Fifty-Seven

Southern Mom was born in 1957.  In 2014, I kept telling her that it was her “Golden Year” because she was TURNING 57, and she was BORN in 1957.  Little did I know that less than two months after her birthday, she’d be gone. Whenever I see the number 57, on an interstate exit in particular, I always think of her.

Doug Banks, my FAVORITE radio DJ of all-time, passed away a few weeks ago at the age of 57.

Yesterday, we lost my boo, the ultimate performer, the greatest musician, an icon. How old was he?  Fifty-seven.  Prince Rogers Nelson is the ultimate instrumentalist.  I say “is” because it’s still hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that he is gone.

I have loved Prince for as long as I can remember.  One of my first memories of Prince is “Purple Rain”.  As young as 8 or 9 (probably younger) every time I would go to my uncle’s house, I would ask him if I could borrow his “Purple Rain” VHS tape.  I would watch that movie multiple times a week before I took it back to his house.  It got to the point that one day he just told me he would get me my own copy.

For my 10th birthday, I got the tape of “Diamonds and Pearls”.   I was SO happy to get that doggone tape.  One day, I took it to daycare so we could dance to it.  And my BFF lost it.  I went SLAM OFF on her.  I was so upset!  I had it less than a week, and she LOST IT!  Thankfully, it was recovered, but I learned then not to let anyone mess with/hold/borrow my stuff.

One of my bucket list items was to see Prince perform live.  Despite the circumstances, I was BEYOND thrilled to see him perform in Baltimore last year.  My linesister B and I had floor seats!!!!  It was one of the greatest experiences of my life.  And while I missed his DC show, I didn’t worry too much when he announced he was going on tour again in 2016, because I just KNEW I would get to see him perform again.  Alas, that is not to happen in this lifetime.

It’s still surreal to me.  I just can’t believe that he’s gone.  I feel like there’s so much more he has to do.  There’s so much more the fans have to see and hear and do.

Prince was unapologetic about who he was.  He was about the music.  He was about living your truth.  He wasn’t the biggest man or the tallest man or the most masculine man, but he could have any woman (ANY WOMAN) he wanted.  Even guys respected Prince because he was a bad-ass.  As my friends on Facebook have said, “he was the original Mr. Steal Your Girl”.

While I am upset that I won’t get to see him this summer, I will remember how his music made me feel.  How I still dance and sing to the “Purple Rain” soundtrack (heck, really any Prince album).  How amazing it was to see him on stage last year.  And how he changed the music industry.  Prayers to his family, friends, loved ones, and fans.

Prince Rogers Nelson, you were one-of-a-kind, ahead of your time, and you will be forever in my heart.

Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

I Should Have Stayed On My Hiatus

Awhile back a dude approached me.  He seemed nice, was attractive, and said all the right things.  Despite my reservations, we became official.  He talked a good game – he was older and divorced but stated he was tired of dating and wanted to re-marry.  And was open to having more children (he already has one).  So, I decided to be open and give a relationship with him a go.  After not hearing from him for 72 hours (yes I called and left a message), I decided that I was done and whatever we had was over.  Which apparently was on his mind as well, because he decided to tell me that I could date other people…via a text message.  (I swear I can’t make this stuff up.)  I feel like he took the coward’s way out.  He’s a man of a certain age, so he should at least have been ballsy enough to pick up the phone.  Yes, I understand that this may not seem like a big deal to some, but it was for me.  Despite the fact I let my guard down and opened up to this man, I told myself that 2016 was the Year of Elle.  No dating, no relationships-just focusing on myself and school.  They always say that love comes when you least expect it, and please believe I was not expecting this man to walk into my life.  However, I should have known to trust my gut.  And if that leads to others thinking I’m cynical, I don’t care.  I’d rather protect my heart than to look like a fool.

Oh, and the guy from this post….GREAT conversation last night!  Because long distance relationships have not worked for him in the past, he will not date me because we live 6 hours apart.  Which I’m totally ok with.  I said we could just be friends and that would be fine by me.  However… he ended the conversation with, “Good night, beautiful”.  I had to let him know that that was not acceptable; we’re not dating, and we’re just friends, so there’s no need to blur the lines with terms of endearment.

No more dating for Elle in 2016.  I mean it.  I am TOTALLY going to focus on me and getting my stuff together for school, my physical health, and my mental capacity.  I just don’t have the energy anymore to put into “potentials” that may not go anywhere.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

 

So, I May Have Been a B*tch

….but I don’t really think so.  Let me give a little background.

(Oh, first, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!  I hope you all had a great holiday season!  Ok, back to this post.)

I met a guy in late 2014. After going back and forth multiple times with nothing ever panning out, he reaches out to me a year after we met.  Homeboy has done a COMPLETE 180-texts every day, calls me at night (like 6 pm-after-work-night, not 11 pm-booty-call-time-night), is real anxious to take me out.  Then he disappears.  And re-appears.  And disappears.  And re-appears.  Most recently, he invited me over this weekend and cooked for me.  I REALLY wanted to say “No” (he’s inconsistent, plus, I told myself I’m not dating in 2016), but homeboy said steak.  I mean, it’s not like it was chicken; it was a freakin’ steak!  So after church, I moseyed on over and we broke bread. And watched movies.  Until I had to go.  (Previous plans and always keep them wanting more.)

