Friday, August 31, 2007

Many Have Wondered...

I know I said I would not be duplicating posts on the two blogs I now maintain, and the fact that I am adding this sentence kinda makes it so that I really haven't broken that committment....okay, NOT!...but anyway....

Many have wondered exactly what it was that led to the creation of the person that is ME! Wonder no more fight fans, because right this very moment, right now today, I want to introduce to each and every one of you to the individual responsible for the me that I am. Good, bad, or indifferent, love me or hate me, you can finally meet the responsible party who has started her very own blog which you can find here!!

So please go visit my beautiful Mother's personal space, invite her to join your neighborhoods if you feel so inclined [have no worries about her being my mother....she is a REAL person, with a beautiful spirit, capable of reading, embracing, and allowing even her own daughter to have "radical thoughts" and express them without fear of "Mother Judgement"], or just give her a good old fashioned welcome into the LAND OF BLOG!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

That's No Boy...That Man Is My Son!

When I was 25 years old I had no idea that the single most important thing that would ever happen to me in my lifetime had already happened. My son Ryan was born in November 1989, three months before my own 25th birthday. Now of course I knew that this was a big event, but could I possibly have imagined how big? No way! Obviously with a new baby comes change. I'm not talking about the changes that come with having a baby, I'm talking about the way a woman, particularly a self-reliant, independent thinking, got it all together, motivated woman such as I believed myself to be can change. I've heard it said many times that God does not make mistakes. That notwithstanding, I was positive that God (not I) had made a tragic mistake on the day I discovered I was pregnant. Fortunately for us all and me especially, life creates many opportunities for us to learn that it is a really good thing that we are not God. Thankfully, contrary to our own wishes sometimes, we don't rule the world; because I shudder when I think of all I would have been giving up if I had had it in my power to change the result of that pregnancy test.

As the years went by and Ryan grew up, I found that there were many things I didn't know about myself let alone the world. Being Ryan's Mom taught me to stop and smell the roses, a skill I've tried to pass on to him. Before Ryan, though I believed myself to be a cool cookie, I stressed over just about everything. After Ryan, I learned that there are so many more important things than whatever it was that had me "upset" at one point or another. I was able to go with the flow so much better. I'm sure beyond a shadow of a doubt that having this incredible person in my life changed everything for the better. No matter how hard I think about it, I can find no down side to being his Mom. This baffled me for a long time as I believe every cloud has a silver lining so the reverse has to be true as well. I have reconciled this discrepancy by accepting that the fact that the silver lining that is Ryan has no accompanying cloud is the exception that is necessary to prove the rule.

Today was the first day of Ryan's senior year in high school. Damn! where does the time go? My sweet little baby who used to be unable to dunk on his Little Tykes basketball goal now is 6'2" tall and weighs 280 pounds. He is a Varsity football player playing both Offensive guard and Nose Tackle. He is researching colleges and moving at the speed of light towards the day when he will make that first real step towards a life that is all but totally independent of mine. A part of me feels a sense of loss at the impending severing of the "unbilical cord" that though cut at his birth has continued to connect us as he has grown up. A bigger part of me however feels a greater sense of pride than I ever thought was possible. I feel pride that he has turned out to be an even better person than I anticipated. I feel pride because of the role I had in helping him become the person he is. Mostly, I feel pride because even though he was raised almost single-handedly by a woman whose father died when she was only nine years old, my son is no longer a boy, he is a MAN; and a damned good MAN too if I do say so myself!!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

People Who Need People

Today has been a hard day. It is the PO's birthday, and all I want is to be with him.

Trying not to allow myself to slip too far into the sadness I feel about the current state of things between us, I did everything I could to stay busy and not spend too much time alone today. This morning I attended Ryan's football team's pre-season scrimmage which was a lot of fun. Following that, I took my Mom and sister to brunch and hung out with them into the late afternoon. Then I came home where Ryan and I lounged around the house doing not much of nothing.

Nevertheless, I found myself home alone tonight when Ryan left to attend a Rams pre-season game with some of his buddies. Gradually, I lost my tenuous footing and began to descend once again into the emptiness I've been engulfed in lately. Things were getting really, really bad, and then it came to me...I needed somehow to get in touch with myself. I needed to be reminded of who I am and who I want to be. Pondering this thought for awhile, I finally remembered where I could go to get myself together and so I went here!

Believe me when I tell you that reading this again HEALED MY SOUL! Right now, I am feeling as Just Right as I have felt in a long time and I have the ORIGINAL ORIGINAL OLDGIRL to thank for it.

OG I wrote in your comments long ago that you actually SEE me. Then I was thrilled by it, and NOW, I am so blessed by it, because by seeing me the way I used to see myself, you have helped me to see and believe what I will be again.

If you don't already know you better ask somebody, YOU GOTTA HAVE FRIENDS!!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Updates and Introductions

I have started a new blog on VOX. Not to worry, I also plan to keep this blog, because plain and simply, I Love It! However, I will be doing some writing over there as well. My new blog can be found at this address and it is called Write Right Now!

