A Keeper of Men

So I just have a question…

Ladies, how do you keep a man? Do I wear my hair a certain way? Are there “Keep A Man” clothes? Do they need special food? Specific snacks? Should my home resemble a sports bar with a bed? Do I fill my brain with motivational messages that I blurt out when he slaps me on the ass like a vending machine, giving him exactly what he needs, exactly when he needs it? How do you do it? Can you ladies in relationships help me out? Because I’ve wandered into yet another place where I thought I had some footing and it turns out I might be totally clueless. Walk with me…

I’m on Facebook, minding my business (which is part of the problem because I should have just kept doing that), and one of my longtime friends posted a meme asking women to name a way to keep a man that doesn’t involve sex, food, or money. Now, it was at this point that I really fucked up because I decided to stop scrolling and read the responses. What in the hell was I thinking? That just gets you more involved; I should have known better. I read what the ladies were writing down, and a lot of it was, quite honestly, what I expected: support him, foster his dreams, pray for him, build him up, don’t knock his ideas, and my personal favorites (sarcasm)–shut up sometimes and don’t nag him so much. I laughed a little, nodded my head thoughtfully, took a deep breath, and wrote my sure-fire foolproof method for keeping a man: nothing. That’s what I believe, so that’s what I wrote. I wrote that nothing “keeps” a man other than him wanting to stay. Period.

Now the response from my longtime friend (a guy, if you haven’t figured it out), was not agreement. He told me he disagreed and that I had answered the wrong question. Now that stumped me. Because I thought I read the question correctly. The meme didn’t say “Name ways to make your man happier,” “Name ways to cater to your man,” or even, “Name ways to keep your relationships strong.” It said to name a way you keep a man, which I interpreted as “keep him from leaving me,” and from what I’ve learned, there’s no way to do that, other than him wanting to stay. So I don’t know how it wasn’t the question being asked. Now, this is when I got smart and figured out that I didn’t want this Facebook discussion in any way, shape, form, or fashion. So I didn’t respond after he said that. I moved along. But it stayed with me, and I couldn’t move on in my mind. I even asked my Twitter timeline, that’s how confused I was. How did I not get the question right? Because I didn’t mimic the answers of those other women? Because I actually believe healthy relationships are a result of free will on the part of both people and not magic beans wrapped in condescending rhetoric like, “shut up sometimes and don’t nag him?”

Look. I don’t have a thing to say about those other women’s answers. I don’t care. Besides that, most of them probably have a man and I certainly don’t. So maybe I’m totally wrong. But it bothered me a lot that those answers were given, that those were the answers expected, and anything not in that vein was rejected as not answering the right question. I mean, support, prayer, encouragement are all par for the course in relationships, right? Why would you be in one otherwise? Those are all things that keep relationships strong, things that both partners need, things that are somewhat necessary. They’re not tips to glue a man to your side. Shutting up sometimes and listening is just good communication skills–necessary for life–not some ancient Chinese secret to keep a man. You think men are the only people who like silence? You think men are the only people who want to be left alone sometimes? But it drove me to something deeper. The idea that “keeping” him was my responsibility as his woman.

See, once you start throwing around things like, “Ladies, how do you keep your man?” you’ve just given the woman an extra job. Suddenly, it’s my duty to make him stay. Now the onus is on me to “keep” him rather than on him–a fully functioning, grown ass man–to make himself happy in whatever way that means. You’ve unbalanced the scales. You’ve moved the goalposts. Both of us working to keep our relationship strong is somehow not enough now. And you’ve given him less work. Because now, if he does in fact leave me, he can blame me. He can point to something I didn’t do, rather than just saying the relationship wasn’t right. And now he can go blameless into his next one without ever learning how to self-reflect, or self-correct. Maybe the issue is laziness. Because “maintaining your relationship,” or “keeping it strong,” implies that both people are working at it. And “Ladies, how do you keep your man?” clearly implies that only one person is. It’s entitlement. It’s unfair. And really harmful to women, I think. The idea that I have to do anything other than reciprocate what’s given to me, in order to “keep” someone who has the free will to leave anytime they want, is utterly ridiculous. And since I haven’t had the greatest luck in relationships, I can also attest that I’ve begged enough people to stay to know that it doesn’t work. A man who wants to stay will build with you, and stay–and a man who wants to leave, will leave. Nothing can keep him but his desire to stay. Let me say that again. NOTHING CAN KEEP HIM BUT HIS DESIRE TO STAY.

