Everything smells like smoke

On Wednesday April 29, 2020 there was a fire at my apartment complex. Wednesday started out as a normal day for me but ended in a way I never expected. Early afternoon I started to smell smoke so I walked around my apartment and figured out it was coming from the bathroom. I was nervous for a second because I thought something in my place had caught on fire. My candles were burning just fine, I checked my stove and all the eyes were off.

So then I stepped outside and I see my neighbor and we both asked each other if we smelled smoke. She told me her smell was strong in the living room. Another neighbor, who I’ve never seen popped up and asked if we smelled smoke and I told him yes, in my bathroom I did. His smell was coming from the kitchen. Prior to even smelling the smoke I heard a loud boom, which I didn’t think was anything bad, I just assumed it was someone dropping something heavy. Later on I found out from my neighbor who said the smell was coming from her living room, she told me it was our other neighbors vape pen that exploded.

Thankfully the people who lived in the apartment weren’t home, unfortunately their cats didn’t make it. The Fire Department arrived and cleared out the smoke. I couldn’t stay in my apartment because of the smokey smell. Even with me airing my place with the door open, windows, and fans going while the firefighters did their job. The leasing people didn’t even communicate with the fire department from what I could see when I was outside waiting in the parking lot/side walk area outside of my actual building.

Living in my space isn’t safe anymore. What makes it worse is that my leasing office hasn’t said anything to anyone about the fire or how to help. They haven’t offered to move those who were affected last Wednesday. I’m disappointed and ready to move. I can’t live in a place with the smell of smoke. I’ve been back and forth from my place to air it out as much as I could and I’ve been staying at my parents but that’s not enough.

I didn’t realize until yesterday when I went to clean it from top to bottom that my anxiety would come so strongly.  I want you to imagine everything smelling like smoke. Not knowing what does and doesn’t smell like smoke so you clean everything. Even in areas where the smell wasn’t as strong I smelled smoke. In closets, on my clothes, walking through the door. I cleaned everything and still the smell was there. I have carpet, so the soot and smell of smoke will be stuck there until the carpets are pulled up. Cleaning my bathroom tile and seeing the soot come off took me over the top. I couldn’t believe it. I knew it would probably have a little soot but the more I wiped I felt like the sponge was dirty and I just sprayed it with my cleaning spray and started wiping. Tears were flowing and my breathing wasn’t even.

How is this possible? I loved my place simply because it’s mine. It is quiet. Forgetting all the negative things that I’ve experienced while being a resident at my complex I don’t feel safe. This incident has made me want to move even more, and let’s not forget that my rent will be increased. A few days before the fire, my complex sent out an email stating the follow, “As you know, your lease is about to expire and we have great news for you! In an effort to ease the burden to you caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are offering you a revised and reduced 12 month renewal! To increase flexibility for all, we are also offering you the option to renew on a month-to-month basis without any increase or premiums.” Am I missing something? How are you offering a “revised and reduced 12 month renewal” but rent is going up?! That’s not reduced. Reduced means less not more to make smaller not larger. Furthermore, if you’ve stated “…to ease the burden to you caused by COVID-19 Pandemic...” shouldn’t you as the leasing company help those who were just recently affected by the fire to which you haven’t sent out any emails about that at all. You aren’t easing any burdens if you can’t address the biggest issue, and if you know this pandemic is a problem, you’re not doing anything to make things easier for your residents. How is it that you’re still able to take rent from the people who were affected by the fire and not contact them in anyway shape or form, but then expect a new lease to be signed? Shaking my head.

This is all so sad, unfortunate and unfair. I just want to be back home in a safe environment, and this is in no way safe at all.

Why not Workout?

Working out hasn’t always been a thing of mine. People assume that because I’m petite and have a slender frame that I’m “in shape.” Totally not true. I would go through spurts of working out and or stretching to get exercise and try to live a healthier lifestyle, but that desire would slowly die out. Workout over. Being in shape, over.

Being an athlete in high school was fun and exciting. I was a fencer. Yes, the sport with the swords and mask, like Zoro (insert straight face emoji). The thing were people say “En guard” which just means “get ready/go.” It wasn’t something any of my teammates or I said if rarely, it mainly came from our coaches. Anyway, I digress. High school was the last time I was probably in the “best shape of my life” (super cliche I know) lol, but it’s true.

