An Undesirable Gem in America

My people are an undesirable gem in America.

We’re special and priceless,

But worthless in America,

Unless we’re submissive to the rules of America,

No matter how unfair or unreasonable they are to us.

We have to shut up and be grateful.

Shut up and America will treat us right on their own time.

Shut up or America will tear gas us.

Shut up or America will shoot us without hesitation.

Shut up or America will suffocate us,

So that we can’t breathe.

All we have to do is shut up,

Then we’ll be worthy of America’s conditional love.

After all, America is known as the land of the free,

Yet my people have never seen freedom in America.

We have only seen enslavement, torture, persecution and abuse,

That never ends because of the color of our black skin.

Police officers must be happy they can choose when to be blue.

Police officers can be free whenever.

That form of freedom must be nice.

Don’t we have a right to fight for freedom?

Don’t we have a right to want more?

Don’t we have a right to want a better future?

Don’t we have a right to matter?

No, that’s too much in America.

We’re asking for too much in America.

America would like it better if we didn’t ask at all.

Is that too much to ask?

America wonders.

Meanwhile, America’s other gem can do whatever they want,

Thanks to the color of their white skin.

They don’t have to worry about basic human rights.

They don’t have to worry about freedom.

They don’t have to worry about mattering.

America loves them.

They can protest little inconveniences like wearing a mask.

They can even storm and terrorize the Capitol Building,

Simply because an election did not go their way.

No repercussions will come their way.

America will think about them.

America will see the hurt that they’re going through.

America will be patient with them.

America will be kind to them.

America will listen.

America will hope to alleviate the pain and stop the crying,

Because they matter.

I wish for my people to matter to America.

I wish America could see my people’s priceless worth.

I wish my people can have the privileges of the other gem.

I pray my people never forget we are priceless and special.

We are black and proud,

We are worthy of freedom and love in this country.

We have to remember and know our worth and beauty,

Despite being an undesirable gem in America.

Letting You Go

I thought that it would be impossible to let you go.

It’s a miracle that I was able to do so.

You always had me itching and wanting your attention and love.

You were medicine for me.

It’s a fact,

I can’t lie about that.

You were a drug that gave me a special kind of high,

Yet you were also a drug that was detrimental to my mind, body and soul.

You were a goddess in my eyes.

I worshipped you without hesitation.

I believed in you with determination,

When I should’ve known that you were a false idol.

I never had a chance,

I was lost in your trance.

I was hypnotized by your physical beauty.

I fantasized about you,

When I knew that I should’ve kept my distance.

But you would not allow it.

You depended on me.

You told me I was a comfort for you.

You told me I was reassurance for you.

You told me I was an angel to you.

You told me I was the sweetest and kindest to you.

You told me I was somebody that you could count on.

You told me I was so much for you,

Yet you were so little for me.

You were never going to let me go.

You intended to keep me as your prisoner,

But I longed for freedom.

It was tiring and exhausting to be with you.

I had to give you so much,

And you were content in giving me so little.

That was never going to change.

You envisioned a future with me.

You had these big plans and dreams for us,

But they were not meant to be.

Disappointments, heartache and hurt was our future.

You tried to tell me that things would get better between us.

You tried to tell me that you were going to change.

At that point,

I knew that they were just mere words.

I could finally tell.

You did not mean any of those words you spoke to me.

They were just lies to keep me under your spell.

I had a chance at love with you,

But I knew that it was not going to be real love.

It would have been an illusion with you.

I even had this delusion that you loved me in your own way.

Maybe I just needed to take a chance with you

And hope you would change in time.

Sadly, I could not trust in chance and hope.

I had to trust the evidence.

I had to let you go.

Dream Girls: Part One

I’m in a strange place right now.

I’m laying down, and I can’t move.

I’m not scared, but I long for answers.

I’m in a place of hurt and pain,

Yet my surroundings are the exact opposite.

I look around, and I’m surrounded by black sand.

I look up and the sky is red with pink clouds,

And the sun looks like a big, white light bulb.

It’s bright and intense.

I can hear waves crashing rocks and the black sand.

I naturally assume that I’m on a beach.

 

My vision starts to blur, and I can’t hear the waves anymore.

