Thursday, April 9, 2015

If No One Has Told You: This Evening

Someone told me, but it was too late.

He disappeared after 2 years of getting to know one another.

He was gone. I didn't know what to call him. We'd always been friends, but after coming to watch him DJ, because I admired him and anything he put his hands on, after he drove me home, after he pulled me into a full fledged lip-lock, I think...

I thought...
I might've mistaken...
...him, for love.

But now he was air, a whisper on the lips of friends...

So and so graduated, he's doing so well now.

Maybe because it was the night before you were leaving I deemed it the right time. I guess I never thought you'd vanish, just a few miles away.

A younger me had something taken from her. I was sixteen, ---teen, and --teen. The ages it happened doesn't matter. The incident does.

I was excited about handing it over, freely. I was ecstatic to do what I wanted with my body, on my terms.

But this...
This was like déjàvu.
It was eerily similar.
It wasn't the same, but it still corroded me the same.

...because I admired him and anything he put his hands on...

& still I have trouble admiring me. Funny.

Someone told me, but it was too late.

He pulled up, months later, visiting his popularity, his old professors, the scattered sadness he'd left. He chased me down a dark pathway, while I was walking, and yelled my name. I turned. I stood still.
I remembered my mother's words about boomerang men and karma. I wished him light and happiness, even though I'd been everything but.

"Erica, I'm sorry."

His eyes were green, sparkle across his stare, but I no longer took fancy to twinkling.

I looked into them, long and hard, "F-- your apology."

"Please, I'm truly sorry."

He probably was. I didn't care. I remembered feeling like something was wrong with him, when for the first time in 730 days, he didn't answer a text. I wondered if he was okay. & then I remembered the hollowness I felt when his social media was updated, but I still hadn't heard from him. & then I remembered the anger that ensued, when I realized he was only ignoring me. 

He said something that I’d be hearing for the first time, but I’d be hearing again and again. He sounded like a prospective broken record:

You’re a unicorn, 
got bells and whistles 
that I ain’t used to
too good---errra, errra, 
too smart---erra, erra, 
not ready for something serious, 
even though you never asked for that
only respect—
but I wasn’t brave enough to give you that

Someone told me, but it was too late. 

In the dissonance between being violated and forgotten, the quiet between the forgetting and the acceptance, I realized that I had to tell myself. 

This is what you aren’t:

You are no goddamn unicorn. You’re exceptional, unique, and all other things that individualize you, but you are real. The moment you start accepting yourself as something that is unreachable, you will ceased to be reached. You are no paragraph long text, because he will not answer the phone. You are no stupid reply.

I don’t know why you’re bugging.
I thought we were just kicking it.
Uh huh. 

You are no anxiety for talk bubbles and responses. You are no cryptic conversation, squinting eyes, trying to figure out what they really mean. You are no 3 hour wait, in the middle of hurt words, because he did not feel like responding. You are no wallowing in it, wondering where you went wrong, trying to fix something that you never broke in the first place.

When we first started conversing, you were paragraphs. You're from the generation of don't-pick-up-the-phone-unless-absolutely-necessary. I tried to respect that. I didn't. At least you text me your philosophies and notions with enough breadth, that they deserved commas.

Now...suddenly, when your words count you are nowhere to be found. Mimic of Siri with curt replies and remnants of you not seeing what a relationship looks like.

You are no last minute cancellation. You are no last minute request, that's drenched in or-else. You are no ultimatum. 

I dated a cop once. 

We sat atop his squad car, conversing about the stars, while Brooklyn boasted its famous summer nights. 

It came out of nowhere, “My partner, a white cop, is about to get married. He’s only twenty three. I don’t get it.”

“What don’t you get?”

“It seems like they do their foolishness in college, leave, and then pick a woman. It doesn’t even seem like it’s the ideal woman either. It seems like someone that works and then they decide to make it work. It’s as if they’re raised understanding that there will always be flaws. ”

I looked straight at him, instead of the stars,”Do you not have that understanding?”

“I do, but I don’t. I wasn’t raised that way. I’ve never seen love like that and most of my boys haven’t either. We use what we see in the media, on TV, and mostly our imagination, to find our “wife.”

“It sounds like you’re searching blind.”

“A lot of us are.”

You are no philosophical conversation. You are no could be, should be, might be. You are no fixing what isn’t splintered or damned from salvation, but refuses to be whole. Your time is worth more than dealing with those emotionally stunted. You are no faltering commitment. 

You deserve better than me. 
You see my momma says...
I wonder what it could've been like, if...
Good things come to those who wait...
One day your prince charming will come. 
There are so many fish in the sea...

Or the patriarch of them all...
When I get my sh* t ogether...

You are no rocked knee and broken-hearted personal day. You are no inundating of schedule, so you don't have to feel. You are sunken spot in the couch, that knows your ass and sorrow all too well. You are no comforter that has known more of love-hoping and saline than love-making. You are no tremble and acting as if he doesn't exist, b/c it's the only way you can cope. 

This is what you are:

You are real. 
You are spine. 
I see God in you, girl, woman, Aphrodite. 
Take your smile back. 

You are vacays and sand, between your toes. You are knowing what the world feels like wrapped around you, if you can't seem to find arms that are willing. You are equal pay. You are a paycheck that correlates with the quality of what life should be. 

You are the depiction of strength and that should be recognized: not as a reflection of his mother or some idiotic vision he has of what you should be. You are the type of strength that is built like Babel, through hurdles, and boulders, and rock, and stone. You are the type of complexity that God only wants the right man to recognize, so he leaves the others speaking in tongues that you don't.

You don't need to hear what they're saying anyway. 

You are sweet words. You are nothings. You deserve to feel light, to be light, to have it as yours. You deserve to never have it taken away, against your will. 

You are grabbing your womb, when black boys fall prey to devils. You are the conflict, that we will have to teach our sons to be better men in more ways than one. You are the indecision of whether you truly want to bring a child into this world. You are the realizing that it's YOUR DECISION. 

You are wearing your hair however you want. You are wearing whatever you want. You are bleeding, when it's your time. You are commando on days you don't care. You are realizing that there are vibrating things that resolve the quiet that is Mr. Right Now.

Send him on his way. 

I've gotten into the habit of taking my power back. I love with a fury and once I realize that I'm being taking advantage of, I rescind. 

(Because my love is not ordinary. It's not the type of adoration that withers and dies. It's the kind that stays with you. It's the kind that you don't recognize, until I'm gone. 

I bet yours is too. You just have to own it.)

I'm not talking about outright and blatant disrespect. I'm talking about the hidden one, lingering under half-assed compliments and thoughts about his exes, during those first few conversations. Once I recognize this in them, I remove myself. You should too.

& this...
this hurts them better than the betrayal and frustration,
that comes along when we ignore our intuitions...

You are knowing. 
You are the ability to discern bullsh*t, before it dries, cracks, breaks, and becomes you. 
You are worthy of outstanding love.
Familial love.
Friendship love.
Romantic love.
Self love.
Spiritual love.

You are everything you want to be, if you allow yourself.

This evening...

allow yourself.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for the beautiful reminder. I know about those boomerang men all too well.

Anonymous said...

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

No words because they are all here. Thank you.

Anonymous said...
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Teka said...

this was so necessary for me to read, TONIGHT. thank you, so much. for your transparency and your wisdom. your encouragement and truth through experience.