Monday, December 27, 2010

Fourteen (Chapter 1)

This is how I am going to die. She thought miserably. Not at home in my bed. Not in a hospital room with people who love me. No. I am going to die on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere; surrounded by houses and no one willing to help me. Wonderful.

She knew they heard her screams. She could see curtains moving in the windows as he drug her by her hair. She fought him with everything she had. When you are kidnapped during the night, you tend to go into survival mode. You don't think what your next move is. You just fight. You fight to stay alive because you assume you're going to die. After all, if he hadn't intended on killing her, he could have found a more gentle way to get her attention than yanking her out of the comfort of her bed.

Correction. The comfort of the couch. That’s where she had been laying. On the couch, wrapped in an electric blanket under the glow of the kerosene heater. In April, the nights are still as chilly as a February morning. The trailer she was staying in didn’t have any electric heat to it. An open oven turned on high helped heat the living room that they all slept in.

They. They being her family. Her mother and two sisters were sleeping in the living room with her. She shared the long couch with her older sister, Crystal. Her younger sibling, Renee, occupied the love seat. Her mother was stretched out in the recliner, snoring softly. It had been a quiet night following a rather dramatic evening.

The banging of the door had awoken her…..had awoken all of them. Her sisters screamed first as he barged into the small room. Paralyzed with fear, all she could do was stare as his massive presence filled her line of sight. Without a word, he grabbed her and tore out of the trailer just as he had entered it.

She heard the girls continue to scream as he hauled her out of the house. Yet, no one came after her. The mother that held her hand at night and kissed her forehead until all the monsters in her nightmares went away was nowhere to be found. She was learning - quickly- that monsters did exist. In fact, monsters could break into her home, in front of her family, and with a swiftness unlike any she had ever seen, pluck her from safety. No one followed behind as she cried and begged for mercy. No one shouted, threatened to call the police, or even uttered a simple protest as her legs dragged against the dirt. She held out little hope for a rescue team. At the age of fourteen, she was resigned to the fact that she was going to die.

I'm dying. But, that doesn't mean I'm going down with out a fight.

They approached his driveway and he stopped to throw her over his shoulder. She took this opportunity to wiggle free and make a run for it. As she felt his grasp loosen around her, she experienced the momentary sensation of freedom. Daringly she thought she may actually live through this.

No such luck.

With one hand, he reached out and snatched her back. Laughing, he tossed her over his shoulder like a bag of potatoes. She kicked. She punched. She used foul language. His laughter rang out into the night.

Finally, she did the only thing she could think of. She pleaded for her life.

“Please,” she begged. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you. I am so so sorry. Let me go. Don’t hurt me.”

He snorted. “Hurt me? Didn’t mean to, huh? Bitch. You don’t know the first thing about hurt. I promise you that.”

He began to climb the steps to his house. There were five steps in all. She knew them well. These were the steps that he first kissed her on. These were the steps where he told her he thought she was pretty. These were also the steps where she had told him she never wanted to see him again just hours earlier.

A lifetime ago, she had met him at his birthday party. She had stood on these doorsteps as he introduced himself. She was taken by the color of his eyes. Eyes that were neither blue or grey, but a mixture that left him with a gaze as intense as the sun. Her knees weakened as she averted her eyes from his stare; unable to hold it. She had no experience to draw on to handle the emotions that weld up in her. Over the next few weeks, she would feel her knees weaken, her stomach flutter, and her palms turn sweaty. Once she realized what was happening, she welcomed these little tell-tale signs of young love. He was what she wanted. He offered her the kind word that propelled her during a long day of school. He took her side when she argued with her sisters. He nodded in approval while she described a decision she had made that angered her mother. He was everything she needed and wanted, but never had. He was support. He was companionship. He was her ally.

Her mother approved of the relationship. Despite his twenty years to her fourteen, he was welcomed by her family. Their courtship had quickly blossomed from holding hands and light kissing to passionate love making. She gave him her innocence. He greedily took it.

Now, in a twisted sort of deja vu, she had come full circle.

First step. She began to sob. Not cry. Not beg for mercy. But sob.

Second step. She began her prayer. God, please. Please. Do not let me die. Where are you? Strike him down. Make me safe. I promise to go to church more. Just....please. Don't. Let. Me. Die.

Third step. The step where he told her he loved her. The step that saw him take her hand into his and look into her eyes....into her soul.....and tell her that he held her above all others. He would always protect her. Keep her safe. Take care of her. This sacred step was where she felt the warmness seep through her panties and down her jeans.

Oh, God. I pissed myself. God. Oh, God.

He felt the wetness on his shoulder. He chuckled softly as climbed the steps.

Sick bastard.

Fourth step. This was the step that had ended it all. It was on this particular step that he had accused her of flirting shamelessly. He called her a whore and spit in her face. Outraged, she had slapped him with all the force she could muster and told him they were over. He had shaken his head at her and laughed that laugh. The laugh she once loved, but now was sending terror throughout her body.

On this step. The fourth step. He stopped. He reached into his pocket and fumbled for his house keys; almost dropping her in the process. It amazed her that he had consciously locked the front door prior to kidnapping her.

He was always responsible like that.

Fifth step. She quieted. Her fight was gone. Her prayers went unanswered. She had nothing left in her. No hope. No anguish. No fear. She simply was.

Aren't I supposed to be seeing my life flash before my eyes or something? Since God has gone on vacation and my mom isn't here, who else is there?

He opened the door. Fluid in his movements, he threw her across the room onto his couch. He quietly closed the door behind him.

She briefly considered calling for her mom. Perhaps she was outside in the bushes, waiting for a surprise attack. To be sure the police were going to show up at any moment. She imagined her mother throwing open the front door with a squadron of troops behind her. In a fit of gun blaze, he would go down and she would be rescued. As quickly as the thought entered her mind, she dismissed it. She knew no one was coming for her. She knew she was alone. Her mother was not there. God had other business to tend to.

“You don’t know how much I loved you,” he informed her. He looked at her with such detachment, she wondered if he had ever really loved anyone.

“Just let me go,” she cried. “Let me go back home. You don’t really want to do this.”

“Oh, but I do.” He informed her. “I do want to do this. You have no idea how much I want to.”

Then he smiled. She looked into his eyes and saw none of the shine that had stolen her heart. His eyes were black and dull. His smile revealed jagged, razor sharp teeth. He licked his lips with an elongated black tongue that was sliced down the middle causing the two separate pieces to wiggle in different directions. She grimaced and tried to look away as blood trickled from the corner of his mouth. A redness crept up around his neck. Veins bulged in his temples as if he was straining to come up with a particular thought.

This is what the devil looks like.

It was the fire that consumed her that she would remember the most. Not the pain as the fire shot forth from his hands as he touched her. Not the smell of burning flesh as he entered her body. But, the heat itself. She could not fight the heat. Her screams seemed to fuel the flames even more. No matter how hard she tried, she couldn't break free from his grasp. As he pinned her down, the fire swept over her. His fire swept over her.

The devil is surrounded by fire.

No words were spoken as he grabbed her off the couch. Her undergarments seemed to melt away from the heat. Her nightgown, having already traveled above her waist line, offered up no protection. She fought. But, his hands

hot, burning hands

were too strong. He chuckled as she tried to free her wrists. At one point, he threw his head back in laughter as she tried to bite him.

I really, really hate him.

Engulfed in flames, all she could do was pray for death. Pray that Death was kinder than the God she once believed in and would deliver her from this hell.

She had heard  stories of women who were in similar situations such as her own. Women, aided by God and fueled by their anger, becoming victorious over their attackers. This was not happening for her. Her anger fueled nothing but his delight; and God was nowhere to be found. She began to doubt these tales of heroism. Rather, she believed, all these women were lying to cover up the fact that they were too weak to protect themselves from the evil of the world.

God, whatever I did to piss you off, I am truly sorry.

At some point, while he was still inside her burning her flesh, the blackness arrived and began to take over her mind.

I'm loosing it.

The walls around her began to shift. Blood seeped through the door and windows. The sweet stench of vomit filled the room. Dark reds, purples, and browns danced through the air. Electricity crackled and popped. The carpet beneath her became a stream of black sludge that stuck to her body; caressing the raw spots where her flesh had been burned. She caught the faint sound of laughter from somewhere off in the distance. Smoke billowed out around her as the blackness spread throughout her mind. Before she lost complete consciousness, she thought she saw a lone figure standing in the corner. Watching. Waiting. With it's head cocked to the side, like it was listening for the same laughter that she'd heard only minutes earlier, the figure began to move towards her.

Hello God. How nice of you to finally show up.

