Relationship Topics

While You Were Away, Part III

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He grabbed my arm tightly, it felt like blood vessels were bursting all at once under my skin.

Let go!!!!

He released my arm and as he did, my right hook connected with his jaw. He pushed me up against my car and held me there as I tried to headbutt him. I squirmed around trying to free myself. Finally, able to break free, once I stomped on his pinky toe with my 4” stiletto boots. OUCH!!!!! He screamed, and at the same time, one of his neighbors exited the front door and ran over to my aid.

“Hey guy, get the hell off her!”

Shawn, still in shock from the pain shooting through his body and this now, “Captain Save-A-Hoe” guy that appeared. Before he could say a word, the guy did some Bruce Lee move on his ass. All I saw was Shawn pinned up against the ground, with his left cheek in a urine stained chunk of snow, by my foot, on the sidewalk.

“Miss, get out of here. I got it!”

Within seconds, I heard the sirens, yes, the boys in blue pulled up. Now, let me paint this picture. Woman, clothes looking disheveled, due to man trying to prevent her from punching him again in the face. My appearance would leave anyone to believe that I was the one that was in danger. Then, you have a barely dressed black male; in gray sweatpants, no shirt, and barefoot. To make matters worse, you have a Caucasian male, restraining this black man, and a woman crying uncontrollably. What they don’t realize is that I am not crying because he physically hurt me, no, it’s the emotional pain that has me in this current fragile state.  If you were the cops, arriving to this scene, it is quite obvious whom you would assume was the culprit in this matter. As you can see, this has escalated rather quickly.

One cop rushed over to assist the neighbor whom still had Shawn pinned on the ground. The other officer walked up to me to ask how I was doing. I told him that I was okay and was only having an argument with my boyfriend. He looked at me, if I were lying and merely covering up for Shawn, as if he were an abusive douche bag. I reassured him that I was leaving in the heat of an argument and my guy was simply trying to prevent me from leaving without talking. During our disagreement, the guy from the building came on the scene. My boyfriend was trying to prevent my attempt to repeat something I had done to him. I tried to avoid disclosing the fact that I physically assaulted Shawn.

By the time, the officer walked away to go and talk to Shawn, I leaned up against my car for support. My toes were numb, and my thighs felt as if I had hundreds of needles sticking me. Obviously, I was having the early onset of frost bites. Officer Wright, from the 79th Precinct, came back and told me that Shawn was not going to press charges. This son of a bitch! I can’t believe he told them that I sucker-punched him in the face. Well, he deserved it for cheating on me. I should have kicked him in the throat with my boots. Better yet, I wish his neighbor gave him a Karate chop to the throat.

I sat in the car waiting for the police to drive off. I had my head down browsing my Instagram page and watching a video, all while the car heat up. The tap on the window, broke my attention from the video I was watching on ‘Callhimrenny’ page.  I looked up and it was Officer Wright.

“Ma’am, we’re going to need you to leave the premises. Your boyfriend said he feels            unsafe with you being in front of his home. He is fearful of what you may do once we        leave. He’s considering filing a restraining order against you. However, until he                  decides what he will do, please avoid any contact with him.”

I told the officer that I would comply with the request. I pulled off and drove to the corner store on Lewis and Jefferson Avenue. I bought a dutch and a ‘torch’ lighter. When I walked back to my car, I noticed that the back-left tire was a little low and in need of air. Before I pulled out of my parking space, I turned on the radio and DJ Dahved Levy was playing, “Hills and Valleys” by Buju Banton. The perfect song to get me in the right vibe before I smoke this spliff.

I began singing aloud to the verses and then my phone interrupted the song, over Bluetooth. I looked on my console and saw Satan’s name pop up. I let it ring out because I wanted his dumbass to know I was avoiding his call. I’m sure he thought I was driving back to DC now, with tear-filled eyes. It’s all good. I had already text Blake and told him that I was on my way to his house. He told me that the keys would be left in his mailbox, so I could let myself in. I was halfway home jamming out to some culture music. I was high as a kite. I made it from Brooklyn to Maryland in two hours, with only an hour more to spare. It was almost six thirty when my phone began ringing again. This time, the trifling demon called ten times back to back.  I decided to find out what he wanted.

What the hell do you want?!

“Cut the crap Jen! You wanted this to end. You came fishing and you found what you were looking for. I want you to ship my stuff to me. And while you’re at it, send back the engagement ring. You don’t deserve to keep that ring.”

You are as small as your manhood. Only a useless person would say what you just said to me. You know what?!!

“What?!”

I am happy that I lost our baby. I wouldn’t want to bring a child into this world with your dumbass!

“Jennifer Madison Beckford!! Lose my F#$%*! $ number.”

Babe…I’m sorry! I didn’t mean it…

I heard the phone go dead on his end. He hung up. It was at this very moment that I came to the conclusion that there was no coming back from what I had just said. I crossed a line that no woman should cross. What we lived through was no joking matter to make light of. Nor should I have thrown it down his throat in a vindictive way. I’m an a@#hole.

I pulled into the driveway and bawled. It felt as if the life was escaping me, like a balloon losing all its air. I was unaware that I was holding my breath, thankfully my brain reminded me that it needed oxygen. I gasped and swallowed a gulp of air. I cried the same way I did the day we lost our son that was born stillbirth. The same heartache, this time worst!

It was our 8-month check-up with my OB GYN. I always enjoyed our visits, especially when I was further along and could hear the baby’s heartbeat on the fetal doppler. Today was the day I would show Dr. Liz my engagement ring, as she kept teasing Shawn on putting a ring on it. She’s a huge fan of ‘Queen Bey’ and loved bringing up any Beyoncé song at the drop of a dime. She even went as far as singing one of her hit songs on our last visit,

“If you liked it, then you should have put a ring on it.

“Don’t be mad once you see that he want it…” We shared a laugh.

I went ahead and changed into the scrubs prior to her entrance. I laid on the examination table, with Shawn to the right of me holding my hand. Dr. Liz walked in and greeted us with the same usual perky attitude. She would always remind me to eat, as my pregnancy caused me to experience rapid weight loss. My morning sickness was horrendous. I hated the mere sight of food. I had 24-hour nausea. We small talked to pass time, as she reviewed my chart. My blood pressure was normal, weight was the same as the month prior. She put the lubricating gel on my stomach, we talked about the trip she was going on with her husband to Dubai. She put the device on my stomach and started making circular motions. The next thing I knew the conversation came to a halt.

