Pulling Numbers and Letters

So I’ve been told I must got the GCP. What’s the GCP you ask… well in the words of Jay Z and in the spirit of Don Magic Juan’s pimp challis, “my cup runneth over”

I hear it all the time…”who are you dating NOW!?!?” like I’ve got a wheel I spin to see who’s on my hit list this month. Or the ubiquitous, “You always got a (insert term for man: dude, boyfriend, whatever)” comment, that is so interesting to me. “Got” would imply in my vocabulary, something that one has on lock… yeah nope. I might be able to pull, as my one friend termed it “letters and numbers” (I’ll leave that for you to decipher), but dating is the pits. I personally despise it. Plus at this point, post 40 with kids as the custodial parent, there is no dating. Any outings or conversations, texts, or emoji sends are basically one long ass interview on how much you make me laugh, how long I can stand to be around you in one sitting, and whether you match at least three of my five must haves, that better quickly materialize into a relationship if you meet the requirements, or I gotta go.

Most of my first dates have morphed into relationships that last years. Instead of “dating”, I participate in the pull and catch; it really is self explanatory. There is a subtle art to the pull and the catch… and while I’m not interested in doing much more than expressing interest and then letting him find his good thing… cuz I’m a mf lady, I am involved in the process. Not that I’m an expert… but I pull a lot of As and Bs, and 9s to 7s. You can keep that 10 though, leave him for the chicks with time on their hands. He’s too pretty for how my life is set up.

The Art of the Pull

1. There is nothing sexier, in a man or a woman, than confidence. Period. When you know you are fine, he’ll know it and she’ll know it. Confidence is the art of aesthetic persuasion. Notice I didn’t speak of beauty, that’s too subjective a thing to use on humans. You need something foolproof.

Confidence is the reason she wore THAT dress, the one you hate and think she’s too whatever for, but that him, him, and her are staring at. Confidence is the reason she cut her hair the way she likes it, with no worries about what he thinks, or why he wears that combination of shirt, pants, and shoes that confuse you but your woman says “his outfit is NIIIICE!” Confidence is not bound by beauty, body type, color, or any subjective boundary… it’s an undeniable acceptance of how wonderfully made you are, despite whether you do or don’t fit into society’s ideals. And it’s 100% ownership in that acceptance. Get you sum.

2. If you are playing Bid Whist and you pass on your bid, and you knew you had 7 Uptown and the clowns next to you bid 6 Uptown -cue Aretha “Ain’t No Way”- how pissed will you be that you didn’t bet on yourself. You knew what you had and what you wanted, but you got scared of the win. Well, in dating, the win is the guy or girl you dream of, the one you know or don’t yet know who will check all your boxes. You have to bet on yourself when the opportunity presents itself, and speak on your wants. Now you don’t have to be full on direct, but if you are like me, you give an in. You leave the door ajar. You flirt, come hither, a little Happy Birthday Mr President… and then you go sit your cute ass down somewhere. If he’s in for the win, he’ll bet on himself, and complete the deal. If he’s not, he missed out. Cue the death of Pac-Man…

But always bet on you, know what you want, set a boundary, and then touch your boundary by going for the win. Shit, at least smile.

3. NO ONE LIKES REJECTION! Not women OR men. Just because men get rejected more, does not mean they enjoy it. C’mon, that’s ludicrous. So just like the thought makes you want to hide under a rock, it makes him want to hide in a cardboard fort. So, it is very important that you make sure he can see your open door… fellas too, women are shooting their shots out here these days. Its also important you clearly communicate with kindness your closed door. If you are involved, say so. If you aren’t interested for one reason or another, say so. If you simply are casing the joint and don’t yet know what you want, say that too. But whatever you message, make it clear. If one doesn’t have to guess what you want, but it’s clear, the more likely you’d get what you want! It’s a pull not a push.

The Art of the Catch

1. “You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar”

Okay so one wants flies, but if you want anything, you get much closer to your goal by being positive, with smiles, with kindness, and with, well, honey. There’s a reason Pooh ate it by the jar full… shit was good and sweet! Likewise, being a bitch will get you nowhere. Only assholes, real assholes like bitches, they enjoy that game. But people tryna boss up and get this money …

… have no time for that game, cuz tryna figure out your bad attitude takes up time away from the grind. Once you have pulled, you have to be kind and open to the catch. And while we’ll eat cod, every one prefers fresh water fish over salt water fish. Be not salty or stank.

2. Ella Mai said it best :

“I put my feelings on safety
So I don’t go shootin’ where your heart be

All that extra special crazy, it took you five minutes to text me back, trippin for nothing, checking his phone, acting a damn fool is for the birds. Yes, KeKe Wyatt might have that bomb snapper, but again, that’s your typical saltwater variety. It’s sure to run your pressure up and increase your light bill. Let’s look at the quality of her choosers. The last dude was a preacher who left her while she was pregnant with their third child, after she raised two of his children, right… okay enough said. We want to be a quality catch just like we want quality fishermen. And you simply are not exhibiting quality behaviors when you are acting a fool. You have to remember what pulled dude… your confidence, self-love, high esteem, win-win-win-win attitude, and your kindness. Keep those factors at play the entire time. Put your weapons down and rely on your personal stock of personality and class to end up, hooked up with a quality dude. But you gotta be quality first.

