Territory

She had marked her territory. He was her man and she wanted to make sure all the other women knew it. So, she insisted that he didn’t hang out with his female friends anymore. If they were married, they could do couple dates. She was to be the only woman in his life.

One day she stopped by his job to bring him lunch. He was happy to see her. She noticed a woman lurking around and playful touching her man. She didn’t like it. He was hers. She waited.

Later that evening she asked her boyfriend about the woman. “Oh, she’s just a friend. Very nice woman” he replied. She smiled. This woman was infringing on her territory.

She didn’t like that.

Later that week, she began observing the woman. Watching her. She wondered what her motives were. Why did she think she could have her man?

She became obsessed with the other woman. She reasoned she was protecting her territory so it was okay. She began stalking the woman’s every move. On-line and in person.

She slashed three of her tires one night. Wrote “slut” on her car. Sent her a dead cat via a courier service. She wanted her to move on. Leave the state. To leave her job. To leave her man alone.

But, this woman wouldn’t budge.

Her relationship with her boyfriend changed. He began to feel sorry for his co-worker. He started to be concerned about her safety and well-being. He even had the nerve to cancel dinner one night. He wanted to check on her.

She told him that she understood. She told him that was why she loved him. His loyalty to friends. She told him that she would keep dinner warm for later.

He loved her. She was such an understanding woman. He wondered how he had ever gotten so lucky.

So she went to the woman’s house that night. Stayed in her car and watched them. She was intent to find out what was going on between her man and that woman.

She got out of her car and peeked in the window. She saw them sitting on the couch. The woman had her head on her boyfriend’s lap. She looked scared.

She smiled.

She returned to her car and grabbed her 9mm. She walked up to the front door of the woman’s house. Her boyfriend opened the door. He looked surprised. He smiled.

She shot him in the chest.

Blood pooled on his shirt. He fell forward. She stepped over his body and entered the woman’s house. The woman screamed and began to run away. She shot her in the back. Point blank. In her head.

She smiled.

All those lessons at the gun range paid off. She was able to hit a moving target. Her instructor would be impressed.

She took her fingers and dipped them in the woman’s blood and wrote one word on the wall.

Mine.

 

This post was inspired by the Daily Prompt. The word was territory.

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links:  Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Instinct

My instinct told me that he wasn’t the one for me.

I ignored it.

I was in that place of blissful ignorance and called it love.

Why was I ignoring my instinct?

My instinct told me that he was a liar and an abuser.

I ignored it.

Even after that first punch, my heart protected him.

My instinct told me to run.

The continued physical and emotional abuse had left me broken.

An empty shell.

I was dying inside.

My instinct kept telling me that one day he would kill me.

I ignored it.

Death was better than this.

I loved him.

I just had to be better.

I had to be more of what he wanted.

I had to change.

I woke up this morning and my instinct told me that today was the last day I would be alive.

I ignored it.

I laid next to him.

Watching him sleep silently.

He was beautiful.

I reached under my pillow and grabbed the blade.

I stabbed the hell out of him.

He lay choking in his own blood.

My instinct was wrong.

Today was the day he took his last breath.

 

Today’s post is inspired by the Daily Post. The word was instinct.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links:  Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

When Being Strong Kills You

I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve heard men tell me that I’m crazy. But, I think what I’ve heard uttered in frustration is something that I want to bring attention to now. The myth of the strong black woman. This myth that seeks to guide us as we grow up in facts cripples us by the time we’re grown women.

We’re taught that we shouldn’t be vulnerable. That we should be able to get through the problems that we encounter with strength and determination. We should just keep on keeping on. But, that’s not true. So many black women suffer from depression and are not getting the help that they need.

We try to explain it all and say “Oh, she’s just a little sick right now. She needs to pray on it and she’ll be better.” We can’t pray away mental illness. We have to address it and we have to stop teaching our girls that they have to grin and bear the pain. It’s too much.

Being strong is killing them. I’m tired of reading stories about my sisters who are struggling with underlying cases of mental illness and no one in their circle seems to know it. Blame it on the fact that we are uneducated or unconcerned about mental health in this country, but I have to say “Please stop ignoring it. It’s killing us.”

anxiety_depression

I know. I get tired. I get tired of being a strong black woman. I watched my grandmother raise 11 children on her own and then raise some of her children’s children. If that wasn’t enough, she took in foster kids. One summer that I spent with her she had 13 other children that summer. Who the heck openly commits to raising 13 children for the summer? Why? I know she loved us but did anyone think that maybe that was too much? Let’s alternate kids for the summer?

My own mother pushed aside her pain to raise her children by herself with no financial, emotional or physical support from my dad. I still remember the day she said to me “Your dad is gone. I need you to be a big girl and help me with your brother and sister.” I was 10. Thus began the need to be a strong black girl who would become a strong black woman.

