Courtship Needs To Make A Comeback

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Flowers, candy, cards and love notes have been replaced with text messages, DMs on Twitter, likes on IG  and Facetime chats.  I am in love with technology, but I am not in love with the fact that it is slowly killing courtship.  Most men these days only buy flowers on hallmark holidays and only because it is “expected.”  I must thank my girl Shameika of the MoFo Chronicles blog for bring us today’s topic.  Here’s what she posted on FB earlier today:

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I hope courtship isn’t gone forever, it really needs to make a comeback in a major way.  I’m just thankful that the mister understands the importance of romance and still holds my hand in public.  I pity those who don’t know what that is like.  I’d love to hear from the guys.  Do you all still court?  Do like buying your lady “just because” gifts and sending her flowers?  So do you think being romantic is appreciated in this age of technology first, personal interaction second?  Would love to hear thoughts.

Love is Truth

Last night I went to the India.Arie show in Charlotte.  It was such an amazing experience.  I don’t have words for the journey her music took me on last night, but I must say, the first thing I wanted to do was call my love and tell him I was thinking about him as soon as the show was over.  I love how music can amplify what you already feel.  This is one of my favorite India.Arie tunes and it pretty much sums up my love life and emotional state, particularly this line:

“…and if I am a reflection of him, then I must be fly cause his light it shines so bright…”

Happy Wednesday!

I’m Not Sorry

Yeah, yeah, yeah…I know I haven’t posted since June.  However, in my defense, I have been in the lab working on projects, traveling, launching campaigns, starting new ventures and more.  I haven’t neglected the blog on purpose—promise.

Lately, I’ve been in the process of distancing myself from all things negative (vibes, people,  and thoughts) because you become that which you surround yourself. I’m happy, and I want to keep it that way.  I am so blessed and highly favored, and I owe it to myself and those in my circle to celebrate that.  There is nothing wrong with allowing your light to shine brightly, especially if that light can help lead someone else to where they need to go.  God has given me talents that He expects me to use to make the world better and for the upliftment of His Kingdom.  My life is supposed to shine brightly because of the light of Christ that shines through from within.

There are those who will not thank you for your work.  There are those who will not appreciate your efforts.  There are those who will try to tear down what you have worked hard to build.  And that’s okay.  You can’t get caught up.  I had a realization recently about myself, I need to stop being apologetic for being me.  I’m unique, quirky, but I’m also fiercely loyal to the people in my life.  I stand by the motto, no matter what happens, I refuse to treat people how they treat me.  I will always try to take the high road, smile in the face of adversity, laugh at the randomness of my life whenever possible, and continue to not take myself too seriously.

I’m in a great place emotionally right now.  Love, Laughter and Light prevails.  God told me, don’t be sorry about being happy, being fabulous and yes, even being in the spotlight as long as I put Him first…Point taken Lord.

Side note, it’s October, which means it’s been two years since me and mister have been together as an official couple. Feels good.  Looking forward to more good times with the man who is not only my love but one of my best friends ever.  Enjoy my Friday musical collection, fitting don’t you think?

Why It Works…

Over and over again, one of my endless  cyber stalkers  casual acquaintances will ask how am I making my relationship “work”  with having us four jobs (you could argue six, but for the sake of argument we’ll keep it at four) and a good two-hour plane ride between me and the mister.  I’m always confused by this line of questioning because, for me, the answer is a no brainer–we want to make it work, so it does.

People tend to complicate matters that aren’t all that complicated.  When you love and care about someone, you make it work–especially when you are both adults who are comfortable in their own skins.  When communication (real communication, not smoke signals), honesty, and genuine trust is at the forefront, the pieces of the relationship puzzle always come together rather effortlessly…at least they do for us.

