I Need A Bitch Nigga Rehab

So the fact that this title made some of my friends cringe is part of the reason that got me thinking I need a Bitch Nigga Rehab. In this increasingly politically correct world it has become imperative that people watch what they say in public for fear of offending others. God forbid others get offended at something you say in the heat of the moment. I mean, because all of us are these pious personas that we portray on social media, right? Yeah, OK. Now its no secret that I curse, and sometimes quite sailor-like. I feel like comedian Monique when she said, “Sometimes I just like the way it feels when the cuss words roll off my tongue.” Or like Lauryn Hill when she rapped “After all my logic and my theory, sometimes I add a mutherfucka so y’all ignorant Niggas hear me”, on Zealots. I’m a complex person, with my emotional ups and downs as well as my moments of wisdom and clarity. As humans we are allowed to be these multi-layered creatures who express ourselves in ways that are uniquely individual to each person. My form of communication happens to be peppered with colorful words such as Bitch, Nigga, Shit and sometimes even Bitch Ass Nigga, if the situation is appropriate. Nah mean?

Now I understand that these words hold negative connotations for many people, but I grew up in insensitive NYC where words roll off your back like raindrops on a duck. The normal language of New Yorkers includes cuss words from as early as elementary school. When a New Yorker wants to exclaim how serious the topic is, they say “dead ass”. I mean your parents try to teach you better but at school its a different dynamic and you must use your language to establish your dominance. The consequences of not doing so guarantees you will get tested on the regular. For example, in my case, I was always the youngest in class so I had to establish my prowess with either making you laugh or cussing you out to the point of utter embarrassment to avoid being the brunt of bullies jokes. I learned early on that words have power, and you only are affected by the power you attribute to them. That was the whole point of learning “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never harm me”.

Words can be harmful as we know, if we let them, but we also have the power to change the meaning of the words to us so they become empowering. I believe this is the origin of embracing certain derogatory words like Bitch, Nigga or even Butch came from. In the LGBTQ community some greet each other with a hearty “Work Bitch” when someone is looking good and in the hood “You my Nigga” is a high form of flattery. Dyke and Butch started out as a derogatory titles for masculine identifying lesbians but now it’s simply a description. It’s all about the context. Yes, sometimes Bitch or Nigga are fighting words, depending upon the shade intended and the person saying it. However, those times are glaringly obvious and it is easy to know the difference when to fight or laugh.
I know people judge me based upon the seemingly limited range of my vocabulary, however, I fully embrace that me cussing is my version of letting my inner Bitter Bitch out to express herself. Cussing for most of us is only the tip of the iceberg of anger that bubbles underneath the surface of our PC everyday persona. If, as the Bible says, out of the mouth speaks the issues of the heart, hey I am obviously guilty of harboring a few issues in there.

However, in light of the more heinous things in this world like mass shootings, domestic violence and pedophilia, being committed by Bitch Ass Niggas, I feel like a little cussing literally doesn’t hurt anyone. In terms of rehab, I see we have serial rapists and predators talking about going to a rehab for sex addiction and bigots going to rehab for exactly what I don’t know, so why not a rehab for habitual cussers? Until that time though, I’m gonna continue to dap up my Niggas and Bitches and please let a Bitch breathe, in other words let me do me. I am still intelligent, Blessed and Highly favored, I just like to cuss

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My Caribana 2016 Trip: Cayonne Legacy Coming Full Circle

 

So, this past weekend I got to check off another long time item on my God Box list. My God Box consists of items that I long for but don’t see any realistic way for them to come to fruition, so I leave them in the box and let God handle them supernaturally.

