"There are notes between notes, you know." -- Sarah Vaughan

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Change Is Gon' Come

Well, in some areas of my life there have been great change and in others not so much. I'll hit the unchanged stuff real quick.

Despite months of talking to many many many many different outlets and people about various opportunities, I have not locked down a new job that I want. I'm not discouraged though, because opportunities continue to come my way. When the right one presents itself, I'll jump.

I lost a little bit of the weight I regained then gained that back and now I'm holding steady. I got sick over July 4 weekend and have yet to get back to 100 percent (medical folks are trying to figure out if it's just allergies or adult onset asthma), and that knocked the wind out of me and my weight loss efforts.

OK. On to the changes....I been datin'. I been datin'.

I wrote a post right after my birthday lamenting my dating struggles, and then I made up my mind I would focus on this area of my life. There has never been a time in my life when I decided I wanted something, put the work in and didn't net results.

Over the past four months I have met and been on dates with some several fellas. There's one man in particular I have been dating since late May. Things are moving slowly but seem headed in the direction of a relationship (I say "seem" because I'm still deciding if that's what I want both generally and specifically with this guy).

I also connected for a third -- and last -- time with the teacher (I've written about him here before, we met in early 2011, while I was separated. Also see boobcrumb-gate). All of my "what if" questions have been answered in more ways than one. I'm good on this for lyfe. But no regrets. #yolo

I have figured out a lot about myself and dating this summer. As I noted in my birthday post, I was encouraged by friends to shift from a zero tolerance policy to a three-strikes policy. I worked hard, with the help of my male BFF, to be more three strikes this summer and I think that led to me dating more. Staying chaste has helped with sussing out who was sincere and who was playing. Dudes my age without real intentions ain't really hanging out for long periods of time with someone they can't touch. And while you can't know everything about anyone, time is still the best way to separate the wheat from the chafe IMO.

The other thing that helps here is I am not afraid of being by myself and not afraid of being hurt. My husband hurt me deeper than anyone else ever. I loved him with everything in me. Before him I didn't know I could love anybody else like that. I married him. I carried (and lost) two of his babies and stuck long drug-filled needles in my ass to make them. So some random mofo I just met and went on a few dates with just doesn't have -- or get -- that kind of power over me. Not interested? KTHXBAI! On to the next. It just isn't that deep.

So, that's what's been popping off during my spring and summer. What's been going on with y'all?

And here's a bonus (yes, I know he explained this, but I still can't stop looking at it):

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

But wait, there IS good news!

A coworker told me today out of the blue that I always look stylishly pulled together and fresh. Which of course pepped up my cute shoe step. Like I said the other day, I might be fat but I'll be DAMNED if I just give up.

I have an acting event coming up soon. I'm nervous, but excited, too.

My mom sent me one of her hats for derby day. A sista looks clean like NEW MONEY with that hat on yo!

Someone reached out to me about career opportunities yesterday and sounds like they are excited about me, so maybe that will turn into something promising.

I've got a couple of conversations going with some artsy/musical dudes, which you know is right up my alley.

And finally, I have two trips scheduled for this summer and fall, and another in the planning stages.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Freedom Is *NOT* Free

I spent some time clicking back through old posts yesterday and laughing, but as I scrolled through, I noticed something: I've written A LOT about not liking my job.

Now, I'm trying to figure out if that's a matter of me having a bad day or week and writing about it here or have I really been this consistently unhappy in this job. And, if the latter is true, what the fuck yo?! Six years I've been there. Six years. Six years of unhappiness?!! Is this for real?

Naw man. Naw!

My responsible side says, "I've got bills and a mortgage, I can't just quit." But a part of me that's starting to talk louder than the responsible side is saying, "QUIT THIS DAMN JOB. Just quit. Get some Obamacare, cut way back and be free while you find something else you want to do that won't have you writing in a blog for SIX GODDAMNED YEARS about how unhappy you are doing it."

The question is, which voice am I going to listen to?

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Hello and other things....

It's been a longggggggg time. A lot has happened and not a lot has happened at the same time. I'm not even sure what to write in this space but I woke up and felt the urge to say (write) something so I'll just word vomit here. I apologize in advance if it makes no sense, but this is where I navel gaze.

Friday was my born day and it was bittersweet. I am grateful to see another year, but my life is not what I thought it would be at this point.

