Life was good. I had made some major changes in my life for the better. After 12 years of dedicated service, I left my religious organization. In fact, I became an agonist – questioning the value of religion and even the existence of God. I also made a major career change, which brought better direction in my life.
Life was really good that I foolishly begun to wonder, where was misery? Things were flowing too smoothly to last forever. Where is it? I knew it had to be right around the corner because where there is an abundance of joy, misery is usually not too far behind.
“How could you do this to me? I thought you were my friend!” Anna yelled these words at me for a decision her daughter made. I was shocked and hurt. This woman was my friend, a motherly figure. And here she stood before me, blaming me for the pain she was feeling. Blaming me for the decision her daughter made.
Out of her frustration, she threatens to take my life, supposedly for the pain I had caused her and accused me of taking advantage of her daughter. To make matters worse, she turned her attention to Zoe, her daughter, and renounced her soul. “You are not my daughter. I don’t know you. I should shoot you from where you are standing.” At that moment, I went from rage to concern. I was concerned about what Zoe was feeling. Is her heart bleeding? Does she want to cry? Is she okay? What is she feeling? It was hard to tell because she just sat there expressionless. Anna continues, “Until you leave this destructive pathway you have taken, you are not my daughter.” Wow! I could not believe what I was hearing. This woman was throwing away her daughter like spoiled food that has become infected with maggots and developed a bad stink.
In all the confusion, I did not know how to respond, which emotion to free? Should I release my girl Deedra? Deedra did not play. She didn’t put up with anybody’s shit. If you looked at her the wrong way, she would cut you. Deedra didn’t waste time with battling with words. She handles her problems by whipping your ass first and she didn’t bother to ask questions later.
I really like Deedra. She is mentally strong and doesn’t have a care in the world about what others think or their personal space. She has gotten us out of many tight and scary situations in the past. She is my ride and die chick, but I always get into trouble when I let her loose.
What about my girl Kim? Kim is better at handling these kinds of situations. We are almost forty and Kim understood the importance of acting like a mature woman. She constantly reminded us to act our age. She is our voice of reason, even when we are wronged. She keeps all of us in check. She works very hard to make sure we don’t show out and embarrass ourselves, more importantly her. She always reminds us, “It is me that has to show up for work the next day. You all are not going to have people up in my business, talking.”
Kim is the smart one. We often tease her, calling her “The Philosopher”. Although, she holds us back from really enjoying life, but she is always right. She has a perfect record.
Maybe Keekee? That girl is young and more trouble than she is worth. Nevertheless, her innocence has gotten us out of many situations. She knows how to bat those beautiful brown tinted eyes in a way that convince you to believe her even though you know she is lying. She is a natural magnet. People are drawn to her because of her sheen beauty. Having sex appeal doesn’t hurt either. She knows how to use her pretty looks and sex appeal to get her way. She does not hesitate to use them whenever or with whomever she needed to seduce. I always can count on Keekee for laughter, a great time and entertaining conversations, but she is inconsistent. I need a sure thing in dealing with this matter.
Deedra, Kim or KeeKee? Who is it going be? Although, I respect and love Anna, what she needs right now is a good old-fashion beat down. She knows she is wrong. One, blaming me for her daughter’s decision to stand up to her ass. Can you just imagine her reaction when Zoe said to her, “Mom, I’m gay. I’m leaving our religious organization and I am moving in with Michelle”. After 30 years of living with this secret, lying and living a double life, Zoe just got tired of pretending to be somebody she wasn’t, in order to please her ass.
You know what, that’s it, come on Deedra, let’s bust her ass right now. “Yea, yea, you know we can take her ass. Slap that bitch! Slap her!” Deedra yelled. “No, no, don’t do that!” Kim screams. “Kim! Didn’t I tell you to stay out of this. Deedra will help me out on this one.” “Michelle, this is Zoe’s mother you are about to take out. Come on girl! Is this really worth it? Think about Zoe! You take her mom out, as much as Zoe loves you, she is liable to turn on you. Could you blame her if she did? That is her mother! Think about it! That is her mother,” she said again to me softly. “Don’t do it,” she whispers. As bad as I wanted to slap Kim and Anna, I turned and looked at Zoe. As if she knew what I was thinking, what I was about to do, she shook her head. I could read her mind saying, “Don’t do it, Michelle, please don’t.” Her eyes pierced right into my soul and softened my heart. For a moment, I could feel her hands gently caressing my skin. Her lips softly kissing mine, pleading again, don’t do it. I looked to my left at Deedra. She made me laugh for a second. There she stood, pumping her fist, yelling in the background, “Let’s go, let’s go. I got your back Shells.” That girl is straight hood. I looked back at Kim, paused for a second, and then took one step back while Kim took a step forward and began to speak. Before I knew it, Anna was crying. Zoe was crying. I was crying. Anna hugged the both of us. She told us that she didn’t approve, but she loved us both and left.
Every now and again, Zoe and I look back at that day. We can laugh about all the events that led up to that moment. I can tell Zoe still hurts a little because she lost her mother that day and things between them has never been the same. But she admits she can look in the mirror and be satisfied with the person she sees. Me personally, I’m just glad I decided to free Kim instead of Deedra that day. Can you imagine what would have happened if I did otherwise?
I’m From Florence, SC. ” Hmmm, love is so weird that I didn’t realize that it was imperfect and needs to mature. I failed to recognize that love needs time to show itself in full measure before I can define the trueness of what love is. It needs periods to mold itself; occasions to stumble and fall; instances to build up and shut down; points to reenergize and heal. Love is so weird because I failed to realize that most of all, love needs moments and time to mature and develop.”
I’m From Florence, SC. “My mom left my father in 1985 when I was 10 and moved us to Columbia, SC, and finally to Charlotte, NC. My formative years took place in those two cities. It was there I realized that I was different. My friends became so important to me, especially the male friends. There was some teasing, but because of a friendly disposition and hyper athleticism I was able to skirt the horrible names of some of my classmates.”
I’m From Florence, SC. “I put down the phone having just been told you had found my missing brothers in an orphanage and you were bringing them back to South Carolina. We had not spoken in six months, and only my little brother’s insistence had forced you to call me now. I agreed to wait with my grandparents to greet them, my partner and I hurried over to their house to wait. I was hoping beyond hope that this would be the moment that we would become a true family; I was already planning how I could be a big brother to these two younger ones. The meeting was wonderful; I thought we were definitely on the right path. Until my sister pulled me aside as soon as you left and showed me the text messages, where you described me as a faggot, totally disgusting, and blamed my homosexuality on a mother dead for 23 years. My partner held me in silence while I cried, in our years together he had never seen me cry.”