Archive | December, 2014

Race in America, and a Family’s Nightmare

17 Dec


Rilla Askew | 2014 | 21 minutes (5,065 words)

When my godson Trey was a toddler growing up in Brooklyn, every white woman who saw him fell in love with him. He was a beautiful child, sweet natured, affectionate, with cocoa-colored skin and a thousand-watt smile. I remember sitting with him and his mom in a pizzeria one day, watching as he played peekaboo with two white ladies at a nearby booth. “What a little doll!” the ladies cooed. “Isn’t he adorable?”

I told Marilyn I dreaded the day he would run up against some white person’s prejudice. “His feelings are going to be hurt,” I said. “He won’t know it’s about this country’s race history, he’ll think it’s about him. Because so far in his young life every white person he’s ever met has adored him.” Marilyn nodded, but her closed expression seemed to say I was talking about…

View original post 4,994 more words

Long Distanced

15 Dec

Today I ended one of the best experiences of my life with one of the greatest people I have ever met.

Instead of anger, resentment, bitterness or even apathy (all emotions I have felt before in my previous six break-ups) I feel at peace. It’s like my heart & head, for once in my twenty-three & eleven/twelfths years of life are finally in perfect alignment.

This was just the right thing to do.

However, flashback to last week and I was in a very different position. I felt painfully unsure. I felt foolish for even considering this an option because I was so lost in all the grey of the matter.

It felt like quitting & throwing away something that was so great. This is certainly not a simple situation. No one cheated, no one stopped trying & certainly no one fell out of love.

But this morning I & my wonderful boyfriend of the past 10 months broke up.

But instead of crying & burning pictures, I have a comforting feeling of calm.
Not surprisingly, the downfall of our relationship right now is some uncontrollable third party factor. Something that every long distance couple battles constantly–the separation.

Shocker, huh?

Before you began pointing fingers or making assumptions, know that I am a very practical person. I am quite guarded with all my chips & would never take an unnecessary gamble on something like my heart. Unless the pay out is worth it.

I have been battling with the idea of giving up on something so great due to one little thing like distance. But the more I think about it–it’s not a little thing at all. It quickly became a very big thing & created a wedge between us, steering us towards disaster. So before we crash & burn in the wreckage, I am pressing my eject button because I feel like this is the best time. And he is doing the same right along with me.

Although it wasn’t love at first sight, it was definitely love. And it only grew and grew, like a muscle, constantly becoming stronger with each new experience. I can honestly sit here & say right now, something I have known ever since a few weeks after meeting–Filip is my soul mate.

Personally I believe you have more than one soul mate in this world–but he is definitely one of them. It was like an intricate puzzle that molded us together over time. He was my best friend, my confidant, my shoulder to cry on time & time again.

I met him for a reason.

Like a guardian angel who met me at the tram stop every day after another awful day of work. He was there to give me money for food when I was broke, translate all the frustrating Czech time & time again, & calm me down whenever I was ready to give up & go home.

He is one of the main reasons I survived living in Prague. Sure I had a lot of support at home, but schedules are busy, Skype calls freeze & no amount of Facebook messages can substitute a face-to-face conversation. He was my main life line.

And this is something I will never forget, no matter what happens to us. I am eternally grateful that he made my solo move to a foreign city–the most rebellious thing I have ever done–something so memorable.

I knew moving home would be hard, but I was willing to work. Fate stepped in & allowed us to Skype almost daily, something that allowed me to feel like he was still with me. Then when he did finally visit in October, it was like nothing had changed. We were us again.

But now something is different. My heart is not telling me the same thing it did on that hot June day in Vaclav Havel Airport when tears were streaming down both our faces. My heart is telling me to listen to my head.

My head has always told me what you all told me–it won’t work. What’s the point? Where is this even going? Why put yourself through that?

But my heart always won.

Well now I will follow it once again. Because I have planted & fully harvested this relationship. It is something I am extremely proud of & will always look back on with a smile & not a single ounce of regret. We did the best we could to beat all the odds for as long as we could.

But now, I must once again, focus on me.

Filip helped me get through the lows in my life…but now I am at a high. And it’s my chance to shine. Set schedules unfortunately have little chance for change & we ended things today because of how busy we are. So busy that it wouldn’t give the relationship the proper nourishment it required. & I would rather let a good thing go before circumstances turn it into something terrible.

We know each other inside & out–but I think we should get to know ourselves a little more. I just moved to an awesome apartment & got my dream job. For a strange moment in my wanderlust daydream life I am putting deep roots down & I need to come to terms with that.

Instead of planning my next chance to fly away, I need to learn how to nest. It’s pretty scary, but I will figure it out.

Filip is in the opposite position. Having already long over-stayed his residency, he is ready to plan the big first adventure. Selfishly, a tiny part of me hopes that adventure will be somewhere near me, but I have learned that one should never live their life for someone else. Even if that person is very much your soul mate.

Fate will bring us back together again whenever it sees fit & I truly believe that.

So for now I am pressing pause on this beautiful love story. I am very much traveling to Prague in March so hopefully that week will temporarily resuscitate the relationship. But for now we will head to intermission.

Some scripts need to be re-altered, new plot lines must be drawn up & the main characters need to be re-worked. But I promise you, dear readers, the show will go on.


-JG 🙂