I am *still* making peace with the fact that I will likely never be a bio mom. This has been harder to do than I had anticipated. A couple of tears are rolling down my cheek as I just think about this situation.

I continue -- to my utter frustration -- to mourn the demise of my marriage. That angers me because it's over. IT IS OVER. I have been divorced nearly three years. That is too long to still be sad about a situation that has ended and is done, IMO. And yet, I still mourn what might have been. Knowing my ex-husband moved on long ago makes me even angrier at myself. I'm the only one stuck here. Or, rather, back there. I purposely put some distance between us this year and though I didn't talk to him about it beforehand, he seemed to figure it out and has been good about respecting that. Aside from a few pics on Facebook, I have not seen him in 2014.

Dating has been...challenging. There are a lot of wrong ass mofos and a couple too many of them managed to find themselves in my space. This led to a discussion among some friends about how I operate from a zero tolerance stance when it comes to dating these days. Mess up? Bye. Delete and blocked. A few of my lady friends say this isn't a good "strategy." My longtime trusted guy friend told me he thinks I was right to fire the people I dismissed, but I should swap my zero tolerance policy for a three strikes policy. Not a bad idea, so I am working on that.

I gained a chunk of the weight I lost back over the long long long long freezing cold and did I say long? winter. With the sun out more, I feel motivated to get back out and become more active, but there was a point there when all I could do was go to work, come home and go to bed. Lack of sunlight and warmth has an effect on me, yo. I have to admit, I feel a lot of ...shame? definitely sadness, for gaining this weight back. I worked so hard and got so much positive feedback last year and looked and felt so much better. It makes it difficult to dress myself and take pride in my appearance these days, but I make the effort anyway because my people are vain and I might be fat, but I'll be damned if I just give up. It also scares me, this weight. I don't want health problems.

The last seven months or so, I have been working harder than ever at getting another job -- but not just ANY job. I want a job doing something I am excited about and want to get up and do every day. I've had some offers, but none have been right for me. I don't want another job like the one I have now. I'm not fulfilled doing this job so why go somewhere else to do more of the same? The right position not presenting itself has been hard on me. I know I need to be patient, but I need this change. I really really do.

So to sum up, all the things I want -- love, baby, new and exciting job, general happiness and contentment -- have not happened, despite my best efforts at attaining them. And to make matters worse, most of the things bothering me today were bothering me two years ago. Yeah, my soul is hurting right now and I am enraged about the lack of movement in my life. I said to someone recently that "sometimes you have to make what you have be what you want." I can't do that. I won't.

Because the things above collectively threw me into a deep mire of depression (or were the result of being depressed, like the weight gain), I decided to start seeing a counselor. I cried through the entire first session as I described my issues to her: shame, fear, loneliness, stress. We have met for a few sessions and at the most recent one she pointed out some things about me that she picked up from our conversations: I can be cold and unfeeling. I push people who care about me away. I get angry and uncomfortable and downright mean when people try to care about or love me (ex. my parents). And she's right about some of that. If I start feeling smothered I kick and scratch and fight my way out so that I can breathe again. And then I eat. According to the counselor, my mouth says I don't want to be alone, but my actions say otherwise. Sigh. I don't want to think about this stuff man. Damned counselor.

In any case, as hard as it is, as angry and sad as I am, I continue to work on myself. Always striving (struggling?) to be the best me.

Happy Easter everyone. Take care.

A Dream Deferred

by Langston Hughes

What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore--
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over--
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Long And Winding Road....

Hey! *waves* This post may be long and rambly, so I apologize in advance.

I read this statement yesterday and it gave me pause:
 "…in general people regret inactions rather than actions.  There's actually a whole field of study in social psychology related to this phenomenon.  It has to do with "counterfactual thinking. If you do something, you will know what the results were, for better or worse, and deal with it.  If you FAIL to do something, you always imagine it having the best possible outcome, and it becomes this idealized scenario in your mind."
Is this true for you?"

Back in December 2004, I decided I was moving to Paris. Why? Because. Just, because. Seriously, there was no real reason other than I've just always wanted to live in another country and I speak enough French to manage so, BAM, Paris it was. (yes, I have visited the city before, I wasn't going sight unseen)

I was so committed I told my parents and friends 'cause I wanted to talk it into life. I started preparing to go and had compiled a bunch of freelancing contacts, resources for African-American ex-pats, hairstylists, places to live and so on.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Who is your cheerleader?

