We eventually moved from the “Land of Soccer and Pucker,” back near the area of town that I had grown up in. Though scattered about, all of my neighborhood friends where still in the vicinity. Our transformations and situations varied, but it felt good to be back home, on familiar soil-despite the fact that our lives had gone in several different directions as we’d gotten older.
I quit the fast-food joint and decided to find myself a “regular” job close by where I lived until summer and night was to school began. I was becoming quite the diva and fast-food work was just not my bag and taste anymore.
Pucker and I still continued to see one another. The distance to come see me was never too far for him. He was still as attentive as he was like when we lived in the same community. Considering my situation…I had to be more careful and covert than I ever was with Pucker. He had no idea…But the distance between us afforded me the time allotted for more careful planning. It was a load off my head that since that nearly fateful night of mine, any spontaneous action done in the name of lust and love could cost me big time-this time.
This time, if I busted Santana’s heart wide open again, he…was gonna make my head roll for sure...
Without having landed the job I wanted yet, and while waiting for summer and night classes to begin; it seemed like me and Lucky: fat, healthy, happy, and home now; had a lot of time on our hands. I couldn’t tell if it this stretch of free time was because for a long time after I had him, he was still in the hospital incubator fighting to grow. I made it my business to get up to that hospital on schedule every Monday through Friday early mornings like I was going to school, and on Saturday and Sunday late mornings-religiously; just to make sure I could stick my hands in that incubator to rub Lucky from head to toe to help him thrive, and to give energy to his body when he would wake up to looking at me with his tired little cute face. Santana: absent. His work schedule was not as consistent as mine, so I gave him the benefit of the doubt for that reason and that reason only. There were a few times he’d pick me up and we’d ride over together, but they were very few and far times in between. Outside of that, if or whenever he made his way to ICU, I never asked and I never knew. I secretly felt that he felt as long as his mother made it over, it was fine with him. He had bigger things to do-occupying his time, that too, afforded me more time with Pucker.
We eventually called it quits for good because this thing with Pucker was picking up hot and heavy. But until that time, although Santana and I were still together, there was indeed wedge in between us that I still could not put my finger on-nor did I seem to care enough to slow down with Pucker to investigate just what that thing was, but it didn’t take much time because everything began to unfold and everybody’s truth was laid out on a picnic table one fine day-courtesy of my dear old friend since dear old fourth grade: Aya.
I never knew how these covert meetings would be set up behind my back-how Santana would be sequestered into some cocoon; all nestled up, receptive and ready to discuss my transgressions with my Twin. Then from out of the abyss, he would be ripped, rattled and torn; coming towards me like a storm-and with my calm demeanor, would quarantine his thoughts immediately.
But this time…this time…there was no way out. Aya got the job done this time, and she and Twin drilled that nail into right into that finger of mine that I could not put on what was going on with Santana, and together-they crucified any and everything Santana and me ever had or was trying to salvage. Together they had risen.
Aya knew almost everything about me, and what I was doing, so there was no way I could drill holes in the story that she carved out for Santana and Twin at that picnic table meeting.
She was able to give details like: “remember that time you were at work-the same day that you and Angie did X-Y-Z? Well, A-B-C happened…” As this history of mine was in the making, according to Santana; Aya had all the g’s nailed on the head.
She could give him all the grooves, splinters and heartbreaking details of my whereabouts and goings on with Pucker and cut down anything I could do or say to seal the holes of any scenario that Aya exposed.
All this time, little did Twin and Aya know, I never brought up Pucker to Santana and worked really hard on helping him live in the denial that he’d rather live with knowing than to have the answer about whether or not it was a true hardcore fact that I had slept with another man. That, compounded with the fact that he felt confident that he put the fear of the devil in me while sitting me up on that kitchen counter that nearly fateful night was enough to make him feel a bit more secure-especially when we moved. He had grown somewhat comfortable that if I really did cheat, I would not, anymore. And just like that, out of the blue, one day; Aya and Twin wiped it all away for no reason other than not minding their own business-spilling the beans to a man as if they were talking to some little boy about his girlfriend and there was no child involved. In addition to this being neither of their business (to tell him); neither one of them took that into consideration, at all. I wasn’t fucking my brother. If what I was doing meant that much to him, he should have come to me. Santana wasn’t fucking Aya (at this time-yet)…so if it meant that much to her, she too-should have come to me. Instead, they took it to Santana many months and Sundays after the big mess that happened outside my mother’s house where we no longer lived. And unlike the last time; this time was different.
This time, Santana was not going for the okie-doke.
This time, he did not ask any questions.
This time, he lit right into me like the capital letter “T” turned sideways.
This time he man-handled the holy shit out of me with no remorse or emotion other than complete manic rage.
By this time, my TGGF was a beast at the five-finger discount and any high-end store’s worst nightmare. She was excited by the best of the best. I was sharp as hell that day-wearing an outfit that she had boosted for me: A white fitted-tank, a sky-blue corduroy and sheep-skin Carole Little mini with the sky-blue corduroy and sheep-skin Carole Little puffy jacket to match. She kept me laced in Adrienne Vittadini and Carole Little exclusives. But this day, my little ass was caroling octaves of a soprano-desperately fighting hard to get my balance and grab hold of either the banister or Santana’s strong hand that held my entire body stiff and unable to turn around to gain any footing. Regardless of the direction I tried to turn, I was being dragged backwards: scalp, head and body throbbing with a kind of pain unheard of.
I was coming home from a long day out with Pucker, and just as I was about to slide the key into the door of my house, I felt a heavy hand grab a big chunk of my hair and wrap it tightly-like you would wrap a belt around your hand. My head rolled…and I knew this was it.
We lived on the third floor of this big wide huge vintage apartment building that you had to walk six flights up or down (to get to my house). Each flight of stairs had about fifteen steps. Santana had the tightest grip on my hair, dragging me down backwards while the back heels of my shoes hit every step like fingers pouncing the piano keys of an intense and violent score played by Bach or Brahm while I tried to scream opera of the Kathleen Battle kind. At first, my lungs and larynx would not help me compete.
He did not care if my body from neck to my feet was going to make it down each step without injury or no, all he knew is that he had my head in his hands and was about to take me somewhere. I could hardly breathe. I was gasping like an asthmatic. My breath wouldn’t make it to my throat to help me scream no matter how hard I tried to. It was crazy. It felt as though my heart and all the air in my body completely locked and wouldn’t allow me to scream for that help I so badly need no matter how hard I kicked, wailed, and tried. My scalp was throbbing as if that was where my heart surpassed the wind in my body and retreated after that first drop to the ground when I felt the force of his grip. By when he got me down to the first floor my windpipe miraculously opened and I screamed to the top of my lungs: “HELP ME!!!!!!!!!!!!! SOMEBODY HELP ME!!!!!!!!!! PLEASE!!!!!!!!!” Over and over.
I wasn’t as afraid of Santana, or even this moment in the middle of his anger as I was afraid to have him plop me down and the car and drive me off. That would have been the point where fear would have set in for me.
Still, I was petrified, and knew I was either about to go into a state of shock if that same scenario was about to be repeated outside this building-because I knew that this time, he was going to kill me. He wasn’t going to put up with that masquerade and charade again like before-never again. While screaming and wailing, I could hear the sounds of some guys coming from the apartment where all the Goths lived. They must’ve been having a party that night. They all screamed and yelled in my defense with the force of a firing range but were too scared to run up on Santana while he was dragging me down that half-mile stretch of hallway leading to the door outside. I begged and pleaded for them to help me. I screamed out to them: “DON’T LET HIM PUT ME IN THE CAR!!!! HELP!!!” Over and over.
I knew that when we busted through those doors and if he was parked right outside in front and could throw me into that car-it was curtains for me.
Instead, when we busted through the doors he tossed me over to the right towards the parking lot of the building.
I was stunned, tired, and sore as hell. My body was so weak I was ready to fall to my knees and crawl back to building. Thinking that it was all over, I stood there in total vertigo and Shaken-Lady Syndrome, trying to focus in on non-other than Aya and Twin standing there with their arms folded and looking unsurprised-as if they knew he had plans to do something drastic anyways.
