It’s Not The Race, It’s The Finish Line.

So I switched things up a bit with school. Now that I have the twins every day, I had to re-think my schedule. The final couple of courses I needed to finish up would have forced me to extend things a bit…and I really didn’t want that, especially seeing that come the end of May, I’m going to be saying so long to New York and heading home to Tennessee. J YAY!! And so, anyways, I did some thinking and looked over a few things and decided to switch my major to a more general liberal arts degree, with a focus in humanities. It worked out since I already have the majority of the credits I need for the degree anyhow. So I’m finishing up the remaining few credits and will be completely done come graduation in May. And even better, I’m doing all the work online, so it doesn’t interfere with me watching the boys for my sister. It’s already one week in and I’m not going to lie—what with my consulting work, school, AND playing nanny to two VERY energetic (but loveable as all get out) 3-year-old little boys 5 days out of the week—it’s absolutely insane…but it’ll be worth it. Just a few more months and I’ll have what I want. A big part of that is that I’ll FINALLY have this degree out of the way. I never imagined when I went back to finish up that there’d be all these hiccups along the way…but such is life. And now, the hard part is over.

It’s not about the degree. I don’t need it to do what I do. But having it feels nice. I know that when I decided to back and finish up, it was more for my family than for myself. I know I really let them down when I first decided to walk away from the Ivy League path they’d envisioned for me. I don’t think they would have been nearly as disappointed if I’d told them the truth about why I left. If I’d told them that I’d gotten messed up with the wrong guy and caught in a really unhealthy, dangerous situation—they’d have been completely supportive. Well…I think they’d have gone off the rails a bit first and did something crazy like send my brother out to rough a certain someone up a bit, or have my sister call up the Dean and demand that the situation be rectified. Well, technically, my sister did end up doing something along those lines. She called up the school and actually requested a meeting with the Dean of Students himself. When I found out, I was of course, livid and literally had to beg her to stay out of it. My thought process at the time was that I felt like I’d been humiliated enough. I didn’t need or want my big sister or any member of my family to come swooping in and trying to fix the mess I’d made like they always did. After almost a year and a half of covering up bruises, making countless excuses, and constantly feeling as if I was walking on eggshells, I felt completely hopeless. Honestly, I think I just a reached the point to where nothing mattered anymore. I was tired of the pain—both physical and emotional—and of feeling like nothing I did or said was ever going to make it better. It’s not so much that I wanted to die as it was that I no longer cared if I did or didn’t. I think a part of me would have taken death as a relief. Sad and pathetic, I know.

In hindsight, I now realize just how ridiculously messed up that whole situation was. I was stupid to stay; stupid to believe him when he apologized and swore it’d never happen again…until the next time when it did. I was even more stupid for letting him run me out of school, for making me feel like I had no other choice but to go. For making me feel like it was somehow my fault, so I had to be the one to leave. I hate that I gave him that much power over me, but what’s done is done. It doesn’t matter. All that matters is right now and finishing what I started. At some point over the last few years, it stopped being about proving something to my family and instead became more about proving something to myself. I wanted to prove that I could do it…that I could finish. That I could do more and be more. I know that I can do this. And I’m going to. For ME and for the people in my life. Right now, I’m just focusing on the prize waiting for me at the end of all this: I get to go home. Back to my friends and the people that already feel like family to me. Back to long hikes in state parks, just me and my Canon. Back to the peace and quiet. Back to the city life. Back to where I belong. Back home.  ❤ 🙂




Okay, so I’m not usually one for politics, but in light of recent political events—hell, this entire election year, I should say—I think I’m going to make an exception….so let my first (and hopefully last) political rant on here commence…

Soooo for those of you that aren’t yet aware, Donald Trump won the New Hampshire Primaries tonight for the Republican Party. Yep, Donald Trump—the Ass-hat leading candidate for President who thinks he’s going to “Make America great again” by

