Sunday, June 1, 2014
If I'm honest with myself, I've known for a while.
He's cute. Very cute. Chocolate And tall and broad. Charismatic and witty with a smile that could light up a whole room and a booming voice that I'm sure, at some point, incited some butterflies in me. I can understand why women like him.
But to me, he's cute, like most guys from Brooklyn. His height, once perfect, is average. His brown skin more chocolate with almonds and his voice the same timbre as a piano that plays a perpetually flat A sharp. His smile more of a sneer, as if he has a mean joke waiting to explode from his lips. Those butterflies, a distant memory that may have just been a side effect of the acquisition of something new, like the feeling of getting a new pair of shoes in the mail.
But he's there, sometimes.
I think, often, that I'm selling myself, and he, short by remaining. But he doesn't demand much of me. And I don't really have much to offer so I suppose it works.
But, a lot of the time, when I'm with him, I can't help but miss the men that gave me butterflies. You know, the ones whose "check up" text messages make you feel like you're living a very dangerous life because, well, another man--one from your past at that-- shouldn't (still) make you feel that way...
And begs the question...why doesn't the one who is here make you feel that way...
I'm aware that most would say that I romanticize the love experience. I have a penitent for Disney Princesses and knights in shining armor. The moment where Belle looks into the eyes of the former Beast and recognizes his soul as hers. The moment where the vial around Ursula's neck is broken and Prince Eric realizes that it was Ariel he was searching for all along. The moment when Aladdin's shoulder/apple trick on a magic carpet ride clues Princess Jasmine into the fact that this man and her love are one in the same.
Because hearts always know when someone is the one. Even if they are only supposed to be the one for a little while.
I know that love is perpetual work. But, those moments of living in the love bubble are so precious. And, having had the pleasure of being in love twice, I know that it's possible. I know there is a love that is so real and amazing that you'll search your whole life to feel that way again... I get goosebumps as I write about it. It's that delicious.
It's the nature of a writer to watch things. To observe, internalize and analyze.
I watch him, to his chagrin, rather intently. How his chest rises when he sighs, how he flexes his hands in and out when I frustrate him with my silence, how the corners of his mouth turn down a bit when he searches my eyes for a glimpse of something and finds the blankness of my nothing.
And then I notice what's not there. How I don't mind when he doesn't kiss me. How, when he does kiss me, I maintain knowledge of exactly where I am, exactly what time it is, and that my breathing doesn't quicken. How I don't reach for his hand instinctively. How I still look both ways when we cross the street together.
I hope it's not him.
To think that it might be him would be to admit defeat. It would be to prove all my friends who have told me to "settle"--I hate that word-- with someone stable who can provide for me, correct. To bow to the notion that passionate, all consuming love in reserved for college co-eds and Nicolas Sparks novels.
Please, don't be him.
And for those of you asking how I could be so bold to post this, rest assured that he'll never read it...
....because he is not the one...
Friday, July 22, 2011
As of tomorrow (at 8:15 p.m. if you ask my Mom) I will be 27 years old. As I look back and reflect, 26 has truly been one of the best years of my life--mentally, physically and spiritually. Life wouldn't be so great if we didn't learn and improve along the way, so I wanted to share some of my lessons with you all.
Looking forward to a pseudo-fab 27! HAPPY BIRTHDAY NAT!!! I LOVE YOU!!!!
1. That I'm a twin because God knew I would need someone there to make me strong, even if I didn't realize what she was doing. Couldn't ask for anyone better in my life than you. You're my heart. <3 you super much! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
2. Siblings are God’s way of knowing that you'll stumble and will need people to catch you before you fall. My sisters and brother truly are my rocks and I thank God for them everyday. <3 My Maggot and Rich the Man!!!
3. That Mommy and Daddy are not superhuman. But they are super humans. They make mistakes like the rest of us and that's perfectly OK. Which means I’m allowed to make mistakes and not kill myself over them. <3 Mommy Dearest and Daddo!!
4. That not everyone is meant to be in your life. Sometimes you just can't get along with everyone. This helps me cherish the fabulous friends I have. Love you bestie!
5. That love really isn't all you need. Love takes time, patience and effort. And a willingness to cultivate an initial spark and a commitment to that one person. It also means knowing when it's time to let go. Miss you...so happy you’re doing well…
6. That true love really does conquer all. It may not be in the form you expected, or wanted, it to be, but it conquers all. This past year has been such a test and you rode through it with me. Never can say I love you to you too many times. I mean it every single time.
