Long-Awaited Rant Before Hibernation

The time between posts seems to grow larger, the colder it gets. It’s not a coincidence. My body wants to hibernate for the fall/winter months. No bullshit: I’ve felt like doing, absolutely nothing for the last 2 months. It hurts to go outside. Wind, rain & temperatures under 50 degrees, have me huddled with an electric blanket, anytime I’m in the house. If I remember to do so, I’m gonna research battery-operated electric blankets. Eva had a small, short, outdoor performance this afternoon with her dance class & drama club. It was 52 degrees at showtime….. And I was wishing I had purchased a home in Florida.

This particular post has been re-written & scrapped, at least half-a-dozen times. Shit keeps happening. Life keeps chuggin’ along. And more often than not, I’ve got something fairly intelligent to type about. So………. What’s new? Or “old,” but feels “all brand new?” Well, I’m still riding the high of winning that child support thing. It’s not the monetary thing so much though. It’s the fact that my daughter (Ayanna), will have to talk to me soon, if she wants access to her 6 years of free college. And who turns that down out of spite? Exactly. Not even one of my stubborn-ass daughters. I’m looking forward to that conversation in 7 months or so. Another good thing in my life currently, is that Izabella is calling me on a weekly basis to discuss (of all things), “adulting.” Work, school, navigating & cultivating new relationships, customers (she works retail), etc…. It’s amazing! I’m so proud of the decisions she’s making…. For the most part…. Those that I know of…..Except for the boyfriend. I’ll never be “ok” with a “boyfriend” until she’s 30. And even then, it’s definitely on a case by case basis. And finally, there’s Eva…. I can’t say enough, how much better she makes me on a daily basis. Her greatness & the fact that she’s here with me, breathes life into my days. We have been exactly what the other needed at this point of our lives. I allow her to be the young lady she wants to be. And she calls me on my shit…. EVERYDAY.

And now…. What this post initially started as…. Bear with me folks. But it’s selfishness.

At what point does our selfishness, become too much? Does it take another person to call out when your moral compass is out of whack? Do you possess the discipline or integrity to do the right thing? What if what’s “right,” is only “right” by you & your desires? Do you draw the line, when your selfishness hurts someone else? Or do you pick & choose who you hurt, based on some meritorious scale? Just something I’ve been pondering, as I’ve found, that I use a meritorious scale. I won’t go out of my way to hurt someone. But if I don’t like a person, I sure as hell won’t consider their feelings when making a decision. Where do you stand, on something I’ve been pondering for a couple of months now?

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24

Goddamn, I kinda miss writing! It’s been 24 days since my last post. Unfortunately, ain’t much changed. My weight has plateaued at a decent spot… Eva is still amazing… And currently my scalp has developed another annoying keloid, that likes to ooze. I’ve been put on antibiotics, but haven’t heard back from the doctor that cultured the keloid. I’ll probably give her a call tomorrow morning. Here’s something stupid, I just realized: I’m drinking a raspberry hefeweizen currently & on antibiotics.

But that isn’t the only stupid thing I’ve been doing… I’m still sleeping with a woman I probably shouldn’t be sleeping with… And it’s fucking fantastic! Am I sounding like an addict or an asshole?

This weather out here has taken a turn for the worse. My bike riding has been sporadic at best, the last few weeks. That’s a bummer as I’ve substituted the eliptical for it now. And I absolutely hate that thing. I feel confined to a glass cage, running on that thing, looking at the geese, ducks & herons congregate on the lake. Have you ever played Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Freebird,” to a lake full of birds?

There’s a certain freedom that comes with riding, or just exercising outside. I’ve considered road running again, like I used to do. I just worry about my pelvis moving, back going out, right leg going dead & ending up stranded in the sticks. Did I mention there’s bears out here? Safe to assume, they love the dark meat…. Or any meat, during this time of year. Add to it, I smell really good… Ripe for the picking!

Thanks for reading this shorty, but goodie…. My free time is coming to an end, but this beer isn’t. I’ll holler.

Going into hibernation….

Friday the 14th…. Doesn’t really carry the same weight, does it? Regardless, there’s been some weird shit in the air lately. There were 4 separate instances in which deer crossed the road in front of my vehicle this morning. Five hours of sleep last night, has me feeling as though I got twice that. I drank enough last night to have a hangover today, but don’t. My body has been aching worse than it has in years- Throbbing extremities. I’ve been in “block & delete” mode with my phone contacts earlier than usual. And here’s the craziest shit of all: I’m letting go; Trying not to control everything. I don’t doubt that it comes across as indifference. Hell, it could be! But at this point, I couldn’t give a damn.

