Mar 21

{Steps to the Altar} Defining Yourself

Do you know who you are?  I mean, really know who you are???  Think about what makes you tick, your motivation in life and where you are headed down the road.  Now list three words or phrases that describe you (don’t think real long, just quick, what first jumps into your mind?)

Was one of those words wife, girlfriend or fiancé?  Do you like the sound of that?  Was his name placed in front of that (ex: I am Josh’s wife… not just wife)?  How does that make you feel?

Alright, I will stop with all the questioning, but I have a point.  Recently, I have been in several scenarios where I was asked to tell a little about myself.  My response is almost becoming robotic: wife, mother and small business owner with a Hospitality and Tourism Management degree… blah blah blah.  But who cares?  Is this how I am defined?  Is being Josh’s wife what defines me?  Wife is the first thing that comes to mind…

I read this quote yesterday from The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, and it made this all come together so well, “…ancient biblical writings spoke of the husband and wife becoming one flesh.  That did not mean that individuals would lose their identity; it meant that they would enter into each other’s lives in a deep and intimate way.”

In order not to lose my identity, I had to first know who I am without Josh.  I rarely say I am Josh’s wife, that would imply that he owns me (for those of you who are a little less grammatical the apostrophe implies ownership).  I say that I am a wife, and we do belong together, but we are a team.  This is not an ownership game with us; it’s a life that we have built together.  That’s how we entered this marriage.  I can comfortably say this because I can still define myself without the use of my husband’s name; I know who I am, even if I do choose to label myself as “wife”.

Before you get caught up in the romance of an engagement and fulfilling your lifelong dream to walk down an aisle in a big white princess dress, make certain you know who you are and you have clearly established your own individuality.  Ensure you know what you are bringing to this marriage and what you expect in return.  Think of your dreams and aspirations (outside of love), will you be able to achieve these once you are married? Will you be able to work together to make these goals happen?  Or will you be asked to give these up?  Will you feel stifled and unhappy if you do have to give them up?  This may lead to resentment towards your spouse which may not end in a happy marriage.


Photo by Kelly Lynne Photography

I am by no means an expert on the issue of marriage, so take my words lightly.  I just want to encourage you to know who you are, and not lose your inner glow once you walk down the aisle.  The perfectness of the “in-love” feeling is not going to last forever.  But it can be the foundation for something a whole lot bigger and better.  All relationships require a little give and take.  Just take care that they are the right sacrifices and you wouldn’t be left feeling empty and wanting more later on.

Now stop ready silly wedding blogs and go get married!  It’s time to make your own happily ever after!!!



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