Want It All

Last week was a big one for me. My team; Legacy House Inc. released my first ever feature music video, with the beautiful T. Nayah. Music has always been a part of m, but I’ve grappled with the idea of pursuing music on a grander stage than my bathroom. I’ve had reservations which I will detail in another post. However,  I finally decided that it’s time to let the light that God put in me to shine bright for His glory.

The song is titled; Want It All. It’s an ode to challenges and the haters who try to tell us we can’t do it. The powerful lyrics tell a story of hope and strength, and preach encouragement and resilience in the face of struggle.

Writing this song was inspiring for me.  I hope that listeners feel something special as they let the music touch their sould.

Thank you,

Always.

 

The THANK YOU Card

“Thank you,” she said as her lips curled up in a smile to mask her breaking heart. He smiled an accomplished smile, like he’d bought her the best Valentine’s Day present ever.

It was 2013, one week after Valentine’s Day, and they were sitting on his bed in the lone room in his parents’ basement. He’d just handed her a rose coloured card, with grey letters at the front that read; THANK YOU. Inside, he detailed his appreciation for their friendship and how grateful he was to have her in his life. It’s like a mustard seed and we can water it to grow into something beautiful.

“So where are my chocolates?” She hoped that their sweetness might help with the sour taste in her mouth. “Oh I’m sorry, my sister ate them,” he said almost laughing. “I told you to come get them sooner. You should have listened to me.”
“You let your sister eat my chocolates? You bought them for me, for valentines day. You should have hidden them better.” She looked at him and smiled. It was all she could do to keep the tears at bay for just a little bit longer; when she’s in her bed with only her pillow to judge her.

They’d been dating for 6 months. And even after all this time, he still couldn’t love her. What hurt the most was that she nurtured him. She ran to his side at every beckon, opened up and poured – gave- herself to him. Yet, here he was, saying thank you.


Their romance had started like a passionate wild fire. Six months ago, when she’d walked into a room at their community college and seen that tall glass of chocolate milk, she couldn’t resist the chemistry that sizzled every time they locked eyes. He was tall, dark and handsome, and that night was spent chatting over Skype. He was smart, driven and very ambitious, so she fell. Hard. Within a week, they were dating. Discreetly. His idea.

“I think I’m starting to fall in love with you.” They were sitting in his car, barely three weeks into their romance. “I know it’s a little soon, but I’m one to wear my heart on my sleeve and I believe you should know where I stand.” When she’d said those words, she hadn’t had any agenda. She wasn’t expecting a reciprocation of her feelings. All she knew was her desire to let him know her heart.

“I love that you feel that way. But you see, the thing is, I just got out of a serious relationship about a year ago. We’d been dating for two years and she cheated on me.” She watched him with a mix of pity, and love. “I’m still a little broken from that. I need some time to get my heart right. Can we just enjoy being ourselves the way we are right now?”


Now it all made sense. He was never going to love her wholly. The discretion, the request for time to heal from a breakup which was over one year ago, all the signs she’d missed were now on replay in her mind, weighing her down with hurt. “Walk me to the bus stop please?” She had to go home. Now.

“What’s wrong?” He’d finally noticed something was amiss. “Nothing.” She replied, biting her lower lip. The tears couldn’t stay buried any more so she closed her eyes as they came streaming down.

“You’re crying!”
“You gave me a Thank You card. For Valentines’ Day!”
“Oh my God. And here I was thinking you’d love it,” he said, sounding completely flabbergasted by my apparently inconceivable reaction.
“Why would you think that? I told you I love you. I gave you my heart and everything else. A Thank You card? I want love, not appreciation,” she said in a firm but low voice as she felt herself shaking from the pain.
“I didn’t realiz…”

Nothing he said after that made any sense to her. Her heart had come to the realization that she deserved to be loved wholly and not for convenience. This was never going anywhere. They were never meant to be.

 

 

 

Self Love And Morality

These days, all young people want is to love themselves beyond societal pressures. I cannot count how many times I’ve heard a millennial say; “I’m empowered, I know what I want, I know who I am.” etc. We’re on social media wearing what we want, saying what we want, and loving who we want (including ourselves – if you know what I mean).

I’m not entirely adverse to these concepts. I do think that to some extent, we should all embrace ourselves and live fulfilling lives, reaching our full potential for success and happiness. We shouldn’t be constrained by the pressures of societal correctness. Embracing this ideology has given our generation a sense of self confidence that allows us to chase our dreams, take more risks and be our best selves.

Here’s where I start to question everything; most of the time, these concepts of self love and acceptance tend to deconstruct actions that were once taboos of societal morality, and turn them into acceptable or even normal behavior. The idea that we can commit taboos without feeling the guilt associated with our actions is what appeals to us young folk. We masturbate, dress suggestively, get high and ‘happy’, and we take pride in all of this – it’s who we are, and we’re convinced of it.

So, have we thrown in the towel on moral virtue? Or are we simply embracing our true human nature. Are we just being immoral, or is there even a standard of morality? Who made the rules anyway?

As a practicing Christian (i try), I know who made the rules and I know who I am. My identity is not defined by anyone but God. My self love comes from being secure in knowing that I do not have to embrace the vices that have now become the pillars of contemporary empowerment and self acceptance. My self love comes from knowing that I am a child of the Creator.

