Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Family Photos

Sometimes I wonder the conversations that took place before and after photos of myself as a baby. Who argued, who didn't want to take a picture, who wasn't ready e.t.c.
I also look at these pictures and I look into my own eyes as a baby. So tiny, delicate,engaging and bright. Seeming to see all and provoking uncontrollable joyous conversation. I then compare them with more recent photos of myself. Fewer questions come to mind. I remembered the arguments, who didn't want to take a photo and who wasn't ready. I compare the possibilities I once felt with the crippling realities faced.
I wonder why you can't remember any of these tiny precious memories and no matter how old you become there are some memories you will never forget.
My eyes have gotten much larger are still bright have seen the dark side and lived to tell the story.
My heart is burdened to carry out the unfulfilled dreams of a that little girl. The never ending conversations about what I want to be when I grow up, with Mother Dear, my mother and my father. The Bible says the Heart is deceitful and desperately wicked but you surely feel that thing don't you. The disparity of doing what's right and what you need to do. Come up against your self worth, belief in you and physical restraints.
I am committed to making every dream, thought, imagination come to fruition. I need this like I need air. I have to make!!! I can't not make it! I can't give up. I have to believe in me for the little girl in the picture and for the little girl from my womb. The little girl who needs something to believe in. A picture of someone that looks like her and has conquered lack. I mentioned it before it gets so hard you want to scream at the top of your lungs and stomp your foot, ball up your fists, curse God and die.  I think we all have a little bit of Brother Job in us, tap into it. It's Power.
I send you my strength.
Take a picture, see you on the other side of the struggle
God bless You

note to self

Sometime you want to be there for people where ever there might be and you just can not. I wish I could. Respond to every request, every need and every event. Sometime I play it forward and I intentionally imagine what it will feel like when my children need me for something and I'm not going to be able to physically be there for them. I let it kill me now so it won't so much later or at least I hope. I imagine the fear in there hearts and the tears in their eyes. The prayers they might pray and the frustrations they will assurely encounter. I imagine the stuff I just can't get them out of, the people and places they will gather . The first boy to break my daughters gentle heart and the first fight my son will brave. I have filled my heart with prayers to activate in my absence.
I am also instilling life skills within them now. Its so hard, but I know it will be just fine and God will be in the midst.
Quick Note to Self
God Bless You

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Thank you Lord!

From Heaven He came to see about me. He is the perfect example and the most splendidly divine. He is, He reigns and is ever so humble, a perfect gentlemen. He saved my soul and I am safe. The troubles I face and the fights I victor He earns the glory. I was gracious enough  have loved Him from early on assisted by my elders prayers for me as I developed in my mother's womb.
I yearned for a relationship before I could spell the word.
I close my eyes and I imagine the middle age, rapidly aging man, homeless living in Grand Central Terminal Station. I imagine the day his mother discovered his pregnancy and the smile on her face as she shared the news with her closest girl friend. His first day in school, his fear and his triumph. His teen-age years, the experimentations, disappointments, failures and confusion. The people he loved, the people he lost and all in between. I wonder where the bright youngster turned to a sure future of despair. One day I will muster up the courage to ask. I will be sure to have a hot sandwich and a cold beverage close by.
I heard the man of God say whether you fail or succeed in life it will be because of who you chose to honor or dishonor.
When I was homeless a living in a youth crisis center, I chose to dishonor quite a few people, but I called a name. The precious name of Jesus! He came to see about me and made my burden light. He picked me up, dusted me off, and directed me to a new start. I'd loved to say I was completely delivered and I never dishonored anyone ever again, but that would be far from the truth.
That reminds me of the time(s) I disappointed those that have passed.
You notice that? When your young it's so cool to be so busy/too busy for the people you love and that are priceless. Wow, I'm such a big cry baby! As the tears roll down my right check I remember disappointing my Great Grandmother, a fascinating, God fearing,interseccorary prayer warrior, beautiful, tell it like it T-I-IS kinda woman. Always on time and extremely generous. She lived to the ripe old age of 96 and was sharper than a tact.  I will write one day exclusively about her.
I was to go to her home after her Sunday service. She made vanilla pudding, my childhood favorite. She included vanilla wafers and all, so sweet. I loved her! Her deserts were like her love, oh so sweet. I loved her! Sweet love the kind only a grandmother can give, a seasoned love, unconditional, know how to love on you kinda love. As the inconsiderate, selfish," too busy" young lady that I was, I failed to appear and when I knew I wasn't going , had the nerve not to call. The next day the phone rang, it was Mother Dear. I was frozen and carried to the phone anyway. I prepared myself for a lashing, and to my surprise she was as composed as if I'd never stood her up cool as a cucumber. She allowed me to talk about whatever I wanted to and how I was doing. As the conversation concluded she said Ah Shawna-Boo, You can't go around disappointing people like that now. If you say you're going to be someplace you should be there. All I could say was sorry Mother Dear. It cut me deep. I wouldn't know how deeply until she passed a few short months after.
Before I flood my apartment with regretful tears, the point I am making tonight is if it had not been for the Lord we don't know where we might be and with this very important piece of information keep it close to your chest. You and I are just one Jesus away form being just like those that we place a quarter in there cups during our busy commutes. Also slow down, take a moment for your family members, stretch yourself go visit. One day there eyes will close forever,
God Bless You

