Thursday, April 30, 2009

Bad Mommy

For the past two weeks, I have been facing down one of the greatest challenges of my adult life: Getting my toddler to go to sleep all by herself. No mommy next to her, and certainly no booby (TMI - get used to it). She's already been weaned. She still attempts to use my breasts as her pacifiers at night.

In the beginning, I looked at this as a milestone. A one week trial period that would put assuredly put her on the path to independence and give me much needed free time. I read several articles from my collection of parenting books. And consulted other parents who assured me that it would be a rough few days, but soon she would be sleeping soundly without me. I even had a cutesy name for her little journey to becoming a big girl: Operation Night Night.

Two weeks later... "Operation Night Night" has become: Operation Take Your Little Ass to Bed Before I Lose My ISH! Such are the sentiments of a sleep deprived mom. Oh, and Dr. Sears, Spock, and the frickn' Baby Whisperer can all kiss my ass.

Tonight is the first night she has fallen asleep before eleven. I gave in and let her have her booby just to get her to go to sleep. Yeah, I know...

Sunday, April 26, 2009

There are no words...

Seriously folks - should we laugh or be really really sad? Personally, I'm upset with myself for spending almost twenty minutes of my life watching this...

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Perez Hilton take a bow

I have question about the Miss USA controversy: Why is everyone up in arms about this woman's answer? Yes, I know for those who are proponents of gay marriage her answer was offensive, intolerant, yadda, yadda frick'n yadda. Before anyone jumps down my throat with a barrage of nastiness, insults or before anyone agrees with me without knowing where I'm coming from - consider this: Would you have preferred that she lied? Would you have preferred that she had given, what is unfortunately being called, a "politically correct" answer? What the hell does "politically correct" mean anyway? For many on the right it is on par with using the term "liberal" as a slur. Describing someone or their position as such is often used as a way to stop a cogent argument from someone they disagree with dead in it's tracks rather than debate actual facts.

Let's put it this way: If you feel the need to use derogatory language when discussing a particular group of people - then go on ahead. Seriously! Hey, as an African-American woman, I would much rather you be upfront with your unsavory opinions about me than keep it in the closet. Why? Because I know exactly who I'm dealing with and can act accordingly. Don Imus was real with it and got slapped down. For what? Jesse Jackson was real with it and got reprimanded. Why? Don't apologize. You said it, you meant it, now stand up and defend yourself. Don't hire a publicist, go to rehab and hold prayer meetings. Put that shit out on Front St. and allow the public to decide if you deserve to keep your job, place in the public eye or a GP beatdown.

Back to Miss USA... I have not a single issue with gay marriage. Do I agree with it? Yep. Have an issue with those who don't? Nope. Not really. Why? Because you have the right to your opinion, a right to vote how you see fit, and we can go at it when it's time to cast a ballot. I may disagree with you, think you are dead wrong, have no respect for your opinion, but guess what? It is your right to have that opinion and stand up for it. For supporters of insert your cause), you cannot say you want to live in a tolerant (another word used way too often, but that's another post)world, then display an egregious amount of intolerance when the opinion voiced does not line up with your own.

So, Ms. Prejean (Runner-Up for MISS USA) go ahead and hold your head up, take your bow - we'll see you on Fox News with your new show and on the lecture circuit and at2010 Palin for President rallies. And Mr. Hilton - thank you for continuing to rant against her and extending her 15 minutes of fame.

That's my take. What say you?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

You might act white, but you ain't white.

And those unfortunate choice of words were the beginning of the end of a promising relationship. I could post a rant about Negroes confusing whiteness with rightness, and rave about the "The Soul Patrol" policing the black community for signs of random acts of selling out by readin' and writtin', but this brilliant quote will address that:

“If you can control a man’s thinking, you don’t have to worry about his actions. If you can determine what a man thinks you do not have worry about what he will do. If you can make a man believe that he is inferior, you don’t have to compel him to seek an inferior status, he will do so without being told and if you can make a man believe that he is justly an outcast, you don’t have to order him to the back door, he will go to the back door on his own and if there is no back door, the very nature of the man will demand that you build one.”
-Carter G. Woodson

I would rather address the issue of my disasters in the dating department. The fool who uttered these words seemed like a nice enough guy. What went wrong? I should have known something was up when he started to tell me about myself - after knowing me all of two weeks. It started with a little criticism here and there. As months went by those little "observations" grew into full on dissertations of who I am as a person and why I had dated certain people. According to the sage one: I have dated white guys because they are passive, I needed a man who always agrees with me and my friends are a bunch of enablers. In other words: I'm a total asshole.