Since COVID-19 seems to be taking an extended vacation I find that working out has helped my anxiety as well as just giving me something else to do besides eat, watch tv, talk to my homegirl Ms. Asia Michelle, or my sisters Kim and Khaleeah. Besides finding a new found hobby, thing, whatever you want to call it, I’ve been pretty consistent. I’m proud of myself. Also with the help of YouTube and my brother I’ve been feeling good. I have tried to take days off to rest but I find it just makes me want to slip back into not wanting to work out so on those days I tell myself I’ll just stretch, but I end up working out anyway. I was excited to start this new found idea of mine that I ordered a weighted ball (10 Lbs), a step ladder, a kettle bell (5 lbs) and resistance bands. If I’m being honest, whenever I worked out it was only to get abs and a plumber bottom, and while that’s still the goal lol, I find that I just want to be in shape and it’s a great feeling. I work up a nice sweat and I can start my day. Yes that means I try to workout in the morning. I’d rather not work out in the afternoon/evening because in my brain that won’t give me time to do the other leisure things I like to do.

In this new normal I hope you can find a hobby, tasks, an old past time, something to keep you busy. For me it’s been trying to work out and stay in shape.

Get moving! Get to those ideas or hobbies you’ve been putting off! We have nothing but time.

workout meme
A real life representation of me after working out. 

The Hate U Give

the hate u give cover

So… I usually am not one to watch the movie before reading the book and I promise you I wouldn’t have done so, but I remembered I saw the movie while reading and I was very upset with myself. It’s just not something I do so I felt like I failed at life (yes I’m being sarcastic). The Hate U Give written by Angie Thomas is nothing short of amazing.

I’m a huge fan of the movie but I would say without a doubt the book is better. In all cases. I’m a nerd. I have nothing bad to say about it. I’d be lying if I said the main characters in the movie weren’t who I pictured while reading. That’s part of the reason I like to read before I watch the films so I can come up with my own opinion of who and how the author wanted to have the characters portrayed. Even for the characters who weren’t the focus, like Maya, Kenya, Hailey, and Seven ( played by Lamar Johnson) I remember what they looked like but small details in the book my brain is thinking…is this really what they looked like when the movie came out. Example, Seven had dread locks in the book, I don’t remember the actor who portrayed him having them, not a biggie it’s just how my brain works.

What I will say, the father, Maverick played by Russell Hornsby I envisioned how I embodied the character on film exactly as the father in the book. It’s kind of like how you’re so used to seeing certain characters play certain roles; like how the All State Commercial guy “Are you in good hands?” will always be the father in Love & Basketball in my head. “Can’t should never be in a man’s vocabulary” (if you know the movie you’ll understand the reference). Anyway, mini rant over. Maverick was this strong, pro-black everything, f*** the police, street man who wanted the best for his children, even if circumstances didn’t always present itself that way.

The Hate U Give  is the type of book that will always be prevalent. It was published (2017) during a time when police brutality seemed to spread like wild fire around the country. This book is a reminder that children of African American race in instances will not be provided justice.

The main character Starr fought hard for her friend Khalil who was wrongfully shot by a white male cop. As to not give away the entire story, I’m sure you can guess what the outcome was. Either way, the book touched on a subject that I’d say most people would say you can only sway one way, there is no in between. Race is a touchy subject. Police brutality is a touchy subject. If you’re a lover of books like me, you’ll enjoy the read and it will remind you of what kind of society we live in.

Should you be a huge fan of Angie Thomas or just a lover of books The Hate U Give is actually part of a trilogy series. She just released On the Come Up. This is about a different character, Bri, who goes through police brutality amongst others things in the same neighborhood like in The Hate U Give. Thomas also will be releasing Concrete Rose (at a later date) which is based 17 years before The Hate U Give. Concrete Rose follows Maverick as a young man.

 

Happy reading friends!

January 22, 2020

Get your tissues, this post will be the most emotional and longest I’ve ever written to date.

