Thursday, January 31, 2008

Overwhelming Response to Use Me Up Post...

A quick visit to the comments section of the previous post "Ever Wish You Could Just Get USED UP?" illustrates the fact that this post sparked a very active conversation. A myriad of explanations could be given for what it was that drove so much interest, such as:

  • My fellow bloggers' concerns that I might do something crazy to secure sexual satisfaction

  • The fact that the post contained the words [I MISS SEX] in bright red letters

  • The words sex and fantasy jumped from the page causing some confusion as to exactly what kind of blog this actually is

  • Any number of plausible explanations exist.

However, having gleefully read all of the comments posted and even responded to some, I think the reason that this post generated so much interest is very simple -- on some level it struck a chord in every one of those who read it. Whether or not a particular individual agreed or disagreed with what Ms. Just Write Now was trying to communicate, each and every one felt compelled for the same reason to respond...on some level, we all relate, acknowledge, identify with, or comprehend that there are some definite concerns revolving around sex, intimacy, and relationships for folks like us.

So much of what was shared in the comments hit paydirt with me, but two commenters in particular managed to provide greater clarity and personal edification on the subject for me: Ali's Zay and CapCity. For those who remain intrigued by this conversation, I am humbly requesting that the articulate blogger Ali's Zay please pick up the thread of this tattered fabric and continue to weave a beautiful cloth of deeper understanding. After reading his eloquent comments, I for one am truly interested to read more. Secondly, I am embedding a trailer of a very interesting documentary that was provided by CapCity, one of the captivating bloggers whose acquaintance I have just recently made and on whose new blog CAPCHA U...In Luv With Life, yours truly was welcomed as a contributor. Not only does this documentary address some of the issues discussed in the "...Get USED UP" post, but it appears from the trailer to delve into many other issues that I believe many of us might be concerned about.

Both of these phenomenal bloggers have also recently published new literary works and though neither of them knows I'm even writing about them or their works in this post, I encourage anyone reading this post to check them out! You can click here to read more about the project that Ali's Zay has produced and here to find information on CapCity's endeavor. I have read excerpts from both works and immediately moved to order each book as the excerpts were exceptionally well written in my opinion, leaving me anxious to read the finished products. Do yourself a favor and check these projects out....I promise you won't regret that you did!

Now, click play to view the trailer and hopefully we can continue this at Ali's Zay's spot soon!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Ever Wish You Could Just Get USED UP?

The other day while driving to work I heard this song on the radio...

Since I was a little girl, I have had an affinity for this song. I can remember riding to school with my mother, brother, and sister and Bill Withers would come on the radio singing this song and I would sing along at the top of my lungs inside my head (as I have never been blessed with singing ablility my family members were not having me singing out loud outside my head in the car). Thinking back to those days, I don't believe I even knew what he was singing about, but I loved this song.

Well, as I drove myself to work the other day listening to this same song on the radio (and singing out loud outside my head ;) I can assure you that I knew EXACTLY what Mr. Withers was singing about and it was then that I knew that once again I had a problem...

My problem is that I miss sex...A lot!

Finding myself quite unexpectedly single yet again, I am living without sex, yet again. Not being a woman who sees casual sex as a viable option for herself for more reasons than I want to expound upon here in this post, this is simply the way things are. It is what it is. I accept that.


Upon hearing Mr. Withers' soulful rendition of Use Me, I found myself fantasizing. Now don't get too excited because there will be no sharing of any good fantasies in this space..."get real people", my Mother reads this blog! What I was going to say was that I found myself wondering "What if I were a different kind of woman? What if I could get past my necessity to feel an emotional connection with a guy before feeling comfortable about sexual connections? What would it be like to be that woman?"

Right about now, the idea of "getting used up" is not such a bad thing; at least not on the surface! The idea of being more cavalier in my sexual attitudes on the other hand is driven by a deeper, underlying fear that I have felt more often than I care to acknowledge. I find myself wondering sometimes if this is an irrational fear or if it is one that other women share with me. When I consider the number of times since I first became sexually active that I have found myself for extended periods of time experiencing what I call "self-imposed celibacy" I sometimes become anxious. My anxiety revolves around the fear of one day finding that while living in one of these periods of self-imposed celibacy, my desire to have sex at all will have vanished or that I might one day find that what was optimistically expected to be just a little while has turned into the rest of my sexual lifetime. Maybe other women don't worry about this at all, but I am primarily a long-range planner and as such find it virtually impossible not to consider the long-term ramifications of most any action I take.

I know women to whom these very things have happened. I know women who are still what I consider to be young sexually speaking, who have lived without sex for decades, even scores of years during which they should have been at their sexual peak and enjoying great quantities (and if truly blessed) great quality of sex. During a time when they should be blissfully enjoying the joys of sex that come with the maturity and self-assurance that increasing age brings, these still sexually young, attractive women are seemingly standing on the sidelines and allowing their sexual primes to pass them by simply because they are not half of a committed coupledom. This seems to be especially true of many single, black women between the ages of 35 and 65. Take a moment and think about it...think of the girlfriends, co-workers, mothers, grandmothers, aunts, and great-aunts in your life...I bet you too know at least one and probably more than one black woman who somehow found herself single between the ages of 35 to 45 years of age and never again having seriously connected romantically with a man remained single and without sex for the remainder of her life.

How the hell does that happen?! I don't know about you, but I don't hear of many men in this age group going for decades without sex and if on occasion I do hear of accounts where this has happened to a man, believe me you, it is an isolated occurrence. So I ask you, "Why is this such a common fact of life for so many black women?"

We all know there are many answers to this question, from the way most of us were raised, to our attempts to protect our reputations, to a fear of HIV/AIDS and other achronyms, no one has to outline for us the underlying causes of so many wasted sexual lifetimes; however, does anyone besides me wonder why this is allowed to be, and what we as black women can do differently to avoid the same fate as so many of our predecessors? Why don't our male contemporaries seem to be faced with this eventuality and how is it that they seem to be getting plenty...are they for some reason unbeknownst to me, not susceptible to the same sexual tragedies that we are? Can someone tell me how can I be down if this is the case? Or, are we black women drinking the proverbial kool-aid and in actuality brothers aren't getting any more sex than we are? Wouldn't that be terrible...finding out that NONE of us are getting any?

I don't know the answers, and most of these questions are rhetorical at best. There are no easy answers, but from where I stand as a soon to be 43 year old, single, black woman who is not getting any I will say this much...