I can only hear the sound of my heart beat.

Beating faster and faster.

The pain in my chest has intensified,

My throat is swelling up,

Breathing is a struggle,

Death is coming soon.

I know it, but I’m not afraid.

I’m relieved.

Dying on a strange, yet beautiful beach doesn’t sound too bad.

It’s a luxury that not a lot of people have.

Some die in the darkest of places,

Others just die normally in regular places.

We just never know how death will take us.

 

As I have accepted my fate, a woman appears above me.

She kneels down to my level,

And gently touches my face.

There’s something sweet and familiar about her gentle touch.

I wish I could see her clearly.

Her face gets closer to my face.

Our eyes meet, and I think I know who she is.

But I’m not sure.

Our lips are inches away from each other,

She decides to seal them with a kiss.

 

I immediately remember who she is.

She’s the one that got away.

She’s the one that I miss every single day.

She’s the one that had lips like candy.

There’s no one like her.

No one that will ever be like her.

 

After our shared kiss, she gets back up.

She grabs my feet and drags me to the ocean.

I don’t resist.

Once she has me in the ocean, she disappears.

I search for her, but she’s long gone.

The black-sanded beach is nowhere to be found either.

 

I find myself just surrounded by the purple ocean.

I chuckle as I fully submerge myself into the purple ocean.

As I am slowly drowning,

I welcome the calmness of the purple ocean.

I listen to the quietness of the purple ocean.

I can no longer feel the intensity of the sun,

The purple ocean is all I feel now.

The sun fades away from my memory,

Everything turns black.

 

I wake up from a strange dream,

I can’t help but remember.

My mind doesn’t think about the sweet purple ocean,

It doesn’t think about the pure black-sanded beach,

It doesn’t think about the majestic red sky,

Or even the intense white sun,

It only thinks about her.

For she is now a dream girl.

 

This is the end of part one of the Dream Girls series. Be sure to like, share and comment your thoughts on this poem!

I will be posting and sharing part two of “Dream Girls” on Sunday!

 

 

 

 

 

Imagine Her Being a Butterfly

It’s hard to imagine a black woman being a butterfly in this world.
Can you imagine that?
I hope that some of you can, but I struggle to imagine it.


I think about a black woman who protested and risked her life every single day for the justice of a black man.
Unfortunately, that black woman would later be sexually assaulted and murdered by a black man.
Can you imagine that?


Then, I think about a black woman who was sleeping in the privacy and safety of her own home.
Her own home would be mistakenly invaded by the police.
She would then be brutally murdered by the police.
Can you imagine that?


I think about how a black woman’s protection is conditional.
For some black men, a black woman has to meet certain criteria points in order to have their protection and love.
At the same time, she must still be strong.
Never weak, always strong.
A black woman must listen and submit themselves to these black men in order to have some of their protection.
Can you imagine that?

I think about these things and wonder if a black woman can truly be a butterfly.
Can she fly, flutter and be free?
Or will she always be a caterpillar trapped in a unbreakable cocoon?
I would love to see a black woman be a butterfly.
It would be beautiful and glorious, but I struggle to imagine it.


She always has to meet certain standards.
She’s always expected to stand, fight, protest, protect and march.
She’s always getting attacked for doing too little or too much.
I often wonder does she even have the time and opportunity to be a butterfly?
I’m genuinely asking because I have no idea.


Can you be positive about the future of a black woman?
Can you see a black woman be free and exceed expectations?
Can you see her fly high in the sky?
Can you imagine a black woman being a butterfly?

Food For The Dog

A couple named Brian and Lauren are driving home with a car full of groceries.

As they’re driving home, Lauren notices up ahead something unsettling.

It’s at the side of the road.

She tells Brian to pull over.

He listens to her and pulls over.

When they stop completely, he sees what Lauren sees.

 

In front of them, a man is lying on the ground curled up like a ball.

The man is starving and struggling to stay alive.

Next to him, he has a cardboard sign that says “Anything will help.”

There’s also a malnourished dog sitting next to the man.

Lauren notices that the dog is wearing a tag.

She squints to look at the tag, and it reads Max.

 

Lauren looks at Brian and pleads that they help him.

He’s starving and struggling to stay alive.

