Jealous of God

The tears fell without me knowing. I was wearing makeup, so I couldn’t swipe them away. As delicately as I could, I wiped away one tear and then the other. I reached into my bag for a tissue and dabbed away whatever was left. None of this was as discrete as I would have preferred, but the train was pretty empty and the three people sitting across from me didn’t seem to notice. One was sleeping.

I was on my way home and thinking. I forget what about, but I suddenly felt very alone and I was. My closest biological relative is my father. He is not, and has never been, a person I can talk to about anything. My brother is a child. My younger sister is terrible at conversations and my older sister is too far away. There was no one else physically near me. I then thought of the only friend I had made and kept in, throughout and after high school. She was still in Jamaica. It was when I thought of her that my tears stopped restraining themselves. At that moment I really wished that I could talk with her, in her room, on her bed, at the opposite end of the hall from her mother’s bedroom, in her house, up and across the street from mine. But then I remembered that she was now a Christian and I thought of how I would hate to hear her mention anything about god and his hand in anything going on. And then I felt worse. There was definitely no one I could talk to.

* * *

I’ve just finished a bowl of cereal and was simultaneously reading a section in an article on how a lack of social support in addition to constant stress negatively impacts a person’s mental health. I thought of my suspected depression again and how it might be a good thing to have it checked out. But then I thought that I didn’t want to know, because if I really did have it I would use it an excuse to do all the things I barely keep myself from doing now – like staying in bed, all the time.

I’ve been enveloped in a low mood that started off as exhaustion after making a few calls for work. I honestly felt physically drained – from making phone calls and talking to people. And then suddenly I couldn’t do anything productive. I couldn’t read my article or clean my apartment.

I opened the karaoke app on my phone and tried singing a few songs. To my knowledge I don’t have a cold of any sort, but my throat was not clear and I sounded awful and this plummeted me further down. Several times, I tried to get myself to do something else. I stayed on my phone. Even if I did change my activity, I didn’t do the things I needed to. I finally got annoyed with my singing and swept the kitchen, my bedroom, the hallway and bathroom. I wondered why I hadn’t done it hours earlier. What had kept me from simply getting up and doing it? I felt bad for only doing it then, for wasting all the time before on an activity I was engaging in to make myself feel better, but that had only made me feel worse.

While eating my cereal earlier and reading the article, I thought of the man I met recently. I thought of how my last boyfriend was my confidante and how having boyfriends be confidantes suck because when you separate, you’re left with none, which is why friendships are necessary. I thought about my friend that I’m meeting up with tomorrow. I had thought about her when I was sweeping. I thought of perhaps confiding in her about how I’ve been feeling lately, but then shook my head mentally. I rarely see or speak to her. She’s incredibly busy.

I thought of that day on the train and processed my thoughts about my high school friend. I imagined talking to her and thought she might immediately turn to god. I didn’t like that. I didn’t like that in my mind she turned to god. I wanted her to listen to me and empathise with me and leave god out of it. I realised I was slightly jealous. I wanted my friend to myself. I didn’t want to share her with god.

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Floating on Emptiness

I pound against the doors of time
And beg them to release me.
Why did they lock me in here
When did they lock me in here
When will I be let go

Into the darkness
From whence I came –
Free from memories
And want
And love
And hurt
And desperation.

I float on my emptiness
And wait to be swallowed up
By this great vacancy
Which I’ve been allowed to occupy.

I wrestle with my ambitions
And my knowledge
And I fight and give up
Side by side.

“What’s the use?”
I ask myself.
“There will be nothing
When this is over
The same way there was nothing before.”

I release my breath
And sink into myself.
“Endure,” I say
“It will all be over soon.”

It’s Okay to Flirt

SKYLARITY

One of the most common questions I was asked during my time as a university lecturer was, “How do I find my passion?” 

My response to that question was the same every semester. And that was, “You flirt.” The students’ quizzical expressions to my response always made me chuckle—it never failed. Here’s the premise behind my response.

People, both young and old, often ask the question, “How do I find my passion” based on the following mindset. First, they do not know and are uncertain of how to get started or where to begin. Secondly, they made an attempt to find their passion, but did not find any fulfillment. 

My response to both groups is to flirt, i.e., to experiment with different ideas until you find the idea that aligns with your person—one that brings you total and complete satisfaction. On the journey to discovering your passion, it is important…

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With Envy

Marquita Nicole

I’ve always wanted to be like her so much, I brushed off anything positive people said about me. I don’t know when it started or if this was caused by the environment consistently pitting women and girls against one another or if it’s 100% me and my delusions, but I used to always think that the grass was greener for the next chick.

There was a classmate of mine that I was so envious of that in the 4th grade, when I saw that she was upset about something, I railed on her: “how could you be upset about anything? Your life is perfect!” And to my nine-year old self, it was. She had a house complete with a play room, well-dressed parents and luxury cars. Moreover, she was pretty, popular and got to do both dance and gymnastics. When I compared that to my life: small apartment where I…

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Fcuk Pretty

Wow

coffee and a blank page

Coming out to my 91yo grandmother, that spring I first broke the news to her about dating a woman, did not proceed according to plan.

My mother’s mother took a long moment, squinting at me intently, before she spoke.

FP_madeup-eyes

“So…when are you going to lose the weight?”

I sputtered back incoherently, shifting quickly into defensive mode while still trying to confirm if she had heard and understood what I had said. But once begun, Gram was not to be dissuaded. From critiquing my body, she moved on to my brother’s, and then my brother’s wife. When her litany of complaints reached the circumference of my preschool niece’s thighs, I stood up to leave the room.

“I don’t understand what happened,” my grandmother’s querulous lament followed me. “You used to be so young and thin.

“You used to be pretty.” 

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

This is not a story about living in a fat body…

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Love or Languish

I don’t consider myself a people person, but I think they think I love them. Maybe I do, maybe I don’t. Maybe it doesn’t really matter. Maybe I should stop being so vague. Maybe I should be direct and say when things rub me the wrong way. Maybe I really don’t need to kiss anyone’s ass, because asses are for sitting on and shitting out of and not for my lips to touch in any way.

Maybe I’m too lazy. Maybe I should keep my guard up and stop making myself vulnerable because I cannot be bothered to stand watch. Because the truth is, people are complex and whatever side of a person you are shown is not the entirety of who that person is. In efforts to protect myself, maybe I should not believe what I see to be all that is. Maybe I shouldn’t show as much of myself as I get the chance to. No one needs to know all the things I disclose about myself.

But how then do I satisfy the craving for human affection?