Yes, now I am allowing myself to be angry
I am angry for the delicious lies
For all the fucking disappointment served cold
I am pissed at my naivete, my expression of weakness
Waiting and waiting, just wasting my time for unappetizing narcissism 
But dishonesty defines the boundaries, and I partake in this sin too
I am guilty of not knowing how to do this
I am guilty of being stupid, poor me (go ahead and laugh)
So fuck you for your dishonesty

I am certain the greed will hurt for awhile – I deserve all of it

20 Minutes

I held my breath
I closed my eyes
I tried to make the world stand still
Dear GOD please, for just a minute
But the world doesn’t work like that

So, I gave myself 20 minutes to release all the tension
I wrote my truth
I shared my unfiltered honesty
I acknowledged my demons, my lies
One lifetime, yet another self-inflicted stupid fall

I will no longer serve myself on a silver platter to feed narcissism
I will force myself to laugh, to smile, to witness
I can deliberately move forward
I focus on the exact minute when I won’t look back – its almost here

I won’t be lazy, I do know how to get up and learn a lesson

I know how to put one foot in front of the other and walk away (so watch me)
I have always been worth more than this… and, that’s “just how it is” 
Time is slipping away to make this… right
So I whispered one last time… “just fix it, or miss me… ‘always'”

And now… it’s fixed

The Kindness of a Young Stranger

Half way around the world a handsome stranger sits alone
His face lit up by the soft light of his computer
His young devilish smile warms me

He shares his voice with me
His image reminds me that I am not so young
But his words to me bring me back to my 20s
When he says my name
I am a believer 
He is kind and refreshing
Unselfish and raw
His conversation is timely
Sweet dreams…

The scars of greed and rejection hurt less with his “hello”
Uncertainty within is forgotten in the minutes we share
When he calls me “bella” 
He reminds me that I have spirit
Unwittingly he mends me…

A Woman Sat at the Bar Beside Me…

I am in Las Vegas alone. It’s a Thursday night, and I want to be somewhere elegant, away from the seedy nightlife. I get dressed up, decked out in lagoon blue silk and my best high heels, and dab Chanel No. 5 on my neck and wrists. The concierge made a dinner reservation for me at 8:30. A steak house at the Red Rock Canyon Resort. The place looks like most of the hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, but the restaurant tucked deep in the back of the casino was nice. I am seated at a table next to a large glass enclosed fireplace, which warms me from the blasting cold air conditioning that is characteristic of every hotel in town.

I am cognizant of the fact that I am the only person sitting at a table by myself. It does not bother me to sit alone, I rather like to see people as I catch their glances my way. Not sure if they feel sorry for me, or sorry that they are not me. Perhaps they wish they could get away from their dinner companions. It amuses me to wonder what they think.

I have a lovely dinner, with a gorgeous, if not wildly delicious cocktail that goes down too easily with my hearts of palm salad and perfectly cooked steak. I find myself…. tipsy.

After dinner I realize that I am not quite ready to drive. So I walk to the corner of the long bar on the other side of the restaurant. I sit at the end to people watch as they come through the door. I order a coke — not a rum and coke — just a coke. I am a tad bit disappointed that the bar tender didn’t throw any cherries in it, but oh well, c’est la vie.

As I sit and watch the younger men and women mingle, a woman enters from the rear door by the swimming pool area and sits a few seats down from me. She has salon blond hair, and I notice the lovely jewelry she is wearing. Her makeup is flawless and looks effortless. She is at least 10 years older than me. She asks if I could recommend something to order, as she forgot her glasses and can’t read the menu.

Something quite unique happened as we started talking. After not having a real conversation in several days (I’ve been on the road), I find that we are chatting like we have known each other for years. As it turns out she is originally from the area where I live, and we even graduated from the same University. She told me of her man trouble, I told her of mine. She tells me of her struggles with her kids who are kicking off their independence, leaving her with an empty and financially depleted nest. I tell her of my young daughter, and she gives advice that does not feel like lecturing. We talk about travel, and how we both like to see the world alone, because it gives both of us a sense of wholeness and rest that we don’t find when in the company of others. We listened to just how much we had in common. It’s both refreshing and frightening to find a kindred spirit here, on this anything but typical Thursday night.