"I will not go softly into that good night!"

I will rage against the dying of the light! I intend to do whatever is in my powers to find that special guy with whom I can establish the kind of connection I require to comfortably, willingly, and enthusiastically enter once again into a sexual relationship with total abandonment. I will find him by using

from having my Grandma do the quintessential "fix-up" to trying my luck on the internet. Whatever I have to do, I do not intend to "wake up" one day 10, 20, or 30 years from now on the brink of my 53rd, 63rd, or 73rd birthday and realize that since my "self-imposed celibacy" began I have not had sex for more years than the number of years I was having it before said self-imposed celibacy began. I am an attractive, desirable, intelligent, liberated, black woman who happily admits that she loves, LOVES, LOVES sex; and as such, I say to the world right here, right now

I will not quit until I find my someone special and the two of us can keep on using each other until ...

somebody gets used up!
Of course I mean that in the best possible way ;-)

Tell 'em what I'm talkin' bout D'angelo!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Something New Around Every New Year...

On New Year's Eve 2007, I was invited to help a very good friend with the logistics of the party he threw to ring in the new year. I created a VIP space using equipment my friend had provided and it turned out very nicely if I do say so myself...

After going home to change my clothes, I returned to the party where I was introduced to one of my friend's close friends, a guy I will call Teacher. The Teacher and I spent some time talking about all manner of things before going our separate ways to enjoy the party with those with whom we had come. At the end of the night, the Teacher and I exchanged contact information though I did not really expect that we would be in touch.

A few days later, the Teacher called me up and we had one of the most enjoyable conversations I have had in a very long time. The Teacher and I have continued to have great conversations during which I always seem to come away knowing something I didn't know before or minimally curious to learn about something I had not previously wondered about. For me, this is the very best part of meeting someone new...being exposed to new thoughts and ideas. I am always happy to make the acquaintaince of someone new and interesting, but in this particular case, I feel that meeting this particular person is contributing in the most amazing way to increasing my personal awareness regarding some very important subjects and potentially will make me a more interesting person! Now I don't know about you, but I've gotta love that!

This experience has been so visceral for me, that the following seemed to just spill from my fingertips as I recalled one of the conversations the Teacher and I had shared a few days earlier. Never had that happen before...

LEARNING by Sharon J.

Illumination arrived.
Unexpectedly and quite by surprise,
With no more intention than the sun has
Each day as it brings light to the dark places of the earth.

The light came.
Without the trouble of formal introductions,
Without fanfare or trumpets to herald its arrival
Nor the pulling back of curtains to announce its presence on stage.

The darkness departed.
And with it, the willingness to know less.
In its place, two things…knowledge and fear;
The fear a manifestation of all the new knowledge required.

The night evaporated.
Allowing the dawning sun to vanquish the fear
Creating space for the new knowledge to take root
Encouraging exploration and internalization of the new knowledge.

The spirit bloomed.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Overcoming The Obama Dilemma

Once, a couple years ago or so I wrote a post about the Academy Awards show. The points I made in that particular post coincided with the opinions of one of the bloggers whose writing I respect the most and when he read what I had written, he stated as much in my comments. On Friday last, I went to That Johnson Boy's blog and found there the post you are about to read here. With That Johnson Boy's express written permission I have shamelessly stolen the post in it's entirety including pictures right off his blog and posted it here! The points That Johnson Boy made in this post coincided with the feelings and opinions of this blogger so much so that as the infamous "they" always say,

If it ain't broke, why fix it...or write it for that matter :)

So for all of you "closet Obama supporters" who are scraping the bottoms of barrels trying to convince yourselves that in not voting for Mr. Obama as the next president of these United States of America you are doing him a favor because:

  1. it is not his time

  2. he doesn't have enough experience, or

  3. you believe you are helping to keep him out of harm's way,

keep reading...the answer to your dilemma lies herein.

"I'm Asking You To Believe."
Not just in my ability to bring about change in Washington...

I'm asking you to believe in yours."

-Presidential Candidate Barack Obama

"Not yet, Mr. Obama... not yet."
Those were my thoughts about Mr. Obama's Presidential aspirations. I met Mr. Obama a few years earlier at a Chicago fundraiser for his first Senate bid. I found him and his wife refreshing and most of all, the real thing. I've worked in the political arena on both the national and local level. Refreshing is a rare commodity. When Mr. Obama announced his Presidential bid, I didn't hesitate to point my mouse to to make my campaign contribution. In the recesses of my mind, those words continued to resonate... "not yet, Mr. Obama... not yet."

And then came Iowa. I vacationed in Iowa immediately after first meeting Mr. Obama. There were cornfields aplenty and several really nice art galleries. But the talk of the town was all about Obama. Senate candidate Obama had blazed a trailed thru Golena, Iowa a week earlier and folks were still on fire! They were actually giddy over Mr. Obama (as in Ala-BAMA). So, I wasn't shocked when he won the Iowa Presidential caucus. However, I was shocked that my silent mantra was still playing out in my head... "Not yet, Mr. Obama... not yet." My apprehension was logical to me, even if steeped in a kind of ethnic protectionism. Why would anyone want to face these facts:

Fact: The next President of the United States of America will inherit a mess of historic proportions. From the economy to foreign policy, the President-elect will be knee deep in mess. I'm talking the kind of mess that invokes memories of Cedric The Entertainers' Presidential Stress Response of "just tell 'em I ain't home."

Fact: By all indicators we are already immersed in a recession. Then again, who needs an indicator. How's your raise? Your mortgage? Your credit card debt? Your tax bill? Are you oversleeping or can't quite sleep through the night?

Fact: There is no quick fix to the war. The only silver lining? Buy some Halliburton stock. Then again, you might do well to just say no to this blood money.

These facts, coupled with America's pattern of assassinating African-American leaders, form the basis for my Obama dilemma. Why would I want my candidate to inherit this mess? Six months into the new Presidency, the American public will forget who created the mess. I honestly don't want the Nation's first African-American President to be crushed under the weight of the Bush administration. I acknowledge and accept that African-Americans must often do more with less, and have historically made the best of bad situations. But Damn! This is about as bad as it gets. So you see, this cannot be your time, Mr. Obama. I felt strongly about my position - that is - until I heard your Iowa victory speech...

"They said this day would never come..."

