Another Bad Memory Triggered

Spending holidays alone sucks, but like a lot of people, there have been times not dealing with family issues makes it better. Unlike most children, I dreaded the holidays most of the time, because they were so unpleasant. Here is an excerpt from chapter six of my book, Unheard:

The longer the holiday vacation, the more I dread it. For at least two weeks each December, a half of a week in November, plus a week during the spring, while everyone else looks forward to going on vacations, hanging out with friends, and having fun, I feel as if I am the only kid in the world wishing that I am still in school.

Before Marcus came along, I enjoyed the holidays. But with him around, there is sure to be an argument or other miserable time, listening to him complain and snark about everything, especially anything I do. It also means he drinks more. There are no parties, no friends, and no true laughter except to ridicule others. The only family gatherings I look forward to are at Gramma and Papa’s because it is the only time that I feel safe from Marcus’s barking at my every little move.

Another excerpt:

Sometimes holidays seem like they are going fine until Marcus says something to destroy the joy.

“Are you going to see your dad today?” Rose asks.

“Yes, I’m going to see Daddy and my other grandma later,” I tell her.

“Daddeeee,” Marcus mocks me in a snobbish, nasally tone, while he and his stupid stinky father and brothers laugh, as if I can’t hear them.

“Daddy buys her whatever she wants,” Marcus tells everyone.

That isn’t true at all. The truth is that Daddy buys me things for Christmas or my birthday that I need, like new shoes for church or a bicycle to ride to school. Just because he gives me nice things from the store instead of from the garbage doesn’t mean I’m spoiled. Marcus mocks me and says mean things about my Daddy because he knows it makes me furious. He does it at home when no one else is listening. He enjoys taunting me because I am his only witness, and he gets away with it because no one does anything about it. If I get mad or react, he calls me a brat and finds a way to punish me. I know he does it on purpose, but there is nothing I can do about it. He is sneaky.

Growing up, smaller holidays such as Labor Day and Independence Day, were just as bad, because it usually meant more drinking and more fighting and chaos, and for whatever stupid reason, I’d up getting punished somehow. So as an adult, I want to enjoy whatever I can to make up for it, and my family does not get together on these holidays at all.

Two years ago on the Fourth of July, I enjoyed myself by spending the day kayaking and watching fireworks – alone. While I really wished I had someone to share my day with, I tried to make the best of it. Last year on the same day, I was invited on a boat with a group of people, most of which I didn’t know. As a water lover, I jumped at the chance, because I rarely get to go boating. (It was also the last time I’ve been on a boat.) I attempted to enjoy myself as much as possible but ended up dealing with some miserable Mean Girls, then I met up with Biker Guy (we had met around that time) at a waterfront bar for drinks and fireworks.

This year due to Covid restrictions, most people I know made no plans, and city firework displays were canceled. However, people had private sky shows, which were really nice, and I sat at a beachside park by myself to view them, again wishing I had someone special with me while I watched families and couples around me enjoying their time together. (It’s a very odd feeling to be in public on a day like that when you’re alone, but it reminds you of who and what matters in your life.)

Once I’d learned the truth about how Biker Guy spent his evening without me this year, it
added to every shitty holiday I’d ever had. Again, I felt as if I was being “punished” for something I wasn’t even sure I’d done. I couldn’t wrap my head around any of it, and I still can’t, because he has no excuse for what he did. Although he apologized, I’m unsure as to how sincere it was in the beginning, and he can’t even explain his own actions.

To be continued…

Discovering a Betrayal is a Stab to the Heart

Yesterday I’d written about Biker Guy and realizing I’m just an option to him, no matter how much he tries to convince me otherwise. Actions speak far more than any words.

On Monday, I’d taken a nice long walk on the beach to clear my head, and I told myself that I’m going to stop doing so much for him and do my own thing, because I felt like I was being used and not taking care of my own needs, and he wasn’t helping me in any way. I felt confident about my decision, and I told him I’m not happy with his behavior and I refuse to enable him, and that I’m perfectly happy being single if he doesn’t have time for me. Of course, he told me what women want to hear; I just needed physical proof this time. Also, in his accident from Saturday night, he’d received a ticket for leaving the scene, but it happened in front of his house, so I’m unsure what exactly occurred.

Then I stopped at a friend’s house for some “girl time,” so I could get some things off my chest. Biker Guy had texted me a lot while I was there (he does that when I’m “unavailable” for him). I’d also sent him a Facebook friend request, because after all, we’d been friends for an entire year, and if I’m going to be dating someone, I think we should be on each other’s social media pages at least. Once he accepted, I saw photos I had never seen before – many of him and the other woman he dated, and it made me resentful that out of all of the time I’d known him, I was never mentioned anywhere about anything, and it also appeared as if he’d made a lot of time to do things with her… so what was wrong with him doing the same for me? It made me feel like shit.

There were some other things that I questioned due to the timestamps on the posts – because last year when he was blowing me off, there are photos of them together. At that point, I decided it was time for me to contact this woman and find out her side of the story, because I wasn’t sure if he’d been telling me the truth. The good news is, he had been honest about them dating and breaking up during the times he said; however, she’d told me that he’d contacted her a few times wanting to hang out after she broke it off, and she reminded him that they were only friends. Now this really concerned me, because I didn’t know if he had been doing this while he was with me, if he’s playing us both trying to get laid or what the fuck is going on. It also explains why he begged me not to contact her weeks ago – because when he told me he was out “riding with the guys” he was with that group of friends. Why wasn’t I invited? I mean, he knew most of my friends and even my family, so what the fuck is going on here?

In the meantime, Biker Guy knew that I was sitting at my friend’s house talking about him and was texting me to come over. I told him no, that I wasn’t going to his house; if he wants to see me, he has to make the effort. Then I started questioning him about some of the things I’d seen, and at some point he said that he loved me, but I didn’t believe it. And then shit hit the fan.

The woman I’d contacted was very nice, and our conversation did ease some of my suspicions, which is why I wish I’d done it sooner (we are now friends on Facebook). Without me even asking, just in general conversation, she’d mentioned she’d seen Biker Guy on Saturday night with their friends. I asked this Saturday, as in the Fourth of July? I was not expecting her to say yes. I was shocked, because this was during the time he’d been texting me that he was fixing that truck. I asked what time, and he was sitting there at seven o’clock when she arrived. I was floored. Before I knew all of the details, I’d confronted him, and he said he went after fixing the truck, which was another lie, because I had timestamps for all of the texts! Not only that, but he’d told that same group of friends that he’d been fixing a truck all day when he was really with me! What. The. Fuck.

Biker Guy had texted me at 6:30 saying he was heading up to fix the truck. He’d continued messaging me about every hour saying he was still working on it up until 10:15pm saying he had another half hour or so and heading home, even still apologizing that he “had to work.” At 10:30 he’d had the accident, according to the police log – so he’d been sitting at the bar/restaurant the entire time while I was sitting alone watching private fireworks and wishing I’d been with the man I care about, all along thinking he was making a lot of money that he really needed to fix a fucking fictitious truck! He had made up a truly elaborate lie… for what? What reason?? If he didn’t want to be with me, then he should have just said something, and I’d have moved on. I still don’t know. I’m not sure I will ever know, because I haven’t seen him since.

At that point, I saw nothing but red. My friend was trying to talk to me, and I was in a rage inside my head that I couldn’t think straight. I was so angry, definitely more angry than the night I lost my shit on someone in public. I knew there was no turning back from that point on in this relationship, because if I do, then I’m enabling him to treat me poorly again. Besides, what trust I had built was demolished. I refused to go to his house to listen to his bullshit explanation, but I went full on psycho with text messages until late at night, called him every name in the book, and screamed so loud I’m sure my neighbors thought I was being murdered. Then I slept for a few hours, woke up and sent him more psycho texts. (I say “psycho” because there were numerous ones asking questions, telling him off, calling him names, etc. all day while he was at work. I would never threaten anyone, nor did I wish bad things.)

I did NOT deserve this treatment, and it made me physically ill to think I’d just made his breakfast that morning, went out of my way to do dinner we never got to have, not to mention the fact he’d had sex with me that afternoon before “going to work on the truck,” ditching me on a holiday knowing that anyone who truly loved me would have loved to be with me. I am sick over it, brokenhearted, no appetite, and I’ve had to drug myself just to get to sleep. My anxiety and depression that I finally had under control came rushing back. I feel as if I’ve been punched – no, kicked – in the stomach. I am forcing myself to eat, even if it’s a few bites of something, because the last time I got fucked over by someone I was in love with, I didn’t eat for four months.

I had and still have so many questions as to WHY he thought it was okay for him to do that. He was the last person I’d expect to do something like this, because we’d both recently been opening up to each other, and I was trusting him more. I felt closer to him than ever before, and that’s saying a lot, because I don’t get close to anyone. And then it was gone within seconds. Oh, and did I mention he had asked me to go to New York with him where his family lives? Yeah, so this was a huge blow that he’d ask me that but ditch me and lie about it to be with local friends.

He hasn’t found the time to explain anything to me, which is not a surprise at all, although what possible explanation could he give without creating more lies? This was an outright PLANNED lie, stringing me along, and it didn’t even allow me to make my own plans. Even writing about this now is making me feel sick and anxious inside. And just minutes prior to me finding this out, he tells me he loves me? I’m so fucking confused at this point, I don’t know what to think. More lies, more manipulation – and I deserved NONE of it!

When I was done being angry yesterday, I was driving home and suddenly, out of nowhere, the tears flooded. I bawled for a while, because I knew that it was over for good, and it hurt as if someone had died. It almost felt like I’d been cheated on, which is a horrible sinking stabbing in the stomach feeling. No matter how hard I had tried, he treated me like he hated me, like an option, like a friend with benefits – definitely not the way you treat someone you care about or “love” at all. I knew that not only was I having to start over not seeing him anymore, I’m having to heal all over again after him ghosting me and me forgiving that, except this time there won’t be a third chance.

Realizing You’re Just an Option in a Relationship

Life has been a complete rollercoaster the past few weeks, and my head hasn’t been clear enough to sit and write about it. After a follow-up appointment with my surgeon, I had to have another unexpected biopsy, which really scared the shit out of me because of what the doctor had asked me. I was super stressed out not knowing the outcome and waiting on results, but luckily, everything came back fine.

Since my last post about him in May, I had still been seeing Biker Guy. Some friends have convinced me to “just try” things out with someone, and even though it’s against my better judgment, I did it anyway. Things this time around went from bad, then okay and seemingly good again, then bad to worse. My head has been spinning about it all, and I can no longer deal with the complete mindfuck ups and downs that I’ve been tolerating. The last incident has completely broken our relationship to the point that I’m unsure we can even still be friends, because what he did is unforgivable and irreparable, because true friends that care about you do not do what he did, which is super depressing and disheartening. My heart is broken over this, but I’m not going to allow it to affect me the way I was affected by another asshole that treated me poorly.

