I’m detoxing right now. Laying off the sauce or oil, depending on the generation you’re from.
I’m a millenial technically but I did grow up with a floor model TV in the living room and a black and white 13 inch so I’m “transgenerational”. Half my generation is drinking themselves to death and the other half is nagging them to death with alkaline water, gluten free bread and fake meat that fails at everything meat succeeds at except for being an over processed shitty substitute for nutrition. No shade to the vegans.
I exist in both halves. I drink all weekend and alkalize all week.
As apart of my weekly detox, I make a tea tonic, of
- 1 nub of turmeric
- 1 nub of ginger
- a dash of pepper
- honey to taste and
- lemon or lime
Limes are best. You can make tonic on Mondays and take tequilla shots on Friday. Balanced diet.
Limes detox for all intoxicants even infatuation. That’s my dope. I’m an infatuation fiend.
I like to like. An object of affection to fawn over. What better mind game is there? I like the game of getting. I’ve had notebooks with details of each crush I had as a tween. They had stats just like my baseball cards: smart, funny, creative, talkative, pretty teeth, soft hands, long hair, nice voice, athletic. I thought I was a player or wanted to be one but the jigg was up when I find one that had the ideal stats and liked me back! Brawn, beauty and brains.
The first infatuation crush was 4th grade. A beautiful brown boy with a sweet smile and a brain that threw sarcasm like darts to a bullseye. Rahman, if you say it how he says it. I’m a sucker for unique names. I don’t know why this boy made me smile, flutter in excitement, talk incessantly or do all I needed for his admiration but I was hooked on the feelings. Even though he was mean with his sarcasm, made fun of unique classmates and complained A LOT, I liked him. I was like that well into high school. I’d lock my eyes on my “type” and get way more than I bargained for. Nothing could compare to the infatuation feelings. Someone to be happy with and for someone I could make happy, someone that was happy with me.
For a clean slate of happiness, price you pay is really high. Making my happiness dependent upon the object of infatuation proved to be costly.
Infatuation delusions and a need to please make a bad cocktail. My habit led me to so many delusions of love. Sometimes I sobered up other times I kept on coming back. I came back to one over and over until 8 years ago I found myself detoxing from the delusion of me loving someone who tolerated but never embraced me. I met him at 18, young, tender and starry eyed. He was 25 “mature”, established and rigid.
I respected his rigidity as a sign of maturity and wisdom not fragility, judgement and insecurity. He was cute, older and different from all the young boys that wanted to sell or smoke weed all the time. He was the poster man for responsible young adult. He was handsome, with a low cut full beard, I’ve been into this look since 2000 people. Tall, but everyone is taller than me. Thinner but not frail, and neat. Detroit impresses style upon every being in its borders, especially black men and he was able to accomplish style without kitchy fads. He was his own person, his identity wasn’t attached to popular culture. Very neat and clean in appearance from hairline to pant crease. Then the music. He played Dilla and Slum, The Roots, Erykah, Pharcyde, no man under the age of 25 I had dated was up on Soul Quarians. Or knew The Score was a classic. He was original. He was a classic. He was the resume and picture of my ideal guy. He fit but nothing with us ever sit. He remained ideal but had to be convinced to that I was. Every major life cycle event I pretty much felt abandoned by him. From getting robbed to needing money for tuition it was never convenient for him to support me. I kept on though cuz I was hooked on em.
(Brevity on lack of support)
Misinterpretations of obvious marks of disinterest led to a draining episodic 7 year commitment challenge. As a fiend it’s obvious I struggled with my own emotional damage independent of excess provided by this relationship. It was never the feeling of abandonment but the sobering moment of when he refused to help me slice limes during the 2008 NBA playoffs that slapped me awake.
It was a typical weeknight for me. I’d come home after work and class ready to cook for my love. I’ve always loved cooking for my lovers. He was in the living room watching TV and I was in the kitchen doing the most. I had asked him to come to the kitchen, without reason. He was unresponsive so I repeated expressing my need to put urgency to it, also firm to show it was crucial enough to pause the game. Yes I said pause. The game was live but the new technology of DVR made way for pausing live TV. He finally answered snapping “The game on!”
It was. For the last 7 years, we’d both been tuned to it. I was tuned into making his favorite cuisine, Mexican, which meant digging up creative recipes. I’d dig up these recipes on breaks at work and anticipate his delight in them while in class. This night had a mango papaya salsa that taught me I was allergic to real papayas. My eczema was a constant enough condition that kept my hands riddled with tiny cuts and and bumps so adding an irritant like papaya was gasoline to fire. So, Slicing limes was like throwing in rubbing alcohol. Actually, that’s exactly what it felt like, pouring alcohol on an open wound. Same feeling when he refused to come help. He was tuned into what was most important to him, like always.
I’d have these small fires in my life and he’d turn to the game while they burned. Funny it took lime juice to detox me from the infatuation of a lover who didn’t want to support me.
I condescended him with “Why can’t you pause it? What’s the big deal?”
He responded “It’s not the same as live.
Dude I get it, sports fans, I get it live action but it’s not like you’re leaving a game to watch the replay later, it’s on TV, you will return to it with a delay of maybe 10 minutes. Like why is this so high stakes, you betting, winning or playing? I still don’t understand that emotional attachment people have to their teams that makes them ignore the rest of their lives for it but I digress.
I didn’t want to argue, I was tired of arguing and beggin him to help me. I had to beg him for everything from a place to stay when I lost my job, to a loan for tuition in my last semester of school, WHEN we LIVED together. So I cut those limes, by my damn self. I had been doing most things without his assistance but he’d been accustomed to mine. It wasn’t going to change especially not during Eastern Conference playoffs. The Pistons and The Sixers were entirely more important than my burning hands, mind you for HIS favorite food, but I’m HAPPY to cook for him. He is my lover.
I’m chopping away, in silence with a look to burn through dangerous neighborhood glass. My silence must have struck him. Not only because I refused to argue but also because I sing and hum while I cook. The bliss that gives humming its tune had ceased. My intoxication was broken. I was focused. I didn’t need him.
I could slice my own limes. I could detox myself. I no longer needed to give energy to my intoxicant.
He ended up coming to the kitchen once a commercial is on, asking what I need, almost fumbling to help, AFTER I sliced all the limes. I sliced through the burn and brewed over all the reasons I was in that relationship, all of the ways he showed he didn’t care and all of the ways I was intoxicated with loving him and neither of us embracing loving me. My mind had built a flow chart of why I was slicing limes with cut hands that I’d just presented to myself for my MFA dissertation in me. I’d mastered my happiness and the infatuation of loving him was gone, cold turkey (burgers), with lime papaya and mango salsa.