She asked if I felt any kicking or ‘flutters’ today. I told her that the baby wasn’t as active today. Not realizing until that moment that there was a problem. She told her medical assistant, Kem, to run into the other examination room and grab her the prob. I asked if everything was okay. She didn’t want to look at me.

Dr. Bryan!!!

Dr. Bryan, please speak to me!! Is everything okay with my baby?!

At this time, Shawn stood up and walked to the counter. I guess he needed to lean against something because now, I had released his hand. He slowly put his hands to his head, then his mouth. I’m guessing he was battling something internally. My baby was doing his darnedest to hold it together.

“I’m sorry but I’m not hearing a heartbeat. Please wait until Kem returns. I need to             confirm with the Probe.”

Dr. Liz…No, No, Nooooo! This can’t be happening.

What do you mean you don’t hear a heartbeat?!!

Kem entered the room, sweat beads had formed on her eyebrows. She looked confused and concerned at the same time. I looked at Shawn, he was off to the corner of the room now, rocking back and forth but still on his feet. He walked back to the counter, directly facing me but his eyes were looking pass me. He clearly was in a trance, somewhere mentally far, far away. The agony in his face, of the unknown; was grueling.

Dr. Liz inserted the probe inside me and asked that we all remain silent as she listened for a heartbeat. I laid there stock-still with tears streaming down my face. When she spoke, a part of my heart shut down. Sometimes, the simplest words carry more weight than you can manage.

“Jennifer and Shawn, I am terribly sorry.”

As she said those words, I realized my plans to bring home our baby boy were over. The nursery that we had spent months decorating, in anticipation for the day we brought home Shawn Anthony, were gone. I don’t think we really recovered from that. We simply have been in autopilot for the past few years. How does one recover from the loss of a child. The day after the visit, they scheduled the procedure for me to deliver my deceased son. I wanted to hold him, and feel him in my arms. I always wanted to be a mother. I wouldn’t let this unfortunate outcome rob me from hugging and holding my baby. When Shawn held him, he finally released that pain in a deafening scream. He sobbed as he held him for more than twenty minutes. The nurse had to convince him to give her our son. The way Shawn looked at me, caused me to feel as if I was partially to blame. Not sure why I felt that way.

Shawn and I began seeing a Bereavement Counselor for a year. We went twice a month as a couple and the other times by ourselves. Within the year, instead of healing and growing closer, we grew a part. We realized there was a major strain on our relationship. Shortly after, my friend Nanna, introduced me to smoking weed. Marijuana became my outlet with coping with my emotional pain. I hated the smell but grew addicted to the way it made me feel. I was obsessed with not wanting to feel anything and weed was successful in allowing me to achieve that.

I walked up the steps and grabbed the keys out the mailbox. I stopped and sent him a quick text, letting him know that I was about to enter the house. I wasn’t sure if he deactivated the security system. When I walked inside, I smelled bacon and eggs. I made a pit stop to the bathroom, all that water had my bladder extended. I dried my hands and walked past the kitchen into the bedroom. He didn’t realize that I was in the house, as he had “Shake Body” by Skales blasting. I glanced him in the kitchen but decided to continue to the bedroom.

I walked into the bathroom, now filled with candles and the smell of Strawberry Butter incense burning, making love to my nostrils. I undressed and retrieved the towel and rag he left on the chaise, at the foot of his bed. I kept the lights off in the bathroom and allowed the natural light to fill the space. I turned on the water to achieve the desired temperature. I then pinned my hair and put on his skull cap to prevent my hair from getting wet. When the water was to my liking, I stepped into the steamy shower. I washed and scrubbed my body as if I were washing away the pain. I spent more than 20 minutes just letting the water flow off every inch of my body. When I felt a freeing sense of calmness, I turned off the water and stepped out of the shower unto the memory foam bath mat. I began drying off but his bathroom is narrow, so I decided to finish drying off in his bedroom space. When I reached for the handle of the door, at the same time, Blake swung open the door. He looked at me, as if I were a precious prize. He stood there with my breakfast on a Sterling Silver tray. I was surprised to see that he had coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice as well. He was as thoughtful as he was sexy.

The best part of this was that he was standing there in his birthday suit. He obviously was happy to see me and his body confirmed that visually. I love getting his attention in that way. I walked past him, holding my towel closed, as it was small and was not easy to keep fastened. I sat on the chaise and began eating. At that time, he got on his knees and put my right foot in his hands. I was unaware of his intentions with my feet at this moment. I figured he would give me a massage. Yes, a massage. I sure as heck needed one after the frost bites my toes experienced. I finished the bacon and eggs, now I tackled the pancakes. OMG…this food is so damn good. Wait a minute! The blood from my stomach went to the lower region of my body. I opened my eyes, unaware that I closed them from the sensual bliss I just experienced. He had my toes in his mouth, in an apparent attempt to feast on them, as I was with his delectable, mouthwatering meal. I quickly put the plate down on the chaise. No longer able to concentrate on eating. I leaned back on the arm of the chaise and allowed my body to respond to this surreal moment. I told him to stand up because he needed to be rewarded for making me feel so good. Now that he was standing directly in front of me, I tied my hair back in a bun and began to… <>

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While You Were Away, Part II

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We Need to Talk…

I walked to my car, afraid to look back to see if he were watching. I couldn’t find my car keys at first so I turned on the flashlight app on my phone, great; found it. I sat in my car and waited for the engine to warm up, as the weather outside was frigid. I watched the cold escape my mouth as little mini clouds filled my car and fogged my windows. I shivered uncontrollably until the lever went past C. I could have taken him up on his offer to spend the night but I wanted to speak to Shawn before I went to bed. I have no desire to catch feelings for Blake. He knows what this is. It is and will remain a booty call.

Relieved that the car was finally warm enough to drive, I turned on the heat at full blast. As I put the gear into drive, I heard tapping on my window. I almost jumped out of my skin, because he scared the crap out of me. I unlocked the door, afraid to wind down the windows and risk letting in too much cold air. He sat down in the passenger seat and remained silent. After a minute, he broke his silence,  “are you sure you want to leave without finishing our conversation?” What is wrong with this dude?! We were in bed after our session and he wanted to cuddle and talk about our future. I told him, it would be awkward to do cuddle and do things that are symbolic to what couples do, as we are far from ever being that. I also stated that, it makes no sense to try to put a label on what we were doing because I am not leaving my fiancée.  As soon as I brought Shawn into the discussion he shut down. I wasn’t going to negotiate my comfortability with this man. I told him that I really enjoy what we’ve been doing for the past month. However, I would really like to keep [emotions] out of our situation. Before he could respond, I jumped out of bed, threw on my clothes, and walked out. I felt like he wanted me to make a decision and I already made my choice.