She told me I reminded her of when she was my age. The softness of her voice as she spoke those words made me look up at her. I saw past the slight wrinkles around her eyes, and I realized I was looking right at me — the me I’ll be in 10 years. Her story – a need for a new self identity, not company – was my story. She told me of her new job, her new move to California, and the sense of ready to “leave the shallow, self-absorbed Las Vegas scene” behind as she begins a new phase of her life. As I looked at this stranger, I felt a kind of warm assurance that I was going to be OK, and that feeling rushed through me.

In the no more than 30 minutes that we spoke before her girlfriends showed up, I felt like I met someone who gets me. I have been struggling to open up and lean on friends to keep me company through this period of my life, but that’s not easy for someone like me. I wish I could have talked to her all night, but I politely excused myself so she could be with her friends. She wished me good luck, and as she shook my hand she looked me in the eye once more as though she was saying goodbye to an old friend.

I went on this trip to find a few days of peace, and maybe a little adventure that could give me some sense of purpose during this middle part of my life. I am convinced this was no chance meeting. This was fate handing me a look at who I’ll be, and I am starting to see that I’m going to be alright.

Las Vegas

There’s a thick cloud of desperation everywhere
It is palatable, like acid on your tongue
You breathe it in on every corner
You smell it in every bar, at any hour of the day

Collagen injected lips
Tummies tucked tight
Silicon breasts coated in an unnatural tan
Heels so high, they concentrate hard to walk

They can’t hide their vanity behind the steering wheel of their overpriced sports car
They all believe it makes them look more attractive, more worthy
But even in their middle age, they lack the depth of a real man
Their selfishness is worn on their sleeve like a badge of honor

The seedy is on display in lights all over the city
Sex is money, money is power, power is everything in this town
The salty sweat of the people who come in search of fantasy rushes against your clean skin
You can drive anywhere, and never escape it
There is dysfunction and satisfaction on every corner

The lights will lure you into the city limits
The insecurity we all have will make you want to come to this place
No matter what, you will secretly like it here
Its too much to resist
Not even the heavy rain that falls can wipe it clean
You can see the dirty from the 31st floor as clear as from the street
Its too delicious to walk away for good

The sun will burn you
Welcome to hell
The natural beauty of the landscape will entice you
Welcome to Las Vegas
Time to get dressed, the night sky is calling my name

Have You Ever Thrown a Fist Full of Glitter in the Air?

One of my favorite songs EVER is “Glitter in the Air” by Pink. When she belts out lyrics like these, I am reminded of EXACTLY how I want to live my life. I am reminded that the only thing you take with you when you take your last gasp of air is your experience. This may be my mid-life crisis speaking, but I need to throw more glitter in the air…

“Glitter In The Air”

Have you ever fed a lover with just your hands? (YES)
Closed your eyes and trusted, just trusted? (YES!)
Have you ever thrown a fist full of glitter in the air? (Theoretically, YES – but I should do it literally too, no?)
Have you ever looked fear in the face and said, “I just don’t care”? (Many times, WILL do it again next week… I’m all in, and ready to bring it)

It’s only half past the point of no return
The tip of the iceberg
The sun before the burn
The thunder before the lightning
The breath before the phrase
Have you ever felt this way? (Yes, but I need more)
Have you ever hated yourself for staring at the phone? (More than I care to admit)
You’re whole life waiting on the ring to prove you’re not alone (Never wanted a ring, just his word)
Have you ever been touched so gently you had to cry? (The experience transformed me)
Have you ever invited a stranger to come inside? (Yes…)

It’s only half past the point of oblivion
The hourglass on the table
The walk before the run
The breath before the kiss
And the fear before the flames
Have you ever felt this way? (Yes, I crave the building of emotions — that feeling you have the moment before you accomplish something great)
La La La La La La La La

