Tag Archive | Adulthood

Talk to Me Nice . . .

6 weeks ago, my whole world turned upside down.  Not as a euphemism, but like actually turned upside down.  I left Arizona, headed to MI on a plane on March 30th, with a job and a home. 10 days later, I was going to be homeless because the house I was renting was going on the market. “But we will of course honor your lease,” said the white woman.  My lease was up for renewal at the end of June.

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So I flew back to AZ, and packed up my entire life in less than a week.  Followed by DRIVING 2167 miles from Tucson, AZ to West Bloomfield, MI. Because, why not?  Did I forget to mention my 70 Lb dog . . . whose favorite thing in LIFE is to be in a car with me.  I had to drug him . . . because just NO.

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This is just here to set the scene for the actual point of this blog, because it’s important to know my mindset on this journey from AZ to MI. I was doing what I HAD to do, not what I wanted to do.  My life was in AZ. I started a business, I had friends (well like 10 of them, but still), my life wasn’t great but it wasn’t bad either.

Or so I thought.

I’ve been a Social Worker for 6 years.  Which means I understand things like “Survivor Mode,” and “Secondary Trauma,” but some kind of way, I didn’t know I was dealing with that, and in all honesty probably had been for at least 2 years.  Basically after my seizure, I just went into survivor mode and I haven’t stopped.

So much shit – good, bad, and horrible – has happened to me since I had that seizure.  Gained and lost friends, gained and lost family members, discovered Medicinal Marijuana, fell in and out of love with several people, dealt with my mother’s illnesses, got a dog, etc.

But I’d just been going full force.  Working 12 – 18 hour days, with one off day during the weekend, and usually I had stuff to do so I didn’t get the chance to just de-stress.  I’m actually slightly surprised I managed to function that long without having a serious mental breakdown.

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Looking back, I was in a rut of my own making.  I wasn’t very social.  But then again, Arizona is NOT very social.  There is nothing to do that doesn’t require hiking or swimming in extreme heat.  Which is bullshit, because FAT. Thus leading to the theme of my 2000+ mile journey: “Why the FUCK did I ever think I was Happy in Arizona?!?”

Click here for my definition of Happy

I was miserable.  I was irritable all the time, and I put up with bullshit because it was the best I could get.  I put up with a nigga (and the sex was garbage) because at least he was a Black Man in Arizona that liked me. I ignored my feelings for the only otha Black Man in Arizona that liked me, because I didn’t want to ruin it. I lost myself in AZ.  I forgot I was cute.  I forgot I was sexy, I forgot that I was a GOT DAMN UNICORN.

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I”m a 36 year old Black Woman.  I have 1 degree, and enough professional knowledge to have 2 more.  In multiple disciplines.  I’m the GOT DAMN Autism Whisperer.  My Vagina is a got damn miracle.  It could change your life, if you let it. I’m smart, capable of doing anything, and a cunning linguist. Driving cross country I realized several things about my life going forward.

  1. You never know how people view you.  You can have this thought, that the way you present yourself to someone lands the same exact way, every single time.  It doesn’t. One of the men I love {or am In love with, depends on the day}, (because I’m allowed to love more than one person at a time, SOCIETY) he sees this strong and resilient person, who never gives up and always perseveres.  He thinks I’m a strong person, even though I feel like I call him and cry like once every 3 months.  About completely different things, and I always feel so damn stupid for crying about it, because I’m supposed to be an adult at all times. So I feel weak, and less than for being vulnerable to him. And his take, “You may feel you’re not where you wanna be in life, but you’re right where you are supposed to be.” *thug tears*
  2. Love is Love is Love is LoveIt doesn’t have to look like anything other than something that makes you happy every single GOT DAMN day of your life. You don’t have to choose between the person who makes you laugh, and the person who makes your lady parts tingle.  No one has the right to tell you what your love HAS to look like.  Talk to the people, tell them your preferences.  If they aren’t down with the Get Down, that’s okay.  But don’t compromise yourself, to settle with what other people think is good for you.  We are living in Trump’s whole ass ‘Murica.  The world could end tomorrow, don’t waste it being sad because your needs aren’t being met. 
  3. I’m done apologizing for the way I’ve lived my life thus far.  I’m done feeling ashamed for the missteps I’ve taken.  I’m done trying to make up for the fact that I didn’t feel like I was an adult until a week ago.  I’m over anyone who tries to tell me how I should live my life, and navigate the world.  Be they Family, Friend or Foe – GTFOH with your rules and expectations.  I get to walk through the world in this new body I’m creating for myself.  I get to eat whatever the hell I want, and also RUN A FUCKING MILE for the first time in my life. The only people in this world who get to dictate how I live my life, are the people I choose to listen to.  I’m in charge of this ship now.  No more letting the wind take me wherethefuckever. 

