Friday, January 4

#Dondothis- Confessions of a Mean Girl

I was a mean girl. I expressed relational aggression in undue directions. I had an us vs. them mentality until I realized I didn't want to be an us... or a them...
Image result for black mean girls
When I say I was a mean girl I mean like as recently as last year I was displaying tendencies of a mean girl: being nasty, manipulative, and exclusionary. Then one day, I realized I was being wack. I didn't even have any explanation as to why I was doing what I was doing to the people I was doing it to at the time. People were the targets of my petty, wit, sarcasm and sometimes downright rudeness after having done the least little thing. I realized that I had to extract myself from a mentality that was making others miserable and bringing my vibrations low.

I'm not really a cliqueish person. I have about 6-10 close friends who I hang out with separately or sometimes in a small group. But I never really got down with huge friend groups where everyone was with everyone all the time. My introverted empath could not take all of that. Because of that, from my elementary school days until now, people tend to see me as a lone wolf in need of a pack. People have  often tried to absorb me into their's and I'd go because I was curious. Well, we all know how rude curiosity can be... I was starting to feel suffocated.  I needed out of the cycle of misplaced anger and unnecessary clapback before. One thing about mean girls is they start to turn on each other eventually... WHEW!

So, I placed my anger where it should have been and I clapped back at the necessary people... much like Cady in the movie Mean Girls. And let me tell you, I feel so light! I have opened myself up to opportunities to connect with more like-minded people. I have received unimaginable love and support.

You may notice that the title hashtag usually means a story about someone's son is coming. But I have not been on a date bad enough to blog since I changed my energy. I have had amazing experiences, met incredible men and discovered more about harnessing my power. The bad ones are fewer and farther between. I am not beholden to anyone's ideals or ideas of what my love life should look like. And it has since flourished in all areas. WHEW!

Let me be crystal clear, I can and will still bless you out or meet your ignorance with sarcastic wit, if I deem it necessary. But I am deeming it less necessary these days. I am more intentional about my energy and now choose to focus it on more positive and joyous endeavors. I'm still going to post about people's sons doing dirt, but I encounter it less so you will see it less. I am still an advocate for people especially women of color unduly penalized by the white cishet patriarchy. I am still going to crack jokes and troll people on my social media pages with well-worded posts occasionally. But, what I will not be is a mean girl waiting to strike, who then gathers other mean girls to join in. I'm off that. I can only hope people who were adversely impacted by my actions and my actions by proxy can extend me grace and accept my apology. Self-reflection is a hell of a thing! I am grateful to have the opportunity to reevaluate, recalibrate and refocus!

My vibe changed, my tribe changed, my life changed.

Friday, December 28

2018 Tho...

2018 has taught me so very much! Mainly, it taught me to let stuff go! Things, people, places, ideas, concepts, people, norms, inhibitions, people...
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I have learned the art of letting things float away that don't mean me well. That includes people that call themselves my friends. I have started to advocate for myself in various spaces including speaking my mind to people and not really caring about whether or not they like me after I've said what I said. This has led to some people taking the coward's route of not addressing what I have said and others doubling down on their disdain. Either way, I'm not concerned. Does it sting at first? Of course, but I have a whole life to live and a purpose to carry out that clearly doesn't include them. I am learning to make peace with that.

In contrast to that, I have made connections with people who I am convinced are essential to my next steps! Men who are communicative, expressive and not afraid of feelings and emotions. Women who are supportive, caring, generous and not intimidated by other women's shine. I am grateful for what I have made space for after the garbage took itself out. I am concerned about the amount of garbage that keeps trying to sneak back in, but that's not my focus here today.

My family recently suffered a tremendous loss when my mother's best friend passed away suddenly last week. It's been tough because she was like family to us and watching my mother grieve has been difficult for me because I want to support her in the best way possible while I am also dealing with the loss. But even in this sudden tragedy, God has shown up and shone light on so much these past few days. It makes this process easier to deal with and the stages easier to get through.

Overall, I have grown in 2018 by leaps and bounds. I have been shown who my people are and I have been provided love and support from unexpected places. I have let go of who I thought I should be and started loving who I am even more. I don't think there are enough words or time to explain all that I have learned about who I am and what I am truly capable of but understand that I have a testimony!

As the new year begins and I get back on this road to my PhD, I cannot help but smile because there have truly been people, thoughts, situations and issues sent my way that were clearly intended to break me. Things that others have not survived, but this year, I gained a greater understanding of  my purpose, my personality and my principles. I pray 2019 is as educational, inspirational, propelling and compelling as 2018 was!

