Beyond the Screen II (Hady)

I continued to talk with Sanjeev but I let myself stay separated emotionally from him. I didn’t want to get my hopes up, I wanted to stay rational and I kept reminding myself that it was not impossible for us to be together but it was unlikely. I had a lot of extra time on my hands, I didn’t think of sanjeev non-stop like I did before, classes had ended for the semester and I found myself chatting with others while I waited for his occasional mails and IM’s.

I am not saying that I was over him, or that it was that easy to move on, it wasn’t. I hated life, I hated the circumstance I was in and I often questioned God’s plan to keep me from love. I stopped praying…..

One of the conversations Sanjeev and I had towards the end was that he had seen a man that did horoscopes and he had mine cast, he said that he was concerned about me and if I was strong enough. He wanted me to start praying to a Hindu God (Lord Hanuman) the Monkey God. I had no idea who he was and I argued that I will not pray to a God other than my Christian God. He said that all Gods are the same God just different versions of the same man and I should get to know this one. I didn’t know who he was or what he was known for then. I never did pray to him, regardless of Sanjeevs pleading. But now I better know who Hanuman is and why people do pray to him. He is not just the God of strength physically but he also was one of the few God’s that was celibate. I should have known him better then.

I was not an internet whore and I seriously do not know how it happened that I would have so many internet love interests. I used yahoo like a screening process, getting to know men better without the stress of sexual pressure. I kept pictures of each man and the ones I didn’t like I deleted and the ones I did like I let myself get closer to. At one point I would show my mother pictures of them, tell her a short run down of where they were from and what they did. She would do her own research on where they were from and tell me later if she thought one was better than another.

Usually as soon as I found out one was without a job or that he had no desire to come to America to be with me I would let them go. I met a few men that I consider worth putting in this story. I can’t say I remember all of their names, many times they tell me nick names anyway or in my mind I thought of them as what they did (the architect, the artist, the dr) I tried to keep in mind that although I wanted a good man I needed one that I could actually fall in love with, not just financially take care of his family, but the fact that money was needed to be able to come to America it did tend to tip the scales a bit.

In my search to find this man I thought I needed I met a few men that I knew were not going to be able to come, I knew were not a good choice, they were too young, too poor, and they even knew they were out of their league. They were my friends, the ones I would tell my stories to. Beautifully handsome, wonderfully nice and caring, Hady was 24 and had no real job; he occasionally worked at his father’s shop repairing TVs. Hady was a great listener and I spent a long time never even knowing what he looked like, I knew he would have been a waste of time. Our first meeting after finding out his age and his occupation I made him promise me before letting him look at my cam “You have to promise you will not fall in love with me or ask for sex, we are only friends and we will only ever be friends, now promise me!” he laughed and almost joked that I was big headed to think that all men would fall in love with me.

I was not saying that because I thought I was so great. I swear to you I had no idea why so many men from other countries loved me so much, every time I opened my cam in chat it was always the same “OMG! you are the Moon, you are the Queen! Why are you not married? You are so beautiful!” I have to admit it was a boost to my ego, and I never felt like I was so wonderful or beautiful but they did, and I loved hearing it. After all I never really heard that before here from men, no one told me I was beautiful or even acted interested in me at all.

I was a dime a dozen: blonde, blue eyes, pasty white, fat, mother of 3 sons. That was pretty much ½ the population of the German heritage town I was living. No there was something about me that East Asians, south Asian, middle eastern and north African men loved, I was special in their eyes, maybe it was that I was large, I had heard that some cultures value a woman when she is fat because it is a sign of good health and money, or maybe it was that I was so honest, maybe they just never met anyone like me before, but for whatever the reason I attracted the darker skinned men, they were like moths to the flame.