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I’m sure I’ve written in the past that today is the day my life is different.  I’m sure at the time I wholeheartedly believed it.  Maybe things did change, in a way. But this version of MJ, the one writing this blog has already won.  She is living in her GOT DAMN truth.  And it’s Sofa King Fabulous.

Please, join me. 

Let’s live our Best Whole Ass Lives for the rest of 2018. 

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I Can’t Drink You Away….

This blog MIGHT be all over the place (kinda like my emotions right now) but I promise there is a central theme.

*******Avengers: Infinity War Spoilers********

We all said, nothing can ever be better than Black Panther. I THINK we were wrong. This movie is just….. So first off, FUCK THANOS. His entire existence just ruined my life. For a myriad of reasons. The last 20 mins of that movie are 1000000000 times worse than the Red Wedding episode of GOT.

But what has me awake at 4:30am like I don’t have shit to do in 3 hours, is the relationship between Thanos & Gamora.

He stole her, after he destroyed half of her planet’s inhabitants. He killed her mother, and told her it had to happen that way. He then trained her to be a deadly assassin who traveled the world killing for him. Because he’s an ASSHOLE.

Even though Gamora swore she hated him, when she *thought* she had actually killed him it tore her apart. Like broke her all the way down. Because even after all the abuse, and hate, and self-loathing, that was her FATHER. Every girl just wants a Daddy.

My life is in chaos right now. I reached out to my father, who has more than enough money to help me deal with this situation. It’s an unexpected life altering event, right as I took 2 months (unpaid) FMLA off to help my mom.

I knew he was going to say no. I knew it in my soul. I told my mom he was going to say no. He did. I wasn’t even shocked. I had already been working on another solution to the problem. He has never helped me out in a crisis. He has actually caused the last 2. And yet…..I asked. At 36, I still held an impossibly small piece of hope he would come through for me.

Because that’s what parents are supposed to fucking do – Help their children in times of need. That’s what our relationship was until I was around 12. The spoiled girl who was pampered and NEVER told no until she started gaining weight……she didn’t understand why the relationship just changed. It went from fun to weight control and walking 4 miles a day in the Arizona heat. I didn’t handle the transition well, because I wasn’t prepared for it.

My Hero. That’s who and what I used to think my father was. You couldn’t tell me shit bad about him. And due to his “strict religious and moral beliefs,” he would of course never lie to me or hurt me. Because that’s what the Bible says. But not the Good Reverend. That nigga worked 50 years to push his kids out the house at 18, and tell them to fend for themselves. Because that’s HIS moral obligation. Now, where this supposed code came from, I don’t know.

It took me way too long to understand this code of ethics even existed. [Partially due to my mother’s parenting style, because she’s the best mom ever] I was used to having a need, telling my primary parent at the moment, and getting what I needed. Some people called it spoiled…not sure why. Some part of me still felt, even after all the times he had disappointed me – if I can just explain why it’s so urgent that I need his help, he won’t say no then. I keep banging my head up against this emotional wall.

Always leaving a door open, or a window slightly cracked hoping he will be different this time. Because I never felt more loved and appreciated than when I used to go visit my father in Tucson and Pittsburgh. I still crave that….feeling. I write about wanting that all the time. Thanks to therapy, I know the root of that. But this blog isn’t REALLY about my daddy issues.