3. So since I’ve earned my degree in letters and numbers… I think it’s safe to tell you, that the final test, the piece de resistance, the grand finale of the catch is the most important. Webbie had I-N-D-E-P-E-D-E-N-T what you know about me… and I’ve got C-O-N-S-I-S-T-E-N-C-Y, that shit’s so fly! So they say women date & marry men hoping they will change, and men date & marry women hoping they’ll stay the same. Now I’m all for growth, but I don’t think you have to change who you are fundamentally to grow, you just get better. I’m with the fellas. We should be FIRST, ensuring we are dating people who we like and accept AS IS! At 40… they might not ever be anyone different than the person you see in front of you. Furthermore, we could stop sending our representative and just be who tf we are. Then be consistently that in word and deed. If I tell you I’m going to cook you dinner on Thursday, only an emergency out of my control would change that. If I say I’m going to be respectful of you, that’s what it is. I’ll even respect you and me enough, in the presence of your disrespect, not to stick around and bust your head to the white meat. In order for human beings to feel safe enough to be emotionally vulnerable and mentally free they must be in space that’s consistent, which is synonymous with peace. You won’t get chose if you bring chaos.

So you see, it’s that simple. And if you are doing all those things and he doesn’t respond, he’s not the one. Move on with grace and bitter-free. You put your feelings on safety so you wouldn’t black out on these dudes, and simultaneously dodged a bullet. See how the universe is always working with you. Now put on your sundress or those gray sweatpants and that beater, check yourself in the mirror, do the Blade Icewood dance, and go out here, boss up and pull letters and numbers, and soon you’ll be saying …”my phone won’t stop ringing!”

“It’s Mr. Lee Iacocoa
And I’m the mayor of the mitten
Ya’ll niggaz ain’t bossin up y’all bullshittin!” -Blade Icewood and G-Rock “Boy Would You”

Looking… at the Front Door

  1. Check your phone
  2. Stalk you on social media to see whose booty pic you liked.
  3. Sneak watch you texting people.
  4. Give a DAMN about any of that.

That’s a list of what I’m NOT gon do!

So let’s be honest. Black men don’t cheat my ass… they cheat, women cheat, Indian transsexuals cheat, Tibetan polyamorous bisexuals cheat. People are imperfect. People are stupid. People are selfish. People are tempted and weak. But what won’t happen, is me looking for your cheating.

Nope.

The cliches are true…

What is done in the dark will come to light!

If you go looking for trouble, you’ll find it.

But if you got a job, a life, take care of your skin, and drink your own water, you don’t have time to concern yourself with the transgressions of other individuals who don’t respect or care about your feelings and who give up.

Cheating is giving up. A cheater is a quitter. Instead of dealing with issues that arise they take your relationships trade secrets outside of the relationship and with it their intimacy, insecurity, and infidelity. Flag on the play! Now if you choose to forgive and move forward with that person, cheers to you! However, cheating, that is a deal breaker over this way.

But looking at attractive women, talking about attractive women, sharing with their friends, communicating with their friends… it ain’t cheating. It’s not something I care to spend any time worrying about… because you can be sure I’m looking at these fine chocolate brothas, talking to my friends about these fine chocolate brothas, talking to my friends when I need to, and checking on ALL of my people. I have zero interest in cheating on anyone, but I’m neither blind nor dead and fine is fine… okay. Most importantly, I am secure in mine. If you wanna give up this 80 and go get that 20, go ahead. But numbers don’t lie… only men and women do.

I’m a fan of not just emotional intelligence but sexual intelligence. The sight of a beautiful woman should be something you look at, it’s aesthetically pleasing, and ABSOLUTELY healthy and normal. If you looked at me that way, chances are you see all these other fine ass girls too. Finding someone attractive and acting on that attraction are two entirely different things. The ability to do the former without engaging in the latter… a sign of sexual intelligence.

So follow Big Booty Judy on Instagram if you want… but have some fucking loyalty… if the sneakers she has on with those booty shorts are fire… show your girl. Keeping that kinda stuff from me will get you thank you nexted. All that other, I’m unconcerned with.

But go sharing the ole bait and tackle… that’s a one way ticket to Nopelandia and I live in Yestopia.

