Her Husband, My King: Unconventional Ties , Part 2

Her Husband My King Unconventional Ties

To Read Part 1: Click Here

“Love is composed of one soul inhabiting  two bodies. “ -Aristotle

Looking into his eyes was like looking at myself in the mirror.  Except he was everything  that was good about me.  I thought he was beautiful.  There were times when I questioned my beauty. I had been told my whole life how beautiful I was.  But when you’ve gone your entire life falling for guys who never thought you were good enough,  you wonder if people are just saying things to be nice. You wonder if they saw something deeper.

I knew that I had a beautiful heart,  but it’s impossible to make someone fall in love with your heart when they aren’t attracted to the owner.

It was like he saw my heart through my eyes.  I didn’t have to tell him who I was because he knew.  The more time we spent getting to know each other,  the more we realized how much we had in common.  Like that one time I smashed my finger in my car door and had to cut off my ring that I always wore. Then there was the time when he broke his finger and his wedding band was stuck. Same hand,  same finger,  different bodies.  Then there was the fact that cold weather made both of our right ankles hurt, due to a similar injury years ago.

I remember growing up and feeling upset. Not really knowing why, I would pray for my future husband. Because if I came from him, I was bound to feel his pain. So if I was emotionally upset for no reason, he had to be going through something in that very moment. If there was a pain in my chest, I assumed his heart was hurting. So I would anoint my chest with healing oil because I needed him to be okay for me. If I was unable to physically take care of him, I needed to be able to do it spiritually. God heard more prayers about him than myself for a while.

Fast forward about ten years and there I was falling in love with a man who seemed to have gone through life wondering about me. He knew that he was missing something, but he had no idea what it was.

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“You’re beautiful, Rack.”

“No one’s ever called me beautiful before.”

“You’re how I expect royalty to look. Everything about you, from your facial structure, to the way your eyes wander when you’re in deep thought.”

“Thank you!”

“You’re welcome.”

“Let me take you somewhere.”

“Where?”

“It’s a surprise. Do you trust me?”

“I do.”

“Meet me in the parking lot of the place where we first met? Tonight at 7.”

“I’ll be there. What should I wear?”

“Wear something that makes you feel beautiful.”

I knew exactly what to choose. I knew that he would love it. But most of all it made me feel gorgeous. I bought the dress a few years prior. I had gained a few pounds since, but it still fit just right. There was a time where I loved to wear sundresses, but that time had passed. The extra weight had caused me to push all of my dresses to the back of the closet. I barely wanted to see myself in a dress, so I was sure that no one else wanted to see it either. But when Rack told me to wear something that made me feel beautiful, I chose the only thing that I knew would bring back the old me, the Sheila that could turn the head of every guy in the room.

I was there about thirty minutes early, and he was already there. I was early to everything. I would much rather drive normally and get somewhere early than to rush and be late.

“Rack, you’re early!”

“So are you. Ready to go?”

“As ready as I’ll ever be.”

“Don’t be nervous. It’ll be fun.”

“I’ll take your word for it.”

He drove for about twenty minutes before we made it to our destination.

“I’ve always wanted to take someone here. I’m happy that you said yes.”

“Anywhere with you, was fine with me. You could’ve invited me to church and I would’ve been happy to go.”

“Speaking of church, how often do you attend?”

“Every week. My church family is really close. We’re really more like friends than anything.”

“I think that’s cool. I grew up in church. But let’s finish this conversation in a few. Follow me?”

We got out of the car and he led me to this lit grassy area near the parking lot, under a tree. I wasn’t sure where we were but it was beautiful. You could see the stars in the sky and there was no one around. The typical person would be afraid. But I knew that he wouldn’t let anything happen to me.

The sun had set and the moon was full. There was a blanket laying under the tree with a basket. There was a tea candle on top of the basket. The wind was still tonight, so there was no chance of it blowing out the flame.

“I’ve never been on a picnic.”

“I figured, if we had no distractions, we could get to know each other a little better. I know that our usual hangout spots aren’t really conversation friendly.”

“You’re right. But I enjoy being in your presence more than you know. I think I’ve grown to know you pretty well, my idea of you at least.”

“Tell me something. What do you see when you look at me?”

“Well, I noticed you from afar. You seemed quiet.  I imagine that you grew up in a loving household with siblings. But I also imagine you being the quiet one. You look like you used to play sports, maybe football. I think you’re smart and have a knack for learning new things. It seems like you’re good with your hands.”

I grabbed his hands with mine,

“They’re rough. So, I’m sure that you’re no stranger to hard work. Your eyes are gentle. I think you have a lot of love inside. You give the best hugs. But I feel like you don’t get them enough.”

“So, you’re just going to read me like an open book huh?”

“Your eyes tell me more than you probably want me to know.”

“I’d tell you everything about me if you asked.”

“An open book.”

He laughed.