These are the past posts about Biker Guy in chronological order:

Realizations About Suppressed Feelings 
Getting Rejected By Male Friends
Blocked Again
Eye in the Sky

Biker Guy has been gaslighting me – big time. His actions and words do not match, and when I bring it up to him, he still insists saying what he claims is the truth, but everything came to a big head the other day. Whenever I’ve questioned him about anything, he either avoids it or gives me vague answers. Compared to when I’d met him a year ago, I feel like I don’t even know this person anymore, and to know how much effort I put into this makes me feel stupid for wasting my time on someone that obviously doesn’t give a rat’s ass about my feelings and treats me as an option. I’ve come to the conclusion that he’s selfish and all about himself, and how I didn’t see that earlier, I have no idea.

Instead of fixing my car as promised (there are multiple things – one is a big job that I’ve been waiting on for a year, the others are much smaller) or even helping me hang a mirror at my house or small things that women may need help with that their boyfriends do for them, he was still helping out everyone else, and just as I’d suspected, he even fixed the vehicle for the woman he was dating a few months back – but lied to me and said his friend was a “he.” Lying like that makes me suspicious, makes me wonder what he’s hiding, because if they are only friends like he claimed, why lie?? (Personally, I think he still has a thing for her, because men want what they can’t have, and apparently she doesn’t want him.)

Another lie is when he first came back to me in April, he told me I had been the last person he was with sexually, but I felt that was a lie because he had been dating someone before, so I made him use a condom. He’d claimed it had been a “long time” since he’d had sex. It was actually in the heat of the moment when he’d told me I was the last person he was with sexually. Fast forward to my doctor’s appointment mentioned above, the truth came out that he had been with the woman he was dating when he ghosted me, which I’d suspected anyway, because who dates for three months and doesn’t have sex? This is the type of shit that I can no longer tolerate – constant lies and manipulation and outright selfishness. Then he claimed he did not tell me things when I know for a fact he did, because there are certain things that I do not forget, and that was one of them. Classic gaslighting.

I spent Memorial Day weekend alone while he went out on a planned boat ride with his friends, and that included the woman he was dating prior – and he failed to mention this to me. Without me knowing the actual truth about anything, of course I jumped to conclusions, because what else was I supposed to think?? Were they really friends? Were they friends with benefits when I wasn’t around? Was the boat actually to full capacity, and that’s the reason I wasn’t invited, or was he lying to me again? I was pissed that I wasn’t even invited, yet here I was having a relationship with him, cooking meals, helping him deal with things, sharing my body… and I felt like total shit being left alone on a holiday. I should have contacted the other woman during that time, because it would have relieved my suspicions at least; however, it still didn’t make me feel good that he was leaving me alone on a holiday while he’s having a good time, yet we’re supposed to be in a “relationship.”

Progress in the relationship was slow. It dawned on me that everything we did was about him, his wants, his needs, his friends, his whatever – but my time… he had never asked me what I would like to do. He would never plan a thing with me more than a day in advance – and this really got to me, and I let him know it. While he did manage to find some actual time for us to spend together at the beach when he got off work a few times, I still felt like I had to fight for quality time with him. He was always tired after work, which is understandable, but often would fall asleep shortly after dinner. I actually met a few of his friends from his biker club for the first time, which at the time I felt was progress in the relationship, since I’d never met any of his friends, yet he’d met many of mine and my family – he’d been the only man in over 7 years of  being single that I’d taken to my mother’s house. He claimed he’s working on changing a lot of things about his lifestyle, and while I did see a bit of effort, it was short-lived. Unless I cooked his meals or he ordered takeout, he simply did not eat, but he was still drinking. He was also smoking, which is something he wasn’t doing when we met, and I’m not one to date smokers whatsoever; however, he claimed he was quitting. But every time I saw “progress,” something else would happen to set us back in the relationship.

Due to a “miscommunication,” one weekday afternoon, he went out without me even though we’d had plans together. I went off on him about doing that to me, because all I’ve done is wait around for him, wait for him to hear from his friends or whomever he had to “help” every other day instead of making actual plans with me. This was such a shitty habit, and it certainly didn’t make me feel like anything more than his friend with benefits, except that he’s the one reaping the benefits. He ended up getting hurt on his bike while he was on his way to pick me up, and I went to his house to help him, because he was worse off than he thought. He could barely walk for a couple of days, so I waited on him hand and foot. I didn’t mind it, because that’s what you do for the people you care about, and he had cared for me during my surgery last year.

Over the past few weeks, his behavior became a lot more aggressive on the sexual side, and it seemed like all he wanted to talk about was how horny he was and how hard his dick was and things he wanted to do to me. That was such a turnoff to me, because obviously, there is more to a relationship than sex and cooking meals; plus, I prefer a lot of mental stimulation that I wasn’t getting. I started feeling used, because I was still “serving” him so to speak and getting nothing in return. Then one night he was super aggressive in the bedroom when my back was hurting and he was massaging me, but some men can’t just allow women to be comfortable without insisting on having sex, even when I repeatedly said no and had to yell to stop. It really made me upset and feel differently about him, but once he realized what he’d done, he apologized for his behavior. Still, it brought me back mentally to other times I’d said no and had no control over the situation.

Fourth of July weekend rolled around, and for the first time since I’ve known him, he actually had the entire weekend off with no mentioned plans. Due to the fireworks being shutdown from Covid and unpredictable rain we’ve been having, we didn’t make any actual plans except to go to the beach on Saturday (4th of July) and play everything else by ear. I had stayed the night at his house on Friday, cooked dinner and breakfast for he and his temporary roommate (did this on multiple occasions), ran home on Saturday to prepare some food for us to eat that evening, then back to his house before heading to the beach. (Note that I’m doing all of this running around, which started getting tiresome.)

While I’m sitting there waiting on us to leave for the beach, he announces he might have to go fix a truck. Really? On a holiday? I said no, we are going to the beach, that is our plan, you never spend weekends off with me, and how could you put this on me when we’re literally about to walk out the door? I also reiterated how I have spent most holidays alone for the past 7 years, so it’s a big deal to me. We went to the beach for a short time before it rained, and the entire time he was worried about this truck he had to fix (but at the same time being sexually aggressive). Again, I was super annoyed that once again, I did not have his full attention when we’re together. I began to think that he doesn’t like spending time with me, because if he does, why is this always an issue? I have been in relationships in which I didn’t feel that way, so I know something wasn’t right with this. However, he was motivated to have sex with me before going to fix this truck, which made me feel super used. He claimed he really needed the money and was going to get paid very well and would have his foot in the door with this company that might lead to better things. Although I was still pissed about it, I understood the need for quick money, and he apologized.

I’d left his house around dinnertime that afternoon, and Biker Guy texted me throughout the evening about the truck getting fixed and how he made great money, again saying he was sorry for having to go. I was happy for him about that. Around 10:30 that evening he texted saying he was about done with the truck, he’d call me in the morning after he had gotten some things done (again, helping “a friend” with something, always friends with no names).

On Sunday morning, Biker Guy sent me a text that he’d been in an accident on his way home from fixing the truck. First, I couldn’t believe he hadn’t contacted me when it happened, but I was suspicious about his story, because things didn’t add up and he wasn’t exactly talkative. I was certain he was drunk when he hit the parked car, but of course he claims he’d only had a few beers because he’d been working on that truck. I had my doubts, because he looked hungover, and I was pissed at him for it. Of course, that incident ruined the rest of the weekend, because he went to help someone move some things and then went home for the rest of the day. So there I found myself once again available for someone that was too busy to spend quality time with me – because once again – he had yet another thing to deal with that he’d brought upon himself. I was super pissed by then.

I had a good night of sleep that evening, so on Monday I woke up feeling pretty good for once. I had decided I need to focus more on myself, drink less, take better care of myself, lose the weight I gained over the past year, and do the things that I liked – and if Biker Guy wanted to join me, then he could. But at that point I was done going out of my way for him if he wasn’t going to help himself or find quality time to spend with me. I could lead a horse to water… but some horses are mules.

But then something else happened that completely changed the course of everything. I will post that tomorrow.

The U.S. is a Shit Show & Social Distancing is Great

I have so much to write about, so much going on in my head, but putting things into words lately has been difficult. I have dealt with some batshit crazy people in my life, but today’s world has put the icing on the cake. This is not the same country I served, and these modern times aren’t exactly what I had in mind when I joined the military. None of the goings-on in the world today are anything anyone from my generation ever expected. The complete lack of respect for anything or anyone has gone out the window. Teachers are wrong, cops are wrong, everyone and everything is wrong, but everyone else is to blame. There is zero accountability, and that’s what’s really scary.

Today’s media is the Enquirer of the grocery store check-out aisle – sensational news, false information, and clickbait – and it’s amazing how many people actually believe all of it without thinking rationally, only reading misleading headlines. Our country is a complete shit-show to the rest of the world, and god forbid any of us to have an actual opinion about it and express it without offending someone to the point they find out your address, hunt you down, and threaten your life.

The people of the United States are fucking insane. The entire country was first divided by political candidates, now add in mask-wearers vs non-mask-wearers and erasing white history vs keeping white history alive. People show their true colors behind keyboards, lifelong friendships ending over some of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen. And then there are the people that think it’s their right to tell you how to think and what to do, that if you don’t vote, you’re part of the problem, that if you do vote you must vote in their favor or else you’re a libtard, a repuke, or whatever other names insecure control freaks come up with. That if you don’t wear a mask to fend off Covid-19, you’re a horrible person trying to kill your grandmother. That if you do wear a mask, you’re falling into a trap of compliance for a hoax virus. If you agree with the tearing down of statues, you’re a horrible person that doesn’t understand history; if you don’t agree, you’re also a horrible person that doesn’t understand history.

No one is winning, so I sit back and think for myself, do whatever the hell I want, when I want, and how I want. And if someone doesn’t like it? They can kiss off. I don’t need the media or the government telling me what to do. I take most of it with a grain of salt and think for myself and do what I feel is best for me. I don’t feel the need to tell anyone my opinion unless I know we agree on things, because why start an argument? It’s not worth it. Plus, does my opinion really matter except to anyone trying to start something?

I have limited my time on social media and catching up with news just because I don’t care to see all of the negativity. It’s SO unhealthy! (Instead, I’ve been doing other unhealthy things, like not working out and eating cookies!) The best way to deal with this shit show is to work on myself and stay the hell away from people, because the only thing good coming out of this is social distancing!

Owning Your Power & Healing

Owning your power can be a scary process, because oftentimes we don’t understand just how powerful we are.

“Enough is enough,” I told myself one day. I had to teach myself that no matter what, I must refuse relationships that are no longer beneficial to my spiritual well being – even if it means excluding family members and outdated friends.

Being raised in a controlling and manipulative environment, I had learned that I had no power. My power belonged to someone else. If I knew in my heart that something was the color blue, I was told that it was red, and I was forced to acknowledge that it was red even against my own honor. The environment would then be manipulated enough so that things would appear red, and then I would question my own sanity and doubt myself. This type of behavior followed me into adulthood, and it caused many issues in relationships and other situations. I doubted myself many times when I should not have. I didn’t trust myself, and I didn’t trust my own instincts, and I found myself in many, many abusive situations that caused much heartache.

