Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Cue Aaliyah: “Dust yourself off and try again…”

Smart Guest Post week rolls on here in BougieLand. After yesterday's somewhat melancholy post, we're coming with the happy post today. A story of stepping back up to the plate and swinging for the fences and finally… FINALLY hitting a home run. Join me in showing some love to Tiffany in Houston. She isa charming, charismatic Texas chick newly engaged and newly unemployed (she did NOT see that one coming… damn economy). She blogs about the trials and tribulations on The Unemployed Bride. And just cause it's relevant, I've inserted a dance break before Tiffany's story: The lovely Aaliyah (RIP – Miss her still!) with Try Again from the Romeo Must Die Soundtrack:

Back to our program. Ms. Tiffany:

I was talking with a friend the other day and she was saying how she was excited that I was gonna blog this wedding planning thang and how I gave her hope that she could be married. And I do believe I have spoken to some of you in real life about how quickly my relationship moved. I met my fiancé in June 2009, we got engaged in December 2009 and the wedding is September 2010. That's pretty fast, at least for some.

And I hope that the fact that I'm getting married, at age 36, can be a testimony for some and give hope to others, especially with the bombardment of negative press that black women have been getting in the media as of late. (I realize that it's hard for ALL single women, when it comes to dating, for sure).

But the fact of the matter is: I was like many of my friends. I would date randoms and it wouldn't work out. The dude would look perfect on paper and be a complete asshole. I'm not a prude so there were probably some times that I probably slept with a man too soon and he got ghost. I was in a relationship with the same man, twice. (I am, OBVIOUSLY, a glutton for punishment.) I moved to Minnesota to be with a man without a ring, and then once I got there found out he didn't want to commit. I've been fortunate actually. I've dated some pretty decent dudes… they just weren't the dudes for me. Those who know me very well know that I have been very candid about my dating adventures and mis-adventures. Some of them were hilarious. Some of them were very painful. All of them were necessary.

I speed dated. I online dated. I asked my married friends for introductions. I got involved. I started going out by myself. I got my confidence up. I started working out. Didn't leave the house looking busted. I did all that. I tried to get busy living.

I would call my homegirls and cry. I would go to happy hour and bitch. I would pray. I would pray then cry. I joined the singles ministry at church. I journaled. Worked on my mental. Tried to get rid of the 'baggage'. Still tried to get busy living.

And yet, I would try again. Meet someone new. Date. Didn't work. Go through all the stages. Still was getting busy living. Notice a pattern there.

And yet, I would try again. Meet someone new.

I'm not a preachy chick. That's not my steelo. But the thing I really want to leave you with is this: You can't give up. If your heart's desire is to be married (not just a wedding), then you can't give up. You can't lock your feelings in a bottle, you can't withdraw from relationships. You may want to, but you can't. You have to keep trying, you have to keep putting yourself out there. Yet, you MUST try again.

I sat at my mom's kitchen table in May 2009, and told her that she needed to accept the fact that I was not going to get married. I told her that I had accepted it and evidently it was God's will too. She looked at me like I had two heads. She wasn't used to hearing me talk like that, like I was giving up. Like I was quitting. She said she didn't believe me. I met my fiancé the very next month. God has quite the sense of humor. Evidently, He didn't believe me either.

So, I'm getting married. To a man that I LOVE to bits and pieces. And who loves ME more than I know.

Because I tried. Yet again.

Okay gals and gents, you've heard Tiffany's tale and what say you… have a "try again" story to share? Words of encouragement and wisdom for Tiffany? Words of encouragement and wisdom for those of us trying again? Fellas, any of you feel ready to take the plunge? Any of you "already plunged" have words to share? Engagement stories? Basically – here's your chance to weigh in on engagement and marriage… whatcha got?

31 comments:

BB Waite said...

Awww... great story. My advice: don't overstress about the wedding and enjoy the marriage. Be prepared to work and pray everyday. To those still awaiting the blessing, let this be a lesson to you: the very next one could be the One you've been waiting on.

Liselle said...

I love "future so bright" stories! Don't stress the job, those come and go. Enjoy the season.

midwestdominicana said...

Congrats Tiff!

I'm with BB. Don't stress. In fact, elope! Ha ha...just kidding. If planning a wedding is your thing, go for it, but remember that the wedding is not for you, it's for everyone who wants to watch what you're going to do.

The thing that matters most is the love between you and your future husband. Lean on the Lord first of all and then on each other. You will be required to give each other 100% at all times, but sometimes, the percentages will tip one way or the other, just remember your dating mantra...keep putting yourself out there, keep trying, never give up. The rewards of marriage are so wonderful and so indescriable.

Keep yourself up physically and mentally. My husband says that he never wants to know all there is to know about me. What he's saying is that he wants to keep rediscovering me (and not in some psycho crazy what happened to the woman I married kind of way). I agree. Keep yourself fresh and you'll always be interesting.

Appreciate your husband for who and what he is.

Another word of advice is to remember that you are not just marrying one person, but you are totally marrying his entire family. (That was a hard lesson for me). The difference in family dynamics, the traditions, etc...it's all part of your life now and vice versa.

Be prepared to handle the tough stuff without involving friends or family members. You have your own inner-inner circle now and there is nothing like bringing in your crew to a home-based issue. It usually does not bode well for the solution.
You will face things that you never in a million years expected to face, but remember that God will never leave your side and remember that you and your husband are together for a reason and that you love each other. You'll get through whatever challenges you have to face.

