Thursday, December 31, 2015
Here, I sit, on New Year's Eve reflecting upon the year that is about to no longer be and more than anything right now, I am pleased to say that fear and I are no longer lovers.
If there is one thing that you haven't noticed about me, it's that for a long time, I have allowed my fear of the unknown to rule my life. It has ruled me in every aspect of my life. From my personal, to my professional, my marriage, my parenting, my relationship with others; you name it, fear ruled it. This past year though, fear took a back seat to change. I wanted to embrace change so much so that I had to dominate my fears; mind you, there were a lot.
I have come to realize as I sit prepared for the new year, calmly waiting on the new year for once in my life, that in order to embrace everything that you want in this life, you have to let go of fear. You have to conquer yourself and not allow fear to conquer you. For so long, I imagined what I wanted, what life could be if I just let go, but because I couldn't, my life didn't really go in the direction that I wanted it to. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong in my life at the moment, it's just that it isn't consumed with my dreams and goals being my full time reality. I don't blame anyone but myself because we all know that you have to be the change you want to see. If I am not seeing the changes in my life that I want, then there is something that I am not doing to make it happen.
Here, I sit, on New Year's Eve more prepared than ever for what the upcoming year brings. The challenges and the rewards. I see myself very successful and 2016 is going to see me very successful as well.
Happy New Year, Everyone!
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
So, can you guess what grinds my gears? Opinions do. But not just any opinions. Oh no, these are opinions pertaining to things that require ratings. Yes, I said ratings. Let me explain myself a little better so that you can understand exactly where it is that I am coming from.
I am a writer; no surprise there, right? As a writer, one has to learn how to be open to constructive criticism; maybe even develop a thick skin if you will. But what a lot of people don't know, especially those that aren't writers, is that negative reviews hurt. They literally can make or break a writer and I don't think people can understand that. We can have a thousand reviews, but it's that one negative review that haunts us.
I, myself, would rather not give any ratings or reviews before I give a negative one. I don't know, it's just a preference of mine. I do understand the need for reviews and ratings; they're there so that others may get a feel as to whether a book (or something else) is for them, but it's all of that extra verbiage that I find unnecessary. Why verbally attack a writer for a story that they took the time to write and share? Why put down a story that you found out wasn't quite your cup of tea. Okay, so it wasn't meant for you but does that mean that you have the right to run it into the ground?
As I come close to finishing my first novel, I think I'm slightly getting hung up on the review process. Granted, I'm not going to let that stop my progress but I may end up becoming one of those authors that are just not interested in reading negative reviews. I'm sure it doesn't help that I have yet to have a negative review about anything I've written thus far (knock on wood), so I wouldn't know how to deal with one if it were to actually come my way.
So much thought process and work goes into anything a writer writes (or a person creates for that matter) that anything said about a project becomes personal. I understand not all things are for everyone, but instead of hopping on items and being a Negative Nancy, maybe there are other ways to express the issues that one has while still maintaining some kind of compassion for the person who reads it.
I don't know. What I do know is that as much as I am ready to expand my reading audience, I'm not exactly ready for all that comes with it...
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
In this life, I'm sure many of us have wished that we possessed a "do over" button. Those of us have also stated that if we were ever given a second chance, we would do "whatever it was" differently. Not all of us are given a second chance, but there are a lucky few that are.
Due to recent personal events, my sister and I have been stressing the lesson of second chances to our children. What a second chance means. What a second chance stands for. And what actions you are supposed to take if ever given one.
I feel as if a second chance is like another opportunity to right what you may have wronged in your life. It's like God (or the universe to others) is giving you a second chance at taking the correct path without having to worry about any of the hurdles that you had to jump over on your previous path. Like, even though you might have deliberately ignored all of the signs that you were given previously to halt the outcome of something going "wrong" in your life, you are still given the opportunity to fix it and start anew. In a sense, it's as if you get to become a new person while still being able to be the same person. A new way of thinking. A new perspective on life. Maybe even a new life. I mean, who wouldn't want an opportunity to experience that, right?
I cannot stress enough how blessed a person is to be able to receive a second chance of any sort in this lifetime. I know the times that I were given a second chance to do something differently, I did not squander the opportunity. Life is all about choices and hopefully, if our first choice isn't the best choice, then we are given the chance to choose again...
