Have you ever taken a hot shower and felt like you washed all the stress of that day off? And all that you’ve been going through with your family, school, your job, finances, and love…for those minutes, went away? Only thing is, you can’t live in the shower. I found myself wondering, Why can’t I find love? They say, “Don’t look for love. It will find you.” At the same time, I won’t hold my breath. Yet, I found a deeper answer to my own question. I wanted a committed relationship with someone. I wanted the romance, the sensuality…the love, but the biggest commitment I had broken was with myself. Here I was, twenty-five years old and not stable. My life was up and down. I hadn’t gotten to a place where I could be self-reliant, and I was thinking about who would be the next guy in my life? Talk about backwards.
I’d cheated on myself. Yeah, I know it sounds funny, but it’s possible. With my writing and my aspirations to make it in Hollywood, every once and awhile, I dipped out. I’d try to make time for a new guy I’d met or commitment to the new episode of Love and Hip Hop or Basketball Wives. God, help me.
“Stop carrying on with this foolishness and get focused,” I could hear my preacher friend, Juju relaying to me. I nodded but it wasn’t registering. I could date ten guys and have ten different great times and end with the same ten different bad results. Instead, I preferred to go on ten different auditions and maybe not get any. At least I would have learned something about myself and what I needed to do to be a better actor or writer. That was the true definition of loving myself.
My affair with this emptiness couldn’t even allow me to be happy for the people around me. When I’d hear how great they were doing, I couldn’t respond with genuine congratulations. I was plain. I wasn’t Langston. I was losing the foundations and means to survive and still putting up with bullshit men for an even shittier conclusion. But like a failed audition, I learned. I realized that love is the biggest audition I would ever go on. Love didn’t restrict its meaning to comforting and protecting and securing someone else. I needed to do those things for me. TV personality Terrence Jenkins said via Twitter yesterday that, “My goal for tomorrow is to be a better man than I was today.” It stuck with me. I apologized to myself today for not being totally faithful. I took myself back. Thank God I didn’t have to sleep on the couch.