Last Night I Fell In Love
Minding my business, eyes focused on the road, not really taking in the surroundings. No need really. I’ve driven this road so much that I can really do it in my sleep, and often feel like I’m sleeping when I drive it, waking up in front of my apartment with no recollection on how I got there.
This was no different, for the most part. I recall the huge Grinch stealing Christmas in someone’s yard, 2 stories tall, and thinking how ridiculous it was. I recall the black living room set in front of the thrift store and thinking it looked awfully clean and modern for that store. I remember wondering how the lady in the minivan behind me managed to shake the traffic and get in front of me, and committing to reclaiming my place in front of her.
Somewhere in all of that, I turned off Raekwon’s Cuban Linx Pt II, and was listening to the radio. No, I don’t recall doing it. Some remixed version of the delusional dude chasing R. Kelly’s style and claiming to have invented sex came on and forced me to switch stations, wondering when I started listening to the radio. Needing to escape the madness, I turned to an “adult” station to seek refuge. The music hit me, the song just beginning, no words yet. My stomach clenched. My face got hot. My mind started racing. I was so involved in my physical response to the song that I never identified the singer. His voice came in, silky smooth and clear as crystal. “GODDAMN YOU, LUTHER!” He was singing The Night I Fell In Love.
What did my mind do? It grabbed its flashlight and went searching for my heart and ganged up on me. Near tears, traveling at breakneck speed down memory lane, I suddenly wanted nothing more than to be in love. To feel those feelings of warmth, peace, and joy deep in my belly. I wanted to know a face on the other end of brief call-ins, I-love-you texts (remember the 1-4-3 on ya pager?), a warm body on the other side of the bed, big open arms to wrap me up and take me away like Calgon. I saw babes with our blended features, the best of Mommy and Daddy standing at our knees looking up in amazement at the love their parents share.
The fantasy slapped with a sting like a wet fish across the face. I even reached up to feel my cheek where the sensation lingered. I drove faster, wanting to get home and out of the tight air in my car that was filled with this desire to love and be loved. I had committed to a selfish period, guaranteed myself that I’d only be responsible to and for self right now--outside of the children I care for and about all day at work--and get into ME! I felt like a traitor in the car, arguing with myself that “I’m not ready for that yet, leave me alone.” I gave myself the side-eye that read, “OK, but don’t sleep. You’re open again and it’ll come for you faster than a young nut.” Wait for it...that one’ll come to you, I promise.
Nervously, I await, scared of the way life gives me what I need in packages I wouldn’t normally choose. Time to gather my coping mechanisms near and sit with my arsenal to protect myself against impending vulnerability. I swear...I’m just not ready but, last night, apparently I fell in love. I can't wait to find out who HE is.
Watch me move.