Growing up it was always my mother and I. My biological father wasn’t in the picture. I’d only heard stories from my mother as a child growing up about who he was, their relationship and how things abruptly ended. As you can imagine being a young child I couldn’t really grasp why my father wasn’t around and I’m sure it only broke my mothers heart the more I asked her why he wasn’t there, where he was, all the questions young me asked, it was just as hard on her too.  To see that her baby couldn’t have the memories and relationship with her dad that I would create with my mother was heart wrenching. I was only ever told about the relationship my parents had and then one day my father left. Leaving my mother to raise me alone and not knowing why. My mother did a great job and as best she could sharing stories and giving me things that like pictures, and momentos so I could feel connected to my biological dad in some way growing up.

I remember one time I had asked my mother yet again about him and this was just around the time the internet became a thing. Me, being the inquisitive child I was I searched his name and I remember telling my mother I found him. I honestly couldn’t tell you what her response was, or what happened after that. I probably cried. Finding the man who had a part in creating me and seeing him on a computer screen. I knew from the stories my mother told me that my father had other children, two other daughters and a son. 

I had so many emotions growing up knowing that my father was out there but left me hanging. I was mostly angry at him for having another family and just essentially forgetting about me. I became angry and disliked any man my mother dated and I couldn’t tell you why. I guess part of me felt like it had always been just my mother and I. Maybe I felt like any man who came in the picture would just leave and hurt her and me all over again. Granted, I don’t have any memories of my father seeing as how when he left my mother and I, I was only a baby. I guess subconsciously, I was able to just put two and two together and I wanted to just spare my mother the pain. Our pain. Eventually I stopped asking about my biological dad.

As I got older, into my middle and high school years my biological father wasn’t a thought. I still had tons of anger and resentment towards him but I knew, or I thought at least I couldn’t be angry at him for so long. So I tried to move on. I became more sad and nonchalant. My step dad became my father. He was the man my mom married when I was in high school and has been there for me like a father should. I always looked to him for things a young girl would look to her father for. People just always assumed he was my father because I’m mixed and if he, my mom (she’s my twin), and I  were seen out it would just appear she’d married a white man (insert laughing crying emoji). Even when my step dad came into the picture I wasn’t nice to him at all. After a while I just stopped saying “step” and just introduced him as my dad.

Writing this I’d be lying if I said I still didn’t hold anger before January 22, 2020. I always battled with reaching out to my other siblings, and my father. Long story short I was supposed to meet him one day while I was still in New Jersey but things ended up happening and I never got the chance.

I was always scared, nervous, didn’t care, wasn’t sure, etc. about how my siblings would take me reaching out to them. What do you say to people who you’ve known about all your life but they don’t know about you? (Or so I thought). I didn’t want to seem like that unstable person coming out the woodwork, like “Hey, my name is Jordan we have the same father. Wanna love me unconditionally now?” Like… what. I just couldn’t do it, so it was always just a thought of mine until one day it wasn’t.

Let me just say my life was great growing up. Not having my biological father in my life definitely affected me and still does presently but I will never take for granted the man I have in my life now or my mom for playing both roles for all those years before she met my dad.

Now, let me back track a bit and explain when I first moved to Virginia. I’d been here for at least a year and I remember my mother and I talking about that time many years prior when I found my father on the internet. I remember clearly saying it just like that to my mother “remember when I found Lamont (who for the longest I struggled to even say his name or even to give him the proper title of my dad) on the internet all those years ago, I wonder if I could find him again.” When I found out that he had died I was shocked. I remember showing my mother the online-obituary and so many emotions came over me. Even still I couldn’t bring myself to reconnect with my siblings. It was too scary for me. I remember feeling like, man I’ll never be able to ask him all those questions I wanted to ask him years prior. Part of me still feels that way, but there is nothing I can do about it. He’s gone.

My feelings of anger towards my biological father would come in waves. Some days I just wouldn’t think about him, other’s I’d be so upset because again, there was so much I wanted to ask, but couldn’t. Writing, if you can’t tell by now is therapeutic. It’s my thing. One of the many ways I coped with not having him around was writing. I wrote a poem in my book called Fatherless Man. I’m only mentioning this because that was written in 2014 and now 6 years later I don’t feel the same. 6 years.  That’s not even including all the years I spent hurt, crying, confused,  and in pain growing up. That poem was filled with anger at my dad, and his other wife (stories that I heard growing up) and after speaking with my siblings once we reconnected I understood more of our dads relationship with them growing up, etc it’s just not necessary. I had so much anger back then because again, I only knew the one side. I’m not writing this to point fingers, to accuse, or to make it seem like my sisters parents (their mom and our dad) where these bad people. I’m writing this to tell you all I was hurt. I never felt like I mattered. I never felt like my father cared. I was only told the story of the one person who was a constant in my life, my mom. It wasn’t until 1/22/2020 that everything changed. This post is about reconnecting with my biological siblings.