“I say it now like I said it before
I’m lookin’ at the front door” -Main Source

Makidada

Weezie & Helen

Florida & Wilona

Pam & Gina

Whitley & Kim

Joan & Toni

Cleo & Stoney

Taystee & Poussey… (real tears)

Suzy Skrew & Sascha Thumper (thots need friends too)

Issa & Molly

Celie & Nettie

We don’t need “Thelma & Louise” we got our own Black Girl Besties in History to choose from. Don’t underestimate the real life need for a Black Girl Bestie. She is like your very own superhero. I call mine boonapolis, that’s Greek for she’s mine (not really, but go with it). Every so often she just unties my cape, puts it on over hers and scoops me cuz I’m out here tired, sleepwalking, had too much tequila (ok that’s usually her), being wild, or just need to be Robin for a little while. So she does her whole Batwoman thing… slaying and what not. Lemme explain…

Basically, it’s hard out here for a pimp…

and by pimp I mean “Phenomenon in Melanated Pulchritude” (you’re welcome and yes you can use it…)

… and we need some support. A group of like minded sistas is very important, but that one you can depend on, the keeper of your secrets, the holder of your most deep truths, the one that keeps their “dressed in all Black like the omen” outfit in a duffle in the trunk, always ready to knuck if they buck…she is very necessary. And when people say one name… the other usually follows.

👏🏽You and me, us never part 👏🏽

In a world that diminishes us no matter how much they mimic us, she is like your shadow, the only one that really understands. She knows your number; she remembers the ones you no longer claim. She completes your thoughts; she knows what you are thinking. Y’all got inside jokes and code words. She will call your ass ALL the way out, and everyone else knows only she can do that. Likewise you call her on her shit, because every partner in crime needs an equal partner. You help bury her dead bodies, she’s got a shovel in the trunk too. You know how we do.

Most importantly, she knows your heart. While you are code switching in your intersections all damn day, you can send her bat signal and she’s ready!

If you are sensitive, she guards you like Fort Knox. If you are sarcastic, she enjoys your banter. When you suffer from uncertainty she adjusts your crown and reminds you that you are royalty. When your heart is broken she reminds you of how awesome your heart is when it’s healed and whole, and waits until you are okay to remind you that she said he was trash. She gives you a safe space to talk about your passions, face your fears, and be your authentic self.

👏🏽You and me, us have one heart👏🏽

Likewise, you pick up the phone in the middle of the night because she knows you like sleep… so something is up. You let her know her fave movie is on, and and pray for her because some things only God can do… limitations and what not. She is your person and you let her know by being a constant and continuous support. By cheering the loudest when she wins, and being there to help her up when she has a loss. Bottom line, when one is falling, the other one has the parachute…

You see, your best girlfriend will say shit that makes you think… mind blown! They will give you advice tailored just for you, because they know you so well and they can relate. They are like your life partner with the same PMS, love of mimosas, and attraction to men with strong backs. She will be uncomfortable for you. She will be dependable and loyal to you… even if she doesn’t give other folks that same energy.

👏🏽Ain’t no ocean, ain’t no sea👏🏽Keep my sista way from me 👏🏽

For Black women, our bestie is much more like a sister. We go in the refrigerator and might go find a place to take a nap. We just show up at family dinner… cuz we are family. Her mom and dad like our own. The kids think we are really related. Blood couldn’t make us any closer. Now maybe you are lucky enough to have two or three… but most of us are too flawed and complicated to have more than one Nettie to our Celie. Someone who will hold on to our collective promise to be by one another’s side. Our best friend. Our greatest confidante. So, we stay on sideeye… she all we got!

To all the boys I loved before…

“Ronnie, Bobby, Rickie, and Mike…”

Okay, so not them, but you surely didn’t think I was gonna give you real names right? Besides #NE4Life… all six or no mas, none of that RBRM foolishness.

Sorry, I got carried away… but back to the lecture at hand…

Nobody told us that little rock head boy we thought we were gonna one day make little rockhead kids with was not the one. Our Mother tolerated our “little friend” knowing full well he was likely the first or third in a long line of little, medium, and eventually big friends that would attempt to woo us into relationships that would end. Relationships that were supposed to end, for most of us who didn’t end up marrying our prom date. The end of those relationships, though devastating at the time, were actually the experiences that would one day lead us to the one. A series of dating couplets that would both get harder and easier, as we matured and hopefully gained needed wisdom. A journey, if you are anything like me, you could have done without were it not necessary to arrive at the grand finalé. In the words of the modern day I Dream of Jeannie, Ariana Grande, “Thank you, Next…”

I’m not talking about the love or lust or intense care for another person; the emotion of a relationship. We talk about that enough. Instead, I wanna talk just a bit about the experience of loving and losing… and still being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel when you are beyond the age by which you THOUGHT you’d be happily forever betrothed.

Ronnie was your high school/college sweetheart. He was family, but he couldn’t handle your growth. You married Bobby. You divorced Bobby. Rickie was wonderful… at first. He treated you like a Queen…but he already had a Queen. Epic fail. Mike was familiar and comfortable, fun and spontaneous. But Mike was noncommittal. Those are not the kind of relationships God would prepare for us, no matter how deeply we feel for an individual. God commands the man who findeth a good thing to love her as God loves him… and that’s with unconditional, continuous, and dedicated commitment. You didn’t love to lose. You lost, to be loved. I’ll repeat it…You didn’t love to lose. You lost, to be loved.