  • Overturning Obama Care— which don’t get me wrong, the program does have its flaws (what program doesn’t) but it’s also the reason why millions of Americans who were previously uninsured now have affordable health care coverage. People can bitch about its faults and loopholes, but they can’t just dismiss its successes, or the legitimate premise it was founded upon. It’s not a perfect system, not by a long shot, but it’s something. It’s a step towards something. I mean, it’d be great if the U.S. would follow in the footsteps of other countries that have taken the initiative with healthcare reform to the extent that healthcare is a free and available resource to all citizens no matter what the circumstances…but I don’t see that happening any time soon. And instead of Trump praising Obama for taking the initiative that he did, or promising to evolve on that initiative, he’d rather criticize and condemn Obama and the program AND essentially start writing checks on the taxpayers’ dime and putting the country into more debt before he’s even officially in office or hell—even the official leading contender for the political party. I mean, it’s easy for him to say. He’s got millions already. It’s not like he’s going to be the one scrambling around to find affordable health coverage for him and his family or having to work two jobs just to afford the insurance premiums and cut that’s taken out of his paycheck and what he brings home each week.


  • Declaring War On Islam – This declaration, to me, by Trump—is just plain dumb. Not to mention completely reckless. I mean, the guy clearly has no ounce of common sense in that tiny pea-sized little brain of his. It’s one thing to take a stance against violence and terrorism. ISIS—they’re scary. They have a far reach—probably further than we’ll ever know—and they need to be stopped. Hell, I’m an American. I remember 9/11. I know what this country has lost because of radical Islamists and terrorist cells like ISIS and Al Qaeda. I haven’t forgotten. But it’s just that. Radical Islamists. The few, not the entirety. Not all Muslims are terrorists. So this plan of Trump’s to essentially round up all the Muslims in the U.S., give them ID cards so we can keep track of them at all times, and to restrict all traffic/people coming in and out of Islamic countries…really? Pardon the language…but are you fucking kidding me, Trump? I mean, seriously? For starters…this is America. Whatever happened to the first amendment and the freedom of religion? The fact that a presidential candidate would even build his campaign around an idea that directly violates and snubs the Constitution of the United States of America is absolutely ludicrous—and that he’s being allowed to continue to run and seriously being considered—that’s just irreprehensible to me. It’s sickening that there are so many people that are actually supporting him, particularly on this part of his campaign. This whole ID-card thing—what is this, Hitler’s Germany and the Jews? It’s bullshit. These Muslims he wants to keep track of—many of them are actual U.S. citizens—doctors, teachers, soldiers—our neighbors and friends—no more a terrorist than you or I. Completely innocent. Yet to Trump, they might as well be criminals–their only crime being that they happen to be Muslim, of course. Sure, will cutting down access into the country stop some would-be terrorists from getting in? Maybe. Probably. But let’s not fool ourselves. They’re already here. Enough of them, anyhow. Terrorist and sleeper cells that we don’t even know about yet. Do people really think that ISIS and these radicals are just going to go away or lay dormant simply because Trump thinks they will or tells them to? What do they think ISIS and countries that already hate our country are going to think if the leader of it basically snubs his nose at them and tells them in the proverbial to “fuck off”? We have enough countries that hate us already. Why make more enemies for ourselves? If you ask me, Trump’s on an ego trip. He thinks that because he’s “Donald Trump” that he’s untouchable. And he’s got enough money to buy that security. But the rest of us—we don’t stand a chance. Mark my words—if Trump becomes President—we’re done for. I hate to say it—I really do—but if we thought 9/11 was bad—we’re going to be in for a comeuppance of catastrophic proportions. I just know it. It’s common sense. 


  • Ending The Drug Problem In The U.S. By TELLING Mexico To Build A Border Wall— I gotta say, this one is my personal favorite. 🙂 Trump thinking Mexico is going to just build some wall—and screw themselves out of all that business they’re making from the drugs they’re sending over—just because some dumb ass who has millions but can’t be bothered to do anything about that whacked out hair of his TELLS them to? Yeah. I’d LOOOOOVEEE to see that happen.

