EVERY DAY LOVE

FACT: I LOVE love.

Your reaction as you read this:

uh-huh

I DO! 

I just don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day though. I’m not one for sentimental displays of affection. I joke that boyfriends have always gotten off easy, because I refuse the acknowledge the day.

Which leads people to believe that I hate romance, or love. That I reject the idea of it.

Nope. Not true at all.

It’s lovely. Besides, to know me is to know I LOVE candy. How can a person who loves candy as much as I do even possibly dislike the second most candy-oriented holiday of the year?*

Kids. Love is this awesome and amazing thing, and it does more than release endorphins. It motivates. It inspires. It creates.

Well… I think it should.

Too often, #LOVE is often relegated to this one day.

A shit ton of importance is placed on this day.

A day for a grand and wonderful expression of love.

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Me, when people start talking about #VALENTINESDAY

That? That’s boring. I HATE that. That I hate. Ick. It’s so…

Mediocre.

That kind of love, that same old, same old love is what I raise an eyebrow to and kiss my teeth at. I have higher standards for love. I don’t want the same old. I don’t want sentimental teddy bears or milk chocolate hearts. I don’t’ want lukewarm bubbly, or a dinner out.

Been there. Done that.

Do better. Expect better.

My standards for #LOVE is means that I’m ACTUALLY a romantic.

(Waits for y’all to stop laughing)

(Waiting. Waiting…) 

I AM!

Love should be an everyday expression, and not one that you wait to toss into a card. You have 365 opportunities to show love, so why try to cram it all into one day? By cramming it into this ONE day, most people end up getting half assed attempt at a grand gesture, and THAT is something I hate. Half-assery. Y’know what I hate even more? People giving credit to half-assery. Thinking that this ONE day is the one day to know and experience love.

ONE. DAY?

Are you serious?

You got a card today. A dinner even. But tomorrow? Do you just go back to the same old tomorrow? WHYYYYYY? By placing importance and value on that ONE day, you miss out on the other days. You inadvertently tell the people in your life that they don’t have to make any effort the other 364 days because as long as they show they #LOVE you today, it’ll make up the difference.

I know…other holidays are relegated to one day. We don’t celebrate Christmas 365 days of the year, so why this one. Really? Look at this way: a faithful Christian** gives thanks for the life of Jesus every day, so why can’t we acknowledge and give thanks for love every day?

I’ll be honest: part of me just wants cinnamon hearts to be available year-round, but also, I want…seek out…and cultivate love every day.

It’s more effort. But it’s worth it. You’re worth it and you know for DAMN sure I think I’m worth it.

xoxo

* – candy usually goes on sale at 6 pm…y’all have no idea how excited I am

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** – faithful Christians, feel free to correct me on the frequency thing. I got kicked out of Sunday school when I was 8 AND I’m an atheist, so I’m basing my assumption on how my friends and family act.

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Dinner For One…

Okay.

I get it.

What I’m happy about is that I “got it” a lot quicker than the last time.

I wanted a date. You wanted to fuck.

Now. These things aren’t mutually exclusive. Just because I wanted a date (first), it didn’t mean that you weren’t going to get fucked. But I can see how you might think that. But to forget that you had made plans for a date? While still remembering that you wanted to fuck me?

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We didn’t even get started, so I can’t even be mad…

(or even bitter) 

I AM annoyed. I wasn’t sure why at first. So I slept on it.

But I woke up. Annoyed. Thought about it some more.

Then it hit me.

It was the, “I have a lot on my plate” line.

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Cue up Sunshine Anderson, because I’ve heard that all before…

I get having a lot on one’s plate. I do. I really do.

But I’m not parsley, luv.

I’m the fucking steak.

The main course that you can’t wait to dive into. The one you make reservations for. The one you wait to be cooked to perfection. The one you’ll stand in line for when you can’t make a reservation.

I’m not drive thru.

So. Just like that (poof), you are gone.

Nope. I’m not interested in seeing the dessert menu.

I’mma just order some takeout.

xoxo

*

Ghosts…

In the name of research, I pulled out an old journal from ten years ago.
Shaking my head at the fact that I haven’t learned ANY dating lessons.
Those who ignore history…

Doomed.

I put away the journal when I found what I needed. Right then, a ghost appeared.

IG notification: hey girl! That ex that you can’t shake just liked a photo of you! 