This time, the Goths were the only ones outside on my side at this moment while Santana began walking around the parking lot like a crazy man with his hands shaking and trying to figure out what to do with them. He snapped again. He ran up on me and picked me up and began tossing me around every which way possible while he tried to decide at what point and where he wanted my lifeless body to land while he prepared to throw it. When he got tired of tossing and swinging me around, he stopped to catch his breath and began choking the wind out of me as if somehow the wind from my body was going to be enough to give him the wind to set sail.
I kept both my hands up and visible in a position of surrender but he paid that no mind.
He wanted to use his fists to hit me so badly but he couldn’t bring himself to do it.
He wanted to kill me-so badly-but he was scared.
He was rabid.
I had never seen him this mad before.
I was right in the middle of that moment where I could clearly see how someone with their bare hands, could kill another person who they loved-in the heat of an angry moment.
I saw it coming. I could see the rage in his eyes and lips underneath the light outside of the building that lit the dark parking lot.
The anger of not having the heart to kill me caused him to do everything else but strike me. He knew that if he struck me-he would definitely kill me.
I was so tired. I didn’t care anymore. At that moment-I was numb. My mind, my body, my soul and my spirit were literally numb. Little did he know he had already killed me right there but my eyes remained open. I was so numb and my body was such that if he would have struck me, I swear I wouldn’t have felt a thing. For what seemed like forever he kept picking me up and tossing me around like he was trying to debate where to throw me. I wished he would’ve just hit me and been done with it, because I could feel that he wanted me to physically feel what his heart and mind was feeling when he let me off the hook with the first couple times this Pucker situation reared its head.
The firing range of screams of all the Goths right up on us and in Santana’s face still did not phase him.
Half of them split and began yelling over to my left at the couple who appeared to know exactly what was going on and who either ordered this ass-whipping, or provoked it.
“You know these guys? Why aren’t you helping her? Why aren’t you stopping him! This is crazy, man!” Twin and Aya said nothing.
The scene got quiet while Santana calmed himself down by walking back and forth across the parking lot, holding his hands to the sides of his head then placing them on his hips as if he’d just got done running a marathon.
The bravest Goth who had just got done reading Aya and Twin the riot act, couldn’t help himself, he was so angry. He walked closer to Santana:
“Dude, I know you’re mad-and I don’t know what happened and-and-and-and-and-and it’s none of my business. But NEVER EVER hit a girl like that EVER in your life again man. This aint cool! It aint cool at-at-at all,” he stuttered.
With his hands on his hips and calm demeanor, Santana looked over at him:
“I didn’t hit her,” he defended, in a low and exhausted tone of voice.
The Goth guy insisted:
“Dude, it was the next worst thing man-you lost your cool alright? I know what I saw Pal. I know what I saw. I was IN that building. She was screaming for her life man. And YOU had a pretty good grip on her. Look, I don’t want any trouble, I’m just saying-I know what I saw. It should stop RIGHT here, RIGHT now-regardless of whatever she did! She-she-she’s still a woman,” he said, scolding Santana, with his index finger pointing to him, the ground, the building, and me.
Santana didn’t reply back.
I stood there staring over at Aya and Twin in complete and utter disgust.
Aya wouldn’t look back at me-instead, she stood there with a look on her face as if a gun was being held to her head and she was forced to nail me the way she did. No, crossed me is what she did. And I wasn’t buying her victimized look. I was officially done with her and she knew it. I couldn’t believe that she was in on all this as if, though long ago, wasn’t she who delivered the news of Santana cheating on me that fateful day that just so happens to be the catalyst and one of reasons for all this. I couldn’t believe Aya-my friend since fourth grade who knew my feelings for both men and she dumped the hurt in the lap of the one who she knew mattered most me. That hurt me.
She and Twin got into her car and pulled off.
The Goths walked behind us to return back to their party on the first floor.
Santana followed behind me to head up to the third floor.
When we got in, my mom and Lucky were way back in the front end of the house sound asleep on the couch having slept through it all. I was amazed. If my mother did peep out the window to see the commotion, I knew she already knew it had something to do with that same “LiL Boy” (Pucker’s name between she and I and when she’d catch his calls). She probably rolled her eyes in her head, took the baby to the front of the house and went to straight to sleep. Pucker was a household name in my house and my relationship by this time. She already knew that whatever happened, it was a long-time coming.
Santana and me made a cot with two pillows and lay by Lucky’s bed. We used the night light that was plugged into the wall to light the way to our much-needed, long over due conversation:
“So how long has it been going on Angie?” he asked.
“A little while after I had the baby” I replied.
“How did it happen Angie?” he asked-robotically and as if he was sticking his chest out to be able to take every bullet penetrating his heart and blocking it from getting to his head as well.
“He was the guy that had been driving up and down the street that long time ago back when I was pregnant-back when you and I would take walks down to the corner store out. He had been after me for about a year before I actually met and started seeing him.” I confessed.
“He was just everywhere-like a stain. No matter where I was; restaurants, times when I’ve been shopping with you-all that. But I never would allow him to talk to me” I said.
He took a deep breath:
“I know everything Angie. I know everything. E-ver-y-thing. The sex y’all were having. The stuff he was saying to you. The stuff you were saying and DOING to him. I know it all. And I-know-that-you-love-him-too!” he grunted, drilled and said really fast and angrily.
“Oh God, I could only imagine,” he sighed.
I didn’t respond.
He took another deep breath of a different kind:
“I guess I’d better tell you what’s been going on with me as well,” he prepared.
I lay there, calm-because I called it a long time ago and was already prepared--too. I knew something was going on with Santana but like I said, I just couldn’t put my finger on it, but I listened on:
“I’ve been seeing girl for a while now too. I met her around the time you were up at that school for pregnant girls,” he confessed.
“I tended to you Angie-I was still in love with you. I was still in love with you,” he defended.
“She knew about me?” I asked.
“Yeah…yeah she knew” he nodded.
“Wow Santana, so in counting, you’ve already fucked two girls-one was a virgin-smack dead in the middle of our relationship and having had my virginity first. Now here it is I find out while I was preggers and sent away, you were boo’ed up with the other chick. My situation with Pucker didn’t even occur until after Lucky was born. And all this time you’ve been at me about him-as if! Aw man” I gasped and shook my head.
I didn’t shed a tear.
It merely saddened me considering the changes I was going through at that time and to now know for sure, what he was doing-meanwhile, back at the ranch…
“I was still in love with you. I was still in love with you, Angie. And you know that” he insisted.
I ignored him.
I rested my forehead back into the pillow and I tuned him out with so many things dancing around in my head.
I knew it. I knew I should have let him go the first time he cheated.
I should have just let him go then.
I was at a safe point in my life. I wasn’t pregnant and I had dreams then. I had goals then. Now, the only goals and dreams I was looking forward to, was getting my ass back in school for which I had to attend night and summer school classes in order to graduate on time.
What a dream. What a goal now.
Had I let him go the very first time he cheated, my life would have been a whole lot different. In my corner, I had Ms. You-Know-Who, on “TeamMe.” All she wanted was something better for me. She saw greatness in me. She loved me so much that she was ready to finance my life to do anything I wanted to do besides cozy up with some “light-bulb head boy” who she warned me would ruin my life. This shit is surreal now, but impossible to see-then. It was his senior year. My prom dress what bought and paid for, his festivities planned-it was so much going on around that time that bailing out on him after all we had been through felt like leaving him standing at the alter. Besides that-I loved my fairytale boyfriend…
But that cheating thing is amazing.
Just like an animal getting that first taste of blood, from there on, it does not stop. And unless a man makes the decision that he finally “got it right”-he will continuously be out on the prowl. Santana obviously didn’t make that decision that we had it right.
To add insult to injury, this motherfucker did not even have the decency to consider the fact that I was lonely and crying; calling home during the week in search of comfort, all the while he was out in-search-of: some other bitch…when I was pregnant.
Considering the details that he had revealed to me, I could only imagine the field-days he was having Monday through Friday while I was knocked up and away at the preggers jail, agonizing over my innocent child growing inside of me with my emotions oscillating like crazy.
This revelation was almost unforgivable to me but I listened on, and just like first time he cheated, I made him run down every detail-except for this time, I was calm. We were older now and I was well-over preoccupation of being the high-school popular and good-looking couple. I’m a woman now, and this is real-life now. There are no facades and faces to put on for anyone except for the two of us laying there face to face (now)…in the night light with Lucky in the other room sound asleep listening to birds tweet and counting sheep.