As you can probably surmise, I’m no fan of Donald Trump’s. Nope. He’s not a politician. If he wins this elections it’s because a.) Money will get you pretty far in this country—it might even buy you a presidency, and b.) Because there’s a hell of a lot more dumb ass sheep in this country than I thought. I wouldn’t trust that Ass-Hat to walk my dog…and he wants to be the President of the United States? “Make America great again”? Bullshit. He wants to run America into the ground. He gets elected and that’s exactly what’s going to happen.


My vote this election is with Hilary. And not just because she’s a woman. That’s part of it, sure. There’s no denying it’d be a coup for women’s rights if she gets elected. It’s more than that though. She’s got the experience…and it doesn’t hurt that she’s got a former-President for a spouse. People—MEN mostly—like to say that because she’s a woman she can’t handle the stress of running a country—and I call bullshit on that. Women are just as capable—if not more so—than men. And it’s about damn time BOTH genders get that through their heads and just shut the fuck up about it already. As for that whole Benghazi and the emails and whatever—yeah, she lied. Yep. If anything, that just cements her political character even more. Politicians are born liars. Why should she be any different? And as for that whole thing—I think people need to get over it. It’s over, it’s done. Move the fuck on, people. Focus on the fact that people are homeless and dying every day in our country. That our resources are drying up and we’re destroying the earth for future generations. That unarmed adults and children are being gunned down in cold blood by our nation’s finest because of the color of their skin. Focus on things that matter, not things that don’t. Of all the candidates, I think Hilary does that best. She’s focuses on the issues. Is she making promises that she might not be able to follow through on—sure. All the candidates are making those promises.

But when it comes down to it—when it’s a choice between an Ass-hat, egotistical, media-seeking clown like Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders who pretty much has one foot in the grave already, and Hilary Clinton—I choose Hilary. Every time. Still, Heaven help us all come November because from the looks of it…this election could go either way.

Anyhow…rant over…



Hello (After All These Years)

“Hello” By Adele



Hello, it’s me

I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet

To go over everything

They say that time’s supposed to heal you

But I ain’t done much healing

Hello, can you hear me

I’m in California, dreaming about who we used to be

When we were younger, and free

I’d forgotten how it felt before the world fell at our feet

There’s such a difference between us

And a million miles


Hello from the other side

I must have called a thousand times

To tell you I’m sorry for everything that I’ve done

But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside

At least I can say that I tried

To tell you I’m sorry for breaking your heart

But it don’t matter, it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore


Hello, how are you?

It’s so typical of me to talk about myself, I’m sorry

I hope that you’re well

Did you ever make it out of that town where nothing ever happened?

It’s no secret that the both of us are running out of time

Hello from the outside

At least I can say that I tried

To tell you I’m sorry for breaking your heart

But it don’t matter, it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore…



Well, thanks to Adele, I don’t think I’ll be getting this song out of my head any time soon. I mean, these lyrics…can we just talk about them for a minute, or five, or ten?!?! Ummm…Yes, please…


So (ladies)…we’ve all got our relationship hang-ups. You know…that one ex/should’ve-would’ve-could’ve-been-soulmate guy (or gal, if that’s your thing) that for the rest of your life will forever reside in the back of your mind as the one that either loved and/or hurt and/or wrecked and/or taught you the most. That sore subject…the bitter memory. The one that you-albeit unconsciously–compare any man you meet after him to. It’s the the mistakes you made with him that you now know not to make…and his character flaws that you know to look for and to avoid. Yes, that guy.