My reaction:

Noooooooo.

Texted one of my girls a screencap.

“Why don’t you block him then?”

Exactly.

So I did. Unfriended him. Blocked. Removed. Him. Along with others.

It’s not 10 years ago.

I WILL NOT ignore history.

I’m giving you up
I’ve forgiven it all
You set me free

Send my love to your new lover
Treat her better
We’ve gotta let go of all of our ghosts
We both know we ain’t kids no more

xo/rr

Beyonce’s Lemonade Explains Why I’m Single…

First, lemme get some things out of the way so that you can understand the context of this post.

  • I’m NOT a Bey stan. I’ve never seen her in concert. I’ve paid to see Solage and Hov, but have no desire to see Bey in concert.
  • I do not tear out my edges and sacrifice them on a bee-covered altar every time she releases something.
  • The first full ALBUM I’ve owned by Ms. B was her last album.
  • If the headline made you think that you’ll find hotepisms or AshyCheyB quotes scattered throughout this post, you have come to the wrong place.

Okay. Let’s proceed.

First Listen

I tuned in shortly after Lemonade dropped. I had ignored social media for the hours leading up to it for unrelated reasons. When I did tune in, my TL was covered in lemon emojis. With a sigh I thought, “what has Beysus done now?” I found a link to Lemonade (HBO Canada, who dropped the ball on this?) and listened with half an ear. Even then, I only listened to a few tracks.

Hey…this is good. The kind where you find you’re screwing up your face as you nod along.

Second Listen

Woke up the next morning and all my chats were LEMONADE focused. Found another link (seriously MTV Canada, MuchMusic…Vice…anyone? Beyoncé could very well be on the $20…she’s guaranteed to print you money) and watched again.

WAIT. “HOT SAUCE” is her BAT?!!? Wooooi. G’head Bey!

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Sidebar: when should I tell a man that I already own a bat?

(I really do. It’s a treasured memento from my days on my Junior and High school teams. First girl to play on my elementary school’s team…)

I’m am HERE for angry Beyoncé. Bat-wielding Beyoncé. Set shit on fire Beyoncé. Rip out her sternum Beyoncé.

Gone is the “Cater 2 U” Beyoncé. The “Crazy in Love” Beyoncé would “…rather be crazy” and I LOVE this.

Friends have started to ask me directly for my thoughts. But there are LEVELS. I’m not ready yet. Instead I gossip about “Becky with the good hair” (my official theory: “Becky”is a composite). One friend admits she had to google where your sternum is located…I admit that I already knew because I have threatened to rip one out before. I joke that hell hath no fury like a Virgo woman scorned. When it’s really bad, we’ll go silent and then rip you apart when you least expect it. This will happen months….YEARS later.

When you thought you were safe.

Third Listen

One of my girlfriends texts me to say we have to go for drinks and discuss Lemonade in depth.

“hahahaha, I legit thougt of you at a couple of moments hahah.” I’ve decided my favourite song is “Sorry”. But not because of Becky, but because of the hook.

“I ain’t sorry…I ain’t sorry…I ain’t sorry…”

THIS Beyoncé I love. The defiantly unapologetic Beyoncé.

That’s when I realized why I was single. Well, not REALIZED, but had something that could confirm it.

This album – and really it IS an album; there is not ONE radio-friendly song on here – examines relationships. Not just THE relationship between her and Jay, but ALL her relationships. She talks about the work, the effort, the struggle, the pain, the joy, the confusion, the conflict.

RELATIONSHIPS ARE HARD YO.

Whenever I hear stories from my girlfriends who are in relationships I roll my eyes and say, “THIS is why I’m single. I can’t deal with this shit.”

(Again. I always forget to add “again”.)

It’s true. I’m not ready to accept a person’s failings. I’ve done that. I’m not ready to put in the effort, especially if I don’t think the effort will be matched.

You ain’t trying hard enough
You ain’t loving hard enough
You don’t love me deep enough
We not reaching peaks enough
Blindly in love, I fucks with you
‘Til I realize, I’m just too much for you
I’m just too much for you

I often say/warn people that I’m a LOT to deal with”. In the past, I’ve slowed down to match someone’s pace. Compromised to match. Conceded to match.

Notice how I frame all of these as negatives? Because that’s how I view what so many others call “balance”.

