Hair Therapy…I shaved my head

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November of 2017, my life was spiraling. I allowed myself to slowly fall back into my old ways by opening my life and home to my ex husband. I became so frustrated with myself, as I spent so much time forgiving, and healing from the years of pain I allowed him to cause. I became weak, because the power that I worked so hard to regain, was depleted within a span of three months. I fell into the role of wanting to be liked, and accepted. I became obsessed with being rejected, and wanted to prove my worthiness of his corrupted version of love. My vision had become clouded, and so had my judgment. I began to question myself and fought daily between the old me and the new me. With the overwhelming thoughts in my head, I needed to release his energy. I needed a release period. I had been rocking a weave to maintain a versatile style for about two months. The day I took my weave out, I was amazed at the amount of new growth but had been frustrated with my curl pattern. I just began thinking about the years of my lack of self-love. At that moment, I had the impulse to cut it all off.

I realized this was a reflection of how I felt about myself.  My crown, my tresses are a part of what makes me a woman. This is something we pride ourselves about. Three years ago, I did the big chop and cut my hair to renew my curl pattern. It took one visit to a new hair salon, with an individual not concerned about my process, to damage a year and a half of progress with my natural hair. We can end up taking ten steps back on a journey through introducing ourselves to people not concerned about maintaining or aiding us with our personal journeys. All it takes is one situation, one person, or one decision that can send you back pedaling to the beginning. Everything you worked so hard for, appeared to be damaged within a span of seconds. It took me a while to digest the fact that after years of protecting my crown and nurturing it, I allowed someone to end up damaging it. Now, I know that those very setbacks are required. I realized not to be so hard on myself and to use what I learned for the next time. It unfortunate, because a lot of times, those very people who may cause those setbacks for you have no clue the damage they are causing.  Those dead ends can be clipped, that pain can be released, and you can regrow and start anew. My best friend and I sat around talking about the liberation in a woman cutting her hair. When I first cut my hair bald, she was the only one that I allowed to see me like that. The only other person was my son. I wish I could have video tapped his reaction and outburst of laughter. I couldn’t help but laugh as well, but after, he asked if he could do the same. He said “Mommy I want to be healthy too.” I knew at that point, I was making the right decision. As liberating as it was, I had to move past my ego and the insecurities in my head. I always wondered why when I went through a break up, or a life changing event did I have this desire to cut my hair. My best friend brought the answer to light to me today. She reminded me of the fact that she knew what I did before I told her. She said that when a woman cuts her hair, she is releasing the heaviness of her thoughts. When a woman is overwhelmed or consumed in her thoughts cutting her hair helps to release the heaviness, but doesn’t rid her of her circumstances. She is creating a new foundation through cutting the damage and making room for new. When a women cuts her hair, she is about to change her life. Our physical bodies, and physical circumstances, are a representation of our thoughts. It is beyond changing her image and how the world sees her. She is embracing the women she is beyond her tresses. She is a rebel and is not defined by her hair.

before 1st cut

My mother almost had a heart attack when I told her and could not understand why. To be honest, telling her was the most liberating thing for me. Growing up , I was taught to be everything else but myself. I had stripped myself of everything. Of intimate relationships, my hair, my brand new home, and so much more. I stripped myself of everything that others use as an illusion to distract them from knowing self. A lot of people fear that intimate connection of self, because there are a lot of hurtful truths we discover. It requires strength, love, patience, and nurturing. All the very things required to regrow healthy hair. Every journey is just that…a journey. To be honest, it doesn’t end until the day we die, that is where the roads ends. I am so proud of myself for removing the self-inflicted cancer of toxic relationships, and learning to love me, flaws and all. There is therapy in a hair cut, because lately I careless of how I’m perceived. I have my days when I feel boyish because of the cut, and some days a complete bad-ass. My hair is a small portion of this whole being. I am beyond the physical as my personality and purpose confirms that. When I cut my hair I don’t just change my life…I am influenced to inspire others.

after 1st cut

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There is POWER in letting Go…