Stay romantic and never feel too proud or too tired to take the extra step. He'll appreciate it and he will reciprocate.

I wish you many blessings and joy and peace and wonderful success in your marriage! It's fantastic!

shelbie said...

I love that you distinguish a difference between being ready to be married and being ready to get married. A lot of women don't think about this before accepting a man's proposal. I am married right now, soon to be divorced. My marriage only lasted 6 months for a number of reasons (one really big reason). But in the end we never should have gotten married in the first place. By the time I walked down the aisle I was not in love with my soon-to-be-ex-husband. It was over before it started, but I had the image in my head of what I wanted my life to look like and our life together fit the bill. So I bought it and paid for it (boy did I pay for it). BUT I still very much believe in marriage, and I will remarry. This time for the right reasons. Congratulations Tiffany!! Cheers to a beautiful wedding (recession or not), and an even more beautiful marriage!
p.s. I blog all about my marriage/divorce woes at www.luvsdetriment.blogspot.com

Hasaan said...

I'm a man in my mid-thirties contemplating popping the question to my girlfriend of one year. I keep waiting on a sign to tell me this is the wrong thing to do. The fact that there haven't been any tell me it's right. Enjoy the blog, I'm a serial lurker.

Sasha Stiletto said...

You go Tiffany! And I will just dust myself off and try again... again.

Man's World said...

One of the things I like about this blog is that you really try to show all sides. Married, single, on the way to married, on the way to single. Hang around BougieLand long enough to hear it all. Congrats to Tiffany - great to get a redemptive story.

OneChele said...

Excellent response, thanks for sharing!

daisy said...

I have determined that I am simply not ready to put in the word need to get and keep a man right now. Now that might change tomorrow but for today... not so much. I love hearing Tiffany's story today and Chele's story yesterday, both teach me things. Thanks ladies.

OneChele said...

Thanks so much for sharing... great points!

Just Passing BY said...

I will admit to being skeptical about the speed at which your relationship moved until I re-read your age and experience. Clearly at this point you know what you want. So glad you found it.

OneChele said...

Thanks for de-lurking and good luck to you. Just curious, why were you looking for negative signs?

Eye Candy said...

I wish more people would just admit THIS ^^ instead of keeping someone around that you have no intention of making a serious commitment too. Not everybody is ready to do the engagement marraige thing and that's fine but they should definitely be upfront about it, male or female.

Steve said...

General question for the relationship experts that hang in BougieLand. I got blessed out for telling someone that while I was ready to be in a committed relationship, I wasn't ready to talk engagement and/or marriage. Now what did I do wrong there?

OneChele said...

Paging Dr. Jayme.

JaymeC said...

LOL - I'm going to have to start charging the BougieLand faithful. Steve (it amazes me to say this) you did nothing wrong. Some people just don't want to hear the truth when it doesn't measure up to their expectations. The best thing in a relationship is to ALWAYS communicate your thoughts and plans. As a side note, you may want to think about why you are interested in only being committed part way and not all in. Is it the girl, are you just not there yet, do you still think there's something better out there... just a few thoughts.

Hidi said...

Congratulations Tiffany and I wish you the best. :)

Sarah said...

Congratulations and happy wishes for a long future together!

One thing I've noticed over the years is that men seem to decide a woman is who they want to marry pretty much from the start. Two male friends of mine who were also in their 30s at the time proposed to their intended at around 6 months and as far as I know a decade or so later they are still married. Happily I hope, but I haven't talk to them in a while.

BendLikeBent said...

And now my girlfriend is giving me the look "met in June, engaged by December!" We have been together for two years. I sense a "discussion" coming on.

OneChele said...

If you are two years in and haven't had the "what's next" discussion, be glad you are only getting "the look" - LOL!

tiffanyinhouston said...

BLB, Don't despair. My story is not for everyone. I will point out that we are both older, we both want kids, and my fiance has been married before, enjoyed being married and had fine tuned what he was looking for in wife. So when we both met, he was VERY upfront about what he was looking for and indicated that he was not going to waste YEARS in dating someone. So I knew what I was getting into.

tiffanyinhouston said...

Thanks for the well wishes. I wouldn't recommend this at age 26 either. But I've kissed enough frogs...who stayed frogs.

tiffanyinhouston said...

Word to Eye Candy!

tiffanyinhouston said...

Shelbie, I stopped by your blog. You are bright and beautiful and I am confident you (and your soon to be ex husband) will find who you all are supposed to be with in due time. I actually think it's better to cut your losses sooner rather than later in a case such as yours.

tiffanyinhouston said...

Thank you for the wise words!

Andrea M said...

Fon post. All the best to Tiffany and hope for the rest of us ;-)

jasmine said...

Ahh, a woman who worked on herself first and got what she wanted. I'm going to share this post with a few of my friends who make a list of what they want in a man, then sit on their a** and wait, wondering why they're still single. Great post, Tiffany.

shelbie said...

Thank you so much Tiffany. Each day is better than the last :)

shelbie said...

I love your blog! It's always fun and informative. Thanks for checking me out!

sunt97 said...

I think I need the encouragement because I feel like giving up and giving in myself.

Tiffany
http://liferequiresmorechocolate.blogspot.com/

Brown Babe said...

I am entering my 31st year - fresh out of a failed relationship. This post was very necessary for me to read as I stand teetering on the brink of telling my mother that she may have to hold on until my teenage sister is of age to have any grandchildren. I will pick myself up and try again - and of course get busy living! Thanks for the inspiration/gentle reminder.

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