I know, insanity. The kid inside of me always feels so less than when dealing with him, because I’m still trying to get him to:

  • Acknowledge that parenthood doesn’t end when your children reach 18.
  • HELP ME GOT DAMMIT

Back briefly to Avengers.

In order for Thanos to reach one of his final goals, he LITERALLY threw Gamora over a cliff, and killed her. I started crying right then. Because GOTDAMN! Gamora’s face as she was falling, throwing out her hands and hoping by some miracle he would save her in the last minutes…….

It was like seeing myself on screen. (This conclusion is why I’m still awake right now) Every time I call my father specifically for his help, I’m hanging off the cliff holding on for dear life. He reaches down, and lifts each finger off, while telling me something about budgeting for unexpected events.

That’s how I see my dad. I paid the mortgage on a house that was in his name for 4 years, for him to tell me if I didn’t let my DEADBEAT ASS SISTER move in (and pay no rent or contribute to the household….did I mention shes is 22 years older than me) he would sell the house, and I would be homeless. This was of course about a WEEK after I had a Grand Mal Seizure at the gym and dislocated my shoulder. And my mom was already staying there to help me recover FROM A FUCKING SEIZURE.

Did Thanos love Gamora, yes? But he – and by extension his agenda – was still more important to himself than his child. I just don’t understand how that is. I try really hard to look at everything from both sides. But my dad….

Seriously tho, Fuck that Nigga Thanos.

I just…. I can’t wait for the day when I can not have “daddy issues” flare ups. This shit is worse than herpes. I might be done tho…because exhausted. Also, I might have already said too much. I had to edit like 4 times before I could post this. Because feelings.

Fuck Thanos So Much

Dear Depression……Thanks

I need to take a few minutes to talk about one of the benefits of MY depression. I talk all the time, about how Depression has seemingly taken over my adulthood. It makes things HARDER to accomplish. In order to be fair, I must now share the good sides of Depression. So without further ado, I present…..Thanks Depression!

I’ve lost 30lbs since July of last year. I went from 363.2 to today’s current weight of 334.8lbs. I can write those weights with pride, as it’s the smallest I’ve ever been (since I started actually weighing myself). The only time in my life I lost weight like this, was when I was working at the Tucson JCC. I was working out 5 days a week (for at least 40 mins), and eating kosher.

Which is why I have to say, Thank You Depression!

Because I just stopped eating food. That’s how I’m losing this weight. I have no appetite, at all. I forget to eat during the day, and I barely eat at home. When I do eat, the portions are so small it’s like being on a diet. 9 times out of 10, I always end up feeding the rest to my dog.

I’ve been dealing with my mom’s health issues and living 2309 miles away, so food intake has been the least of my worries.

People come up to me, and ask my diet plan. Usually, I lie. Cuz it’s kind of weird to be like, “Worry about your mom on an hourly basis! The pounds will just melt away!” I feel like, that wouldn’t go over that well.

FitBit reminded me today, I’m just 9lbs away from the initial goal I set for myself 3 years ago. I got a lil bit happy, knowing that goal is on the horizon. Then, I got sad again. Because I know I’ll make that goal. And it’s not because I’m doing it on purpose. It’s because I’m so stressed out about other things in life, I won’t be focused enough to try to stay at this weight. Depression is still there, I haven’t figured out how to get rid of it…..yet.

I sometimes miss when food was my happy place. I miss being able to eat my feelings. Because when you can just eat them, you don’t have to process them. You don’t have to sit with them, rolling around in your head all fucking day.

When you can eat your feelings, you also end up weighing 378lbs at 30. So clearly that wasn’t a healthy coping mechanism. But as I looking at the numbers getting smaller and smaller on the scale, my new fear is that once I’m back in Michigan, the weight just comes back.

So I’m planning already, how to keep this going. Joining Lifetime Fitness again, and cooking healthy food. Actually going for walks on the trail behind my mom’s house. Maybe I can get to my ultimate weight Goal, size 18 on the bottom, and a 14/16 on Top. The numbers never mattered to me, the way my clothes fit did. And 2 weeks ago, I bought a pair of size 24 jeans….and they are already too big now.