A friend of mine (a man) told me that part of man’s journey to do/ be better for women in this life is disabusing themselves of the notion that a woman’s love for you is assumed, but your love for her has to be earned. And I find myself wanting to ask men–is it more important that I love you, or is it more important that I earn your love for me? I wonder how many of them would have a thoughtful answer. Because in my mind, the first one is heart and the second one is ego.

Now let me not suggest that you don’t do all that stuff for your man that those other women wrote in the comments (if you want to). Of course you should support, uplift, encourage, and pray for him. Of course you should shut up sometimes and listen. But do it out of love and reciprocity, in the interest of strengthening your bond and falling deeper in love, not because you think it’s some magic glue that’s gonna hold him to your side. Because it’s all about choice. And so-called “perfect” girls get cheated on and dumped everyday, B.

 

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Forgiveness, starring Lemonade and Ricki and the Flash

Now I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Shameka, what the hell kind of title is that? What are you writing about now?” But I did it to pull you in. It worked, right? So walk with me. I promise I have a point, and those two ladies are at the center of it. Good news is, I’m back to using TV as inspiration for my life. Lol.

I watched Lemonade like the rest of the world and am just in awe of Queen Bey. Now, people who know me know that while I don’t dislike her, I am certainly not her biggest fan. So for her newest project to touch me so much really means something. It’s significant. For me. I wasn’t looking to be so captivated by it, wasn’t looking for it to resonate with me. But it did. And one element of it especially. Now, in this mini movie, Bey seems to be chronicling a journey of a woman going through a romantic crisis. She goes from wondering about her husband’s distance, to finding out about his infidelity, the pain and anger of her confrontation, forgiveness and reform, and finally, a higher level of self, and of happiness. I’m sure there’s a deeper meaning to it all as well, but on the surface, this is what appears to be being depicted. Now whether she’s speaking literally of her and Jay has been the topic all over social media, but that’s not what I’m concerned about today. When she gets to the point of forgiveness, the section features both her and Jay and she sings a song called “Sand Castles.” That part speaks to me… and I wonder about forgiveness. But that was just the beginning. The universe continued it’s prod in this direction again today.

Today, I happened to watch a cute little dramedy starring Meryl Streep called, Ricki and the Flash. It’s a movie about a wife and mother who leaves her family to pursue her rock star dreams and gets called back into the fold years later when she’s distant and washed up, to help with a daughter (whom she barely knows) who has been abandoned by her husband. It’s a lesson in swallowing your pride, but also in redemption… and forgiveness. See the recurring theme? Told you guys I had a point! Anyway, all of that got me to wondering about forgiveness. Should we always forgive? Does everyone deserve it? Are there levels? Does forgiveness mean forgetting? How does anyone do it fully? Forgive, I mean.

So let me jump right in. When someone does you wrong, lets you down, breaks their promise and your trust, is forgiveness always the way? Is it the truth and the light? People always say you should forgive, for yourself. They say it’s so YOU can move on, with a clear head and heart and it doesn’t have anything to do with the other person. But it does. Forgiveness absolves them, it wipes their slate clean. You might not have done it FOR them, but they benefit. You might think it’s petty for me to concern myself with that, and you’re probably not wrong. But it’s how I feel. So here we are. I’m all about justice and balancing the scales. And when someone who’s harmed me gets to skip away unscathed with no comeuppance, my petty comes out. I mean, it’s quite possible that the other person doesn’t even care and will skip away unscathed anyway–but if that’s going to happen, then you certainly don’t need to have my forgiveness to go with it. I’m much more likely to forgive if I can at least count on you to be contrite about your shit.