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
I just want to take a moment and say that I am so very proud of the many people that I went to school with that are steadily going after their dreams. Whether we were close friends, friends, acquaintances, or simply two people who passed one another in the hall on occasion, you have found a way to have a positive effect on my life.
You all are showing me that no matter the circumstances, the obstacles, or the amount of times you fail, a dream is always worth chasing. Time means nothing. Our ages mean even less. You are proving that it doesn't matter how old we become, as long as their is blood flowing through our veins and our bodies are able, IT CAN BE DONE!
There are times when some of us just need that reminder. When it seems like our dreams are moving further and further away instead of coming closer. When we need that little bit of inspiration to give us that extra push. I just want to let you know that it is in the those moments that I appreciate you all the most, because you all have inspired me in ways that you will never know or even begin to imagine.
I once said that I wished to inspire others one day the way that I have been inspired, but I was told by some of those that have inspired me, that I have inspired them as well. Wow... Who knew...
"Why be a dream chaser when you can be a dream catcher." - La Kata E.K.
Monday, October 12, 2015
Saturday, during a M.A.D.D. meeting, one of the Women's Youth Directors shared her very personal story with the young women that were in attendance. I honestly don't think she realizes how much her story hit home for me.
First off, M.A.D.D stands for Making A Direct Difference. It is a nonprofit organization that empowers the development of youth in the community through self-expression. I have currently become a Women's Youth Director as well. So now that that is cleared up, let me continue on with that I was saying.
One of the things that was mentioned was that aside from not letting anyone bring us down, we have to remember to not allow ourselves to bring us down as well. No matter what it takes to get to our goal in life, the fact that we get there is all that matters. Some of us go straight for what it that we want out of life, while others, myself included, take the "long route." That "long route" is our minds allowing doubt and fear to get in the way of what it is that we want.
Growing up, I always wanted to write. Whether it was poems, short stories, novels, or songs; I just wanted to write. Now, that's exactly what I do. That's what I mainly do, but it wasn't always like that for me. I didn't solely focus on writing because I allowed my fear of the unknown, of negative feedback, to keep me from fully pursuing a career in a field in which I love.
Writing is a part of me, but reading is my passion.
For the last five years, I have been a proofreader. I was only a proofreader to one until late last year sometime and even then, I was scared. Like, seriously. I had previously doubted my ability to do my job well, even though, the person that I had proofread for hardly ever received reviews for proofreading errors. For some reason, I was just scared that I would fail. But that's another thing that the Women's Youth Director said; she said that "Yes, I have failed, but I did not quit." That, is what makes all of the difference. Though, I haven't failed, I have not quit either. Instead, I allowed myself to pick up more clients this year and I did so with pride. Humble, but proud. I know I am not the best proofreader out there, but I am good at what I do. To say that I am great would mean that I was completely perfect at it and I know full well that I am not at that point yet, but that doesn't mean that I am not trying to get there.
Basically, I'm tired of holding myself down and it's been a long time coming that I shook that ball and chain...
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Any time I feel like I know exactly how my life is going to go, something comes and knocks me off balance. Luckily for me, it's been nothing but positive experiences lately. It helps to have positive moments being practically thrown in your direction because it helps to keep you on your toes. At least in my opinion anyway.
One thing that I find myself doing a lot of in the recent weeks is writing. I haven't written this much in so long and it feels pretty good to do so. I've been writing short poems, long poems, and I've even been able to work on my novel. Yes, that novel. Like, as of right now, I am currently on page 85 and counting! That, my dear readers, is a very big deal for me! Who knows, maybe I'll keep on writing to actually publish it one day soon. Yup, that would be rather amazing if that were to happen...
Today, I decided to take a social media hiatus because honestly, I'm not channeling my extra energy into the things that I need to. Instead, I find myself zombie scrolling through Facebook blankly reading about other people's lives when in reality, I need to be reading about my own. Well, at least doing enough in my own life that would cause it to be worth reading to someone else one day. I don't know, but the hiatus is certainly needed and Facebook isn't the only site that I'm taking a break from. If it isn't about writing, proofreading, or beta reader then I'm not really going to be posting or interactive. Pinterest, however, is my addiction and that's going to be a hard habit to kick...