It was a learned behavior, but I was determined to unlearn it all in order to become the person that I was meant to be and to heal once and for all. What has been ingrained in your life over several years can sometimes take several more years to unlearn. Years of therapy and self-help books and seminars are a good start, but most importantly, the support received from those around us is the foundation of our healing system. Finding the right “family”, so to speak, is where self-healing truly begins. Acknowledging our power and practicing using it goes right along with that first step. Knowing that we can change our own lives by using that power is a freedom that we all deserve.

However, there are other obstacles to overcome in the process. Once I reclaimed my power, those that I had released from my life didn’t take kindly to it. They provoked, prodded, accused, blamed, and hurled insults at me. I became their dartboard for all of their own problems because I chose to step away and refuse to tolerate their abusive behavior. I was tested time and time again with the same types of people and situations until I learned not to react, which is a very difficult lesson to learn. It was then that I was finally no longer a part of that wicked cycle of drama.

During my own personal process of reclaiming my power, a new friend with an old soul confided in me about her own similar situation. “When one person changes her behavior, the others that are a part of the group get upset because now they must also change. And no one likes change!” she told me. Her truth resonated in me and helped me to see my own situation in a bigger perspective.

After a few years, some of these people finally started to understand my position, because they were forced to change as well. That’s when relationships began to heal, and my power became stronger, because then I realized it was respected. Owning my power is still a process, because unlearning something isn’t overnight or even a few weeks. It can sometimes be years of learning, but once you start, it feels great.

Last Week, Bitches Be Crazy

Last week was one that can totally kiss my ass. Besides dealing with lack of sleep, horrible allergies and migraines due to the weather, other potential health issues, dealing with crazy bitches made me want to hibernate in a dark corner and not speak to anyone – ever! It literally ended with me in tears that I’d been holding back and almost feeling that downward spiral of depression again. I don’t know if it was the full moon that also made people crazy last week, but holy hell, I started having flashbacks to junior high school bullies. I seriously felt attacked for no reason or incredibly stupid reasons that shed some light on how dumb people really are.

I do believe that social isolation brings out the worst in some people. Even people that I used to consider friends showed their batshit-crazy, narcissistic, attention-whore sides that do not deserve a place in my life. That is how my week began – and it happened to be over something completely stupid – a miscommunication in the beginning that turned into something else entirely. Without going into too much detail (because it was SO stupid it truly is a waste of time explaining), a so-called 13-year friendship ended just like that. I wouldn’t consider this person a close friend, but one in which we shared things in common, communicated and vented to each other about our personal problems and issues – the way women friends typically do. Other than that, I can now see that she was more of a “what can someone do for me” type of person. (As a matter of fact, I see this a lot in some of the people that I’ve distanced myself from.) So I asked myself the question, “Am I going to miss this friendship?” It only took me about two whole seconds to conclude that no, I will not, because true friends don’t treat people like they’re disposable over something so incredibly stupid. Besides, she is extremely vengeful with so much negativity and resentment within her, the toxicity looks like a smoking chimney. I don’t need, nor do I care about, being around dark energy, because it’s just gross, and this is also one reason I’ve avoided visiting her in person.

Everyone gets offended by the dumbest shit anymore, and no matter what good intentions are in place, someone will come around and make it into something it’s not without asking for an explanation – just jumping to the worst conclusions their sorry little brains can come up with. Social media is awful like that. There is a Facebook group in which people post crazy/weird things that people are selling, often making fun of things. Some things are truly comical, but other times I think people are just plain mean. A young woman was selling a crocheted item to wear, and there were a lot of body shaming comments. I happened to make the comment that it was cute if you’re a size zero. I wasn’t saying the woman in the photo should be a size zero (she was thin), I had meant it as if I were a size zero, because I have never been that size and not even close to it now. I meant nothing else by it except referring to myself, but oh-my-god! I had numerous notifications from my comment – got slammed for body shaming, called a bitch, told that my attitude was “I am a perfect size zero and everyone else should be too” – all coming from young women that didn’t understand my comment, and when I tried to explain my intention, it only became worse. These ignorant keyboard commandos jumped on the bandwagon just like kids do in middle school, and when I told them all to get a life and blocked them, I got banned from the group. Just like that. I was banned before I could remove myself, which really pissed me off, because I wanted to choose how I left. I had a few conversations with others in which we discussed how some of these Facebook group admins/moderators let everything go to their heads as if their group is really meaningful in the whole scheme of life. No, it’s not, especially when the posts are negative things and makes fun of people. Imagine if these moderators were given actual power in real life – they would fall before they could even rise to the second step of the ladder.

Then on Thursday evening, I noticed something on my leg that hadn’t been there before. It was small and round (about the size of the tip of a felt marker), raised, and appeared blackish. At first, I thought maybe it was a tiny tick or an ingrown hair, and when I squeezed it, blood came out. I was Facetiming with my daughter and showed it to her, and she freaked out saying that it was melanoma. I had to view it under a magnifying glass, and when compared to photos online of melanoma, it did appear very similar to skin cancer, so I was very worried.

The following morning, I emailed my doctor (a new one the VA assigned that I haven’t yet met). Instead of calling me, I received an email that I was being given yet another round of antibiotics – the second time in a couple of months this same doctor has prescribed them without seeing me in person and not actually needing them. I thought maybe they mixed me up with someone else, because antibiotics obviously don’t treat melanoma, and I needed to be seen. I emailed again asking what they were for, and I was told for a tick bite. Since it wasn’t the first or second time miscommunication via email with the VA clinic has happened, I questioned as to whether or not they were thoroughly reading what I sent and said I’m not taking another round of antibiotics, because I was just on them (also still causing stomach issues and depression). I attempted to call as to have better communication, was sent to the wrong line, stood on hold forever, called back and no one answered at all, which is typical of the VA system.

Well, I guess my email struck a nerve, because I finally got a call from the doctor completely bitching me out for questioning her reading my emails thoroughly. When I attempted telling her I think they mixed me up with someone else, called and couldn’t get through, she raised her voice and spoke over me that I didn’t explain myself, that nothing is wrong with the system (total bullshit!). While she was yelling at me on the phone, I raised my own voice and said, “I’m not going to argue with you, I know what I said in my email,” and she kept going. I came very close to hanging up on her and stopped listening. Shut down and felt helpless.

I was already upset from having a shitty week, not sleeping or feeling well, and worried I might have skin cancer, and for her to speak to me like garbage brought me to tears. She basically called me a liar, claimed I said nothing in my email about melanoma nor did I request to be seen, and I when I tried to say something must be wrong with the email system, she told me it was my fault, that it must be me and not the VA! Yes, that’s what she said, and I couldn’t believe it! Oh-my-fucking-god, you bet your ass I almost completely lost it on this woman! (I don’t know how long she’s been working for the VA clinic, but she’s not going to last long with that shitty attitude!)

I mean, it’s even in my “sent” folder for fuck sakes, and it literally reads in the subject line “Appointment: melanoma” with the attached photo – and shows as being “read.” She claimed she didn’t see melanoma anywhere, did not see where I requested to be seen, and did not receive a photo, and I told her the VA needs to update their system and fix it, because I know what I sent. She finally calmed down and said the clerks would need to call me to schedule the appointment to be seen. I get to meet her next week, and I’m not looking forward to it. I swear, if she says or does one thing during that appointment that I don’t like, I will get up and leave and request a different doctor and report her, because nobody deserves to be treated that way. I hate the fact that the doctor I’ve been seeing for two years is gone and I’m stuck with whomever they have available.

Later that evening, I ended up not sleeping again. It was the night of the full moon, and I was feeling extremely emotional. I had a really good, long cry, and it was what I needed, because I tend to hold things in until I explode. And then I slept. Hard. But at least I felt better.

Too Nice = Wants Something In Return

It’s nice, and even refreshing, meeting genuinely nice people, but when they are too nice, something is definitely up. I used to give “too-nice” people the benefit of the doubt, thinking they’re not in it for themselves or for another purpose. After observing too-nice people during my lifetime, my perspective has changed, and I learned years ago in social psychology that there is always a return in their investment.

For example, someone that is always giving to others or doing for others and not expecting anything in return from an outer perspective is definitely expecting something in return internally. Whether they get a thrill out of it or a boost in ego or even some attention they were craving or maybe they just want a new drinking buddy, that is what the return brings. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the truth is, it’s their return. Of course, there are always the people that are complete pushovers and enablers that don’t know how to use boundaries; however, I wouldn’t say they’re “too nice;” I would say they’re blind to reality and somehow enjoy the conflict it brings.

When I was growing up, there was one person in particular that I was very wary of when it came to “being nice.” I would be given something I’d really enjoy, then at a moment’s notice over nothing at all, it would be taken away – because it made that person feel good to see me upset. I’ve even had someone help me out and continue to remind me of it for 20+ years, making me never want to accept anything from anyone – ever again!

I’ve also met too-nice people that are pretending to be nice, when the reality is they’re envious or they’re nosy and looking for information to suit their own purpose. It could be someone close to you that gives you something, perhaps something they’ve made, smile right to your face, and then proceed to talk shit behind your back. What is their objective? To make you think they like you, even when they may be jealous or just a shitty person doing a type of bribing. Or maybe it’s someone that’s not necessarily a friend, but perhaps an acquaintance that may offer something tangible (or non-tangible, like a favor) out of nowhere. Do you really think that person isn’t expecting something in return? They may say, “This is for you,” and then, “here is my business card to give to all of your friends.” That’s not a big deal in the overall scheme of life, but it’s worth taking a look at how those types operate. Business is one thing, but personal life is another, and fake-nice people suck!

Getting something in return happens in a lot of dating scenarios, and I’ve either seen it many times with others or experienced it myself. Whenever I hear a guy say to me, “I guess I’m just too nice,” I ask them what were they expecting? Because if there was no agreement between the two people that a certain action was supposed to happen, then there’s nothing to really complain about. Of course, there is always the obvious one in which the man pays for drinks or a meal and expects to get laid or whatever else his objective may be. When he gets rejected, he regrets paying for anything. And there are always gold diggers whose interest lies only in material gain, who feign niceness and take advantage of unsuspecting men or only date men that will do favors for them and fix their house for free. This is one reason I make it clear “we are friends” or pay my own way. Let’s not forget the self-proclaimed “nice guys” on dating sites that are only nice for a minute until they are rejected. (You can see exactly what I mean when @SareyTales posts the messages from the “nice guys.”)

When you truly give from the heart, you’re not looking for anything in return, except maybe some peace and happiness, and maybe even a smile.

Moody Man Strikes Again

Yesterday I posted the backstory about Moody Man. I received a text around 11 p.m. one night from a number I didn’t recognize: “Hey stranger.” Before I knew who it was, I was annoyed that someone whose name was not even in my phone was texting me at that hour, because I was working intently on something and it disrupted my thought process. When I asked who it was, Moody Man identified himself. Supposedly, he was having beers with his friend and my name came up. (Can’t even imagine why, since I only met the friend once.)