He needs their help Lauren says.

They have an obligation to help him.

His life is precious and matters to them.

Brian agrees and wonders what they can give him.

Lauren says that two bags of dog food should be enough.

 

Lauren gets out the car with the dog food and places it next to Max.

She tears open both bags of dog food.

Max quickly comes over and starts devouring the food.

For a second, Lauren is happy that she’s able to feed Max.

Then, she realizes that it’s not right with what Max is going through.

Max is abandoned and in harsh conditions.

Max deserves to have a proper owner.

Max deserves a better life than this.

 

Lauren runs back to the car, and Brian smiles at her.

He tells her that they did a good thing for that dog.

Lauren says she knows, but she still feels bad for Max.

Brian understands and assures her that the food should help.

 

Brian starts the car.

They drive away with their car full of groceries.

They feel good for what they did for Max.

They’re thankful that they have plenty of food.

Food for themselves, their kids and their dogs.

For they were able to provide food for the dog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Father at His Weakest

A man finds out that his father died in his sleep.

He’s surrounded by his wife and children when he discovers the terrible news.

He’s devastated, and he doesn’t know how to contain himself.

How can his father be gone so suddenly?

How can he imagine a life without his father?

Without thinking, he cries.

His wife quickly comes over and tries to comfort him.

He welcomes her embrace, and he still continues to cry.

His daughters start crying as well.

It hurts them to see their father in pain.

He assures them that he’ll be alright, and he still continues to cry.

His sons didn’t know what to do.

They had never seen their father be so emotional and vulnerable.

They had never seen their father have a moment of weakness.

They wondered what did it mean as their father continues to cry.

 

Those boys would later realize that their father was simply being a man.

A man that had lost a father.

A man that needed to cry and mourn for his father.

A man that needed the comfort of his wife and children.

A man that wasn’t afraid to be weak in front of his family.

A man that has integrity, dignity, honor and love in his heart.

A man that always wants to teach his sons the true meaning of strength and courage can come in times of weakness.

Their father was a man at his weakest.

But most importantly, he was a father at his weakest.

 

This poem is dedicated to my father Shawn McNeil. Thank you for never being afraid to cry, being emotional and being vulnerable. Thank you for always teaching me how to be a true man. I love you so much, dad! Happy Father’s day to you and all the good fathers in this world.

 

 

Imagine Her Being a Butterfly

It’s hard to imagine a black woman being a butterfly in this world.

Can you imagine that?

I hope that some of you can, but I struggle to imagine it.

I think about a black woman who protested and risked her life every single day for the justice of a black man.

Unfortunately, that black woman would later be sexually assaulted and murdered by a black man.

Can you imagine that?

Then, I think about a black woman who was sleeping in the privacy and safety of her own home.

Her own home would be mistakenly invaded by the police.

She would then be brutally murdered by the police.

Can you imagine that?

I think about how a black woman’s protection is conditional.

For some black men, a black woman has to meet certain criteria points in order to have their protection and love.

At the same time, she must still be strong.

Never weak, always strong.

A black woman must listen and submit themselves to these black men in order to have some of their protection.

Can you imagine that?

 

I think about these things and wonder if a black woman can truly be a butterfly.

Can she fly, flutter and be free?

Or will she always be a caterpillar trapped in a unbreakable cocoon?

I would love to see a black woman be a butterfly.

It would be beautiful and glorious, but I struggle to imagine it.

She always has to meet certain standards.

She’s always expected to stand, fight, protest, protect and march.

She’s always getting attacked for doing too little or too much.

I often wonder does she even have the time and opportunity to be a butterfly?

I’m genuinely asking because I have no idea.

Can you be positive about the future of a black woman?

Can you see a black woman be free and exceed expectations?

Can you see her fly high in the sky?

Can you imagine a black woman being a butterfly?

 

 

We Are Always Wrong

Throughout history, we have always been wrong in their eyes.

In times of slavery, we were wrong.

In times of Reconstruction, we were wrong.

In times of segregation, we were wrong.

In times of the Civil Rights Movement, we were wrong.

In times of marching, we were wrong.

In times of protesting, we were wrong.

In times of kneeling, we were wrong.

 

When will we ever be right in their eyes?

