Archive for December, 2009

Now Playing 12.30.09

Music is a major outlet for me. When I feel a certain way that I don’t care to express outwardly, I let the music “speak” for/to me. This is my escape. My understanding. A place I can call my own. Then I write…

  1.  The Climb – Miley Cyrus
  2. Bitch – Meredith Brooks
  3. Just Like A Pill – P!nk
  4. Hero – Mariah Carey
  5. Killing Me Softly – The Fugees
  6. Houstatlantavegas* – Drake
  7. Boulevard of Broken Dreams* – Green Day
  8. You Were Meant For Me – Jewel
  9. Stop Falling – P!nk
  10. Disappear – Beyonce
  11. Lucky* – Britney Spears
  12. Family Portrait – P!nk
  13. H.A.T.E.U. – Mariah Carey
  14. Obvious – Christina Aguilera
  15. Paparazzi – Lady Gaga
  16. Hands – Jewel
  17. Don’t Let Me Get Me* – P!nk
  18. Reflection – Christina Aguilera

*these songs stand out the most

Thinking About the 90s

Maybe it’s the 80s baby in me, but… I miss the 90s! I was listening to an old 98 degrees song (don’t judge me) and it took me back. It doesn’t take much to take me back though. Those were the days where I would tape the MTV countdowns of the same videos 5 times over, even if I caught it from the middle. When Hits from the Street was funny and I used to actually learn interesting things from VH1’s Pop Up Video. This is when BET was a lot less coonish, but still coonish all the more (don’t deny it). I was in love with N’Sync, Spice Girls, Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys (Nick), Christina Aguilera, Mandy Moore, DMX, DragOn, Eve, Jadakiss, Biggie, Pac, Jay-Z, All Saints, Foxy Brown, Eminem, Suspense None the Richer, Limp Bizkit, Paula Cole, Natalie Imbruglia, Busta Rhymes, Ma$e, Cam’ron, Beanie Sigel, Mya, Brandy, Dru Hill (Nokio), Monica, Green Day, Toni Braxton, 702, Aaliyah, Bone Thugs & Harmony, and a hosts of others simultaneously! My music collection is even more eclectic today lol.

These were days when tv actually interested me. I miss Doug, Rugrats, Eureka’s Castle, Recess, Under the Umbrella Tree, Snorks, Barney, Lamb Chop, Jetsons, Flintstones, all my Disney movies and so on. I used to rush home to watch Sweet Valley High, Sister Sister, Moesha, Full House, Step By Step, Smart Guy, Martin, Hangin’ Wit Mr. Cooper, and I can’t think of what else. This was when The Real World was more real. When Lil Kim looked human. This is when I would argue down (and win) with any elementary school kid that the WWF was real! My brother used to break it down for me as to who was who by dividing the good guys from the bad guys (i.e. Shawn Micahels = Good Guy, The Undertaker = Bad Guy) and I loved them both, but Bret Hart was my fave!

I remember playing hide and seek in the projects and hiding all over, in people yards, near the highway, behind dumpsters, wherever! All those relay races and other aggressive games were worth some of the scars I still have to this day (tom boy days). Everything just seemed to be fun. Maybe because I was a young bol, more than likely so, but it is good to reminisce. Since I was maybe 5 years old, we have stayed in every hotel and motel on or near the boardwalk of Atlantic City to the point that I pass up free rooms today because I am AC’d out lol! We used to make up tv shows, dances, songs, did drill team, play: red light/green light, mother may I, catch a girl freak a girl, curb ball, double dutch, MASH, make fortune tellers (and believe them), tell creepy stories, played on people’s phones, fly down the stairs on mattresses and blankets, make tents out of our bunk beds, blackmail each other, play Mario, Sonic, NBA Jams, called the psychic hotline and many other foolish things. I remember in middle school following the almost weekly trends that faded as fast as our boyfriend/girlfriend relationships like: giga pets, pokemon cards, pacifiers, spinning tops, jacks, yo yos (all these things became hustles, a business, and also for trade lol). I met people that I still know to this day and it actually makes me feel kinda old to be able to say I’ve known people for over 15 years lol. These were all the things that were the bright side of my world. I just had to get that out of my system!

The Funny Thing About Rain

Life changes like the weather. It can be random, possibly predicted, and occasionally be in your favor. We can plan, plan, plan, but we don’t ultimately get to tell “life” what to do. It is true we can control ourselves and oversee certain situations, but there are many things that come our way that we have no power over, we can only control how we respond to it.