All this time you thought you liked the members of the boy bands and really you needed a solo act. But you see, all of that was the set up YOU needed to get to your come up. That’s the thing with love & relationships at this age in this age, everyone is on social media with rings, white dresses, newborns, honeymoons, and #baegoals. So we tend to compare ourselves with those images… but that is their path, not yours. You couldn’t walk their path and get to your perfect destination. Instead, tis the season for realizing how much better you will be for the man God made for you now that the boys are…

So how do we really move past those encounters and see them as the very important opportunities to learn how to love and be loved, to communicate and comprehend, to partner with another to do life together? What you feel is a result of your experience. As relationships perish, remind yourself of the actual experience -the actions, promises, broken promises truths, untruths, consistency, and growth, or lack thereof. We can’t continue to sit only in the stew of our emotions and not be honest about what was really going on. I mean no matter how great Rickie seemed to treat you, he dishonored you, disrespected you, and lied to you… he had a whole wife for the love of all that is holy. He was an ass. Mourn him if you must, but mourn him in the way you would any donkey. Briefly.

After all, it is your reaction to those experiences that are the true hallmark of your readiness for the mate of your dreams. When we profess after a heart pause, that we don’t need a man… well, chances are you will be single until you reverse that mantra. Be clear, there is NOTHING wrong with being single. However, for humans, life is a series of relationships with other people, and most of us, if we are honest, want to spend part, if not all, of our adult lives living in tandem with another. We want the continuous support, companionship, and peace that having someone you care for deeply, and whose face you want to see, by our sides. So professing that we hate men… that’s not the jump off.

Being fearful or hesitant to open up to others is not the way to the light either. Instead, after we have given ourselves time and space to heal… from both our actions and theirs… we must open ourselves up and be receptive. We have to be available and show up in our availability. As much as we might like this scenario, Mr. Right is probably not going to ring your doorbell while you are binge watching Fuller House. OutKast put it best… you need to get up, get out, and get something. In this case, something might just be that human jungle gym of a chocolate drop you have been waiting for, that God planted in that space, place, and time… just for you boo.

Phone a friend. Eat some Talenti Caramel Cookie Crunch. Have a good cry or two. Get a new hairstyle, exercise the pain away, and get extra fine… because God is trying to tell you something. He is the cutter of zeroes, and the force behind the hero that will come along, let you take your cape off, and get this excited when your fine ass walks into a room …

How does that feel?!???

Consistently Inconsistent

“Seasons change… people change” -Exposé

I like the four seasons… the pretty sandals and sundresses in summer, cropped pants and food trucks in the spring, sweaters and knee high socks in autumn, and hot cocoa and coats in the winter. Yep fashion and food. And while I like the consistently inconsistent seasons in Michigan, at 40, I have zero time for inconsistent people. They are to relationships what passive aggressives are to communication… death dealers! They make my teeth chatter and my eyes water with their cold aloofness. I like winter the least of the seasons. But winter is coming…

Consistency is a requirement for a healthy adult relationship. It is not only a sign of respect and protection, it literally determines how secure and confident one party is in a relationship and how considerate the acting party is to your time and your prioritization in their lives. The ability of a partner, whatever the nature of the partnership, to give credence and care to how valuable it is to (1) have an equal and reciprocal action for everything they claim they will do and (2) value your choice to engage in partnership with them is paramount. Sadly… because actions speak loudest, there are a lot of grown people who simply do not bound their actions by their word. They manipulate with words, and forget that after so many instances, the jig is liable to be up.

Well beloved, the jig IS up!

I lead with my expectations regarding behavior. It’s nothing complicated or a list with ten folds, but it simply puts anyone on notice, I don’t have the time! I expect grown people to do what they say they will do, when they say they will do it… and I expect that consistently. I make that clear, but people tell you what they think you want to hear. From here on out, actions only, keep your mouth shut. You don’t talk consistency, you demonstrate it.

You see, a failure to respect other people’s time and match their energy comes from a failure of others to hold your ass accountable. The only way to hold others accountable is to call them on their shit, set boundaries, and honor those boundaries even if they fail to. It is an ultimate sign of disrespect for a person to sway in the wind like a vinyl air sock when you are always clear skies and sunshine. Disrespect must be met head on with direct communication about the disconnect. It’s easy to correct inconsistency… if you make a plan, you stick to it; if you make a promise you keep it; don’t claim you about it just BE about it. If that’s hard for you, you haven’t grown up.

Grown up \grōn-uhh/ n.: mentally and emotionally mature, behaving in a way characteristic of a responsible adult

Inconsistency is not mentally or emotionally mature behavior, and it is completely irresponsible. If you are engaged in a relationship, that you chose, the only way to develop stability and rhythm is to ensure your partner can depend on you. All that charm, saying all the right stuff, and showing up JUST at the right time is a mask for the claims of being so busy, disappearances, and failing to be there when their partner is in need. It’s a charade… and who has time for games of the heart and excuses for bad behavior? We make time for the things we care about… and anyone who is consistently inconsistent only ultimately cares about themselves. Besides… excuses are the tools of losers. Ain’t nobody too busy to be consistent! They are just, frankly, full of shit!