Then I wonder what my level is. Because I’ve done plenty of things wrong. And one would think I’d want to forgive as I’ve obviously been forgiven. We all think the things we’ve done are forgivable. And it’s easy to pass judgement and say that other people’s transgressions aren’t. Trust me, I know. And I get it. And as much as I struggle with forgiveness, I still realize that I need it too. I still want it. But I also know when I’ve done wrong and I acknowledge it. I work hard to make amends. I want people to be able to trust me. I think sometimes I worry a little too much about that. Sometimes I’m pretty consumed with making sure I’m walking that straight and narrow, and showing the appropriate contrition for the things I do. So I usually feel like someone who has in fact “earned” forgiveness. But that’s just me. It’s the rest of the world I’m worried about. And it doesn’t really work that way anyway, right? Or does it? Do you have to “earn” forgiveness? Or does everyone just “deserve” it?

On a more spiritual note, some say it pulls you closer to God to forgive as he forgives, as he’s forgiven you. To err is human, to forgive, divine, and all that jazz. And I think there could be some truth to that. I think it does put you on a bit of higher plane to forgive someone completely and without any lingering negative feeling. I just don’t think I’m ready to be on the plane. And is that really the goal? I mean, should I forgive everyone, all the time? I don’t think I should, nor do I even think it’s possible. And frankly, so what if I didn’t? I guess I really can’t get to the higher plane then. But quite honestly, sometimes forgiveness is tiring and being the “bigger person” is vastly overrated. Sometimes is it not better to simply cut the offensive persons out of your life and move on? What do they need with your forgiveness? Like I said a couple of paragraphs ago, they probably don’t even care. But you’re doing it for you, right? Not them. So there should be satisfaction in that. Hmmm… maybe.

Then  there’s the whole forgive/ forget argument. Some people say you should forgive, but never forget. Others say that you haven’t fully forgiven if you don’t forget. I don’t see how you could ever forget some things, even if you do forgive. But I guess that in order not to let the mistake color how you treat the person, you’d have to forget on some level, wouldn’t you? I think that’s my issue. I mean, I let my anger go. And I cry enough to wash away the hurt, and I forgive. I do. But I’m always cautious with you from that point. I don’t ever feel like I can let you all the way in, again. Does that mean I didn’t really forgive you?

I guess there really are levels. It depends on whether you’re ready, whether your life is being held up by your anger, and in some cases, whether you feel like you should, or want to. Forgiveness in the eye of the beholder, huh? Like beauty. And art. And… other things you look at.

Stuck

So one of the things I did when I moved and decided to jump out the window onto the hopefully not-too-hard landing that is this next phase of my life, is I decided to try my hand at writing a novel. Now I’ve attempted this before. I have two finished manuscripts (both written years ago and both of which are really bad if I’m going to be honest with myself), but I wanted to try again. Now, novel writing has always intimidated me, for a couple of reasons:

  1. I suck at describing scenes- all of that descriptive language that takes up pages and pages and pages and simply describes a house, or a street, or a field–I suck at that. And in a lot of the books I read, I feel like it’s not even necessary. So. What I used to do was try to fill those pages with more dialogue or more discussion about the characters’ feelings–because that is more my forte. I can describe a state of mind or an emotional state until my fingers fall off. But describe a scene? I suck. So at first I tried to avoid it. But that’s not good storytelling. Settings are important and I needed to learn how to write them. Period. But that was just the first reason.
  2. I’m not good at suspense. I don’t like waiting. I need to know the resolution and I need to know it now. So novel writing is hard for me because I have to build to the climax. I have to wait and I have to make my audience wait. And then when I finally get there, I can’t just fall out in a gratified mess and catch my breath and relive the experience. I STILL have to bring the story back down, reconcile the characters’ lives and wrap it up neatly. There’s still work to be done. Shorts aren’t like that. In shorts, the climax usually is pulled right in to the wrap-up. I do both at once and leave the audience like, “Damnnnnnnnn.” And it’s good. But building a story properly and knowing where to place the arcs and keep the anticipation is hard for me. After a while, I’m bored. And at that point, I HAVE to back away because I know I’m going to bore my audience if I’m boring myself.