I’m kind of floating on cloud nine. I received a call from Izzy a few nights ago. She thanked me for putting so much emphasis on her education and for making college easier on her.

“I totally understand what you were saying Dad…. I’ve got it easy by comparison with my peers.”

I wasn’t expecting a “thank you” until she was in her mid-20’s. But I’ll take the acknowledgment now, before something tragic befalls me.

My girls are the ultimate confirmation that I’m doing something right. At least 2 of the 3, make me feel that way. I wonder when Ayanna will come around…. 20’s? 30’s? When I’m in my death bed, cuddled up with & drooling on a nurse that resembles Rosario Dawson?

I fucking love that kid…. It’s just complicated. I long for the day when I can interact with her, one on one, without the influence of her mother hovering about. I realized today, that I’ve never placed a band-aid on her knee after a fall…. Never nursed her back to health when sick….. Never held her after a nightmare….

I sacrificed our relationship early on, for peace & serenity. And now I kick myself in the ass about it, during the most peaceful & serene time of my life.

I took time away from this post, to shoot Ayanna an email… It’s been a year since I’ve reached out.

My Week in a Nutshell….

SEPTEMBER 4TH

Where did the summer go? Today is the first day of school out here & the town is dead- Or at least being overrun by those close to death. Senior citizens were out in droves today! It’s as if they were exiled from their assisted living homes. Eva seemed really excited about being back in school. I’m pretty damn excited to have her back on some sort of schedule. It was getting annoying allowing her to sleep past 9-10am this summer. She’s a “morning person,” like me. But not if she doesn’t have to be!

SEPTEMBER 5TH

This seemingly overwhelming feeling of “not belonging” has plagued me today. Maybe it’s the allergy medication that has me “loopy?” Perhaps it’s having Eva away from me in consecutive days? Could it be “end of summer blues,” so I naturally hibernate? I’m not sure. I just don’t feel as though I belong anywhere in particular here. I have friends/acquaintances/co-workers & what-not. But I AM NOT “one of these people”; Homegrown & products of nepotism. My family background & experiences are just different. And quite frankly, I’m Black. That in itself, makes me “different” than most out here. Nearly 3 years of paying property taxes & patronizing businesses & I still get weird looks, or have awkward interactions with service industry folks. Let me say this to the assholes of the service industry: If I want my order of wings “extra-extra” crispy, you bet your ass that’s what I better receive. I don’t care what your opinion is of MY preference. As I’m writing this, I think this is truly one of the few times I’ve felt like a minority while in the U.S. Fucking small town!!!

SEPTEMBER 6TH

My dumbass really tied one on tonight. I’m currently drunk, in bed & just realized I don’t remember the drive home. I’m gonna hate myself when that alarm goes off in 5 hours.

SEPTEMBER 7TH

Hungover, exhausted, thirsty (for water), & at work. It’s dead here at the massage studio & in the background on my phone, is an ESPN podcast. I’ve got my water, Mt. Dew & a comfy chair now. Just finished folding linen & looking at the schedule again, nothing has changed. First appointment of the day will be arriving as I’m leaving at 4pm. Thank goodness. I don’t feel like dealing with too many people today. Given how my allergies are kicking my ass, I’d rather use my mouth to breathe instead of talking.

Quick story: I saw some “Quat Tabs” while at the brewery the other day. They’re used in the sanitation process of the brew tanks. Apparently, and even advertised on the label, it kills the HIV VIRUS! That’s always a plus right? But if we can create a tablet that can kill HIV, clone animals, draw/write shopping lists on refrigerator screens, arm a UAV with enough munitions to take out the New England states & still keep up with the Kardashians…. Why can’t we create ONE allergy medication that fucking works?

This is the weekend of the “Rod Run” out here on the peninsula. Earlier in the week, I heard someone refer to it as: “Old men having foot spasms in old vehicles….Vroom-Vroom-Vroom!” I couldn’t agree more at the moment. These guys & their majestically painted hot-rods, that are LOUD FOR NO OTHER REASON THAN ATTENTION, are not helping my headache.

