loved.

I was afraid.

I inherently knew that I had to go back to my alma mater.

Not the school so much, but really, the city.

I had been through so much, this year. I knew I had to go where the love was at. Where I didn’t have to worry about arbitrary shit like “is my ex gonna be here?” and “what passive aggressive bullshit will I have to deal with today?”.

Just love. Love. That’s all I remember about Norfolk. Love. Any bullshit I had to deal with in undergrad melted away. Or I forgot about it. Or I grew past it. Past beefs no longer exist. It’s like entering another planet.

Nothing like home.

NYC is toxic. I needed a break from all that poison in the air, literally and figuratively. I can’t leave just yet, my life has really trended upward itself in the last few months. There’s a ton of opportunity; opportunities I can really take advantage of. With that said, NYC still kills you. Slowly. People will try to sell you on otherwise; they also tie their identity to living in NYC. I am not one of those people.

But I still love my city. And my borough. But when you spend a good year, year and a half, dealing with terrible experiences in it, you may need to go elsewhere for a few.

So I left.

What I was so afraid of was…….had my experiences permanently changed me? Do my friends in VA love someone who no longer exists? I am a dramatically different person from this time, last year. I physically don’t look the same (hours of gym solitude, with bouts of terrible, depression fueled eating in between), I am on another plane emotionally, and I am nowhere near as spiritually in sync as I once was. All of these things together affect your personality, what you do, what makes you smile, what pisses you off, etc. I was afraid that my friends would not recognize me, that we couldn’t hang out and laugh like we used to. The free-wheeling, carefree Robert was dormant for so long, could I bring him back? Was he even real anymore? I didn’t know. I never knew.

I was so concerned because…that’s my biggest fear. I have always been afraid of “losing myself”. I’ve watched people work their asses off to become successful, get there, and completely lose touch. I’ve witnessed people go through incredibly painful situations and never be the same after. The fact that these could become my reality, terrifies me. I have been afraid of recognition and being great at what I do (whatever that may be), forever. I never really think my bad experiences have affected me long term, but they certainly have. I’ve seen the pitfalls up close; I didn’t want to be a victim.

I knew that I was coming off of a bad stretch, and depression (and anxiety!) that existed before that only worsened over time. I was….sullen. I was not myself. Certain things going right for me, namely me getting into Cosmo and getting published on Noisey (the start of two things that have been dreams of mine, for a really long time). I felt…better.  Right before Homecoming, I started to feel regular again. But this would be a test; just how “regular” was I?

I was really regular.

Norfolk felt like 2009 again. Back when I was much happier. Back when I had weak ass struggle waves in my head. Back when everything was ok. Love at every turn. No pain. No suffering. No sadness at all. Old friends. New friends. It was great.

Everyone treated me like they always have. Some of them knew what was going on with me. They showed me a lot of concern, a lot of care, never made me feel awkward. It was therapeutic.

They didn’t have to look out for me. I haven’t stayed in touch as well as I need to. I don’t feel I’ve done enough as a friend.

But regardless of what I do (or don’t do), the love never left.

The love never left.

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Condoms are USELESS.

But what if my boy Mooj is wrong??

What if “it” really is all about COCK and TITS and ASS and BUTTHOLE PLEASURES and JAGGED HEAD DILDOS????

Here’s something you don’t know about me: most of my life, I was the 40 Year Old Virgin.

Let’s set the scene: picture a lanky, frail, 18 year old black kid. He’s in Walmart with his dad, furnishing his freshman dorm. EXCITE! Now let’s continue. Right before my family left, he gives me a HUGE ASS box of condoms and tells me “take this”. His eyes are beaming with pride. His young, promising son is going to lay his meat down all over Virginia and terrorize his city. He also told me “You have potential, these girls might try to trap you!”. I take his knowledge (and all these damn rubbers) and start the college experience.

 

NO.

 

I was a fucking DWEEB. I wasn’t getting ANY ASS but my pops definitely thought I was a teenage Bill Bellamy. I was an ultra-virgin because I looked funny until I was about 16.5. I got my first kiss somewhere around there; we clicked teeth because I was a DEPLORABLE kisser. In that lil space between then and graduating high school, I was attracting girls I didn’t really like. If a girl I DID like noticed me, I turned it over in the red zone when I coulda just….*raises eyebrows* ran it in there. So I was TOTALLY in over my head.

I had a  freshman year(college) bae early, but I botched that because I was so, so insecure. I let some other girls convince me she was getting PLOWED by dudes from a  nearby school….and I got cold feet. She was fine too…SO YEAH! I’m a moron. I also tore that girl’s bra tryna unleash her chest; I can still hear the cup separating from the fabric in my nightmares. Even worse, the rumors were false.

I always thought that sex should be special. Even as a kid. My parents explained sex to me early, they gave me a book about it; I understood it. I wanted the first time I had sex to be special, with a girl I really liked. I wanted to see stars and constellations whilst inside that thang. So I held out for “The One”. There were girls who liked me but I was so overwhelmed by the idea of sex, I couldn’t even make a play for them. Or I would boss up and get at them, but I couldn’t keep them interested. I didn’t know anything about consistency, or what women seek, or even when they liked me (I still kinda don’t but I am MUCH better).

