Thursday, March 4, 2010

I'm moving!

I don't have many blog readers here (that I know of--some of you may be stealthily stalking me lol) & in order to make good with a new years resolution I made to follow thru with things, I'm moving. I've made a leap to On this new site, I will feature my own personal blog, insights, thoughts, fictional short stories (maybe even a few non-fiction), poetry & professional published articles. It will be almost like an online profolio, only a tad more personal.
I'm not sure if this move will actually work or if I'll come crawling back to blogspot with my tail between my legs, but there's only one way to find out & that's to try. Want to come with me to the new digs?

Keep in mind that it's a work in progress. Oh, & I'm an artist & I'm sensitive about my shiz. Thanks for rocking with me & now, thanks for moving with me! Let's grow together!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Playing the Victim

I've always been the type to blame people for things--my own reactions to circumstances. I think people, definitely myself, forget that WE control our own emotions because we control our thoughts. My finger pointing is a testament to a horrible habit of playing the victim. This all didn't occur to me until after a few interactions with my mom & this one dude that has tried to date me since 06.

My mom: She was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, maybe 10 or 12 years ago she took that diagnosis as a death threat. She stopped working, having hobbies & basically stopped contributing joy to her own life. My brothers, sisters & I all watched, sad for her, but understanding that she had a battle to endure. Too bad my momma didn't want to fight. What I didn't know back then, that I have certainly learned now was that my momma didn't teach her kids a valuable lesson in resiliency & perserverance--two things I suffer with trying to hold on to. My mom never really had goals & dreams, so it was up to me to dream of getting out of the small town life that I grew up in.

She taught us how to give up & ask for sympathy. Growing up poor because my mom couldn't & refused to work, around friends with hard working moms & both parents always garnered sympathy from my friends & after a while, it was what I was used to. I started seeking it out. I'd complain to my friends, hoping for that "wow, I don't know how you deal with that" look on their faces. Most of the time, my friends fed into it. "Aww poor Dani." It's not a strange thing for your friends to feel sorry for you or bad about your circumstances, but constantly make sure they are patting your back with an obligatory frown, pasted on their lips just for you--means you enjoy the role of victim.

And that was me. Seeking sympathy so I could get some sympathy, sit comfortably in the victim's seat & point fingers at all those who did me wrong. This is especially apparent in my dating. To the one man that observant & man rnough to point itt out to me--thank you.

The guy: He & I had a first date that went pretty well. He tried hard to get some once he dropped me off back home, but I wasn't giving him that much of myself on the first date. I guess he was pissed about that & wanted to make sure he played me out.

He asked me out the very next night to a fancy dinner at some swanky NYC restuarant. I was SO excited. I was fresh from NC & was dying for a romantic NYC date. I got all dolled up & waited & waited & waited. He didn't show up. He didn't call. And of course he didn't pick up his phone. He stood me up. Three years later, I'm over being stood up, but I realize I held on to that feeling & he's tried to make that up to me, realizing he was wrong, but I resented him. One day, when I guess he was tired of trying to make it up to me, he said, "You're so determined to label every man 'no good.' Not everyone is out to get you!"

Cut me open & squeeze a lemon in the wound--it STUNG. But I swallowed it. He was right. Yeah, there were a ton of times where men did bad things to me, but I was beginning to play the victim, whine & complain to my friends about it & point the finger at all of them--labeling them no good.

So that brings me to this. I've never really participated in lent, but the idea of it, inspires me. Giving something up for 40 days that you are comfortable with--something you enjoy. At least that's how other people explain it. It's definitely a challenge. I've decided to give up complaining. Complaints are meant for a sympathetic reaction. So, not only will not complaining help me break out of my victim role, but it will teach me how to be more grateful. I'm moving onward & upward in 2010!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Man Whores & A Woman Scorned

I was on Facebook the other day, randomly (if you know me, you know I don't fancy FB) & I was kinda shocked to see my chat window blinking. When I clicked, I was a little confused to see that it was a happy couple (girl kissing boy on cheek) trying to get my attention with a simple, "Hey." I recognized the fella in the photo--Justin. He & I went to college together. I don't know who he is now, but back then, Justin was a typical college cutie. You know the type--girls standing in line just to be noticed by him, always the one on the yard with all eyes on him--he was definitely desired & he knew it. He was definitely cocky. An underclassmen with seniors after him.

