The Joy & Pain of a Broken Empath

Empathy. Many days, it's awful. Being a broken empath? Nearly unbearable. I understand the "gift" of empathy. I understand that those of you who connect with my writing & have encouraged me to *finally* finish my memoir -or any book for that matter- see the spiritual gift of empathy in me. Being able to see & speak into the pain of others is a tremendously beautiful gift God has graciously allowed me to have to make my sista-frans & beautiful brothas a bit more at home in a world full of rejection. But. Empathy is the taking on of others pain. And I am a "high empath." Which means I'm feeling another's pain *almost* as if it were my own. If I'm closely connected to someone who's pain is unleashed in irresponsible ways, I am literally absorbing toxicity much like the dude on the 1st season of Heroes who absorbed others powers after he killed them, except I don't kill people so there's that. I digress.Yesterday I had a safe space conversation in which I ran through … [Read more...]

This is 40, Dahling.

So. Here's the thing. I turned 40 since my last post. FORTY!?! To commemorate this blessed event, I decided to do my usual annual birthday pearls post in video.The chunk of what I've learned in so far. Forty whole years worth!Enjoy!https://youtu.be/LrJ1EJFKeOw … [Read more...]

In Which Rescue is on Deck

I turn 40 later this month, and as such have become hella reflective. This year has been one of the worst years of my life. So much so, I’m thinking of canceling my 40th birthday party. Please, please forgive my swears, but what is the gottdamb mutha-effin’ point of a celebration when you are wildly swiveling through the five stages of grief every other day or week? And please know, I do not say any of this lightly. I do not say that for the sake of page hits, Facebook hyperbole, ‘likes’ or pity.I say this because it’s completely, wildly, disappointingly, surprisingly, mortifyingly true. For those of you who’ve kept up with my blog & my writings know that the implosion of my 1st marriage, a complete breakdown, a fierce custody battle, an ugly divorce are all a part of my story, and that too was deeply painful. This year rivals the level of pain & hopelessness of those years. I cannot say why. I am still surprised at the turn of events. I only know life is as equally a nightm … [Read more...]

I Hate Thanksgiving

The day after Thanksgiving, I sat & cried with my husband about how much I hate Thanksgiving. This year, I find myself emotionally gutted over Drumpf's politics of course. Who isn't?  Even bigger than that my heart remained heavy at the treatment of the Standing Rock protesters. On Thanksgiving. With frigid water. In frigid temperatures. Why can't the United States keep it's treaties with Native Americans?  Why are we incapable of treating Native Americans fairly? Why God why? My heart hurts for them. They fight to protect sacred land & get nearly killed for doing so.So. There's that. Sigh.Without fail, every year I tend to dread Thanksgiving & Christmas. Has anyone else noticed this incredible expectation attached to these days? YOU AND YOUR BIG, BEAUTIFUL FAMILY MUST ALL BE HAPPY! THANKFUL! FULL! *Insert eye-roll emoji* This expectation was something I read loud & clear long before social media gave us clues about not only what we should feel on these holidays … [Read more...]

Sitting with Jesus at Sex Camp

I remember meeting Jesus once at sex camp. It wasn't our first meeting, but an important one.Everyday I walked up to a giant, beautiful, colorful painting of Jesus’s head, hair blowing in the wind. The massive painting hung on the wall of the Church where I was attending a week long retreat for women being treated for female sex addiction...what I like to call 'Sex Camp.'When I first saw the painting I was taken aback. Great art captures one that way. And the size, my God, it was huge. I said “well hello there Jesus.” In that moment he seemed so real with his piercing brown eyes bigger than my head. In the course of the week, every time I passed it I'd say “Hi Jesus!" I’d try to say sweetly but somewhat sarcastically “it’s another great day at sex camp!”  "How are you feeling about sex camp?"  "Me?" "Oh, well I feel deep shame & loathing self-pity, so there's that. I'd rather be on a cruise. No offense."Join me to read the rest over at the Mudroom blog?&n … [Read more...]