She met It in the blackness. It reached out to her and offered her It's strength. It's raspy, coarse voice soothed her until she was free to listen. The dark killed the fire, It said. Here, nothing can touch you. Only I can save you, It informed her. Not God. There is no God here. Only I exist.

Yes. She realized. My prayers are answered. Save me.

The blackness crept around her as she searched for the source of the voice. She couldn't see anything; fore the blackness was total. She wasn't scared. She was oddly at peace.

Am I dead? Is this what Heaven is supposed to be? Surely, I'm not in Hell. I left Hell back there. 

You're not dead, It told her. You are here with me. I own the darkness. I brought it with me when I came to help you.

Where are you? Who are you?

Laughter reached her. Maniacal laughter that reminded her of the witch's laugh from the old cartoons her mom liked to watch.

Don't worry, It replied. I am what you've been waiting for. You called and I came. Now, open your eyes and see the chaos I created in your honor.

Cries. That’s what she awoke to. Cries and the smell of burnt flesh attacked her senses. She was too dizzy to think. Too dizzy to open her eyes.

“She’s coming around.” She heard a voice from somewhere over there. Another distant voice thanked God.

There is no God here.

“Are you ok? Can you hear me?” She shook her head. She couldn’t seem to free herself from the blackness.

“Stay with me,” the voice begged. “Open your eyes. Talk to me.”

No. Let me go back. This is Hell. Return me to the darkness.

But the voices kept on. Begging her to open her eyes. To speak. She prayed for the blackness to come back. In the blackness there were no voices demanding ridicules things of her. There was no pain. Nothing but sweet, cold…..blackness.

“Maybe we should call the police,” a small voice suggested. That sounded like her youngest sister, Renee.

Geeze, that’s an idea. Maybe you should have thought of that….I dunno, when I was being DRUG DOWN THE FRIGGIN ROAD!

Renee’s timid suggestion was ignored. The others argued amongst themselves about what to do with her and the body.

The body?

At that, she opened her eyes to a small band of people. Not the platoon of soldiers she had been hoping for. Her mother, sisters, and two men she didn't know were there. One of the men knelt beside her with a look of 

is that disgust I see?

worry on his face. Her mother stood by the door; while her two sisters huddled together in the corner. The other man was on the far side of the room accessing her attacker.

My attacker. She thought bitterly. My ex-boyfriend. My Robbie.

"I got to get out of here," her mother declared. "This isn't right. I can't stay here."

Her sisters nodded in agreement and they all left out the front door. She surveyed her surroundings and saw what her mother had been talking about.

The blood splatter on the walls told a gruesome tale. What was once brown paneling had been replaced with blood and what she assumed was human tissue. There was a distinct odor in the air. Had she thrown up? Bits of skin hung from the crooked picture frames. What seemed to be matted hair was stuck in the carpet; along with some type of black mud. And what exactly was that hanging from the ceiling fan? Intestine?  She touched her faced; feeling the swelling that would later become bruises. She shivered and looked down at her arms and legs.  Her arms had long scrapes down them; as if Jesus, Himself, had decided to show her what the nails of Calvary felt like all those years ago. Hand prints were burnt around her wrists and forearms. Her legs were not in much better shape. Skin had been burnt off of parts of her legs. Her left knee was swollen with a knot jutting out of it. Her right ankle was purple. And she wasn’t sure, but it looked like she was missing a couple of toenails.

Where is he? Where’s that bastard?

The bastard, or the bastard’s body rather, was sitting upright against the opposite wall of the room. He looked as if someone had taken a giant cheese grader and played ‘scratch-that-itch’ down his face and arms. His left leg did not look just right. It took her a moment to realize what was so off about it.

Oh my God.

His left foot was pointing down to the carpet. Where his knee would be visible; instead was the back of his leg. All one saw was his hamstring and his heel. His right arm dangled at his side. His stomach bulged out, revealing what the inside of a monster actually looked like. A tube of some sort ran from his abdomen to his mouth.

Tube? That's not a tube? Oh, God. Oh, my God. Did I do all that?

“Look at me,” a man commanded her. She looked up. “My name is Steve. I'm a friend of your mom's." He gestured towards the other man that was now backing away from Robbie. "We’re gonna get you out of here.” She nodded, unable to trust her voice. Unable to trust herself. She tried to stand but fell to the ground.

“She needs a hospital.” Steve's friend said.

"I know," Steve replied. "You got your phone on you?" When the guy nodded, Steve instructed him to call the police.

The friend stepped outside to make the call. She leaned her head against the wall, not caring how bloody or nasty it was. Her rescuers were here and that was all she cared about. She felt Steve gently rub her head and she let him. She could not cry as Steve was obviously doing. All she could do was be thankful that help arrived before Robbie had the chance to kill her. She had no memory of the blackness. All she was aware of was the here and now. The trailer. Steve, her hero, and the smell that seemed to live in the room.

Remembering Robbie, she stole a glance his way.

Robbie. Damn you Robbie. What happened to you? Why did you do this to me? What did I do to you?

As if sensing her confusion, the Body of Robbie looked at her and grinned.

She screamed.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Fuzzy Legs

This morning my handsome little three-year-old visited me in the bathroom as I was getting ready for work.

He looked up at me with his beautiful brown eyes. With as much seriousness as a child his age could muster, he shared what was on his mind.

"Momma," he began. "Your legs are fuzzy."

"Uh huh," I replied. "I know."

Why?" He asked.

I looked down at my angelic tax deduction. With as much honesty as I could muster, I began my explanation.

"See, honey. Your mother is a 34 year old single woman. Do you know what that means?"

He bravely shook his head no.

"It means that I don't have to shave my legs. It means that when you are at your father's house, I sleep on the couch wrapped in your Thomas the Train blanket. A hot night on the town to me means going to Barnes and Nobles. You don't have to shave your legs for that. You don't have to shave your legs to go see a movie with your sister and be home by nine. Sweetie, most Saturday nights find me watching old horror movies and drowning my sorrows in Oreos. I don't need to shave my legs for any of that either.

I don't hold out any hope that a man will visit me and rub his hand down my leg. I have given up on the notion....on the idea....on the belief that I will ever have a boyfriend. When a single woman resigns herself to the fact that she will always be single, she kind of forgoes the shaving of the legs. Leg shaving means you are hopeful. Baby, I lost all hope months ago. Now, I've just decided to risk hypothermia and leave my window open at night in hopes of the snake returning."

I looked at the three-year-old. "Do you understand all this?"

He presented to me a blank stare that I could not read. "Momma, can you just fix me some oatmeal?"

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Letter to Santa

Dear Santa,

In about a week, you will break into my house to bring presents to my children. I am grateful to you for that. After all, Barbie's Dream house is very expensive and Red has her heart set on it. The three-year-old would really like a Buzz Lightyear something-or-other. I am sure you know better than me what it is.

I am quite certain that you will take care of the offspring's toy needs. So, this letter is not really about them. It's about me. You have neglected my needs for years now. Frankly, I am sick of it. So here they are for you to address.

1)I need a ceiling fan. My bedroom is not sure what temperature it should be. One minute it feels like the Arctic, the next the fires of hell are coming out from underneath the bed. I feel like a remote control ceiling fan would help.

2)I would really like a longer bathtub. See, as you know, I am 5'8". However, by some mathematical miracle my legs are 6 feet long. My bathtub can not accommodate them. I deserve an 8 foot long claw tub......with an endless supply of hot water and bubbles.

3)It is no secret that my love life has been And a life. Could you change this? You have a reputation of keeping an eye on everyone. Between you and me, I know about your peeping-tom habits. I promise not to tell Mrs. Claus if you bring me the man of my dreams. You know who I want. Make it happen, or I'll tell your wife about that one time....

4)I need some pots and pans. I love to cook and it is hard to cook with what I have. Between my numerous moves, I have lost a pan or two...or eight. I prefer the non-stick kind.

5)A couple of months ago, a snake crawled through my window and into my bed. He lovingly wrapped himself around my leg. I found him there and released him back into the wild. I haven't heard from him since. Could you please locate him? It hurt that he never called. I thought we had something special.

6)As you well know Santa, I don't sleep. I've counted sheep, demonic cows, vampire poodles, and little green men. Nothing has helped. I heard through the grapevine that you know the Sandman. If this is true, could you send him my way?

That's about it for now, Santa. I don't ask for much. Just a little of this and that to make me happy. Appreciate all you do. I know it's tough being a big man and having to fit through all those small openings. A single wide trailer must be hell on your back.


P.S. I was serious about Mrs. Claus. I have photographs.....

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Insomia Part One: The Devil

I know the devil's true name. It's not how the bible refers to him. It's not a name you would normally attach to a being of evil. But, I know it. How? Simply because he reveals himself to me every night. The devil sits on the edge of my bed and whispers his secrets in my ear. He mocks me as he points to the alarm clock and reminds me that I only have two hours to sleep before it's time to start my day. Yes, I know his real name. We're old friends. The devil and I.

