My name is Crystal. I’ve been called a firecracker, a go-getter, a live wire. I have also been called less complimentary terms that rhyme with words like ‘stitch’ and ‘score.’ Alright, I can be a bitch! But that has never bothered me much. In my life, I learned nearly every lesson the hard way. I mean, really a hard way.
If the hard way was a stone, mine would have been diamonds. ‘Your problems are diamond hard, so you might as well shine like Crystal,’ my dad would say in his lyrical Jamaican accent. That is how I got my name, and so my name turned out to be a reflection of the life that stretched out before me.
I like to think of it as disastrously fabulous, a beautiful succession of lessons that made almost no sense to me until I took the time to sit down and reflect. And what horrific pain it was! No one died – but the death of love and losing part of me each time with love, felt emotionally terrible. When betrayed or lied to, no one can brace themselves for how they’ll feel or react. Getting through heartbreak and heartache is tough. Especially as a young person, nothing prepares you if you’ve found love. Although I enjoyed the Concord flights, celebrity parties…and the affluence.
Only a few people can say that they’ve had a taste of the lux life and then lost it all. That’s how it felt at the time. Rarely have they seen what I have seen, or experienced what I have done. But this is hardly my story.
In fact, it’s a story about the five men who I have loved in my life and the lessons they taught me. Isn’t love an incredible thing?
Most fascinating, I think, is how it can blind you to the circumstances of your life. Love, you see, has been my biggest and most persistent problem. I used to believe with every molecule of my heart that love could conquer anything. Well, girls, I had it a little wrong. Love can give you the world, but it can also rob you of it.
I’m proud that I’ve loved with such ferocity in my life. It took me everywhere I wanted to go. But again, I learned the real meaning of the term by living through it. With five broken hearts come five diamond memories, the advice I know that you need or perhaps find helpful.
And so here I am with these five lessons of love. These diamond lessons brought to you by a woman that made every mistake in the book and survived with a smile on her face and love in her heart. What is real love? And what does it look like? I now know what it’s supposed to feel like. I have seen every lie and walked through the fire of every separation.
I’ll show you how to sparkle like a Crystal, baby.