Feels good to be with someone who understands that love isn’t complicated, it’s the situations that people allow themselves to be placed in that are.  My relationship has a zero drama clause built-in, and we LOVE it that way.  I’m so thankful for my current situation.  I couldn’t ask for a better friend and partner.  Remember y’all, it’s about the little things, the small moments.  Make each day count. Live. Love. Laugh.

Until next time…

 

 

Date Weekend for A Cause!

Hello lovely people!  Guess what?  I’m back blogging ( I know, I know, I claim that I’m going to start posting on a regular basis all the time, but I promise, this time is different, lol)…I digress.

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Photography: C. Holliday, MUA: Greg Lawrence, Styling: Kyle Murray

Today’s post is dedicated to my awesome organization, The Red Pump Project and our annual “Rock The Red Pump” Campaign.  March 10th is National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, and we at Red Pump always commemorate this day; after all, this is the core of what we do–raise awareness about the impact of HIV/AIDS on women and girls. We promote HIV prevention through education, and open dialogue about the issues that surround sexual and reproductive health.

So last month, the mister and I decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day a bit differently.  Instead of making it all about us, we decided to volunteer our resources to travel to DC and do the very first Red Pump DC photo shoot, organized by my lovely partner in crime, Red Pump Coordinator Brittani Menina.  I absolutely love the pics he captured of me and the girls…and since I love his work, I wanted to use his pic as my official #RockTheRedPump photo to commemorate the day.

I’m blessed to be involved with a man who supports and gives back, by any means necessary and is always willing to help.  This was one of the best date weekends ever!  Not only did I get the chance to spend quality time with my hun, but I was able to contribute to a cause I believe in.  What more could you ask for!

I’m Rock My Red Pumps Proudly, today and everyday.

Closing the Gap (Guest Post)

I’m not even going to apologize for my lack of posting…I’ve been so bad with updating (maybe that’s what happens when you are so focused on work, you forget to post about the fun stuff, lol.  Don’t judge me!).  Fortunately, Lilly Star, a dating and relationship blogger, is our guest blogger for the day.  Thank goodness for Lilly, or else y’all would still be waiting on a post from me.  Hope you enjoy.  Lilly is going to give us a few tips on keeping and maintaining a healthy long-distance relationship (Lawd knows I need to take notes, generally speaking my “specialness” doesn’t translate well via text and chat :::sorry Babe, I’m trying to do better:::).  As usual, comments are welcomed and appreciated!

Closing the Gap

Three Hints on How to Make Your Long Distance Relationship Work

Sometimes you fall in love with the exact right person at the exact wrong time. I have a friend who had been keeping himself out of the dating game for years. He’s an attractive, smart and funny guy but when it came time to make a decision on women he always opted to keep his distance. Then, as though struck by cupid’s arrow he meets a girl four days before she moves halfway across the country. Something about her intrigued him and now with almost no history they are trying to make a long distance relationship happen.

It’s not pragmatic, some might even call it foolish, but when it comes to matters of the heart, rational thinking has never been at the forefront. 

What my friend is beginning to realize is that to make a long-distance relationship you need to combine a tension-free existence with total and complete devotion. These might seem like competing ideologies, but to make it work from a distance you need to combine the two for a mixture that will leave your partner swooning. 

Treats, Treats, Treats

Groupon is saving relationships. You can gift your significant other a thoughtful present with the click of a button. Sign-up for their cities updates and when you see something they might enjoy on their own (massage) or something you can enjoy together (museum tickets) hit purchase and send it along. Imagine being in the middle of a normal day and getting an email that your loved one just bought you a 90-minute deep tissue massage? Glorious. 

Think Before You Text

Jealousy is a pretty natural component of long distance relationship. We all know that the ideal is to never be jealous but when your partner is at Happy Hour grabbing drinks with attractive coworkers there is a little antenna within us all that pops up and tells us to protect our position. Don’t. When you feel like you HAVE to say something you often shouldn’t. Patience is the key, and you’ll soon figure out the more space you give your partner to enjoy their tie with new friends, the more they’ll seek out your counsel. 