So I wanted something special, but I was also scared and overthinking things.

I have a CRAZY fear of STD’s. A day or so after one of my early makeout sessions, I had a pimple on my lip. I SWORE I HAD HERPES. AM I GONNA RIDE THE VALTREX HORSE??? IS IT GONNA COVER MY FACE?? IS IT GONNA GO TO MY WEE WEE?

No. It didn’t. It was regular ass acne because my skin is greasier than the bottom of a Five Guys’ bag. Still, I was nervous. In addition to STD’s, I was afraid of accidental pregnancy, sores, my dick falling off the next morning…you know, RATIONAL shit.

To make things even MORE interesting, about halfway through my college career, my dad became a Born Again Christian. His parents were always very religious, so I wasn’t surprised. The thing about this is…it changed his views on pre-marital sex. I’m 21 at this point. I’ve engaged in FILTH but I haven’t actually had SEX. INTERCOURSE . THE OL’ IN OUT IN OUT. He’s telling me I shouldn’t have sex before I’m married. The same guy who gave me enough rubbers that I could put 6 on my meat, the rest on my fingers, and still have enough for next semester. I looked at him like he was absolutely crazy.

I turn 22. I go through a bad breakup. AFTER that, I finally have sex with the ensuing rebound. I was TRASH. She still gassed me and positively subtweeted that “Madden on Rookie” stroke I was doling out. I ALMOST hated her because she was annoying as hell and NEVER stopped talking ….but she was cute. I kinda fell in it by accident. She had her eye on me and called me one day. She said “I had a dream we were having sex, but I don’t know what to do, since I’m celibate”(what a weak ass opening move). I responded, cool as a fan: “Call me back when you actually wanna make that a reality”. She hit my phone in less than a week and…YEP…ROBBY HAD SEX.

I remember thinking….”That’s it??? I was stressed out over THIS???”. I simply didn’t wanna wait anymore, I just wanted to have sex. I’m glad I did it but….I quietly wished it was “special”.  Most guys just wanna get in there; I held out until I couldn’t take it anymore.

Before I had sex, I didn’t feel it was central to everything. After I had it….I still felt the same. It’s important, its vital, but I think my semi unique experience with it allowed sex to not steer every fiber of my being. I obviously liked it more going forward. I love sex as much as I hate spoken word aka…A LOT.

In case you were wondering:

(posted in order of pleasure)

1)Jerk Chicken.

2)Experiences In The Love Canal.

3)Grapefruit Juice.

4)Breathing.

 

And my dad only knows I’m having sex off of assumption; never outright told him.

 

Crazy, right?

 

Hitched, Part 2.

****Read this first.*****

    Over time, I started to notice…things. Well, just one thing. Whenever there were other girls around us, she acted “off”. I remember it clearly; when we were walking to go eat on campus, a girl from one of my org’s stopped me. We exchanged small talk, regular chatter. I guess this went on a little longer than she liked: She just walked away and left me. All I got was an “I’ll meet you there”. I wanted to introduce them to each other but she hung back so far when saw her, I couldn’t even tell where she was standing in the crowded student center. To be totally clear, I had a crush on that girl that stopped me at a point. My current situation really dissolved my interest in even going down that road. Maybe she “felt” something. Either way, I started to feel that we might be in trouble.

   My 22nd birthday came up. My 21st birthday was a mess, so I promised myself I would make my next one memorable. Me and my roommates brainstormed and we decided to have a party. We had liquor, I let the people know; no way this would turn out wack. I told “her” about it and she never really sounded too thrilled. I kept bringing it up, hoping she’d see how badly I wanted her to show up. Hours before the party, she said “I’m sure there will be more than enough girls at the party, you don’t need me to come”. I was sick over this. How could someone so important to me see her presence as disposable? She was always uncomfortable with my popularity(ugh, my friends were way more well known) at school , and that comment sent it home.

    The party went down. It was a success. I nearly got into a fight, plenty of girls came and it closed with the cops trying to arrest me (A+!). Seriously, it was a good time. With that said, I had a strange little moment there. My VERY first college boo(“A”) and her best friend (“K”) came. This is no big deal, as we were cool and put the past behind us (lol oh pls). They came through fly as usual, danced, drank, enjoyed. Once A walked away, me and K were talking. She out of nowhere murmurs to me…

“If you and B didn’t date……”

    She looked me in the eye and I knew what she was trying to infer. Ive known her forever. She’s been (and still is) an attractive woman. However, I didn’t hesitate. I defused that immediately and moved on with my night. I was very serious about whatever it was me and “her” had, even when it was on the rocks. My feelings and heart were tied up and I really just wanted to put my energy towards that.