An update on the current status of my relationship with the PO can be found here for those who are interested. A year ago, I wrote this post, and now.... Wow! Talk about your 525600 minutes, could I really have been that far off base?

In the future, I will be posting here as well as there, and though the posts will not be duplicated, I will provide links back and forth whenever I think those of you who are accustomed to and/or prefer to come visit with me here might be interested in something I write over there! Of course I would love to have any and all of you to stop in over there as often as you'd like as my intent over there is to publish some of the writing from the "literary" projects I am working on at any given time for public review and comment/critique.

So in the words of Aleta Adams, "I don't care how you get there just get there if you can"!!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


How much of what happens to you is your fault? If we are the captains of our own ships and the masters of our own destinies, then who is to blame when our ships run ashore or we arrive at the last place on earth we ever wanted to be?

I believe in Karma. I believe that you will pretty much get out of the world what you send into the world. For the most part, this is not a bad thing because it keeps me cognizant of how I treat those I come in contact with. I work hard to be kind, to be considerate, to pay attention to the needs of others. In the words of the late June Carter-Cash, I spend a lot of time just trying to matter.

When good things happen to us, most of us accept them as par for the course. We sit back and "let the good times roll" as if we in some way are entitled to the good things coming our way. I find this way of thinking acceptable because I believe in karma. However, I find it funny that many, [maybe even most] of us almost injure ourselves as we pat ourselves on the back congratulationg ourselves on having "earned" the good things we are enjoying only to lament our misfortune while moaning "Why me?", when the bad things show up.

The problem is, that karma is NOT just about good things. This being the case, why do we not accept personal responsibility when things in our lives are not so great? Why is it that when things fall apart, what is happening in our lives is no longer a consequence of our own actions; at least not in our own minds?

I find it very difficult to subscribe to both of these trains of thought. In my opinion, if I can take credit for the good things that occur in my life, then conversely, I must accept at least some of the blame for the bad. Claiming responsibility for the good but not the bad is like claiming "partial paternity".

Right now I am dealing with one of the most difficult situations I have ever personally had to face. Intellectually speaking, it would be easy to convince myself that the position I currently find myself in is not my own fault. I could very easily point fingers and most of those who love me would agree that I am not responsible for the way things are turning out right now. However, I can't go along with this even though in some ways it would make what I am going through easier. I can't go along with this thought process because even though I feel I have done everything I could to change the situation, I still feel that I have in some way fallen short of what I should have done or could have done. I've always had major issues with giving up on anything too soon; in many ways, I think giving up too soon is worse than not ever trying at all. Also, I can't help but flip the script to a scenario in which the final outcome is positive and when I do, I realize that if indeed a positive outcome had actually been the case, I would whole-heartedly accept responsibility for that being so.

Additionally, believing in karma as I do [whether it is good or bad], I find myself wondering what the hell I did that was so bad that I subsequently deserve the pain of my current situation? I find myself thinking of that movie "Defending Your Life" as I replay my own life trying to discover exactly when and where I went so terribly, terribly wrong. I want to find everyone I might ever have caused any kind of pain and apologize to them in an attempt to correct my own karma. Unfortunately, karma just doesn't work like that...does it? (Sharon asked with her fingers crossed and the slightest glimmer of hope sparkling in her eyes.)

So here I am, trying to figure it all out. I am a spiritual person but not a religious person. Those in my inner circle who are religious talk about "letting GOD order my steps". I thought that was what I was doing. It always throws me how "religious" friends see GOD all up in the middle of everything as long as things are good, and the minute things get shaky they tell you that the problem is that you are trying to order your own steps. I always wonder just when it was that the driver of this vehicle switched.

At this point, I am bewildered. I am adrift in the ocean, and though I am a good swimmer, I have no life jacket, I am tired, and there is no land in sight. There is no real point to this post, and no real conclusion except that I just wish someone could please tell me, when do you know you have truly done enough and how the hell does one ever know for sure?

Monday, August 13, 2007

Let's Get Serious

Last night I had the distinct pleasure of chatting that infamous Oldgirl Ladylee up on the telly. She and I are both writers who aspire to be published authors, so as I'm sure you can imagine the conversations could go on forever.

I love, love, love talking to the OG because no one else on earth motivates me to get serious about my writing like she does. From talk of technique to crash courses on creativity this sista schools me in the gentlest, firmest way possible. I probably have mentioned before that I met the OG in a writer's seminar back in 2005, and man am I glad I did. That first meeting went something like this:

Sharon: (showing up late for a crowded seminar and standing in the center aisle with bewildered look on her face as she tries to find a seat)

Other participants: "SEATS TAKEN!"

LL: "You can sit here", as she moves over so I can sit in the seat next to her.

Sharon: "Thanks!"

Sharon: "Where is my pen?" (whispering as she searches for the pen she forgot to bring)

LL: "You can use this one." (handing over her own pen to this disheveled basket case)

Sharon: "Thanks!"

Sharon: "Wow! That was really good; but I still need more information about writing details."

LL: "Yeah, that was pretty good, that Anita seems to know her stuff. I know this great book I will send you..."

