Make Room For Your Blessings
In 2009 Steve Harvey's book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment were released. I was determined not to be single and, convinced this book was my answer to understanding men and finding a relationship, I ran out and bought it. I finished the book in three days.
I don't remember much of what I read. These days I don't take dating advice from men who build platforms teaching women how to be better for or understand men rather than teaching men how to be better men. So, I doubt I'd read it again or recommend it. But one part of the book stayed with me over the past 13 years.
In one chapter, Steve told how, when he was younger, he needed a new car but couldn't afford one. Because he couldn't afford a new car, he didn't bother to get rid of his old car; it sat on concrete blocks in his driveway. Eventually, he removed the old car, making his driveway clear and ready for a new car to be parked there. Not long after having the old car removed, Steve was offered a paid opportunity and that allowed him to buy a new car. At the end of the story, he tells readers to make room for their blessings.
About two months ago, my cousin and I were out for an evening walk when a car bypassed us. One of the occupants shouted out the window. It sounded like the person shouted one of our names, they're similar, but I didn't think much of it. Men always yelled out to us on our walks. Plus, the odds of someone in that particular neighbourhood knowing either of us was slim to none. But this time was different. This time the car stopped. My cousin hadn't heard anyone yell out to us, so she didn't think anything when she saw that the car had stopped.
But as the car's passenger door opened, I said, "I think these people might know us". Two seconds later, out popped Brian (fake name). Brian was the last guy I was seeing before I moved from Bermuda to England back in 2016. Although I always knew of him, I only met him at work two weeks before I was due to fly out. It was a Sunday afternoon when he came into my job, made some small talk and eventually asked me if I was free after work. We spent the evening together at the beach.
I told myself to keep things light since I was moving to a different country in two weeks. Somewhere within that two weeks, I forgot that I was meant to be keeping things light. Instead, I had the idea that maybe we would fall in love, he'd eventually follow me to England, and we'd be together. That’s not even close to what happened. We stayed in contact for a few months after I left, but I was the one always to initiate contact. A few months after I moved, he came to England to visit his brother for a month. He didn’t even bother to attempt to see me. However, he got into a fight with his brother and called me when he needed somewhere to stay for a week. Yes, I let him come stay with me.
Back to the evening walk. He stepped out of the car, grinning ear to ear. I felt relieved because I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first saw the car door open. He approached us, we started talking, and he told me he’d moved to Manchester a few months prior. Thanks to him coming up as a suggested friend on Facebook, I knew he’d moved to Manchester; I pretended it was brand-new information. Whilst he ranks high on my “wtf was I thinking?” list, I never harboured any ill feelings towards him. So, when he asked to keep in touch, I didn’t hesitate to give him my number.
The night I gave him my number, he called me at least six times and sent just as many messages. That was pretty unusual behaviour for him. I told him I felt that was obsessive and unnecessary, not in those exact words, but my point was clear. He apologised and blamed it on his excitement to see me. I might’ve found it flattering before, but this time around, all I could think was, why the hell would you be that excited to see me?
One of the first things he asked me was if I was single. I started to type out, “yes, and I’m not looking”, but I deleted that. The truth was, I was about to be looking, but he didn’t have a chance. Instead, I wrote, “yes, but I’m only interested in friendship.” He said he understood and asked if we could get together one day. I told him I’d be pretty busy over the next two weeks, but my schedule would free up more towards the end of that month. The next time I saw my cousin, I told her she’d have to come along. She was fine with it as long as he didn’t bring a friend.