Beware of Summer Solstice

•July 10, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Time… it is valuable. Once you lose it, it’s gone.  There is no getting it back.  I’m sure all of you are familiar with the saying “time is money”.  It’s true.  Time is money.  But as important as money is to me, time itself is more important. Sometimes I think we truly believe that we are invincible and that time will wait for us.  But as the saying goes, time waits for no man. Often times I sit back and reflect on how much time I wasted on stupid things, stupid people, and stupid situations.

shutterstock_766847608Now that I am in my “thirty somethings”, I have made a conscious decision to stop wasting time and to stop having people waste my time. I swear it was just yesterday that I was 15 years old, and now 15 some odd years later, I am here, wondering where all of the time went.  I have come to the realization that although it is good to have such reflections, dwelling on these thoughts is futile. It only makes you more frustrated.  It is best to reflect and move on. You can’t turn back the hands of time.

We have all wasted precious time on dead-end career paths, meaningless fights with siblings, toxic relationships, and the list go on. We have wasted time trying to make toxic situations work. As a result, we have issued key cards to undeserving individuals, giving them full access to our mind and body. Certain relationships have left permanent scars on our hearts and souls.  These individuals should have never been given the time of day.  They should have never been given the opportunity to hurt us.  The hurt was a lesson, a painful one, but a lesson nonetheless.  The scars are reminders to never let it happen again, to be more vigilant and to be protective of ourselves.

With all of that being said, we have now entered into what has been called by the astrologers as “summer solstice”.   Translation, cuffing season is officially over and everyone is on the prowl, it’s hot as hell in these streets, suns out skins out.   During this season, people will actively seek to waste your time.  Beware of summer solstice, for it is not all fun and games.  Yes, the sun is shining bright, yes people will be in these streets half naked.  The sights will be delightful, but unless you are about that “wasting your time life” (which, if that was your summer goal, do not let me stop you), be careful.

Dating is tricky during this season and it is during summer solstice that your time may be wasted the most and in the worst way.   A few warnings:  If he sounds too good to be true, then it probably is too good to be true.  If you feel like he’s acting funny and things are not adding up, you’re probably not buggin out. Chances are you may have encountered a f*u@k boy.   If he is displaying narcissistic behavior, RUN, (Unless you are in need of material for your upcoming book or album).  I have met my fair share of narcissists.  They are super fun, super charismatic, but super dangerous, super evil and they will ruin your life in the end.   If you have met one of these Loch Ness monsters, I urge you to jump off that roller coaster ASAP Rocky.  You may break a few bones but at least you will have your life!

shutterstock_1016394355In essence, time is something that you cannot get back.  You cannot afford to waste it. I cannot stress that enough.  Sometimes we walk into situations knowing that it will be a waste of time.  We entertain people knowing full well that this situation is going nowhere fast.  But we always want to wait and see if there will be a different outcome.   Nine times out of ten, there will be no different outcome.

Time stops for no one.  Time is unforgiving, it doesn’t say “hey she messed up bad let’s give her a do over”.  That doesn’t exist.   It is up to us to be mindful as to how we spend our time.  We are not getting any younger.  Let’s try to make wiser decisions.  You can have fun while being smart.  Trust me, it’s possible.  Summer solstice is enchanting, it’s invigorating, and it can even be intoxicating.  For the longest time summer was my season. “Summer of Tata” one of the most magical and enthralling times of my year.  It can be just that for everyone, just be mindful that you don’t have to speak to everyone and you don’t have to entertain everyone. If they call you a bitch, just smile and say thank you.  You will thank yourself later, trust me, you will. With all of that said, go forth, drink, be merry, and be selective.

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In the case of Junior Versus The Citizens of New York City

•June 27, 2018 • Leave a Comment

In April of 2010, I wrote a blog post entitled “Are You Your Brother’s Keeper”. That post was a based on an incident that took place on April 24th, 2010, where a homeless man was brutally stabbed while saving a woman from a knife-wielding attacker.  The homeless man was left to lie in a pool of his own blood for more than one hour while several New Yorkers walked right past him.  One person even took a picture of the man with his phone, while another shook him to see if he was alive.  Both walked away doing nothing.  No one even bothered to call 911. This was all captured on video surveillance.