I’m not against therapy. I’m a big supporter of the need for therapy. I will often say that black folks need three things: Jesus, wine and therapy. We often neglect therapy believing that we can pray away our pain. But, if you are in immense pain can you even hear God’s response? No. The noise is too loud.

So, we put on our cape and continue to fight for the injustices of the world and never worry about how it is affecting us. How it is killing us because we are supposed to worry about everyone else but ourselves. We don’t want to be weak. Therefore, we continue to do everything around us to make people not see that we are cracking under the pressure. Try to live a normal life.

We deny that we are hurting for the convenience of others. To try to appear strong in spite of the pain. To endure. To deny the ugly truth that sometimes life is hard and we need help. We need your listening ear. We need sympathy and we need your encouragement that we should seek help.

I’m tired of reading stories where black women are killing their children, each other or themselves in what is clearly undiagnosed mental health issues. We have to stop saying be strong and tell them that it’s okay to not be strong. Be you. Find your authentic voice and get help. It’s okay.

shirley-depress

 

 

 

Disclaimer: I don’t own these photos. A quick Google search was performed to find them.

Meaning

Sometimes the load gets to heavy to carry. The weight of the world rests on my shoulders and I feel as though no one can see my pain. I struggle to maintain my sanity when my world turns upside down. To be able to distinguish between fact and fiction when I’m looking through the glass and trying to find meaning.

Is it supposed to be hard? Am I supposed to know what to do with my life? How can I get out of this situation I put myself in? When will the pain end? Does anyone see me crying? Why can’t people stop being so dang selfish and offer to just be there?

All those thoughts overwhelm me and the voices start to tell me that no one is there and that it is all on me. I don’t know if it’s true. I’m grasping for something to hold on to because I can’t seem to get my bearing. I need to find solace. I need to find my strength and regain my balance.

Black women are supposed to be strong. We’re not supposed to show the cracks in our armor. We are supposed to heal. A mental health break is for fools they whisper. Pick up your armor and keep fighting the voices yell. I can’t. I’m too tired. I can’t keep fighting. Am I having a mental breakdown?

I need to get a grip. So, I place my weary body in bed and reach for my Ipad. I need to read. To lose my mind in the pages of someone else’s fiction. To stop trying to fix my life when I can’t stop crying. I click on the Kindle app and read and soon I feel my pain ease.

My mind subsides. The voices become a whisper and I find solace in the pages of an author’s pain. The characters become kindred spirits and I see color. Color is calming. It claims my spirit and tells me that this too shall pass.

I like color. I like reading. I like being. Right here. With you. In this fantasy.

I Get it Okay

I’m anemic. I’ve been dealing with anemia most of my life, but never to the point that it has gotten as bad as it has now. I’m exhausted (severely fatigued) and barely able to perform my day-to-day tasks. So on Monday, I called my doctor and left a voice mail about the new medication he’s put me on and how it’s affecting my anemia (which has been mild up until this point). The nurse called me back and said the side effects of the medication are normal, but that I need to get on Iron supplements immediately. She said that she would leave a note for the doctor who was making rounds that day and would call me tomorrow. No problem.

On Tuesday, I went to the local CVS to get some supplements ASAP like the nurse said to try to get this constant fatigue under control. I am so tired that it feels like there is not enough hours in the day and I can barely drive the 14 miles to work. I took two pills yesterday and then received an email from my doctor recommending that I get a biopsy and that he’s contacted the scheduling coordinators in the office so that I can get on the schedule. Hold up! What? For real? Why?

No reason mentioned as to why I should go for this invasive procedure when I was told by the nurse that my side effects that are worsening my anemic self are normal. Whose running whom? I was hot. I decided to not respond to his email at this point because I needed to craft a perfect snarky response to send to him.

Here were some of my response choices:

Response #1

Dr. *Blank*:

Have you lost your dang mind? Why in the heck would you send me an email and mention the word biopsy and me getting one? Do you think that is appropriate? Were you sniffing the gas when you did your rounds today? I think you need to call me ASAP because I’m ready to drive over to your office now with my anemic self and demand a face-to-face consultation.

Call me now!

Response #2

Dr. *Blank*:

Umm, I’m gonna take negative on the biopsy for $200. Why? Because you didn’t explain why I would need a biopsy, the risk of said biopsy or even talk to me like I’m an actual breathing patient. I’m getting weak writing this because if you haven’t heard, my anemia is making me pass out.

Call me now man!

Response #3

Dr. *Blank*:

Wow! You were so thoughtful when I was breeding and carrying and actual human being in my womb, but now since I’m not you’re acting like I’m a menopausal “Stepford Wife” with no real opinion. Why would you suggest a biopsy in email and think that I would agree to such an invasive procedure without a phone call or a face-to-face consultation? Don’t you understand that I’m a feminist and even though you were there when I gave birth to my king, women run this world! You would know that if you were paying attention. I can’t talk to you anymore and I would like one of the other women doctors in the practice to call me ASAP because they apparently have graduated medical school and understand my rights as a woman and a human being. I bid you farewell and would like the higher species in the practice to contact me from now on.

