The Collateral Beauty in the Synonymity of Love

The harmonic sounds of steady rain, meshed with a hailstorm, blizzard and wind dancing on a window surround me. It’s half past midnight, and I can’t seem to calm these thoughts. I had pretty intense conversations tonight. Tough conversations. Vulnerable conversations. These conversations among a few other experiences have inspired me to work on this new series, ‘The Collateral Beauty in the Synonymity of Love.’

“Dear Love, I God you” has always been one of my favorite play on words and witty use of synonyms. “Love” and “God” are synonymous. Because God is Love. But is all Love God? Love is more than a feeling or a choice, it is an action or a decision. It also has synonyms. Love is synonymous. Though synonyms can essentially be used interchangeably, they always mean something slightly different. For instance, a synonym for “mad” could be angry, infuriated, enraged etc. We interpret these words as virtually the same, however, I want to highlight how they all explore different degrees of the same emotion.

That is my intention behind this series. To distinguish and make sense of the synonyms for Love. Love is synonymous and there are different degrees of Love.

Love says:

“I’m here”

“I’m in this”

“I am committed”

But it’s important for me to explore the similarities and differences in the degrees of love because I think, or know, I sometimes confuse Love. Not necessarily in regard to confusing it with lust or infatuation or romanticization. Rather, with acknowledging the degrees and being able to acknowledge and accept them for what they are. As much love as there is that lives inside of me, I’m not sure I’ve ever known or shared it with others. I’ve rarely acknowledged the degrees of Love that I have experienced. I think this because I have not taken the time or initiative to learn Love. To distinguish it or even recognize it, especially when it appears differently than I’d imagined. I hope that by writing this, I am able to understand more about giving, receiving and accepting love of all varying degrees. Instead of disqualifying the Love that I have received based on ignorance and lack of knowledge.

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Overstaying My Welcome

Life is full of experiences. We find ourselves in sometimes dramatically different places and circumstances today than we were this time a year(s) ago. I wrote this compilation of thoughts that capture and document exactly this. This was a moment in time.

Overstaying My Welcome is an introspective journey of the thoughts, vibes, moods, feelings and general well-being of my trip to New Orleans, LA. A place I’d never been before. A place I had such a good time with linking with a friend. However, these are not about those memories. The writings included, document the moments following my unexpected extra stay in the city (courtesy of an abomination for an airline that won’t be mentioned).

Join me as I share these pieces of me.

The Vibes

I will give you that feeling you get when you connect silently, yet publicly, through curious eye contact with a stranger.

You feel like you know them, or at least you want to…know them.

But then they get up. They leave.

And though your eyes wander about, you realize that they’re not coming back.

Gone, forever.

But that feeling, you’ll surely remember.

One of Those Days

I sat inside all day today.

Sleeping and waking and eating then sleeping again.

Catching up on shows I usually can’t watch live because of the intensity of my real life.

Alone.

All day, I was alone.

Thinking of the whirlwind, massive tornado that has hit what I call home.

Home.

Home is honestly wherever my father is.

And these days that’s not a location but a feeling.

That feeling I get when I see him smile.

His full set of pearly whites contrasted against his dark skin, remind me that there is God.

The sound of his laughter assures me that the sun will rise again.

And that all will be well.

But this day, full of emotion. I hadn’t spoken or seen my father in days.

I spoke with not one soul, for hours.

Time was flying, but still I laid.

Stiff on that tan couch.

Messages and calls kept lighting my screen saver that is full of red roses.

But I muted, I silenced-I could not bring myself to read let alone respond.

Chained by this depression.

This overwhelming feeling that has followed me on and off for years.

This day, it gripped my heart and paralyzed my mind.

I felt nothing.

I wanted to hide under the covers forever.

I wanted to sleep and never wake up.

Technically those could be considered suicidal thoughts.

But really, this day, my thoughts were just lost.

I felt like I was experiencing life in an alternate atmosphere.

The upside down version of our universe.

Work

School

Family

A mess…

These worries are far too much too carry.

Greeting the Trees and the Songs of the Wind

How could I lift me out of this fog? I hadn’t showered all day.

So I walked to the bathroom. Turned on the hot water and submerged myself into a cleanse. I couldn’t tell the difference between the tears and the droplets from the showerhead.

But I was moved to sing.

My psalm to God.

A sweet melody of surrender.

Tunes from the pits of my soul rolled off of the top of my dome.

I could feel my pulse through my toes.

This heart began to defrost.

My spirit is still alive.

The sun was gone well before I decided to greet the trees. It was dark out. But this was what I needed. The navy blue hue of the sky was gentle on my eyes.

There I stood on a balcony.

Breathing in the breeze.

Listing mentally all the things I was grateful for.

In that moment, overstaying my welcome in New Orleans didn’t seem so bad.

In fact it seemed to be destined.

I had a roof over my head and fufu and light soup to eat. I had clean clothes, no money, but breath in my lungs. Hours ago I had no idea how I would get home, but I had a brother to call.

In this moment, I was remembering light.

I was remembering that feeling I felt yesterday when I took a nap on a bench.

The sun was kissing me.

Overwhelming me by its warmth.

As much of a romantic as I am, even I have to remind myself that:

I too am loved.

Streets On Fire

10 people got hurt on a street I was on Saturday night.

A few people from home called to see if I was alright.

I can’t believe that I was really on that street that night.

But I left early.

I was so thankful when I thought about how close I was.

How close I was to breaking my fathers heart.

How close I was to making my loved ones cry.

How very close I almost always am to really not being alive.

I tend to forget that the enemy does not simply want to see me suffering, but the goal is to cease my life.

To quench this light instilled in me.

Man, 10 people got hurt last night and one lost their life that Saturday night

1 of them could have been me.

I swear,

My sole existence is attributed to His grace.

Apologies

Processed with VSCO with b1 presetI’m sorry I ever made you worry.

I left you in limbo.

You know me. When I go through things I tend to isolate.

Running further and further away from the love that I need.

But you would not relent.

Even after several unread or unreplied texts, you didn’t give up.

You didn’t give up on me.

You called.

You sent music.

You sent roses & heart-eyed emojis.

You double texted me when you felt the need.

I didn’t even bother to tell you that I was alive and alright.

I couldn’t budge or lift a finger; believe me even showering that day was hard.

Still I’m sorry I ever made you worry.

I’m sorry I fell out of touch.

You know me and when things get to be too much, like the cancer I am, I tend to bundle up.

But when we finally got back, there you were, reminding me of love.

A friend.

The friend that I need.

The friend I’ve been searching for my entire life to really just be there.

To be there.

To care.

To stay.

I’m sorry I ever made you feel like you weren’t enough.

I’m sorry I don’t tell you I love you or give you more hugs.

I’m sorry if I was careless with my words.

I’m sorry for all the gaps, the back and forth, the struggles with how we talk.

I’m sorry my friend, I really am, I can’t say this enough.