The sordid details:
She was the half-sister of a girl that went to school with us.
Unlike the first girl he cheated on me with-who like me, was a virgin, Sordid wasn’t, so the two of them had been fucking like jack-rabbits. I didn’t even care by this time-she could have that dick.
(More details please):
He told me that the thing that made him like her was how whenever he would have to leave to tend to me, she would drop to her knees, crying and grab onto his legs while he would walk towards the door. That was why he was late getting to the hospital the day Lucky was born-because Sordid dropped crying and hanging on his leg.
In that moment, I had a life-changing revelation about my whole situation with him.
“This fucking fable Fabio,” I said to myself, rolling my eyes in my head while listening to this romantic hero. He was good for romance. I knew how he was. He lived for those “cutesy” fairytale-like moments like this. With Sordid down at his feet, I could clearly see him lifting her from the floor and kissing her passionately like a scene out of some corny ass movie. Sordid may not have been a virgin, but that drop to her feet move was her money shot and way-in to his heart: (for the “moment”).
I knew him oh-so well…
While learning him, he taught me that you gotta shake these men down from their secrets-make them tell you everything in order to find out their motives and reasons behind the shit they do, because somewhere in there, somewhere-you will find your own self in there…or out of there.
I listened on to the Sordid details, remembering the details I made him spill to me about the first girl he cheated on me with and instantly-those details too, came to mind where even back then; I could clearly see him making that romantic decision to carry that girl up the steps after she revealed to him that she was a virgin. That was her money shot (and “moment”). I remembered his confusion in his very last letter to me after it happened. He was partially excited about his new romantic moment, but at the same time, still in love with me because all day-everyday I gave him plethora’s of “moments” that fed his Fabio.
I knew his moves-all too well.
An impulsive romantic is what he just: was.
I was perfect for him when he first walked into the library that day and I was standing way up high on that ladder while he stood below it. The whole scene for him was classic “Romeo & Juliet” all the way down his beckoning me from the ladder and into his face-where he could clearly see me as some virginal, homely, Cinderella-like being that he could turn into a princess for a night, that ended up turning into years simply because of how my personality just-was: I had a never ending supply of “cutesy” moments, so he was constantly enamored by me…well…by that (first) and then came “me,” which made “us” possible for so long.
When we were younger, I swear I would see Disney-like movie scenes and carousels dancing around his head; circus music blasting loudly from his heart-playing loud enough to drown out the constant juggling of Ms. You-Know-Who and my mother repeatedly riddling me this: “He’s too immature for you! I don’t care that he is older than you! You are far too mature than he is-you will see, in due time!”
All his letters to me-all the cutesy little things we used to do and the things that I would spontaneously do to fit into his B-Boy world, like: putting on his sweat suits and Run-DMC hats-standing there dancing for him to the Beastie Boys’ “Brass Monkey” and “She’s Crafty.” He loved thattoo. The scene in his head would light up like E.T’s index finger and his heart would glow and show like E.T’s as well. I swear I saw all this in his Disney frontal lobe. Cutesy little things like that would make him carry on fantasies of the two of us being swept away on some Italian Riviera with some young fit lad named Geno Scraggaadagi, dressed like a matador, spear-heading our wooden boat adorned with the curly front and back ends.
Looking debonair and straight out of the cover of a Harlequin romance novel, Geno would stand at the front of the boat carrying a long stick in his right hand, while his left hand would be covering his lifted brow-looking out to the waters while the two of us sat in the little boat, me: singing and pouring flowers into the water while Santana would be holding on to the boats oars; rowing us away into bliss and obscurity.
“This romantic hero” I said to myself while rolling my eyes in my head.
It didn’t take much to send Santana’s mind off into some play land and in the matter of an endearing literal moment, he could entertain the thought of the house on the hill, the two-car garage, the white picketed fence, the horse, the baby, the carriage, and the two dogs that go: “woof-woof” all in a matter of minutes, then with the snap of a finger-he’s in lovvvvve simply because you’re near me! (singing).
My eyes rolled in my head as I shook my head again.
We were young and in love then. He worked real hard to win me over-all kinds of tricks, flips, and letters, I knew no better. I was in love too. I had a fairytale idea of a relationship and it seemed like God plopped just the right boy in my life and gave it to me.
I held his attention for so long because I had so much young love in my heart for him, insisting on proving my mom and Ms. You-Know-Who dead wrong.
Hopelessly devoted to him was I; cuddled up and watching one of my favorite old movie classics: “Grease” listening to Olivia Newton-John sing my song while at the drive in park-up on the screen there-played a cartoon of a hot dog and a bun where the hot dog, like he-Santana, was doing all kinds of flips and tricks hoping for the bun to finally open up for him to jump in. The bun eventually opened up and allowed that hot dog in and from that point on; they were America’s favorite happily ever after.
At the scenes end, I turned to look at Walt “Santana” Disney who was lying next to me-daydreaming and looking like a big ole kid watching a Saturday morning cartoon. I shook my head and said nothing-instead, I watched the scene in his head play, and I watched his heart illuminate. I remember that day oh so well.
No sooner than the next school day had come to an end, I walked upon him standing in a crowd of his peers laughing and joking in the hallway. There, stood a girl from their senior class-clowning around, her name was Vivian.
I stood back and watched Santana and the whole scene, awaiting that look in his eyes to appear. It would start off as a charming smile, turned gaze. That gaze would then turn into an off-stare, and that would be the point where the house on the hill, the two-car garage, the white picketed fence, the horse, the baby, the carriage, and the two dogs that go: “woof-woof” (and Italian “Geno”) would appear. But right before his daydream could crystallize, I walked over to Walt Disney, lightly smacked him in the back of the head, stood on my tip-toes and whispered into his ear: “Come back to the light lover boy. No doing tricks for the bun already. You are so Walt Disney,” I said-shaking my head.
He was partly embarrassed and felt a little bit busted, but at the same time, that was another “cutesy” thing to him-something else “cute” about me that he so adored: The jealous girlfriend. So in his mind-at that moment, it was he and I that rode off into the sunset where the circular window of the movie ending would read: “The End” (for Vivian-unbeknownst to her). I ended up winning that scene by the way.
That was his style.
Being with him, I was learning him; what triggered him, and that was precisely it.
He just loved: love and certain moments reminded him of love. And whomever fit that moment; he could “love” them. Reality set in when reality showed up. That’s when he would get scared and the clock would strike .
As for me, I refused to part with my virginity for anybody that couldn’t give me the fairytale boyfriend in my young mind. And viola! There Santana was: perfect (and like me-a virgin, too). Heaven must’ve sent him from above, in my eyes.
But despite my shyness, I was always a little more mature than him, and even as a very young girl; I always observed people for years even before I met him. He was my boyfriend, so he was definitely under my microscope.
He never grew mature enough to understand that while being in love with love was fine-you have to love the one personthat you are not only “with”…but that one person whom you love-not just “love” of the moment. A person is not “moment.” He had no concept of understanding that in love (with that one person you are supposedly committed to); you can’t be swept away by cute and “love-like” moments. That’s not what real love is…
I knew now, why he had sooo many girlfriends back before we began going steady and just how he managed to remain a virgin. He had a lot of “moments.” Practically every third girl at the school had made out with him; he just ended up in a full on relationship with me-I was the one with the never ending supply of “moments.”
Such a romantic idealist he was-it’s never so much as “love” being about the woman, it was the endearing moments in romance, or those remarkable moments of any kind that looked like love to him that made him liked, or loved the girl. A man like that could cheat a thousand times a day and not even know it.
As I was learning and observing his ways, truthfully, I couldn’t see the thought of marrying him back when we were young with hopes for it in our future. I used to read in his letters where he would talk about it, and I would shake my head back and forth-knowing that he loved him some “love.”