I met my father, John Cayonne, back in 1993 after an unlikely encounter at the Baltimore Caribbean Carnival celebration. My mother had told me very little about him and their relationship, but she did mention that she met him while singing with La Petit Musicale, a prestigious group of folk singers formed originally in Trinidad. This particular group had actually come to perform at Carnival that year and many of the members looked to be around my mother’s age or older and I wondered if that could possibly be the same group of singers. My sister, Jiku, was with me and she was like, “Wouldn’t it be crazy if your father was here and you could meet him?”. I was a bit reluctant because I really didn’t know anything about him except his name and my experiences up to that point with father figures had not been the greatest. Anyway, she dragged me up to the stage area and Mama tagged along, also reluctantly I guess based upon their relationship. Once we got to the stage my sister asked one of the group members if he knew where Johnny Cayonne was and when the man looked at me, it was like he saw a ghost. I immediately knew that I must look like my father. He explained that he didn’t make it that year because he was sick but that once the group returned to Toronto, he would relay the message and my information to him. My mother gave him our number and let him know we would be awaiting the phone call. The next evening the phone rang and my mother answered, I heard her say, quite coldly, “ Hello, remember when you gave me money to have that abortion? Well, I never had it, hold on.” She handed me the phone very unceremoniously and walked away. WTF?

So, I took the phone and my father was chuckling on the other end. He said he knew this would happen one day and that I probably had other brothers or sisters that he didn’t even know about around the world. We laughed and agreed to keep in touch and he told me that he lived in Toronto and I had 3 sisters, one older and 2 younger and a brother. He sent me pictures and I even made it up to Toronto to meet them in person later that year. He tried to open up a relationship with me but since I was scarred from my stepfather’s abuse, I really didn’t know how to relate to a man, especially a father. My older sister, Yveanna, became my go between as communicator and eventually she told me that my father got ill, had a stroke and no longer remembered me. So I stopped trying to keep up the relationship.

Over the years, I wondered what happened to my other siblings but it seemed like the family was irreparably fractured, at least from her point of view and I lost touch.  After Yveanna passed away in 2012, I longed for a connection to my siblings because it seemed like there was always a missing piece to my family background. I followed my brother, an actor,on social media and wondered about my sisters. The idea of a close family is dear to me and since I never had kids, I always fancied myself the family connector. I placed my request for a family reunion of the Cayonne side of the family in my God Box back in 2010 and I guess the timing was finally right for it all to come together.

So about last weekend, the whole Caribana experience was awesome! I had always wanted to experience Caribana ever since I found out that my father was one of the founders of this significant cultural event. I am in the process of writing my memoirs and I thought it would be so fabulous to see where I get my love of pageantry and Trinidadian culture from.

After learning of his creative and artistic history, I figured it was literally in my DNA. The bonus of the trip was getting to hang out with my sisters Ramona and Juanita, who also solidified my belief in gifts and interests being passed through the bloodline. First of all, the foodie thing runs real strong in this bunch! Whether cooking, eating or both…we all love some food. The other commonalities are these intuitive gifts and being drawn to spiritual practices. It’s so crazy how we did not grow up together but we share many personality traits and interests, the good and the not so good. I was actually comforted to know that I do have siblings that share my eccentricity because my brothers and sisters that I grew up with always tease me for being quite different from them. I guess I take a lot from my father’s side including his looks and career aspirations. My mother was more the practical one and my father was the artistic one, I clearly lean toward the artistic unconventional spectrum. I once asked my Mother why she never pushed me towards a particular career and she answered that she assumed that I would pursue the arts like my father. Although she never told me about his acting, writing, singing or artwork, I guess she figured it would come naturally to me. After reading his rich history, I see why she said that. One of my regrets is that I never pursued dance or theater because I really loved it. I always say that if I had my life to do over, I would be a choreographer. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that was one of my father’s talents as well. The other crazy thing is I was always drawn to holistic healing and metaphysical beliefs and I found out that he was into all of that as well. Apparently he had natural spiritual gifts that allowed him to manipulate plants with his mind. I’m still working on my gifts, I wonder if I can manipulate my bank account to add some commas and zeros to that joint?

