May 31, 2011

Not Broken…Not Cracked…Just Stretching

I received a valuable life lesson today from my good sister..M. She’s wise beyond her years (she’s just a few years younger than me honestly) but I’ve always viewed her as a baby sister of sorts…that’s how it is. Sometimes a child (in the metaphorical sense) shall lead you.

Well…lately I’ve felt like I feel have an impending heartbreak coming.  What seemed like it would be magical may just go down in flames and I don’t know if I can handle it.  I mean, I’ve been divorced and to compare this is truly nothing. Yet that doesn’t negate the pain.  The inevitable ending of a possibility. The person drawing back. The person ignoring you. The person realizing they have a better option than you. The person realizing that this just won't fit into their life..their time..or their schedule.

 I saw myself possibly LOVING this person. And I don’t use that term lightly. There seems to be some distance. Some tension. Some uncertainty. And I have no reason why. I don’t know if my heart will actually break. But right now…it seems like I see some fine, hairline cracks. The kind you’d see in some old stained glass in a church window. Something is tugging at me. My heartstrings are tense..not totally broken.

I expressed this to my friends, and my little sister, M, says:

“It’s not cracked…just stretching”.

I sat there for a minute and was like..”Huh?” Me being the wise, older person should have gotten that right away.

She went on to say:
so i had some time to think on this "stretching" theory of mine.  Stretching hurts and when something stretches space is created and that can make you feel like there's a void or emptiness, or it can be a sign of increased capacity... also stretching is indication of some level of elasticity, too and i take that to be a good thing.  so what i'm saying is... you're right, your heart is not breaking.  i think it's stretching.  i think that after your divorce (which was not like lifetimes ago, it was only 3 years ago) your heart might have hardened and you're getting back out there and it's HARD.  don't let anyone ever tell you it's like riding a bike or getting back on a horse... opening your heart is HARD.  you don't just fall off, get a band-aid, or ride safer with a helmet.  and so now, with some new experiences, your heart is stretching and i don't know what else to say about the process, but the Bible does say to guard your heart, so i would just lil' sis some advice and say that even while it's stretching and it seems like there's all this space for all these new feelings, be cautious because when something is being stretched, it's vulnerable.

As I sat and read her words, tears fell from my eyes. Granted I had had a few beers on my patio listening to Fantasia’s “Bittersweet”, but I just knew she was on point. I am  trying to be vulnerable. I have no idea how to be out there with a heart that was hard. So maybe what I am feeling, this stretching is a good thing. This uncomfortable feeling that is akin to trying to break in some new shoes..I’m trying to break in a new heart. I’m stretching to make room for love. For something that will allow me to be my authentic self. I do want to be in love. I want a very passionate yet fulfilling relationship. I want to not sit here and question myself or who I am. Yes, I must learn to date again..but it doesn’t and shouldn’t be this damn hard.

Cracked…maybe. Broken…no. But stretching..most certainly.

Thanks M....

May 26, 2011

The Wedding Pariah

When I was married and a newlywed, my husband and/or I were invited at to at LEAST 6 weddings a month. (Not even kidding).  Every weekend was packed with at least the brief appearance at a wedding. Or  a trip out of town to go to a wedding of a friend...or a friend of a friend.....etc. It seemed as though folks wanted us to be there. Not because we were all that close..or that we were the best of friends. But..they needed that "newlywed" energy. You see...Me and the ex were THAT couple. The fun couple that laughed, danced, and looked as though we had been married 20 years. People loved us. I had my plus-ONE for life...and that was just fine with me.

Fast forward to 2008....and I know of plenty of people getting married. Ask me how many wedding invites I've recieved since my divorce? 2. Yep...just 2. How many people do I know that got married? Tons....

Once you get divorced or are single, folks look at you as this "wedding pariah". It's not..."Oh..we HAVE to invite The W----s" nor it's more like.."Jeesh.....she's single. I mean..where can we PUT her? Is she gonna bring a date??" and believe that is how wedding planning goes. Ask me how I know? Because I DID IT...yep...I did it. However...I had this strategic plan of having tables of singles mixing and mingling....I wanted my wedding to be this match making event. And it actually worked. We got a wedding out it (which I wasnt invited to..but that's another story)......3 babies CONCIEVED that night. It was magical....(lol).

