I am back to blogging. Why did I leave in the first place? My heart had been broken.
I was really on a roll in the Fall | Winter of 2013, I had been frequenting tastings, events, all things food – and blogging about them. Something had changed in my life, for the first time, I had a man in my corner who pushed me to be the best person I could possibly be. Never had I met someone from the opposite sex who embraced my strong will, encouraged my work, and inspired me every time we texted, talked on the phone or hung out. There were days that started with the sun out and ended with the moon shining bright, just straight hanging, goofing, and always, lots of eating.
This was not a romantic relationship, though it did start off with a Tinder connection. Did you just laugh out loud? Because I did. I wasn’t even feeling this guy when we first met, but he was a chef, so duh, I was intrigued. Months later he hit me up again to hang out, and we did, for about 4 months straight. What developed was something stronger than any relationship with the opposite sex since post break up with my long time boyfriend. A real friendship blossomed, with what I thought was a strong foundation. It was such a different feeling to have a man genuinely open up to me and happily say that I was his best friend. He was kind, courteous, charming, caring and eventually, as the tide had turned, incredibly handsome. This could be a really long story but I am not going to make it one. Maybe it will make it into the book?
I must not forget to mention that my girlfriends (smart women they are), sister and mother, had started to warn me about this friendship. They saw something I obviously didn’t and repeatedly told me this friendship was becoming inappropriate. I think it all started when I mentioned that he fed me cake with his fingers.
Did I mention he has a wife and girlfriend? Go ahead, grab a glass of water. An estranged wife, and the girlfriend came after we were besties, AND after he told me he wasn’t looking for any relationships. Hilarious. This is all character building for me, don’t worry. I should’ve known there was a major problem when he was FaceTimed one evening and he wouldn’t tell his girlfriend he was driving around with me. My gut feeling warned me, but I didn’t listen. I must admit that when it comes to love, I have been naive. When you grow up with an amazing father, who shows love and respect, like I did – well, let’s just say, I had faith in my friend, trusted him and believed his words, even when he was lying straight to my face. I didn’t understand why someone who said they cared about me so much would act otherwise.
When you live 100% your actions let it be known. Something had changed in me and I couldn’t keep it to myself. A couple months in, I had developed very strong feelings for my best friend. It wasn’t planned, but those things rarely are. I didn’t want to disrespect his other relationship, so not once did I act inappropriate or cross the line. And if you know how aggressive I am, then you know how difficult that was for me. Instead it culminated in very intense, tear filled (on both sides) conversation in my car, just down the street from Beard Papa’s on Sawtelle, where we were about to go eat cream puffs. I broke down and was straight up, and told him exactly how I felt. It was a really proud moment for me because I had finally learned that when it comes to love, honesty is number one. I gave him the chance to totally crush me, I said “just tell me you don’t have any feelings for me and that you just want to be friends.” In all honesty, I was ready for the quick blow and I knew I could get over it, it would be easier this way. Instead, the person sitting across from me, with tears in his eyes replied “but I can’t tell you that. I don’t know what the future holds for us.”
Needless to say, this only made things more difficult for the both of us. I was now unhappy that someone who had feelings for me couldn’t actually be a grown ass man and do anything about it. And he was unhappy because I wasn’t going to put up with this lack of backbone and was most definitely feeling the heat from his girlfriend who was bothered by all the time we spent together. He was going to have a girlfriend and it wasn’t going to be me, I had to deal with that. But why was I hearing all the things in his life that were meant to be shared with a significant other? Taking the high road, I told him I wished nothing but the best for his life and that all the time he was spending with me, he could now spend with his girl. I needed to be out of the picture because well, I don’t like to torture myself, and I have no interest in making someone else’s life more difficult, AND, I would never want to get a man that way. I’ve listened to enough Keyshia Cole to know better. I had more respect for his girlfriend than he did, but she would never know that.
I said it was best that we didn’t talk anymore, in any way, that I needed to just go away. Wished him well. Now if only he could’ve respected that.
Things took a turn for the worse in January 2014, which in turn became an extremely difficult month in my life. Without saying too much – if you only knew how short of a story this actually is in comparison to real life – I received a couple emails verbally assaulting me from someone I didn’t even know, from the girlfriend of this former “best friend”. He was cc’d on both of these emails, calling both of us out, but mostly telling lies on me.
It ends like that. The person who once called me his best friend, who asked me to push him to do better, who said he’d never had a friendship like this, said not one single word. I called him, he didn’t pick up. I texted him, there was no response. I was being called outside of my name, and there was not one peep from him. It was truly devastating. My heart was completely crushed, my spirit saddened. I didn’t leave the house much that month because when I did, my friends were so concerned about how much I wasn’t myself. If you know me, then you know my energy, vibes, loudness, everything. It was gone, but only temporarily.
I view things in life as either a blessing or a lesson, and this was a bit of both. It’s not difficult for me to say I still think about him, because whenever you’re lucky enough to get a piece of my heart, you’ll always be in my thoughts. Because he was the one really pushing me with my writing, attending tastings with me, and believing so much in me, when shit hit the fan, I simply didn’t want to write anymore. In fact, it even took awhile for me to attend tastings again. I had grown so accustomed to him joining me and giving me his invaluable feedback as well – I mean, he did work at what was ranked one of the top restaurants in L.A. – that now eating without him or having him cheering me on, made me really, really sad. It was a major loss in my life.
With any kind of struggle that comes my way, it doesn’t take long for me to address the situation and then thrive better than ever! What had knocked me down truly put perspective into my life. I began to think about how I spent my time, who I gave energy too and who truly deserved to be in my tight circle of friends. Like one of my best friends Jasiri said, I needed to be with people who deserved my blessings. I had decided what was most important of all was self love, which I always knew, but obviously needed to find new ways of practicing it – my life changed for the better because of this. I began volunteering again, which I’ve been doing since the beginning of the year. I promised myself I would spend more time with my parents, adoring them like they deserved to be. And I had decided that I simply wanted to stop buying things, wasting time, and use any money I earned to just travel the world. All I truly want is to eat delicious food, travel the globe and serve my community – when I get a TV show where I’ll be able to share that, even better.