Before I continue with my divorce story, I want to tell you a little more about Leslie than what these stories are describing him to be. Although these stories seem to paint him in a negative light, I do want to inform you that he was once indeed beautiful and absolutely radiant. These recent stories tell of his lows and I did not fall in love with the man who I am currently divorcing. I fell in love with a wonderful man of God who was on fire for God and after God’s own heart. He helped me to my spiritual feet at my lowest and helped me to become the woman of God that I am today. Some of you may be familiar with our love story but I would like to retell it because even at our outcome, it still has merit and our love story was ordained by God. Remember it was the assignment that changed.
I met Leslie in the most unplanned, unusual, and unexpected way possible. I had just ended my relationship with my son’s father the month prior on 2/18/13 and I met Leslie on 3/24/13. Sound’s too soon but God’s timing was just perfect. After leaving the toxic relationship with my son’s father, I vowed to follow Christ like I never had before. All distractions of toxic relationships were out the way and I was single for the 1st time in years. For me being single was a big feat. I entertained toxic relationship after toxic relationship and they all intertwined. Most just for the heck of it or because I was bored. This was a time that I could finally get myself together and really just focus on me and God. Sounds cliche but this is what I really wanted and desperately needed. Where I struggled was with what I wanted and what I knew I was capable of. By that I mean the ruthless part of me. I was notorious for using men and manipulating them for whatever I needed. It entertained me and I loved a good challenge. I loved taking on the responsibility of taming the wildest ones. Even with most of these men never being my boyfriend, I knew I possessed the ability to make you fall in love with me and I had quite the list to prove it. The savage in me wanted to redeem myself. My son’s father was the only man that I had been faithful to in my whole life and he betrayed me. I was literally on the fence of running to the past that I was familiar with or choosing to follow Christ once and for all. Leslie was sent to me at that exact time. In the timing he came, I had little to no time to ponder on that decision. When he entered my life, he swept through the broken parts of me and put me back together fueled by the instruction and love of God. Let me tell you guys how I met him.
Have you ever met a man so on fire for Christ that it was captivating? Well that’s how he caught my eye. In March of 2013 I was invited to an event at The Christian Lounge by my hairdresser, Renee. Renee and her husband host events and invite various Christian artists and entertainers to showcase their God given talents at their lounge. I didn’t plan on going. I didn’t want to go by myself, but I got up, got dressed and went. I had trouble finding the location and almost turned around and went home but after circling the block again, I finally found it. I walked in and the place was packed. I immediately saw Renee, she greeted me and said let me find you a seat. Out of all the seats she sat me smack dab in the middle of the second row. I had to walk over and through people to get to this seat. If you left it up to me, I would have been content with standing up in the back so that I could slip out with easy access to the door. But little to my knowledge, God was working.
Seating Arrangement Pic
Behind me stood a tall gentlemen. I could feel his presence behind me and occasionally feel his glare. Now I couldn’t just out right turn around and look at him but I took note of what he had on so that I could catch a glimpse of him later. Renee called the next act to the stage and to my surprise the tall gentleman who was standing behind me took the stage. He opened up his performance with his testimony and I was utterly shocked to see a young man so on fire for Christ. I was also pleasantly surprised by his performance. Christian rappers don’t get a lot of credit in the entertainment industry but this man was talented and I was impressed by his performance.
The Songs He Performed:
We caught eyes a few times and after his performance he took his seat behind me again and I couldn’t help but remain intrigued. Did I mention that he was tall and handsome? Well the show ended and I fought within myself if I was going to ask him for a CD or where I could find his music. I didn’t want to seem like a Christian rapper groupie. I stopped him as he was walking and he said his mixtape would be released the next month but to follow him on Instagram or Facebook and he would get one to me. He said he would announce his info on the mic and then he was rushed off. He announced his Instagram handle as ‘two young royalty two’. Now with my instinct to be grammatically correct, I attempted to look him up with all proper possibilities of the combinations of those words. After numerous failed attempts I felt defeated and reluctantly gave up. I then remembered he said his name was Leslie Jackson but there were many people are on Facebook with that same name. I went home with him still on my mind. I happened to scroll down my Facebook feed later that night and I saw him tagged in a post thanking that night’s artists by Renee’s husband. I rejoiced but to my dismay he couldn’t accept more friend requests. He had reached his limit! So I gathered any information I could get from what was available on his Facebook page and I ran into his stage name and how it was actually spelled, Yunng Royalty. Now I would’ve never guessed that. I tried my Instagram search again with the newly acquired spelling and I found him! Of course I requested to follow him and he immediately requested me back but I was not sure if he recognized me. Much later in our relationship he confirmed that he knew exactly who I was and I too stood out to him. As he stood behind me, God told him that I was his wife and that he had to be my friend for a year before he could have me. Sounds romantic huh? It wasn’t exactly that. That was a long trying year.