Friday, May 20, 2011

She Lite a Candle

An intimate meeting in the dark. A single candle flickers in the distance, soft cool of spring evening breezes blow the dingy drapes. The sound of a dripping kitchen facet and a busy city echo the background. The light scent of nutmeg fill the air. The room is still and everything is out of place. The room filled with well intented projects and her forgotten priorities.
He is absent yet again, after last time was the last time.  The phone rings and she turns away. Tonight will be a meeting of the mind free from any distraction. An introspective analytical honest intuitive glance at herself.
Like a moth to a flame drawn by the fire she gazes longingly at the candle. She remembers the first candle she lite for him in preparation of his long awaited, highly anticipated arrival. He was the special kind, the cross everything off your man wish list kind. She remembers watching the candle pool as the evening grew long and he was an uncertain guest. She blew out the candle  before heading to bed, he arrived much later.
She remembers the flame she lite in a drunken stupor , after a night on the town with the girls. The intention was to forget him girl he wasn't worth it anyway type of occasion. He broke your heart and left with her type of occasion. The foolish antics of the young. The memories float to the top of the drinking glass and you swallow each one of them. Sometimes you look right at them without recognition. Only for the liquid memories to reunite with you later joined with your favorite love song about heart ache and pain and leak from your tear ducts uncontrollably.
She remembers apologizing to him for not being as pretty as the other girls and promising to do better. Wishing, hoping and praying to be more beautiful, more like them. Cursing her own mother's womb and the man she choose as a suitable mate. Had SHE only choose someone more beautiful maybe then she'd face a chance at a pretty face. She knew! She would work really hard, save her money, and lay her body  on the plastic surgeons table for slather. He thought it a great idea. They went home and lite a candle before she made love to him.
His request increased, after the slather he wanted to invite another women into their bed. She agreed. She never lite another candle in their bedroom after that night.
She remembered candle lite bubble baths and relaxing good nights. His inability to relax an her waking to an empty house. Intoxicating days followed by lonely nights. She remembered her naked body and the scent of him on her sitting up in the bed and the sheets she griped tightly covering herself as she hung her head and cried into them. She couldn't remember when she stopped crying before another something happened. She got used to the movement of the candle and the something to look at in the room other than the pink elephant. She knew many candles ago like the flame he too was dangerous for her.
 She touched the flame. It burned her a little more each time.
She remembered her life-less body awaking with his hands releasing her neck, she had embarrassed him in front of his friends a few hours earlier. She was no longer allowed to accompany him while out with friends, she lite a candle before bed.
Holding her face watching the blood pour down her arms and splash into pools on the bathroom floor from her elbows, she stood up. Looked herself in the mirror, dazed. She could see him in the corner of her eye. He was sorry. The E.R resident doctors found seven broken bones. She would spend Christmas alone, hiding her abuse. She curled up in the fetal position under the Christmas this time, unable to go out and purchase a candle.
Why would tonight be any different? Because she sat and pondered on it? Because she cried a little harder? She was unsure. She would start by cleaning the cluttered rooms in her environment, physically and mentally.
If you are at all like her you can light a candle for yourself and your wellness. Place your hands together as you would when you pray. Open them just enough to allow your nose and mouth to fit inside. Whisper to yourself and listen to the sound of your own voice. Say it, Say listen to the sound of your own voice, listen to the sound of your own voice, listen to the sound of your own voice!
God Bless You
Be Encouraged