 

As you can see, I was going through it right? But, the gist of the matter was that I was not going to get a biopsy or any other invasive procedure without talking to the person who wants to do it. I went home that night and in my severely anemic and weakened state began to research my condition and learned that according to The Mayo Clinic (a really important clinic) that I have 7 out of the 10 symptoms. Here is the list of symptoms:

Anemia symptoms vary depending on the cause of your anemia but may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Pale skin
  • A fast or irregular heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness
  • Cognitive problems
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Headache

Yep, I was depressed. I swore I started seeing stars at that moment. I just
climbed my frail and anemic body under the covers and started to try to motivate myself to keep up the good fight. I searched the internet to try and find songs to encourage and inspire me because hey I’m dramatic. I found this list of 31 inspiring songs and realized one of my favorite artists was among them…Kelly Clarkson. I decided “Ode to my Anemia” and chose to listen to this song on repeat:

Yep, what doesn’t kill me will make me stronger! No Anemia, I will not die. I will fight! I will get healthy and I will survive. (I was going through it the other night).

The next morning, I called a good friend of mine to update him on my condition. He is in the ministry and he listened to my dramatic monologue on how the anemia was trying to take me out, but I wasn’t letting it. He never interrupted. That’s what friends do right? Listen. Well, when I finished he said, “I’m really sorry you’re going through this and you’ve consulted the internet, but have you gone to God with this?” I was hot.

Why was I hot? Because here he was trying to tell me what I should do about my medical condition and he doesn’t have a medical degree. Men, I tell you! I went off. I said, “Look, God is too busy to worry about me and my anemic self. He’s focused on bigger issues and bigger prayers. Like my prayer for Ebola, but thank you for your concern.” He was offended. He said, “Wow! It amazes me how people who are faithful to God don’t realize that God wants you to come to him in all things.” He said, “I never expected to hear that from you.”

Well, I was fit to be tied. Much arguing, overtalking and I gotta get ready for work statements and we ended the call. I went about my day talking with the office nurse who was making notes to send back to the doctor (still no call from the man himself) and then I said I need to write about this. I looked up what my friend said about God wanting me to come to him for everything and realized…he was right. I was wrong. It says so in Luke 16:10 (KJV) “ He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.”

I felt horrible. I was not going to God with my severe anemia because I wanted him to focus on Ebola and I thought this was too small for him. But, I should have known better. All things should be brought to him and he will decide what he’s too busy for. I owe my friend an apology, which I probably won’t give him due to my anemia being so severe that I am entitled a pass (hey cognitive problems okay). More important than my not giving an apology is the fact that I learned that I must go to God with everything.

I Have My Moments

A couple of weeks ago, I posted this on Facebook:

From the mommy diaries…I’m gonna pat myself on the back because I rock. After taking care of munch with his respiratory infection this week, missing work, missing his homework and not having time to write, I was able to Google translate his French homework packet in 2.5 hours last night, email the teacher with questions I didn’t understand, go to work today, knock out 2 of the 12 items due, pay bills, order his halloween costume, pay for Tae Kwan Do, order Chipotle for dinner, pick him up, eat and help him with 2 hours worth of homework to have him in bed by 9 pm because tomorrow is another busy day with the start of church school. Whew! ‪#‎momsrock‬ ‪#‎mommymoment‬‪#‎brennansmom‬

As many of you may have guessed, I have a supermom attitude when it comes to my son. That week, I was super proud of all the things I was able to accomplish in the limited amount of time with a sick child. I want to make sure that I am not only giving munch my best, but being the best with juggling motherhood and working. But, I have to admit it does get exhausting.

Why do I do it? Part supermom complex. Part insanity. I’m an overachiever when it comes to my son. I want to show the world that you can have it all. I struggle to make sure that my son never feels neglected by me (physically, emotionally, spiritually, financially, etc.). So, I am the mom who does custom holiday cards (complete with a fall photo shoot) and all. I send thank you cards, teach church school, attend Bible studies, attend PTSA meetings, update his website, blog, write my own book, order uniforms, buy new outfits for school pictures, take him to swimming, soccer, bake cakes, do play dates and attend every birthday party we’re invited too. Why? Because I’m crazy. That’s probably the simplest and best answer I can provide.

If I don’t do it, I feel like I’m somewhat being an underachiever and cheating munch out of opportunities that I didn’t have as a child being raised by a single parent. I feel guilty. I wanted him so much, but I want a career too so in order to make sure there is balance, I want to do it. I need to do it. But, doing it all exhausts me. It leaves me feeling drained and not having enough time to enjoy myself. It’s that whole supermom complex.