Approximately eight years later another “public street” tragedy has rocked our community.  On June 20, 2018, Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz, a 15 year old child was brutally slain at the hands of gang members in the Bronx.  Like every major event, I learned about Junior’s death through Instagram, specifically, on the social media platform, “The Shade Room”.  To be completely honest, when I first saw the headline that a 15 year old boy was fatally stabbed in the Bronx, I said a quick RIP and continued to search for the latest “tea”.  Unfortunately what happened to Junior happens all the time.  These children just become names after a while.  It was just another sad post.  You read it and you move on.

However, I couldn’t move on so quickly.  Herein lays the power of social media.  I kept seeing posts about Junior. “The Shade Room” wouldn’t stop.  Social media would not stop.  I got home late last night.  As I was getting ready to go to bed, I remembered that “The Shade Room” had posted something about Junior’s funeral.  After watching that video, I continued scrolling the” gram”.  That’s when I came across a video montage of Junior.  It was at that moment that I saw him.  Junior became real.  He was no longer a headline.

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Picture taken from “Crime Watch”

I spent the whole night going down the hashtag “rabbit hole”.  I clicked on the hashtag #JusticeforJunior and what I would see would haunt me for the rest of the night.  I didn’t sleep last night…  I was troubled.  I was disturbed.  I was anxious.  I turned on the light.  I opened my door.  I felt evil around me.  A sense of fear and discomfort overcame me.  I have a son only a few years younger than Junior.  This could have been my son.  We could have been chanting justice for my son.

I viewed the videos…, all of them.  I viewed the video of Junior running into the bodega seeking assistance.  I viewed the video of Junior being dragged out of the bodega by the gang bangers.  I viewed the video where the cowards used their knives and machetes to hack away at Junior’s body.  I viewed the video where Junior ran back inside the bodega begging for help, but was turned away.  I viewed the video of Junior struggling to stand outside of the bodega, but then finding strength to run towards St. Barnabas Hospital, which was only a short distance away.  I viewed the video of Junior’s lifeless, bloody body slumped outside of the hospital.

You would have thought I had had enough.  I then viewed the videos and images identifying the girl who delivered the wrong target to her gang banging brother.  I continued down the rabbit hole and viewed the images and videos of the apprehended low lives who brutally and savagely took the life of this innocent boy.  A case of mistaken identity they say. “They got the wrong kid”.  Is this what our world has come to, where “my bad” is the response to slaughtering an innocent child?

I, along with millions of people, watched a boy seek refuge in a neighborhood bodega, a place where you were told as a kid could be a safe haven if you were ever in trouble.  We watched him get turned away.  Now, I know what some of you are thinking.  What was the bodega employees supposed to do?  They probably knew what time it was and knew trouble was coming.  After all, do they not have the right to keep themselves safe and out of harm’s way?  The answer is yes.  Yes, they do have the right to be safe.   But they could have simply dialed 911.

Although there are reports stating that the bodega employees did call 911, we do not know when they called, nor do we know what was said. I submit to you all that the call either never happened, or that the call was insignificant.  How many times have 911 calls been played for all to hear through the media? How many times have the media leaked 911 call transcripts?   The stabbing happened right outside of the bodega. They knew what was going on.  I am pretty sure Junior wasn’t silent while being stabbed to death.  But then, Junior ran back inside of the bodega, this time bloodied, and instead of helping him, they again turn him away.  What about the passerby’s on the street? No one thought to stick him in their car and drive him to the nearby hospital?  Instead, he ran for his life.  He could have still been alive if someone had lent some assistance, if someone would have just made a call.

Situations such as these beg the question, what kind of society allows for individuals to stand back and watch another human being get slaughtered right in front of their eyes? Instead of calling 911, people are Instagram “live’ing” brutal attacks for the world to see.  We are so obsessed with capturing a person’s final moment that it doesn’t dawn on us that we could have saved their life.  I asked this question in April of 2010, but I will ask it again.  What does it mean to be your brother’s keeper?  Should we feel a sense of responsibility when our neighbor is being harmed? The answer is YES.  We are all responsible for each other.  I am deeply disturbed by the state of humanity.  It sucks that I have to raise my black male child in this mess. I am not hopeful for his future.  Not when children can be slaughtered in plain sight and where not one sole will place a call to 911.