When will we ever get their support?

When will our anger, frustrations, disappointments and sadness be recognized in their eyes?

I fear we will never know.

I fear that we can never be right in their eyes.

 

So what should we do?

How can we please them with our actions?

How can we make them comfortable with our marching and protesting?

Honestly, there is no way to appease them.

They will always think we are wrong, but it honestly doesn’t matter what they think.

They have no right to tell us how to think or feel for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to march and protest for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to grieve for our people.

They have no right to tell us how to fight for our people.

They don’t own us anymore.

We are not their slaves anymore.

 

Too many black lives have been lost to racism and injustice in America.

Real change is necessary for our people.

Our anger and mourning are justified, don’t let them tell you otherwise.

Justice for our people must come soon.

I’m tired of them telling us to wait, to calm down and to be patient.

That time has long passed.

White Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Island Americans, Italian Americans, Irish Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans, we need your support against them.

Help us fight them and show them that black lives matter.

 

Who am I talking about?

Who are the “they” that I am talking about?

They are the ones with all the power in this country.

They are the ones that have evil and hatred in their hearts.

They are the ones that allow racism and discrimination to run this country.

They are the ones that turn a blind eye to injustice against people of color.

They are the ones that always change the subject when it comes to black lives and police brutality.

They are the ones that quickly tell us that all lives matter.

They are the ones that tell us to let things go.

They are the ones that tell us that they see no color.

They are the ones that tell us to shut up.

They are the ones that tell us that things are better for us now, and we should be grateful.

They are the ones that tell us that we’re wrong in how we peacefully protest.

They are the ones that tell us that we are always wrong.

 

 

 

 

 

The Old Man at the Bus Stop

I wait patiently for my bus at an abandoned mall.

I remember my times at this abandoned yet familiar mall.

I remember the sacred moments I had with family, friends and even a girl.

I especially think about the girl and the spot we shared together.

I miss the spot.

I miss the girl.

I think about those two things too much sometimes,

When I’m at the bus stop.

I long to forget about the paradise I once had in my life.

 

A few drops of rain fall from a gray sky.

It adds a little more sadness into my heart.

I wonder why there can’t be more sunshine in the sky or even in my soul?

I miss the sunshine that I once had in life.

I wish for it, but it’s long gone.

It’s somewhere far away, while I’m in a place of darkness.

A place I fear that I will never escape.

Is escape possible?

As usual, I don’t have an answer.

God really does know how to create a depressing situation.

Enters the old man.

 

I look at the old man, and he seems sad and depressed.

He is a white man with a gray beard.

Then, I see a part of his hat that read “Vietnam” on it.

He’s a veteran, I naturally assume.

I start to feel bad for him

Because it seems like he had suppressed one too many things

That I could never imagine.

That weight of suppression has him looking down at not only the world but also himself.

He is lost and abandoned.

 

The old man looks at me, says hi and gives me his best smile.

I did the same thing as well.

I want to keep my distance and not talk anymore.

Nothing against him, but I’m just comfortable with silence and my own thoughts.

There’s just comfort in being alone.

People just complicate your state of mind.

However, he wants to talk some more with me.

I want to politely tell him that I don’t want to have a conversation

But then I stop myself.

I realize that maybe we both really need this conversation.

Maybe our conversation would have a purpose.

Maybe meeting each other was crafted by God.

Maybe I’m stretching, but I need to find out for myself.

 

Five minutes into our conversation, we’re sharing laughter and smiles.

We’re sharing our emotions and feelings.

We’re sharing anything we can.

I never expected to share so much to him.

I share so many secrets and disappointments

How could I admit and open up so much to a stranger,

When I struggle with being honest with others and myself?

 

He looks at me and asks me when was the last time I cried.

I tell him with ease that it’s been a long time.

Then he tells me to not be afraid to do so.

He was a soldier,

He admits that there were times that he had to cry.

Crying really helped him let go.

 

He pleads for me to cry when I get the opportunity.

Before I can respond, my bus arrives.

I look at him and promise that I will try.

He nods his head, smiles and thanks me for having a conversation with him.

I tell him that it was an honor.

I say goodbye to him and get on the bus.

The bus rides away from the abandoned mall.