No when I asked Hady to promise it was because I wanted our talks to remain as friends and not be bomb barded with all that lovey stuff, I needed a friend. He promised and I reluctantly opened my cam, I saw him sit up straighter to get a better look at me, he smiled and starred…. Silent a moment…. “Hi friend” and I laughed so hard that I scared myself, I was able to keep my friend, I was so happy! I found out that we had a lot in common, his birthday was the same week, we always thought the same, finished each other’s sentences or typed the same things at the same time and we became very close. More close than I had planned.

Hady started asking to see my cam every time we talked and he started giving his opinion on the men I told him I talked to, and of course none were suitable. He wanted to know more and more personal things about me and I started to see in his big beautiful eyes more than just a friends love, I asked my friend/neighbor who was also single to come over one day and sit to the side of my computer so that Hady would not see her, I wanted to know if it was just me or could she see in his eyes and in his words that he loved me. Maybe I was wrong and maybe I was just starting to love him myself and it was just wishful thinking. Rachel watched as Hady and I opened cams and listened to our conversations, she watched as Hady sat from across the world with his face resting on his hand, smiling into a camera at his computer screen and Rachel started to cry “I wished I had a man look at me with that much love as he looks at you”  

What was I going to do? I didn’t want to lose my best friend!

I tried to keep it from turning into love but sure enough I fell in love with Hady and we started to think of ways we could be together… student visa, marriage visa, work visa, what the requirements were for each. Meanwhile……

Another friend that I had met that Valentine’s day was also from Egypt but he was much younger and he had no interest at all in thinking of love or marriage Hamid was taking Hadys place in the best friends roll. Hamid loved my stories about who I talked to and who I was interested in, he used to draw the cutest cartoons of Men in a competition for my love. He called it the race to Deborah, whoever would be able to come to America would win Deborah’s hand and heart.

His jokes were not that far from the truth, I had put myself in a position where I had met so many men that were what I would say was suitable but each had their own reasons why they couldn’t come right now to the US or they were working on applying. So many that I had become attached to, I loved little things about each but none I could actually say “This is the ONE” and honestly even if there had been a man that I considered perfect in every way, it would not have changed my attitude, I knew not to trust my feelings or to wish too much, at any time they could disappear.

And one by one they did: The Iraqi Dr, The Egyptian Architect, The Indian Artist, The Rich Sadi, the Business man from UAE, The funny man from Jordan. I stood by and watched each one of those men that said they loved me, give up on trying to come here, and one by one through the years I got mails of them telling me they were getting married. I was happy for them in a way, and a little insulted, why couldn’t I meet a man that would work hard enough to be with me? Why couldn’t I find one man that would do anything for us to be together?

I decided that maybe me waiting for them to come to me just wasn’t going to work, maybe I needed to just give in and go to them. I had an older friend going to Egypt with her husband’s group of friends and I asked if I could tag along with his group for the cheaper air fare. She said sure but wouldn’t you know it, the very day I got enough money together to buy the tickets, Egypt’s government fell and there were riots everywhere, the business trip was cancelled, Hady told me to wait a little while and try again, but then there was internet problems and I stopped hearing from Hady at all

I got a mail after him being gone for a few months, his Father wanted him to marry…….

NOT AGAIN?

Beyond the Pane III (Ben)

It is funny how the mind works. I could be doing something as simple as cooking a meal or doing the dishes and all of the sudden memories of a lifetime ago come flooding in like it was only moments ago. My days are full of flashbacks, and no way to escape those tortures of wrong turns and eternal dead ends. I made some terrible mistakes and lived scripts from horror movies because of them. I have also loved so deeply that at this point in my life I know that there is no way I could best those memories. The next story will be one of those memories.

It came so innocent, getting my now 7 yr. old twins sons ready for bed; they always had a tendency to get a little rough at the end of the night. They try their hardest to fight sleep. “Mom, Anthony messed my bed up. Can you fix it?” I did my normal fussing but not as much as I could have. I have been though an emotional time, strengthening myself as a single woman now, being a mother, going to school. I was tired. I noticed that the bed wasn’t just messed up “What happened in here, Wrestle mania?” I started; strip the bed while the boys reluctantly picked up the toys and put away their things. Arron jumped in front of me and said,” that’s good, Mom. I don’t need a sheet. I’ll sleep like that.” No, I do not think so. I finished making the beds as I remembered another time in my life.