There you are, sitting in the garden
Clutching my coffee,
Calling me sugar
You called me sugar (Everybody wants a moment like this)
Have you ever wished for an endless night? (Do you ever stop wishing for nights like this?)
Lassoed the moon and the stars and pulled that rope tight? (Yes)
Have you ever held your breath and asked yourself will it ever get better than tonight? (I remember like it was yesterday)
Tonight (Always)

The View from the West Window – Reflections on a Friend

An old friend was in town and sat across the table from me over the weekend. More than a decade has passed since we shared a meal, a drink, a face-to-face conversation. The years may be showing around our eyes, but I could still see his youthful smile and the face I have adored for what seems like forever.

He is the kind of friend that has always been with me. Over 23 years, he knows my secrets, my demons, and my joy. He was with me every time a boy broke my heart, and somehow remains at the center of most of my cherished stories. Drunken laundry afternoons at the Glamorama on Hope Mills Road (why do I remember that?!!), a failed attempt to steal a giant inflatable bud light man, and a weekend at Myrtle Beach with Fred the magic pumpkin.

We watched each other grow up. While we may have splintered away from each other –for whatever reason– as he talked with me again I found him as familiar to me as my own blood sibling. “What was the name of that bar we always went dancing at in Fayetteville?” and “Do you remember making all the Thanksgiving stuffing that one year?” We shared stories of Saudi, Somalia, private letters, oh, and don’t forget Christmas in July. Ahhhhhhh…. good — no scratch that — f*ing great memories.

My fondness for my friend is timeless. My admiration for his threshold of putting up with me all these years is infinite. My astonishment, and sheer, utter gratefulness for a friend like him is unfaltering. I think we will always see life the same as we look out the west window. I hope he knows I will love him forever and ever – Amen.

Everybody please rise… oops, no wait, everyone please sit down. (inside joke).

Another Leap

I keep dreaming of taking that leap.
I even know the date and time when I will jump
108 stories the website says
How morbid, how exciting

I remember the inner faith it took a girl like me to jump the first time
“We’ll roll out of the plane on 3” he shouted in my ear
Pressed so close to me from behind
His hands strong around my waist as we sat in the door of that small plane
But I just smiled, I had other plans

1, 2…………no 3 heard
Just the wind flashing hard against my face
A fellow jumper sped to me to high-five the girl with her first jump
Arms in the air, spinning, rolling
Giggles of adrenaline ecstasy
I can hear him laughing with me

10,500 above the green grass of North Carolina
The meter moves down quickly
I hear the words, “pull it now!”
The chute crackles when it unfurls
The pull upward jolts me, thrills me more
I Loooovvvvvvveeeeee iiiiiiiiittttttttt

The drifting comes under my control
I guide myself to the landing zone
I pull tight, and run to my landing
My feet, my body still feel airborne

I shed the parachute
I laugh and hug
I remember a hard kiss and then driving away
Not quite just another beautiful, sunny North Carolina day

Funny, I don’t remember his name, his face
But I have always remembered the thrill he gave me
I want that feeling again
I will have that feeling again


While I quietly move around the million pieces of the mosaic that represents my life, looking for a new picture, I am not surprised at how many pieces have always belonged to him. I’ve always seen him in the mirror.

I’ve lived a lifetime loving a memory, time to let go
I have relinquished my tight grip, and I breathe hard, deep
Perhaps now he’ll carry that goodness in his heart
Maybe he’ll throw it away

Either way, I am liberated
My sentence is over
My shame is no longer hidden
The tears that fall are lighter on my aging face

This weight was my honesty, my ground truth
This natural, gentle, passionate care was always the only thing I could ever offer such a strong force
I never felt worthy, though I was indeed worthy of more
The price of insecurity was a young woman’s dream, a feeling of “home”
The cost…silence, peace, years


Shades of blue waves reflecting in the mirror
The air is so still now, she can’t breathe
Mascara runs down her hot cheeks and onto the pillows that brought her dreams
Her eyes burn from the sunlight pouring through the window

Her lace chemise torn, stained by tears
Her bones feel broken by loneliness
The voice in her head whispered lies to steal her passion
No lyric, no letter could ever save her from that profound moment

The ocean screamed her name, she runs to it
The salt of the water hurts, but washes her clean
An urge to rise up and gasp for air takes her
She kicked hard to reach the surface

The rough hot sand on her back told her that she was born again


Have You Ever Missed Someone You Don’t Know?