And I leave the old man at the bus stop.

 

This poem is dedicated to a veteran that I had a conversation with at a bus stop two years ago. It was one of the most realest conversations I ever had with someone, and I’m so thankful and blessed for that conversation.

Happy Memorial Day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Strangest Compliment: Episode Two

In this episode, I received not one, but two strange compliments from a girl that I consider a friend. The first compliment wasn’t weird or crazy, but it was an unexpected compliment that made me feel some type of way. It was a compliment that she didn’t give to her boyfriend at the time, but she wasn’t afraid to give me this compliment. I didn’t necessarily know how to respond to the compliment, but I think that I gave a reasonable response. The other compliment was more of a realization of where I stand as her friend. It’s a compliment that I think a lot of guys get, but they don’t know nothing about it. Let me tell you all about it.

Last summer, I was hanging out with my friend Rosa at Taco Bell on a Saturday afternoon. It had been a while since I hung out with Rosa, and it was nice to have an opportunity to catch up with her. At Taco Bell, we both got Doritos Locos Tacos and some drinks. We’re sitting down, taking bites of our tacos and we start to realize that there’s something missing in our tacos. We both smiled and realized that we needed some hot sauces on our tacos. So, I got up and went to get a handful of different sauces for our tacos. I brought the sauces back to our table, and we went crazy and drenched our tacos with hot sauces. Then, we started eating our tacos with pure satisfaction.

After we were done eating, we started talking, sharing a few laughs and catching up. I ended up telling her about this girl that I had been on one date with and how there was something strange about her. Rosa was excited and ready for me to spill the tea. So, I explained that on my first date with this girl, she was talking about being exclusive.

Rosa was surprised to hear this and said, “Wait a minute, she asked if you wanted to be exclusive on the first date? That’s interesting, but I know that must’ve freaked you out.”

Rosa knows me and knows that I don’t believe in putting all your eggs in one basket. Meaning, I don’t believe in hopelessly chasing after ONE girl and putting all your time and energy into that ONE girl, even after one date. I think that it takes time and 5-7 dates to determine if you want to be exclusive with that person. Also, I think it’s okay to be talking to other girls, while you’re dating someone because I think it’s important to have options.

Going back to the story, I replied, “Yeah, it kind of caught me off guard. It surprised me. I guess she was really feeling me on that date.”

“Wow, and what was your response?”

“Well, I said alright and told her that I wouldn’t be talking to other girls anymore. It would be just her.”

“Really? Why would you say that? Aren’t you talking to three other girls?”

“I was, but not anymore. I gave my word that I would be exclusive to her, and I’m keeping it. I cut them other girls out, and I’m just talking to her. I mean, I guess I kinda like her and maybe there’s something there.”

Rosa smiled and said, “That’s what’s up. I hope things work out.”

I shook my head and said, “Yeah, I just have bad feeling about just being with her. I don’t know, I feel like I’m gonna be disappointed at the end of it all.”

Rosa groaned and replied, “Isaiah, you are such a pessimist when it comes to girls. I just don’t understand it.”

I explained, “I just don’t trust y’all. It’s just that y’all be playing too many games.”

Rosa responded, “Says the guy that talks to multiple girls and has a really hard time committing to one girl.”

I chuckled and said, “First of all, I don’t have an issue committing to one girl. I believe in pursuing the right girl rather than aimlessly chasing after some girl like a hopeless romantic. By the way, why do girls find hopeless romantics attractive?”

She responded, “Because there’s just something sweet about a guy obsessing over you and thinking about you and only you. He goes out of his way to win your heart and treasures everything about you. It’s so romantic.”

I replied, “But that kind of sounds forced and tiring for the guy though. Plus, that level of consistency is unrealistic, and how do you know it’s authentic? What if a guy’s just being this way to catch you like a fish. He has the right bait by being a hopeless romantic, and he ends up deceiving and catching you and you’re disappointed with the results?”

“Isaiah, you’re reaching, that’s not how it is.

“I’m just saying that it sounds like hopeless romantics force love and try to control it, but that’s not how love works. Love is this beautiful, uncontrollable, natural force. It’s patient and kind, and it’s something that is shared and mutual between two people, and it’s not so one-sided.”