I didn’t really feel like to speaking to him – but then I remembered that Moody Man probably rides his motorcycle in a group with Biker Guy. For a minute, I thought they may have been hanging out, but they weren’t, thankfully. I remembered that Moody Man had been to the same event that Biker Guy had been with the other woman he was dating. And like the detective type of woman I am, I use certain things to my advantage to find out information. I had no other way to find out information about Biker Guy to see if he was indeed telling me the truth, so I asked Moody Man about him. They had met recently, but they don’t hang out, and he knew that Biker Guy was dating someone. When I asked if he knew if they were still together, he said he’s not going to “tell on a brother,” to which I replied, “Fuck your ‘brother’ you’ve known for a minute. You’ve known me for 30 years, and I’m trying to protect myself from getting hurt.” He told me he hadn’t seen anyone since the coronavirus lockdown, so he really didn’t know.

Changing the subject, he told me about his kids and other random news like he got himself a boat and asked if I’d like to go on it. I said sure, I have some friends to bring. How many can fit? Because I did not want to go alone with him, and once again, I made it clear we would only be friends and nothing more. That’s when he Facetimed me instead of texting. It didn’t take long before the conversation turned creepy.

Moody Man told me he liked being with me one-on-one, because we have good chemistry “when we talk,” but I knew that’s not what he was referring to. I ignored him, saying, “Maybe I’ll bring (friend’s name). I think you will get along,” just to steer away from anything even remotely sexual. A few times I noticed he was holding his camera oddly so I’d only see part of his face, and I wondered if he was playing with dick or just being a childish weirdo. He made a comment about wanting to see what I was wearing and said some things I wasn’t comfortable with, and I’d change the subject or pretend I didn’t hear him. At some point he started walking around his house with the camera aimed at his face, but then I could see a shower curtain in the background, so I knew he was in the bathroom. Next thing I know, he flips the screen around above the toilet and aimed it on his dick. I told him I didn’t want to see his dick, and when he realized I wasn’t falling for his bullshit, he said he was sorry, that it was an accident. Yeah, right, because who holds their phone in one hand and and dick in the other when Facetiming a friend? I said I needed to go, because the conversation was going nowhere, and I was getting nothing but creeped out frustration and losing minutes of my life. I ended up hanging up on him and haven’t heard from him since.

He’s very charming at first, so I can imagine that Moody Man is appealing to women meeting him for the first time. I’ve never known him to be violent or forceful, but his behavior in general doesn’t sit right. The moment he flipped that camera around was almost like an epiphany of what a skeez he really is, how manipulative and gross and disrespectful he is towards women. Because he’s both educated and street smart, his manipulation skills could very easily be on the verge of a psychopath. He’s also worked as a law enforcement officer, so he knows the system well, and he’s probably smart enough to beat it if he needed to. It would not surprise me if one day something really dark is revealed about him.

I knew he had issues, but I didn’t realize to what extent he would go against my personal boundaries. What I saw and heard from him that night really creeped me out to the point that I know I never want to be alone with him ever again. It was the price I paid for trying to find out information to protect myself from getting hurt by someone else, but it was more internal information for me to process to protect myself from Moody Man acting like a sexual predator.

Another Douchebag I Dated Returns

I mentioned in a post the other day about thirsty men coming out of the woodwork, and while I was writing, I’d received a text from someone I hadn’t heard from in a year. There is a short history with this him, and one that I don’t care to relive in person. I will name him Moody Man for reasons I will explain later.

Moody Man and I went to high school together, and we hooked up around his 21st birthday right before he joined the Marines. Being that it was the 1990s and no internet or social media, we lost touch until I got onto Facebook when I was separated from my ex at the end of 2013. The first time he contacted me via Facebook, I had just separated – literally days – from my ex and was in no way, shape, or form wanting to hook up or even meet with a male for a drink or a meal. I was still dealing with the shock and stress of a separation from a marriage and still living under the same roof as my husband. It was clear that Moody Man was looking for a hookup, and he was very pushy in his messages, saying “it’s just a drink,” when I said I wasn’t even ready for that. Instead of being patient or understanding, Moody Man unfriended me. I hadn’t even noticed until a few months later when I went to send him something I thought he’d like. Right now I don’t remember his reasoning for unfriending me, but I’m sure now that it was stupid and petty, because that’s just the way he is, especially with women. I didn’t realize at the time that this was Moody Man’s modus operandi.

Once I messaged Moody Man after he’d unfriended me, he started talking to me again and talked me into meeting him for a drink. I hadn’t seen him in 20 years, and he was looking pretty good for a 40-year-old man, not to mention he’s intelligent, which is a turn on to me. We met for a drink one afternoon, and once I gained trust in him, met him at his house for drinks one afternoon. The chemistry was heavy, stronger than any chemistry I’d had in probably ten or more years, and we ended up having amazing wild sex all over his house for several hours. Now I had just come out of an 8-year marriage with no chemistry or sex (three times in three years), and apparently, I was also in my prime, so I was ready and willing. What I didn’t realize was that Moody Man had so many issues and mood swings, it was nearly impossible to please him or continue anything with him.

Moody Man wanted a relationship, and not only could I not imagine myself being in another relationship ever again at the time, I hadn’t even filed for divorce yet. He was totally unreasonable about it and expected me to text him constantly while I was working, even though I was teaching at the time and couldn’t be on my phone for obvious reasons. He’d get really pissy with me for not answering him or for being too exhausted to go to his house after work and then he’d abruptly stop talking to me. It was a total mind fuck game to him. If he didn’t get his way, like when I refused to send him nudes, he’d cut me off and act really snippy.

Although the sex was great, I couldn’t deal with him emotionally. There were so many red flags about him, even ones that I saw pretty clearly at the time. After only hanging out maybe three times, he wanted me to meet his young daughter. I didn’t think it was appropriate to be introducing his child to me before being in an actual relationship, but he moved very quickly. At some point he told me I reminded him of his mother, because she’s artsy. And then a few days later he was complaining about his mother and called her a cunt, which is where I drew the line… I reminded him of his “cunt” mother? This guy has issues!

Moody Man had taken me to his friend’s house (a married couple), and for some reason, he got mad at me for talking to the wife alone, like he was jealous, and started acting pissy in front of everyone before he said we were leaving. His own friend referred to him as moody, hence the nickname! I believe that was the last time I saw him during that year. I was certain Moody Man was still using dating sites and texting other women while I was sitting on his couch next to him. I’m pretty sure he had the next one lined up in case we didn’t work out, because a year later, he was married for the third time. Two years later, he was divorced and back on dating sites… when he messaged me.

Since I already knew Moody Man’s m.o., I wasn’t going to play into his bullshit games again. I unequivocally wasn’t going to date him or do him, but I was open to being friends, and he agreed to it. He offered to come over with some beer and catch up. He’d had two more kids with the woman he married, and of course, his “ex is psycho,” because that’s what men like him always say. Then he started telling me some sexually explicit things that I didn’t care to hear, and as he was telling me, I could see his dick getting hard through his pants. (It’s a pretty good size, so not difficult to notice.) He kept getting up and rubbing it down, hinting about us hooking up, but I refused, and I told him I’m not hooking up with anyone I’m not in a relationship with. (This was last year right around my first surgery, and sex was the last thing on my mind.) Plus, he was the last person I’d attempt a relationship with when he can’t even be friends like a normal person. Once he realized I wasn’t buying his bullshit and I clearly wasn’t going to fuck him, he said he had to go… and he took the rest of the beer with him! I literally laughed out loud about it, because it was such a douchebag move.

About a month later, Moody Man offered to take me and friends out on a boat with his some guys. I jump at most boating opportunities, so I went with a female acquaintance. It was a fun day until the driver decided that women are stupid when I told him to follow the other boats, because there was a hidden sandbar nearby. He hit the sandbar and decided to burn out his motor like a dumbass and had a $600 tow back. While the other female and myself laughed it off and continued enjoying ourselves, Moody Man became moody and was on his phone with yet another woman to pick him up at our drop-off point. When the boat docked, he took off, and I didn’t hear from him for a couple of weeks. Mad at something else yet again for not being able to handle the truth, I didn’t hear from him for an entire year until recently.

To be continued…

Realizations About Suppressed Feelings

Yesterday I posted the backstory and update about Biker Guy, but there is a hell of a lot more to talk about. After he contacted me the first time, I realized I’d written about him on here three times:

Getting Rejected By Male Friends
Blocked Again
Eye in the Sky

As I was reading, I felt a lot of emotions coming out that I didn’t realize I’d built up. I also realized that my feelings for him were stronger than I wanted to admit – something a couple of friends had pointed out. But at the time, I didn’t see it that way, because I knew deep down that a relationship between us would never work – for several reasons.

The several times Biker Guy and I got together, alcohol was involved. I just figured he was going through a lot with his wife’s passing, but currently, that behavior hasn’t changed. He mentioned something recently about his family and himself being alcoholics, which is something I’ve been steering away from. I was doing so well with social distancing and not going out, only getting together with friends for drinks maybe once a week, but not overdoing it. When Biker Guy contacted me, I found myself drinking more so than usual when he was around and feeling the changes in my body from it. Not good.

Biker Guy and I don’t seem to share the same interests. The only times we got together was having some food and/or drinks when he got off work, because as I stated before, he always had other things going on. I’m an outdoors person that likes to be active and enjoy nature. He enjoys motorcycles (which I’m not opposed to) and racing (no thanks) – and racing motorcycles, which I find to be extremely dangerous and outright stupid for men over 40. Getting him to do anything that interested me was nearly impossible. He was always getting invited by friends to go to parties and drinking events and bars, which is okay some of the time, but completely useless all of the time. I felt that he always needed company, always needed to be around people, and I’m the extreme opposite. So none of those things worked for my lifestyle or the lifestyle I wanted in a partner.

When I first met Biker Guy last year, he was pretty consistent in his contact with me, even initiating conversation most of the time – more than I was interested. Eventually, that dwindled down prior to me telling him we’d only be friends, before he ghosted me for three months. Recently when he contacted me, he was consistent at first, but now that’s changed again. He went from saying good morning or how is your day to not a fucking word, even when I have initiated a conversation. I’ve spent the past two Friday and Saturday nights home alone with my cat, because he was out with his buddies. This is the type of shit that confuses me and causes me to lose sleep. This is also why I feel happier being single and alone with my cat without mind-fuck interference and setting myself up for disappointment.

Last weekend we made plans to go to the beach on Sunday. (This was after me telling him he can never plan anything with me and why I told him in December we can’t be more than friends.) I got up early on Sunday to prepare food and get things together, but I didn’t hear from him like I expected. He woke up late, because he’d been with his friend the night before drinking shots of moonshine. Fucking moonshine. We finally made it to the beach, but I could tell he was feeling super hungover and wasn’t hydrating at all. Instead, he started drinking beer by noon. He was on his phone a lot, which annoyed me, because when I spend time with someone, it’s with them, not their phone, and we never got to talk about anything that I wanted to talk to him about. Then he started saying his friend wanted him to help him do something, and I said well we’re at the beach, tell him you’re busy. It’s like he can’t just spend time with me alone without anyone else around. How the hell do you get to know the real person inside like that? You don’t.

In the meantime, a couple of my friends he hadn’t yet met were at the beach practically right next to us. We sat with them and chatted a bit, then Biker Guy tells me his friend that needed help is having a party, and he pretty much tells me we are leaving the beach without even asking me if I wanted to go. I had the feeling either way he was going with or without me. I was super annoyed, especially having waited for him all morning to get his shit together. We did end up going to the friend’s house, which was fine, because I ended up seeing people I knew that I hadn’t seen in years.