But something has to be done. Those of us who bleed red and whose heart beat cannot just sit back and watch our society crumble before us. We have to save our children. We have to save our streets.  It can be done, but we have to be willing to sacrifice. Serious work needs to be done.  We cannot wait around for politicians to show up.  We all know how that goes.  We have to take back the streets, but in the right way.  I do not purport to know all of the answers, but I do know one thing. This CANNOT be life. No more hashtags.  No more names. No more senseless killings.  No more guns. #JusticeforJunior and for all of the children who fell victim to these ruthless streets.

Suicide, A Public Manifestation of Death

•June 6, 2018 • 2 Comments

Kate Spade was one of the savviest business women of our time.  She broke barriers and paved the way for women everywhere.  She was an icon.  She was worth millions, and yet, even with all of the fame, fortune and notoriety, she still found no reason to live.  As outsiders looking into the life of Kate Spade, you would think she was living her best life. I mean, what more could a woman of her stature want or need?  Kate Spade’s suicide is yet another example of how money cannot buy happiness and how mental illness does not discriminate. Her public manifestation of death is another reminder on how looks can be deceiving.kate spade

It’s funny you know. Many of us would kill to get to the level of a Kate Spade.  We go through life as gunners, doing everything that we can to make sure that we get on top.  However, with the slew of celebrity suicides, it is safe to say that it gets lonely at the top. There is a level of self-sacrifice that one must give in order to reach such high peaks of greatness, and sometimes that sacrifice is one’s own mental health.  I’ve said this before in past posts and I will say it again.  The pressures in these streets are real.  Mental illness knows no socioeconomic class, it does not discriminate.  Most of us are one crisis away from wanting to kill ourselves and we may not even know it.

I truly believe that women have it the worse.  Our pressures are unparalleled.  And now, thanks to social media, I would say our levels of anxiety have been exacerbated.  I am always saddened to hear when someone takes their life. Suicide is a public manifestation of death.  People who commit suicide are dead long before they actually take their lives.  Kate Spade was dead long before she hung herself.  Without knowing her personally, I can say that she was dead inside.  She was empty.  Despite having a husband and child, she was lonely.  Despite having fame and fortune, she may have felt like she wasn’t enough.  How can I make such speculations? Well, I have been there.  I believe many of us have, whether we want to admit it or not. I believe that you all have had these thoughts.  I can honestly say that if it were not for my Christian beliefs, my faith in God, I could have easily taken my life a long time ago.

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As I sit back and read all of the articles relating to Kate Spade’s suicide and see all of the meme’s with sayings like “check on your strong sister”, “check on your strong friend”, “suicide is not the answer”.  It makes me wonder how serious we are we about helping our fellow man.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that we are acknowledging that we need to do better, but will we truly do better?  When the news of Kate Spade’s death fades away from page six 6, will you still be compelled to check on that “strong friend”?  Will you still be concerned?  Will it even be a thing?  Or was this all for the “gram”?

In no way am I throwing shade to those who are posting these meme’s.  But you cannot argue that we are a “bandwagon” society.  People are fake concerned on social media. Meanwhile, in real life, some of these people couldn’t care less, they take no position on any social issues, and in fact, they aren’t even aware of the state of their own society.  But for the “gram”, these people are savants; they are cultural relativists, universalists, they are community activists etc. But suicide is serious.  Mental health awareness is critical.  I am genuinely concerned about society and the things that motivate and captivate us.  The band wagons are strong. But in order to truly to better we need to move away from this mentality and start being “day ones”.

For those of you who may be reading this and wondering to yourself “is she OK?” This post is not a secret cry for help.  But it is friendly reminder that things are not always how they appear.  We all need help.  But we need to stop talking about how we all need help and actually get help. We need to be more open and honest with each other. There is nothing wrong with getting help and there is nothing wrong with telling people that you are getting help. Your story may be just what someone else needs to get their life together. Your story may just save a life.

