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Married with No Handbook

by Nani Goo 5 years ago in married
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Nobody said it would be easy.

12/26/2009

I met my Husband when I was 18 years old. I was a Freshman in college and he was the finest Sophomore on campus. If you ask him, he noticed me way before I noticed him, inquiring with others about who I was. When we finally spoke on the phone, our conversations lasted for hours, he told me he was interested in getting to know me better, my response was "I'm an obstacle course." Who would have known that four years later we would end up married. Let me not ruin the story.

My Junior year, during Christmas break, I went home to visit my Mother as usual, but something was off, and my Mom read it on me right away. Although I still wasn't sure myself what exactly had me feeling slightly off, the first thought that came to my mind was to pee on a stick, and just like that, a portion of my future was revealed to me, or should I say any college students knight mare. I was pregnant. Coming from a Latin culture, it's not uncommon for the girl to move in with the father of the child, and so we did. With my Mother's support, we moved into our first apartment, in the middle of the hood, where we had the pleasure of seeing a dead body getting pulled out from underneath a car in our neighbor's back yard.

We went from two college kids, free from any serious responsibilities, limited bills, and free food all day, to parents of the most precious gift any person can ask for. A few days later, we were in a pawn shop for one reason or another, when we found ourselves looking at rings. I guess I was tired of waiting, and told him he was going to marry me. I thought he was going to tell me I was crazy as hell, but instead he asked me which one I liked. We literally got married a few weeks later, the day after Christmas to be exact.

The wedding was small, nothing that any girl would imagine her wedding to be like, but it didn't matter. The rose pedals and tee lights were enough decorations, my $20 vintage wedding dress could not have fit me any better. My soon to be husband's suit was less than my dress, and we had to wait for our wedding cake to arrive, because no one had thought about getting one. Needless to say, my wedding was unforgettable.

Simply from the information I've given you, you can see how all the odds are against us. We are a statistic in many categories. Minority, college students with a child, married young, living on our own, on one income. This shit sounds like failure.

So now here I am, a new mother and wife, and I have no fucking clue as to what I'm doing. Of course your natural instinct to take care of you child automatically kicks in, and you kind of have a good sense of what steps to take to ensure the baby is comfortable, but guess what, there is no natural instinct that kicks in when you become a wife or husband. There's so much to figure out, so many awkward conversations and realizations that need to continuously be made in order for your marriage to continue blossoming.

Through out the years, I've learned to always remain open to the concept of change, no I'm not saying that I agree to change everything, and as hard as it may be, I did agree to learn how to truly evaluate what it is that the change requires. In order to do this, you must truly be able to recognize when you are being petty, because often we remain stubborn due to our petty nature. It's okay to want your marriage to work, you don't always have to be a hard ass (says this married girl to herself over and over). Marriage takes fight, marriage takes sacrifice, marriage takes looking like an ass some times, and marriage takes patience. Whatever positive word you can think of, that's what marriage takes.

Marriage has been one of my biggest challenges yet, yes challenge, because that's what it does, it challenges you, and your partner. We've failed together, and succeeded together, and guess what, we have even succeeded alone, and failed alone as well! Understanding that there are still two unique individuals united in the marriage, will take your marriage a long way. I am still me, and he is still himself. At first I used to try an force my view points on my husband, not realizing that I was unintentionally belittling his views. It took years before I learned how to truly understand, know and accept him for being him. How I did it? Prayer of course, reflection, and a lot of conversations about our backgrounds, and upbringing, our similarities and differences.

There is always added pressure when you're married young, because of course over time your old views may not hold valid to you anymore, your opinions change as do your dreams and goals. These are all things that no one informed us about, no one teaches you how to evolve with your marriage, no one talks about how hard the shit really is. There are so many components to a marriage, I like to think of it as a math equation with infinite variables.

Best advice I can give married couples, is go with your discernment, learn to know when advice given to you about your marriage sounds like bullshit. Don't feed into all the negativity regarding a situation (it's not going to be the last), always have a positive person to turn to, not someone that will help you pull the trigger prematurely. If you know your relationship is not over, try your best not to bad mouth your spouse. I promise you will look crazy when you're back with them in a week. Take everything into consideration, when getting and giving advice, being brutally honest can avoid more future issues.

Here I am creeping up on my 8th wedding anniversary, still learning and living. No I don't have all the answers, but I am searching for them, because I understand that my marriage will last as long as we both want it, regardless of the bullshit, the disagreement, the ultimatums, disappointments, there is nothing that time, patience, and understanding can't heal.

So to all my married couples, it's ok to feel completely lost, it's ok to not know where to start, it's ok to feel like you're not enough, it's ok to want more, it's ok to change, it's ok to fight (just don't physically hurt each other), it's ok to love!

There's no handbook to marriage!

married

About the author

Nani Goo

I like to think that I view life differently. I wear my sleeve on my heart, but am quick to tell it like it is. My life hasn't been easy, but every experience comes newness. Life is a son of a bitch, grab him by the ball and jerk him.

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