Thursday, July 30, 2009
Recently, someone that I have grown to like and respect very much gave me her two cents on this subject. She stated that talking things out always makes her feel better because at least things were out in the open. She is the type of person who wants to work on things, try to make them better before throwing in the towel, or at least reach an understanding. A few weeks ago I would have agreed. My Facebook status currently reads that I am tired of explaining myself.
For years I instead of just doing what was best for me, I would try to get people to understand me. A more honest way of putting it: I was afraid of pissing people off. Don't get me wrong - I'll argue a point to death, but I still wanted your acceptance - you to like me. Now? Not so much.
I was pretty carefree and was able to do and buy most things I wanted for a long time. I worked hard, had fun, and the future was bright as hell - then my parents fell ill, and my father died. Finances and my mom's well-being pushed everything aside. My daughter was born. My grandmother died. I ended my relationship (with the help of the po-po) and my mom got sick again. Some of the people I met during this period only knew me in these situations.
What happens when you make the decision to stop being miserable? In the case of SWF's they tend to show their true colors (asses) and it ain't pretty. Recently, I embarked on two projects that focus my creative energy that had damn near shriveled up and died. The excitement level was high, the energy was boundless, and the ideas were pouring in. The support from the SWF? contingent? Let's just say that posting personal on Craigslist for a one-legged dwarf who loves long walks on the beach would have given me a better response.
What I received was a complete lack of interest, questions as to why I was acting "out of it" and several stabs. My friend, JTC, is fond of saying that when people are unhappy, they like to take stabs at one another. Sometimes it may feel like a plastic butter knife, and other times? Well, it feels as if someone to a rusty ass dagger and plunged it in and twisted the shit. Strange how those stabs started getting sharper as I started making moves to improve things for my daughter and I. The point to all of this is that your friends want what's best for you - always. Friends do not use you to make themselves feel better. Friends do not desire to take you down a peg if they think you are rising too high.
The friend I at the beginning of this post asked me if still think people were basically good. She had such an earnest look on her face when she was speaking...I looked at her and lied. I don't have the faith in people that I used to. For the most part, after taking a step back and shedding my Pollyanaesqe worldview, I find people to be self-serving as hell. To that end, my reactions now reflect what I see.
Today, I had an email exchange with someone that ended in me explaining myself (habits die hard okay?) and while on my drive home even though I felt sad, angry, and tired - I realized something. My reactions are just that - mine. My decisions, worldview, actions, and feelings for too long have been dominated by worry about how others would perceive them. No more.
I don't have to tell you why I no longer wish to interact with you if it is going to be draining, annoying or time consuming. And more importantly - are you listening Fam and anyone else reading this? If you have ever for one second put me down to build yourself up, told me or anyone else to "get over it" when you haven't dealt with your own shit which causes you to lash out - understand this: Not for one more day, hour, or second do you get any part of me. I count myself among those I am obligated to. Obligation does not equal enslavement. I will not give up my life so that you may live yours with your foot on my neck.
To my two ex friends: Go in peace, but go. To the father of my child: Someday I hope you have a relationship with your daughter, I will not hinder that. You still are financially responsible and to date have failed to produce a cent in almost a year. Pay your child-support or go to jail. To Satan disguised as the Ex's manager who reads this blog: The city prosecutor thinks you're an idiot, dishonest and would like you to pay for wasting their time. Good luck with that. Next time you sashay into court(apparently this is your weapon of choice for intimidation) don't send me an email beforehand detailing the crazy that inhabits the shell your soul should reside in, but does not.
This may come off as a rant, and that's okay. It was necessary and I feel much better.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Is closure necessary when ending a friendship? One commenter and several friends think that you should never walk away without discussing the reasons for doing so. Let's examine two different situations and how you think you would react.
Situation 1: You're driving down the road when another driver is forced to swerve into your lane. Your car is banged up, but otherwise you are fine.
Situation 2: You're standing on the sidewalk chatting with someone from work. A friend walks up to you and slaps you in the face.
What's your reaction? Personally, only the first situation calls for discussion, exchange of information and understanding. The other situation? Someone deliberately went out of their way to hurt you. Does it matter if they had a bad day, a bad year? That mofo just slapped you. Do you really want to sit down over a latte and work out your feelings? Didn't think so.
Misery loves company. Stormy Weather friends are not the same as "Ride or Die Friends" although that mistake is very easy to make. Trust me. Are Fair Weather and SWF's friends really friends at all? No. A true friend remains so in every circumstance - not just when it fulfills their needs. Let's be clear: the needs being met are not yours, and you are not engaged in a friendship. Self-service is the name of the game here. Sometimes it takes a brick (hell, an entire high-rise) to fall on one's head to see the truth. I spent years in a one of these despite every other friend, God, and my mamma telling me to let it go. I eventually walked away, but not without some craziness on her part. I wonder why I didn't notice the signs before.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Is it ever okay to end a friendship without discussing it with the other person? In recent weeks I have defriended someone on in real life and Facebook - without discussing it with them. Some of you may feel that the ending of any relationship deserves a chance to be redeemed or at the very least some sort of closure should be sought. One of my friends feels very strongly that I should talk to the person and work things out. I'd rather not.
Have you ever had what you consider a perfectly normal response to something only to have it dissected and criticized? In my last post I wrote about taking a self-inventory and how life is viewed as a series of actions and reactions. I asked what makes a reaction negative or positive and who gets to decide which category said reaction falls under.
Some of my friends would tell you I am too emotional, patient and forgiving. Other friends would say I can be rather cold, snippy, and a tad self-absorbed. Most people are a combination of all of those things at one time or another. My current attitude can be read as: don't be an ass and I won't treat you like one. Some people are not reacting very well to this.
