Have you ever let the perfect mate go?

Yes, but I don't regret it. Married and divorced 3 times, there was no way I could settle down again or commit to a relationship. I lost all respect for myself and for men in general. I used them, abused them and then kicked them to the curb. I hate to admit this, but I loved married men . . . they were "safe" for me. They didn't want a commitment, just fun times, good sex and then they went home to their wives. I was upfront and honest with all the men . . . I would tell them, "never, ever, stop by my house without calling first as I might not be alone. If you think that you are the only one I am sleeping with, better think again."

During these awful years that I refer to as the "hoe stroll" I met a man I will call Carey. He was head over heels in love with me, but I could not commit. I knew he was my soul mate but it was too soon for me. He finally confronted me one night and demanded monogamy. He told me to drop all the others or he was walking. I showed him the door.

The days of the "hoe stroll" came to an end and I relocated and settled into a really good job; however, I was miserable and extremely lonely. I let my soul mate go and he found another and was happily married. I sought comfort in food. I remained lonely and celibate for years on end until I met and fell in love with an incarcerated inmate.

I was living in Oregon at the time and I was studying English Lit at Oregon State. I was reviewing books for a small book company in New York. Every month they would send me a book, I would read it, then critique it on-line. One day I received a phone call from the publishing company wanting to know if I was interested in editing a manuscript for one of their authors?

Edit a manuscript? I had never done anything like that. Reading a book and giving your opinion is one thing, editing a manuscript is a whole different ball game. First question out of my mouth was "Will I get paid for this?" They said, "no, but it would be a nice addition to my resume'." They then went on to tell me that they had a gentleman who published a book with their company and was working on his second book. This gentleman, they explained, was looking for a student who be willing to help him edit his manuscript. So, I said, "why not? what the hell?" at which point the publishing company said, "well before we go any further, we need to let you know that this gentleman-author is an inmate in a New York correctional facility."

"That's his problem" I told them. I gave them verbal permission to give their author my name, address and phone number. A few weeks later, I received a phone call from this guy who, for the life of me, I could not understand. He had a heavy Jamaican accent. Now don't get me wrong . . . there is nothing sexier then a Jamaican accent, but I could not understand him and I had to repeatedly ask him to "spell it, please!" He sent me his manuscript and I wanted to cry. Dude needs to keep his day job, he cannot write! I didn't have the heart to tell him that his manuscript sucked, so I whittled away at it slowly. He would call me 3–4 times a week and we would chat about the manuscript and naturally, of course, a little about ourselves. He would hear children in the background and asked if they were my children, I laughed and told him no, my children were grown adults, I'm a grandmother and those are just neighbor kids that I tutor.

Another time he heard a man's voice and apologized for calling at an inconvenient time, thinking the man was my husband. I had to set him straight and told him, "Nah husband fa mi, mon" trying to imitate his accent. We never exchanged photos, and only knew each other through our phone chats over his piece of shit manuscript. We grew closer and closer through nothing but phone calls. I fell in love with him. I had never been to New York and now I had a reason to go. I booked a flight and flew to New York for the first time in 2010. I met him in Otisville Correctional facility. I was soooo nervous . . . and when he walked into the visiting room, my heart sank. There was absolutely NO love connection or attraction, nada, nothing. I went back to my motel room and cried myself to sleep. I had wasted all this money on round trip plane tickets, car rental, gas, motel, food etc. and I was not the least bit attracted to him physically. I like a big man, give me a man with some meat on his bones. This dude was small and I knew I outweighed him, which made me uncomfortable. I think he's a biscuit over 140 and I felt like a beached whale next to him. What I did like was his accent and his dreadlocks. He has dreadlocks to his knees! They are beautiful.

After our 2-day visit, I returned home and I said nothing about how disappointed I was after our first face-to-face meeting. Time marched forward and we discussed his manuscript less and less. I fell deeper and deeper in love with this man. I realized that he was my best friend, and soulmate. That the outside package means absolutely nothing . . . it's whats inside that counts. I knew his feelings for me were just as strong, if not stronger, after all he was doing time and was very lonely. I met Rasta in 2010 and I married him in Great Meadows Correctional Facility in New York, two years later in 2012. We have been together 8 years, married six. Our 6th anniversary is this Friday, June 8th.

I am a woman who believes in second chances. Is my husband where he should be? Absolutely. He took the life of another human being. He was 26 years old at the time and he currently 56 yrs. of age. He has been incarcerated for 30 years now. When will he get out? Ask the parole board that question. He is not doing Life Without Parole and therefore goes up before a parole board every two years.

Maybe next parole? Who knows? I can only tell you that we are happy, we are in love and we make our marriage work. I'll let you in on a little secret . . . only FOUR states allow inmates conjugal visits. Those four states are: California, Connecticut, New York and Washington. So, because we are legally married we could be together sexually as New York is one of the four; but we have not and will not apply for conjugal visits! We didn't marry to have prison sex.

You ALWAYS test drive the car before you buy it, right? I didn't. We agreed that when we come together as one, it will be in the same bed that we will continue to share every night thereafter as man and wife. When his mother learned that we would not be applying for conjugal visits she just wept tears of joy. She continues to tell us how Jah (God) will bless us for making this sacrifice. I relocated to New York to be closer to my incarcerated husband, but personal family matters beckoned me back to Oregon. Rasta was amazingly supportive and unselfish. He understood and encouraged me to return to Oregon. He is an amazing person. I married a man, not a number.

The moral of the story is you will find another soulmate. You never know where you will find love.

Jah Bless

No, I landed him. Should I say, I found him, and he found me.

This was a long time ago when I was 12. I was attending a bible camp. I'd arrived early and made a friend, I ended up moving into a room with her in the cabin. I made another friend later in the day and she also moved into our room. I had also brought another friend with me I had at the time. There were 5 rooms in the cabin and there was 2 bunk beds in each. Our room had 4 people in it. This was a week long camp where were arrived on Sunday afternoon and leave at noon on Saturday.

I believe it was Wednesday when the girl I had first met decided to switch rooms. I don't remember why but the rest of our roommates were frustrated that she had left us. One of the girls came up with a plan. The girl decided we would get bug spray and spray her sheets. The two other girls each got a can of bug spray and I got a can of air freshener. We sprayed her sheets. When the girl came back she immediately noticed and had figured out it was us who had done it. She had an older sister who had attended the camp who I believe was 17 at the time. The sister decided to turn us in to the female head. We were called in and we were scolded for bullying and they made us apologize to the girl, have our parents called and as punishment we had to wash all of her sheets for her. After doing that the girl was rightfully angry with us and I had lost a friend.

If they were " perfect" you would want them around, and look for no reason for them to leave.

So despite what you are thinking, this person may have not been perfect after all. And EVEN IF THEY WERE, if timing is perfect, and they are perfect, everything will find its way back to you.

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