Rosa was impressed with my thoughts on love, but she still pointed out that I was still the guy that talked to multiple girls. I sighed and said, “Oh my goodness, y’all are just as bad if not worse. Y’all be talking to other guys too, y’all are just really slick about it.”

Rosa shook her head and replies, “Maybe before we meet a guy, but once we start dating a guy, we’re invested in him.”

I responded, “I definitely believe that, but y’all still have guys around in case things don’t work out. Y’all just have them disguised as your ‘guy’ friends.”

Rosa rolled her eyes at me because she knew where I was heading. She knew that I was about to bring up an interesting rule that I apply to girls all the time. This rule could also be attributed to guys, but in most cases it’s attributed to girls. It’s called the 20% rule. This rule implies that at least 20% of a girl’s friends that are guys are attracted and interested in being with her. For instance, if a girl has 20 straight guy friends, then at least four or five them are interested in being with her.

Rosa couldn’t necessarily say anything because this rule is accurate with her. In our friend group, it was me, her, Jake, Paul, Stanley and Bryce. Five straight guys total that she was friends with. Three of them (Bryce, Paul and Stanley) were trying to get with her. That’s way above the 20% mark with it being 60% of the guys she’s friends with were trying to get with her. Jake and I knew this, and Rosa eventually and slowly found out about this. She claimed that she was oblivious to this, but I didn’t necessarily believe that. I do think that some girls are oblivious to guys liking them, but for the most part girls know when guys are interested in them. Rosa is a very smart, attractive, flirtatious girl, and she always knows when guys are trying to get with her. Rosa likes receiving attention from guys, so it was hard for me to believe that she was clueless about the whole situation between Bryce, Paul and Stanley, but that’s another story.

Going back to this story, Rosa asked me then if I think it’s wrong for a girl to have “guy” friends. I quickly replied that it’s not wrong at all. I do believe that a guy and a girl can have a genuine friendship with one another as long as boundaries are created and set. At the same time, I do believe that girls keep certain guys around in case things don’t work out with their significant other because you never know. I think girls have backup options because I don’t think girls want to completely start over, and it’s more convenient for them to have backups.

Rosa understood where I was coming from, but then she had another question. She asked, “So, do you think that the girl you’re dating now has backup options?”

I replied, “Yeah, she probably does. I just really don’t care too much about it. I’m aware of it, but I’m not gonna stress about it because it’s not necessary. I’m mostly just thinking about her. I promised to be exclusive to her after one date, and that’s what I’m gonna do. I gonna be as real and as honest as I can be, and we’ll see where it goes.”

Rosa liked my response and assured me that things would definitely work out with us. They did not, but that’s another story. Let’s just say that I will never again put all my eggs in one basket.

Alright, let’s get to the juicy part of this story. I ended up asking Rosa how things were with her boyfriend Dexter. Rosa quickly told me that Dexter wasn’t her boyfriend. I was confused, and Rosa told me that he doesn’t necessarily believe in titles. It sounded like they were in some kind of a situationship. This surprised me because she is the type of girl that wants to claimed, and it just sounded like she was settling for less.

I asked her if she was okay with that. She replied, “Yeah, it’s honestly not a big deal for me. We’re definitely in a good place, and he’s just so romantic and sweet with me. We have amazing conversations and our text messages are funny and ridiculous. He’s just so obsessed over me, and he’s such a hopeless romantic, I love it.”

I responded that’s what’s up. As she was talking about him more in detail, it sounded like they were “single but together.” I asked Rosa how long have they been together, and she told me eight months. I was shocked. Then, I said, “Oh that’s what’s up! Look at y’all going all strong and everything, that’s awesome! Being all in love and everything and—

Rosa interrupted, “Oh, we’re not in love. We’ve never said ‘I love you’ to each other.”

This was quite strange to me because Dexter and Rosa had been together for eight months, and they never said “I love you” to each other. I asked Rosa how come they haven’t, and she just told me that it’s not a big deal to them. They just haven’t felt it for each other.

Rosa and I kept going back and forth about them not saying “I love you” to each other because it’s just super weird and confusing to me. How could you not love someone after being with them for eight months?