But back to what I was initially saying, positive moments are always a plus. They help to create great memories and in some cases, great connections. Right now, I'm finding that both are happening in my life. I am thankful for all positive occurrences in my life because it's those occurrences that allow me to smile, genuinely smile. Those occurrences remind me that the energy that I am putting out in the world really is positive energy and that I am on the right path as a person.
Hey, we all as people need a reminder every now and again that we are on the right path in life and I'm pretty blessed to recognize and receive mine.
Tuesday, September 1, 2015
*If you are highly sensitive to the following subject matter, then I suggest you read no further.*
I am a black woman, married to a black man, and we have two black children. We have black parents, black grandparents, black cousins, and black aunts and uncles. Do Black lives matter? Of course they do, but so do White lives, Hispanic lives, Asian lives, European lives, and so on and so forth. The point that I am making if you haven't figured it out by now, is that ALL LIVES MATTER!
I am not going to lie, in the recent years, I have become extremely concerned for the well being of my husband and my brother. Fearful for the life that my son may grow up to have because of how black men in general are portrayed in the media, however, that is not my only fear. There are so many wrong doings going on in the world, that it is senseless to just focus on that one only. As a woman, who is the mother of a daughter, rape and human trafficking are something else that plagues my subconscious thoughts. What I am saying is that while we all focus on the injustices of race relations, there are other things going on around us that need just as much attention, if not more.
Because I am aware of how the media perpetuates the relationships between that of the black male and the police, I make certain to not fall into the state of mind that causes me to raise my children in fear of calling 911. Never should a moment arise that my children see a police officer and their blood run cold. Children have enough to deal with already. For some, the boogey man is very real; he doesn't wear the badge that promises to serve and protect, he wears the title as father, uncle, cousin, friend. He is the abuser, the sexual predator, the real monster under one's bed. He is the one that no one would expect to do an act of any violence at all...
Do not think that for one moment that I feel as if racism does not exist, because it does! A Lot! I have been the victim of plenty of racial attacks, none have ever become physical but I feel that the verbal is still just as bad; especially, when you are a child. The color of my skin is never going to change and neither will the opinions of ignorant minded people.
As a woman who grew up in the suburbs my entire childhood and has lived my entire adult life in the inner city, there are things that I have seen that I much rather wish I hadn't. That is neither here nor there. But what I have seen is that black people DON'T RESPECT black people no matter where you live. I feel that if black lives truly matter, then the black community needs to practice what they preach. You cannot expect someone to treat a person, pet, or thing any better than you treat them when all they have seen you do is treat them like shit. Pardon my language, but I feel as if that word fit perfectly. Have you ever noticed that if you run your siblings down to your friends, your friends feel as if it is okay for them to do the same? What about as a parent with children? If you do not treat your child with love and care, then those around you won't either. Owner of a pet even? Mistreat your animal and watch how quickly others mistreat it as well. The point I am making is that if you act like black lives don't matter, then the rest of the world will too.
Black on Black crime is very real, as is other race on race crime but those are not the races that are the focus of the nation right now; those are not the races that have been oppressed for as long as black lives have. Understand that I am not minimizing any other race and their issues because I do understand that the issue of immigration is very real as well, but as a black woman, with a black husband, raising black children, I felt that I was long overdue to share my opinion about black lives.
Before any of us can go around pointing fingers at those that are doing us an injustice, it is best that we make damn sure that we are doing all that we can and then some to make sure they don't have an example to lead by...
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Right now, what I want to say is on the tip of my tongue but it is the issue of how I want to say it that I am having a problem with.
I wonder if there are people in the world that ever wonder the kind of impact they have on someone. The kind of effect that they have on a person. The kind of impression that they leave on a person. I wonder if there are people who actually stop to think before they ever open their mouths. I wonder if they wonder like I wonder...