His name is Insomia and I hate him.

He likes to pick the magic hour of 3 am to come and visit. He knows this is the hour that I am lost in a daze of thoughts and confusion. He sees this as his opportunity to seize my weaknesses. To play with my emotions. He laughs as I try to pull the blanket around me and cover my ears. He lays beside me and talks of my lonliness as if only he knows how I could feel. I beg for sleep with tears in my eyes. He laughs. If you've never heard Insomia laugh, I can only describe it as chilling. And beautiful. Insomia is my confidant. My companion. In the late night, he is the one that knows my true fears. My heart's desires. Insomia listens in on my prayers to God. He jokingly asks me if I truely believe God will answer the prayers of a sinner such as myself. He spills forth his bone freezing, hypnotic laugh as I meekly reply, "Yes."

The devil's name is Insomia. And I hate him.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Letter of Advice to the Red Head

Dear Red,

You are growing up so fast. Pretty soon you will be having your own adventures. You will fall in love. You will find out the meaning of true friendship. And you will see how evil people can really be. I have so much to tell you. I want to share with you all that I have learned in life. So, I decided to offer up some of my own lessons that I have learned over time.

Here they are in no specific order:

Always date a man with laugh lines. If he does not have these tell-tale signs, then you know he never laughs. And a man that is incapable of laughter is unable to make you laugh.

You don't need a lot of friends. You only need two. A guy and a girl. Choose these two wisely. They will be your soul mates when you have no one else.

Never dye your hair. God gave you that gorgouse red hair for a reason. It makes you stand out.

Always tell the truth. No matter what. The truth is easier to remember.

Do not hold grudges. A grudge takes so much energy to sustain. Rather, forgive and move on. Try to remember that you will make many mistakes in your life. You will, more-than-likely, have to ask forgiveness for these mistakes. Never ask for what you are unwilling to give.

Speaking of mistakes.... Know this: You are my child. When God decided to give you to me, He knew that you were going to be born hot tempered and strong willed. Your temper will subside over time. But, your will (hopefully) will remain strong.

You are going to face many challenges in life. Embrace these moments of adversity. They are what make you strong.

Always laugh.

You need to always use Aveeno Sunscreen. It's the safest for your skin.

Remember to never leave the house with fuzzy legs. I did this once and ended up in the ED. I don't know if the two are related; but just don't risk it.

You will have your heart broken in some form or another over your life. I can't say how many times it will occur. But, I can tell you with almost certainty, that a broken heart can love better and deeper than a heart that has never been broken. Therefore, you should never be afraid of the pain of losing someone. It is this pain that will enable you to love with a passion so great, it may just take your breath away.

Don't panic.

It's ok if you don't know what you're doing. No one does. Those that say they do are lying. Trust me on this one.

Don't believe someone who says they won't hurt you. As human beings, we are going to hurt one another. We all suffer at the hands of the ones who love us best. You just have decide if the person is worth the suffering.

Never trust a big butt and a smile. I don't know why this is. But, it was advice given out on the radio years ago. It sounded good then and it sounds good now.

There will be days when it seems like the sun rose specifically to humiliate you. Know this: It's true.

You can judge a man by the first kiss. Nice and firm is good. Weak and sloppy is not.

Over time I will offer more words of wisdom. I love you my Red Headed Angel. You are proof that miracles exist. You are proof that God loves me without bounds.

But, most of all, you are proof that God knew that I would end up a pretty decent person. If not, I don't think He would have trusted me with such a wonderful treasure such as yourself.

Your Momma

P.S. Take that big butt thing seriously, now. Ok?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Conversations with The Red Head 6.2

Last night, as per our usual bedtime routine, I asked the Red Head how her day had been. She answered that it was fine as I made sure her covers were straight and she had her teddy bear. The Red Head spoke about school and art class. She described the crafts she made that day and touched on her apprehension over performing in the upcoming Christmas concert at school. Then she got quiet.

"What's wrong, baby?" I asked.

", what's rape?"

I paused for a moment. I tried to gather my heart up out of my toes. For the first time in a quite a long time, I looked at my oldest child.

I mean really looked at her.

Wasn't it just yesterday that she was crawling around the livingroom? Wasn't I just showing her how to wasn't that long ago that I taught her to tie her shoes. Right? Where does the time go?

And when do they start to lose their innocence?

I cleared my throat. I try to answer all her questions as honestly as I can. But, as a mother, it is my job to keep the world out there. In my house, in the safety of my arms, I keep the world from intruding and bringing with it all the ugliness that it contains. Yet, at the same time, it is also my job to teach about the ugliness. To warn her against the evils of society.

I do the basics. I teach my children not to talk to strangers. I teach them not to recieve candy or hugs from people they do not know. It's not always easy. Old women will approach the Red Head about her hair and tell her how pretty she is. They try to hug the three-year-old because he is just too adorable to pass up. People have forgotten the golden rule when out in public. They make it difficult to instruct our young ones about keeping to the ones they know. What's worse is that sometimes it's the ones you know that hurt you the worse.

So, I answered her question. As simple as possible, I explained what one of the ugliest acts of violence was. I watched her as her eyes got big and she pulled the covers to her. I waited, patiently, as she sucked in her breath and then analyzed the information I had given her.

Finally, she asked, "Why would someone do that?'

"For pure meaness." I explained. She is too young to understand about control and power. She is too young to comprehend domination. But, she undertsands 'meaness'.

The Red Head absorbed all the information I had given her. She bolted upright out of the bed and wrapped her little arms around my neck. I nuzzled her and told her how much I loved her. I inhaled her scent. I cherished this beautiful creature that God saw fit to bless me with.


"Yes, baby?"

"Will that ever happen to me?"

"More than likely not." I answered her. "But, that is why I tell you not to hug on people that you don't know that well. That's why it's important not to talk to strangers. I tell you these things to protect you. I don't ever want to see you get hurt. Ok?"

She nodded quickly. Laying back down, she explained she had heard on the news about a woman getting rapped somewhere far from here. I nodded and made a mental note not to run the news anymore.

Kissing her on the forehead, I asked her if there was anything else she wanted to know before I turned her light out.

"Have you ever been raped?"

I took that opportunity to lie to her. I told her no.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


I don't understood the male species. While women were always deemed to be the weaker sex; I often thought males were the simpler ones. They seemed to be content in their recliners, sipping their beer....watching their sports on the enormous t.v they bought to compensate for whatever they lacked. Throw in a scratch of the genitalia and men seemed to be in a form of their own heaven.

As I grow older, I find that isn't the case.

These days, men seem to speak their own language. What's worse is that they expect women to decode it. Where once apon a time, men sought after women with a force that was usually reserved for the hunting and gathering of food; the tide has turned and women are the ones chasing after men. We are not only paying a great deal of attention to what men are saying, but we are deciphering what they aren't saying. My generation of women have turned into their own version of CIA decoders. As much as we break down every grunt, look, and shrug; we could easily work for Homeland Security.

I can see the conversation now:

Mr. President. We have certain intelligence that suggests Al-Queida will be attacking the wheat fields of Wisconsin soon.

The wheat fields? Are you sure?

Yes sir. We are positive. According to our sources, the planes are en route even as we speak.

How in the world did you figure that out? You must have had every high ranking military linguist working on this. I bet you had the best in the field on this assignment!

No sir. We didn't need them. We just pulled a couple of 30-something year old single women out of the dating pool. They were able to decode it in no time.

I long for the days where a guy would come up to you and simply state how much he liked you. He would take your hand and say, "Be mine. I want to get to know you." Instead, all we get is, "Well, sure. I like ya."

What the hell does that mean? So, you like me? Does the liking me include long walks on the beach? Do I need to find out your favorite movie? Should I be prepared to cook you meals? Am I, at the very least, going to be able to see you naked in the next decade?

These are all important questions to a 34-year-old single woman with two kids, such as myself.

Men don't seem to get that. To them, "I like ya", means "You may have a shot. At some point. But, right now I am busy trying to reach that itch under the left testicle that has been bothering me all day. Can I get back to you tomorrow?"

Tomorrow in man-time is actually next week.

A few weeks ago, bothered by the fact that the object of my desire was not being clear in his intentions, I set out to see exactly how this man felt about me. If I couldn't get him to say what his intentions were during a conversation on the phone......or in a text.....or email.....or smoke signals, I was hell bent on seeing him face to face. My reasoning behind the visit was to judge how he looked at me. A girl can usually tell if a man has some sort of interest by the way he gazes apon her.

At least that's my opinion.