And that as they say was the start of a great friendship. The funny thing is, that in the two years that have flown by since we first met, nothing much has changed. She is still very focused and dedicated to writing something everyday. While I on the other hand still have very little focus and am still chronically late, bewildered, and trying to figure out technique. As a matter of fact, last night's conversation ended like this:

LL: "I know this great book I will send you..."

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Short and Sweet

One of the primary reasons I started this blog was to gain more experience with the craft of writing. After more than a year, I am proud to say I have learned some things. One of the things I have learned, is that I am LONG-WINDED.

If you know me personally, you already know that this particular trait doesn't only apply to my writing! That notwithstanding, I have decided to dedicated myself to posting more posts that are short and sweet in an attempt to hone my skills.

This is not to say that there will be no more "typical" Ms. Just Write Now rants....I don't have that much self control. However, I will be making the effort to post more frequent, shorter posts and see what happens.

The journey begins....

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Unused Gifts....Got Any?

Ever received a gift you loved....but then never used? I'm wondering if this is a phenomenon that happens to us all because I know it has happened to me more than once. It is Christmas time or your birthday, and someone you know presents you with a beautifully wrapped package. Upon opening it, you exclaim with wonder because somehow they have managed to get you exactly what you wanted. Why then is it that you somehow never got around to using it?

Maybe it was a blouse or other article of clothing that was too dressy for your regular life and you simply didn't get invited to spend any time in Oprah's life. Maybe it was something you always wanted to try like a class in pilates or weight training but you just never got around to it because you just couldn't find the time. Or maybe, like me you're just a big old procrastinator who simply put off using your treasure for much longer than you ever intended until you forgot you had even received it. Whatever the reason, I was thinking about the giver of the gift and how they would feel if they knew that you had not/ were not/ are not enjoying your perfect gift. I imagine there would be some sense of disappointment, and at least a little bit of the "why don't you just spit in my eye" sensation.

In my opinion, this situation is very analogous to how GOD must feel about unused potential.

I think most would agree that potential is a gift from GOD, so when we fail to live up to our potential or worse yet, don't even make the effort to reach our potential, in my opinion it is much like spitting in the eye of GOD.

I am a lover of potential, in myself and in others. I seek it out. I encourage its development and do whatever I can to nurture and nourish it when I encounter it. This is a good thing......except when it is not.

As a woman whose deepest desire since forever has been to be one-half of a great relationship [and maybe even a great marriage one day], my affinity for looking for potential in others has not necessarily worked in my favor. Potential can be a tricky thing especially in the arena of relationships, because what it is in a sense, is the promise of things yet to come. It is today's fantasy of what tomorrow's reality MIGHT be.

Black women who are single and successful in their chosen fields and over the age of 40 often get a bad reputation for being unwilling to "give a brotha a chance". We are often accused of "chasing the white collars" or worse yet, "chasing the white boys". I can only speak for myself when I say that this assessment is completely off the mark when it comes to most of the black women I know [including myself].

When I meet a brother and take my "inventory" of what he has to offer compared to what is on my "list" of what I'd like in a mate, I often make allowances based on a brother's potential for things that might currently be "missing". Now don't get me wrong, I'm not talking "earning potential" here as the only monetary requirement I have is that the brother be handling his as I am handling mine, then together we can surely manage to handle ours. When I speak about making allowances based on potential, I'm thinking of situations such as the brother who is not very worldly who I can see in the future broadening his horizons, or the individual who isn't great at verbalizing his feelings but who through his actions demonstrates a kind and caring nature; even the brother who finds it difficult to stay level-headed when angry and thus can't truly have a constructive disagreement without requiring a "cool down" period. These are the kinds of things I typically make allowances for in the hope that I can help them get to their potential in these areas.

What I have learned so far though is that this probably is NOT the way to go. There is a definite shelf-life on potential, and as they say, "old dogs and new tricks don't mix". Unfortunately I am finding that if a brotha has reached the ripe, old age of forty-eleven and still is not in the neighborhood of his potential per his own assessment, it is most likely a destination he will never reach. Worse even, someway, somehow I always seem to end up [at least in his mind] being the reason his trip was aborted even if I just arrived on the scene only a short while ago. I'm guessing the same thing applies in reverse for the brothers out there; however, you guys very rarely get accused of "chasing white collars" even though "chasing white gurls" is a whole 'nother post :)

The long and short of it is that we single, successful, sistas over forty are trying our best to work with the brothas. On behalf of all of us, I'm asking that the brothas please try to work with themselves and stop hating on us if you choose not to.

Before he sends us to our lives here on earth, GOD loads us up with gifts. Some are obvious like a beautiful smile, great personality, and natural talents such as the ability to sing, dance, or excel at sports. Others are less obvious, and require some effort on our part to become obvious; but believe me when I say that these "not so obvious" gifts are no less valuable. As a matter of fact, I believe that GOD expects more from us when it comes to the kind of gifts represented by potential because it is one of the few opportunities we get while here on earth to actually be involved in a direct partnership with GOD.

So here's to hoping you are allowing your partnerships with GOD and with each other to flourish by way of maximizing your potential; I know I am working as hard as I can on mine.