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KITTEN
USA
Community Psychologist. Writer. Avid Reader. Researcher. Activist- one who questions everything!
Interests: Family. Activism. Writing. Research. Change the world.
Recent Activity
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Writing Project: 100 words/ 100 days Day: /100. 10.3.21 Title: Elevate Words: This writing Project is coming to an end. I wrote little in the month of September but will continue after the project has ended. I have several works to keep me occupied. Writing is good for the soul and this time has certainly been good for me. It may not seem like it, but I am getting closer to my own understanding in this isolated space. I've been telling myself that I need clarity and understanding to make informed decisions, and while that is true, perhaps the best thing is to unclench my fists and allow things to flow_ to come and go _allow love to find me again and free space to elevate. I'm working on laying to rest the traumas of the last several years that hinders rather than set me free. I've looked them in the mirror and call them by name. And though I still struggle at times, I'm proud of the storms that I walked through with no one to hold my hands but my loyal cat. On many, many days and nights, she was enough as I stumble my way through some darkness. I'm perpetually amazed by the human condition to adapt to whatever conditions present themselves. In this space, I've allowed myself to be vulnerable_ expressing my need for companionship, not just with anyone_ but genuine soul connections, both in love and friendships. I'm not ashamed of the tears, my frustrations, that I needed consideration, resources and support and experienced moments when I was not ok without feeling that something was wrong with me. As I go about my days, I'm convinced that the love I'm looking for is looking for me too and the right people, those who love and support me are not far away. I am convinced that even in what sometimes feel like aloneness, I'm not really alone. Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 89/100. 9.27.21 Title: Nostalgia and Deja Vu Words: 205 I am sitting in a park enjoying one of the few lingering days of summer. People are out walking their dogs, children are playing in the swings and slides, people are shopping, and I am enjoying being surrounded by the trees, the small water fountain and the sounds of life in full bloom, real and deceptive at the same time considering that fall has officially began and the transition, even though it was not apparent on a day like this, fall was in full swing. As if by magic, one day we’ll notice that the colors have changed from green to any combination of colors. The branches will shake the leaves loose in preparation for the looming winter months, and these same trees, immaculately clothed will be standing naked in the harshest weather. The changing seasons can teach us much about life, serving as a perfect reminder that sometimes the best thing to do is to unclench our fists and let things fall. I looked around at the people, closed my eyes and absorbed the feel and sounds, and welcomed whatever came to me. I allowed myself the spiritual connection to that place deep within that takes us all the way back to nostalgia and deja vu_ to that which is both old and new. Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2021 at KITTEN
Thank you KK.
Toggle Commented Sep 22, 2021 on Trauma at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 84/100. 9.22.21 Title: Evenings with Sophy Words: 173 I've been spending some of my evenings at a hotel down the street from where I live. I find the ambience a welcoming place to read which I've started doing again in addition to writing, working out, taking myself out to dinners and movies. I’ve been working to consistently get back into a routine of doing things that feeds my spirit. I'm glad that throughout my life all of my habits have been healthy. If drugs, alcohol and reckless sex were my vises, I reckon I would be on a self-destructive path. I do things that allow me space to sit with myself and escape into worlds of adventure. I've been escaping into strange worlds all my life and know how to get myself back. I don't care what anyone thinks of the woman who shows up alone and read by the fire. Sometimes out of curiosity, I wait, not quite sure exactly what or for whom I wait except something inside tells me to _ I know only that some energies linger. Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 Words/100 Days Day 82/100. 09.20.21 Title: Trauma Words: 548 I’ve concluded that I am living through a bout of depression. I don’t believe that it’s necessarily the alone, isolated life that I’ve been living the last four years, but rather the circumstances that got me here. If I’m going to heal, I must take off my cape and face my traumas. I am not ok. Events of the last four years have traumatized me in ways that few may be able to understand unless they’ve been through it. Some who know me may find this statement confusing. I smile often. I carry myself well. I go out in public and engage with strangers. I joined a gym and started working out again, and if one is to look at me and spend time with me, they would not know that I am struggling with anything. I am a walking contradiction. I do my vulnerabilities behind closed doors. Truth be known, I feel lost _ and the feeling is getting deeper like one who wanders into the woods finds herself unable to find the path that leads her home. I feel like I’ve been asking for help in my own way but I'm not being heard. I hide well but there are clear signs that all is not well. I am aware that in this skin, I’m not supposed to be vulnerable despite having dealt with real life traumas that would threaten the balance of anyone’s life. I’ve tried to tuck the pain beneath my rib cage and pretend I don’t feel it but some things cannot be packed away and forgotten_ some life situations demand to be dealt with. I’ve been living in a space spanning four years that I simply cannot remain. My life felt perfectly on track in the year 2017 before it started unraveling. I was employed, married and working on my doctoral degree. I filed a racial discrimination complaint at my job and have marked that moment as the starting point when things began to go wrong. By December of that year, I was fired, hacked (desperately trying to rescue my dissertation) and separated from my husband. 