Fuck this shit

There is so much power in letting go! It took me a while to recognize it, but I felt the need to share my story. People have no idea how I conceived Micah. I mean beyond the sexual activity that I had to partake in. I mean on a spiritual level, his conception was divine timing. I always get a laugh from my friends when I tell them he is the easy bake oven baby. He was made on a rooftop of a hospital in less than four minutes. His father and I decided to do things the right way this time. We became so close after the loss of our son, that we decided to get married. The closeness wasn’t healthy. In fact I clung to him for the fear of losing him as well. Within two years I had lost both my grandmother, my newborn son,  and the thought of losing him made my emotional grip even tighter. Micah was the gift that we received as a result of me letting go of all my fears. As most mothers do, I spent months preparing for London right up until my due date. I spent time preparing his nursery and shopping for all his needs. I even got a new apartment, and cleared out the negative energy of some family and friends. I did what I thought I was supposed to do in preparation of my new title as a mother. When he passed, I spent days in my apartment, with visitors coming in and out to check on our wellbeing. I became so comfortable with all of the company that when alone, I became afraid of darkness. My husband at the time did his best to make sure I was never alone, and one day while at work, I did the unthinkable.Buddha let go

I called my best friend at the time, to tell her to bring her cousin by to take everything out of the nursery.  At the time her cousin was about five or six months, and was the only other person I knew expecting. I really wanted to give everything to a person that greatly appreciated it, and she was the first person that came to mind. I just wanted it all out of my house. I got sick of physically looking at my dreams shattered but nicely arranged like a museum display of what life was supposed to be. A quiet nursery, that screamed the very pain that I felt within. My girlfriend at the time, thought I was losing it. She asked me multiple times if this was something that I wanted to do. One thing about me is that when my mind is finally made up, that is it. There is no turning back for me. One thing I regret is not talking to my then husband about it at the time. Then again, if I did, he probably would have talked me out of it.  I watched as they removed everything from my home piece by piece. To be honest once everything was gone I don’t recall shedding a tear. My husband and I got into a huge argument that evening when he got home. He wanted to hold on, and I was ready to let go! People said not to get rid of it because you will have another child. Or, “put it in storage so you don’t have to prepare when the next child comes. Why would you do that?”. The answer is for my sanity. I slowly, opened up to holding other babies, and celebrating the life of other couples and their newborns. I still hurt from the loss of my son, but I no longer wanted to be stuck on the events of Dec 2011.Letting go 2

Three months later, I ran into my best friend’s mother while leaving an attorney’s office. She proceeds to tell me that one of my best friends were expecting at the time. I sat in my car for at least an hour crying crocodile tears, not even aware that I was pregnant myself.  March of 2012, I found out I was pregnant with Micah. My husband and I at the time were grieving in our separate ways. Him though partying and bullshit, me through facing my demons head on. I call to tell him the news of the conception of our second child, and to my surprise, he asked me what my plans were. Neither of my pregnancies were celebrated, but there was no way I would even consider an abortion of a child after losing one. In our physical bodies, we are more inclined to physically or mentally hold on to things. The power in letting go is letting God or the Universe know you have faith.  We continuously try to play in these roles, trying to control every aspect of our lives, only to find much of  this life we have no control over.  The power of letting go is knowing that there is something more for you. Letting go is allowing space for the new. When we hold on through trying to control, we lose or power, only to allow the situation to end up controlling us. When we let go and surrender the power of trying to control, and allow what is for us to be received by us,  life becomes much simpler. What is meant for you, will always be, and nothing that is for you can be taken or compromised by anyone but you. There is so much good in change and miracles that occur when you realize the power of letting go. Holding on through action is backed by fear. Letting go and doing so with love, only life changing situations can occur. When we hold on to events, people, and circumstances we are stunting our evolution. Forcing what we thought was meant to be, as opposed to what is to be. I have learned that no matter what the circumstance is I will let it go, always realizing that whatever the outcome, I will be okay! Letting go is my silent physical prayer to God + or the Universe, letting them know that I trust them even when I can’t see what they are constructing behind the scenes.  Let Go!