In the midst of our reality-way past , I lay there on our cot continuing in my head:
“Do you understand?! What do you see?! Why are you with me?! What do you actually see when you look at me?! I could be anybody! Let’s see: I have on a long white dress-black at the breast, with white puffy ruffled short sleeves. I have a red belt around my waist, with red ribbon in my hair. I have seven short fat friends who play with me! Don’t I? That is probably what you see! You just love the thought and the act of being in love! That is what you see! This is real-life for you! I had a real heart before you and all of this! We have a real baby with a real beating heart!” …I wanted to look him in the eyes, grab him by the head, shake it and say. But instead of saying that to him, I kept it in my head because in that moment, I knew that if I would have said all that to him, Italian Geno would have appeared and we would have been right back on the boat. And I couldn’t bare the thought of being on that boat with him Santana anymore.
This was real-life to me. Not some increments and moments of the heart and head.
Into the night, I lay there with him-calm and pensive.
I didn’t even care anymore about the details he had just revealed about he and this girlfriend of his. My mind began to race and reminisce about the-us: then and the-us: now…now with a child having being brought into this world amongst all these circus acts, this chaos, this confusion, and this mess of a man-child I now had a “baby by.” That is when I began to cry uncontrollably. Because I swear to God I say as I grunt…I know him so well now, like I knew him so well, then…And had he run by me a long time ago; the Sordid details of that money shot moment that made him fall for her: that drop to the leg scenario bullshit-I swear to GOD I would have had this very same moment of clarity about his Disney thinking-then.
And had he told me this-then, I would have run away from him: THEN. That would have saved us all this Pucker trouble that we had gone through, now-unnecessarily as I lay there with a sore neck, body and headache from outer space.
As far as the likelihood of us succeeding together as parents-we were a mess and that killed me, for my baby. At that very moment, I knew what I was in for going forward.
I lay there knowing that I was going to be needing to woman-up real soon. I prayed that every fiber, tissue, and bone in my body would begin to repair and prepare itself while I rested-starting now: [whatever o’clock time it was] because I knew for sure in this moment of clarity, I had a real live “baby”… “baby daddy,” not a “man,” or a “father” of my child, and definitely not the husband for me. Because he was still now, like then, was no more than a man-child out here in this world trying to function: fucking and dreaming out of a Disney frontal lobe for a brain, a scarecrow’s fear, a tin man’s heart, and a puppy-dog existence, who was far from a lion.
There I lay on my side on that cot next to our beautiful son’s bed while my lil’ baby-daddy lay behind me listening to me weeping-holding me tightly; most probably with the whimsical notes of a carousel of some damsel in distress love story playing around on his mental Miramax, having no idea the seriousness of this moment for me right now.
There, he lay next to me-the same person now-as he was then…I was the only one who had grown up in this situation of ours. I cried uncontrollably as balled up into fetal position-scared myself in that moment (of mine).
He held me tight and began to cry with me me-most probably thinking that my tears were from the Sordid reveal and details he gave me about his lil’ girlfriend, but little did he know, I could care less. I was very sad for him, and I was very sad for me—for us: as “parents.” But most of all, I was sad for Lucky-that was all that mattered to me in this situation right now.
He begged me not to leave him.
He wanted us to try it one more time-to give the relationship a chance for us to be a family.
He wanted us to let go of our sideshows that we both were sneaking and seeing to do this right.
I knew I wasn’t in love with him anymore.
And I knew I couldn’t stomach the idea of making love to this man-child anymore.
But it mattered more to me that my child would have a father, and if he was willing to try and be a father, I couldn’t begrudge him the chance of trying.
I figured the only thing I could do was help him see himself in a real-life regular mirror-rather than some “funhouse” mirror in a carnival of life, then perhaps, we could take it from there.
I’ve always felt that the night-time brings about all kinds of goings on, thoughts, and feelings that the morning time would either: solidify or dissolve. So I needed to see how we would feel in the morning after all these fears and tears subsided.
I would have to wait until the sun leaves footprints across the sky…and we could take it from there.
The sun left its footprints across the sky.
He woke up with that same look of love in his eyes. He then kissed and held me and grunted: “I love you so MUCH Angie,” he said adoringly.
I just looked at him and smiled.
He was so happy and fresh-faced. I chuckled as I laughed to myself while he lay there, holding on to me with the kind of force of tightening the lid on the bottle of something that you never want anyone else to open but you.
I could tell that all this felt new to him: To be able to wake up next to me in this way, considering the fact that my mother didn’t play that shit. No matter how much older we were getting-and if we had five kids together, Santana could never sleep over at our house. It was different for his mom and his house-I could sleep night or day over there, on any given day. So this morning most certainly probably looked like a different moment of a fantasy for him: a money shot moment that won him over (for the moment), because low and behold, in a matter of hours-that moment was merely a footprint left.
We made plans to spend family day together-the whole day.
When he left, his plans were to go home and get freshened up then come back to pick us up early that same afternoon.
Something happened though. Some other “moment” sure as hell must’ve beat me to him.
Because late into that afternoon, my neighbor-a girl who attended high school with both Santana and I-was slowly dragging her feet and walking up the last section of steps to the third floor that we both shared.
My bedroom door was wide open which was directly across from the front door to enter or exit our apartment.
I was waiting on Santana already, so I could hear her shoes crackling slowly and I knew it wasn’t him. Her feet even sounded like she had bad news for me-each step she took towards my door.
I got up from the bed and turned the knob to open it to say something to say hello to her, but she started first:
“Hey girl, sorry about what happened last night. It was a lot going on out there-and in the building. Are you okay?” asked Nayba.
“Yeah, I’m good. It’s a new day, so…” I replied optimistically-although I was pissed because it was way past “early afternoon.” It was now almost evening time, and Santana was not at his home, nowhere to be found, and still had not called me.
“Santana moved quickly after last night didn’t he?!” she said, then continued:
“He had the nerve to be out there kicking on your ass last night and he’s downtown-right now-as we speak…all Boo’d up with some chick! I thought I was seeing things at first. I mean like…he’s Boo’d up with her as if you, or last night never happened! I was shocked! It was just weird because I’ve never seen him with another girl Boo’d up like that-since you and him. Totally awkward, just totally awkward. But…he is down there with a girl…right now-I promise you that,” she confessed.
“He ended up staying for the night last night. We talked everything over and had plans for today, and he’s downtown with a girl you say? Now I know why he’s not home and why I can’t find him…”
“Oh. Okay.” replied Nayba.
“It’s okay, I’m about to get down there because I just need to see this with my own eyes.” I replied.
“Well, it’s true,” she assured me-again.
“Did he see you?” I asked.
“To be honest, I don’t think so. I saw him from the back and then I walked to the side to see who the girl was, and that’s when I knew for sure it was him-but I didn’t know her. She wasn’t from our school I know that. So I walked back the other way. I doubt if he saw me though,” she replied.
According to Nayba, they were down at “The Spot”-a place where pretty much everybody in town frequented. She said it looked like our high-school’s “Couples Day” down there. But what looked most weird to her was how Santana had long graduated from our school yet, it looked like a page from the scene reminiscent of the book of me and him. No one down there from the school had ever seen him Boo’ed up like that with anyone else but me. And according to her, it was one hell of a sight to see.
Nayba’s description of the girl matched the same description that Santana gave me during the sordid details of their goings on and such. I just rolled my eyes in my head and shook it pitifully, twisting my lips up with a pop-up bubble of the scene in my head:
Sometime between when he left my house and got home to his house, Geno appeared, and Sordid got on the boat. She and Santana then rode off into obscurity and bliss, leaving me at home looking beautiful-dead sharp in my designer five finger discounted sexy Adrienne Vittadini fitted dress, courtesy of my TGGF. My hair: the shit, shined and shellacked, while Lucky napped.
Nayba and I agreed to meet on the bottom floor of the apartment building in five minutes-she wanted to head down with me. Said she would point ‘em out over in the little area where they were all boo’d up.
Mom kept an eye on Lucky while I “headed out to the store for a minute.”
When I shot down those steps, the front doors of that apartment building’s half-mile distance down that long hallway couldn’t reach my hand quick enough, this time.
My impatience wouldn’t allow me to stand there across the street from the building to wait on the bus so, Nayba and I began walking until we saw a bus come-hoping to make it to “The Spot” before the Boo Fest broke up.
By some stroke of luck, my home girl Isis pulled alongside me with her boyfriend who was driving: “Where are you twisting and stomping your lil’ self off to girl? Somebody is about to get dealt with! What the fuck baby!”