After therapy, (fast forward to present) and finally just not being scared (kind of) that was the day I decided to finally reach out, 1/22/2020. I had already done my FBI duties and stalked my siblings. I believe I found my oldest sister Kimberly on Facebook (years prior mind you) I forgot to mention that, but I just wasn’t ready to reach out. So, when I finally did I had already constructed a letter with the help of my mom to kind of explain who this person (me) was reaching out to her. I sent it to her and my sister Khaleeah (I knew she had a Facebook too). My heart was racing, I was crying uncontrollably. Kimberly responded so quick I didn’t even know what to do. Can you say full blown anxiety attack. I called my mom crying because Kimberly was so welcoming. She was so excited that when we were messaging back and forth she accidentally gave me the wrong number. The night I reached out was a Wednesday. Needless to say it was tons of emotions. I couldn’t believe that she not only knew who I was but she and Khaleeah had been trying to find me, and was just talking about me the other day! (Are you crying yet). I spoke to my sisters and my brother Lamont Jr. named after my father all night. I didn’t go to sleep until probably 4 AM that morning.

I still can’t believe it some days. My siblings and I are doing great. We are learning each other and did I mention I love them. Whew… I never would’ve thought I’d be able to even tell them that. Everything is still so new. I was able to share some stories with them along with my moms help about the time I was supposed to meet my dad, but after speaking with my sisters and putting the pieces together we realized (my mother and I) that my biological dad had been in the hospital a few times which is why we never got the chance to meet.

I will forever be grateful for them for being so welcoming and wanting to build a relationship with me. I have nephews and a niece too! So exciting! The weirdest thing probably is that I’m not the baby any more, at least not on my dad’s side. My brother is the youngest. Ya’ll I have a little brother, lol. Like… what. He’s 3 years younger than me. My siblings are super chill and funny. I am just so blessed that I can finally have a relationship with them. Again, all of this is still so new but I am so glad I finally was able to reach out and build a relationship with them. I’m learning things about my father little by little. I honestly don’t know what to say or even ask my siblings sometimes because they got to grow up and make memories with him. That’s something I’ll never have. I have to come to terms with that, and I am, it’s just still so crazy to me that my siblings want me in their life. I mean of course you’re thinking, why wouldn’t they? But when I tell you that was something I was always so scared of. I didn’t know what kind of life they had growing up, if they knew about me, how’d they feel about another sibling reaching out and me not knowing they knew who I was. Either way, this is all still a learning experience but it’s a beautiful one.

Wanna know a secret?.. I didn’t start getting teary until this very last paragraph.

While so much has happened with this pandemic currently going on January 22, 2020 is a day I’ll always remember. My life changed forever. It changed for the better. Below are some pictures of my siblings, nieces, and nephews.

LeLe and Kim
Khaleeah  “LeLe” (left) and Kim (Right)

 

Kim and Ashton
Kim and Ashton (Our Nephew)

 

Lamont
Lamont Jr. aka “Mont “Mont”

 

ava
Ava (Kim’s daughter)
ashton and ethan
Ashton (Left) LeLe’s son & Ethan (Right) Kim’s son

 

lele 1
LeLe

How I cope with my anxiety

Hello Fans! This post is going to be a bit different because I’ll be explaining different ways of how I cope with my anxiety. First let me start off by saying that everything I am going to mention does not always work for me all the time. I also understand that what works for me doesn’t work for everyone.

Please understand that anxiety is not something “people get over” and it’s not “not real.” Telling someone with anxiety those things is the quickest way for someone with anxiety to NEVER talk to you again about their anxiety. I promise you.

