Lost Ones

22:00






Once upon a time I was in love with a man who didn't love me. It's too generous to say in love, but for a moment I believed it could turn into one of those loves that you read about; the timeless, endures-all-things types of love.
I don't know why I felt that way about him. We had great chemistry. I felt drawn to a quietness that he possessed, a calmness that I found so tantalizing and made me wonder what he thought about when he went to that quiet place. I imagined him bringing me there, sharing it with me.

This man. Oh, this man. My mind elevated this man to the heavens. This man who affectionately asked me what I wanted for my birthday. I could have said anything, but instead I asked for a handmade card, with a poem written by him. Instead, I got a bag of oranges, and blank paper folded in half, with an embarrassed smile about how he hadn't been able to get around to the card.
I bit my tongue to keep from crying, but I could feel the frustration bubbling up my throat. I looked at him. I unleashed my frustrations because I couldn't hold them in. He told me that I wanted too much, that no man can live up to the one who lives in my head.* Evidently, I cared for a man who didn't care about me.  Even the little that I asked for he couldn't give. This man who wanted and demanded so much from me, but gave me nothing in return.

And how can I forget that other one, the hustler. The one with ambition and drive, who was doing all he could to elevate himself. Who didn't let his pride keep him from doing an honest days work to get where he needed to be. He worked so hard I could barely reach him sometimes. Days would go by without communication. But it was ok. He was saving to go back to school. He never missed a chance to tell me how much he adored me though. I even got sweet kisses and a beautiful bouquet of roses on Valentines Day. During all of this, I had my suspicions and boldly voiced them out loud. He never skipped a beat with his reassurance. But I couldn’t shake off the feeling that something wasn’t right.  But how could something not be right with a man who was doing all he could to get to the top? 

One night I dreamt of a woman that I had never met before. She was pregnant with twins. A feeling of dread stayed with me that day. The woman from my dream e-mailed me, asking me about the man we were sharing. She’d found several emails I’d sent to him with college application leads.  She asked me how I knew him. Did I know that she was pregnant?
Twins? I inquired.

She was shocked. How did I know?

I told her it was a lucky guess. I told her I hadn't known about her.  

But I had, hadn't I?

I didn't cry for him. How could I? I felt sorry for her and the new lives she carried. All three of them would never know a love based on faithfulness, commitment, and honesty. Not from him. 


Don't be a hard rock when you really are a gem.** 

I became an expert in subverting my intuition, fighting with myself to demand less, be softer, less volatile.* I finally woke up when one proposed that we commit to each other but we allow ourselves to roam elsewhere. I felt a repugnance I've never felt toward another human being. My Spirit was infuriated. Enough was enough. I had disregarded good counsel, and every instruction. I'd heed one warning, only to be swayed against my better judgement. I was at a crossroads and had to choose. No longer could I straddle two roads that led to opposite directions. Funny enough, I had made the choice a long time ago, but along the way I got lost. Took several wrong turns. Cried for help when I was too deep to find my way home, yet, somehow I'd be enticed by a dirt road that seemed adventurous. I had forgotten myself. 
It is the voice of my Beloved that woke me up, reminding me of His unconditional love: Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away, He whispered.  It was then that I irrevocably and soberly chose the road of peace, of forgiveness, of repentance, of love--the real love, not the illusion, certainly not its substitute.

Consequently, that quiet place that I sensed wasn't what I thought it was. It was a void; a dark abyss, a voracious and insatiable bottomless pit of lust. I looked at it, and it looked at me and smiled. I smiled back. I was no longer enslaved to it. I had nothing left to feed it. 
I let it starve and I became free.

I am free.


Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed; neither be thou confounded; for thou shalt not be put to shame; for thou shalt forget the shame of thy youth, and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood anymore. For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is His name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall He be called. For the Lord hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou was refused, said thy God. Isaiah 54:4-6




*line from the poem For Women Who Are Difficult to Love by Warsan Shire

**Doo Wop (That Thing) by Lauryn Hill

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2 comments

  1. Love this so much! Holy!!!! Chenai, you took me to a deep place. As women we all go through this. Amen sista! Impressive. ❤

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    1. Thanks Linda! wish, I know right?? Glad you liked it.

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