Once again I am in awe of God’s timing and sense of humor. All my life I jokingly claimed my love of Weed, Women and Song, and apparently I couldn’t help my habits if I tried. LOL. I’m not sure about the weed thing for my father but the other two, most definitely. I always felt scattered because I could never decide on which artistic talent or spiritual gift to pursue. I thought that it was impossible to really possess such diverse interests and be a sane individual. I wish that I was able to get to know him so I could form my own opinion of my father, but I can’t question God’s Divine timing. It has worked out for the best because I now have a relationship with my beautiful sisters and nieces. I have so much more to tell but I’ll save that for the book. Suffice it to say that I am looking forward to my Trinidad trip this October so I can put all of the genealogy pieces of the puzzle together. Check my Facebook and Instagram feeds for pictures, I am still learning the mechanics of WordPress when adding to the blog page. Until next time, Peace and Blessings!

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My 33 year Bachelor’s degree AKA Persistence Pays Off

 

It’s still so surreal to me, I am finally graduating with my Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from University of Maryland University College today.

I started this journey towards a college degree back in 1983 when I graduated from high school back in Yonkers, NY. I graduated at 16 and entered an elite Urban Legal Studies program at City College of NY where I was supposed to have earned a Bachelor’s and a Law Degree in 6 years. This program was started by the late great W. Haywood Burns, a civil rights lawyer and general counsel to MLK’s Poor People’s Campaign. My intent was to become a civil rights lawyer and use my legal skills in the service of the underserved urban community in NYC. However, as life goes, circumstances in my life changed the trajectory of my path and I became disenchanted with the legal system, since it failed me and my family in our time of need.

My career path took me into the US Army then to a career in Telcommunications for the past 2 decades. I would have never imagined myself in such a technical occupation, but as I have said before God laughs at our own plans. I started in commercial telecom back in the 90’s when cellular phones first became practical and affordable for regular folks. At the time there was really no formal education for this because it was a new and ever changing technology. Since I was already working in the field, and being trained in proprietary practices for each company I worked for, I felt there was no reason to pursue a degree. I mean my only reason at that time to pursue a degree was to earn more money with a “professional” job. My logic was if I was already making good money and working next to folks who spent good money and time getting their degrees, I was already ahead of the game. After working in this field for so many years, since it was never my passion, I became bored and could no longer motivate myself to learn anything new in the field. I always wanted to pursue my creative talents of writing, promotion and marketing and even some motivational speaking. Since I am a veteran, and I was blessed to work for a company that offered tuition assistance I had many opportunities to pursue higher education. I stopped and started many times over the years. I started at UMUC while still in the military, but because of my schedule it was too taxing to keep up with the assignments. I attended a couple of community colleges and earned enough credits for an Associate’s degree but I never thought that was good enough so I didn’t take the steps to get that degree.

Finally back in 2008, when President Obama took office and he gave his speech on the importance of empowerment through education, I was inspired to take advantage of my benefits and finally complete my degree. I realized that I was squandering the very benefits that immigrants like my Mother come to this country to take advantage of. I also realized that since this is the latter part of my life, I might as well not chase the dollar but chase my real passion. I have always felt that my unique perspective and personality make me a “brand” of sorts so I wanted to get a degree that would help me capitalize on that. This is where the marketing comes in, I figured this knowledge will assist me in effectively promoting my blog and eventually my book, Memoirs of a Bitter Bitch.

I guess I have always held myself to such high and unrealistic standards that I have been reluctant to celebrate my accomplishments. I wasn’t even going to walk in the ceremony until my sister Wanjiku convinced me that at the very least, I should celebrate that I actually completed something worthy in my life.   I also have to shout out my dear friends like Malcolm Wellborn, Reshonda Carroll and of course my partner Johni who always congratulated me and told me how much I motivated them, although I never thought that I was doing anything special. It’s so crazy how I give others such inspiration but in my own mind, I deemed myself not good enough. I remember one class I had where I procrastinated horribly until literally the last day when I had a 16 page paper due. I was so disgusted with myself once I hit the send button after working from like 4am to midnight to complete this paper. I just knew that I would be taking that class over and I was so surprised to get an A on this paper. An A on 16 page paper that I did in one day! That was when I began to realize that despite all my anxiety issues and my addictions, my brain was still functioning properly and I can accomplish great things. Of course I prayed and smoked through every minute of writing that joint, but in the end God’s grace prevailed and got me that A. LOL

