Category Archives: Marriage

Heavy in Your Arms

This song from Florence + the Machine really stood out to me, not just because it is beautiful and her voice is simply mesmerizing, but because the lyrics reminded me a lot of myself when I first started dating Alexander (now my husband). Now, I’m not sure if this song is about her being in a relationship she never wanted to be in, since she says “this will be my last confession I love you never felt like any blessing” and it was a relationship doomed from the start since it was a burden for both of them to be in love with each other, but here is my interpretation. I see this song as a woman who is heavy to her beloved because she is testing his strength.

Here are the lyrics:

I was a heavy heart to carry
My beloved was weighed down
My arms around his neck
My fingers laced to crown.

I was a heavy heart to carry
My feet dragged across ground
And he took me to the river
Where he slowly let me drown

My love has concrete feet
My love’s an iron ball
Wrapped around your ankles
Over the waterfall

I’m so heavy, heavy
Heavy in your arms
I’m so heavy, heavy
Heavy in your arms

And is it worth the wait
All this killing time?
Are you strong enough to stand
Protecting both your heart and mine?

heavy_in_your_armsWho is the betrayer?
Who’s the killer in the crowd?
The one who creeps in corridors
And doesn’t make a sound

My love has concrete feet
My love’s an iron ball
Wrapped around your ankles
Over the waterfall

This will be my last confession
I love you never felt like any blessing
(Ohhhh)
Whispering like it’s a secret
Only to condemn the one who hears it
With a heavy heart

I was a heavy heart to carry
my beloved was weighed down
My arms around his neck
My fingers laced to crown

I was a heavy heart to carry
But he never let me down
When he had me in his arms
My feet never touched the ground

Since I grew up without a dad and saw that most of my aunts were either divorced or widowed (and seemed perfectly fine with this) the message sent to me as a kid was that men were a) not to be trusted, b) not needed or c) a burden. The only stable man in my life was my uncle Larry, who treated my sister and I as if we were his own daughters. Throughout high school and the beginning of college I had dated here and there, but very casually. Xander was my first real boyfriend. At first, everything was fine. It was all very new to me and it was a lot of fun being someone’s girlfriend. However, as time went on, and things were becoming more serious, I subconsciously put Xander to the test. I had to make sure that he was “not like the rest”. From what I could understand based on my family situation, men were not to be trusted and could very easily abandon you. That was the message my dad had sent me. You are not important enough to stick around for. You are not important enough to build a relationship with. So, naturally, I had to see if Xander was going to do this to me as well. I would say that in the first 2-3 years of our relationship it was the most challenging, since pretty much the whole time I would do or say things (really mean things at times) to see what his reaction would be. It really confused me that he wouldn’t leave me. I was like, Seriously, I’m not worth it, can’t you see?! (Of course, I wasn’t doing this consciously, only now when I look back can I see why I did everything that I did.) It also helped me realize how I felt about my own relationship with God. Seeing Xander’s unfailing and unwavering love for me reminded me that this is exactly how God is in my life. No matter how many times I tested Him, left Him, forsaked Him or yelled at Him, He is always there. It was a beautiful moment when I realized that I was unconditionally loved, not just from Alexander but from God as well.

“Are you strong enough to stand, protecting both your heart and mine?” Love is a huge risk. You have to trust that the other person you are pouring your heart and soul to is going to accept you for who you are. Alexander had just gotten out of an emotionally scarring relationship and had to trust that I wasn’t going to do what his previous girlfriend did to him. Through all my testing, I was basically asking him if he was strong enough to protect both our hearts. He had to be the strong one for us, otherwise we would never have worked out. And so, the beginning of our relationship was Alexander doing his best to carry my heavy heart. He never let me go as I dragged my feet across the ground, didn’t unlace my fingers that crowned his neck, and he never let my feet touch the ground. (And I am very glad he didn’t!)

As our relationship continued and I realized that I was obviously not getting rid of this beautiful man, I began to let my guard down and fully trust that he wasn’t going to be like all other men. I began to see that I was worth it, that it is possible for someone (especially a man) to love me unconditionally.