I left our meeting feeling satisfied that this man did like me. The vibe he gave off was one of interest. Interest in me, of what I had to say, and even in what I was wearing. I thought "Goody, we are on our way."

No. Actually we are not on our way. At some point, our train of communication has derailed. I'm not sure when it happened, why it happened, or how it happened. I take that back. I know how it happened. The phone calls stopped. The texts stopped. There were no emails.

And I haven't received a single smoke signal in weeks.

Not sure how to get my train back on line and pulled into the station, my only recourse is to leave well enough alone. I figure I am a fabulous enough catch, that someone will jump onto the train and get the engine of communication going once again.

Unless Al-Quieda needed it to get to the wheat fields. If that's the case, then I'm screwed.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Red Head Discovers Porn

I never intended to introduce my daughter to porn at the age of six. I thought this to be too young of an age to learn how to appropriately entertain the plumber when he visits your house....late at night. My plan was to wait until she was- at the very least- ten.

Of course with her being my daughter, Red decided to take matters into her own hands.

Friday evening we are standing in the video store. In a time when you can recieve movies in your mail box the next business day, download them onto your computer, or even view them on a Playstation, it baffles me as to why video stores still exist. Yet, there I was, trying to pick out age appropriate viewing material for a three year old, a six year old, and a 59 year old. (My dad was babysitting that night.)

My three-year-old was in the children's section of the store squealing his delight with every Wow Wow Wubzzy movie he came across. "Sista, sista," he would call out in that sing-song voice of his. "Wooooook at what I bound."

"Hold on," the Red Head yelled back to him. "I'm coming." She was standing beside me reading a notice on a door. The door was saloon style, like the kind you'd see in old Western movies.

"Stop." She read aloud. "Must be 18 years of age or older to enter thru here." She looked at me curiously. "Momma, what does that mean?" She asked.

I was busy trying to decide between Iron Man 2 or Splice for my dad. (I later picked Iron Man 2 just in case the three year would be interested.) I mumbled something about having the right to vote before entering into the room.

In my defense, what happened next occured relatively quickly. I could still hear the three-year-old's squeals at the front of the store. I knew he was safe. I assumed the Red Head was with him. I know. I know. One should never assume anything in regards to their children. However, I was engrossed in reading the back of The Machinist.

I had just made up my mind to grab that particular movie when I heard a timid voice call out. "Momma? Momma?"

I knew it was the Red Head. I walked over to where the three-year-old, now sitting on the floor surrounded by a collection of Wow Wow Wubbzy movies and giggling manically, was.

"Where's your sister?" I asked him. "I dunno. But, momma, woook at what I bound! Can I get dem? Pweeeaaassee?" I answered in the negative on that and told him to sit still.

Again, I heard the faint sound of my beloved tax deduction's voice. "Momma? Momma?"

At this point, I began to feel like the mother in the movie, Poltergiest. I resisted the urge to yell back, "Carolann! Run away from the light!" Instead, I looked down every isle of the small store. Finally, I faced the dreaded door and peered underneath. Sure enough. I saw a pair of size two sneakers.


Not sure of what exactly I was going to find, I opened the door slowly. The Red Head stood in the middle of a small room overflowing with images of naked women and men doing things together that I would be ashamed to admit I knew about. In her hand was a DVD case. On the front of the case was a naked woman entertaining two lonely gentleman. She was in a most impressive pose. I breifly wondered how flexible you had to be to get into that sort of stance.

"Baby? You ok."

My innocent offspring gave me a look of confusion and annoyance. (Or she could have been a little gassy.)

"Momma, is that sex?" She asked pointing to the picture on the cover.

I try very hard to answer her questions honestly. I have never told her the story of the stork bringing a baby to the mommy and daddy. When asked, I offered up the real deal on copulation. So, unless the couple in question are into beastiality, birds don't figure into our sex talks.

"It's a version of it," I answered vaguely. Truthful I am. But, I did not think my child needed to know about oral sex in the middle of a video store. Or sex with two men.......ever.

"Do you do that?"

I cleared my throat. Oh dear Lord in Heaven and all the holly crackers. How do you answer that?

"" I answered. Candid about sex? Yes. On the level about my sex life? Not so much.

I have to give the Red Head credit. She has been known to handle things pretty well. She put the movie back in the proper spot. Taking my hand, she looked up at me and said with a rather grim expression, "Momma, let's just stick with the Tinkerbell movie for right now. Ok?"


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Love Life Found Dead in Home

The Love Life of Weslyn Chavis came to a tragic end on Saturday, September 18, 2010. However, the Love Life's body was not actually discovered until two days later.

As of today, crime scene tape is still up around where the body was found. Police are not publicly saying what the cause of death is. Inside sources are stating that all signs point to strangulation.

"It looks to me like whoever actually was involved with Weslyn Chavis's Love Life might have played a big role in the Love Life's death. We can't say for sure until all the forensic evidence comes back from the lab," a source close to the investigation stated.

Right now, the biggest question facing Weslyn Chavis is: How is she going to survive without a love life?

"I don't think I need one," Ms. Chavis spoke openly with reporters. "I mean, it would be nice to have one. But, if it's going to be this much trouble, I'd rather just do without."

With a murder suspect on the loose, police have advised single women living in the area to take extra precaution with their Love Lives.

"My advice to every single woman out there is to guard your Love Lives closely. Don't just let any person around them. This could happen to your Love Life." Police Chief Henderson said Tuesday morning.

Funeral arrangements have not been announced. Once the autopsy is completed, the Love Life will be received by The Heartbroken Funeral Home on Wayward Street.

Ms. Chavis requests in lew of flowers, monetary donations be made into her bank account.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Last Exorcism

I am a horror movie fanatic. Ghosts? No problem. Blood shed? Love it. Axe welding homicidal maniac chasing horny teenagers through the woods? Bring it on.

The one thing in the horror movie genre that I have a hard time watching is anything to do with demonic possession. Maybe it's the Christian in me. Maybe it's the fact that demonic possession is thought to be real by some. Or, maybe, I'm just a wuss.

Knowing this about myself, I decided to go see The Last Exorcism at the movies. The film was supposed to take a different approach to demons and those that house them. I can handle it when a movie has more to it than just a little girl laying in the bed spitting out green pea soap. This is why I enjoyed the Exorcism of Emily Rose. The audience was never told whether or not she was actually possessed. It was a drama that forced the viewer to draw their own conclusions. I could handle that. I walked into The Last Exorcism ready to do the same thing. In no way was I prepared for what I watched.

I picked the wrong day to skip church.

The movie follows Reverend Cotton who has made the decision to leave the pulpit. He allows a film crew to follow him on his last mission to exorcise a demon out of a sixteen year old girl, named Nell. However, the good Reverend is not like most that perform these rituals. He doesn't believe in the devil. And because of this, he openly admits to not believing in God. We watch Cotton perform the exorcism. He shows how he manipulates his surroundings by hooking wire to the bedposts and picture frames to make them move. He has a tape recorder with demonic sounds coming from under the bed. He even has rings on that shoot small currents of electricity into the victim's temples. These people believe that an actual exorcism is taking place; even though it's all smoke and mirrors. When Cotton is done with his performance, the father is happy, Nell is happy, Cotton is happy, and I am happy. So far so good.

And then it got creepy.

The whole movie is shot like a documentary. I have seen plenty of movies shot this way. Frankly, I could care less about them. The style is jumbled and most of the time you can't tell what's what. But, for this movie it really worked. I felt the tension build as Cotton and his film crew begin to discover that something isn't quite right with the teenager. I could feel their confusion when they heard multiple voices coming from Nell's locked bedroom. And you can just forget how creepy o'le girl looks when she's asked who she's talking to.

"No one." She says as she stares at the camera. Yeah, ok. Whatever. I'm out.

One of the scariest scenes is when Nell gets the camera and walks out to the barn. While everyone is asleep, she takes a knife and kills the family cat. The camera is out of focus and all you see is blood splattering as poor Snowball meets his maker. And there are also the quiet moments of neck cracking she does that make me want to see a chiropractor.

When it becomes apparent that something is seriously wrong with the teen, her father gives Cotton an ultimatum. Either perform another exorcism or he will kill his daughter, thus saving her from the evil clutches of whatever has her possessed. As Cotton argues with him, I am sitting in my seat cheerfully yelling, "Shoot her! Now! In. The. Head!" My fellow movie goers agreed with me.

This movie really got to me. It creeped me out. It scared me. It made me hurt. Nothing jumped out at me like is the norm in horror films. This was just your basic evil feel of a movie. Which, in going back to what I said in the beginning, is why I do not like movies dealing with demonic possession. It's like the evil in the movie jumped out and tried to grab me.