Heal Thy Self

I posted that this morning on Facebook.

I am pretty cryptic on Facebook, because I’m very private and I might have something to say or have learned a lesson I believe is worth sharing, but that’s all I’m willing to share. But this time, I was asked to expound, by people who support and show love to me consistently. What an honor. So you stand tf up in your greatness and do what you do best. So just call me She Will Heal aka Poe-Etta the Human Go-Getta aka Sage StCroix. I’m on my Erykah Badu today. Headwrap and all. (Ok I washed my hair, it’s a towel…whatever).

….

On Sunday, I was faced with the realization that some people, no matter how hard they try, just don’t know how to love back. At least not in a consistent and dedicated manner, which is the only kind of love I am interested in. They may try, may think they are loving you, but really they are unhealed and projecting their scars onto you.

When you were young and free from the very real responsibilities of parenthood and adulthood, it was easier. Love just flowed from your heart like water. Fairly unscathed by and maybe just unaware of how our experiences would come to shape us. It isn’t until you can process those experiences that you fully understand their impact. Experiencing trauma in any form, especially as a child, is just your experience at the time. It’s not until the real damage the experiences have done hit you as you grow and mature, that the true trauma starts. When you haven’t gotten there yet, you are very free to live and love openly and freely and without fear. But when the trauma hits the fan… Fear!

They say life’s a bitch, well fear must be it’s pimp, because it is stifling, predatory, a mental and physical prison without chains, and controls every move you make and every step you take. It is the bastard of trauma. It robs you of your security, confidence, assurance, and awareness. It’s the little girl from the Bad Seed pushing you into the deep end when you can’t swim and into the fire to burn. And when you aren’t raised in love… it’s you. Slave to your fears and illegitimate child of your trauma.

So many of us try to love people who are still caught in the web of their painful experiences, struggling to get out, but without the proper tools or guidance to navigate that trauma. So we become, naturally, involved in it. Sometimes just as a supporter in their healing but other times as a self-sacrifice. It is the latter that robs us of our needs and wants and puts us center stage in full Joan of Arc character, ready to be burned at the stake. Instead we have to demand the other party rise up in their shit and walk in it… until they reach dry land. They must do their own work. And no you can’t walk behind with a pooper scooper, it’s their shit…. Do the work.

So I’m always ready to do the work. Whatever it entails. Do I need to do more of this and less of that to get the desired result for the team? Sure, no problem, gimme an hour. Do we need the best shovel money can by to dig up these experiences and face them head on? Where is the closest Home Depot? No Home Depot, get me a paperclip, the blade of a metal fan, a brick, two screws and bolts, and a broom handle. Call me MacGalver.

Likewise, any partner, friend, family member, must be ready as well. We each need to get a part time job in solving our collective problems. I’m willing to support in any way. But a person still stuck in trauma can’t give anything their all, and the only out from that is them deciding they are ready to roll up their sleeves and dig in. Acknowledging, processing, talking through, and ultimately healing from the very real things that they experienced. Shit, we all have something. We aren’t to blame for it happening but we are certainly responsible to heal it.

When you have unhealed trauma, you become that traumatic experience for others and self-sabotage in every realm of your life…

So your parent leaving you and not being present; being physically present but not emotionally available; their deception; drug use; ignoring how their new girlfriend or boyfriend looked at you with desire; or simply their failure to properly parent… is abandonment, and until you get to the bottom of that, you will fail to be present for others and will likewise abandon them. You will fail to finish the things you start. You will take on too much that you know you can’t complete, in fear of failure. Your inability to commit to everything will leave you alone, lonely, and unaccomplished.

Your chaotic home; lack of discipline; the failure of those around you to address and maintain boundaries; toxic behaviors; and any lack of organization, order, respect, and peace that you experienced growing up… is turmoil, and it manifests itself in your own chaos and toxicity. So you rob people of their peace. And you have no peace. You bring dysfunction with you into every space, and it lingers around you like smoke, debilitating anyone who comes into contact with you.

If you had to fend for yourself; every step you took was in the face of violence and unsafety; cuz mama had to have a life too you were changing diapers, making syrup sandwiches, and had a switchblade ready in case someone strange knocked at the door; or you just simply had to take care of yourself in hopes that you made it to the next morning…. that’s survival, and when it’s all you’ve known you only know how to hustle and protect yourself at all costs. Loving isn’t your game, and you likely play Russian Roulette with other people’s hearts to protect your own. You project your fears onto everything. You make other people nervous because you are overly aggressive, and yet you are timid in trying anything new.

