Category Archives: Author’s Corner

Tough Decisions

As you grow older and you are blessed to still have living parents, of course, they grow older too.  This in itself can be a blessing or a curse or in some cases both. I have never had any qualms about expressing or sharing my feelings about the relationship I have with my mother.  It is a “shit show” for lack of better terms.  No matter how I try to sugar coat or mask it with scents of hopeful thoughts it is what it is and nothing more.  Which is why it is so hard for me to deal with my own feelings about my mother’s health and what responsibilities it holds for me.  As an only child, (fille unique) the burden of making her health care decisions is weighing heavy on me. I am angry, saddened, confused and frustrated.  All of the emotional components of making irrational decisions; however, in situations like this, there is no way to discard those feelings so you try to work your way around them.

This morning as I engaged in a conversation with a social service worker that advised me that the most feasible option for my mother, at this point, would be admittance into a group home facility for the elderly.  I tried to remove all of my internal emotions from the situation and assess it with an unbiased observation.  If she were a stranger or simply an acquaintance I would, of course, make the same recommendation as it seems the most logical thing to do, but it’s my mother. I know the moment I commit to putting her in such a living arrangement it will be the last place she will ever be and that scares me.  On the flip side of this, being alone in an apartment with minimal supervision and maximum health issues is a bad combination, so I know it is in her best interest.  So why am I so bothered by presumably doing the right thing.

I am feeling like my need for guidance in this situation and enlisting that assistance of family members may have been more of a hindrance as they plant mental seeds of demise.  Saying things like “when “so and so” was admitted into a facility they withered away and died.  That’s like fucking saying if I put my mother in a home it will kill her faster than not.  I just don’t see that as a rational.  If I don’t put her in the facility she could kill herself.

ann-bancroft-quote-i-think-that-was-the-hardest-decision-ive-everThis is the hardest decision I have ever had to make and NO ONE else can make this decision but me.  No extended relative can intervene, no doctor, not even my mother has the mental capabilities of making this decision.  I feel like the culmination of all that is happening is one tremendous burden.  Then I get angry with myself because I use terms like “burden” when referring to the elderly care of my mother.  I get angry with her because she made no preparations (as usual) for me (or anyone else for that matter) to care for her.  I am saddened because she did not make preparations to care for herself.  I am saddened because everything she has essentially worked for will be resolved into obscurity because there is no legacy in material possessions, they are simply objects.

There is so much more I want to express but even as a blogger it is exhausting reliving certain emotions and events.

I will, however, express my feelings about the urgency of maintaining good health and as we inevitably age, that we make preparation for the ones we love to make easy decisions.  Sometimes life isn’t as simple as living and dying.  For some, there is a transitional process that includes a decline in mental, spiritual and emotional health. No one should have to make the decisions about how you should spend your end of days but YOU.

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Triple M Day!

It’s pretty ironic for me that May is Mental Health Awareness Month and Mother’s Day.. Triple M Day, I call it. How so? You ask.. well the relevance should be fairly obvious but I shall share my story anyway.

Without seeming to callous or to coy about it, I can bravely admit that I was raised by someone with mental health issues.. I could be dismissive by saying what child doesn’t think their parent is a little “off” at some point? or I could be over dramatic in the idea that I was raised by a nut job and found it so easy to relate to the character Christine in the movie “Mommy Dearest.” Neither of those reactions would be fitting in my case. Being dismissive about it for the last 40 years or so has only made the relationship with my mother more tense and very formal and being over dramatic has never garnered any positive results for any one. So now I just deal with it (finding a way to deal with it).

All in all I have mommy issues. I’m not bragging I’m just being honest. With the openness and candor I’ve seen on social media I’ve learned “I ain’t the only one honey!”

If you’ve met me, this may not be an obvious observation but if you know me you’ve probably witnessed the awkwardness of my maternal relationship first hand.

Do I blame her for her condition.. not at all.. I believe if she had the tools and the common knowledge now so easily accessible she may have been more self aware of herself and gotten help..Ahhh, who am I kidding she would still be the self centered narcissist pridefully adolescent being with a dark secret that she is today.

