Love, Marriage, and Divorce (part I)

“The course of true love never did run smooth” William Shakespeare

Love is one of the most beautiful things in this world. Love is the force that keeps the world rotating on its axis, and without it, I believe, the world would stand still.  It is through the lense of love that things are seen in ways we’ve never seen them, our senses are heightened, and our emotions race while considering the possibilities of what this relationship will bring. When love has that “new car smell” nothing can compare to it. For me love was always something I always dreamed about, wrote about, hoped for and sung about. I consider myself a HOPEFUL ROMANTIC. The thought of loving someone, marrying someone, and then divorcing was never a consideration in all my love scenarios.

I truly believe that most people don’t get married with the intent to divorce. They want it to last forever, and they are deliberate and sure when reciting the vows, their love comes from a pure place. However, when it doesn’t end like a fairytale, and there is no happily ever after, it is the worst feeling ever. Nothing in life ever prepares you for divorce. Divorce feels like a death. Divorce takes your breath away. Divorce destroys segments of your heart and soul. I don’t care how tough you are, when you sign those papers, it is life changing. My experience with divorce honestly destroyed a part of me. Even during the roughest period of my marriage, divorce had never entered my mind, however I was lost about what to do to recover it.  I didn’t feel like I had any real help or resources, there was no magic wand to fix it. I felt alone. After a nearly two-year separation, divorce became a reality.  I felt like a failure. I was depressed. I was unmotivated. I was ashamed. I didn’t care about anything. I felt like less than a man. I felt like I let God, my family, her family, our friends, and most of all I let her down. I could not forgive myself. I couldn’t have a healthy relationship after because I couldn’t heal. I was afraid  to get into another relationship because I didn’t want to hurt anyone else, but I still ended up hurting others on the course of trying to find my way. When you don’t really take the time to evaluate your heart, your mind, and your spirit you just carry an open wound to the next relationship. You hurt others by building walls, being emotionally unavailable, non-committal, self-serving, and hidden. A lot of what I had become I didn’t even totally realize it, I was just trying to maintain my heartbeat.

What does a  man do after a failed relationship? Men have to continue to be strong. Men aren’t supposed to cry…right? Men are supposed to just move on, but this just perpetuates the cycle of hurt.  I found myself asking the question, “Is there life after divorce?” my desire was to be the perfect husband, not a perfect man, but everything my wife needed and wanted. I wanted to be an example for other couples of how to love, endure, and have a Godly marriage.  However, that is not my story. The battle with self has been the biggest battle of my life. How to forgive myself. How to chart the next course of my life. My life is still evolving and recovering even after almost 10 years after my marriage ended.

One thing I have come to realize about love, especially once marriage enters the equation, is that each person must make a daily decision to remain in love, cultivate love, and be committed. Totally.

I  can’t claim to have all the answers. I am not a relationship “expert”. I’m just man who still believes in love, loves God, loves family. There are things I have learned and story to tell. I just want people to stay in love.

Men feel too

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The Fight

Suspect Dies Baltimore

Let me preface this by saying I love ALL people. I believe in peace, love, and unity. I do not condone violence, looting, or rioting….AND I love my community and my country. However, I am deeply saddened by what I perceive as great injustices in our country.It is extremely difficult for those outside of the Black American community to really understand why the recent murders of unarmed black men has cause such outrage, protests, and civil unrest. The has come about due to the a systematic and generational issue regarding how the Black man is perceived and treated, and it has been bubbling under the surface for a while. The uproar in Ferguson, Baltimore, Los Angeles, Sanford, and inner cities across America are not a result of of ONE isolated incident but numberable incidents that have been swept under the rug, ignored, or the account of what happened falsified by those in power. As black man in America you are viewed as a suspect, less than, and a threat from the time you are born til the grave. Abuse of power by some, not all,  police;  an unequal judicial system and  the black man is not a new problem. South Central Los Angeles has experienced it and witnessed flames engulf its community by those that felt powerless on more than one occasion. The South has experienced it throughout Jim Crow and segregation. The North has experienced it as men migrated from the South in hopes of a providing a better life for their families, but faced opposition and still no level playing field. Today, we are constantly seeing Black men released from prisons around the country after serving decades for crimes that they did not commit, because they were viewed as guilty even without proper evidence. Even those who do achieve a certain level of success, wealth, and education still have to constantly PROVE that he belongs and do far and above his counterparts in an effort to gain a respect that may never come his way….he is still a threat. It does not matter if you are the CEO, CFO, a PHD, a war veteran who has given his all is service to his country, or even the President of the United States of America, many individuals cannot see beyond skin tone. Somehow, when we lead there is a cry to “Take Back America”, but the last time I checked I am American also. The question then is who has taken America and who do we need to get it back from?  Black men experience the the looks of others as we walk down the street; being pulled over while driving in certain neighborhoods; the holding of the purse on an elevator; not being spoken to in the hallways of corporate America; our salaries not equal to that of our counterparts, and having to fight for every inch of success in life. The unfortunate result of these situations is that we often start to have a disdain for our own skin tone and it shows in how we treat ourselves and others within our own community. We attempt to destroy each other to get out of the barrel, because of  the limited allotments of those who can “make it out the hood” in any given area of expertise. These plights tends to siphon a bit of the hope and confidence we try to have for the world and ourselves. Thus, you are left with two choices, either give up and purposely destroy everything in your path to “fight the power”. The other choice is to get a new resolve and fight to change the system, inspire the generation behind you to be better, and fight to be a better SELF. Really when you look at it you only have one option to FIGHT. It’s just going to be how you choose to fight. For generations we have tried to be accepted, to assimilate, to lessen our light. However, it does not matter how much we try to be less than, we cannot because we are strong, we are light, we are who we were created to be. We are kings, leaders, warriors, fathers, husbands, priest, teachers, elders, innovators, creative, and we are strong. When we open our mouths people listen. When our fist are raised, people see it’s power. When we create it, it shifts an entire culture. When we move, people are captivated or scared of where we’re going. So fight on…

Hello world!

Words are powerful…the expression of them can encourage, inspire, provoke, or tear down. I choose words to express what I feel in my heart and mind in written form. I hope to make you feel something, start a conversation, make you feel emotions, and want more. This the beginning point of sharing this journey with whoever wants to read them….Enjoy