For as long as I can remember, I’ve never had a Valentine. At this stage of life (not that I’m super old or anything), I still don’t have one – at least not in the sense that we have all been conditioned to accept a Valentine.
Intimate relationships with significant others evade me. They always have. If there has ever been a spark, that’s all it was, a spark. And icy cold winds follow that spark to out that flame and give my heart frostbite.
Based on that reasoning, Candice has never ever had a Valentine… – because she’s never truly had a boyfriend.
To all of you, who at this point gasped and repeated the questions:
How have you never had a boyfriend?
Is something wrong with you?
…or anything remotely close to questioning the reality of my life – please, carry on. Because I often ask myself those questions.
The interrogation occurs more frequently during this time of year, too. You know, when Jack and Jill go up the hill and yaddi yaddi yah and then they get shot by cupid.
The Reality of Love in Jamaica
Not that what I’m about to say is unique to my beloved country or anything. I’m just speaking from the reality I live in.
After some reflection, I’ve come to the line of:
There is nothing wrong with me for being single.
For all the single ones out there, I want you to repeat those words.
Our Men are Predominantly Aggressive
I don’t like that. Definitely not an attraction point!
My experience has 7/10 times been that an aggressive man sees me and likes me and approaches with his aggression.
No, sir! I don’t do well with your aggressive approach. So go away.
And when I do that, he aggressively responds and attacks me with words. Then he aggressively approaches another woman. And, the cycle continues.
Some like the aggressive approach and they get to the next stage with Mr. Aggressive. But that’s their life story. The relationship may or may not work depending on their dynamic.
Anyways, for as long as I can remember, the culture of about 90% of the relationships I know of has had levels of abuse.
Parts of my family – the parts with healthy and loving relationships – make up the other 10%.
All others include some level of abuse.
That abuse is inclusive of mental, physical, emotional and psychological.
I learned about the various forms of abuse long before any teacher or textbook could ever explain it to me. At home, minus disagreements, love was the order of the day.
So, imagine my sheltered ass, going out into the world to either witness or learn that relationships aren’t always or only about love.
Once I stepped into the World, I grew up hearing about this man beating his wife and learning about these couples abusing each other. Initially, there were the one and few reports of abuse leading to murder-suicide.
As I grew older, the reports and observances didn’t get any better. It’s become ‘normal‘ for the news to report that another man has killed his lover and then killed himself. The narrative is often:
they were so loving towards each other except that one time when this that and the other…
And, don’t get me started on the victim blamers. The ones who say:
She should’ve done this or that.
He could’ve done this or that.
That’s for another conversation.
Down with victim-blaming!
Refusing the Arrow
I’m sorry, not sorry. The 10% I have of healthy loving relationship examples is not enough for me to feel comfortable enough to put myself completely out there.
I am scared, to be honest.
My environment doesn’t suggest that it’s okay to be shot by Cupid. As far as I know, if I allow the cherub to shoot me, I run a high risk of being slapped by his fisted hand, shot by his gun, slashed by his machete or even stabbed by his knife.
I know. That’s no way to live. ‘You can’t be afraid of love.’
Love isn’t what I’m afraid of.
As I dodge arrows or get sideswiped by Cupid
With my single ass, I’m going to embark on a purposeful self-love journey this week.
Don’t get it twisted… Candice loves herself.
I’m only gonna sprinkle more love and be a bit more purposeful with that love.
While everyone gets chocolate and engagements and flowers and dates from their Valentine, I’ll be my own Valentine.
For each day of this week, I’m going to do something for myself that I either have never done or haven’t done in a long time.
After all, who says I can’t get love because I have no Valentine?
And yes, I’ll document each day leading up to V-Day.
Signed with love,