I am not the perfect person, in fact, I am completely far from perfect. I try to live by what I "preach". I am not the kind of person to mistreat someone or use them because I know that I do not like to be treated that way. I try to be honest with people and before I allow a lie to leave my lips, I will shut my mouth. If I do not like someone, before I go out of my way to be nasty to them, I will just simply stop dealing with them. I make it a habit to keep my fangs sheathed when I am dealing with someone that offers me help of any kind, because you don't bite the hand that feeds you and no matter how together I may ever get it, I make sure that I am never that full of myself to mistreat those that were there when everything was scattered for me. I am not the kind of person to burn bridges, but the kind that will blow them up when I see that what is on the other side is not good for me.
This is who I am, now who are you?
There are people in our lives that are not good for us. They are not healthy for us either. If a person spends more time tearing you down than building you up, then that is a person with whom the ties need to be severed. Unfortunately, it's not always that easy. So if you cannot severe ties, then try adding slack to them. I once thought that distancing myself from those kind of people would suffice, but I have since learned that what I considered adding distance, is not in fact distance at all. I find that I am still sacrificing my mental well being dealing with those kind of people and I shouldn't allow myself to sacrifice any part of me for anyone.
Sadly, I am reminded quite often the reasons that I have become as withdrawn as I am. Not a moment goes by that there isn't something in the air that settles quietly and without notice. I enjoy peace. I enjoy serenity. I enjoy calm. Quite frankly, if any of those are continuously disturbed, then I am going take the necessary measures needed to protect my mental well being and I honestly, I will learn to enjoy that too...
Monday, August 17, 2015
I'd like to take a moment and veer off of my "usual" banter to acknowledge something that has weighed heavy on me for quite a few days now. If you are not one that enjoys raw opinion, then now would be the time for you to halt your reading and to go on your merry way.
Late Monday night/early Tuesday morning, someone I knew was murdered by a stray bullet. The details of the situation are neither here nor there but the point is, bullets don't have names on them. There are multiple people around the world that have taken a stray bullet. Have I done my statistics? No. I don't need to, but even one person taking a bullet not meant for them is one person too many.
Understand, this post is not only about gun violence, it's about violence in general. Growing up, most of us are taught to defend ourselves if we ever feel that we are threatened; to not be the first to throw the lick but better make sure we are the last and to strike first ONLY if a person that is out to do us harm is within arms reach. To fight a fair fight, one on one without any weapons and if you have to jump in, make sure that it is done as fairly as possible as well. It seems to me, however, those teachings are no longer the case. No one fights fairly anymore. Weapons are drawn with a quickness and there are people out there all too eager to jump someone. The saddest part about it all is where there is a violent act about to occur, chances are there is someone lurking (or maybe even bold enough to stand out in the open) with a phone camera poised to record every single minute of the action.
These fight videos can be found all over the internet; you really don't have to look very far to find them. I am the kind of person that refuses to watch those homemade fight videos of any kind. I do not find it cute or even entertaining to watch people of all ages, sexes, nationalities, etc. fighting over something that was probably trivial anyway. I find it very disturbing that there are people who choose recording such foolishness over stopping it. I don't know nor do I get it, but it does bother me.
Let me take a moment to address some of the recent violent events that have been going on throughout my country. I have an opinion about each individual media whored situation, however, that's not what I want to discuss. What I want to discuss is what everyone is doing as far as their part is concerned.
Though adults will be adults and you can't always teach an old dog new tricks, are those of us who love all doing the best that we can to teach our children that? Are we as individuals teaching our children to love unconditionally no matter a person's size, shape, sex, race, religion, or even social background? Hatred of any kind is a learned behavior and it is our responsibility to not allow that kind emotion to fester into our children. Also, are we providing the proper outlet for those children who may need someone to talk to or even a way to let off steam? It seems to me that angry children grow up to be angry adults. It used to be that it was said that it took a village to raise a child, but now a days it seems if as all of the villagers have left and the child is out there fending for itself. Children cannot raise themselves, if they could then they would be born already self-sufficient. We have an obligation to the safety of our children, ourselves, and to others to ensure that tomorrow be a bit better than today is and a lot better than yesterday was. If no one can do their part to ensure a better today, then it's best that no one complain about how terrible tomorrow becomes....
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Freedom. There are multiple definitions of the word, but this is the definition that I choose to use today: exemption from the presence of anything specified (usually followed by from).