Also, related but unrelated.... someone buy me this shirt:
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Thursday, November 29

"I Am NOT Okay." and That is Okay!

Did you know that you don't have to be okay everyday? Did you know that pretending you are okay is not helpful or healthy? Did you know that when you are not okay you are not alone and that that that feeling of being alone is a whole entire lie?

These are Bri facts based on my lived experience, observation and what God has downloaded into my spirit. But, look, if you are NOT okay, tell someone.

Who is your person? Scratch that, who are your people? I have a few. I have a coach, a cheerleader,  a hugger, a prayer warrior, a real-talker, a light-shiner, a laugh-bringer and then some! I spread it out because, like many of us, I don't want to feel like a burden to any one person. The thing is, I recognized the gifts in these people to lift me up or call me in (not out) in a way that is helpful and healthy. I know that the things these people do for me are from a place of love, care and concern for me and that helps me remain in a good place to receive what they have to give. Take some time to recognize your human assets. In a time when people treat one another as expendable, it is imperative to find, acknowledge, and magnify value in one another.

I see so many people saying they don't get what they give from anyone and I just find that hard to believe. And maybe, just maybe, it is because they are trying to get things from the wrong source. Tryna get light from dark dwellers. Tryna get real talk from yes men.
That's not how this works

Getting what you need starts with you. You have to be honest with yourself first. Think back to the last time you were not okay. Consult with your spirit and consider what you truly needed in those times. Now, you gotta put your pride aside. You gotta go to the people that will give you those things. If they cannot provide, then you have to go back to the drawing board because you have not gone to the right people. There's nothing wrong with that, do not be discouraged. You are on a journey to get the most out of this here life and along the way you may have to backtrack, check your map, reroute or even change your destination. But you won't know until you're on the road. The most important thing is to get on the road!

We often allow catchphrases like "living my best life" make us feel like we have to be at the top of our game all the time and when we aren't we beat ourselves down, try to bring others down with us, fake it 'til we make it, or sometimes just stop trying altogether. It's okay to NOT be okay sometimes. It's okay to seek your people in those times. It's okay to seek help (THERAPY) when you are not okay for long periods of time. It's okay to ask for directions along the road to wellness. It's okay to not always feel like you haaaave to "be best". It's okay to strive to just be okay sometimes.

Call on your people. Check on your people. Love on yourselves. Holla at your girl.

Related but unrelated- someone buy me this shirt...
Okay, bye!

Friday, October 5

Cuffing Season Redux

This is going to be brief.
let me start by saying I have drastically reduced the foolishness in my life by swiping left MORE and unmatching QUICKLY! Since that time, things have been gravy. I won't be blogging about the good stuff until I am certain it's dope and not baking soda, so... in the meantime, here's my blurb about the cuffery some folks are attempting.

If you thinkin about gettin that old thang back, don't! If you are thinking about contacting a plushious woman that you've been keeping on the bench until it gets chilly, don't!

The ghosts of summers past have come a-texting. Yes, I can cook. No, I'm not cooking for you. Yes, I love to lay up and watch movies when it's cold. No, I will not be allowing you to join me. Remember how you were too busy this summer? Keep that same energy, dude! It's like a few of y'all looked at the extended weather report and decided it was time to change out your women like you change out your closets.
Just so we are clear I am not only talking about myself. I have a few friends that are thicker than cold grits whose popularity has spiked here lately. And I want you to know, they're on to you, sirs.... so, please, quit it out.

Y'all stay warm! (but not at my house)

Thursday, September 13

#DontDoThis- Setup, Stand Up, Shut Up

So, before I begin, the answer to all of your "Girl, why?"s is "Because why not." The answer to all your "Girl, what?"s is "Chiiiiile, Iowno."
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So I was doing my dating app rotation after a particularly harrowing experience with a faceless man who solicited me on a dating app that apparently is teeming with ne'er-do-wells, degenerates and toothless male nurses. But thanks to that app I now know what P2P means... *shudders* But I digress. So I had closed 2 accounts and reopened Plenty of Trash.  My approach this time was different. I was blocking from the first message. If my spidey senses tingled looking at your profile, you got blocked. So enter the municipal worker. His intro message was funny despite the lack of subject-verb agreement: "If you was a vegetable, you'd be a cutecumber." I had never heard that one before and it made me chuckle. I go through his profile. It's pretty blah. Lots of pics in his work uniform. So I respond. We chat a little. I suggest he remove the pic of him shirtless in his work vest that he claims was "sexy" (I assured him it was not!) He actually removed it. A man that can take a suggestion, huh? He doesn't say anything vile, disgusting or off-putting so I give him the burner number.