Thank You Depression, for being a catalyst to a lifestyle change I needed. I wasn’t gonna do it myself, so I appreciate the help 😁.

The Possibility of Us . . .

In my 20’s, I used to make playlists for everything.  Even before the Great Spotify, I needed a soundtrack for whatever my life was at that moment.  They all had super emo names, like “The Living Struggle,”  or “Why do I still Love Him?” etc. It was my way of singing out my problems.  It was a good catharsis for me.  I could instantly go to the song I needed to hear, sing and cry on my porch or balcony, write 7 blogs, send 3 or 4 passive-aggressive emails or texts, and I could move on with life.

In my 30’s, the loss of music has let me know I’m going through something.  When I would rather listen to NPR in car, or Old Podcasts I’ve listened to 1000 times, I know I’m due to have some sort of emotional breakdown.  Living with Depression has taught me everything isn’t sadness.  It isn’t “OMG my life falling apart,” it’s instead I have something I need to.  I have to find the music again.  Find the song, or the playlist, or the lyric that is going to express EXACTLY where I am.  I’ve gotten to the point where I am too busy with everyday life to wallow in my emotions.

That’s probably a good thing, especially for my friends who have been with me through my adult life so far. Because I KNOW they were tired of all the emo ass texts, and phone calls crying over the same person, or the same situation, or some conversation over and over again.  I’m trying to be a better friend.  My last relationship ended just as it began, with little to no fanfare.  No one knew it was over, it just was. That’s the adult way to do it, right? However, tonight, while driving home from my last tutoring session, a random Spotify Playlist lead me all up in my feelings.

I Present to you: Selections from The Possibility of Us.

Poision & Wine – The Civil Wars

I miss MM.  I’ve accepted the fact I miss the intimacy we had.  I can acknowledge that it was unhealthy to a great extent, but also wish I was that naive again.  I trusted every word that came out of his mouth.  I gave every single part of me, gladly, and without Fear.  I’m so cynical and untrusting these days.  I cut people off when I feel they are about to hit me with a bullshit excuse.  I don’t have faith in anyone except my inner circle.  I expect people to lie, and be unfaithful, and bad.  I long for the girl I was when I fell in love with MM.

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Stay – Sugarland

I’ll never be a Side Chick again. It’s not because of something stupid, like morals or whatever. It’s because I’m over the bullshit.  The conversations that used to woo me into that position no longer hold the same weight.  I don’t need you to tell me, “I can’t talk to my wife/girlfriend/lover the way I can talk to you,” in order to feel special.  I don’t need the ego stroke anymore.  Maybe i’ve grown up, or maybe it’s that cynicism.  I’ve come to realize, every Man/Woman has a choice.  You can control yourself.  You can get a divorce. You can break up with your partner. Just like you choose to not be honest with your significant other, I can choose to tell you that you are full of shit, and need to put on your big boy boxers and handle your business.  You aren’t staying for the kids, you are staying for you.  Until you are important enough to you, get the fcuk outta here.

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One Day You Will – Deborah Cox

I’m still looking for the connection I had with TBTLNY.  No one has ever given me that same feeling, which means everyone eventually disappoints me.  {This is probably means I’m continually setting myself up for failure, but you know, whatevs} Which is kind of stupid, since clearly I’m not with him right now. It was a teenage love, but it was STRONG. I would have climbed mountains, and swam oceans, and ran marathons to keep that love in my life.  That feeling, it’s a high I’ve been seeking out since I got the first taste. My life’s addiction is that high.  I can admit that to myself, and even understand how unhealthy that is.  Craving an emotional connection with someone is just as harmful as a drug addiction, because it could lead to putting yourself in dangerous situations.

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I Won’t Give Up (Demo Version) – Jason Mraz

I wish I believed in Love like this again.  Even if I go out searching for it, I don’t believe I will actually find it.  Which is kind of sad right? But it’s the truth.  To be able to say to someone, “I’m not going to quit.  I’m going to love you enough, to work on this.  To grow with you, no away from you.” It requires a certain level of vulnerability and openness, and a trust that I don’t have. And I WISH I had it.  I wish I was that Girl who sat on the phone talking to TBTLYN for 12 hours.  I wish was the Girl who made a mixtape for MM because I couldn’t find an easy way to say I loved him.  I wish I was the Girl who smiled at text messages from my current crush.