He called my behavior childish and rudely insensitive. I chuckled. He stopped talking for a second and lowered the volume of the radio. I guess the volume was too loud or maybe, he didn’t like the Drake song playing over the speakers, “O to 100.” I guess that was making him feel uncomfortable. All I know is, this is not a conversation that is worth having. Nonetheless, I sat there and listened to him bitch and moan. I immediately felt like the dude in this sit-uation-ship.  I softened up and interrupted by expressing how much I cared about him. As a matter of fact, I think because I care so much, it is best that we cut back on our frequency. I think, quite possibly, seeing each other three times a week is showing itself to be a bit much. He looked at me, pulled my face to his pillow soft lips and smiled. He kissed my forehead, the way I grew accustomed, and shook his head. As he reached for the handle to open the door, I stopped him.

“Wait!”

What’s up?

“Blake. I think you should know something. I’ve been keeping a secret from you but I don’t think it’s fair for you to not know.”

Ok. What’s going on? Is there something troubling you?

“Yes. Shawn and I have decided to get married in two weeks. We are going to use our planned vacation to Jamaica, as a destination wedding. I just purchased the tickets for our parents today. Our two best friends will be the witnesses. I thought you should know that once I am married, we can no longer see each other.”

Are you kidding me?! Why would you marry him, if you and I both know that you are not happy?! If you were happy with dude, you wouldn’t be here with me.

“Yes, there are some things about him that I am disgusted by but the pros outweigh the cons. I am not satisfied with him in the bedroom but that’s mainly because once he turned 40, his man parts have a hard time staying stimulated. He has been taking the pills the doctor prescribed and they have been helping for the most part.”

LOL. So, you rather marry a dude that can’t keep it up?! I don’t need pills to keep it stimulated for you. I’m a year older than him and don’t have this issue. EVER! You are MORE than enough, to keep any REAL man stimulated. Why are you marrying him? Is it the money?

“Blake. Though I have financial stability with Shawn, we were never together for the money. I make my own damn money and don’t need him or any man to hold me down. Heck, I hardly need a man to satisfy me. I have toys that do a better job and cause less stress. So, if you really think, I’m with Shawn for the money, you are bugging!”

So, why the hell are you with me? You pull me into your world, only to dump me so easily. Do you even realize that I broke up with my girlfriend because I’m in love with you. I broke up with a damn good woman, that I was with for two years, to be with your crazy ass! And this is how you repay me?! You’re going to marry a dude that’s cheating on you with his former colleague.

“What did you just say?”

You heard me. Did I stutter?! Your fiancée is banging Emily. You know Emily, don’t you? I believe he mentioned that a year ago, you grew suspicious of their interactions. He said one night while he and Emily were away on business, you were blowing up his phone and he didn’t answer for an hour. When he finally called you back, he gave you some bogus excuse that the two of them were entertaining clients.

Just know that, he wasn’t with clients, he was with Emily. To ensure that you stopped pressing him for information. About two weeks later, he told you that she no longer worked for his firm. Something to the effect that she moved away to Chicago for a new role. Do you want to know why she moved? Hmm…

She moved because his assistant caught them making out in one of the conference rooms. When Shawn was confronted, by another senior executive, he told them whatever it took to save his ass. He threw Emily under the bus and she was laid off. They didn’t tell her why they were letting her go, they made it about performance. The assistant was debrief by Human Resources and warned that if she spread any rumors, she would be fired and sued .

Shawn felt guilt for being responsible for her termination. He decided to take matters into his own hands and reach out to one of our college buddies. He’s a Managing Director at Goldman Sachs and owed Shawn a solid. By the time, he convinced her to move to New York, he fed her the dream that he would eventually leave you and they would be together. Some riding off into sunset fallacy. She bit the bait and moved there. However, New York, isn’t quite Chi-town.

Now, let me get this straight. You paid for an apartment for him to move into, and live with, his side piece. Ha-ha. That’s some funny stuff.

Let me ask you a question, why haven’t you visited him at his place in New York?

When I spoke, it was to let him know that I needed to head home. He let himself out of the car and I watched him as he climbed the stairs and entered his home. He moved into his house a few weeks after the dinner at my place. Once he walked in and closed the door, I jumped on 95 North. I had a few things I needed to find out from Shawn.

I arrived at Shawn’s place about thirty past one. I had my girlfriend meet me at the building so she could let me into the premises. As she no longer had keys to the apartment, I needed to have someone let me in. I wanted to catch Shawn, if he were up to no good. Ringing his bell at one in the morning, was not going to be the wisest. I hugged her and told her that I was good and would call her once I was headed home. I walked up two flights of stairs and once I got to his apartment door, I put my ears to the door to listen. I heard nothing but the music blasting from the apartment three doors down. I forgot I was in New York, the city that never sleeps. I took out my phone and dialed his number. After three rings, he answered and sounded very groggy.

“Hey. What’s up babe?!”

Where are you?

“What do you mean?”

I said, where are you?

“I’m where I’m supposed to be, in my bed.”

Ok. Open the door.

“What?! Are you joking?!”

Nope. Not at all.

I heard footsteps on the other side of the door. I stepped to the side, so he couldn’t see me from the peep hole.

“Why are you playing with me? I am home babe, wish you were here.”

That’s sweet. Funny thing is, I am here. Come back to the door.

On his end, he grew silent.

“Oh okay babe. I am in the bathroom now. Let me take a whiz and I will be right there.”

I hung up and leaned against the wall in the hallway. I counted down how long it took him to come back to the door; five minutes. I heard a door close and then lots of movement but couldn’t decipher what caused his delay. I used this time to unbuckle the straps on my shoes.

When he opened the door, he looked visibly uncomfortable. I took off my pumps by the door and noticed a pair of black shoes, too small to belong to him. I shifted my eyes to the living room, he still had the television on. Nothing out of the ordinary, just Sports Center. I walked to the kitchen and saw two plates, one wine glass, and a scotch glass. I kept quiet because he was a wine drinker, why assume he had company. I walked to the closet door and he grabbed me from behind and pulled me into his arms for a warm embrace.

