Friday, January 30, 2009
Let's just say, I got seed on my mind.
All I'm thinking about is seed.
And that was the purpose of this fast.
Now, since I'm not the most learned individual, I tend to go look up words, to help me understand them properly. So I looked up the word "seed" over on dictionary.com. There were close to thirty different definitions of this word seed.
One stuck out, and I really don't know why... Maybe because it ties in closest to what I think of seed.
Seed: the germ or propagative source of anything.
That right there is a loaded definition. A phrase that sticks out to me is "propagative source". Source can also mean "root". So, if we alter that definition, then we get
Seed: the germ or propagative root of anything.
Now, that's a definition right there. Hmmm
Another word sticks out in that definition: "anything".
What do I take from this? The following:
Everything starts somewhere.
Those huge California Redwoods didn't just appear overnight out of thin air. They all started from a seed.
Likewise, you and I didn't develop into who we are overnight. Our problem areas didn't develop overnight. They started a long time ago.
A seed was sown somewhere. Where? Who knows! I can only speak for myself, if I examine my past really hard. But a seed was sown somewhere.
We saw something. Somebody said something to us. You and I received that seed (that thing we saw, that thing that was said)...
We incubated it, we nourished it...
And it grew into something.
Oh, and it grew into something BIG. Now, maybe we caught it when it was a mere seedling and we could pluck it out the ground with a little toothpick. But, if we've been growing it and nourishing it, it might be as big as one of them big California Redwoods. And a little toothpick won't do. It's gonna take some WORK to uproot that issha that started from a little seed.
Hmmm... Does that sound complicated? Maybe so... But you know what I'm talking about.
Let me give you an example: You've read on this blog, many a time, that I can't stand reading erotic fiction. First of all, much of it is badly written. And with me deeply ensconced in learning the art of writing good fiction, I ain't reading that. Second of all, I've gotten busy every which way possible, have swung from the chandaliers, got down on kitchen floors and counters... but heck, that don't mean that I want to read about it, i.e, I don't find it original.
But most importantly, if I keep reading it, and reading it, and reading it...
I'm sowing some seed into the ground.
I'm sowing some seed into the ground (my heart).
That seed is going to grow into... something.
So, why would I ever be surprised sometime later in life, that I wake up one morning and realize "I am such a ho!".
I suppose that is an extreme example. Surely it is. That ain't true for everybody. I, LadyLee, have a VERY addictive personality. I am ALWAYS mindful of that. That's another way of saying, if I start some craziness, it will take root and start to grow VERY rapidly and out of control.
A real life example about myself: I use to listen to A LOT of gangster rap in my 20's.
Why is it not a shock that I use to smoke a lot of weed and drink alot and cuss way too much? It's not a shock, because I was spending my time with music (containing words, which produced images in my mind). Eventually something's going to happen.
So, with that said, and looking at the condition of urban black music: Why are you suprised that our children and teens are out of control?
Everything in life is about seed.
Everything starts somewhere.
Jokers don't wake up and become hard core killers overnight. No way.
I submit to you that THAT is impossible.
Why do you suppose when you look at these documentaries on killers (stuff like Snapped, a show which I absolutely love), that they ALWAYS go back to the beginning.... waaaay before the murders take place?
They have to show you where things started. They are looking for the seed.
All these negative examples. GEEZ. Let's think about something positive.
Now, I love the fact that Barack Obama is president. I was neither here or there concerning the election. I just wanted that stuff to be over with, because it was stressing me and everybody else out.
Yes we are all clicking our heels, doing the running man over this.
But I'm not thinking about that, the end result, his presidency.
I'm thinking about the moment, the THOUGHT of "I want to become president" forming in his heart.
What was the "seed" that started all of this?
I've always imagined he and Michelle sitting at the kitchen table in the cool of the morning, just before the kids wake up, having their cups of coffee, and him saying "Baby, there's something that has been in my heart, and I want to know what you think about it."
His whole presidency grew from some seed.
Interesting example. I hope I got my point across.
And, this is what I have learned about seed during the 30 day seed fast:
Overall, I feel as if we are responsible for what "seed" we choose to receive in our hearts. We are responsible for the incubation, care and nourishment of that seed.
But, most important, and terribly crucial and critical-
We have to investigate if that seed is something that will bring us to our life's purpose or if that seed will eventually grow into something that will lead to our total destruction.
I am starting to throw everything in those 2 categories: Life purpose or total destruction.
And when I say "Destruction", I mean deterioration and loss of my self-esteem, self-love, character, self-worth, and a host of other things...
Even destruction of my life.
And I am finding now, over the last few years, that if I discern the DIFFERENCE and act accordingly, well... I can expect to "grow" a better life for myself.
Seed may mean something totally different to you. Enlighten me.
Question (which you can answer for yourself and quietly to yourself):
If you have a bad habit, are you able to locate the seed from which it originated? Are you able to locate the root, the "propagative source"?
If so... if you destroy the root, then you will destroy the bad fruit that's being produced in your life.
More importantly, when it comes to the good in you, the good things about you (your positive qualities), are you able to locate the seed from whence it grew?
Are you thankful for that today?
If not, take a moment to be thankful for it. It may be something that will grow into your life's purpose.
I hope I put a little sumthin' sumthin' on your mind today.
I really do.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
I have a birthday coming up in about 9 days, and if you have been reading the LadyLee blog for the past few years, you will know that around this time, I tend to wax nostalgic about the status of the past year since the last birthday. Much has happened in that span of time. And it is interesting that our church fast is for a month just prior to my birthday.
This also fulfills mandatory requirements from my baby blog sista Serenity3-0. That chick gets a bit surly if I don't post some posts from my heart, posts that delve deep behind the funny. She has private access to my wonderful wisdom on a daily basis (and I to hers) , and for some reason thinks I should share what's going on in my heart and with me in general within the virtual walls of the House of LadyLee.
These posts are rare, and you better catch 'em while you can.
The House of LadyLee can turn back smurfy at the drop of a hat.
So bear with me and hunker down for a long post here or there.
Ya'll know how I do. (Hush up Original Oldgirls Chele and Lbeezy. Hush now).
It is my goal here, and especially leading up to and surrounding my birthday, to really gather in my thoughts and experiences in certain matters and place them in a set of blog posts. That way, I can just pull them up and read them. I use them to uplift and encourage myself throughout the rest of the year. (This was especially true with last years birthday posts).
So, I said I would write about this fast that I am on right now.
I've been holding off on writing about the fast because I wanted to get near the end of it. There are too many *crickets* at the beginning of a fast, and I need to get to the end to have some clarity on it all, because A LOT of stuff has occurred. I won't divulge here. But you know you have to read between the lines here anyway. I expect some "sidebar" email discussions with several people behind these posts. (Trust me, that has already been going on- What's up, my bootleg virtual psychotherapist Ms.Blackliterature.com?)
I suppose this fasts ends on February 4th (I need to go check on that).
And this is what, the 29th?
So that means 5 more days.
Every year, during the month of January, our church does a 30 day fast.
It is suppose to get us ready for the year ahead.
I have failed the past couple of years.
Don't know why... Let me stop lying:
Yes I do: I was lazy and hard-headed. I was selfish, self-serving!
That's what that's about.
But this year, I was, and still am, determined to finish. Yeah, yeah, I decided that I won't beat myself up if I mess up (which I did one time. It was funny. So I will most definitely write about it).