Admittedly, I was  one of those girls that desired him. It's been a few years since we met & I can't really recall how we met, although, I think it was through FB (when it first came out). Either way, Justin had somehow caught wind that I gave head like my life & my grade depended on it. Hey, don't judge--I'm sure we all had our slutty college days. Well, being that Justin was such a cutie & I was so desperate to have a hottie in my bed, we hooked up. And that, was basically that. From what I remember it was a one time thing.

I would see Justin around campus, all hugged up with a top model wannabe chick & he wouldn't even glance my way. Back then, that lack of attention would send my thoughts reeling into--"Am I not good enough for him? I'm too big for him, so he's embarassed. Maybe I should have had sex with him--that would have kept him." --Yeah, typical lost girl with daddy issues & trying to find love, tangled in sheets in dark dorm rooms.

When Justin told me through Facebook the other day that he didn't really remember who I was & I had to remind him that we hooked up. After his memory was sufficiently jogged, he was all chitter chatter. But not about, how I was these days or what I was up to--Justin wanted to know if I wanted to watch him jack off on camera because thinking about the head I'd given him some 6 years ago made him hard.I can't front like I wasn't a little flattered. I my mind, I shamefully pat myself on the back, but I was also a little hurt.

I used to treat myself like the sideline chick back in the day because any attention was good attention to me. But, now that I am in my roaring 20's, I'm grown & definitely not the sideline chick anymore. So the fact that he would think that I was actually willing to watch him pleasure himself on webcam, while he chats with me through FB with his girl's picture in clear view--made me want to set him up.

I figured I could get a few screen shots of him doing that, with our chat box open & confront his girlfriend with the evidence. Should I take it upon myself to get his busted? Or should I just mind my own business & write Justin off as yet another untrustable man? See, it's things like this that make me bitter about men. I try my best not to be a man-hater, but these dudes seems to always find their way to me. I strongly believe in you get what you put out there, but I don't feel like I put anything out there to attract these fools. He still lives in NC & wanted to know when I would be home next. He also asked me if I was dating anyone. I told him no one in particular, but I am dating more women these days. Of course he took that information & handled like any BOY would--he asked for a threesome. (NOT even with his own GF!)

Personally, I feel worse for his girlfriend. I'm certain I'm not the only woman he reached out to, to get his rocks off. I asked about her & he told me that they were good. Wow, men are very srange creatures. I really hope I can stop meeting or reacquainting myself with these losers. I really don't need to be anymore jaded about men.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Lonely vs. Independent

The other night, I attended a Sade album listening party. Of course I was looking forward to it because--who doesn't love Sade? I went alone, which is usually no biggie to me because over the last couple of years, I've gotten used to being alone, going places alone & spending time alone. I've always enjoyed my own independence. So, I checked my coat, turned the corner, walked in & immediately was face-to-face with industry moves & shakers who I used to schmooze with when I first moved to NYC. You know, back when I was bright-eyed & bushy-tailed & armed with naitvete, ready for this concrete jungle to eat me alive.

I had fallen out of networking because I came across so many people that were insincere with contacting you. They'd tell you how awesome you are, promise dinner, drinks or whatever & you never hear from them again. It's like being in failed relationships over & over again--you become jaded. With this new year, I decided I would make an effort to change. I would grasp at some of that same bright-eyed-ness that I used to have & look at the world with my rose-colored glasses.

I went in with the intention of networking, only to just not feel like it once I was there. Maybe some liquid courage could help? So, off to the bar. Instantly, I started making jokes with this girl next to me, while I waited on the bartender. "Ok," I thought. "Maybe the social Danielle is back!" That little ray of sunshine didn't last long. Once I got my drinks, I walked around, smiling at folks & just clammed up. I went to sit alone at some booth & tried to make myself go chat. I was successful a few times for a few short chats, but nothing in-depth.