Always learning, Always Growing

After I titled this piece ALWAYS LEARNING, ALWAYS GROWING. I thought to myself , wow, you should use this title for a post after you graduate and share your emotions from this new perspective. Immediately I was reassured to continue. The blessings of the Lord addth NO sorrow and there is more than enough abundance to go around. There is No scarcity or Lack in God's Kingdom and as his child I am a shareholder and entitled to a piece of this never ending pie.
 I met a beautiful woman of color on yesterday an God brings people in your life when you need them most. I was in a wind tunnel of constant disappointment and this petite 60 something gentle, soft spoken women helped me flip the power switch in this proverbial tunnel and see the light at  the end of the tunnel. I couldn't see it for all the wind in my face and I couldn't remember the positive affirmations I'd rehearsed time and time again in past moments of pain I'd learned while hiding my face under the covers. My vision was cloudy , my mind was confused. Thank you Maritiza!!
She spoke with me and shared her life, In  passing she made a comment in my ear shot. She said the minute you think your life is over, its only beginning. So I teasingly responded, How are you so sure? I caution you be careful when you ask a question especially to an elder, they have been down the road you are traveling they just may give you a powerful answer filled with strength courage and wisdom.
Maritiza said because two years ago I couldn't walk. I had breast cancer, and the Chemo was killing me, but here I am today shopping, spending my own hard earned money, cancer free. I never thought I'd be able to do this nor did I think I'd ever have any money. I thought my life was over. When your on the path you get up in the morning go about your day an hope, one day, things will be different. I'm here to tell you that everyday you get up you are securing a sure future. Everyday is a chance for a new beginning, a chance to start over. She said you need to start over sometimes and sometimes your forced to start over. She used Maria Schriver as an example. She said look at this woman, beautiful , smart, the total package , in love, married to a man for twenty some odd years just to find he has been betraying her trust for decades and with several woman,  to add insult to injury unprotected, one of the women lived in her home with her husbands  love child. Now what do you think she's going to do? Shimble up and die? Absolutely not, she will start again. You never know what kind of box the present gift will be wrapped in. One morning after 14 years of marriage and two children my husband confessed to me he was gay. Again I started again, an I am growing, I am learning, I am doing! I do things I like, that make me happy. My eyes began to water. She reached out to me. She said now don't get me wrong with tears in her eyes your going to cry and your going to stain your shirt with tears, invest in waterproof mascara. We smiled as we instinctively and collectively placed a finger at the base of our eyes to keep the tears from falling as women sometimes do when it kind of hurts inside but,this is not the place nor the time to mess up our make up and jump feet first into the ugly cry.
She said my youngest is in his 40's and I tell him I love him, I show him I love him. I live in love. I have remarried and my husband sometimes fusses with me for spending so much time collecting orchard's. I tell him I absolutely must. This is what I love to do.
I shared with her my love of writing , fashion, color, artistic harmony, and creativity. I keep some of me for me and I am so filled with guilt for my inability to physically share the same space with my children as much as I'd like and it kills me and I sometimes want to have someone else raise them...................................................................................................................................................excuse me, my natural rain began to fall.  She hugged me. She told me she loved me, She said you are right God did send me here today for you. She said when I was your age I had to leave my children with there abusive father because I wouldn't let him beat me,( I thought about my great grandmother , she had a similar story) but I told him they will know me and they will know what you are. I was later able to reunited and pick up where I left out. Children are much more forgiving than adults. They are closer to God. When you are with them she continued ,tell them you love them, kiss them, hug them. I told her I would never do it they made me who I am, I can't believe I phatnomed the thought. Its OK she said I love you, God loves you and love is more than enough to cover a thought. Jesus left us to prepare a place for us. You are preparing for your family also.
So I said let me make sure I have this, pray, love, do what you love to do and you can always start again, go for it and go with the flow? Martiza said yes you are so beautiful, you remind me of myself when I was young. You are going to make it!!!! We hugged a sincere hug and exchanged numbers, but if we never call each other I got the message!!!
 Maritiza thank you for sharing your life with me. I am encouraged to walk this road. When the winds pick up I will flow with them I will keep my eyes wide, blink when necessary and lean on my loved ones who are walking right beside me.
Use your resources. Chat with your Big Auntie's, Grandma's and the Mother's on the Mother Board of your church. Learning from them can help you with the challenges you face and help with the anguish you feel.
God Bless You !!!
Be Encouraged