After following each other on Instagram our interaction with each other remained stagnant for about a month. Outside of liking each other’s posts, we did not communicate. I was that single girl falling in love with Jesus and he was that man of God on fire for Christ but we were watching each other. We tested each other’s spirits and character by the content of what we displayed on social media. We liked what we saw but again we weren’t communicating at that time, just Instagram followers at this point focusing on our individual walks. This happened up until I saw him make an announcement stating that his mixtape was releasing the following day. I reminded him in his comments that I wanted one. He gave me his number, asked me to text him and promised to get one to me. That marked the day that communication began, 4/20/13.
Some of the Songs Off His Mixtape:
From the moment we exchanged numbers we began to extinguish our curiosity. Although I reached out to him about his mixtape, our text message conversation transitioned to questions about each other like what’s your favorite color, what’s your favorite food, what do you like to do and other innocent, really get to know you, questions. This was strange to me. Not strange as in I didn’t like it but strange because I hadn’t been asked these kind of questions since I was in like middle school. His genuine interest in wanting to get to know me threw me for a loop. You see, up until this point in my life I had experienced every other type of man except a man of God so I was not used to this. Our text message conversation lasted well into the night and the following morning and by the next day he asked if he could call me because he wanted to pray for me. I looked at my phone in confusion and disbelief. Pray? For me? How could I say no to that? He called me and did just that. Our phone conversation lasted well over 5 hours. We spent hours getting to know each other and exchanging testimonies. We were able to agree on our beliefs, morals and values. I shared with him that I wanted to conquer celibacy and he was all for it, encouraging me to stay true to my promise to God. Again, something I have never experienced before. We reluctantly got off the phone with a promise that we would talk again soon. Soon transitioned to everyday. Everyday from then on he called me and prayed for me before we got off the phone each night. He sent me scriptures and encouraging words throughout the day and taught me from the Bible too. I soaked up what he taught me and heard and saw God operate and speak through him. I grew spiritually with him with God being the foundation of our friendship. We continued to get to know each other for months like this only meeting up again some months later in June of 2013. The 2nd encounter with him was even more beautiful. It was so pure, genuine and God led. It confirmed so many things that we already felt for each other and even created some apprehensions too.
Phone Screen Shot From Our 1st Conversation
IG Post After Our 2nd Meeting
The only time where I did not agree with Leslie was when he was operating in his flesh. Although we were falling in love with each other, he kept telling me we were only friends and I felt him running from me. This was frustrating because I knew that he was my husband and he knew that I was his wife but we hadn’t even gotten to the boyfriend/girlfriend stage yet. He never shared with me what God told him to do. That ‘wait and be her friend for a year’ thing I was oblivious to and I personally think he took it a little too far and used it as a clutch when he got cold feet. I knew that he was reluctant on being in a relationship with me because of the last relationship he was in. She actually had the same name as me. My middle name was her first name and even some of my qualities reminded him of her. She broke his heart and he was terrified to love and lose again. I assured him that I was not her and that if he allowed me to love him freely, he would see and experience that. I didn’t have a problem being his friend, I knew I was his wife without a shadow of doubt but I just didn’t see how we were going to progress to that when he kept limiting me after we clearly understood each other’s boundaries and pasts. We pretty much operated as if we were in a long distance relationship without a title. He lived in Houston and I lived in Dallas. I would offer to travel to him and he would decline my offers stating he wasn’t ready to see me again yet and reminded me every chance he got that we were just friends. With the type of past that I come from, I took that as he was curving me. I said to myself if we are just friends, I guess I can have other friends too while he figured out what he wanted to do. That ended up backfiring on me. My bright idea got me left out in the cold.