So, back to the bar I go. More drinks should loosen me up, right? Wrong! It only made me sad & I started thinking. Sometimes thinking can be my worst enemy. As I sat in my solitude in the middle of a NYC nightclub (a dream for most), playing Words with Friends on my iPhone. The more I played, the lonelier & sadder I got. That's when my girl Vintage Vandalizm aka Jasmin, texted me. She had been going thru somethings & I reached out to her earlier to make sure she was ok. She hit me up to thank me for caring. That's what opened up the flood gates. I let her know what was in my heart.

I was LONELY & it wasn't even on some needing a lover type stuff. I needed friends. Isn't it crazy that someone that has always been so social & appears to always be in a mood for parlaying ends up being a lonely loner? I've realized that I was & always have been independent--able to stand on my own without faltering, always apprearing strong & confident. But, truth is, I was always lonely & hurting. Jasmin & I spoke for a while back & forth & she let me know that she was working on a blog that I definitely needed to read. That's where her post "Meanings" comes into play & the reason for this blog. A response/reference.


This girl is very similar to me, internally. That very night that I was explaining to her how I was feeling, she was in the process of writing this blog because of how she felt the previous weekend. We're both extremely independent & hold high standards for our friends because we're both great friends. Whenever someone did something to let me down, oh boy--disappointment doesn't even begin to cover it. That led me to distancing myself from people because I got so tired of being disappointed by them. I was convinced that people sucked & I was better off alone.

If the loneliness didn't fill my heart with so much heavy weight, I would have continued living this way. During the last few months of 09 & up til now, I allowed myself to make more connections with people & just put myself out there to develop friendships. Sure, I've been let down by some of these people, but I'm learning not to make it black & white, either you is or you ain't. I'm learning to give people room for error because honestly, when have I ever not messed up or let someone down?

However, old habits die hard. I am so used to being alone, that it comforts me, but at the same time, tortures me. There will be times where I'm asked to hang out, go to this cool spot, take this cool class & without thinking, I decline. Sometimes, I force myself to go & while I'm out, convince myself that being home alone would be much better. What am I doing to myself? It would be different if I enjoyed my alone time & that was that. But to be so conflicted about it makes me crazy.

Take tonight for example. I was supposed to be hitting up a bar & having a few drinks with some old coworkers--these people I have not seen since this summer. You think I'd be excited to catch up with all of them, but I used any old excuse I could to "get out of it." Although I did have to interview someone for YRB at 5pm, the interview was over 10 minutes til 6. I knew everyone was meeting at 6, but I still needed to get home & change--so I just scrapped those plans altogether. Basically acting as if I couldn't show up an hour into the get together. Now, instead of having a night of drinks with some cool people, chatting, laughing & going home with a smile on my face, I'm sitting here writing this blog about it & going to go home, straigh-faced, sit on my bed & watch TV alone until I pass out.

Unlike Jasmin, my loneliness isn't only because of people letting me down, it's because of me constantly letting myself down. I'm the kind of girl that is saddened by being loney, but when people call to hang out, I find reasons not to. I wonder what it is that I can do to make myself back into the social butterfly I used to be before moving here. Crazy as it seems, my move to NYC killed me socially & I moved here hoping for the exact opposite.

In order to fix this, at first, I am going to have to force myself in the beginning, to hang out with people that actually want to hang out with me. I've got to get myself out of the habit of being alone because I was the one that got myself IN that habit. I've got to get out of my antisocial cave. Or maybe the truth is, I can't do it alone? I always expect to do things alone because of being so independent & being used to handling things by myself. So maybe all I need is a helping hand? Jasmin's blog states that she held the key to her cage this entire time. If I'm holding the key, I have no clue how to use it.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