2018 came around. My unemployment was denied though I worked at the job for almost three years. I could not secure another job and it didn’t take long to wipe through my savings. I managed to rescue my dissertation and graduated in June of 2018 but still couldn’t find a job except substitute teaching which was not enough to pay the bills. It’s now 2021, and I still cannot find gainful employment even with a long history of consistent employment and advanced degrees. Indeed, this has been hard on me. How is one to make a life when they cannot find work to take care of their basic needs after years of working and schooling to get to a point in which employment would never be an issue? I struggle to understand how I went from never having a problem getting a job to seemingly being employable while I hold a piece of paper boasting a PhD. How did my upward trajectory unravel so fast? I'm not ok and I shouldn’t be. The events of the last four years have been traumatizing and would be for anyone who went through what I did. That’s a fact. Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day: 76/100. 9.14.21 Title: The Game of Life Words: 337 I am sticking with the writing project that I started on July 1st to write 100 words in 100 days. I haven’t written and have missed most days in September thus far, I don’t have a good reason for falling off, but it happened. It’s day 76 of 100 and I am going to see it through. I’ve been doing a lot of reflection about my life, looking at where I’ve been, where I am and where I’m heading and certain things are clear, I finish what I start no matter how difficult the challenge. I would not have done the things that I’ve done nor would I have accomplished the things I have accomplished thus far. I learned many hard lessons as a young age that taught me grace and resilience and to keep getting up no matter how many times I fall_ and to never give up on myself. Nothing about my life was easy when I migrated here when I was 18, but I still managed to build a meaningful life. I raised two sons, dealt with heartbreaks, got married and divorced, worked jobs that barely paid the bills but kept working on myself and even finished a PhD. I kept advancing. I’ve always applied myself and kept trucking. Whenever I found myself heading down a road to nowhere, I created new paths. I did this time and again throughout my life. I know that there is a bright side to challenging times. Indeed, the difficulties I face now are no different than ones I’ve faced and triumphed over. This writing project is no different. I made a commitment to myself to see it through and even though I didn’t write on some days, it’s not over. I’m an athlete_ and have always lived by the code that even if I trip and fall at the beginning _ or stumble along the path _ to get back up and finish the race. There are still 24 days remaining. Such is the game of life. Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 Days Day 75/100. 9.13.21 Title: Time Words: 288 If we resist change, time will drag us along. That I know for certain. I’ve spent the last couple years looking at a life in motion that I’ve been watching through a thin veil, the dreamlike world in which I've ascended. I am more introverted than extroverted though I’ve learned from years of working in sales to moonlight as an extrovert really well. In fact, the ability to adapt and function in any environment is a skill at which I am adept. I spend most of my time alone and have become used to and appreciative of isolation on a level that I never knew existed. There is something sacred about having deep, life conversations about yourself with the mirror being your most fervent critic_ there is nowhere to hide and no way to sugarcoat the conversations with the mirror as your reflection. Yes, there’s something sacred about finding peace, acceptance, joy and love with yourself. I take myself to movies, out to dinner, take long walks and lose myself in that space_ the past, present and future reflections are intense, nostalgic and restoring. Indeed, this alone-ness and isolation have moments of missing certain things that humans crave. At times, I certainly miss among other things, love and intimacy, climbing into bed and falling asleep in a man’s arms, the scent of muscular combined with my feminine, the neck kisses, the holding and making love. It’s not that I can’t have intimate moments, but sex has never been just a physical act _ not anyone will do. I must be connected with someone beyond pure physical attraction. I must like their heart and be in alignment with their spirit with their soul. He's out there and I'm waiting. Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project 100 words/ 100 days Day 62/100. 