The singer Mikki Howard sang a song that said “experience is a good teacher, it takes someone like me to knnnnnooooowwww”. As a 13 year old in the 7th grade at a Catholic school I really didn’t understand the phrase or the song; although I sang ‘Love Under New Management’ with the conviction of a scorned 50 year old women. Okay let’s have a moment of transparency. I have been a “serial monogamous dater” my entire life. I have never been one to date multiple people at the same time. That at times has been a gift and a curse. But hey! It is what it is. I like familiarity, comfort, and I like being in relationships, not situationships. That’s just how the good Lord wired me.
So tonight’s Not So Random Thoughts Before Bed is dedicated to the men in those relationships who either brought me a lesson or a blessing. And if I got real lucky they brought me both. Aliases will be used to protect the identity of the innocent as well as protecting my pockets. If someone decides to make a movie about my life, I don’t want anyone trying to get my “wiggums”; that’s a word my old co-worker and I made up to replace money. Jennetrice, if that word starts trending we need to hurry up and trademark it!!!!!
- Tyrone: This is not the friend that Eryka Badu was telling ‘ole boy to call. He was actually ‘ole boy. This was one of my very first real boyfriends. I learned a lot about life real quick dealing with him. Lesson: As a young teenager never settle. Know your worth and if folks don’t rise to the occasion it’s okay. Let them float somewhere else. Blessing: I dodged a bullet because he ended up later in life going to jail for murder (yeah, for real). But, what I heard through the grapevine is that he gave his life to Christ. And that good people is a blessing for the Kingdom of God.
- Benjamin: This gentleman was the master of disguise. Now that I look back on it we fell in lust/love too quick. See that’s one of the curses of being a “serial monogamous dater”. But hey we always had a great time together. We hung with some cool folks and loved to go out to eat. And really he was a good guy. He was a serious dreamer but lacked in the doer section of life. Lesson(s): Pay attention to a person’s family, because it will tell you a lot about that person and the dynamics of what you are getting yourself into. Talking about doing something versus committing it to paper and actually doing it are two different things. When dating, the talk and walk should line up. Blessing: One of my biggest accomplishments came from this relationship.
- Rock: Have you ever met someone and thought to yourself “this is the opposite sex version of me”? This gentleman was one of my closest male friends ever. I could tell him everything about me and he wouldn’t flinch. We grew up together as teens in the same neighborhood. His family was my family. Lesson(s): Some relationships need to be left in the friend zone. In the words of Chris Brown (I cannot believe I am quoting him) “I don’t wanna go there, please don’t go there”. Needless to say, we are no longer friends after 24 years. There are times that I miss him, but really he was “messy boots”. Blessing: His mom helped me get closer to Christ. And she taught me so much about what I truly deserved.
- Man: Remember those gold metallic pants I wrote about the other day, yeah well…you know the rest of the story. Man was a provider, a protector and the first time I ‘thought’ I heard God say marry someone. He liked to do all the things I loved to do: ride around the park with the windows rolled down while bumping the quiet storm radio station, chilling hard with friends and family, playing board and card games (he flipped over a game of adult monopoly, true story, red flag) and just laughing a lot and having a great time. Lesson(s): Soul ties are real people. The break up of this relationship in my late-20’s taught me so much about myself. I was braver, wiser and fearless after this relationship. I also learned that hurt people, hurt people. And in the infamous words of my mama “you cannot fix, what you did not break”. Blessing: It was the first time I realized that purpose could come out of a painful situation. This relationship also created another important accomplishment in life.
- Jo Navin: I picked that name because I love the movie “Jerk”; let me leave that alone. Anyway Jo Navin, caught me at a very vulnerable time in my life. His quick wit, love of music and implied potential had all the makings of a Tyler Perry movie ending. However, it ended more like the novel and made for Lifetime movie Disappearing Acts. Lesson(s): When your gut tells you something ain’t right listen to it; your gut really is just the Holy Spirit leading you. You cannot marry, date or create with potential. Potential has to come with tangible actions that can be seen, heard or felt. Blessing: I was blessed with another accomplishment. I left in my right mind. I now understand the power of knowing God’s character.
These relationships have spanned over a period of 25 years. I write this blog not to bash men. I take full responsibility for the part I played in this show. Everyone has flaws, imperfections and areas of growth. I write this blog to simply say; don’t let a bad relationship keep you from living your best life ever. Don’t beat yourself up over a decision from your past, present or future that was not the best one. When we know better, we do better. And to be quite honest, I have finally learned how to forgive them; but most importantly myself.
There is a lesson in every encounter and a blessing in every situation. You really just have to find it, then move on. Cry, scream, shout, roll around on the floor like Patti LaBelle used to at her concerts; but whatever you do, do not stay stuck. Otherwise you end up being bitter, cold, and damaged like a box of lemon heads with freezer burn LOL (that visual is killing me softly right now)!
Now please don’t share this blog with any of my exes. Why?
- I have no money to put on anyone’s commissary.
- I don’t feel like hearing their side of the story again.
- I don’t want to play another game of monopoly.
- I don’t do backsies anymore.
- I cannot rationalize with irrational people.
I hope by now you know I am just kidding. I am the “Queen of Transparency”. Tell’em, hopefully they have some blessings and lessons about me. Otherwise, our encounter was in vain.