It’s been four plus years since the love of my life took his last breath as I held him in my arms. The “sexiest” man alive as I fondly called him died of bone marrow cancer. He was such a courageous human being. Following the diagnosis in early 2006 and a successful transplant later that year, we thought for sure he had defied the odds. A relapse in late 2007 took him out in less than three months. I was truly devastated because he was the wind beneath my wings. He was charming, intelligent, funny, and very down to earth. He was by far everyone’s favorite person. He was so magnetic that when you were in his presence, you felt like you truly mattered.
“When you swim, it will lead you into new territories”
I was cleaning out my desk in my office a few days ago, and I stumbled upon a picture that he and I took the morning after we met. It brought back so many sweet memories. In the picture, I was sitting on the edge of the pool with my feet barely touching the water and he had his head on my thighs. One of his hands was across his bare chest while the other just hung lazily over the pool. I had my hand nestled on his hand that was over his chest. We looked as though we had known each other for decades. Perhaps it was the deep connection we felt hours before the picture was taken or it was just a perfect shot. The picture nonetheless was the picture of two people deeply in love without a care in the world. We were barely clothed. I was wearing a wrapper around my slender frame as he wore a colorful pair of boxers on his chiseled body. We looked as though we could be on a resort enjoying a quiet vacation. Prior to meeting Charles, I had never ever felt the powerful waves of current that I experienced the night I met him. It shook me to my core. Is love blind? Is there such a thing as love at first energy? I think so. It was a spiritual kind of love. I haven’t met anyone who has ever experienced the strong pull I had toward him when I first met him. I vividly remember him walking toward me through the shadows and wondering what force was blowing the being toward me. It wasn’t his physical presence that I felt. It was his overwhelming spiritual magnetism. It was so moving that I became speechless. I struggled to catch my breath when he introduced himself. Children flocked to him like bees to honey and people were always seeking his attention and opinion. When it came to looks and charm, he had it 100%. With Charles, I never needed to be anyone but who I wasn’t.
“Facing your fears sometimes pushes you to do things you never envisioned doing.”
He was independent and so was I. We fit into each other’s souls in a way that only a hand crafted half of a key would fit. I fell deeply in love with him and he was completely and totally enraptured by me. We were inseparable and our authentic selves showed up whenever we were together. There was never any pretense or games played. The commitment level was unwavering. I was confident that he was “the man”. He was certain; he could handle my highs and lows. We made it work against all odds. It was the most incredible 10 years of my life and I fell more and more in love with him with each passing day. I let my guard down because I felt safe, protected and he allowed me to be me. The path I have taken to survive since he passed has been uncharted but so far an incredible exciting journey without a road map or GPS. I am suddenly a role model for many women, young and old, and I have garnered the respect of men and boys. None of that would matter to me if he were alive. However, I find myself in this position to lead. What else can a single mother of two young and boisterous boys, an entrepreneur and newly published author do? LEAD. Everyday when I wake up, I give the utmost glory to my creator for giving me yet another opportunity to live out my purpose. I know now that my purpose is to lead by example. To share my story of loss and to encourage and motivate people who have experienced similar losses that they too can make it through another day, week, month or year. I have chosen to not be a victim of my circumstances, but instead rise above the ashes. I could have thrown in the towel and just moved about like a zombie waiting to die. However, when I look at my two young boys, I realize there’s so much work to be done. If I give up on living, they would not have any role model guiding them daily though the rough terrains of life. You can too. It takes courage to take that first step, but once you do it, the other steps will follow. The morning after Charles passed, I woke up to a new reality; he was no longer going to be the head of my household. I could either choose to sink in my sorrows or swim upstream to a higher state of being. I decided to swim. It was hard. No one can ever tell you exactly how to swim. My desire to make the best of my life far outweighed my desire to remain stagnant and settle for what my fate was.
When you swim, it will lead you into new territories. If you can just work on your mindset to BELIEVE the impossible to be possible and really find something you love to do and stick with it, you will slowly and steadily start to rise. I surrounded myself with positive influences. I found a lot of friendships were shallow and based on what people could get from me. If someone is going to knock you further down when you are already at rock bottom, what use is that person in your life? I was happy to let go of whatever wasn’t working. Whatever wasn’t edifying my spirit, I let go. With time, I started to find myself again. I started to find peace. I started to make new friends. My loyal friendships that date back decades ago are still intact.
I inherited the business Charles left behind, a small specialty food store located in Oakland, California. I can attest to the grace and favor of God. Day by day, I trudge through the process of rebuilding my life. I have made a lot of positive strides that even Charles would be proud of. My children are at the top of their classes and are very grounded young boys. I am glad they are coping better without a father. I have faith that I will marry again. I always say to myself, if this was God’s will, He must have a better plan than I planned for myself. I recently penned my first book, The Reconstruction and Transformation of Queenkay. It took me three and a half years to write it. It felt cathartic. I cried so much as I relieved some of the good and bad memories that led me to this day. I feel like my mind is transformed, my body is better and my spirit is at peace. Following that book, I co-authored, The Unstoppable Woman’s Guide to Emotional Well-Being with 24 phenomenal female authors from all over the world. It was as though once I released my pain and shared my story with the world, I was now open to new amazing opportunities. Opportunities are gravitating toward me like never before. I couldn’t have ever imagined years ago that I would ever have been a published author. There is so much untapped potential that lie within each of us. It shouldn’t take a tragedy to discover it. Facing your fears sometimes pushes you to do things you never envisioned doing.
Stay grounded, stay prayerful, positive and determined that no matter what, you will “SHOW UP” in your life story. Show up by being open, honest, and present in all that is happening to you so that you can be the hope and change agent in your family, community and the world in general.
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About The Author
Queenkay is a new author, mother and entrepreneur. Her authorial debut, The Reconstruction and Transformation of Queenkay can be found on www.queenkay.com www.amazon.com & www.barnesandnobles.com. She has co-written her second book just released titled The Unstoppable Woman’s Guide to Emotional Well-Being. The book is a collaborative work with 24 female authors from all over the world and from various backgrounds. The foreword for the book was written by Oprah’s Marketing Manager with Harpo Studios. Information on that book can be found on www.theunstoppablelibrary.com