Didn't mean to be away this long, but I was busy socializing, then I was traveling and then I couldn't get into the blog.

But anyway! Today I want to write about cheerleaders. Do you have one or more? I'm talking about people who are in your corner rooting for you to succeed. People who help boost your confidence when you stumble and start doubting yourself.

I can happily say that I have always had lots of cheerleaders -- my parents, my friends, my family. Folks have always believed in me. But in the past two years or so I've had one cheerleader that I didn't appreciate until recently: my high school boyfriend.

We haven't seen each other in person in years -- at least since I was in college -- but bumped into each other on a reunion site back when I was married (he was married too, at the time) and we caught up. He got divorced first and then my shit crashed and burned.

Now, let me be clear. We aren't hooking up. We haven't even talked on the phone more than once or twice. There's nothing going on here.

But when I told him my husband had cheated and that's why we aren't together, this man realized what a blow to my confidence and self-esteem that was and unbeknown to me, he made it his mission to tell me every day via text that I'm beautiful, hawt, sexy, desirable etc.

At first the texts made me uncomfortable. Then I got used to them, but just laughed them off. Then I started sending him pics (not sexy ones!) if I got a new wig or hairstyle and when I started losing weight. One day I realized that I looked forward to and appreciated his messages. Cause I AM beautiful, hawt, sexy, desirable and more.

I mentioned to him one day how his texts had really helped a few times when I was feeling fat, ugly and unlovable and that's when he told me that that's the reason he sends them. He remembered those months after his divorce when he was feeling like shit. He sought out lots of women to feel better, but knew I would not take the "get over one man by getting under another" route. So he sent me texts.

If you had ASKED me if I needed that kind of cheerleader, I would have scoffed and been all dismissive. But sometimes people in our lives know what we need before we know it. I needed those texts. Shit, I still need them. Thank goodness he knew what I didn't.

And I'm posting this cause it always makes me smile.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Do something that's worth the risk

"You have to find something that you love enough to be able to take risks, jump over the hurdles and break through the brick walls that are always going to be placed in front of you. If you don't have that kind of feeling for what it is you are doing, you'll stop at the first giant hurdle." - George Lucas

Monday, August 26, 2013

"U better live now, before the grim reaper come knocking on your door" -- Prince

I went to a Prince v. Michael Jackson dance party at the Howard Theater on Friday night and this Prince-like dude right here was doing IT!

Before the dance-a-thon, I went to the gym at work and did a bunch of squats, push ups and lunges. My body has been hurting ever since. It's a good hurt, though. Imma be FIERCE when I get these next 25 pounds off, this belly flat and some definition in these arms!

Remember I told you two Saturdays ago that I had signed up for a one-day acting class to jump start my "get back to living and loving life" campaign? Well, the class was this past Saturday and it was (warning, lots of cliches to follow) every.little.thing. It was like the heavens opened up and the sun started shining on me. I felt at home and at peace. This sums me up as I left the class:

The lesson learned? Never ever ever allow the creative/artistic side of me to lie dormant again.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Follow up to the dust and crumb posts

On Wednesday we laughed and pointed at my lameness chatted about celibacy and @reads4pleasure noted in the comments that she too struggles when it comes to making moves on guys and getting cocoa heated up for stirring.

@TiffanyInHouston responded that it wasn't that simple, but that it wasn't that hard and I think that's both right and wrong at the same time, as I think how easy it is for you to be more se.xua.lly assertive is going to vary from one person to the next.

I'm awkward (people NEVER believe this, but I have worked very hard over the years at not being shy) and generally traditional, and as a result I am most comfortable with intimacy in a committed mutually faithful relationship. I can talk all big about wanting to get it in and all that but I know that if I open these legs to some guy and he doesn't call the next day or any of the days after that, my feelings will be hurt. I know a healthier way to look at the situation is that me and dude were taking care of a physical need, that makes sense to me LOGICALLY, but the emotional part of me would have a hard time being OK with a guy who didn't want to deal with all of me 'cause what's between my legs is not, IMO, the best part of me (it's good, now, don't get it twisted, but it's not the BEST part of me LOL)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Fitting In Cardboard

This video sums up my awkward ass.