The following week when I couldn’t get him to hold down plans, I told Biker Guy that I feel that I’m an option when nothing else more interesting is offered to him. We were supposed to talk about it yesterday, but something always comes up. That is probably the most consistent thing about this entire story. This time, one of his biker buddies crashed and died in an accident the night before, and they had all been out together. Super sad situation. We texted back and forth, he said he was going to get back to me later about food that I was making… not a fucking word. And as of this writing, not a fucking word. I absolutely cannot have a relationship like this, especially not one that includes intimacy (another post to come about that), something I’ve already told him.

So why do I have feelings for someone that I know would never work out, would never meet the qualifications I desire in a partner, and treats me like an option? I suppose this has something to do with how I’m treated within my family, how I was brought up – what I learned as a child. But I need to figure this shit out, because I can’t keep having these types of relationships of any kind with people.

Rejected & Ghosted – But He Came Back

Almost every single guy I’ve dated has come back to me at some point, even if it’s 20 years later. I’m going to be writing this in segments, because it’s ongoing. But first, I feel I should do a little recap and start from the beginning… About a year ago, I was introduced to someone thru an acquaintance after telling her I wasn’t interested in meeting anyone at the time. I’ve only been calling him my “close male friend,” but now I will give him an actual name for this blog… Biker Guy.

Biker Guy had lost his wife from a long-term illness about three months prior to me meeting him, so I know he wasn’t in the best frame of mind for dating or anything like that. I had my own health issues at the time, too, and the last thing I wanted was a relationship. But we became good friends, and he’s the one that helped me out tremendously when I had the hysterectomy. He also fixed my car for me and had promised to do some other work that never happened (still waiting). We were both emotionally unavailable at the time, and I reminded him of that, because it seemed like maybe we were getting too close to the point he asked me what “this was,” to which I replied, “we are friends,” – because the reality was – he was unavailable most of the time, and I didn’t think we shared the same interests and lifestyle. And he was still mourning the loss of his wife, which isn’t what I want brought into anything more than a friendship.

Shortly after meeting him, Biker Guy had a couple of people that he was “helping out” that moved into a spare room at his house. They were always drunk or stoned, we could hear her moaning in their room when they were having sex, and it became uncomfortable for me to even be there. There was something about the woman in particular that I felt was “off,” because she wouldn’t look me in the face when she’d speak, so I immediately did not trust her. I still don’t, but that’s another story for later.

When the holidays rolled around, Biker Guy was absent for the most part due to family obligations and whatever else he had going on. The thing is – he ALWAYS had something going on! So much that even if I’d wanted a relationship, there was no way he would have had time for anything. If he wasn’t working, he was helping someone out or fixing someone else’s vehicle (but not mine as promised). When I finally did see him around Christmas, I made it clear that we could only be friends. I told him that I loved him, because he’s special to me, but that he’s never available to be more than friends. And that is when he started blowing me off altogether and pretty much ghosted me for three months. He started dating someone three weeks after I said we can’t be more than friends, and this was someone he already knew (they were friends on Facebook, but we weren’t – and shortly thereafter, his account had blocked mine). I felt hurt that he found time for someone else but not me after being there for him during the time he needed someone to talk to. It really made me feel like shit and super sad.

April 20th was the first text I received from Biker Guy in three months asking if I’d gotten my brakes fixed (I had). I was shocked to hear from him, because I figured he was in a relationship – and I literally had considered the day prior deleting his number out of my phone. I had done what I could to spy on social media to see if he was still together with the other woman, and the last thing I’d seen her post was three weeks prior to him contacting me. So I wasn’t sure why he was suddenly contacting me out of the blue. He asked me if I was hungry and if I’d like some company to catch up on things. I thought, why not, because I’d been home alone for nearly 2 months. But in the back of my mind, I was thinking I’m not allowing this to happen again, because it was really hurtful not to hear from him for so long after having been so close.

He came over and kind of acted like nothing happened. Obviously, I had to ask what’s up with the woman you’ve been dating? He said they were just friends. And I’m thinking, yeah, so were we, and I was also thinking but you were just together three weeks ago, and so I had my walls up. He didn’t like the fact that I seemed to know more than he told me, probably wondered how the hell I found out, and said it was “a little creepy”. I said I don’t care what you think it is; I have to protect myself both physically and emotionally, and I’m not going to have someone come back and forth into my life. It’s something I absolutely refuse to do. We have hung out a few more times since then, and I had a lot of questions about things. He doesn’t open up much, and his answers are vague, which doesn’t sit well with me. I don’t think he’s lying to me; I think he’s not telling me the entire story about things. Oh yeah, and we still aren’t friends on Facebook, which I find to be totally odd considering how close we were. And that’s what I don’t like.

Biker Guy’s behavior is slightly different than when I’d first met him. Perhaps I didn’t notice it before, but he seems a little self-destructive. Personally, I think he’s depressed but won’t admit it. And maybe this is something else I didn’t notice before (since a year ago there was no Covid19 lockdown and I was out of the house more), but Biker Guy can’t seem to make plans with me. Ever. If I say, “Hey, what are you up to later?”… I get, “I don’t know yet. I have some things going on. I’ll let you know.” And then he’s out with his biker friends. That is the type of shit that tells me if I’m not important enough to make plans with, then I am number two. Number two is shit. And no one wants to be shit.

Lockdown Update & Thirsty Men

With most people at home for now, it’s mainly been quiet. It’s almost like a flashback to 1990-something before my area was too crowded and overdeveloped with traffic. And I love it! However, all of that is about to change, because Florida is about to open back up. If money wasn’t an issue, I’d like it just fine the way it is.

Because of the Covid-19 shutdowns, I figured I’d have written way more than I have. Hell, I should have written my next book by now! However, I have done some much needed healing both physically and emotionally, catching up on sleep and removing toxic people out of my life, and catching up on some personal and work projects. I have been extremely content with being isolated during this pandemic. In fact, I’m loving it! I haven’t experienced any depression and very little anxiety (mainly just needing exercise). I’ve even managed to meditate a few times, and now I realize that I have been surrounding myself with untrustworthy assholes and going to places that are spiritually damaging and dark, which I feel has contributed to so much of the depression I’ve been writing about. Visiting family or friends and/or getting out once a week is just enough for me.

During all of this, there are certainly some thirsty men out there that I’ve been either avoiding, rejecting, or just disinterested in a text conversation. I am worth more than being there for someone for their entertainment when they have nothing else to do. If they can’t hang out with me or be a friend in real life or we don’t have a business interest, I’m not interested in wasting my time. There are too many good books to read for that!

In the meantime, I’ve run into a few people unexpectedly. I’m pretty sure I saw Toe Ring Guy’s truck pass my house one day, and I know I passed him on the street just prior to the lockdown. He does live nearby, however, I don’t want to see him on my street.

I ran into King Nothing a few times, and we’re cordial. (I think he secretly loves being called King Nothing, because he loves attention.) Another guy I went out for sushi with once (not a date, since there was no interest on my part) sent a text after months of silence. Someone else was trying to hook up, and I just wanted to be alone. A few random local guys on Instagram are also attempting to make conversation. God forbid I post a selfie, because that just makes them send DMs.

This piece of shit sent me a message on POF without realizing who I am; I ignored him.
I saw the back of Mr. Volatile on a beach walk one day – and he sent me a message on POF again without recognizing me. I told him he needed to stop lying about his age, so he blocked me. That was definitely a good laugh.

And then I heard from my (close) friend that hadn’t talked to me in three months. The one that was supposed to fix my car. The one that helped me during my surgery last year. The one that suddenly started seeing someone right after the holidays. But that is another post altogether.

As I’m writing this, my phone dings a text from a number I don’t recognize. I ask who it is. It’s someone I’ve known since high school that has a tendency to show up every couple of years. It’s 11 p.m. That will also be another blog post or two…

Right now my biggest concern is keeping healthy both physically and mentally, and I feel that keeping myself away from most people is key to succeeding at that. I enjoy company and good conversation without anything difficult, so I’ve been sticking with family and female friends as to not complicate things. Although I feel like a stereotype for doing so, I enjoy time with my cat more than most people… has life really come to this?

Don’t Shoot Me – Dreams Relevant to Waking Life

Sometimes dreams are relevant to waking life if you really try to interpret and make sense of them. I’ve been dreaming very vividly every night, which is good news, because it means I’m actually getting some REM sleep. Remembering the dreams, however, is another story. But this morning, I remembered a part of one when I awoke to pee at 3 a.m. The only thing I remember is a guy holding a gun on me, and each time he pointed it at me, I kissed him. Weird, right? I suppose in real life, I tend to be too nice to people that would hold a gun to me or otherwise treat me poorly. Now I will explain how I related this dream to waking life.

First, I am still on POF as an experiment with no intention of ever meeting anyone. I’ve been changing my zip code every 10 days or so to check out different areas I might want to visit and see what type of responses I get. However, the app also goes by your actual phone location, so someone can view me locally by using another feature. I noticed someone in my city had viewed my profile, someone I’d never seen before and is a transplant here from another state. And here is the thing – I NEVER initiate conversation with anyone on these sites. For some reason, I felt the urge to initiate a conversation with this person, because his profile seemed different than the typical rednecks and stoners around here, and he had a nice smile and nice eyes, which is a thing for me.

There were a couple of things he said that totally rubbed me the wrong way, because I was being sincere and doing what most people do on online dating sites – asking questions to get to know someone. I started by giving him a compliment on his profile, and at first I was only getting short answers in return until I must have annoyed him when I asked about his short answers. I guess he was working at the time and answering me when he could, but I didn’t know it until he told me so.

I made the mistake of telling him that I found online dating to mostly be a waste of time, because either people want to get married the following week or they’re not serious about what they want, and that I had been on and off dating sites for the last six years. Within 24 hours, there were quite a few messages back and forth (mine were much longer), and at some point he was a bit short with me and accused me of being judgmental. I was taken aback, because I wasn’t sure I understood what he meant, and it turned out to be really stupid.

He’s working a lot, having surgery in a couple of months, and trying to get his son here for the summer. Like anyone that uses logic – based on what he told me – I said it sounded like he didn’t have time to get to know anyone with all of that going on. How does that make me judgmental? He said something in Spanish, so I asked him if he was Spanish or spoke Spanish (he’d mentioned having lived in Texas for the past 20 years). His response was that I was jumping to conclusions “like 95% of women,” and that he’d taken Spanish in high school. He also said that maybe that’s why I hadn’t had success on dating sites. Whoa… Jumping to conclusions? It’s called deductive reasoning, for fuck sakes, and I know plenty of women that have the same issues on said sites, so I know for a fact it’s definitely not just me.

I had asked him multiple times why he only had one photo and how long ago was it taken. He said he already answered that, but when I scrolled back through messages, I didn’t see it anywhere and told him so. He’d buried the answer within something else he said, but the answer was “I don’t put much effort into this site,” yet somehow I was supposed to interpret that as to why he only had one photo?

