She sat quietly for a moment before looking at me in the eye & asking, 'Do you really want to know?'
I was taken aback at the question. She had this glint in her eye. Hesitantly, I said, 'Yes.
She began, "As a woman in this day & age, I am in a position to ask a man what can you do for me that I can't do for myself? I pay my own bills. I take care of my household without the help of any man... or woman for that matter. I am in the position to ask, 'What can you bring to the table?' "
I looked at her, a bit unsure , I knew she wasn't referring to money. She quickly added , "I am not referring to money. I need something more. I need a man who is striving for excellence in every aspect of life."
I sat back in the chair, folded arms, open mind and hopeful heart as I asked her to explain.
"I need someone who is striving for excellence mentally because I need conversation & mental stimulation. I don't need a simple-minded man.
I need someone who is striving for excellence spiritually because I don't need to be unequally yoked...believers mixed with unbelievers is a recipe for disaster.
I need a man who is striving for excellence financially because I don't need a financial burden.
I need someone who is sensitive enough to understand what I go through as a woman, but strong enough to keep me grounded.
I need someone who has integrity in dealing with relationships. Lies and game-playing are not my idea of a strong man.
I need a man who is family-oriented. One who can be the leader, priest and provider to the lives entrusted to him by God.
I need someone whom I can respect. In order to be submissive, I must respect him.
I cannot be submissive to a man who isn't taking care of his business. I have no problem being submissive...he just has to be worthy.
And by the way, I am not looking for him...He will find me. He will recognize himself in me. He may not be able to explain the connection, but he will always be drawn to me. God made woman to be a help-mate for man. I can't help a man if he can't help himself.
When she finished her spill, she looked at me . I sat there , a bit puzzled.
I asked sheepishly, 'Arent you asking for a lot. She replied, "I'm worth a lot"
I looked at her intently. I was impressed with how eloquently she had described her expectations. However, what floored me was the things she had left unsaid, untouched. It was almost like an encrypted message, meant to be decrypted by the one who could realize her true worth.
I smiled, slowly, softly. "What can I bring to the table..." I started, gazing at her.
"Financial stability, an assurance of a better life, luxurious life, a promise of a strife for excellence in every aspect of life, a character that would invoke respect..."I paused. "I think rather than such selfish tangibles, I think my biggest contribution is that I understand what it all means, its significance to you and inherently its importance for the man you seek."
She looked at me quizzically, it was my turn to elucidate.
"I will start with the easiest", I said with a sweet smile, "Financial stability is not having a good income or one's own home or a set of mortgages, is it! It is a perspective that has an essence of financial management. It is about looking at money as an resource to achieve the life goals for you, for me , for us. Lose the sight of any of the factors, the instability sets in. It downhill for there as sooner or later dissatisfaction would get the best of you. I do not propound to segregate it into 'your money' , 'my money', 'your expenses' , 'my expenses' but a clear vision and understanding can aid a couple manage their finances for each others satisfaction. "
She had a hint of a smile on her lips, yet she resisted. I knew she was pleasantly surprised with my grasp on the concept she had introduced, but I knew there was much ground to cover.
" For someone to comprehend what striving for excellence means, they have to realize the concept of growth themselves. For someone to strive for growth in mental, spiritual, financial, personal, emotional, moral & professional aspects of life, they need to be aware about them, They need to explore them well. What is interesting is when one is cognizant of such aspects of one's own life, they learn to appreciate them in everyone else."
I paused to look at her beaming face. it was a mix of amusement and delight.
"So as a man i bring to the table the endeavor for excellence in every aspect of life, for you, for me and for us. I intend to be the man who you can respect by respecting you first. You are right, GOD did make woman as his mate, neither a master nor a slave. So you would never be a submissive, but a partner of equal. The bedrock of marriage would be an un-split table atom formed from a pre meditated fusion of two universal elements, identical in weight, equal in force."
"So to be very frank, I dont think you are asking a lot. Infact you are being fair, to yourself , to the guy you will be with, and also the guys you would reject in his wake." I paused.
She was calm. Smiling but composed. I knew that she knew the compliments were fair and just. No exaggerations or embellishments. I took a deep breath, looked at her angelic face, and admitted, " I dont know what you are worth, I doubt if I will ever fully comprehend that. What I do know is that to me, you are invaluable."