Ya know...I am conviced the reason why we divorced folks don't get invited to weddings is because we just have that "energy" (or percieved energy). They dont want us to jinx the wedding and be this pariah with the albatross of "Divorce" hanging around our necks. True..we may have sage wisdom..but seeing your divorced friend sitting at the table make rub you the wrong way.

And OH! Let's not even get on baby showers if you are both divorced AND childless. They might as well think they are sending you a suicide note...saying 'B*tch kill yo self!". It isnt that deep. Hey..I like finger sammiches and looking at baby clothes like the rest of the fine ladies. I LOVE to go baby clothes shopping. Just the other day..I was wondering who was pregnant  or had a newborn so I could send them a gift.. It gives me a tiny bit of hope. And quite frankly...we all need that.

So I say all of that to say...don't discount your divorced, childless, or single girlfriend when these major events happen in your life like weddings and baby showers happen. We just want to share in your joy. Not all of us are (for lack of a better word), "haters". Not all of us (again, for lack of a better word) are bitter. To see your joy, share in that joy, gives us hope and joy.

Don't shut us out.

May 24, 2011

Summertime...: A Poem

Georgia Heat
Air Conditioner
Ceiling fan
Too slow
We lie
In Bed
Sheets off
Can't cool off
We try
Skin touching
Too hot
Sweat Drips
Into cleaveage
Between  thighs
You touch ...
Finger down..
Tracing trails..
Placing it in your mouth
You leave
Ice Cubes
Trace my lips
Down my neck
Down my cleavage
Ample Breasts
Nipples chilled
Drip down
Into my Navel
Navel becomes Well
You drink
Ice Drips
Thighs cool
Up and down.
Flower watered
Opened up
Heat permeates
"I'm hot!"
"I'm cooling you down"
"No you aren't"
Air Conditioner
Georgia Heat
We lie
In bed

May 21, 2011

19th Century Wisdom

..from pioneering writer, activist, and novelist Pauline Hopkins

‎"I am thinking what a horrible thing it is that we women are always loving the wrong men--worthless,heartless men who cannot appreciate in even a small degree the love we waste upon them"- Pauline Hopkins' "Hagar's Daughter"

May 16, 2011

Dear Married Friends...STFU

Dating is hard enough. It is even hard if in your circle of friends you are the only single person (or in my case, a newly single person….).  Usually when chicks are dating, it’s not so bad. But as soon as they get married, it is as if their brain cells took a hiatus and they forgot what it was like to be single. They have no idea how to interact with you when you are lamenting about the ups and downs of your relationship.
I was married once. NEVER and I do mean NEVER did I say the words “Oh lord..I am SO GLAD I am not single” when talking to a single girlfriend. It is hard enough to be single. It is even harder to have it rubbed in your face, intentionally or not by some “well-meaning” friend
You know something, I think I may have to just cut my married friends off for a while. I know they THINK they mean well. But in reality, you are doing more harm than good. So, in the meantime, if you want to converse with  us, and we want to vent on our relationships or dating, please refrain from using the following phrases:
“Oh Lord..see..this is why I am glad I am not single anymore! All that foolishness you are going through” (So you lightweight gloating in the fact that you are single aint helping either, b*tch)
“Just dump him girl and move on!” (.So Imma dump him cause he forgot to put the top on the toothpaste? Get real…this only applies in non-harmful issues. If it is harmful, please tell us that)
“Oh but you are still young! You got time” (Says who..Jesus may come tomorrow!)
“Marriage aint all that it’s cracked up to be” (Let me be the judge of that..just cause your shit is awful don’t mean mime will be)
“Girl what I wouldn’t give to be single” (No you wouldn’t..b*tch stop lying)
“Just enjoy this before you get tied down with kids” (Maybe a bundle of joy will BRING me joy)
“You are just too picky…so what he got 3 kids, been in jail, don’t go to church” (Listen to how you sound….kick rocks!)