Fast forward a few days of texting and short phone calls. He keeps asking weird questions that are struggle love adjacent like "would you date a dude with no car?" and when I say "NO!" he tells me that's messed up. Spidey senses activated. He says he wants to go out Friday night. I say ok. I suggest the seafood spot, he asks about the soul food place, I tell him about Bonchon. He's never heard of it. He looks it up and has no idea what anything on the menu is besides chicken and fries. As a foodie, I was concerned. He asks, "What's buhlaaahjee?" I reply, "You mean, bulgogi?" Him, "Yeah, what's that?" I explain, he seems hesitant. Spidey senses tingle. He mentions having been to the fast food pollo place nearby. Spidey senses tingle more.

Friday comes. He's been texting me all damn day. We are on the phone around 6:30 and we're supposed to meet around 8. He's complaining about an issue depositing his check. I'm a full-blown spider now! I tell him that it sounds like he's not going to be able to go out tonight. He insists he's good to go. This spider has decided to build a web. He says he is going to charge his phone and let me know when he's on the way. I call around 7:45 and no answer. I was already on my way to the Thai spot down the street because my mama didn't raise no fool. I ate well and went home.

The next morning I am texting with another guy who tries to pull that whole "send me a pic". I tell him if he wants to see me, set something up. He then asks me to meet him at a popular brunch spot  in an hour. (Actionsssss!) So I am in the bathroom getting ready and my phone rings. I run into the room and answer without looking at the number. Dumb! It's the municipal worker. Dammit, Bri! He says good morning like nothing happened. Me, "Nah. This is not ok." He starts pleading his case. He fell asleep and had 20 missed calls and his roommate (please get your answers to the what or why above) woke him up at midnight to ask if he went out because the $20 he loaned him was still on the coffee table. Yes, you read that right. I said "nah" again and he puts me on hold because his child's mother is calling. I hang up immediately and continue to get ready for an actual date. He calls again and texts. I ignore.

I am driving down the street and decide to listen to the voicemail. Yes, he left one. He's pleading his case and promising me he will make it up to me. Tells me we can go get seafood or anything I want (remember that, it's important). His text is pleading in a similar way. I call back. (please get your answers to the what or why above). He's swearing he will make it up to me. He apologizes. He tells me he will bring me breakfast. I tell him I'm not even home. He asks if I eat crabs because his roommate told him about a seafood carryout with a dozen crabs for $20. I tell him I have plans for the rest of the day. Plus how you offer seafood as a makeup then think someone is going to want $20 crabs? Then he says he will send me lunch money. I almost slowed down on the highway, y'all. Me, "You know what, Imma let you do that." I get off the phone with him. I go on my date, have a great time, attend my meeting and head home to write my paper that is due the next day. I get a text at nearly 1130 saying he's not sure how to use the app. SIR! I ignore it. 20 minutes later, there's money in my Cash app. I cashed that thing out so QUICK!

We talk a little on Saturday and Sunday. I was busy most of the day writing my paper. But he did call me Sunday and told his son to say "hi" to me. Yes, he did. No, I did not respond. I pretended I didn't know his son was talking to me because, sir, what are you doing?

So here's where it really gets weird. He texts me at 6:01 AM on Monday. I respond as I am on the  way to work. He calls. Apologizes again for Friday and asks if I want to go to the movies that night. Mind you the web has been built already. He texts me throughout the day. I ask if we are still on for the movies and he says yes. I tell him what I want to see and the times it is playing near me. The next time it's playing is 7 something after discovering the 9 something is actually a 10:35 movie... nope. As I am heading home, he starts with the bull. It was so much, I may forget something so let me give y'all the exact screenshots.

Not sure what was said in that outgoing call, but I am sure he still said he wanted to go to the movies....

one screenshot is missing where I say I don't want to go to Buffalo Wild Wings OR TGIFriday (his other suggestion). He says he's not really feeling the movies, let's go bowling.

This is real life. Please note that by the time he was talking about Buffalo Wild Wings, I was already on my way to get some dinner because I peeped his game from the Dollar Tree text. Also note he texted me "Hi" again after that wack excuse at which point I blocked him on my way to another date.

Fellas, tell your homeboys to stop doing all of this. Even if you don't think he's this type, tell them to stop. I know this is such an odd amalgam of ashiness and assholery that seems to only happen to me.... but seriously based on the amount of women I know that have had something remotely similar to this happen, it stands to reason that at least one of your friends is doing this type of foolishness and not telling you about it. So gone on ahead and send out that PSA to stop setting up dates they cannot afford, stop standing women up instead of telling them they cannot make it, and start shutting up when women ask them to leave them alone. 


Friday, September 7

Back to SKEWL!