I write to you right now to say that I have never felt more free in my life than I do at the present moment. This is a happiness that I have not known before, but am glad to have made its acquaintance. I have embraced so many changes in the past month that I cannot understand why the idea of change at all ever scared me. But then again, I can understand it because change is the door in which on the other side lies the unknown.
At present, the unknown is the the only thing that I am most certain of. I cannot predict the future, nor do I know what lies ahead of me on the path that I have recently been traveling upon, but I can for sure tell you with absolute certainty that everything is unknown. Where I will end up in life: unknown. My relationships with people: unknown. My hair growing to be shoulder length like my sister's: unknown. What my exact purpose for existing is: unknown. When my time will be up: unknown.
And you know what? I honestly don't care either.
That's right, I DON'T CARE.
There was a time when I cared about everything and now, I don't. Don't get me wrong, it's not that unhealthy kind of not caring, the one where you throw up your middle finger and drop a slew of swear words, it's the one in which my shoulders are no longer heavy and my soul feels free. It is almost as if I am high off of my own freedom. I don't know when, how, or why it happened and I'm not going to question it either. Why would I when I feel as if I can finally breathe.
If anything, I give credit to my husband for leading by example. For showing me that the kind of freedom that I so long sought after was within my grasp the entire time. That the opinions of those around me was ultimately inconsequential in the grand scheme of my sanity. That all I needed to do in order to feel euphoria was to let go of everything that was holding me back. To let go of me...
Tuesday, June 23, 2015
Like a computer that has constant applications running in the background, that is how my mind has been feeling lately...
I cannot pinpoint the exact moment in time when my mind began feeling cluttered, when my thoughts became crowded, or when my drive faltered, but I feel like there is no longer any room for me. Looking back on it, I can kind of give a start point when my drive faltered but I would like to believe that the situation didn't have anything to do with it. What situation you ask? About a month and a half ago, I had surgery to remove what they refer to as a "chocolate cyst" from my left ovary. Because I couldn't really do too much afterwards, the following few weeks started to wear me down. Granted, I probably needed the rest and to allow others to take care of me, being that "dependent" felt crippling to me. After so long, it becomes hard, if not harder, to get yourself mentally and physically back to where you once were. Almost like climbing the side of an icy mountain in six inch heels.
Other than that, there are things going on in my life that I feel should require my complete attention and my purest emotion, but those things are things that I cannot figure out at the moment. I have found myself quietly thinking and trying to eliminate all of the possibilities, but none of which require what I feel that they should. In that aspect, I feel that I may just be unnecessarily searching for something to, I guess, be wrong. I'm not exactly used to things going so right for so long and I find it a rather awkward thing to accept. Don't get me wrong, I am extremely grateful for such a blessing, but it's just that I guess I am not used to such peace.
Then, there is the issue of me as a writer. Well, it's not exactly an issue per say; it is more like I am dealing with a challenge that I might be too afraid to face. I am afraid of the endless possibilities; of the things that my pen is capable of. I am afraid of negative feedback because it is something that I am not used to and I am afraid that I wouldn't know hot to react to it. I am afraid to come up with an ending to a story that I have been working on forever. To simply put it, I am too afraid to step out of my box. Wow, fear is stumping what should be monumental literary growth for me. Reading that admission, makes me feel ridiculously foolish for even feeling like that and I am beyond embarrassed for even publicly sharing that feeling.
Apparently, reading back through, I am making mountains out of molehills and creating problems where there aren't any. It seems to me that if there was to be an actual problem, then that problem would actually be me....
Tuesday, June 9, 2015
No matter what in this life you are feeling prisoner to, everyone dreams of freedom. It could be that you feel prisoner to your relationship(s), your family, your job, your home, your neighborhood, or whatever the case may be. Nothing weighs heavily on the mind and the spirit than being in a situation that causes you to feel as if "life would be better if only I were free."
More so recently than before, I find myself steadily falling back into that mindset. I feel like a prisoner in certain aspects of my life and those aspects are all intricately intertwined with one another. Like, no matter how you view it, one aspect effects another which effects another causing each to play melodiously on my nerve endings. I often find myself thinking that if I can just free myself from one aspect, then I should be able to free myself from them all. Like a large tangled ball of string, that is how my thoughts are becoming again.