But there’s hope, if you just give it time. Years will pass. You’ll both move on. You’ll find someone new, someone who loves you for the real you…something he just never would, or let’s face it–never could. You’ll learn to love again…a man who’s twice the man he is. You’ll find yourself wondering how it’s even possible to love more than one person like that in one lifetime–hell, you didn’t even think it was possible–but you’ll find that it will be…that it is. Slowly, but surely, you’ll start to heal all your broken parts. You’ll learn to smile again. To laugh. You’ll feel joy again…without feeling guilty for it. You’ll get those butterflies when he walks in the room or his hand goes to the small of your back and with just a knowing look, a single touch, you’ll feel safe—like nothing in the world will ever hurt you again. You’ll slowly start to get back pieces of that girl you’d thought was gone forever when he left you there,  heart in pieces and your world turned inside out. You’ll start to feel whole again. Right now, I know it seems unlikely. Impossible, even. But trust me, it WILL happen.


That’s not to say that you won’t have your bad days. For sure, there will be moments now and then when it hits you…those painful, little flashbacks from seemingly a lifetime ago that’ll come out of nowhere, rob your breath for a half minute or two, and maybe take with them a few stolen tears on their way out. But if there’s one thing you can trust, it’s that with time, those days and those moments WILL get very few and farther in between. The only downside is that you’ll be cautious–because you’re conditioned now to build up walls and be on the alert when it comes to protecting yourself against love and heartbreak and smooth-talking guys with twinkling green eyes that tempt you with their delicious world of sin. You’ll hate that you’re so guarded now, but you have to be–as it’s better to be safe than sorry. Which is why you’ll go back and visit your family in your hometown, but you’ll skip the usual hotspots to avoid running into or seeing him out and about…because godknows you’ll take an uneventful week-long visit with family over the drama from him and/or anyone connected to your past, each and every time. And when the week is over, you’ll say your goodbyes and board the plane. You’ll fly to a home 900 miles away, contemplative and confident as you come to the realization that at some point in the past 6 years you managed to truly move on and grow up–and you’ll smile. It’ll be bittersweet. Admittedly, less bitter and far more sweet.


You’ll find happiness in the arms of another, take vows and make a commitment before God and all your loved ones. You’ll start a life together, take out a mortgage…and settle down. You’ll be happy, complete…whole. You’ll have the life you’ve always dreamed of…you’ll have everything…and so much more.


But moving on and letting go…doesn’t necessarily mean you forget that person. You never forget. Sure, you can try. Best of luck to you with that. You can shut yourself away; shut the world out for days, no contact with the outside world, nothing. You can try running and moving hundreds of miles away from everyone and everything. But distance doesn’t change the past or what’s been done. The hurt and the scars remain indefinitely. You never forget.

This song and these lyrics—for me anyhow—speak symbolic of closure, yet at the same time, they don’t. Closure—there’s that word again. So many want it—yet so many have no idea what it means. Or how to go about getting it, for that matter. There’s probably a good way and a bad way to go about it, I’m sure. Rebounding—while physically satisfying, I’ll concede, doesn’t help all that much. Okay—I take that back. It does for a little while, at first…while you’re still in the “hurt and angry as hell and I’ll do just about anything to lash out” phase…but once you move past that…yeah, all the rebound sex in the world isn’t going to help that broken heart of yours feel any less broken. It just doesn’t. Trust me, I’ve been there, I know. Some people find closure from an apology…and I understand the rationale behind it, I do. In fact, there was even a time when I would have given anything to hear one myself…a time when I actually believed that an explanation and an apology would somehow negate all the hurt that he caused…and that it’d give me closure. It was a ridiculous, naïve notion–for all the “sorrys” in the world couldn’t possibly make up for what was done. My life was irrevocably changed in ways that he will never understand or even know because of his actions and the choices that he made. He’s always going to be that bitter memory because of that. That hang-up that my mind always goes back to when songs like this come on the radio. He’s going to be the kind of man I warn my daughter to stay away from and the kind of man I can only hope my son never becomes. That’s not something an apology can fix. As for closure, I’ve come to the conclusion that there’s really no such thing. Granted, time goes on and you move on and ultimately it gets harder to recall the face and the name and the memories are fading from color to black and white, but you never really close the book…you just store it away. I guess if you want to call that closure, then call it that…even though it’s really not. I mean, it’s still there, available whenever to sift through should you ever have the urge, so it’s not really gone for good.


