Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Destroyed and Rebuilt...

In the past when I wrote about my mother, it touched on some of the pain I felt. Never got too deep. Lately I've been thinking a lot of about her. It's been 10 years since I lost her. I think these last few months I've thought about her constantly. With Mother's Day right around the corner, just wanted to let some thoughts out. This isn't a pretty piece, but here goes.

I remember losing my mother like it was yesterday. I remember the exact time she took her last breath. I remember that whole weekend I spent laying in bed with her. I remember wanting to believe that she would pull through. Now that I look back, I knew she wouldn't. Not that I didn't have faith, I just felt that miracle wasn't going to happen.

Her funeral is still a blur to me. I do remember walking up to the casket and wanting to jump in. I didn't want to let her go. I felt like I had died too so may as well make it a double. I spent the next few months pretending I was okay. I took a new job to distract myself. Only to end up crying in the bathroom during my lunch breaks. This most painful thing I had do was cancel her phone line. I bursted into tears when the customer service asked was there any reason why I was canceling the line. Felt like I was giving her up all over again.

Next the anger set in and took a tight grip on me. "Why didn't you fight harder?!" "Why did you listen to those idiots at the church"" I was angry at my dead mother. How could she be so cruel to leave me, to leave us? I was mad at every doctor, nurse, assistant, valet worker, custodian, anyone who worked at that hospital I loathed. Why didn't ya'll try harder? Did you give her every treatment you could? You call yourself a doctor and couldn't save MY mother?! You worthless pieces of shit! Lastly, I was mad at God. With all the drinking, smoking, general hell raising people on this earth, you chose to take my loving, beautiful mother? You serious right now?

Once the anger subsided, the depression blew into my life. I got depressed when I finally realized "damn, she's gone and not coming back". I never wanted to kill myself. However, there were days that I was like if I don't wake up, that's cool. I engaged in some hella self destructive behavior. I drank more than I did in college. I smoked like a chimney. Anything to dull my senses. Anything to not deal with the emptiness I felt inside. I withdrew from the world. I left the the distraction job. I sat in my apartment and didn't leave. I didn't sleep. I didn't do anything.

On one of the rare nights I actually slept, I had a dream. The most vivid dream I've ever had. I saw my mother so clearly, almost to the point I felt like I could touch her. When I woke up, I was in tears. I reckon it was for two reasons: 1. I didn't want the dream to end and 2. I felt like it was her way of telling me how I was living wasn't cool.

That night was a turning point for me. First thing I did was found a therapist. Not the one at the bottom of a bottle, but the one with the letters behind her name. Life without my mother has been tough. However, I have been able to cope and deal with life. It's obvious at times that my mom was the glue of our family. My pops has really stepped his game up though. I'm amazed by his strength. I can only imagine losing someone you were with for over 3 decades. He held it together for us and I appreciate that.

While I would had rather not lost my mom, losing her has given me a new purpose in life. I have been able to comfort so many people who lost their mothers. To be able to look into crying eyes and say "I've been there. It won't be easy but you're going to be okay". Helping people during tough times was her gig, now it's mine.

Monday, February 6, 2017

When You Love Someone, You Just Don't Treat Them Bad....

I know at first glance at the title, you may think it's the line from Donell Jones' classic "Where I Want to Be". You may also think that this blog is going to be about me trying to hook up with someone else. As salacious and scandalous as this may sound, this blog ain't that.

My journey as a black lesbian has not always been an easy one. Even though I am more masculine presenting, coming out to family and the aftermath has been tedious still. The biggest offender has been my eldest sister. Incidentally, she is the sibling that I am closest to. After our mother died, she has really stepped in and filled some of the void I felt.

Background on my sister: she is 8 years older than me (early 40s), married, has a kid, uber religious, and quite conservative. My sister has been an adult since we were kids. I don't ever recall her letting her hair down and having a good time. She's always been super serious. My parents would leave her in charge and she'd actually tell them if we acted up. Like bruh...this supposed to be fun time. Anywho, she is a true and through holy roller. Always has been.