Reading and writing seem to be my only current escape but I can't seem to bring myself to focus on them long enough to give myself the freedom that I so yearn for. If mentally escaping is the only kind of freedom that I can have at this point in the game, then I will have it ten times over... Once I'm able to focus on it long enough that is... Maybe, I am subconsciously punishing myself for not properly protecting what is rightfully mine. The one thing that I truly have control over in this life. The one thing that some have lost and others wish they still had. The only thing that medications are made to fix but can never repair. They very thing that people assault when they find themselves intimidated by you for reasons that you yourself cannot even begin to understand.
Thursday, May 7, 2015
Saturday, was the day that I was a featured reader at the "May Open With Women Unbound".
When I initially thought about speaking at this event, I was completely calm about it. As time went on, I was still calm; it was only when it came down to the day of that I began to lose my nerve. Time that morning seemed to zoom by and nothing seemed to be going right for me. If I allowed myself even a second to believe that the events of the morning were a prelude to the events of that afternoon, then I would've completely lied to myself.
The event time was 2 PM, I arrived there at 2:04 PM. In my mind, I was terribly late but the women hosting the event (Lorraine Cipriano and Kayla M. Williams) let me know that I wasn't late at all. Their friendly smiles and welcoming demeanor allowed me to calm down and relax. A lot. After brief introductions between us and small chatter, I donated "The Growth of a Writer" to be given away in their raffle and set a few of each of my books on the table up front to be sold after the event.
Time ticked by and my anxiety eased down to a mere rapid heartbeat. As nervous as I felt, I was even more anxious to get up to that podium and share my words with the guests that had taken time out of their busy lives to attend the event as well. My mom, my sister (with infant son), and my daughter had accompanied me so I knew that if anything, I had not only my support system but a focal point when speaking to the crowd. As Kayla and Lorraine began speaking, I began watching the time. The more they spoke, the quicker my heart began to beat.
Tick Tock. Tick Tock.
The time came when they began to introduce me to the room and as they wrapped up their introduction of me, I gulped in a deep breath, stood with pride, and walked up to the podium as if I owned the room. Well that's how I felt I did it anyway. I said a few words and then I read various poems from all three of my poetry books, stopping here and there to make mention of what might have inspired me to write a certain poem. I tried to maintain good eye contact with the entire room, but I know that there was a moment or two when I didn't look up at all. In those moments, I was relieving the reason that caused me to write the poem in the first place. Every emotion that was poured into the poem, came back and hit me in the chest like a 2 ton weight. I couldn't have looked up at the audience if I wanted to; my emotions were too raw. Once I was finished, I wrapped it up by thanking my audience and was asked a couple of questions before I returned to my seat to listen to the other featured readers share their words. Only then, did my breathing go back to normal.
The entire time that I was in front of the audience, I was completely nervous. I could feel myself doing things that I felt like the audience was focusing on, proving how nervous I was. I was bouncing from foot to foot and stumbling over words. Each time I stumbled over a word, I could feel the heat rise to my face as I corrected myself and moved on. What the audience couldn't see was the desperate grip that I had on my books and on the rare occasion, the podium. Mind you, NONE of this was mentioned to me afterwards, at all. Everyone that spoke to me said that I did well while I was up there and the feedback was nothing short of positive on my work.
Looong story short, I gained new fans that afternoon and a new appreciation for what I have set out to do. By the way, did I mention that they're going to try and get my books in the library? Yup, they are. I'm blessed to be able to do what I love to do and I'm thankful that I have never given up on my dream...
If you're interested in hearing/seeing me read, as well as a few other talented poets, here is the youtube link for that video: May Open With Women Unbound
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Saturday, March 28, 2015
The rest will be a casual jog...
My 31st birthday is in four days and it's funny because I haven't really given it a second thought. Compared to last year, my calm factor is off the charts! I can't explain to you what changed but I'm not going to complain either.
Throughout the entire first year of my thirties, I went through one heck of a mental ride. Everything that I was putting myself through was ultimately all psychological. The mind is a dangerous place, especially when you allow yourself to get trapped in there.