Now that alone was enough to capture my full attention. But his message was bigger than the civil rights movement. He then followed with...

"This is the day America remembered what it means to HOPE."

On that victorious evening in Iowa, Barack Obama stopped being too young or too inexperienced. His youthful outlook and lack of time inside the political machine will be invaluable assets. I vowed that I would combat any fears about his safety with prayer. Most of all, my support wouldn't be based simply on the color of his skin. He's my next President because he is the best candidate for the journey that lies ahead. As my good friend, Dr. Dickerson, would say "he came into this world fully prepared for this journey."

In the words of the late Martin L. King, Jr., "there are some difficult days ahead." Indeed America must reap the bitter harvest sown from the Bush administration's seeds of arrogance and blatant disregard for humanity. The bible teaches us that in everything there is a season. I believe the 2008 Presidential election challenges us to pick the candidate best suited for the coming season.

There is a time for a politician. There is a time for a war hero. There is a time for a diplomat and a time for a shrewd tactician. But, today... today is not that season.

This is the season of Hope. This is the season of change. We need a leader who can inspire the light within us, even as the foreboding shadows close in all around us. This is the season that they said would never come. I'll never understand why the naysayers doubted its arrival. Then again, the messenger was just some wet behind the ears, 34-year old minister talkin' bout "I Have a Dream." What would he know... right? Right!

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day from That Johnson Boy!

Friday, January 18, 2008

See What Had Happened Was....

The aftermath of the end of a serious romantic relationship is always difficult to navigate at best. From publicizing the break-up to others, to dealing with the surprise and condolences offered as the word gets around, to deciding when one is at a point that dating again makes sense, there is nothing easy about this predicament.

In the worst-case scenarios, one or both parties can't seem to stay out of each other's lives which only adds to how problematic managing this time in one's life can be. In my case, when I say goodbye to a romantic liaison, I say SO LONG, FAREWELL, AUF WIEDERSEHEN, GOODBYE! I typically am not the type to continue the "friendship" or meet for lunch or any of those types of things (with the exception of one case). I'm not sure why this is unless it is that though I have typically been the one to ultimately fire the bullet that put the injured horse [that was the relationship by that point] out of its misery, I was almost NEVER the one who actually wanted the relationship to end. By forcing me to end something I still wanted to flourish, many of my ex'es wrote themselves off my radar screen, just like that.

I have found that in my own dealings with the opposite sex, even when they want out of the relationship, the men in my life have been unable to simply END IT. I call it the "Good Guy Syndrome"; none of them wanted to be the bad guy, the one who ended it. Even so, most of them found no issues with coming out of the bag on me in ways that left me no choice but to call it quits; effectively avoiding being the one to break it off a.k.a. the bad guy. Nevermind that the shit they did to piss me off enough to let go was worse than simply ending it could ever have been. Yeah, as I think back now, I can not recall even one relationship that was terminated by the man with whom I was involved stepping forward and simply saying "I no longer want to be in this relationship." or any other words to that effect; not even when that was exactly what he wanted.

Anyway, I digress...
What I came here to toss around today is the idea of how long is long enough for someone [man or woman] to get over the emotional trauma caused by the break-up of a serious relationship and start dating again? AND, is it ALWAYS necessary that the individual in question take that time?

As you heard in the audio introduction to this post, one of my ex'es suggested to me a few weeks ago that I had not given myself enough time to get over the PO before considering the option of dating again. My impulse upon hearing his opinion was to tell him to "Kiss My Black Ass", but he might have been pleased by that suggestion so I opted to just get off the phone. LOL.

That was almost 3 weeks ago, but today as I sit isolated in the house with an ear infection and some really funky stuff happening with my throat as evidenced by that extremely "sexy" voice recording I left :), I got to thinking about what he'd said. I found myself wondering whether he might be right on any level or was he just being a typical hater and doing what haters do best:

As I rolled this question over my brain cells until they were well saturated with the issue these thoughts started to take shape.

1. I suppose it could be said that there is a period of time necessary to "mourn" the death of a relationship that at one time was the primary focus in one's life.

-However, it is my opinion that only I can decide for me how long that time period needs to be. For some external force to try to dictate for me how long I should wait when that individual has no real clue of whether or not I am ready to move on, stay still, or heaven forbid even go back and re-visit what I just left behind is absolutely ridiculous.
-Furthermore, I personally don't feel that every break-up even requires a mourning period at all. I know that in some situations what is being left behind was so worthless, meaningless, and shallow that getting out of it is in many ways a relief or cause celebre'! When this is the case, the individuals leaving this train-wreck behind may be ready to become involved [maybe even seriously] immediately thereafter.

2. It seems that most people believe that it is necessary to have a significant "break" from dating following a serious break-up.

-Perhaps, but here's the thing...
I believe in carpe diem....seizing the day, though I don't believe in one single "soul mate" for each of us because I think GOD loves me much too much to make finding happiness so unlikely considering the size of the planet and the sheer numbers of people on it [but this is a post for another day huh-LOL]. Anyway, carpe diem applies in my book no matter what is going on. So imagine a situation where you have recently ended a serious relationship that was everything but good for you. Shortly thereafter, you meet someone who possesses all of the traits you value in a significant other and who wants to be good for you and to you but because of the proximity of meeting him/her to the end of your last relationship you decide that you cannot investigate what could potentially be exactly what you have been dreaming of all along. I say "To hell with that nonsense!" In my opinion, meeting someone who has the potential to make you happy and letting him/her go by because you took longer than you should have to figure out the last person you were with was not good for you is just compounding your mistake. I've said this before, but it warrants repeating again here:

Letting a person who might be capable of making you happy go by without taking the time to investigate is tantamount to being given the POWERBALL numbers the day before they are picked and deciding to wait to play them next week.

People the thing to understand is that sometimes TIMING IS EVERYTHING! So understanding that sometimes a break from dating is needed, I still say no matter what, don't forget to seize the day!!!

3. Rushing too soon into dating again or another relationship means you are on the "rebound".

-Maybe, maybe not. It is that simple. The key is to make sure that whatever you went through that led to the break-up has been as fully resolved as possible. The fallacy in waiting for "total resolution" of previous issues is that most of us never completely resolve the issues with which we are confronted. Sometimes we don't even know what the issue was that led to the demise of the relationship because we were blind-sided by a partner who seemed to do an about-face for no clear and apparent reason. In those cases, I believe the best we can possibly hope for is that we are able to accept the end of the relationship and take the fact that we don't truly understand the how or the why in stride. I have known people who when faced with this situation have spent unimagineable amounts of time just trying to figure it out. Sometimes, (and please understand that this is only sometimes) the thing to understand is that sometimes you don't get to understand much if anything and sooner or later it is time to just move on. Time is not promised and as such should never be wasted.