Breathless, and with a serious look on my face, I simply replied: “Hey girl.”
I peeked into the car at her boyfriend, Pierce, who graduated from our school with Santana. He and Santana were good friends during their junior and senior years.
“Pierce let me and Nayba hop in. Take us down the hill to the “The Spot” will you?” I asked, impatiently.
“Sure, it’s cool, come on-no problem. What’s wrong?” he asked-concerned.
I ignored him and we climbed into the back seat in a hurry.
As the car pulled off-I got angrier, just sitting back there remembering how the previous year before this, that very same couple in the front seat ended up hanging out with me and Santana after Santana’s senior prom.
Instead of Santana and me riding home with our patient limo driver who escorted us there; he ended up getting a paid-for free night to himself and whatever lovely lady he wished to surprise for the night. Courtesy of Santana’s parents, he was already pre-paid to wait outside while my then, Prince: Santana, and Me: Cinderella-enjoyed our five-star glamorous night inside the formal gathering. Behaving like the rebellious teens we were, we did not want to go along with the hum-drum and formality of the pre-planned night for the romantic ride around town in the beautiful spacious limo, so instead-we decided to hang out with Pierce and Isis in the old-school Cutlass. Ironically, Isis happened to be a friend that I grew up in the neighborhood with-so it was perfect. We all had a blast. The night was so wild.
We ended up running a red light-speeding through the downtown streets and running from being chased by a cop car as a result of. Pierce somehow managed to lose the cop and we all hid the car out on a side street and made plans to split and meet back at it. We thought we were bad-asses in our heels and sexy shiny, pretty dresses. Our sharp dressed men in black tuxedo suits, and shiny shoes matched our sexy. We running from the police in our visible prom attire-while during, I ripped my pretty bright red Taffeta dress but I didn’t care, we all had a ball. The night was so unconventional, spontaneous, wild and fun.
That was then, but this was now.
Everything was so timely and unfolding right before my very eyes: Last night’s revelation, this incident I was on my way to, and the irony of the couple who happened to pull up on me while on route to handle this Sordid and Santana situation. It was all too surreal for words.
I was now sitting in the back seat of that very same car that, a year ago-prom night-we ditched…now, this time-having been ditched by Santana. The space in the seat across from me where he once sat was now being replaced by Nayba, who was on her way down with me to get him bitched…while I impatiently sat in the back seat of that old school Cutlass-pissed-fidgeting like a gang member preparing to roll up on this mark and yell: “Break yo’self-fool! What sect ‘ you claimin’?”
I sat in that same back seat, jealous, watching this very same couple that hung out with us a year ago; still rolling and making it happen. In that moment, I was just so jealous.
I couldn’t get to “The Spot” soon enough. I was growing more livid by the minute.
“What’s wrong?” Pierce asked again.
Again, I ignored him but this time, pretending to be preoccupied with the contents in my purse so that I did not have to tell him what was about to occur. He would have followed and stood between the plans I had for Stupid and Sordid because he and Stupid were friends.
When we pulled near “The Spot,” Nayba exited Pierce’s side and I exited Isis’ side.
I kissed her on the cheek and told her that I would talk to her later.
As we began to walk through the wide dimly lit tunnel, I could see the large crowd of people and couples holding hands into what was left of the day light.
I needed my way through to the light as soon as possible so that I could get my hands on Stupid.
When we made it through, I knew the first couple that I saw: Yoshi and Darren.
The last they had seen me was a little over year ago, before I mysteriously left the artsy school without saying so much as “goodbye” to anyone. My mind gave me no time to. As a result of preggers, my mom pulled me up and out of that school my senior year so fast my last leg didn’t even get to split the doors of that school good. At barely there whispers and missing my first period she pulled me up out of that school like I was nine months preggers already.
The last they knew of Santana was that he had long graduated and was supposed to be a man now.
The last they knew about us was that we were supposed to have been getting married and on the love boat, sailing off to bliss and obscurity.
They had no idea that we both had a beautiful baby at home who at that very moment, was waiting on us to rekindle our family fire now, in this moment-to no avail.
I couldn’t lie to myself, the sight of Yoshi and Darren still together after hitching a ride down with another couple we knew-both, still making it happen-killed me inside. I was so jealous. Although I was long over the preoccupation of those (then) seemingly large matters and my life had gone through so many transformations since then; for that moment, I suddenly felt like the high-school girl who, yet again, had been made a fool of- just like in high-school.
Pierce and Isis sent my blood rushing to my head.
Yoshi and Darren sent my blood rushing through my head.
Blood rushed to my head intertwined with my thoughts about the fact that I was no longer the traditional teenager turning adult, preparing for my senior year-life with my friends, doing normal “last year-of-being-teenager” kinds of things, like my friends.
Instead, I was in preparation for being forced to have to attend night + summer school and then attend some wild neighborhood public school for my senior year. But had I left him, I would have been right with Yoshi and Darren on Monday, making plans for having a life.
Blood totally rushed to my head.
Because the one and only thing that lead me down to deal with this matter at hand was Lucky. Other than that, after Nayba delivered that news to me, I would have continued on with my Saturday-most probably, with Pucker, and without [this] incident that was about to occur.
Now, here I am, with incident:
“Yoshi! Darren!” I spoke out to them-as if to say hello and at the same time, as if to say: “Did you see Santana down here?” They already knew what was up.
Yoshi gestured back first. With her lips tight, she rolled her neck out then rolled her eyes tightly and twisted her lips upwards. She had large slanted eyes and wore a bad attitude-at all times. Her eyes always looked as if they were cutting you-even in regular conversation. She then turned her head to the right and rolled her eyes again to signal that what I was looking for was right behind she and Darren. Her entire face was turned up as if she smelled the stench of dead carcass. I followed the stench.
I spotted my prey and threw my purse over to Nayba.
Like the female king of the jungle-fresh from hunting and securing life for her family only to come back roaring mad at the scene in front of her-effortlessly, and with the agility of a panther; I hopped on top of the ledge where Stupid and Sordid stood stinking busted: Frozen-with their backs turned to me as if they had already seen me talking to Yoshi and Darren.
They looked as if they were hoping that I would see them both as mere bushels of camouflage. Stupid was at such a distance from Sordid that a stranger could have very well walked between them, copped a squad and asked: “Are you two together?” And he could’ve easily said: “No.” I think that was what he was hoping I would ask, so that he could reply the same way to me.
He did not know what to expect, because throughout our entire relationship, the only other time he had ever met the bitch in me was the last time he was in this same exact predicament, but this time, complete rage went through my body as I reminisced about the hurting he put on my body almost twenty-four hours prior to this very moment.
Sordid was so far away from Stupid that I had to look over at Nayba to nod and confirm that this indeed was the chick she saw.
I stood up on that ledge above Sordid while her body and face remained so far turned to the right that I swear if she turned it any further, her face would have been faced backwards.
I needed her to flinch-to have the balls to look up at me, so I yelled over to Nayba:
“Is this her?”
Nayba yelled back:
“Yep-that’s her. I don’t know why they’re so far apart because I swear-they were just hugged up on one another earlier, but that is her!” confirmed Nayba.
Santana snapped. He turned quickly to Nayba and began to yell out all kinds of expletives with the force of a thousand knives being thrown into her-nearly matching rage he had inside of him from the previous night’s rage.
And just like the previous night, again, courtesy of my TGGF, I was sharp as hell-wearing the same designer fitted sexy black dress that Lynn Whitfield wore in “A Thin Line Between Love and Hate” when that thin line was crossed in that moment in the movie.
In this real-life moment, that same thin line was crossed and Santana had definitely walked it. To prepare to walk this tightrope with him, I began to tie a knot with the front end and the back end of my long sexy black dress to give my legs room on the side of the long splits to allow me the leg room that I needed to rumble with this bastard, this time.
In position like the top kicker on the highest-paid football team; I curled my fists, held onto my bottom lip, stepped back, twisted my lower body and punted him in his back with my sexy chunky high-heeled strappy red, yellow, orange, and black Etienne Aigner sandals. With the speed of a football flying across a field, I was hoping to see his heart, larynx, lungs, esophagus and other organs come flying out of him and land onto the cement in front of us.