“Baby. I’ve missed you so much. What do I owe this surprise?”

Why are you trying to stop me from going into the closet door?

“Babe. Please, don’t start. You can go anywhere you like.”

I opened the closet door and found only containers and a few jackets. I closed it and walked over to the couch. I told him to join me so we could talk. It was then, I heard a noise coming from the bedroom. I jumped up and ran to the door. Once I got to the door, I put my hand on the handle and turned the knob. It was locked. I turned around only to find him by the main door.

Shawn. Come and open this door, RIGHT NOW!!!

He began walking towards me with fear in his eyes.

“Babe. I must have accidentally done that. Let me go and get a dinner knife. Maybe I can pry the door open.”

I noticed that he elevated his voice, when he said, “Maybe I can pry the door open.”

I heard wind blowing on the other side of the door. By the time he came back with the dinner knife, I had used force to push open the door. I walked in and saw an opened Magnum wrapper, next to his very messy bed. I noticed that the window was open and it was obvious that whomever was here, had escaped down the fire escape. I smelled the same perfume that was on one of his business jackets a year prior; Jadore. I walked into his walk-in closet and found two women suits, coats, and two shoe boxes. None of these items belonged to me.

“Babe. It isn’t what it appears to be. I let my boy use my apartment earlier. I came in from work and passed out.”

So, you mean to tell me that you jumped right into your bed, knowing that your boy had had sex in it earlier? Then you decide to leave the open condom wrapper on your night stand. Not to mention, you allowed him to let his female friend leave clothing here? Okay, if these items mean nothing, then you won’t mind me throwing them away?

“I snatched the clothing off the hangers and threw them on the ground. I stomped the shoe boxes and threw the shoes at him, in a fit of rage. Within seconds, I collapsed to the floor in emotional pain. I screamed at the top of my lungs and sobbed. I was certain his neighbors would call the police. I didn’t realize that he had his arms around me until I came to my senses. I threw his arms off of me and stormed out, but not before leaving my engagement ring on the kitchen counter.

By the time I reached my car, he was within inches away, still in boxers and barefoot.

“Babe. Wait!”

<To be continued>

While You Were Away

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The morning after…

 

I woke up parched but water wasn’t what I craved. The thing I thirst was laying across town in his bed, wondering if and when I would take him up on his offer. Blake opened up Pandora’s box and I wasn’t sure if I had the will-power to close the door. I laid in my bed, next to my fiancée, fantasizing about how soft his lips were. I found myself feeling stimulated all over from the idea of one more taste of his kiss. As I turned to the side, in an attempt to crawl out of bed, without awakening Shawn, something sharp stabbed my side. Ouch!! I yelled out at the top of my lungs, in the most dramatic way. Shawn moved around a bit but didn’t wake from his slumber.

I guess this is my punishment for trying to sneak out the room to send sexy pictures to another man.  I grabbed my phone off the nightstand and disconnected it from the charger. Once again, I thought the sound would wake Shawn but to my surprise, he slept through it all. I tip-toed out of the bedroom, stubbed my pinky toe on the file cabinet we had right across from the sofa. I wanted to avoid turning on the lights, so I felt my way through the darkness until I found the love seat.  Once I was no longer within earshot of Shawn, I sat down and put my foot up on the ottoman. I unlocked my phone in a haste, using with my fingerprint, a new feature I activated last night. I guess if I was going to commit to stepping out on my man, I better be careful and use as many precautionary measures. My phone opened to three new text messages and all from Blake; whose name was saved as “Elizabeth”. The first text read, “when are you going to finish me off?” The other texts were so steamy, I had to delete them but not before I sent both to my email. My virgin eyes were scarred for all the right reasons.

I sent him a text with some available days when I knew I wouldn’t be in court. I had a trial approaching and I wanted to be sure that my availability was concrete, to avoid the need to reschedule. Coincidentally, my available days coincides with the days Shawn is slated to be in New York. We texted for about an hour and would have continued but I heard Shawn opening the bedroom door. I quickly hid the phone under my butt and pretended to be asleep. Though, it seemed odd for me not to be in the bed, I am sure he expected to find me in the restroom, not (pretending to be) asleep in the love seat. Fortunately, I turned off my volume earlier, for this very reason. You never want to get caught, not if you can avoid it.

Surprisingly, he went directly into the bathroom without acknowledging my presence. When he came out, he called me, finally he stood right over me and scooped me up into his arms. I did my good ole’ acting and jumped up, pretending to be surprised by this Hercules act. My acting was definitely Oscar worthy. He asked what I was doing in the living room, so I made up a lie about how my IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), was acting up and how I wanted to avoid potentially waking him, with my frequent visits to the restroom. Check mate. Little did he know, t-minus five minutes ago, I was sending X-rated pictures to his boy. Ha-ha. What a savage beast I am. The fact that he bought it, showed how skilled I was at lying. He ushered me back to bed and we had a quick session before we both fell asleep.

I was excited for his promotion and how it would allow for Blake and I to have some fun. A part of me felt guilty for agreeing to fool around with his boy but the other part of me was numb. I went as far as contacting my friend Kay, a realtor in Brooklyn, to help with finding his short-term rental. She waived the broker’s fee, took the application fee and security deposit through Venmo. All Shawn needed to do was view the space, sign the month-t0-month agreement and collect the keys. The rest was a done deal. I just needed to get through the next couple of days with Shawn, then Blake and I could commence with our plan.

The day before…

I did what any fiancée would do in a time of celebration. I cooked his favorite lamb and curry dish with sautéed spinach and my famous mashed potatoes. I went to Whole Foods on P. St, in Northwest DC. As I walked down the aisle to pick up his favorite Kale Chips, at a glance, I saw a tall man cross my aisle, that resembled this hottie from my spin class. I dropped the container of Brad’s Crunchy Kale Chips into my hand basket and proceeded to walk towards the end of the aisle. As I approached the end of the aisle, I slipped and would have fallen, had it not been for muscular arms bracing my fall. As I guessed, it was the sexy guy from my spin class.

“Jen?!”

Hi! Trying to remembering his name but drawing a blank. Thank you for preventing me from losing all my cool points and possibly getting a concussion. Ha-ha

“No problem. I spotted you as I was passing the aisle. I wasn’t sure if you were by yourself, so I kept walking. Then I thought to myself, if you noticed me, how rude it would be for me to not come back and at least say, hi. Thankfully I did because it appears that you needed my help. Hahaha”

Yes, it appears so. Forgive me, I forgot your name.