I ain't gonna be right for a long time.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tim and Tina

Once apon a time, before the advent of texting and Facebook, men actually contacted women for dates via the phone. It's true. Ask your parents.

This was a good thing. A man would actually have to make the effort to approach a woman and start up a conversation. These conversations usually started with an inquiry as to the woman's name and marital status. Let me create a typical conversation for you:

A man approaches a woman. "Hi. My name is Tim. What's yours?"

The woman would bat her eyelashes and smile. "I'm Tina. How are you?"

Tim takes a step forward. "I'm doing good. You have a beautiful smile. Can I have your number? I'd love to take you out sometime."

Of course Tina says yes. They go out. They fall in love. They get married. They buy a house. They have babies. Tina gains 35 lbs of pregnancy weight. Tim begins to drink one too many beers at night. They go from having sex three times a week to three times every sex months. Tim has an affair. Tina moves in with her mother.

Couldn't be simplier.

These days that scenerio would be played out quite differently. Men no longer approach women in the supermarket, bookstore, or any other place that grown folks may go. I have had men that I barely know contact me through the almighty Facebook to ask me out. My reply: "And who are you?"

Now, let's take the above example and apply it to today's hightech world.

First, Tim is trolling online. He is on Steven's Facebook page. He sees a post from Tina and thinks she looks cute. He pokes her.

Tina pokes back.

Tim requests Tina as a friend. Tina accepts.

Hi Tina! Hope your day is going good! Tina thinks this post fromm Tim is sweet. She replies with, It's going good. How are you?

Tina and Tim exchange these type of posts for a day or two.

Finally Tim catches Tina on Facebook instant messenger.



U busy?

Nah. Sup?

Wanna go out Friday night?

Um, sure. Here's my number. Text me.

Tim texts Tina. They go to a movie and end up back at Tina's house. They spend the night together. Tina is fairly certain that Tim is the one she should settle for. Tim, on the other hand, promises to text later on that day. But, Tim gets busy and never texts her again. Tina ends up a bitter, man-hating single woman. She begins to collect cats. As Tina grows older, the neighborhood kids begin to fear her. Tim becomes an alcoholic and dies from liver failure at the age of 50.

Trust me. It's much better to accept a date the old fashion way. At least you get babies out of it.

Monday, August 9, 2010


I'm raggedy. There I said it. I'll say it again for those that didn't get it the first time.

I. Am. Raggedy.

Those who know me, know what I am talking about. Those of ya'll who don't, can only imagine. And I say, "Imagine away." You probably aren't too far off from the actual truth.

And that's all fine and dandy. I want to get to a point in my life that when people look at me, they see a good mother. They see a God fearing woman. They see a klutzy, God fearing, good mother.

When people look at me, I want them to say, "I remember when Wes used to go to the clubs every weekend. I remember when she broke so-and-so's heart. I remember her running the roads. But, look at her now. She goes to church. She's good with her kids. Shoot. If she can get her life straightened out, I know I sure can."

Being raggedy ain't too bad.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

My Nemesis

There are certain people in the world. Those who can walk through air without problems and those that can't. I am the latter.

I noticed it at an early age. I believe I was about 6 when my little friend asked me to skip with her to the sandbox. We grabbed each other's hand and proceeded to make our way. At the time, I did not know how treacherous thin air could be. I quickly learned as I tripped and went crashing to the ground. Startled, I looked around to see when had caused my fall. There was nothing.

I learned two things that day. (1)You can not trust air. (2)It helps to have a sense of humor.

Things have not gotten any better with age. I went from tripping on my way to the sandbox to falling as I cut grass. I have tried to pull off the seductive lean in a door frame stance while talking to a good looking men. However, at the last minute, the door frame moved and I fell to the floor; causing injury, not only to my body, but to my ego as well.

I blame the air for my troubles. How else can you explain landing on the floor when I was sitting in a chair? Or, better yet, how can you explain the time I went to sit in my car and hit the ground instead? I believe it was the air that moved the vehicle.

It's a terrible ordeal for me. Everyday I am conscious of the fact that the very element that sustains life, is out to end mine. While others can walk down steps or climb up stairs with no worries, I hesitate. I know the air's lurking all around me. It tries to lure me into a false sense of security as it waits patiently to strike. I can feel the grip of its evil clutches, as the air swirls around my ankles causing my to fall as I try in vain to grab on to anything for support.

It also shoves me.

The shoving is the worse. I went to hug a friend of mine the other day. Instead of hugging, I fell on him. Poor thing probably thought I was suffering from an aneurysm of some sort. I have walked along a wall, only to find myself walking into it instead of parallel to it. You can thank the air for that. It likes to shove me into the hardest thing it can find.

I am not giving up. I will defeat air. I haven't exactly figured out how I am going to get the upper hand; but I will. One day, the air will not be such a bully. It will not shove me into parked cars, throw me up against walls, or trip me as I am walking on flat surfaces. One day, I say! One day, the air will do the job it is meant to do. Not the job it wants to do.

Until then, I urge all of you to proceed with caution. The air is all around you. And it is evil....

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I Don't Eat Vegetables

I was pretty much born and raised in the country. From early on, my diet consisted of fried chicken, fried fat back, sweet tea, Pepsi, and scrambled eggs. We had home made biscuits made with lard and dipped in molasses for breakfast. Lunch came from a fried bologna sand which lathered in mayonnaise. Dinner saw us chowing down on fried pork chops, fried corn bread, and collard greens cooked with.....ham hocks.

By the way, heart disease runs in my family.

I loved to pull my chair up to the table, along with the rest of the family. The eggs would disappear before the steam cleared out. The pork chops were gobbled up before the pig even quit squealing. This was down home eating at its finest. I ate everything that my Granny put in front of me. Everything except the collards or any other vegetable. I just don't eat vegetables at all. I know. It is very 4 year oldish of me.

And it's not like I have tried various kinds of vegetables and found them not to be of my liking. No. I simply look at whatever earthly concoction that's brewing and turn my nose up at it. I refuse to eat anything that comes from the ground.

Let me tell you why.

I was about 5 or 6 when I first lived with my dad in Virginia. My parents had not long divorced and my dad was in the Navy. My sister and I lived with him in VA Beach. During the day, while my dad worked, we went to a babysitter. I do not remember her name. Well, sometimes we had to stay late at her house. This late night schedule resulted in dinner with the babysitter and her family. She used to cook stuff that none of us kids would eat. Eggplant.....soup that tasted like cardboard.....squid. Where were my pork chops? Where were the biscuits and the Pepsi? She would give us unsweetened kool-aide.

One night the babysitter set before my sister and myself a bowel of black beans. "Try them," she advised. I quickly turned my 5 (or perhaps 6) year old nose up at it.

"I don't wanna," I remember saying. She told me to try it and if I didn't like it, I didn't have to eat it. Fair enough. I tasted the nasty stuff and managed to swallow.

My sister shot me a look. "You didn't eat enough," she said. "You need to take a big bite. How do you know if you like it?"

"I know." I told her. "It's nasty. She doesn't cook good."

"She just cooks different. Try a bigger bite, or I'm telling daddy you're not doing what you are supposed to." My dear, dear sister. Always there for me when I needed her.

So, being the good little sister instilled with the fear of my father, I took a big gulp of the black bean mush. I'm not sure if it was the taste or the texture that did it to me, but I ended up regurgitating the meal back up. My eyes watered as the beans shot across the table.

Instantly, tears sprang to my eyes. I began to hiccup with fear as the babysitter stormed down the hallway towards us.

"What in blazes hell is this mess? Were you playing in your food, girl?" she demanded. I wasn't able to respond. My sister quickly came to my defense and tried to explain what happened. Her words fell on deaf ears.

Now, I don't remember much about the babysitter. She was a black woman with short curly hair. The woman could have stood all of 5'2". For all I know, she could have been a dwarf with only one arm. But, in my memory, she was a massive Amazonian woman. She stood at least 7 feet tall. She was broad shouldered with muscles as big as my calf. She had blazing red eyes and a mouth that was big enough to eat small children.

That's how I remember her anyways.

She snatched me from the chair as she accused me of playing with my food. She marched me into the bathroom. There she ordered me to pull down my pants. I remember going into hysterics at that point. I also remember hearing my sister cry in the other room. With the wired handle of a fly swatter, she whipped me.

Dramatic? Yes. A therapy causing event in my life? Definitely.

Later that evening, I sat in a bath tub. My dad's girlfriend, Rita, had come to retrieve us. As she saw the bruises on my legs and buttocks, she gasped. I didn't say anything. I didn't have to. My terror and shame at being whipped in such a manner had turned to anger. However, I knew revenge would be mine. Soon, that horrible monster would get exactly what she had coming to her. It was inevitable.

