Starting at the age of twelve I knew I always wanted to be married.
On late nights I used to stare up at the popcorn ceiling of my blended family home, wondering what it would be like to have a wife to call my own.
It went much deeper than the institution of marriage though.
To formulate that unique bond that no one else would understand.
To create a realm, a reality that no one else could understand.
To find THE ONE.
Rejection came in many forms during grade school and college years.
One would begin to think there was something SERIOUSLY wrong, but as many times as I wanted to give up, I kept going.
I just had faith you were right around the corner.
I just knew, I was on a mission to be fulfilled.
Not Ready for What You Wanted. . .
There’s a certain irony in wanting something so bad yet not being prepared for it.
I eventually got on the path to marriage but there were so many red flags ignored. Too many break-ups and make-ups, too many demands to adhere to.
Despite those flags, I continued forward. Listening to bad advice from family, her practically raising me to be relationship ready, and my own insecurities telling me this was as good as it was going to get.
The Perfect Storm.
As badly as I wanted marriage, I wasn’t ready the first time. I took a good woman for granted. I just thought you fell in love and that’s it; the rest just magically happens.
I guess that’s why movies cutoff when the guy gets the girl. . .it’s too gruesome to show what happens next.
I didn’t nurture the relationship, never watered my grass as I was too busy looking at other plentiful pastures.
Suddenly, the dream came crashing down as I lost to those insecurities, rediscovered by “singleness” in marriage, wondering if I truly gave it my all chasing my ambitions in prior years.
Did I just. . . settle?
I knew I had to make the difficult choice of breaking up a family, to show my son what was truly important, in pursuit of what mattered more than anything else: Getting it right once and for all.
What does it mean to be a man?
Being man means taking accountability for your mistakes.
It means creating yourself into someone worth the honor, respect, and support of a woman
This means taking the time to find yourself.
I was together with my ex-wife from 2009-2016, dating phase to divorce.
So, getting back into the dating world, when you’ve been involved for so long can make you feel antiquated.
Learning game was a step up for me, but in actuality, it didn’t matter because women knew how to game too.
Women had adopted the tactics of men and moreover, it was glorified.
Women maintaining rosters was the norm.
Women had a man who fit every purpose: a weed man, a tax guy, a mechanic, a guy to take them out, a man who listens, a man that lays the pipe proper, the friend waiting 20 years to shoot their shot.
Showing interest and effort was not enough.
So yes, the girl you might be talking to is going to wish her ex a happy birthday.
Yes, a girl you might be interested in may stay with her “cousin” in Fayetteville, even though she let it be known her ex lives there too.
Yes, a girl can go out with you and the very next day post pictures of her at another dude’s shirt.
Because we live in a world of options, we love keeping doors opens.
In the midst of that, I spend countless hours sarging just like Mystery and Style did in “The Game”; malls, Targets, Wal-Marts, clubs, lounges.
Countless hours perfecting my craft.
Countless times getting rejected as well.
Countless times things just didn’t work out.
But I took something from every interaction.
Each step, slowly progressing to find you.
Eventually I got pretty good at attracting the level of women I had always desired.
My bro Jason would tell me, “Eric, those 8-9-Dimes you keep chasing ain’t nothing but trouble.”
But I was hard-headed.
That was easy to say for a person who is used to pulling the coldest women.
I just KNEW having the baddest chick in the city was just going to complete me.
Growing up, I was the kid bigger than just about everybody in class. Thighs nearly busting out of my jeans, not the funniest, or most athletic, or the toughest.
But I was approaching 30, nearing the height of my career, and probably the most handsome I had ever been in life (Men age like wine, it’s just the truth).
I NEEDED THIS
But as I was finding those bad women. It was always just as Jason said.
More trouble than they were worth.
They either lack humility, or rarely showed any effort. When I did hold their attention, it was only for a moment.
Where was the happiness that was supposed to come with this?
So, I went back to the drawing board.
Evaluating why I desperately wanted a woman in my life?
Where was I failing?
Where could I improve?
So, I realized that one reason is because, the average lifespan of an African-American man is around 65, and I was nearing the halfway mark.
I wanted to someone to love me, to fill a void.
That was the wrong motivation to have.
So, I focused on my health, my career, my spirituality with God. Stopped going back to exs when I was lonely and turned to the Lord and my progression as my anchors.
I created my own happiness.
No longer looking for others to fill the abyss in my heart.
I learned to enjoy the process of dating more. So often we complain about not finding what we ultimately want, and not enjoying the process.
But the process can only be thoroughly enjoyed when you know yourself, steadily improve, and setting STANDARDS.
I knew what I wanted.
Recognized immediately when a woman didn’t exhibit those characteristics and moved on accordingly.
I was finally at peace with everything that made me who I was, with where I was in life, the whole process.
And that’s when God was like, “Alright son, I think you’re ready now.
You embody everything I value in a significant other in a relationship.
I remember when we started texting, you were responding in long paragraphs, and I was like “Oh shit. I think we might have one.”
Our first date, we were both upfront in our intentions, and hence forth, our actions backed up our words.
3rd date when you put together an event yourself, I already knew I couldn’t let you out of my sight.
You explained to me your boundaries, and I agreed. Wanting to give us an honest try but realistic, I was expecting we would be like so many others.
Passing each other by like two ships in the night.
But what came was great communication.
We’ve accomplished in months, what would have taken years in our past relationships, IF at all.
We have been intentional in every move that we’ve made.
We have loved unconditionally and freely.
Trusted each other much sooner than society would have encouraged.
And the results have been extraordinary.
You are the best thing to have ever happen to me.
There is no one else I would rather have in my corner than you.
The journey was an arduous one, but totally worth it to get to you.
Now its time to get these men on the same path.
Weather Your Storm, Maintain Inner Reign -E