Child support?

box of darkness

My mother was always concerned for me because she believed that I was more book smart than street smart. As years have progressed, that theory of me no longer remains. I have always been an extremely emotional person and have even considered myself an “empath”. I would pride myself on my emotions,  and still feel strongly about the importance of them. They are our internal indicators but sometimes can result in poor decision-making and effect our logical thinking. Today reminded me of Groundhog day. or even the Netflix film “Naked”. You don’t have to see the film to understand the concept of the movie. It is about a man who keeps reliving the same events over and over of his wedding day. It begins with him being Naked in an elevator from his crazy bachelor night prior, to his wedding day. He gets caught into a time loop over and over again, encountering the same events, and people throughout the day. Today was Deja vu of exactly what my life was like in 2016. Only this time, I was proactive and not reactive.  See people tend to forget about this university called life. Just like school, every lesson you are required to graduate from before moving on to the next stage. Many people are experiencing Groundhog Day instead with other people and differing events, but similar lessons to be learned. I was stuck in the pain and reopened the wound this summer only to repeat and be time warped back to 2016 the year of my divorce. 2016 was the time my ex-spouse decided to move another woman from my hometown to the very place he uprooted me to. Well technically I made that decision for myself, but was under the impression I was doing what was best for my family. I was an emotional mess, because the very man I protected, was the same man to cause me pain, and that was the turning point for me. I thought the Divorce was the end of this battle with him, and believed he did enough to try to kill my soul, but was I wrong. I realized that I was not dealing with someone normal, but rather a narcissist, that had nothing but time to mirror his feelings of himself upon me.

A year ago, I decided to take him off the initial child support agreement because we were co-parenting with no issues. He would make comments about how he wanted to know where his support was going, so I made him responsible for half of our son’s tuition. If you have not endured Divorce, it is an extremely ugly battle between two people who once loved each other, that at some point turned into hate. Not always the case but this occurs for most.  They said its a thin line, and to be honest, this is true. Our relationship thrived and blossomed during trauma, in our hapiness we fought the most. We were two people who felt unworth of life’s blessings.  When you’re not married and have a commitment with someone such as a child, you don’t necessarily have to involve the courts unless you cannot  come to a mutual agreement. Once married, it is a requirement wirth the divorce process. A once intimate relationship that involved just the family, then becomes the business of the court and the county. As black women, I see on social media, women post their pride in not receiving assistance from their child’s father. It is like that awards them as the mother of the year, for their independence and lack of support. I don’t deny them of this, but realized that raising a child is not solely meant to be done alone financially, physically or spiritually. Now if the father is abusive to the child and neglectful, that is a whole other story. I decided that it was time to revisit this option as his father was not withholding his commitment to his son. I pay tuition, housing, insurance, and extra curricular activities solely myself. For the past three years his father remainder unemployed and would play the court system and me. It’s unfortunate because there are fathers out their, that actually are doing for their children and women take advantage due to their emotional baggage they haven’t unpacked. However this is not my case.  Today in my time loop he repeated everything that he has said in the past. The lies and other spiteful things to diminish me as the primary parent. “She is mad that I don’t want her, that is why we are here.” I had to chuckle to myself, because my only concern was I had fallen behind on my son’s tuition payments with all of my additional responsibilities as a homeowner, and single mother. I actually felt bad for him, because he is stuck. Stuck in the same space that I met him 10 years ago in which I thought I could fix. He appeared in all black, which was a symbol of the darkness that is clouding him. He never could give me eye contact because the child in him knew of the guilt he felt in his adult body. I provided every document required to state my claim, while he remained empty-handed with not a paycheck stub to be found.