Yet, when you grow up in love, a nurturing environment that teaches you your value and the value of the other people living in the world with you, that supports you, that protects you, and that imparts confidence and assurance that you can be anything you set your mind to… that’s love, and in turn you know how to support, respect, and honor others. To show love you have to have seen it. That love emanates from you like a light. Everyone sees it and they navigate towards you. Opportunity is at your every corner. Success is yours for the taking.

So again, the experience was out of your control… but the responsibility to heal from any hurt or pain you were left with is yours. Get your shovel, your tissues, unpack that baggage, get a therapist, open your mouth and your heart, and do your work. And vow that until you are healed properly, you will take extra care of those around you by acknowledging that you have limitations and giving them the option of rocking with you or not. Everybody isn’t equipped to deal with the vestiges of your trauma.

As for me, I’m navigating the situation. I am not a sacrificial lamb, but I will happily support someone I care about through their healing. But if you knocked on my door with your briefcase in hand, ready for the first day on the job I expect you to be ready to do what you say you are prepared to do. Because when I answered, I was suited up with my pearl studs on and my blouse perfectly starched. My lowest offer was at the top of the scale, and I promised you an office with a spectacular view. I am worth you doing your work, because I’m already ready to move us both to the next level. Get like me. I’m a healer. Now where is my sage…

Coffee Dates

So you meet a nice man or woman and you all decide to do the first safe date… meet for coffee. You put on your best casual, I’m not trying too hard but I kinda am, outfit and head out. He or she is just as attractive as you recall, and you sit down and talk for hours. You both are sure the other could get it… but while your date seems to be interested in something a bit more serious, you know you just want to casually date, period. But that’s another conversation for another time, right.

Your next date is a bit more involved, you meet for Happy Hour at a nice restaurant and decide to stay and get dinner downtown. It’s a nice night so after dinner you take a short walk and talk about everything from your favorite song, neither of you have one because that’s just too hard; you debate Love Jones v Love & Basketball, you both pick the latter (wise choice); and then your date asks you “so when was your last serious relationship?” and you answer truthfully and return the question. Your date says a year or so, and adds that while relationships are hard work they are worth it with the right person. You think to yourself, relationship?!? But that’s another conversation for another time, right?

So you are both over 35, both been in serious relationships before, perhaps even married at one point, whatever shoe fits…if you are the woman, chances are you’ll be fine, as he’ll likely be ok casually dating at least until he makes a plan to be more serious with you. If you are a man… pump your MF brakes and STOP…

Let me let you in on a little secret, there are very few women over 35 looking to casually date your ass for more than six months. At that point, decisions about exclusivity and some type of commitment are expected to be made. She’s watching from date #1, hell conversation #1 if some fundamental things are present. If your watch is digital, unless it’s an old school Casio and you are also rocking an Eastbay backpack and Converse with a crop to your pants, it’s a no dawg…. cuz you faking the funk and not committing. If you say you will call back but don’t or don’t at least acknowledge her texts, it’s a no dawg, your consistency of communication is clearly off. If you look in your wallet, your pants pockets, inside your blazer, and in your coat pocket for the cash to pay for coffee, it’s a no dawg, cuz chaos and financial mismanagement. So if you are getting signals that she wants something serious, and you don’t, speak on it! Quickly!

Since the beginning of time, men being single and free to mingle has been celebrated…bachelor pads, bachelor lifestyle. Single women over 35 were doomed to spinster status, grocery carts full of Fancy Feast, Vienna sausages, and romance novels. As far as we have come, there is still some unfair and frankly very silly stigma attached to single women… as if every non married woman pines for marriage. That is simply not the case. Less than 15% of women who have been married before consider remarriage (according to Pew Center, 2014) and only half of never married women at 35 or older want to be married (Pew Research, Population Survey, 2013). However, over 80% of unmarried women over 35 want to be in committed relationships compared to 65% of unmarried men over 35 (Pew Research, 2015). Commitment is not casual, so speak on it! Quickly!

The truth is, that many of us avoid conversations about our wants and needs because we don’t want to scare off the person… regardless to whether we want something more serious or more casual. However, those conversations are necessary and important, because you strip the other party of the full ability to decide whether they want to continue to spend time with you, if you aren’t being honest about who you are and what you want. Furthermore, women need to start asking the important questions. I know, I know… women want men to be the aggressor and lead the relationship, but he cannot do that if he is unclear about your wants and boundaries. Notice I didn’t use the word expectations… those are your own personal goals that have nothing to do with the other party. You can effectively manage your expectations by being honest and open about what you want, and being okay with stepping away if that’s not what you get. Letting a man know what you want let’s him know you what you are available for and open to… period.

Bottom line… if we all use our words and communicate with people, our overall relationships will be much better. So let him or her know what your music collection looks like, your favorite restaurant, that you are a dog person and not a cat person, and whether you are looking for a partner or a playmate. Honesty is like sugar… it can make sure you begin and end on a sweeter note…and no one likes bitter coffee!

No HANs … EVER!

