Marriage…The Mirage

I’ve delayed this post for a whole week while I got my thoughts together.

Couples who have been together or married for years, always say things like…”It’s ok to hit a rough patch. Everyone does. But love will prevail”. What I want to say at the moment is…whose love will prevail? Mine or the relationships as a whole? Will the love of self-remain relevant? Or is making the marriage/ relationship overcome no matter what the goal?

I usually walk away thoroughly confused and questioning everything…Is marriage a mirage of overwhelming expectation or is it just me?

Who hasn’t dreamed about their wedding day? Imagined being married for years, celebrating anniversaries and all that a happy marriage entails (key word is “Happy”). What girl hasn’t thought about who she’ll marry and how the proposal will go? Dreamed of their wedding colors and the guest list and the dress…Oh lord please don’t forget the dress. What person hasn’t at least thought about marriage at least once in their lives? Marriage for some is the golden goose. It’s the creme de la creme of relationship goals and it’s the thing in life that’s considered the ultimate commitment (besides bringing a life into the world…cause that’s irreversible). Note: (Morgan’s father will hate me eternally for voicing my opinion on marriage on here. But I have to voice my opinion. Respectfully). 

Since I can remember, I dreamed about getting married.  I mean, I’ve been collecting and drooling over Marth Stewart wedding magazines since…well forever.  I idolized how classic and clean but modern Martha makes weddings look and how just overwhelmingly (in a good way) doing a guest seating chart and how things like picking the cake would be the joy of the whole process. So, I would imagine my own proposal after reading the articles on how men like Kevin (not a real person) took Marie (not a real person) to their favorite restaurant in Brooklyn for a casual dinner (this is a fantazied story) and as they wined and dined on roasted duck and then dessert, Kevin would prepare for their leisurely stroll home in which they would chat about work and buying a new rug from the farmers market but before making it home they’d make a stop, unknowingly to Marie, at the neighborhood garden that they visit daily after he’d previously filled it with hundreds of flowers and candles (yes in a garden) and christmas lights around the fence for aimbiance and would propose to her on their favorite bench (that they sit on every Saturday and read excerpts from novels aloud to each other) and she would say yes and their family and friend’s who’ve been hiding, would pop out and they’d celebrate as Marie’s eyes filled with tears of joy. I MEAN CMON…THAT SHIT SOUNDS AMAZING RIGHT!!! But I know not one woman, whose proposal was as romantic as that. But overall, these are the types of proposal stories that had me not being able to wait until it was my turn.

(Sidenote: I understand the pressure that is put on men when it comes to proposals and the impending marriage. I understand the push that men get from women they’ve dated for years to get married. I won’t speak on my own proposal but men…the proposal is kinda important…it sets the tone sometimes)

I obsessed about the type of dress and the guest list and the proposal and of course the man. OHHHHH the man, I would marry and whose name I would take and whose love I would have for the rest of my life. I felt lucky before I even had a man or a proposal.  But sadly, I never thought about the marriage. Martha was covering weddings…not marriages for the most part unless it was advice on longevity or anniversaries or celebrations. I mean how naive of me to not think about the marriage.  The marriage was the whole point but I’d never thought about that. Small minded me…I know…I know…I’m slapping myself on the hand daily for my immature thinking. Overall, my silly younger self-had the audacity of thinking that what I had in my mind would transfer over to reality.  Fast forward, I had a proposal…I had a wedding and then a marriage.

Over the past two years, I’ve come to dislike and not understand the point in marriage.  My views on marriage have changed drastically from my pre-proposal and then engagement and first-year thoughts were. The fact that they are so different, perplexes even me.  Now let me say this now… some will immediately think that this my husbands (Morgan’s Dad) fault and that he’s just an extreme shit or something but that’s not it (even though he can be as much of a shit as I can be sometimes) it’s not just him…it’s mostly me.  But seriously, the main reason I’ve come to have such strong feelings around marriage is due to my pure dislike for how settling and disconnected from my own dreams and goals, it’s made me feel. Now yes, this could totally be because of the person I’ve become or that I’m in the wrong marriage or that I was never truly ready.  In that statement, it would mean that I pushed him and myself into something before we were truly ready.

In short…I feel smothered. Unable to breathe. Unable to advance. Unable to do what I want, when I want. Just unable. None of those feelings are good when discussing something that is supposed to make us happy, feel comforted and secure and be the love we are supposed to have “forever”.

Let me add…

In my 3 years of being married, I’ve come to realize that people change.  No one likes to admit it but people change. Personalities change. Interest change. Situations change. Love and admiration change. Needs change. Things evolutionarily change. It’s natural. Comfortably become normative. Life goes on and with everything in this world…we grow as individuals. But that’s the key to my issue is that in marriage you are supposed to grow together too. We have not. Much like vines from a tree…we started to route ourselves in different directions and now we are so far from the original root…I’m unsure how we’d ever get back. I’ve lost sight.