“No worries.  I’m Blake. I know you forgot my name because it’s so hard to pronounce and spell. Blame my mother.”

Oh. So, I’m dealing with a smart ass?! I see now. I love a good laugh and I def. deserve that. I know you’ve introduced yourself a couple of times after and before class. I suck with remembering names. Then again, I have no reason to commit your name to memory. You understand, don’t you?!

“Ouch. Yikes. That burned. Sorry if my joke was in any way offensive, as that was not my intent. I love to make people laugh and smile. Especially a beautiful lady as yourself. “

Oh no…forgive me. I was busting your chops. Sweetheart, I am quick with it. I thought you would catch onto my snarky remark. Trust me, we are good.

“Oh snap. Is that a little New York, I hear?”

Yes, you pick up quickly grasshopper. Ha-ha.

“Jokes. Really?! Now you sound ancient with that ‘Karate Kid’ reference. “

You know what?! I’m going to let you live because you clearly have no respect for your elders.

“Jen.  I am really enjoying this banter. But, instead of blocking the chips aisle, what’s say we finish up our chat over a drink? I know this really cool bar/lounge in the neighborhood by the name of, Wisdom. I am offering to pay for your Juno, drive you, or carry you on my back. What will it be?”

That’s very sweet of you and I am really flattered. However, I am headed home to cook dinner for my fiancée.

“Oh. I can’t say that I’m surprised that you are involved.  My offer was purely harmless. I only wish to continue talking with you. Unless you are afraid to be alone with me?”

You’re right. A quick drink would be nice. What’s the cross streets? I’ll meet you there.

“See you in twenty.”

I quickly loaded my trunk with the grocery bags and warmed up my car a bit. As I was about to pull out of my parking spot, a call came up and the name on my console, read Shawn Lew. I put the car in park and answered, trying not to sound guilty. I don’t know why I felt guilt, as if I had done something inappropriate.

“Hey Babe!”

What’s good Ma?!

“Nothing, Son!”

How’s your day going?

“I’m good. Headed home to make Massa’s food.”

You’re a fool! Okay, that’s what I like to hear. Make sure you’re wearing little to nothing when I walk through that door.

“Your wish is my command, Daddy!”

This is why I love you! Oh, and the fact that you can cook your ass off. I’m getting off a little early so, expect me around 7:30 instead of 8:30pm. Cool?!

“Oh, okay. I was actually headed to grab a quick drink with a gym buddy. I may not be ready with dinner for 7:30 but I will try.”

What friend?

“She’s from my spin class. We just bumped into each other in Whole Foods.”

Okay. Sounds fun.  As a matter of fact, my old college roomie hit me up on Facebook. He is supposed to let me know if he has time to grab a drink this week. I may take him up on his offer since you are running behind. I’ll keep you posted on my whereabouts.

“Nice. See you later, Sexy!”

I pulled out of the parking lot and when I pulled up to the lounge, there was a spot directly in front.   I had enough time to retouch my makeup and spray a splash of perfume. My favorite go-to lipstick, Ruby Woo, by MAC, is always a hit. I walked up to the door and almost turned back around. Everything inside of me told me not to go inside. I already lied to Shawn that I was meeting a female friend. I felt horrible. As I walked through the door, my eyes surveyed the room until they landed on Blake. He was sitting in the corner, off to the side, almost hidden in the cut. He had on a Black fitted button down shirt, and two buttons were undone, enough to show the some muscles. I tried to control my sexual urge to jump his bones. Damn, I am so weak for a chocolate fine ass man with muscles. Not to mention, he’s 6’4, with massive hands. Oh my!

I walked slowly to the table and as he saw me approaching, he stood up. We drank and talked for what felt like twenty minutes but it was really an hour. When I felt my phone vibrating next to me, I knew it was Shawn. I excused myself to the restroom and answered my phone before it went to voicemail. Shawn had gotten off the metro, literally around the corner from the bar. Of course, he had no idea that I was here. He told me that he was going to meet his buddy and a lady friend he bumped into at the grocery store. I asked him which bar, and like lethal injection, I was stunned when he said; Wisdom. I almost dropped my phone.

He asked if I wanted to join them, now that he realized his buddy had a lady friend present. He wanted to avoid being the third wheel, let alone, run the risk of one of my friends reporting back that they saw him out with a guy and a girl. What did you say, your friend’s name was? His name is Blake, sweetheart. He begged me to join them but I declined. I agreed to pick him up in thirty minutes, as he also informed me that he left his car keys at work and had no way of getting home. The weather was brutal and Shawn was a pre-Madonna, when it came to walking in the snow. He felt that the salt that’s used to thaw the ice, eats away at the stitching of his fine Italian leather shoes. I digress.

As I was trying to rush off the phone, he became silent on his end. He starts laughing and said, you wouldn’t believe it, but there’s a car that looks exactly like yours but cleaner. He was unaware that earlier in the day, I stopped off to get my car washed. We ended the call with me agreeing to call him once I was outside. I panicked because now that I knew he was outside, how do I wrap up my conversation with Blake and rush the hell out without being caught. I opened the bathroom door and quickly slammed it. My eyes did not just see what I thought I saw. No frigging way! Shawn and Blake were chatting at the table. I prayed that there were two Blake’s and that the man I spent the last hour flirting with, couldn’t be the same man my man was meeting.

I am so lucky that I kept my jacket on, due to the lounge having poor heating. I sent a text to Blake, hoping that he would read it and be discreet. I told him that the man he was talking to was my fiancée and I needed to sneak out, as I did not want to make things any more awkward than they already were. I snuck out the side exit, the one directly across from the bathroom. I got in my car and rushed to the wine shop, Bed-Vyne, to pick up a bottle of red and white wine. By the time, I headed back to the bar, I called Shawn but his phone rang out. I called him three more times and he didn’t answer. Finally, I doubled parked and ran inside, trying to compose myself for this very weird meet and greet. Blake saw me approaching but unlike earlier, he did not get up. He looked in my direction and went back to focusing on whatever Shawn was rambling about.

