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Blog, Faith, Marriage, Relationships

Why You’re Worth the Wait

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In a little over a month, J and I will be celebrating two years of marriage. (Yes, yes, still babies to those who have been married for 10+ years with/without children – disclaimer duly noted) Yet, this upcoming anniversary has had me reflecting more and more on the ever-prevalent question of whether the wait for something “serious” is really worth it.

In a world where DM’s on social media, bad tinder dates, and even worse blind dates seem to run rampant – it’s increasingly difficult to hear things like “Don’t settle” or “Real love is worth the wait.” Well, while I will gladly be the first to admit that I am no relationship or love expert by any means, I hope you’ll allow me to add my voice into the chaotic choir with some personal background on my own marriage that will hopefully provide encouragement to you – no matter what stage of life and/or relationship you are presently experiencing.

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Y’all. This man. Every single day I am more humbled by how he continues to choose me and love me no matter what the season has brought us. The longer we are married, the more clearly I can see how God works through him to strengthen my faith and improve my character. Our journey has not been without its challenges, and we will surely have many more in the future, but facing those unknowns with him put my otherwise anxious-self totally and completely at peace.

Ironically, from the very beginning, of knowing him, I was so ridiculously scared of developing a relationship with J because I knew very early on that he was different. That something was different. This man didn’t play games. He didn’t manipulate my feelings or back out of a “coffee” date not date thing. He didn’t pretend to be someone he was not just because church-culture said he should show up wearing chaco’s while drinking counterculture coffee.

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Instead, Justin was so respectfully direct, honest, and consistent. I could be fully open and real with him, fully sharing everything about myself for the first time in a romantic relationship ever. Sounds wonderful to the point it’s almost magical, right? It was.

So it may surprise you that while all of this was happening, I was simultaneously thinking “Oh no, God. No. No. No. I’m not ready for this. I know I’ve been praying for ‘the one’ and I’ve also been asking to meet and know who ‘the one’ is ha but I was really thinking more along the lines of around 28 maybe even 32 years old, not 21. I can’t. I’m not ready.” Y’all, I panicked. Really and truly panicked. So much so that in spite of this honest heart knowledge I had of who Justin was and who he was going to be in my life – I gave into fear.

In September of 2014 I broke up with him. Never in my life would I have expected the way my heart responded to this – instead of the wave of relief I was expecting from the “stress” of such a serious relationship on my plate, relentless waves of THIS WAS NOT THE ANSWER crashed into and over me – to the point where I thought I would drown from them, barely an hour after having “the final talk” with him.

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As someone who is rarely emotional – this strong reaction furthered my fear. Like WOAH NOW hold on a second here, Carolina must have really done me in! I’m supposed to be this steady, ultra reasonable person. Why am I feeling like the entire world is crashing down? That’s so melodramatic and not even close to what is the norm for me. I remember calling my mom bawling from pure confusion combined with the mess of it – trying to understand – trying to grasp why the logical explanation was no where to be found. I was the one who broke it off so why am I suddenly feeling so broken? UGH MORE IRONIC DRAMA.

I can’t even express how incredibly well she handled this phone call. She listened with patience limiting her own opinions, instead allowing Truth to enter the conversation. There was neither judgment nor selfishness when she spoke to me. Through my mom’s loving support, I was provided with such peace, comfort, and clarity. I sincerely hope that one day, I will be as wise and unselfish as she has been, is, and continues to be for our family.

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After listening to my gurgled jarb of what happened, all my mom said was, “Do you feel any peace with what you did? Any at all? It’s natural for these things to be painful, but I need you to search yourself. Do you feel any bit of peace?” I paused. I searched my heart for anything other than the twisted storm inside me. “No. Mom, I feel like I’m drowning.” And all she responded with was, “Well, you need to call him now. Hopefully it isn’t too late, and hopefully he’s still in Chapel Hill.”

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So I did, hoping he hadn’t already left town and praying he would even answer my call. Little did I know that during this something, or rather, someOne, had made it clear to him that I too was worth the wait. I was worth the heartbreaking confusion, and I was worth the unimaginable patience that it took to sit in Chapel Hill and resist hopping in the car to begin the 2 1/2 hour drive back to Boone. SomeOne told him to be still.

Justin answered my call on the third ring. (Here’s yet another fault of mine I’ll publicly air on the internet, but let’s be real for a hot minute: Had the roles been reversed, that phone call would have been ignored faster than you could’ve blinked. See, here’s the thing: J doesn’t struggle with pride when it comes to grudges from being hurt like I have and still do at times. So the outcome was thankfully very different here.)

And y’all, until the day I die I will never forget how J responded, it was one of the most ultimate displays of grace he could have possibly given me in that moment. The first thing he did when he walked through the door was hug me. What had already been broken inside of me shattered in that moment. I couldn’t even get the words out to apologize, all I could think was, “God, not only am I not ready for this, but I am so not deserving of this kind of love. Holy cow I am so not deserving of this unfailing and steadfast love.”

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… fast forward to now, over 3 years later and I am still not deserving of this kind of forgiving, grace-filled love J chooses to give to me day in and day out. But man oh man, am I ever so immeasurably grateful for the heart and character of this man that God chose for me.

It’s a double-edged sword though, because, at the same time, I completely understand the apathy and cynicism related to the current state of dating. I seriously get it. The repeated, pacifying sayings, I know sound cliche, and I know y’all are so sick of hearing the same “Sunday School” answers – I thought the same thing for years. However, I hope you grant me this moment to share with you that a man who reflects how Jesus loves you in the way he himself chooses to love you… Well. He is absolutely worth the wait. No matter how painful, complicated, or confusing that wait or journey may be. He is so worth it.