Rage

If I had the power of invisibility the power of flight the power of unlimited strengthI would unleash a rage built up over these years settling on tired shoulders.A rage like this world has never seen.Rage at my father Rage for little girls, cut. Rage for my people Rage at the powerful Rage at the law makers Rage at the suits Rage for black women Rage for sex slavery Rage at his betrayal Rage for Kalief Browder Rage for beaten dogs Rage for colonization Rage for my cityRage. Rage here Rage there Rage everywhere and there would be no end.While the heavens cry out the glory of God my reign of terror would barely be satiated by death's sting at murderous hands.But I have no power of invisibility of flight of unlimited strength. No platform. No flight. No fight. No strength. No money. No home.Nothing to brag or boast.There is no power to speak of but this muffled voice which boasts of my rage and asks who'd I'd be if … [Read more...]

If I Had Died in 1999

I must admit I'm borrowing the idea for this post from fellow Patheos blogger, Steve Austin's powerful post...Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. I'm woefully familiar with the suicide battle. I've struggled with suicidal ideations & a near attempt in 1999. A close consideration in 2004. A close call in 2014. Basically,  all of my adult life I've struggled on and off with some form of depression: the regular kind, post traumatic stress disorder, P.M.D.D. and two bouts of postpartum depression. As of today, I'm 8 weeks out from having a newborn, wading through some form of Baby Blues praying it doesn't evolve into another heavy round of postpartum, but is likely more a symptom of situational life stress.A lot of my struggles with mental illness issues come directly from childhood trauma that bled into teen trauma, that bled into college trauma, that bled into marriage, life & situational traumas. Some of my own doing...divorce, addiction and such. For those of us … [Read more...]

I Used To Be a Minister

I used to a be a Minister. I served in a ministry position for 12 years. For about 259 reasons I walked away from it, which was healthy & necessary at the time. Intuitively, I knew the storm brewing in my heart and life was bigger than I could handle. Also, I was one half of a crumbling, toxic marriage. As the nightmares of life grew I went on to have a breakdown of sorts including but not limited to PSTD, depression and spectacular moral failures of epic proportions. The marriage disintegrated into a million little ugly pieces, followed by a traumatic divorce & an equally traumatic custody battle where I genuinely feared I would lose my children. During that time, I lost my job, every penny I had, I was *nearly* homeless, slightly suicidal and spent a week in rehab followed by months in Anonymous meetings. I threw away a lot. I ran from a lot. I lost a lot. I hurt a lot. I was hurting. Deeply, deeply hurting.When I’ve casually thrown around the phrase “I put a blo … [Read more...]

My Big, Fat, Audacious Career Lessons, Mistakes & Risks

 I got laid off from my company last November, the day after Thanksgiving. The company was seriously shady & in preparation for their imminent bankruptcy they'd stop paying into unemployment for my state, where there were only 3 of hundreds of employees. Needless to say, none of us Michigander's were able to collect unemployment while we searched for new positions. We got our last check a week into December, when we were expecting 3 December pay-outs. Not only that, because it was commissioned-based most of us were/are still owed thousands of dollars. (Yes, we could take them to court but the emotional toll & legal fees are not worth it).This situation really took us off guard financially of course, but for me it gave the me the biggest b*tch slap of all time & for all ages. First off, my husband & I had just found out we were expecting. At that time, with both of our individual emergency funds, we assumed we could make it 3-4 months-ish. And then … [Read more...]

Without Self Pity: Ruthless

Yesterday, I posted on my public FB page about life being impossible and awful and how I had no hope and therefore must die. Or...something like that.A bit ago, the company I was working for folded & all of sudden *poof* I'm unemployed. As it turns out, they were straight up swindlers. They owe a lot of us a good chunk of change & made it impossible for any of us to collect unemployment in the midst of this abrupt change. No notice, just goodbye and right before the holidays.A few weeks ago the stress of this situation started folding in on me like a backpack of stress getting heavier by the day. But last week, I got THEE MOST unexpected news that I could be suffering from a serious non-pregnancy related medical condition and we're still waiting on test results. What in the actual? I've been healthy as a horse. I'm significantly jarred.When life is unpredictable like this, particularly because I'm pregnant & suffering through hella morning sickness straight … [Read more...]