life and our marriage on his talents and what he’s trying to do well, rather than where he fell short. I realized that if I always met him with what he wasn’t doing or what he hadn’t done, he may never choose to progress in those areas. If I approached areas that I wanted him to improve in with positivity and support, I found out how much he actually was willing to change.

Focus on Your Contribution
In reflecting on the list that I used to create to depict all of the qualities and traits that my future husband needed to have, I eventually realized that I had to reflect on myself. What did I bring to the table at 18, at 25, at 30? How did I compare to what I was asking for? I had an apartment, a decent car, a okay job (not my dream career), I had a kid from a previous relationship, I have a few recipes up my sleeve, and I felt like I was easy on the eyes. Would I meet all of his expectations on his list? Probably not.

My self assessment made me realize that all of the things we may ask for in a man are things that we couldn’t bring to the table if we wanted to. I was wrong to expect my husband to meet all of these criteria but not hold myself to a certain standard. I had to do better. I had to be a better version of myself at every step along the way. I couldn’t ask for improvement in my husband if I couldn’t find ways to improve upon myself.

But it didn’t stop there. I realized that what I did expect my husband to bring to the table in this marriage. Income, of course, but I brought that too and it went into one pot. Love, he definitely brings that and never lets me forget it. Then I realized what my husband brought to the party that I couldn’t give myself, was a peace of mind, he is my peace. He was (and still is) my solace.

I am the type that will run myself ragged. If I have 38 billion things to get done in one day, I will probably try to squeeze in 39 billion even though my body quit on me hours ago. I don’t know how to turn off. This is where my husband comes in, he helps me settle down. He gives me peace in every way. I know that when he tells me to rest, that it’s out of love and concern and I can let go of stressing to do it all, especially when I know that I cant.

For him, I help him “turn up”. My husband is home body and I like to explore and try new things. So I drag him to try these things with me and for the most part, he always finds himself having fun.

In the end, we complement each other and that is the only thing that we both need to contribute most to this marriage. So know how you fit into his life and where he fits into yours…and with two imperfect puzzle pieces working together, you end up making a perfect union.

Who Said YOU were Perfect????

Not PerfectSo after all of my list and wishing for the perfect man, I had to realize that I myself was not perfect (and would never be)! I did realize that his flaws matched mine perfectly.  My flaws were recognized and I had to admit to myself that I needed some fixing…

The (Unobtainable) Lists – THEY WERE CRAZY!

As I mentioned, I was lucky to find that my husband was a perfect match for all of the top items of my list that I made when I was fifteen years old. He was perfect for the young me (sounds a little perv-ish) and is even better for the me now. But what bout the other seventy items I had listed? Would he have met all of those expectations? Were my expectations realistic? And where did these expectations come from? I honestly don’t know.

After looking at the full list, I realized that I didn’t even meet all of the things on my list, so how could I request that someone else be so perfect? Some of the outrageous things I had were “Must know how to change oil in a car” and “Must be able to fix everything in the house”. Now, realistically, there is nothing wrong with having a handy man, but in life, all men are not handy. My husband is one of these men.

Now to make up for him not being handy, he’s willing to call the best handy-man to come and complete the repair, and I appreciate him for that. I’m okay with this, but are you?

All of those little things that you had on your “perfect man” list, have you let them go? Have you let your husband be himself and you be appreciative of these traits?

You may not even realize that you are holding your husband to an unobtainable list of wants that he doesn’t even know exist. You want your husband to have a certain career. You want your husband to go back to school. You want your husband to be a certain weight. But first ask yourself, have you done these things for yourself. If you cannot even list where you have accomplished these tasks, then why is it fair to hold him to the fire for these things.

Leave the Lists Alone

Your husband isn’t a Build-A-Man he is The Man that you chose to give your heart too, so let your lists go. Let him be who he is as you committed to being supportive of that person. Embrace the great qualities that he does possess and work with him to improve in areas that he seeks to improve. If I worked as hard on myself as I initially tried to with then I’d be in amazing shape, with perfect hair, and have more education that any one person would need. However, I didn’t and settled with being comfortable with my skills and making the choice to improve what is within my power. So, with your support, love, and encouragement, he can do nothing but be great.