 

  1. I try to breath (and this usually works) to where I can control my breathing and then fall asleep. Except that one time I had an anxiety attack and I was out of work for two days (hand plant on face emoji).
  2. I listen to music and I stretch.
  3. I try to write down what may have triggered my anxiety so I can talk with my therapist about it the next time I see her. This helps as well because we can figure out together how to process my feelings.
  4. I sleep, even though this may not be the best option. I sometimes need a minute to just shut my brain down.
  5. Anxiety for me doesn’t mean I can’t be around people of large crowds, so I wouldn’t say I have social anxiety, but I will say that if I’m around a group of people no matter if it’s family or friends for an extended period I will need to separate myself for a while. I need time to decompress.
  6. I feel like at times I don’t like to repeat myself and this causes me to be anxious because I feel like the person I’m talking to is hearing me and not listening. There is a difference.
  7. At times I don’t want to always talk to someone. I need time to process and figure out what and why I’m feeling how I’m feeling.

I’ve posted some photos from a friend of mine who’s a licensed mental health therapist. His business page is @mental_health_apparel. I picked these particular photos because some not all of these are what I experience with my anxiety, and also hopefully they help you too.

anxiety symptoms diagram              anxiety skills affected

depression anxiety diagram 

COVID-19

COVID-19 is here and she did not come to play.  Please be safe out there. Keep yourself 6 feet away and practice social distancing. This virus is real. Please wash your hands.

I’m a special education teacher and schools are officially closed for the rest of year. It still hasn’t hit me that school went from closing for two weeks to shutting down entirely. I miss my students. I honestly can’t even process this whole situation. It’s absolutely crazy to me.  Like, is this the new normal? I understand everyone is trying to process things and go with the flow and just take it a day at a time, but…. (insert mind blown emoji).

Honestly, today was the first day since all of this craziness started happening that I felt overwhelmed and anxious. It probably started last night as I was trying to add onto an assignment for Master’s class and my Professor wasn’t helping. She lacks communication skills, but that’s neither here nor there. Teaching from home is probably harder than being in school. I tried to make sure my parents were set up with any and all work they needed without overwhelming them. Making sure to let them know that if they need me they could reach out.  Working from home now is a constant checking of emails, and at times the emails don’t pertain to me.

I felt like waking up this morning I had my day planned out of what I needed and wanted to do, both work and leisure tasks. While I got everything done I just felt like there were other things pertaining to work that added on to my already work related pile. I took a minute and stopped everything. I had to lay down. Then I talked to a friend and my sister, and I had to realize that I could only do so much. I have to learn that I can’t do everything in a day, and what I did do was important enough. I’m not a slacker and I shouldn’t feel like because I can’t get to or haven’t started a particular tasks that I am a failure. Whew! Transparency moment for real.

If there’s one thing I’m trying to fully grasp during this Rona, yes I said Rona it’s that while we are quarantined it’s important to just be. Take this time to be productive. Stress less. Do something that makes you happy, preferably a leisure task. If you choose to go outside then just keep your distance, even if it’s just to get some air. Do something.

I challenge anyone reading this to exercise. Read. Write. Learn a new hobby. I personally have been trying to watch less tv and so far I’ve been successful. I’ve also been telling myself I want to keep writing more (hence this post) and recording more of my poetry videos. If you’re a fan of my blog or my business Instagram you know what I’ve been posting pre COVID-19.

We can’t go stir crazy because things are looking different. I hope everyone stays safe and is slowing down for their health and for their sanity. Be safe out there people.

 

Your Mental Health Matters

 

 

mental health matters pictureIf there is one thing I’m learning it’s that I need to put my mental health first. This post is for myself and my readers. It’s about being able to push through. Understanding that people aren’t always going to receive the advice you give because they may not be ready too.

People have to work through their own feelings at their own pace. It can be very triggering, tiresome, and frustrating when you’re giving advice and the person asking just isn’t listening. There’s a difference between hearing and listening. That’s something I still struggle with, people can listen to what they want but it’s just as important to hear and be able to fully understand what’s being said to you. I’m trying to tell you, don’t think it’s the same thing. Wanting to be a good friend and helping others is just what a good friend does- but there comes a time where we have to remember to love ourselves. Take a step back and focus on our own well-being. Sometimes that friend who’s asking for advice just isn’t in the space where they can hear what you’re saying, or they simply can’t because they are experiencing depression, anxiety, etc. Don’t think because they aren’t hearing you it’s because they are being stubborn. Sometimes it’s way more than that.

