Archives

2016: A Year In Review

Usually when I do my end of the year blog, I have a set list of things I want to talk about.  This year it’s going to be kind of a free write.  Spotify did this great thing, where they put together a list of the Top 100 Songs you listened to this year.  For me, it’s been a true portrait of what this year has done to me.  Yes, done to me.  So I’m going to let the music guide me in what I write about.

Be Alright – Ariana Grande

Baby, don’t you know
All them tears gon’ come and go
Baby, you just gotta make up your mind
That every little thing is gonna be alright

This part of my “I Will Survive” Playlist.  I needed songs this year that took me to the After place.  After all the bullshit, After all the tears, After all the pain.  This song is the perfect vibe for that.  You are going to be alright.  It’s not gonna be like this forever.  Sometimes, when you’re stuck in the middle of a storm that seems to be pulling you down, musical lyrics can be the life preserver that pulls you up to the surface.  I still think Ariana is wasting her voice . . . but that’s a whole ‘nother blog.

Rise – Solange Knowles

Fall in your ways so you can crumble
Fall in your ways so you can sleep at night
Fall in your ways so you can wake up and rise

A good reminder that you can rise above.  Even when you don’t want to, or you feel like you can’t.  You have to rise above.  Even if the only satisfaction or acknowledgement you will ever get is from yourself. That’s what it has felt like this year.  I’ve been patting my own damn self on the back. Cuz the hater’s been hatin’ like a muthafucka in 2016. It’s hard, to not just fight everyone in the face. {Maybe that’s just me…} This song is a great way to calm myself down when I’m ready to fight, which has been frequently this year surprisingly.

Needed Me – Rihanna

Don’t get it twisted
You was just another nigga on the hit list
Tryna fix your inner issues with a bad bitch
Didn’t they tell you that I was a savage
Fuck your white horse and a carriage
Bet you never could imagine, Never told you you could have it

When you have to explain on countless occasions that you are NOT like these other females.  I can be attracted to you, even see a future with you, and not be trying to tie you down.  I can understand that we want different things right now, and either I can take what you wanna/can give, or I can move the fuck on. A Bitch has Options.

If I tell you I’m trying to engage in some Hump & Go type action, why do you THEN feel some kind of way? Especially if you told me that’s all you have the possibility to give me.    It’s just a matter of us being HONEST. Why must people lie and placate?  Or tell people what they THINK the other person wants to hear.  9 times out of 10, we are thinking the same thing, or want the same thing.  But you are too scared to be honest.  Weak People Suck. Like SO MUCH.

Better ThanGretchen Parlato

This precious heart, broken apart
just leave it there and let it go
cuz all i know’s there’s nothing better than

how it keeps beating
it keeps repeating
a blessing in disguise
dry my eyes and realize there’s something better than

So like, I know a guy who told me a story about his friend trying an edible for the first time. Supposedly, this album was the music in the background while this friend of a friend was trippin’ balls. Which lead to some major life revelations.  My friend told me that his friend heard the lyrics to this album for the 1st time, and realized why it was her favorite album to fall asleep to.

This friend of a friend felt like she was having a private conversation with God while this album was playing.  And after she got done trippin’, she was seeing her whole life in a completely different way. At least, that’s what my friend told me happened.  I wasn’t there, so I can’t say what’s the truth.  That’s only what I heard when someone told me the story.

F**kin’ Wit Me – Tank

Every time I lick it, you be losin it
These young boys didn’t know what to do with it
You got it all on my face, I love the way that it taste
When you put it all on my plate
It won’t go to waste

It’s rare that I don’t know about songs like this.  My sexytime playlist is quite extensive. But this song . . . This song reminds me of a promise made, but never kept. Folks be talking so TOUGH, beforehand.  Then, in the heat of the moment, they lose their nerve. Cuz once again, I’m not like these other females.  I bring my A game all the time, and people don’t know how to hang.  Let me stop . . . I’m supposed to be working on being subtle, and not blaming or shaming people . . . 

Perm – Bruno Mars

You need activate your sexy (activate your sexy)
Silky, smooth and snap (silky, smooth and snap)
Now lean with it (lean), throw a lil sheen in it (sheen)
Then pat, pat, pat ’til it’s flat

Yall know this song goes.  This whole album – minus Versace on the Floor & Callin’ All My LoveliesGOES. This is the new getting ready to hit the club and be fly album.  It’s so much 90’s fun.  My chair dancing routine to this song is intricate, and makes people so jealous when they see me doing it . .. in my car . . . on the way to work. Bruno put his FOOT in this album. Also, you know your girl loves any song with a good Diva Finger Snap {no seriously, I have a whole playlist of songs which inspire the Diva Finger Snap} in it. I almost made this my ringtone . . . then I remembered my phone is always on vibrate because I work so much.