It’s easy to be bitter towards the person that hurt you the most—the one that lifted you up so high, just to break you down as cruelly and as destructively as possible—so easy. I’ve entertained the emotion on more than one occasional bout over the past several years myself…until I realized my energy was much more productive being used for something else. But that one hang-up—that exclusive ex that took our hearts for a bumpy ride—they’re always going to be there. We can choose to either let their background presence restrict our success and future happiness…or we can use him/her to find exactly who we’re meant to find and be happy with and to have everything we ever wanted with. The choice is ours. Personally, I choose the latter…



The Words That Lie Between The Lines.

For as long as I can remember, words and stories have been my safe haven. My escape. I remember, way back when I was in grade school—I couldn’t have been more than 9 or 10 at the time—I had this teacher who moved me from my seat in the back of the class—which happened to be near the windows—simply because she grew tired of constantly catching me staring out those windows and “daydreaming”—as she put it. While the seat change may have put a damper on my window-watching that year, it did nothing to hinder my imagination. I remember that it was there that some of my first stories came about. Sitting there in that little desk, my Lisa Frank pencil flying across the pages of loose leaf whilst the teacher wasn’t looking, my little mind racing faster than my fingers could even write at times. To say that writing has always been my first love, while true, is also a bit of an understatement. I didn’t find writing. I didn’t seek it out. It found me. It’s been there, all along…like an obsession, or an addiction…or a disease. Sometimes I love it. Sometimes I hate it. At times, it’s like having schizophrenia…like there’s this voice inside of me—only it’s all these words and these stories just floating around—and there’s no rest to be had until I’ve written it down, until it’s out. And then there’s this cathartic peace to be had. It’s like a climber reaching the summit of Everest—that dizzying rush you get when you look around and see all your hard work has finally paid off.

Sometimes, it’s about more than the rush. Sometimes, it’s about having all these words and emotions inside of you and just needing a release…of sorts. To let it all out. Before it consumes you. That’s what writing became for me. An outlet. A release—for when that sweet, innocent little girl with an obsession for Lisa Frank everything grew up into a teenager and everything that was once bright and cheerful turned dark and colorless, seemingly overnight. I started writing poetry…a lot of it. There was no rhyme or reason to a good majority of it…just a way for me to put to paper the thoughts that were racing through my mind at the time. There was a lot of anger in those poems. A lot of confusion, sadness, grief, despair…you name the emotion, chances are it was in there. It became my therapy, of sorts. And it helped—a least for those few brief moments when the words were finally out—it did. I remember it was my English teacher in Junior High that was really supportive of my poetry writing—and the first one to really encourage me to find my “inner poet” and to play around with that type of prose. I remember her telling me how much she liked my poems, and how honest and insightful they were for someone my age. One memory in particular that I haven’t forgotten is of an exchange we had one day; she happened to ask me why I chose to write sad poems instead of happy ones and I remember simply just shrugging and saying “…because it’s not realistic… life isn’t all rainbows…” I can still picture the look on her face when I said it—that typical initial look of surprise that’s all too quickly followed by that inquisitive stare-down that’s intended to make you break down and “talk it out”. Yeah…that didn’t happen. I stopped writing poems after that. Or at least—I should say—that’s the lie I told her weeks later when she cornered me after class one day and asked me how things were and if I had any new poems to show her. The truth is, I’d had plenty of poems I could have shown her…but I wasn’t going to. It was bad enough that she looked at and treated me like I was broken or something whenever I was in anywhere in her vicinity. I certainly wasn’t going to encourage her curiosity or confirm/deny whatever inferences she’d made from my poems. I mean, granted there were some pretty messed up things going on at the time and sure, some of what she’d gathered from the subtext wasn’t all wrong…but then, what teenager doesn’t have issues? And while I realize she might have had good intentions and meant well—the fact that she was my teacher didn’t earn her my automatic trust. Don’t get me wrong, I have the utmost respect for the teaching profession—my own sister is a teacher—and I realize they’re mandated by law to report certain things and whatnot…but that doesn’t mean I have to like it or agree with it. And I’m sorry, but it’s a little hard to trust a person who isn’t capable of keeping your confidence—and it’s even more of a betrayal when they break that confidence and then have the audacity to tell you they did it “for your own well-being.” Right. Because turning someone’s world inside-out and making the situation ten times worse is sooo much better for their well-being. Riiighhht. And teachers, for all their good intentions, aren’t really there for the aftermath. It’d be one thing if they were, but they aren’t. You can’t just get involved, mess with someone’s life, then hand off the responsibility as if to say “well, I got the ball rolling, my job here is done.”. I’m sorry, but no. Just no.