Remember when I said that God would use him, well God would speak to him too. A few weeks into my bright idea, Leslie reached out to me and told me that I was an amazing woman of God and that I would make someone a great wife one day but it wasn’t going to be him. I attempted to tell him it was his insecurities speaking but he was adamant on his decision without giving me any explanation at all. I was heartbroken and devastated. But he was my husband. What am I going to do now? Those “friends” I made could not even slightly compare to him. He rejected all my attempts at an apology and went on about his life. Although I was hurt, I still continued to pursue Christ stronger than ever. You’d think that I would’ve considered falling back into my old ways but by that point in my walk with Christ I couldn’t even fathom a relationship with anyone outside of Leslie or dating without the intent of marriage. God had shown me that he was my husband and he had poured so much into me and exposed his soul to me that he ruined it for any other man I came in contact with. I only wanted him but he was gone. I didn’t know how God was going to work this out because he was not budging. I continued to remain hopeful and continued to pray for Leslie in the meantime.
IG Post I Wrote During This Time
A Song Leslie Wrote During This Time:
I got the opportunity to connect with Leslie again the weekend of his birthday October 2013. Prior to our disconnect, we had planned to spend his birthday together with me coming to Houston. I kept the plans even though we hadn’t been in communication for going on 3 months at that time and decided on a whim to still go. I called him on his actual birthday and told him that I will be in Houston for the weekend and that if he wanted to meet up, where I would be staying. He told me that his best friend had come into town and that he had plans to celebrate the whole weekend with his friends. One of those plans was to go to the strip club and a college party at Prairie View A&M. Strip club? Party? This doesn’t sound like the Leslie I know. I just said oh cool and got off the phone letting him know I’ll let him know when I make it. I drove to Houston that weekend not knowing if I would end up seeing him or even if he would want to see me. We hadn’t been in communication for 3 months and obviously it sounded like some things had changed. I checked into my hotel and let him know that I made it. He stated that he did want to see me but it would have to be later because he was out with his friends and didn’t know what time he would be back home. I settled in, unpacked and waited as patiently as I could. I didn’t know what to expect. Later that night he let me know that he made it back home but he probably shouldn’t drive. I picked him up because I did not want him to drive inebriated and we went back to my hotel to catch up. He filled me in on what had been going on with him since the last time we spoke and what he shared with me wasn’t good. It was obvious to see that the trials that he had gone through led him to backslide. We had now switched places. I was now the stronger person spiritually and it was now my turn to do for him what he did for me. This was a trend that also continued into our marriage. Leslie ended up spending the whole weekend with me. His strip club and partying plans didn’t pan out. We were able to rekindle our friendship beyond a level we expected. I went back to Dallas knowing that us meeting again had changed both of our lives.
Houston Birthday Pic
Over the next few months, Leslie still struggled with overcoming the effects of his backsliding and I continued to remind him of the man of God that he was called to be. I would help him from encouraging words to financially. I nursed him back to spiritual health and he got stronger but never really fully got back on his feet. I knew this and I vowed to stick by him to repay him for what he did for me under God’s instruction. At this point in our friendship, we had both invested in each other. God told me if I can accept him where he is at and be patient with him, that with his obedience he will be the man of God that he is called to be and my investment would not come back void.
We started traveling to each other more often after that. He came to Dallas for the first time in December of 2013 and met my family. I guess you can say that we began “courting” then. He let me know he had a surprise for me for my upcoming birthday but wouldn’t give me any clues. He finally asked me to be his girlfriend two days after my birthday, 2/5/14. He wrote me a song telling me of how he felt about me from the first moment he met me up until then. He even told me of his instructions from God to be my friend for a year and said the time has finally come, leading up to him asking me to be his girlfriend within the song. It was a beautiful song and one where he was actually singing. Not only was he a Christian rapper, he also sung beautifully and I actually preferred his singing. I never thought the day would come. At that point I had even given up on expecting a title and became content with being his friend. You would think it was all unicorns and rainbows from there after but our battles had only begun.