I’m Not Anymore.

And I really don’t even know what that makes me? Who am I now? My Love of Love kind of defined me for a while.  I hate romantic comedies, because they are so unrealistic. I used to swear that Carrie Bradshaw was my Love Guru, she was an Idiot.  Big was an asshole! I used to read Trashy Romance Novels in one sitting, I don’t even buy them anymore. Maybe my heart’s been broken too many times, maybe I just need a break from love.  Fuck if I know.

I bask in other people’s relationships.  I’m happy for their love.  I’m not like a Love Hater. I see beautiful relationships all around me, and I’m so pleased for my friends.  I’m equally content with my current busy life/schedule. I’m just . . . . trying to figure myself out now.

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Anybody Want to Buy a Heart?

*The following post was inspired by this Album*

I used to write all the time.  I’m kind of ashamed I don’t anymore.  Maybe it’s a good thing, because the reason I don’t write anymore is that I just don’t have the time.  Between having two jobs, one boyfriend, and trying my best to have an actual social life, it’s just been A LOT.

I’m not complaining, because that would make me an asshole.  Because there are people who wish they had my life.  So for those 3 people, I’m grateful everyday.  I think I’m searching for a creative outlet though.  Every minute of every day is focused on something, and It’s exhausting.  My time doesn’t belong to me any more. It belongs to the kids I tutor, or the kids on my case load.  Or it belongs to my boyfriend, or it belongs to my friend who needs a support system.

I think my only child is angry with me.  I haven’t had a day when I turned off my phone and movie hopped since . . . maybe July of last year? The minute summer camp ended, I was on the run.  I had to find two jobs, because I need variety.  My need for autonomy and flexibility also leads to multiple responsibilities.  If i take a day off of work, I could really actually impact someones life.

I’m wondering if I’m making myself feel important?  If i’m picking jobs/tasks because I know people are actually counting on me.  I feel like there is some psychological explanation for having that kind of complex . . . and it’s not a good/positive one.  So because I fear I’m secretly crazy, I’m stressed out.  That leads to getting sick, and staying home but still working from home because $$$. Either way, I judge myself for not working, and I’m judging myself FOR working so much because I don’t know if my heart is all the way in it.

My goal for this year, has been to take one weekend a month, and have it be about me.  I’m slowly but surely trying to change my schedule so that I actually adhere to my off days.  I haven’t been so far. But next month is a new month, so i guess we will try that again.  The other good thing is that I get to start working out again.  I remember how clear my mind used to be when I was working out 5 days a week.  Gotta get back to that.

Maybe my middle of the week off days will be for writing.  Maybe that will be the time I carve out for myself to sit, find a topic, and write at least 1000 words.  I doubt I’ll post all of them, but still to have them there.  My last blog was written in September! Almost 6 months ago.  Half a Year without writing?!?!? I just like . . . what?

So here’s the last thing . . . I think like a social worker now.  It’s HORRIBLE for a relationship.  Because when conflicts arise, I’m looking at it as, how can I solve this problem.  I’m stepping out of it, and analyzing the situation . . . instead of being in it at the time.  I think my Trauma Stewardship Skills have reached an all time high.  I don’t take anything personal, I don’t assume anything about people’s actions.  I’m quite sure in the last few weeks someone has tried to sabotage me . . . but I’m not worried about THAT. I actually said to a co-worker, “I can’t judge her because she feels a way about me.  That’s her journey, and it has nothing to do with me.”

WHAT . . . . IS . . . . LIFE?!?!?!?!  I’m actually starting to live by the motto, “We Don’t Judge.”

I think I’m at a personal crossroads.  Not one that’s going to lead me to moving again or anything like that.  But one that makes me reorganize my life, my priorities, and such.  My calmness scares me, which shouldn’t be a thing right? But as someone who used to be the emotional equivalent of a Kardashian-West Twitter Rant, this is just weird.