So for these reasons, ladies and gentlemen, novel writing is something I just couldn’t bring myself to try again. But when I moved and took the time to focus on writing, I decided it was time to try again. I even had a story ready. I decided to make things slightly easier on myself and just find a short that had an opening to go longer and extend it. I didn’t even call it a novel. I said I was shooting for a novella. I thought that would take the pressure off. What happened you ask? The same damn thing that always happens. I got bored. I am like 1000% better at describing my scenes and I think my readers will be able to tell. But I am bored. I had the entire story planned in my head but now have no inclination to write it. I’m bored with it. I’m mad it hasn’t ended already. Now I know part of this just residue from the fact that I write shorts all the time, but still. Every time I open the document, I sigh. I want to scrap the whole thing, but I’m in so deep. It seems rude not to TRY and finish. But I’m stuck. And so here we are.

I don’t know what I hoped to gain by telling you guys this. I just know that this is the place where I mull things over. So I am here, mulling. I am going to try again. A friend of mine told me it might be better to outline the chapters. Did that. I think I know where it’s going. I just don’t feel like writing it. I even went back and started writing shorts again and have been pretty productive with that. But I know I’m just using them to burrow deeper into my comfort zone, no matter how good they are. And they are pretty good. But I need to finish this novel. I need to prove that I can. And I need to get this story out because I think it’s good. I hope it’s good. I hope one day you guys get to read it. I hope I get to look back and laugh at being stuck. I really do.

Goodnight.

He-Man Woman Haters, Seesaws, and Stockholm Syndrome… I think.

I love men. But they hate me.

And I’m saying that with a fragile heart that I think is breaking. The chinks in my armor are becoming full-blown holes and I am tired. Let me explain.

Every time there’s a new year, people spend some time talking about what they learned over the past year. I learned that I am stronger than I thought, and that transition is necessary. I am a better writer than I’ve ever been in my life and I’m more and more a believer in love, in passion, in forever–even though I haven’t had the best romantic experiences. But that’s where my heartbreak rolls in. Because another thing I learned, in 2015, is that there are large numbers of men, staggeringly large numbers of men, obscenely large numbers of men… who hate me. And I don’t mean me personally (although that may be the case, who knows?). I mean women. In 2015, I have never before, in my life, had my eyes open to how many men… hate women. Don’t get me wrong. They love pussy. They’ll fuck you clear to next Tuesday. But they hate WOMEN. And I mean hate us in the sense that they don’t believe us, respect us, fight for us. The #BlackLivesMatter hashtag/ organization was started by three women; women are the forefront of every hashtag on Twitter, every march, every protest. But a lot of our men… hate us. They won’t fight for us. They don’t care when we’ve been assaulted, raped, shortchanged. THEY. DON’T. CARE. And that has been the hardest pill to swallow. Because I love them so much. Too much. And they hate me.

Let me just spend a few minutes and tell you how much I love my men. I. LOVE. THEM. In every shade of brown, every body type, every piece and part. I love the way they walk, and talk. I love how cool and confident they are. How intelligent and funny they are. How sexy and talented they are. I love their laughter and tears. I love their strength and stability. Black men have been the arms that cradled me, the hands and mouths that drove me out of my mind with lust, the force field around me, protecting me. I love them so much. I would give my life, with no hesitation, for the ones that I love, no question. I have risked my heart with them again and again, because to me there’s no one better. Do y’all hear what I’m saying? My men are everything to me. If there is a world without them, I don’t want to know it.

But… they hate me. They hate us. And it’s breaking my heart. Because I don’t want to give them up. I don’t want to walk away. I love them in spite of everything. But it’s killing me. It gives me so much pause. How can I fight for women, loving these men so deeply when they hate me? Does that mean I have Stockholm Syndrome? Isn’t that what it means to be in love with your abuser? It’s some crazy shit, having to come to the realization that SO MANY of our men hate us.

If you don’t believe me, social media is a great tool. It exposes the inner thoughts of people better than alcohol ever did. This Cosby situation has turned my whole mind around. I mean, the amount of men who are caping for him, justifying him being a serial rapist, finding ways to discredit and disrespect the women–it’s disgusting. I mean, this is my Facebook we’re talking about. I thought I knew these people. But the sheer number of them who are twisted enough to think that this is some sort of a plot against Bill Cosby is ridiculous. And they believe it. And it shows how much they hate women. They won’t even fight for us. Believe us. THEY DON’T BELIEVE US WHEN WE TELL THEM WE’VE BEEN ASSAULTED. They won’t believe women–they call us liars to protect the image of a FICTIONAL FUCKING CHARACTER ON A TV SHOW. If that’s not hatred, I don’t know what is. Cosby hasn’t done a thing for them except be a man like they are. And for that, he is worthy of their protection–and rape victims are not. Because they’re women. The hatred runs so strong.