Let me be clear: I’m not looking for PASSION or CONFLICT or DRAMA. But I am looking for someone to walk in stride with me. Not behind. Not ahead. By my side. Does this make sense?

Fourth Listen

Hold up, they don’t love you like I love you
Slow down, they don’t love you like I love you
Back up, they don’t love you like I love you

Oooh. This I know. I love fiercely. I will be your number one cheerleader. I will “Spend my life in the dark for the sake of you and me.” The very idea of giving that much and not getting that in return?

(Where’s that bat?)

Ooooookaaaaay. Lemme give “forgiveness Beyoncé a listen. On “Sandcastles”, I realize she’s playing the keyboard. I had just been reminded that Prince told her to learn piano and she’d be unstoppable. Sounds like she listened. G’head Bey…

Her voice breaks on Sandcastles, and sigh. There it is. I know that break so well. That break is when you realize that the person standing in front of you doesn’t give what you give. They don’t love you like you love them. They’ve taken all that shine and they still choose to leave you in the dark.

You’re not angry. You’re not even annoyed. You are just so, disappointed.

So very disappointed.

With yourself. Disappointed that you let this person past all your boundaries. That you conceded on things. That you compromised. That you forgave failings. That you slowed down and you are not where you want to be because you didn’t want to leave THEM behind.

That you made lemonade out of lemons..

That they KNEW all this and they STILL fucked up.

You’re not even as mad at them as you are at yourself.

These feelings apply to ALL relationships. Romantic. Friendship. Situationships.

All. Of. Them.

So begins the process of forgiveness and letting go, because YOU will never be able to move forward unless you do. You leave them behind as they cry. But another brick is added to the wall around yourself. A brick that no one else can chip away at. It’s a little piece to remind you.

Don’t hurt yourself.

beyonce-lemonade

 

So, now I own TWO Beyoncé albums

xo/rr

*NB this post is about how aspects of this album relate to me on a personal level. If you’re looking for a good breakdown of the album and all the themes, read this piece by Sajae Elder on Noisey

Ain’t It Funny

I’ve been thinking about my exes lately…

Not because I want to.

Like a cold sore on my social life and emotional balance, they pop up…to say hi…to add me as a friend on FB…follow me on Instagram…to join their LinkedIn network…

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Yes, really. LinkedIn…what kind of recommendation am I gonna give you motherfucker?

Now here’s the plot twist: the exes that are coming around saying hello from the other side are not the guys I would expect to come come around.

You may think that my acid tongue has left a trail of broken hearts, but no. Every guy who has come looking for me in the last 12 months…has been someone who dumped me.

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I KNOW, right?

So now we’re exes, yes?

As in X = unknown.

My taste in men are diverse…so I have exes in different area codes, social groups, interest groups, tax brackets… I don’t really have a type. When things end, I’m fortunate (??) enough to not have to worry about “bumping” into them at “our spot” or anything weird. With a couple, we share the same social circles, but those interactions are generally harmless. I rarely add guys I’m dating to my social media channels, so when they come looking, they have sought me out…

I’m confused by this.

Part of my confusion is that I’m not really sentimental and I like clean breaks from things.

I don’t generally cry over breakups – I usually get angry/annoyed. In the past 10 years, I think I’ve cried over one break up. I don’t keep mementoes – I have given back presents! I may delete your number. Usually my reaction to a break up is this…

 

…and my reaction to my exes popping up like whack a moles who have lost their way and are asking me to be online friends is kinda like this:

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Someone suggested that they’re checking in to see who “won the breakup”. Who’s moved on. Who upgraded. Which one is sitting at home posting pictures on their Instagram using the lyrics to All By Myself as captions.

YOU dumped me. Doesn’t that make YOU the loser?

Heh.

But seriously. I can’t compete with them in the breakup games because I forgot to enter the competition. Have I googled an ex to see what they’re up to? Yes. Have I creeped on an ex’s social media feed? Uhm…yes. Right after I accept their request. Do I miss any of them?

(One. But I wouldn’t tell him…#pride)

But I don’t go looking for them. When they come looking for me, I wonder what they’re expecting to find?

As I delete FB friend requests from the scary exes (think “restraining order”) and ignore the LinkedIn requests from the benign ones (again WHAT kind of recommendation are you looking for), I guess I’ll chalk it up to the random that is my life.

Love is crazy, I’m glad I can smile and say

Ain’t that funny