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Where do I begin?

Long time no talk. In all honesty, when I have been talking, I don’t feel like I have been talking. I always try to recapture the freedom from my Tekwh0re days, but the Internet changed, I changed (in certain ways) and that freedom of personal speech just went out the window the stronger the algorithms became. I also became busy- always so busy. But that good busy became good busy and frankly, I got lost, seriously lost focus. Most of it isn’t my fault but I like to think I’m stronger, better, and less swayed than your average human. That’s mostly true but necessity has a way of erasing stances and I became caught up in it all. And while I have been in this whirlwind of just trying to stay one step ahead of the Devil, the world changed around me, and those things I kept saying “I can do it later” just passed me by and “later” became “too late”.

Too late.

I have zero regrets in life, I do have many disappointments. One of them is the fact I never got to fight in Thailand. Another is that I never found that special someone who knew how to reach me and who I could trust with the secret of me and actually be able to talk to. I’m disappointed that none of my businesses took off. Disappointed, distracted, distressed and ill.

This COVID time has been hard on all of us, and though I did well from many perspectives, those things that I wanted to do finally became “too late” due to lockdowns and my health finally just faltering due to stress and other things. I’ve been thinking that I am at the start of my physical decline. I’ve been so, so, so, ill and no doctor has been able to help me. The frustration, oh the frustration. But on the other hand, my career keeps going from strong point to stronger… until last week and maybe a little before last week. A few things happened when I came back from Mexico and per usual with me, the firmware that runs me was doing its job before the OS that is me knew what was up. I’d like to compare it to a controlled system shutdown and reboot that I wasn’t even aware of. My better angels taking care of me because I certainly was trying but failing at really taking care of the soul of me. So here’s what happened:

I’ve always been vocal and stood my ground but I think over the past 6-7 years I’ve been more and more worn and beat up and feeling like there is absolutely no point that I’ve been keeping my mouth shut and just “SUCK IT UP, BUTTERCUP” and getting on with it. I was still speaking up for others but myself I just let shit go because I knew nobody ever believes me or even gives a shit when it comes to me. I’m always forgotten. I just let it go on because what else is new. But something happened on my vacation in Mexico where I finally really spoke up and I literally said in so many words “you know, fuck you and fuck this, I don’t deserve this.” and I walked. And that was just the start. I stopped training for the moment because it wasn’t fun and just too hard to make it work with my current life situation. I decided to quit my job because it was going in a direction that I didn’t want to go in… and that came to a head last week when I once again had someone try to gaslight me and use coded terminogly to insult me. But unlike every other time where I’ve had to bite the inside of my cheek to not be accused of being the “angry half black woman” I push that shit back and put them on notice and on blast because it WASN’T OKAY for them to try that shit with me and speak to me like that. And of course they pulled the “scared white woman” shit on me immedately because I firmly but politely ask them to back up what they were saying and held them to their words instead of just keeping it inside and nodding my head and thinking “here we go again.” She immedately acting like I was being agressive because I simply asked her “who said that?”

You know what? That felt fucking GOOD. Because I finally put myself in a position financially where I don’t have to put up with that shit. In the aftermath of that situation, I just made a definitive decision to get out of the type of work I do and made a year long plan to exit it. Two days later, I land a job paying way more money, working from home 60% of the time if not more and letting me work back in the city again if I do need to go in the office. It also puts some REALLY GOOD shit on my resume which will help with my gig after this one.

In the meantime, I’ve been really monitoring my health and stress levels since two weeks before Mexico, The day I had the worst altercation in Mexico was the worst that my stress levels were- my number were really really bad. But when I finally pushed back, things have been progressively getting much, much, MUCH better. My sleep has gotten better. My resting heart rate is better. My asthma is much better. And the more I push back, the better I am feeling.

Which is where I am right now. As I said, I quit the martial arts training. I stopped going to the gym. What I have been doing is taking care of all the little things that for YEARS have piled up and haven’t been done because I was “too busy”. The last few weeks, I’ve actually had time to be a little creative and work a little bit on the books I have wanted to write, fixing up my apartment, reading and not forcing myself to do more in a day than I feel like. I’ve slowed down quite a bit and I think that’s what I needed psychically. In that vein, I decided that for the rest of the summer, that’s exactly what I am going to do- just work on me, 100% what I want to do (besides having to work). I need to find balance back in my life because I feel like my timing has gone way off and that the me that is me has been severely disengaged from myself. I feel just so out of sorts and disconnected and that’s because I’ve been going though the motions without being in the moment and I know from years of my Aikido and Buddhist training, that not being in the moment is a very bad place to be and where one gets lost. So for the rest of this summer, I will do what makes me happy. I want to get in shape but I wanted to do it fast and how I did it before. That absolutely wasn’t working for lots of reasons. I wanted to keep doing the work that I have been doing. That absolutely wasn’t working. I was conforming my words and dress to not rock the boat. That absolutely wasn’t working. I believe that is why I have been sick and not getting better.