Alright – Kendrick Lamar

When you know, we been hurt, been down before, nigga
When our pride was low, lookin’ at the world like, “where do we go, nigga?”
And we hate Popo, wanna kill us dead in the street for sure, nigga
I’m at the preacher’s door
My knees gettin’ weak and my gun might blow but we gon’ be alright

Aye look . . . . this is my current morning alarm.  I gotta wake up every morning, remembering my people have survived some shit in the past.  The current political climate of the US might be leading to the worst shit since Slavery.  That’s not even hyperbole on my part.  I really believe that shit.  When it becomes a bit much, when I can’t seem to get out of the bed in the morning, so I can’t face another person telling me to give that asshole a chance, this song can get me through.

Ultralight Beam – Kanye West feat. Chance the Rapper, The Dream, Kelly Price, & Kirk Franklin

I’m tryna keep my faith
But I’m looking for more
Somewhere I can feel safe
And end my holy war
I’m tryna keep my faith

This is the only song on his new album I listened to.  Legit, I didn’t go past this song.  There was no need.  This is Kanye West’s best song {maybe ever} . . . not because his verse was great (cuz it wasn’t) . . . but because of everyone ELSE’S verses.  This song is such a beautiful way of expressing what I think we all go through with our faith.  Sometimes it’s so hard to keep the faith, and trust that God really has your back.  Especially when you see people who are supposed to have  your back {read: family} don’t.

I was raised in the church, and taught I should have unwavering faith in God. In all honesty, it took me awhile to get there.  My issue, I don’t have faith in people AT ALL. There are lots of people in the world who don’t have faith at all.  These people are hurting and for whatever reason, the way they cope is hurting other people. This song got me through the first part of 2016. It was played on repeat at loud volumes every morning. Because having faith isn’t hard, keeping it is. 

Father, this prayer is for everyone that feels they’re not good enough.
This prayer’s for everybody that feels like they’re too messed up.
For everyone that feels they’ve said “I’m sorry” too many times.
You can never go too far when you can’t come back home again.

So that’s my year in review.  Hope you enjoyed it 🙂

Advertisements

Awaken My Love…

I had two goals for this trip home. To see the people who matter to me, and get all the food I’m about to give up for the rest of my life. The latter isn’t working out all that well. But this blog is really about the former goal. 

I’ve stated since college, that I created my own family.  I’ve picked and chosen who I was going to rely on and trust.  I’ve actually been doing it since high school though.

My freshman year of high school, I met my best friend. Our relationship has been through so many things, sometimes I’m in awe that we’ve made it this far. But during this trip home I realized she’s my sister. We don’t even have to talk to have a whole conversation. We became a Triad our sophomore when I introduced her to a friend from biology class. From that point on, there is no picture that I could find that isn’t the 3 of us. 

We were always together, even after I changed schools. We did everything together. I was a triplet for about 6 years.  As friendships do, folks starting fighting over dumb shit (read: boys, drugs, and money) and I was the friend in the middle for a while.  Then I was the friend alone. We made up, in some shapes and forms after college, but that closeness from high school seemed to be unattainable.

In college, Zeta brought me my brothers, and another 2 sisters. They looked out for me, even when I didn’t know they were. Even though some of us didn’t develop our relationships fully until 7 years ago, the foundation started there. It’s hard to meet people, and instantly connect. Let alone if that connection stays through kids, heartbreak, marriages, and location changes. 

This trip, I got to finally introduce my high school best friend to some of the other people who make up my core. And it brought me so much Joy. Cuz she gets it now.  Why these people matter so much to me. Why I am who I am now, because of these relationships. 

In October, I sat down with the other triplet and just talked it out.  It wasn’t pretty but it was necessary. Because we let something small become something huge that changed our lives forever.  This trip, the 3 of us went to lunch. 4 hours went by so fast! It was like old times, a conversational ebb and flow that I’d forgotten could exist. 

I’m so glad we did that. I don’t know where it’s going to go, but I know that friendship isn’t stuck in the past anymore. We are grown ass women, which grown ass lives, who can still make each other laugh, cry, and think. I had missed that so much more than I probably wanted to admit to myself.