I would just get back on the horse and go forward!
So... the fast rules change every year. This year, the rules seem to coincide with some of the life issues we were studying.
1. Whatever is eaten has to come from a seed. Fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds... whatever grows out of the ground or on a tree. It has to come from a seed. Add to that rule- no junk food, no sweets, no sugar, no sodas, no meat, no refined foods.
Seed related products and water. That's it.
2. Pray for one hour a day.
Sounds simple enough.
(That's what I always think on or prior to Day 1, lol)
Now, after the instructions, you could see people mulling over this.
*Crickets* abound, frozen in that classic Karate kid eagle stance.
So, the pastor said REAL QUICK... (and I paraphrase)
"Don't be calling up to the church asking questions, trying to figure out what is what. The instructions are simple. Ya'll are grown! Just don't cheat. I don't care how many times you eat a day, that's up to you. If ya gotta ask a bunch of questions, then ya trying to find a way to cheat or something. You are adults. Work it out!!"
I think he had that right. He was talking to me. I myself am quite the bootleg chick, you see.
Now, as for the praying an hour a day...
I was up in the air about that. That meant getting up earlier than usual, and praying. I am grouchy in the mornings. I don't want to talk to NOBODY that early, not even Jesus. I sometimes don't feel well or don't sleep well because of my illness. (Uh, don't trip- it is very low grade- some joint pain, maybe a fever or a headache, stuff like that). Let's just say, it takes me a few hours to get up and get moving, get my head right, all that - in order to start my day.
Interestingly, we had a prayer conference in early January, more like a clinic really, on how to pray... basically examining elements of prayer and what not, and most importantly, how to avoid doing some stupid unproductive stuff. I got 5 good hours of good information to put to use. My church done went and did the wrong thing and streamed it over the internet (which is really a good thing- but it's a WILD thing to actually watch church over the internet because we didn't feel like going- lol), but I actually went up to the church on only 3 nights of the conference and caught the internet stream the other 2 nights.
So, I had a basic plan for myself in place, and I was actually motivated to pray.
Now, I tend to pray here and there during the day, if I am alone. This has been a natural habit of mine for years, but not for no hour straight through. I'm good with my minutes here, minutes there. So I thought that would be my biggest challenge.
But I found that the prayer time has been the easiest part. Something's on my mind every day, and people around me have their issues. There's stuff on my mind that has been bothering me for YEARS that I really need to pray about or at least pray for the courage or desire to deal with them. There's stuff that I don't even know how to pray about. I just need to start talking and maybe something will happen.
I have a plethora of goals and dreams that I'm trying to muster up enough faith to tackle. Shoot, I can pray about that stuff alllll day long!
There's the economy, world isshas... my enemies.
Trust me, there's always something to pray about. ALWAYS.
I would say that I have clocked over 25 hours of prayer time total during this fast time.
I am ashamed to say, I don't think I've prayed that much, total, in the last year. Last few years, really.
Don't look at me with that tone of voice...
I don't know many people who make prayer a high priority. I mean, I've prayed about things, and I get answers. But for me, it has always been sporadically throughout the day, for mere minutes at a time. I get results, but sporadic is what it is: sporadic.
I've learned through this all that that must change. Really. It is highly crucial and highly imperative. And it changes now. THIS year.
It has made me realize that I need to be mindful of what should be a priority with me. And I must say, that I have REALLY enjoyed waking up and praying every morning. I look forward to it. I was NOT expecting that.
This is the first time in a long time that I don't wake up tired. Shoot, I don't even use an alarm clock. I wake up every morning between 4:30 and 6:00 a.m...
And I pray.
I would say that 80% of the time, I pray quietly, with no distractions. The rest of the time, I think I've crocheted. I don't know, but it seems as if crocheting and praying have some synergistic peace effect on me. But at the same time, I really don't want one associated with the other, so I have tried to stay away from that. (Does that make any sense?)
One time I folded some clothes while praying. I ain't doing that no more.
My complaining and whining has virtually evaporated into thin air. I'm not much of a complainer, but I realize I whine just like er' body do from time to time. Whenever I do, words of encouragement and edification come up in my heart. They give me peace and annihilate my fears (let's face it, that's what's really behind our whining and complaining).
My thought life is much better also.
And I realized yesterday, that I no longer feel any pain when I wake up. Now, how I missed that, I don't know. Much of that comes from being detoxed by this fasting. But that right there is a GOOD thang.
My day goes a lot better as a result. I still have my challenges. But I'm doing much better with my anger management, time management, and fear isshas. MUCH.
I am getting some great results, just from simply praying every morning. Man, there's some weird stuff going on, like things that I didn't think were important enough to be praying about, getting answered. And in a bizarre way. I'm talking, stuff that has me a bit shook up and in tears because I can't believe God got me on His mind like THAT. How on earth is this happening? WHY is it happening?
*Lee raises hand and says "Alex, I'll take Bizarre for 200 dollars, please"*
No, I ain't hating on bizarre. Listen up... bizarre is cool with this Oldgirl right here!
Let's just say, uh-rah... the hour-a-day prayer in the morning is going to continue indefinitely. Just for the sense of personal peace it is bringing. That is going to continue.
Now as for this seed thing, i.e., everything eaten must come from a seed...
That has proven to be more difficult.
Man, I have come to find out that I better have my meals planned. None of this "Oh, I won't pack lunch today, I'll just run out and get something!"
I better think about it before I leave the house in the morning. I better get it ALL together before I head off to work. It is a bit cumbersome, I must admit. All I know, I better make it do what it do.
With that said, variety is key. I've spent MUCH time in the natural foods stores as of late. I've come up with some interesting meals, lol. (That's a whole separate post).
But why on earth would we have a fast involving only consuming stuff that comes from a seed?
Because... it is to remind us that everything in life starts with a "seed".
You don't believe me?
Simple example, which I've used before.
I would guess you think about the color of grass, the color of money, even of it being your favorite color, perhaps.
I must say, I don't think of such things. For the past few years, I believe, I think something else when I see that word.
Let me throw another word with it.
Those two words probably got you (and me) doing things we don't normally do. If not, just give it a little time. You WILL be doing some things different. Watch.
Those two words put together make up an interesting type of "seed".
I've said it before, I'll say it again (and during this past month, I've been waaaaaay more cognizant of it than ever)
Words produce thoughts…
Thoughts produce action…
Actions produce our destiny…
I have been thinking on this, especially with all the things that have happened over the past year...
And I do believe that was the whole point of this fast.
to be continued...
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
The current temperatue in the ATL is 44 degrees. That ain't bad. That's better than that 13 degree craziness back around January 8th and 9th. Man, I thought it was the end of the world.
So, 44 degrees is a GOOD thang.
My weekend. I had a very good weekend. I actually had dinner with one of my favoritie bloggers, Terry. He decided to hop out of his Los Angeles Cheap Seats and come alllll the way over to the ATL to see your friendly neighborhood Oldgirl.
Naw, he just happen to be in the ATL on bizness, and we hooked up. We had dinter at one of my favorite places, The Watershed. It was a bit difficult, since I'm not eating any meat, dairy or junk right now, but I am a MAVERICK, baby!! I didn't break down and get the grilled porkchop or the fried catfish that I LOVE so much. I had a veggie plate and a huge salad and some water. GO ME! I am a MAVERICK!
