*cue Willie Hutch*
While I was home in MI visiting the family, I got a chance to have lunch with my friend LH. LH is a few years older than me, but a dear friend who always is a wealth of knowledge, and as usual, our lunch didn’t disappoint. We spent a lot of time talking about relationships & marriage. She’s been privy to the ups & downs that my romantic life has taken while I’ve been in Orlando, so her advice/info was spot-on, as usual.
But this post isn’t about her advice to me (which I’m not sharing, cause it was just for Jubi, & plus it probably wouldn’t help anyone else anyway…). This post is about something profound that she said.
We were talking about marriage, and timing (which is another post in itself, if I ever get around to writing that) and the overall “Black women aren’t getting married” nonsense in the news lately…and that’s when LH remarked that women aren’t dying to get married because they believe in the institution, or they are so in love, or whatever reason folks throw out…
Naw, chicks are clamoring to get married because THEY WANT TO BE CHOSEN.
I had to stop & pause & ponder for a second, and I could totally see that. Look at all the ritual surrounding engagement & weddings. Its all about the ring (& how big it is) & the dress (& how much it cost) & the wedding (& if it was the biggest/baddest/most expensive/whatever) compared to your girlfriends. Getting married or even engaged is a badge of honor! Its a symbol that says “Look at me! I’m good enough, he chose me!” Its all about being good enough or worthy, and then being able to say to another woman “I’m better than you are cause I got chose!”
Several days later a lightbulb went off in my head.
It occurred to me that MY ISSUES regarding being single are really rooted in this “chosen” thing. Do I really want to do all the things that it requires to be married right now? Nope, I know that about myself. My issues revolved around being worthy & being good enough to be chosen – specifically why I hadn’t been chosen when so many (IMO sometimes unworthy) women were being chosen, & what I had to do to get chosen. Its basically an extension of the self-esteem issues that have plagued me since I was a young girl: I want to be told that I’m good enough & when I’m not then I think there’s something wrong with me. I’d like to get married eventually, but the desire to “keep up with the Joneses” on the marriage tip is not where my focus is anymore (thank goodness! Looking back I cringe to think @ some of my own behavior, but I digress). The competition aspect isn’t important to me anymore, what’s important is building a solid marriage.