I tapped Shawn on the shoulder, Blake looked at my hands on his coat. His eyes stayed there as if the sight of me touching my man paralyzed him. Shawn turned around and stood up quickly. He gave me a quick peck on the lips and said, “Blake, meet my lovely fiancée, Jennifer.” Blake shook my hand with such fervor and force that it left my pinky finger sore. It was obvious that Blake read my text and now seeing us together, something shifted. He kept his cool and told me how nice it was to meet me. All I could think about was how his hands were caressing my thighs under the table earlier. How we spent ten minutes before that call making out at the table, without a care in the world. Now, as I stand there, like a complete stranger, it actually gave me a rush.

Honey, we really need to run as I am double parked outside. As I turned to walk away, Shawn grabbed my arm. It was then that I learned that he had invited Blake over for dinner. He went on about how it would be nice to catch up over dinner. Blake broke his silence and said, he would have invited his lady friend but she rushed out a few minutes ago, to tend to a personal matter. Oh, this m’fer was savage. He was anything but subtle in his remark. His “lady friend.” This man was going to be a handful but lucky for me, I have big hands. I grinned and smiled and told them I’d wait in the car so they could satisfy their tab.

I walked back to my car and subconsciously locked the doors to clear my mind. My trance was interrupted by the tapping on the window. I unlocked the car doors and dreaded agreeing to having Blake as our dinner guest. However, how could I not be enthusiastic? This is a man that I am not supposed to know. I tuned out their conversation and replayed the discussion I had with Blake in my head. I guess I was unaware of my speeding until Shawn tapped my leg. Jen, now is not the time to be a speed demon. “Yes, honey.”

I left them to unload the car and after dinner was done, we all retired to living room. Shawn and I sat on the chaise, while Blake chilled on the sofa. We all enjoyed the bottle of Sauvignon Blanc until it was completed finished. It was at this time that Shawn excused himself to the restroom. As soon as Blake heard the bathroom door lock, he came to the chaise and started making out. I felt as if I were having an out of body experience.  I couldn’t believe my boldness, and arrogance, yet it was an exhilarating feeling. I enjoyed being so daring, especially when you realize that you can be caught but you realized, you are getting away with it. That is the ultimate rush. I decided to tune out my morals and give in to my wild side. Basically, I sat there under his spell, unable to move, not wanting to move. I drank his kisses as if my body needed them for sustenance. I almost didn’t hear when Shawn opened the bathroom door. He walked into the bedroom, maybe to change his clothes.

Now that we had more time, I mounted his lap. I grind on him, like a teenager trying to sneak around while my parents are in the other room. I was so turned on that I made a mess though my undies onto his jeans. Neither of us noticed until he pulled my hair to gain my focus on what I was causing to rise in his jeans. I stopped and slowly dismounted his lap. As I did, he pointed out the stain on his denim. I quickly got the wash cloth and began cleaning him up. He kissed my forehead and whispered, “good girl”, before he slapped my butt and sent me back to my cleaning duties. Moments later, Shawn re-entered the room and turned on Sports Center. It was the final quarter of the Cavs and Bulls game. I left the room to go and get ready for bed.     <To be continued>

Double Standards

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June 20th was a warm day in Brooklyn, when I woke I found myself in a pool of sweat. The room was humid, you almost felt as though you could slice the air like pie. I was rudely awaken from my dream by my obnoxiously loud ringer. I wanted desperately to go back to my dream that involved me marrying Idris Elba. We were about to consummate our union, when the phone disturbed me. Oh well, it was a dream, so nothing to get excited about, thought it felt so real. When I moved my mask from my eyes and grabbed my phone resting on the nightstand, I saw the name and sent the call to voicemail. I know that’s a douche bag move but he wasn’t deserving of an answer.

He called about ten times back to back before I put my phone on silent. I stumbled out of the bed and realized my legs and arms were sore. I don’t recall the woman getting that many swings in but hey, such is life. I walked over to the window in a snail like motion. My head hurt from being hungover and my body ached from fighting. Sadly enough, I had no idea who this woman was, all I knew was she was booed up in a corner with Robert when we walked into Brooklyn Moon. I opened the window and heard the ice cream truck making its way down my block. I was tempted to run down the stairs and get me a cone but was too achy. I felt dehydrated, so I made my way to my kitchen.

When I walked into the kitchen, it was obvious that I brought some of that anger home with me. It looked like I had a fight with my kitchen. The week old bouquet of roses, which was his attempt to get back in my good graces, after I caught him with a woman, two weeks prior, were now on the floor, with the broken vase in a puddle of water. The roses lay on the floor, as dead as our relationship. I looked at my window and beneath the windowsill, laid my once mounted wine rack, and the wine bottles were at the base of the stove, thankfully unbroken. I had way too much Tequila last night. What was I thinking?! Ugh…I should had never let my boy Starrtender convince me to try his new concoction, when I stopped by Milk River. He sure knows how to make a drink. He is so darn heavy handed with his drinks though. Sigh! I surveyed my kitchen and was in shock as to the condition. I began cleaning up but was stopped suddenly by a glass that suddenly pierced my foot. Now I have to deal with a cut under my feet and blood staining my floor.

After I cleaned up the kitchen, I hobbled my now bandage foot into my living room. When I walked into my living room, I saw my home girl Naadira, passed out on my carpet, fully dressed and her “ruby woo” lips, nicely smeared on my cream color carpet. I yelled in the highest octave “Naadira, Get UP!!!” She did not budge. I walked over and nudged her with my feet. “Naadira. Get up babe!” She opened her eyes, like this was the first time she saw the light of day. I was a prick, so I walked over to my drapes and pulled them back, letting in all the BRIGHT sunlight. She sucked her teeth, like a true Trini-woman and cussed me in under her breath, in her Trinidadian jargon.

“Michelle, where’s Paula?” I told her that last I remember, her man escorted her out of the lounge. She told me to check on her to make sure. When I called Paula, she seemed pissed. She began by scolding me about her disappointment in my actions last night. I tried to interrupt and defend myself but she shut me down each time. “Michelle, you are too grown for this kind of behavior. What were you thinking?! We are in our 40’s, you looked like an immature child unable to control herself. Fighting over a man that can’t keep his ding-a-ling in his pants. Stop making excuses for his actions and own the fact that you are taking crumbs from someone unable to give you more.” I was silent and took it all in because everything she said was true. I played myself and made a fool out of myself.