What is your standard of self love?

 

i USED to

I used to infuse you into my fantasy,

         A PHENOMENAL future.large
         One where we’d FLAUNT and FLOAT, on clouds of FINESSE,
         Our heads held HIGH in six-inch HEELS and HAUTE couture,
         And CONFIDENCE to make {them} quiver.
         I would be QUEEN and you would be QUEEN.
         Our REIGN would be indivisible,
and w
e would DOMINATE this world of money, men, and matters of the heart.

***

Key words; “used to, infuse you”.
The fantasy is the same, but void of you.

Everyday People – August 30th 2016

I met Robert Adams today. He’s a tall African American man with dread locks that reach the small of his back, pulled in a low ponytail. When I first walked into the historic looking high-rise building on Vermont avenue NW, Washington DC, he greeted me with charm and eloquence. He had been typing an email.

“Hold on a second, I’ll finish this email and I can be out of your way”. Just a moment later, he asked – looking down at his computer screen; “So are you in school? Or…” I smiled and told him my education spiel and how I’m working a new job now in addition to this concierge gig (updates about this in a new blog coming soon).

In the few minutes we talked, I found out he’s been playing guitar for 40 years.

“OMG that’s crazy cause I sing too!”, I said, gushing as he pulled his guitar from under the concierge desk and put it in its bag.

“Well then, you should come to our Live Music Monday shows in Silver Spring” he said, the sound of his guitar bag zipper subtle but noticeable as he spoke.

For a moment, I did consider it. I mean, I’ve been thinking about a venue where I can sing with a live band and just have a relaxed time on stage, sharing this gift that God bestowed upon my vocal pipes. As I processed his invitation, he pulled out a card and handed it to me. I looked at the card thinking; I’ll keep this. Maybe one of these evenings. Who Knows? 

“I wanna learn to play. I bought a guitar once, and my fingers just wouldn’t cooperate.

“Hah! see? You know what they say… when the student is ready, the teacher will appear”, he said in response. I smiled at his subtle invitation be my teacher.

A few minutes later, his girlfriend came down to meet him in the lobby for their lunch date. As she stepped out of the building, he stayed back, pulled out a black newsboy hat, the kind with extra room for long locks like Bob Marley’s, and he put it on.

In that moment, I saw the artist in the man. He had gone from a suited up, prim and polished look, to an approachable lover of the arts, just by adding a hat and removing his name brooch.

When he finally stepped out to meet his woman, no sooner had they taken 3 steps before he extended his left hand and placed it on the small of her back; a gesture of protection, and affection. I smiled in admiration as they disappeared down the rather quiet street.

I met Robert Adams today and I saw the meaning of simple happiness. I saw love, passion, art, and life in his eyes and heard them in the words he spoke. It was my pleasure Mr. Adams, and maybe I’ll visit and listen to your show one of these Mondays.

 

Love and Understanding Chapter 1

CHAPTER 1

“I love you.”

Karen stopped dead in her tracks, the 95 degree heat suddenly feeling hotter. In slow motion, as though afraid to see sincerity in his eyes, she turned to face him. They stood on the sidewalk in front of a small french bistro two blocks from her apartment complex. Here she was, the six-foot-three, broad shouldered Darien King towering over her. This dark-haired, brown-eyed, ruggedly handsome Darien King. The same one to whom she’d given her heart. The same one who’d, so coldly, shred it in a million tiny pieces and flushed it down the toilet. She had pinned for this day for about 5,475 days give or take – not that she was counting. Yet here she was, speechless. The words she’d rehearsed so many times, couldn’t make their way from her heart to her lips. All she could manage was a weak and confused sounding chuckle.

It felt like the bustle of the people and cars rushing and swooshing up and down the road completely stopped. He looked so intently into her dark brown eyes, searching for something he knew was there. She gave him her coldest glare and watched him die a little inside. In fact, she almost wanted to celebrate the fact that he was hurting. So what was that thing in her heart still tugging at strings she thought she’d cut long ago? She would deal with that later. For right now, she had to get out of there before she said or did anything she would regret. So she turned away from the one man who will always have her heart. As she sashayed away, she knew he was breaking just like she had that day.

***

Karen Sway had never looked at him like that. Not even when he had told her she wasn’t good enough for him, and turned his back on her. That was the first time he really saw the pain he’d caused the only person he never ever wanted to hurt, and he wanted to slap himself for damaging her like that.

Now he was back and more in love with her than he’d been before he broke her heart. I had no choice.  He kept telling himself this, hoping that if he said it enough, he’d convince himself that she’d understand. Would she understand? Would she ever even let him explain? He wondered about all this as he watched her walk away from him. The love of his life was walking out of his life! What are you doing you idiot, follow her NOW!

“Karen, I’m serious. I love you. I always did. Please stop!”. She turned around so abruptly and started to say something. As he closed the gap between them, he saw her catch her breath like she’d decided not to confront him after all. She still couldn’t bring herself to say one damn word? He saw the tears start to gather in her eyes and then it hit him. She hadn’t moved on. She still hurt deep down and now here he was, bringing all her buried pain back to life. He now understood that she wasn’t ready to face him. Who could blame her? When she turned around and briskly walked away, this time he let her go. He’d have to wait.

CHAPTER 2