Thanks for Reading . .. hopefully there’s more coming.

The Story of My Life . . . or Holy Shyt! I’m 32

*Editor’s Note: I started this blog in January.  Actually finished it, then never published it.  I know why now.*

Every year, I TRY to post a blog about what I’ve learned over that previous year.  With my Birthday being so close to the New Year, it’s usually just my yearly recap as well.  This time, I’m going to do it a little bit differently.  After another one of my “I haven’t gotten any sleep in the last 48 hours” Epiphanies, I realized that I can actually pinpoint the times my life took a direction I wasn’t expecting.  The first 17 years of my life aren’t going to be discussed here . . . mostly because I’m lazy.

All Denim Outfit . . .No One Loved me.

All Denim Outfit . . .No One Loved me.

The University of Dayton

No, we start with my first step into adulthood.  The moment I decided I was GROWN! I stood at the West Bloomfield post office, mailed that acceptance letter, and that was all she wrote! I was going to be the female Bill Gates, and change the world of computers.  *Mind you, I didn’t visit the school, didn’t know what it looked like, they just gave me the most money. So they won.* But I MUST admit, best decision I’ve ever made. The friends I made there, the people I met, the experiences I had . . . wouldn’t have had it any other way.  University of Dayton lead me to Zeta, and my Degree in Education (more on that later), my closest friends, love, hurt, fear, anger, and most importantly – Understanding of Myself.  On May 3, 2003, I graduated knowing EXACTLY who I wanted to be.

13 Years Ago . . .

14 Years Ago . . .

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

It SHOULD be common knowledge that Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. is the Greatest Sorority in the Nation.  But if you didn’t know, now you know, sucka! I joined ZPhiB because I wanted to be the kind of woman ZPhiB represented.  What I didn’t expect, could have never imagined, was the Family.  The Women I call Sister, not just Soror. The two women who grew up right beside me.  Who dealt with my Sophomore Year Depression, who dried my tears, and had numerous sleepovers with me.  The Women who taught me how to create a Programme, and put on a Dove Ball, and STEP.

Ryders of the Storm

Ryders of the Storm

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.

Even more unexpected (and judge this next statement if you want) The Men I Call Brother. R.O.T.S changed my life. Not just because LeRoy was the scariest dude I had ever met in my life, but because they PROTECTED us.  From Greek Life Bullshit, and everyday Bullshit.  They knew how Naive we were, and they shielded us from so much more than we ever knew.  The Blu Bond is so sacred to me, and is still very much prevalent in my life. What I’ve learned, and cherished the most in these 14 years, is that Family can come out of nowhere.  These 3 Men, will forever be referred to as my Brothers, not my Frat.

2nd Best Kitchen I've Ever Had

2nd Best Kitchen I’ve Ever Had

My First Apartment

Having my own place was so freeing! I FINALLY had my own space.  I didn’t have to fear my mom randomly knocking on my door. You mean I can have HOUSE PARTIES. Kait and I entered in that adventure with the best of intentions.  We were going to be the only Best Friends that moved in together and didn’t hate each other.  The Road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions… The loss of that Friendship shook me to my core.  Not because I had known her forever, or because it was unexpected. But I saw that for the first time Money and Friends should NEVER mix.  We weren’t fighting over anything emotional, it was about her breaking her lease. *To move in with the man she eventually married but still…* Add to that, I spent 3 months without a JOB! As my support system from age 13 to 24 was leaving me high and dry rent wise, I had no idea what I was going to do.  Moving home wasn’t an option. So I began to hustle.  I had 3 part time jobs, 2 that were under the table (gotta collect that unemployment), and I babysat whenever I could.  I learned then, I’ll never be unemployed.  Because the Hustle is STRONG within me. I worked my way out of that rut, got a porn star roommate – no really, she did Porn – and Lived It The Fcuk Up.

These Two Ladies Saved My Life . . .

These Two Ladies Saved My Life . . .