See, my daddy was home.

He stood in the doorway and surveyed the damage.

"I'll be right back." was all he said. I can't tell you anything about the exchange between the babysitter and my dad. I can tell you she never kept us again. I only saw her once after that. She would barely look at me as she limped by.

And now I'll hardly touch a vegetable.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Story of Auntie Wes and Steve

Come, my followers. All three of you. Come and gather around the fire and listen to the tale of Auntie Wes. It is a story full of love, lust, broken hearts, and a possum. Come, I say. Sit a spell.

See, a long time ago Auntie Wes was young and full of life. Not like she is now....A decrepit old hag that is searching for stray cats to give a home to. No! Once Auntie Wes was carefree and looking for love. Like the country song says, it was in all the wrong places. But, she was looking none-the-less.

Well, one night Auntie Wes met a nice gentleman. We will call him Steve. Steve was 6 ft tall with curly black hair. His eyes were brown and he had a smile that was lined with the straightest, whitest teeth one has ever seen. He was what the old timers called a real looker. He was such a looker that Auntie Wes saw him and it was love at first sight.

Actually it was lust at first sight. But, they both start with the letter "l" and have been known to induce sweaty palms, the shakes, and gas. So, who really cares?

Auntie Wes was no slouch back then either. She had long, brown hair and legs that just went on for days. The men liked Auntie Wes and paid her a great deal of attention. Not like now-a-days, where the men only look at her long enough to ask her to put down the liquor bottle and escort her out of the store. Last time she got kicked out of the Piggly Wiggly, a man was nice enough to hand Auntie Wes back her wig that had been knocked off during the scuffle. And who said chivalry was dead?

But, I digress. Auntie Wes saw Steve at a party one night. It was a cookout celebrating the retirement of Old Kay. Old Kay had been a barmaid for 40 years. She finally decided to retire because she didn't have any good teeth left to use to open the beer bottles with. Steve was showing off his homemade tattoos that Bubba had put on him while they were cellmates in prison. Bubba and Steve were the best of friends. Steve kept saying how he couldn't wait for Bubba to get paroled and they could become roommates. Auntie Wes thought Steve was quite generous for opening up his home like that.

Auntie Wes saw Steve first. He was indicating the size of something with his hands when she made her way over to him. Right as Steve exclaimed, "Man! That thing was huge!" Auntie Wes caught his eye and smiled. He smiled back and offered her a drink. Over a shared pint of grape flavored MD 20/20 they talked about life, jail time, and NASCAR.

After a few hours of conversation, Steve proclaimed his devotion to Auntie Wes. Feeling the stirrings of love (along with at least a half a pint of MD 20/20) as well, Auntie Wes invited him back to her camper that she was staying in. It was a brand new used 1975 camper that was kept behind her cousin's single wide trailer.

"I just dig your Spud McKenzie shirt," slurred Auntie Wes.

"Thanks baby," Steve said. "So, tell, uh......."


"Right. Ahem, Wes. You lived here long? I mean, this is some nice digs you got."

"Not long." Auntie Wes informed him. "A couple of months. It's all I need right now."

As our two love birds began to get to know one another, there came a knock at the door.

"Are you expecting anyone?" Steve asked. Auntie Wes denied any knowledge of who could be at her door.

The newly formed couple began to pick up where they left off. Ignoring the bothersome noise, Steve began to fidget with Auntie Wes's bra snaps.

"Be careful." she warned.

"I got it. I got it." More fumbling. "What the hell is wrong with this thing? Is there a trick to it?"

"Nooooo. Damn it. Let me get it."

"No, I got it," a frustrated Steve said. "I've done this plenty of times."

"Apparently you haven't," Auntie Wes shot back. "Hurry up. I'm losing my buzz."

"Just....damn it! Turn around." Steve turned Auntie Wes around and snatched her shirt up over her head. "What the hell kind of bra is this? What are these? Hooks or snaps?"

"Get this cotton-pickin shirt off my head! I can't see a thing!" Auntie Wes shouted.

Another sound came from the other side of the door. Only this time it was a pounding.

"Who the hell is it?" Steve shouted.

"Don't you yell at my company," Auntie Wes stumbled around the small area that served as a kitchen/dining room/living room combo. "Who's there? I'll be right there. Dag-nabbit, you asshole! Get this shirt off my head. My arms are pinned in it."

"Well, if you just hold still, I would." Auntie Wes knocked into the cabinets, which in turn flew open. A frying pan fell on Steve's head.....knocking him out cold.

More pounding on the door. More screeching from Auntie Wes.

"Steve, now I mean it! Get this shirt off of my head. I ain't playing with you! Steve? Steve?!? Steeeeevvvvvvveeeeee!"

About the time Auntie Wes was figuring out how to wiggle her way out of her newly made straight jacket, Steve was coming to. He was bleeding from his nose and seemed a little out of it.

"What the hell did you do to me?" He demanded as Auntie Wes straightened out her shirt.

"Not a thing! You crazy fool! You have got to be the worst date a girl could ever get a hold of!"

While they stood there glaring at each other, another pounding came at the door. Furious, Steve flung it open.

"Ah, man. Ah, shit. Ah, damnit to holy hell and back." Another string of obscenities flew from Steve's mouth. But, in the interest of our story I'll stick to the basic cuss words.

"Who are you?" Auntie Wes asked the red head standing on her threshold.

"Don't worry about it," glared Red. "Steve, come on. I want to go. Now!"

"Who are you to be knocking on MY door and demanding MY man?" Screeched Auntie Wes.

"Your man?" Steve snorted. "Since when? I am a grown ass man! I do whatever I want whenever I want. I can do anything I want!"

"Really? You sure as hell couldn't get my bra undone, Mr. Man." Auntie Wes shot back. Turning to Red, she shouted, "Now the who the hell are you?!"

Grabbing Steve by the arm, Red drug him out of the camper. "I'm his wife," she exclaimed as she slammed the door shut.

Poor Auntie Wes. All she had wanted to do was find love amongst the crowd. With her head hung in sorrow; she cried drunken tears of broken heartedness. She stumbled blindly into the small bathroom to wash her face. As Auntie Wes reached for a towel in the closet, she grabbed a fury four-legged something.

Dear followers, I am not sure who screamed the loudest. Auntie Wes when she realized that she got a hold of one mean possum, or the possum when he realized he was gotten aholt. Needless to say, Auntie Wes ended up in the emergency room for rabies and the possum ended up six feet under.

I'm not sure where poor Steve ended up.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Keeping the Kids Safe

I often wonder if my parents truely loved me. After all, I rode in the front seat of the family station wagon without a seatbelt more times that my mother will comfortably admit to. I remember laying down in the back car window and waving to the travelers driving behind us. I will daringly admit to riding my bicycle on a paved rode without the benefit of a helmet or knee pads. And let us not forget the countless trips between Fayetteville, NC and Stafford, VA in the bed of my dad's truck with nothing but a camper shell protecting me from the outside elements.

This is how I grew up. Dangerously. I ran around the neighborhood til dark.....barefooted. I know. I know. If you had known it was going on, you would have called DSS. My caretakers were thoughtless people.

I try to do better by my children. My three year old wears a helmet when riding his tricycle. His older sibling sports a helmet, knee pads, and bubble wrap when cruising down the road on her Dora the Explorer bike.

I take it a step further within the confounds of my car. Both children are strapped in a car seat by a sixteen point harness that I bought from the boys at NASA. I lovingly stuff pillows between their seats and the doors, protecting them from the possibility of shattered glass or the occasional fly that wonders in through the window. I also travel at a safe speed of 30 mph when driving down the interstate. I will not risk the chance of one of my beloved tax deductions flying through the windshield if I so happen to have to come to a complete and sudden stop.

My home is a fortress of solitude and security. I do not let other children near my precious cherubs. I can not risk them getting infected with the Swine Flu, Bird Flu, SARS, Chicken Pox, Meales, Mumps, Mad Cow Disease, Foot and Mouth Disease, or anything else that the diseased neighborhood kids may be carrying. I keep a jug of Clorox and Lysol handy in every room. This way the children can disinfect themselves once they are done eating, playing, watching t.v, sleeping, and bathing.

While I was growing up, my parents sent me to school and that was it. I was never enrolled in any educational activities. The sculpting of my young and impressionable mind was left to strangers at the nearby public school. I have taken a more aggressive approach and have become an advocate for my children's education. I home school both children. I teach them reading, writing, arthrimatic, chinese, spanish, crocheting, origami, home ec, and basket weaving. I believe an educated child is a happy child.

