The flea market

I recently visited the flea market for the first time in over 5 years, and I loved the whole experience. While I thought it was to hot to be walking around at 1 p.m. for S.C. weather, I enjoyed it. There everyone is the same. No person is better or bigger. The goal is to either sell your goods, like the young man sitting at the trunk of his car selling his artwork, or making a purchase. Maybe there are amazing peanuts there that you traveled for (like my mother), but find other things along your search for that vendor. I guarantee that you will find something you want or did not know you want. At the flea market.

When I realized my barber was homophobic

Let me tell you about my visit to the barber shop when I discovered my barber was homophobic.

My last trip to the barber shop started out normal. Getting into the chair and starting a conversation to fill each other in since my last visit. This time my barber decided to take the conversation in another direction. He told me that his daughter, who is gay, is getting married in a few weeks. I congratulated him, when he says, “I’m not going. I am not about to be struck by lightning“. The statement caught me off guard, because he knows I am gay and we talked before about an experience I had at a previous barber shop.

He continues saying, ‘I don’t have a problem with gay people. It’s just that you cannot get married under God in a church.

Noticing I became quiet he attempts to change the tone by adding, “Gay people are cool. You are one cool dude and you dress like a dude. I just don’t like boys dressing up like girls and wearing heels and girls like boys. Just be regular with it“.

At first I wasn’t going to comment and move the conversation to another topic, but I realized I can’t allow these comments to be made without speaking up.

Thinking to myself, “Bitch, I got time today“.

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Gay and family.

Growing up in a small town in South Carolina I have always heard similar statements. I have family members who say they won’t attend my wedding, and siblings who called me a faggot growing up. Sadly, growing up I got use to hearing people say things like that and learned  how to ignore it.

Think about that. Getting use to people and your family saying hurtful things to you.

At first I told him that not attending his daughter’s wedding would be a mistake on his part. He would be hurting his daughter on one of her most memorable days in her life. A day he will decide not to be part of. No amount of expressing love for her the day before will make up for missing it.

Now you have created resentment they will always have against you.

I used an experience with my father to help him understand. My father didn’t attend my high school graduation.  My mother went against my wishes and invited him when I told her not to. (More to that story). He told her he would be there, so I became excited to have all my family members attend. He didn’t show and gave some excuse as to why he didn’t make it. I brushed it off because it was my big day, but my feelings were indeed hurt. They still are and I’ll always remember that he could not put me first for once to celebrate my accomplishment.

Regardless of how his daughter deals with it the day of her wedding she will always remember that her father was not there. A person who she loves and care about did not want to witness something great in her life.

Gay and religion.

Growing up in the small town of Hartsville I was called gay before I may have known what gay was. Also hearing I was going to hell before my young mind knew what Hell was. The glories of growing up in the Bible Belt with these great “Christians”.

So I took this time to question religion with my barber. I simply asked him, “If God is this amazing being why would someone be doomed to hell for being in love? Think about it. Isn’t he a loving God and that is the reason we are here, for love and happiness?‘ After making my statement he stood quiet, and I continued, “because if you can go to Hell for love, then why would you believe in him”?

You learn to truly form your own relationship with God, and stop listening to other’s interpretations.

Gay and black.

The thing about being gay and black is that you cannot be both in some people’s eyes. We are raised to be strong, smart, and have to work twice as hard in this country. So being gay is seen as adding more baggage.

The famous phrase goes, “You already have it hard enough being black. Now you adding gay to it? People say it like it’s some career choice black gays make at a young age.

The need for gay people to act and dress what some consider “normal” is asking someone to not be themselves. My barber mentioned how he saw a guy who was dressed feminine a week prior to my visit. He said in his hometown guys would try to fight him. And to that I asked, “Do you know how brave that guy is?” Brave because he is able to walk freely while knowing there is someone out there who may attack them.

Possibly being attacked for being yourself. That’s some shit, right?

Reminds me of how white people had this hatred or feeling superior towards black people for just being born black. Or how people from the Middle East is treated by some white people. Gay people are treated the same way. Worrying about being attacked because a group thinks low of you. Being hated for something you have no control over. Being yourself.  However, you will get those people who will say that you can hide being gay when you can’t hide being black. To those individuals I guess you say Muslims can hide their religious beliefs and way of dressing because of the hatred they are receiving from everyone?

One would think that with everything going on in the world (Trump being president) that people would just stop creating unnecessary division.

Now I have to find a new barber.

 

Friend or foe? Stay or go?

Have you ever asked yourself why you are friends with someone? Ever wonder what it is about this person that you want to keep around and not just drop?

I have asked myself that several times about a few of my friends. So Let Me Tell You why you keep dealing with these individuals, so you can stop asking yourself those questions.

I struggle with letting go of certain people and ending friendships.  Many times, I have asked myself why, and even stopped talking to said individuals only to find myself to repeating the cycle.

It is draining.

Reliving memorable moments that you have shared with this person could be a reason you struggle with letting go. Reflecting on moments of partying, thotting, and having fun together. Remembering that time when they had your back in a difficult situation. You revisit those memories and you want to create more with that individual, because actual good friends are hard to find.