The Triad

Words can’t even . . . The Triad is the Polyamorous Relationship everyone wish they had.  These two Women showed me what Friendship is supposed to be.  No Judgements, No Fear, No Regrets.  You live your life, you learn from the pain, and You Move On.  Diamond and Aaliyah were my anchors in the storm that was my early to mid 20’s. We Drank, (they) Smoked, and we Loved HARD. The nights/weekends/days we spent laying on someone’s floor crying and bitching about Men and Women! The Ex’s that we still talk to, the tradition of emailing each other all day, the Wearing White in public the day after Labor Day.

The children, and road-trips, and music that happened from 2005-2007. I don’t even talk to them every month. Doesn’t matter, the minute we are on the phone it’s like nothing has ever changed.  I’m my true self with them.  Not the woman I wanted to be post Graduation, but somehow better. Nothing seemed out of reach, everything was a great idea.  If later I found out it wasn’t, didn’t matter. We Laugh/Drink/Cry about, and Move The Fuck On.

To See a Mountain is to See God

To See a Mountain is to See God

Moving to AZ

And I did . . .right to Arizona.  With intentions of going back to school, and getting my teaching certification.  I was gonna fix my relationship with my Dad, so I could finally get rid of those Daddy Issues, and find love . . . Arizona started out as a peaceful place to me.   Instead of teaching children, I found a job teaching Teachers how to teach Children. I found my professional voice in AZ. In Michigan, I’m surrounded by family and friends who discount my knowledge of children because I don’t have any of my own. In Arizona, people assumed I was an expert. Took a little while to realize I actually kind of am. My love for children was confirmed there.  My life path was made certain.  Arizona was everything I didn’t know I wanted.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, I thought I had also found the man I was going to spend the rest of my life with.

 

The Mexican

me and eric

Loving you is the best thing that ever happened to me.  It’s also the worst.  You changed me, turned me into a person I didn’t even know I could be, or wanted to be.  The last thing you said to me, in anger, was “You are just a faint memory. I’ve almost forgotten you existed.”  Even with that much hate in your voice, I remembered when it was beautiful.  When the love I saw in your eyes made every day worth living.  If I never see your face, and never hear your voice again, I Loved You.   In a way I had only read about in romance novels and Donny Hathaway songs.  For everything losing you took away, it gave me twice as much.  So for that, I saw Thank You. For showing me who my true friends are, and because you helped me stop hiding behind my weight. You were Loved Sir.

When I think of Home

My Mommy and Me

My Mommy and Me

I left AZ because I was devastated and I couldn’t be there.  Up until the point, the House I Bought was the Reason He Wasn’t There. Everything about my house reminded me of a loss I still can’t began to describe.  Emotionally, I was a 17 year old girl who had lost her 1st Love. I needed my Mommy.  I’m okay with admitting that.  I needed a break from those last 18 months.  My Mother Saved Me. I’m just glad I was Woman enough to admit I needed to be Saved. What I didn’t know is that I had been in a Domestic Violence relationship, and I needed to understand and forgive myself for letting it happen in the first place.

The Job I got once I moved back to Michigan healed me. I took the job thinking it would be just another opportunity to help children.  I was part of a team that worked everyday to save lives.  We worded to heal people who have been hurt/violated by people they love. We educate women (and men) about Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.  My clients, these brave and frustrating women taught me so much about how Trauma follows you your whole life if you don’t address it. My job taught me Accountability.  Owning up to the choices I’ve made in my life and their impact on me and others. My co-workers brought back my happy. In the completely emotionally damaged world we work, I smiled more than I cried. I looked forward to seeing them, and hopefully they felt the same about me.  We are a Strange Group of People, those of us who choose to do Social work, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I have to take a second to shoutout TIITC.  Never shall he be named, but he helped me realize that not all men are assholes.  He found me beautiful at my ugliest, and he let me cry on his couch when my Nephew died.  I wouldn’t have made it without him.  Thanks TIITC, you are loved as well 🙂

Finally, MJ has come BACK to 3013!

Finally, MJ has come BACK to 3013!