Darkness

 

I used to get frustrated with the idea that I had to prove to the courts what type of parent I was. This actually is not the case. You see, when you do all things in love and are living life in your truth, there is no need for proof. A blind man could read between the lines of every word that came out of each of our mouths. I have felt guilty so many years for his circumstances, and feel uneasy as he is a reflection of someone I chose years ago. I tried over and over again thinking that my son would only be complete with all three of us as a unit in the same home. I wanted what I did not in my childhood. So I did everything to make it work. A man on his current level today, I wouldn’t give the time of day! It hurts to see that he is the very man, I don’t want my son to become. I feel for the black man, and all of his struggles. To a point we as black women and mothers are coddling some of them and restricting their growth. Some of us women stand in the way of their karmaic debts and keep them at Groundhog day while we suffer as the accomplice.  I stayed with him for so many years, because I didn’t want to abandon him like his mother. I eventually realized the love he was searching for could not come from me. He was looking for his mother to save him, but at this point he can only save himself.  We are placed on this guilt trip when it comes to our men. We are to protect them and be their peace. But what about the black woman? I fought years in court for his freedom. I think he forgot who was behind all that administrative work. Court dates, paperwork, witnesses, and putting money on his books only to be standing with him in court to fight for whats right for our child. See, the girl years ago used to love this man more than she loved herself. Then she realized that she had to love herself more,  not only for herself  but to be a good mother to their child. I was the woman who stated she only wanted one man for her children, and believed that to be the right way. I no longer believe this is true. As women we sometimes leave the door cracked hoping for the day that he will change, and that day may never come. I closed the door that last time he got close enough to put his hands on me. I pray for his happiness so he can become a better father for our child, and leave me the hell alone. Today, I found clarity outside of my emotions. I was even able to find him entertaining to say the least.  I found it humorous that he appeared with the coat that I bought him. Everything I gave him he still holds onto. I no longer take what he says personally because he is fighting with himself and despises me for my growth. He can no longer curse me with his words because they no longer have value here.  As women we worry about the man moving on and becoming the person he wasn’t for you. Many times they don’t change, they change who they are with. I feel for the next victim because who he chooses is a reflection of who he is today. I pray for her confidence, and ability to see clearly. As any man who is willing to disrespect the mother of his children, will eventually do the same to you.  I pride myself on advocating for my son and I, even against someone I believed was family.  Just a friendly  reminder: It’s not nice to make an enemy of someone who truly knows you, with my level of intelligence. A woman of my caliber is dangerous, and many are aware. People see your power, before you see it yourself. A little hood, but educated, and a heart full of gold. I’m not the type to start a fight, but when it comes to my son and his growth to become a  well-rounded young black man, your asking for war. It is beyond the money.  It requires more than money to support the child, advocating for your childs developmental, physical, and spiritual growth is true child support.

The intuition of Serena, and the power of Oprah…

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Today while scrolling on social media, I came across multiple articles about Serena Williams and her trauma during child birth. Williams who appears in the most recent article of vogue, discusses her medical emergency after her C-section to her first born daughter Alexis Olympia. According to the Vogue article, once Williams contractions began, baby Alexis heart rate began to plummet. Due to their concern for the baby, an emergency cesarean section was performed. The next day during recovery, Williams began to fall ill and flagged down a nearby nurse for assistance. She stated to the nurse that she needed an IV with heparin, blood thinners, and a CT scan to check for blood clots. The nurse immediately brushed off Williams request, as she believed the previous medication provided to Williams may have affected her decision making.  A doctor appeared only to provide Williams with an ultrasound, in which it had no evidence of blood clots. Williams aware of her medical history proceeded to repeat her need for a CT scan in which the doctors later found small blood clots in her lungs. William’s intuitive decision for herself, saved her life. She advocated for herself and her needs. Williams is a well known celebrity tennis player, and African American woman. Her experience and platform brought light to a medical crisis that we as African American women are exposed to during childbirth.  African American Women are three to four times likely to die of pregnancy or delivery complications, as opposed to white women. Our fetal loss number and miscarriages are high as well. My concern with this, is the amount of value our community places on the words of the physician. There are two community leaders that we as African Americans are taught not to question. That is the pastor of  your family church, and you family physician. What they say goes! Unfortunately, we as a people are unaware of the collaborative effort it takes in diagnosis and in treatment of disease within our community. We lack self-love to the point of being unaware of our bodies, and leave the power of advocacy in others hands. No one has your best interest for you, except you. We have to learn to be confident enough to know what is or isn’t good for us. Doctors diagnose you off of what they see by comparing to similar cases and the symptoms you tell them. Every case is different and unique just like every birthing story.