I can’t say that my sister and I didn’t get along. There was a time in my life that we were inseparable, in a lot of ways we were like twins, although she was older and more time than not she treated me like I was her personal assistant. When I was 15, Mary had already been out on dates, had true love affairs and found herself “experienced” when it came to men. I was not so much so interested in learning about sex I still was afraid of getting my feelings hurt again.

One of the things my sister liked to do was go to the victory, an under 21 dance club/entertainment in Evansville, a half an hour away from our small town. It was an all-nighter this night; Parents would drop off their teens and forget them until morning. My mother didn’t trust Mary, and told her if she wanted to stay out all night she would have to take me. I hated to dance, didn’t have friends that ever went. To tell the truth I was a little frightened, I had heard stories of what girls did in the giant buildings dark movie theaters, drugs and drinking even fights. I knew this was not going to be good.

I hadn’t known Mary was going to leave soon after we got there; her plan was to go with her boyfriend and be back before morning. I sat at a table off to the side, slightly in the dark. I was ticked that my sister left me, and that I had the whole night to feel alone.  I noticed a table of laughing Middle Eastern men not too far from me. I didn’t understand what they were saying, and that alone made me feel very uncomfortable. I also noticed that they were older then what was allowed. I could tell that most the group was closer to 27 to 30. I knew this from being around so many Asians (short doesn’t mean young)

I tried to ignore them, but as the evening went on I couldn’t help but notice that they spent a great deal of time teasing the youngest and shortest of the group, he seemed to look over at me when the others were having the most fun at his expense. I started getting tired and tipped my chair back against the wall, watching the kids dancing and talking all around. This was going to be a long night.

Out of nowhere the younger man in the group was standing at my table” Would you like to dance?” I shook my head no. His head dropped as the others at the table started laughing. Angry that a so called group of friends could be so mean, I jumped up and caught him before he got back to his table, put my hand on his shoulder and whispered in his ear “I do not dance but you can keep me company”. The words seem to float off my tongue and you could tell from his excitement that he must have really been interested in me. Of course I also love the fact that his friends now sat so surprised with mouths hanging open in disbelief.

Ben was amazing, he hung on my every word, smiled like I was the reason he lived and he was by far the most gorgeous man I had ever seen, but he didn’t know he was handsome in fact he blushed every time I said I just liked looking at him. We sat there most the night, talking about everything, laughing and I dare say I knew more about that man and my own feelings in a few hours then I could have ever learned about Ta in all the months I knew him.

When his friends wanted to leave he said for them to go without him and that he will walk, but since he was new to the city, they simple said that they would return later after 2 hours.  We continued our conversations, as he wrapped his arm around me. And as the time flew he kept looking at his watch. “If I am boring you, you can leave,” he laughed and held me tighter “No, you could never bore me, I look at my watch disappointed that I am losing time” I understood what he was saying; I didn’t want the night to end either. Ben and I talked about everything, walked around the building, and made our way to the movie theater where we (didn’t) watch a movie. Kissing and holding, touching; but not at all in a sexual way, it was more like lost loves reuniting. We were holding each other like we were to be torn apart soon when I had fallen asleep in his arms. As I woke, I looked up at him. I was shocked. Above me was a beautiful man, long hair, bronze shin and the loveliest eyes I had ever seen. He was like art. “She lives” I apologized but he would have none of that “I have never seen a more beautiful sleep”

I was sold. Better yet, I was in love. When his friends came back, so did my sister. She was so pleased that I had found someone that she suggested that I leave with him, and she said it right in front of them all. There was no way for either of us to tell the other no. He had his peer pressure and I had mine.