7. That not everyone deserves to have weight in how you live your life. My mom used to say "opinions are like assholes...everyone has one." It's so true. When you try to live up to everyone's standards, you stop living your life. So pick a few valued people and listen to their opinions. Then live your life.
8. That passion is a gift. People wish they had things to be passionate about. I thank God everyday for my love of music and visual and written art. Those are my passions. Those things that no one can ever take away from me.
9. That your body really is a temple. No one will value you if you don't value you. This refers to mental and physical health. And, quite surprisingly, you'll find that when you're body is in order, your mind will soon follow. And vice versa.
10. That more is said in silence than in a thousand words. If we took more time to listen, we would realize that most of the things we jump to get worked up over aren't even worth unsettling our peace of mind.
11. That, sometimes, the thing that scares you the most is the exact thing you should do.
12. That the most fabulous things in life never "just happen." You work toward them. Then, when you are at the place when you can handle the fabulousness, it happens. You can't be idle and expect it to fall on you. Gotta hustle.
13. That there will always be someone who can do it better than you. The difference between you and them should be the fact that they are not willing to work their ass off and you are.
14. If you trip too hard you'll fall. So stop tripping.
15. People who are genuine don't start a sentence with "I'm the kind of person." Substantive people show you who they are. Those that "tell" you who they are almost always posers who will tell you anything you want to hear.
16. "When people show you who they are, believe them." - Dr. Maya Angelou
17. "Looking for closure" is an excuse. No matter who ended it. It's done. Accept it so you can move on. Find closure in being done.
18. You cannot spend time scared that you'll hurt the feelings of someone who clearly doesn't care about yours. You have to look out for your own sanity at all costs.
19. There are people in this life who don't deserve to have you in theirs. Is that bourgeois? Probably? Is it true? Absolutely.
20. My pride may very well be the reason I miss out on some great people and experiences in life. I'm stubborn and I live inside my head entirely too much. But I know this about myself, and I accept it. So I deal with the repercussions of it. But I don't make apologies for it. It's who I am.
21. Never become consumed by other people's problems. You have some, deal with your own. And if you don't have any, that's problem number 1.
22. Lying to yourself is the worst kind of lying you can do. Be real with yourself. That awakening, when you realize you've been lying to your self, is rude.
23. Knowing what you don't want is, sometimes, more important than knowing what you do want.
24. "The only constant in life is change."- Oprah Winfrey
25. That life, and the journey it is, is such a blessing. Take time to look around and breath. Breathe and live each moment, because you'll never live in that breath again.
26. That the world will go on with or without you. Make moves so that it's a better place with you.
27. That lessons are best learned through experience, so even the tough times are to be appreciated.
BONUS!!! That life, for me, has really just begun!
*Cheers to 27!!!*
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Thursday, May 19, 2011
I’m in love. Head over heels, maturely, romantically, starry-eyed in love with a man…
Loved him when he was my “best friend” and fell in love with him when he became “my man”…
BUT… what I DON’T love is the “you’re a big girl, you can do it” credence he seems to have for women. Don’t misunderstand, I am a big girl. And if he weren’t around, I sure would get it done--but he’s here, so, shouldn’t HE do it?
Let me explain.
My dad’s the uber man’s man. Gentle as a feather to “his girls” as he calls my mother, myself and my sisters, but a ruffian of sorts. Married my mom at 24, was a dad of 2 by 26, and was a father of four by the time he was 34. And he took care of his family. My mom didn’t work--she was the nurturer. My dad the anti nurturer--never changed a diaper in his life. He was the provider. Worked all week, and sometimes on the weekend; made sure we never went without what we needed, and most of what we wanted. Put us all in private school on just his salary. I never saw the man take a vacation if he wasn’t taking one of us to a summer program, moving us into college, or taking us to visit one of the places where kids “needed” to go: the Liberty Bell, Amish Country.
Oh, but we went on vacation. Daddy sent us to Puerto Rico, to
Daddy was up before everyone on Saturdays--on the roof, under the car, behind the lawn mower or under a cabinet-- because he didn’t want the car breaking down while my mom was driving it, or us to be embarrassed when our “little friends” came over.