For the next hour, we ate shrimp alfredo, baked salmon, and strawberry cheesecake, courtesy of Chef Rack. I had no idea that he could cook, but I was pleasantly surprised. I was stuffed and I hadn’t laughed so much in my entire life.

“I hope you enjoyed yourself.”

“That would be an understatement. This is the most fun I’ve had in a very long time. I don’t usually leave the house much.”

“Well I’m glad you did, or else, you would’ve never met me.”

“That would have been a great injustice.”

“I agree.”

“I spent a lot of years wondering when I would meet someone who would mean the world to me. But I knew that if I didn’t get out, I’d never meet him unless of course he was a pizza delivery guy or the mailman.”

“That’s the most hilarious thing I’ve ever heard. Well I’m glad that you knew you deserved much more than that.”

“I’m glad I did too. I think this is the start of something beautiful.”

“Something beautiful indeed.”

He drove me back to my car and for the first time, I wished that he didn’t have to leave. The closer that we got to my car, the more I wished he would keep driving, to somewhere far away, that we could be together.  Before I finished that thought, we had made it.

“Text me when you make it home?”

“You can count on it.”

“Thank you for tonight. I had an amazing time.”

“Anything for you, Sheila.”

I hugged him and he kissed me on my forehead. It was the warmest, most gentle kiss.

“Goodnight Rack.”

“Goodnight Shelia.”

The drive home was quiet, but loud. I couldn’t stop thinking about him and honestly, I didn’t want to. Thoughts of him were bound to turn into sweet dreams. As I walked into the house, I made sure to shoot him a text.
Text conversation

I was convinced that if nights ended with dreams of him, waking up without him may not be so hard.

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Her Husband, My King: Unconventional Ties, Introduction

Her Husband My King Unconventional Ties 

I grew up learning that woman came from man’s rib. There’s the story that God put man to sleep, took one of his ribs and formed woman. So I believed that when a man found his rib, he would know. It would be as though he’d lived his life missing a piece of him and the moment that he was in the room with her, he would feel whole again. Also, the woman would feel at home when she was near him, after all she did come from him.  That theory died a little, after years and years of dating men who just weren’t it. I found myself settling for good enough. As long as they loved me slightly, I let it ride. I would give all of my love in hopes that something magical would happen. It never did. Because they just weren’t the one for me. Until the day that I met him.

Let me tell you about my king.

You know the saying, “eyes are the windows to the soul?” Well I never thought that was true until I met Rack. Rack was 6’2 about 300 pounds. He was beautiful. He had skin that reminded me of the motherlands and a smile that rivaled even the best Colgate models. He was quiet and gentle. I secretly gave him the nickname, gentle giant. He was an artist. His persona gave off one of authority and aggression. But I saw something else in his eyes. I saw peace and a story that was waiting to get out. I also saw hurt. I could see that behind that gorgeous smile, something was wrong. I was dying to hear his story one day. But there was one problem. He was married.

Meeting him was like falling in love with yourself after years of wondering why anyone else would. 

It’s like getting to know you all over again, when you never knew you should.

You look into their eyes and you’re reflected inside.

You’re not sure where it’s headed but you’re down for the ride.

You’ll ride to the moon with them if it meant more time spent.

It’s so hard to walk away. You wonder where they’ve been.

You wonder if it’s just a phase, but you’re sure there’s more in store.

You’ve never liked to share,

But you like him a little bit more.

You’ll give him all the love because he’s shown so much to you.

It’s non-traditional, but it works for you.

I always told myself that I would never date a married man. So regardless of how he made me feel, I had to let the idea of getting to know him go. He’d never entertain my advances and I had no intentions of advancing past friendship. But there was something in the way he hugged me. It was almost as though he didn’t want to let go. I was comfortable with staying in his arms. But I kept looking past him. There weren’t many times when he’d go out alone. But I looked forward to the times that he did.

One night, he was alone. It was late. We were hanging out among friends and it was a bit chilly outside. I instinctively cuddled up next to him and he didn’t push me away. He welcomed me with opened arms. It seemed like the warmest place to be. In that moment, I knew that he was something special. It felt like I belonged there. I had no clue why he felt so comfortable, so familiar. I had no intentions of finding out. But the way he looked at me when I backed away made me sad. I knew in that moment, that I had to be close to him, that this had to happen. I knew that if he was home, I’d never be sick again.

That night was the start of something beautiful. Friendly text conversations turned into a game of 21 questions. We spent hours messaging about each other’s favorite things, from colors to positions. Nothing was off limits. We were getting to know each other after all. Funny how, I’d known this man for over a year, maybe two. But I didn’t really know him. I honestly didn’t know anything about him other than the fact that he was married. He was an open book and I was nervous. He did everything in his power to make me feel comfortable. He told me to take my time, and I did.

“I can’t believe we’ve never talked before.”

“I can’t either, but I’m glad that we’re talking now, Rack.”