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MOST IMPORTANTLY though, you need to know that you are too. God has an incredible plan for you and your life – no matter who you may or may not see running the race beside you right now.

You have not been forgotten. You are loved. You are known. You are valued beyond measure. You are worth being pursued & you are worth the wait. 

Whether you are currently seeing these truths through the actions of another person, or having to trust them on your own for now, their significance holds strong and true.

Christ chose you, and continues to choose you time and time again. You are worthy and you are beautiful. I pray that you come to see and be reminded of these truths in all circumstances and stages of this life. I pray that you come to know – if you don’t already – that you have already been chosen, and you, my friend, are absolutely worth the wait.

 

 

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Beauty, Blog, Gifts, Relationships

Top Gifts for Galentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day aka Galentine’s Day is coming up, meaning that now is the perfect time to figure out what to give your best gal pals (while maybe finding a little something something for yourself along the way).

Oh my gosh, I could, can, and will happily go on and on about how much I love Smith & Cult Nail Polish. It’s durable, beautiful, and makes even the worst skilled nail painter (aka me) look like they just had a fresh manicure.

Top knot and coffee time? Yes, yes please. Make sure your bestie feels as fabulous as she is while drinking her morning coffee in this Gold Lips Mug. Oh, and did I mention it’s only $12? Seriously. It’s only $12 y’all!! 

Even if you have a beau, let’s not forget who Valentine’s Day is really about. It’s us. Go ladies go. Celebrate all the fun with this super sweet Galentine’s Day Pillow from Nordstrom.

And, if going out on Valentine’s Day isn’t the plan for you and your girls, curl up with this fab Faux Fur Throw Blanket to make your Netflix night even cozier.

Kendra Scott is always a good idea. These Elle Drop Earrings  pair well with anything & are perfect for any occasion.


If you haven’t tried Diptyque candles yet, now is definitely the time. This design is limited edition, but it features one of the company’s most popular (and pleasant) scents. Available in two sizes, it’s the perfect selfie or bestie gift.

Last but certainly not least is this Tory Burch Signature Valentine’s Day Set . I’m in love with this scent. It’s classic, elegant, with the right amount of sweetness balanced into the earthy undertones. This set includes a travel roller ball, and the full size spray in addition to the fretwork keepsake box.

Need more ideas? Check out my Ultimate Last Minute Gift Guide for an even wider selection of gifts for you and your bestie!

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Adulting, Beauty, Blog, Gifts, Relationships, The Home

Gift Guide For The Bride-to-Be

Hey y’all! Not only are the holidays upon us, but the engagement season is as well! Have you, or one of your close friends, recently gotten engaged? Congratulations! This is the start of a crazy, yet very fun journey. To have the chance to look back on all of the wonderful (and at times stressful) moments is super special, which is why I LOVE the bride-to-be book to keep track of all of those precious memories.

Also, let’s be honest – what’s a reading/writing session of those memories without a great cup of coffee in your engaged mug. Although, to be fair, at times you’ll probably wish what you are drinking is contained in the diamond flask instead (hehe only halfway kidding). So, whether for yourself or a loved one, it’s celebrating time!

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xoxo, M

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Adulting, Blog, Finances, Relationships

Social Media and Getting The Job

Ever get tired of hearing other generations complain about “the millennials'” constant presence on social media? At some point, it definitely seems like most of us have started tuning their advice out whenever it starts, as the usual lectures from professors and advisors all seem to echo the same thing. This generation is extremely comfortable online, which does have many advantages. However, what happens when Social Media Prevents You From Getting Hired, or even worse, causes you to get fired? Do you really think changing your Facebook name to be just your first and middle name will prevent a future potential employer from finding your account? It won’t. How about setting your Instagram and/or Twitter to private? That won’t help either.

So, rather than make you feel constrained by telling you to just not post anything fun or personal, I’m going to share three tips on how to make social media work for you when it comes to getting accepted to your dream school or hired for your dream job. For another view on this, check out: Signs Social Media is Blocking You from Jobs 

  1. Yes, you do need to delete anything/everything offensive. How can you know if something is actually offensive or just personal to you? Try this: Imagine someone who had never met you before, has no idea about how you grew up, what your sense of humor is like, or what your general lifestyle habits are, coming across that photo/tweet/post/status update. Would they think you’re a crazy partier? Irresponsible? Rude? Immature? A straight-up jerk? If you even hesitate on any of these, it needs to be removed. A great example of this is a picture of you smiling holding a puppy. None of those questions would even make sense. That’s exactly how your social media presence needs to be: unquestionable, yet positive.
  2. Do post more of your good strengths. Do you enjoy volunteering? Are you gifted musically? Post about it! Employers love hiring diverse employees. They love it even more when they feel as though they have discovered a diamond in the rough. Whether or not it’s entirely deserved, every other generation seems to have exceptionally low expectations for ours. If you are willing to put in the very small amount of conscious effort it takes to exceed those, your job outlook has already vastly improved.
  3. Stay positive. This last point cannot be stressed enough. Between the news, online media, our own lives, and the lives of others, negativity is rampant in our culture. If you can maintain a happy, non-combative, genuine presence online, you’re already separating yourself from the bunch. Everyone loves a happy person. Why? It makes you happy to be around someone who is positive. Happy employees are better for the organization internally, and externally in business. How can you show you’re one of these stellar people? Don’t use Twitter as an outlet to complain about how your waiter took too long on bringing you your food. Don’t post angry status updates to Facebook about your crazy on-again-off-again ex. If someone else attempts to engage with you online in a public debate, disengage and privately message them instead. Do post happy updates, even if they’re small. Apply the age-old rule of: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all,” and try your best to resist venting online.

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