If you have ever seen the movie LOVE ACTUALLY, or the latest feature film, VALENTINES DAY, or if you’re familiar with any one of the books written by my very favorite author, J. California Cooper, then you have witnessed the celebration of LOVE. Love between a man and a woman, or between friends, or even between family is priceless and right now is as good a time as any to let everyone in on the bittersweet love affair I have had for almost 12 years…
My son, Khalil is pure joy!!! Watching him grow from a premature lil’ chocolate drop into a lean, charismatic, popular and highly intelligent, cutie pie/funny man is nothing short of euphoric! I say bittersweet because the sweetness my amazing (self-proclaimed) mama’s boy displays is unparalled. In the second grade instead of telling a story that his class was required to write every week, his teacher allowed him to channel his inner comedian and tell the class jokes that would have normally landed him in the principal’s office for being disruptive. How delicious is that???!! Another time there was the day that my best friend Tracye and I were in her car with he and her daughter. When I looked back to see him rubbing the two year old’s hand gently while she slept, I asked him why he did this since she was clearly “knocked out”. He answered that he realized she was not awake, but that when she did wake up, he did not want her to be afraid. Boy oh boy what a nurturing, thoughtful husband my kid is going to make I thought. Then there was one of my very favorite moments with him, when we had recently moved to LA, and I’d taken him to a movie not realizing that it was sold out. He was three years old at the time and when I attempted to explain what it meant not to have any seats available for us, he thought for a moment, and innocently inquired do they know who I am, I mean, do they know I am God’s best friend??? WHOA! Having explained to my baby what his name meant as soon as he was able to talk, and having him process it, comprehend it, and apply it in such a poignant manner had me at a loss for words. These are the moments that we as parents live for. The precious and fleeting opportunities to reflect on the lessons taught and rejoice in our attempts to make them great human beings. I can assure those of you who are not parents just yet; it ‘aint nothing like it!
Unfortunately in my personal journey as a parent, the bitter is especially painful right now. Once I made the decision to participate on the LET’S TALK ABOUT PEP show, I knew that I would not be in a stable position right away because I would have to relocate to the other side of the country. Instability never makes for a functional or a happy family environment, so I reluctantly left Khalil with my mother in LA while I pursued a golden and rare shot in the finicky entertainment field that I am so passionate about. She and I had made the agreement for Khalil to stay with her with some clearly defined stipulations twice in the past. The first time was when I had to relocate from my hometown, Washington, DC to New York, and then again when BET moved the cast and production staff of CITA’s World to Los Angeles.
I never anticipated that this time would be any different than