I wanted to provoke Sordid so that she could get fly with me because I was dying to slap her face so badly. I could taste the sting of doing it:
“This Winnie the Pooh looking bitch. Are you crazy? How dare you! You love this fairytale bullshit from the look to the letter!” I said, standing there sexy, sharp, built like a brick-shit house; a closet-shallow, snapping like a materialistic broad-thanks to Prince Santana who changed me from my Bohemian taste in clothes and shoes and convinced me that designer everything was the way to go (with him-anyways).
He was arching his back in excruciating pain and now standing at a safe distance across from all of us, he began to yell, telling me to calm down and just leave-as if the previous night had never happened.
As if we did not sit up for hours talking about working things out to rebuild our lil’ family, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and hearing and felt like I was standing in the middle of someone else’s nightmare.
“That’s all he’s got to say to me?” I thought.
“That’s how he talks to me? As if we never were in love? As if we hadn’t shared our first everything together, but more importantly-as if we did not have a child together? I shouldn’t even be standing right here-in the middle of this!” That was all my mind could take in.
I couldn’t believe that I actually had a child with this cartoon character, a child who was at home at that very moment waiting on both of us to come home to it.
Still in pain and grunting to get his words out, he proceeded to yell at Nayba, who never could live down the rumors about the many who had allegedly resided in her “humble” abode:
“You whore! You whore! You’re nothing but a stupid whore!” Santana yelled.
“Don’t respond to him-girl,” I said to her.
It didn’t seem to affect her. She shrugged her shoulders and looked at him as if to say: “I don’t care, I’m not your friend-I’m a friend to her.”
I told her to come with me so we could go on and leave, but not without spewing botox, The proverbial female code and ex-girlfriend thing to do: Yell out any and everything to tear at his manhood, his pride, and his ego; take back from him-all that you gave and could not take back even if your life depended on it or you had the money for it: Your heart, your sex, your oral sex, your time, and most of all, all the things you did that taught him how to be even a smidgen of a better man than he was-all the ways he learned from you how to lovea little better than he did before you and when he took up all your heart, sex, and time…under your instruction and construction just to take it all and build with another bitch-right underneath your care and awning.
You just gotta shit on it all.
In my heart of hearts, in the middle of this big pay-back, I knew I couldn’t even include Lucky in my wish list of the big take-back, because I always felt like Lucky was really…all just mine. From bonding, to nurturing, and existing—all mine. Despite Santana being one-half and part of Lucky-no doubt, I just don’t think Lucky was a part of that Disney theme going on his heart and head. Any whimsical and carousel playing in his head, I believe was exclusive for the fantasy of romance, not the reality of, and for a bambino. It’s like every step in this situation was so ordered for some reason that I just couldn’t explain. Every door kept opening in succession: A Situation. A Revelation, and then a Light that lead me to the next door—crazy!...
My mother shipping me off to the preggers jail must’ve had been some kind of blessing in disguise (for me and Lucky). It enabled Santana to pick right back up on a dramatic romance of what, for him, must’ve felt like some unrequited love (considering his situation). It was like for a reason, on and for some purpose, I kept a flat tummy before, during, and after-and baffled many friends and family as to how, or when Lucky came. It was miraculous, like it was destined in the cards for me to not be in that typical motherhood preggers woman form: fat, wobbling, stretch marks, and swollen-as if somehow God knew that would have been too much for Santana-his biggest nightmare and culture shock.
It was as if he spared him nine months of that kind of reality on the strength that I had already gone through enough emotionally during the few months preggers that I did-so he spared, and let live: Two birds from one throne...But at some point in the situation, Santana would be forced to deal with the reality that Lucky really was real-but have fun living in the carnival of your heart and head until then.
With that on my heart and in my head, I had to break him down. I had to break up all the only parts in this that he loved, cherished, and cared about-the parts that mattered and meant so much more to him than his own seed. I had to break him down to the point where, from the first girl he ever loved, had sex with, and shared his first meaningful experiences with—she would be the one to make him feel like none of that ever mattered, since what too, mattered to me-did not matter to him. I wanted him to feel like everything I had ever said in the name of a letter, linguistic, love, lust and in the heat of any sensual or romantic moment-all were nothing but mere burning lies and ashes through the fire, to limit, to the wall (for the chance to be with him, I gladly risked it all).
The bet and bounty of the head that Ms. You-Know-Who and everybody else had on our relationship had finally been delivered, and over something that I never even entertained the thought of ever being a reason for.
I had to break himdown.
I needed him to feel that all things involving love from my mind, body, heart, and mouth were nothing but bold-faced lies of the soap-opera kind and that we never had anything but close encounters of a long, strange kind.
So with without use of my feet, or my hands, and nothing but my mouth as my artillery; while standing high above him on that ledge and right in front of his bitch, I ripped and gutted him from inside out, upside down, and in ways that no ass-whipping could deliver and no death he cause. Nothing he did could compare to the way I was lighting into and killing his entire soul that day, and he deserved every hole I shot into him.
Like someone else’s nightmare I felt I had walked into, I wanted him to feel the same.
I wanted him to feel like he was standing there in ladies silk panties and a garter-questioning who really wore the pants in the relationship. I wanted Sordid to feel like that whole time with Santana, she had been getting fucked by a woman with a dildo who merely had a talented tongue.
I meant business.
Like the capital letter “T” turned sideways-I charged into his ego and anything he felt was safe, solid, and sacred between us. I spit venom all over into and up and through their shit-which a nice calm demeanor and not having to raise my voice barely and octave.
He was pissed and embarrassed and couldn’t take it anymore. So now, Nayba and I were both whores:
“Fuck both of you! Both of you are whores! She fucks anybody and you’re fucking somebody else too, who’s got a girlfriend too-you whore!” he slowly emphasized down to the spelling and the one word syllable-perfectly.
My brows frowned downward nearly expanded to the shape of a wide letter “V” like some evil cartoon character that never made it to the Disney frontal of his many head fantasies.
My mouth dropped and that second shot of botox spewed:
“Oh okay that’s the part that you didn’t know about. Kudos to you for being honest with your whore right here-by being honest with her and telling herthat you had a baby on the way by a girl gone far away who was in love with you and had always been faithful to your tired ass while you were down here in the city cheating with her whore ass… knowing that you had a baby in conception dammit! That’s the whore right there,” I pointed down at Sordid and redirected my scorn.
Sarcastically I said:
“Unfortunately for me, the guy who pursued me (for over a year and finally bagged me I might add) was so desperate to not lose what he worked so hard to get that he lied like a rug. Yeah, he sure did. Unlike you, he was dishonest in keeping from me-the fact that he indeed had a girlfriend (who wasn’t preggers I might add)…but unlike you honest Abe, that dick and the fuck was righteous-from day one. So take that from my mouth-what you couldn’t bare to hear the details about last night during our pillow talk where you preferred to be left with the flat version from Aya’s mouth---furthermore, his lying ass gives a good righteous fuck and that’s the reason I don’t fuck you! He fucks me senseless-so I can’t even think about you! He earned it and knows what to do to keep it!” I drilled in:
“Sure, he lied, we’re over that. And other than that, he handles his functions over here--something you couldn’t do too well. Now “whore” that!” I said.
I smirked and looked down at Naybor as if to give her a high five while she covered her mouth and continued to laugh like a Frat Boy at a Frat Boy college party. I let off an aggravating giggle while standing above him, looking down at him fold his bottom lip and stretch his nostrils-wanting so bad to jump up and strike me while I stood strumming pain to him and singing the death of our life together with my words…killing him softly. And he deserved every bit of it. He really wanted to kill me just about as bad as he wanted to break down and cry. I didn’t even care anymore. I dared him to buck this time. I continued:
“Go on and buck. Jump on me like you did last night. Jump on me in front of all those people over there and in front of your whore right here. Show her how you behave when somebody busts open your fantasy and takes your woman on a ride. Show her how you do,” I challenged, and proceeded to take another bite out of them both:
“And before you two whores think you’re going to continue to receive any life pumped into this bullshit relationship y’all call yourselves having while my poor baby is at home fatherless…Whore…You…” I pointed down at Sordid:
… “you can stand down there all you want to with your head turned down and afraid to look at me, but one thing about me is that I sure as hell wasn’t afraid to look the girl in the face whose man I later found out I was fucking. That’s because I’m not a coward. You’re a coward and he’s a paper tiger, and your sorry weak asses deserve one another.”