When I came out to my other siblings, it was like "meh, okay". I've had some missteps with my other sister, but that's more of her being an ass than anything else. She's the type to try to hurt you with words because she can't win an argument. My bro is indifferent about life in general really has nothing to say one way or the other. He told me to be happy and that was that.

Let's get to the get down with this blog. My oldest sis recently had a birthday. Her husband texted me an invite to come to their house for birthday cake. Apparently they didn't coordinate the invite, so my sis called with a similar invite. I tell my sis that sure, the girlfriend and I will come thru. because we may go bowling or something beforehand Radio silence. "Umm umm if yall were gonna go on a date, don't worry about. His (my bro-in-law's) parents will be there. You know how they are. I don't want them to say anything offensive to yall. Plus the kids....*voice trails off*. Just don't worry. Come over another time"

I am on the other end completely flabbergasted. I know she is still trying but I felt like we had made some progress. "Okay, if that's what you want. I'll chill" is all I can stammer fighting tears. I'll never give anyone the satisfaction of knowing they made me cry. After I hung up the phone, I just let loose. Anyone who knows me knows that it takes a lot to make my cry. If I cry, I'm for real hurt. I couldn't believe my sister didn't stand up for me. I was hurt that a person I care about just threw me under a whole bus.

How can you say you love someone but don't love everything about them? If your love for me is dependent upon me hiding or denying myself. You can keep your love if your love is not extended to someone I am in a relationship with. You don't love me, it just sounds good to say. It baffles me so much that people allow ignorance, bias, a book, whatever treat a loved whole so badly. Why would  you try to connect a perversion such as pedophilia to two adult women in a loving relationship? How do you fix that same mouth to say you love 100%? So if that's your idea of love...don't love me. Keep it,

Friday, December 30, 2016

Talk Ain't Cheap And Maybe I Said Too Much

What it do, ya'll? I can't believe it's been so long since I've blogged. While your screen may have showed blank, behind the scenes I had been typing and backspacing and typing and backspacing. A lot of stuff has gone down, but your fearless hero always finds a way back to this blog. These are some words about some words...

When you don't properly handle things, don't be surprised when they pop back up. They never pop up when you're equipped to deal with them. It's not that you want anything from them; the intrigue just amplifies the voices that have been in your ear for months asking "are you sure?". And on the other end, it's probably not that deep. Is it nostalgia or a blind spot? Maybe too much free time.

No shame in admitting that you caught a charge from another power line. Just don't get electrocuted, b. It's just talk...right? Years later, it shouldn't be this seamless.  Should have skipped a beat here or there. Ain't no running off into the sunset. It's a break from all the ills that plague. It's refreshing like someone opening a door in a stuffy room. It's just talk...right? That first frothy sip of a brew. Tastes good, but don't have too many. It's just talk...right?

Let's shake hands and let cooler heads prevail. Too many moving pieces this go around. Nobody moves and nobody gets hurt. You're good, I'm good, we're good because it's just talk...right?

Monday, April 13, 2015

I Got Friends in Low Places....

Warning: this post will probably be all over the place. It makes sense to me, so I reckon that all that matters.Love can be such a beautiful thing. Love can be such a cruel beast. It's amazing how something that brought so much joy can bring so much pain.

Is this a "woe is a heartbroken black woman" tale? Nope. I am black. Still heartbroken but this is just me putting words on page. Words that I can't speak. The pages can't talk back. It won't tell me how it thinks I should feel. It won't judge me if I said I wanted to stand outside of her house with a boombox. It won't go eerily silent if I say I want to throw the aforementioned boombox through her window. The pages just let me be.

Just kinda wondering when will "over it" and "good" come rescue me? Here I am, each and every day waiting for them to come see about me. I lay on the couch. I lay on the bed. I drive in my car. I walk around my neighborhood. Surely they got my change of address card. Did they stop by her house instead? Please no! Is there a waiting list? Perhaps the curb is full of poor souls who have been kicked to it.