Rewind to 15 years ago and I met Morgan’s dad and we just clicked. He was everything I thought I wanted at the time.  We’d met in undergrad and I’d gone to school with a boyfriend that turned out to be an idiot and so when he came along after his friend started dating my friend…I was down for something new.  He was confident but witty and arrogant (in a good way), smart, friendly, skillful, tall (I’m kinda short), protective and extremely funny. He was deep-rooted in being a hard worker in all that he did and was devoted to working and making money.  It became so clear after just a few days of knowing him, that I was hooked to being with him, and used the term “forever” with strict seriousness.  We dated for 13 years – but it was not without its trials and tribulations and various feuds but we stayed together.  Let’s be clear…my clingy and jealous personality was a nuisance (even for me).  We stayed together even after a betrayal so hurtful, something that broke me down to my core and that I was sure would break us…didn’t. Nonetheless not long after the betrayal and after some pushing and persuading about “not wanting to wait forever and I don’t want to be a girlfriend for the rest of my life conversations”, he proposed.  It wasn’t my dream proposal but I just wanted it.  Planned the wedding, got married, got pregnant and had baby Morgan. I lost myself around baby Morgan. We lost each other. I drew into myself and he disconnected and drew into himself and that was it. The disconnecting of the roots of who we were as a couple, as best friends, as partners, as each other’s “everything”…broke and it’s been different ever since.  People say with tragedy and hard times, that’s when in marriage you are supposed to dig deep and work harder.  This didn’t happen. We split…mentally, physically and emotionally.

Today…

The idea of Marriage makes me challenge it.  I’m not the happiest when it comes to talking about the “joys of marriage” because my joys now…don’t always included my spouse. Being on my own seems like the goal. Finding the strength to believe in me, was the key. Loving myself and my current journey with all the things on my plate is important to me. Losing myself in my marriage was a mistake. This was all my fault as he never asked me to do that. But the key to everything was that loss and disconnection.

His interest has changed. Mine have also. His personality has stayed the same, while mine has changed. My need for accountability and stability changed, while this was of no concern to him. Seeing the world and experiencing things it has to offer…just wasn’t of interest to him and while I denied my feelings about it originally…I realized I wanted those experiences and it’s things like this that caused me to get to where I am. I would find myself wanting to do things, get out and underneath the marriage and experience life. In short, I felt like I was missing life and questioned deeply why marriage made me feel like that.  It came down to differences, changes, challenges, experiences, wants and possibilities that marriage doesn’t offer me and I’m disappointed in marriage.

I would say that finding myself while married but mentally separated from my spouse has made me realize the beauty that is who I am and where I’m going.  I see myself as a critic of those that believe marriage is the “golden goose” of relationship goals. Because marriage changed everything. Had we not been married, I honestly believe things would be different.  I mean don’t get me wrong, what I needed, I got in the beginning and while dating. But regardless…the root of the issue is marriage itself.

I’m 30 years old. I’m not my 18-year-old self- young and naive. I am not my 21-year-old self- fun and carefree. I am not my 25-year-old self – attached and comfortable. In those time increments, I needed something out of my relationship and got it that made me think marriage would be the same and wouldn’t provide any challenges or changes. No one talks about those things. Either the narratives around marriage are either “great and fantastic” or “horrible, bad and the worse thing ever”.  Infidelity in marriage is the narrative, I’ve become so familiar with.  It’s all people talk about. I also don’t have idols of marriage to pull from.

With all this being said, I find myself less confused about the fate of my marriage and more happy about the possibilities of the future.  Happy about the possibilities of growing on my own. Being my own person.  I’ve found myself out of the darkness and I’ve walked into the beautiful light.  I find that it shouldn’t be hurtful to think about my wants and needs first.  I love and adore Morgan’s father but in a different way. We are great friends and the best parents. I want him happy. I want him to grow. To accept, to love, to see his possibilities and happiness. I saw that with trying on my end, came more hesitation on his end. He has been hesitant to accept my growth and change.  My push for wanting to grow with someone is no more. My fear of being alone…dissolved and instead I see it as being a breath I’ve been longing to take. My heart…unbroken. I am no longer who I thought I was. I no longer need what I use to need before the baby and before the marriage. I need the independence for myself.  I needed something that I can’t put into words and that the marriage hasn’t provided me.  I’ve chosen to step back from marriage and continue my journey of growth.

Just my innermost personal feelings…Finally released.

 

Peace, Love & To the Future,

L’Erin

One thought on “Marriage…The Mirage

  1. Shameka Jones says:

    (Standing ovation)!!!!!!! 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 Testimony!!!! Great job at letting the truth come out! Your love journey was great to hear!!! I’m glad you took the high road in all of this and held your head strong and proud! We often loose our heads after kids and think we have to work it out for the sake of them. I’m glad you are doing self discovery, and finding what makes you happy! And I’ll be there to root you on!!! Thelma and Louise!

    Liked by 1 person

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