Do you have a heavy heart? I’m not going to lie, it is pretty damn difficult to fully trust someone with your heart, especially if you have been burned before. One thing that you can always, always trust in, is that God loves you unconditionally. He doesn’t care about all the other stuff, how many times you have spit in his face, how many times you told him you didn’t need him, He is still carrying you and will never let your feet touch the ground. Your love doesn’t need to be an iron ball or have your feet made out of concrete. With other people, yes. That’s why God tells us to above all else, guard your hearts, because he knows how delicate and fragile it is. My heart was guarded to the max when it didn’t need to be, because time and time again Alexander proved that he was a solid guy who had no intention of leaving me.

Perhaps this is why I am so infatuated when men carry women (without struggling of course). Every time I would read about it in a novel or see it in a movie, my heart would give a little sigh and I would picture the day when my handsome strong prince was going to lift me from the ground effortlessly and carry me home. There is something incredibly sexy when a man is strong enough to carry his woman, not just physically but emotionally as well. Let’s face it girls, we are pretty crazy. Emotions run high and we are weary of giving up our hearts so easily. For a man to be willing to carry a woman despite all her baggage, or how much she may be dead weighting to test his strength, is a beautiful picture to me. I applaud all men out there who have carried their women’s heavy hearts and patiently waited for them to trust in their strength.

(Today, the only reason why Alexander struggles to carry me is because I weigh a bagillion pounds. It’s back to the gym I go!)

I love this song so much that I will even forgive Florence for letting them use it in the awful Twilight movie, Eclipse.

The Transformation of Natalie Rickadori

When they say that you will become one with your husband in marriage, they weren’t kidding. Lately I feel as if I am morphing into a girl version of Alexander. The more I am introduced to his world, his passions & his hobbies, the more concerned I am of losing my identity of Natalie Bahadori –girl before Alexander Ricker. The girl who lived her life not taking very many risks, who loved divulging into novels to escape her mundane life, who lived her life primarily with only women (which meant no sports, no football, etc). Seeing myself freakishly begin to look a lot like my husband, I have begun questioning my own identity. When you get married, you are no longer you. You are you + husband. So then you ask yourself, where does he start and I begin? At least that’s what it’s like for me. Here are some ways that I see myself morphing into Alexander.

Spliced21) UFC – When I first started watching this, I was like, ‘Seriously, what is the big deal? The guys do a little dance and then 5 minutes later decide to actually start throwing some punches. And then one minute later they are on the floor cuddling each other and throwing some girl punches here and there. But then the more I watched it, the more exciting it became. The best part was having Alexander watch it with me and explaining to me what all the fighting techniques meant. Seeing his passion for which fighters he wanted to win was contagious, and eventually I got more and more into it. (Go GSP!) I can honestly say now that this is one of the funnest things I get to do with Xander, and I can tell it also makes him happy.

2) Cigars – I would have never in a million years thought I would like smoking cigars, but I do (only flavored ones). I smoked my first one when we were at his old house in Hacienda Heights, and all his guy roommates were outside smoking. I remember that I had colitis at the time, and they were telling me that smoking actually helped it. So I was like, ‘Why not?’ So I smoked one and thought it wasn’t so bad. It was actually fun just talking with the guys and smoking. Very relaxing. This is another activity that I love doing with Xander, that also gives him that look in his eyes that say, “That’s my girl!”

3) Sushi – I never touched Sushi until after I met Alexander. I never had the desire to. When he took me to restaurants I would rebel and eat the chicken teriyaki. My teriyaki came with a crunchy shrimp roll once and it was pretty tasty. So I told Xander, “Ok Xander, I like the crunchy shrimp roll, and that’s the only one I’ll probably ever like.” Now, I can do all you can eat sushi (only at Maru Sushi of course), which also makes Alexander very happy.

4) Beer – My favorite alcohol was always rum. I loved rum and pineapple juice and mai tais and all those other girly fruity drinks. Beer was not my favorite. I always thought it tasted like popcorn. It actually wasn’t until I was introduced to Land Shark that I was like hmm, I can actually stand this beer. So now, I drink that and Blue Moon, and anything that’s similar.