But I must tell you... Terry is a GREAT dude. Salt of the earth. He is good peoples, of the Celie variety! I tell you, he is a treasure chest of information. You DO NOT find that in people these days. Folks are shallow as HELL, and he is NOT one of them. It was great to be in his company, and the convo was amazing...
I'm not worthy! I'm not worthy!!
*Lee falls prostrate on the hard concrete*
That has been one of the most important meetings of my year thus far. And I was happy for it.
So thanks, Terry, for hanging out. I know the man behind the Cheap Seats now! And yeah, you are all I thought you would be. I am blessed to have you in my corner:)
On Saturday, I attended another one of the Green Eyed Bandit's son's basketball games. They actually won the game. So, I am NOT a jinx. I had a good time, and I MAY attend one more!
And the Green Eyed Bandit didn't haul off and throw a shoe at the referee or anything. So it was a good day!
Sunday, I had a finance meeting with my Triple F (Financial Freedom Fighters) Posse. That was good. It always gets me motivated to handle my money right, and someone ALWAYS has a success story. ALWAYS.
I LOVE when people are doing good and meeting their goals. I really do!
Afterwards, me and my sister Kentucky went to the natural foods vegan store Sevenanda. That was a treat. There were a gazillion people up in there. It looked like Wal-mart on a Saturday afternoon.
I will have to write about this whole fasting thing... Uh, I have some stories to tell. LOL!!
Weird stuff. Keith has all kinds of widgets over on his blog. So I decided to entertain myself and play around with them.
Some of ya'll be complaining about how long winded I am. Hush up. I am terribly quiet in person, so all of what is stuck in my brain comes out on blog, lol.
But there was some site that calculates how long your blog posts are, or something like that. And here is the result.
Whatever!!! I don't agree with that! My posts aint THAT long.
Another one rates your blog:
My blog is NOT rated R. My blog is rated SMURFY.
One last one:
I really don't know WHAT they're talking about there. That makes it seem like I be cussin up a fire and burning down forests over in these parts.
I do NOT bring out my Book of Cuss to often. HUMPH.
Well, I decided to let it go after that. It was all messing with my smurfiness.
And if if ain't smurfy, it ain't right.
Well, let me get back to the work. The boss, the Darth Sista, is messing with an Oldgirl.
We have foolishness going on already, messing up my Monday. EVERYBODY is gone to D.C. for training. Our work group Super Hero Hen Dog is gone. The Cowgirl Cre is gone. Lieutennant Meek-Meek is gone. UGH.
They are gone all week. I am lonely. I have no one to talk to. I might get some work done, lol.
I'm surprised Darth Sista didn't hit me with the HARD football tackle when I walked through the door.
She has this knack for calling me at the very moment I walk into the cubicle area. I mean, just as my butt is about to make contact with my seat. She must have a hidden camera in my cubicle.
"LadyLee, did you get a chance to look at that data? It is laying right there on your desk. Do you see it? Do you see it sitting there?"
"Hold on, Darth Sista! Gimme a chance to sit down and get my head right. I gotta smoke a cigarette and drank a little of this liquor here before I peruse this here data. Just give me a minute, man. You know how I am on Mondays."
*Darth sista hits LadyLee with the hard sigh*
"Whatever, LadyLee," she moans. Then hangs up on me.
Yeah... it's gonna be THAT kind of week.
Ya'll have a good week... on purpose!!
Thursday, January 22, 2009
I was at work in the lab, having a GOOD time working (yeah right).
When my cell phone rang.
It was my brother Kari, aka "Milk and Cookies", who's stationed up in Virginia.
"Hey, Lee," he said.
"Just called to let you know that you're gonna be an Auntie."
"How far along is she?"
"A few weeks. We just found out."
"Well, congratulations," I said.
"Everything going alright with ya'll?"
"Yeah, everything's fine."
"Well that's good to hear."
"I got to make a few other calls," he said.
"Okay. Well, congratulations," I said again.
We said our goodbyes and hung up.
So, I am going to be an Auntie. Hmmm...
I must say, I am happy for him, since he and his wife have been wanting a baby. I hope the best for them, and that everything will be alright.
We haven't talked much as of late because of various disagreements a while back, but we do text each other from time to time.
While I was thinking about all this, I thought back to some discussions he, myself, and my sister had while standing around the kitchen island talking about family stuff. They both said how they didn't want children, because they didn't want a whiff of a chance of their child feeling the way we felt when we were growing up. It wasn't really worth it. I, who had the hardest time out of us all growing up, tried to convince them that that wouldn't be the case. I thought that they were good people and would be good parents.
I would have hated for the strain and memories of the past to taint their futures...
And just for that reason, I am glad for Milk and Cookies.
He can look past the past, and make his own future.
And that is a lesson that I am still trying to learn for myself.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Read The Caption on the first photo then look at the second photo
Look at the picture above and you can see where this driver broke through the guardrail, on the right side of the culvert, where the people are standing on the road, pointing. The pick-up was traveling about 75 mph from right to left when it crashed through the guardrail. It flipped end- over-end, bounced off and across the culvert outlet and landed right side up on the left side of the culvert, facing the opposite direction from which the driver was traveling. The 22-year-old driver and his 18-year-old passenger were unhurt except for minor cuts and bruises. Just outside Flagstaff , AZ on U.S. Hwy 100.
Now look at the second picture below...
If this guy didn't believe in GOD before, do you suppose he believes now?
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
Yes, it is Martin Luther King Day in these United States of America.
And what is ironic, yet at the same time, truly wonderful, is that the first Black President of the United States of America will be sworn in tomorrow.
In other words... you know how it goes.
Don't act, ladies.
Some of ya'll have had to throw a joker out of your house. Remember that moment... close your eyes, dig down deep, and say it with me:
"George Bush, git yo _____ and git the ______ outta here!!"
I'll let you fill in the blanks. The Oldgirl is working on her cursing right now.
*LadyLee throwing Bush's clothes out the window*
You do remember that classic Biggie Smalls line, when he was talking about his b*tch:
"Throwin my clothes out the windows
So when the wind blows,
I see my Polos and Timbos"
Yeah, the country is more than through with Bush. The Polos and Timbos were thrown out the window a long time ago. Maybe it was because of the war. Or that 'Trina thing.
Anyway, I am happy about that, and I will give my thoughts on the inaguration tomorrow.
My boss and I were taling last week on the phone about some work related stuff, and I said at the end of the convo...
"Uh-rah, Darth Sista, it don't seem quite right to come up in this here workplace on Inaugaration Day, seeing that it is history. I reckon I won't be coming in. Somebody somewhere is having a party. So, uh, I'm uh rah, just letting you know that I'll be calling off that day."
I'm glad I wasn't in her office. Darth Sista's *gas face* is deadly. Really.
She moaned a quiet "Whatever."
Yeah Darth Sista... I have, by my calculations, 9.5 weeks of vacation this year. I AM TAKING THE DAY OFF.
My Weekend. Man, I messed up BIG time. This weekend, there was a suprise party for my coworker Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia.
And I forgot all about it.
You know it's bad when the birthday girl calls you from her own suprise party hollering...
"Where YOU at? I heard you were suppose to be here. You ain't even here to surprise me."
I knew the moment I saw her name come up on my ringing cell phone that I was in BIG trouble.
I completely forgot, even though the plans had been in the making for the last 2 weeks. I was even responsible for bringing chips and dips. But I remembered that I was going to go late because they had a stripper, and I don't get into all that.
