I have so much to talk about! Where do I begin? It’s my fault for taking three days to update. I’m really trying to do better at blogging. Hang in there with me everyone! It’s my goal to eventually have daily updates.
So many things are happening in our world today. I’m a very opinionated woman but the older I get, the more I realize the worth of my opinion. It’s one thing to have an opinion and it’s another thing to share it. The last thing I want to be is a gossip or mean spirited. So although there’s PLENTY to chew the fat about, I often find myself silent.
Thinking before you speak is a discipline that should improve with age. I know there are some older folks who feel as if age grants them license to speak their whole mind but I don’t agree with that. I think age should give a person even greater pause. Words have power. They are spirit. They have the power to transform. So it’s imperative that we take and choose our words carefully.
Since it’s wedding season, I want to take a moment to talk about weddings and engagements from a single mom’s perspective. Although I’m unmarried and have never been married, that doesn’t mean that I haven’t come close to walking down the aisle with a couple of men. The first serious relationship where we were actually engaged took place when I was 19 years old. That relationship lasted for eight years. The primary reason that relationship didn’t work out was because I grew up and he was 15 years my senior. So, one day when you feel like discussing the topic of, “Should I Date An Older Man?”, I got you! Been there and done it.
Thankfully, that relationship was built on a foundation of friendship which made it extremely difficult to say good-bye. It’s one thing to walk away from a romance and another to walk away from a confidante.
Every now and then we still reach out to each other, seven years after our break up. I care deeply for his family and as I mentioned to him the last time we spoke by phone, “You’re more like an ex husband than an ex boyfriend or fiancee”. We lived together. Shared bills. Shared tears. Had a pregnancy scare…or two. He was there in sickness and health. We laughed and joked together. I prepared his meals, he washed my clothes.We celebrated holidays and birthdays together. We were everything but happy together.
And that’s why I decided to call it quits.
Fast forward to my last relationship, which was my children’s father. This relationship could not be compared to the one before it, primarily because it did not begin as a friendship. Our physical involvement began way earlier than the previous relationship and this time, I got pregnant…
I’m not a bitter baby mama who can’t admit that she ever loved the father of her children. I did and I still do, although differently than before. He represented freedom and liberation to me. For the first time I felt like a woman, a real, big, voluptuous, curvaceous, hot as fire woman. He affirmed it each time he desired me. I ate it up like icecream and cake. But that’s the bad part of having a junk food relationship. It tastes good while you’re eating it but it won’t nourish you or help you grow.
When my soul needed more, he couldn’t give it. When I needed a confidante, he couldn’t be trusted. When I did give him my secrets, they were hurled back at me like daggers in arguments he knew he was losing. I came to realize that although my body was satisfied, my soul had to retreat and protect herself from this man. He never once asked or cared about my talents, hobbies or interests. Sometimes, he didn’t even care if I was physically satisfied or not. Before too long, I began to realize that this relationship was one sided and it wasn’t on my side. I loved our children and felt like I owed it to them to try. I tried hard. We lived together, we fought, we cried, we apologized, we moved back in together, we fought some more, and it never got better. Honor was missing. As much as he claimed to love me, I never felt honored. We never went anywhere together. We’d both get off work on Fridays and while I’d be completely caught up in the children, he’d be dressed in his fly gear, getting ready to go “hang out” most of the night. When I say most of the night, please understand this wasn’t 2-4 hours. If he left at 5pm, I wouldn’t see him again til 4 a.m., and that was his idea of coming home early. However, when I asked him could he and I go out, his answer was, “We don’t have the money to go out”. I wasn’t fancy. I was willing to sit in the dining room of Wendy’s if it meant a chance to dress up a little and go out with my man. That didn’t happen.
Where was the honor?
No compliments. When I asked him why he’d never compliment me, he told me, “I shouldn’t have to tell you that you look good. You should already know”. Really? Is that how it works? lol!
Marriage was always a goal of mine. I don’t get into relationships to be casual. Once I hit 30, I was serious about settling my happy behind down with somebody. I’ve done the dating multiple guys thing. I’d had my fill. I was ready to settle in and be a family and my hope was that with enough time and if my presentation was on point enough, he’d buy in to my dream.