-The other point to keep in mind here is that you should never feel you have to explain or justify to anyone other than yourself your readiness to step back into dating. I have heard so many people explaining all that they have done to "get their heads together" or why it is "not too soon to be dating again"; when in actuality those things are no one else's business but their own! In my opinion, it is not for me or anyone else to question another's readiness to "get back on the horse" so to speak. So to those of you who find yourself explaining AND those who find yourselves criticizing....STOP!

So if you haven't figured it out yet, my perspective is what it always is...DO YOU! Whatever that is; and you can best be assured that I'm gonna DO ME!

Don't forget, I want to know what you think, what your typical death of a relationship mourning time period is, and when you decide to get back in the game how you go about it....ease in, jump in with two feet and sink up to your neck, or dive in head first and let it flow!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Why I LOVE, Love, love BLOGGING!

Today, while strolling down Ladylee's street, I bumped into an old friend! I can't even tell you how happy I was to see her again; and though I've never actually met her in person nor have I ever actually heard her speaking voice, believe me when I say I could not have been more happy to see her there if we had grown up right next door to each other! Bumping into Chele over on Ladylee's street like that made me realize how much I LOVE, Love, love blogging and what it brings to my life.

Over at Ladylee's, in the last week I have empathized with her over the relationship that she and her father have failed to enjoy to this point in their lives, learned a lil' sumthin' sumthin' about being more dedicated to my writing endeavors, and just had a plain old good time with her and her peeps!

I went from Ladylee's place over to the new space Chele now occupies. There I found that I could indeed hear her TRUE VOICE once again and I realized with glee that the more things stay the same the more they seem to change and I was sooooooooooooo glad.

After I left Chele's, I decided to stop by Diva's and found her there loving her some Scribe as always! The Diva has decided to accept a very worthwhile challenge, one that challenges her to encourage her husband every day and to pray for him with his knowledge every single day. "What a worthwhile and noble thing to do!", is what I found myself thinking. I was impressed if not surprised knowing how very much the Diva and Scribe love each other and cherish their marriage. Not married myself nor involved in a serious relationship currently, I quickly copied the link to this page on her blog to send to my BFF in the hopes that she would choose to follow the Diva's lead and pray for her own husband.

Traveling by blog helps me to get a more clear picture of what good looks like when it comes to really significant other material. From the stories the Diva shares about Scribe to the amazing discovery that REAL MEN DO TALK AND THEY CAN WRITE (will wonders never cease) that hanging out with brothers like That Johnson Boy, Luke Cage, and James Manning elucidated, I believe that I have been more capably equipped to choose better for myself in the future.

Stopping by the ATL over the last couple of days, I found Fergie (whose smile was a gift from the beautiful pair of eyes in the collage above) and Nikki at the Infinite Ink (hands down the best photographer around....check out her gallery) both slightly disgruntled over differing issues. Fergie took issue as do I with this whole idea of cloned animals being used to perpetuate the food supply in America with no mandates for identifying the food products as having been derived from cloned animals. Nikki on the other hand was commenting on the increasing practice of overlaying Dr. Martin Luther King's speeches (and our heritage) over popular music a practice which in my opinion in some situations diminishes the importance of these speeches and desensitizes many to Dr. King's tremendous contributions to society.

From the ATL I went to Charlotte for some Serenity and then took a quick jaunt up to see Safa where tranquility and peace always await me.

In their own unique way, each of the bloggers or their representatives pictured above as well as scores of others who have not been displayed or mentioned here today broaden my horizons over and beyond any geography I would ever be able to travel even if someday I were to win the POWERBALL. From each of the bloggers I read, I find I take away something of value. In some cases it is a thought I never had before, an idea I might never have gotten around to conceptualizing, or a joke that brings a smile to my face I might otherwise have missed experiencing. In other cases, I have been helped to face difficult situations in my own life, I have been given the insight to better understand myself and others, and I have been given the gift of helping someone else to better understand themselves. In all cases, I feel like after a very short while passes with me making regular visits, I am received like I am a long-lost and cherished relative who is happily being welcomed home again! That my friends is love and as most of you know and Luther Vandross and Gregory Hines sang (bless their dear departed hearts),

There's Nothing Better Than Love!
So, this post is a tribute to all of you bloggers who have contributed to my life's happiness in ways most of you will never truly know. I want you ALL to know whether you are mentioned by name or not and whether or not there was an available image of you I could steal from your blog (ROSE and DP!) or not, you are all family to me. I will be forever indebted to each and every one of you for all that you have brought to my life and all that you continue to bring each day. By some miracle, you all always seem to be here blogging away about whatever it is I need to read, learn, know....just when I need to read, learn, or know it....

Monday, January 14, 2008

Theme Music....

Music is so important. I am blessed to have music in my head. This "theme music" as I tend to think of it is one of the things that keeps me sane.

I can't sing a note, not with a gun to my head and my life on the line; but that's okay. Why is that okay you ask? That's okay because I don't need to be able to sing because I am blessed to have Jill Scott singing my own personal theme song "Living My Life Like Its Golden" in my head anytime I find myself needing that little extra push to accomplish some goal I have set for myself.

Yeah, my girl Jill follows me any and everywhere and sings her heart out on my behalf because she knows that she helps me to be the best me I can possibly be. Jill knows that by constantly reminding me that my life is golden, I will do all in my power to live the shiniest golden life I can possibly live.

No doubt, I appreciate Jill and all she does for me and I will be forever grateful to her for it. But lately....

Two other musical geniuses have been horning in on Jill's turf.

One is Cassandra Wilson and the other is Me'shell N'degeocello.

Though Jill is without question my girl and definitely has the market cornered when it comes to providing my overall life's theme music, these other two sistas have carved out a theme music provider niche all their own. I find that whenever I start to hear two songs performed by these particular sistas in my head, things on the romantic front are bound to take a turn for the better very soon thereafter!