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Suicide is not the way out. But to someone who is suffering from depression, it is the ONLY way out.  It is the only way out of a world that makes them feel low, despite their highs.  It is the only way out of a world that makes them feel worthless, despite having immense wealth. You all just do not understand what can go on in one’s mind.  The thoughts, the emptiness that is felt deep in one’s soul… My skin crawls as I write this because I know.  We need to do better. We are each other’s keeper. It is not easy trust me, because I find people to be rather strange (joking not joking). However, we have to do it or else, we are going to keep losing amazing people.

 

Don’t Let History Make You a Slave

•May 17, 2018 • Leave a Comment

Recently Kanye aka Yeezy went on yet another rant. This time stating that slavery was a choice. Obviously he’s disturbed and I’ll leave it at that. Clearly slavery was NOT a choice, but you you know what is a choice?  Friendships. The people you choose to be in your inner circle.  Your squad, your tribe. These individuals have your back even when you disregard their sound advice. Your goonies will ride or die for you (This is figuratively speaking. No one is taking a whole bullet for anyone).

This is what TRUE friendship is suppose to look like. However, for some reason there has been a surge in “frenemies” and “Petty Betties” and it seems as if true friendship is becoming more of a fairytale.   Urban dictionary defines frenemy as the type of “friend” whose words or actions bring you down.(whether you realize it as intentional or not) The type of friend you ought to cut off but don’t cuz…they’re nice… good …you’ve had good times with them. U know…they’re good people that you can count on to bring you down again sometime in the near future.   https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=frenemy

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 We all have had frenemies in our lives at some point. Some of you may be dealing them as we speak. Some how, we have convinced ourselves that our history with these “individuals” trump our sanity and that it is ok to keep toxic people around. This is a bold face lie. A myth if you will. Who ever is out here giving this advice should be sanctioned. I am a firm believe that there is a time and place for everything and this includes relationships. An individual who presented themselves as a friend 10 years ago can now be a devil in your life today. People change. Relationships change.  What we fail to understand is that not everyone is meant to stay in your life forever. Some of these so called friends should have never been in your live to begin with. (but I will reserve this topic for another blog post)

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Being around toxic people serves no purpose but to destroy you, your self-esteem and your confidence. We go through enough as it is with our jobs and family. Why choose to be unhappy? As I have gotten older, I am very very careful as to whom I bestow the title of friend. Friendship is serious. If your so called friend is constantly putting you down, that’s is not a friend, that is a hater. If your so called friend is only happy for you when their life is on a positive track, this is CERTAINLY not a friend. This person needs to be cancelled. Throw the whole “friendship” away!

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When it comes to friendships, you have a choice. You can choose to disengage. You can choose to have healthy relationships.  Don’t let history make you a slave to anyone. Because at the end of the day, it is your feelings that will be hurt, not theirs. Stop complicating your life with toxic people. Take a stand and choose you!

 

*Gifs taken from google images

The Art of No

•April 5, 2018 • Leave a Comment

It’s funny how children love to say “no”. After mama and dada, this is more than likely a child’s next word.    Kids say no to everything! Water, food, sleep, you name it.  They say no just for the hell of it. No hesitation, no concentration, it just comes out so easy.  Interesting how things change the older we get.  As an adult I find it harder and harder to say no. In fact, at times the thought of saying no gives me knots in my stomach.

I don’t know about you, but for me, I feel like I go through all sorts of mental gymnastics and analysis when making BASIC decisions. I’m taking all sorts of shit into consideration.  My being a lawyer may have something to do with this. Weighing pros and cons, fact checking, assessing situations before giving a definite answer…  It is the risk averse side of me I presume.   I find this practice very useful in my professional life; however my personal life… that’s another story.