oprah

In the same week, Oprah provides a compelling speech for women to take back their power. Just recently have women come open about their stories of sexual harassment and abuse with the #metoo movement. These two women are reminding us of the powers within. We as women need to be reminded to tap into our intuition and internal powers when it comes to making decisions in every area of our lives. Our bodies are our temples and it is our job to protect and care for our physical being. When you have established a love for self, you no longer fear telling someone “No”, or making a decision solely for the protection of your being. You are you own advocate! Stand within your power and process intuitively what it is you need or don’t need. It is a new day! Tap into your tuition like Serena, and stand in your power like Oprah! That is just a preview of some of your black girl magic.

Right in front of your face…

searching for love

When something goes missing and we are on the frequency of lack, we go overdrive into panic mode.  We do ourselves an injustice because our vision becomes blurred. We are unable to focus and attract the very thing we are looking for or missing. It is when we slow down, control our vibrations and become aware, are we then able to see exactly what we were looking for all along. This is what happened to me. I spent 32 years in panic mode taking action searching  for what was always right in front of my face. Searching for what was always within me.

The hurtful truths of a girl on a self -love journey…

Anticipation

anticipation

Anticipation is a huge part of the manifestation process. The anticipation factor allows us to use our imagination and create ideal outcomes for any situation. The key component of anticipation is to monitor  your emotions and make sure you imagine the best possible outcome. This is tricky, because if things don’t go as you originally anticipated, it can be discouraging. However, we have to learn to detach ourselves from the outcome and know that whatever the result is… we will be okay. When you anticipate something with a good feeling, you go into the situation with a positive outlook and good energy. On the opposite of this, with previous experience, we tend to find comfort in imaging the worst possible outcome. We don’t realize but creating or imagining a scenario with negative feelings towards it,  sets the tone for the experience. I see a lot of myself within my son, and learn a lot from watching him grow. Yesterday, we made a visit to the hospital because he has been running a fever. Ever since he got the flu shot, his immune system has been compromised. My son, like most children, dislikes visiting the doctors because of their fear of getting a shot. He continuously asked me whether this would be a part of his visit. I told him that he would not have to worry about getting a shot and that we just wanted to confirm he just had a cold. Even with his illness, he had very high energy and was extremely social as usual. The nurses and physicians immediately fell in love with his curiosity and manners. They had won his trust!  The nurse told me they were going to run a few test to check for the flu virus. It has been a while since I worked in the hospital and had no clue of how they ran these new test. She told me that she would have to swab his nose, similar to the strep testing procedure. She briefly explained to my son what she planned to do, and caught him off guard. She stuck the swap up his nose to the point he began to gag and then cry. His trust for her was done.

Fast forward, the next day I went to purchase saline spray for his nose. He has been feeling much better but not completely himself. As soon as we got to the car I opened the packaging to the saline spray. I wanted to help clear his nasal passage, as his nose has been bothering him.  As soon as I brought the bottle to his nose he panicked. He began to cry as he anticipated the pain he endured the other day at the hospital. He anticipated trauma.  As he was crying I couldn’t help but sympathize for him as his reaction was valid. I completely understood him because I have been there many times. Reacting to a situation, creating and anticipating an outcome that I did not want to experience. I saw my son create resistance to a situation that was nothing like the other day. He was ready to avoid something because of his previous experience. Of course, as his mother I was able to calm him down. I showed him what it was like by practicing on myself first. I was able to ease his fear to allow him to anticipate a different outcome. In life we create so much resistance and avoid situations all out of fear and previous traumas.  God, like the nurse, catches us off guard and place us in those very situations we fear and avoided. Only to realize that it wasn’t as bad as we anticipated, and that we will be okay!