Since I first saw what has perhaps become my all-time favorite romantic movie LOVE JONES, for which these two phenomenal artists performed the songs in question You Move Me and Rush Over respectively on the soundtrack, these songs have become what I consider to be my romantic theme music. Now as it happens, I find that if I hear these two songs consistently at unexpected times and not as a result of my having taken any action resulting in my hearing these songs, shortly thereafter I seem to become involved in a new romance. As neither of these songs were mainstream radio songs, hearing them multiple times means something to me. Call me superstitious if you want, but all I have to say is that this has been my experience and recently I've been hearing my romantic theme music again and all I can say is play on, play on!!!

P.S. - In the event that you are right and I am wrong and all of this is just wishful thinking so to speak, the silver lining is this:

These are two bad azz songs so even if they don't herald a new romance for a sista, at least I get to feel the jubilance that comes with anticipating something wonderful happening to me AND even if the romance doesn't show up, I once again get to hear two of the sexiest and most poetic songs ever to be recorded so I STILL WIN!!!!

YOU MOVE ME by Cassandra Wilson

Rememberin' moments, so precious and real

The thought of you, kissing me there

You know my secrets

You know the curve and the line

One touch, and I know you are mine

Rain falls down on me I can hardly see,

for the water in my eyes

Love comes down on me I can hardly breathe,

for the trembling in my thighs

You move me

RUSH OVER by Me'shell N'degeocello
your music is so very beautiful
i want to feel you creep inside me
the warmth of a Kiss beneath my berry skin
i want to experience the taste of dark berry nectar the seed of life heaven everlasting
the phone just won't suffice no more
my imagination is filled and my cup runneth over
if you feel the same for me
yeah the way i feel for you
i'll rush over
there's no need no to be alone
my want for you is rushing over

patiently i wait for an invitation
i often try to imagine picture you
for you're no more than a voice on my telephone
that i find myself rushing home to
your voice makes me wanna do things i'm much too shy to say
you leave me to question
if you feel the same for me
the way i feel for you
i'll rush over
tell me there's no reason to be alone
my want for you is rushing over
won't you play for me?
if you feel the same for me
the way i feel for you
i'll rush over
there's no reason to be alone
my want for you is rushing over
my sweet marcus won't you play for me?
i'm rushing over.
What songs make up your personal theme music?

Friday, January 11, 2008

Do I Know You???

There is a curly-head LURKER out there who has been waiting for this post for many days now so I hope it is all that she hoped it would be!!!! YOU know who you are LURKER!

You see, the LURKER was the inspiration behind this post. I have known her since she was a young girl still in high school and though almost 20 years separate us in age, she is one of my dearest friends and as close to having a daughter as I am ever likely to come it seems. Even so, it occurred to me that I might very well be her best friend. This struck me as somewhat odd considering the difference in our ages, and I found myself wondering if I was right or not regarding the role I play in her life and this thought led me to an even bigger well as I believe I know her, maybe I really don't know her at all.

I was thrown into a bit of a tizzy as I thought this thought. I realized that even though I've always felt that she and I were extremely close and in some ways we are, suddenly it became clear to me that there are some definite GAPS in what I know about her. Now I know many of you are thinking, "There goes Ms. Just Write Now losing her mind 'cause she ain't all up in somebody's bizness." Though I will admit to a bit of nosiness, I assure you all that that is not the case in this situation. As I thought about my sister/daughter/friend I was astonished to realize that since she graduated college and moved to DC, I know very little about her new life. For instance, I don't know who her friends are and I always knew before. I don't know even who her BEST FRIEND is and considering the nature of our relationship, I find this unacceptable.

She and I spoke last week about this and other things that I no longer know about her, and she too was a bit taken aback to realize how much our relationship and the way we interact has changed. At one point, if she had decided to run away from home, I would have been the person who could have told you why she left, where she would go, and to whom she would turn for assistance. I was shocked to realize at this point that I MIGHT be able to give a motive but might be hard-pressed to do that even.

As I thought about this as it relates to others with whom I have significant relationships, I realized that in just about every case, there are HUGE gaps in how well I know people I love. Therefore, I have resolved this year to really and truly strive to know better those I care about. I will make the effort to become a real part of their lives. I will include them more deeply in my life. I will learn their truest self and share parts of my true self that they might not know exist. Above all else, I will no longer be content with the superficiality that I have allowed to define my relationships.

For some this will be a welcome change. For others it may feel like an invasion of privacy! For me, it will move me one step closer to being the person I want to be: One who is truly engaged and actively participating FULLY in the blessing of life!


It Could Happen....

My mother is known throughout my family as quite the little computer geek! Once several years ago, she took a correspondence course in order to learn the basics of "computing". The really interesting thing about this is that she enrolled in this class before she ever had a computer . It was the funniest thing to watch because since she did not have a computer, she drew out a keyboard on a piece of cardboard and would practice "typing" on this contraption.

It is years later, and though she is one of the most talented individuals I know when it comes to finding her way around a computer, she still takes half an hour to type the word "Hi" so instant messaging with her is not instant to say the least ;).

Anyway, none of that is the point of this post. In her computer "geekiness", my mother often spends time just surfing the www. Recently, she has developed an affinity for checking the state lost and found sites just in case she has some "unclaimed property". Now I did not even know that the state had a loss and found, but my brilliant, geeky mother figured it out.

During one of her recent searches of the site, she plugged in the names of each of her children and what do you know.....Ms. Just Write Now popped up with not one, but two claims for unclaimed property. Unbeknownst to me, I have had some type of property sitting in the state's lost and found for several years. Quickly my mother notified me of said property and I undertook the necessary steps to claim what was mine! Those steps included signing separate claim forms for each claim, attaching copies of my driver's license and social security card, and in the case of one of the claims which is valued minimally at over $50 I had to have my signature notarized. Once all of this had been done, I sent the documentation on its merry way and am now waiting excitedly to discover what these mysterious and unexpected "gifts" could be.

It may take many weeks before my claims are processed and the property that belongs to me is returned. So to pass the time, I have decided to add a section to this blog which will be updated regularly with my fantasies about what the mystery property might turn out to be. I see this as an opportunity to let my hopes get as high as they can because anything is more than what I currently have and until the actual property arrives, I may as well enjoy my dreams and afterall, don't they say "The sky's the limit"!!!!

Make my weekend, and drop a comment with your wish for what this mystery gift might bestow upon me.....