5) Snowboard – By far, this has been the hardest hobby of Alexander’s that I had to get into. If you didn’t know, my husband is obsessed with snowboarding. Not only with the actual sport but with the gear, the lifestyle, EVERYTHING. We have closets full of jackets, gloves, beanies, pants and boots to prove it. I had never attempted any kind of snow sport before I had met him. And of course, Xander was all about me trying it (but he did wait until after we had dated 3 years). The first time I tried, it sucked. I fell down the whole way down the mountain. After we were married, we got some lift tickets as a wedding gift, so we went to Snow Valley. It was also very difficult the second time around, but I couldn’t help but notice how happy it made my husband to just see me dressed in the snowboard attire and going down the bunny slopes. I have now gone around 5-6 times, and I can finally go down the mountain fast without falling (still need to learn how to toe carve!) And now it’s finally becoming fun!

Is this really a bad thing? Am I changing who I am to appease my husband? I don’t think so. I am still the nerdy girl who he fell in love with, the girl who made him laugh and made him see why he shouldn’t love every single movie that ever came out. But I do realize that by at least trying out the same kinds of things that our significant others love to do, it doesn’t hurt (except for snowboarding). The only thing that can come from this is you making your hubby really happy. And isn’t that the whole purpose of marriage? Trying to do anything in your power to make each other happy? Yes, I am looking more and more like Alexander, but I am having fun doing it. I never grew up with a guy in the house, so this whole thing is very new to me. At first, you’re like “Omigosh this is so stupid, why does he love this so much?” But then you try, (and maybe try a couple more times) and you begin to see. His happiness will make you happy. What’s so bad about that? He hasn’t completely taken over my identity (I will not become a gear whore like he wants me to be), but I don’t mind it. Not at all.

me_becoming_xander

The Fairy Tale Version of How I Met Xander

cropped-medieval_romance_pic.jpgThis fairy tale story was written by me when I was bored and trying to get Xander’s attention in Facebook chat. You can actually see him trying to tell me to stop telling the story (good thing I didn’t cause a masterpiece was born!). So forgive the informal writing, but it is shown pretty much exactly the way I wrote it in 2009 on chat. This will probably be the fairy tale I tell my kids ( I refuse to tell them we simply met in college–boring!!)

Enjoy!

I think I should tell myself a story

once upon a time

9:43pmAlexander

stop

9:43pmNatalie

there was a beautiful princess

and her name was Natalina

now Natalina was the fairest maiden of them all

but she was under an evil spell

her mother was holding her captive

no one could have her

and so Natalina too thought that she was doomed to live in the dungeons of her mothers heart forever

until…

one day

there was one man

who decided to fight

he knew it would be difficult

everyone told him to let it go

there were other maidens he could have

but he said no

he had to have Natalina

so he left his castle in the snowy mountains of Switzerland

to pursue this maiden

and so he raced through jungles

battled with lions

and a monkey

and finally got to the place he needed to be

the place of no return

no one dared to venture this fiery and evil dwelling place
many had died in their pursuits

and so the prince…Gerard Butler

decided to take out his sword…

ah hah! YOUR NOT paying attention!

anyways

the real prince was devastingly handsome

he had a fierce look about him

He had scruffy features

great eyebrows

and deep green eyes

His arms were beautifully sculpted

his chest broad

and legs like iron

every woman wanted him

every woman in the snowy mountains wanted him, for he showed great skill in the snow

But alas

he had his heart set on the princess whom he had heard so much about

all he had heard was that she was exotic looking, and this frightened off many men

but not this one

he was tired of all the golden haired lasses

he wanted someone who would take his breath away

and so with this in mind

he trespassed through the fiery pits of Victorialand

he heard a noise

he looked around him

and saw nothing

he kept walking until he heard it again

all of a sudden, the fires of the volcanoes turned off

it was pitch black

“Who turned the fire off?” His unbelievably deep voice asked

“No need for the light be on. Like I said, I have no income!” a voice shouted out

it was a woman’s voice

“Who are you?” He asked

“It is I, Victorias sister. They call me Dollyia”

“Well Dollyia, how can I make it so I can see to get to my beloved who is waiting to be rescued?”