In the past, I refused to mix friend factions. Everyone had to stay in their proper lane, no merging.  I can totally understand why I did that, because I wasn’t secure in those friendships. I had yet to realize that I mattered to them as much as they mattered to me. But now…I want them all together all the time!

This trip for me has firmly solidified for me why my core group of people are so important to me. It’s also shown me, that if thrown in a room together they would probably all love each other. The mix of personalities and humors and world views would always lead to good conversations and adventures. To road trips, and girls weekends, and grown ass sleepovers. 

Cuz it’s all love. I can bask in being the hub for all this love, being the person who could bring them all together, and not be worried that I might lose them to each other.  I think they all kind of like me at this point 😀. 

I’mma Keep Runnin . . . Or My Fan-Girl Reaction to Lemonade

Your. Fave. Could. Never.  That’s the first thing you need to know.  I don’t care who your Fave is. They could NEVER be Beyonce.  Not ever in life. Not with training, not by drinking her bath water.  Not by living with her for 10 years.  YOUR FAVE COULD NEVER.  {YFCN}

Now that I’ve got that out of the way, Lets Talk about Lemonade.

beyonce-lemonade-video-trailer

Lemonade is a visual representation of the Black Woman Struggle.  It’s every part of a Black Woman’s life.  The Lies, the Love, the Tears, the Anger, the Jealously, the Shame, the Ugliness, the Beauty, but most of all . . . The Pride.  If you finish watching Lemonade, and don’t feel like a Proud Black Woman . . . you did it wrong.  Start all over again. I don’t care if you’re Asian, you should feel like a Proud and Strong Black Woman at the end.

BAAAAABY.  Beyonce said, “Keep Trying ME.” The Visuals, the spoken word (shouts to Warsan Shire) the music.  Every track is immaculate.  Yes, I am fan-girling the FUCK outta this album. Thank you to Tidal for this, because . . . yes.  I have to go Track by Track.  That’s really the only it can be done.

Pray that you catch me

1) Pray That You Catch Me

Ever KNEW your man was cheating.  Every sign pointed to him being an Ain’t Shit Type of Nigga, but you wanted to hold on to the part of you that feels like you can’t get played.  That’s this song.  She knows he’s cheating, she is praying that he knows that she knows.  While watching this with my Twitter Family, we were all like . . . hold on wait?!?! Is this about Jay? This is actually my least favorite song on this album. Not because it’s not good . . . they just all get consistently better.
hold up

2) Hold Up

Beyonce was walking down the the street, with a bat.  In wit’ dem micros flowing free.  All types of Bey from Destiny’s Child.  Like . . . everything.  Her in that yellow, smashing windows and breaking shit. She’s my Angry Black Girl Hero. Then she had the nerve to drive over all them cars with a Big Ass Truck.  Look Here, Don’t fuck with Beyonce. She is crazy.  And I LOVE it.

 

Don't Hurt Yourself

3) Don’t Hurt Yourself feat. Jack White

Angry Beyonce who curses is so much of the things. First, Jack White?!?!? Your Fave Could Never. Lets talk about these lyrics tho . . .

Who the Fuck Do you I am?

You ain’t married to no Average Bitch Boy!

You gone watch my fat ass twist boy, 

As I bounce to the next Dick Boy. 

Again, all of Twitter was like wait . . . what did Jay do to her?  Do we gotta hate him now? Is we fighting him in the face? Cuz why is Bey this mad?!?! At this point, Jay’s twitter mentions were in SHAMBLES. Men and women were like “Jay, I mean we can’t even help you out.  You done fucked up now.”

i ain't sorry

4) Sorry

Then she showed up with all her girls, in a bus. Throwing up middle fingers, and saying, “Fuck em’ Girl, Fuck Em'” AND had Serena Williams twerking in a video! But once again, them lyrics.   I have to admit, I was more than a little concerned at this point.  Cuz ummmmm, again, why is she so mad?!?

I love this Beyonce, not afraid to curse, to be real about her life (maybe) and talking about all the facets of her relationship (maybe). Best Line of the Song . . . “He betta call Becky wit tha Good Hair.” Bish WHET?!?!? Now we gotta be mad at any bish named Becky?!?!?

