He said he saw me on a Friday.
I was coming out the mosque and I caught his eye.
I guess I had it goin’ on that day…
He was a kufi wearing, dashiki donning, Africa medallion down for the revolution type of brotha.
Oh yeah, and he was a vegan.
I have a soft spot for tree huggin’ Black brothas.
I wasn’t talking to anyone so I accepted his offer to get to know me better for the purpose of marriage. We exchanged a couple emails and flirty texts (yes, Muslims flirt…) until we finally decided to meet at a restaurant for lunch. It was vegetarian, mind you…
I got there early, so I took a seat in the waiting area.
I decided to dress casually. Cute skirt, casual knit top and some strappy leather sandals is what I decided on. Of course I couldn’t forget my mama Africa wood earrings.
I’m a SistaQueen…gotta represent.
He walked in and headed towards my direction.
I have to say that he was incredibly cute. He smiled and his whole face lit up. His eyes smiled when he laughed. He handed me a single red rose and I made a mental note to remember that. The restaurant was packed with hipsters and wannabe vegetarians (such as myself). He already knew what he was ordering and I was picking through the menu to see what looked remotely familiar.
I settled on a BBQ tofu sandwich. It was aight…
We talked about our families and interests. He was very educated and knowledgable. He was conscious of the world and specifically the plight of Black people in America. He told me how he thought the only salvation Black folks could get would be to travel back to Africa in mass numbers. He said there would never be justice on stolen land. I felt his energy. He had not touched his lentil soup instead his attention was focused on me. He was a passionate brotha and I could see it in his eyes and hear it in his voice.
I nodded in agreement and I studied his words and body language.
The waitress came over to see if we needed anything. She handed us the bill and I took it (this is one of my tactics I’ll expand on later). He gently grabbed it from my hands smiled at me and walked up to the cashier.
He asked permission to call me later in the week. I said yes and we parted ways.
It was around dusk and I was walking to the train. My shadow was dancing on the Chicago pavement and I was lost in my thoughts. I was recapping the sit down in my head. It went well and I was intrigued. I wanted to know more about him.
He called me later that week. I was pleasantly surprised.
We agreed to meet up at a local coffee shop with some mutual friends.It went well.
Fresh aromatic coffee, familiar faces and laughs. Who could ask for more?
We both had a good time.
This is when my feelings started to kick in.
Not the feeling of lust, love, or passion…but the feeling of distrust.
You see, I am a big believer in intuition. It is an instinct that many people write off due to reasoning and self doubt.
I did not know him but for some reason I didn’t trust him.
It was only the second time meeting him but my feelings of distrust were so strong. I expressed my apprehension to a close friend and we wrote them off.
Over the course of several weeks we continued getting to know one another. He expressed interest in meeting my family. I thought that was a great idea.
Needless to say, things were progressing pretty smoothy.
He was very attentive and sweet. Always knew what to say at the right time.
Besides my tugging feelings of distrust I saw the potential in the relationship.
One morning, I received a phone call from his cell.
“Asaalamu alaikum…” I said.
“Wa alaikum maaaaaa — who’s this?!” The voice sounded unfamiliar and that of a distraught woman.
Needless to say I was not surprised in the least.
Not even shocked.
The woman proceeded to tell me that her and the brotha were engaged and about to get married.
She proceeded to try and get “sista girl from the hood” with me and turn it into a competition.
I stopped her right in her tracks and said “Sista, lets not go there…”
I gave her the advice that I would highly reconsider marrying someone who was already trying to talk to other sisters. That was not a good look and that she deserved better.
We ended on a respectful note and it led me to this thought:
As Muslim women we must be pillars of support for one another. Not play the blame game. Brothas need to be called out for legitimizing certain behaviors with Islam. This is absolutely unacceptable. Polygamy is a respected practice in Islam but dishonesty is abhorred.
Best believe, he got a piece of my mind as well…
My intuition was leading me in the right direction. I was the one who chose to ignore the signs of the universe.
Life is full of subtle signs.
Keep your eyes and heart open.
Be willing to accept these signs even if in the end it is not what you truly desire.
Allah knows all.