Andy Williams sings that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. For me? Eh, the season is attempting to grow on me some. My kids tend to call me The Grinch around this time because I’m not into all the commercialism. If I had my way, I would buy everyone gifts on the 26th when everything is half off! Yeah I know that’s bad, but at least I wouldn’t have to confront the anxiety of trying to purchase gifts that compromise my monthly budget and leave me hobbling into the New Year.
Like most parents, the pressure of trying to accommodate a child’s Christmas list brings on a full measure of holiday tension. So imagine how the anxiety must be for a guy that has been dating a girl for more than a year? (ooooooohhhhhhhh!) Pressure has been mounting all year long as those oh so subtle hints have been hurled throughout the year. To make matters worse, there is that media harassment. Yeah, you know the intimidation that one receives from writers, celebrity hosts, and reality shows telling when, where, and how someone should pop the question? So giving in to this coercion, the guy saves and saves until that day comes where he gets on one knee and pulls out the ring. POWWWW!! Tears of joy and excitement emerge from the lady as buddy has placed a down payment on forever (which these days is about three years, give or take). Buddy is the man! But is he or his new bride to be ready for what comes next?
Not to be a Debbie Downer but there is more to marriage than a shiny ring, just like there is more to Christmas than expensive gifts. People begin relationships with the intention of forever and there’s nothing wrong with that. However, have you prepared yourself for what happens once you have the title? It’s kinda frightening because what you are about to encounter is ten times more than what you are taught in marital counseling. What you’ve learned doesn’t cross your mind because you got the ring right? You’re thinking about all the people you are going to invite right?
So much of your singleness has been spent debating about how disgruntled women are or how promiscuous men are that you haven’t taken the time to explore the possibility of a fruitful union between two, constantly evolving, human beings. Of course you’ve written down the criteria for your soul mate on those precious white index cards, praying for God to send them to you every night. You’ve even felt betrayed by Father because you’re in your mid forties and still no prospects. But what happens if Utopia lands at your door step today? Can you handle it?
I can hear you all saying that you can handle Mr. or Mrs. Forever. At the beginning of this year, I was ready for another relationship. Well, I thought I was. I did the online thing, having friends set me up thing, meeting people from social media sites thing. I have to say that in retrospect, I wasn’t ready at all. While I wanted someone to love me unconditionally, I couldn’t give it back. My relationship PTSD kicked in and all I could remember was the pink slip. Because of my fear, I drove some wonderful women away.
Earlier this year, I briefly dated this executive. She was the most (and I mean the most) beautiful woman that I’ve ever held in my spheres. Somehow we ended up conversing and I was drawn by her hustle. She continued to make moves to put her in different tax brackets and challenged me to do the same. When I got into her White BMW M6 Coupe, I knew that I was out of my league. She constantly complimented me and encouraged me to write again. She instantly fell in love with my son and started contributing to my household. She treated me better than any other lover before her. I felt like a king! There were no complaints. My life was chaos free. So you know what that means? I had to create chaos to feel normal again! When she traveled away on business, my PTSD would say that she was out cheating. If she didn’t answer my calls or return my texts immediately, my PTSD would say that she was cheating. Canceled dinner dates? Cheating, cheating, cheating! So what do I do? You guessed it . . . I started being unfaithful to her. I couldn’t handle it.
So what am I trying to convey today? It’s very simple. If you want to be a wife/husband, make sure that you are ready for the task ahead. I’m tired of seeing people enter into covenant just because the cookies are delectable or the eggplant is exquisite. In order for me to be ready for Wonder Woman, I had to take some time to be happy being me. Now I’m ready, and yes I can handle it. Can you?