I'm proud to say, however, that once I confronted my demons, I was able to escape the labyrinth called my mind. I guess when you think about it, poisonous thoughts are tunnels that all connect to create a wall free maze. Once you start finding the antidote to each tunnel, then an opening appears leading you to the next tunnel; essentially guiding you towards the exit. It just depends on you, your patience, and your faith that determines whether or not you make it to the end in a timely enough fashion. Sometimes, it takes people a lot longer than others to get to the exit because they refuse to look themselves in the mirror and accept that they are their own reason for whatever has held them back.
I guess I decided that I just didn't want to be one of those people anymore...
Friday, March 13, 2015
While everything around you never stops...
How can I describe this moment? If I had to use just two words, I would describe it as "simply magical."
A couple of weeks ago (I think it was March 1st), as I walked out of my home, it took a minute for my eyes to adjust to the sun reflecting off of the fresh fallen snow. As I took in my surroundings, I felt as if I were in a snow globe. There was just the right amount of sun peeking through the clouds, large snowflakes were steadily falling, bare trees that had just enough snow covering the branches, fluffy snow on the ground (the kind that is soft and doesn't stick), and the temperature was just right (that cold but not too cold kind of warm air). I could help but to stop and think to myself, "This is the beginning of something amazing."
Now, what that amazing something is you ask? I couldn't tell you if I tried, but I know in my core that I'm on the right path to greatness.
Greatness to each individual has multiple meanings but for me, greatness means just being the best me that I can be and doing all of the things that I possibly can to get to that point. Whether it be perfecting my talent as a writer, perfecting my craft as a jewelry maker, or bettering myself on other more personal levels, as long as I am working towards being all the me that I can be then I am on the path to greatness.
One cannot build a strong empire if their foundation isn't sturdy. Just saying...
Saturday, February 21, 2015
Sunny and bright coming out...
That's exactly what the weather was like when I went to be a vendor with my books at my first public event.
It was a local event that was hosted by a couple that's very active in the community and had I not been called out by the Mr. then I probably wouldn't have gone.
Because I was trying something new with handling my nerves, I was feeling calm and collected leading up to the day and even before I ventured out to the set location, I was still as cool as a cucumber. Though, the weather and the roads were becoming nasty with each rotation of my vehicle's wheels, I was still peachy keen. The moment I spotted the set location, I practically lost all nerve! I was shaking like a rattle snake's tail as I collected my box of books and headed into the building!
Thankfully, the Mr. and the Mrs. made it easy for me to relax. It's funny because that was our first actual personal encounter even though I've been Facebook friends with them for years! Anyway, though the event seemed small in numbers, it was large in meaning to me. This was the first time that I ventured off to sell my books to complete strangers. People that I've never seen before in my life. That meant that I also had to talk to them, engage them even. So yeah, it was pretty major to me.
At some point though, I was reminded about how socially awkward I have a tendency of being at times. Especially, when I get nervous. It was only when another poet approached me about "performing" for a group of youths that he works with/mentors that I was reminded of my embarrassing behavior. Long story short, I have to seriously make sure that my mouth clearly conveys the thoughts that are in my mind. Smh...
There was so much talent in one room and each person, in their own way, inspired me in ways that they will never truly understand. All in all, more than anything, I am grateful for the experience of it all...
Friday, February 20, 2015
While death is not...
For some reason, we all expect to live. We expect longevity in our mortal years but in all actuality, we really should expect to die. Death is inevitable. It's actually more guaranteed than living is.
People always say to love those while you still can because you never know when they might leave, but I don't know about that anymore.
I love very few and for all others, I began a long time ago adjusting my emotional ties to them as if they were going to go at any moment. Does that mean that I'm nicer to these people? No. It means that I'm emotionally cut off from them. Why love you like you might go at any minute while you treat me as if I were already gone?
Ultimately, it's a defense mechanism. Though lonely in some aspects, the peace of mind that has come with it has been rewarding.
Not that long ago, I began severing familial ties and only recently did I finish the job. If someone were to ask me now compared to a few years ago about the size of my blood family, I would tell them that it's very small. Even though I have no intention to go into the details of the matter, know that it's for the best.
Life deals us some pretty unexpected blows and while living is expected, we have all been taught at one point or another to expect the unexpected.
Reconciliation of long buried relationships would be the unexpected for me...
Friday, January 30, 2015
To a very close friend.