Often I wonder where it all went wrong.  When did the disconnect happen?  Maybe it is because I started out late in the dating game and therefore I did not obtain the requisite backbone needed to enter and exit stage left as swiftly as my counter parts that started dating in middle school. My first and only boyfriend was in college. I didn’t get to acquire crazy college stories and I didn’t get to experience the life of thotdom… (In no way am I promoting this lifestyle or implying that college wasn’t great because I didn’t get to be a hoe. I’m just saying college is where stars are born).  But I digress…  Was there a reason for my scarce and non-active dating life? Well possibly.  Many would say that I was and still am “picky”. I use quotes because this is debatable.  I believe that I have been a serious equal opportunity dater (therefore NOT picky). I have dated people who I had no business even saying hello to.   Sadly enough, this is still the case today.  But I will say in my defense, the quality of the trash has improved exponentially. I mean trash is trash at the end of the day, but it is getting harder and harder to identify the garbage.  The point is I do give chances.  It’s just I give chances to the wrong people.

Over the last few years (or weeks if we are really going there), I have encountered textbook sociopaths and just plain crazy Negros. I am not one of those people who use the word “crazy” loosely. When I use that word, it’s legit. And over time those of you who have followed me and thought that I had to be buggin with these stories, came to realize that I ain’t never tell a lie.

Growing up, I was never really interested in dating.  I was more interested in graduating, volunteering and staying under the radar. I was raised by a Haitian who loved to lecture.  To avoid these lectures, I did what I was told. The last thing I needed was the threat of being sent to Haiti.

Perhaps my behavior stems from the fact that I was pegged as the “picky one and therefore I made a conscious effort not to be. Maybe that is why I became an equal opportunity dater.  Based on my track record it’s as if I threw my standards out of the door.  No degree? Sure you seem descent. Oh you are unattractive?  You have a good job and accolades, sure why not. I felt like I had nothing to lose. Why not see where this goes with the gremlin looking man. Unfortunately my Jiminy cricket was defective. Instead of saying   to me “hey, what the hell do you think you are doing? This dude is one tree short of the forest” Jiminy was telling me “hey… remember beauty and the beast?” The fact of the matter is that this life is not a fairytale where men look like gremlins and then transform in to Boris Kodjos… you get what you get.

This is where the art of “no” comes in. I’ve spent so much time saying yes just for the hell of it, convincing myself that it’s not always about attraction. Listening to relatives that tell you things like “he’s not cute, but you’re over 30, so your options are limited. Asking questions like “does he work?  Can he pay bills? What’s the problem, go on the date and marry his ass”.  Then receiving advice from friends who have seen the shit shows, one after the other and then they too make comments like ” well he has a job”… After a while you start to just give in and say what the hell, I may as well go out with this one.  I’m not repulsed. The irony of all of this is that I actually am not pressed. I did not grow up wanting to be married.  Men were always painted as being shit. Interesting how we let society convince us to go after things we are not in a rush to obtain.

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By saying yes to everything, we are selling ourselves short. We are settling for basic. What I have realized from my experiences is that if I have to make excuses or rationalize the individual, then that individual is not for me. The other thing that I found extremely helpful is prayer. I pray about each and every situation and ask God to make it clear and to do what he must to protect my heart, my mind and my soul. Dealing with trash will suck the life out of you. It will cause you to second guess yourself, it will also make you do things you otherwise would never do. Hindsight is 20/20 and it is easier to make these assessments and judgments after the fact. But imagine if you were just able to say no in the first place? Is he’s acting lame? Say no to lame ducks. The sex is bad? No need to give him another opportunity to correct the job.  First impressions are everything. When you report to a job interview and you mess up, do they grant you a redo?  Can I get “hell no” for 2oo Alex.

The struggle is real in these streets, and the societal pressures are even realer. However, settling is not an option. It shouldn’t be at least.  If we truly understood our worth, we would not be out here dating randoms. (A random can also be someone who you have known for a while but ain’t shit). The game has changed so much. Being the” nice guy (or girl)” is the new game. So it’s getting harder, and more and more people are getting duped. Don’t beat yourself up if this has happened to you. I mean shit, it has happened to me and I am very intelligent and my spidey senses are on fleek (yes I said fleek). It’s part of the game and if you want to win, then you have to play right? The point of all this is to say that when things are new, we feel the need to be extra flexible and compromising. It’s ok to not settle. It’s ok to say no from the get go. It will save you time and energy and those are two things you can never get back. Trust me. Just say no, your heart, mind and soul will thank you.

