Helluva Man

I thought it was impossible to love me. I mean I dated, married and later divorced a man that told me that I had some serious daddy issues. Was he wrong? Not entirely. But, could he have said it differently? Possibly. But, I believed his words.

They sank into my spirit and cut like knives going down my throat. I believed that I was f*cked up. I believed man over God. I was lost.

I believed that it was impossible to love me. To find someone who would see all my quirks and faults and accept them as normal. Someone who would respect my boundaries, love me and Munch and be able to afford me financially. But, God.

I thought that I had an impossible list of qualifications for a man. I wasn’t specific about height, weight, looks, etc. Well, he had to be taller than me. Nothing else was specific. Okay, I’m lying. He had to:

  1. Make no less than $10,000 than me. He could make more, but I wasn’t dating a broke man.
  2. Have children because I wasn’t having anymore.
  3. Have a relationship with Christ. This was the most important. He needed to be a believer and believe in the power of prayer.
  4. Have a relationship with his parents.
  5. Have a career that he loved.
  6. Be taller than me.
  7. Understand that I wasn’t giving him my cookies.

That was it. I didn’t know what kind of man that would bring, but when I let go and trusted God to send someone in my life that understood that I had been broken but saved by grace….whew! Mr. C showed up and showed out in my life. Even when I tried to run because I couldn’t understand these feelings that I was having. Here was a man that had all the things on my list that valued me.

That respected my boundaries and loved me in the midst of all that I had going on. He’s not perfect. Neither am I. We just craft this space that we understand and respect each other. No matter what. I’ve gotten frustrated at him and will say I need a break and get off the phone. He’s cool with it. He’ll give me the time and we’ll circle back later and discuss any residual feelings.

I never had that. I didn’t know that relationships worked like that. I was use to drama and never being able to have a civil conversation. Mr. C gets that I’m an alpha female so I get straight to the point. I don’t need to stroke his ego. He is the man and I tell him so. He knows that when I send him love notes that they are genuine. But, if I’m direct in a conversation, he doesn’t get offended. He doesn’t think that I don’t love him or I’m trying to control him. He just listens and responds. Our communication is evolving and I can honestly say that I love the man that God sent to me. The man that sends me beautiful videos to encourage my soul or little love notes that tell me how he feels. That man. He’s a helluva man!

Here’s an example of how wonderful he is:

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Yep, I’m one lucky girl!

Talk to me:  Are you in that kind of relationship? What kind of things did you want in a potential partner?

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

5 Things I Need Babe

So, my friend Victor at Victor’s Corner wrote a post encouraging you to write an Open Letter and describing the different types of open letters you could write and I decided to do one. I thought about what kind of letter I would write and I knew that I wanted to write an open letter to my future husband. For all intents and purposes it will most likely be Mr. C, but I wanted to let you (and him) know the 5 things I need for our marriage.

Dear Mr. C:

It’s almost that time. Our time of reckoning that this life we’re building must go further. We can’t continue in an indefinite state of boyfriend/girlfriend. I know it was my wish to be this way for many years and you have indulged my spirit. I want you to know these 5 things before you ask me to be your wife.