Before I left, we made plans to go to the movies this week.  He was supposed to call and let me know what time he was picking me up.  We talked about chivalry and how it wasn’t dead and how he was going to do better (in the being a gentleman department).  After pushing our movie date back by a day after I texted and asked what time I need to be ready, I called him last night on my way home to find out what time he was coming to pick me up.  He said he was still in “work mode” and hadn’t really thought about it.  I said, cool, but when you figure it out, call me, ask me out, and let me know what time I need to be ready.  Now, this is where the b*tch part comes in.

I could have EASILY done some things around the house and waited for homeboy to call me.  But noooooooo…..I find look for a link that gives tips on being chivalrous and send it to him.  (Now say it with me, “Oh, Elle”.)  I thought it might be comical, and I even prefaced it by saying, “Since we were discussing this earlier this week…” so it wouldn’t seem (as) harsh.   Can you believe homeboy then sent a message saying he was too STRESSED to go out, but that he appreciated me and that he was going to work on him???  So my text may have been a little itchy with a “b” in front of it.  And it doesn’t help that Southern Cousin AND Southern Dad have said that I may be too hard on guys.  But shoot, if a little text message about chivalry stresses you out, you probably don’t need to go out with me (or anybody else) anyway.

While I was a little shocked at first, you know, I’m actually kinda glad he bailed.  I definitely dodged a bullet.  What bullet?  It doesn’t matter.  Homeboy wasn’t stable/consistent anyway and most certainly is not the type of man that I need in my life.  Hasta luego….or not.

Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

 

I Should Have Said Yes

As an only child, I’m used to doing things for myself.  And I HATE asking for help.  For anything.  Well, basic stuff.  You know, stuff like bringing in my groceries, cleaning the house, and re-arranging my work space, I got it covered (I do need a maid, though).  But for heavy lifting, moving, shoveling snow, I’m real quick to figure out who I can ask to help.

Last week at work, I had to stay late for a meeting.  After I had my students straighten things up and pack my bags with the leftovers, another (male) adult asked if he could carry the bag for me.  It wasn’t heavy, so I said, “Thanks, but I got it!”  Thirty seconds later, heck probably 10 seconds later, I realized I should have said, “Yes”.  No, the bag was easy to carry, and we were just going down the one flight of steps.  But I should have let that man carry that light bag down one flight of steps.  For a number of reasons.

One, men like to feel needed.  And in that moment, though he had just met me, I needed him.  And he needed to feel needed.  Two, I should have allowed him to be a gentleman.  It was the right thing for him to over to carry my bag for me.  And although he may have been asking to be nice, not really expecting to carry the bag, I should have let him.  Because I would have been sending the message, you ask me to carry something/do something for me, I’m going to let you.  Three, I’m so quick to tell people “no” without really hearing what they are saying to me.  I should have listened to his question, processed it, then provided an appropriate answer.  In my haste to get out of dodge, I wasn’t really focusing on the nice gentleman in the suit who was offering his assistance.  In my defense, I was finishing an 11 hour work day and I was sick.

So, at the end of the day, the lesson learned is: everyone wants to feel needed, especially men.  And the other lesson: when someone offers to do something nice for you, allow them to, especially a man. 🙂  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

I’m Over Being a Party of One

Last weekend I had my housewarming.  It was great having my friends over to celebrate my home.  I trust everyone had a great time.  Well, everyone DID have a great time, seeing as how much food was eaten and how many empty champagne bottles I put in the recycling bin.  But some things were missing.  I definitely wished the parentals had been here (Southern Dad will be in DC before the end of the year…he says).  But I wish I had a mate here.  A boo.  A steady love interest who could have stood by my side and wished me well on this new endeavor in my life.  Basically, I’m tired of being single.

I’m tired of wanting to go somewhere and trying to figure out a) which of my friends are single and want to go or b) which of my married/boo’ed up friends would go with me.  I want to be able to say, “Babe, let’s go to ______” and we go.  Alas, it’s been a LONG minute since that’s happened. For example, I want to go to the Redskins pre-season game when they play the Jaguars.  So my linesister is going with me.  I want to see Stevie Wonder in October at the Verizon Center.  Do I a) buy two tickets and hope I have a boo by then or b) (once again), ask a single friend to go with me?

Don’t get me wrong – I enjoy my single life.  But it’s old.  Like really, really old.  I desire a friend, a lover, a prayer partner, a church attendee mate, and a gentleman all rolled into one.  Who belongs to me. And I belong to him.  Do you hear me, Lord???