My Birthday Song From Leslie/ His Version Of Events:
Not even a week after becoming his girlfriend, something dropped in my spirit so heavy that I had to come clean about. Before I met Leslie, I met another man via a dating website who I attempted a relationship with. Recall, I was still in my “wannabe reformed savage stage”. I did not approach this encounter with the same mindset or standards that I did with Leslie. Obviously, because I was on a dating website. I was literally only on there for a few days before I threw in the towel and ended up meeting this other guy. We clicked, exchanged numbers and agreed to meet up after he moved to Dallas. We even both deleted our profiles after that. By the time I began communication with Leslie, the other guy and I were platonic. The guy and I actually ended up being really great friends and he became my personal trainer. We could not erase our initial relationship. We just agreed we were better off as friends and left the past in the past. No big deal right? Well I found out via Instagram early in our friendship that he and Leslie knew each other! Like really knew each other! They were friends in college at Louisiana Tech University and still had many of the same friends now. What the heck were the odds? The only two men I have been involved with since being in Texas knew each other! I had mentioned this involvement turned friendship to Leslie and he was already aware that he was training me. What he was not aware of was all the details. This is what I had to come clean about. I had never lied to Leslie about anything. He knew all about my past and present except for this. This is the information I withheld. My logic in withholding this was Leslie’s inconsistencies during our friendship and the fact that it happened before Leslie and I couldn’t take it back either way. So I swept it under the rug until my heart wouldn’t allow me to anymore. He took my truth terribly as expected. He broke up with me, spurted a few curse words and hung up on me. Despite his reaction, I felt free. There was nothing else I was hiding and if we could get past this, we could get past anything. After all, he was the one who said “we haven’t gone through anything yet, how can we know we can make it through marriage?” I guess this was our opportunity to test our strength.
I knew he was hurt and there was no consoling that I could do so I just worshiped and prayed asking God to work it out. In record timing, God turned it around. Within a few days he forgave me and asked me to still come down that weekend so I can meet his family. That weekend was beautiful. My son and I traveled down to Bryan, Texas and met his mother, sisters, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins and they all loved us. His family was so warm and welcoming. They accepted me and my son with an open heart and told us we were family. I apologized to Leslie in person and he told me that he loved me and forgave me. The ball started rolling then. The following month in March of 2014 we got our marriage license and by early April Leslie moved to Dallas and we began marriage counseling. We got engaged not too long after that. On the year anniversary of the day we began communication, Leslie proposed to me.
Road Trip To Meet His Family
Promise to God IG Post
It was Easter Sunday of April 2014. We were at my parents house, my older sister and cousin were in town and I had a friend and her daughter over for our annual Easter egg hunt. I was sitting at the kitchen table deep in conversation with my girlfriend when I heard a familiar song playing over the speakers. I recognized it as a song that Leslie would sing to me. My sister came and abruptly interrupted our conversation demanding that I come with her. I gave her a look like she was out of her mind and out right told her no. She again demanded I come with her grabbing me by my arm and making me get up from the table. I reluctantly followed her into our foyer for the surprise of my life. There my mother, father, brother, sister, son, cousin, friend and Leslie were waiting for me with phones out and the biggest smiles on their faces. Leslie approached me, took my hands, said something to me I no longer recall because I was in absolute shock, got on one knee, and proposed to me. Obviously, I said yes! My parents were in tears and my cousin too. My sister threatened him and gave him her approval. My brother congratulated him and my cousin said welcome to the family. I stood there in shock asking everyone if they knew what he was going to do. You see, I am almost impossible to surprise. I am way too analytical to let something like this slip past me but he got me and he got me good.
For the duration of our engagement I moved back into my parents house and allowed Leslie to live in my apartment. Leslie and I didn’t want to live together until we were married and had promised to God that we would wait until we were married to be intimate on our wedding night. Since we already had obtained our marriage license, we began to plan an intimate ceremony to be wed in May of 2014. We decided on a private backyard ceremony at my parents house with only immediate family invited. We actually also chose to not give notice to anyone outside of immediate family and closest friends that we were married because we had planned to have a larger wedding later that year. We married in an afternoon ceremony on May 31, 2014. The ceremony was done by our marriage counselors and our immediate family was in attendance. The day was perfect. The ceremony was beautiful and we were husband and wife.
So what happened next? Where did our love story derail? Truth be told, not too long after this.