I do not allow my children to play video games. For recreation, they are allowed to read books approved by myself. I give them books such as "The History and Culture of the Amish" or "Meditation for Children". I do not like for them to read anything that will get them excited. Excitement can elevate your heart rate, which makes your blood pump faster, which can lead to a stroke......I read that on the internet.

My children are happy though. I know this because I have taught them a special song to recite on command. It goes something like this:

I am happy. I am happy.
Hug me. Love me.
But, do it from a distance.
I am happy.

I am dedicated to keeping the ankle biters safe.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


As I look apon the weekend and make plans to celebrate the white man's independence, I can not help but take stock in my new found life and freedom. I have finally moved into my own place. Each child has thier own bedroom. I can walk from one end of the house to the other completely naked. (Which I have done on several occasions...just because.) I wake in the morning to my 3 year old squealing with delight or whinning with displeasure and I am not stressed. There is no worries about waking anyone else up in the house; simply because there is no one else. Life is good.

But, life is stressful as well. Being a single parent means having only one income. However, I take this stress in stride. I know money is going to be tight. I expect it. So far, I have been able to obtain whatever it is that I need. Thanks to God, I have not had to sell my ass. Yet....

Work is going ok. There is never really anything to report when you sit in an office all day by yourself working on paperwork. My companion is the radio and the handful of people who call or text me throughout the day. They are welcomed interruptions.

My love life is non-existant. There are those that are interested, but no one that I feel God has planned for me. I am patient in that area. A relationship is not something I really want to rush in to. I am perfectly happy talking and taking things day by day. However, I do miss having a manly presence around the house. I often times wish I had someone just so I'd have a warm body to snuggle up to. Someone to appreciate my cooking. All in due time, I suppose.

I have not had to threaten to kill the ex as of lately. We talk as friends. Phone calls are exchanged and advice is given when needed. It's a nice relationship that I have begun to appreciate. There is no tension. I am thankful that we can act as adults and put the kids first. I wish my own parents had been able to do that.

So, life is good. I feel good. The kids are good. What else is there to say?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Lost the Mojo

I've lost it. My mojo, that is. I used to have it. I used to carry it with me wherever I went. Now-a-days, it's like searching for the Lost City of Atlantis. I see trace evidence of it, but can't seem to pinpoint the actual location.

And I really need my mojo. Last night it would have came in real handy. I was at a Fourth of July celebration. I am standing in line, waiting for a greasy sand which that promised long hours of heartburn, when a rather handsome gentlemen spoke to me. I looked over my shoulder to see who he was addressing. He spoke again, and I gave him my best smile. Unfortunately, I ended up looking constipated. If I'd had my mojo, that would never had happened.

This past week, I could have really went far with my mojo firmly in hand. I ran into a guy that I've had a crush on for years now. He's one of those men you admire from afar. You know the type: tall, handsome man with the type of grin that makes the panties melt off. He has big brown eyes. The kind that look at you and make you contemplate how gifted your children will be. Whenever I've seen him date, it's usually with the leggy, gorgeous types. I don't think he'd go for me. I still haven't mastered the whole walking without tripping over dead air thing.

But, if I'd had my mojo, I wouldn't care about any of that. With my mojo, I would have walked up to him, cocked my head to one side, and grinned a fabulous grin that said, "Hey there! Yeah, I know, you want me." Instead, I mumbled something and gave him my famous I-ate-something-that-now-is-making-my-stomach-bubble look. Not very impressive.

I was thinking about calling the police and have them search for my mojo. Perhaps they could issue a psuedo-Amber alert for it. Maybe even telecast a public service announcement. I could have George Clooney star in it.

"Hello. I'm George Clooney. You may know me as the super sexy doctor from ER. Right now, I want to talk to you about a serious matter. You see, this young lady has lost her mojo. Mojo is important to all of us. Without it, we are unable to date. Which means, we are unable to have sex. Please, help this single mother of two find her mojo. No one wants her to become an old hag that collects cats. Think of her children. Thank you for your time."

I think I'll give George a call....

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

PRN Position Available. Apply Within

"I would really like to be your boyfriend," he said to me. "We'd be good together."

"You're a great guy," I told him. "But, I'm not ready for all that."

"How do you know unless you try?" He asked.

"Because I know. Trust me, it's not you. It's me."

And there that is. I promised myself I would never use that phrase. It has been used on me before, and it left me feeling so frustrated and rejected that I wanted to snap the guy's neck like a toothpick. But, I didn't know what else to say. There is absolutely no other explanation at this point in the game.

I don't really have time for a full time steady. I don't even know if I have time for a part time steady. Am I supposed to look at this like I would employment?

Ok. So, part time is 15-20 hours a week......Full time is at least 40 hours a week with the possibility of overtime. I just can't swing it. Maybe I should try to find a guy who's looking for a prn position in my life. Ya know, mostly nights, weekends, and an occasional holiday.

Excellent benefits though.

So, I know what I am going to do. I am going to put an ad out in the classifieds. Not the personals. I am going to submit the ad under General Employment. It will read something like this:

PRN Position available for a
single male. Must have a
strong back, easy going personality,
ability to make others laugh, and patience.
Preferance will be given to those who attend
church and have children. Hours will vary
depending on the schedule of the
employer. Benefits discussed at a later date.
Apply by phone or in person.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


I'm a little skittish these days. I want to put my foot into the dating pool, but I'm not quite ready to feel how hot the water is. I don't like the feeling of being burned. No one does. So, I have to wrestle with the question of whether or not the search for finding that special someone is worth the risk of running into the ones that aren't that special at all.

I wasn't always this way. Along time ago, I was the heart breaker. And I definitely broke a lot of hearts. Maybe karma is trying her best to show me what getting your heart trampled on feels like. If that is the case, she can stop now. It only took one time to show me. I don't need a concession of heartbreaks, thank you very much.

I went out on date Saturday night. I went out on my "perfect date". Meaning, we cuddled up on the couch and watched horror movies. We laughed and talked. I enjoyed myself so much that I went back out with him on Sunday out to eat. Laughing and talking followed. He's a nice guy. Laid back and relaxed, just the way I like them. I have known him since high school, so he's not a total stranger to me.

The problem is is that I am coming out of a ten year relationship. Ten years of carrying the weight of someone else. Ten years of answering to someone else. Ten years of walking around on my tip toes; afraid to anger my significant other. Cautious of his feelings; unable to speak my mind. I feel like I have been in shackles for so long, that I'm still trying to rub the imprints off of my ankles. I am just not quite ready to go out and get a brand new pair.

There is also the fact that I still have not gotten back on my feet. I don't really have anything to offer anyone else. At this point in the game, I am nothing more than good company. Good for a laugh and an ear when someone needs to chat.

I don't want to string anyone along. My friend told me that if someone (anyone) likes me, they'll wait out my skittishness. He said I was worth the wait. And I agree with him. I am a fabulous catch.

But, I kind of feel sorry for the next man that happens to catch me and shackle me down. He is going to get an out spoken girl who's a little quirky.

And I ain't changing for no one.

Attack of the Killer Cow

I have not always been afraid of cows. One upon a time, I viewed these massive creatures as a sweet and innocent food source. I never saw them for what they really are- demon possessed beasts that are out to destroy me and all that I hold near and dear.

Years and years ago, back when I was adventurous and did not have children that asked endless questions, I dated a young man. This young man was a sweet thing and only a few years older than me. Together, we made up a sweet, young, and adventurous couple. Like most teens, we had issues when we wanted to be alone. "Your place or mine?" really didn't apply to us. So, we had to get creative.

Driving around one evening, we decided to take a blanket out to the edge of a corn field. Sensing my apprehension, my date promised me that the spot was secluded. "Nothing but you, me, and the cows," he informed me. "It'll be totally private." I happily agreed.

It actually was a romantic spot. I remember it being a cloudless night. There were stars everywhere. I laid in his arms for a good while as we talked about what we wanted out of life. At fifteen, what you want is basically everything. I eventually tired of the conversation; so we started to fool around.

So, here I am, with my adventurous-free-living-self, looking down at my boyfriend and thinking life doesn't get any better than this. Then it hit me, life doesn't get any better than this because I am about to die. Every horror movie that I had ever seen came to mind as I slowly turned around to see what was breathing down the back of my neck.


I screamed bloody murder. I did not give my sweet boyfriend a chance to ask what was wrong. I shot up like a lightening bolt and took off across the corn to the car. I left behind my blanket, my clothes, and my boyfriend.

I haven't liked cows since.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Back in the Day

One of my favorite activities during my workday is eating lunch at my desk. Alone. I turn my radio to 80's music, and I sit in silence listening. Remembering... My friends make fun of the fact that I enjoy the 80's so much. And I do like to add to the humor and joke how it makes me a dork. An adorable dork, but a dork none-the-less.