So today as I walk across that stage to get this degree that I went through the fire to earn, I feel so grateful and amazed at God’s grace and Blessings upon my life. I made it through the loss of my parents, financial loss, homelessness, illness, surgeries, addictions and most recently a heart attack…to end up here, on the threshold of my next career. I hope I can keep it together without weeping for joy over God’s goodness, but even if I don’t…I don’t care if everyone knows that my unwavering faith in the Almighty Creator got me to this point and it will carry me on until the time I transition from this earth. I am so at peace with myself and my emotions now, since I have gone from weed to worship that I may just break out in a praise dance while crossing the stage! So, to everyone that is on this same journey to gain a higher education, keep on pressing and keep your faith in God, nothing is impossible with God, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Now, I am even toying with the idea of pursuing my Doctorate, if I can figure out how to not go into debt by taking student loans. LOL Oh well, as I have learned, God will make a way that is perfect for my situation. Please keep me in your prayers people and as always I wish you Peace and Abundant Blessings! #UMUCGrad2016

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Bmore Artists Feel The Bern

 

Let me start this off by saying that politics are not my normal subject matter but I felt that I should explain why I’m really feeling “The Bern” after this past weekend. I attended a rally at the Hollywood Diner Food Truck Park, down on Saratoga St, which was organized by various grassroots community groups. One of the main event organizers was Chasz Sollmer, founder of www.theartistscompound.com, one of the areas best marketing and networking opportunities for DMV area artists. As we were chatting about me blogging for her organization, she mentioned that she was hosting this rally for Bernie Sanders and I was a bit intrigued because I think that art and politics make strange bedfellows. She explained that she wanted to do this rally to show that artists in the Baltimore area and nearby cities really do support the Bern’s platform, despite the media’s attempts to basically ignore coverage of his campaign efforts.

 

Until Chasz made this point, I never really paid attention to the lack of Bern coverage, I was simply sick of hearing the Trump bullshit. This made me realize that I had pretty much counted Sanders out simply because I hear so much about Hilary. Now, I used to be down with Hilary until Scandal came out and now I can’t help but think that the Mellie character is based a little bit on her. As a matter of fact, now that I am fully awake and realize that whether I like it or not, the political process has quite a bit of bearing on my life and livelihood. For this reason, I decided to really investigate Sen. Bernie Sanders’ record and how he articulates his position on the issues that affect me. I must say I was pleasantly surprised. I admit that my interest in him was originally piqued when a few of my favorite rappers endorsed him…Killer Mike, Scarface and Bun B. Yeah, I know that’s juvenile but hey I’m influenced by my idols sometimes. LOL

 

Anyway, not only does he meticulously lay out his response to numerous societal ills but he also provides sustainable solutions and the methods to pay for these proposals.   The Bern is on point with reforming Wall St, racial justice, women’s rights, LGBT rights, Medicare and Free Higher education for all, empowering Native American tribal nations, increasing and improving Veteran services, complete economic reform for Puerto Rico, increasing minimum wage to $15 and generally working to close the widening economic gap between the filthy rich and the working class. The list is quite comprehensive and frankly sounds more genuine than Hilary’s explanations of the same issues.

 

This authenticity is what I believe his supporters connect with. I mean, Sen. Sanders has been grinding it out on the fight for social justice since the 60’s! Although The Bern did not attend the rally in Baltimore, his passionate supporters showed up about 1000 strong and marched in the rain to rep for him. Since these were representatives of Baltimore’s arts community, it was a very eclectic and diverse mix. I saw all races, the ages ranged from college students to seniors, vegans and carnivores, Wiccans and Baptists, all loving the Bern. Shout out to DJ B-Side who kept the crowd moving in between musical performances. A special shout out goes to Courtney from Craving Potato Factory who hooked me up with the massive Old Bay Lump Crab potato. If my trainer is reading this now, I know I’m going to pay for it, but it was worth the extra cardio.  A final thumbs up to The Artists Compound for a well-organized event and I am looking forward to the next one. Next up, The Gathering of the Arts on 4/16. www.thegatheringbaltimore.com

 

 

 

Juggling for BernRockin Out for the Bern
Cats for Bernie

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Blessings on Blessings on Blessings!

