Watch Your Mouth, But Don’t You Dare Lose Your Voice

When you think of marriage, what are the top five things that pop into mind? Before my husband and I tied the knot, here was my list. Having my family together under God, spending the rest of my life with my best friend, travel, building businesses and brands together, and simply being in love and having fun with the love of my life. Negative thoughts never crossed my mind because I didn’t envision a negative future with James. But one thing he and I both agreed on was doing our best to model our union after what is described in the Bible. So although we were inseparable and confident in our future together, we sought premarital counseling to make sure we were headed in the right direction. During the class we took, one lesson stuck out like a sore thumb… SUBMISSION.

I’d heard about submission times before, especially during church services, but I never received the information in-depth. Before, submission sounded like the wife is supposed to wait on hands and knees for her husband even when he was in the wrong. In my mind, submission meant doing everything your husband asked or told you to do. What added to this notion was the fact I’d heard James and my friends’ boyfriends say this famous line… “You don’t know how to submit!” I would have a healthy savings for how many times I’ve heard that line before. The problem is both men and women don’t know what submission really means.

Here is my take on it in a nutshell. Submitting means yielding. A definition that I saw on Webster’s Dictionary for yield is “to give up and cease resistance or contention.” In a class at church, I was given this example. When you are driving and a lane is merging and/or ending, someone has to yield or there is going to be a big accident. That accident can be fatal. In this case, your inability to yield to your spouse can be fatal to your marriage. Many people hate using biblical guidance toward their marriage, but it has been the foundation of my husband and I’s marriage. It says clearly that wives are to submit to their husbands, and husbands are to love their wives as the Lord loves the church. So at the end of the day, we have to change our perspective and look at submission as ultimately submitting to God. In addition, men can’t look at submission as treating their wives like doormats.

I find looking to the Lord to be easier to be honest. When I know my husband is not making a great choice, I submit to God by closing my mouth and letting him be the leader of our household. Prayer becomes my best friend because I instantly want to yell obscenities at that man. In my mind I say ” Help me Lord because I feel myself losing all sense of control!” You don’t know how many times I’ve used my imagination, froze time and body slammed him like the wrestlers do in WWE. I love my baby though lol.

It’s important to know that if you have married a man of God, you cannot interfere in the plans God has for him. You have to intercede through prayer. I’ve seen this work for me firsthand. It’s when we start going off at the mouth and telling our husbands what to do when he makes decisions out of spite to show and prove that he is a man and knows what he is doing. Ultimately, our husbands are looking for partnership and respect, not for another mother. It’s not our place to nag and yell and tell him what he’s supposed to be doing. How will a man ever be able to lead if we’re always stepping in?

I’m still working on this til this day! My latest struggle has been knowing when to “watch my mouth, but not losing my voice.” I sometimes confuse stepping back with not being able to voice my thoughts all because I over think the process of surrendering to my husband. The fact that I do this on my own, and he looks at me crazy when he notices it means it’s a problem. I have to remind myself, “Tiana, watch your mouth, but don’t you dare lose your voice!” Timing is so important in this case. Sometimes you have to shut up and let God do the work. That takes trusting Him to handle his son. Also, submission doesn’t mean you don’t get to share your thoughts or feelings. It’s a matter of how you express your feelings. If you go into a conversation with negativity, the outcome will be negative.

I’ve noticed that men want women to be submissive BEFORE marriage, and it does NOT work like that. I really think we confuse submission with respect. A woman should not submit to a man she is not married to. There are ways where he can show that he is able to lead, and she can show that she can take direction. Some men think that a woman is supposed to just do what he says, but he shows no promise as a leader. That man needs time to develop. And then there’s the woman who is hyper-independent and doesn’t want a man leading her in any way. That woman needs time to develop.

All in all, submission is something you have to tackle daily. It’s not simple, but it can be pretty easy to yield to a man who has shown the ability to lead you and your family in the right direction. Everyone makes mistakes so you have to loosen up a little in order for him to grow during the times he fails. For my single ladies, when you are looking at a man as your potential husband, ask yourself can you submit to this man for the rest of your life? If he spent all of y’all money and the lights were cut off, could you still make his dinner, light some candles and feed him?

Daddy Woes

Since I was a little girl, my parents did their best to protect me from the horrors of the world. That included the horrors of our family and household as well. Like I said, they did their best, but it wasn’t too long before I would find out that my father had an addiction to drugs. To be honest, I can’t even remember how I found out. I’ll probably remember when I finally commit to going to therapy and blog about it lol.

Nevertheless, my father was amazing! He was what every great father is to his daughter. The apple of her eye… the love of her life… her king. His name was Bobby. He was an amazing cook, artist, guitar player and more. He was absolutely amazing with his hands. He could handle all things electric, plumbing, building and more. He actually helped rebuild my elementary school’s playground. He was a high school drop out, but committed and received his diploma my sophomore year of high school. That man LOVED his girls ( my mother, sister and I) as well as the family that we took in. We spent so much time together that I didn’t notice anything “different” about my father. I remember when he wasn’t home, my mother would say “daddy had to go out-of-town to handle business for work.” It didn’t click until I was writing this sentence that there was no way my father could have been out of town for work when he was at home with me all time. When he wasn’t at home, he worked at my elementary school. Where was he going that no one else was going?

So that was some of the good! I gave you that first because in my opinion, it outweighed the bad. I’m confident that my mother and sister feel the same way. But my father’s drug addiction definitely changed my life in many ways. I won’t get too deep into it right now. I’ll blog about it more another day AND you can read it in my book when I stop backing out and write it lol.