  1. I need to know what you think. I’ve had so many relationships where the man that I’m with doesn’t offer me an opinion on anything I suggest. I hate that. I need you to be my partner and I will be your help mate. You need to be able to offer an opinion on things that I suggest, even if it’s “Babe, I don’t know what to say. It’s complicated, but I trust that you will make the right decision.” That explanation alone speaks volumes. I don’t expect you to have all the answers. I expect you to be able to talk to me and respond when I feel uncertain. Ask yourself whether or not you could do this?
  2. I need you to understand that it’s more than me and Munch. You know my relationship with my son’s father is contentious on its best days. I struggle to find the time, energy or power to respond. We don’t speak and even though the constant emails and text messages are wearing on me, you continue to keep me motivated and inspired. I need that for the next 9 years. It may never get better (although we pray that it will) but you need to be bigger than me when I am feeling defeated. You need to remind me that we have less than 9 years. I need you to understand that you will now be faced to deal with some of the frustrations, back and forth or drama. Are you okay with that? This is my reality. Ask yourself whether or not you believe that Munch and I are worth it?
  3. Respect my neurotic need to delay marriage. My girlfriend told me years ago that every delay is not a denial. I love you and I can’t imagine a life without you in it, but I’m just not ready to get married again. Yet. I love how you respect my wish to set a wedding date for the fall of 2020. It shows that you know that we’re not going anywhere. We’re willing to take the time to invest and cultivate our relationship in our own time. You totally respect the fact that I love being in the G-spot (girlfriend spot). But, ask yourself would you be okay with that should I want to move a wedding date closer or later?
  4. Know that I need you to lead. I am so tired of being superwoman and I need you to lead us. As a couple and a family. I told you before that I would follow a man to the end’s of the earth if I knew that God was leading him and God told me to follow. I can’t do everything. I feel like I have to do everything and sometimes it gets so overwhelming. I can’t do it all – without consequences and sacrifices. As a partner, I shouldn’t have too. I need you to know what I’m asking of you. Ask yourself whether or not you are ready to be superman?
  5. I am not her and you are not him. I know that we’ve both had experiences and relationships that may not have been the best, but surely we’ve learned the lessons that we were supposed to learn. Everything in life is meant to teach a lesson. Sometimes we listen and learn and sometimes we’re not that smart. Whatever the case, I need you to know that I’m not her. I’m not the one that may have broken your trust or family or anything else. I’m me. I also want to assure you that I know that you are not him. I will never compare you to anyone else or tell you that you are just like such and such. You’re not. I know this. You will never pay for the mistakes of anyone before you. I vow to communicate openly and honestly about all things knowing that you love me and what we’re building. I need you to ask yourself are you truly over your past relationships with your exes?

Life isn’t perfect. I know this. I’m not expecting perfection. I’m just expecting that two people that love each other will work together as a unit to build a strong foundation that will support us and our family for years to come. I vow to speak life into you and our family and all our dreams just like it says in Proverbs…

Proverbs 18:21 (NRSV) Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

Do you want to participate in Victor’s Open Letter challenge? Check out his blog: Victor’s Corner and participate. I would love to hear what you have to say.

 

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Volume

I turned down the volume on the radio. I had a headache. The stress of my situation was weighing on my spirit and I couldn’t take it. I sighed “Two more weeks.”

Two more weeks until I was free to move away. Move to another place far away from this mess of a life that I had managed to create here. My job was transferring. Bigger raise. Bigger opportunity. Bigger city.

The promotion spoke volumes about my professional career. My love life on the other hand wasn’t as finalized. I had been dating a man for the last six months. I don’t know if you could really call it dating. It was more of a relationship of convenience. We hooked up when we were available.

He was a Virgo. Moody as hell. Fine, but definitely not a long term option. He didn’t seem to care when I told him about the job offer and move to Chicago. He just grunted “Good for you.” I guess I knew where we stood in those three words. They spoke volumes.

I couldn’t wait to get out of D.C.. So many memories, both good and bad, but Chicago was a new city. Time for a bigger change. I had already connected with some of my sorority sisters and they couldn’t wait for my arrival. I could just imagine the jazz clubs, the deep dish pizza and the winters. I was ready.

I looked around my apartment and tried to finish packing up my life. No real attachments. My walls held the standard black art and my shelves contained the acceptable amount of English and Russian literature to show that I was educated. I had no personal photos of men that I dated or my family. I was too busy.

Always working. Always striving. I was the most accomplished in my family. That in itself spoke volumes.

I grew up dirt poor in Frog Jump, Tennessee. Not much to see, but the minute I graduated, I packed my bags and headed to Atlanta, Georgia.  I was a southern girl at heart. I attended a prestigious HBCU, graduated with honors and got a job in NYC. After a few years working my way up the corporate ladder, off to the nation’s capital I ventured to work on my MBA at Johns Hopkins and work in finance.

I just knew that I would find love here. I did. Derek was his name. He was tall, sexy and educated to boot. He was my first real love. He showed me the world. I gave him my all. Including my womb where he planted his seed. We were having a baby. It was unexpected, but I knew that Derek would be excited.