I’ve been with Rob for two years, and caught him cheating four times. The first time was with his second child’s mother. The times after were with women he met at the lounge he owns in BedStuy. I resented him for opening the business. I wanted to partner with him and he told me, that privilege was reserved for his wife. Those words pierced like a knife but I had no fight in me at the time. Although it was my $40,000, he needed in order to get his business up and running. His credit was so crappy so I did like what any good woman would do and gave him the money. I thought I was being a good woman but in actuality, I was foolish for prematurely giving money to someone not willing to give me his last name.

The times I caught Rob fooling around, was not by chance, I had help. One of the security guards that likes me would always send me pics of Rob in action with the caption, “Boys will be boys. When are you going to get with a real man?!” Whenever he sent me these text, I would rush to the lounge but as I got to the door, the other security guard would act like he forgot who I was. I learned that he did that in order to give Rob a heads up that I was there. He would have me wait at the door and go inside and obviously warn my man. By the time I walked in, most of the time, in sneakers, spandex, and a t-shirt, he would have cleaned up his act. I didn’t realize then how crazy I looked walking in there looking crazy, sometimes with my hair pulled back, only thing missing is vaseline on my face.

On May 25th, the disloyal guard wasn’t at the door. My insider was working the door that night and let me in with no issues. I walked in like a hound dog, searching every corner for my cheating behind man. Finally I spotted him, caught in the darkest part of the lounge, kissing on this female I knew from the beauty salon in Clinton Hills. She knew he had a girl but could care less. It turns out that I use to date her baby father, who I wound up cutting off. The vicious cycle is a bit more complex than you’d imagine. I broke up with her baby father to be with Rob, and he broke up with her to be with me. YES, karma is a biatch!!

That night I ran up on them, she saw me coming ahead of time. She got up and positioned herself ready to defend herself. Something within me told me to rush them, so I began running towards them. As I got within arms reach, she swung at me. I ducked, caught her with a right hook to the jaw. Her cheap, .99 cent gold hoop earrings, flew across the room and her head cocked to the right. I went to hit her again but she caught me in the stomach, guess I have to pay better attention in boxing class with my trainer Nay-Shaun. He always tells me that I have a strong jab but I am poor with blocking hits. Well, when I went to kick her, Rob grabbed me by the waist, threw me on his shoulder and hauled me towards the door. I kicked and fought, calling out all kinds of obscene words to her. She stood on the platform of the seated area, smirking at me and blowing kisses. I was so heated but there was nothing I could do as the six security guards held my arms and legs until I was outside of the lounge.

When we got outside, Rob hailed a taxi, gave the driver $30, and told me he’d see me in the morning.  When I got in, I sent him a text so he knew I was safe. It was so odd but he was extremely calm. Not once did he look me in the eye, I could feel his embarrassment, shock, and anger. He arrived at 5 am, slammed the door and walked into the room, seemingly ready to argue. What happened next was something he had never done before. He dragged me out of the bed and pulled me into the living room. The living room was facing the back of the building and no one could hear my screams if he did anything to me there. It’s apparent that he was drunk and was not in his right mind. I screamed as loud as I could but no one came to my rescue. For the next ten times, though it felt like an hour; he beat me. I don’t mean the kind of beating that your parents give you. No, this beating was violent, it was laced with venom and his target was me.

After he grew tired of pounding my face and body with hits, he walked into the bathroom. As I laid on the floor, bleeding from my nose and mouth, all I could do was pray that he would not come back to beat on me some more. Moments later, I heard the shower running. I cried, screamed, but no one was there to hear my plea. At this point, my vision was blurry. I could not see through my black eye. Once he was done with his shower, he went in the room and began watching TV. Not once did he come back to check on me. He left me there on the floor, like a piece of garbage. I must have dozed off for three hours because once I awoke the clock, which was now on the floor, said 8am. The phone ringing was what stirred my slumber. I was sore, weak, and therefore; could not move. I listened for the caller-id to indicate who was calling me this early. I heard it blurt out, “Angela Bryan”, my mother was calling. I tried desperately to crawl as quick as possible to my desk. However, before I could answer, I heard Rob answer the phone in the bedroom, “Good morning! Hi Ms. Bryan! Yes, she’s good. No, she’s in the shower. I will have her call you as soon as she gets out. No problem. Have a great day beautiful!”. He hung up the phone, walked in the living room and said, “…”

Stayed tuned to Part II. Please follow this page for immediate updates on posts.

Would I Date Me: Spring Cleaning Edition

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Hi Everyone,

The wait is over, now is the time to purchase your tickets to the next “Would I Date Me” event. The event will be held on Saturday, May 16th at Pearl Studios. Don’t miss out on the early bird ticket sale and don’t miss out on this AWESOME event.

See you there.

Purchase your tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/would-i-date-me-series-spring-cleaning-relationship-edition-tickets-16537166109

Would I Date Me Series.IV

Conversations with Khemeka B: Would I Date Me Series **Recap**

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If there was one question you would ask the opposite sex, what would it be? Here are a few that came up in planning this event:

Do you believe in the institution of marriage? Would you stay with your mate if they cheated on you? Would you marry someone who had BAD credit? Do you want children? How long do you wait before intercourse? Does courting still exist?

Let’s skip all the questions and get to the meat and potatoes.

On a chilly Saturday afternoon, January 17th, to be exact. A group of about fifty people, age ranging from 20- 50’s, gathered to discuss some of these topics; keeping it 100. The event took place at Bed-Vyne Brew, one of Bedford Stuyvesant’s hot spots. The room was electric and filled with some sophisticated, spunky, and charismatic personalities. One in particular was radio personality, Humble Prince. He tried to take a more tamed approached but he brought his snarky and ginormous personality. He made a few new friends but a few frenemies were created as well. However, he didn’t mind, as he is accustomed to ruffling feathers wherever he goes.

Humble Prince…

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He brought along a friend, who had never heard of “Courting”, which was the first topic of discussion. As, Pierre described, “I’ve spent 39 years dating and have not much to show from it. If I had known more about this ‘Courting’, maybe I would be married with kids now. But…today, I learned something new. Courting is going to be my NEW approach going forward. chuckles”

Pierre…

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The topic was, “Does courting still exist?” and most people in the room felt it was a thing of the past. Others felt that it was hard to decipher the difference between “dating” and “courting”. There is a significant difference. As Dennis described, “I dated, then courted my wife. Dating comes before courtship. You have to date the person before you know if you want to court the person. Courting is the step before commitment and in most cases it should lead to marriage. I was not going to court someone that I couldn’t see myself settling down with. I must admit in the beginning my wife resisted me courting her. However, with time, she was able to see that I was in it for the long haul. Once she knew my love for her was real, the rest is history. We have been happily married for 3 years now. Women need to stop saying that ‘courting is a thing of the past’ maybe they need to learn the difference so they can decipher the two.”