So what I’m saying is, I wasn’t a Daddy’s girl (My sisters? Yes. Me? No.), but I was loved, provided for, and taken care of by my Daddy.
The love of my life was raised by women--all women--with guest appearances by his Dad. Provided for by women, protected by women, nurtured by strong women. It was women who drove him to and from work, made sure he had what he needed, looked out for him, etc.
So-- the clash.
To him, his women are invincible. He loves me because I’m independent, I’m resourceful, I’m sharp and witty, and I always find a way. I love him because he’s nurturing, he’s loving, he’s non- judgmental, he’s optimistic, and he’s loyal.
BUT whose job is it to mow the lawn?
Me: His of course, I’m a woman, I don’t MOW LAWNS!
Him: If you get around to it first. UUUUUM...
Him: “Baby I took the garbage out yesterday, it’s your turn”
Me: My TURN?!
Him: “Baby, I’m running late.”
Me: “Running late?! You should have been EARLY!!
But then, if I’m taking out the garbage, why are we having the “Baby you don’t cook for me” conversation. Isn’t it one or the other?
What are our roles here? If I think men are the providers, and, in his experience, women are providers, who exactly is mowing the lawn, and who is doing the cooking here? Who is driving who home while the other is passed out in the passenger seat? Are these things we can “take turns” on? If I see men as the providers and women as the nurturers, and he sees women as the provider AND nurturer, then who’s POV will reign in this relationship? And this, in polling my closest friends, is not only our issue. It seems like most of my friends who were raised with their fathers have certain expectations of men that our men, raised by these phenomenal women, are lacking.
In a candid conversation with my boo centered around my disappointment that he hadn’t fixed a door in my apartment that had been off the hinges, he said “you didn’t ask.” Me, appalled by the thought, countered, “Don’t you see it broken just like I see it broken?”, to which he replied, “Yes, but don’t you see it broken just like I see it broken”?
So what I’m asking is: are our expectations based on our being “Daddied” actually putting us at a disadvantage, do we, as women, encountering this new man, raised exclusively by women, need to relax our expectations? (SN: My dad was raised by both parents and 3 older brothers).
Granted, I’m not cooking his meals, packing his lunch, or cleaning up after him like my Mom did for my Dad (Hey! I’m busy! I throw his laundry in with mine from time to time!). But, he should still be just like my Daddy right?
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
I don’t dream often.
I mean, I dream in the wishing sense that basketball players tell you.
“Dream, big! You can be anything you want to be…”
But, in sleep--the type of dreams my people call reveyons—those dreams rarely ever happen to me.
Unless someone is speaking to me.
I had a dream on Sunday night. And for a non dreamer who dreams, it was a heavy one. I’ve been trying to put it together in my head for the past few days. I have stewed over it and gone to sleep early about it, praying each time beforehand that my grandmother would come again and expound. I even took a nap about it, impatient to find out what it might mean.
Let me tell you the dream…
Me and the all too inconsistent constantly reoccurring “him” in my life are entering a party hand-in-hand. This is odd in itself because we rarely, if ever, hold hands in public. There is a girl there. She is standing on the mass of a black boat, snarling at me. Instantly, I feel that this girl is the antithesis of who I am. She is light skin and rail thin with a short, Rhi-Rhi circa Good Girl Gone Bad, jet black hair style. Her lips are luscious and her eyes are a little blank, filled only by the apparent dislike she has for me.
I’m finna whoop your ass, bitch.
I look around. Certainly, she can’t be talking to me. I’ve never met this Chicago-esque hood booger in my entire life.
As if she reads my mind, she points at me, and then, in the strangest manner, throws up a pinky.
I’m an AKA, you know.
Then she sticks up a middle finger.
How, um…AKAish, I retort, sarcasm dripping from my voice. Apparently, even in my dreams, I’m an asshole. Why do you want to fight me?
Because you had the nerve to show up here with my man. She spits.
Oh. Ok. I let go of his hand.
You’re not going to fight for me, Steph? I hear his voice beside me ask.
No. I reply.
And then I turn to him. He has morphed. Skin that I once thought so flawless is replaced my hideous legions of pimples. His caramel tone has taken on hints of black, almost bruise like marks and the body that got me through drab afternoons with a secretive grin across my face had now transformed into a mass of lard, his stomach peeking out from underneath a too tight, dingy polo shirt and lapping over a pair of stained, khaki cargo shorts, seemingly pristine compared to his used-to be-white grey shell toes and I can’t decide if he’s wearing socks or ash.