Cloudy, With a Chance of Meatballs Rain. As I said already, life changes like the weather, but not all of us get the same type of weather, even if we are side by side. Rain is usually used to describe the hard times in life, the storms. I had a pastor say years ago that you are always at one of three points in life: 1) about to head into a storm 2) in a storm 3) just getting out of a storm. I guess there is truth to that, I don’t disagree, but I’m also not totally sure, so I guess (lol).

I realize storms are usually looked at in a negative light, which is understandable because  it sucks when bad things happen. I also realize that we need rain, and we also need the rain in our lives, the pain and hardships. I don’t want to go into the cliches we are all aware of when it comes to hard times. Yes, I know “joy and pain go together like sunshine and rain,” I love that song, but it’s saying those things at the wrong time that can ignite a fire in people (personally speaking).

In my experience, the worst things that have happened to me have made me stronger. The things that have brought me to the lowest points of my life and made me wonder was all this suffering worth it. Why? Mainly, because I survived and it was worth it, even when I thought it would never end. I learned to endure when there didn’t seem to be any light in darkness. Storms are not easy, but necessary. I know that some of the rainy days of my life were self-induced. I learned from those as well. I know that I am young. I also know that I don’t want to be afraid to screw up, but this doesn’t mean that I want to live recklessly either. I am still looking for that balance. I may be searching for that balance for a while.

“..if I begged and if I cried, would it change the sky tonight? would it give me some light?..” – Beyonce

“..I was sure by now,God, that You would have reached down and wiped our tears away, stepped in and saved the day.. but once again, I say amen and it’s still raining.. – Casting Crowns

Living a life of no regrets is, of course, easier said than done. I look at my past and know that it is anything but pretty, but then I look at me today. If that was what it took for me to get to the road I am at, then as I grit my teeth, I would do it all over again, if necessary. I have learned that misery doesn’t necessarily always love company. In my experience, when I get to those points I prefer to be alone to get a chance to think and regroup.

“..when I’m lost in the rain.. in your eyes, I know I’ll find the light to light my way.. – Christina Aguilera

Cheap Umbrellas. There are also times when we don’t have to walk alone. These are usually the times when we find out who is really here for us (*Ray J voice* lol), but seriously, this is when you weed out the posers. I am certain that I am not the first, last or 15th (random number) person who was told from different individuals at some point in some way that they would be there for you no matter what. I also am certain that I am not alone in noticing that some of those same people were the first to disappear when it began to drizzle. Those moments impact us and if you are saying they don’t, you have proven my point.

“..on a perfect day, I know that I can count on you.. when that’s not possible, tell me can you weather a storm?..” – New Edition

I read in this book by Dr. Larry Crabb about relationships and he said, “we must never claim that our relationships with others do not affect us deeply: they do.” Just because something doesn’t have a major impact on you doesn’t mean it didn’t do anything to you at all. These disappointments should give you wisdom as to how you evaluate your relationships, that would be my hope, unless you are interested in unhealthy cycles. When you begin to allow people to show you who they are, it lightens the load a lot. Personally, I experience this a lot when I meet new people (particularly males, but I digress lol), but male or female, it happens! Notice our circles flourish when it’s all good, but my how the crowd scatters when the climate is altered. Lest we forget, in the words of New Edition (lol), “..sunny days, everybody loves them.. can you stand the rain?..” This may be a rhetorical question, a rare few would say “no.”

“..when the sun shines, we’ll shine together.. told you I’ll be here forever, said I’ll always be a friend.. took an oath Imma stick it out till the end.. now that it’s raining more than ever, know that we’ll still have each other.. you can stand under my umbrella..” – Rihanna

Don’t get me wrong, there are also in existence the “ridaz” (slang explanation: people that will be by your side no matter what lol). Though they are few and sometimes far between, these are the ones you truly appreciate. This is the way life works, never has anything that is too big been totally loyal, not necessarily saying it’s 100% loyalty in small circles either. Anyways! We luck out and get these people in our lives that will not only be with you through all your drama, attitudes, and storms, but not care if you all have an umbrella. They just want to be where they said they would be, and that place is there.. for you! I can only speak for myself, but apart from God, those people in my life helped me learn what it means to cherish something. The only way to really have a good friendship is to also be a good friend. One must also be mindful as to personal ‘operations’ in dealing with people and maintain your own character. Many of us are known for seeking out qualities that we do not possess, let’s not do that!