“Hmmm”

she answered

“I shall tell you, if you answer correctly this one question”

“Agreed”, he said

“Do you agree with the policies of our current king, Rackobam?”

“That is an assured no.” He stated

“You may pass, but turn off the fire on your way out!!”

“Alright ma’m” (she is crazy! he thinks to himself)

And so the fire turns back on

he jumps over the lava

with one giant leap

(he is genetically enhanced)

and so

on he trails

until he comes to the castle

He decides to ring the bell

The door opens after 5 minutes

slowly

but no one is there

A woman appears

“Hark!” he says

“Who goes there?” A beautiful voice asked.

She is standing in the shadows, a veil over her head

“Are you the one they call Natalina?”

Silence

“Answer me princess! I am here to rescue you!”

She slowly turns around, and unveils her face.

“Who are you?” Her gentle voice asks

“I am Alexander the great. Are you Natalina?”

“I am not. I am called Cheskalina.”

“Cheskalina, what an unusual name!” He remarks

“Tis.” She replies

“Your beauty surpasses most in this land.” He said

“I am aware.” She said. “No one comes though. It is too much work to get to Victorialand. I fear I am not worth it.”

“Never think that, fair maiden! One will come! For you are definitely worth it! Not only for your beauty but for the kindess and peaceful spirit I see in you.”

“I thank you fine gentleman. You seek Natalina, my sister?”

He nodded. “I do, my heart will be complete once I am with her.”

“Ay.” She said

“How can I get to her?

“You can find her sleeping. I am out doing errands while she sleeps. This is common for most days. Her room is past my mothers. My mother is in there right now.”

She put her hand on his shoulder

“Good luck, sir. I do hope you can get to her. I see greatness in you.”

“Do not worry, fair maiden. I shall get to her, no problem!”

And so Alexander the Great went down the hall

and knocked on the door.

“Come in.”

A tired voice called out

Suddenly Alexander hesitated

maybe this wasn’t going to be as easy as he thought it would be

“Ma’am?”

“Yes? What do you want? Why are you screaming at me?”

“I’m sorry ma’m this is just how my voice is” He replied.

“Oh”. Was all she said

She was in her closet cleaning

“Who are you?”

“I am called Alexander the Great, and I am here to marry your daughter Natalina.”

“Why?”

She asked.

“Why? My heart longs for her, and only her and I will cherish her until the moment I die.”

“Hmmm. How do I know you’re a good guy?”

“You will have to trust me ma’am. I was raised in a great home and I am a man of many useful talents.”

“I see,” She said looking him up and down

“You’re not what I had pictured for my daughter, young man.”

It felt like a knife had went through his heart

“But if you will treat her well, then you can ask her yourself, if she’ll have you. Her door is over there.”

She pointed to a door that was down another hallway

“Thank you ma’am.”

He approached the door and stopped, trying to think if he really knew what he was getting into.

With a deep breath, he opened the door, and found stairs that led to a dark tunnel

He fumbled through cobwebs as he walked down the stairs

Till finally he saw lights through the hall way.

he walked in to the room and held his breath

There she was, standing in the sunlight, more beautiful then he could ever imagine. She looked just like the woman of his dreams. Long flowing black hair and piercing green eyes under luscious long lashes

She was in a word…stunning to him

He was speechless

“Natalina?”

He asked

She looked at him strangely.

“Who are you?” She asked

“It is I. The man who has come to rescue you from this evil place.”

“Rescue? Who needs rescuing? Not I!”She said, arms folded firmly together

“But…” He looked around “You are Natalina right, fairest maiden of them all, lives in the dungeon of Victorialand?”

“Yes, yes and yes,” she said. “But I do not to be rescued. You see this window here?” She showed him the window

“There are no locks sir. I can leave whenever I want. My mother cannot hold me down. I have no chains”

“Why won’t you let me take you out of here?” He asked

“I have to say, I am impressed that you have made it here, it’s been so long since a man has tried. I am flattered good sir, that you have heard about my beauty and wished to see it for yourself. Well, you have seen it, and now you know that I do not need to be rescued. What do you wish to do now?”