I want to formally apologize to Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia.
"I'm sorrrrryyyyy, gal!"
That don't mean nothing to her. This was her 40th birthday. I will be getting the evil side-eye for the next 20 years.
Oh well. I will bake her a tin of oatmeal cookies. That should keep the sharp verbal jabs to a respectable minimum.
I didn't do much this weekend. I was tired, and it has been quite cold since last Thursday. It was 13 degrees then, and I don't have a coat, so I was HATIN' life. I didn't go anywhere on Saturday, because I got up at 3:30 in the morning and went back to sleep later. I had stuff to do, but would've been late.
Oh well. It will be okay. I did more yarn shopping on Saturday evening, when I FINALLY managed to get out of here. But that was about it.
It has been a pretty calm weekend.
So on Sunday, I was laying in bed, talking to LadyTee... we were watching our church on the internet (Man, they should've NEVER done that. LOL). She and I had been talking for a couple of hours that morning...
And then my cell phone buzzed. It was on vibrate because I'd gone to church on Friday evening and I forgot to turn it back on. And it kept on buzzing. I didn't know what it was at first. I thought it was something going on outside. But it was my phone, which was under a pillow on the other side of the bed.
So I jumped out of bed, and picked it up off the bookshelf, and walked into the kitchen.
It was the Queen.
It was the Queen of Lurk City, aka Miss Celie, aka The Mysterious Racer X - Tayari Jones...
I had missed the call but I dialed back.
She called to tell me that last week's posts about me meeting my father were excellent, and that she thought I should develop them more and do more with it.
I said whoa.
So I am standing there, in the kitchen, trembling HARD and about to drop a glass of water on the floor. I was in SHOCK that she called. That chick is busy as a bee these days, globe-trotting all over the place. She just got back from Africa and is now in D.C. for the Inauguration. She was on the elevator, on the go yet again, and wanted to call me.
Even the *crickets* were silent for that call. LOL.
A call out of the freakin' blue. Man, that is a vote of confidence right there from someone who I consider to be hands down, the best writer in the solar system.
You made my day, Miss Celie. I've been a little down on my writing lately and that was a good shot in the arm to get my ass in gear.
So, that was the gist of my weekend.
This is going to be a great week. We have a new president coming into office.
I plan on posting everyday this week. (What is WRONG with me?)
With that, I leave you with this video. It is crass, yet hopeful. But it made me smile. Might make you frown, though.
Enjoy, or give me the Gas face. I don't care. You will be alright.
rednecks surly white folk, get over it... He is YOUR president too. He's EVERYBODY'S president. (We learned there was a difference when Hurricane Katrina hit these United States of America).
Now, you have to listen to a black man. You will be alright. Really. We had to listen to Bush for the past 8 years, and that was JACKED up. So really, you will be alright.
Have a good week... on purpose.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Then, lo and behold, he actually allows me to come over there. Didn't have to hear "Today is not a good day."
And I actually go over there...
On Tuesday night...
Now, I didn't know how I felt about this. I wanted to go over there when I when I could be halfway spiffy, but shoot man, he was just gonna have to catch me after work.
Ya'll who know me know what I do for a living. Let's just say, thank goodness I didn't have to grind up 20 lbs of strawberries that day. I tend to get stuff all over me.
But, I work in Midtown ATL, and his house was only a 15 minute drive from me. I called first, and he wasn't there. His sister said he had walked to the store, but was expecting me, and for me to come on over.
So I headed over there.
The house is a small white house, surrounded by a chain link fence. The yard is very neat, no flowers no fuss. The porch light was on. I sat there for a second then got on out the car.
Might as well get this over with.
By the time I open the gate to the fence, he had opened the front door. He opened the screen door.
It was dark, and the porch light was bright. I didn't see him until I walked up the stone steps and was looking right at him.
He still looks the same as I remembered him. He looks exactly like the pictures here in this post, which were taken between 1965 and 1969, I believe. I think he and my Mama are teenagers in those pictures.
But he had aged some 40 years.
And yeah, you could tell he was a drinker. He has that look of someone who drinks a lot.
"Hey 'Lesia," he said. He smiled. He put his hand up to cover his mouth, as he has bad teeth. He only has maybe 5 or 6 teeth, really. But you know how people do when they got bad teeth. They cover their mouths.
He is a very thin man, a bit bent over. He is a taller than me, looking to be about 5'10" (I am 5'7"). He wore a pair of maroon khakis and a matching plaid shirt. A black cap with a beaded skull and crossbones covered his small afro.
"Hello Milton," I replied. (I have the worst bootleg busted diction in the world. I was trying to make sure that at least talked like I had some sense that day, lol).
I eased past him. There were no hugs or anything. (This ain't dayum television, ya'll.) I thought I would at least shake his hand, but that didn't happen.
When I walked in, I saw some pictures on the table.
They were pictures of me.
"You have pictures of me?" I asked.
"Yes I do," he replied. He walked over and picked them up. "I have pictures of you. I look at them everyday."
That kinda freaked me out. He had a collage of pictures of me, on a piece of paper. It was in a gold frame under glass. Each photo had the year, or event.
So, I haven't been to his house since I was 10 years old. So, he would have various pictures of me from younger years... like the one with me and my Auntie Joyce (shown here; the pic he had, had my aunt cropped out)
But what was ODD, was all the other pictures in that collage...
My high school graduation. My college graduation. Various pictures I'd taken back in the 90s (which I absolutely DON'T remember taking)... Pictures all through high school.
Heck, he even had a picture of me in a long periwinkle gown and shawl. (I was a hostess at Cowgirl Cre's wedding back in 2002). That is a rare picture, because that mighta been the last time this Oldgirl put on a dress, lol.
"Your Auntie Joyce sent me these pictures. I like them. I look at them everyday."
Now, Auntie Joyce said she talks to him, and I vaguely remember that she said that she sent him pictures.
(Auntie Joyce is an artist and master photographer. She uh, has her own photo restoration business. So it was nothing for her to scan all these photos and caption them. Goodness.)
I thought Auntie was just talking smack. I guess she wasn't.
"I really be laughing at that picture of you right there with them lil legs and them patent leather shoes," he said, as he pointed to the first picture of me above."
I chuckled right along with him.
I sat down in a flowered chair next to the front door. He sat down on the sofa opposite me, gripping the picture frame in his hand.
"So how you been doing," he said.
"It's good to see you," he said. "You look just like Carolyn."
"You went to work today?" he asked.
"Yes," I said. I explained to him what I do for a living. (He was totally confused).
"I hear you a doctor, but not the medical type."
"That's right." I explained to him my Ph.D. (He was REALLY confused.)
"I be in a lot of pain. Can you mix something up for me to make me feel better?" He laughed.
"No, can't do that." This is a usual question from older black folks, lol.
We talked a bit more. I didn't have much to say, just answered his questions.
I asked him if he had ever been remarried, or if he had any more children.
"No, you was the only one. You the baby. You my only baby."
Look like he started tearing up. Man, I didnt' know what to do. All I could say was "okay".
By that time, somebody else walked in the room. It was his brother Willie. I remembered this man, because he had the most unusual light eyes. I remember wondering how, when I was little, how a black man's eyes could be SO light.
He said hello, and it's good to see you.
I said the same. And then he disappeared back into another room.
Me and Milton talked a little more.