SEPTEMBER 8TH

Woke up this morning, stiff throughout my neck & shoulders. This weather change has my body going bonkers; Alcohol consumption too. Limbs are throbbing & I feel lethargic. Perfect excuse to have a “lazy” day & enjoy college football on the couch….

SEPTEMBER 9TH

Checked my calendar today. Turns out, I was due to give myself a Humira injection yesterday. Just another reason my body is throbbing. I feel like a dumbass. I remember alot of the dumb shit that doesn’t matter. While forgetting the important shit, more often than I’d like to admit. Namely, taking my medication. Although, it’s been tougher since the frequency change- From every other Thursday, to every 10 days. Good thing tomorrow is what I call “Maintenance Monday.” A day in which I cook/prep meals for the first half of the week, meditate, stretch, nap & make a concerted effort to “heal” myself. As for today’s agenda…. SEASON 5 FINALE OF “POWER.”

Just watched the season 5 finale of Power. Goddamn! Sometimes, you can be too smart for your own good.

And to conclude the evening… “Apocalypto.” Another good movie. Grotesquely graphic… But a good story nonetheless.

SEPTEMBER 10TH

Currently what’s brewing, is a turkey and black bean chili. The chili will then be spread over tortilla chips & drizzled with an amazing cheese (Kerrygold Dubliner). I’m sure some may be wondering about the “vegetarian thing.” I’m not built for it yet. Eva has more discipline than me, in the food department. But even she gave me the “ok” when she heard my plans for this amazing chili/nachos! “Maintenance Monday” has started without a hitch. The sun has been teasing me to come out & play. But that wind is visibly brutal & not something I’m trying to battle today.

Tonight is also the start of Eva’s contemporary dance class. I tried to convince her that cross-country would be a fitting extracurricular activity. However, it interferes with dance, hapkido, drama club & every other part of her schedule. Not a battle I could ever imagine winning. As a parent, it can sometimes be annoying when your kids make decisions for themselves, that don’t align with yours. It’s also an awesome sight, when they fearlessly stand their ground, state their case & accept the repercussions of said decisions.

SEPTEMBER 11TH

On this day 17 years ago, I awakened in my Texas apartment at 4:30am. I was showered & out the door by 5:15am. And by 5:30am, I was 15 minutes earlier than the prescribed 15 minutes early (5:45am). That day was either a battalion or division run of 20 miles to celebrate picking up the DRB Status (Deployment Readiness Brigade). All that meant was: If some shit popped off, we would be in the 1st group of deployments.

Anyway…..

The run goes perfectly. No one keeled over puking or dying; My body felt great; And it was a breezy 70 degrees on Ft. Hood- “The Great Place.” I return home to shower & am instantly tackled by a 20 month old Izabella.

I miss those days with her…. She looked at me differently.

I peel her from my legs and hit the shower. Ten minutes later, the uniform is on, looking “crispy” & highly creased. I exit the bedroom to see that Izabella has sloppily poured us both a bowl of Lucky Charms. I go to the kitchen, grab the apple juice, a glass & the Tweety Bird sippy-cup. We decided that the best place to be, was in the living room, in front of the television, watching “PB & J. Otter”…. A very underrated Disney cartoon. It encouraged kids to use their “noodle”/brain, when trying to solve a problem of any sort. The characters would place their index fingers on the temples and dance around in a circle. After about 2 spins, I’d play like I was too dizzy to use my noodle. At which time, Izabella would try to save me from falling.

Noodle dance executed & breakfast finished, I kiss the kid & wife & hit the road. In the CD player was Method Man & Redman’s, “Blackout Album.” Pulling into work (C-Btry 4-42FA), I’m greeted at my car door by “A.B.” He asked, “Have you seen what the fuck is happening?” He directs me to the First Sergeant’s office,where there are nearly 70 men piled in, gathered around a television…. Watching the same shit you were: Planes crashing into buildings.

What is your most profound memory of that day? I remember at some point around 8:30am thinking, “This is gonna be a perfect day.”

My last big fight…. Yeah right!

August 28, 2018 at 1:30pm, I finally settled this child support stuff with Ayanna’s mother- The final hearing/argument/modification. I went into it armed with nothing but logic, my attorney’s “good luck” & a calm demeanor. I started the day knowing it was a big day. Speaking to a friend that morning, I was asked the question, “Are you ready?”

Blast Off!