It's Christmas Time in the Country

I went home for Christmas, neice, nephew & sister in tow. We had an incredible time with our little country family. Christmas has definitely lost its luster as the years have gone by. I remember the excitement in going to bed on Christmas eve, not being able to sleep knowing your new favorite toys were under the tree, but trying your best to sleep because you never wanted Santa to catch you peeking. All of those butterflies faded just as quickly as my belief in Santa, the older I got.
I've always tried to hold on to the mysticism of Christmas, but truth be told, it's for children. People forget the "real meaning," and to be quite honest, so have I. Although, I did drown deep in the feelings of being surrounded by family. If you know anything about my family, that's a job within itself. Everyone was on their best behavior though, so we all enjoyed ourselves. What a relief! Here are some of the photos I snapped!
Christmas Eve--my sister Dawndria's frying up some sweet potato jacks. They were soooo good!

Here's mom making another batch of the sweet potato jacks. Yes, she makes her own dough & yes she makes a huge mess everytime!

Meanwhile, all the kids were in the living room, raising hell!

Oh & my mom surprised me with one of my favorite foods--RIBS! Usually we starve our way through Christmas Eve, cooking. This time, she provided a little snack. :-) YUM!

My sis tearing her ribs UP!

Along with cake comes frosting. Makayla & Denayah are fighting over the frosting container. haha! I was never a frosting girl, I liked licking the cake batter from the spoon & bowl when I was little.

They were so happy to be done with the cooking!

As soon as I finished icing the Milky Way cake, I had to finish stuffing stockings & wrapping presents. What a long night!

Pausing from wrapping to take a pic with Dawndria. We're smiling so dang bright LOL!

I loved this pic of Baby Steph. How cute is this boy?!

Finally finished wrapping!

Christmas morning breakfast. Yes, that's a Pepsi on the table. Momma raised us on that. SMH

Momma's opening her Temptation Christmas album. She lost it some years ago & was so delighted to have it back.

Oh & the money had her tickled PINK!

The kids FINALLY opened their gifts.

My neice Azariah got mostly boys toys--that's just her.

Kayla didn't look too happy about her doll. She'd better be, it was from me!

Baby Steph opened his big wheel & promptly climbed on the box. LOL

We finally got to meet Damien Jr., my brother's (who passed away) only son. This was an incredible moment for our family.

Most of momma's grandkids.

Dawndria & Damien look the same age. She's 27 & he's 11. LOL She's so tiny!

I'm hugging him so tight! LOL Sorry Damien! I was so happy to see him.

More presents being opened.

Kayla STILL not looking too happy.

RJ's 13, so he's too cool to be happy.

How cute is Jalen in these specs!?

Of course we had to take some time out for dancing. Az & Kayla doing the "Jerk?"

Denayah didn't want to be outshined.

More jerking.

My little mini me posing for the camera, as usual.

Denayah fell in LOVE with Kayla. She wouldn't let her our of her sight.
Ambia (my brother Ben's first child) opening her gifts. FINALLY a happy kid!
Of course we had to go visit Grandma. It was a little too hard to get a good pic with Baby Steph being angry because we wouldnt let him play with all the decorations Grandma had up.

My girl Valerie. We've been friends since the 6th grade! Look at her lil man Tim--so adorable!

Of course JoJo didn't want to be left out. How can you resist a smile like that?!

So cute!

TIm Burton at the MOMA

Art is amazing because it's all about perception. Some people manage to think so far out of the box, they leave us all behind in a confused stupor. However, some artists are so in tuned with their imaginations, they take us on a journey with them & we get to see the world through their eyes. Those people to me art true artists. Tim Burton is one of those people. He's managed to have a career in art that goes beyond painting & sculptures. He's mainstream & that's a diffcult feat for most artists. We've seen his work in movies (Beetlejuice, Batman Returns & Pee-wee Big Adventure to name drop some.)

Taking photos at the MOMA isn't illegal, but they didn't allow it in the Tim Burton exhibit, so my iPhone & I had to work around the restriction. I got yelled at a few times by a few self-righteous bouncer types, but I managed to snap a few pics. In case you guys can't make it to the exhibit before it's done, check these out! It'll be going on until April 26, 2010, so you have time! :-)