Then someone else showned up. It was his sister, my Aunt Evelyn.
Tripped me out that I look like her. She was glad to see me. I stood up to talk to her, and she gave me a slight hug and patted me on the back, told me "You stoutin' up there, gal!"
She left the room as fast as she came.
These are some QUIET folks. My aunt told me that is where I get my "quiet loner" nature from. After meeting them, uh, I understand why. That house was VERY quiet, and everyone spoke in quiet voices.
Anyway, Milton and I talked of other things. He wanted to know how long I'd been married, and the places I had lived.
He gripped the pictures tighter in his hands.
He held the framed picture out in front of him towards me, kinda like someone carries a very hot plate.
"'Lesia, I look at these pictures everyday, and I just cry."
Man, I didn't know WHAT to say about that. I thought about a WHOLE lot of stuff in those few seconds while he was staring at me, all teared up.
WHAT THE WORLD.
We talked a minute longer. Then I was like "I don't want to take up too much of your time, just wanted to stop by." I stood up. He stood up.
"You need to come back by here when all or your cousins are here."
"They don't know me."
"Yes they do. They use to pass you around and hold you up in the air when you were a baby. They remember you. They be asking me about you." He motioned like someone holding a baby up in the air.
I was a dear in the headlights. "Uh, okay, yeah, well, you call me and let me know. Give me a days notice."
"I will," he said. He walked over to the door, opened it for me, and then opened the screen door.
"And please come by again," he said. "It was real good to see you."
"Good to see you, too," I replied.
He watched me walk to the car. "Be sure you lock your doors. It's dangerous out here. And be careful."
We said our goodbyes, and I got in my car and went on home.
That was that.
It was a decent visit. Much more calmer than our back and forths on the phone.
One thing gave me pause, and I am STILL thinking about it:
"'Lesia, I look at these pictures everyday, and I just cry."
That just left me... I don't know the word. STUNNED? Yeah, that's a good word.
I don't consider myself a particularly important person. Let me correct that: I am very important to myself. Period. LadyLee is important to LadyLee. Anyone else can go sit on a tack, because I am not known to care if people like me, think of me, whatever.
LadyLee is important to LadyLee.
But for him to say that... somehow meant that I was important to someone else.
That's just odd to me. Especially when he doesn't know or see me.
But what had me MORE stunned: I think it is horrible for someone to be in torment like that.
To look at pictures everyday, and CRY? That is a thing of torment.
It gave me pause. I searched my own life on the way home, and I don't remember feeling like that on a daily basis. I made SURE to promise myself that I won't ever feel that way.
This visit with him was brief... no more than 15 minutes, I suppose? But a lot happened in 15 minutes. I am terribly quiet if I don't know someone. He is too. We had as much convo as could be expected.
Will I go see him again? Sure, I don't mind.
Do I want a relationship with him? I don't know. I have never been close to either of my parents. I don't understand this whole "daughter-parent" relationship, dependency, need, care, etc., type of thing. Honestly, I always felt that I was around because it is against the law to dump children on the road.
That is harsh, but I am just being honest with you.
Don't understand it at all, and have, for the most part, had to live without it... have had to live in spite of it.
Something else that made me pause. I have always been proud of myself, for all I have accomplished over the years. How does this man feel, and for over 30 years, he hasn't done anything? I ain't even talking about doing anything for me. Sure, I would like to ask him this, but you know, I ain't gonna get all up in his bizness like that. Plus, I may just be assuming things (that is what I hope). But I have never known him to work. Maybe he gets a disability check. He don't have a car. What has he been doing all these years.
Well, I have been doing much.
Made me pause. I now am TRULY thankful for the vast accomplishments I've had, whether big or small.
And I don't think I will ever whine about some goal I am trying to reach, whether big or small...
For I am in motion... I am trying.
Whether I succeed or fail: I tried.
And I can pat myself on the back for that.
And if these truths or thoughts are all I take away from it? Then that was worth it. Well worth it.
I will go over to see these 20 or 30 cousins when they are all over for some gathering. That's not a problem. I live no more than 10-15 minutes from Milton. And I aint' worry about mess. Don't bother me one bit to scare folk with my credentials. I get a kick out of that if people are snooty, lol.
And if he wants to see me on his own time, one on one, then that is fine too.
I had a goal set to meet my Father by the time I turned 30.
Well, I am 38 years old, and I will be 39 in approximately 24 days.
Boy, if that ain't a goal that wasn't met, then I don't know what is.
But that has been on my "to do" list since I was in my early 20s. Heck, I had PLENTY of time before I reached 30. We could do it any old time.
30 came and went. 40 is peeking over the horizon.
I probably would have chalked it up to a failure if me and my Mama's sister, my Auntie Joyce, weren't talking about this subject matter on and off. I'd told her of how I wanted to meet him, on my own terms, without the influences of my mother in the mix. Auntie Joyce was highly supportive, even gave me his address and phone number.
I think she gave me his information back in 2003 or 2004. I kept the piece of paper with his address and phone number in an envelope in the bottom of a drawer.
I called a couple times and wished him a Happy Father's Day.
(I feel like that had to be the dumbest thing I've ever done. But what do you do when you don't know how to approach someone? Still, it was stupid. You don't shock people like that, and he was shocked speechless, I must say.)
I just left it alone.
I just can't deal with no unnecessary stress, man. Shoot, he has never been a factor in my life. No need for it to look like I'm upsetting his.
Anyway, fast forward to August of last year. Serenity3-0, the LBeezy, and I have these ridiculous (in a great way) threads where we REALLY discuss things ALL day long at times. Somehow we get on the subject of my father. I think, if I can remember correctly, LBeezy and I were reading a book together and the subject came up of a woman visiting her father at his job and how he blew her off. I was DEEPLY disturbed by it.
I told them about my father issues. And The LBeezy made a suggestion that set a light bulb over in my head: she suggested that I should send him a note in the mail with my information, and if he wanted to contact me, he could. She even gave me an August 6th deadline to complete the task.
(LBeezy is a tough Oldgirl. Really though.)
So that's what I did.
Didn't hear anything for a couple of months, I believe. I felt a sense of something, like I had did something to move in some type of direction... And that was about it. I was satisfied with sending a note.
Then he called me out of the blue. I posted about it in Lost and Found Part I and Part II.
That was back in late September.
We've been dealing with some craziness every since then.
Scenario: Me calling him:
"Can I stop by today."
"No, today is not a good day. I've had a bad day today," was his reply.
This was usually followed up by, a week or two later, my phone ringing, me picking up and having to hear:
"When you coming to see me?"
*LadyLee kicks the HARD drug induced eyeroll*
Now, negroes who know me, know how I am. Let's just say, this type of thing pisses me off to the highest of pissivity. It is one of my pet peeves. And I'm not the most patient Oldgirl in the world. I make myself real scarce when it comes to the run around.
So we would set a date. I'd call. He'd say not that day. I'd say OK. And leave it alone. Then he will call back again hollering:
Man. I don't LIKE that type of craziness. AT ALL.
So I had made a decision not to call him up. If he wanted to see me, then whatever. Man, I got waaaay tooo much stuff going on to be caught up in this vicious cycle.
Me and LBeezy figured out something a couple of weeks ago: He's probably ashamed of himself and don't want me seeing him look as bad as he looks.