Which leads me back . . . to Arizona. Somewhere in the 4 years I lived there, it became Home.  I felt displaced in Michigan. I didn’t have my own space, I couldn’t live the life I wanted there.  I now crave warm weather, and mountains. I want two dogs in my backyard and Sundays at Mt. Lemmon.  I want Holiday dinners at 4 different houses with at least 3 different cultures represented.  I want to be called Aunt Marisa and ‘ARisa and Mz. Joy by children playing in my front yard. It’s time for me to stop licking healed wounds.  I’m finally stronger than that Pain. I leave you with an Eminem Lyric that perfectly illustrates my current mindset…

 But you won’t break me, You’ll just make me,

Stronger than I was, Before I met you

 I bet you I’ll be just fine without you

And if I stumble, I won’t crumble

I’ll get back up and I….

And I’mma still be humble, When I scream fuck you

Cause I’m stronger than I was – Marshall Mathers

 

Free Write: This is My Temporary Home/Fix You

So, I’ve been in Arizona for about 6 weeks.  The move was frantic, but the energy it required to move back was enough to keep me distracted.  Getting settled and job hunting has taken a while.  I’ve kept myself busy.  Purposefully, it seems.  The first time I saw this house, I knew it was for me.  It had everything I’d ever wanted for myself.  I prayed for this house every day, until I put in my offer. This was MY house, I wanted it for me.  I was only thinking about me when I saw it.  People say all the time, make plans . . . then listen to God laugh at them.

Somewhere along the way, this House lost it’s luster.  I’d be stupid to say, I don’t know the exact moment that happened.  But even acknowledging that an ‘entity’ had the power . . . nay, I gave an ‘entity’ the power to take that away from me . . . is disgusting.  I ran away from home, that’s what moving back to Michigan was.  I told me truth to very few people, because it was embarrassing to me.  But, God and Ernestine helped heal me.  I stopped judging myself, and blaming myself for everything that had happened in the past 3 years.

I was able to forgive myself for the part I played, and the choices I made that lead me to where I was – cowering like an abused puppy in Michigan.  But along the way, I lost one of my Best Friends.  Forgiving myself meant I had to place the rest of the blame on all parties, and them not acknowledging their part was a deal breaker for me.

This new me, that Haven built, holds people accountable.  Its a huge disappointment to me that I lost the one person who I could share my secret hidden thoughts.  There was no {to my knowledge} hidden agenda, jealousy, or lies.  My most outrageous thoughts were heard without me being told they were wrong.  There is something freeing about that.  I don’t have that many female friends who don’t judge me, or preach to/at me, or want to lead me down a different path.

I miss that freedom.  I miss the days when I didn’t think my words were going to be used against me.  The betrayal I feel, isn’t because she ‘chose’ him over me, it comes from the feeling that everything else in our friendship might have been a lie.  Every thought I shared with her about him, things I couldn’t say to his face {and there wasn’t much} he ended up knowing.  He used that knowledge, those secrets to break me.  She helped him.  And for what? Feeling that a man is more important than a friendship . . . it’s alot.

I thought I was ready to be back here, in this house that had begun to feel like an Island I had been exiled to as punishment.  The majority of my friends live at least 200 miles from me.  The one person I want/need is too far away.  Maybe that’s whats wrong.  I’d gotten entirely too used to having access to people who made me happy.  I can’t call TIITC and say lets go to dinner, and I can’t text The Boy and ask What’s the Haps.  I can’t go stalk Astacia at Jimmy Johns . . . It’s lonely starting all over again.

The worst part is, I haven’t been idle.  I’ve been reading, and discovering new truths about myself.  It hasn’t been all bad.  In fact, it’s been kind of awesome.  But on a night like tonight, I wish I could dial her number, and give her all my secrets. And I can’t . . . and that makes me hate her all over again.  It’s been worse though, this feeling.  So I know it’s going to get better.

Tears Stream . . . down your face
When you Lose something you can not replace.
Tears Stream . . . down your face

Lights with Guide You Home,
And Ignite your bones,
And I will Try . . . To Fix you.

Tomorrow is another day, a day to look into the sun, and feel the warmth that is Arizona. Because this is MY HOUSE, and if it takes a few for weeks, and a few more thousand dollars to make it feel as such, so be it.