I mean I could go on and on. The lesson here is to please choose your words carefully. Learn to just be a sounding board for a friend.  Just reassess your girlfriend duties. Let me cry. Let me fuss. Let me get mad. Just learn to STFU…and maybe..just maybe…you’ll get that coveted invite to that wedding.

(Not from me though……………I ain’t telling you wenches sh*t….LOL)

May 11, 2011

Taking a “Test Drive”

One of my really good friends, CJ has been single from sometime. She is a fun, spunky and outgoing Southern girl with a good heart and morals. Despite all this, she like the rest of us has been pretty unlucky in the love department.
She told me she was interested in a guy. She really liked him until he said something so remarkably stupid. She said she told him she didn’t want to just “give up the drawers” to anyone. She definitely wanted it to be special (it had been a while for her). She said the dude told her before he can decide if he can even entertain the idea of an exclusive relationship or even DATING, he has to “test drive” her sexually.
Say what??
Look, I understand that sexual compatibility is a must. But sex is pretty basic and everything can be taught or coached if you have a particular preference. But I find it totally unfair to say that a prerequisite to DATING is that you have to bump uglies.
Not cool.
I am sick and tired of HOES and Hoe behavior winning. SO you mean to tell me I have to “put out” in order for you to even consider wanting to spend time with me? And God forbid if the sex is bad, I guess I’ll just never hear from you again. What happened to courting? Do we have to just put the goods on the table in order to keep a man even remotely interested? Just so that my Friday evenings stay occupied and I’m not with my cat and a bottle of Reisling?
I thought about this today as I was eating my yummy Stonyfield Greek Yogurt and listening to the Steve Harvey Morning Show. There, the dating segment featured equally yummy singer Tank and 3 bachelorettes vying for his attention and to win a luxury, all expenses paid date with him. Well…not only were these three women all high yellow (that’s another blog in itself…) they were just putting the goods all out on the table. Saying they do “lingerie flag football” and they wanted “his body on their body”. Say word? So you just lost the good sense God gave you because TANK was on the radio? I don’t give a fuck if it was Tank, Prince Harry or whoever else. You don’t have to slang the pussy up under a man’s nose, dangling it like a carrot for him to be interested! This is clearly sad and downright pathetic. They didn’t mind letting Tank “test drive” them on the first date. It was awful. Clearly they would have never picked me for that show. I mean …a brown, natural PhD student surely can’t win against a high-yellow Lingerie Flag Football playing /Print Model chick whose long term goals in life is to “treat people nice, stay positive,  and find a good relationship”.  This vapid heffa and her Miss Black America pageant answers…*smh*
I was reading The Help by Kathryn Stockton and there was a line in there that really resonated with me, because it sounded like something my own Southern mother would say. The main character, a meek and awkward (yet brilliant) woman who had been pretty annoyed with her mother, realizes that despite her mother’s faults, she gave her some sage advice.
“Don’t let him cheapen you”
Don’t let a man (or woman if that is your preference) cheapen and debase you. Don’t compromise who you are for the sake of not being alone. Don’t be some sort of “test drive” for a relationship.
 Because usually a guy who test drives rarely buys….

May 9, 2011

(Non) Lovers Anonymous

Me: Hello. My name is TheMochaPeach. And I am love.

(Audience): Hello TheMochaPeach, Welcome! You are in a safe space to share!

Me: Ok. Truth is. I am not addicted to love. I'm addicted to NOT loving.

(Audience): *looking with confused faces*

Yeah, I am not addicted to love. I am addicted to NOT loving. Let me explain...

I'm one tough egg to crack, so to speak.  When I was young, I really and truly only had a few boyfriends before my ex husband. And the break ups were so dramatic and crazy, I just built up a resistance to love, vulnerability or tenderness. When I met my ex husband, I thought I would be able to relax, become vulnerable, and love freely. That was great for a while...then here again came the hurt and pain. Once again, I built up a shell around my love No one has been able to penetrate my heart since.