You see, my father is a lifelong alcoholic. And he still has his Vietnam isshas. Just a lot of stuff going on with him on the mental tip, I suppose (I can only assume, really). My brother sees him off and on, and he has been like "Yo Lee, I saw your Daddy, and he look pretty bad off. You can tell he drank alot."
So we chalked it up to that.
Nothing I can do about that, you know? Shoot, I ain't judging nobody.
He don't know that, though.
From the way he talked, I knew he thought I was some big time doctor. This is furthest thing from the truth. Even though my name has a "Dr." at the beginning of it, ya'll who know me in my personal life know one thing:
I am just an Oldgirl.
No sparkle. No shine. No bling.
I drive a beater. My gear of choice is sweats and sneakers. They know I will straight up come to work with a head rag on my head (like I did this morning).
I am just an Oldgirl.
So I took all of this into consideration. Tried to understand.
LBeezy would question me about this, off and on. (Beezy, I thought you would start a sanging "Kume-bah-yaaaah, LadyLee, Kume-bah-yaaaaaaaaah!!")
(Thanks for listening and putting up with my rants, LBeezy. That means much to me:)
I made a decision that I wasn't gonna call anymore more. He was going to have to get over it.
Nevertheless, there were more conversations.
"Yo," I say just as loud as he does.
"When you coming to see me?"
"I can't catch up with you!"
"Where you at right now?"
"Getting off from work."
"Because I'm going home. Been working all day. I am tired. I'm going home, fixing something to eat, and I am going to bed."
"I want to see you before I croak."
"Uh, yeah. And?"
"Come see me."
**insert neck breaking eye roll here**
"I drive through your neighborhood when I cut through to go to the Farmer's market, Milton. I be looking out the window to see if you walking the streets."
"Would you recognize me, 'Lesia?"
"I don't know. I was gonna just lean my head out the window and yell 'You Milton?'"
**insert his HARD laughter here**
(Uh, I didn't think it was that funny).
"I would recognize you, 'Lesia."
"No you wouldn't."
"I will always recognize the baby."
*My turn to holler with laughter REAL loud*
"Why you laughing, girl? I'll always recognize the baby."
(Man... that was TOO much for me.)
"What are you talking about? I'm just about 40 years old, Milton!"
So we had one more round of him wailing about me coming over, me calling, him saying it wasn't a good time.
"I love you, 'Lesia."
"Do you love me?"
"I don't know you."
"I love you. Always have."
*palm of hand to forehead*
"I love you" is rarely heard around these parts. It is not spoken. Lovers have had to drag it out of me, lol. I say such things with a fist bump or something. I'll do something special for you. That's love to me. I rarely hear those words or even say them to anyone. They unnerve me.
UGH. I did not feel like dealing with any of this. And I have been very skittish this week for whatever reason. Not quite irritable, just skittish.
Then, lo and behold, he actually allows me to come over there. Didn't have to hear "Today is not a good day."
And I actually go over there...
On Tuesday night...
To be continued.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Honeydew Green and Cream:
In the aim of going for some ol' Delta ish... crimson and cream.
Dr. Sunshine, a Delta, said that red was too dark. She gave me a keychain to match colors. As a result, we have the following version of "crimson and cream":
These aren't due until around Mother's day, so at least I will have plenty of time.
I found an old picture of her on my blog... sitting with my brother at Red Lobster!
My brother was a host there at the time, in 2005 or '06. I was happy, because I thought that meant free shrimps! But the boy kept bringing those dayum cheese biscuits. LOL
Grandma turns 80 years old today!
Good-ness! I want to make it to THAT age. Grandma has seen it ALL, ain't she?
So, Happy Birthday Grandma!
She doesn't have a computer, but I thought I would just post it.
But I called her this morning and wished her a Happy Birthday. I didn't get a gift for her. I usually take her to lunch and a movie, and take her to her favorite Christian Bookstore and let her pick out a few books. I may try to do that real soon.
Grandma keeps a tight schedule, and I better check with her a week in advance to make plans. Forgot to do that this time, so oh well...
But I had a "gift" for her. I let her talk to my work group superhero, the Infamous Hen-Dog.
She's always asking about him, after meeting him in 2005 at Thanksgiving at my house.
"How's that young fella doing? He's such a handsome fella!"
Then she kicks the hard giggle.
So, he talked to her for a minute. "How's my lil' girlfriend doing?"
Auntie Joyce, if you are reading this: we gonna hear about THAT for a lonnnnng time!!
I think THAT made grandma's day. That's what I call a happy birthday #80 to remember!
Grandma got herself a lil' boyfriend! LOL!!
So Happy Birthday, Grandma! And many more:)
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
And I learned much about character, respect, and integrity, and community assistance that day..
Enjoy. And learn(?)
(Dedicated to that Botanical Chick Carleen, who seems to like the hardcore posts, lol)
From what I hear, every 'hood supposedly has a Mayor, i.e., one who knows all of the neighborhood gossip, illegal activity, etc.
The Mayor of my 'Hood is a crackhead known as SNAKE...
Snake is the Ultimate Hustler. He is quite industrious, he is! The owner of a vacant rundown house down the street from me, next door to my friend and coworker The Infamous Hen-Dog's crib, left the water service on (how stupid!). So Snake, being the crafty hustler that he is, has been operating a rather lucrative full service car wash corporation from that house for several months.
It was a bright and sunny day, and I was sitting on the rock retainer wall in front of Hen-Dog's house with our neighbor Kim, going over some details in my manuscript, when a skanky looking prostitute name Clara walked down the cross street next to my street. She had, um, a few choice words for Snake...
"Snake, you "mother*****", I don't appreciate you brangin' no johns over to my man's house."
Snake, who was washing a car at the time, looked her way.
"Clara, don't act like you ain't no hoe! I was just trying to make sure you got some business. I was trying to help you out, with your stupid ass."
Snake was loud, but calm... They fussed a little more. Snake went back to concentrating on the cars he was washing, and talking to a customer sitting in one of the many chairs that were in the driveway of the vacant house. Kim and I went back to reviewing a chapter of my manuscript.
"Snake, you a no good disrespectful mother******," the highly perturbed trick yelled. "Don't you EVER disrespect me and my man like that, you hear me mother******??!! You ain't right.You ain't no damn good! "Snake threw down the waterhose and stomped down the street towards the pissed off prostitute. It kind of reminded me of that scene in the very beginning of Menace II Society, where Larenz Tate's character Mad Dog threw down his change and shot the Asian store owners...
I have to admit that I was quite terrified, because it looked as if a serious ass-whooping was about to take place. I know one thing... I heard some highly creative cuss words that day that I'd never heard before. Apparently my neighbor Kim was use to such behavior, because she sat there next to me and continued sipping beer from a wine glass, as was her usual habit.
Poor Clara retreated, needless to say... I have never seen anyone get embarassed and cussed out like that! After such a harsh tongue lashing, she scurried her behind right on up the street.
Snake turned to me, grabbed my hand in a hearty handshake, and said,
"Welcome to the Hood!"
Snake then apologized for his bad behavior, but Clara was insulting his character and integrity.
"LadyLee, I'm sorry, but that bitch had the nerve to insult my character and integrity, and I can't have that. She know she a hoe, and I was trying to bring her a customer. She know she need the money. Damn, I try so hard to assist the people of this neighborhood..."
Hmm... Character and Integrity... Assisting the people of the neighborhood.
