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Friday, September 30, 2011

Clarity

As you all know, I’ve been relishing in my single life for a while now and truly enjoying it.  But every now and then, I get a flashback…And this one came completely by surprise.
Last Sunday, I was having a conversation with someone I hadn’t seen in a while. We caught up with the usual “how are you” & “how’s the fam” generic questions you ask when you haven’t seen someone in a while. We were just breezing through our lightweight conversation and then he asked about my ex. This wasn’t a surprise because for so long, when you saw him, you saw me.  I gave short yet sweet answers to let him know that I was ok and that I hadn’t talked to him.  Then he asked a question! A question that was completely unexpected. ..
“You do know that there isn’t anything wrong with you and that you didn’t do anything wrong right??”
I wonder what my face looked like, because I was not expecting him to say that.  As tears streamed down my face, he proceeded to tell me how men handle situations much differently than women and that just because I didn’t get an answer as to why things ended doesn’t mean I’m toxic!
I’m not sure if I was more shocked from the words coming out of his mouth or that I was crying.  As I stopped listening to him, I tried to figure out exactly why I was crying. 
Is there something wrong with me? Am I still sad about the breakup? Was I emotional because he was showing me that he cared? Or am I just extremely emotional for no reason at all today? (I have those days…I don’t know why)  I needed to figure this out!
This man doesn’t really know me that well and he hadn’t seen me in months, but he was able to pull this emotion from me… It was weird, because I couldn’t figure out where these emotions were coming from. All I know is that they hit me like a bolder!
I realized that his intentions were not to make me cry.  He was just being concerned. This conversation is a prime example of how our loved ones hold on to things long after we let them go.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not in any way trying to forget my relationship, because it taught me valuable lessons. As does all relationships. I’ve learned a lot about love, compromise, honesty, and loyalty while dating.  What I learned from this relationship as well as the ones that preceded it, will allow me to be a better partner in my next relationship.
This conversation gave validation to what I had been trying to convince myself of ever since The Breakup.  That I didn’t do anything wrong and I’m not toxic!  Hearing those words from him gave me clarity.  Sometimes we need a second opinion to validate what we already know is the truth! I am grateful for those tears because they were happy ones and his second opinion not only allowed me to put everything in perspective but it was also just what the doctor ordered!
I’m on a journey…and taking every moment in… Table for One please… All of me no holds barred… Love me or leave me alone!
BACK TO HAPPY TIP: Don’t forget to be grateful, things could be much worse.  I am grateful for the happy tears, because for a long time the only tears that fell from my eyes were from pain.


Thursday, September 22, 2011

For Friendship or For Love...

Love is like a friendship caught on fire. In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep-burning and unquenchable. ~ Bruce Lee

We all know the story of Love & Basketball, but just in case you are one of the few people on earth who hasn’t seen it…Quincy and Monica are childhood friends who are nothing more than just that, until their senior year of high school when things change.  They decide to become more than friends.  Their relationship has its ups and downs, but they eventually live happily ever after.
Well, I tried to make this movie a reality in my own life a couple times.  I’ve had great friendships with men that were just that, friendships.  But my last two relationships, which lasted for several years, didn’t quite turn out like the movie.  Both of them ended abruptly, leaving me with feelings of pain and regret.  What did I gain from these relationships?  These are friendships that are ruined and will NEVER be the same again.  I’m not so sure they were worth it…Worth losing two good friends.  But, the euphoric feeling I had while in these relationships is irreplaceable.  The feelings were different in both of these relationships, as were the dynamics, but the euphoria…that “I can’t feel my feet”, “floating on air”, “walking on sunshine”, feeling like the girl in your favorite love story, was the same.  I loved both of them differently and for very different reasons but I often wonder if I had to do it all again…would I?  I’m not so sure.
Well, the cycle continues…I have a couple friends who seem as if they are trying to ease their way into a relationship with me.  And just think about it, it’s really hard to remain friends when a loving connection is already there.  If I already love this person as my friend, it’s kind of hard to let what could potentially be a great relationship go down the drain.  The ball is in my court, but I have to learn to draw a line.  A big, bold, black line with a permanent marker!
I have to stop myself from taking this kind of risk.  As bad as I want to let my guard down, I CANNOT!  I’ve been burned two times in a row…and in a minute, I’m gonna be out of friends!  LOL!  My mother (for those of you who don’t know, is a hopeless romantic) says that the third time may actually be a charm.  I’m not convinced!
There is one friend of mine who is very persistent and not backing down in his efforts of pursuing me.  And I must admit, it’s VERY hard to resist.  But at this point, I’ve gotta protect my heart.  But it’s so intriguing that HE would be attracted to ME!  I mean, he has been my friend for several years, even before my previous relationships and the type of women he usually dates look NOTHING like me!
So, why me?  Am I convenient?  Or is the attraction actually there?  I have given in a little though…We have kissed a few times.  And the way he kisses me… OMGEEEEE!  It’s ridiculous and extremely intimate.  But I definitely have to leave this one alone because I am truly playing with fire!  I want him to remain my friend and in order for that to happen, I need to separate myself from him.  I refuse to lose another great friendship.  I’ve gambled enough.  I’d rather have my friend.
So for now, it’s still a Table For One please… All of me, flaws and all… Love me or leave me alone…
BACK TO HAPPY TIP: Laugh out loud!  Literally…Even if it’s not that funny, learn to laugh at the little things.  Laughter is the best medicine.  ;)


Friday, September 2, 2011

Love Music?

Music can make you think, cry, laugh, dance, worship and so much more.  As I studied radio production at Columbia College Chicago, I learned a lot about music and how its timing can make or break a mood.
There are many ways you can express yourself through music.  It makes dancers dance and singers sing.  I have been a dancer since I was 2 years old, so when I hear music I immediately want to dance.  It’s like it’s in my blood!  But no matter how you slice it, music enhances all feelings and emotions. 
As I was driving home the other night after having drinks with a friend, I turned to WGCI.  “Whispers in the Dark” was on, a show that plays nothing but songs regarding relationships; from 10pm to 2am every day.  As I drove the 20 minute drive home all kinds of songs were playing in my ear… I heard these men and women singing of love and happiness and I felt nothing. Not one thought to make me smile, giggle, feel butterflies or even get angry! I was blank!
Now of course old songs bring back moments & memories of my past… Speaking of which, I had a moment last week that made my heart smile.
Several years ago, I had a connection with a man that I have yet to have in any of my other relationships.  We were connected without even trying, it didn’t take any effort…we just “were”! It was magical and I’m not sure if it will ever be matched.  We listened to music often and whenever I hear a song from that time in my life I think of him, just as I did last week. I like having joyful memories to go back to; they take me back to feelings of the past that inadvertently make me optimistic for my future.  I believe most relationships are seasonal and I am grateful for the time I spent with this man. Music was a big part of our relationship. Although our personal situations didn’t allow our relationship to last forever, I learned a lot from it and it made me a better person.
I am grateful for the memories, however when I hear new songs that I’ve never heard before with great melodic tones and lyrics of love and happiness, I am left blank.  No face, no thought, no feeling or person to think of.  I am not saddened by this…I just “am”.  I am living in the moment… Patiently waiting for my love song to walk into my life…
But until then…Table for one please, all of me, no holds barred… Love me or leave me alone ;-)
BACK TO HAPPY TIP: Turn on your favorite song and DANCE! Dance like no one’s watching!