Focus on Measures that Matter

I used to get so angry when my husband couldn’t fix or do something like my father did. Why didn’t he know how to do it? But this would only leave us angry at each other. He would be frustrated that I didn’t believe in his ability and me frustrated because something didn’t get done the way I wanted. He began to let me know how it made him feel like he didn’t measure up. Like he wasn’t a great husband. Because I focused on the negative, I forgot all of the things that he did well. He could do twenty things right and I focused on the one thing that was wrong, but what did I do wrong?

I hate cleaning bathrooms. I will do it because it needs to be done, but I despise it. My husband can clean like no one I’ve ever seen. He is extremely thorough and does a wonderful job. Same with making a bed, I can make our bed up, but I am not the best at tucking sheets. However, my husband does it with military precision. I love when he straightens our room up. Its gorgeous. Now, does my lack of bathroom cleaning and bed making overshadow all that I can do well. I would hope he hasn’t held me to those things. But how would I feel if he did?

What if you can’t cook. Ok. And you may have your own style of cleaning. Oh well. And let’s say you don’t like all of the shows he likes. So sue you. Do any of these things make you a bad wife? No. Would you like to be held to these measures? I’m sure you wouldn’t. So don’t hold him to any as well. Love him as he is….

When Reality is now REAL

Future HusbandWhen I was in middle school and high school, we used to make lists of what we wanted in our perfect man. I can remember writing about eighty things, yes eighty, in a spiral bound notebook that I felt like the perfect man must have in order to be the “perfect man” for me. These things ranged from how tall, his skin color, his annual income, the type of car he drove, what his teeth looked like, I mean the list was exhaustive.

Around the time I met my current husband, I recall finding my list while digging through some things at my parents house. What amazed me was that my boyfriend at that time (now husband) had damn near all of the things I listed in my top ten on my list. He was the right height, right skin tone, he had a job,  he had his own car, he had a good job, he came from a good family, he was educated, he had white pretty teeth, and he loved me for me. WOW!!! I had lucked up or had I? I actually didn’t, but what I came to realize was that my list was based off what a 15 year old thought she needed and most of them were what I didn’t possess. I am short, so I wanted someone taller than me.  I was in braces at that time, so I wanted someone who already had their teeth worked out. Hilarious, as I could go on and on. In the end, I wanted someone to complete me. To fill in the gaps in my life, but there were so many more areas that my husband fulfilled that I wouldn’t have even imagined listing at that time.

What I’m getting as is that, whether we create a physical list or a mental list, we all had some idea of what our husbands needed to be before we met them; however sometimes we don’t let go of those “lists” and cause them to get in the way of our happiness. We allow our wants and desires to get in the way of seeing and appreciating what we already have in front of us.

The (Unobtainable) Lists

As I mentioned, I was lucky to find that my husband was a perfect match for all of the top items of my list that I made when I was fifteen years old. He was perfect for the young me (sounds a little perv-ish) and is even better for the me now. But what bout the other seventy items I had listed? Would he have met all of those expectations? Were my expectations realistic? And where did these expectations come from? I honestly don’t know.

After looking at the full list, I realized that I didn’t even meet all of the things on my list, so how could I request that someone else be so perfect? Some of the outrageous things I had were “Must know how to change oil in a car” and “Must be able to fix everything in the house”. Now, realistically, there is nothing wrong with having a handy man, but in life, all men are not handy. My husband is one of these men. Now to make up for him not being handy, he’s willing to call the best handy-man to come and complete the repair, and I appreciate him for that. I’m okay with this, but are you?

All of those little things that you had on your “perfect man” list, have you let them go? Have you let your husband be himself and you be appreciative of these traits?

You may not even realize that you are holding your husband to an unobtainable list of wants that he doesn’t even know exist. You want your husband to have a certain career. You want your husband to go back to school. You want your husband to be a certain weight. But first ask yourself, have you done these things for yourself. If you cannot even list where you have accomplished these tasks, then why is it fair to hold him to the fire for these things.

Leave the List for the To-Do’s

Your husband isn’t a Build-A-Man he is The Man that you chose to give your heart too, so let your lists go. Let him be who he is as you committed to being supportive of that person. Embrace the great qualities that he does possess and work with him to improve in areas that he seeks to improve. With your support, love, and encouragement, he can do nothing but be great.