I got a hard and complicated lecture on character and integrity that day, and I get the same lecture every week... I just stood there like a deer in the headlights, and listen to him drop such complicated knowledge.
I'm not sure if I will EVER understand the intricate and complicated details of hood politics...
But Mayor Snake does an excellent job of keeping my car washed and my leaves raked...
For a small fee of course...
Then he disappears down the street to get a good hit, I suppose...
All I gotta say is... SNAKE is one heck of a Mayor!
Monday, January 12, 2009
(I ain't all THAT chipper, LOL)
The current temperature in the ATL is 33 degrees.
It is COLD.
Uh, maybe I should buy a coat. Maybe I should buy a pair of gloves. Maybe I should even buy a hat.
Hmmm... I will have to think on that.
My Weekend. As usual, it went by pretty fast. I tell you, we need to reverse this thing... five day weekends, two day work weeks!
We are on a 30 day fast (fruit, vegetables, water) at church, which started last Monday, so I spent most of Saturday morning trying to get that stuff together for the week. I was caught flat-footed last week, and was winging it. I wasn't going to get caught looking silly this week, so I actually went and did some grocery shopping.
So... that has been interesting. I may write about that as time goes on.
Then, on Saturday afternoon, I went to Green Eyed Bandit's 12-year old son basketball game. They lost the game. I was sitting there thinking "Now, if I'm going to drive 30 MINUTES to a game, ya'll best win!" LOL! Na'wl, I wasn't thinking that. But they were undefeated, and now they are not. Hope I ain't a jinx!
Saturday night, I went yarn shopping. I have 4-5 blankets planned for the year, one a season, I suppose. So it's best for me to get all my yarn shopping out of the way.
Sunday morning, I got up and did a few chores, lounged around the house. We had a Triple F Possee (Financial Freedom Fighters) meeting, which is now open up to folk outside of the bookclub, so there were a GANG of people there. Even my sister Kentucky joined the group. GO KENTUCKY!
I talked to LadyTee on the way home from the meeting.
"Awww," she said. "You and Kentucky having some sisterly bonding time."
"I don't think so," I said. "That was a meeting. That ain't bonding time."
"That's right," Kentucky chimed in. "Sisterly bonding time is during Law and Order Marathons.
Really though. "Duumm-Duumm"
That's what I'm talking about.
Although Kentucky has been grilling me down about my past relationships and what not. She's at that age, you know, late 20's, when you figure out that you REALLY don't know it all. Ya'll remember that time. You need to talk to folks. Hmmm...
Post and Quote of the week: from Hawa Bond over at the Fackin' Truth blog. She answered that really tough question "Who Are YOU?", and did an amazing self assessment.
So my Post of the week is Git Yo' Head Right (The Self Assessment Series) PART 1A - "WHO ARE YOU?"
From which I gleaned the quote of the week:
"...who I was yesterday, I may not be tomorrow, because of what I learn today."
That right there is deep off the pages. Ocean DEEP.
I tell you, the people who have answered that question... I have really learned how deep of a treasure chest of experiences you all have. We all offer a wealth of experiences, that's for sure.l
And that is something that is much more valuable than gold.
2 words: GIT SOME!
This morning. I actually got to work early this morning, 8:30 a.m. instead of 10:00 a.m. I need to leave early. My father wants to see me (so he says). Now, I've been talking about this for the LONGEST, but I don't know if it's going to go down or not.
I have some thoughts about some interesting convos to post, but I will hold them. The LBeezy knows my thoughts on all of this, but I will talk about it later this week.
So I plan to leave here today around 4:30 p.m., TRY to catch up with him around 5 p.m., and he has exactly one hour of my time. I have to be somewhere else by 6:45 p.m. We'll see if this jumps off or not.
On to other things...
Anyway, I was walking down the hall this morning, back towards the lab, and my boss, The Darth Sista, was walking in my direction. I am working on not completely seizing up when I see her. We have been at odds, and she has been somewhat pleasant to me since the latter part of last week (I don't know WHAT is up with that).
So, she was like "I want you to meet Roger."
*LadyLee seizes up*
"Roger is here for a week from another state to work in our group for a week."
*LadyLee eyes Darth Sista suspiciously*
She fusses at me a little, because I am giving her the *gas face* and am about to walk away.
This "Roger" she speaks of is in the side hallway, trying on a labcoat, talking to one of my group senior chemists.
Roger is a tall hershey bar dark chocolate sumthin' sumthin'.
WHOA. Wasn't expecting that on a cold Monday morning.
*Ladylee unseizes IMMEDIATELY*
He has some really soft hands there.
I met him, did the "Dr. LadyLee" thing to make sure dude know who he is dealing with (meaning don't come up in here trying to bogard), and kept it moving.
He look a little on the young side. I don't know, and I don't plan on finding out.
LOL! Can't wait 'til he meets my coworker Ol' Mean Ass Cynthia... She might send dude running up outta here! (She is THAT mean).
I hope he's a hard worker, because dude is going to work this week. We don't have enough people in our group, and uh-rah, Shawty better throw on a labcoat and GIT TA WORKING!
Should be an adventurous week! LOL!
However adventurous it is, I'm going to have a good week... on purpose.
Ya'll be sure to do the same.
Friday, January 09, 2009
Today is PAY DAY!!!
*LadyLee smiling like Miss Celie smiled*
Hold on, ya'll... let me count my cash. Yeah, let me make sure it's all here. You know, management be tripping...
This stack of bread feels mighty right, but it might not be right... Let me just be sure about this...
Oh yeah, baby! It's all here!!! Oh yes...
There is NOTHING like PAYDAY!
The Green-Eyed Bandit is reading this right now thinking, "Oh joy, now LadyLee can put some cash toward her debt."
NO, DEAR BANDIT!!
Now it's 'bout to be all about that "bling-bling" baby!!!
*Green Eyed Bandit spews coffee, all over everything and everybody*
Yeah right. She'd wrang my neck if I balled out.
But...She'll be happy to know that I get two raises over the next 2 months, about 8% worth.
Oh yeah! Increase in these times of decrease.
(Ya'll can listen to the news if you want to. Ya'll better be sure that something different is coming out of your mouth!)
In 30 days, we're going on a cruise. It leaves port on my birthday.
I've never been on a vacation as an adult. So this is something new for me.
So, I plan on going through some of my summer clothing this weekend, doing a little packing... yeah already.
I have a busy weekend coming up.
-Financial Freedom Possee meeting.
-library, to do a little writing
-etc... who knows what else I'll get into?
I posted everyday this week? Aren't you proud of me? (Don't get use to that!)
I'm going to have a great weekend... on purpose.
You be sure to do the same:)
Thursday, January 08, 2009
I had one last request from my 12 page "WHO Are YOU?" entry in my diary. I told Serenity3-0 and That Southern Black Gal to pick anything from the 13 point list, and I MAY discuss it.
I was hoping that they would pick the easy safe stuff.
Serenity picked I am quietly compassionate.
Simple enough. I don't know why she asked about that one. We get into some DEEP discussions on a daily basis seems like. I do believe we have discussed such. And she knows me pretty well, the good (and the bad).
Odd, but pretty safe pick.
Sherri, aka Ms.Blackliterature.com chose I am God's beloved.
Again, simple enough. I like Ol' Sherri. (You alright with me, gal). She would choose that one. Nice safe pick.
But then, here comes That Southern Black Gal. She picked an entry that uh, I don't discuss in these parts.