Summer is over, y'all!

Over the last few weeks my timeline has been full of pics of my people's kids with their adorable first day of school looks...

Well, here is mine!

I feel JUST like my man Rodney! I am nearing the end of my first quarter in my PhD program and I am asking myself "why is you doing this?" Then I picture the life I want to live int he next few years and get back to the books. Most of my Friday blogging time is spent researching for a class or my dissertation. Ok I'm lying. Most of that time is spent goofing off on FB and pretending to catch up on work that my brain did not have the capacity for during the week. These last 9 weeks have been a test of my patience, organization, and general wherewithal because folks from all aspects have been trying it!

My first week I got into it with a little Miss know-it-all from class. By "got into", I mean she tried to flex her academic pecs (quite poorly, I might add) and I responded with my best academic clapback which included "it would stand to reason" which is academic-speak for "THINK, YOU DUMMY!" From then on, I had only one other incident with her. I know that she was fuuuuming when the professor posted her weekly feedback to the class and I was the onliest one who got praise! I felt like Violet Beauregard when she was talking about her gum-chewing rival:

There, of course,  have been incidents and run-ins with people's sons not being respectful. This includes somebody's uncle that keeps calling and texting me after refusing to stop referring to me as babygirl, which I asked him to do less than 24 hours before he did it again.

No, you're not missing anything. No, I did not delete my responses. This conversation ended on August 11th when he reluctantly agreed to stop calling me babygirl, strike 1 AND 2. Then doing it again the day we were supposed to go out. Yes, that is a voicemail he left for me sounding as if he was about to file a missing persons report. *sigh*

Lastly, I have some big news! *drumroll* Ok, I lied. Life has been pretty boring and I have been doing my best to avoid undue stress which is why I haven't watched the news in over 2 months. I see what comes across my timeline and I will stop at my co-worker's door to briefly glimpse at CNN, but I no longer tune into the local AM or PM news and listen to the endless cycle of TURRBLENESS that spews forth from this administration. It's been so peaceful! I am on vacation from the world,  y'all... the whole, wide world. Bubble life!

That picture is the perfect visual for how I have been feeling. I have stepped my trolling game up on my own page. I now just repost anti-patriarchal/ misogyny messages from other sources without comment and step back to see what color they gonna put on the wall like Miss Celie. Several folks have unfriended me over the weeks! And to that I say: "Oh well, they're lost!" (misspellings intentional... that's FB speak lol)

In the meantime, in between time, I have been showered with love and support from my friends and family. And for that, I am eternally grateful. This weekend I will be holed up in the house or maybe at my fave workspace busting out a paper where I am the subject. It was threatening to cause me existential crisis, but instead, I chilllllled. 

Y'all keep fighting the good fight and love on your peoples!

Monday, August 13

This Ain't The Walking Dead, Sir

Hey, listen. First, let's agree The Walking Dead has been trash for several years. The plot is a mess & the zombies' actions are inexplicable and inconsistent. (remember that, it's important!)

Now, let's talk about zombies. Relationship zombies. These are the people who come back from the dead after relationship ghosting (never calling or texting again after being serious for an extended period of time) or blowing up the relationship and themselves along with it and acting as if nothing happened.

Over the past 3 weeks or so, this has happened to me and my ladies SEVERAL times. All these planets in retrograde have y'all out here cutting up! And I will not abide it! Stop doing this. I implore you. In each instance, the woman involved expressed her feelings about the relationship in a way that was calm and direct and in each instance, the dude had in some way faded away without acknowledging the feelings, thrown a tantrum (yes, y'all a tantrum complete with a "you're not my friend anymore"-adjacent response), or acted out so badly there was no sense in trying to set things right.

Sirs, if this is you, I urge you to seek therapy. As I stated in my tweet last week: You cannot keep throwing tantrums or ghosting or acting out and then coming back days, weeks or months later to "check on" her as if you've done no harm. This is not okay. This is not an apology. This is not an acknowledgment of your poor behavior. This is not a kind gesture. This is toxic behavior that only seeks to ease your own mind at someone else's expense.

We cannot continue treating people who mean us no harm poorly and excuse it away because "that's just how I am". A refusal to do the emotional work is a refusal to mature into a healthy, introspective person. An unwillingness to address, apologize for and ameliorate your wrongdoing is an unwillingness to acknowledge that you view the individual as a human being with feelings. This doesn't mean, blow things up now and apologize later. This means admit you have blown things up in the past and you are going to seek therapy to prevent the situation from happening again.

So to the relationship zombies that refuse to stay dead, if you must reach out to someone let that someone be a therapist. Otherwise, please cease & desist.