Anyways, that was really the last time I voluntarily showed my poems to anyone…at least during my teenage years. I started keeping a journal when I was about 14 or so…right around the time I developed a couple of not-so-healthy, self-destructive-type habits…aka my less-than-lovely eating disorder and even less-than-lovelier self-harm problem. Before then, I’d always looked at the whole “keeping a diary” thing as kind of cheesy and childish…but after a few entries, I found it hard to stop. And it didn’t seem so cheesy or childish so long as I referred to it as a “journal” and not a “diary”. Gotta love the illogical silly semantics of a teenager. Anyhow, I would write nearly every day in that hard-covered book…and not just a paragraph or two—we’re talking more like pages. And looking back—I can honestly say that journal was my saving grace on more than a few occasions during those years. It literally held my heart and soul within those pages…all my hopes and dreams and fears. All the secrets and scars I kept hidden from the rest of the world. It was my lifeline to sanity. Without that outlet—without it—I’d have gone crazy, for sure. Or worse. I still have them actually. All 14 of them—yes, 14!—I guess I figure it’ll be cool to keep and look back at them years and years from now and see what’s changed and how much I’ve changed. Maybe I’ll use them to write my memoirs someday when I’m old…maybe. If I get that far.

Since I’ve started this blog–about 5 years ago now–I’ve gotten a bit lax on my journal writing. I’ll write here and there, but definitely not as much or as often as I used to. I think that’s going to be one of my EARLY New Year’s resolutions…to disconnect a bit and do a little more re-connecting with some things of old. I kind of miss my down-time journal writing. Just curling up on my comfy couch in my PJ’s and a blanket, a glass of wine or two at the ready (though I admit, it’s more like coffee these days than alcohol anything) … just me, my ultra-fine point pen (is it weird that I refuse to use pens that have anything bigger than a fine point on them?? err, oh well) my journal, and all my darkest, deepest, most personal thoughts. Yeah, I really do miss those writing sessions.

So…where exactly was I going with this post? I’m not entirely sure. (*Not surprising, I know. Lol) Anyhow, it started off as an ode of sorts to writing and I guess that’s where I’ll end it. It’s funny how things haven’t changed all that much from those grade school, day-dreaming days…even though I still have my days and those moments when I have to wonder if that girl is even still in there—in here—somewhere, after everything that’s happened and everything I’ve seen. I’d like to think that she is…that I haven’t become that jaded that I’ve lost her completely. And maybe it was me, maybe I saved myself…but a lot of it was the writing, too. It’s really always been there for me as a crutch when I needed it. A harbor in even the most intense, darkest of storms that I’ve encountered over the years…and trust me, I’ve encountered plenty. For some people its music, or dance, or another hobby they’re passionate about. But for me…it’s the words. It’s the story. And whether it’s those stories or poems or blogging or journals…it’s all the same. Writing…it’s my saving grace. The one thing no one can take from me. It’s mine. All mine.


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