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Blog Back In Time: Heart cracked not heartbroken

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2008

Heart cracked not heartbroken

So I’m a blogger now? Well who am I kidding, this has been a long time coming and I really should have anticipated it happening. But it took reading a thought provoking blog for me to realize that maybe this is the release I’ve been seeking. See, I am what most would describe as the over imaginative straightforward boss lady-esque diva with a passion for Disney movies and shoes who has a heart of gold once I warm up to you. But in the process there are just some things that can not be said at all times. Not everyone wants to hear about an issue that has been troubling you for a while; there aren’t enough hours in the day! So without further ado…my words and thoughts.

Adri Speaks: I had a very rough breakup and I was in a place where I didn’t want to talk to anyone anymore. I was drinking heavily (even more than the average college student) at the time and wasn’t eating. It was either write or waste away. I chose to write.

Regardless of who is reading this, I think it is safe to assume that everyone has either experienced first hand or watched someone go through a bad breakup. They may come in various flavors but generally the results are the same: one or both persons is left with a “broken” heart. Recently, I became acquainted with the worst kind of betrayal and for a few days I would think (but never vocalize) that indeed, my heart was broken. Oh sure, I got up everyday, refusing to fall victim to the crying fits typically seen on daytime soap operas and went about my business. I would walk around with an air of confidence but within I felt empty. Like a shell of my former self. That may sound very melodramatic like it should be a line in The Young and the Restless but the phrase rings true. When you begin to define yourself based on who you share your hopes and fears with, suddenly you all alone feels like a stranger.

 

AS: This was my very first boyfriend. When I discovered that essentially everything about him was a lie, I was shocked. I had no idea how to cope because my only experience of love was through that person. I said to myself over and over again, “Is this love?” “Love can’t feel like this.” “I don’t know who I am without him.” “I am nobody without him.” I also cried. A lot. Even when trying to sound strong,  I was not honest with my audience and I was not honest with myself. Looking back- I can say with all sincerity- I was a complete wreck.

It’s amazing how much we try to convince ourselves that we are fine but our heart knows the truth and never fails to remind us with the painful pang of memories not so long ago. I’ve been tempted to succumb to the resentment surrounding me and proclaim myself as the maneater/ femme fatale/ Samantha Jones character women my age have been taught to idolize. Yet still, I cannot bring myself to do it. I think it’s because my heart is too big and my morals too influential. I would lose myself in the process of asserting my womanhood and sexual prowess.

AS: Lies. I was very bitter and very much turned off by the idea of relationships. It is true that I was not sexually promiscuous but that’s because you have to actually interact with men in order to have sex with them. I would have sooner stabbed someone than dated them. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but I grappled with my feelings for many years. I was often ashamed of even feeling anything less than strength and resilience.

When I came to this conclusion, I realized that my heart could not possibly be broken. If indeed it was, I would not be able to maintain the love I have for my family, my friends, and my God. I have not lost the capacity to love as I did with such fervor and devotion. I am not broken at all. If anything, I just have a few cracks along the surface that will fix itself over time but will never completely fade away. Like the scars on my departed grandfather’s hands- my heart is stronger now than it was before. It has a few battle wounds but it works just fine.

I’ll be just fine.

AS: Even reading this now, I have tears in my eyes because I so desperately wanted to believe the words that I wrote. Maybe I believed them at the time, as I was tipsy on cheap vodka and my mind was swimming with optimism. The reality was that I would not be “just fine” for quite some time. And that’s ok.

Lesson: It’s ok to not be ok.

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Blog back in Time

Have you ever wondered what you would say if you could talk to your younger self? I have. My latest endeavor will be called “blog back in time,” where I pull entries from my old blog called “words and thoughts”and parallel it with what I would say and do now.

I started that blog as a hurt 19 year old who desperately wanted to find healing after being heartbroken by her first love. I turned to my true first love- writing- in order to cope. While these entries were very personal, they  apply to every young lady who thought they knew everything but really knew nothing about love, loss, and forgiveness.

I hope you enjoy.

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Confession: I’m a bad feminist

There’s no easy way to say this so I will just have to get right to it. I’ve been living a lie and it’s time I came clean. For the past few years, while I have been touting the feminist rhetoric, empowering young girls in my community, and proudly proclaiming myself as a feminist (even going so far as to write a whole blog entry about it), I’ve been hiding a massive secret. I haven’t burned any bras. I don’t hate men. I believe that men and women have special and important roles in society. And worst of all, I don’t promote promiscuity. You see, according to a large population of those on and off social media platforms like twitter, feminist women are man hating whores who “don’t need no man”. They are angry, unattractive, emasculating, and belligerent. They are why chivalry is dead and why many men (black men in particular), left the home.

If that sounds as ridiculous to you as it does to me, here’s why: because it is. But for an incredibly long time, I often found myself at odds with several sides of the feminism debate and within myself. One side was comprised of my religious associates and family members who cited biblical scripture to support their narrow-minded and often misogynistic views on women. I couldn’t and still can’t utter the word “feminist” without being barraged with all sorts of language around Adam and Eve, the “proper order of things,” and did I mention Eve?

Loud and prominent voices in the feminist community also made me feel that my type of traditional feminism was wrong or not progressive enough. For instance, while I do believe that gender roles are largely comprised of social conditioning, I also believe that there is a biological basis for behaviors in a majority of men and women that is shaped by our environments. So yes, I would prefer to date and marry a man who has physical strength, for instance. I would also like to be professionally successful but would limit my career progression for the sake of raising my children in a home where both parents are present, engaged, and loving.

I am not traditional enough or feminist enough for either side and I am certainly not black enough for those in the black community who say that feminism is responsible for the destruction of the black family. The idea is that white supremacists used black women as pawns to convince them that they did not need their black husbands/partners, thereby eroding the nuclear family and leaving children to be raised in fractured homes and disenfranchised neighborhoods. Largely based on assumptions and outright lies, those that spread this nonsense also say the absence of the black father is a leading cause of homosexuality and promiscuity in the black community. I won’t even dive into how dangerous this ideology is at this time.

What I will say is this: I am comforted by the fact that my feminism is just that- MINE. Yes, it is “the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes”. But it’s more robust than that. It says that my partner should not have to be made to feel like “less of a man” if he earns less than me, cries when he’s overcome with emotion, or has to ask for directions if he’s lost. Feminism says that I can come home from a late night at work (in which I am paid fairly and not less than my male counterpart) and dinner will be waiting for me because my husband got home 2 hours earlier. Feminism says if a woman is sexually assaulted, her attire at the time or personal sexual history shouldn’t be brought into question. Feminism says that Odell Beckham Jr. should be able to dance without having his sexuality come into question. Feminism says that black girls and women are also beaten and killed by law enforcement officers and their names should be uttered and shouted.

 

I am a woman. I am black. I am a feminist. And I will never apologize for what feminism means to me.

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