In my cucu’s days, a woman was basically a housewife. Not that we don’t have them nowadays, we do, and it is still in order.
She received a lot of support from her fellow women around the community, washed together, ground maize together, fetched water and firewood together as they talked and encouraged one other.
Fast forward to today. Mary is my name.
Currently living in this 21st century where everything is so fast and expectations so high.
Am expected to study hard, pass, get a good job, drive, maintain my hair, nails, tweeze my eyebrows, shave my armpits, etc. etc.!
In the morning, am to march into an eight to five hour battle, present in meetings and meet targets.
Evening comes and I get home, to make dinner, do laundry, and still be the super-woman: A pleasing and a receptive wife to my hubby!
Imagine all that and all other nitty-gritties of life that I haven’t put in a daily woman’s schedule. Phhhhheew!
With all that, most women tend to be resentful because they give, give and give without receiving especially from their husbands.
She will give and when it’s not reciprocated by her husband, she will give more, thinking that she didn’t get it right.
She will keep giving again and again, eventually, she will find no joy in the mundane.
The feelings of bitterness and resentfulness, are all she has towards the man who was once her knight in a shiny black armor.
Her home becomes a cold place, typically freezing.
She no longer talks, she no longer jokes around, she doesn’t go out, she doesn’t enjoy her husband’s company.
She withdraws emotionally. Whatever attracted her to this man, suddenly becomes irritating.
Marriage becomes burdensome.
So, where did the rain start beating married couples? I mean, I would presume or assume that when you married that guy or that lady, you did your homework.
Checked all the qualities and decided, I can handle his/ her imperfections.
You might not have known everything about him, but am sure you applied all your God given wisdom in taking that decision to say “TILL DEATH DO US PART”.
Sure, there are circumstances that happen, uncertainties in life are unsure, but, for most marriages, it’s the small cracks that lead to a marriage crumbling.
Cracks that would have otherwise been filled and fixed.
It’s having unrealistic expectations about your spouse.
It’s wanting to change the other person, and sometimes, it’s you who needs to change.
It’s the fact that most of us are selfish-always wanting your way.
It’s the fact that we can’t apologize, and our pride supersedes the peace we need.
Personally, from the moment I said I do, I RESOLVED a couple of things, I hope it will help you my fellow wife, and anyone who is planning to walk this journey of marriage.
It’s not a rule book, and marriages are different, but remember that problems in marriages are almost universal, and one person’s experience can help you overcome an obstacle in yours, so this, might help you out!
I had to accept that I am married.
For most men leaving and cleaving to their wives is a daunting task.
Leaving and cleaving doesn’t mean that you stop caring for your family members, no.
It means that it’s you and your wife first, in every decision, from the tiniest to the biggest of them all.
It means that everyone else is inconsequential in your family decisions.
The only thing you can do, is ask for advice if need be.
Being married meant that I had to “grow up” and be more responsible than before. I was never irresponsible before, but, the job description was bigger, the scope was larger and more was demanded from me.
The biggest responsibility in making marriage a success, lies with the wife.
Whether we want to twist it or not, that’s the absolute truth.
“A wise woman builds her home with her own hands, and a foolish one destroys it with the same”.
Why because we can WIN OVER ungodly husbands too! We are the builders. Not that the husband shouldn’t do his part, but remember to FOLLOW takes a BIGGER PERSON!
He can’t build without you.
Well, one minute I was in Mwangi’s home, and the next minute, there’s a snatch party whirling me to the car, and suddenly am a wife!
It doesn’t strike the cord until after the honeymoon.
Suddenly, it dawns on you! Jesus! Am Married!! Whhhaaaaatttttt!!! I had to accept that I am no longer under my father’s authority, but under my husband’s.
It meant that the ‘government’ had changed, and I had to agree with new terms and conditions.
My hubby can never be my dad.
Dad can eat chapatti throughout, my hubby can’t handle eating one type of a meal for 2 consecutive days.
Therefore, comparing him to my father, would be digging my marriage grave.
