Love is like the human brain, it starts off very simple and grows more complex as the days following. Just like the human brain, love needs to be surrounded by affection, physical contact, and consistency to fully develop and properly function. When love is neglected, malnourished and inconsistent, it can lead to broken hearts, ruined relationships and even death in some circumstances. Can you recall the first time you thought you were in love? Do you still look at love the same way? Just like the brain, love is shaped by experiences and the relationships we have with the people closest to us.
Rodney and I have sat on the sideline and watched each other play call our way through love. I have to be honest, some of the plays we have called should have cost us the game, but our fans (Lovers) still loved us. I made the trip to Dallas, TX so we could tally up or wins and losses in the game of love. Also, everything isn’t bigger in Texas.
Who was your first love?
“My mother. My mother would have to be my first love. Then passion comes from love, which birth the love of football. But my mother was my first love. “
Close your eyes and think about your first love. If that does not make you smile, then maybe that person is not your first love. The feeling of butterflies in your stomach, sweating palms, and your heart racing makes you feel like a kid again. The first love of your life can make or break the way you love people in the future. Lucky for me she taught me how to love like no other.
“Because I love you silly” is a phrase, I think about from time to time. It is a phrase I would hear frequently while I was in high school. My high school sweetheart would say it when she wanted to make me laugh. Cassie René was my first love. I thought I had been in love before, but it was nothing like what we had. One of my best memories was a day she came over hair tied, sweatpants chillin with no makeup on. We sat together and took silly pictures for hours. She taught me what love was, and what love was not. I love you silly turned into I hate you stupid. Hearts were broken, lives were changed, and hundreds of tears were shed (real men cry). But I am glad Cassie was my first love. Because I love her silly
What has taken the place of your love for football?
“Kids. Being an inspiring change for the decades to come. So, it is the youth. Giving them the courage to chase those visions that they think about, to chase those images that they think about. Because without the courage to do something it is just an idea that sits stagnant. The kids have replaced the emptiness that football presented.”
Losing someone you love or not being able to do what you love the most can be devastating. You can spend years trying to fill that void with anything possible. People, drugs, and careers are just a few things. Lucky for me I have not crossed that bridge in life. Unfortunately, Rodney has loved and lost.
However, his loss is not in vain. That emptiness that football presented made space for his organization. Feeding Kids by Faith, Incorporation. “Change the future one balanced meal at a time” Providing meals for kids in less fortunate neighbors has taken the place of football. So, if you are in the Dallas area and know of any kids that are in need of a balanced meal. Contact Rodney at Rodneylyles@fkfmeals.org
Are you worth loving?
“That is a great question. The new me that has been born in Christ is worth loving. The boy I was, was worth loving, but it should have been with limitations for sure. Being black, being successful, being someone that people look up to, being a goofball and being all the things that I could be. Now that I have grasped the concept of awareness. Because it is about being awake. You understand that more than anybody . We are all worth being loved even ones who do not know what love means. I deserve love just like everyone else. “
Sometimes you feel like you are not strong enough, smart enough, pretty enough or tall enough in my case. Then there is not being good enough for someone to love you. Every time a relationship ends you find ways to blame yourself. I should have loved them more. I shouldn't have fallen in love so soon. I have trust issues. The list goes on.
Truthfully, these statements may be correct. Maybe your past has made it difficult for others to understand how to love you. “I was worth loving ,but it should have been with limitations” If you want to be good at something you have to study it. The same goes for love. You must learn what love is for you and where you are struggling with love. Then communicate that to your partner.
Who taught you how to love?
“God taught me how to love through breakups and trails. I learned to love through the bad shit. The seeing who’s really there. We can use this situation. For him (Weednel) to be sitting here during this story. For you to be doing this story. For me to be giving you the time out of my day and you giving me the time. This could be a Picasso. This is not a better setting, it is us three and God in my opinion. God, great friends, trials and tribulations taught me how to love. I learn from yall
Social norms are created by the society we live in and tolerate. Media, whether that be music, movies, or Instagram influences millions of people. From Pretty Ricky to Hugh Hefner sex has been the symbol for love. Many people show their love through physical contact. Holding hands, cuddling, and kisses on the forehead. However, there are several other ways to show love that are just as intimate. Such as quality time together, words of appreciation, and doing a simple task that makes life easier.
I never had the opportunity to see what loving someone looked like when I was younger. I have never seen a man love my mother, kiss her gently on the forehead or stare at her like she was a dream come true. That was until I was 15 or 16. One morning, my mom woke up to my little brother staring at her with his eyes filled with love. He hugged for a few seconds, kissed her on the cheek and asked her how she slept. For the first time, I saw a man love my mother. So, Nari taught me how to love.
When do you know you are in love?
“This can go with black on white love. This can go with black on black love. Because I have only had white girlfriends. Have I done some stuff with black girls? Absolutely. A lot of the people I am around say there is no love like black on black love. I have never been in that, so I do not know. I know I am in love when that lady consumes me… (He paused for a few seconds and thought) When my first thought is what is the best for us. Instead of what is the best for me. But I do not know. It is a feeling that you can’t describe. This person is supposed to be here, and it isn’t an accident. I am looking at a rock right now. I know love is solid. Even though it is a feeling , it is a solid. If I throw a rock at the wall it might chip but it won’t break. Love has to be something like a rock. Like yall nigga Plies.”