On Day 2, he said he was feeling better and thanks for asking (I didn’t ask, wasn’t aware he was ill) and insisted he had told me he was feeling terrible the day before. I told him to go back through his messages, because it wasn’t me he told, because I have compassion for people, and I’m not an asshole. Then he brought up that I hadn’t responded to his comments about giving/getting a massage, and I told him I don’t have discussions about massage or intimacy with someone I’ve never met. And that was pretty much when I shut down. Being flirty is fine when you know someone, but it’s not okay with me when I’ve never met someone that has already insulted me more than enough times. It made me jump to more conclusions that his intentions aren’t sincere. I felt like either he was a being a dick, and I did not deserve it whatsoever, or maybe I was taking it the wrong way, which is easy to do with text. I told him that I prefer to speak in person anyway, and when I asked him to tell me more about himself, he said he would do it in person. With this coronavirus thing going on, I told him that might be awhile. (If at all!)

When I woke up the following day, I decided I was done wasting my time with him. I realized he hadn’t asked one single question about me, and the more I thought about it – didn’t show any interest in me whatsoever except when he mentioned massage – AND he briefly mentioned maybe I needed a spanking, but I guess I had missed that. I decided I wasn’t going to message him anymore and didn’t hear from him for two days, to which his only message was asking how I was. I was short in my answer: “Good. You?” Said he was feeling better and needs to prep for surgery and his son. Like I mentioned – who has time for a relationship? Not that guy.

But here’s the funny part – I will be starting a new job for the company he also works for, and there’s a really good chance we will run into each other – and I didn’t tell him this. I believe I will recognize him right away (if he really does look like his one photo), but I don’t believe he will know who I am, especially considering he showed such little interest. My one photo is full-length, dressed in winter clothing with my hair down and no tattoos showing. That’s not my typical look, so it should be interesting if he flirts with me in person – and this time, I can be the one to show no interest. Oh, and did I mention I don’t even know his name?

I think my dream was telling me how I have been with men in real life. This guy was ready to shoot me, but instead of leaving, I kiss them. Well, fuck that. I would only be setting myself up for failure, to be hurt, to be used, to be abused. I deserve a hell of a lot better than that. I’m not that lonely!

Mindset & Changes

The past two days I felt great – allergies were minimal, not really much pain except when my Yeti cup fell on my foot and I thought I broke it (it’s fine now), slept pretty good even though still a little tired. I managed to go kayaking for the first time since last summer, got too much sun. Yesterday I managed to do a lot of other house cleaning that most of us tend to ignore. Been eating fairly healthy, took a walk on the beach… and today I feel like total shit again. I’m achy, allergies are horrible, my head aches to the point it’s difficult to concentrate – like I have bands wrapped around my head, squeezing it… and when I feel this way, I’m not in a good mood at all. It’s extremely difficult feeling like total shit and trying to be happy or even content. To only feel good two or three days a week just plain sucks, and I don’t know what else to do anymore. It is terribly difficult to function and feel hopeful like this.

This is what happens to me all the time. I start to finally get on a roll of doing better, than bam… I’m brought back down again. It’s extremely discouraging to have a good outlook on life when you cannot even predict any given day of the week. There are many things I need and want to write about, but my head can’t focus on much of anything. I just applied for a new job that was referred to me by someone else that is doing very well during this pandemic, so I’m hoping that will at least bring some financial relief.

I’ve been working on a lot of things mentally. About two weeks ago, something within me kind of snapped, and I decided that I have absolutely outgrown this town I’ve lived in for 14 years. It was like I woke up one day and said nope, this isn’t for me. I’m over it for sure now. The changes that are happening here aren’t what I want in my life. The majority of people are too small-minded and uneducated for my interest, and it’s either time for me to find somewhere else to call home or travel enough so that I don’t notice it as much. I have struggled here for too long to continue trying to make it happen, because I’ve done nothing but waste my time. The money I make to keep a roof over my head has nothing to do with living here (it’s remote), and the other jobs here I can do pretty much anywhere.

But I don’t want just a job. I want something that I enjoy and look forward to going to every day. I love project based jobs, which is what I’m good at, and what I’ve been doing for several years. Although they can be inconsistent at times, they are flexible, which is how I like things to be. Sitting in an office or a classroom from 9-5 doesn’t suit me whatsoever. Being indoors constantly causes me so much anxiety I literally get ill. I don’t know exactly what it is I will be doing in the future, but it will be something that is meant for me. I have been meditating, and I feel something is out there for me, and it will come up unexpectedly – an offer I can’t refuse that I will absolutely love. I don’t know why I feel this, but maybe I think it’s time for the universe to finally present to me what I’ve been searching for the last 20 years and place me around legitimate work with legitimate people that will appreciate what I have to offer.

With that being said, either this job will require me to travel and allow me to keep my current apartment and lifestyle – OR it will bring me to a new place that will either be better or similar to where I am now. I don’t know when this will happen, but my mind has set it in motion. I’m ready for a better life.

Another Religious Reject

This is a continuation of Why I Reject Religion. The other day I saw an article about televangelist Kenneth Copeland who claimed the coronavirus is not that serious and that he can blow it away. Most people probably don’t know who this man is, but unfortunately for me, he was one of the many religious con artists I was forced to watch and listen to when I was a kid. This was during my middle school years, which were detrimental to social development and socializing with my peers, and as far as I knew, none of my friends (even the church ones) were made to watch these shyster programs. It was one of many things that make me reject religion today.

I had only lived in the cult-religious home with my father and stepmother Bianca during my seventh grade year – a year that I would never want to repeat if I time traveled. The restrictions were ludicrous; I wasn’t allowed to listen to the music I liked, dress like a normal kid, and I wasn’t allowed to go to other friend’s homes except the preacher’s daughter. Basically, if it was considered normal or something I enjoyed, I wasn’t allowed to do it. This is an excerpt from my memoir, Unheard:

I have a little radio that I listen to in my room, usually tuned to top 40 music. I like reading teen magazines with all of the latest, greatest posters of pop stars and teen idols, and at the same time I listen to music. I’m not allowed to hang posters in my room because it will ruin the walls, so I keep them in a drawer.

“What are you listening to?” Bianca asks while I am in my room, reading and listening to music. I can see in her face that she doesn’t like it, and something is wrong. I am afraid of what I have done.

“Men At Work,” I answer timidly.

“I’ve never heard of them,” she says.

I show her a poster of the group from one of my magazines.

“See? Here they are. They have good songs.”

“They look gay,” she says, crinkling her face.

“Huh? How can you tell?”

I’m not quite sure I understand what gay is, but I know the kids at schools say it means a man liking another man.

“They’re gay,” she repeats. “You can see it in their eyes. And look at their earrings. It means that they’re gay. It’s disgusting. Turn this music off, it’s making me sick to my stomach.”

I am confused. A lot of guys at school wear earrings, but they’re not gay; they have girlfriends. And how can a song about Australia make someone ill? I am offended and insulted! After all, something that I enjoy that is perfectly harmless is being used against me.

“But they’re not saying anything bad!” I cry.

“I don’t care what it’s about,” Bianca’s face contorts. “They’re homosexuals and it’s satanic! Just turn it off!”

I sulk the rest of the afternoon alone in my room. It’s not fair that I have to turn off something I like just because she thinks someone is gay. Who cares if they are gay if the music is good?

I try to keep my radio as quiet as possible and my bedroom door shut now so the music doesn’t make Bianca sick.

She opens my door.

“What are you doing?” she asks.

I look at her.

“Who is that on the radio?”

“Michael Jackson.”

“I don’t think it’s a good idea to listen to that garbage. The Jacksons are sinners.”

She hands me some tapes.

“Here’s Amy Grant and Sandi Patty for you to listen to. You like them, right?”

I don’t really care for the lame Christian music, but it’s better than listening to some of the other awful boring church stuff she has.

Music was just one of many meaningful things taken away from me due to ridiculous religious beliefs. I had to hide some of my friendships, because Bianca wouldn’t allow those, either. This is another excerpt from Unheard:

Sabrina is allowed to have me over once, with her father there, but Bianca says she must come to our house first to meet her.

“She seems loose,” Bianca says after Sabrina leaves. I don’t know what that means, but I know it doesn’t mean anything nice.

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

Bianca doesn’t like me questioning her, but I think I have a right to know why she says the things she does about my friends.

“The way she dresses… those pants,” her face scrunches up. “I don’t want you going over there.”

“Parachute pants? That’s what all of the kids in school wear.”

“She looks like a French whore.”

“What does that mean!” I yell and cry. How dare she call my friend such an undeserving name! I do an about face and stomp right into my room.

Bianca doesn’t like any of my new friends; she is just as judgmental and picky about the kids from church. She is starting to get that way about me, too.

Things gradually worsened throughout the school year. My body started developing when I was nine, so by the time I was twelve, I was wearing women’s normal bra sizes. When a child’s body develops faster than her mind, she is still a child inside, even though many adults don’t seem to realize that. (A good analogy would be seeing a 9-month-old puppy looking like a grown dog, but it’s still a puppy.) Bianca wouldn’t even allow me to wear certain items in our own home, and I didn’t understand any of this over-the-top bullshit:

You need to wear your robe,” Bianca announces.

“You mean over this?” I question, tugging at my long shirt.

I am wearing an old, red, thick, oversized t-shirt nightgown she’d given me last year. It hangs on me like a potato sack, right past my knees.

“Yes,” she says. “I can see your nipples.”

“How? You can’t see through it. I can’t see through it. It’s thick like a shirt.”

“I can see the outline of your nipples. Go put a robe on. You can’t be walking around your dad like that.”

It is over 75 degrees, and I’m not allowed to wear a t-shirt?

“But it’s hot,” I whine.

“Susanna!” she snaps. “Put your robe on or go to bed now!”

Dad is in the other room on the computer.

Why doesn’t he defend me at all? I’m not doing anything wrong! This is ridiculous!

I am starting to get sick of Bianca’s weirdness with everything that I do. I decide to go to my room instead of look at her.

Those were just a few of the things that Bianca did to ruin my life as a twelve-year-old. My father never stood up for me, and over time, things progressively became worse. I didn’t realize then what I know now that Bianca was trying to shape me into something I wasn’t, and when she figured out she couldn’t, I was banned from the family. I will explore some of that later…

Bye-Bye, You Big Baby

People have lost their damn minds over this coronavirus quarantine. I see nothing but people arguing over things and just being outright stupid. It’s gotten to the point that I’ve started blocking anyone that “yells” at me or says anything negative online. I see friendships going south due to all of this madness. I see nothing on my social media news feed except negativity and fake news, so I’ve been deleting and removing myself from a lot of it, and I’m kind of avoiding social media altogether, adding yet another touch to my social distancing.

A male friend that is popular with the ladies lost his mind on Facebook the other day. I met him about six years ago when I was newly separated from my ex, but I had no interest in dating him. While he seemed nice and friendly and not bad looking, there was that something I couldn’t pinpoint about him that made me unattracted to him, but we remained friends. I hooked him up with someone, because I thought they would get along, and they did last off and on for two years. (Watching it from my perspective made me realize they were both crazy.) At least two of the women he’s dated that I’ve met have said he was dramatic, had a short temper and got right up in their faces and screamed at them during disagreements (I will call him Short Temper). As a matter of fact, he tried to do that to me once in public because I didn’t hold the same political views as he, so I moved across the room and refused to speak to him for weeks until he apologized. Being the listener that I am, I’ve listened to Short Temper’s sorrows numerous times about the women he dates, how they’ve done him wrong, and he sometimes literally cried over the phone about it.