We had talked about children, marriage and a future after we had both established ourselves professionally. We were going to be a power couple. Until the baby. Until the night I told Derek that I was carrying our future. He looked at me with so much power that I knew that he would gather me up in his arms and kiss me.

But, I felt the force of his fist across my eye. The venom and anger in which he hit me with his fists and his words spoke volumes. “You whore!” he screamed. “You know that I am not where I’m supposed to be. You trapped me you slut!”

I laid there as he continued to hit me and kick me. I couldn’t fight back. He was too big. I tried. I cried. I tried to protect my belly.

My neighbor called the police. They broke in. They saved me.

I was another statistic. Another battered woman. My degrees didn’t matter. My job status. My race.

I lost more than my baby that night. I lost a piece of my soul. The quietness of my womb spoke volumes as I lay in my hospital bed.

 

This piece is inspired by the Daily Post. The word prompt of the day was volume.

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Co-Parenting: Dating with Kids

One of the hardest things to do is date when you’re a parent. Whether the other parent is active or not, I think we can all agree that it is hard dating when you’re a parent. Whether it is coordinating schedules, your child gets sick or you are exhausted, we all have things that get in the way.

When I started dating one of the things that I made a point to say to prospective men was that I was a mom first. That meant that you needed to be flexible with me when it comes to my son. I remember that I had met a guy and we had gone out a couple of before. He was nice enough. Well, one Sunday he wanted to go out and I told him that I didn’t want too.

I explained that my ex-husband had sent me a text that Munch was not himself and not feeling well that day. He said he would monitor him. I was asking for more information and he just responded “If he gets worse, I’ll take him to urgent care.” That meant that I wasn’t going to go out that night. The possibility that my son could be in urgent care was too much for me. My son had never been to an ER or Urgent Care without me.

This was the new me. A single mom and my son would always come first. Needless to say I texted the man back to say that my son was sick and I wanted to stick close to home in case he had to go to urgent care. The guy didn’t get it. He was disappointed and I never heard from him again.

Okay. His loss. Munch did end up going to Urgent Care and was later diagnosed as having shigella, but that didn’t matter. That man had broken a cardinal rule…being upset that I told you no over choosing to be a mom. I wasn’t hurt. I stood my ground. I was a mother first.

Dating is hard as hell whether you have a child or not. How are you expected to cater to your man and to your child too when you just meet someone? How are you expected to balance it all? The truth…carefully.

You have to meet someone who understands and values your commitment to your children first. I would never be upset if someone’s child was sick or they needed to be a parent first. Remember that I told you that I wanted someone to love me and my son as though we were flesh of their flesh. That was a requirement.

Mr. C is an incredible father who respects and loves the fact that I’m a mom first. He tells me all the time that I’m a great mother. Even when I feel like I’m doing everything wrong. He’s encouraging. I remember the first time I cried when I told him my fears about parenting. He soothed my spirit and calmed me down. He’s a parent.

We have two different parenting styles. He doesn’t believe in allowance (but secretly spoils his son) and I am going to start giving Munch an allowance. He believes that driving are a right of passage that a boy must undertake by his senior year in high school (I think it depends on their responsibility level). He’s strong and a provider and I’m a tough as nails educator who will dole out kisses and hugs and lots of encouragement and support.

Different. I think that’s why we work. He respects that I’m a mom first, a girlfriend second and knows that I will always trust his judgement. I am blessed to have met someone who gets that parenting is hard and it comes first. Someone that gets that I may have to reschedule plans or include Munch when things get in the way. He is flexible.

Find someone that encourages you to be a better parent. Who supports you in raising wonderful and good human beings. Who believes that there is nothing more valuable than creating and crafting the minds of the future leaders of America. Okay, well maybe that’s too much…but find someone that loves your kids as much as you.

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Dating Chronicles: The Series

I hope you enjoyed reading my series entitled “Dating Chronicles” and some of the things that I endured when dating. I’ve always tried to be very honest and transparent with you because I want you to know that I’ve been there and done that too. I am an eternal optimist and I believe in love. No matter what. Despite the trials and tribulations and false starts, life is truly about finding your footing and figuring it out. You have to keep climbing. No matter what.