She asked

“I have a snowy castle, I can teach all sorts of pleasurable activities on the snow.” He said

“I do not know the snow. ” She replied.

“What do you know?” He asked “What do you like?”

And so they spent the next 4 hours talking about their lives, her likes and dislikes and his likes and dislikes.

She finally stood up

“Because sir, you have cared to pursue my heart, I shall leave with you at once.”

His heart leaped. “I have loved our conversation, and am further convinced of our destiny to be together,” he said.

“I feel now as if you love me for more than my beauty.” She said

“I do. I love your laugh, your smile, your sarcasm, your humor, everything about you! And I do not think that I can live without you for another moment!”

“What is today?” She asked

“I believe today is the 6th day of February.”

“What a wonderful day! We shall be married at once!” She exclaimed

And so they went upstairs and told her mother who cried and held on tight

but finally let go

“I love you mother, and always will!” Natalina said as she left, hand in hand with Alexander the Great

They both hugged her sister and they were off

They lunged through the fiery pits and waved to Dollyia who was scrubbing a burn stain on the ground

And so they both rode on his strong stallion until they hit the snow

and then they both jumped on a long board that slid them through the snow

They stopped and did a backside 360 then kept going down the hill until they went to his castle

and on that day they were married

and lived happily ever after

the end!!!neuschwanstein-castle-lancastria-004

Marriage is like Supreme Scream…

I have been married for almost two years. Now I’m not going to be all like, “Hey, I have been married a WHOLE TWO years, I know everything there is to know about married life, men, relationships blah blah blah. But hear me out. This is a pretty good analogy (at least for me). I was thinking about this on my way to work one morning. Picture it.

You are at the theme park with your boy or girl, walking around, dating, having the time of your life. You’re holding hands, kissing, playing arcade games, cuddling on the log ride, whatever. All of a sudden, he pops the question and you say “yes, yes a million times yes!”(or not, if you aren’t cheesy). Since you are now engaged it’s time to go on Supreme Scream, the scariest ride of them all. In the theme park. In the world. You both have butterflies, but try to will them away as you both sit down and pull the bar over you. The ride slowly starts going up, you look at each other, wink, and take a deep breath.

supremescream1As you start escalating higher and higher, you begin to see the whole world out there. Wow, look at all those cities…. look at all those people! Am I really meant to be with this one person? Is he/she the one? What if my “real” wife or husband is out there, waiting for me to find them? My God, we are getting high. Holy Shit, what the HELL were we thinking?! Your hands let go of each other, and you both hold on tight to the handles for dear life. You look at one other, trying to smile but really both thinking ‘seriously how did I let myself get into this, this is the worst mistake of my life!’ Finally, you are at the very top. It’s beautiful, serene. You are on top of the world. You both say your vows, still having butterflies in your stomachs, but knowing that something exhilarating is about to happen. The vows are done. You are now, literally, taking the plunge. Your 5 seconds of wedding bliss is now over, and now you are falling, falling, falling, demon butterflies are screaming inside you asking you why you were stupid enough to allow this to happen. As you are both dropping into the never-ending abyss, you think ‘Really, so this is what marriage is about huh? Falling, feeling sick, and just wanting to be put out of your misery?’

Then comes the part where you finally stop, then go back up for the second round. By this time, you both know what’s coming, so you learn to deal with it. It’s still scary, but not so bad. You actually might even begin smiling because the ride is actually getting fun. The hardest part is over. By the time the third round comes, you are both laughing hysterically, tears of terror and relief streaming down your faces. The ride comes to a halt and both you and your spouse get off, laughing, thinking you were both crazy for embarking on this adventure, but wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

–And that pretty much sums up my first 2 years of marriage. Anyone else have (kind of ) the same experience as I did?

Oh, and Happy Anniversary to my sweet sweet hubby, who had the patience to deal with my scary experience on “Supreme Scream,” and still decided to hold my hand when the ride was over!