Now that the following situation happened, I can see exactly what I’ve been told about the dramatics and anger management issues and that thing I couldn’t pinpoint about not being attracted to him. Short Temper had been complaining about just about everything and posted some fake news on Facebook that had something to do with the Chinese putting a curse on us. Knowing what I know about the culture, I questioned it, because it irks the shit out of me when false information is shared, and people are dumb enough to believe it. Short Temper replied, “Look it up, it’s ancient.” So I did.

I honestly think a lot of people underestimate me. If someone challenges me on fact finding, I’m all over it! I replied with a link that revealed it’s not from the Chinese and certainly not ancient. He got really pissed at me and sent me this long, nasty message but blocked me before I could reply (pussy move):

His response didn’t really make much sense to me, and I wondered if he’d been drinking early in the day. I was actually pretty shocked that he took it the way he did, because I thought we were bantering the way I do with some of my other friends. Plus, HE is the one that said look it up. What he said about embarrassing me was very bizarre, and I believe he was bluffing, because I can’t think of anything he could possibly say that would embarrass me. I mean, hell, I pretty much admit to and write all about my faults right here.

Our mutual friends agreed that he was acting very childish, and he’s done similar things to them, unfriending or blocking them, as well. I guess he’s one of those guys that can’t admit when he’s wrong, but that’s not my problem. I have no bad feelings about losing this “friendship”, because what did I gain from it? Judgement? Because I do that about myself pretty damn well on my own. An ear full of sobbing over women he screamed at? Go hire a therapist.

If someone is this petty over something so trivial when there are real world issues going on, I don’t consider it a loss.

No Coronavirus, but Still in Quarantine

Today is the first day I’ve felt mostly normal in two weeks. I’ve been cooped up in my house with a head cold and back injury all at once. The head cold is pretty much gone, but allergies are really bad right now, so sometimes it’s hard to tell what is what. One thing definitely caused by allergies when I go outside is my throat closing up to the point that I nearly lost my voice. I’m just trying to determine what is actually going to kill me in the long run.

Two weeks ago I hurt my back from picking up a bag of soil and twisting at the same time. It became progressively worse to the point that I could barely walk, could hardly bend, and doing daily tasks have been extremely difficult. Today I managed to do very little of an online yoga class, because spasms took over. Not only am I frustrated, because I cannot physically do what I need to, but the head cold and medication cause mental blockage to the point I can’t concentrate. Now I am two weeks behind in getting anything done, which exacerbates anxiety.

The only time I’ve been in this much pain is right after a major surgery – and yes, it hurt that bad. I guess I’m used to healing quickly and getting back to normal life, except this time it ain’t happening on my terms. It hasn’t even been a year yet since I had the first surgery and not even 6 months since the last one, so my body’s healing ability has been in overdrive, and I’m sure getting older has a lot to do with that. This is another reason I’ve chosen to socially distance myself, because I’m more prone to catching something, and I’ll be damned if some batshit virus is going to take me out.

With all of that going on, insomnia kicks in when I’m in pain. I literally had to roll over to get myself out of bed, because sitting up was not an option. I’ve been taking 600 mg of ibuprofen, but I don’t think it works well. Muscle relaxers help a little to sleep, but otherwise they make my head feel loopy.

The pain was the exact same way I felt right after surgery, when the CO2 gas was working its way upwards out of my body. I cannot imagine living like that for long, because it’s pretty excruciating. I am not rested well, which of course isn’t helping the healing process, and having a head cold on top of it makes it slower to heal. I’ve been going to bed at a reasonable hour and waking up around midnight or other early a.m. hours, unable to get back to sleep for a few hours at a time. Sometimes I don’t get to sleep until the sun is coming up, so my entire morning is screwed up.

I know I’ve been dreaming a lot, and I should be writing them down. Last night I finally slept decently and dreamt. But now for the life of me, I cannot remember what the dreams were about. Right now I wish I had someone to rub my feet, feed me, and tell me I’m pretty. HA! Wishful thinking.

Why I Reject Religion – Part 2

The same house with the same people that I posted about yesterday that were trying to get the devil out of me when I was in my mid-20s (Part 1 of Why I Reject Religion) – this is part of what I remember as a kid, from Chapter 9 of my book Unheard:

“Our church is called The Four Squares. It’s a small Pentecostal church, the same one where Daddy met Bianca. I think Four Squares is a dumb name for a church, but I figure it has something to do with the family of four that runs it. I have to attend church every Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night.

Gertrude, Bianca’s mother, goes to our church. I have to spend a few days with her while Daddy and Bianca spend some time together alone. Gertrude is an overweight lady with pretty skin, and she constantly preaches about the Lord. She yells and cries for no reason, calling for Jesus and praying to him to save her marriage from her unfaithful husband. Her yelling and screaming scares me at times, especially when she tells me that the devil is inside of me. That’s only if I say or do something she doesn’t like. More than anything, that makes me mad, and I feel like telling her the devil must be in her since she yells and scares kids away.”

For a child to experience this is pretty frightening. It’s like using the boogie man to scare children, but instead they use their god and hell and damnation. The thing is – I always questioned everything, but their answers never made sense. For example, I asked about dinosaurs not being in the Bible. I can’t recall the answer I was given at the time, but it didn’t make sense. I asked about timelines and relevant things that were contradictory in the Bible, but every answer I was given was also contradictory or made into some other uneducated explanation. I asked about children dying or people getting cancer, and I was told that was God’s will, which wasn’t an acceptable answer for me either. And this is a good one – why do women have to serve men? Because that shit didn’t fly with me, even when I was a child. Nothing made sense to me whatsoever, and I thought that “God” sounded like a total misogynistic, selfish asshole. By the time I was a teenager, I had made up my mind that church was not a place I ever care to go. If you’ve never experienced something like this in life or as a child, let me tell you – it’s not only weird, it’s pretty damn creepy! But not as creepy as what I’m about to share.

A girl I’d been friends with since fourth grade lived down the street from me. Her parents were very strict Christians, and even being only about nine years old, I noticed some very strange behavior. One thing was her older brothers pissed their beds (I believe they were either in high school or close to it), and looking back, that is a sure sign of abuse, whether physical or sexual. My friend was rarely allowed to play outside much, but sometimes I was allowed over when their father was there. Now this is where it gets really weird, and today I am 99.9% sure he was a goddamn pedophile. From Chapter 1 of Unheard:

“[My friend] was never allowed at my house, and I stopped going to hers when I was ten because her father kept making me sit on his lap, facing and straddling him as he held me close. He gave me the creeps. When I tried to scoot away he forcefully continued to pull me forward. He also liked to hug me a lot, which I also thought was creepy. I wasn’t used to hugs much from home, but I knew that my grandparents never hugged me like that. I knew in my stomach that something was wrong about it.”

Around the time I wrote and published my book, I was getting in touch with old friends on Facebook, including the friend mentioned above. I’m pretty sure she read the book but didn’t know if I’d written about her, because I kept her details and identity fairly private. I know she was going through a lot of her own difficulties, and at one point she did ask me about her father holding people too close, mentioning that people thought it was weird. She made some excuse about his actions, but I wasn’t buying it. I am certain that man probably did a lot of disgusting things to children.

These people that I had experience with in the religious sector had to be some of the craziest, sickest people a child could be forced to interact with. To this day, the only time you will see me in church is for a wedding or a funeral. But this still isn’t the end of my church stories just yet.

Why I Reject Religion – Part I

While I appreciate and accept other people’s paths in life, religion is not for me whatsoever. Even when I was a small child, I had interest in the occult, which major religions seem to despise.

If you’ve followed me long enough or read my first book, Unheard, you’ll know that religion was a big part of my childhood that led to the ultimate demise of the relationship with my biological father.

This is an excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – as told from a child’s point of view:

Grandmaw got Daddy to go to a big church called Calvary where Aunt Marylou went, and he became born again. That meant that he loved Jesus, who was the only person to show him how Daddy was getting to Heaven. They told me I should be born again too, but I decided that I would be baptized with the Holy Spirit. The spirit part scared me, because I thought that God’s son was a ghost. One night I was baptized in a big bathtub at the big Calvary church in front of a big audience. That’s when they handed me a microphone and I told them I love Jesus, even though I wasn’t sure I trusted Him, because I was afraid that I wouldn’t go to Heaven with the rest of my family if I didn’t do exactly as He said in the Bible. I think that water must have been dirty because I got sick a few days later. Maybe it was because my sins were still washing away. I wasn’t sure I liked the Calvary church because it was boring and they made us read like they did in school instead of color and do crafts like some of the other churches we went to. Besides, they made me feel stupid when I didn’t know what some of the Bible meant.

I stopped liking the Sunday school after they asked us what we knew about Abraham. I raised my hand. I knew all about Abraham from school.

“Abraham was the sixteenth president of the United States!” I proudly announced.

“No,” the teacher scrunched up his face. “We’re talking about Abraham from the Bible.”

I guess he thought I was a dumb kid because he never called on me again. I liked the story about the president Abraham better anyway because he freed the slaves.

I was an impressionable child that believed what adults told me as truth, because that was what I was taught (even when my gut said not to). There was another portion of Christianity that I was exposed to but thought it was not only horse shit, but outright nuts – the Pentecostal church. This is another excerpt from my book Unheard:

Grandmaw stopped going to the big church because they asked for too much money and started going to the new small Pentecostal church next to her house. I wasn’t sure I liked that one much either, because the music was old and boring, and so were most of the people. Most of the congregation was a bunch of people raising their hands and talking in a funny language they said was their tongue, even though I thought my tongue looked the same as theirs. The preacher would call up people to the front of the church and start yelling at them and push them on the head until they fell over raising their hands in the air and crying for Jesus. All of that yelling made me want to vomit sometimes because it scared me. The only part I liked about going to that church was meeting other kids and when Grandmaw gave me mints out of her purse when I sat next to her. The other part I liked was when they had food after the service because I was always starving by the time it was over.

Once I educated myself and had a mind of my own, I realized that religion is complete and utter bullshit that was invented by men to control the masses and take property from single/widowed women they deemed as “witches.” One college class I enjoyed most was World Religion, where I grew to learn about and respect other religions, which I feel pretty much all have the same basic beliefs and values. I gravitated towards Buddhism, Paganism, and anything considered “occult” because none of them were religions; they were ways of life and not defined by rules like Christianity or any of the other major world religions. Plus, they made sense.