I have been anticipating court this upcoming week in regards to custody and my request to relocate. I have created every negative and positive scenario in my head.  I am learning to detach myself from the outcome because in the end, I will be okay. That guy you have been anticipating to speak to, your anticipation of that public speaking event, or anticipation of what tomorrow brings. Remember to imagine and create a scenario with love and positive energy. Just know, that whatever the outcome you will be okay!

Freedom

I do not own the rights to this image!

I recall questioning why a woman experiencing domestic abuse would stay. I would watch a film or hear horror stories of women in emotional and physically abusive relationships. I always wondered what they were thinking. I always said that I could never be “HER”. For ten years, I gave pieces of my power away, and created a debilitating cage of fear. I confirmed and made an agreement with myself, with every malicious or loving word that spilled from his lips. He confirmed the very things that I unconsciously felt about myself. I fed onto his promises as opposed to his actions. Until recently, had I broke away from the vicious cycle. I decided that enough was enough, and finally made a decision to do something for myself. I left everything I knew and worked hard for, all to escape to my freedom. Last year, I purchased my first house around the holidays. A huge three bedroom home for just my son and I. This year, I became aware that I was living someone else’s dream. Unconsciously, fulfilling someone else desires of me. I am currently sitting in a one bedroom apartment writing this blog. I rented my home to make a transition and was told by the court and my ex-spouse that I am unable to relocate. That cage of fear door has finally opened, but I haven’t prepared myself to fly out just yet. I have seen the pain of one’s life being in the hands of another from seeing my ex-spouse in criminal court. His fear of his freedom at the fate of bad choices he made and company he kept. He was at the point of suicide weeks prior to his sentencing. The stress of the process took a toll on him and made him aware of his every move. He really believed he was innocent and so do I. At first, I felt like the victim. I did nothing illegal to deserve this treatment, nor have I ever had to answer to anybody about my personal life’s decisions. My son was born in Massachusetts and was raised there until he was one. His father came around enough for me to choose “making my family work” and I uprooted us to Pennsylvania. No one questioned me at the time about my decision, except for loved ones. They saw how hard I worked in healing and making a life for my son and I. They showed a true concern for my relocation to his town of support. I asked God to make my family work, and he did show me exactly that. He gave me what I asked for, but showed me that the family could work, just dysfunctional and not how I would desire. Fast forward, I am under the same stress while raising a five year old son. Originally I had thought to myself that he was trying to control my life, put a hurdle in the way of my goals. However, I came to the understanding that he can only get in the way if I allow him. I created this space in which I allowed his negative energy to block my dating life, professional life, and self-love. Those women I could not understand, I now do. They forget how powerful they are and fear cages them from flying to their freedom. The court system is slow and when someone’s life is on the line it is better to play it safe. Freedom can be an ugly journey, but the only person that will fight for you is you. You have to save yourself. It all begins with the mind and moving beyond all the fears that block you from moving away from all that is holding you down. Including a toxic relationship. It may take a while because your power was diminished piece by piece, but it is possible to regain. Once you have it, you will realize that no one can ever take it unless you give it to them. You will see that the cage door was always open, waiting for you to get the courage up to fly out of your fears. The court may have say over where I’m going physically, especially in regards to my commitment to my son and custody agreement. They however have no power over where my life is going, nor over my dreams. Its unfortunate that my poor choice of company five years ago, lead to a life long commitment. Its embarassing as he is the reminder of the girl I used to be and the very man I don’t want my son to be. He pushed me out of the cage and has forced me to fly on my own and for that I am grateful. He has reminded me of my power, that very light he tried to dim. My freedom came when I changed my mind.