8.31.21 Title: Seasons Words: 310 I started blogging in 2004 when the blogging world was fairly new. To date, I am connected on other social media platforms with some of my fellow bloggers that I met through the community. Seventeen years later, I’m still writing on my blog, however, most of the blogs that I used to read on a regular basis are closed, others have not been updated in many years. I clicked through the remaining websites on my page (a fraction of the daily blogs I used to read) and felt a moment of loss as one after, I came across the closed pages that reminded me of life’s ever changing seasons. I remember the characters behind the pages well and could not help wondering where life had taken them. I encountered some of the greatest minds, the most fascinating characters and eccentric personalities during those years. I miss the exchange of ideas, the sharing of life stories, the wealth of creativity, and being immersed in a community of deep thinkers that shared perspectives, laughter, tears _ we shared our sadness and our hopes, exposed our vulnerabilities, flawed selves and everything in between. I’ve been journaling since I was a child, throughout my teenage years and continued into adulthood. To date, I have not found a more therapeutic way to bring all of my emotions inside out _ to have hard, candid and yet loving conversations with myself, to laugh, celebrate and cry. Writing has healed some of my deepest wounds, taught me about myself and brought me profound enlightenment. I have surrendered and found grace within these pages, lost and found myself, died and lived again. Indeed, seventeen years is a long time to keep a blog and I have changed tremendously from the person who began. Some of my chapters are missing, but I’m still here_ a tapestry stitched by time. Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day: 56/100 8.25.21 Title: Father Words: 150 I piled my hair into two afro puffs, grabbed my umbrella and left for the gym this evening. It was no surprise that the streets were empty. The rain was falling steadily. The walk to the gym was nostalgic. I experience rainy days differently since my father died. On the day after he was buried, my sisters and I went to dinner at a restaurant on the beach in Jamaica. Rain started falling heavily with roaring thunder and lightning flashing across the sky. The six of us sat around the table mostly, silent, perhaps thinking the same thing_ that we were now fatherless children. One of my sisters commented that he was crying for us. I felt that we were having an intimate moment with him_ his presence was everywhere. Even now, I can smell the rain mixed with sand and how the ocean swallowed every drop that lasted anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. I remembered every minute of it. Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 55/100 8.24.21 Freedom Words 249 Like love and happiness, freedom is not a source that comes from the outside. There are different types of imprisonment and freedoms _ there’s physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual and imprisoning someone's physical body is not the same as taking their mind_ spirit_ soul. Some things can never be taken. I am here in my growth. It’s an amazing thing waking up and walking through a storm through which you cannot see and end or light and not having any fear of what may greet you. There’s freedom in releasing oneself from anyone or thing that seeks to bind, entrap and oppress them. There is freedom in not being affected by what people say or do because you have mastered yourself and nothing or no one can get close enough to touch you unless you allow it. Indeed, there is freedom in walking towards the void and not feeling helpless, stranded or lost. This sense of quiet calm has been coming for a while and I have walked calmly towards it and accepted its gift that allows for more observation and less reacting_ less feeling like my life is in the hands of a puppeteer _ less holding on to things that I don’t need. At some point along this long and treacherous journey, my emotional, psychological and spiritual self took a train out of town. In this space, there is no negativity towards anyone, no anger, hatred, strife_ nothing except a quiet calm that is best described as freedom and it's not something that anyone gave me, like love and happiness, freedom is a gift we give to ourselves. Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 52/100. 8.21.21 Title: The eyes Words: 235 Life will change us. It’s supposed to. It’s what and who we become that one must take heed. I have always been fascinated by people’s eyes and what they tell me. I believe that the eyes are truly the windows to our soul and will often reveal what a smile hides. In fact, if I go on a date with someone who will not look at me, nothing will become of it. That being said, I’ve made it a point to not not only study others, I study myself. No matter what’s going on in my life, when I step out I do so with a happy face. Smiling comes easily. I can compartmentalize and store emotions where I want them and decide how I conduct and present myself to the world. I do not give misery the satisfaction of consuming me. As such, I’m often told that I do not look like what I’ve been through. I’ve tried to picture what that would look like and can’t. Still, whenever I think of some of the worst things that I’ve been through, I can place goodness beside them. Indeed, I have laughed as much as I cry. But I do wonder what one sees when they look in my eyes with full understanding that ‘looking’ is not the same as ‘seeing’. Is it all there, the triumph and tragedies of this extraordinary life I’m living? Continue reading