Once I knew he was on drugs, I guess you can say I became “woke.” When he was around things felt so right, but it was when he would be gone for three days or a week that would kill me. I worried every day that my father wasn’t home that he was hurt or dead and i would never see him again. I became severely attached to my mother because I didn’t want her to be hurt, but I was still attached to my father because we did so much together. I mean I literally had to argue with this man to stop walking me to the bus stop before I entered high school. Now I understand more than ever why he didn’t want to stop. So when my father died, I lost a part of me. I was confused. I felt like I didn’t get enough of him because I had to share a lot of our time with the streets or rehab. I often wonder if he died thinking I was mad or disappointed in him. My attachment gained a new friend… Abandonment.

My husband was with me through a portion of the experience. I kept it a secret as long as I could. Things got so bad at home I broke up with him in the 9th grade. I had to choose between him or my grades, and my parents expected nothing but A’s and B’s. He kept asking, “was it something I did wrong?” My answer was so cliché. “It’s not you, it’s me!” He said “tell me what’s wrong, what’s going on?” I spilled the beans. “My father is a drug addict!” I yelled. He replied, “that’s it?!” He then chuckled. “I thought it was something bad, like somebody died. My father does drugs too!” We crack up about that conversation til this day. But after my husband found out, that’s when my attachment to him began to form. It got really intense when my father passed away. I never wanted to leave my husband’s side. That’s why him becoming a truck driver crushed me. He couldn’t understand why I would cry so much when he had to go. It was like PTSD or something. I would feel abandoned by him leaving and constantly afraid that something would happen to him. Just as I did with my father. My oldest daughter would cling to me because she knew I was sad. Just as I did with my mother. I remember when she was two, she told my mother “my mommy’s eyes are broken” because I had been crying so much.

I clung to how great my father was though. I expected my husband to be great just like him, but to take it up a notch. This wasn’t a problem for my husband because he’s naturally a great husband and father. It was our age that created an issue. We did everything SO young. We fell in love young (14), had our first child young (21), got married young (23) and have been building as a family in our youth. Since we moved into “adulthood” pretty fast, I expected my husband to jump into gear and get it all right. My expectations of my husband were so high, it was crazy. In my mind, there was no room for mistakes. I didn’t see my father make any besides his drug addiction. Since my husband didn’t have a drug addiction, there shouldn’t have been anything holding him back. He already placed pressure on himself and I made it worse by setting a bar too high for him to reach. He hadn’t had enough time to learn and grow.

When I discovered that I was placing my daddy issues on my husband, I couldn’t stop apologizing. I felt terrible. Not for what I went through, but for what I put him through.

It is vital that we take a look at our childhood and life experiences when approaching relationships. That includes friendships as well. An individual will never know why drinking and smoking bothers you if you don’t tell them addiction runs in your family, and you’re terrified the same will happen to you. That’s just an example. There are so many hidden secrets we have, and hurt/pain that we haven’t uncovered because we don’t like to visit those dark places. Our relationships, especially our marriages and relationships with our children will not be healthy if we don’t tackle our deep issues. This doesn’t mean hold onto your hurt and pain, it means deal with it so that you may move past it.

I’m still a work in progress…

Hair or No Hair??

This post is random but so relevant in my opinion lol. If you can’t tell from my other posts, I’m pretty open and honest about a lot. I plan on continuing with my pregnancy experiences, but when I get the feeling to write I just can’t hold back.

Just in case you’re just now tuning into Queendom Wife and Mother, I gave birth to my second daughter almost three months ago. Since then it’s been pretty difficult for me to separate from her. This isn’t the greatest situation to be in especially when it comes to the need for self-care. For example, I recently went to the hairdresser to have my locs maintained and she was right on my chest in her baby wrap. I changed her diaper and nursed her when needed during the entire process. I’m so grateful my loctician had no issues with it and actually encouraged me to nurse my baby girl without care.

Now… the problem is I’ve neglected shaving/waxing since having my daughter. Why?? Let’s go through my list of reasons. Reason #1: I had to heal. Reason #2: I could (still can’t) barely pee, poop, shower or eat without the child crying to eat, be changed or see mommy (this includes my 6-year-old). Reason #3: Shaving is SO hard!! I have long locs so they get in the way and are too heavy in bun, AND it takes way too much time if you’re doing it right. I like to look well-groomed, none of that stubby half job mess. Reason #4: Watching the hairs die from Veet scares the living daylights out of me. Reason #5: I like to get waxed, and having an infant with you while your hairs are being snatched is not an option for me. The both of us aren’t allowed to cry at the same time. Reason #6 My husband doesn’t care at all!

Now, the last reason is so important to me and is why I had to blog about this. Don’t get me wrong, my husband loves when I get waxed, BUT he has made it very clear that it’s not important. Although it doesn’t bother him, it definitely bothers me! You can ask any woman and she will agree with this statement… “when your hair isn’t done, you don’t feel like yourself.” Watch the confidence level increase in a woman as she looks in the mirror before she pays her stylist. She’s ready to be seen and take over the world. The same goes for my precious Jewel. Life ain’t right when she’s out here looking like a bear in hibernation (judge me all you want, my husband still loves me lol). But when your girl gets a fresh wax?! I’m ready to run a marathon and ready to model for my man. “Look at her Love, isn’t she pretty?!” Lol I do it every time.

So I need to know, do women shave, wax or veet for themselves or for their man?? If your partner said he didn’t have a problem with your hair, would removing them still be as important to you? I personally do it for myself AND my husband. He may not care, but we both know pubic hair can definitely hold a stench, and I respect and love him way too much to walk around smelling crazy. Also, I feel comfortable and confident when I have been “groomed.” I will say that since having hair doesn’t bother my husband, it takes away the pressure of having to take care of home, the kids, him, and the hair on Jewel! LOL