So I cooked, cleaned, ironed his work uniforms, I was his personal alarm clock every morning, gave him gas and lunch money when he asked for it (which was often), gave it up when he asked for it and unlocked the door for him like a good little “wifey” when he came strolling home smelling like liquor and beer at 4 a.m.
But I had a man! That’s all that mattered, right?
Nothing’s perfect. All relationships take work. There’s going to be problems anywhere you go and with any man you meet. These are the things I told myself, week after week, and night after night as I sat up waiting for him to come home, hoping he was simply “hangin with the guys” as he told me.I told myself that if I’d just hang in there with him and be a good little wifey, my patience and long suffering would one day pay off and be rewarded with a wedding ring.
Whenever I brought up the subject of marriage, his agitation could barely be concealed. He gave terse answers and sharply said, “I don’t want to talk about it anymore”. Marriage was my goal, but was it his? I wanted it to be his. I wanted him to want me and to love me. I wanted him to honor me as the mother of his children. I was the only one in our house who had a different last name.
Can’t we all just have the same last name?
The last and final time we broke up (Aug 2010) was far less dramatic and traumatic than previous breakup’s had been but I’ve learned so much since then. We toyed with the possibility of reconciling. I even prayed and fasted that we’d see a turn around in our relationship.
But at the end of the day, I still believe that God sets before us doors and allows us to choose which ones we’ll walk through.
There’s some things that God won’t interfere with and one of those things is the character and integrity a man or a woman chooses to cultivate and live by. God can use anybody but your character & integrity determines exactly what and how much He can use you to do.
After thinking about that long and hard, I realized that as much as I wanted a husband, a family, and matching last names, I didn’t want it at any cost. The memory of waiting up all night was emblazoned in my mind. What do you do when the man you’re with just wants to crash at your house but doesn’t want to live there? He wants to sleep til 12 noon, get up, and be gone all day and return at 11 pm or later? How is that a happy home?
Why do I want someone who doesn’t want me?
Why do I want someone who would even hesitate at the offer to spend the rest of his life with me?
I used to believe in women giving men ultimatums but I’ve since changed my opinion.
I believe that every woman who reaches the point where she feels the need to give an ultimatum to a man needs to turn around and give one to HERSELF. How long are YOU going to let this continue? How long will YOUR silence be consent? How long until you say enough is enough? How long until you accept that you deserve to be honored and demand to be treated with respect? How long until you reward disrespect and dishonor with your absence?
No man will ever have to worry about me asking him when are we going to get married.
If I have to ask…
I can’t say that I’m ready to date again or if I even want to. I’m very much interested in cultivating a solid friendship with someone new. My soul longs for that type of connection. That’s the thing that people don’t tell you while they’re out there running around being hot in the tail.
But I’ll tell you and I’ll be honest about it.
I don’t care how good the sex is and how loud he can make you scream…
It sucks not having someone to pillow talk with.
It sucks not having someone to bounce ideas off of.
It sucks not having someone who will celebrate your successes and comfort you through your failures.
It sucks feeling all alone while sitting next to your man.
It sucks not knowing where you stand with him…ever.
It sucks having to ask for compliments and the empty feeling that comes when he offers it half heartedly ONLY because you asked.
It sucks not being able to trust him with your secrets because when he gets mad, he throws it back at you.
It sucks knowing that someone else probably has your man’s heart.
It sucks to daily lay your pride and dignity down as payment for a man’s company.
That’s what they DON’T tell you when they’re running around acting like characters in Sex In the City.
They don’t show you what REALLY happens… or how it all can really make you feel.
After going through all of that, I value friendship so much more than anything else. Even if a marriage never transpires, who couldn’t use a friend for life? Who’s life wouldn’t be improved by the presence of a faithful friend, there through thick and thin, hospital visits, and bouts with the flu.
It’s better to make a friend before you become romantically involved with a man than to try to find the friend in that man that may not even be there once you do become intimate.
So we’ll see! I’ve got two little children who are my responsibility to raise properly. As I’ve stated before, we are already a family. We’re not looking to become a family with the help of any man. He’d simply JOIN our family, already in progress. 🙂
It’s possible that my future love interest will have a child or children of his own. In today’s society, that’s to be expected and highly likely in my age bracket. Either way we go, whether he’s learning to love and accept only my children or we’re learning to love and accept each others’, it will take work.
Work doesn’t scare me.
Unwilling workers scare me.