In a world of faith and high hopes,

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


January 1990:

The baby pictured here was barely 2 months old and had no need to partake of the democratic process as he had his own personal dictatorship in which he was THE LITTLE DICTATOR.

If he wanted something, there was no need for him to cast a vote as his loyal subject (a.k.a. Mommee! as he would soon come to call her) would jump through whatever little hoop he decided to twirl.

January 2008:

THE LITTLE DICTATOR is all grown up and at the ripe old age of 18 he is now officially a participant in the democratic process as he completed his very first voter registration process today and will subsequently be eligible to cast his very first ballot in next month's presidential preference primary to be held in Missouri on February 5th.

At least four times over the last 18 years THE LITTLE DICTATOR was taken by Mommee! to the local polling place where he was allowed to enter the voting booth with her and punch his Mommee's! ballot. This ensured that THE LITTLE DICTATOR would know exactly what to do when his own turn to exercise his GOD-given and hard-earned right to be a part of the decision-making process sanctioned by the United States Constitution finally came.

Additionally, on the day that THE LITTLE DICTATOR turned 18 back in November 2007, he exited his high school building to find a birthday cake left by his Mommee! on the hood of his car with the following caption:

Happy 18th Birthday Ryan!

Love Mommee!

Don't Forget to Vote!!!

(Don't gotta take every available opportunity to educate the leaders of the future!)

In the two months since THE LITTLE DICTATOR came of age, he and his Mommee! have had many conversations about the various candidates with his Mommee! encouraging him to use this wonderful invention known as the world wide web to learn as much as he can about ALL of the candidates. THE LITTLE DICTATOR has been encouraged to consider the candidates based on their position on the issues that are most relevant to him (i.e. Iraq war, financing of secondary education, etc.). THE LITTLE DICTATOR has been cautioned against voting based on party affiliation, what he thinks his Mommee! will vote, race vs. experience, or anything else other than what his own brain and gut tell him to vote.

So today THE LITTLE DICTATOR officially became part of the voting public of the United States of America. He knows this right is one that was bestowed upon him by GOD and accessed for him by thousands who sat down, marched, stood up, and in many cases died for him to be able to exercise it. With all of that education behind him, I truly believe my work...Mommee's! work here is done! ;)


Tuesday, January 08, 2008

What Goes Around Comes Around....

Does this conversation sound familiar to you?

Please don't come around Talkin bout how you've changed,
How you've said goodbye to what's-her-name,
All it sounds like to me is new game.

And I was right when I thought I'd be much better off without you,
Had to get myself around you,
Cuz my life was all about you.

So you say you wanna talk, I don't,
Say you wanna change, I won't,
Yeah it's like that, you had your chance
Won't take you back, now what,
What you think about that?

And when I say I'm through, I'm through,
Basically I'm through with you,
What you wanna say?
Had to have it your way, had to play games
Now you're begging me to stay.

There you go, looking pitiful,
Just because I let you go,
There you go, talkin bout you want me back
But sometimes it be's like that,
There you go, talkin bout you miss me so
That ya love me so why, let you go?
Yeah you know, cuz your lies got old,
Now look at you, there you go.

Don't you wish you could turn the hands of time?
Don't you wish that you still were mine?
Don't you wish I'd take you back?
Don't you wish that things were simple like that?
Oh, Didn't miss a good thing till it's gone,
But I knew it wouldn't be long,
Till you came running back,
Missing my love, there you go!

If not, and if you've ever been left wondering "What went wrong? What did I do wrong?" or anything else of this nature, I hope that one day you will get to deliver this or a very similar conversation. I DID!!!

Have any of you ever had a "THERE YOU GO" moment? If so, click on comments below and tell us all how it made you feel.

Tell it like it T-I-S Pink!!!!

There you go - Pink

Posted Nov 07, 2006

Saturday, January 05, 2008

You Want A Piece Of Me (Part 2)?

Yesterday, my brother Dee and I had the honor of meeting Everson Walls (pictured above with us) the former four time all-Pro Dallas Cowboys football player who recently acquired national level media attention for yet another albeit different display of how spectacular he really is.

Mr. Walls made headlines almost a year ago when he donated his kidney to friend and former Dallas Cowboys teammate Ron Springs in a transplant surgery which was similar to the one my brother and I were preparing to undergo in July 2006 when I wrote this post from which the title of today's post was spun off. Mr. Walls was in St. Louis in support of legislation being introduced in Washington D.C. by Missouri Congressman William Lacy Clay (pictured below with me and Dee). At the request of the transplant department at Barnes-Jewish Christian Hospital where Dee and I underwent our surgeries a year and a half ago, my brother and I participated in a luncheon and press conference to introduce this legislation where we and seven other families shared our own transplant stories.

Many of you who have followed this blog have commented on how impressed you were by our story. I now feel the type of awe many of you bestowed upon us after hearing some of the stories of the other families in attendance.

There was the mother of four who told of having her then 2 year old son suffer complete and sudden liver failure as a consequence of being given an over-the-counter medication to treat a simple cold. This otherwise healthy two year old was suddenly critically ill and required a liver transplant in order to live. Imagine the flood of emotion we all felt as this mother introduced us all to an obviously healthy 9 year old, rubbing his head and telling us that "her baby" as she referred her son much to his chagrin had received a successful liver transplant and was still thriving and growing strong 7 years later!

On the flip side of the equation, one of the most emotional moments of the entire event occurred as a well-dressed African-American gentleman stood to tell his story. He told of a day when his 9 year old daughter Jasmine, better known as Jazzy suffered a tragic asthma attack from which she did not recover. He shared that the spirit and character that defined his daughter dictated that her parents make the crucial decision of donating her organs and eligible body tissues for transplantation. I believe the Bible alerts us that "a child shall lead them". What an amazing way to create beauty from the most tragic event that could ever possibly present itself to any parents. From their generous gift, 40-50 patients were able to receive life-saving organ and tissue transplants that have enabled them to lead healthy and productive lives.

I cried as this story was shared, and after the press conference ended, I made a point to meet these beautiful people personally to share with them how brilliantly beautiful I felt they made the tragedy of their daughter's death. I asked them how long ago their daughter had passed and was shocked to discover that this angel's death occurred on September 3, 2007. I was even more winded upon discovering how recent her passing had been because in their shoes, I don't imagine I would be able to leave my house at this point and here they were doing everything they could to raise awareness around organ donation after all they had just been through.