Faith MLK

 

So, in order to fully explain this latest God story of mine, I need to provide a bit of the backstory. My mother and biological father are both Trinidadian, but I did not meet my father until I was an adult, and therefore did not know his side of the family. My early years were spent in Trinidad, being raised by my Granny, whom I adored but my mother unfortunately did not. Since my mother’s emotional ties to Trinidad were less than pleasant, the family ties to my cousins and other extended family were allowed to dissipate over the years. I have always considered myself the reconciler or the historian in my family. Although I have made an effort to communicate with my extended family via phone and social media, it’s not the same as having face-to-face interaction. I have always wanted to have a family reunion for both my mother and father’s sides of the family. As I grow older, I am more interested in my ancestors and their legacies and how I can add to that legacy by both contributing my own gifts and telling the stories of their lives.   I feel a responsibility to bridge the communication gap between my Trinidad family and the new generations here in America. My siblings, nieces and nephews have not experienced the beauty of their culture firsthand and I want them to be inspired by their rich cultural heritage.   I know that during my most difficult days, I was inspired by the stories of my ancestor’s business success and how they overcame difficulties. I am sure the next generation could use the same inspiration.

I had the pleasure of connecting with my father’s side of the family over the past 7 years, but I haven’t yet met the ones living in Trini. I used to visit Trinidad for my birthday every couple of years but unfortunately, I have looked up now and it’s been about 16 years since I last visited! Damn time flies. Anyway, I have been praying earnestly for God to hook up some way for me to visit Trinidad this year. I feel it calling me for real. In the natural, I could not fathom how this would happen, because of finances and my unfamiliarity with reputable, affordable places to stay. I used to stay with family and friends but circumstances have changed in the past 2 decades, so that is not possible now. The issue for me was not so much the price of the plane ticket but having somewhere reputable to stay. My own family that frequents the island told me to be careful. Basically, I didn’t know where to start and I just left all the details up to God, I just kept claiming I’m going to Trini in 2016.

Fast forward to last week, when I got a FB message from my friend (shout out to Shannon!) about a Female Writers Retreat in Trinidad July 26th-Aug 2nd. I usually never click on those videos or messages I get through FB right away, but this time I opened it immediately at the prompting of the Holy Spirit. I read all the details over and over and over again thinking this can’t be real. I felt like the details were tailored for me. The application was straightforward; I have a valid passport and I am working on an actual book that takes place in Trinidad. The best part is that the retreat is right in Port of Spain where my family lives so I know we can link up. Yo! I hurried up and sent in all my info. I didn’t do my usual procrastination thing because I just felt like this was the beginning of something major. I know the organizer probably felt like I was a stalker. I called her a couple of times and was checking my email like I was getting a tax refund.   Anyway, at the twelfth hour on the deadline for the deposit to be in, I basically banished all the negative thoughts in my head and had a Personal Praise Party in my bathroom. Last night as I was watching the Grammys, I received confirmation that I was accepted to attend this retreat. You know I had to do my church step!

So because of the weather, I’m having a slight flare-up and although my fingers are stinging with every stroke I type, I’m sitting here bouncing to some August Alsina and Big Sean while I meditate and pen this latest post about God’s goodness. I can’t let a little bit of pain stop me from declaring how putting my faith over my fear and doubt has manifested in a victorious testimony….and I’m just getting started. Praise God!  I have started writing my memoirs again and my official release date will be later this year. So this time for real, Memoirs of a Bitter Bitch coming much sooner than I thought. I’m looking forward to soaking up the atmosphere of sweet, sweet T & T this summer to relive the memories of my youth and connect with the energy of my ancestors. Once again, all the time God is Good! Like Big Sean said, I got Blessings on Blessings on Blessings!   And now, back to this herbal pain killer…LOL