The advice giving friend is only trying to help, but I can tell you first hand it’s a lot trying to help everyone else and we’re working on trying to be our own advice takers. Read that again. It takes so much more energy to be our own advice givers when we’re trying to help everyone else. It’s extremely draining to be a good friend and help someone when you’ve got your own problems to work through; I would bet my last dollar that the friends who are the advice givers, you’ll never know they’re going through things because they are trying to help their friends. I’m that person. She is me. I am her. I’m learning that I can’t save and help everyone if they don’t want to save and help themselves.

Another thing friend, stop always depending on your friends to be your therapist. That’s what therapist are for. Please go find one. I’ll do you one better and attach a link for you to search for a therapist in your local area. I’m pro therapy and see my therapist at least every two weeks as well as being able to email her. I have experienced a lot in these last 25 days of 2020 and it’s been rough but I’m purposely emerging myself in things that I like to do (all thanks to the advice of my therapist). I’m making sure I don’t sink into depression or have an anxiety attack. Learning how to work through my emotions is hard but I’m trying. Seeing a therapist is a big part of my life. I can’t just talk to family or friends all the time, not that that’s a bad thing but trust me when I tell you it’ll be great having an unbiased professional opinion.

If you don’t receive anything else just understand as good of a friend as you want to be, you’re going to quickly burn out if you don’t take the time to focus on you. Love yourself. Be selfish. Sometime’s it’s necessary. Don’t be so quick to rush to everyone’s side to help them. You keep doing that you won’t be able to help yourself. Your mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health is just as important.

Click the link to find your therapist: https://www.goodtherapy.org/find-therapist.html?keyword=therapists%20near%20me&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIwt6JtoKg5wIVhJ6zCh0QdQC3EAAYAiAAEgIgJfD_BwE

 

Please do better…

In 2019 I feel like the least someone can do is communicate efficiently. Now, I know not everyone knows how to, or can’t always put their words together, but that doesn’t mean you can’t try. My biggest pet peeve is when I’m friends with someone and then that friend feels some type of way and doesn’t communicate. I’ve been blocked and ignored a few times. Why is this even a thing? I don’t understand.

I understand people say things that they may not mean in the heat of the moment. I’m one of those people, and I can say I am trying to improve on making sure I express how I feel to try and be as clear as possible without going from zero to sixty in 2.5. I also understand that sometimes depending on how friends are communicating (face to face, or texting) wires can get crossed. Facial expressions are misinterpreted or sometimes people take to heart what someone else says. I am not the best with my facial expressions, it’s a work in progress. Even still, if friendships have been had for months or years then I feel like these two parties should be able to argue, agree to disagree, and keep it pushing. It’s very disheartening when I become the person that’s blocked or I lose a friend because that person can’t tell me they have a problem with me. If we’ve been friends for some time then please speak up. It’s childish to me when people can’t communicate, especially when we’ve had numerous conversations. Throwing away a friendship or choosing to not hear the person out is unfair. I understand people may grow apart, but that’s totally different. I would never block someone and not at least explain how or why I’m feeling how I do. If myself and my friend can’t have a conversation and move on then that’s fine. People grow apart, but I can’t just block someone just because I maybe in my feelings. That’s something I would never do.

I guess it’s just another lesson learned. I can’t even tell you what I took away from this friendship, but thank you for allowing me to start writing again. Seriously. If people have a problem with you and they can’t communicate what it is then I feel like you can’t be the problem. If there’s a situation that needs to be discussed please tell me. I can’t fix or explain my side of the story if you chose to just erase me from your life.

Don’t reach out or try to explain how you felt later on. I don’t want to hear the shit. I don’t have the energy to try and make any relationship work with someone who doesn’t want to tell me before hand that they are bothered.

It’s not me, it’s you. Do better. Please and thank you.

Before I Let Go (Beyonce’s Voice)

Today I learned a valuable lesson. While I may think I’m giving the best version of myself as a friend, and I’m the “strong friend,”  the one who’s always positive and checking up on others and tries her best to listen and advise those she loves the most. It sometimes may not be enough.