The hurtful truths of a girl on a self love journey…

Second time strangers…

Strangers-Again

Happy New Year! I swear time is flying by. This weekend, I made a spur of the moment decision to go visit family for the holiday. Such a great decision it was. I was feeling such extreme joy to spend time with such positive energy, my anticipation was overwhelming. This year I have committed to doing all the very things that make me happy, and what better way to kick off the year’s transition with friends and family.  With the New Year only hours a way, the eve produced a challenge that I had no idea I would be confronting. I had a falling out exactly a year ago with a friend of over 15 years, which ended with a lack of understanding or resolution. I though that at this point that I had accepted the fate of the relationship, until I was notified that I would be attending the same event with these second time strangers. The energy I had towards being in the same space after a year was charged negatively to the point I was ready to drive back home, from Massachusetts to Pennsylvania. After being made aware, I was frustrated with the lack of time I had to amour up energetically to not be emotionally attached to the outcome. However, my frustration with the lack of clarification and resolution really did not allow me to ignore the “elephant in the room”.  I spent at least an hour trying to make a decision on how to handle my emotions, and make a decision on what was best for me. I recently realized this with my hundredth time reconnecting with my son’s father, that only through interaction will I see the progress of my healing and forgiveness. Healing in solitude is easy, but only through socialization will you be able to test your progress. With him I still have work to do, but in the case of the second time strangers, the chapter has closed. Within that hour, I created and acted out every possible scene that could have occurred. I planned on drinking during the event and was afraid my openness could transpire into a physical altercation. That was not who I was, but who I have become is a person who believes everyone deserves at least me to remain cordial. I mean Cardi B told everyone, “If you see me and I don’t speak, that means I don’t fuck with you.” but is it ever that serious? After speaking to my son’s godmother and her husband, they unclouded my perspective and really tuned me into making the appropriate decision for myself. Who I was, used to run from conflict. Who I am now stands in her power, and truth by remaining true to who I am. I decided to stay. If I left, I would be giving my power away. I guess it angered me that the length of time we were as friends, that an understanding was never sought out. I guess I could have been the bigger person, but felt the relationship must have never really meant much to any of us. The reality is EGO stood in the way of both parties. I don’t suggest this, but I drowned down three cocktails prior to the reunion. I had to kill the butterflies and expectations. The two second time strangers greeted everyone upon their arrival. The first says “Hi” with eye contact the other “Hi” with the side eye. The worst part was over and it was nearly not as bad as I though it was. The part that shocked me was the disconnect with my son, who they watched come into this world.  We are taught as children in school and by our parents to not speak to strangers. Beware! You don’t know them and they can be potentially harmful.  What about the second time strangers? The people who participated in your evolution, those you have given love and intimacy too. Those who you may have shared your dreams and fears with. These are the second time strangers. Those who once were strangers, then people you knew, and due to unforeseen circumstance, became people you did not know all over again. The night confirmed that we have grown apart, and also confirmed they may have thought they knew the person that I once was, but they were strangers to the woman I have become. In a year, so much has changed for all of us. One thing I was curious about was did she know the rose he gave to her for last Christmas, was my idea. That I reminded him that she deserved to be acknowledged that day. I know she knew because she looked at me that day as if she knew I had something to do with it. I played like I didn’t, but I did. Death has taught me the value of life and relationships. This year I have learned that not all relationships that end need to reconciled. We closed a chapter that day in Disney on Christmas. New Years eve was the confirmation. I appreciate the experience and love I received while the years lasted. There are so many emotions that you experience in your encounter with second time strangers. For me, it was a sense of peace. For death has taught me to do the best you can, and give your all in your relationships. There is not one day that goes by that I don’t let my loved ones know they are loved and appreciated.  So next time you run into your second time stranger, just remind yourself they may have known you, but they have no clue who you have become, and give thanks to them for their participation in your evolution. My first challenge of the New Year was a success, universe bring it on, what’s next?

The hurtful truths of a girl on a self-love journey…

If only you knew (Patti Labelle voice)