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Poverty is Truly a State of Mind

 

Napoleon Hill Prosperity

 

I have figured out that being broke and having a poverty mindset are two distinctly different situations, at least in my life. I visited some friends and family over the holidays and came to the realization that I am no longer the same poverty-minded individual I used to be. I always loved money, because to me money was power, but I never seemed to be able to hold on to it long. I remember the first thing my Granny and Mother told me about money when I was little, because I guess they recognized the thirst, was that I was a spendthrift. They hit me with the “love of money is the root of all evil” Bible verse. I always felt like you can’t take it with you, so why not spend it? Especially when I was a kid. They also, said that money burned a hole in my pocket, and I guess I lived up to that prophecy.

I have always held great, well paying jobs, but no matter how much money I earned, how much I cheated the tax man, how much I tithed, how many side hustles I had, cash was always still elusive for me. I remember working with many friends who had Benzes, Audis and custom tricked out trucks, while owning homes and raising privately educated, fashionably dressed kids. Here I was, working right beside them, earning basically the same salary, but struggling check-to-check. I knew that I should probably prioritize my rent and bills over taking that trip to Cali to meet that hottie from the website. I mean, let’s be real, my philosophy has always been YOLO, well before Drake. However, it never dawned on me that this “take mine off the top” mentality had now grown into a poverty mindset. I never really appreciated how much money I was making because I never learned to manage it well. I would feel like, “what am I doing wrong? Shit, I can’t afford a BMW or shop at Neiman Marcus, hell Macy’s at full price is a stretch! So, as per my usual, I found myself praying and seeking spiritual counsel from many sources on the subject of tithing, debt and just how other people deal with their money mistakes from a spiritual perspective. I was always wracked with guilt about not tithing because I couldn’t afford to tithe. I knew God wasn’t going to put me in jail for not tithing but the taxman would! I was raised tithing the full 10% and during my adult life, before I really got away from organized religion, I practiced the same thing. I must admit that I noticed my money went further when I “let God manage my 10%”. That’s what I called it, letting God manage my money. Unfortunately, once I got away from that belief, I found it hard to go back. It just didn’t make sense for me to continue to give money to the church, while I am still mired in debt. I would do dumb sheeple shit like give an offering and have the damn check bounce, just to say I paid tithes. Like God didn’t know I was robbing myself to pay the church.

This ever present guilt about my money management skills always caused me to feel less than. In my family, I was viewed as the irresponsible one, yet I am the most generous. I admit I may go overboard sometimes with the spending on friends and family, but I have always felt that they deserved the best. Interestingly enough I didn’t always transfer this feeling to myself because I felt undeserving. I mean on the outside, you couldn’t tell, hell I even fooled myself for years. I always dressed well; I like to be sharp proudly sporting my ethnicity with bright colors. It’s the Trini in me. My mother taught us to always look our best when walking out the door. “You cyan go outside looking like a little ruffian! Don’t embarrass me in public nuh.”

I would always get apartments that were decent to me, but in retrospect they also reflected my poverty mindset. I think I lived on the ground floor or in the basement for about 2 decades of my adult life. The places were cool, and they were definitely blessings at the time but God showed me over time how I was undervaluing myself. I never really believed God for more than I thought I could afford, which wasn’t a lot because of my mismanagement. It was like I was constantly punishing myself by dumbing down my wants. I remember when I needed to move once; I looked at an apartment in NE DC, because it was in my price range. That shit was in an alley, across from a cemetery and in the hood with a price tag of $1000. After that, I was like OK God, I can’t do this hood stuff for real. I ain’t bout that life! I was led to a cute little neighborhood in the cut of Rockville after seeing an ad on Craig’s List. It was a condo owned by a Trini woman and she was motivated to rent cheaply because she was purchasing the unit next door. God hooked it up that I ended up in beautiful neighborhood for $800 and a great landlord. With each subsequent apartment I asked and believed for more ideal situations, and I really just put absolute trust in God that He would provide the best living situation for my ultimate good.

