Monday, July 26, 2010

Faith and The Single Woman

My mother prays for me.

To be clear, she prays for me all the time. She's not overly religious but she definitely believes in God, goes to church, and fully believes that through prayer and faith, all things will work out. Because of that, she prays that I have a good life and am happy in all that I do. But there's more. Two years ago, she wrote me a letter that she put in with my Christmas gifts where she said, "...I pray that you find a partner worthy of all you are." Sweet lady, that woman is. A couple months ago, I was telling her something - very light and just a quick story for conversations sake - that deserved nothing more than a quick laugh. She did laugh and then she said, "I'm praying for the two of you. It is bigger than what you two know or see." My response was, "Ma, you worried bout the wrong things, the wrong things." She just said "okay" but would continue her prayers. *NOTE: I'm sure you can figure out who she was talking about if you follow...or go back. She hates to believe the truth of what it is.

My [now former] co-worker is getting married. One day. To someone. Two weeks ago, she started looking for a wedding dress. And a reception hall. And bridesmaid dresses. Try as I may to mind my business, I finally looked over and said, "You're getting married?" She said, "Yes, one day." Now she has an on/off boyfriend so when I asked if she was marrying him she responded, "Maybe. Or maybe not. But I want to be ready. I know it will happen so I'm going to start looking. I speaking it into existence. Going on my faith." Okay. I don't always show a poker face and this time was no difference because she said, "What's wrong with faith?" Nothing. Nothing at all.

But maybe there could be. My mom is praying on something that likely won't ever be. I won't say "never" because if for some odd reason the moon turns royal blue and a tide changes, I don't want you all to say 'I thought you said never.'" My old co-worker is planning a wedding when a proposal hasn't happened. Now, if that's what she wants to do, fine. I do wonder though: Can the faith lead to becoming delusional? Women walk out on faith all the time when it comes to relationships. We so often hope that though "he may be like this now, he'll get better as he grows." That's because its the hope we want for ourselves. To make us happy. We pray and keep the faith that things will change. In reality, sometimes things are getting worse even we just know that "God is making a way."

There is nothing wrong with prayer and faith. We all need something to get us through - through life, work, relationships, etc. When you want something, you should work toward it and if prayer is part of who you are, pray for it to happen.

Does/Can Faith cloud your judgment? Let's discuss.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Change For You

Lebron's going to Miami. By now, some have jumped for joy, some have wished him ill things, some have acted like life is over. Some...well see Cavs' owner Dan Gilbert's letter here (if you haven't read it already). While I'm a huge fan, that is not why we're here today.

Savannah. Savannah Brinson, to be exact. Still not ringing a bell? Well, she is Lebron's long time girlfriend and mother of his two sons. They're roughly the same age (though she might be a year younger) and from what's known, they've been together about 6-7 years. High school sweethearts, she's been with him since he was a scruffy kid with no money and years later, she's with the scruffy young man (minus his appearance on ESPN to announce "the decision" - did you see that SHARP line) who has millions of dollars. He's leaving "working class" Cleveland to head down to Miami - home of the pretty beaches and hot women.

All of a sudden, its time for Savannah to "step her game up." I read message boards and blogs all weekend and saw all the comments of "Savannah needs to get her sh*t together" and "Savannah needs to lose some weight if she wants to compete with those women." Wait, here's my favorite: "Savannah needs to stop looking so regular. She's going to be in South Beach." WHAT? Really? Admittedly, I laughed and shook my head when she and Lebron arrived in Miami and she had a doorag on her head (I read it was 3am when they got in) but not because I was thinking, "She'll never 'keep him' that way." Anyone who knows me knows that I have a thing about walking out the house with a doorag on my head. Lucky and I also briefly discussed that "Savannah #mightdontmakeit" down there - but not because of her looks. To our understanding (from reading an interview of a former player's wife), Miami is a different beast and the groupies are hardcore.

But why should Savannah have to physically change her look just because the groupies will be crawling out at a more swarming rate than when he was in Cleveland or because his money might be longer? If the man is going to cheat, he is going to cheat - no matter how good Savannah looks, how dope or expensive her clothes are, how well she cooks, or how HARD she puts it down in the bedroom. He'll do what he wants...if he wants to (and this is not to say he currently is or will) and nothing she does can stop that. They've been together when they both wore Guess jeans and flannel shirts (I'm stereotyping and in my head, that's what they wore in Akron during their HS years)

In fact, why should any woman HAVE to do that? So you meet a man that's universally FINE. HE pursued, you let him and you BOTH liked what you saw on the surface and beneath. Now when people see you, they may say "He dresses NICE all the time? She dresses down - what would he want with her," but is that really necessary? Sure, there may be some aesthetics that to the naked eye that are different but that's why you look deeper. I'm the type of woman that dresses up sometimes, wears jeans/sneakers most the time and am cute ALWAYS - so if someone is with me and he's more "clean cut" than you'd expect ME to have its because there's something more there. When you get with someone, you know what you're getting into. So while you may yearn for something different, you can't change a person and they shouldn't be subjected to have to "upgrade" because their significant other is wealthy or fine (but yes, clean up for a special event - even if its your own style).

Really? Savannah's got to step her game up to compete for her man? The one she's been with for close to a decade?

Let's discuss.

Friday, July 9, 2010

I Love You - Here's a...Plate?

Some friends and I got together for a 4th of July bbq in my second home of Harlem at the park. Whilst we were basking (and baking) in the sun, our hostess Precious introduces us to a friend of hers - affectionately describing him as her "brother." Now understand, many of us at the bbq are pretty close to her and we've never, EVER heard of this brother (and trust, we've heard of just about all the play cousins, play sisters, play brothers, god sisters and god brothers). We observe (and in a playful way, instigate) her with "brother" and a friend informs us that she fixed his plate. Ahhh, and here we go!

Ju: She MUST like him if she's fixing his plate.

B: That's the kind of thing you do for your man or someone you want to be your man.

Shelleys: Yeah, you don't just see that all the time.

Ju (again): But you know she's country. That's the South in her.

Me: I think its just her way.

B and Shelleys' comments are the one that strikes the cord. B continues to tell a story of how a friend (or maybe it was a family member - it was hot and I couldn't focus on small details) came over for a get together and when her mother asked her why she didn't fix him a plate, she told her mom "He has two hands and two feet - he can walk to get his own plate!" Her mom responded "That's why you don't have a man now!" We laughed but I thought about my own experiences and added: "I don't know if I've ever fixed a man I was dating a plate but I do know that when the FP and I went to a baby shower once, I asked if he wanted me to get his plate while I was getting mine." They responded, "Eh but you liked him." True. But my friend ShonDon was there and he confirmed that when he came to my house for a get together, I made a plate for him, his cousin and possibly other guys.

For me, that's just my way. I'll ask my homegirls if they want me to get them a plate too while I'm up or if they're at my place (but only up until the second visit because you know "the rule). I just think its proper. I don't even know if I think its something I should do for "my man." I talked to Lucky about it and we're on a similar page. I suppose it could be subjective depending on the person.

We could take it a step further and say this is a sign of society's male/female roles. A woman is supposed to "do" for her husband and much like back in the day where women were housewives, they had their husband's dinner on the table when he got home from work. Many like to dispute that because of the womens' movement, these gender roles don't exist. but how true is that? Could it be that even through the womens' movement (I could actually write a book on my feelings about that) and other progressive moments in history, we have still passed on certain things that show our domestic ways?

If you fix his plate, do you love him? If you fix his plate, are you setting the womens' movement back? If you fix his plate, are you just doing what comes natural to your personality?

Let's discuss.