Dennis…

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The room digested what Dennis said but the next topic was going to be equally interesting. Mr. Prosperity Unlimited, CEO, Kevin Ferere got the room buzzing. The second topic was, “Women who hustle relationships” because they are in fear of being alone. They settle for ordinary, instead of extraordinary because their 1.) biological clocks are running out, 2.) Fear of being alone so they settle for anyone that will have them. 3.) They don’t really love the guy but he can financially support them. These women tend to get into relationships for all the wrong reasons. The room was in an uproar. The majority felt that Kevin’s analysis was incorrect. In fact, most women do want to be in a loving relationship and did not appreciate his subtle accusation that they settle just because they want to hustle a relationship.

Kevin…

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There were many women who stood up to challenge Kevin, but two in particular left him (slightly) speechless. Let’s just say, the men in the room, were happy they didn’t have to tackle this one; Kevin was on an island by his lonesome. One of the ladies, Maria, shared about her story and her marriage. Maria summed it up by saying, “It’s not that we women settle, we have to find what works for us. First, we need to accept that there is no such thing as a PERFECT man. Secondly, you have to find out what you can work with and what are deal breakers. Last but not least, don’t choose your mate because on paper it makes sense. If you want to marry for money, you will find yourself in a lonely and empty marriage; which is no marriage at all. I married my husband because he was my best friend and he truly loved me. When I thought of someone I could see myself spending the rest of my life with; his name was what resonated. I was in no race to beat my biological clock. Though I wanted a child, I knew that finding the right mate took precedence. My husband and I have been married for going on seven years. We are proud parents of a two year old daughter. He is an amazing father but most importantly; a wonderful husband!”

Maria…

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Then came round II from Karen, a.k.a Ms. Mack.

Lawd have his mercy!!! Karen was the “Firecracker” of the event. Oooo chile….she didn’t hold back and we were happy she didn’t. As you could just imagine, she was not going to be gentle with Kevin. It’s cool because Kevin could handle it. However, he didn’t realize she was going for the jugular. Ouch!!! Yea…Kevin really wasn’t ready. She stated, “I think the issue is with the men. Most men, think all women want them for is money, sex, and companionship. Honestly speaking, I’ve been married and now that I am single. I learned valuable lessons about myself and what I want, and need, in a mate. I was a young bride and now that I am older and wiser, I am in no rush to shack up with just ANYBODY. No matter how much you make, how fine you look, or how well endowed your manhood; real talk! I will not settle for less than I deserve. Even if I might feel my biological is ticking…it’s better to be single than miserable and in a dead-end relationship. So, I am not sure where you are meeting THESE DESPERATE WOMEN but you won’t find ‘A woman hustling a relationship’ over here.”

Karen…

WIDM 2-8

As you could imagine; she smoked the microphone and then we moved on to topic #3.

Topic #3 “Is being faithful Hard? If not, then would you be ok with giving your significant other your password to your social media accounts?”

Let’s just say, the room was in a ruckus. No one, I mean, NO one was in agreement to give out their passwords. Even the one gentleman that said, it was not hard to be faithful, “depending on the individual” was not in agreement to give his mate his passwords. I understood what he meant but some of the ladies felt otherwise.

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Zerlena called him on what she felt was “B.S.” about it being easy to be faithful. She believes that it is a learned behavior to be monogamous. Trust me, she didn’t care if you agreed with her statement. In fact, she broke it down and said, “We walk around in New York City, where there are beautiful people left and right. I am tempted everyday. Being faithful is a LEARNED BEHAVIOR. It does not come easy and for you to say that it is easy to be faithful. Well, that is just pure ‘Bullshit’!”

Zerlena…

WIDM 2-23.

Free came on the scene to back up the brother but, honestly, Zerlena said her peace and-that was all she wrote! Free agreed that it is not easy to be faithful. However, he mentioned, “For men, we think about sex every thirty seconds. Therefore, it is much, much harder for a man to be faithful because we think with our manhood. We are visual so we can see a woman and entertain sexual thoughts and not even touch the woman. Real talk!”

Thanks for sharing that crucial information Free…but every 30 seconds. That’s deep bruh!

Free…

WIDM 2-24

There were a lot of high points to the evening. For example, we had a comedienne in the house. The lovely Tanisha shared about men who don’t keep it real. Men who lie and say, “My mom lives with me”, when in fact, they live with their mothers. These men, still sleep in their full size bed, with superhero sheets and stuffed animals on their bed. Quite possibly, still have magazine clipping on their wall, as “Throwback” wallpaper. She had the room cracking up. At least five of the women in the room, can relate to this kind of man. Honestly, it’s better to keep it 100, then fronting to make yourself look like you are more than you really are. Word of advice to the fellas, stop lying to yourself.

Tanisha…

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A special thanks to Dhylles “The Coaching Cupid” for sharing her story and the exercise. At the end of the event, she instructed us to close our eyes, listen to our hearts beat and our breathing. By doing this, we are cherishing our life and each moment we have here on earth. It was a great exercise and a beautiful way to end a wonderful event.

Dhylles…

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A special thanks to my awesome Chef and amazing friend Naadira Muhammad (a.k.a Trop) for catering the event. Everyone who dined with Trop, were thankful for your superb culinary skills. We are still talking about the menu you created.

Trop…

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Thank you to the team that makes the dream work; Ciuella, Techla, Dhylles, and Alisa. I would not have been able to have such a smooth and effortless event, had it not been for your assistance. I love you all and appreciate you for holding me down.

Ciuella…

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Techla and Khemeka B…

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Alisa and Khemeka B…

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>>All photos on this post were provided by Mr. Greg Frogg, of Froggin Flicks>>

Follow him on Instagram & Facebook: Froggin Flicks

Contributing Photographers

Mello Evron, CEO of Full Blossom Magazine

Pascale Duthel, Pascale Duthel Photography

Thanks to all my guest who attended the “Conversations with Khemeka B: Would I Date Me Series” on Saturday, January 17th. You all made this a successful and wonderful event.

Stay tuned for the next event in March 2015.

Be sure to follow my website http://www.khemekab.com for updates on the next event.

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