I started joking and saying that they’re in “luh” rather than in love. I explained that it’s a term that my best friend Obi created. It means that you have a little bit of love for a person, but you’re afraid to be fully in love with a person. You’re simply in “luh.”

Then, I said, “You and ole boy are in luh. You can’t deny the luh that you two have for each other. Your luh is real.”

She laughed and told me to shut up. I chuckled and continued, “Dexter has so much luh for you, and you’re playing games. You luh that boy, and he luh you. It’s that simple when it comes to luh.”

We both started laughing, and she said, “Oh my goodness, I can’t with you. You sound so ridiculous. But nah, I’ll say it when I mean it. I don’t want to say it if I don’t mean it, you know? Plus, I don’t want to look like a fool. When I say it, I mean it, especially with a guy.”

I nodded my head in agreement and said, “Yeah, I agree and understand. You should definitely say it when you mean it. At the same time, you shouldn’t be afraid to love somebody.”

Then, Rosa looked at me in my eyes and whispered, “I mean…I love you.”

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting that strange compliment from Rosa. It took me by surprise because it came from a place of vulnerability, and it meant something more than just a friend. For a second, I didn’t know what to say, but I knew I had to say something fast. So, I smiled and responded, “Aww thank you.”

After I said this, I could tell that my response kind of upset her a little. So, I added, “I’m just kidding, I luh you too, girl.”

My comment put a smile on Rosa’s face, and she just responded, “Isaiah, you’re something else, you’re so weird and extra.”

We both laughed, and I said, “Yeah, I am a little crazy and weird every now and then. And I most definitely extra, I can’t even front. Also, I’m not ashamed of it thank you very much.”

We continued talking some more, and we eventually ended up leaving Taco Bell. I drove her home, and we said our goodbyes. As I was driving home, I couldn’t stop thinking about how Rosa told me that she loves me. What does that even mean? Then, I slowly realized that she does in a sense see me as a backup option for her. I didn’t know how to feel about being Rosa’s backup option, when I just saw her as a friend and nothing more. It’s honestly a strange, weird compliment to be someone’s backup.

It’s kind of nice to be someone’s backup, but I wonder if Rosa and I could still be friends. Can I really be friends with someone that has strong feelings for me? I have an answer to this question, but that’s another story. I just can’t believe the two strange compliments that I received from my friend Rosa

This is the end of “The Strangest Compliment: Episode Two.”

Based on this story, I have some interesting questions that I would love to be answered. These questions will help me prove something to a friend, so if y’all could answer one or more these questions whether you read the story or not, I would really appreciate it. You can comment a simple “yes” or “no” for all these questions or go more in depth. Here are the questions:

  1. Are hopeless romantics authentic?
  2. Should you be exclusive to one person after one date?
  3. Is it okay for a guy to talk to multiple girls while dating someone?
  4. Is it okay for a girl to have multiple guy friends?
  5. Is 6-10 months too long for you to say “I love you” to someone that you’ve been in a relationship with?
  6. Can a man and a woman have a genuine, close friendship without it leading into something more?

Here are my answers:

  1. No
  2. No
  3. Yes because you never know, and you have to keep your options open. Also, it’s okay for a girl to do this as well. I think it takes 5-7 dates to determine exclusivity with a person because I believe in “growing in love” with a person rather than “falling in love” with a person. Growing in love with a person to me is about using your mind, heart and soul. Falling in love is only about using your heart. Love is patient and kind, and to me falling in love is the opposite of that. It’s abrupt, sudden and emotional. There’s nothing stable about it, and it’s not a good foundation to build love with somebody. Again, this is my opinion. In addition, it’s important to be mindful because you don’t know a person, and it’s okay to keep your options opened for someone that is better fit for you to grow in love with. If you meet the 5-7 date requirements with someone, then I think that’s when you should stop talking to multiple people and start building and being exclusive to that person.
  4. Yes, but I think it’s important to be aware of girl’s friends. Same way with a guy’s “girl” friends as well.
  5. Yes
  6. No

Again, if you all can answer one or more of these questions with a simple “yes” or “no” and/or go more in depth with your questions, I would really appreciate it. Also, if y’all want to dispute/argue with any of my answers, I will welcome it. I love arguing.