Another example–Twitter started off 2016 with a bang and had the child support discussion again. If you could see these men, so angry about having to provide for lives that they helped to create-it would make you sick. And as soon as they are given facts, they counter with insults. The disrespect, the widespread asshole comments. Apparently these women are all greedy whores who just want as much money as they can get. Never mind that it costs THOUSANDS of dollars to raise children. Never mind that some of these men are actually happy to not have to do the day-to-day with their kids; that some of them are perfectly content being weekend/ holiday dads. AND never mind that there are a ton of ways to prevent pregnancy if you don’t want to provide for your children. Never mind all of that. They just blame the women right away. They go on the attack, they say the most awful things. They are so busy hating the women they don’t say ANYTHING about the children. And this is a manifestation of their true feelings. This is how they see us. They hate us. It’s mind blowing. And heartbreaking. Some of them even try to convince you that they’re the “good” ones because they love their mothers, and sisters, and daughters. But if the only women you can think to respect are the ones you know personally, then maybe you hate women too. Because we’re everywhere, bruh. Not just in your family.

Now like I said, these men love pussy. Make no mistake. They love to fuck us. But they hate us. And even that comes with crazy strings and extra expectations. Because some men will love your body when they’re long stroking you, and then judge you for knowing how to fuck. Some of these men will want your mouth on their dicks and then throw that in your face and call you a whore when they’re angry with you. They think the number of partners you’ve had determines how much you’re worth, and how worthy you are of respect. Those men… hate me. Hate us. And they’re everywhere. In much larger numbers than I ever thought.

You want to know what’s the worse? When other women jump right in their corner. When other women say sexual assault victims are lying (even though less than 2% of all reports are proven false), when OTHER WOMEN help these men hate us. That wrenches my guts, I swear. That’s the worst part of it. Now, I don’t want you to think that I don’t know there are trash ass people in the world. I KNOW. But when the men, that I love, so much, see me as the enemy, I’m heartbroken. Because where does that leave me? These will be the men in the world that I will be asking to love me, to build with me, to create with me. And when women, fall in line with men who abuse, and disrespect women. Who trap and imprison women. Who don’t protect women (and girls). When WOMEN fall in line with these men, it’s a punch in the fucking stomach. I mean, what’s going on here? Am I in the fucking twilight zone? I’d hate to think 2015 is the year I dropped my optimism completely, but maybe my rose-colored glasses just shattered and broke. Only took 35 years. Go figure.

I need to say to my black men… that I still love you. I still love you. I know it’s not every one of you and I still love you. But I’m so disappointed. And my heart is breaking. Because the number of you who don’t love me back is a bigger number than I thought. I guess I need to wrap tight in the love that’s real. It’s getting harder to find though.

 

Submission

In my everyday life, I am very much a woman in charge. I make all the decisions, I pay all the bills, and my biggest pet peeve is someone even THINKING they can tell me what to do. I am outspoken, sometimes loud, stubborn and bossy and one of my favorite things is being right. So in my everyday life, I would say I’m a pretty dominant person. But I’ve been noticing more and more that I’m developing an interest in being a sexual submissive. It took me quite a while to even think about writing this, because I didn’t want people to look at me differently. I didn’t want to look at myself differently. But I pushed. This is me. And I’ve got to learn to be more unapologetic about it.

Let me just start off by saying that I am no expert in BDSM. I’ve never practiced any sort of kink. To use a Twitter word, my sex life, as passionate as it’s been, has been pretty “vanilla” in terms of kink. So if you’re looking for some wealth of knowledge on being a submissive, I got nothing for you. This is just me expressing some thoughts. But in order not to offend anyone, or make a total ass of myself, I did my Googles before I started writing this. One of the first things I saw was that my interest in being a submissive is pretty common. It seems that many people like to use their sex life to be the opposite of who they are in their daily life, which makes perfect sense to me. And there was a time when I never would have considered expanding sexually in this way. I saw kink in a very narrow, negative, lens. To me, it seemed like people with no chemistry trying too hard to create passion that should come naturally. But the more I read, and observe, I can admit that was wrong. I can admit that BDSM is just a way for people to enhance their passion, to make a good thing greater. And I’m completely down with that.