Poverty, fear and complacency must be close friends because they usually occupy the thoughts simultaneously. My thinking that I was OK living in these places after their time had expired, clearly demonstrated by break-ins, electrical issues, rodents and such was crazy. I always had to have a kick in my ass to finally get moving. Looking for a place with bad credit is a stressful situation! Again, just keeping it 100. So sometimes I overlooked issues for fear that I wouldn’t find another spot. Totally irrational right? Even after all my previous victories, my thought process would always revert back. But, that is an example of Poverty mindset and irrational fear.

Now, the cliché goes, “God works in mysterious ways”, and I have to say it aptly expresses this lesson and the messenger used to convey it to me.  I was going through a very dark time in my life. I had a bunch of personal and financial turmoil going on at that time and I relished my time at work so I could not have to think about my life. I worked the overnight shift and there was a temporary contractor that came in one night, a young Korean guy named Choi. Now when I went to work, I was in the zone for the first couple of hours. I usually didn’t even pay attention to who was sitting next to me. I would be chiefed up and focused on some trouble tickets. I believe dude tried to speak to me for a couple of days before I even really gave more than a polite Hello. I tried to look as unapproachable as possible because I wasn’t feeling too friendly those nights. Around his third night there, during some downtime, we struck up a conversation about my two favorite subjects God and weed. We set a time for him to come past and to blaze and politic about whatever. Once we got back to my spot, we started talking about the Holy Spirit and what it meant to grieve the Holy Spirit. Then homeboy dropped the bomb on me. He said, “I know you thought I was just coming here to kick it with you and blaze, but the Holy Spirit laid it on my heart to minister to you ever since I met you.” He said, “when I first saw you at work, you looked angry as hell, like you could bite through nails. It took me a couple of days to even get your attention.” I laughed and agreed that I may have been a little aloof. He told me that God wanted him to tell me that what grieves the Holy Spirit is living beneath your means. Living like God does not value you. He looked around the apartment and said, “you know what I mean?” Instantly I got it, I knew exactly what he was talking about. I was living in a toxic situation, next to the trash room where rodents were becoming a problem. My time there had long since expired but I was too afraid to get rejected looking for something better. He said the Holy Spirit was grieved that I was too afraid to ask for help when it was readily available. I was utterly blown away by the turn in the conversation but it was exactly what I needed to snap out of my fearful mindset.

As soon as Choi left, I had a serious prayer session and asked specifically for supernatural favor in finding a new place to live. I had to learn to take that leap of faith and KNOW that God would give me nothing less than the best for me. Since I didn’t even know what that would look like, I was too afraid of settling for less, so I let God choose and have been doing so ever since.  I sometimes have a hard time making choices, so I have always asked God to let only the option for me be left standing at the end of my selection process. Oh yeah, Choi left the company a week after our meeting and I never heard from him again. He just dropped in and out of my life to leave that valuable message. Only God.

It was like something shifted in my world, ever since I had that change of mind, all of my apartments have been on the second floor and flooded with sunlight in every room. A drastic atmosphere change from ground floor and basement living. I would like to say that my money management improved at the same time but it has actually taken these past 5 years of not working to reach my next level of healing. God really has jokes, using my time of being broke to teach me not to base my worth upon earning power. I still don’t know why I constantly did dumb shit with my cash. Perhaps money trouble became my comfort zone? Maybe I got addicted to the rush of fixing the problems until the next due date? Or I just thought I would never change and kept doing the insane things repeatedly while expecting different results? Either way, I am so glad to realize I am no longer in that place. I am definitely still discovering and working out my emotional relationship to money but the “thirst” has subsided. I no longer feel like I have to “get mine first” or feel like I need to be manipulative to get God to give me what I really want. Plus, on the real, being damn near 50 and in a relationship, ain’t nobody got time to be having shit cutoff and cars repossessed. That is not sexy.

