Do you remember your senior year book? I can’t find mine. (It’s either at my mom’s house in Virginia or I threw it away.) I distinctly remember what I wrote down in the “10 years from now” prediction section. I wrote, “I will be divorced with 2 kids and successfully working in the career field of my choice.” By nature, I am a “Pollyanna” but I am also a realist.
Nia Long, the gorgeous actress, has received a fair share of criticism for the statement, “I’ve never seen a marriage work” that she said in the August issue of Essence. When I was 18, I would have agreed with her. Personally, I had only seen one marriage work – my Big Ma and Big Daddy’s. (In my young mind, I attributed that to them being from the “old school”.) The other marriages that I had an up close look at left much to be desired. I am from a family with a history of divorce, so that was my expectation. Fortunately, I grew up and didn’t allow my past knowledge and experiences to determine my future. Just because I hadn’t seen marriages work didn’t mean that mine couldn’t or wouldn’t work wonderfully.
Here’s the thing…there is no perfect marriage. There’s this song that has this line, “There is no perfect church and if there were, it would cease being perfect the moment that you joined it!” It cracks me up, because it is so true…not just about church, but also about practically every other area of life. We bring ourselves with us wherever we go!
Recently, Jennifer Lopez stated, “For me, the biggest dream is the fairy tale. I will never give up on that dream…” regarding the topic of marriage on a “Good Morning America” segment. In my opinion, that’s one of the reasons that people think marriages don’t “work”. Marriage is not a fairy tale. At some point, you have to wake up and realize that marriage is a decision. Every day, you have to choose to love and be committed to the person that you married. Some days are easier than others !
I will admit that I have been extremely blessed in my marriage. For the most part, the last ten years have been pretty easy…to the point that I had to stop myself from weirding myself out by thinking “this is too good to be true”! My husband Reggie is not perfect (surprise, surprise!), but he’s perfect for me. While no one can predict the future (in theory, Reggie could lose his mind one day and cheat on me or abandon us – my personal two “deal breakers”!), from my viewpoint right now, this is one of those “until death do you part” marriages. It’s working, because we work at it every single day.
The great thing about marriage that “works” is that it gives hopes to others who really want to get married one day. Not everyone wants to get married and that is totally cool. Each woman gets to make her own choice. However, there are many women that I know who want to get married, but had given up hope that it works. I cannot express in words how great it makes me feel when my family members and friends (young and old alike) express how my marriage gives them hope that they too can have a great marriage. Forget what you heard…marriage works. You just have to work it!