What If I Wanted To Slow Down For Myself And Not A Woman?
Here we go again, another post about how busy I am. But this isn’t some cry for help, so much as it is a cry to help myself and if you can relate to any of this, great. Glad you can be a part of the struggle.
I can’t stop writing about this whole busy thing because I’m not any less busy than I was and it’s where I’m at with my life. I’m busy. As hell. And I don’t know how I slow down.
People keep telling me, when the right woman comes along, I’ll slow down. But why must it be because of her? Maybe I would like to slow down not for her, but, for me, and maybe I should be trying to figure out how to do that.
Two years ago, when I wound up in the hospital with a skin infection, my relationship with women came to a head. There was the ex-girlfriend with whom I remained friends, who visited me before anyone else. She was by my bedside when I woke up out of surgery. Then there was the girl I had started dating a mere week before I checked myself in, and came by each of the four nights I was there. Then there was my most recent ex who I wanted to visit me but refused to do so because, well, at that point, the wounds from our breakup were still fresh. And when I left the hospital, there was my mother who flew out from California to help me out as I recovered.
And I remember thinking how shameful it was that the only woman I could truly trust to be there for me was my Mom. All those years I spent away from my home (eight to be exact), all those women who loved me and cared for me at some point, and yet I managed not to do enough for any of them to take care of me to the extent my mother was. I felt like a failure of sorts, simply because I had these women in my life who cared about me, but all were doing so from a distance of sorts. None of them wanted to get in too deep to help me recover because they either couldn’t or simply didn’t want to or were still too busy getting to know me and thus, didn’t trust me enough to be fully invested.
Damn, I though to myself. Why can’t I be a man good enough for a woman to be unconditionally good to me?
Two years later, I’m beginning to think about that period of time a little differently. I think what I’m starting to realize is back then I was upset at myself for the wrong reasons. I shouldn’t have been mad at myself for not being a good enough man to a woman. Maybe the real disappointment should have been at me, for not being capable of taking care of myself.
These days, as I have written for the past couple of weeks, I am busy and stressed, and I know none of it is good for me. Especially as a man who just turned 29, all these things like late hours and early mornings, energy drinks and fast food diets, aren’t meant for men my age. I should have left those days behind in college, but as it turns out, my work space in my one bedroom apartment is looking a lot similar to my workspace in my college dorm room during final exams.
I want to take better care of myself, not for some woman, but for myself. All these people keep telling me it’s going to be a woman, albeit the right woman, who comes along to slow me down. And I’m not saying I’m opposed to such a thing. I would love for this magical unicorn woman to appear right before my eyes. But you know what else I would like? The self-discipline to slow down my damn self so that if she does appear before me, I can easily recognize her and not pass her up.
Unfortunately, if she is around, I have been way too busy to notice her because right now, I’m in a relationship with myself, and honestly, I am being straight abusive towards it. I’m beating myself up and not only that, I’m not even being faithful to my current self, because every now and then — or wait, let me stop lying, not “every now and then”, every freaking day — I cheat on myself.
That’s right, I cheat on my present self, with my future self. These days, I get so caught up in all the things I want to accomplish, I sometimes neglect the things I need to accomplish. Perfect example: As a man, I often get obsessed with the idea of creating some sort of legacy for some kids I don’t even have yet. Like, all these things I am doing are being done so I can be this good father and husband. Meanwhile, in the present day, I’m an uncle, and frankly, I’m doing a horrible job of that. Just because my new niece lives 3,000 miles away and can’t say a word, doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be trying to talk to her on the phone and ask her do things I know she can’t do yet, like, telling her to say, “Uncle Jozen.”
But I haven’t done any of that since she was born on June 11. Instead, I have just worked and worked and worked and worked. Yes, I have gone to a few parties and even take a trip out of town, but ask my boys what I was doing while I was down in New Orleans for Essence Fest or ask my Mom how I was calling her in the mornings talking about the work I had to do when I got back. Ask my two friends who just came out to visit me what I was doing every day when they woke up? Work, work, work, work, work.
I’m honestly sick and tired of writing about this stuff, as I’m sure some of you all are probably sick and tired of reading it, but the only way I know how to get this sort of thing out of my system is if I write about. I’m pretty sure at some point, things will turn around and I’ll start writing about something else, but that time isn’t coming anytime soon as far as I can see; at least, not until the work gets done, or I figure out a way to slow myself down.