Posted Aug 21, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 49/100. 8.18.21 Strategy Words: 460 I have thought about seeing a therapist a few times over the last couple years. I am not one of the many who are adverse to getting help when or if I need it. In fact, a few years ago while going through some work-related trauma, due to a toxic work environment, I met with a therapist and she was helpful. Sometimes the world gets a bit crazy and overwhelming_ seeking therapy is not a weakness, there is strength in asking for help. I have alluded without getting into great detail here that the past several years has been filled with one challenge after another. Like many, especially black women, we are used to dealing with difficult situations on our own _ often in private with little to no support. Sometimes even when support is available, we do not ask for help _ that’s part of the unbreakable, wonder woman, strong woman schema that we have been taught to uphold. Any show of emotion and vulnerability is rejected as false, holding a passionate position about an issue, any issue, we are deemed hostile, confrontational, and out of control. We have to watch the tone of our voice when we speak, make sure we don’t make any move that can be considered aggressive, deal with societal disrespect, exploitation, and abuse with a smile _ or else. I have always had an issue with the ‘or else’ part. You see, we are trapped in old stigmas that have followed us from the slave era that deems us less than. On a large scale, we are still not considered women. We do not fit into the European standards of womanhood. Indeed, we are strong _ I know that I am, I’ve had no choice. But being strong all the time no matter what is taking shape in our lives leaves us vulnerable and at risk for health issues and further exploitation. It’s a vicious, endless cycle that many of us know too well. I addressed this issue to some degree in my dissertation along with other microaggressions. Too many of us are walking around traumatized, carrying the burdens of the world and never stop to think that we deserve care because we’ve existed in a state of survival for so long. I’ve been left traumatized from the issues that I have faced these last few years and I am not ashamed to say that. I have come to the conclusion that I may need help getting through some of the emotional/psychological blocks that I have been facing and don’t really understand. One thing is clear, I can no longer continue on the path I’m on. It’s not working. Moving forward requires healing and a different strategy and ways of approaching things. Perspective. Continue reading
Posted Aug 18, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/ 100 days Day: 47. 8.16.21 Cracked Spaces Words: 358 I've been spending less time in my apartment and more in the open. Going to the lake and parks gives me a kind of peace and soul-care that keeps me connected to myself despite the seemingly shifting and swaying waves taking me to unfamiliar places. I do not mind new discoveries and have always embraced new experiences no matter in what form they come. The biggest challenge is making sure that I do not lose myself in the cracked spaces. Along this new path I have learned the importance of constantly taking stock and stepping away from the canvas far enough to gain clarity and the foresight to make thoughtful strategic decisions that will elevate and not hurt me and others. There is so much to be done and no longer can, nor will I spend time going around in circles to end up staring down an endless abyss dressed in illusions, disconnections and distortions where clarity should be. Time is our most important asset. Like most of my life lessons, I learned this at an early age. Some things are final. Someone I knew recently died, I would've liked to pay my final regards but could not attend in person and the link for livestream remote attendance did not work. Final. In this phase of my life, I reached a point where it became necessary to pause, observe, reflect and insist on truth and transparency as necessary for relationships to evolve. Indeed, this is a peculiar time. I have concerns about loyalty from people who I would never think of doing harm or acting against. It is in this space that I stand looking up at a dark cloud not sure where it came from_ but understanding that it must be dealt with. It’s like the elephant in the room that looms and will not move until it's addressed. The energy is oppressive. I am not afraid of darkness_ this cloud is threatening only because it hides in the shadows and presents itself friendly while acting like a monster. I am not afraid of monsters. Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 41. 8.10.21 Summer Words: 287 It's been a beautiful summer in Chicago as far as the temperature goes with warm evenings and a gentle breeze from the lake. It's also been one of great reflections for me. I find myself once again asking big life questions about my next chapter. I am at a fork in the road and both indicate that this current chapter continues, for how long, I don't yet know, but there are more twists and turns ahead that may hold some answers to this chapter's questions, and mysteries. I learned long ago that some things follow us from one lifetime to the next and that's as it should be. This realization is not new, but yesterday I found myself in a frustrated space that needed greater control and from which I needed an escape. I went to the lake and spent a long time conversing with nature. I said a silent prayer for those who are in the process of transitioning to the next life including a member of my cohort. And I ask guidance from my father and ancestors in the spiritual realm. Nature even when it's silent is felt in a deeply spiritual way_ in a knowing place of the connection that we share with the earth and sky and every living thing. I left the lake reminding myself to avoid cynicism even on rainy days (that leaves me with a yearning that I can’t yet explain). Though it may rain at times_ and though life may break my heart _ my way forward is to think of joy and bliss _ to to keep smiling. I reminded myself that a loving heart_ no matter its wounds is still meant to love. And so it is_ Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 35. 