5-Day Forecast? We are an instantaneous generation. We want everything right now! The idea of waiting 30 seconds for certain things might make us want to burst into flames. Am I over-exaggerating? Maybe, but how often have you waited 30 seconds for a website to upload, a channel to change, or have been on hold on a phone call. We want to know everything now. Waiting, is unfortunately becoming archaic. This mindset is becoming how we expect life to work. We need detailed predictions that are accurate, at least almost always. Just typing about this is pathetic lol.

Call me old-fashioned, but I like the anxiety of waiting and not knowing most times, especially when it comes to a love interest, ha ha. I love the nervousness and weird insecurity it brings because it is that exciting. Believe it or not, I somewhat feel this way about my storms. They aren’t bad every day, because I don’t allow it. Just as the saying is, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade,” well, I say, “when life give you rain.. learn to play in it sometimes and grow!”

For those that know me, know that I am a big movie buff. I don’t watch television from the same perspective as everyone else. I try to understand the characters, the purpose of the script, etc. I always love pulling out quotes that are applicable. I don’t remember how it was said exactly, but in the movie “Troy”, Brad Pitt’s character says something about how the gods were jealous of humans, because we don’t know our fate and that it was more beautiful that way. I agree. For me, the uncertainty of life excites me, even when it hurts. In this way, I feel as though I truly live! Imagine how Noah felt when he saw rain for the first time.. one word: wow!

“..and I’ll praise you in this storm and I will lift my hands, for You are who You are no matter where I am and every tear I’ve cried, You hold in your hand.. You never left my side and though my heart is torn.. I will praise You in this storm..” – Casting Crowns

And remember.. after the rain, the sun shines and the rainbows come (the reminder of the Promise), but through the storm, the Son shines.. be encouraged!

-Signed, No Matter the Weather

“..I was alone, but You found me where I was hiding.. my love I’ve never left your side, I have seen you through the darkest nights, and I’m the One that’s loved you all your life..– Meredith Andrews

“..what you want might make you cry, what you need might pass you by if you don’t catch it.. when it hurts so bad, why does it feel so good?..” – Lauryn Hill

Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time, one of the most important questions in my world was: Can you tell me how to get to Sesame Street? Once upon a time, to start a story this way brought excitement, a good type of anxiety. Where is this going? Where is this coming from? I’m glad you wondered! We all have those moments when we stop and think “when did it all change and life get so complicated?” I was babysitting my 6 year old sister a few days ago and watching her partially inspired this topic, but not only her, but children and their mentality in general.

Fantasy Land? My sister and I were walking down the street and there was snow out (we had somewhat of a blizzard recently). She was singing and hopping around in the snow, in her own little world. I thought to myself how some parents would have probably told her to cut it out before she falls or gets dirty or something, but when I watch her I tend to let her wonder and wander. I understand that she is a child and that is just what they do, even if it’s annoying to me, I won’t rob her of those moments (at least I try not to).

As all these thoughts flowed through my mind, I almost instantly began to compare our worlds. She doesn’t have a worry or care in the world because she trusts those around her to protect, provide, and help her if she needed. She knows her limits will be given to her if need be, so her plans aren’t much until those limits are close.  It made me think, “when did it all change?” For example,  if she fell, she probably wouldn’t care, but would just get up and brush herself off. She hasn’t properly met embarrassment yet. Whereas an adult would wonder who saw that. I realize children tend to be fearless, because they don’t understand the world yet and how it works.

“Dreams used to be shared with any who would listen, now they are kept close by or else they might be murdered by the dream killers, also known as the hopeless” -TV

I remember when I thought my part of the city was all there was to the world. I remember being maybe 3 or 4 years old thinking that 52nd Street (in West Philadelphia) was the most crowded and busiest place ever! Everything and everyone seemed so big and fascinating! I remember having heroes, whether it was on television (Power Rangers, Lamp Chop, or my favorite WWF wrestlers) or the adults “the big people” in my life. It seemed like they knew it all, as if they had all the answers to everything I didn’t understand. And I’m sure I annoyed them the same way my sister tends to annoy me with questions. I understand she doesn’t properly understand sarcasm yet so I let her slide.. a lot!

There were days when I didn’t look over my shoulder because I didn’t know I needed to. Everything and everyone was some kind of pure and had good in them according to my logic. Forgiveness was instant. Friendship was forever. Later took forever. Poverty promoted creativity not awareness.  Okay meant now. Mother May I was a game. Water plugs weren’t for fires, but to play in. It was literally “all good”. The good old days I would say. Though those good old days lasted up to about 5 years old… that is when the world got real!