Now, from what I’ve been reading, there’s definitely levels to this dominant/ submissive relationship thing. I already know that I have no interest (right now) in anything humiliating or painful. Those things can be exciting to some, depending on your level of kink, but I’m not there. I do have an interest in bondage, and some in domination and submission. I’ve also read that some dominant/ submissive relationships extend beyond the bedroom and the submissive surrenders their day-to-day life to the dominant partner. I don’t have any interest in that either. I would want to stick to sexual spaces only, with safe words for when I feel uncomfortable. Let me explain further.

Bondage is the one that peaks my curiosity the most. Being tied and/ or restrained seems very exciting, the idea of being forced to wait for the pleasure, and learning to appreciate the anticipation. I think it’s a great way to learn patience, if that makes any sense. And being a submissive in that situation means that I get the opportunity to let someone else make the decisions, to do the heavy lifting, so to speak. I let someone else, someone I trust, have their way with me, and be responsible for both of our pleasure. I’m very interested in that. Honestly, I’m not very dominant sexually now, even without the kink. I don’t like to conquer; I like to be conquered. I love strong, outspoken partners who can overpower me (with my consent, of course). So this seems like a natural progression. The idea of surrendering my power to someone else, bending to their will… and taking pleasure in it… my heart races just thinking about it. To be able to feel, without having to think. To take directions instead of hoping I won’t have to give them. It sounds like a relief. And the fact that there’s pleasure at the end, if I’m patient and obedient? Icing on the cake. Taking orders is something I definitely don’t do in my everyday life. To be in a sexual situation, where I literally can’t do anything unless I’m told to, sounds equal parts scary, and stimulating. Scary because I’m sure I’ll resist it in the beginning, just because I’m not used to it. But stimulating too, because once I let go, I can have fun, and make a good thing greater. And like I said before, I’m completely down with that.

Sometimes bondage situations can involve blind folds, but that piece doesn’t really appeal to me. It’s going to sound funny, but I think that I’m more against that because I wear glasses, and I definitely feel insecure, and at a disadvantage when I’m not wearing them. So maybe having a visual impairment already means that making that worse isn’t exactly a turn on for me. Lol. But it could be that I’m just not ready. Maybe with the right dominant partner, and that level of trust.

As for the discipline angle that can accompany the bondage, I don’t think that’s something I want to do. Like I said earlier, I’m not into pain or humiliation. I wouldn’t mind being spanked, or taking a “punishment” just for the sake of sex play and as a means of stimulation. I think I could be comfortable with that. But not more. Not now, anyway.

But who knows? This may be just the beginning of my foray into kink. I may decide I want more. But I’m getting ahead of myself. I’m not even in a relationship. And even then, I’d want to be as sure as I could about the level of trust I had in the other person. So I’ve got a ways to go. But a girl can fantasize. That’s what it’s all about, right?

Battle Scars

Guess who’s bizzack?

Hi guys! I know, I know, it wasn’t that long of a hiatus, but it was full of changes and shifts and transitions and lots and lots of head clearing. And then… something wonderful happened. A mere four months after I decided to stop writing until I had something new to say, I woke up the other morning… with something new to say.

Hallelujah! Thought I was losing my mojo out here. Anyway, for a quick update: house sold smoothly, I quit my job, moved back to my hometown, and took an entire month off to think and write and contemplate where else I want my life to go. Things are settling down for me finally, which is probably why I’m finally compelled to put down some non-fiction words. But enough of the update. On to the topic, right?