8.4.21 Strange Times Words: 218 What a strange time? I thought about this as I searched through remote jobs on LinkedIn. What a strange time? I remember my mindset heading into the PhD program back in 2015/16 when I decided to enroll. I was going to do anything and make whatever sacrifices necessary to achieve my goal. At that point, I had spent my entire adult life in sales and marketing selling anything from credit card machines, insurance, software sales (saas) and even some telemarketing. I've always gravitated to professions that allowed opportunities to both make money while controlling my time. My almost 10 years in the insurance field allowed me to do just that. However, my education suggested that at some point, I was going to implement other experiences into my lifestyle. I had a love for writing and an interest in journalism and law, thus becoming astute in communication would be essential. I majored in communications for my Bachelors and Masters degree and thought getting a PhD would add to my accomplishments and set me on a course of never having to worry about employment in any profession. I’m not sure how to explain that on the heels of graduating with a PhD in community psychology, I had difficulty in gaining employment in any profession. Indeed, these are strange times. Continue reading
Posted Aug 4, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Day 33/100. 8.2.21 The Children Words: 175 There are children playing in the tiny park outside my window. I'm certain that they are from a neighborhood child-care center. It's seldom that children come to this particular park with only a small sand-box and two benches under a big tree. I have seen old men sitting in the shade enjoying the peace, or the homeless, sleeping on the benches. I took my reader out there a time or two and sat with the birds and butterflies. But this morning the children came to play in the bushes and amidst a patch with yellow flowers in full bloom adding music to the silence. It was a welcome change to hear them laughing, chasing each other and playing hide-and-seek. My two sons are grown now but some of my fondest memories are of them as children and in my heart, they never really grow old. Children remind us of everything we are and not _ they are our window into yesterday_ a reminder to stay present _ and they are our hope for the future. Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days The Canvas Day 32/100. 8.1.21 Words: 150 I've decided to take a 'self-care' break from social media for at least a few days. Too much of certain things are not good for you. I've done quite a bit of social media engagement in the last couple years_ put a lot of paint on the canvas so to speak, made countless brush strokes in trial and error and now it's time to step back and examine the painting for a clearer view. How does it look? How does it feel? How is the connection with myself, my heart, spirit, soul? I firmly believe that when the connection with 'Self' is broken, it's difficult to connect with others in the right way. That's why I've always insisted on maintaining a space that is pure, uncluttered and that only I occupy. Energy transfer is real. This small break has been a long time coming. We’ll see what insights it brings. Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days Jamaica Day 31. 7.31.21 Words: 235 Jamaican born and raised, I woke up in a celebratory mood to the news Jamaica dominated the women’s 100 m at the 2020 Olympics taking first, second and third. Track and field is one of the few sporting events that I watch in the olympics. I am always taken back to my high school years when I competed, the thrill of watching my fellow Jamaicans is nostalgic. I know how grueling they trained _ their victories are certainly worth celebrating. Jamaica is still a developing country but we are a people of indomitable spirit that I have always connected with my African ancestry and the diaspora. An avid reader growing up, I knew very well the history of enslavement and could see in many ways how the remnants of that history was passed down through generations and the impact on the people but I swear, some of us can walk through fire smiling. The Jamaican flag is marked with an X and the black, green and gold colors are rich in meaning. Black depicts the strength and creativity of the people; Gold, the natural beauty of the sunlight and the wealth of the country; and Green signifies hope and agricultural resources. In some of my darkest moments, I think back to my childhood, and the small island that fed my spirit family, love, sunlight, ocean, trees, fresh air, land, and so much more. Indeed, today was nostalgic. Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100days 17 Years Day 29: 7.29.2021 Words: 370 It is nearing the end of the first month writing project that I’ve been following to write 100 words in 100 days that began July 1st. I started following along, deciding to resume writing on this space that I’ve had since 2004. I missed several days during this period, but each post exceeded 100 words and I’ve written more this month than I have in a long time. My objective was to challenge myself to start writing here consistently again. Writing has always been therapeutic for me. I’ve been journaling since I was a little girl and it’s one of those lifestyle habits that not only grew with me_ it guided my steps. I solved a lot of life’s big questions, found clarity in complex situations and resolved many personal challenges by taking pen to paper. When I started this blog over 17 years ago, I got to a point when I was writing daily for extended periods. In fact, I was writing for an audience and worked diligently to build my readership because I was exploring writing professionally at the time. The content was ‘somewhat’ erotic and most people who knew me socially and professionally would not connect me with certain language. I’m not sure why the interest in writing about sex at the time but I had fun doing it. Later, I transitioned into sharing reflective, life experience posts. My writing slowed significantly on this site beginning around 2015/2016, a 'manic' period that I wish I had done more documenting. I would've loved to look back at that period when I was still mothering my youngest (now 19), working full time, chasing a PhD and my life with Leo. It's safe to say that my writing changed direction and evolved with me several times. A lot can happen in seventeen years_ it marks several important chapters in my life. I am at another cross-road, and in a way, I'm trying to figure out where we go from here. I'm different. Life is different. My Interests have grown and I’m trying to organize and maneuver this big life. I’m sure that one day I will write the story of where life has taken and done to me. Continue reading
Posted Jul 29, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 days A Sense of Calm Day 27. 7.27.21 Words: 248 The urge to detach and fall into open space is stronger than it's ever been. The feeling of being tethered has dissipated _ part of this tetheredness that I felt for so long may have been a reaction to things going on around me that felt foreign and unfamiliar and which I was caught in the center. Though there are certain aspects of my life that remain a mystery, I accept them as they are for now, trusting that time will reveal what I need. Some mysteries belong to the galaxies. As such, I've been focusing on self-care and not losing myself. I have a strong family, friends I trust, love and support, but if everything and everyone were to fall by the wayside, I will come to my rescue. This self that I am_ this heart and soul as old as time has never left me and has never failed me in times of need. I found in my archive a post from 2012 aptly named, Lessons from my younger self reminds me that everything that I have been through and are going through have a purpose and to trust myself and my journey. In all the chaos, I'm learning to calm my mind. Most things do not require a reaction. Indeed, the mind is our most powerful tool and self-mastery is among one of our highest accomplishments. I’m trusting the journey and myself. Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project 100 words/ 100 Days Walking Again Day 25. 7/25/21 Words: 235 I used to take 'Hot Yoga' years ago but stopped along with most of my hobbies when I started the PhD program. I'm confidently back on a regular routine and would like to integrate it back into my workout. Today, I took a class at close-by studio. It was challenging, but it felt good. I’ve been dealing with a lot of deep, life changing situations, that leaves me feeling as if my heart, mind, and soul are out of alignment. It's been strange seeing distortions and confusions where there should be clarity. This creates tremendous physical, emotional and psychological changes that I have no choice but to embrace, surrender to and walk the journey. I have never felt broken or scared or that I cannot handle my life. I don’t think that we are ever given more than we can handle. Indeed, this has been an isolated chapter and there’s nothing to do but accept it. Despite not having all the answers to some big questions right now, and at times experiencing some frustrations, there is peace in my heart. I’ve lived long enough to know that in some situations, clarity waits for the right time. This I know for certain: I am living a truly extraordinary life. I feel fortunate and grateful for the challenges, for my health, and the people in my life, known and unknown who have been there for me. Perspective. Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 Days Title: Chicago Day 22. 7.22.21 Words: 276 As winter looms, I've been thinking more about leaving Chicago. Though I've lived here for almost 30 years, every winter I talk about leaving. Born to the warmth of Jamaican sun and mother earth that I can still feel beneath my bare feet from walking barefoot as a child, and the ocean _ that is as much a part of me as the blood in my veins, I've never gotten used to the rigid Chicago winters. But Chicago is such a beautiful city, come summer, spring and fall, each year with the last of the melting snow, I forget that I wanted to leave and enjoy the thrill, the hub, and energy of this amazing, yet crime ridden city. I did have a solid plan on leaving when my youngest graduated from high school. He graduated two years ago. This time is different. I've been without steady employment for the last few years, my children are grown and I'm not involved in a romantic relationship. The time to surrender and get lost in this vast universe might be a welcome change. I thought of this again last night during my nightly stroll. The sky was clear and the moon followed me as if it was afraid to let me out of sight to which I whispered a heartfelt thank you _under its watchful gaze, I felt safe. Yes, the world is my oyster and filled with possibilities. I don’t know where the wind will take me, whether it’s here or somewhere else, I cannot wait to step into the unknown. Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 Days Night Day 21. 7/21/21 Words: 302 Today was one of those days... I didn't get much done. My body clock is off. I joke sometimes that I must've been a vampire in my former life _ I have a habit of going out at nights and roaming. I've always been a night person_ in fact, those who know me well know that 3:00 am in the morning is a good time to reach me if I am not working a 9 to 5 and have to get up early. It's the roaming part that's new. The night brings me a kind of comfort that is both odd and familiar, lonely and pleasurable like I've done this before many lifetimes ago. I have a theory that I will keep to myself for the same reason many do not tell their dreams. I like to spend time at the Starbucks close to the gym where I work out. There is a trumpet player who sometimes plays for hours on the corner. He is gifted. I have spent many hours sitting in the sun, listening to him play. There is a story in him and a message that comes to me. I love to watch people at their craft. It;s also a place where many homeless people spend time. I've gotten to know some of them by name. I feel bad when I don’t have money to give them. It’s also a place where many retirees come to play chess. These days I take pleasure in the simplest things like the swarm of crows that just landed in the single tree outside my window. There is a splash of orange made by the setting sun _ a patch of grey clouds floats by. The scenery is stunning. Continue reading
Posted Jul 21, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 words/100 Days Life is Good Day 17. 7/17/21 Word Count: 320 I treated myself to a birthday movie night and went to see SpaceJam. It was enjoyable. A lot of parents brought their children. It was great to see all the families out. This morning I treated myself to breakfast at a new Caribbean restaurant named 14 Parish that recently opened in my neighborhood. Born and raised in Jamaica, the name caught my attention. Instead of States, we have 14 Parishes, so I was curious to know what kind of food they served. They serve Caribbean food. I will be going back. The food was excellent. I am committed that this season of my life will be devoted to my self-care, self-reliance, self-determination etc. As I heal from the traumas of the past few years, it's clear that I wandered into territories that were not good for me_ that were diminishing _ places and situations that I would never knowingly enter. I remain gentle with myself as I seek to understand how I ended up in some of these places. Indeed, I can start this last chapter with a grim question: Have you ever been left to die? But it’s the story that follows that is truly extraordinary, full of hope, redemption, change and living a purposeful life. I will reveal some of these happenings as time goes on. In the meantime, I'm doing my best to put the broken pieces of my life back together and discard that which is no longer needed. I am perpetually grateful to so many people known and unknown. Whenever I catch myself complaining about anything, I am reminded that it's a miracle that I'm even here. Stop it. Life is good. There's still much to sort out and do, and it may not seem like it sometimes, but change is coming and I'm on my way home. Continue reading
Posted Jul 17, 2021 at KITTEN
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Writing Project: 100 Words/ 100 days A Special Birthday Day: 16 - 7/16/21 Words: 393 It's my birthday today and I'm going to take time to do a few of the things I love. I wanted to start the day out reflecting on this day. It's a special one _ not that all birthdates aren't important, but this one is special. It's a different kind of appreciation knowing that I survived situations that were meant to destroy me. It's a different kind of seeing looking out this one window in this small apartment from the 3rd floor at the yellow roses below and listening to the birds in the trees. I think about love this morning_ not in a sad way just reflective. My cat woke me up wanting to be fed. I smiled and stroked her _ we've been constant companions for the last several years. She belonged to my ex-husband but when she ended up with me in the separation, I promised that I would take care of her. Mimzi, like most cats, she’s a mysterious and mystic creature. I've always been fascinated by her. I stroked her thinking that I can easily reach back in my memory to previous birthdays being awakened not by a domineering cat but by kisses and sex and flowers and breakfast and an entire day celebrating me. It is not with sadness that I remember but with understanding and appreciation for the ever changing and unpredictable hands of time. On this journey, I have been kissed and touched in every crevice of my being inside and out and at the end of my days I can say that I have loved. These days I sometimes wonder if the one with whom I will grow old will find me again. It’s too early to tell at this point _ I am experiencing the unfolding. I've been found and lost or let go and came back for _ and a lot of other things in-between. At the end of the day, a significant part of our lives boils down to how much we loved and how much we've been loved. We shall see where this lifeline goes. I love movies and it so happens that SpaceJam comes out today. I may spend part of the evening at the theatre: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olXYZOsXw_o Continue reading
Posted Jul 16, 2021 at KITTEN