My brother and I will be working together with this beautiful family in the future to increase awareness amongst African-Americans regarding registration for organ donation after death as well as living donation such as the kidney transplant my brother and I underwent. We plan to focus on the Black churches in the St. Louis and metro-east Illinois areas.

The final story I will share comes with a prayer request. Another African-American father shared the plight of his 15 year old daughter Brittany. I had the absolute privilege of meeting this beautiful, young sister who was afflicted with leukemia as an eighteen month old child. With her family's support and great medical care, Brittany survived her cancer and is now in remission from her condition. However, the stress of the disease has weakened her heart and though currently cancer free, she now awaits a heart for transplantation. In less than a week, she is scheduled to be connected to an L-VAD as her heart and lungs are weak. This will require Brittany to be hospitalized. With tears in his eyes as he talked about "his Princess", Brittany's father vowed to take care of his daughter even if it meant transporting her entire bedroom to the hospital so she could feel more at home. The prayer request is specifically for Brittany to be blessed with a heart in time to save her life and enable her to enjoy her teen years to the fullest.

In order for this prayer to be answered, some one will have to die.

As horrible as that last statement sounds, the fact of the matter is that every minute of every day, someone somewhere will die. At some point in time, each and every one of us will ultimately die. Since this is an irrefutable fact, the part of me that always searches for the silver lining in every cloud can see an obvious way that each of us can create beauty from our own registering to become an organ and/or tissue donor. In my opinion, to die and not leave the precious gift of life to someone like Brittany who so deserves her chance is to squander perhaps the greatest opportunity any one of us has to be the kind of person most of us aspire to who is willing to help another.

There are so many myths and URBAN LEGENDS in the African-American community that are used to justify why more of us don't donate our organs following death. Myths like [GOD not welcoming us back without all the parts HE sent us here with] or [the hospital allowing individuals who could have been saved to die so they can harvest the organs for transplant if indeed it is discovered that the person has registered to donate his/her organs]. These reasons for why many of us hesitate to give the greatest gift anyone could possibly give don't hold water. If it would displease GOD for us to return to HIS KINGDOM without everything HE sent us here with, then most of us (men included) had better start gathering all of the hair we have cut or shaved off over the course of our lifetimes and those of you who have required appendectomies or tonsillectomies, I hope you hung onto the organ so you can get into the KINGDOM when the time comes. Let me assure you that the process of harvesting organs and tissues for transplant is one that is tightly regulated by state and federal law and as such in the litigious society in which we live, there is no risk of a health care provider allowing someone whose life could be saved to expire in order to procure their organs or tissue.

If the goal of faith in GOD is to become more like HIM, what better way than to be one who plays a role in giving life. I think most of us would agree that the power to give the gift of life is GOD's greatest power. Organ donation in a small way, allows each of us to be more like GOD. Many of us ask ourselves on a daily basis "What would Jesus do?", you know what I'm talking about...WWJD? Without attempting to speak for Jesus, I would venture that if HE could save a life by organ donation, that is EXACTLY what Jesus would do.

The only hope that Brittany and many others like her have of survival is to receive an organ transplant. However, the fact that she is African-American decreases her chances of a suitable match significantly because the pool of African-American registered donors is very small. Additionally, the fact that diseases such as hypertension and diabetes are so rampant in the Black community means that the pool of available donor candidates is diminished even more. This makes Brittany's situation critical. Though compatible matches can be found for Black recipients amongst donors of different races, the odds of finding a match are increased amongst those of the same race. Registering to become an organ donor in the event of death is very simple. In most states, an individual can complete the donor information on the back of their driver's license. In Missouri, registration can be completed at this website. It is also important to make your family aware of your wish to be an organ/tissue donor in the event of your death. Living organ/tissue donation is as simple as contacting your local transplant center and letting them know you are willing to be typed and tested as a potential donor for either someone you know or a stranger who will never forget you.

One of the things that Everson Walls said as he shared the story of his experience as a donor was that one of the reasons he felt compelled to donate his kidney was because he and his family have been blessed with health because unlike many Black families in our communities, diabetes and kidney disease does not run in his family. He felt that he had no choice but to share his blessing of health with his friend. I felt the same way when I made my decision to donate my kidney to my brother. Blessings are meant to be shared and to be appreciated.

Wouldn't you love to give the gift of good health or the ultimate gift, the gift of life by considering living organ/tissue donation or registering to be an organ donor in the event of your death?

There is NO GREATER GIFT one can give!

Oh, by the way....

Tomorrow, January 6th is my brother Dee's 48th birthday! Though I have no way of knowing if he would be here to celebrate it or not had we not undergone organ transplantation, I DO KNOW that the fact that we did certainly gave him an increased chance that he would be here tomorrow to read these words



Thursday, January 03, 2008

Message in a Bottle

Have you ever felt a connection to someone in the world that you didn't even know? Not in the six degrees of separation way, but in a more specifically direct way than that.

Recently, I have had that experience and if I lived close to an ocean, I could imagine myself putting a message in a bottle and throwing it into the ocean as I hoped fate would facilitate its delivery to that individual. Since I don't live near an ocean, I will allow this wonderful invention called the internet and the amazing world of blog to assist me as I try to get my "message in a bottle" to its intended recipient.

As a consequence of having been involved with one person, I have been connected in some strange way to a person I don't know and will most likely never even meet. Though I am sure this happens all the time and in many instances can be a happy occurrence, in this particular situation that is not the case. She and I are connected by the same web of pain. As you all know by now, though I have moved past the pain of which I speak, she is experiencing the full force of it at this point in time. I don't know her. I will probably never know her. I want her to know that I feel her pain. I want her to know that she is not alone. I want her to know that I understand how disappointing this entire situation probably is for her as I too felt the warmth of this particular sun and the bone-crushing chill of discovering that this sun was not a true sun but something dark and cold and in many ways devoid of any true warmth.

I want her to know that though it may not feel like it today, this too shall pass.

The world in which we live can sometimes be a lonely place even if like me you are surrounded by the love of many. Even so, sometimes the only comfort we can find for ourselves comes from a place we never expected. If I can provide that comfort to her at this point no matter what she decides to do as she moves forward, I am happy to do it.