“If you could ask me anything, what would it be?”

“How many times have you been in love?”

“Not many. Maybe twice.”

“I’ve been in love too much to count. But none of them loved me in return.”

“I can’t believe that.”

“Believe it. I really wish that it wasn’t true. But it is. I spent a lot of time trying to prove myself to men who couldn’t reciprocate general feelings for me.”

“I’m not sure how you’ve stayed single for this long.”

“Hopefully, that won’t always be the case.”

“If I have anything to do with it, it won’t.”

I wondered if he was just running game. But he seemed sincere. It was almost as though I was having a conversation with my father. He said all of the right things at all of the right times. But he didn’t come off as a know-it-all. He was genuine. Before ending the conversation, he said something to me that took all of my anxiety away.

“I feel like I’ve known you my whole life. The moment I saw you, I knew that you were someone that I had to know and here we are. Can we keep this going?”

“As long as you’ll have me.”

That was something that I told most people. In the past, I had a bad habit of running men away. I had the tendency to come on too strong. I didn’t want to do the same with him. But he assured me that it was okay to be myself. Hopefully, it wouldn’t be too much. Even with his permission, I chose to keep a lot of my feelings under wraps. After all, he did belong to someone else.

The Diary of A Homeless Romantic

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Dear Diary,                                                                                                                          October 16, 2009

I can’t remember the last time I felt this way. This was reminiscent of the time when dad bought me those candies. They were delicious. They were even better because I didn’t expect them. I was coming home from school one day. I had to be about 5 or 6. He had it wrapped up neatly and tied with a pretty purple bow. I couldn’t wait to get to school and show the other kids what my daddy had bought me. But things didn’t go the way that I had planned. I was robbed. Karen, the class bully stole the candy right out of my locker. I’m not sure how she got in. Maybe her lock had the same combination. But it was more likely that the key she used unlocked my lock too. The lock didn’t cost much at all. No wonder, it was so easy for her to steal from me.

The same way that she took my candy, she’s trying to take the man of my dreams. It’s been ten years and she’s still taking things that don’t belong to her. She should be ashamed of herself. I know that they taught us to  share when we were in school, but I never thought I’d have to share the love of my life. No one should have to do that.

James has no clue that I like him. He’s the most popular guy in school. Everyone wants him. But this is different. We’re friends. He looks out for me and I help him with his homework. I’m not allowed to date, so I don’t. But he spends time with me anyway.  Usually, we’re somewhere public. We’re not alone too often. But I guess we’re not supposed to be.

Karen has no remorse. She couldn’t care less about how I feel. She just wants to make sure he sees her. She does things that even my mother wouldn’t do. I’ve watched her bend over in front of James in skirts as short as her attention span. She lets him look onto her papers during tests.

I’ve never liked small skirts. Mama always told me that boys value what they don’t see more than what’s thrown their way. I make him work for the answers to tests. Why give him all the answers when I can teach him how to come up with them on his own? She’s known as the easy-going girl. Ya know, easy… going… Everyone seems to notice this but him. Boys can be so naïve.

He deserves better than that. Hell, I’m better than that. I hope he sees it. Maybe he only sees me as a friend. Maybe we could be more. I guess I’ll never know as long as Karen is around. She will keep throwing herself at him and he will never notice little ol’ me. I refuse to be that girl. If that’s what he wants, maybe they deserve each other.

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Meanwhile ma is having another one of her episodes. They seem to be getting worse since we lost the house. I’ve officially been homeless for 32 days. I haven’t slept in my own bed for 42. Some men in white suits came and took that first. Then they came for the car. Before you knew it, all of our clothes and furniture were outside. Ma said that we ran out of money. She hadn’t worked in a few months. She would leave the house as I left for school but it wasn’t for work. I wish she had told me what was going on. I may have been able to get a job working at the grocery store or a fast-food joint. I just hate that her anxiety affected her ability to talk to me.

We’ve been living in a homeless shelter for women. The people there are okay. I don’t talk to them much. I’m rarely there. I hate seeing ma like that. I spend most of my time at school and hanging with James. His mom is cool. She lets me come over whenever I want. I don’t stay long. Ma told me to never wear out  my welcome. I usually go back to the shelter around 10pm. Then I go to sleep. I wake up around 5:30am, shower, and go to school. I come back to the shelter, go to sleep and do it all over again. It’s a constant cycle that I’m just about sick of continuing.

Ma hasn’t done much since we lost the house. She’s been depressed. She doesn’t talk anymore. What’s going on in her head? Why won’t she talk to me? She stays at the shelter most of the day. The shelter provides meals, even if she rarely eats them. All she does is sleep. If she got out more, she would probably feel better about herself. I don’t even want to see the place, let alone stay there all day. Thank God for school. Hopefully things will get better. Maybe I’ll get a job. Living homeless and free is definitely not a good look. No one wants that kind of freedom, if they can help it.