 

FREEdom…

•July 19, 2017 • Leave a Comment

I am Black. I am female. I am a single mother. I am Haitian-American. These labels make me beautiful. Each and everyone of them make me the woman that I am today. Such a powerful mix… and yet each one of these labels contribute to my feelings of bondage. Have you ever felt caged? Like you don’t have control over your own path or destiny? That feeling of restriction, I know it too well. I spent most of my life fighting all sorts of stereotypes and overcoming all sorts of obstacles. I learned how to fight for what I wanted and needed. I thought I was fighting the good fight. One that was leading me to freedom. I thought I was winning. But in reality, I had been fighting for was this perceived sense of freedom.  I was not fighting the good fight, I was fighting the wrong fight. I was fighting for the wrong cause, I was fighting the wrong opponent… My opponent was not society, my true opponent was me….

The internal struggles of worthiness, self acceptance, shame, guilt…. I should have been dealing with these issues, confronting them head on, staring them in the face.  Instead, I let them consume me. We became one. As time went on it became harder and harder to live without them. They secretly defined me. I say secretly because unless you were a soothsayer or a prophet, you would have never been able to see them living inside of me. You would have never been able to see them peering in the back of my eyes.

Freedom. To be free, to be liberated, to live with no fear, to live a life with no restrictions, no encumbrances… What would you give to truly be free? The concept of freedom surpasses all things physical. It is a mental state. When you take a look at your life do you consider yourself to be free? Are you free from conventional thinking, conventional living? Are you living your life in the way you envisioned it? Or are you living someone else’s life? Are you fulfilled? Are you satisfied? Are you feeing empty? And if so, do you feel pressured to fill the void?

I am not free. Correction, I am becoming free. Each day poses its own challenges but each day has promise. I was living in the dark and I knew it. I accepted it. But then God brought a positive influence in my life that changed me. I was challenged to be the best person that I could be, but that meant facing my issues and saying to them, you do not define me! It meant going back to my past and uncovering what I had buried alive. I didn’t know how this self incarceration was affecting my personal growth. I was at a point where I became stagnant, but had no clue why.  I was a professional woman, who seemingly had my life together. I went to church, I was God fearing. Why was I stuck?

It all became clear when my dear friend called it out. His words to me were “you are stuck because you are not free”.  I didn’t understand him at first and quite frankly, my thought was you don’t really know me anyways. But he did and he was speaking the truth.  I realized that I had not been truly living. I thought that I could bury my past, bury my issues and move forward in living a happy and meaningful life.  But the reality is that nothing can be buried alive. If you do not deal with your issues, they will spill out and make their appearances whether you like it or not. It may not be today, but at some point they will.

Sometimes your fight is not with the world, but with yourself. You need to wrestle with your demons in order to be truly liberated. When you are truly free, people’s opinions and these social constructs will not matter so much. You will be able to define yourself and choose your own destiny, your own path. I am learning to dare greatly each and every day and it feels great. Sure there are days where I regress and fall back to my old ways of thinking and feeling, but then I think about my goals, my future and my potential and I recalibrate. I reach out to my support systems and reaffirm myself. Life is full of twists and turns, disappointments, heartaches but as as long as you believe in yourself and have an idea of where you are going, you will be ok. I know it sounds easier said then done. But what do you really have to lose?

I have made a lot of mistakes in my life but I have learned that it is not about what you have done, but instead, it is about where you are going. I encourage you all to work on YOU. Fight with YOU. Fight for YOUR freedom and be the best version of YOU that YOU can be. This is one fight worth fighting for and I promise you it will all be worth it in the end.

Suicide… you don’t have to be crazy to contemplate it….

•May 24, 2017 • Leave a Comment

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Life…. it’s funny.  You can be staring someone right in the eye and have no idea the pain they live with every day.  We will never say that we are hurting.  We will never tell.  We are too busy making sure the world is a better place while suffering in silence.  We are awesome.  Everyone loves us.  We are so giving…  “How could a person like that take their own life?”  Recently we lost a legal eagle.  A powerhouse in the legal community.  A woman of distinction.  A trailblazer.  The reports say that she committed suicide.  Others have differing opinions, but after an investigation, the results remained the same… Suicide.