In short, I learned how to keep secrets, how to lie, what rejection felt like, pain, manipulation and a host of other things that I had no idea what to do with. There was all of this new information, all of these new pieces I had no idea as to how to put it together. Naturally confusion became a big part of my world of discovery. Things weren’t as simple anymore and no one told me why. I keep this in mind when I think to myself that a child is asking me a “stupid question” and dismiss my thoughts and try to break down the world to them in a way that they could understand. I reminisce about key points in my life where things got too real for TV (Takesha Victoria that is lol) and I didn’t understand. These things were a little more than an earthquake for me. It made me question who I was and now who I am and why.

“Tired of injustice. Tired of the schemes. The lies are disgusting. So what does it mean? Kicking me down. I got to get up. As jacked as it sounds. The whole system sucks.. -Michael Jackson “Scream”

“Look at me.. you may think you see who I really am, but you’ll never know me.. every day, is as if I play a part.. now I see If I wear a mask I can fool the world, but I can not fool my heart..” -Christina Aguilera “Reflection”

Reality Bites? So here I am wrestling with “who I am“in a lost world. Though I do maintain some fairly solid foundations, there is much building to do. I’m getting the better parts of my child-likeness back. I am regaining my desire to explore, forgive now, being a friend forever (even if it isn’t reciprocal), attempting to grasp fearlessness again even after all I have been through. I refuse to place blame in my past, but learn from what I know and have known.

Circumstances are constantly changing and in many cases they tend to be unfortunate, so I make the best of unpleasant situations and move on. I realize my travels will be great and their isn’t much need for baggage outside of my luggage. I’m determined to make “once upon a time” something to look forward to again instead of it being said with a sigh of loss of what once was. I know that in order for this to happen, I have to constantly stay true to myself regardless of what is going on around me and the pressures of this world.

“..you’re sellin’ out souls, but I care about mine.. ..with such confusion, don’t it make you wanna scream? your bash abusin’ victimize within the scheme..you try to cope with every lie they scrutinize..somebody please have mercy ’cause I just can’t take it, stop pressurin’ me..” -Janet Jackson “Scream”

-Signed, and she lived happily ever after

“..back when ‘I don’t know, maybe‘ was an acceptable answer..”

Let’s Be Real

I’m sickly at the moment and in addition to this I realize I am rather emotional/moody. A lot of raw emotions are here and I figured I would vent about things I know that many feel, but may not necessarily say. What sparked this fire? Well, when I talk to somebody I tend to save messages, but never really look at them again, usually I realize I still have them when that person is no longer in my life.. aka bad time to look over old messages.

The ones I saw tonight made my heart heavy, because as always, it started out great (the relationship that is). Yeah, I know I’m not interested in love, but I thought in this case a friendship was a possibility, but everything changed and as usual, I backed off, because that’s what I do. I don’t “sweat” people. I don’t pressure people to hit me up or to be in my life. I don’t want anyone around that doesn’t want to be around. It’s a tough rule to uphold sometimes, especially if I don’t agree with the person’s decision to leave, but what can ya do? Lol, stalker isn’t my twist at all and won’t be! So I let go who wants to be let go, keeping in mind I had a life before, during and after them… male or female.. I’m talking about general relationships here, nothing “deep.” I won’t front, I did like that one, but I guess “it is what it is” and I will just leave it that way.

I refuse to put myself on the frontline for something I didn’t want to “go” anywhere anyhow. I just value real friendships and thought that one might’ve lasted a lot longer than it did, but such as life (I guess). That bridge is apparently burned (I guess). I just can’t bring myself to erase the messages.. well at least not yet. Ladies, I know y’all understand how I feel. When you first meet somebody and there is a vibe (finally!) and then after a while they fade (like the rest of them), but you didn’t want that one to fade, but you can’t make them stay. It sucks, that is all I’m really trying to say. Maybe these ((cramps)) are talkin, but that is just how I feel right now. Tomorrow may be different or maybe it won’t.