6 inch

5) 6 Inch feat. The Weeknd

Just . . . yes.  I’ve been waiting for this collaboration.  I can’t even tell you what this song is about {honestly, I think it’s about a working girl who wears 6 Inch Heels}.  I got caught up in the sampling of Walk On By by Isaac Hayes.  That guitar riff.  EVERYTHING. Seriously Guys, at this point I was just so much in my feelings at the beauty of the visuals. I had to stop tweeting, and just breathe.

daddy lessons

6) Daddy Lessons

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAS Come Through with this Country Song. She said, “Hey Taylor Swift . . . fuck you.” And she started it with Zydeco music.  This visuals for this one were beautiful.  You get this home movie with Beyonce and her Dad which then switched into a video of Blue Ivy and Matthew.  At this point, I think we all breathe a sigh of relief, maybe it was about Matthew and Tina, and not Jay and B.  Okay, maybe that was just me.  Either way. I was able to deal a little bit better.

Love Drought7) Love Drought

At this point, the visuals changed, and along with them the message (at least for me)  From talking about Self, to the purity of having your sister’s behind you.  To having women in your life you can build you up when you are down. These women, in white in a river, gives me this feeling of being cleansed and washing off all the weight of the past.

Sand castles

8) Sandcastles

At this point, I started crying. Because . . . OH MY GOOD SAWEET LORD! It came out that Prince said in an interview, that Beyonce needed to learn to play the piano, it would take her to another level. Like . . . . Seriously.  I’m tearing up right now remembering that clip.  Because This whole WEEK has been shitty. I still haven’t processed the loss of Prince.  It felt like he was saying . . . “If they listen, I will guide them.” Plus, the VISUALS. Jay-Z at his most vulnerable.  With his hand on her ankle, laying in bed just basking in her. Sitting there holding her. Y’all #GOALS.

Black Moms

9) Forward

AGAIN, TEARS. This whole montage of Black Mothers and Children, in PAIN because of their loss at the hands others.  The PAIN in Mike Brown’s mother’s eyes . . . I lost it. These mothers, who raised beautiful Black Men, only to lose them in such a violent way.

Don’t ever say Beyonce doesn’t care about her people, don’t ever say she doesn’t understand or know the plight of her people.  Don’t Ever Say Beyonce isn’t WOKE.  She’s 6 Liters of Monster Energy Drink and 18 Cups of Coffee type WOKE. She doesn’t even have to set alarm clocks, she just wakes up on her own.  

Again, Your Fave Could Never.

Freedom

10) Freedom feat. Kendrick Lamar

Hands down my favorite song on the album.  The message of Black Power, of Black Female Empowerment, of Black Beauty coming in every shade, size (maybe), and age.

Freedom, Freedom I Can’t Move!

Freedom Cut Me Loose!

Freedom, Freedom Where are you?

Cuz I need Freedom too!

I break chains all by myself, won’t let my Freedom rot in Hell,

Im’ma Keep Running cuz a Winner don’t Quit on themselves!

black girls are awesome

Lets talk about this Visual.  You got Zendaya, Chloe and Hallie, and Amandla Stenberg. {Judge me not, I don’t know who the other girls are} Like, WHAT?!?!?

Beyonce called people and was like, “Look, I need you to come sit.  You don’t have a speaking part, I just need you to sit on some stuff.  There may be chairs, steps, perhaps a tree? You Down?” 

And EVERYONE SAID YES. Cuz at this point in life, you don’t say no to Beyonce.  You just Don’t. Can we also discuss Michaela Deprince and her ballet.  Yes Chile’ get it.  Beyonce is here for all the little black girls with a dream.
blue feeding Jay

11) All Night Long

At this point, I was so drenched in Love, and Black Pride, and happiness.  And then we get Family Home Videos?!?! Beyonce pregnant, do you SEE how cute Blue Ivy was as a baby! It’s just so much of all the things I needed today. The home movies, plus the beautiful pictures of all kinds of love.  Black Love, and Queer Love, and Interracial Love, and Young Love, and Old Love.  Tina and Richard! Come on now! So Damn Beautiful.

formation

12) Formation

Look here, she didn’t even have this in the Visual Album.  That’s how much she knew we didn’t even need this again.  What she had just given us was MORE than enough.  We thought Formation was the beginning of the Movement, and it was the Culmination of the Journey. 

Beyonce

Look, I’ve been an admitted fan of Beyonce since I Am Sasha Fierce. But Lemonade is everything I’ve been trying to tell everyone Beyonce could and can be.  This was like a therapy session, FOR FREE.  Twin said, “This should have been called Daddy issues Part 1,” and she ain’t eva lied.

She talked about generational curses, and the WORK it takes to break free of them, as well as the power that comes to women when they finally break free. I’m not really sure what I expected this to be. But I can tell you what it ended up being for me.