My sister got sick over the holiday. Now, she’s diabetic with a myriad of other health issues, so her being in the hospital was serious, but it wasn’t the first time. It wasn’t the second or third time either. I tried to take it in stride. My parents were scared. They usually are. And I try to keep a clear head, but I worry too. I’m already and anxious person. I’m already full of worry about things going wrong, about the destruction of any of my carefully laid plans. So I was scared too, though I tried not to show it in front of her kids. Which leads me to the crux of this matter. Her kids… not so scared. Not so worried. Either they wear the bravest faces I’ve ever seen and hide the fear so deep you can’t detect it, or they’re so numb after years of her health issues that they really weren’t affected. I didn’t wipe any tears. I didn’t give them any comforting words. I didn’t hug them and reassure them and let them know it was going to be okay. And it’s not because I didn’t want to do those things. I didn’t have to. They didn’t need it. There were no breakdowns, no clinging, no tears. And it dawned on me that those things didn’t happen because THEY ARE USED TO THIS. They don’t need the coddling because they are used to this, and as such, numb to any fear of it. They probably have some deeper seated fear of the worst happening, but as long as the worst is nowhere in sight, they are fine. They were so fine that they got me thinking about scars. How first time fear is a fresh wound, and second and third time fear rips off the scab, but then… nothing. The scar heals and then it’s par for the course. We are scarred but we don’t feel it anymore. It fades. We can walk through our lives and ignore it. My nieces certainly do. And some would think that’s making them stronger. But is the fact that they don’t feel as much hurting them in the long run? Hurting us all in the long run? I think it is.

I hate to think of my nieces getting to the point where worrisome or fearful things just roll off of them, but it’s hard to be an aunt and want them to be scared. I don’t really know where to go here. I’m a little anxious about it. Okay, a lot anxious. I have no desire to see them turn into me, an extra anxious over worrier who can’t stop thinking of what could go wrong. But it’s not okay that they’re so used to what’s happening that they have no reaction at all. I mean, that affects you. It changes you. And not in a good way. I want them to be able to feel things in their interactions with other people. I don’t want them to be jaded.

It makes me wonder about the battle scars I carry. The things I’ve seen and heard so many times that they just roll off of me; the things I don’t react to anymore. Is my sister one of those things? Am I not as worried as I should be? Do I not take it as seriously as I did the first time she got sick? A part of me thinks I don’t. And it’s not just that. Am I numb to bad news? Goodness I hope not. But after a while, you feel like you have to ignore it to survive. You can’t let it affect you too much because then how can you go on? Sometimes, there’s not much else you can do to keep moving, keep living. But how do you strike a balance? Where’s the line between letting the scars heal and not letting them fade completely so you can feel?

They talk about it on Twitter all the time. How we’re so numb to the unjust death of our people that it barely resonates anymore. Maybe for #TrayvonMartin it hurt. Maybe for #JordanDavis it hurt. Maybe it even hurt for #FreddieGray. But does it still hurt now? Does #LaquanMcDonald hurt the same? Does #JamarClark? Does #SandraBland? Or are we all just numb now? Have our battle scars faded to the point where we can’t feel them anymore? Are we just resigned to this being a normal, regular, thing? I sure as hell hope not. And those deep and active in the movement will say absolutely not. But sometimes I’m afraid that it has. That it will. I’m afraid that my nieces are resigned to my sick sister. That they’re numb to the medicine, and tubes, and visiting the hospital. That they’re used to it. Sometimes, I’m afraid I’m used to it. But you know me. I don’t always have the answers. This is just the place where I ask the questions.

But when I think of it, I guess the answer is the balancing act. I guess the balancing act is life. And I guess I’m back. Thanks for reading.

The Shame of Sex Drive

Two years ago today… I wrote my slut-shamer blog, my second most popular one to date. So today, on the two-year anniversary of my encounter with that fuck boy, I give it to you again… lol.

My Plus Size Life

Before we begin, I have to warn you my friends… this is the realest shit I ever wrote…

Okay, so I know the VMA’s were weeks ago, but something happened to me recently that made me think of Miley Cyrus. Now, before you ask me, no I am not doing drugs, losing my mind or considering a career in twerking. Now that we got that out of the way, walk with me on this…

I’ve been trying to get back into the dating game and have taken yet another dip into the online dating world. My responses thus far have been overwhelmingly positive- and I think it’s because of two things: 1) I am having fun, and letting things develop as they should instead of always feeling the need for control; and 2) I’m not letting the responses from the weirdos get to me anymore. Now, I’ve been messaging and…

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