I’ve heard in conversations (and IG comments) that only women who are “built” for this lifestyle can handle the ups and downs that come with it. Of course it makes it sound like we’re some elite group of warriors specially made to endure miles, months and years apart from our significant others, along with a cloud of worry that’s forever lingering. But the truth of the matter is, NO ONE is “built” for this life. We adapt, we accept the hands we chose(or were dealt) and go on with life as best as possible, but there’s nothing in our DNA (def not mine) that prepared me to deal with being the wife of a prisoner.
That’s not to take away from the strength that myself and women like me exude while serving out sentences of our own parallel to our men, because it definitely takes strength to get through each day, but its not the natural order of things. I never envisioned myself being married (like ever), but as I got older and the the topic became real, I definitely never envisioned being married and away from my husband, for any reason. I love all the parts of being in a relationship, wearing matching t-shirts, random dates, inside jokes, cuddling on rainy days, growing together etc. So while I’m proudly high-stepping through this bid with this man, I’m impatiently waiting for this shit to be OVER.
And its evident in the women I cross paths with that its not just myself who hides behind a smile. No matter how stoic we may come across, its not ok. This arrangement sits well with NO ONE who’s in it(and if it does, that’s a separate topic for a trained professional to address🤷🏾♀️). Yes, we make it our business to be at visit, yes we make time to answer phone calls, yes we will check ANYBODY who speaks ill of who we’ve chosen to love, but I would bet my life that if the option to have our man home presented itself EVERY woman in this position would take it. Why? 🗣BECAUSE WE ARE NOT BUILT FOR THIS … PERIODT!
I feel like we also get so caught up in trying to prove people wrong about our decision to love a prisoner that we sometimes hold back on showing any emotion other than “cool, calm and collected”. But while I love my husband and would choose him a million times over, I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve cried after carrying a bunch of heavy ass laundry bags (or groceries)in the house. I’ve been upset with him for not making better choices all those years ago despite the fact that he and I weren’t anywhere near being in a relationship at the time. I’ve expressed my unhappiness with him for playing small in an effort to keep from outshining the meager folks he chose to keep in his company.
This life is a process, it’s a challenge in MANY ways, and it does take strength. I’m not an advocate for marrying prisoners, but for those that choose to do so (or are in a serious relationship with one) I do advocate for your peace of mind. If you need to kick and scream, do it. If you need to pull out a pen and paper and write yourself a love letter every month to help combat the struggles of this life, do it. How you handle your particular situation doesn’t need approval from anyone, and you definitely shouldn’t feel obligated to smile about it if/when times get tough during your wait. You’re still human and you have every right to experience whichever emotion arises as a result of life taking its course. Fall apart if you need to, then get up and get back to kickin ass💪🏾💪🏾💪🏾