Have you ever missed someone you never actually met?

I had an interesting conversation with a friend at work today, and she told me a story about a guy she met online who kind of blew her mind. The two complete strangers carried on a great conversation for months. She said she would constantly be checking her email, waiting for their next exchange. He apparently said all the things she waited years to hear.  My friend, a normally outgoing, confident woman, admitted that it grew to be quite a torrid exchange, and she found herself glued to her email. Its funny, because I had noticed that my friend, a 40-something mother, seemed happier than she had been in years. You could see it in her smile, her eyes.

Of course, as all great things do, it ended faster than it began. Over the course of the last couple of weeks she found the exchanges slowing down, and couldn’t figure out why. She thought perhaps it was her rather strong personality (she can be quite sharp with her words) that may have driven him away. But a few weeks ago, she found out that there was more to the story. She found out that the guy actually had a “very serious girl friend,” and was floored by this admission. She said she liked him so much, that she told him it was OK, especially since they didn’t live near each other, and frankly she was too lonely and confused by her her own problems that she found herself almost relieved to know he wasn’t asking for more. She just wanted the company and the effects his written word gave to her.

I asked my friend why she would settle for so little. She had no answer other than to say “loneliness.”

I found myself scared by that ugly little word… “loneliness.” That feeling of despair, that makes you believe that something otherwise not worth your time, is suddenly “good enough.” I wondered why this man was not forthcoming earlier on, why he waited until she was into him, so much that his leaving (not the admission of infidelity to his actual girlfriend) literally broke my friend’s heart. She was overwhelmed by how much she missed a guy that “never even held (her) hand.” She was taken aback by how much this strange online relationship hit her. She kept saying over and over, “I never even actually met him,” as if saying it would somehow eventually sink in and help her through this difficult period.

I’ve been thinking a lot about her. As a fellow 40-something, I can understand a lot of the needs she spoke about. I know how you can surround yourself with friends and family, but sometimes, when a woman our age looks in the mirror, you just want to see something else. In a way, its about a need that you can’t fix yourself. I think its about recognition, wanting to be something worth looking at. You know, before you are of an age that no man even bothers to lift his head to look you in the eyes until maybe halfway into a conversation.

I also have been thinking that she might have been hard on the guy too. Maybe he’s feeling that loneliness too — but, I’m just guessing since I never met the guy either. What drove him to convince her to stay, when he knew it wasn’t going to go anywhere? She’ll never know for sure. I think that’s a shame. Maybe they could have been friends, or maybe it would have made it easier to say goodbye.

This all in the wake of the Representative Weiner sexting scandal has me wondering what drives people our age to do stupid shit like have intimate conversations with strangers online? Why do we live lives that cloak our true selves? Why don’t we live more openly, and really work to be the people we portray ourselves as in the silence and darkness that computer anonymity gives us? Why would she trust the word of a complete stranger to bring her that much happiness, when she didn’t even know his name?

I am sure she will eventually get over it. She has bigger fish to fry raising her kid, and maybe, fixing other relationships in her life – the ones worth fixing anyway. Until then, I guess I’ll just be a friend and listen/offer her company — which, I think, might be all she ever needed anyway.

A Reason To Smile

Yesterday, I had a moment with a complete stranger. I was rushing to a meeting, running through the metro terminal, to get up the escalators. I was trying to get to my badge to gain entry to my building, but of course my badge was buried at the bottom of my purse. As I am standing there struggling to juggle my purse in one hand and looking quite frustrated by the fact that I can’t find my badge readily, I hear the voice of a man as he says to me “you are quite a beautiful woman.” 