She still wouldn’t look at me, but I continued:
“You may not have the balls to look up at me, but you are listening. You are listening. So I’m gonna put this bug in your ear before you walk away from here with this clown, playing into his fantasies of any untruth about how he: my baby’s father…this “man-child…is the victim here and was cheated on: He’s no victim. No, he cheated on me, after my losing my virginity to him and coincidentally hooked up with another virgin and played Captain Hook to her too (for the night). ‘Cause he’s cartoon-minded. And your day is coming too-whore! This man-child wasn’t cheated on until well after our boy was born; that while conceived-he was cheating with you… and you knew! Your day is coming! So don’t get excited by playing into his fairytales. And don’t that think I’m going to walk away from here knowing that I’m about to be in this thing by myself and let both you whores think you’re gonna survive off any lie off of me. So Whore…I know that one ear facing me is listening, so take in all in.” I said.
I looked down at Santana and continued to speak my peace:
“And Santana’s right, I am fucking somebody else, and I don’t want him and haven’t for a long time now. So know that we’ve all met, and everybody’s clear on the 4-1-1, who did what, and who drop-kicked who; you don’t have to worry about dropping to your knees and crying at his feet for having to leave and come to see me anymore, ‘cause I don’t have to play pretend with ass anymore. So you best be conjuring up yourself some new damsel in distress fantasy to try and sustain him, ‘cause I can’t help you with that one anymore,” I revealed.
“You whores should be good and bored now, ‘cause now, I’m not the source of your lil’ unrequited love you had going. Whore, I don’t want your man. And don’t let him fool you into thinking that I do. I merely wanted him to do right by what’s innocent in this, which is what we both made a decision to do last night and he forfeited today-which is what brought me here. Not about him. So don’t get excited.” I said.
I wanted to make sure that Santana would not leave this mess he made with any life taken from me and mine only to be breathed into some happily ever after on our account.
He sat there to my right with his legs swinging on the ledge.
Sordid stood to the left of me nervous-still, with her face turned to the ground-still-trying to look innocent and looking like she was ready to cry and die. I felt no remorse for that bitch or her feelings. She had no remorse or consideration for me and mine, so fuck her and the shoes she stood below me riding the sides of while never having the gumption to look me in the face the entire time I stood there.
In those moments standing there something happened.
That wish that I prayed for to help me repair, renew and prepare, felt like it was working.
I did not shed one tear. My heart did not flinch any faster a beat per second, and I had no fear. It was in those moments while standing there, although being a real bitch about but speaking my heart; something changed inside of me. In between my venom while standing there on that ledge; those doors, those revelations, and those lights kept coming on:
It was all coming back to me as I pieced together he and Sordid’s details from his confessional from the previous night and suddenly, I remembered the moment when I stopped having sex with him during my pregnancy. It was one of my weekends home from the preggers jail.
From the rear, I remembered he was fucking me abnormally hard; rougher and more violent than we had ever fucked in the history of our relationship. In the middle of it, I was totally turned off and made him stop. It annoyed me, because I was pregnant and it just didn’t seem appropriate for him to be fucking me like that.
I was very emotional during my pregnancy. I remembered how during one of my weekends home from the preggers jail, Santana and me were at his family reunion. They had some relatives come down from Canton. He had this one girl cousin who practically followed me from every table of the park-aggravating me, picking and prodding at me to the point that I was in literal tears and yelling at Santana who acted as though I was over-reacting; trying to make me think that her cynicism was merely apart of her personality and that what she was doing wasn’t personal. He tried to make me think it was all in my head. That day, I was so exhausted, stressed out, and overwhelmed. He should have protected me from that knowing how emotional I was during that time and he did not. I couldn’t wait to go home and get away from him-even. I hated him that day. I was totally turned off.
In the middle of all of this, I remembered how on one of my weekends home from the preggers jail, one of Santana’s close relatives stopped me on the back porch of his mother’s house, coercing me into a conversation about all the cons (and none of the pros) about our keeping the baby. I remembered how she presented to me-my life on a platter of sticky, sweet, shiny appetizing candy in comparison to the sauerkraut it would turn to should I keep the child; describing to me how all the fun and comings and goings on with my friends would be no more-as if my life would come to a complete end when I brought a baby into the world. That conversation was for a reason.
Back then, those weren’t pieces of anything that meant anything, especially considering how attentive and caring Santana was to me every weekend that I came home, I had no reason to assume that he was behind any of this. I had no reason to think that he was trying to make me get rid of the baby or at last resort: lose it-by way of sexing me to my baby’s unlucky death that by the grace of God, didn’t happen despite the fact that he came early.
Speaking my peace while standing on that ledge; that 100 watts of light put everything into perspective that back then-I did not see. I snapped right back into a special kind of consciousness and calm that came over me. In the midst of this nightmare, I relinquished all the illusions of our past, along with it; having learned more than I had lost after the last breath I took when I had spoken.
Immediately, I untied the knot out of my sexy dress and that moment was like untying a knot inside me-about all of this, him, and them.
Suddenly, the storm was gone from my mind, and my heart was unclouded. I got over this situation and accepted them as illusions and life in those moments and mere blasts from the past. With the blink of my dry eyes, acceptance took over, and Santana merely became just an old high-school first love and boyfriend to me.
Everything went into reverse.
It was like an outer-body experience: one-me was standing there, and the other-me was helping renew, repair, and prepare me for the move on--right there in the middle of the moment.
Suddenly, the scene of Yoshi and Darren looking at all of this was apart of our past.
Pierce and Isis had long driven off-but even the two of them together as a couple, was apart of our past.
What I went through and my feelings and loneliness while up at the preggers jail had come and gone-that too as apart of my past. In this history of mine in the making, that experience taught me what it was really like to really feel “lonely” and I never felt “lonely” again because I knew what really feeling “lonely” was like.
I let it go.
Hell, even while standing there looking at Sordid’s side view-hoping that she would get the nerve to look my in my face became apart of the past as well, she was never going to-and in that moment, I accepted that, too.
I let it all go.
I let go of being worried about being a single parent.
I was done lying to myself and thinking that I needed an ally in a man-child in this thing, all merely for the sake of keeping up appearances-to keep from looking lopsided with a baby on my hip. Where I was from, that was no culture shock anyways. Damned near every friend of mine was a product of a single parent home-absent father, being raised by their mothers and older siblings, and lived.
The fantasy was no more.
No more: “boy meets girl-boy loses girl, boy gets pretty girl back.”
No more: “first time love, then comes marriage,” …nothing became of that but the baby carriage that, as a result; there would be no singing, no dancing, no acting, no painting and no going off to college just yet, either.
I accepted that.
The school I had attend and trained for all that at; all that I had learned outside of what was about to be useful to me for now: Home Economics, was apart of my past-so in my mind, I took a bow to the life and to the boy I met there and once knew.
It was real life for me now.
My clear and present eyes were finally open and I began to truly see.
Repairing, renewing and preparing was taking over me.
The right here, the right now: minute by minute, moment by moment.
Regardless of the fact that I was set to attend night and summer classes in order to graduate on time, I accepted the reality of my current situation right there as it was in that very moment:
I was high school dropout with a baby. I was a literal single parent with an absent father who in this history in the making; would graduate to being “estranged” altogether, and at that literal moment, I was a statistic-something I fought to avoid being labeled.
My mind stopped trying to resist that was my reality (at that very moment).
I did my part-I did all that I could do.
I did not have anything to prove to anyone anymore.
And as I stood atop that ledge over both of them, I took a deep breath and let it go.
I was calm.
I was clear.
The strumming was happening to me right about now.
I could now hear every word of Anita Baker strumming my pain, singing my life with her words, killing me softly with this song-telling my whole life with those words mimicking my life at this very moment in time: “No royal kiss could save me, no magic spell to spin. My fantasy is over-my life must now begin. My story ends, as stories do. Reality steps into view. No longer living life in paradise - no fairy tales…”
…As Nayba and I walked away, I did not look back and nor didn’t care to. I accepted my fairytale relationship, my fairytale dreams, and my fairytale life as something that was no more in this moment of mine. In this very moment, I accepted that the only stage I would be taking a bow from was the one I had just hopped down from-from speaking a special kind of peace, where real life began from the moment my feet hit the ground when I jumped down from that ledge.