I didn’t think that at this point in my life I would find someone that I would so perfectly fit with, but I did. Not that I’m perfect, but Mr. C loves all my many personalities and it just works. We choose to strengthen both our foundation with each other and our relationship with God. We speak every morning on the phone and read our daily devotional and pray together before starting our day.

We’re trying something different. Something that neither of us really did in past relationships. We’re taking it slow, practicing celibacy and just getting to know each other. There is no rush to it. There is comfort and consistency.

I like the G spot (girlfriend spot) and I love that he still courts me and woos me after so many months. He’s been my rock and my friend. He makes me feel safe. He respects me. He’s a man of his word and every day we wake up and make a conscious decision to choose each other. No matter what.

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Stay tuned to my story because I’ve only given you a glimpse into my dating life, but there are so many more stories to tell. I hope this gave you an opportunity to know me a little more. To be able to relate to me.

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If you want to check out the series, they are here:

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Dating Chronicles: Answered Prayers

Last week, I told you about Mr. K in Dating Chronicles: Take Two. He was right after my love Mr. J that I spoke about in Dating Chronicles: The Filler. Nice guy, but I was 0 for 2 in the dating area.

Mr. K and I parted ways shortly thereafter. We had fizzled within seven months of dating. Casual communication through email was all that was left. My communication with my filler was slowly fading to black. I had served my purpose and truthfully he had served his. I was once again alone.

Dating casually. Not allowing anyone to go beyond the first date because they weren’t what I was looking for. Frustrated was how I was feeling. Would I ever meet someone that I could really have a connection with? Love. That’s what I yearned for.

I kept my dating profiles up because I was paying for it. I went about my life. I asked God to help me. To send me a man that would love my son and I as though we were his own. A good man who made good money and was kind. He had to be taller than me and he had to have a sense of humor.

I also asked God to temper my lust. Since lust was probably the reason that I hadn’t found someone. I focused on other things instead of men. I focused on my Munch, work and civic obligations. I was in a good place. I was 40 and God had given me clarity so I was ready to step into my destiny.

I then opened my profile one day and saw a simple “Hi” in my message box from Mr. C. Trying to make more of an effort, I clicked his profile and saw only the basics. No long statements of what he was looking for or what he wanted. I did notice that he wanted children. Umm, what?

I wasn’t having any. I was 40. What did I look like? I already had one and I know I put in my profile that I didn’t want anymore children. I went back and checked my profile just to be sure. Yep, it was there. Plain as day. Does not want children.

I responded with a simple “Hi, how are you?” A couple of days later he responded and thus we exchanged a few quick messages. He gave me his work number and asked me to call him. I did.

He sounded sane. He sounded normal. He sounded kind. I sighed. We just talked. Talked about everything and nothing at the same time. Goals, dreams and our families. We talked and I begin to learn that he had a sense of humor. He was genuinely a nice guy. So, I told him. I told him that I didn’t want any more children and I know that his profile said he wanted some but it wasn’t something I was willing to do.

He said okay. Okay? He said he was fine. He had one and I had one so he didn’t want anymore. Then why did you write that? He said that he would have been willing had he met someone who didn’t have children. I sighed. Okay. But, I had to tell him something else. I would rather it happen now than later, but I needed to be honest.

I told him that I wasn’t giving him my cookies. That I was practicing celibacy. I told him that I had been fooled and fallen in love with men that weren’t always honest after making them wait months for sex only to realize that it wasn’t working. I asked him was he okay with it. I wasn’t going to change if he wasn’t, but I wanted to know where his head was.

I had spent so many years allowing my boundaries to be sacrificed that I just wasn’t going to do it anymore. Clarity and peace came about when I took back my power. At 40. He responded “So, you want us to live like God intends and not have sex until marriage?” Yes. Yes, that is what I want. He said “Okay, I’m cool with that.”

And he was. My boundaries remained intact. My mind was wondering where this beautiful soul had been all my life.

He began to court me. To woo me. We spent hours talking each day. Working out together and just getting to know each other without sex. He became my rock. See, I was in a season of unrest. Everything in my life was falling apart and I felt like I was drowning. Another month brought another tragedy. It continued like that for 8 months.