Now, normally I would not look up, as I not the kind of woman that would assume those words are for me. But, I was cognizant of the fact that there were not many people around, and his voice was quite close. Just as I looked up, I caught the pearly white smile of an older man that looked like he was from the West Indies. He looked friendly enough, and not threatening in the least. So, I thank him for his kind words. As I walked away I found myself smiling, and I am pretty sure there might have been a giggle or two.
The random kind words of a stranger literally made my rushed commute, frustration with overstuffed purses, discontent with security badges, and stress over a meeting I was running late for just disappear. As I walked the rest of the way to the meeting, I started thinking about that man’s wonderful smile. How nice it was of him to take a moment to utter a few words that turned my day on a dime. Not an easy feat when public transportation often puts me in a less than favorable mood. 
As I get older, I appreciate the fact that there is still a bit of real humanity and civility still alive in America. More often than not you see the lack of manners and the ugliness of society. But every now and then… a stranger comes along and makes it a tiny bit better for me.
How powerful a kind word can be. How very comforting a complete stranger can be. 

She’s My Little 2nd Grader Now

My daughter is about to graduate 1st grade. I remember all the concerns expressed by family and friends about her starting so early, yet here we are. My little future Rhodes Scholar is finishing a milestone. She actually fell asleep reading her elementary school yearbook tonight, muttering names of friends from the schoolyard.

It took me 12 long years to have a child, and she will unfortunately be my only one. As I start to feel the effects of my age challenged by her youth, I am both excruciatingly exhausted, and optimistically energized by the life she gives me.

I couldn’t be more proud. SHE BLOWS MY MIND! 

The Beauty of Roseanne Rosanadana

Some of my fondest childhood memories were of me and my brother staying up late on a Saturday night to watch Saturday Night Live. Sometimes hiding under a blanket to hide the glow of the TV, because our parents would not have approved of us watching the show. We were still young, so we had to sneak the viewing.

I remember great skits like they were yesterday… John Belushi as a Bumble Bee, The Coneheads, and my personal favorite, the incomparable Gilda Radner as Roseanne Rosanadana.

If you have never seen her, cut and paste this clip. You will laugh… guaranteed.

Even though I was just a kid, I could do a mean imitation of the character. I could even do the look thanks to my naturally unruly Mexican hair, and very tight braids my Nana would make to control it. She would wrap those braids so tight, I am convinced it is the source of the migraines I suffer from today. When I let those braids loose, there was the big hair! I even had a blazer – like the kind they wore on the SNL newscast segments – thanks to my mother who liked to sometimes dress me like a real estate agent. I just thought the character was a hoot. The look, the comic delivery, Gilda Radner made me laugh like nobody’s business.

When I imitated the character, I found power in the transformation. I was not the shy kid who normally could barely speak. For some reason when I went into character I could shed the painful shyness that defined my childhood. Pretending made the introvert disappear, and I was “somebody” that made people laugh. It was a very powerful feeling.

What really made the act was the hair. The unruly hair that I hated so much as a young awkward girl was finally useful! But once my Roseanna Rosanadana phase grew out, I was once again left to deal with the hair. Being a teenager left me once again hating the strands I was born with. I am only sorry that when I looked in the mirror, I never again saw an opportunity to embrace the humor or beauty of having something so unique to who I was. As soon as I could, I started a life long process of struggle against my locks. I wanted to tame those waves, and destroy the unruliness. Armed with all kinds of hair products and appliances, I have forged several decades of war against my Roseanne Rosanadana style hair.

Now that I am older, and my sister is a licensed hair stylist who has taught me so much, I have finally won the battle. I can tame my locks in a few short hours of sitting in a stylist’s chair, going sometimes months without having to do much at all. It is all together a relief and time saver.

