14.July – { Sydney Charles – Untitled and Raw }

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( I get a call from Sydney at 4:33am PST…I missed it, and called her back – she say’s “I sent an email” ….and we got off of the phone.  Below is the email she sent.  Untitled and Raw – Kenneth )

Generally speaking, I am the comic relief of my circle, of this blog community, and have even created a bit of a following on social media as being the person who says the things you are afraid to say, but with just enough comical genius to get away with it without offending anyone…

However, today ‘s long overdue post will not be one dedicated to carefully constructed ideas of filled with my notorious lists of things that “Make my Weave Itch”. Today, I want to talk about something that most people are afraid to, especially, in the Black community, because you look weak (unless you put it in a R&B song). To talk about it, mention it, breathe about it indicates weakness. It causes people to spew out meaningless clichés that they do not realize you have memorized since the age of 5. I want to talk about true heartbreak.

Not the heartbreak that has you sitting on your couch in your pajamas eating ice cream and fried chicken, crying into a $3 bottle of wine, listening to Mary J. Blige (old Mary, not new Mary). I’m talking about the kind that tears out your soul. As I lie in bed at 5:45 on this Tuesday morning (actually crying as I write), asleep since 8pm (because I did not want to deal with the pain I have been experiencing for the last 3 or so weeks), I realized that heartbreak isn’t “heartbreak”. True heartbreak—the gut wrenching, soul stripping kind—is hopelessness. You have lost all hope.

You have lost hope in the one thing that everyone has told you to look forward to since you were a little girl in pigtails. What every Disney movie has conditioned you to wish upon a star for since you were 3. What every mom inadvertently teaches you with the phrases, “No ladies, don’t sit like that”, or “you’ll never get a man dressing like that”, or “why do you keep your hair short, men don’t like that”. We are systematically trained to want love, to be a wife, to have a family, and unfortunately, for people like me, when that doesn’t happen with the one person that you thought was made and meant for you, yes, your heart breaks, but more so, you lose all hope of ever having something like that of your own in this lifetime. You have lost hope in love and happiness. BUT JESUS IS YOUR…shut up.

Just like that, your fairy tale turns into a horrible nightmare. One you cannot escape. One that has every villain you have never been afraid of in your life all in the starring cast and you try to escape and you cannot. Instead, you just relive every single, horrible memory of the monster tearing you apart over and over again. No amount of wine or chocolate or meditation or medication can fix this. Time takes too long. Prayer seems futile. Every song hurts, even the ones with no words. You are too scared to die (just so you don’t have to feel), but you are even more terrified to live. This is the definition of a “Living Hell”. If you have never wondered where this phrase came from, I guarantee you, it came from a woman who has had her life completely snatched from under her and does not know what else to do. BUT THE LORD CAN PICK YOU UP AND…shut up.

To my Christian friends, the ones who will surely read this post and quote Jeremiah 29:11 or I Peter 5:10 or Isaiah 53:10 or Psalm 37:4…with all due respect. Save it. Keep it. Miss me with it. NO! We don’t want to hear it. No one who has experienced this level of agony wants to hear it. Honestly, because we don’t believe it or you. Of course you can say that with your house, car, kids, and well-paying jobs, now that you are out of your wilderness. Do something to convince us otherwise. Show us scientific data that shows that women who have had their heart ripped out and thrown in the dirt repeatedly by different men, had 3 miscarriages (by the same man), sickness, being broke, etc,etc, show their survival rate. I DIDN’T LIKE HIM ANYWAY HE WASN’T…SHUT UP.

I want to see the empirical evidence that shows how these women have survived without Xanax or Valium. I’m almost certain it wasn’t yoga. Do not insult our intelligence with Oprah quotes, Deepak Chopra ramblings, Dr. Oz teas and Bible verses about how to get “over it” and “Hold on”. That DOES NOT work…shut up.

What does work? I don’t know. I have been trying to figure this out for at least 14 years. People tell me all the time “Hey, you’re a good girl, why are you single?”, “Hey, you’re a good woman, why would he do that to you?” “Oh, don’t worry, the next one.” “God’s getting him ready for you.” For you, I place up on you the shadiest of side eye I can create with these two eyes, I WISH I had four eyes so more shade could be placed upon your inquisitive ass. WE DON’T KNOW WHY. WE DON’T KNOW…shut the hell up.

Don’t ask us how we’re doing. “I feel like shit, that’s how I’m doing”. Don’t ask us if we need anything, “I need a baby to hold and love, that’s what I need, oh and a husband is optional”. Don’t ask us if we want to go out, “With you and your BOYFRIEND? GTFOH and my face. Be reasonable”. Leave us alone…and shut up.

It is not the picture creatively manufactured to fit into 22 minutes of sitcom on “Being Mary Jane”. It is not the staring out of the window while is it raining and through the artistically non-brilliant close-up shot where you view the tears blend ever so delicately in with the rain. It is HOPELESSNESS. You’re just out of hope. You have nothing to look forward to at this point. You wake up to go to work and your only joy is getting through the work day to crawl back in to bed, to cry yourself to sleep from the energy exerted to keep on a happy face at work, so know one would ask you “what’s wrong”, deliciously sandwiched with the pain of knowing you have lost the one person you have EVER truly unconditionally loved in your life. That my friend’s is heartbreak—that is hopelessness.

They are – in fact – synonymous at this level of ache. I hope you weren’t reading this for an answer, I don’t have one.

Until next time,

Sydney Charles