How bad is it? Well, this year I wanted to sign him up for cub scouts and went to the first meeting with him and his dad. He loved it! I learned all the wonderful things that the kids do and then I also learned all the things that the parents are expected to do as well. This was a heavy parent involvement chapter. I was cool with it. So, another 3 hours a week of more stuff to do? Sure, No problem. I can handle it. But, not everyone was up for the challenge.

His father had sent an email and said that he didn’t think he should do cub scouts now because he’s being over scheduled. I responded “Bye, Felicia! He’s not being over scheduled. He’s fine.” I huffed, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Supermom can handle it. Right?

Well, I could handle it or so I thought until munch got sick with a respiratory infection and I was out of work, in and out of the doctor’s office and nursing my six year old. I was tired. No school. Well, when you’re in a French Immersion program, you need to be at school. Missed days equal missed learning opportunities. We had to play catch-up. In my exhausted state, I sent an email back to his dad and said, “I think you may have a point in no cub scouts yet. While I disagree that he’s being over scheduled, he has a lot going on and school has always been our main priority and focus. That being said, I will wait until later in the year.”

Yep, I sucked it up and bit the bullet and realized that sometimes life will throw you a curve ball and you need to adjust. You need to regroup and refocus your priorities. I refocused and realized that the most important thing in the world to me is a happy and healthy child. It’s my number one priority. So, I have my moments of clarity that remind me that I don’t need to do it all or be it all. Munch will be just fine.

This is one of those moments.

The Quest for Humor

A couple of weeks ago I had dinner with a friend and he asked me, “What’s missing from your life?”  I thought for a second and replied, “Humor”.  As a soon to be divorcee I realized that I don’t spend a lot of time laughing.  I’m kinda high strung folks.  I live by a schedule and have been known to overbook.  I am really into time management or I’m a control freak. Not sure which yet.  Maybe a little bit of both.  How does one get more humor into her life when you’re already overbooked? You guessed it. Technology.  On-line dating specifically.  

So, in an effort to figure out how to meet people, I decided to try on-line dating.  Now, let’s be clear…I’m not looking for a relationship.  Just friends with casual dating.  Bowling, movies or wine tastings.  No romance.  Now, as a newbie to the on-line dating world, I tried hard to figure out what I would say on my profile.  Um, I am a Jesus loving control freak?  Too scary.  I’m a woman who lives by her calendar and doesn’t like change?  Too crazy.  So, here’s what I said:

Profile of a Newbie

I’m a God-fearing, intellectual soon to be divorced single mother of one.  I like reading everything, blogging, kids, church, family and friends.  I enjoy travelling, trying new restaurants and hanging out with my friends.  I love my job and what I do.  I love to laugh. Charm and chivalry are great qualities.  In my spare time, I volunteer my time and talents with various organizations. I love all types of music:  rock, r&b, hip-hop, gospel, jazz and country.  I am happy.

Can someone please tell me what about that profile screams “Hey crazy dude stalking me! Let’s get it on and popping?” Nothing!  But, I digress.  I have met some of the weirdest men in the last 8 days that my profile has been active and I am at the verge of removing it.  See, I don’t think a high strung control freak is cut out for the cut throat world of on-line dating or the creeps that troll that site.  So, in an effort to humor you, let’s laugh at some of the responses I’ve received:

  • Hey sexy! You’re sexy as hell 
    • (Really dude?)
  • Hey you’re sexy for a 39 year old woman! 
    • (WTH? What does that mean? Haven’t you heard that black don’t crack?)
  • Hey I want to get to know you both internally and spiritually so we can bear fruit together? 
    • (WTH? You sound like you’re trying to either penetrate or impregnate me and both are a negative)
  • I want a drama free chick that loves to be romanced 
    • (Why call her a chick then call yourself a romantic?  Doesn’t work)
  • I’m 50 and I’m looking to marry and have children 
    • (Dude, I said casual dating and no more children will ever come from my womb.  What are you missing?)
  • I’m sexually uninhibited.  I will do whatever it takes to put a smile on my woman’s face except swing from the ceilings. 
    • (Yep, I just fell out laughing too)
  • Want to go to Myrtle Beach with me this weekend?  
    • (Um no, I decided to take a roofie and see how date rape will work out)
  • Why are you so uptight? 
    • (It’s my panties.  They get tighter every time I hear BS)

Now you see what I am dealing with right?  I think I should just try to meet people the old-fashioned way…run over them with my car.  No for real, in this age of dating I think it is important for both men and women to have standards, but I can pay my own way.  I am not interested in a friends with benefits relationship and I put my relationship with my son before anyone except God.  That being said…If you’re somewhat attractive, easy going with a sense of humor, please call me and invite me to the gun range for an afternoon of lead bliss! LOL!