I will continue to wait. I think "healing" tried to call me today. I hit ignore because "pity" and "doubt" came by with beer. Meh, it's pretty warm out and I was thirsty. Pity told me to just wallow for a bit while doubt tried to sell me an inferiority complex. The price was good but the return policy sucked. I decided against it.

They saw I wasn't interested and headed for the door. I'm sure they will come over again, but I will do my best not to let them in. I have managed to keep "regret" at bay but I sent my best regards via "disappointment". Yeah I spoke to her. She wasn't sure if she was supposed to be at my house or hers. I told her I didn't need her here because I'm not disappointed in the least bit.

When you know you loved someone with all you had, why be disappointed? I mean honest and true love can be found on every corner...right?

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

If I Be Myself...You Won't Like Me Anymore

During the span of my career, I am sure I have been on hundreds of job interviews. If we throw in phone interviews, I think the number at least doubles. However, this blog entry is not about phone screens (even though they can blow).  This post can be summed up in one sentence: Interviewing is INEFFECTIVE...yeah I said it.

How many times have you worn your freshest suit, styled your hair to the tee, printed your resume on the best paper only to be subjected to the worst 20 to 60 minutes of your life? You walk into the office/conference room and are instantly met with one of the laziest openings ever. "So tell me about yourself"...you freeze, you stutter, you stammer trying to figure out can you tie in how many times you been in Twitter jail with your profiency with pivot tables?  Interviewing is ineffective....yeah I said it.

1. Most interviewers ask lazy questions. Tell me about yourself is a lazy question. First off, the interviewee isn't sure what part of their lives you want to hear about. "Well umm I like pop-tarts, beer pong, and playing Madden in my underwear. None of those skills really helped in my career as an Accountant though." Say that and you're already toast.  Some interviewers ask this question when they have not read your resume and need a little time to catch up. When you think this is the case just talk about your explosive diarrhea and how you're worried that sore on your lip could be Herpes. They will be nodding away telling you how interesting that sounds.

2. Interviews do not want honesty. What is your biggest weakness. "I have the urge to slap co-workers and I have been known to cuss a few folk out here and there. God is still working on me, but I still enjoy the 4 and 5 letter cuss words". Or "I like to do minimum work but get paid maximum dollars. Can I Facebook all day and still make 50/hr? I guess that's a weakness" I'm sorry, Miss Interviewer, I really never had any conflict with my co-workers. Honest answers are just that...honest. Should I make up a story instead? If you want to hear stories, I hear the Brothers Grimm wrote some wonderful tales.
Interviews are littered with tricks and traps to bait you. Such games lead candidates to essentially lie just to stay in the hunt.  I had a guy once comment on a local sports team about how horrible they were. I just shrugged and said maybe next year will be their year. Turned out the guy was a season ticket holder. Had I went with my mind to bash his team, I coulda been toast. See something that simple could be difference between you eating steak or you eating steak sauce on Ramen noodles.

3. Interviews are subjective.  Jane E. Awesome could have a 4.0, 5 years of experience, recommendations from Barack and Michelle Obama, not to mention Tevin Campbell but if her interviewer had a bad morning, she could be toast.  You could be hired (or not hired) based on things such as the time of day your interview is, whether or not the barista got your interviewer's latte right, or the elevator taking too long.  Heck, the interviewer could hate the color shirt you have on. I know we all have our moments, but when your bad mood can affect someone's life greatly, you really should put on your big boy draws and chill.