Someone recently said to me in regards to the relationship with my mother “The hurt have the tendency to hurt others”… that sounds pretty similar to the “crabs in a bucket” mentality if you ask me and just because she is my mother does it make it acceptable? NO it does not.. you see what I’ve learned is that there is a difference between obligatory love and unconditional love. Obligatory love is obliged by responsibility. My mother felt responsible for her irresponsible act of having sex with my father. There was no vision of happily ever after for my parents.. They barely knew each other and what they did learn about each other was nothing positive. When some one is obliged to love you they do the very basics.. the things that are morally and socially acceptable… obliged love draws a line at intimacy and emotionally connection.. Unconditional love consists of nurturing, supporting, understanding.. To love someone anyone I think it is to make ones life better.. I didn’t do that for her. I didn’t enhance her life in anyway and to say she didn’t enhance mine in any way would demonstrate a sense of ingratitude and I am very grateful for my life.

So as you can tell at this point, Mother’s Day holds a variant of mixed emotions for me. It pretty much passes by like any other day. I try not to BUY into commercialized holidays at any cost but there is a sense of appreciation when it is acknowledged. I don’t force my kids or even expect my kids to do any thing for me on Mother’s Day but I’m always appreciative when they do.. and they always do. My Mother’s Day is celebrated on a regular and almost daily basis when I get unexpected messages of love. Or when I walk by and one of my kids compliments me. My daughters hugs every day is a gift.. AND my grand twins well their little smiles are all I need.

My mother and I never had any of those moments.. I would give her gift she’d say thank you and …. that’s it. We never exchanged “I love you’s”.. shows of affections after a certain age became awkward until it was non existent.

As my mother descends into her illness and old age our decaying relationship will only crumble into the dust of our deaths. We will never have closure with one another. I must find peace within myself in order to heal the pain.

I must find a place of forgiveness not for her but for me because I believe the Universe charges a karmic debt when you disregard and abuse it’s blessings. My mother did that. I wrote all this because so many other people out there are dealing with or have dealt with their own particular set of mother issues. Some of us watch with envy and disappointment because we crave that mothering relationship that would excite us about this upcoming holiday. Of course I will gift my mother with a card or flowers because my obligatory need to honor her as MY mother will always be.

I’m sure one day I will share my memoirs with great detail but today from the moment I publish this post I will release a surmountable amount of anger, resentment and pain. I will let go of animosity and fear because I was vesseled into existence on a broken ship. It is not her fault that no one took the opportunity to repair the obvious damage that has become irreparable. I am now a vessel clearly damaged but I have all the tools I need to repair and heal as I explore so much more of this beautiful life.

Happy Triple M Day!!

Let’s Go Crazy

I am certain that every living person suffers from mental health issues at some point on some level.  No human is immune to the psychosis of their environment and while I am no psychologist I have observed enough of human nature to know that we are all fucked up to some degree.  Self-awareness (or lack thereof ) dictates the extent to which our mental health issues are prevalent.  For example, I know I’m a fucking nutjob.  I am very self-aware of the little idiosyncrasies that exist in my defective personality.  I HAVE ISSUES.  I have parental issues, abandonment issues, high anxiety and occasionally I am a little OCD.

The levels to which we all exhibit our mental health can be based on various factors (again I am not accredited in psychology so my analysis is based on simple human observation).  Yes of, course there are professionally diagnosed mental illnesses and I consider those to be severe mental health issues  Some people are overtly self-aware of their mental status and simply don’t give a fuck.  There are some of us that are so painfully aware of it that we go to great lengths to conceal it because we crave “the approval of others” (which is, BTW, a trait of Dependent Personality Disorder (DPD), anxiety and depression). Face it, if every person in this country were forced to be mentally evaluated by a professional, we would all be labeled by something other than our exteriors.

