We’re going to start this thing off a little heavy. This has been the heaviest thing on my heart for a few years now, and now that I have finally picked up my crown, dusted it off and placed it back where it belonged, I can finally release this. I am going to tell you the story of this black girls first time being in love, and falling into a never ending cycle of heart break. Like promised, there is a soundtrack to this journey, you can click here if you’re interested in listening.
Now the words you will will read come from the heart, every emotion that I felt helped build this strong yet fragile soul that’s writing this. We will begin at the point of departure, the moment I was pushed into beginning this impetuous journey. The moment I met him… When we first met we couldn’t stand each other. He wanted to be the center of attention so badly it bothered me. We were polar opposites. When his fire began to grow, it would be my water that would extinguish the spark. But eventually I became the wind, the wind that ignited his spark which grew into his roaring ego. I blew and blew until I was the one who got burned.
It all started with a simple compliment. I wasn’t really used to receiving those from anyone, especially someone like him. He commented on a picture of mine and even used an emoji… with heart eyes. Heart eyes, staring at me? I was never the girl that was looked at, but this time he was staring directly at me, with heart eyes. I know it seems childish but please acknowledge that I’m a millennial, those heart eyes held a lot of meaning. He began flirting through all forms of social media, letting the world know that I was the one he wanted. But of course, I played it as cool as Whitley Gilbert did in her pursuit of Dwayne (If you don’t understand this reference I suggest you take a moment to grasp your life and head to your nearest search engine). I acted like those heart eyes didn’t mean a thing, although I smiled about them for days. It had been a while since I received this kind of attention from anyone, and then came my friend’s birthday kick back. (We went to a very dry, qwhite boring institution in New Jersey, so her parties were the highlights of our college experience.) I was excited to see him, but refused to show it, and then he showed up.
We played cat and mouse that entire night, until he finally cornered me. Surrounded by a plethora of drunk college students, all I could do was stare in those eyes of yours, I felt so warm, so safe. That was the only reason he received my number that night, well that and the assistance of my friend Jack Daniels.
We talked practically every day since that night, becoming more and more intrigued by each other. We had more in common than I thought. Our birthday were six days apart, we were both Scorpios (Let me clarify that male Scorpios are the crazy ones, no bias). Hardheaded, stubborn, determined Scorpios. Which explained his persistence and my resilience. I wasn’t ready to date again, not after the last time and he understood that. Before meeting each other we both experienced pain. We both had significant others, that decided we weren’t that significant. We both felt the pain of loving someone who decided to give that love to someone else. Even though he was persistent I knew he had his doubts too, he was just as afraid as I was. But he was destined to convince me to give him a chance, and that he did.
On September 21st, 2013 we had our first real date. I smiled so much that night my cheeks burned for days afterwards. That’s when he got me, that’s when I decided to let down my guard and allow my heart to defrost. It would still take some time, but I was ready. I knew I was ready! After a year and a half, I was ready to let someone in. I was ready to feel love, to be loved. I was tired of being so hard, so angry, I was ready for vulnerability. I WAS READY. At least that was what I thought, after a few months of pure bliss my fears begin to creep back in. I found myself constantly thinking that this was to good to be true, seeing an impending doom although he was doing everything he needed. On one shoulder I had India Arie melodically whispering her tune “I am ready for love” in my ear, while Beyonce dug her six inch stilettos in the other shoulder and belted Resentment. One reminding me of what I wanted and the other reminding me of my fears. Eventually Beyonce won the battle and I decided to end my own happiness to avoid getting stung.
But before I could shoot him that “we need to talk” text, our mutual friend brought me news that could silence even Beyonce’s best rendition of Resentment. His mother had passed away, right in front of him. All I wanted was to hold him, to hear him, to console him. I couldn’t leave, my empathetic heart overpowered my brain and immediately went into Wonder Woman mode. I was there for him in anyway he needed and although the circumstances were extremely horrible, we grew closer. We both allowed ourselves to experience this vulnerability together. I completely silenced Beyonce and allowed India to continue whispering her melody as I fell in love with this man.
Love. Who knew that such a small word could mean so much? L-O-V-E, just four letters. I honestly never felt that I would find it, until I met him. A soul that consumed me and made me believe that maybe those four letter weren’t such a bad thing. Before I knew it, those four letter tripped me and I fell freely, because I knew that whenever I landed you would be there to catch me. Those four letters felt so sweet, that I manifested myself his essence as if it were my destiny. I felt complete, like my other half, my missing piece had finally found me. Creating a feeling so savory that I felt undeserving. But once the love dust settled things began to take a turn.
A week after Valentines Day, I came to him with an ultimatum after he introduced me to one if his peers as his “friend.” All I was to you was a friend? I can normally keep my composure, but after all that we had been through, all I had done, all that I put up with, I was just his friend. I wasn’t having it. Beyonce then came back with a vengeance, kicking India off my shoulder and belting that damn song at the top of her lungs. We got into a argument that night where I told him that I was either his girlfriend or nothing, there wasn’t a doubt in my mind he would make the right choice. Until he said “I guess we’re nothing then.”
My heart immediately sank into my stomach. Just like that it was over. Adele couldn’t even put how I felt into words. He was the first man that I have ever fallen in love with, the first man I had ever been that vulnerable with, the first man who knew my body better than I did, the first man I had ever been in love with…. and he left just like that. I have never experienced a pain so severe. Normally no matter what pain I felt, I could pick myself up and keep it pushing. But I wasn’t myself, the smile that was practically tattooed on my face was no where to be found, I even lost 30 pounds in a month because I couldn’t fathom eating. You would think after experiencing this pain I would have learned my lesson. But like most insecure people in love, I gave him chance after chance after chance to make things right. Each time feeling more defeated than before. I became his punching bag, he never physically hit me but I was an outlet he used to make himself feel better. He extinguished the little confidence I developed, turning out to be exactly what I feared. Every time I would leave, my heart and the promise of change would bring me right back where I started.
Until the day I finally realized that this was not the love I deserved. He began to joke about the pain he had put me through, saying that I should be over it by now. He then went on to say that he treated me the way that he did simply because I was unattractive and uninteresting. Those were his actual words. I fell deeply in love with a man for damn near 5 years and he just told me that he broke my heart because I was unattractive and uninteresting. Although that isn’t the worst thing he said to me, that was the final nail in the coffin. I left feeling empty and broken but I left and for the first time I didn’t have the urge to back.
The hardest part about moving on from this experience has been forgiving myself. I’ll be honest with you guys, I’m still picking up the pieces. There is still this internal hate for allowing myself to remain in that situation for so long. I completely lost myself while dealing with him. But I look forward to getting to know who I am without his negative commentary and I must say I’m pretty impressed with what I see so far. I’m ready to fall in love with myself, to provide myself with the happiness that I expected from him.
A wise queen named of Hadiya Barbel once said “Forgive yourself for accepting less than you deserve, but DON’T do it again.” I hope none of you ever allow any one to make you feel less than the Queen or King that you are. Keep that crown in it’s rightful place, they were placed on our heads for a reason.