The last straw came when he criticized me for planning a trip to the park with my daughter. To be fair to my self and it's esteem - the last aforementioned acts of random prickness happened in 48 hours. One the day of our parting he told me it was too windy for the baby, too cold, I was too old to go to the park, and insinuated I am a bad mother. I promptly told him to f**k off. He hung up on me. I sent an email (via phone) and left a voice mail informing him that we simply were not compatible and wished him well.

And then I took the baby to the park.

Monday, April 20, 2009

This makes me feel better

Kinda Blue...

I'm feeling a little melancholy tonight. Could be the rain that has been falling all day and the dark sky, but I'm certain that it is more than that. The upcoming child support hearing has me feeling a little on edge. Why it had to go this far, be this ugly is beyond me. Ok, that's a lie. I suppose I always knew it would go this far. My ex seems incapable of handling things like an adult and considering what's in the best interest of our child. Sad, but I tried so hard after I left him to make him be a good father and be active in the baby's life.

What's that saying about leading a horse to water? How many women are portrayed as gold diggers when they are requesting something that should easily be given? Do men have any idea what it takes to raise a child alone?

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Please Baby Baby Please

After nine months of calm requests, pleading, angry remonstrations, a bounced check (his) for $400 at the daycare, and detective work worthy of "The Wire" - it arrived: The letter containing the date for an administrative hearing for child support.

His manager (he is a musician) was shocked and alarmed by my actions. Didn't I realize that I was effectively sentencing him to jail!? Didn't I realize that this was my fault for having a child with him in the first place. Surely, I must have known that he was irresponsible! Can't we agree just agree to settle this outside of court? Court systems in the U.S. are biased against black men! The manager then went on to tell me the story of his friend Sean and how I needed to be more compassionate so this would not happen to my ex. And then he emailed this:

*Names and places have been changed to protect the triflin*

Mr. X requests a negotiated settlement in-lieu of court
ordered child support. He asks that you accept the following terms:

1) A halt to the court proceedings scheduled with X County related to child support.

2) One hundred dollars per month in child support paid

3) Visitation at childcare center

Mr. X requests that the monthly
payments begin May 25, 2009. If these terms are agreeable please indicate so by
your own writing, your signature, and the date of your signature.

Respectfully Yours,

Lest, this post be taken as yet another bash against black men, I should make it clear that I personally had and know many great fathers. I believe that no matter the marital status of the parents, children benefit greatly from having a relationship with their father.

There are those that that try to infantilize black men and "Sapphirize" black women when it comes to the issue of child support: Jimi Izrael this means you!!! Mr. Izrael wrote an article about Sean Levert (yes, the manager's friend) and his tragic death. Unfortunately, this article was yet another diatribe against "baby's mommas" and their gold digging aspirations. To be fair, he does state that he takes issue with parents who won't pay child support, but supports those who can't pay the amount awarded. Having read other articles of his that have a decidedly misogynistic bent to them - I take this with a large chunk of salt.

One comment ranted that single moms need to stop being lazy. Mr. Man, you try working 40+ hours per week, paying for rent, utilities, food, gas, car payment, car insurance, car maintenance, student loan, daycare, health care, clothes and god forbid - a Happy Meal. Spare me the "welfare queen" stories.

Mr. Izrael, you can keep the pacifer -I'll take the child support.

An Introduction of Sorts

I am in my thirties, black or African American (take your pick, but let's not argue about it) and mommy to one beautiful, bright and very strong willed three year old. Of late, things have been chaotic, intensely frustrating, sometimes mundane and dreary, but also strangely rewarding. Currently single, I have been spending the last month hopscotching over the toads in the pond to get to the prince.

No - the prince has not arrived yet.

I've been told that I think too much, analyze things to death, like to argue, am difficult, kind, emotional, obstinate, compassionate, too patient and impatient. Writing about motherhood, singledom, womanhood, the melting pot that is our country, politics and literature is my release.