Magic.  

Black Girls are Magic.  Black Girls can do and be whatever the hell we want to be. Beyonce is the most magical Black Girl some people have ever seen.  Beyonce’s Magic appears to be effortless, even as she shows us all her flaws.  As I’m sitting here, watching Lemonade from the beginning on my phone {because it just feels more intimate} I am in Awe of what Beyonce has become. As well as excited for where she is going to take us next.

Also, YOUR FAVE COULD NEVER. 

Thanks for taking this journey with me.  How did Lemonade change YOUR life? Feel free to share.

Dear Hip-Hop and R&B . . . I missed you

The best thing about music, is that it’s infinite, right? Music can be anything, sound like anything, mean anything at any given time.  Recently, I’ve found myself stuck in a musical rut.  Only listening to songs ive known for 5+ years, and not really exploring other music.  Possibly because my life has been in such a constant state of turmoil, and I’ve been needing to find my balance.  I’ve felt so off lately, and so out of control. So imagine my surprise when new music is the thing that finally brought me some peace. I’m not quite sure how/why I decided to try new albums and listen to other peoples outlooks on life, but I’m really glad I did.

BJ The Chicago Kid – In My Mind

I’ve been hearing this was a good album from people I trust on Twitter.  3 days ago, I started listening while I was getting ready for work.  The MINUTE i heard Big K.R.I.T’s voice on The Resume, I apporoved this album.  Cuz K.R.I.T is #Bae, and always will be.  Jill Scott had already co-signed him on her most recent album, and the song i’d heard with Chance the Rapper (also #Bae) was good, so I kept listening.  This is an album you put on when you want to write about Love and God and how they intersect in your life.  It’s an excellent album to have playing in the background during a cakin’ session with your new potential boo, or while you are organizing stuff on a Saturday night.  His voice is smooth, and has an underlying soul that has been missing with new artists.  He also samples GOOD soul music. Also, Kendrick Lamar.  Cuz (you guessed it) #Bae. Speaking of Kendrick . . .

Kendrick Lamar – Untitled Unmastered.

1) Kudos for the Surprise Album.  It was well played, and  GOOD album.  Each song is solid, they all sound good.
2) Alicia Key’s Son, Egypt, produced Track 7. Like, he created the beat. HE’S 5 YEARS OLD. The child is clearly already proving he’s a musical genius.  And why not, Homewrecker Keys + Swizz Beats = Musical Talent.  Also, Kudos Kendrick for using the beat, and making it my favorite track on the album.
3) I love that each song sounds like a continuation of a song from either To Pimp a Butterfly or GKMC.  These songs could be put on either of those albums, and still have a lasting impact.  His message is consistent, and when most artists are trying to sound and be different every other day, it’s actually pretty refresshing.
4) Did you see his Grammy Performance? This Man is #WOKE. Whew, he made white folks SO mad and confused at the same damn time!

Tweet – Charlene

I missed this Tweet. This album actually reminds me of her debut album. The reason it was so successful was because we could relate to every song. The same can be said for Charlene. It feels like the diary of a relationship. All those emotions that you go through after you break up, all the songs you need to sing to yourself to heal. The overall tone of the album is, “I’m grown, and I’ve made some mistakes. But don’t get it twisted, I’m still amazing.”

Chris Brown ft. Usher & Zayn – F**k You Back to Sleep (Remix)

Okay seriously, I haven’t even listened to Chris Brown’s new album. I hear it’s good, the cover art is cute. But he looks like too much of a meth addict for me to enjoy his music right now. But this remix right here . . . . Like OMG. Usher and Zayn in one song. Just grrrrr. Ursher . . . Yes Ursher’s verse is the best one. He’s so nasty. Using all those bad words, talking about all that grown up stuff. He done went and got murried, and now he ain’t shamed about his grown up sex life. Also, Zayn could GET IT. Like for Real he could get all the business. He looks like the British guy who’s first girlfriend was a black girl with a cockney accent. Even Chris yelling out Karruche’s name like an ass hole in the middle of the song doesn’t bother me . . .that much. Its a song you can play on repeat when you need to get your mind right, or let your mind go. It can serve a dual purpose. This got added to a FEW playlists.

So yeah, that what I’m currently listening to. I’m also looking forward to some new albums coming out this year. Beyoncé, Fantasia, Anthony Hamilton, KMichelle (judge if you must). A lot of folks are in the studio right now, so I’m excited for the next few months. What are you currently listening to?