I've been divorced for almost 3 years. In that time, I've done a lot of soul searching, terrible dating, and even some therapy.  I realize why I'm so cold and aloof. It all goes back to my "dad". I hate to sound like the a-typical girl with Daddy issues (but hey..we ALL got em. Either Daddy is the worst...or Daddy is perfect and no one can measure up). Well,  my dad is the absolute worst. And because of our fractured realtionship, that first relationship that should be the positive model for all relationships you have with men, I have been unable to really let me guard down, be vulnerable and love freely. Not to mention, I often attract those same douchy, narcissitic assholes that my Dad is. (In my ex's defense, he wasn't narcissitic by a long shot. We just had our own differences. He'll  be the first to admit, he came into it with his own "Mama" issues. But..that is neither here nor there).

Post divorce, I've noticed I've ran off every nice guy intentionally, quickly branding them as some sort of "liar" and deciever so I wouldnt get hurt in the long run. The "not loving" just a lot easier. Soon as I found that I cared or started to care TOO much or started to get excited, I checked myself, reverting back to the "ice queen"  I was accustomed to being, and probably drove them away. I was mean for no apparent reason other than I needed SOME excuse to get rid of dude. Why stick around for the hurt and pain?

I'm learning now that being "cold and aloof" when in reality I just want some human contact sends mixed signals. That isn't fair.. Someone recently told me that I had to "look at each person with a fresh set of eyes". It's true. Everyone doesnt have the same Relationship DNA and I can't blame them for that or prejudge them. Every guy isn't my Dad...every relationship isn't going to go down in flames. I just need to enjoy it for what it is at the moment...and not sweat it when it doesn't turn out the way I had anticipated. Or better yet, BETTER than I anticipated.

So somehow, I need to go into rehab for this "non-loving" nature that I have.  I hide it just as well as any crack addict would. On the surface I look so sweet, kind and good natured. Ready and willing to love you to the depths of your soul.... But deep inside harbors this mad woman who is a cold, aloof, and distant lover. I meet a guy and it all goes well...until my little secret starts seeping out. Then the wrath is unleashed, leaving the guy bewildered and confused like.."What just happened?? We were good a few days ago??"

*sigh* one said loving ME was easy (or perfect). But lord knows I want to try to make it easier.....

May 4, 2011

The "Sporadically Happy" Dater: A Quick Blog

"Isn't that what being a single,black woman dating (esp in this city) is nowadays ? Just being happy in sporadic moments and on random occassions?"

I put that quote on my Facebook page today. Instantly, I got a few people to hit me up, asking me what I meant by being "sporadically happy" or that I made it seem like for being a black woman dating isn't happy or joyous. aint.

I'm generally a pretty positive and happy person. But when it comes to dating, I often times are more dissapointed than pleased.  This isnt to say that I look for dating to make me happy. I don't. Dating is TIRING. It's a part time, if not full time, job. Weeding through the resumes and the dating "intereviews" can be a bit disheartening.  And when your applicant pool is already low and being sought at by many different companies, you just want to close up shop and call it a day...and just have a "temp" fill in for the "hard" jobs every now and again. And even your "temp" can flake out on you.

So I settle for cherish the random occasions when I am happy. I revel and look forward to those times. ..the time when I  truly and blissfully happy when I am seeing someone. The times when I could care less what the outcome of this relationship will be.  The random times when I feel loved and pleased. I like the sporadic moments of feeling like I'm the only girl in their eyes (when I probably am not) and feeling totally adored. The butterflies. The jumping into their arms. The PDA...The well..psuedo-love I guess. And I look back on those moments in my dating experiences warmly and fondly.