“..maybe it’s me, maybe I bore you.. a no-no, it’s my fault, cuz I can’t afford you..” -John Legend

“..I just wonder, do you ever think of me anymore.. do you?..” -Ne-Yo

“..I know we haven’t spoken for a while, but I thought about ya and it kinda made me smile.. ..I’ve tried & I’ve tried to get you out my mind, but it don’t get no better as each day goes by.. ..do you know I kept all of your pictures? haven’t had the heart to part with them yet.. tried to erase the way your kisses taste, but some things a girl can never forget..” -Rihanna

Signed, I Used to Love H.I.M

“..I was just waiting for your phone call, when they came along to say that a rose done chased you clear away.. broke my choux pastry heart.. ..don’t wanna lose ya, don’t even own ya.. I just wanna stay right here until never dawns, yeah..” -Corinne Bailey Rae

“..it used to feel like heaven, it used to feel like May.. ..nobody wants to face the truth, but you won’t believe what love can do til it happens to u..” -Corinne Bailey Rae

I Don’t Want To Wait

So I have been thinking about some of my short-term goals and just learning to make the best of unfortunate circumstances, because that is all they are.. circumstances, and they are constantly changing. I’ve noticed many people discussing the coming new year and the “changes” they intend to make and the things they plan to leave in ’09. That’s all well and good if that is what you want to do, but I don’t want to wait until then.. I never do. I have never been the type of person that likes to let anything dwell in my life that doesn’t need to be there.

I am constantly reminded in some way of my potential and the vision given to me, regardless of what others think or who also believes in it with me. I have never been like a lot of people, I realize that. Once upon a time I thought of being “weird” or “different” in the negative light, but I realize that all of those that I compared myself to had nothing I wanted. A little saying I occasionally think to myself is: “I am aware of trends, I don’t follow them” meaning I won’t be ignorant to what’s around me, but that doesn’t mean I have to be apart of it either.

I am embracing the fact that God made me extraordinary, I am finally truly loving that. It’s humbling in the sense that I sometimes wonder “why give me so much or why notice me?” I still don’t know why, but I am grateful. It also made me mindful of my worth. I have spent many years undervaluing myself in different ways and have struggled back and forth with that. With all of that being said, there have been 4 areas that really impacted me this year that I’ll touch on:

  1. My walk
  2. My relationships or relationshits (let’s be honest)
  3. My goals
  4. My finances

My Walk. I say “my” to re-enforce the fact that they are mine, not yours or anyone elses. Part of me wants to say it has been rocky, but in all honesty, in all that I have dealt with this year, I truly can understand the statement “sometimes you don’t realize that Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have.” I realized that even those with the best intentions will disappoint in some way whether it is intentional or not. I realized that even if the whole world turned it’s back on me, God will still be the only one to love me unconditionally. I am no longer afraid to say “I don’t know” or terrified of making mistakes or questioning my faith. I am learning to be real with myself and to take responsibility for my world. For example, nobody can “make” me mad, it’s a choice to respond that way, whether it’s legitimate or not. I also learned that my destiny isn’t in other people’s hands. I have had many assumptions made about me by people who don’t even know me, but run with something they heard and you know what.. I don’t care. I have finally learned to love me and even if I am the only one, that’s fine. I have a greater purpose.

My Relationships. TD Jakes once said, “I’ve got the gift of goodbye. If people walk away from you, let them. Your destiny is never tied to people who left.” Though I am not very familiar with him or his teachings, I liked what he said. I used to be pressed about who was in my life. I wanted everyone to stay forever! I now see that some people are only meant to be around for a season and that’s okay. I have learned to be more mindful in how I invest my time, trust, and energy into people as well. Anyone that was on a pedestal is gone. I put nothing passed anyone, because people are people. It’s okay to be hurt by the ending of a friendship or whatever the nature of the relationship, but it is not the end of the world. I am grateful for the faithful few. 😉

My goals. I’m excited and terrified of my future all at the same time. I am a “planner” and I like to know a play by play as to what is goin on, and I don’t have that. It’s scary, but it’s okay. It challenges me to try to do better today for what is to come tomorrow. I am going through a lot of changes and the adjustments aren’t easy. However, most great things are never easy so I understand the challenges that come my way. I am also coming out of my shell and going harder on the writing tip, which I also know is going to play a major role down the line and even right now. We shall see…

My finances. I want to say that I hate money, but that isn’t true. I’ve seen what just a lil bit of something can do to people and it’s so ugly. I personally don’t really care for it, but realize I need it to get certain things done. I have been between jobs these past few months which mainly started with my car troubles, to the point I just let the car go, it wasn’t worth the headache. However I do have a pretty solid opportunity starting in January, so I’m a little excited/nervous about that. I actually don’t like working. I come from a family of hustlers in the more immediate sense, I don’t like working for anybody, but it’ll do for now.

So anywho.. I won’t wait until 2010 to continue to do what I have been doing, which is progressing. I won’t make any unrealistic plans of change that I probably don’t want to make (yet). I realize I am not an overnight project, so I won’t rush a good thing.

-Signed, pieces out of a puzzle