The Marriage Proposal

I commit to have with you only
Oneness
Of spirit and soul and body
Oneness
Of living
Oneness
Of life
Oneness
Of possession
Oneness
Of fellowship
Oneness
If you would have me similarly
And so choose to marry me
We’ll seal it before the Spirit
By our word and our heart

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The Happiness of Commitment

One of the purest, or truest, expressions of love is commitment. What’s romantic in the modern sense about commitment? Sounds dry compared to passion, and laughter, and fun, and ….
It says in a way that love may not be sweet all the time, but still pleasing, regardless. It agrees that feelings matter, but are not everything. Inside commitment, we find care, respect, knowledge, and responsibility. Foundation for a lifetime of bliss; happiness, if you will.

‘Spanked my children sometimes, yet they run to me every time. Sometimes I feel that they see much more than I could, or would, having grown up and all. I want to be as a kid again. Their eyes are one with their hearts. And the light of love comes out of them so bright that I wonder; I could almost cry for joy for the sight of such beauty. Love is beautiful. I am happy for it.

They see me or their mother changing their diapers in the fellowship of the perfume of ‘pu.’ They see love. We instruct, correct, train, shout, ground, support, hail, carry … And they see love. We go out and come home: it’s all love. I am happy for it.

It was exciting when they met; they could barely keep away from each other for any length of time. They tied the knot, children followed, …. He owned her; she owned him; both of them slaves to their commitment. Where is the love? It is here, in who we are now. I am happy for it.

If we let go of some joys, it was to great joy because it came out of love. We have a new happiness despite the daily grind. It has come with its own excitement and reward. You will see it clearly if you want to be one. It will be ‘easy’ because you are one; there shall be no regrets. Perfect love, the great book says, sets all fears aside. … For you did not receive a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of wise discretion. [1 John 4:18, 2 Tim 1:7]

Will her tummy not go back in?

He being the only one to behold and ‘appreciate’ the whole natural glory of her body, there might have been a feeling of resignation in his words, “I am stuck with the daily sight of this awesome woman whether or not she retains her shape after childbirth.”

Yet this same man, if not his wife, would likely be wanting another baby in about three years. And both their parents might ask questions if their second grandchild from the couple appears to be coming late. Three years is late already. 

The times are changing though.

But what does a man do if his wife ceases to be eye candy for him in the sense of eye candy, lust apart.

Now he doesn’t mind his wife getting fatter or fleshier (he is properly African, afterall), it’s just the protruding tummy. A little is okay, but not ‘that’ much. Yes, he knows he’s going nowhere, and that, by principle; hence, the sign of resignation in his jocular lament. 

Is there more for him to do than to encourage her nicely and out of love…. He has settled with the plot he chose to build his home in, like a real, mature, man on that front. Even if he married her for her body, he is married to her, and that counts for everything. Commitment is love.

I hope it is not that you are comparing your wife with other women. There’s no basis for comparison really: she’s the wife, so the others are not. Besides, their bodies and  histories are different. Ah, he just wants his hottie back (as if she had been away).

But what does a woman do, think, say. Particularly if ‘the one’ is almost making a fuss? Maybe he’s not.

He still likes you to look pretty that way in his eyes. Throwing tantrums like a spoilt child. He is crying over spilled milk, you don’t have to join him. Things would go from good to bad if you felt sorry and sad for what came beside that bundle of joy, your baby. And what if the fattening came by itself? Haha, the blessing of marriage. It is something to laugh about.

You have a little belly sir. I know. It’s nice, isn’t it. My wife loves to rub it. Hmm, why don’t you rub hers? …It doesn’t work both ways man. That’s like stand the earth on its head; unimaginable.

He wants you; only you. Not some other woman, however flat-bellied, tight and shapely, well-sized where it matters, fresh looking, and totally tantalising in a bikini she might look. Em, okay, I’d like think that that is true. It’s comforting at the very least.

But he looked … Haha, you would catch some men giving mannequins a second look. Not funny though, if it happens more than once. He might be trekking towards losing the plot, so a smack and a reminder might be helpful. Whack! What? “I’m helping you stay focused on what matters: me.” He has a sense of serious humour.

So some women delay marriage and childbirth because of ‘fashion.’ …. Some opt out entirely. A friend says she wants only one, for whatever reason. Many others say ‘what the heck’ and trudge on, walking barefeet and free. 

Her home is now a gym, because biology often needs help. Regardless, he’s a pillar that will always be there. Kind of like God in a way. I love you; I know it everyday.

A love-hate-love relationship

First you loved her, then you hated her. And then again you loved her, and hated her after that, even more so a little later. Then you loved her again, coming to hate her eventually some time later. And finally, you loved her, accepting your choice.

At first it was easy, then it became a little challenging, slowing you down. A little later with a spurt of will, you picked up pace and continued, seeking to be diligent, but it got harder. It demanded persistence and you gave it that, until you hit a brick wall and got quenched. You came back again to climb over the wall in a breakthrough, going on for a while and slowly getting weary. Finally you let go and say, “I love you anyways.”

Duty: A way to the lasting marriage

Recently, I watched a PragerU video love needs laughs. It talked about the helpfulness of shared laughter in ensuring long-term marital survival; which got me thinking again about some African marriages that lasted with little of this great ingredient and others like intimacy etc.

It seems to come down to duty. Beyond the duty of a wife to her husband, and of a wife, being a wife; and beyond also the duty of a husband to his wife (or wives), and of a husband, being the husband, there is the duty to self that says that ‘I am married.’ This is at the root of the duty to marriage that serves to keep the family regardless of many imperfections.

Of the various motivations (cultural, religious etc) to make marriages work, this imbibed ideal is key to keeping marriages. It is easy to imagine that more fundamental motivations need to be at work for arranged marriages to work. While they don’t always work, one still wonders why a lot of them do. And I think it is about a certain perspective of duty to ones married status, and not just to ones marriage.


There is nothing about pride or shame in it; it’s just about an ideal that is accepted as ideal, and thus performed. For many couples, they keep it through many pains. And when they get too old, they look back with whatever emotions they choose to hold, satisfied at the very least that they kept the ideal, without necessarily realizing that self-pat on the back.

PS: incomplete thoughts

The Most Basic Wedding

No registries
No holy men to preside over ceremonies
No person to give away the bride
Nobody else to say “I was there”

It would just be a man and a woman cutting a covenant with God as witness. Traditional, court, and religious wedding ceremonies are an enactment of this, with human witnesses.

What if they did not regard God? God would still be witness. Because, it seems, that once the mindset is of marriage, whether or not it is formally recorded or publicly declared, God’s acknowledgment is activated.

So this is what wedding seems to be: when the man and woman agree that they are married, and they seal it with something strong enough to confirm the bond. Two things come to mind: sex and words to the Truth of it. Both affect our spirits.

Adam saw Eve; he married her with his words as she concurred. Such speaking mean something. Words are not ordinary. To Eve, Adam had said, “You are bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh…” Eve must’ve affirmed because their lives afterwards reflected that reality. And they made love, certainly.

Asides:
There was no one but Adam for Eve to marry and vice versa.
You can marry someone just because they’re available for marriage.
Adam and Eve worked well together, it seems.