Actually, as I sit here typing this, "She Works Hard for the Money" by Donna Summers is playing. It reminds me of my mom and the time I lived with her and my sister in Hope Mills. My mom worked at a gas station second shift. This meant that we were left to our own devices after school. Unless you were a "latch key kid" growing up, you can not begin to fully appreciate the excitment of that kind of freedom. This was the time that I would rush home from the bus stop to drop my book sack off at the apartment and race back out to play with the neighborhood kids. We would hold street dances in the middle of the road, prompting angry shouts from the drivers that had to swerve to miss us. We would play kickball, dodgeball, and any other kind of ball you can think of. I would catch up with the boys and play a pick up game of football. They were innocent times. I remember it all very clearly, and I can still recall some of my young friends' names. I also remember the very first fight I ever got in to.

I was not quite 9. I was playing with a group of kids in the woods out on the edge of the apartment complex. We would all go back into the woods and make forts to play war in. Girls and boys would line up behind man-made huts and barriers. Pine cones were our weapons of choice. We would play this way until the street lights came on. This was the signal that it was time to go home. Even us latch key kids paid heed.

Well, during one particular game of war, my battalion was down. We were out most of our men, and it looked like we were going to have to surrender.

"Look, these punks aren't taking me down," my fearless leader hissed to me as we crouched behind a piece of plywood. His name was Robert and he was 10.

"What in the world do you want to do?" I asked. We were under heavy fire of pinecones and rocks. Two of our men had gone home with bloody noses. One was sitting against a tree nursing a very bad boo boo.

"I'm gonna throw our last pile of cones at them." Robert informed me. "I'll cover you as you run through the bushes and capture Jackie." Jackie was commander of the other army. He was 9.

"Why do I have to go? Why can't I cover you or Glenn?" I asked. I already had a nasty cut on my knee that I was sure was going to elicit some sort of lecture from my mom.

"I can't," Glenn informed me. "My mommy just got me a new retainer. If I mess it up, I can't go to my Me-Maw's this weekend." What an impressive army we were.

"I'm the oldest. I call the shots." Robert said. I conceeded to this age old wisdom and prepared to make a mad dash across the border. It never occurred to me to ask how I was supposed to apprehend the enemy's leader. I should probably have asked.

As Robert yelled "Run!", I sprang into action. I dodged pinecone after pinecone. I crouched behind trees until the coast was clear. With what was left of my team cheering me on, I made my way to Jackie and tackled him to the ground.

"I've got him!" I yelled triumphetly as I put my full 80 lbs on him. At least I thought I had him.

With one big swoop, Jackie grabbed my poneytail and flung me to the ground. Pinning me down with his weight, he sneered, "No. I got you. You're going before the firing squad."

Oh, freakin hell. Going before the firing squad meant I had to stand in front of one of the biggest pieces of plywood we had while I got pelted with pinecones, rocks, and anything else they could find.

I began to scream for Robert or Glen to come save me. Glen yelled something back about his retainer and loving his precious Me-Maw. I didn't hear from Robert.

Jackie pulled me to my feet and marched me to the spot where I was to meet my death. I looked for Robert and could not find him anywhere. Sobbing, I asked Glen where he had gotten to.

"He took off that away." Glen stated pointing in the direction of the apartments. My sobs of fear quickly gave way to tears of anger. My commander had abandoned me? In all the war movies I had ever seen, the leader always stayed with their men.

"I don't want to play anymore." I informed Jackie. "I'm going to go beat Robert's ass." Jackie quickly let me go. I ran to the apartment and grabbed my weapon of choice. A baseball bat. Or, rather, a t-ball bat.

I knocked on Robert's door and fearlessly asked his mom if he could come out and play. When Robert came to the door, I grabbed him by the collar and drug him out to the driveway. There, showing no mercy, I beat him black and blue with my pee-wee Louiville slugger.

"What did I do? Wes, what did I do?" Robert cried as he helled his arms over his head.

"You left me!" I screamed. "You were gonna let me face the firing squad all by myself!! How dare you?" Between his cries and mine, I never heard his dad come running out of the house.

He pulled me off of Robert and personally marched me back home. Since momma wasn't there, my sister called our neighbor. He came and made peace with Robert's dad. Later on that evening, Jackie came to check on me.

"I'm ok," I told him as we sat on the stoop outside. "I just lost my temper. He shouldn't have left me like that. I wouldn't have left him. I would have protected him."

"I know that. That's why I like you." Jackie looked at me. He leaned over and softly kissed me goodbye. Grinning, I walked back into the apartment.

At eight years old, I experienced my first fight and kiss in the same day. Now, at the age of thiry-three, a song from that time comes on the radio and brings a smile to my face.

I love the 80's.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Zombies, Jesus, and Cake

I can play the devil's advocate with most any topic. Capital punishment: What right do we have to take another's life? Well, you take a life, you forfeit your basic human rights, which includes breathing. Abortion: An unborn child has a right to life. Ok. But, no one has the right to my body. Christianity: Well, that's a horse of a different color.

In my experience, there are two types of people that call on God. People who were raised in the faith, and people who have been through a tragedy that nearly ended them. These people, or the tragedy people, need to believe in a higher power to make sence out of this terrible event that has taken place. Or the bad thing that they have overcome. At any rate, these groups of people are the ones trying to sell Jesus Christ. There are some that just aren't buying.

I can see why people have a hard time accepting Christianity at face value.

I had a discussion with an athiest friend of mine on the concept of God. His beliefs lie with science and anything that can be proven. He was surprised that I traveled down a more emotional path. (Being that I am not an emotional person) We did not debate scripture, but more the idea of Christ. The idea that I based my life on a supernatural story. And if you look at the Bible and all its tales, that is basically what it is. A supernatural story.

We go to church on Sundays to listen to a man tell us about another man that once walked on water. We are told that this man also raised the dead, turned water into wine, and actually rose from the dead himself. (Which technically makes him a zombie.) We are told that this man has a father that made us all. We can not see this father; but in the past, he has sent angels to destroy us...on more than one occasion. We're told that if we live by the rules this man and his father has set forth, we will one day live in paradise for all eternity. Then, we are asked to believe it all. We are not offered one shred of proof. Nothing tangible. Nothing, but a book that was written hundreds of thousands of years ago. And rewritten countless times since then.

I can see why others would doubt the stories told in the bible.

After my friend finished cross-examining me, I could only come back with one reply. "Because I know."

"How do you know?" He pressed.

"I felt Him," I said. "I have felt His presence when I felt no one else. I just know."

That answer did not satisfy my friend's thirst for knowledge. So, we agreed to disagree.

My "knowing" is what lead me back to church a couple of years ago. It is also why I ultimately decided to join. (That and a piece of chocolate cake) In order to join the church, I had to get baptized. (gotta have the holy water sprinkled on ya) I questioned the need for the baptizim almost as much as I questioned the need to join the church. Baptizim is a symbolic gesture of being washed of my sins. Christianity is full of symbolism. I don't see the point in it. God knows what's in my heart. I don't think having water poured over my head will change that.

I try to be as active as I possibly can in the church. This is one of the things that lead the preacher, on several occasions, to ask me to join. At one point, I declined because my life was too messed up. I felt like a hypocrit standing in front of the congregation. I have settled the turmoil that was going on. I have asked for forgiveness for my sins. All is well in my little corner of the universe.

I still didn't really want to join.

This past Wednesday during family night at church, I was eyeballing the last piece of chocolate cake on the serving table. With my mouth watering, I stalked the cake like a lion would stalk its prey. I could taste it before I even had it on my plate. Right as I was about to strike, the preacher stepped in front of me.

"We are having new member sunday coming up," he explained. "Any more thoughts on joining?" I looked to him, to my cake, and back to him again. In the distance, I could see an elderly lady rising from her seat; ready to snatch what was rightfully mine. I wasn't having it.

Without hesitation, I told him I would join, smiled, and beat the old bird to the mouth-watering-deliciousness that awaited me. (It was everything I had hoped for)

Later that night, I prayed to God about my hasty decision. Did I really just agree to join because I wanted the last piece of cake, or was something else egging me on?I asked Him if this was something that really needed to be done. What could joining a church possibly change? My answer came in the form of a dream about my granny. In the dream, she was telling me I needed to find a home. A home that was mine. I took it to mean that joining was like settling into my home.

And that is how I see it now. I love my church. I can walk in and feel the love pour over me. My children can run about and a capable hand is ready to sooth any boo-boo that might occur, or discipline them when needed. We are family there. And what's more important than anything else is when I listen to the man standing in front of the congregation telling me about a zombie that can walk on water, I believe him. I believe him, because I trust him. I trust that he is close to God and can help me grow and become closer to God.

They also have good cake....