Counterfeit King

The night we met. High above the hills. Head in the clouds...
The night we met. High above the hills. Head in the clouds…

He was the answer to every thought, wish, prayer and dream. Could this be real? Could I have finally found “The One”?

For him, it was love at first sight. For me, it took a little longer.

I was cautious. I was careful. I didn’t want to get hurt. I didn’t want to hurt someone else.

I was tired of being wrong. I was exhausted from pouring my heart, soul, mind, body, and financial resources into every failed relationship. I was always the giver. Rarely was I on the receiving end of any kind of substantial attention or affection or displays of love. I had decided that the next one would be the last one. I had worked on myself long enough that I was ready.

I took my time. And he swept me off my feet.

He respected my timelines. He agreed with my boundaries. He was the only man I’ve ever known who respected waiting for intimacy. He agreed. He wanted to do this “right”.

He looked at me like I had magic in my eyes.

When he spoke, his voice screamed of his heart’s overflowing love for me.

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“Take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are magic.” -Frida Kahlo

Whenever he talked about how much he loved me, he would begin to cry with overwhelming emotion. There were several times he broke down weeping, my heart running over with love for a man who had freely given me his heart.

“Every great man has a greater woman behind him,” he said one morning. “I realized I’ve been good up to this point, but not great. You are that woman for me. I need you to be great.”

I asked him one afternoon if he was ready for this. “Am I ready for this? I’ve been waiting for you my entire life,” he said. “For 31 years I’ve been praying for you. Don’t ask me if I’m ready for you when I’ve been waiting for you, praying for you, dreaming of you, wanting you. And if you ask me again, I will say the same thing.”

He was the literal fulfillment of dreams I’d had years earlier. He spoke verbatim from those dreams. “Confirmation,” he would say. “Confirmation,” every time one of these unexplainable coincidences would occur.

When we looked at one another we could read each other’s thoughts. Often he’d answer a question I was thinking and vice versa.

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Rise and shine and sweep me off my feet.

He did all the little things – beautiful gifts for me, “just because”. He picked up the camera one morning and did an impromptu photo shoot. I felt like I was in a movie. He knew how to make the most mundane things beautiful – an easy task for someone whose career was made on stage.

He looked at me like I was the center of his world. And I was.

He told me I was the most beautiful woman he’d ever seen. And he meant it.

He told me how lucky he felt to “get to” wake up next to me every morning for the rest of his life. And he did.

This is LOVE
LOVE in the little things…

I would make breakfast for him in bed and leave notes on the bathroom mirror. He would bring dinner home for me and write “I love you” so I’d see it in the shower door steam.

We read together, watched football together, wrote together. We discussed our goals and dreams. I felt comfortable with him. I could completely be myself. I spoke, he listened. He taught, I learned. I never felt more beautiful than I did in his arms. We felt like a family.

He was home to me.

He said this was the first time a woman had cared for him, cooked for him, listened to him, encouraged him, believed in him, loved him the way that I did. “You’re the only person in my life who loves me unconditionally,” he would tell me. “No one has ever loved me like you do.”

He told me over and over again that I was his best friend. And he was mine.

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Like-minded

He wanted a wedding in Europe, and a home in the hills. When he came home one night and said he’d bought our home, he showed me pictures of the backyard, the entryway, the kitchen – it was the kitchen I’d pictured in my dreams, the pool I always wanted. “Confirmation,” he said. “I’m building us a studio in the back so we can work on music,” he told me… He was every dream come true.

He brought me into his life, his world, his work, his family.

…I was there at his work functions with his coworkers, his management.

…I was there at his home with his family, his son.

…I was there in the studio when he cut his first record.

…I was there on the late nights when he needed someone to talk to.

…I was there on early mornings when he needed someone to hold.

His friends saw the change in him. “She’s good for you,” one friend told him one morning. “I’ve never seen him this happy in the 10 years I’ve known him,” she told me.

His friends called me powerful & beautiful. Fans called us a power couple.

“You’re stupid if you let her go,” his friends would say. “You belong together.”

He was more creative, enlightened, and happy with me than he’d been in as long as he could remember, he told me. Having me brought out his greatness, he said.

imageHe was the embodiment of every woman’s dream, every wish for a perfect relationship. He was to me what we are all looking for: The one person who looks at you like you are magic, the one person who can hold you accountable and wants you to do the same for them, that one who believes in your dreams and wants you to be an integral part of every one of theirs. He wanted me to help run his companies and bring new ideas to life. He wrote a script; I did the casting. He wanted to start a clothing line; I did the designs. He wanted to have his memoirs written; I would be the one to write them.

He said all the right words. His touch lit my skin on fire. His words lit my soul on fire. His presence lit my heart on fire.

For the first time in my life, I understood why love poems and songs and beautiful romantic scripts were written… because when you experience that kind of unconditional, nonjudgmental, beautiful kind of love, you can’t help but want to share it with the world. You hope and pray that everyone gets the chance to feel so loved at least once in a lifetime.

He told me I was everything he wanted but didn’t think existed.

I thought he was the same.

He had all the qualities I was looking for:

He was good looking and successful and passionate and determined. He had a quiet confidence, a humble swagger, and his own sense of style. He had built a beautiful life and a level of success off of hard work, blood, sweat and tears. He was admired and loved and adored by millions of people who didn’t even know him. He had bounced back from disappointment and failure time and time again. He was funny and fun and caring and kind. He was supportive and encouraging and loving and compassionate. He was artistic and emotional and brilliant. His smile could light up a room. His eyes shone with passion and love. He had a heart for people and a heart for God.

He was telling his business partner about us one day. “It won’t last,” he said. “How could he say something like that?” I thought. “He doesn’t even know me.”

And then I realized, he said that because he knew HIM.

imageHe told me I was his missing piece, his soul mate, his perfect match, the love of his life, his wife. He wrote songs for me and poems about me and made sweeping declarations of love.

He told me all the things I prayed to hear…

…but his actions started showing me something else.

I prayed for him, we prayed together… and then I realized, he wasn’t praying for me.

His word began to lose its integrity. The beautiful fairytale began to unravel. He had my heart. But his was still stuck between me and the questions he’d been left with. Half his heart was still broken by betrayal and uncertainty and pain. A bright future made him regret a dark past. I was all his. And he was only partially mine…

Then the words of my mother rang in my ear: “The enemy brings his best right before God brings His.”

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I saw the king in him. I spoke to the king in him. I loved the king in him. He called me “Queen”. We had what everyone dreams of… But it was just that – a beautiful dream. He loved that I saw him in a way he hadn’t been seen before. He wanted to be that man.

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But even when you act for a living, you can only act out a role for so long. Eventually the truth comes to light… The one before me probably heard the same words, just like the ones after me most likely will too.

A counterfeit king falls in love with love. And I fell in love with him.

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