I’m Feelin’ Myself

There comes a time in every woman’s life, that she realizes her true worth.  This moment can last a lifetime, or it can be a fleeting/passing thought.  But every woman will have this moment.  I had mine on October 28th, 2015.  After a two hour phone conversation with MM, I realized that for the 1st time since we “broke up”, I was happy again.    I was actually able to say to him, “I wish I had met you now, because I’m amazing and you don’t even get to experience that.”
5 years ago, he was the most interesting person in the world to me.  I’d never met anyone like him.  He added something to my life that was missing, in my opinion. 

I had a job I loved, and apartment that felt like home, friends and family that were close enough to see when I wanted, but far enough I didn’t have to worry about them dropping by unannouced.  I was content. Out of the blue, I found someone to share it with. I could come home, and talk to another person about my day, and know they understood my angst, frustrations, and triumphs. That’s what had been missing, and I didn’t even know that was something I needed to get to that next level. 

I’m there again in my life.  I can finally say I’m back to the point in my life that I’m consistantly happy at the end of the day.  I walk into my home that I love, after working my 2 jobs that change children’s lives, and can look around and be pleased with myself.  I’ve gotten to the point where I know who/what I need in my life at any given moment.  My emotions are no longer scary, I’m no longer compelled to eat my way through them.  I can hold myself accountable financially, and even put money in a savings account and not touch it. 

I know what I want my next relationship to look like.  I know where I want to be in 12 years.  I have a plan now.  I have so much knowledge about the wrold, and how it works.  Some of the knowledge came from difficult times, but it’s valued just the same.  Somewhere in the last year, I’ve become this new person.  This new me: She knows her worth.  She is no longer afraid to speak her mind.  She no longer hides behind ‘What I should Be,’ instead, she basks in Who I Am.

image

Who Am I
1) A Social Worker – I work every day to find family members, and bring them back together.  To get kids out of the Foster Care system, and find them a forever home. I’m able to use my powerful skills of conversation, to make people look at the world differently, and use my own story to help them let go of some of their pain.  I’ve found the perfect job for me – I get paid to stalk people on the internet, then convince them to do what I want them to.  Because . . . Awesome!

2) My Mother’s Child – Personality Wise, we are pretty much the same person at this point.  She’s my hero, and I wanna be like her when I grow up. I want to raise a child the way she raised me, and hopefully make the same impact on their life that she has made on mine.  I’m so happy to consider my mother my friend now, it’s been a journey I wouldn’t trade for anything.

3) A Proud Member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc – I’ve finally found a chapter that is going to help me become more active in the community, and eventually the country.  I’m finally ready to get back to that side of me, MJ the Super Zeta. I’m ready to introduce a new generation of kids to greek life.  To invite children to stepshows, and involve them in community service.  To network in the city of Tucson, and the state of Arizona. To do this Zeta thing the RIGHT way this time, and use all my life experiences to make my community a better place.

4) A Registered Behavioral Technician – I work with kiddos on the Autism Spectrum and help them to be the best version of themselves possible, be it at home, in public, or at school.  And I’m Damn Good at it. Now, I am Nationally Certified to do so.  I’ve been working with kids on the spectrum since my frist year of teaching, even though we didn’t know at the time one of my students was on the spectrum.  There is a special kind of blessing that comes from helping a child open up to the world, when they have only been in their own world for so long.

5) A Child of God – Most of my life, I’ve struggled with my religious identity.  Being raised in the church, I often felt bad for questioning certain things.  Adulthood and life has lead me to understand that God is in everything.  He/She/They doesn’t just have to live in a baptist church, or in Jesus, or in Allah.  God is Love.  God is Living a life of Service to others.  God is finding the Beauty in even the most Ugly of situations.  I can finally say, “Giving Honor to God who is the head of my Life,” and know what that means, which is a blessing in and of itself.

I’m sure there are more labels that apply to me.  These are the 5 I choose to highlight today.  Everyday, I thank God for the person he has allowed me to become, and hope I stop fighting him so much when he takes me down a path I wasn’t expecting.  I guess this is going to be my “Me at 34,” birthday blog, just a little bit early.  Thanks for Reading 🙂

image

Words and Sounds of My Life: The College Years

image

So thanks to Spotify, I had the best flashback to my college years today. Some of the best memories I have in life have been associated to college, and the music that was popular at the time.  Since I can’t just comment on all the songs that were in thei playlist, I’m going to talk about 5 of my favorite. Let’s get it started.