Her comment: "I never knew about the chronic illness so I'll like to read about that. If you are up to sharing it."
I think I screamed inside when I read her comment.
*Ladylee hurls self out of window*
You see, at the House of LadyLee, we likes to keep it smurfy.
But Serenity3-0 requires me to do some nonsmurfy posts. If I don't, she starts sniping me with drive-by insults in the comment section. She seems to think I am a Poignant Oldgirl and have deeper things to talk about.
But that Southern Black Gal chose I am a woman living with a chronic illness.
*big HUGE alien break-dancing crickets*
I was kicking rocks after that request.
Hmm... Should I discuss this?
Of course. I like Southern Black Gal.
She and that doggone Serenity always trying to learn something.
Heck, it's my blog... might as well. And people who know me know what's up.
So, why not?
It's nothing I am ashamed of. I don't talk about it because it is NOT a crutch. I also think I don't talk about it because negroes get to tripping, start treating me like some fragile bird, start acting like they have to pull out calendars and mark off a time to come to my funeral.
NEWSFLASH: I'm coming to your funeral before you come to mine, honey.
Yeah, that's a nasty thing to say, but shoot, better think positive!
Let's be BOLD and post this personal journal entry up on the walls of the House of LadyLee.
This one right here is for one of my favorite bloggers, That Southern Black Gal.
I am a woman living with Lup.us.
That is such an ugly word. I don't care to even speak it. I don't know who would come up with such a word. I think it is from the french word for "wolf". I don't remember. It just sound a hot mess.
What I DO remember is the year 2002, sitting up on the examination table, awaiting the doctor's interpretation of my test results. When he said "Looks like you have lupu.s", I didn't know what to think.
My first thoughts were of people I had heard of who had died from it.
Back in the 90's, I saw a character on one of my favorite soap operas dying from it. She was standing at a window, talking, then she took her last breath. I remember thinking, man, whatever she had, that lu.pus thing, I don't want that!
A friend's sister had died from it. She ended up adopting her deceased sister's young son.
I even heard of others dying from it.
Three words came out of my mouth while sitting there on the examination table. And I said it calmly, like I was talking about the weather:
"Is it fatal?"
I already knew the answer. Just wanted to see what he had to say.
"No, it's not. You'll probably outlive us all."
Not the answer that I THOUGHT I would hear.
He said something else that shocked my socks off:
"You're in the right place. My wife is a specialist in that, autoimmune disease. She's the best in the southeast for lu.pus. I'll go talk to her. I want you to see her today."
I spoke the words of Miss Sophia that day.
"I know there is a God."
I was happy that day. There was an answer to why I had suddenly dropped 100 pounds and had no energy and hurled everything I tried to eat. There was a reason why every joint in my body hurt like hell. There was a reason I slept 23 hours a day.
I was happy... and very sick.
But I know what it's like to be knocking at death's door, the body shutting down, preparing to die. I know what it feels like to have to learn to walk again.
At the same time, I know what it feels like to be thankful, and even some 7-8 years after the the diagnosis, being able to take care of myself, being independent.
These days I am fine. But my Doctor has been on me.
I work too doggone much.
She asked me a very pointed question a few months ago:
"Is your life important or is that job more important?"
As we sat there staring at each other, we knew what the answer was:
I need to learn, if I am not feeling well, to be quick to pull back and get my rest. That is something I still struggle with. I have improved in this sticky point, but I can do MUCH better.
The workplace management is NOT sympathetic.
The job doesn't care about me.
Hell, the JOB don't even care about the JOB.
So what does that say?
Okay, Southern Black Gal.... that is all I wrote that day in my journal about that.
Man! I must've had a JACKED UP day at work that day. DANG. Why was I tripping at the end of that post?
I don't know. I go to the doctor every 4-6 weeks, and my doctor is usually asking me about the job while she pokes and squeezes my joints. That's all she wants to yack about: job, job, JOB!
So when I see her, I have to make sure that I have a FULL speech together about my job: how much time I have taken off, how many hours I work a day, have some things written out.
My job is the single worst point of stress in my life.
Stress causes my lu.pus to "flare" up, i.e., sudden worsening of symptoms VERY suddenly.
So she be on me like a hawk, hemming and hawwing, questioning me down. (She is my bootleg therapist, and happy to serve as such).
Yes we have had many an argument. I have bust out crying. She stares, unfazed by my tears, gives me tough talk. She always wins. And when I do what she says, I feel and do better.
It was hard to write about this in my journal. I don't think that much about it. I only write about it when I have to go to the doctor's office, and she and I discuss something interesting that day.
This disease is very hard to diagnose, as it is mistaken for so many other diseases. All I know is there is no cure. And it is brought out by some type of stress.
I have had it since the age of 24, but was diagnosed at age 32. I've met several women with it, who you would never know had it. We all have different symptoms, and have had some hospital stays.
My symptoms over the years are: severe anemia (which we seem to have straighten out at times, achy joints, pleuresy (on my left lung), and heart inflammation. I have rashes, but you can't see them because I am dark-skin. My sinuses aren't the best, as I have been known to get sinus infections, and my nose bleeds sometimes (not lately). I have bouts of insomnia. I have some cognitive issues, i.e., I have a terribly SHORT attention span, and I sometimes have a little trouble writing. I usually catch that quickly and solve it quickly.
I also have some alop.ecia, i.e., no hair growth (well, a little). I am taking a chemotherapy drug right now that is giving me a little male pattern baldness, and that REALLY irks me.
Now... if that's all I have to get "irked" about, well, I am doing REAL good.
When I get a cold, or the flu, it is hellacious. And scary. I was sick for a week of my Christmas vacation, and was VERY happy I didn't have to work. I must say, it was good to be able to not be in and out of the house... just to be able to rest, and get over my cold without a whole bunch of other symptoms coming out.
Somehow my doctor can spot all this BEFORE the onset of the actual cold or flu. (Technology is something else. Goodness).
I get a TON of bloodwork done every month. My blood is a bit jacked up. I look at my blood work results and it looks crazy. Man, there are components of the blood that they didn't even mention to us in school. I've only heard of white blood cells, red blood cells, plasma and platelets. There are a bunch of other components in blood. Shoot, I had to go look that stuff up. Who would've ever known?
Everything else looks pretty normal, though.
The best advice I've gotten about my condition was from a woman with the same thing. I remember looking her up and down, amazed at how healthy she looked. She said:
"Girl, you'll be alright.
You will work.
You will play.
You will live.
But it will knock you down. When your body tells you to slow down or you feel sick, you need to sit down somewhere.
People will think you are lying, but that's their problem, not yours."
Funny... I have passed this advice on to others. Because it is true.
I am still learning the lesson.
My biggest thing now, what I concentrate on more and more each day:
Learning to take better care of myself.
And I think that is key... I think that will make all the difference.
My dearest Southern Black Gal... don't you ever make such a request like that again.
You hear me?
(Just kidding... ask whatever you like of me:)
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
This Semi-Wordless Wednesday has been brought to you by the letter B
(as in LBeezy).
The number 1
(as in, Beezy! You're #1, honey child. Really though).
The color orange
(as in: What's up with the orange pillow laying up there 'cross the bed, Beezy!?)
And by the words "Original Oldgirl".
(as in, "Beezy! The way you hooked that room up... That's that Original Oldgirl ish right there, Shawty!!)
Good job. Please come hook up my space.