Beyonce Reminds Me Why I Should Celebrate Getting Dumped

BeyonceI can’t recall when I realized I was stuck on stupid. It might’ve been something I heard on the radio or a Word that was preached in a church sermon. It would make the a-ha moment that much more powerful if I could come up with the circumstances around that epiphany. However, it made me aware of one slap-in-the-face fact: I had fallen for a dude who really didn’t want me and was telling me so in every possible way.

So I have to thank Beyonce for dropping a gem in her new single, Best Thing I Never Had.” Now that? That is a girl power anthem. And it doesn’t even include one of her signature dance sequences. I yodel that thing at the top of my lungs in the car (and the shower) because it’s my story. A couple times over.

I’ve been foolish with my affections more than one time in my life. In all instances, the rejector (the guy) ultimately ended up regretting giving the heave ho to the rejectee (me). Except one. 

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Ten years ago — even though it seems more like a century — I was steady plotting, planning, and pleading for the man I loved to love me back. He was the other party in my first real relationship, and I was good and strung out over that dude. I didn’t just fall in love. I somersaulted into it. He was my college sweetheart — and eventually, the father of my child — and if I had anything to say about it, we were going to live out our happily ever after. Despite all the odds against us, we were Huxtable-bound, hear me tell it. Love, I thought, would bind us together for a lifetime.

Ah, 18. So young, so idealistic, so freakin’ clueless.

There’s always a reason to make a differentiation between how relationships start and how they finish. So here’s this one: in the beginning, we couldn’t get enough of each other. We hung out between classes, played around in the dorms, ate together in the cafeteria. We canoodled in his room, we were booed up in his.

But in between those episodes of cuteness, we were all After-School Special. Fights — physical and verbal — were commonplace. He started accusing me of cramping him, trying to lock him down while he was clearly too young to be settled. I listened, but I was so hung up in love that I couldn’t hear him. Towards the end, he was all but screwing other chicks on my lap and started treating me like crap to get his point across. And still I hung on.

Our relationship struggled along for three years. Three long, should’ve-been-over-way-sooner years. I had baggage aplenty from wondering why he didn’t want me, when a swift kick of good, common sense should’ve told me to be thankful that he didn’t. I forced myself on him, using our baby together and my desperation to be a nuclear family as a reason to try (and try and try and try some more) to make it work. I was scared to be without him. I sacrificed my self-esteem, my health, and my heart by dragging out the inevitable. 

Ultimately, he ended up breaking up with me. That’s the only way it would’ve stopped because Lord knows when I would’ve snatched my own head out of the clouds long enough to realize our love affair was just dumb. Sometimes even now, a full decade after we called it quits, I break out in random praise for being delivered not just from being part of that couple, but from the defeated mindset I had. That was the lowest period of my life, not just because I was chasing him, but because I had started losing part of myself in the hunt.

It’s strangely comforting to know that even super fabulous, stinkin’ rich, amazingly gorgeous Beyonce has gone through the same kind of bull crap with a guy that we all, at some point and time in our lives, are bound to experience. And I bet that dude feels super, duper stupid. Maybe he doesn’t. One day, my ex may regret the way he treated me. Maybe he won’t, either. But it doesn’t matter. Because I regret the way I treated me.

Now that I’m far removed from it and finally (finally!) healed, I can look back and swipe my brow for making it out with nothing more than some emotional baggage and a beautiful daughter. Lesson learned, my baby.

Are you waiting for the law of retribution to sock it to your ex?


Image via AlexJohnson/Flickr

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