Is one week too soon? Okay two weeks is adequate time to know if you are in love. Knowing when you’re in love is subjective. Some people fall in love instantly, while other takes months to years to truly know if they are in love. There is no specific time when love takes over. In my opinion it is when you have nothing to hide or you are not ashamed to tell your significant other anything. You feel free to be vulnerable. That is when I know that I am in love.
They say there is nothing like black on black love. I feel indifferent about this statement. For me love is love no matter if it is black love, white love, brown love or interracial love. Black love is not some rare extraordinary event. Black love occurs more than people would like to admit. What makes black love stand out is that two people who are fighting a world and system created for them to fail can still find love within each other.
If you could have one girl back who would it be?
“Honestly it is three of them. If I could have three of them put into one. Boom! That would be perfect. But that ain’t life. I would have to give it to. This is what we will call her because we are not giving them names since they are not here. We are going to say my college girlfriend. If love is real as they say it is, and I believe it is. She had to show me the purest form of love, I have ever seen in my life. No matter what your black ass do. You have seen her curse me out. You have seen her be the happiest with me. You have seen every side of that girl because of her emotions towards me. She should’ve left me years ago. But that pure love that she saw something in me, that I didn’t see in myself. If could go back, I would love her the right way Ton. But I don’t want to go back because going through that made me a man. But just to see what happens when you do shit right. Like what happens if you don’t let the devil come into your mind.”
We have all been young, dumb, and full of cum. Scratch that, full of love. Puppy love, teenager fever, and summer flings are a few names. For some reason you meet people at the most unstable times in your life. Your last year semester of high school, that one summer you spent with up north was your cousin, your hoe phase, or right before you leave for a job offer thousands of miles away.
If I could have one girl back it would be Cameal. We started off as friends then became really close as time went on. This generation will never know the feeling of talking on the house phone all night until you fall asleep. Then pretending you didn’t fall asleep so you could stay on the phone longer. Years later she told me she liked me, but I never made a move, so she thought I didn’t like her. The moral of the story is be more like James Harden.
Have you ever loved someone who didn’t love you?
“I don’t know if I ever loved someone who didn’t love me. But I can say I fell in love with a substance. And the only way I can get that substance is using my money to go acquire that substance. So yes, I fell in love with substance that didn’t love me, and it almost took my life. I fell in love with cocaine. As of March 9th 2019 I am 2 years 3 month and 8 days sober. I was trying to feel the emptiness that football wasn’t giving me. I loved football and it didn’t love me back. I loved cocaine and it didn’t love me back. But have I ever loved a person and they didn’t love me back? No.”
I am sure you know someone or have heard about someone loving a person who did not love them. I don’t think I have ever loved someone who didn’t love me. But I have been loved by someone I didn’t love. At the time I was not aware of the harm I could cause someone. Something Mrs. Aimee told me the last time we talked. “You should not play with love”
Love is the strongest drug in my opinion. It is also the gateway drug to anything possible. My heart has been bruised on a number of occasions. Love can take you on a trip that cocaine prays for. Or it can take you to place that many people don’t return from. It’s a place where love doesn’t exist. It’s where hatred, bitterness and jealousy thrives. Not matter how many times you lose in this game of love. Always have the courage to chase those visions of love that you think about.
What’s your definition of a real friend?
“I’m going to use names Steve, Charlie, Jared, Carl , Bo, BJ, Hutch, Lou, Ton, Weeble, Hero, Kelly, Val, Alex, Glazier, NY, Noel. Every friend I named is different in their own way. And at one point of time they helped me out. The people I named is the best way I can answer that question. However, those people I named are, are the definition of what a real friend is. Those who stand by me and support me. “
It’s sad to say but the majority of love that you will receive will come from strangers. Hatred, envy, and greed make close friends the best enemies. Having friends that stand by your side when your heart is broken, and your life is falling apart is a beautiful experience. Hopefully, you have surrounded yourself with individuals like the ones stated above. Side note my name made the list.
After tallying up our scores it seems that we have won more times than we have lost. We’ve had the opportunity to meet phenomenal women. Even though we didn’t make the best of our opportunities. We learned from them. They should us how to love for the next woman that comes into our life. Loving someone is something that you must work on every day. When it come the question. To love or not to love? To love will always be my choice.
In a Year
I remember the day my eyes caught a glimpse of your soul. You were what they consider a Queen. A strong, independent, confident, intelligent, unbothered, beautiful woman.
A beautiful stranger became a beautiful friend. The moments turned to minutes. Minutes turned to hours. Hours to days. Days to months. That glimpse would soon reveal you soul.
Abused until she was weak and depended on others. Stripped until her confidence dangled by a thread. Clearly confused by a broken heart and a worried mind. She saw a silly unloving girl.
Reinforced walls carefully dismantled, slowly built bridges to scares and insecurities. Trust was the key to doors of unseen rooms. Intimacy was born out of the depths of conversation. A world for two was being made.
Hugs solidify a bond never broken. Gestures of unconditional love sealed with kiss. Worries grew tired, and old. With each passing day she saw a silly girl become a woman.
A beautiful stranger became a beautiful friend. Months turns to weeks. Weeks became days. Days to hours. Hours to minutes. Minutes to a moment when she was able to love again.