A woman’s greatest strength is her femininity. We inherently own a quality that men yearn for. It has nothing to do with sex but everything to do with our gentleness, softness and quiet confidence. I am coming to realize that for quite some time my perspective on my worth as a woman has been slightly skewed and it has kept me from succeeding in relationships just as much as I have succeeded in gaining degrees and in business.
One of my friends Anton recently wrote a post on Instagram and it read:
Women, I salute you on your success in Corporate America, being bosses and following your dreams. But can we do that without the sacrifice of the Black family?
Anton goes on to say:
A real man will applaud your ambition to be great, but why does it have to be either or? Why can’t you put the same time, effort, passion and dedication into making a family as you did making it to that boardroom or proving that you are independent and don’t need a man> You didn’t sit around saying I am gonna just wait until God blesses me with the career I am supposed to have. You went out and busted your ass for your career from school, to late nights and long hours of work. Give a relationship that effort and drive. You didn’t allow companies, bosses, or bad ideas to stand in your way. You were determined to achieve your career goals or entrepreneurial aspirations. Why allow that to be the case for you when it comes to building a family? Don’t allow your pride and independent mentality to keep you from a good man because you can’t allow him to be a man and lead.
Let me be honest in saying when I first read this I was heated! But like my grandmother used to say, only a hit dog will holler. I had to check myself thoroughly. I have been single (outside of my most recent relationship) my entire adult life. I have dated, but not seriously been exclusively committed to any one person. I have had the deepest desire and yearning to be in relationship with someone leading to marriage but it wasn’t modeled to me growing up. I was shown how to be “strong” and “independent”. But that came at the price of my femininity, quiet confidence and the softness that men are looking for in a mate. I’ve been a walking contradiction. And many young professional Black women are. So I’m here to not only bear my soul but to help my sisters out.
In Proverbs 31, we read about the virtuous wife (let me make it clear that it names her as a wife, not just a woman). She is the inspiration behind this blog – bringing all of her qualities together to make an exemplary woman, flaws and all. I’ll explain that vision in another post. But when you read about her, she works HARD, honey! She gets her coin and she is known in the city gates, which means she is civically engaged. She’s so bad, her husband is known in the town because of her! She keeps her kids together to the point that they praise her and call her blessed.
This might sound like a lot to balance. And it is. But here’s the thing – many of us are trying to singlehandedly do most of what she is said to do and we don’t even have a king at our side. And we wonder why we’re burnt to a crisp, short fused, and perceived to be angry. We’re taking on the tasks of two people because our pride or fear won’t allow us to submit and be the soft, gentle woman a man needs to come home to. It never once said “she can do this all by herself and she doesn’t need a man”. She is obviously interdependent upon her husband. He’s not an accessory or afterthought – he’s integral and priority to who she is. The passage says his heart trusts safely in her and she does him good all of his days. Are you trustworthy? (that’s a loaded question – I need you to really ponder that one)
I can only speak for myself and hypothesize about others when I say, many of us give up because we’ve been broken, battered and bruised in relationships. It isn’t easy to always get back on the horse when you’ve been violently thrown off. Matters of the heart will take you clean off your square! But it is our responsibility to take assessment of the situations we find ourselves in to find negative patterns and stop them. We also have to extend grace where it is needed because we aren’t perfect and neither will be any man that comes into our lives. Men really just want to be loved, respected, and treated like kings as much as we want to be loved, respected and treated like queens. Don’t throw that man in the trash as soon as he makes a mistake (I’m not talking about staying in abusive, manipulative, cheating relationships).
One of my goals this year is to be found in love and to remain there. I realize I have to make room for that though. So here’s my last thought and question to you, girlfriend – is there room in your life for the man you have been praying for or secretly wanting? Are you contradicting yourself saying publicly and through your actions that you don’t need anyone but silently praying and crying for a mate at night? Make your life congruent to what you truly desire and you’ll attract it.