I began sweating profusely, talking fast & shaking. You damn right I was ready! At that moment however, I was too ready. Words of encouragement calmed me down a little bit. But once the conversation ended, I was starving. So I made myself a breakfast of wheat toast w/ black bean spread & 2 over-easy eggs. From there, I grabbed my “herbal medication,” meditation pillow, glass of water & sat on my picnic table, overlooking the lake. I don’t know how long I meditated/”zoned out.” But by the end of it, I was ready for a nap.

Let me say this: Retiring to the beach, has really made me appreciate the value of a damn good nap!

So after about 90 minutes, I awaken & it’s 30 minutes til showtime! So I smoke another bowl, really chill-the-fuck-out, gather my paperwork and head to the lake. Damn, it was gorgeous. A perfect day for a win!

The hearing started 2 minutes late. Fish were jumping out of the lake, eating insects, teasing me. The sun was beaming & I wanted to be on my 10-speed. None of it mattered however. The mission at hand, was getting this “money-grubbing” woman’s hands out of my pockets.

After the formalities, Judge Turner went to what I deemed important: The numbers. And that was my entire argument. From there she asked if there was anything I wanted to add. Amazingly (to use a poker term), I “checked” & responded with, “No.”

Ayanna’s mother (“M”), took the bait. She immediately went into “Woe is me” mode, asking to be reimbursed for expenses beyond the 90 day period & complaining that I stopped the automatic drafts from my bank account. Judge Turner shutdown her attempts for the old expenses & asked why I stopped the autodrafts. I explained that due to clerical errors or “M” withholding income, the process is delayed with my rebuttal by 30-90 days- Inherently, “taxing” me at a higher rate than obliged, for that same 30-90 days. This was just the first time I put my foot down & refused to pay more, because I had NEVER received a credit the previous 3 modifications.

Upon siding with me & my reasoning, Judge Turner informed “M” that looking at the numbers, she could see that the monthly obligation would be drastically reduced. I was so excited to hear that, I didn’t bother getting greedy, asking for anything more. Rule #1: Be thankful for what you get.

Long story short, I’ll only end up paying 1/3 of what I currently owe for the last 3 months. All of which will be paid September 1st.

In other news…. I was offered a “voluntary” editor position, at a Washington father’s rights group last Saturday. My decision is due in 3 days. And with this current victory, I think I’ll take it.

How to play nice. Clearly, not one of my strong points.

“You’ll attract more flies with honey, instead of vinegar….” I heard my grandmother say that on numerous occasions. Perhaps she could have beaten it into me? I probably would have received the message more clearer. And now here I am, rekindling the spark of an old memory, trying to put on a smile. Why? Refer to the first sentence. I’ve found myself in an odd, but very welcomed predicament: I don’t need shit from anyone. Hell, I’ll go a step further & say unequivocally, I don’t need anyone. And although life didn’t turn out the way I dreamed. The current life I’ve carved out for myself is by design. Needless to say, that when confronted with bullshit (in whatever form it manifests itself), I say or behave, however I want & seemingly with impunity. Living in a small community such as this one, I’ve realized I can’t do that; I gotta see these people damn near every day; My kiddo has to interact with their children. So I parce my words…. Carefully constructing them in a manner in which they shouldn’t offend. They often do however. And in that instance, I’m left wondering: “Why did I hold my tongue?”

Today while confronting my “Boss” about my money, I was incensed at the fact that I have to wait an additional day. Those that know me, know that you don’t fuck with my children, brother (& his family), or my money. I’m sure that’s how most folks feel. So I’m not special. But I will fight you. And I’m built for that.

(Kidding. Full disclosure, I’m too damn old for all of that. I’ll just chew your head off & yell a lil bit now; Teddy Bear.)

If you owe a man/woman money, you pay that man/woman when you say you will. Not a day later. Not an hour later. But when you say you will. It’s a matter of respect (A whole other issue to be discussed at a later date). And although my texts left a poignant taste in their mouth that garnered an elevated tone intially. It quickly subsided when I didn’t meet their aggression with my own. For the record…. That was some tough shit! ESPECIALLY, when I know I’m right! I always have something to say, to attest to the fact that I’m right. Not today though. Today was “opposite day” for me. I remained calm….. Voiced my displeasure with the situation…. Even chuckled while getting yelled at a lil…. And most importantly, kept my job.

34 minutes until I’m off the clock. Will I have my money before walking out the door?

Putting in my 10,000 hours….