“All these hoe [ass] ni**as, must be Hoechella!” -Lil Wayne

Listen, we gots to do better ladies.

Now, be clear, I’m not blaming women for the lack of manhood in a male… but I am putting the onus on us to pay attention to the signs and accept no HANs in our lives, we better than that (unless you not… only you know that!). Like Auntie Iyanla says, “do your work” and heal whatever leftover self-sabotaging demons and ghosts of evil’s past are still lingering. No HANs…ever again… mmmkay!

I know and feel your pain. It often seems like it’s a hoepalooza out here in these streets. So many men aren’t men, they are males of a certain age. They don’t have a clue or a plan. They are looking for a mama, a step mama to their outside kids, an accountant, a sponsor, and a room mate. They aren’t looking to make their women life mates or wives, but a part of their harem of harlettes. But they don’t have a bed to lay in or lay you down in. You are a really bad hoe if you hoeing in your mana’s sleep number adjustable bed. But if the elevated head fits…

Yet… we have the most precious commodity on Earth. Men have been going to the greatest lengths for the love of a woman since the beginning of time. They tryna get to you and that…yoni!

Paris, the Prince of Troy wanted Helen so bad, he started the Trojan War when he ran off with her.

The Italian poet Dante wrote of Beatrice, a woman he met once as a child and saw once in the streets of Italy, in many of his best writings, as his muse.

Lancelot, knight to King Arthur, goes to war with him over his affair with his live Guinevere, wife of the king. He loses, and eventually becomes a priest after losing his love.

We out here starting international battles!

Ultimately, we are making the final call. We are giving the yay or nay, even if we have expressed interest first… it is usually up to us how slow or fast, deep or shallow the situation goes. Add to that our penchant for emotional involvement, it is imperative that we seek out HAN tendencies and believe them when we see them. HANness does not lie, it is not easily confused with other qualities, it is its own sad set of facts. You owe it to yourself to disconnect from a HAN, no matter how fine, smooth talking, well-dressed, whatever… cuz if you stay… Molly, you in trouble girl!

So fellas, be not a HAN. If your daddy and uncles taught you the not so fine art of HANdom, reject it. I don’t think it’s an easy thing to get over. Once a HAN, very rarely does one graduate into manhood. It’s like the black hole. Graduate from malehood to manhood! And if your boy or your brother is a HAN, do your civic duty and yank his chain. School him in the ways of men!

Ladies, accept not HAN ways. He should be clear about his intentions. He should have income, transportation or an active Uber/Lyft/mass transit life, a place to lay his head other than your pillow, and a plan for his life he should be able to verbalize to you unless it’s obvious. He should return calls and texts in a timely manner, make time for you, refrain from telling you how busy he is in relation to your time together, honor his word, and be secure in his clearly present manhood… not to be confused with his malehood.

All in agreement… No HANs EVER!

Only Chella we acknowledge is Bey…

Down for You Always

Y’all have all heard it before, the “marriage is just a piece of paper” argument. Recently some friends of mine engaged in a FB debate about the value of marriage and its standing… is it “just a piece of paper” or not!?

Well clearly it is not… but like usual that discussion led me down a slightly different path! The idea that marriage is the ultimate relationship status disturbs me a bit. Marriage can be great, but it can also be a cave of contempt, a cautionary tale in making choices because they are socially acceptable and not personally fulfilling. Marriage is not the only valid relationship status, just as “husband” or “wife” are not the only valid relationship titles. In fact, I think titles are dumb…

Whether a marriage or a lifelong partnership… both people entering with intention and purpose is what gives either entity it’s strength. If you desire a God centric union, of course marriage is your desired mechanism. But if we remove spirituality simply for the sake of understanding both parties commitment alone, we see that intentionally putting our relationship first, learning how to build a better and more successful relationship over time, and being purposeful in our conscious plan for our relationship is necessary regardless of the status you desire.

In the words of Tupac…”are you still down?”

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Roughly 50% of all marriages end in divorce. There ultimate reason for that unfortunate data, in my mind, is because people have this false notion that marriage solves relationship issues and it is going to somehow super glue you and your mate at the hip.

All wrong!

Marriage is a legal and emotional partnership between two people to act and be treated as a unit under the law. That legal and emotional commitment are the two things that make ending a marital partnership more difficult. Some people enter into pre-nuptial agreements to remove the legal bind, leaving just the emotional connection to contend with. However, someone not very emotionally connected to you in the first place, or a relationship built upon lies, deceit, infidelity, etc will easily break. Furthermore, emotions are fleeting, they come and go, dip and bob… and they are not a wholly reliable source of commitment. So marriage is not some magic fix or super cement to fix whatever ails your pre-marital relationship.

People often argue that the legal confines of marriage make it a more desirable status than a partnership. However the same legal mechanisms available in marriage are available to any two people who want to form a unit. Where marriage makes some legal designations automatically, none of them can’t be done through other legal means. Two people who seek to partner with intent, will ensure the strength of that partnership both personally and publicly.