Until the next story, Be Abundantly Blessed!

Waniboo

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How I Got Rocked By A 9-year Old!

As some of you may already know, I’m a Hip Hop Head till I die.  So, when my friend Yolanda told me she was having a DJ jam session of sorts, called Digging In the Crates, at my favorite record store, Joe’s Record Paradise in downtown Silver Spring, I was most definitely in.  When I arrived, there were a few DJs milling around the stacks and there was a group of elementary school girls playing in one of the aisles.  I figured that their fathers must be among the DJs there.  After a while, I see one lil’ shortie rockin’ a Jay Dee t-shirt and a snapback, break away from the group and approach the turntables.Her demeanor was confident and unassuming.  I heard her friend ask “you going to DJ?” I was not ready for the turntable assault that DJ Kool Flash put down.  I’m talking that real Boom Bap, uncensored, grimy Hip-Hop that took me back to my NYC days when I first fell in love with the whole culture!  This girl blended seamlessly and even threw in some scratching to showcase her skills.  After about 4 songs, everyone in the store was in the back nodding their heads and marveling at her mature selection of music.  Just when I thought it was safe to leave, she launched into a House set!  Yo, I almost messed up my knee again because I can’t resist a good beat.After this experience I had to Google this phenomenon and I found out she is endorsed by some real HipHop heavyweights. Her mixtape is hosted by renowned producer Statik Selektah.  She is the youth DJ for the J Dilla Foundation.  She opened for Wu-Tang, Keith Murray and will be opening up for Smif-and-Wessun on the HipHop Unforgettable Tour on February 5th @ Fire Station 1 in Silver Spring, MD.  She released her debut mixtape called Ladies First back in November and it has garnered over 6K listens and downloads.  This young lady is the real deal!  Her mixtape was recorded live, no edits and a creative selection of the best female MCs you never heard of.  Do yourself a favor and get some DJ Kool Flash in your life!  I have provided the link to her mixtape, which is free on www.datpiff.com as well.  After experiencing DJ Kool Flash I am confident that the next generation will keep real HipHop alive and well.DJ Kool Flash – 1st Ladies Mixtape, Vol.1 – Hosted by : Statik Selektah @DJKoolFlash

Featuring:

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD OR STREAM THIS MIXTAPE FOR FREE!

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TRACKLIST

  • 01. Narubi Selah – Hookless
  • 02. Boog Brown – UPS Music
  • 03. Invincible feat. Wajeeb – Detroit Summer
  • 04. Lin Que feat. MC Lyte – Let It Fall
  • 05. Tiye Phoenix – Skybound
  • 06. Akua Naru – The Backflip
  • 07. Rapsody/Diamond D – Pump Ya Brakes
  • 08. Apani B – The Woman In Me
  • 09. Gavlyn – What I Do
  • 10. Rita J – Body Rock
  • 11. Dynasty feat Talib Kweli – Stay Shinin’
  • 12. Lauryn Hill – Repercussions
  • 13. Queen Latifah – UNITY
  • 14. Soia – Lost In Memory
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New and Improved for 2016! Kinda…

happening quoteWelcome back to Wani’s World!  I had great plans for the beginning of 2016, as I’m sure we all did, LOL, but as we know life happens.  Well, the good news is that I have finally decided to take this blogging thing seriously and be more consistent with my content postings. Umm, unfortunately procrastination, fear, anxiety and other random neuroses decided to slip along into the new year with me.  However, I’m like P. Diddy in this joint, I ain’t ever going to stop!

I keep coming up with great post ideas, but get confounded by the damn media files.  The perfectionist in me keeps trying to get it right, then I get disgusted and go play video games. A mess, I know.   So, I decided to say hell with the visuals for now, and just focus on content.  I have added a couple of categories such as music reviews, links to cultural events in the DMV, Foodie adventures and spiritual growth stories.  If you have any requests for certain subject matters, please hit me up in the comments section or on social media.  Once again, thanks for your support.

Be Blessed!

 

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