People come to me asking for interview advice and help. I tell folks all the time...don't lie but don't be afraid to give the truth a nudge. If you don't speak Russian, you just don't speak Russian. However, if you're just a novice in PowerPoint, it doesn't hurt to say you're proficient. Make sure you get your but on Udemy or something right after that interview.  The job hunt is a dirty dirty game, you can't fight fair. I tell people that interviews are no longer about can you do the job...they are about whether or not you "fit".  Focus on "fitting" not being a Boy/Girl Scout and you should be golden. Peace.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Bridging the Gap With My (Not So) Distant Lover

The countdown to the end of my long distance relationship has started. In just mere hours, my love will make her move to The H. I'm so stoked and excited about us being in the same city. Honestly, I never thought it would come to this. No, no, don't get it twisted. I figured I would end up moving to be with her because I don't really do new friends, so being in a new city wouldn't be so jarring to me.

I think back to when we first decided to be in a relationship. The distance never scared me. I wasn't fond of not being able to hold her after a long day or not being able to tickle her until she exploded in laughter. I didn't care for not being able to take her out for ice cream or go on a Grippo's(those BBQ chips are the TROOF)  run. Never once was I afraid of the miles between us. Truthfully, I was scared of today.

I was afraid that once Rand McNally placed us in the same grid, things wouldn't be the same. It petrified me that either one of us could say "I miss you" and not have to wait weeks till we could do anything about it. Once you take that LD out of LDR, it's a whole new ball game. Silly me, I listened to white noise and read stories of strangers on message boards. It took me a little while to tune the world out and I'm glad I did.

I realize now the distance in the beginning of our relationship built a strong foundation. In an LDR, you become excellent communicators. I can't think of a single thing we cannot talk about. I can't recall going a single day without calling, texting, tweeting, skyping. We used this time to really get to know one another. Not just simple Newlywed Game question answers but real stuff.

We were extremely fortunate to be able to see each other often (thank you buddy pass). A lot of times in LDRs, folk don't see each other often so they feel compelled to be on their best vacation behavior. We farted, had disagreements over Chex Mix, and went to run mundane errands together. We missed each other with that "New Mate Smell". We were ourselves by ourselves.

I'm ready for this next step in our relationship. No fear. No worries. I pray every night this move is successful for her. I know how smart and amazing she is. I want her new co-workers to know this. I want her new friends to know this. I want the whole metro to know this. She didn't make this move for me but I'm gonna do everything in my power to make this move pleasant for her...and US. Welcome to Houston, baby...I luh you. Peace.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Butthurt Black Bicyclist Take 1

This entry started as a joke between my girlfriend and me, but I think it may be a good idea for a series. Coupled with the fact I haven't blogged in a looooong time, it's a no-brainer.

My newest love is bicycling. For the last couple months, I've been on two wheels making it do what it do. I figured it would just be a way to get some exercise in. Never did I think I'd enjoy cycling so much. Each day, I'm thinking of new ways to get faster or to go harder. You're probably thinking to yourself "oh this is all peachy keen, where's the butthurt, LI?".

This installment is about riding gear. Any serious cyclist knows that it starts with the clothes. Spandex and lycra and all that good stuff is wonderful when you're 5'7 and 130 lbs. Looks great. However, for the stockier cyclist, these fabrics can leave you a bit self conscious. Cycling gear is form fitting, so whether a jersey is a L or 5X, it's gonna hug all your curves and swerves....DEAL WITH IT. If you can't handle a bigger person in some tight biking shorts, close your eyes.  Idiots in cars and idiots walking may or may not say something ignant to you. You keep right on chuggin' along.

What's crazy is that I've read msg boards where folk where worried about what fellow cyclists will say/think. Cyclists are notorious for being vain. They shave every string of hair off their bodies. They obsess over having the best shorts, flashiest jerseys, so on and so forth. However, cyclists are typically oblivious. Meaning, don't be afraid to let it hang while you pedal away to take off inches and possibly save your life.

My tip for self conscious riders: stay away from bright colors. Black shorts and maybe blue or green jerseys will let you blend a big. Also, if you're worried about thick thighs or just generally uncomfortable with biking shorts, you can buy baggy shorts or simply wear some basketball shorts over your tighties. Lastly, beware of chaffing...it's real! Otherwise, pedal on and watch that weight slide off. Peace.