 

If you can listen to this song, and not HAVE to move your body, you are not only dead inside, but you might actually be dead.  This album came out my Sophomore year, and I can tell you right now, my suitemates probably hate Limp Bizkit to this day! Cuz this was my wake-up music . . . For my 8:00am classes.  Every day. For an entire semester.  I was an asshole, I’m able to admit that now.  I was also going through a DEEP depression at the time.  Limp Bizkit was all about the angry white girl who lived inside me – Meeghan – needing to yell and scream and be angry about her life.  Plus, this song GOES. Every single verse on this song is A+ . . . And the BEAT!!! I mean really!

 

Remember the first time you heard this song? For me, it was the summer before Junior year, riding in Jigga’s car on the way back to campus.  I was working in the UD Bakery, and HAD to have this song on the next Mix CD he was going to make for me.  The fact that she was so young, and so talented, we all knew she was going to blow up.  I went to Napster (DAMN YOU METALLICA YOU RUIN EVERYTHING!) and searched for any and everything she had out.  When the album finally dropped, we played it non-stop.  I knew every song on that album by heart – the vocalizations, the harmonies, the ad-libs – and tried to sing every song perfectly.  This was before the cyst on my vocal chords cock-blocked my quest to audition for American Idol. This was also the summer I was dumb enough to fall back in love with TBTLINY . . . Ahhh youth.

 

Again, Sophomore Year.  When we watched TRL relentlessly, just to see if *NSYNC or BSB was going to be in the top spot. This album was when I realized a) there were 5 people in the group  b) but I only knew what 2 of them sounded like and c) That Justin had to date Black Girls on the Low-Low.  He had WAAAAAAAAY too much soul on Just Got Paid.  That Just Got Paid was even on the album in the first place…. I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention the Holy War my suitemates and I had with the Girls down the hall, who were HUGE BSB fans. Like, they had posters on their front door counting down until Black & Blue came out, then when it came out they made a Birth Announcement.  Those girls were crazy,and we messed with them the whole year.  Walking down the hall singing *NSYNC songs at the top of our lungs, or moving stuff on their door.  I don’t think we did actual damage . . . I don’t THINK we did.

 

Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan.  I STILL love this song.  My favorite memory of this song is actually tied to a kid I used to babysit that went to the child care center on campus.  One day, while I was changing his diaper in the room, the radio was on.  Of course I was singing, and when I got to the chorus, he thought the Whoooooo was like the best thing to ever happen in his life! He laughed and laughed, and any time I saw him for the rest of the year he would look up to me, waiting for me to say “I’m sorry Ms. Jackson. . .” Just so he could do the Whoooooooooo.  That kid was awesome!

This goes out to Santos Santiago Manuel Pabon.  This was HIS Favorite Song, like of ever of life.  At every Greek party, Meringue Night, BATU House Party, Santos was going to request this song.  I’m not quite sure WHY it was his favorite song, but the smile on his face every single time it played was EVERYTHING. This beautiful kid from Puerto Rico, with more hair products than most girls I knew, was one of my BEST friends while he was at UD.  I sometimes wonder where he is, and what he’s doing with his life.  I picture him as a Doctor, working with his dad, changing lives.  Every time I hear this song, I say out loud, “Awwwww Santos!”

image

Thank you for joining my on this trip down UD Memory Lane.  I’m sure I’ll be doing this again some time in the near future.

30 Day Writing Challenge: Things I Hate About You

{Full Disclosure.  I wrote this blog during a 3 hour flight to a conference for work.  It was 48 hours after Hello had been released, but BEFORE I talked to my ex. So this is rather emo.  It’s also kind of cheating, because this day’s challenge was supposed to be just 3 songs.  But Yeah, That.}

399341_10151088324115613_1770470123_n

10. Hello – Adele

I Hate that I’m thinking about you again. I Hate that hearing this song has put all these emotions back in my mindspace. I Hate that this song stirred up old resentments and anger about life Post-You. I Hate that everyone else gets to talk to you, and see you, and I don’t. I Hate how selfish it sounds to say, “You were my friend FIRST!” And I Hate that I will forever feel that way.

9. Lay Me Down

I Hate that British White People seem to be the only singers to properly convey my pain about you. I Hate that THIS song made me cry the first time I heard it. I Hate that the only person I could explain my reaction to has the option to talk to you whenever she wants to. I hate that I can’t TALK about you to anyone. I Hate  that explaining this 5 year clusterfuck takes a book, not a text. I Hate that I miss the Smell of you in the morning. I Hate that I can’t remember your face, but I remember what your chest feels like. I Hate that you didn’t trust my love for you enough to read the fucking letter I wrote you. I HATE that the only time I feel real emotion is when I’m thinking about or talking about you.