You’re probably wondering how I even came to blog about this particular subject.  Well like I said I HAVE ISSUES and with the acknowledgement of those issues I’ve tried to identify the source and as I began to re-examine pivotal points in my life I was reminded of certain things.  Within those reminders, there were more than ample opportunities to point fingers and place blame.   I could call it genetic, environmental or simple in-definitive (as some shit just can’t be explained). Whatever the source, we can’t deny that we are all just a little fucked up and no, my analysis is not inclusive of serial killers, rapist, pedophiles, and murderers; that ‘s some next level fucked up.  Yes, I do believe there are some sins against humanity that are worse than others. For this post, however, I am referring to those who are deemed “socially functional everyday ordinary I am capable of stalking people on Facebook” kinda fucked up.  Harmless to others at best but self-afflicting in the most pathetic way.  Well, I am writing this simply to suggest that we own our imperfections and for those of you that already do… Kudos.

We are not above our own bullshit, believe that.   If you are reading this and telling yourself “I am not fucked up”, take a moment to examine your habits, your inconsistencies, your overcompensations, your lack of motivation or your vices.  And while it may seem that I am making light of mental health issues, I am not.  In fact, I feel more enlightened with the idea that we all are dealing with some inner shit and to stop taking other’s people fucked-up-ness personal unless that fucked-up-ness is directed towards me personally.

With that being said.  I also want to encourage someone who is self-aware and finds it to be a challenge handling all the FUN (Fucked Up Ness) to seek some support or assistance.  Seeking therapy does not make you weak nor is it against any religion to get unbiased input to better help you evolve.  Black women, I speak to you specifically because we have been stereotyped into the idea that we just “Let the Lord” handle it when we should be laying on a couch in someone’s office sorting through the deep shit we have buried in our bosoms.  Maybe “Dr. Feel Something” isn’t the route for you.  I personally use a series of tools to sort through my shit like Art, BLOGGING, sharing, meditation, therapy and a few more natural herbal remedies.  I want to believe that most people, after a certain level of life experience, become more self-enlightened.  It has been my personal encounters that indicate that is not the case. In fact, I have found that if a pre-existing mental health issue/condition is not addressed in a timely manner it becomes unresolved and a festering personality defect.

Your mental health can be more than the result of a hidden family genetic disease that no one ever speaks of because they fear it but it is also affected by your diet, your environment, and your overall physicality.  As we maintain access to endless information and become more enlightened, the plight of mental health will not be a phrase uttered with judgment and accusation but of acceptance and understanding.

If we all acknowledge our own FUN instead of someone else’s FUN, life, in general, would be a lot more fun.

So let’s go crazy.

No matter what challenges you face 💖

I love this!!!

joypassiondesire

How you feel about yourself matters more than anything else because it affects everything. The more you love yourself unconditionally, the better your life will work for you.

A person who feels love within will never ever harm another being – including himself.

The choices you make from a place of love will be benefical and increase your happiness.

The relationship you have when you truly love yourself first will all enhance how good you already feel.

No matter what challenges you face, if you face them with love within everything will workout beautifully well for you. 💖

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Finding Harlo Pt.2

While I have decided to embrace this new persona known as Harlo, I don’t expect my friends or anyone for that matter to address me as Harlo.. She is to me essentially what “Sasha Fierce” is to Beyoncé or what Chris Gaines is to Garth Brooks.. so I’m still me it’s just now I have this “Fabtabulous” alter ego. Will I flaunt this new personality? Of course I will and at every available opportunity!

So I’m gonna attempt to pick up where the previous post left off.. In the first sentence of the last paragraph of the previous post I referred to myself as being “born broken.” Shortly after I posted someone privately messaged me and asked that I elaborate. To that person I will say that an in-depth explanation will be in my new book “She Raised Me” coming this fall under my new pseudonym.. For now I will leave it as colorful wording; however I will share this. My ancestry and my upbringing conditioned me to believe that I was undeserving of complete happiness which caused me to question every euphoric moment; expecting it to be met with some sort equivalent misfortune. I could never accept true happiness under the premise that something bad was gonna happen.. Now I simply embrace those moments and if karmic absolution is the result then I want to be grateful for every moment that afforded me a moment of joy. And that me friend is what attracted me to Harlo.