We went back to his friend’s apartment and they pushed us both in a bedroom and shut the door, laughing. We stared at each other for a minute, not quite knowing what to say, or what to do. Our conversation never really got to whether or not either one of us was expecting to have sex. “We do not have to do anything” he said with his eyes looking at the floor. I looked over at an unmade bed with no sheets “we could sit down” We talked until the laughing from the other room stopped. He started to kiss my hand like every foreign movie I had ever seen. He kissed up my arm to my neck, obviously he had done this before but I was too embarrassed to tell him I hadn’t, in fact I was too scared to say a lot of things or to even breathe.

The scratch of the mattress without a sheet was one of the many things I felt that night. I felt his hands on every inch of me, and a very knowledgeable tongue that was very skilled. But when he slid on top of me and we were face to face, he noticed I was crying. “Is this tears of joy, do I make you happy?” I looked away, half afraid if I spoke I would start balling or that the words I would say would make him stop. Deep inside I didn’t want him to stop. I wanted to get it over with; I wanted to stop being afraid of losing my virginity. I wanted to be a woman. For some people it might seem a little early, but I had always been in touch with my emotions, I didn’t really think like a child at 15, I never was treated like a child in public because of my adult looks. The subject of my age never came up our conversations either.

Reluctantly I said, “I am a virgin” He held me closer “Why didn’t you say so my love, I think it is great that you save yourself” I looked at him puzzled; he really didn’t know I was young. “Ben I am only 15” I wouldn’t have thought a person could move so fast. Apparently when the students come from other countries they are taught what was permitted and what will get them deported.  Getting dressed in record speed, pacing the room like a mad man and rambling in more than a few languages, he plopped back down on the bed, looked into my eyes and said “I am so sorry. I thought you were older” I held his hand “Ben, you didn’t look that old. I knew you friends looked older but you?” he told me he just turned 21 last month. And he was going to college IU in Bloomington.

What to do? I mean it was awkward for us but all I could say was “I am still the girl you have spent all night with and you are still the man that I have falling in love with, what difference does it make that I am a little young. Did you think I was a child when you kissed me?” I could see in his eyes that he saw me in a different light. “No sex, though” he said with a smile, and I accepted.

My family loved Ben and his friends, They never worried about his religion or his age, My mother’s only request was that “Keep her a virgin and We will sign for you to marry when she turns 16”  so he would spend his week at Bloomington going to school and then spend the weekends with me. A few times even spend the night in the guest room. All was so wonderful. I felt like nothing could go wrong. We picked out wedding rings and put them on lay-away because even though his family was rich they had not sent his allowance yet. He was going to school to learn business management so he could help with his families many holdings.

I felt like we spent a life time together, My only thought was of making him happy, I wrote poems and learned to cook for him. When he came to visit we did everything together, he even took me to some of my school functions, even farm chores were shared with playful adoration and laughter of course. Walks in the woods were romantic and bonding. My whole life was happier. It had purpose

Ben’s friends had started to get a little jealous that he no longer spent time with them and when it was mentioned to a family friend that Ben had found an American girl to marry. He received a message from his Parents that he needed to return home immediately. He told me it was going to only be for the summer. I felt uneasy but I had faith that all was going to be fine “It is only one summer” I remembered Ta’s summer away and knew that I would make sure never to let my thoughts wonder from Ben.

I never saw Ben again; I got a letter or two, telling me that everything was fine. He said he would be back to school the next semester and that I would be the first person he would come and see. He never was allowed back. After a year of wondering, being crazed, and depressed, almost begging for death, I saw one of his friends. “Are you ok? You hear about Ben?” I told him that I had not heard anything from Ben in almost a year. “You still love him, Deborah?” I thought for a second… Did I still love him? Don’t get me wrong I did love him, if he stood before me that very moment I would have not been contained but it had just been long enough, just painful enough that what I felt for him before had been replaced with Abandonment, self-doubt and hatred. If he was still alive I wanted to know “WHY?” so I lied and said “No… what happened?”