8. Farewell – Rihanna

I Hate that you got out of the service. I Hate that we talked about your life after you left, and I’m not there to see it. I Hate that I say goodbye to you on an almost daily basis. I Hate that I still remember the first time I heard this song, and crying on the couch because I thought you were going to be deployed. I Hate that singing this song out loud still makes me cry. I hate that you could hear this song, and not one fuck would be given about me. I Hate that not having you in my life made me give up on love. I Hate that I came to the realization that I was never in love with BTB. I Hate the fact that I’ll never be in love again.

7. Stone Cold – Demi Lovato

I Hate that the first time I heard this song, I thought of you. I Hate that this song didn’t come out in 2012. Because I would have stood outside your house and sang it. I Hate that the words, “If Happy is Her, I’m happy for you.” Apply to my best friend. I Hate that you made me Hate my Best Friend for a brief period of time. I Hate you for ruining the context of perfectly good songs. I Hate that I don’t like Demi’s version, because she’s singing it like I feel about you. It’s ugly, and I Hate that my feelings for you are still so ugly.

6. Far Away – Marsha Ambrosius

I Hate that I don’t listen to this album ever. Because it reminds me of when we fell apart. I Hate that this song is about suicide, and missing you made me contemplate it on more occasions than I’m comfortable with admitting. I Hate that you are so far away, but you live within driving distance. I Hate that I can’t even DRIVE on Ajo for fear of seeing you. I Hate that she was the one to tell me you were in Seattle, and now I’m afraid I’ll bump into you at the airport. I Hate that not even traveling is free of you. I Hate that every time I go to the grocery store, half of me is afraid to see you, and the other half hopes I do.  I just HATE YOU. And I Hate that Hating you is the only way I can tell myself to stop loving you. I have to remember all the shitty fucked up things you did to me, so I don’t remember the way you made me feel. I Hate that the only time I’ve felt happy, was when I was with you. I know I’ve been content most  times, but Happiness is rare. I Hate that because of you I know the difference between Happy and Content.

5. Over You – Miranda Lambert

I Hate the Country music makes me think of you. I Hate that I still have a Whiskey Lullabye Pandora Station. I Hate that Country music is the 2nd best genre for emo shit. “But you went away, how dare you! I miss You!” What the fuck dude. I HATE that song lyrics seriously only matter when it pertains to you. I Hate that you stole the music from me. I Hate that I was longing for the meaning, and now I wish it would go away. God, I Hate You.

4. Maybe, Tomorrow – Jackson 5

I Hate that knowing you didn’t read the letter gave me hope. I Hate that hope still exists in my life. I Hate that even though hope popped up, right behind it was self-doubt and my propensity for bashing myself in your eyes. “Maybe Tomorrow, you’ll change you mind” Fuck You Hope. Fuck you very much.

3. Whenever You’re Around

I Hate that I’m currently on an airplane and can’t sing this entire song on your voicemail. I Hate that you even ruin Jill Scott songs. I Hate that 48 hours from now, I’ll go back to being numb again, and I won’t even have these feelings anymore. I Hate that numb is safe. I Hate that we aren’t building our tutoring business, and making ridiculous amounts of money while helping the children of Tucson. I Hate that at the end I was lonely around you. I Hate that you shut me out, even before I moved. I Hate that even though my house is becoming a home (finally) it’s still my 2nd choice. I Hate that She thinks we should have made up by now, but it’s not even on your radar. I Hate that I told her never to try to make it happen, because I would hate her for it. I Hate that she actually listened to me.

2. Exit Wounds – Luke James

I wondered if you ever loved me
Cuz if you did, why be so cold
I hope you know . . .

This ain’t a heart it’s just an exit wound
That just won’t close.
My brain in scarred each time I let you through, You left a hole
Stole my smile and all i’ve got left of you,
Is these Exit Wounds . . .

1. The Worst is Over – Laura Izabor

I Hate that I dont think this is true. I Hate how much this song should minister to me, because it’s how I felt after the second time you left. I Hate that even hoping things had ended differently is like admitting it was going to end anyway. It was never going to last, was it? I Hate that you will never read this, see this, or answer any of these questions. I Hate that I still have these many thoughts about you!