    A few days later, she texts me back again. She tells me she doesn’t wanna come chill, doesn’t want anything to do with me, all that. I’m pretty much being dumped via text, and I don’t even know what I did. I’m not taking it well but my ego prevents me from chasing down the “why” of situations like these. If you want to let me go, cool. I won’t beg you, I won’t play myself. I simply asked her what lead to this and she once again bought up my popularity and how that was too much for her. I responded back calmly, accepting things for what they were. In the ensuing days, she continues to hit me up and make me feel stupid about the whole thing. How I shouldn’t have liked her so much. How I made it all into something it wasn’t, how all of our time didn’t really mean much. It was bizarre, because I wasn’t chasing her after she dumped me. She just kept coming back to me and killing me with the same knife. Me, in my state of need for her, kept responding until I simply was too bothered by all of it.

      I was totally fucked up over this. Non of my friends knew how serious it was for me, or that we even split. My roommate asked me “whatever happened to….” and to this day, I don’t know how I didn’t get out of that conversation without embarrassing myself.  Partner this bad heartbreak with the melancholy feeling of a pending graduation, trying to enjoy myself before it’s all over, and the incredible amount of violence going on at my school (guy got killed and his body was in the street a block away; on a separate incident a kid got stabbed up in the parking lot right outside of my window), I was stressed about everything. I’ve never really admitted this, but I honestly felt like I was going to get killed my senior year. I ended up adopting some beefs because of my loyalty AND a lot of students were ending up in crazy situations with locals after parties.

       I don’t really know how I decided to stop sulking. I do know that I found solace in my coworker’s bed sheets. We worked together on campus and I kinda knew she always liked me. I was sorta on the fence but as we got to know each other I warmed up to the idea a little more. She was cute; dark skin, big smile, infectious laugh. We hung out at the office, we talked on campus, worked on projects together. As fate would have it, she happened to live in my building. I saw her in the hallway while I was washing clothes, so I texted her when I was almost done. I ended up walking into her apartment and next thing you know, our lips meet. We didn’t have sex until maybe a few weeks later. Once we started, we didn’t stop. She was in an ODU office with me, amongst very important people, and no one knew what we did behind closed doors. There was a certain forbidden air to it. This went on until about a week before I graduated, when she disappeared quietly back home to northern Virginia.

     There was also someone else, who is memorable because she was a big “first” for me. She was at my apartment for a kick back. I was doing my homework; I wanted no parts. Me being involved would’ve thrown the ratio off. Nevertheless, I’ve known her for a few years but we’ve just been cool. I noticed that she kept walking by my door and peeking in. She eventually comes in and one of the guys (who I know WELL) pulled her off of me and out of my room. He had a huge (unrequited) crush on her, and I knew this. Never one to lose his cool in this situation, when she came by again, I took her by the hand and walked her into my room. She giggled and walked in curiously.

        I’m just running my fingers over her, admiring her form. She was sort of defined , smooth light skin and had an edge to her voice. She reveals to me “I’ve always liked you and thought you were cute, why didn’t you say anything?” BULLSHIT DETECTOR WEEEE OOO WEEEEE OOOOOOOO. I could’ve just been overcome with modesty, but I still think she was lying. How did I answer? With a lie of my own. “I’ve liked you for a while too!” First and last girl I ever lied to. It was pre-sex bullshit; going through the motions to make each other comfortable with things that aren’t true. I never subscribed to that again. Regardless, she chose to link up after Spring Break (which was next week) instead of doing anything that night.

   Our night came to pass. She came at 6 am, and slid into my building silently. I didn’t sleep, I just stayed up and waited for her. She hands me this, I take ONE swig, she is in my bed. It goes down from there, as Spongebob Squarepants plays far too loudly from my bulky silver TV. The next morning, I kept the lie train going and told her I had study hall. The truth was I didn’t want her in my spot all day. I eventually felt like shit about the pointless lies and vowed to never do it again. I also considered telling dude who pulled her out of the room what happened, because I wanted him to suffer. But I didn’t. So he may be reading this and just found out. If so, yes, her. 🙂 !

    The final part of my story that connects back to Hitch is simple. He approached women and all that they have to offer as “catching up on lost time”.  In reality, he was trying to cover up the pain of finding his girl in the rain with the resident cool guy on campus. She basically left me for her ex, then a FOOTBALL PLAYER. So she hated my popularity, then went to an athlete. Yep. I finally decided to entertain girls who I knew were interested in me, because I was fucked up. I was trying to patch the holes in my boat with lust. It never worked. Those girls didn’t particularly give a shit about me; they just liked what I projected. One of those girls I mentioned actually told me in bed “You were cute on that (ORG REDACTED) poster around campus, I had to have you”. It was never about me, just like it was never about them. I wanted to feel alive, after feeling as if I was literally dead on my feet. Casual sex is fine; just know that it doesn’t heal your pain. The emotional rawness of being discarded by someone who literally illuminates your days to girls who keep your nights shrouded in darkness is a lot for any 22 year old, especially one with a lot on his plate.

  I had to mature. I had to live. I had to understand that just wanting to have sex is fine, and so is wanting to put your all into a woman who’s special to you. Even though my clear blue sky turned gray, I didn’t want to be afraid the next time the sunlight chose me. With knowledge that it all ended so badly, I thank her for it. The highs, the lows, the jagged separation. My experience taught me to value myself and to appreciate the love in every waking day. Even the cold, lonely ones.