She reminds me of Patti Labelle or maybe that is the image I created of her in my mind. She loves to sing, cook, and spend time with her family. She had a voice just like her, before the cigarettes paid a toll on her vocal cords. I recall my father always bragging about her ability to sing. We recently had another falling out, there is always a constant misunderstanding between the both of us. She with the powerful desire to be respected and my desire to be heard. Neither willing to provide either, but I have a platform that allows me to do so. She doesn’t realize it but I have already mourned the loss of her, as I watched her die when I was a young girl. The last argument she told me that I never have her back. If only you knew…They say growing up in a black household being a young woman can be tough. Majority of the households are ran by single mothers with very little presences from the fathers. A counselor/therapist once asked me did you ever feel loved by her, and the unfortunate answer is no. She used to always tell me when she was drunk, how her lack of affection stemmed from her mother. How she fell in love with countless men, but I never seen her love for herself. Had your back? Lets just say I have pissed in cups for her, having no clue what I was doing that for. Only to realize I was helping her with random drug test for her employment at a big named chemical plant. The same company years later she got fired from. When tragedy hit our family in 1996, she died along with them. I recall cleaning up throw up from the side of her bed, and caring for my toddler brother while she partied the night away. Have your back? She had my grandmother, my cousin, and a tribe of women to call on for help, and childcare. Instead I played as her caregiver, and was screamed and yelled at when I desired for her closeness.

She was great at giving, I had a shit ton of toys and material things. Just like my ex-husband her affection and love was too costly. I recall panicking call bars, and hospitals because she stayed out all night, while I played mom at 13. Middle school I barely passed as I was being bullied at home and in school. I knew exactly the right time to ask you to sign my report cards. The night after you were drinking you wouldn’t even pay attention. You never paid attention. Your pain affected your loved ones. When you lost yourself you forgot about me. I found my uncle dead, had a seizure, and not once did anyone ask “are you okay?” Fuck therapy give it to God and Kieona is strong so she can handle it. I’m a writer today because of you. The only difference is I don’t need liquid courage to be true to who I am. In a way, I feel like you have always disliked me because of that. You always taught me to be everything except for myself. More cute and sexy like my cousin, stay out of the sun your already black. You taught me about relationships and then ask how I ended up with a man like that. You my greatest teacher! I didn’t grow up to be a “Dike” but I do embrace my masculine energy. I monitor my drinking because I never wanted it to take over me like it did you. My father may not have been any better but he did teach me how to be a woman. How to care for myself, it was hard to learn about menstrual care from him. You tell everyone that I choose to live with my dad, and your right I did. If you only knew, I made that decision because I knew if I stayed my soul would have died too.

I made myself responsible for picking up your pieces. Cleaning up after the messes you made. My teenage years were stripped from me, you allowed no room for me to make mistakes. Then you call me “Mother Teresa”, you hated the fact that I was always the good girl. You created enough hell in your life that I did not want to add to it. I recall my cousins mother the “known” addict of the family tell me there was no difference between you two, except you had a job. She was right. I was the disrespectful child because I exposed the shit you sprinkled with sugar. The exterior you did so great to cover. A functioning empty soul. Where were you for all three graduations, prom, the birth of my two sons, and anything else positive that has happened in my life. If you only knew… that through your hell you unconsciously dragged me through, I still loved you. Even through all the lies you have told about me as if I were your competition not your daughter. You brought me up to be independent and nurtured my brother. You tried to hurt me with the very demons you had dancing in your closet.

I gave you another chance. A do over with my son. Even though he gets to see a different side of you, I still have not let my walls down. I don’t trust you with my son for a sleepover or anything without my presence. I value his childhood and his perspective on love. I don’t want you to teach him your conditional love. The love that is available only when you are pleased with one’s actions. One in which subsides as soon as you are unhappy. I don’t want him exposed to your intoxicated love. The emotions you spew with liquid courage that I hold onto until the following day when you are angry and sober. Although life has changed for you because your body doesn’t allow certain things, your heart still remains closed. I am not your competition, I am your daughter. Not your homie or caregiver. You have abused your title as the walls I have built because of you, made me fear others on the outside. In a way, I believe you dislike me because of my strength. I see how easy it was for you to fall into the negativity as I have experienced everything you went through and more. If you only knew…beyond those men, beyond the drugs and alcohol, beyond your fears and insecurities, there was a little girl that truly loved you unconditionally. To the point that when she became an adult she encouraged her self love journey to you as well. I found the secret and couldn’t wait to share it with you. But your heart was not open. If you only knew…