I have been married before, and despite what you have read, I want and plan to be married again. Most people assume I’m anti-marriage. I’m not. I’m anti-bullshit.

I desire a spiritual union that is supported by the love of God. I also plan to build a life with my mate that is abundantly fiscally successful and a union where the legal mechanisms are already in place just makes sense for us. But I don’t see our growing partnership as somehow lessened or missing something because we aren’t yet married. We are committed to ensuring that each of us reaches the realization of self-completion. We intentionally plan and set goals to move us towards that purpose. Our unit is doomed if we cannot first self-commit enough to assist the other party in their individual growth before we take that next step. Your wedding day is just the day you profess your love publicly, the days before that determine how well you have prepared to support that unit and the days after determine how strong that unit will continue to be.

I am not interested in being married for image or because someone else, anyone else, has deemed it the proper way to be in relationship with another person.

——

Historically, women have been brainwashed to believe we should aspire to be wives over everything else, and some of us who are married place ourselves in higher regard or esteem than those people who choose a different relationship platform. “Being a wife” is your own choice. Someone else’s status, whether by choice or by circumstance, it is still ultimately up to that woman. But whatever the case, she isn’t somehow in a lesser position than you.

Just this morning I saw a post about KeKe Wyatt, the singer who has like 10 kids and was recently left by her husband while she was pregnant, stabbed her mate prior, and is now married again. One women on the post commented, “what am I doing wrong” in response to her seemingly quick remarriage.

NOTHING… at least not in this context!!!!

Now KeKe can sing… but she is surely not an example of a woman one should aspire to be like simply because she is married. In fact, your husband left you while you were pregnant… I’m gonna take a wild guess and say therapy and not marriage might have been a better option. But the notion that married women are somehow doing things “right” simply by virtue of being married… that’s that bull!

——

Before I go any further, I want to just share my ultimate disgust with the title “shacking up”.

We should be:

Exercising

Binge Watching Wentworth

Exfoliating

Moisturizing

Drinking Water

Taking Naps

And MINDING OUR OWN BUSINESS

In whatever order you desire, but worrying about what other adults do, that is between the two of them… and includes no violence, harm to children, or odd shit with pets … behind the locked doors where they pay the mortgage… should never be on that list.

We don’t care when folks get a roommate to go half on the rent, but for some reason we take offense when two folks go half on a bed and decide to share their space in a love partnership. My take: it’s to somehow give credence to the decision you made to marry … or your ultimate decision to marry. And if you are choosing to use the Bible as your source,

“Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” Hebrews 13:4. 

unless you were pure before you got married… FULL STOP!

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Marriage is more than a piece of paper… the paper is just the document that solidifies the legal bond between the two people who choose to become a unit. However, unless you are living as a bible purist… and I don’t personally know any… then someone else’s decision to make a different relationship decision doesn’t give you some advantage in the relationship hierarchy. We shouldn’t have to shit on someone else’s choices to validate our own. Your husband to his hubby, your wife to her partner… are all just the same side of a different coin. The choice to love someone and be committed to loving them and supporting them in becoming their best possible self… is a selfless choice, a choice that mimics God’s love. Who are any of us to negate the value of that commitment…

If everyday you are making the choice to be loving, committed, intentional, and purposeful in your marriage or your partnership… you are saying to you mate and the world…

I WANNA BE DOWN!

Donkey and Ox

I’m going to need all the social media ministers, armchair evangelists, the mass for shut-in shut ins, to stop talking sometimes… ye knoweth not what ye speaketh!

^^^^ that is a fallacy. Stop spreading that utter bullshit to people. We don’t have to be the same to be equally yoked. We don’t both need to be Black or White, tall or short, fit or pleasingly plump, attractive, wealthy, educated… That isn’t being equally yoked, that’s nonsense.

On a daily basis, the ox might pull the shit outta that load, and the donkey might give the signal when it’s time for a water break, have a bum knee that aches when rain is coming, give good directions, and cheer on Mr Ox with words of encouragement… “You are a mighty Ox, a big and strong ox, you rock!” Or whatever donkeys say to their ox partners. Donkey might lead Ox to the good green grass and give him a little nose nudge like we give high fives.

But when Mr Ox is under the weather or just needs a break, Donkey kicks it in high gear and just like there were two oxen, he pulls the shit outta the load while Mr Ox takes on the administrative duties of the journey. They both have the express desire to get their load from point A to point B… they share a mission and they are both dedicated to that duty.

A human partnership is no different. Your race, class, social identity, aesthetics, and finances may intermingle or not, but if you are both guided by the same goals to develop and grow together into the best humans possible and bring the same levels of devotion to those goals, then you have forged a God match and not just an image match.

Bond with someone who has the same civic and spiritual goals. Otherwise, you will spend so much time trying to force what you think you need that you will miss out on the blessing you really need. A true partnership should enhance your life, and neither complicate it with a dueling mission nor simplify it with inconsequential factors.