Despite my fiancé moving to another state 15 hours away and despite everything that was going on (or the lack thereof), there were many events and activities that led me to believe he was going to propose. Specifically during the time we were embroiled in heated discussions and debates about him taking a job elsewhere, many distractions to my relationship and potential marriage kept popping up. These distractions came in the form of every ex-boyfriend known from age 15 to 3, popping up out of nowhere.
It was literally like a scene from “Thriller,” as numerous, wayward, scary, non-communicative and emotionally unavailable exes of my past unilaterally reached out to me because “I just happened to pop into their heads and they wanted to know how I was doing.” Word to Ne-Yo, no I don’t just think of you anymore!
I was away one weekend celebrating the birthday of two of my dear girlfriends. My fiancé was at his place in Harlem, packing up his apartment. I was in denial and drinking straight shots of Jack Daniels. I put on a brave face to my friends, acting as if I was ok with his plan to move. My response to the standard, “Are you ok?” was, “Yes, I will be fine. This move is necessary for us to get to the next level of marriage. We need to save money and this job is right on time.” However, I was an emotional wreck.
So you know the devil doesn’t play fair, right?
While in my funk of sadness, denial and intoxication, I get an email from THE EX. Ladies, we all have exes, but then we have THE EX. This may be the ex that you thought you were going to marry, the ex who totally sold you dreams then disappeared, the ex who you cosigned a loan for and he married someone else, the ex who told you he never wanted to get married after dating you for seven years then ended up marrying someone else seven months after you two broke up. Whatever this ex did, however he shaped your perception on relationships, he is always known as THE EX.
Well my THE EX, was perfect (at that time). He was gainfully employed, very successful, funny, the life of the party, giving and ALL of my friends liked him. We met through a mutual friend, he saw my photo in her photo album (yes this was before digital cameras) and he instantly asked to meet me. She called me one evening and told me that her friend would be calling me in 15 minutes.
By her description, he was ready to settle down and he was a good guy. He called me exactly 15 minutes later and my stupid ass fell in love immediately. We talked on the phone for hours at a time. Weeks later when my girlfriend was coming to visit, he asked if he could come along as well so we could finally meet face to face. OH MY SWEET JESUS, I am in LOVE!!! We hit if off instantly.
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He told me I was his destiny. He told me he loved me first. He would send huge bouquets of flowers for no reason. He would fly me to visit whenever I asked and he would come to visit me often as well. I met his family, his best friends, etc. It was textbook, one-way, the fast track to marriage. I had even picked out my ring in preparation of the day he would ask me.
I flew to visit him over one particular Labor Day weekend. Before I boarded the plane, he called to tell me to be safe and that he loved me. When I got there, he had a lot of work to do, which I totally understood because his schedule was set a while ago. However, something was “off.” He wasn’t his jovial self. He shied away from my hugs and embraces and was just acting weird.
Later that night, I asked him if anything was wrong. He said “no.” I asked him again 20 minutes later and he simply said, “I am not ready for this. I thought I was ready for a relationship, for marriage, but I am not. I do not want to hurt you by doing something that I will regret. You deserve better.” I was crushed! I didn’t ask any questions, I simply started crying, gathered my things and slept in the guest room.
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