Always and Forever
Twenty years ago, a 17-year old boy sauntered into Latin Quarters, a New York City night-club that was hosting a male dancers evening that rivaled that of a Las Vegas extravaganza – or so it seemed to the young man. Shortly after checking his coat, he made his way to the bar where a gentleman bought him a drink and proceeded to follow him around as though the drink had a get-young-booty-free card attached to it. Feeling pressured and virtually cornered by the aggressive man, the teenager retreated to the bathroom. After taking a quick leak, he stood in front of the sink and mirrors that lined the restroom and began washing his face, trying to freshen his mood and decide his next course of action. After splashing water on his face, the youngster looked up into the mirror, the droplets of water glistening off his taut face. “You look very sexy when you’re wet,” sang a voice from behind him. Blushing he turned to see a chocolate brotha in his early twenties holding a napkin out to him and offering a warm, seductive and comforting smile. After wiping his face dry the young man thanked the stranger who quickly introduced himself and offered to have the swooning teen join him and his friends at their table while they enjoyed the show. That beautiful dark stranger became the teen’s friend and eventually his partner for over four years. Today, after 20 years, the two are inseparable friends who have undergone many life changes, their relationship evolving into an eternal force that proves love changes forms, but forever sustains itself and those in its path. I was that teen and the gallant dark stranger who saved me from myself that night was J’Moo. Today is J’Moo’s birthday. From that 17-year old boy who was too naïve to know how to handle that predator that fateful night, to the soon-to-be 37-year old man who treasures your self-less friendship – Happy Birthday!
Six Goals for 2006
It’s officially 2006 and time for me to make some lasting resolutions; nothing too difficult that I can’t accomplish, but certainly some pointers to keep me on track for the year. Here are a few of my own and I am curious to hear some of my blogger family’s goals.
Goal #1: A healthier me: This includes eating healthier, working out at least 4 times a week and drinking more water. Also, taking care of my mental and emotional health by accepting what is, what will never be, and what needs to be fought for.
Goal #2: Write: Thank all of you who throughout the years have encouraged me to pursue my number one passion – writing. This year I vow to dedicate more time to putting together my first novel and shopping it here in NY. Please keep your fingers crossed and a knee to the ground for me. With God’s help and the encouragement of my blog family, this dream will somehow become a reality. Periodically this year I will share excerpts from whatever current masterpiece I’m working on and will ask for your honest opinion – be real with me. Always.
Goal #3: Enjoy my family and friends: After losing several friends in 2005 the issue of my own mortality is at the forefront of my daily life. Tomorrow is not promised and I’d like to live as though that statement is not a cliché, but a reality. True friends and close family will not be here forever. I vow to show them how much I care and be present in their lives. I will give of myself honestly and freely this year without expecting anything in return.
Goal #4: Remember the dead. Coming-out so early in life, I’ve lost so many interesting and instrumental people who lost their battles with AIDS, cancer and a host of other diseases. I have made it okay for me to have a moment of reflection for them periodically. A time to remember the many life-saving lessons they taught me, the jokes that made me laugh and the times they offered their shoulders for me to cry on. I promise to have them live on inside my heart – a place that keeps them young and alive forever.
Goal #5: Bury the hatchet: Letting go of pain sometimes feels impossible to do. When you’re wronged, betrayed, hurt and battered it’s almost instinctual to want to retaliate. In 2006 I free myself of all vindictive behavior. The past will remain in the past. Life will take care of all wrongs – I believe and accept that truth. I wish the best to all who have knowingly and willfully hurt me. In turn, now released from the bondage of revenge, I am free to love and feel the love of those around me.
Goal #6: Stand: I won’t always know the answers. I won’t always make the right choices. I won’t always say the right thing. It is during these times of confusion, bewilderment and haze that I offer myself to divine intervention. I agree to stand. I submit to wait until Your will is done. I understand that it may not be what I want, but it will most certainly be what I need.
Sure, there’s a ski weekend planned in March, but did you know we’re planning a spontaneous get-away to La Isla Del Encanto in February? That’s right, I will be planning a short getaway weekend to bask in the sun on the beaches of Puerto Rico, while everyone on the east coast shivers and grits their teeth. No date has been set, but I’m predicting a mid-February weekend with a Friday departure and Monday return. Anyone who wants to sip pina coladas with Cocoa for a spell, please post your interest in the Comments area at the end of this post. Presently, flights are a bargain from $160. round trip and hotel accommodations can be shared to make them cheap as well.
Name your top goal for 2006 and how you will monitor its progress.
Keep passin’ the open windows…