So to you, the one to whom I have been so unexpectedly connected by circumstance I say please remember who you are and of what you are made. Remember that you still are and have always been a child of GOD and he is still watching over you as he always has. Remember that the decisions you made for yourself were made in the absence of access to all of the information you were entitled to have. Remember that you acted in good faith and that is the best any of us can hope to do. Remember all of the things you have survived to get this far and know that you will survive this as well and be stronger for it. Whatever you choose to do from this point forward, remember that the choice is yours and yours alone and please make it for yourself. Finally, remember that at least one other person has felt some of what you may be feeling right now and she is still who she has always been

Ms. Just Right Now!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

2007....The Year In Review

Tuesday, January 1st, 2008!
WOW! Just like that, another year gone. Realizing it has been quite some time since I've been heard from around these parts, I doubt if anyone besides me will ever read any of what I write today. That doesn't matter though as I feel the absolute need to re-cap what has been a critically life-changing year in my life so that I can re-visit it in the future just to reinforce how very far I have travelled from where the year 2007 took me.

Without question, I don't ever recall having lived through a year that was quite like the year 2007 turned out to be for me. Though most people in my shoes would say that 2007 was a "bad year", I happen to believe that any year in which I am blessed to inhale and exhale qualifies as a good year. The picture at the beginning of this post is one of me presenting my Grandmother the "Mother of the Millenium" award on behalf of my family. I chose to use this particular picture on this post because I feel that I too deserve an award for having navigated all the trials that came into my life with 2007 without losing the me that I love for long.

The year began as one of the happiest I have ever known as I was happily in love with the person with whom I believed I would spend the rest of my life. It seems impossible now that I ever believed him to be "THE ONE" as he turned out to be everything BUT what he represented himself to be. Unfortunately, the unraveling of this relationship defined much of 2007 for me and thus the year will always be remembered as one of the most pain-filled years I've ever lived through. I had my only true experience with betrayal, and it was like nothing I've ever experienced. Though I have typically been involved in long-term, deeply emotional relationships, no other break-up ever took me out of my game like this one did; and for the first time in my life, I felt that I would have been better off never having known the person with whom I was involved. Following a couple attempts to make things work out and to convince my "other half" to try being honest with everyone involved (himself included), I finally came to the realization that I was not dealing with a person who had any personal integrity nor sense of responsibility for anyone else's feelings other than his own. After a great deal of soul searching, I took the necessary steps to end the situation; it came down to saving the relationship or saving my sanity as I found myself faltering for the first time ever at everything including being the best mother I could be to my son and excelling at work.

The deepest depression I've ever experienced followed, making me question myself at every turn. I could not understand how I could have so severely misjudged the character of someone I had known and loved for so terribly long...more than 20 years. Even worse, for a time I didn't feel that I knew who I was. Never before, and hopefully never again if I am as blessed as I have always believed myself to be, will I ever allow any outside influence to make me feel the way this person left me feeling about myself. Described virtually since birth as a person with the highest possible level of intrinsic self-esteem and mountainous self confidence, I didn't trust myself to decide what I wanted to eat for dinner. Thankfully, I was never alone as GOD as HE always does, was standing guard over me.

Looking back at some of the posts I wrote on this blog during my lowest points, I am amazed by the depths of what I was feeling. However, as always GOD sent his ANGELS to pull me through. Angels named Ryan, Angie, Ladylee, DJ Diva, Jackie, Mama and a host of others rescued me. Some of my angels were aware of what they were doing, while others without knowing it were being sent to help me get through, over, or around obstacles they might not even have known existed.

Though I stopped writing here after awhile because I was worrying the people who love me and read this blog more than I was helping myself, I began a new blog for Ryan's football team which turned out to be just the ticket. I threw myself into my son's football season and found that what always holds true held true; focusing on something other than myself and what I was going through made all the difference.

I have said it before and I'll repeat it here.....the best gift I have ever been given, is the gift of my son Ryan. He will never know how many times he and he alone has saved my life! I worked with a group of senior football moms to coordinate the support activities for the Varsity football team this season. I had the time of my life as my son's team went 6-4 which though not as exciting for some as last year when they went all the way to the state championship game, was a blast for the team as well as me. I worked with students at the school to increase the school spirit around the football team and with the help of the student body, helped to lift team morale when the team was faced with a three game losing streak after winning the first game of the season against a perennial state powerhouse. With our help, the team fought back and pulled themselves out of a slump that might have killed the will of a lesser team. My memories of my son's last season of high school football are something that I will cherish forever. I know this precious time in my son's life has made the wonderful bond my son and I have always shared even stronger, as I became a major part of his football experience.

The last two months of the year have restored me to more than my former self. As they say, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger....". I have a refreshed outlook on my life. I once again feel the joy of the blessings that have always been bestowed upon me; even during those times that I felt I had nothing good going for myself.

I have even decided to go back to sporting my natural hair instead of continuing to perm and process it with the multitude of chemicals I have used over the years up to now. Perm-free since September first 2006, I have finally gotten to the point that all of the relaxed hair has grown out and/or been cut from my head. As my mother began with the "press and curls" when I was 5 or 6 years old and moved on to perms around the time I was twelve, I like most black women in America have no true recollection of what it was like to care for my OWN natural hair texture. I have been pleasantly suprised by how much I find myself revelling in my own natural hair textures (of which my head has about four). I plan to continue to care for it without the aid of the harsh chemicals that I believe have caused it to become thin and unhealthy. Other than that, my plan is to allow it to

(Sharon's natural hair....January 1, 2008)

"do what it do"!

I am definitely stronger and more importantly, I am grateful. I am grateful that even in the face of losing that which I most desired, I learned that I am NEVER alone and that I will always have the blessing of those who truly love me to pull me through whatever hardships I am asked to face. I am grateful that the joy for life and the sheer happiness I have always felt as I awaited whatever is next for me has returned even though there was a time when I never thought it would. Most of all, I am grateful that in HIS infinite wisdom, GOD chose me who was strong enough to come through this year instead of someone else who was not. I would not wish what I experienced on my worst enemy, but I feel a sense of pride and accomplishment in myself for having found my way to the other side of it all.

Like all years do, 2007 has quickly evaporated, and with it I have sent all of the bad feelings I experienced while it was here. I am excited and hopeful as 2008 shows me its beautiful face and all of the wonderful adventures it has in store for me. No matter what happens, the silver lining is (and of course there's always a silver lining ;) that if I didn't know it before I know for certain now that


(Sharon on New Years Eve December 31st, 2007 ready to ring in 2008 in style!)