Meanwhile, in this history of mine in the making; I was still young and trying to find my way. Considering the slips and falls I continued to go through since Santana, I cannot say that I was getting it all right in my naiveté, but in my naiveté I got it all right about him for sure. Just like I warned him, his fairytale fantasies came to an end with Sordid and he deposited a child with her who too, is left with a broken heart and no dad.
Over the years he would come by and talk, explaining to me about the same kinds of things going on in his life where I would just listen to the stories-knowing all to well that when the reality part of it kicked in, he’d go running. Stories about the very same thing that happened with us-our child, seemed to follow and plague him. Before he knew it, he had a clan. One, he escaped the “fate” of because the mother was in a relationship and got married, she needed to pass the child off as her husbands so she stuffed a picture of the lil’ girl in his pocket to while fleeing. At least he has picture of all his kids, and although he’s no good to any one of them, I at least got a chance to see what my son’s brothers and sister’s all look like.
He knew me well, and was accustomed to detailing confessing so he confessed to the fact that eventually he and Aya fucked over at a girl and her sister’s house who too, went to school with us. His transgressions were plenty, and he didn’t seem to care or have a reason-just opportunity. He seemed lost, but called it life. Eventually, he slept with Sordid’s sister too. He just said: “fuck everything and everybody,” I guess. He told me how the “f’s” went down and I just listened to the details of it all, never having to ask for any elaboration whatsoever. He knows me and knew what to do. So I just listened to every cranny and nookie...
We were amicable. Amicable and okay to the point where on occasion, I’d stop over sometimes after work and he’d fix his room up-nervously, smiling and happy to just have me there curled up on his bed taking a nap. He’d get a thrill just by watching me rest, rubbing my shoulders and smiling, being silly, bursting out saying: “You were my first piece of cock, man.” I would laugh and return: “I raised you.” We’d laugh.
He never changed.
The only thing that changed was that he became a chronic weed smoker. It was odd to see him smoking blunts, looking experienced-and actually kind of sexy doing it…like he was some rugged Marlboro man now. Walking in the room, disturbing his guest from her my nap; I would be laying on my side with my hand laid across my waist looking over at him-lips twisted my lips and shaking my head laughing to myself. Immature, looking at me he’d screech: “Whatttt it’s my room!” I’d laugh.The way he would prepare his space for rolling his blunts, crack open the cigar, or roll from natural leaf-you would swear he was from some island in Jamaica. He could do it with his eyes closed. I would just laugh at him and shake my head, because he wasn’t a little boy anymore (on the outside) but indeed was, on the inside.
The way he looked at me never changed since we were young. His biting his bottom lip, and that love in his eyes-just never changed. Before Geno could sail by, I would snap my fingers and tell him that he never had my permission to look at me in the eyes like that that as long as he has a child with me that he doesn’t even know and have a relationship with. So he resorted to ringing my doorbell, and when I opened without saying a word; give me a kiss, handed me a card with my first name, his last name written on the front of it, and ran. I just shook my head. I never tore the envelope open-because I knew it probably had a letter inside…but I smiled.
He moved from his apartment and I never seen him again hence, another card after all these years yet, again. I call him Peter Pan. And my Peter Pan just:
I felt bad for him somewhat. He was so good-looking, so talented, so charming. I never thought he would grow to not even care about life anymore (in this way). Sometimes I blamed myself because it all started with me-one kind of way, but ended with me-a different kind of way.
Nobody wants to hear about the memories of their first love being something that fucked their mind and heart up and changed them forever. I did find a little bit of solace in the fact that although I refused to be receptive to it; he never stopped looking at me the same way-as if we were still this teenage couple without a child though... It’s like, he and I was all he could see, and somebody else (even though the child is his) was a disruption. While over one day, I handed him a picture of our son with me, together. He was so happy-with that same look in his eyes. But all he saw (and acknowledged) was me. I couldn’t understand his ability to disconnect that. That hurt me. But I understood, by this time.
Some things you just can’t fight, even when you know what you are fighting is wrong, and you are right, and with every right to. That day, I rolled up and tied a knot in my skirt ‘cause I wanted to kick Sordid’s ass right after I literally kicked Santana. She would not look at me nor would she turn her body towards me. You look like a fool literally trying to fight somebody that won’t fight you back. But I had her right ear turned toward me and I put it to her. That was my fight that she won’t forget.
Later into history of mine in the making, Santana was no better a dad while paying child support for years than he was before paying child support, until the day that it stopped (or thereafter). None of that was going to make him be a father. He didn’t play those silly ass games that some men play-who feel that because they are paying child support, they can disrupt the mother with custody and quality time fights, KNOWING they could really care less but instead, really only want their “money’s worth.” He didn’t play those games, so I didn’t play Baby Mama Drama games with him before, during or after all of that. I digressed. And I let him fly free on a ticket of acceptance.
Some things you just can’t fight when there are no dukes up, knives wielding, or guns drawn. It makes no sense to try to. Some shit you just cannot fight.
I have no Baby Daddy drama any more than I have a father to my child.
I accept the fact that I have “Baby Deady” whose main concern was the life of the mother of it.
So there’s no sense in any Baby Mama drama...
Knowing him the way that I do, I think his problems are more created, imaginary, and mental than what really seems black, white, and trife.
But before all this amicability, later-in this history of mine in the making-not without a fight, and only because I felt like if I didn’t, I would be letting my child down in his fight to make what really is wrong-right; I did not come to accept what I always knew about Santana simply not wanting to deal with the reality of what happens after procreating during the fantasy—until later, around this amicable time of ours.
But after that fight, I eventually laid my guns down on that, took my son’s gun, and helped him focus his aims on me, only. For that was who was in this thing with him. All his other “baby mommas” probably think he’s just a deadbeat and loser, but they have no idea about how he “began,”-what I grew to know to be as the kinds of ideals that played on his head about life and love. They don’t know, because they just don’t know “him”; his beginnings-only I know that secret about him.
I look at him and know two things about myself that I know like no one will ever know: Loneliness and Acceptance.
In my relationship with him, while preggers and away; I experienced what it was like to be at the deepest depths of loneliness, down the longest and most dimmest of hallways, farthest in distance from anyone claiming to love and care for you, the quietist of rooms, at the most inadaptable stage of your lifetime, and during your most emotional state of mind with absolutely no one to talk to-absolutely.I’ve never experienced or claimed being “lonely” since then. When people claim to be lonely, most have no idea. I just roll my eyes in my head and say: “Learn to be okay with being alone with yourself, because you don’t know lonely.” Even somebody incarcerated couldn’t compare to understanding the depths of the kind of lonely I knew lonely could be.
Because of him, I know what it’s like to truly being accepting of someone as a result of the most unusual and unacceptable of circumstances yet, know that it’s about them-nothing to do with you…so you adapt, and learn to be accepting of that person because they just love you and wanted you; even if they couldn’t share it with what too, was a part of them, too.
I have no bitterness, no longing. He’s just like that-across the board with all his seeds, unfortunately. It’s psychological and something inside his mind rather than inside his heart that he has to deal with. So I accept and understand that. That’s the epitome of understanding what accepting someone is, I guess.
I think in life sometimes, you really do get what you ask for. And none of it comes with a warning sign or some way that tells you it’ll all be greater later (or happily ever after)…. Part of me felt bad because I’ll never know if as the young girl that I was, did I create this monster by having this young girl ideal about “how” and “what kind of” fairytale-like person my first boyfriend would have to be--and in walked Santana with no warning sign. I was growing up, but he wasn't. I matured just enough to get over wanting a “fairytale person,” and just wanted a “person.” He never mastered that part-with me, or anyone else in his life...
But as history in the making would have it; my life away from the fairytale aint so perfect either. I may have had it all figured out with Santana, but I still had yet to deal with the monster I was creating in Pucker and going forward, because this time-until I got it all right with myself; it, and other situations built me up, and broke me down, too.
Call it extreme acceptance or downright stupidity, either way-it all boiled down to pure unadulterated naïveté…