Be it in the yard, on this keyboard, the bicycle or parenting…. I’m headed towards “Expert” status in one area or another. But if I’m being honest, it probably won’t be in the yard. Hay fever is a son-of-a-bitch, I just can’t defeat. I’m still “on tilt” since traveling to Central Oregon last week. That place really triggered my allergies. But “I’ll be back,” Rebby. No worries.

Eva is still keeping me on my toes. I’ve learned a valuable lesson in dealing with her…. For a second time: Not every fight is worth the headache. When Eva moved out here in February, she told me she wanted to sell her art & get to law school (University of Washington hopefully). And since art selling is more immediate, one can only imagine the pressure I’ve placed upon the kid. Recently (Since the two elbows to the chin), I’ve taken a “hands off” approach & received more hugs of adoration. So I’ll keep that going.

Saw Izabella the other day while in Portland… Her major? Psychology. Ugh…. I’m not enthused with her decision. But I’m here for her…. Obviously. And there’s honor in any legal profession. So I shouldn’t bitch & moan. Last I heard from her though, she was undecided. I suggested “General Studies,” until her mind was made up. Clearly, someone else is in her ear…. Or she’s just doing the opposite of whatever I suggest, out of spite. JUST KIDDING! Amazingly, I’m not really tripping OR “butt-hurt,” on the selection of her major. I just want her to have as much financial security & passion for her “career,” as possible. ALL THAT BEING SAID…. Hard-headed, lil shit, should look to become a doctor, lawyer or Laker. Oooops! Got my shit mixed in there…. She can’t be a Laker! Seeing her now…. Goddamn, it’s hard. She’s an adult now; No longer my “Lil Izzy-B,” but a grown-ass woman…. Set to live & die by her own decisions. One that doesn’t know shit! I’ll let y’all know, just like I let her know: “I’m watching.”

I believe 3 Dog Night said it best: “One is the loneliest number….” And that is the topic, this time around: Loneliness & relationships.

I’ve been feeling a certain way lately…. Continue the promiscuous, single lifestyle. Or settle myself down & wait for “the one;” Go celibate for the next 5 years & focus on ONLY raising Eva & getting her to college expediently. Truth be told, I’ve been feeling lonely since I lost my sushi partner. I’ve even voiced this to Eva. I honestly didn’t know what the fuck I was feeling, until someone said the word 2 (lonely), 3 weeks ago. And now I’m faced with the “Why?”

I have friends…. All of which the “close” ones are hours, states & even countries away….But there are local acquaintances I’ve gotten to know over the last 9 months or so. I get my fair share of sex, here & there, so that’s not an issue. Eva is with me full time. And with no visitation being granted to her mother, Eva is 100%, here FULL TIME; I get no breaks honestly. So why do I feel lonely? I mean…. I always have “someone” nearby it seems. So why this overwhelming (at times), feeling of loneliness? After a fairly long day at work today, I believe I have this feeling of loneliness, because I’m not getting what I want out of my immediate & intimate relationships. I’ll get companionship from one. But no form of intimacy. I’ll get sex from another. But no semblance of intimacy during the act. It’s just sex…. And I can get the same feeling from my hand, without the expectations or headache, of dealing with another person. So…… WHAT IN THE HELL IS MY MOTIVATION? I don’t know honestly…. I just know that I feel myself changing with the season (True Gemini). And right now, I’m getting ready to hibernate for the fall/winter. What I found was productive during my previous bout of “loneliness,” was getting a girlfriend. And Terralar was great. She actually assisted me in getting myself “out there” in the world. Full disclosure: It’s ALL her fault. She also dumped me, so as to leave me standing on my own two feet within the social world; THANK YOU TERRALAR! Best gift EVER! The dumping…. This social shit is for the birds!

My thought process is simple on relationships & I’ll share it: Relationships are simple. How much of the other person’s shit/baggage, do you want to tolerate? If you can handle it, stick around. If not, bounce on a muthafucka. Saves everyone time. Instead, folks lie of their intentions & “run game,” on unsuspecting folks. Or they hang-on for the absolute wrong reasons.

Be true to yourself & with your words…. Most importantly, TO YOURSELF. Let go of anything cancerous or non-conducive within your lifestyle.

BE THE PERSON YOU WANT TO BE.

Thank you for reading. Peace-Out & be well.

Thank all of you that read this blog. I truly appreciate you & the time you spend with me. I don’t only do this for me. But I do it for you as well.