But recently, after going a few weeks too long since my last straightening process, I found myself once again looking in the mirror and seeing that unruliness. I had fallen asleep with my hair wet, and woke up to the biggest hair I had seen on my head since I was a child. I suddenly had a flashback to the days of my impersonations. I sat in the chair in my large unforgivably bright bathroom, stared in the mirror, and wondered where that child had gone. I thought about how I cracked the shell of silence that plagued my youth by joining the military and building my confidence. I thought about how I transformed my life by going to school, working hard to have the blessings I have, the best of which is my daughter (who I am happy to report did NOT inherit my hair 🙂 I realized that no matter how much I change myself, I can’t run away from who I am underneath the cloak of professional success. No matter how much I process my locks, the brown (and now salt and pepper) hair will always come back to remind me that I can be the shy girl who hides, or I can embrace my inner-Roseanne Rosanadana and laugh, talk, joke, and be someone people want to know.

I will forever love Gilda Radner for planting the seeds of confidence through laughter, that I can see even today. We need more Roseanne Rosanadana’s in the world, so that young girls can learn to love who they are inside and out, and begin a lifelong process of self discovery. I wonder if Gilda ever knew just how much she impacted the world.

Rule No. 238

So the other day I found an interesting book at a wholesale price club, because as with everything I do in life, I buy in excess of what I actually need. The book is called “Dance First. Think Later.” Your basic book of quotations, but the reason I bought this one is kind of an interesting story.

I’ve been going through a weird part of my life. Questioning the direction I have been traveling with my eyes shut for so long. No, I didn’t realize that I wasn’t living my life until one day when someone I love dearly dropped a bombshell on my perfect existence. The girl that had it all… yeah, she really didn’t. The reasons for that particular bombshell is neither here nor there anymore, but what does matter is how I was spinning my wheels, questioning everything, as if that would make it better.

So, all this shit came to a halt one Saturday afternoon when I opened the book and the read the following…

Rule No. 238 “Take time to deliberate, but when the time for action has arrived, stop thinking and go in.” – Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor

Not only did the fact that a verifiable self-proclaimed Emperor say something that made complete sense to me, but he just rocked my whole world.

I have been thinking too much about EVERYTHING! I have turned this life of mine inside out, upside down, twisted it, and read it in every color I could color it. The time is long overdue for me to just stop thinking. Accept what I have to work with, and just go for it. Life is passing me by, and I am the only one stopping me from enjoying it.

Not sure why I couldn’t just pick myself up after the bombshell. Not sure why I forgot that I am so much bigger than hurtful words. Not sure why I convinced myself that I wasn’t worth going on to better things. But there you have it — wasted chances, wasted opportunities, wasted time. What a shame, right?

Now, I’m back. Actually, I’m better for it. Ready to take time for myself. No more waiting, just ready. Ready for peace. Ready to feel happy, pretty, confident, successful, loving, and most of all, ready to be the best mom I can be to the best little girl I know on the planet. Ready to be the example I know she needs me to be.

Funny, but picking up a simple book, and randomly opening the pages to Rule No. 238, wasn’t so random to me. I think fate took one last shot at kicking me in the head one more time. Glad I finally opened my eyes.

So now on to Rule No. 386 “There’s always a reason to smile. Find it.” Bob Parsons, Digital Entrepreneur.

I Am NOT A Twitterer…

I have tried Twitter, but you know what? I talk too much even for online. So, I find myself on Trying new things as of late, so why the hell not?

Is it a midlife crisis? Yeah, probably.
Is it loneliness? Sure, most likely.
Is it boredom? Most definitively.

Well, let’s see if putting my karma out there in the bloggersphere (is that what its called???), will help get me through this stage of life. I figure between writing and jumping off of a bridge, a cliff, a building here and there for an adrenaline rush, should do the trick.

Besides, it will be nice to bitch, moan, and laugh by myself or with others who too have a strange voyeuristic lust for knowing people in the cyber world.

Welcome to my world, join me for a bit?