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Suicide… it’s a taboo topic in our society, especially in the Black community.  No one ever wants to talk about it and no one ever wants to acknowledge when it happens.  I remember reading comments about the late jurist in a facebook post.  “She was so skilled and loved she would never do such a thing”.  No one that great would ever take their own life.  That would be crazy! Or is it?… 

Life is tough. It is hard, and every day presents another challenge.  Some days are better than others.  I personally think that there is a point where everyone wonders what this life would look like if they were no longer living. I know I have… 

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I grew up in a high pressured environment.  I was the product of a Haitian immigrant, single family home.  Religion dictated my life, I was not allowed to have real friends and I lived with my younger sibling  who I hated.  (I know hate is a strong word, but you know how sibling rivalries go.  Don’t worry, I like him now).  In my opinion I had no one, and I often felt alone.  As I got older, that feeling of loneliness never left me.  I  learned early on how to maneuver in society, my reality undetected.  The irony of it all is that some call me popular, which in actuality I may be.  I am a people person.  However, I am the most anti social social person you will ever meet.  

Sometimes I get to the point where I am so frustrated.  I feel so taken advantage of because I give, give and give and rarely ever take.  I rarely ever accept and I am rarely ever offered.  People expect me to perform at any given time with out ever wondering if I can actually do the job or what toll it may take on me.  Maybe it is because I often go out of my way to make myself competent so that I can meet the expectations.  

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A lot of high powered/ high functioning people commit suicide, and every time we lose one, the world goes in shock and disbelief.  They insist that there was foul play and compel law enforcement to launch an investigation to find the “killer”.  But the only killer is the deceased….  “He or she was so wonderful, so  loved so perfect”.  Well that’s just it.  Perfection comes with a price.  Being high powered comes with a price and often that price is one’s sanity.  There are days where I want to just drop everything and run because I am tired of being everything for everyone.  I am tired of having all of the answers and I am tired of being tired.  “Take a break or stop it you say?”… it is not that easy.  It is not easy to stop being “that” person.  No one voluntarily jumps off of a pedestal.  There is a mentality behind it.  You can’t just shut it off.  Instead, you run yourself ramped until it is too late.  Until you get sick, or until you say that enough is enough and conclude  that it is better to remove yourself rather than to disappoint by not meeting the expectations….  It gets too much.  It really does. 

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I have been a Christian all of my life.  I believe in heaven and hell.  But if I wasn’t so afraid of the after life, I would have probably taken my life a long time ago.  It is not to sound morbid, but it is true.  Pressure is a real thing and until you have been under it, you will never understand the effects it has on one’s psyche.  It doesn’t mean that you are crazy.  Sometimes it’s a rational choice to say I am done, that it’s time to bow out and let the world figure out how to function without you.  

Why am I saying all of this? Well to put everyone at ease, I have no intentions of committing suicide.  But I say all this to wake your asses up.  It is time that you all stop being naïve about mental health.  Suicide is not a dirty word, it is a reality.  It is time to stop with the stereotypes and the judgements.  Suicide is not a crazy person’s dilemma.  It is real and it affects EVERYONE.   Doctors, lawyers, actors, humanitarians we are all human and we go through hard times.  We have little children committing suicide everyday.  In the past two weeks at least two little black kids have committed suicide.  But because of the negative stigma surrounding mental health, we as a society, have made it taboo to seek professional help.  In fact, we often hear that “black people don’t need therapy, they need Jesus,” or a good whooping.” I am all for Jesus and the whooping, but there are therapists for a reason, just like there are doctors and lawyers. 

When we look at the results of society’s wonderful teachings, judgments and shaming, what are we left with?   DEAD children and DEAD loved ones.  We all need  to take a step back and observe the people in our  lives.  Stop with the pressure and the crazy expectations and just observe…  You can tell a lot about a person through observation alone.  Watch and listen, you do not have to speak.  

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  If there is one thing you take from this post it should be this, take the time to appreciate the people in your life and the things that they do for you PROBONO.  The energy that they invest in you, the time that that they sacrifice to make sure that you are ok, when they clearly are hanging by a thread.  Too many great people are opting out of life.  Make sure that your loved one is not next. 

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