He was my lifeline. My prayer partner. My friend. I had to go home to Tennessee to visit my dad. Before I left he gave me a gift. A devotional. He said, “Sometimes I struggle to find the words to encourage you and I’m hoping this devotional will encourage you.” Wow!

He cared about my soul. He was making me love him. I didn’t yet. I was in strong like, but I was falling. I told you about it in Missing Him. He was restoring my faith in men. He showed me the respect that I so needed. He understood where I was coming from in regards to my need to honor my commitment to God.

I liked that. I never had that. He was different.

However, it wasn’t all flowers and romance. He wasn’t the type of man that opened doors for me. He didn’t do that, but what he gave me was so much more. He gave me honesty, transparency, respect and laughter. That meant more to me than anything.

It’s been a slow courtship. We went on our first date in October of 2015 and began a relationship in September of last year. Slow and steady. We’re still celibate. We’re still celebrating our love for each other and you know what? I couldn’t be happier.

He was proof of my answered prayer. I had to go through the trials of finding my king because I would have never appreciated who he was. I was doing like my girlfriend said an entertaining jokers.

Not anymore. He’s not perfect and neither am I. We just fit in this space that we’re creating. It’s love, loyalty and respect. I couldn’t ask for more.

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Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Dating Chronicles: Take Two

I told you in yesterday’s post how I met and fell in love with a man after my ex that really was a filler. This was difficult because I didn’t believe in love, but after trying on-line dating and meeting this man that wooed me, I believed I could meet someone. He wasn’t the one.

So, I ended things and took a brief break. Until one day I reactivated my profile and met another man. He was different than most. Funny and short with a body made of pure muscle he had some endearing qualities. He was older than the last man and definitely one of the oldest men that I had dated. He as 8 years older than me. I didn’t even agree to meet him for an official date until 3 months of back and forth consistent communication.

He understood. Never pressured me. I believed that the age gap had made us somewhat able to relate. How wrong I had been. I wrote about him and our experiences in getting to know each other when I asked him Why Are You Single? He was showing me a different side. Not romance, but chivalry. We both led busy lives. His son was home from college and had no driver’s license. He lived in Baltimore County and that was a long way from me living in the southern part of Prince George’s County.

We made it work when we could. I was a soccer mom with a pretty predictable schedule. I wanted to take my time and make sure that he was genuine so I was dating a couple of other men during that time. Nothing serious. All were fillers. My heart wasn’t in it. It was with the last one. I was getting over him.

But, Mr. K had problems. Commitment problems. Time was his biggest issue. We could never connect. I believed him when he made excuses. I was being naive. Too trustworthy for someone who didn’t even know the meaning of the word. He cancelled more dates due to him being sick than anyone I have ever met in my life. One of the hardest ones was to the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ festival.

We were supposed to smoke cigars and drink. I only lived 3 miles away and I was hoping to get hammered. He cancelled. I went with my best friend and had a great time, but it wasn’t the same. It ended shortly thereafter because I don’t like liars. I have a smart mouth and I don’t have time for the fake ones. I wrote it about here:  And It’s Done.

I became frustrated about the lack of honesty and transparency when dating. I still had contact with Mr. K. Not sure why. Maybe I was believing that we could just be friends, but did I really need another friend? Probably not, but I was hard headed and I started to let my guard down with him.

Giving him more chances than I would with anyone else because I believed that somewhere there was a nice guy there. Why? Because he would say the nicest things to me. Why was this so hard? I wasn’t looking to rush down the altar (been there and done that) nor was I looking for a father to my son (he has one) so what was the issue? I know that I intimidate a lot of men for various reasons (a lot of it is my intellect) but I really wanted to find someone that could appreciate all the awesomeness of me.

But, I was sliding into old behaviors and sliding into the bed with the one that I loved and left. I missed him. I missed us. Old feelings started to resurface. I was getting caught up again. He was a bad habit that I couldn’t break. I was hurting from the one that I thought was awesome with all the great qualities and feeling lonely because the man I loved didn’t love me back.

I needed to get off this dang roller coaster of emotions and stop myself. Eventually, Mr. K slow faded me. It was cool. I figured it should have happened months before. I deserved better. I needed and wanted someone to love and take care of me. Not financially, but emotionally. I needed my own love. I craved it. I made a decision.

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Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.