I guess for me, all that falling madly in love stuff has lost its luster. I'm ok with feeling it every now and then. And after settling into seeing someone for longer than a month, I'm over it. Not to mention, HE"s over it too. Men def arent putting in an effort to "create" those magical moments for you. Romance is fleeting. Some dudes don't have a romantic bone in their body and forget the golden rule: Women need Romance for Sex...while Men need Sex for Romance.  They are just sorta like "whatever"....and in turn...women are like "Well...I guess I'll take it".

I'll take it...for now. I mean....that's what dating is anyway...just flashes in the pan of what relationship COULD be on their best days.


May 2, 2011

Red Flags: Babies R-NOT-Us

*In this weekly (ok I hope weekly) summer blog series Red Flags, we will be talking about some critical red flags in relationships that perhaps will make your ears perk up and your eyes bug out a little. These are little warning signs that perhaps you need to take heed of and proceed with caution before you go any further. Speaking from experience, these somewhat ring true*
The Scenario:
You and your main squeeze are out at the park enjoying a leisurely afternoon. You are strolling and holding hands and being so in love. You sit on a bench and look across and see a mother with her baby. You smile, having fleeting and romantic thoughts of you and your main squeeze bounced a bundle of brown joy on his knee. You look over at your honey and he frowns “Ugh…I pray that kid doesn’t start crying”. You frown…”But it’s a’s supposed to cry”. He goes “I can’t deal with all that crying”.
You start to notice more and more how your sweetie isn’t too fond of kids. He makes comments about how noisy a restaurant is when a kid may just be giggling or talking. You comment on how cute a pair of little girls are and he goes “I hope they don’t start acting up” or you see a cute newborn and he goes “They look like some weird alien rats.  You comment you need to go pick up a baby shower gift for a friend and he goes “ are a festering money pit”. Or worse, he makes fun of a kid with an obvious handicap or physical/mental disability.
**insert soul-stirring shudder**
Well sista...Before you throw away the condoms and birth control pills and start a baby registry…you might want to reel it all back in.  The fantasies of 2.5 kids may not be HIS fantasy. Believe it or not, everyone doesn’t get bit by the “fatherhood/motherhood” bug no matter how old they may be. Some people find children, dare I say, repulsive. Maybe a person doesn’t want to be tied down with the responsibilities that raising a child entails.  Or, dude could just be an utter and repulsive assclown who has no business procreating because he’s a dick. Nevertheless…
Have you even talked about this? About how you feel about having kids? What if, by some reason, that birth control fails and you are now pregnant? What do you do then? Do you think he’d by the type to rejoice, or ultimately, the kind of guy that would think you trapped him?  Would be at every appointment or just say “call me if something happens”? Would he willingly pay child support or be like “B*tch…I’m not giving you a dime”.
I think once a relationship progresses, a couple should talk about children.  To be honest, you need to have this conversation WAY before you engage in your first sexual encounter (cause sh*t can and does happen). If one party or the other is strongly against kids or is simply on the fence, and you strongly want children, no matter the levels of compatibility, this fundamental fallacy will ruin your relationship. How can you go forward in a relationship knowing the two of you want different things? And if one compromises for the other, in either way, then it could be your undoing as a couple.
Speaking from personal experience, I’m 32 years old and almost at the “biological downturn” of my fertility swing (if you let the doctors tell it).  When I hit 30, a lightbulb went off like “IT”S TIME!!” So basically, I have 3 good years to not be in the “high risk” category. So…I have no time to waste playing the “guessing game” with a guy. I ask straight up “Do you want children?? Do you want to get married?” Now, that may be a little forward and takes the fun out of dating, but I’m dating with a mission and a purpose. And that purpose is to get knocked up and be a wife (not necessarily in that order, now). Sometimes someone can be MADE to be a great father, but the exceptional father (or mother) is a natural or just naturally warm to the idea. You're not asking for a "baby whisperer"/miracle worker...just someone who finds joy in children.
I say all of this to say: If a guy says less than favorable things about children or acts quite nonchalant when the subject is brought up, even casually, then it may not be a match made in Babies-R-Us heaven.  This may very well be a red flag. There is someone out there who wants the same things you do, such as having a family. 
And you won’t have to compromise to get it.


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