Life and all of its nuances are filled with imperfections but that doesn’t equate to unhappiness. Harlo allows me to embrace, understand and accept those imperfections as simple aspects of life’s journey as opposed to my former enslaved mentality that believed nothing came without penalties. But in all honesty there is nothing that is to good to be true.

Finding Harlo allowed me a piece of mind that l never had before. I feel different when I embrace her. I even think different.. Does she affect the core of who I am? Absolutely but she hasn’t changed me just enhanced me. She represents the upgraded version of my former self. As she evolves so will I or vice versa.

I assure you that you will see the name again in all of its rarity.. It captures your attention doesn’t it?

Hi I’m Harlo Hendrix -Certified Game Changer

Finding Harlo

I’m sure the title of this post will one day serve as a book title but for today I hope it serves it’s purpose. If you follow me on social media personally and professionally you may have noticed some changes. I am specifically referring to the pseudonym “Harlo Hendrix”..

Let me start by asking “Isn’t that a cool fucking name?” It absolutely means nothing to me aside from the fact I feel a little tingly and silly when I say it. It’s a rock stars name and ‘ya know’ in some other universe, dimension and time I AM A FUCKING ROCKSTAR.

Why the new pseudonym you ask? I mean my name in general is pretty cool no matter how you arrange it… (so thanks mom and dad for that?) But there is something about the name Harlo.

I did a little digging just to see if the name had any real significance aside from the definition being “army hill.” Ah, doesn’t make the name necessarily more appealing but what I did like was the appeal of its association.. Harlo is associated with being universal and unisex. Uniquely without definition and not very popular to say the least..Well if I’m being modest it was definitively the perfect name for me.

The real purpose of this post was to explain “why” and not necessarily “what”. Well truthfully, I hit my bottom. Funny how that is a phrase normally associated with some sort of addiction or vice. I’m not sure this would be applicable to me but I had genuinely hit my emotional bottom. I was drained. I had convinced myself that I was in full on “midlife crisis” mode. BTW, I hate that term.. Why isn’t it called “midlife breakthrough” or “midlife blessing”‘ or something that promotes a positive transition into a profound wisdom and confidence. Okay, let me get back on track.

As I was saying, I hit an emotional bottom. I had come to terms with so many things in my life that contributed to the overthinking, over reacting, imaginatively insecure being who trusted absolutely no one. I spent a lifetime craving acceptance until one day I felt completely void. I was null. Right in the middle of a dualistic fit combined with intense pain and hilarity, I just stopped giving a fuck.. And I don’t mean it in a disrespectful sort of asshole kind of way but I just genuinely did not care. In a brief moment of declared insanity I finally let go of shit I had no control over and took control of what I could. If I’m not being dramatic it really was the death of who I was and the birth of Harlo..

Harlo is almost (and I use that cautiously) the exact opposite of who I was and everything I want and need to be. I wasn’t looking to reinvent myself it just sort of happened that way. Harlo trusts the universe, she trusts others that she is intuitively connected to and most importantly she trusts herself..it’s sort of creepy to refer to myself in 3rd person but she is definitely a new entity that I’m still learning to identify with.

I was born broken and spent a lifetime trying to insert the missing pieces lost in my innocence. I was never going to be whole until I stopped looking for those pieces and/or stopped looking for things, people and projects to fill that emptiness.

Well I’ve grown a bit tired.. check out Part II of this entry tomorrow….

Why I Left Facebook…

So let me just start by saying social media is a huge distraction in itself no matter which app you use. And I like most of you, use them all. I have Twitter, Instagram Snap Chat and a few other irreleverent apps but it was Facebook that seemed to be my biggest distraction. I was anxious to see the goings on of my family, friends, old classmates and a few engaging strangers. I was even very eager to share events, projects, encounters and POV’s. I enjoyed being celebratory of those who were most like me. Facebook is the curator of that popularity once craved in adolescence. I honestly enjoyed that essence of transparency Facebook afforded me but there is an invasiveness that creates an aura of paranoia and uneasiness when you submit to such openness. Despite all of those charming characteristics, they are not the initial reason I resolved to deactivate my Facebook account. It was that stupid “your memories” option that caused me the most discomfort. You see nothing is more telling of your progress or lack there of than that shit. So I noticed that with all my good intentions and efforts I was just in a repetitive cycle of bullshit ambitions. A hamster wheel (if you will) of repeat memes, videos, links and even similar (or exactly the same) sentiments.