The man told me a story about how his family held money over his head, they forced him to marry a woman of their choosing and that he had no choice. Without his families money he could have never returned to America and marry a “Christian whore”.  He was too ashamed and couldn’t explain to me in a letter that he was never coming back so he just disappeared. His friend was even told to not tell me anything until I was over him.

I grew up in a town and around friends that were all white, predigest, there were no exceptions and yet it was my family that openly defied the norm and teaches me to be open minded and that all people are the same. I never saw that he was Muslim, foreign, different color or even his size. I loved Ben for his words and his heart so why would I be judged for what I was? Even now as I write this I cannot help but cry uncontrollably.

I have had a lot of years to think about Ben, weather I would have done the same thing in his place. Back then I would have, but today I realize how hard it is to find a love like that. How when you close your eyes all you see is them, or the chills that run down your soul when you hear their voice.  I do not think I will ever feel that for someone again and It is a shame that I would have been introduced to such a deep love at too early of an age to chase after it. Now I live my whole life trying to feel that way again.
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Arranged Marriage vs Love Marriage

When talking about arranged marriage vs love marriage there are a few factors that have to be considered. Some are more important then others and depending on your culture and values all or none can be used to determine your perfect match

1) Reputation of the family (are they good people and have good standing in their community)

2) Vocation (Will the man be able to supply for the family and/or does his work take him away from home for long periods of time)

3) Wealth (financially stable families tend to have well brought up children,poorer surroundings usually give access to corruptions)

4)Caste (not much of a worry these days but still and option to understanding the way a man or woman see the world around them and can give keys to the kind of personality)

5) Religion (This may not be an issue as long as there is a very clear understanding the expectations and which religion the children will be brought up in)

6) Horoscope ( some signs just do not match well with other signs example: a free spirited and enjoyed Libra should NEVER be matched with a strict no nonsense Gemini )

7) Age ( with age comes growth and understanding if one is too much the others senior there would be a miss balance of power and maturity and the “growing old together” factor will be lacking

8 ) Language ( no matter the culture or the need of the marriage being able to communicate is imperative to coexist together)

9) Diet (although not impossible to work around a couple that is mixed meat eater/vegetarian is not really the best match and can bring confusion also to the children)

these are just a few things that a person or matrimonial sites might look at when Matchmaking but there are advantages and disadvantages of arranged marriages. In western culture it is frowned upon and viewed as barbaric even though not so many generation ago it was completely acceptable to be in a marriage of convenience.

There is a steady rise in divorce among both love marriages and arranged marriages. The need to be free minded and be involved in arranged marriages is a important, to be drawn into a marriage that is not want by one or both of the parties does not start off the Matrimonial on a good note.

The advantage of arranged marriage is simple some of us may not know really what it is that we want, or have any idea what is good for us either, with the help of matchmakers and family we have an outside view of the situation and a more long term look at what we will need in a spouse in the future.

Love tends to come naturally when the match is made right and the couple experiences life together. The idea of a marriage of convenience is not necessarily wrong when you have two individuals come out ahead in the end.

love marriage vs arranged marriage is a simple and compelling argument and depending on the individuals and there needs and values love marriage works best but it is not fail proof . There is something very valuable knowing that you were picked solely on your personality, and connection with the person you in turn love. and that strong bond has merit and can with stand any trauma or drama.

Understanding and knowing yourself and your needs…. being loved and loving  is the desired life, but it wouldn’t hurt to look at the criteria for a good match while you are dating. Remember that there is a difference between love and lust, not to mention that people change through the years so make sure the expectation you have for your lives together don’t also change.

I suggest going to Psychic and having you and your prospected mate read… you can also have a compatibility horoscope done by a professional. They case your horoscope for both the couple and then compares





I love reading others thoughts on this subject and read a blog that I think is great (Check out another blogger’s work)

and here is a blog I absolutely love http://www.pardesiservices.com/tradition/arrangedmarg.asp