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Things Happen

As a child I would always threaten to run away if things didn't go my way. That's it!!! I would say. No more spankings for me. Now as an adult I rolled the idea around in my head. What would happen if I ran away and never came back? Where would I go? Would I start a new identity? How would I manage all the pain and loss of my closest family and friends. How would they manage in my absence?
I was such a drama queen as a child I even threatened to kill myself. I was dealing with a great deal of trauma indeed but I had no idea how final suicide really was.
Yes, I admit it as an adult I've also thought about suicide in some of my darkest and deepest corners of my mind. I realize when I was thinking these preposterous thoughts the enemy was having a field day on my thoughts and making me to believe I didn't have freedom an authority over the situations. I've experienced sexual abuse, a cheating partner, domestic violence , poverty, homelessness and racism just to name a few. Now when my backs up against the wall, I wrap myself in love for myself. I love on me a little bit as my mentor Lisa Nichols would say. I feel my heart beating so freely and the breathe flowing through my body. I am an authentic individual with a colorful personality and a liberating since of style. I am perfect as perfect can be. I am smart, I am beautiful , I am lovely, I am going to make it. If I end the story too early the very best part of this book will remain unwritten. So as long as my hearts beating and I'm breathing I will allow it to. You be sure to do the same. I know the futures scary, so what! Hold your head high anyway. Most of the things I do, I'm shivering in my boots over but I do them anyway. Learn to live and overcome any challenge fearful an all.
God Bless You

Monday, May 2, 2011

Happy Birthday, MOMMY'S BABY !!!

Some days I wanna place a melody to my blogs or sing an angelic song. Some feelings are inadequately expressed with words alone. I want to belt at the top of my lungs on the highest floor of the tallest skyscraper in New York City, high above the clouds, smog, noise and traffic.Scream louder than the raging winds and stand firmer than the gusty bellows of ferocious nature. I will do my best to adequately express this feeling.  My first born child will be 4 in about two weeks. He is an enchanting child, with the spirit of a warrior and the eyes of an angel. Smarter than most and an appetite for knowledge. Unto me a male child was born.
I think back to four years ago, and where I was. I was filled to the tippy top of my being with fear. Thoughts of failure and what a  disappointment of a mother I would be to this price-less piece of God's glory. I was so worried mostly everyday. My body was unfamiliar to me. I was immediately taken over by this person. I called my boyfriend at the time, who is now my husband into the bathroom and showed him the pregnancy test. We hugged, smiled at one another and laughed. I was a wreck on the inside, smiling all the while.
This baby began to grow and I became crazier by the minute. I was so lonely, so alone and I had so much going on on the inside. I began to connect with myself,  turn to him, my baby boy for comfort. He was there for me. I was so terribly sad one day at four months as was becoming the usually. I had been home bound for months do to my overwhelming morning sickness, left my meaningless retail job, on a "break" from school, and a serial telephone user. This was so depressing.
Before becoming pregnant I was the life of the party with the cutest outfit on , and the highest heels my face was beat honey but life seemed to go on without me and the party I got started hadn't missed a beat. I missed me. Who was I anyway? I was so confused. Did I want this baby? I just knew he (my boyfriend) really wasn't going to marry me know. I was nothing more than a statistic. How did I get here? I needed a drink, but I couldn't drink. Aughhhh! I was nothing to anyone and anything and here I am growing a life.
A few minutes after 6am this incredible beakon of hope in my belly moved. He was four months. It was as if the inside of me reached up and grabbed me. Wiped the tears from my eyes, He said I need you! I do!I can't make it without you! I won't! I'm here and I wanna come home with you. I can't wait to meet you. No one will ever love me more than you, I can't be without you! I hugged my belly,he was nothing without me? I was so in love. I wanted him in my life. From that very moment I have been a firm believer of what love can do. I am so grateful for him and so thankful. I love you baby!
My husband would always wonder why I would cry whenever the baby would cry or whenever he looked me in my eyes, why  I breast feed him for so long and why the song long distance by Brandy produced such an emotional response from me and its simply because this baby saved me from me. Through his birth I was given the excuse I needed to explain the not drinking, life is a party personality I was carring around.I didn't have to run to the club, pretend to be happy. Be mean to you to keep you at arms reach. I didn't need to pretend anymore.
Thank you sweetie, mommy is so happy to have you. I commit to you that I will take appropriate, risks I will make we decisions , keep your feelings in mind and always make you a priority! What a difference 4 years can make!
God Bless