In case I haven’t mentioned, I’m single. And Yes, I am looking. Hell, I am avidly looking. At the gas station, at the grocery store, at the UPS man when he drops off my Amazon packages. We all know the delivery man is a Godsend. Lol, I wish I was joking.
As much as I’ve been looking, I haven’t quite found the right person. The person I think is my person. I am very selective and I say that affirmatively. Not like ohh but I’m very selective. Like being selective is a bad thing.
I find it refreshing. I can weed out before anyone gets too involved. I’m at a place in my life where I know what I want. I’ve written it down too many times to count. I call on my ancestors to guide him to me daily lol. I know they’re preparing him for me, as I am being prepared for him.
I know what I want.
That’s a sentence I couldn’t say let alone write a year ago. Mainly because the moment you make a bold statement like that you leave the listener room to ask one question… what? And it’s at that exact moment you’ve opened the door to your vulnerability.
You have to choose whether or not to let the questioner in on the truth of who you are and who you think is actually best for you. Then get the unwanted response of, you know what I think?… blah blah blah. No! I don’t know what you think of what I want.
And in fact, I don’t think I care either. One of the most eye-opening moments in life is when you find out exactly how someone you think knows you, actually perceive you. There’s a point where you have to take ownership of the fact that who you think you are and who this person thinks you are and who that person thinks you are, may, in fact, be three different people.
The scary part is they’re all right. You aren’t one of those personas, you are all. When you realize that, you become the best person to determine what it is that you want. So, I know what I want in a partner, a friend, a lover. I know.
So, my selective truth, a deal breaker depending on the way the conversation goes; I automatically give a side eye to a man when I find out he doesn’t own a passport. I see that “wow your judge-y look” through the screen. And I accept it. Hell, I’ll even own it, yes, I am “judge-y”.
From the moment you tell me you don’t have a passport that gives you a key to the rest of the world, yes, I question our compatibility. I question whether or not you are aware of your privilege. Whether you are aware of your energy in this world and how you impact the people, places and things around you.
I judge you for not understanding that, that blue passport is your freedom. When you choose not to have one, it is your prison. It’s like showing up at the bus stop with no ticket. The buses destination: the world, enlightenment, culture, passion, laughter, humanity. So yes, I judge you because I’m worried, you aren’t open. I’m worried you don’t know your wealth. I’m worried you don’t know your worth.
As an American, especially as a black American, I find it important to acknowledge my privilege. I was born in a country that tells me I’m from somewhere else, and I am a foreigner in my home. I am African first, where I have never lived, and then American, the place I know un-apologetically.
Emphatically, I go anywhere in this world outside of the U.S, especially Asia. I am first believed to be African. Before I speak, I am looked at twice. I can sense the wonderment in their eyes. It’s curiosity. Refugee? Illegal? Employee? How? Why? And then I speak and the question of how changes into an abrupt smile and its “ohhh American!”
And the same lady who stood in the bathroom mirror right next to mine, and didn’t return my smile, now has a cousin in America she has been meaning to visit and continues to go on and on to the same brown skin she refused to smile back at.
I can’t help but notice what being American gets me when I’m outside of the US. Standing in front of immigration, a bit flustered after a 14-hour trip with a 5-year-old, I hand the “wrong” passport to the officer. “Visa” he demands. “Where is your visa?” Confused and embarrassed, I quickly hand him my ticket to freedom, my U.S passport.
“I apologize”, I say. “I am American”. I declare it affirmatively, I guess in hopes he would believe me. In hopes, he would hand me back my other passport and pretend it never happened. The one that doesn’t work quite as well. The one that can’t quite save me if I get caught in a foreign country after a natural disaster.
The one that can’t let me in or out depending on where I am or where I’m trying to go. You see when we don’t allow ourselves to acknowledge our privileges we make it even harder for the people who don’t have the same ones. We make it harder for a level playing field to exist. We make it impossible to connect with the world beyond the limitations of the world that exists in our minds.
In that instance, my reality flashed before my eyes, what if I only had the “wrong” passport. What if I couldn’t just go wherever, whenever? Who would I be?
So yes, on a first date, I ask you where you’re from and I want to know where you’ve been. Because regardless of the answer to those two questions, the next sentence is what I care about, are you going anywhere?