As I get older, I am finding that I hate to be censored. More or less told what it is that I can and cannot say. I find it even more annoying when it comes from people with loose lips of their own.
I do not like to exercise my thoughts freely if my thoughts are not sought, I've never been that way, but when thoughts are being shared then I might take that opportunity to share mine.
I am not one for complaints, at least not publicly anyway, but I simply do not like to be told what to do. I don't appreciate a person telling me what I can and cannot say, nor when I can and cannot say it. I am a writer and writing is a form of art which is a form of expression; therefore, I will express myself as I chose until that option is no longer available to me.
This post seemed a lot longer in my head. Hmmm....
Friday, January 23, 2015
Deja vu - the illusion of having previously experienced something actually being encountered for the first time.
I'm not sure if I ever mentioned it before but I have deja vu. Often. It used to creep me out when it would happen, but now it fascinates and excites me. I guess because I am of the belief that if you are having deja vu often, then you are on the path that you were meant to be on in life.
Every now again, there would be times when I would ask aloud, "Am I on the right path?" Mainly because I felt as if I had somehow detoured off of the path that I was meant to be on, more or less, the path that I imagined that I should've been on. I found myself constantly wondering if I had taken a wrong turn somewhere.
For a long time, I felt lost. Aimlessly wondering with no sense of direction but when I finally took the time to stop and actually focus on the path that I was on, IT happened. Random dreams that made absolutely no sense. Snippets of moments that stood out in those dreams. It seemed as if they were coming out of no where; tied to nothing, but yet the glue to everything. Constant occurrences. Steady reassurance.
And that's when it hit me!
I've been on the right path the entire time, I just refused to accept it. I didn't want to believe that all of the pot holes were a part of the path that I was meant to be on. I didn't want to accept that the cracked asphalt and withered scenery came along with the territory. It was that lack of belief and acceptance that left me ignorant to my own being. Out of touch with my true self.
Only when I began to take my blinders off did I notice that what I sought the entire time, was as it always had been: under my feet....
Sunday, January 18, 2015
And a dream becomes reality...
I am more focused than ever on my current project. I have a series of children's books that I plan to start releasing around late February into early March and I've never been more excited in my life! Actually, I'm equal parts excited and nervous all at the same time but still.
I've come to the realization that I feel all emotionally conflicted because what I'm doing is going to be the "thing" that changes my life. The moment that defines the very reason why God has blessed me with the talent to write.
For a long time, I felt that I was missing something as a writer. Like, that's who I am but there was something else that I was supposed to be writing about besides what I have been. Generally, I write poetry based on my emotions but it didn't seem like it was enough. I never felt fulfilled as a writer. So, I began working on a novel and even though there's a lot of potential there, for some reason it's hard to finish. I think that's because I wasn't meant to be a novelist; lengthy stories with straight thoughts, for some reason, seem hard to put together. I'm not going to give up though, I'm going to finish this story and release it; might be the only story I write, but at least I can say that I wrote it.
Anyway, at some point in October last year, I suddenly came up with the idea to write children's books and the idea just felt right. As a poet, I've always looked up to Maya Angelou and Dr. Seuss. In my poetry, I feel that I have done Maya well by pouring my heart and soul and truth into my work, but I don't think I've really exhibited why I adore Dr. Seuss. You can't truly appreciate a Dr. Seuss rhyme scheme in an emotionally based poem; his work always came off as light and fun, not weighted and serious.
When I began writing the poems for these books, I found that when you write for children, you pretty much have to keep it light and fun. You can't help but to keep it light and fun and because of that, I'm stepping way out of my comfort zone. Even though I'm having a lot of fun doing so, anyone that knows me, knows that I love my comfort zone. Comfort zones though, don't make things happen and because I'm of the mindset of making things happen, I guess my comfort zone and I will have to see one another later.
Where was I going with this again? Oh, yeah, I remember now.
I've never been more excited about a literary project as I am about these children's books. These are definitely going to be a game changer for me and I can't wait! I get butterflies in my tummy and I want to giggle uncontrollably when I think about their release; about how people will receive them. A strong part of me feels as though they're going to be well received, but only time will tell. Until then, I'm going to keep writing and working. I will continue to patiently wait because my ship is coming in; I know because I can feel it...