It was a humid, hot, muggy August day as it often was during this time of year in the DMV. Being outside was torture but there wasn’t anything Shelley – the new mother and recent college dropout – or the other million DMV residents could do about that.
Shelley was 4’11’’. Mocha chocolate complexion. 100lbs with a unique fashionable swag. She wore her fingernails long and her hair short, cut in a cropped style. The color was auburn with a hint of honey blonde.
Her personality was bold and her look was fierce.
Snappy yet sweet.
Serious yet sarcastic.
Finally, some AC, she thought as she turned the door knob and entered into the back door of the house where she lived with her parents. She grew up in this house and now was raising her six-month old son, Jayvynn, in the same house.
When Jayvynn was first born she would ask herself daily if she was dreaming. It seemed surreal that she was a mother at 19. She had hoped to be back in school for the fall semester but money was tight. Leaving her with no other option except getting a job.
Shelley had just arrived home from her first day of work. It was a two mile walk – but felt like five – from the Metro Train Station. She hated riding public transportation but what else could she do? She didn’t have a car or money for a car.
As she walked through the kitchen sweat rolled down her forehead into her right eye causing it to sting and burn. She quickly blinked and shut her eye tight. She didn’t want to rub her eye with her dirty hands especially after being on the train for one hour touching railings, poles and seats. She grabbed a paper towel off the counter top and wiped her face.
“I need a car”, she whispered to herself but she knew that would be no time soon.
She approached the staircase off of the kitchen to go down to her basement apartment. It was two bedrooms with a full size bath. Just enough space for her and Jayvynn. Her only dislikes about living in the basement were, no kitchen and no private entrance. When she was younger the basement was the place where she and her friends would often hang out playing table tennis and shooting pool. Those tables were still there taking up the little bit of space she had but the memories they gave her would often bring a smile to her face.
Buzzz…buzzzzz. The vibration of her phone broke her train of thought. She rummaged through her bag digging deep to the bottom. She was finding everything but her phone. She pulled out lotion, body spray, make up, baby wipes, pepper spray, a fingernail kit, hair dye, a bag of M&M’s, deodorant, floss, a teething ring, old receipts, and all kinds of stuff. “I really need to clean this bag out.” She had plans to clean out the junk and extra stuff but she hadn’t done it yet.
“Finally,” she said with relief as she pulled her phone out only to miss the call.
Missed call Tee displayed across the screen. TaKeisha, short for Tee, was Shelley’s friend. Tee was a fast-paced, soprano pitch talker. Dark skin with big bright eyes. She reminded Shelley of Dijonay from The Proud Family. Her body was even shaped like hers. When they first met in eighth grade Shelley actually thought she was Dijonay in real life. Tee had just transferred to the school and the two girls instantly clicked. They were inseparable, from eighth to tenth grade. However, half-way through their tenth grade year Tee parents divorced and she went to live with her dad across town. As time passed they continued to stay in touch but not like before. Their conversations dwindled with each passing day and soon became obsolete when Shelley went away for college. But now that Shelley was no longer away at school they had reconnected and talked more frequently than before.
The phone buzzed again. It was Tee calling back.
“Hello.” Shelley answered the phone while throwing all the junk back into her bag.
“How was it?” Tee asked in her soprano fast-paced voice.
“It…..was fine…I guess. It’s retail. What can I say?” Shelley responded in a sarcastic tone dragging out her words.
Tee helped Shelley get her job at Hollister, although she no longer worked at that location.
“You can say…Thanks Tee! You’re a doll!” Tee busted out in laughter and Shelley joined her. They laughed like two school girls on the playground.
“It will grow on you Shelley like it did me. I love it! I get to meet new people every day. And guess what?” Tee continued talking at what Shelley considered 90 miles per minute. She swore Tee didn’t breathe when she spoke. “I met someone today. Well, I didn’t really meet him today but I saw him today for the first time in a long time today. He is tall, light skin, dark brown eyes, nice body. He looks like Drake. Girl, I told him that you would go out with him. I showed him a picture of you and he was in LOVE. Well he wasn’t really in love but he said he wanted to meet you. So I told him that you were free Saturday night. Are you free? Please say -”
“WHAT?” Shelley bellowed. “Why would you do that?”
“Because you told me the other day that you were trying to get your baby daddy off your back and meet someone new. You only need to go out with him once and see if you like him. You’ve been single for one whole year. I don’t know why you broke up with John anyways. Y’all got my cute little baby Jayvynn together and y’all was supposed to be my little happy family. Girl, you crushed my dreams. Y’all were like the perfect couple. Will and Jada. Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis. GIRL…MICHELLE AND BARACK….”
Tee went on and on and on and on as she always did. As Tee ranted Shelley recalled the break up with Jayvynn’s dad, John.
Shelley and John were high school sweethearts. They were voted the cutest couple two years in a row. Everyone, including some of the teachers, had high hopes for their relationship to lead to marriage. Shelley and John had the same hopes but after graduation Shelley went away to school in California and John stayed home to attend community college. The distance between them weighed heavily. The time difference made it even worse. When John was ready to connect with Shelley it was too early her time. When Shelley wanted to connect with John it was too late his time. At first they were determined to stay together but as the days and months went on Shelley met new friends and found interest in new guys. She didn’t want to break it off with John but not seeing him in months and not talking to him in weeks were too much. She knew that their high school relationship had been great but now she was in college and she realized that the world was much bigger than her circle that she had left at home.
Eventually, Shelley called it off with John, not to date other guys but to be single, only to find out one month later that she was pregnant.
“SHELLEY! Are you listening? He wants to go out with you this weekend.” Tee screamed. Interrupting Shelley thoughts.
“Umm, you said he looks like Drake,” Shelley muttered.
“Girl, yeah. What’s wrong with you? You not mad are you? Why you sound disappointed? Is everything okay?” Tee asked.
“No. I was….just thinking…but anyways. Yeah I need to get John off my back. I feel like I’m trapped. Okay. I guess I’ll go.”
You’ve just finished reading The Search Part 1. This blog is a prelude to my book for singles entitled – Dating Smart 9 Tips to Transform Your Crazy Dating Life. Purchase your copy TODAY!
Tweet me Tweet #DatingSmart
Read The Search Part 2
Single ladies! Sign up for my free 5 day E-coaching session The 5 Things Every Single Woman Must Know.