So I broke things down for myself as follows:

Fitness/Health:

If I feel like going to BJJ or Kickboxing, then I will go. If I don’t feel like making the drive then I won’t. I wanted my purple belt. I wanted to do the Revgear Muay Thai tournament. But you know what? I wanted to do it for all the wrong reasons. End of the day, I know I still can fight and will beat 90% of people out there in a street fight, man or woman. I keep killing myself to recapture something that frankly was gone the moment I tore my ACL and my team abandoned me for much younger and hotter chicks (and actually that’s basically the bane of the older woman- nobody cares or respects them after age 25-30… you begin to disappear and that really rough when you’re used to getting some attention. I hope the younger generation of women has it easier. It’s something our mothers don’t really tell us about- when you cease to matter in society if you’ve not had kids and don’t have a partner. You just fade. But I digress.) I had decided to focus on cardio and shit but I don’t want to. I like to lift weights and do strength and conditioning. So that’s what I am going to do. I am going to check out a few CrossFit gyms once my new schedule becomes known to me. I’d like to go first thing in the morning, work, and if I still have energy go do BJJ and Kickboxing. I’ll probably take a Muay Thai private 1-2 times a week regardless on top of everything else. I

Creative:

I signed up for a writing class with The Second City here in Chicago that starts next week. I also am thinking about taking a writing course at the University of Chicago in Fall. I want to also take a photography/film class (more a film class) so if I can ever really travel like I used to, I can tell and film better stories. I also want to start drawing again. I also want to get in the habit of writing my blogs again.

Work:

This current job will be my last IT Project Management job- I have made that promise to myself. I am a designer, a problem solver, a technologist, and a leader. I am not a glorified secretary. I want to be part of the solution and not just the person who documents it. I can thank that horrible bitches of the last two years for finally getting me to say “you know what, you’re right… I don’t want to work with your miserable people anymore. I want to be in the middle of the technology”. I want to be the person who solves the problem. It’s in my nature and it’s what I do. My goal is to earn a new cert every 2-3 months so, at the end of this, I am not longer an IT Project Manager but go back to my roots as a Solution Architect.

Entrepreneurial:

I need more time to work on my other side hustles or rather I need to really look at them. The one business I think I need to rename and take a stab at working the federal contacting angle again. The other is EMPIRE & ACES which I need to do a re-think on in general.

Financial:

I did okay last two years… I made some good decisions and where I wouldn’t say I am in a great position, I am in the best position I have been in my whole entire life. That being said, it still could be better and now that I am a freelancer, I need to really tighten up. I also need to double down getting better at investing. I’d like to purchase a place (or get a leasehold) on a place in SE Asia or Mexico that I can rent as an Airbnb and possibly retire to later.

The me that is “me”:

When did I stop wearing lace lingerie and fancy underwear? When did I stop getting tattoos and swapping out my earrings? When did I become 100% “easy”? I mean lace panties, pretty bras, and earring should be easy and practical- I mean there is no reason why I can’t destroy your ass while looking pretty stylin’. Don’t get me wrong, I love my tight jeans but all the logo and picture t-shirt and shit belong only in the gym. I am far too fine and rare a creature to have relegated myself to what I do now. I still always seem to have cool shoes but the rest could use some rework. I think its because I was living a live that if I wasn’t at work then I was at the gym and everything just went to hell. No more of that shit. I suspect me spending a lot of time in the gym is going to come back sooner than later, but as I said earlier, I need to built back balance in my life because clearly its not there anymore. I don’t wear my rings, my bracelets, my necklaces, my perfumes. I haven’t planned out any of my tattoos (though my leg an butt I am saving for an artist in Japan).

In Summary:

Later has become NOW. But now also means on my timeline. I’m not forcing myself this summer to cram everything in at once. By my 46th birthday, I want to be where I think I need to be, but I have time for that, so long as I make the time NOW. There is a whole bunch of stuff I am going to do that I didn’t put in this post but that’s okay. The fact that I am even posting is a start. The effort is here. The intent is here but what really matters is the action. This summer is about me going back to my roots and then reinventing them. There can never be “too late” again in my life and only I can control that.

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‘Bert

I’m similarly learning about what to hold onto and what to let go of, and why. The best “why” is when I realize that what I’m holding onto is cock-blocking my future, and also that I was more interested in the fantasized *end* of the thing than I was the means/process of obtaining it – which is probably why I didn’t make progress toward it in the first place. Letting go of that bullshit makes room – time, physical energy, and psychic energy – for one’s future.

I’ve also learned that being acutely aware of my place in time, space, and requires an active effort on my part, lest I miss out on opportunities because of myopia or navel-gazing. Sun Tzu recommended that we know ourselves first, and that’s a good call. I realized just today that I have a golden opportunity in a window that will close in two months. And the reason I finally recognized it is because I took a day off from thinking about the “what”s and “how”s, and took time to reexamine and reestablish the “whys” of my life.

I’m very happy for you, as always, especially as you continue to take the time to treat yourself with kindness.

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