As we get older we realize that making new friends is not easy. You have formed strong bonds with people who already understand you. These are usually the friends that you do not see as much.  There is that coworker that you befriend, but you only go out to happy hour together. That friendship mainly stays in the workplace, however. When you realize that you can count the number of friends you have with one hand, cutting one off means your small list becomes smaller, so you put up with the friend you want to drop.

If you decide that you will keep this “friend” around, but want to change how the relationship functions to discontinue the cycle, here are two options to prevent you from repeating the cycle in your relationships.

One way is to take some time and separate yourself from that person. Giving them time to focus on themselves is what I call it. Keep conversation to a minimum.  This worked for me because I do not allow things with this person to upset me anymore. You are simply not phased by their ill behavior anymore. In a way you stopped caring.

The other way you can keep this person around is by considering them a good time girl. A good time girl is just that to you, a good time.  This is the friend that you just party and get your life with. You no longer share secrets with them, and your personal business is never discussed. This is typically that friend who tried to use personal information against you. You might consider referring to this friend as an associate. An associate is someone who you are getting to know. You typically refer to someone as an associate in the beginning of a friendship, but we are applying it here to rebuild a friendship.  In the future, you may grow into more with them, but for now you just focus on the turn up.

A good friend is hard to find, but a friend with bad intentions shouldn’t be kept around.

So is this person a friend or foe?

Mood Music: ‘Fall For You’ Leela James

Just when you think that you have built up walls to not cry over Jasmine Sullivan, Adele, and good ole Mary J. Blige you find another song to tug at your emotions and throw you back in your feelings.

Let me tell you about the song ‘Fall For You by Leela James, and how this song helped me take residence in my feelings.

The beauty of her voice when she sings the lyrics captures you, and puts you into a trance. And when you realize you are in the same situation she is singing about you are pulled in deeper. You realize that you are falling yourself and start smile with uncertainty.

In the song she asks, “Would you catch me if I fall for you?” A simple question, but a damn hard one to ask.  From my own experience I hate liking someone, and when I do I am just worried and I need to know how the other person feels also. And that is what she is saying. I am falling for you, and I need to know if you feel the same way. Because no one wants to be in love alone.

I stumbled across this song while listening to Major’s ‘Why I Love You‘ which already had me in my feelings, and then I heard this. That night was just a recipe for snuggling up next to a bottle of Kroger wine and tears slowly streaming down my face.

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One part of the song she says “But this thing is new baby. Feels like I’m losing control.” When I heard that part I knew this song was for me to hear. You might know that feeling when you can get so emotional and realize you are not as guarded as you thought. You haven’t felt this way in a long time. You start realize you are in deeper than you than you thought. Falling.

Trust me when I tell you that this is a song that you will want to hear. We all have that In  My Feelings playlist, so get ready to add this song to the list next Mary J’s ‘I’m Going Down’.  So be cautious when you are listening because these words may hit close to home. And you might find yourself like me snuggled up with some Merlot.

 

Check it out below.

It’s not you, it’s me

The famous break up line “It’s not you, it’s me”, has been heard in movies, tv shows, and real life situations. It usually means someone is taking blame for a breakup. In my case I am not quoting this phrase due to a break up, just my life for at this point.

Have you ever noticed yourself being frustrated a lot more than normal? Or are you starting to pick fights with family members for the smallest things?  Everyone else is the problem? Then take it from me, this is for you and you might be the problem.

I am 25 years old with a B.A. in Communication and minor in journalism from THE Coastal Carolina University, and I stay with my mother. So this is my personal testimony on this topic.

A little backstory:  I decided to move home March of 2015 after graduating in August of 2014.  I thought  moving home seemed like the smartest way to save money, and not be tied to a lease. if I was to land a job somewhere else.  So I would worked to save my pennies and keep applying for jobs within the journalism field. To my surprise finding a job within the news field is extremely difficult, and everyone wants two to five years of experience from college students.   I did however develop have a nice savings account backing me until rainy days and other stressful situations came. I did land a job at a news station, and worked as a master control operator for six months. It was a temp to hire position, that I my six months did not compete well against someone with ten years. But I still got the professional experience, so I am grateful.

It is now half way into 2017 and I am still staying home and I noticed a change in my behavior. I am annoyed.  For sometime I thought it was everyone else who was the problem? Because how could I be a problem for any one?  Until one day it hit me that I was the problem. Being mad with everyone else because I am truly upset with myself.

Do not take mistake my annoyance of staying at home with being ungrateful or unappreciative, because moving back to home was the smart thing to do. It just isn’t something that was meant for me to do as long.

My space is not my space, the rules are not my rules, and the comfort is going. Which in itself can be that fire that puts you to action and start moving forward. Moving myself back on the path that I once visioned.

This butterfly wants to fly. I just haven’t used my wings in a while.

It is me because I am the only person preventing myself from finding greener pastures.  And being content with content is not how I ever thought I would live my life.

To quote my favorite line from the movie Set It Off, “It ain’t you that I’m mad at“.