I had to accept that I am a wife and it’s permanent!
Accept that you are married and it’s forever.
I had to have the right attitude.
We hear it every day, Marriage is boring, pathetic, a hell hole, and all those negative comments that makes one cringe.
The radio talks, the office talk, everything is wrong about marriage.
I resolved to listen to only one voice, the voice of truth.
The voice that says marriage is beautiful, marriage works, marriage causes positive growth, and marriage is God ordained.
You have the means, the keys, to make your marriage be what you want it to be!
I resolved to have the right attitude in marriage and be different.
I resolved to change my attitude and be positive, and breathe life to my marriage, daily.
That doesn’t mean that our marriage has been without challenges.
Being a wife, requires an extra dose of patience, understanding, love, commitment, trust, faithfulness, but it is certainly interesting and dynamic.
Being in a happy marriage takes a lot of work and effort.
Every day, you have to wake up willing, intentional and fully decided to make your spouse happy.
You wake up putting him first. If you walk into marriage with a wrong attitude, it will not work.
The right attitude will make you work extra hard for a job you are paid pennies.
So why not do that in our marriages too?
Attitude is contagious. A wrong attitude in me, will soon be a wrong attitude to my husband.
Every day may not be good, but try finding something good every day in your husband, and in your marriage.
Sometimes, why lie, he drives me crazy! But, I have learnt to focus on the 80% that is good, as we work on the 20% that might be wanting.
Learn something from your husband daily and be of a teachable spirit. He sure will reciprocate it!
Trust me, nothing is interesting if you are not interested.
If you find your marriage boring, it will continue to be boring till you change your perspective – your attitude.
If you decide to make it alive, it will blossom, just because of your attitude.
Remember, ability is what you’re capable of doing, motivation, determines what you do, and attitude determines how well you do it.
Resolve to have a marriage with a difference, have the right attitude!
Get into marriage with an acceptance and purpose in your heart to make it all work.
It’s GOOD. All that God created was Good!
I had to know my place in my marriage.
So here I was, a lady with a strong personality, independent, can run my show and pay my own bills, getting married.
I remember my dad and mama telling me, “Now Muthoni, you are becoming a wife, know that John will be the head, and not you, putting him off won’t work, and using your strong personality on him will definitely not work.”
I know you are like me, you fight for your rights, but now, learn to submit!
Thank you Mam and Dad!
Well I did get married. Said I do, to a man whose personality was equal to, or more than mine.
Couple that with the male ego he has. The high risk taker!
It was more like paraffin and water!
Who the hell is he!!- (am using hell because, honestly, that’s what I kept saying.)
I was so used to taking the leading role, so used to being the firstborn, making my decisions, and suddenly, I am to follow!
How do I follow? My brain cells were literally shrinking!
Now, I had to consult! Consult?? I don’t consult, I decide! Men! I was in trouble!
The Lord had to teach me.
He taught me this, I have the power, and my hubby, has authority ! KABOOM!
I got it! My place as a wife is to submit to my husband.
Yes we are to submit to each other, just as the bible says, but my main place is to follow my husband’s lead, to respect him, to be devoted to him.
Submissiveness doesn’t cause me to lose my independence, it certainly doesn’t make me small, or have no say in the affairs of our home, no, in fact, my submissiveness to my husband, makes him draw closer to me.
Men understand I LOVE YOU as RESPECT.
That you trust him enough to lead you as you support him and follow.
It doesn’t mean that you can’t tell him of your suggestions.
You can and you should, because to make the best decisions, he needs his logic and your intuitiveness.
I am NOT to COMPETE with my husband, I am to complement him.
It’s funny how we women compete with our husbands.
If only we knew the power of influence we have, your husband decisions would be the least of your worries.
Well, can a head turn right while the neck is stiff?
The answer is NO. The neck has the biggest bearing to the direction the head will face.
Know that your place in marriage, is to follow your husband’s lead, and trust him to do his job well!
My Journey Continues…