Leave ‘Em Floating

Great trip!  One of the oldest and most dependable separation techniques used in relationships is to get upset with each other right before the scheduled departure. It’s completely counterintuitive but we protect ourselves from heartache by creating anger. That anger shields out hearts a bit and makes the moments leading up to and following the goodbyes hurt a little less. Of course, it’s also the first thing we regret once we get a good night’s sleep under our head. Even if your partner is picking a fight, stay strong and listen to what they’re really saying. They’re probably just anxious about another few weeks not seeing you. 

About the Author: Lilly Star
The lead female voice at DatingWebsites.com, Lilly is a professional advice-giver with experiences in dating men of all types, including the good ones that got away. Her passions include white wine, purple peonies and relaxing on the chaise lounge with her dachshund Samantha. Lily’s work can be read on dating blogs for both men and women.

One of Those Moods

It’s  interesting (for lack of a better word) to know that someone you used to be in a relationship with truly feels like you are the one who got away. I know that if I even mouthed the words let’s give this another shot, I would get zero resistance. I don’t do reruns. But I do like the validation of knowing I wasn’t the crazy one after all:-).

Just reminiscing a bit today people. I can truly say the past is the past, and I am SO grateful to be standing in the spot I am in today. Thank you Jesus for Grace.

The Common Denominator (Guest Post)

I know it’s been awhile since my last post (Valentine’s Day to be exact), but I wanted to get back into my blogging groove.  What better way than with an informative guest blog post.  The lovely Denise Hawk has loaned us her writing talents for a spell, so check out her post below, and make sure to comment.  This is a topic that hits close to home for me.

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If you’re over twenty, chances are, you’ve been in a few relationships. Often trends begin to develop in your dating life. Do you keep dating jealous people or “crazy psychos”? Or are you always with people who end up using you financially? Is cheating a trend that keeps coming up in your dating life? Whatever the thing is that keeps happening is beside the point, the real question is…why does this keep happening?

Sadly, the common denominator…is you.

When drama follows you from one relationship to another, it’s not a coincidence. It’s you. That may be hard to hear, but it’s true. Here’s how to change things so you can finally be rid of the negative trends in your dating life.

First off, make a list of why your past relationships ended. Was it jealousy? Cheating or money? Was it a communication breakdown? I had a friend who found that every relationship ended with small talk, as in, that’s all her and her boyfriend could have.

To help with problems like that, take a look at your list. Find the trend, or trends that keep popping up and then think back to your parents relationship. We learn by example and often times if our dad was a cheater, we’ll either end up dating cheaters or become ones ourselves (same goes for jealousy, physical abuse, etc.). To stop this, it’s usually helpful to write out your parents’ relationship, how it effected you and how that style of relationship may have made them happy.

Often our romantic relationships end up reflecting the relationships we have with our own parents. Such as with my friend who had the “small talk” problem. It turns out a big trend with her and her parents was not talking about important issues. Seems her mom would overreact to anything topic of a sensitive nature and her father would berate her for “rocking the boat”. So she learned to keep her feelings and problems to herself.

Unfortunately in dating, this isn’t a very good strategy. Her relationships would start off good, but once the dating hit a rocky patch (as happens in most relationships) she would end up not communicating and shutting down emotionally.

How did she stop doing this? First, she took a little time off from dating and started working out her issues with a therapist. Much of what she learned in therapy was how to express her needs and voice her concerns in relationships. She also sought out parental role models that she could have meaningful conversations with. For her it was her grandmother, but for someone else it could be a professor, an older work colleague or even the parent of a friend.

If you’ve taken a look at your parents relationship and your own relationship with your parents and don’t find any similarities with them there is another approach you can take.

Be honest…what are you getting out of the drama? If you’re always dating people who are jealous, do you get a small charge out of knowing someone is obsessing over you? If you always end up with people who you have to financially support, do you enjoy having the upper hand and slightly higher status in the relationship?