One of the last times I visited my father was when I was in college. My daughter and I went to my stepmother’s mother’s house for New Year’s Day dinner. During the visit, my father asked me about what I’m doing in college, and at the time I was planning to become an art therapist, but first my plan was to become a high school teacher before working my way into art therapy. Both he and my stepmother discouraged me from teaching in public schools (my stepmother homeschooled all of their children), but I was determined to do whatever I wanted. (This was in the late 90s when schools aren’t what they are today.) After explaining how art and psychology helps people, my father basically told me psychology was a bunch of “hogwash” or whatever Southern term he came up with. That hurt me more than anything, because he has never helped me as an adult, nor have I ever asked, and I was doing my best raising a child and going to college and working on my own. He gave me no credit whatsoever. Everything I said made me wrong in his eyes. I was never good enough, no matter what I did for either him or myself. His words also made me angry, and they saw it. And then things got really fucking weird.

At that point, my stepmother said, “Let’s pray for Susanna!” … and they put me in a chair in the center of her mother’s living room and tried to “take the devil out” of me. By that, I mean they were praying loudly and speaking in tongues and putting their hands on my head and saying things like, “Let Susanna believe in God and let Susanna believe in Jesus! Rebuke the devil in the name of the Lord!”

I was pissed and wanted to get up and scream, “What in the holy HELL are you people doing?!!” But I also didn’t want to scare the small children, because it would “prove” to them that the devil was surely inside of me, and I didn’t want to be a part of the children witnessing “the devil” that only exists in their small minds. They had never even asked me what my beliefs were, and at the time, they were probably a little different than they are today.

My daughter was probably about eight at the time, and I believe she was scared for me and scared of them. It was confusing and weird and a total WTF moment. She and I have a bond like no one else, because it was just her and I for several years. I was fuming mad that they humiliated me like this in front of my young siblings (around her age) and my child. I left so angry, and I vaguely recall my daughter and I speaking about it on the way home, and she said that was the weirdest thing she’d ever seen. No shit. To this day, it’s one of the weirdest things I’ve ever experienced. This was only the beginning of the end of my relationship with my father – by his choice (although there are other theories I’ll write about later).

Pain, Allergies, & Being Alone

I’ve been having those feelings again. Slightly depressed, but perhaps it’s because I haven’t been sleeping as well, and I’ve been in a lot of pain lately. I did something to my back somehow, attempted yoga to stretch it out, but it made it worse. Went to the chiropractor, which helped, then I picked up a bag of potting soil the wrong way and screwed up my back again, so that has been an issue.

Some of the pain is caused from allergies. Besides the typical allergy issues of runny nose and itchy eyes, it affects my entire body as if every muscle or my blood is inflamed and poisoned. The only way I can describe it is like a burning sensation throughout my entire body, as if I drank bleach or something caustic – similar to that achiness the body gets having the flu. The only thing does seem to help is alcohol, believe it or not. So I’ve reverted to binge drinking on those days, which of course doesn’t help other issues. I feel like it’s a no-win situation.

Unfortunately, my only option to treat allergies with the VA is to take Claritin, which only solves some of the issues. Allergy shots would require me to drive 70 miles one way 3x a week for several months, which is just not going to happen. I’ve looked into alternative measures that sound promising, and at this point, I’m willing to try ANYTHING to resolve this miserable issue, but the affordability is another problem, just like everything else in this country’s shitty healthcare system.

When I sleep well and I’m not in pain, I feel like I can conquer the world, and it seems like I’ve been dealing with this my entire life. I vaguely remember “always” feeling good for days at a time, a very brief amount of time, and that’s a pretty shitty way to live. Stress has a lot to do with it, I’m certain. Feeling like this gives me no self-confidence in anything I do or anything I am striving towards or anything about life in general. I feel like if I died tomorrow, who cares? I don’t. It would probably be a relief rather than feel this way. (That is NOT a statement that I plan to hurt myself, so back off!)

This whole coronavirus thing is out of control, but since I’m already alone 99% of the time and avoid crowds most of the time, it doesn’t seem to affect me much. What it does affect, however, is the next job I’m waiting to start, because now everything is on hold.

I definitely haven’t been wanting to be around people anyway due to the anxious energy in the air, because it gives me anxiety, too. I feel everyone’s energy, and I don’t like it, because most of it doesn’t feel very good to me. I need to be around calming or creative energies – or just be alone. I feel like all of the good energy has been sucked out of me from the shitty people I’ve allowed in my life.

The only invitations I’ve had since the beginning of the year involve drinking. I went out a few times, but other than that, I’m bored with that lifestyle and end up hating the fake people I meet from it. While it’s fun to interact at times, I get burned out extremely fast, not to mention it’s unhealthy overall.

I haven’t been on an actual date in about a year (**when I say “date” it means with the intention of something beyond friendship**), and that last experience has left me not wanting to put any effort into dating. That was the last straw of dating for me, because I can’t stand another second of wasting my time on liars and people that add absolutely nothing but bullshit to my life. I don’t trust anyone, and I have no desire to make new friends or meet anyone new. I feel that saying hello and being cordial is enough for me right now.

The person I thought was one of my best friends has pretty much ghosted me, but I shouldn’t have been surprised at all after I had surgery and she couldn’t bother to ask how I was doing. I see clearly now that she was a terrible friend and only around when she needed someone. She’s also part of a group of women that act like middle schoolers, which I want no part of. And after my friendship with my male friend that hasn’t spoken to me since the end of January, why bother putting effort in getting to know anyone if they’re just going to ditch me without any closure, without anything but hurt feelings and lies – with nothing more than reminders of the abandonment issues I can’t seem to shake?

I realize I have always felt this way. I have always felt extremely alone in the world, and no matter how many people may surround me, I still feel alone. I feel like an outcast. I feel unloved. I feel like nothing I do matters, so I just go along trudging through each day until my time is up on this planet. I have always felt like there is no one out there for me, and even though I’ve had long-term relationships and marriages, I have always settled for something less than what I really wanted, because there was absolutely nothing that even resembled what I wanted. I am thinking that maybe I’m just a dreamer and nothing that I want exists on earth.

I’ve Been Dating Lemons, Dreams, & Introspection

This morning I had a dream that was very vivid and relevant to my spiritual and mental growth, but I can only remember a few specific details. If I don’t write things down as soon as I awake, I forget them. Years ago, I read somewhere that it’s what you do remember that matters.

I believe there were two men in the dream, but no one I know in real life. I believe one was someone I didn’t want to talk to or be around. The one I was corresponding with the most reminded me of Toe Ring Guy, but I’m not sure why. Maybe it was the way he was built physically but not the personality. The guy gave me a pair of beige high heels with rounded closed toes that were really nice – totally something I’d wear in real life. Apparently, they’d belonged to someone that had just died (I believe it was his mother), which was a little weird – but in the dream, I felt it was a nice gesture. At some point in the dream, I recall him saying something about waiting on his mother’s inheritance, and even within the dream, I thought that was strange.

The place that I was at was possibly a hotel – it was large, and even though I didn’t see stairs, I could see across a sky and felt that I may have been above the bottom floor. I believe my aunt was there and we saw part of a beautiful sunset, but there was another large, ugly building blocking most of it – which annoyed me, just as it would in real life. We said something about the sunset being so beautiful but we couldn’t see it entirely due to the building in the way.

Then back to the guy that gave me the shoes – I felt as if he was the better option of the two guys (by then the other one had disappeared), but I still felt something was off about him – which was probably knowing he was waiting on the inheritance, because that would be a complete turnoff for me.

I’m going to interpret this as:

Some guy giving me his mother’s shoes means filling in for someone else, perhaps in a motherly role. Perhaps I have a habit of taking on a motherly role (very domesticated) when I’m in a relationship. I want to say the high heels probably represent sex in some way, probably another role that women tend to fulfill. What’s the cliche? A maid in the living room, a cook in the kitchen, and a whore in the bedroom? Well, maybe I’ve been offering the Madonna-Whore Complex of being someone’s servant and taking what I can get instead of an actual partnership that I really want and deserve.

As for my aunt and the sunset being partially blocked, this aunt in particular is someone I like talking to, and she’s fun and artistic. Yet something large and ugly is blocking the sunset – which is something beautiful and something I always enjoy seeing. The building reminded me of some of the newer ones being built in my area that I refer to as monstrosities, because they have ruined the beauty of my area – including sunsets no longer to be seen.

I have often thought of buildings in dreams as a representation of a body or mind, but in this one, whose body? Perhaps the hotel represents a temporary frame of mind I’m currently in, but the bigger one represents things to see and sunsets are to come? I really don’t know. The only problem I have is that the building was just big and ugly, and I’m not exactly sure what that would mean in this context. Maybe I have to discover an ugly part of myself or my emotions to see the sunset clearly? Maybe I have to face an ugly part of a relationship (either from adulthood or childhood) or something else that’s ugly that has happened that I haven’t quite moved forward with. (UGH!!!)

Again, this is a lot to contemplate, because there are so many facets it could relate to, not only now but throughout my life entirely. This is frustrating not to know, because I’m probably already an over-thinker and over-analyzer. And sometimes this is why I hate myself – I just want to be normal, whatever the fuck that is.

Somewhere in the dream lemons appeared – I believe towards the end – but I’m unsure as to what aspect. The “off” feeling about this dream guy is probably the way I feel about men that I meet and/or date – since they’re the “only” option available, I tend to go along with it, because I feel that I should “try.” But in reality, they are all lemons!

And as I’m writing this, a big butterfly is fluttering around me – another sign of positive transformation!

How a Person I’ve Never Met Changed My Perspective

How many of us often wonder what is our purpose in life? Do any of us really know? And if so, how do you know?

Just prior to getting divorced, I was going through a rough patch and received a very unexpected phone call early one morning. At first I almost hung up, believing that it was a telemarketer – until the person on the other end said, “You signed up to be a bone marrow donor in 2007. You are a possible match.”

I was still a little groggy and in a little bit of a shock that this could be happening, but I suddenly felt a peace come over me. I thought maybe this was a sign telling me I had a purpose in life after all.

The nurse on the phone asked some questions and told me that the person in need was a 36-year-old male with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. What usually happens is the doctor and patient explore all options, and if they decide a bone marrow transplant is best, then I would be subjected to a few blood tests before proceeding. I wouldn’t know anything unless they decided to go with the transplant.

But I had questions, too. My biggest concern was about the process being a very painful one, because that seems to be the popular rumor. She said it’s not like it used to be, that the donor is put under anesthesia and most people are back to normal within a few days or so.

When we hung up I did some research on the “Be the Match” donor website. I realized that a week of “pain” to save someone’s life is well worth it. I considered the time I was in labor pain for about 20 hours when I gave birth to my daughter (not to mention the pain and anguish during her teenage years 😉 ), so this would be easy for me. I decided to proceed with the paperwork and sent in what they needed. Then a friend reminded me that her son had the same disease, and that a bone marrow donor saved his life. I knew I had to agree to do this if I was a match, and I didn’t think twice about it.

I haven’t heard anything since, so I’m assuming that the patient decided against the transplant. However, the phone call itself changed me. Here I was stressing over things in life that I had some control over and worrying about why I am on this planet. And here was this 36-year-old guy being told his life is in danger; he most certainly had legitimate concerns. Boy, did I feel like a wuss!

Whoever you are, 36-year-old guy, you don’t even know it, but I want to thank you for changing my life perspective. Maybe that is part of your purpose for being here.

*To register to be a bone marrow donor, visit BeTheMatch.org