Although I had some new and even cultivating experiences, Facebook reminded me that my efforts were minuscule at best and that I had not moved stealthily enough to really make a significant impact on accomplishing my goals. I spent more time marketing than moving and goals require more movement; the final product (with extensive effort) will essentially market itself.

I don’t blame Facebook AT ALL..it is indeed one of the most innovative products to emerge since the internet. It has united and reunited me with such like spirits and even past acquaintances that inspired a great feeling of nostalgia but it’s so easy to get caught up in the reflection of a pseudo-reality desperately trying to mirror what was real..

I can’t say that I am completely done with Facebook but for now I’m free from the commitment that once consumed more time than was necessary. In addition to being time consuming it didn’t even garner the support I’d hope for so my efforts were immensely fruitless. As it turns out I find myself most intriguing to strangers who are much more supportive than my circle of peers but that’s what makes social media so great.. it just turns out that (for me) that being unapologetic does not often require the level of transparency that I was exposing everyone to.

Au revoir pour le moment Facebook!

Fly Anxiety

Fly Anxiety is that feeling you get when you know he’s about to touch you..and you tell him “do whatever you want, baby I trust you.”

Fly Anxiety is that feeling you get when you know he’s on his grown man shit and it makes you wanna cry every time he hits ..it.

When your heartbeat flutters like the wings of a butterfly.. and you can’t wait to see him and your emotions are running high.. that shit is fly

It sneaks up on you like that the blunted purple haze and if your not careful it will catch you in a daze..

When the first thing you say is “I want you…inside of of me” …. You know that you’re suffering from FLY Anxiety

NYE 2017 48:94

What a crazy fucking year to say the very least but I won’t because it’s a blog where I am inclined to say the most. I’ll start with Trump.. I mean, who saw that shit coming? Not only did it make me question the sanity of this country but I also had a few reservations about my own.. I blame 45 for EVERYTHING bad that happened in 2017 to anyone, anywhere..

On a less enraged note, this was truly a year of self discovery, self reflection and self love..more so than any other year.. I found myself in such a way that I don’t even recognize some of the aspects of my former self. One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned is that loneliness will allow you to accept anything and LOVE will not allow you to accept anything less than “true.” While we all have our definitions of what’s “real”, I had to define and on occasion redefine what was real FOR ME! As I continue to embrace my “realness” I am still in the recovery phase of fixing (or attempting to) all that is broken, I am very excited for what 2018 has to offer..

I lost some friends this year either by choice or death, either way loss is always painful. I also decided to stop allowing misplaced loyalty to guide my intentions. I always knew that I was battling a series of dysfunctional elements in my life but I had no idea the long term and lingering affect it would have on me.. so I will begin 2018 by removing those elements.. it has been a lot easier to blog than do but essentially it’s done. And while I did lose some relationships there was one that was worth fighting for and will continue to fight for until the end of my days.. (“and that’s all I have to say about that”- Forest Gump

I learned that acceptance of self is the only necessary acceptance but it’s hard to remember that in the land of social media where our very internet existence relies on the acceptance of friends, family and complete strangers..FUCK Social Media and all of its hang ups.. and yet I simply can not pry myself away from this new age technology.. Oh the torture.. FYI if your reading this I am no longer on FaceBook but still very active on Instagram and occasionally Twitter (so follow me) as they seem the lesser of all social media evils..

I can go on for paragraphs regurgitating all of which occurred in 2017 but I will select to bury it in the time capsule of my past and move into the new year with an immense amount of love and positivity.. (#familyfirst).

So with this being my final blog of 2017, I’d hope to end it with a few words of inspiration but all I could come up with was “It was all TRUMPS fault.” Have a bless, safe and Happy New Year 🎊.. 2018 WILL BE TREMENDOUS!