Most of you have heard of and understand what a fair-weather friend is. There is a polar opposite to this type of friend, and it’s not the friend remains steadfast when times are hard. I'm talking about the stormy-weather friend.
The stormy-weather friend is down for you when things are a hot-ass-mess. Is your significant other acting a fool? Boss getting on your last nerve? Babysitter a no-show, Car broke down? No food in the fridge? No heat?
Super friend is here to save the day! This friend provides you with encouragement when you’re ready to chuck it all and sit in a corner and stare at the cobwebs – for weeks. Sounds great doesn't it? Right about now you may be wondering what the problem is with a friend like this. Hell, you may be wishing you had more like friends like this. Trust me you don’t. Because the stormy-weather friend will mess with your psyche in ways the fair one can’t even touch.
Remember both friends of both the fair and stormy variety are consistent only during a storm or if the sun is shining – rarely both. What happens when the storm subsides? What happens when your boo boo and feelings have been patched up? Crisis over. Friendship goes back to normal right? Dead wrong in the case of the stormy-weather friend. Any ideas as to why this may be the case?
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
That title surely conjures up the image of a toddler sitting in a chair sobbing with their little lips poked out. The funny thing about that particular disciplinary method is that it works for adults too. I haven't blogged in over a week because anything I posted wouldn't have been nice. So, I sat myself the hell down and did a lot of thinking. Family, friendship, anger, and letting things go are the things that have occupied my thoughts this past week.
I still haven't come close to working it all out, but I've reached a few conclusions about the person I am. Not the person I used to be, strive to be, want to be, or hope to be - the person I am today. Too many people present their best selves to the world, but never take the time to do a self-inventory. Why? Because they may not like what they find, and herein lies the problem.
Most of us have heard the saying, "Life is 10% of what happens to you and 90% of how you react to it." What if your reactions aren't so great? What if you feel the person who came up with the quote is an idiot who had nothing better to do than come up with a holier than thou quote designed to make the less enlightened feel bad about themselves? I'm kidding, but hopefully you get the point. For instance, is the so-called high road always the one you should take? Who does it benefit and why? Who decides which action qualifies as negative or positive?
The next few posts will take a look at some of the conclusions I've reached regarding these questions.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
*UPDATE* The James Franco video was pulled - enjoy this instead.
This has been a rough week for most of us. If it was not a rough week for you, keep it to yourself, and bask in the glory of your drama free life. For the rest of us: Please enjoy the video, and don't forget to join the "Save Blanket Jackson" Facebook group!
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Monday, July 6, 2009
After having read one hagiography too many today while cruising the internet/blogosphere, I kind of let loose on Max Reddick's site today. My reaction had more to do with certain news outlets and sites salivating over his girlfriend's supposed beauty than anything Mr. Reddick wrote.
I looked up images of McNair's wife, and I gotta tell you, he was an idiot. I know hero's have feet of clay, they're human, susceptible to all sorts of fuckppery - blah, blah, and blah. Okay. Whatever. Can we just call what happened what it was: murder. This was not a love story. He picked her up at a Dave & Buster's after asking for her number. There are children who now fatherless because daddy couldn't keep it in his pants. Could have all been prevented. See there's this new procedure called D-I-V-O-R-C-E.
McNair did not shoot himself four times in the chest, shoot is mistress in the head, and hide the gun under her body. Now, if he was able to do all that - he's a bad mofo. People, come the eff on! This man had a gorgeous wife, and four children. He cheated on his wife with a just out of her teens waitress, and everyone is like, "Well, it could be murder-suicide, maybe that's what happened, but we don't know. Maybe she realized that he lied to her, or he and his wife were having problems, yet he decided to work on his marriage. Whatever happened, can we call it what it is?
Friday, July 3, 2009
When does parenthood begin? Does it begin at the moment of conception? When you give birth to a child? Sign a birth certificate? I was all prepared NOT post about Michael Jackson (figured two was enough) when I read my 88th post in the blogosphere on the paternity of his children. There has been a shitload of snark directed at the biological beginnings Michael Jackson's children.
I could write a long winded post about phenotypes, race as a social construct as opposed to a biological one, or how racially mixed, bi-racial, multi-ethnic individuals may vary in appearance. h/t UBM. I could point out how several of my family members are like the old saying "light, bright and damned near white" with two black parents.
And after I've set forth data culled from Google, The Encyclopedia Britannica, H-NET, Jstor, and posted pics of my little cousin - we could exchange some ideas on what the hell was really going on with Mr. Jackson. We could discuss his father's alleged verbal abuse that is reported to have involved tearing down Michael's African-American features. We would perhaps attempt to dissect the possible layers of generational internalized racism and self-hatred that led him to want to look like a white woman.
We could. You can. I won't.
Michael Jackson is dead. There are three children who just lost the only parent they have ever known. Does it matter who the biological parents were? Even when it comes to custody and the state's favoring of bio-parents, (especially if they are recovering crack addicts) it does not always follow that the bio-parents will regain custody. The children will most likely be able to state who they wish to care for them. I highly doubt the two eldest will elect the woman who essentially acted as an Easy Bake Oven, took the money and ran.
As an adoptee, I have had to learn not to be offended when people ask, "Do you know your real parents?" Our society has been slow to learn that sperm and egg does not magically produce - parents. If my parents had died before I had reached the age of 18, there would not have been a massive search for the bio-parents. I would have been placed with an extended family member.
To those who would say Michael Jackson was not the father of these children: I, and the millions of other adoptees who were loved, protected, and cared for by our "real" parents - respectfully ask you to STFU.