But I don’t seem taken aback by this transformation, this sudden change of aesthetic attraction. I seem…resigned.
Are you serious?!
Yes. I reply. And I can’t help but think that I sound almost droid-ish, as if coming out of a trance. She can have you.
Bitch, I don’t want your leftovers. She charges at me, fangs pulled.
I want you, Steph. He says, in front of me now, pleading.
I see her charging at us and wonder why he seems oblivious to the screeching of her hate as she comes close.
You gonna let her do this? He asks my sister.
The girl is hurling herself at us. Her eyes are now yellow, her iris black.
At the last minute, I am able to peel the swollen, gnarled fingers of his hand off of my shoulder and I step gingerly out of the way.
She digs her fangs into his swollen neck, and the air begins to leave him. He deflates as if he were a balloon, all the helium leaving too rapidly for him to beg for someone to blow it back up again.
She holds his arm as he becomes limp, and, with some effort, takes her fangs out of his neck. There is no blood. She turns and drags his form toward the black boat, over every bump on the marina, with no care as for if she’s hurting him.
I wave. Turn.
A deep breath later, I’m smiling.
I walk away.
Then I’m startled awake.
What do you think?
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
I don’t know the exact moment I fell in love with him. Somewhere between the 29th and 30th of a certain month of a certain year after the millennium between 4:46 and 4:47 in the morning when the sun was squeezing in between the moon and the horizon to peer through my window and cast a slant of light on his chocolate face, his mouth slightly opened to leave the most subtle gusts of air on my nose as he exhaled.
And then I inhaled.
Yea, I think that’s when I fell in love with him, as I waited for the hours to pass by so that I could peer into those beautiful eyes and make sure.
Because you usually don’t know love until you see the eyes. The eyes, they burn into yours and suddenly, somewhere in between noses, that spark happens. Maybe “sizzle” is a better word. It’s a feeling so potent that the air between the two people runs away blushing, and suddenly, there’s nothing between you and his lips but that last brave breathe.
All happens in the eyes, I used to think.
But as I continued to watch him wrinkle his nose to snub that triangle of light that had dared to interrupt the darkness behind his eyelids, I realized that I didn’t need to see his eyes. Because the way his chocolate limbs warred around me, torn between being scared of suffocating me in their tightness and never wanting to let me go, let me know I was in love with him. The fact that, at 4:47 in the morning, I was itching to tell him what I had discovered overnight--that this was it--that I loved him so much, right now, and the first person I wanted to tell was him.
Then, as it often does, my mind began to race and over think what, a moment ago, was as clear as a baller’s wife’s ring. What if he didn’t love me back? What if I let those words leave my lips only to have those eyes, those pools of ink, grow wide as the only reasonable thing, in his mind, to do was mutter a pitiful “…thank you.”
And what if, because I said those words, he began to rethink his forward steps and want to walk a little backwards? Maybe he would ponder if we were moving too fast and he would take moments away from me, running away as those words I had uttered chased his mind and his heart until finally he decided that his emotions just had to be done. With me.
What would I do then?
Suddenly, his limbs that had once been my proof of his love became heavy, suffocating. I breathed deeply while trying not to inhale his smell. I couldn’t be further intoxicated by that vanilla-laced-with-musk smell that lingered in the crevice of his neck. That smell itself would make me utter words that I wasn’t ready to say-- confront feelings I wasn’t ready to feel.
As quietly and gently as I could I peeled him off of me. First a toned leg. Then, after three tries, I was able to successfully dodge his arm’s attempts to pull me back in close to him. I reached into my dresser, pushing aside all of my clothes until I found it.
The only thing in the world that would ever know how I really felt.
I would agonize over my decision afterward. I would smile at him and stand on tip toes to kiss him, when, behind my eyes, a war was waging between the tiny inkling of courage I had to tell him, and the fear of what his rejection would do. But in this moment, I had to let these overwhelming feelings out somewhere.
So I turned to the only thing I knew.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Feel free to leave questions or comments at www.abelleinbrooklyn.com, or here at The Pseudo Fab Life! I would love to hear from you!!! I will try to get to all the comments!
I can't stop smiling, and am so blessed to share this blessing with you all!