“You are goals.” A statement I’ve heard plenty of times from close friends, associates, to absolute strangers. Though I know it is being said from a very positive place, I absolutely can’t stand it. Not just when people say it to me, but when it’s posted under couples pics, to celebrity couples and so on. Why does such a phrase bother me? Because truthfully, no one ever really knows what is going on behind closed doors.
There were times when I too would look at beautiful black strangers pictures who seemed to have it all. There were times when I saw others engagement announcements and felt a twinge of jealousy, why can’t that be me? Why aren’t we engaged yet? I would question my partner and myself and somehow always ended up feeling unworthy or else I would be engaged too right? I would have the viral video too right? I would be #goals too right?
And now that I am, I see just how ridiculous the notion is. A picture says a thousand words and what we don’t see behind the smile and the ring is what it took to get there. We don’t see abuse, we don’t see infidelity, we don’t see the child(ren) that resulted in that infedility, we don’t see the tears at night, we don’t see the fights, the financial struggles, the insecurities, the problems that don’t magically disappear after marriage. We don’t dont see the lows that aren’t pictured in their ig highlight reels, we don’t see nor do we know what happens behind those closed doors or what those people struggled with to get to where they are now or the struggles they will continue to go through as they navigate their way through being married millennials in an age of instant gratification and divorce rates that are equal to that of marriage.
I rarely discuss my relationship/marriage in blogs
1. For the respect of my husband and his privacy
2. I don’t nor have I ever wanted any of my blogs to be based on or considered to be any more valid due to my relationship status because tuh #imdopeonmyown
I digress, though I am currently very happy with my husband and being married that does not come without struggles. We have been through things in our 10 years of knowing each other that have been extremely trying. We have been together through the death of a parent, grandparents, family struggles, financial issues, heartache, a very trying year not being together and dealing with everything that comes with getting back together after 12 whole months of singleness, moving to different states where we knew no one and only had each other and things even in our three months of marriage that have been some of the biggest hurdles of ever knowing each other. Us, our relationship and marriage are no where near perfect just the same as the beautiful couples whose relationships are deemed #goals.
Ask yourself what exactly is the goals part of that couple, that picture, those strangers that you feel they are something to aspire to be? Is it how amazing they both look in the picture, is it the way he smiles at her, is it her ring that makes your eyes and mouth water? What exactly is it that you are aspiring to when you say goals?
If it is a husband you need to make a list of all the thing you want in a husband and #goals that, not someone else’s husband that you know nothing about.
Is it the way he proposed to her? Who doesn’t want a bomb proposal? I thought I wanted mine to be this big production but ultimately the way he proposed with just the two of us on a night walk on the beach of Catalina Island was absolutely perfect and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
Don’t get so caught up in your #goals that you try to rush things to occur that you aren’t truly ready for, that you settle for less than you deserve for the sake of having some arm candy to take cute pictures with, that you wind up in a relationship or marriage that is not pleasing to yourself, your husband, or your God.
Do some soul searching and find out what really are your goals in life and hopefully they are deeper than filtered pictures of your faves on instagram.
Love & Light
Ashley Renee is a soul food enthusiast, sometimes vegetarian, writer and spoken word poet, who doesn’t trust boxed macaroni or cats. keep up with her @ashleyreneepoet on twitter & instagram