I would say if there was a Hollywood Star for people who go above and beyond for their friends I would have one. I’m the friend that deserves an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony), mind you… only a handful of people have that honor. I would be that friend. It’s not to sound cocky, or overly confident. I just know the type of love, time and energy I put into friendships is unmatched. I’m the friend that gives great advice and sometimes uses it herself, but I also feel like no one does the same for me in return. Let my mother tell it, it’s a gift and a curse I have. I’ve come to accept it. I do so much for people but don’t always have those same acts of endearment reciprocated. I’m still learning to accept that- there are people who just don’t give the same type of energy as me. But I feel like something as simple as being a great friend isn’t that difficult. Again, not everyone is or does what I do, not everyone thinks how I think. I get that.

By no means am I trying to make it sound as if I’m perfect. I know and understand people process things differently. That people may not want to talk or express how they feel right away. While I may not have a filter, I just feel like people should be able to communicate. If I’ve ever done something wrong to anyone I would want to clear it up. I never want to make people feel, like how they feel doesn’t matter. I try my hardest to be the voice of reason but I also understand too that just because I don’t fly off at the mouth doesn’t mean others won’t. I’d rather have the chance to explain myself and how you may have taken my response in the present, than in the future, when it’s too late and you don’t want to hear it.

I once heard Kandi from Love & Hip Hop say,  “If I’m friends with someone and we get into an argument and that friend ends up mad at me but I don’t know it, then they have a problem with themselves and not me. I can’t fix a problem I didn’t even know existed.” For the life of me, I can’t tell you why that has stuck with me but it holds value. As I mentioned above I am not perfect in any way shape or form, but if it’s one thing I won’t do, is hold in something negative. It’s not good for me, nor is it good for the relationship. It truly saddens me when a relationship ends. I literally wish I could be friends with people forever. That no one ever argued and it was just world peace for everyone (in my Oprah ‘you get a car’ voice). I understand that’s not realistic at all. It’s just hard for me to let go of a relationship that didn’t have any type of beef or bad blood.

Now, people I also believe are put into your life for a reason, season, or a lifetime. I’ve said this numerous times before. I just can’t put into words or explain it any other way besides being heart broken. Today I lost a friend, and I wished things could’ve been different. I cried real tears because I thought our relationship was stronger. I am big on communication and I try my hardest to not over speak, be defensive (I’m working on it), and I think I chose my friends wisely. To the people who I’ve hurt in the past and I didn’t know, I’m sorry. I wish we could’ve fixed our relationship. To any future friends, I hope we can build a strong lasting relationship. Please understand, this person decided not to be bothered with me anymore based off of something I said to them (when the actual situation took place). I wasn’t given the chance to explain my side, and nor was I angry or upset towards them. Hence why I mentioned the Kandi Burruss comment.

I can’t sit and dwell on the “what ifs”, the “whys”, and “what abouts.” We had our run and now it’s over. I wish you nothing but the best but this is the season finale of our show. Good luck to you. I also learned as much as I want to be friends forever, and while I may not always understand “why” things happen, I need to continue to protect my peace and energy. What I give just doesn’t cut it anymore and that’s just something I have to learn to deal with. It’s not that I’m a bad person or I’m ‘doing too much’ my love just isn’t enough so I have to learn to let go, as much as it hurts. It’s necessary.

candles

We’re Going to Need More Wine; First Thoughts Fiction

 

gabrielle union book cover

 

If you weren’t already in love with Gabrielle Union-Wade now, you’re going to love her more because of her book We’re Going to Need More Wine. She’s witty, funny, personable, and just down right the shit. It’s funny how we read a book, or watch a movie and we think that gives us some unspoken access to a celebrities life, ironically this book does just that. I felt like I was listening to a good girlfriend tell me her life story.

Without spoiling it for those who still haven’t had the chance to read it, I literally don’t have anything bad to say about it; except I wish it was longer! Gabrielle’s personality spews through this entire book, and you feel not only the love but the pain.

I felt like she was a family member. Sister Nickie learned to become this beautiful, confident, and powerful woman she is. I love you sis. I wish you and your family nothing but success and blessings. I’m rooting for you. Always.

In the words of sis herself,

“And anything I have accomplished, I did so not in spite of being a black woman, but because I am a black woman.”

Gabrielle is the epitome of Black Girl Magic, it’s not even up for debate.