We all get things out of our relationships but sometimes it’s a double edged sword. Sometimes just being aware about what you get out of a certain pattern can be enough to avoid people who might perpetuate it. Other times you have to do more, like asking your friends to give you a heads up if you’re falling for your usual “crazy psycho” again. The key to stopping any sort of pattern is awareness. Going into a relationship with your eyes open is always a good idea. Good luck with dating!

Denise Hawk is a regular contributor to firstkissconnections.com

Faith and Fear, the catalysts in relationships (Guest Post)

Hi Everyone…I’m so pleased to welcome CM Writer as my very first guest blogger.  She has a wealth of experience in this arena (and clearly I need it; after all I own a dating blog, but I don’t date, lol.  However, that’s another story for another day). I really enjoy CM Writer’s perspective, so I encourage you all to read and comment.  Let’s get the discussion popping.  And for those in Charlotte, she will also be the featured facilitator on Feb. 20th for our upcoming relationship chat and chew at Red @ 28th in NoDa.  Truly a do not miss event:-). 

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Faith is the antidote to fear.  It works to both protect and push you toward the brighter life you can have.  Fear is the poison that binds you to past pains. What do you do when you are afraid? Do you cower in a corner? Run toward safety? Look for an escape? Or do you freeze?

Fear is learned.  It comes from bad memories, a reminder of hurts experienced once before.  Fear is this uncanny thing that kicks in our most innate fight or flight senses.  Being able to react to fear is great for survival.  However, most of us want to go above and beyond merely surviving.  We want to thrive.

In the relationship realm, we rarely call the feelings that we have “fear”.  No.  It is “intuition”, “suspicions”, a “sixth sense” or “being perceptive”.   All of those things are wonderful, except when the situation does not warrant them.

If you are dealing with an upstanding person, the worst thing you can do is give into your “intuition”.  It will have you going through phones, checking Facebook pages, and questioning every move and motive of your mate. There is nothing appealing about being in a relationship with a private eye who only has one case to his or her name…and that case is turning the relationship upside down until everything falls apart.  Who wants to grow in love with a snoop?

Fear also has a paralyzing effect.  It continuously whispers in your ear all the bad things of your past.  People don’t change…he’s just like the last one…Remember you do not want to be hurt again.  So you carry the fear of past experiences into your present.  You cannot move forward because you have never dealt with the pains of your past. Fear can immobilize you. 

Fear blocks the bad AND the good.  Fear causes your defense mechanisms to kick in.  You have a wall of protection around you, so that no bad can come near you.  However, the same wall keeps all good out as well.

Faith operates in the opposite direction of fear with the same good results but none of the bad.  Faith comes through learning from the past that no matter what comes your way, you will be okay.  Faith is built through trials, and sustained by your endurance. 

Faith allows you to open up to be understood and to see others clearly without the muck of the past clouding your vision.  Faith allows you to trust earnestly without being blocked by insecurities. Faith is not in the other person, per se.  It is in the knowledge that God will see you through any circumstance.

Faith does not lead you to being foolish; it opens you to becoming more aware.  Faith gives the benefit of the doubt.  Faith protects your heart while easing your mind. Faith provides you stability and security.  There is nothing you can go through that will change that, once you have even the smallest amount of faith. 

With faith, you don’t have to worry about what a person will do to you.  You can actually enjoy the relationship and build a solid foundation.  Snooping will never cross your mind.  Fear of being hurt will vanish.  Intuition will pour out all the senses to finally realize and feel the love and security that is possible.

Faith gives you a hedge of protection, but opens a pathway to your heart. 

CM Writer is an attorney and blogger. CM created Your Boyfriend’s Best Girlfriend Blog to showcase her close friendships with men. CM sprinkles her blog with her spiritual upbringing, southern sass, and prissy-nerdy-tomboy charm.