Le sigh.  In any event, that’s where I am.  Being single’s not overrated, but it is played out.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

The Beginning of Something New

At the end of 2014, I met a guy.  We spoke, we laughed, we joked, but we didn’t take things seriously, and eventually, we stopped communicating.  Or maybe I didn’t take things seriously.  He was significantly younger than me, plus he lived 6 hours away.  Not to mention I wasn’t really focused on dating since I had way too much going on in other aspects of my life.  Fast forward 5 months, and we start talking again.  During the month of July we hangout for an extended amount of time.  What I thought might be awkward wasn’t.  It may have been the most comfortable I’ve felt with a man ever.  It was at that time, homeboy realized he was serious about me.  Like REALLY serious.  And as TyAnthony likes to accuse me of, I enjoyed the attention, I’ll admit.  And I have been known to date men because of how much they are in to me and not necessarily because I’m into them.  So, I had to think and reflect – did I like this guy?  If I did like him, was it genuine?  Or, once again, did I like him based on how much he liked me?  And, did I even want to like him?

I have been known to keep a wall up.  I thought this was something only I knew, but TyAnthony and Antonio  called me out on it. So, after awhile, I decided if homeboy was going to be serious, I was going to be serious, too. Let my guard down, be open and honest, and lay my cards on the table.  So I am slowly giving him all of me.

So far so good, although two potential things (well really one) almost put a halt on things.  Well, maybe they were more to serve as a distraction.  First, a few weeks ago, I met a man while I was out with my linesisters.  We struck up a conversation, exchanged numbers, and made plans to hang out.  We danced, and his parting words were, “I’m not looking to be your friend. I’m looking for my life partner.”  Well, seemed like I was batting 1000 because you all know I like to keep my options open.  Sad to say, after one outing, ol’ boy disappeared.  Honestly, it was probably for the best as he has one non-negotiable that is at the top of my list.  The second distraction was an old beau that called out of the random blue.  (I probably should change my phone number.)

In any event, I decided to be open.  I had to tell myself, “Elle, if this man is really into you, he’s telling you the right things, more importantly DOING the right things, give him a chance and be open.”  So, that’s what we’re doing.  Yes, I told him about this blog, but I doubt that he has read it yet.  (Just my luck he’ll read this post.)  Anyway, wish me luck.  I am excited to see what happens.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

It’s Just Me…K.B.

So today we have a guest blogger….well writer.  She’s one of my FAVORITE people and will be sharing periodic posts with you all!  So, without further adieu, let me introduce K.B.!!!

Please think of me as Elle’s arch nemesis. No, I’m just kidding. I’m actually Elle’s “Half” and no, we are not twins. You will see where the “half/double” language comes in at a later time. Elle blessed me to be able to embark upon a new season in my life and using her blog to do so. I’ve been instructed, with love, to introduce myself. Here goes…

Much like Elle, I also hale from the South, and now living in the City of Brotherly Love (aka Kiladelphia but that’s another story). I ended up in the city by picking it on the map with the desire for 4 seasons, no family or friends there, and saying “Hey, you only live once!” (Side Bar: I have a little problem with being 33 years old and saying YOLO but maybe I will conform one day). I attended one of the greatest universities in the world, Florida A&M University, located in Tallahassee, FL as a 2nd generation Rattler, where I had the pleasure of meeting Elle well over 10 years ago. I am a clinical pharmacist, and I specialize in the area of psychiatry but I promise not to talk medications as I try to keep that to my day life only…unless you have a dying question you need more clarification on. I must give the standard “no suing” talk and say the views and thoughts I express via this channel are not the thoughts of my employer, before we go any further. It’s all love.

I essentially came from a home of educators and grew up with a passion for reading and following behind my older sister, all of whom I love so much. I’ve always been an avid reader and a member of the coolest book club in my city where we cook or eat at restaurants that are themed around the book we are reading, and wine is a must at every gathering! So I love wine, vegetarian dishes (I’m not a full time vegetarian), stopped eating pork once I moved to the city, and have a very large depiction of a slave ship and the map of the triangular trade tattooed on my back but we will get into those interesting discussions at a later date as well. I wrote my first published medical article in February 2015, which I am completely excited about.

While our stories in life may be different, I’m sure we will all have some commonalities to share. Life gives us lessons in different ways. I believe in voicing those opinions while remaining respectful. I think healthy dialogue brings about change and growth. If you stay in one space, you can cut your blessings that may be waiting for you. I hope you take this journey as I guest write for Elle, as I may challenge some of the things she says and use the platform to say what is on my mind about a host of other topics affecting the world today. I hope to bring you some discussion on the current happenings and drop a little history lesson here and there on the things I find the most interesting. A great example would be how people told you at some point you would sound like your mother or father and sure enough, you start to see their little ways creep up on you like reciting the famous “Don’t rush growing up. Enjoy it while you can”, as you speak to your young child who is 4 years old and “can’t wait to turn 5!” We gain all of these experiences and share them amongst our circles but being able to share to the masses has to be empowering and also a blessing for someone. I welcome you to take this journey with me as I may stumble along the way, but I’m sure I will jump back in the game. Until next time…it’s just K.B. Peace.