What’s meant for you will always find you…

✨The universe always knows exactly what she is doing.

❌I’ve wanted to quit more in the past week, than ever before. Quit therapy, quit writing, just quit…

And then today, I got this message.

You know life is so unpredictable and there are times I think I’m doing so great and then out of thin air this dark cloud presents itself and it’s always hell to get it to disappear.

I’ve been wearing my best of smiles lately only to avoid being asked if everything is okay. Something about that damn question that gets me every time. So I just pretend and hope reality catches up

And I usually write to dump out all the feelings because I kinda suck at verbally expressing them but lately I couldn’t even bring myself to do that…

And then I got this message… and I just cried quietly to myself.

When something is meant for you, it will always find you.

It will find you in your brightest moments and your darkest corners.

It’ll celebrate your highest highs, and pick you up during your lowest lows…
✨✨
Thanks B, though you reached out to let me know how I’ve helped you-you didn’t even realize how much you were helping me. I love you 🤍
✨✨

Just keep swimming friends
Never stop writing ✍🏾

Just Put Your Hands Up Son

Being black has no age limits, because in the eyes of others being black at any age is a threat. So while other children your age, Kannen, may have the luxury to tell the police officer “it’s just a toy” or “let me reach in my pocket” you do not son.

When approached by a white cop or a white person who feels threatened by your presence just put your hands up.
Do not retaliate in anger because you are being treated less than what you deserve, just put your hands up.
Do not talk back as if you have rights, just put your hands up.
You may want to try and reason with them since you are a human being like everyone else, but please son just put your hands up.
You feel the urge to run as a deadly weapon is pointed at you when you know you’ve done nothing wrong, don’t run son because that just gives them an excuse to kill you, so even though you are terrified please just put your hands up.
We can be outraged tomorrow but tonight I need you to survive and come back home to me, so please son just put your hands up.

What a sad world we live in where these are the type of talks we have to sit down and give our black children. I am outraged that our black men, our black boys, our black people continue to be treated as if we are worth absolutely nothing.

Seriously, take a minute and think to yourself about someone you love dearly and picture them in their last moments crying out for help, screaming for air that is being stolen from them as the weight of a cop is pressing down on their neck. Picture your loved one wanting nothing more than to just survive so that they could hug you tighter but instead because of their color, their life wasn’t given a second thought. I mean can you imagine?

As Mental Health Awareness Month is coming to an end…

I pride myself on being an amazing mother, partner, family member, friend, human being etc.-and here’s why…

There was a point in my life where I was more angry than sad. I was sad because I was so depressed and i was angry because I truly felt like no one gave a shit. So much so that I tried to take my own life (this was years ago) and I wrote a suicide note, and turns out I kept it.
I’ll be honest I didn’t even know I kept it until I stumbled upon it yesterday digging through old journals.

And so I sat down and read it- I bawled. Y’all, I was so angry back then.
It broke my heart to read a letter I left behind for people who knew me and yet it was filled with so much anger and then there was part for Kannen and I told him that despite what anyone tried to tell him, his momma loved him.

Reading a note that was telling my son goodbye- whew, that hit different and it just…
It just really broke my heart.

My point being that as #mentalhealthawarenessmonth comes to an end, I want my family, my friends, other human beings, etc. – I just want you to know I care, I’ll always care- even when I say I don’t…I do.

I will be your vault, your shoulder to cry on, your person, your safe space-I will be what you need in the moment you need it the most.

It’s important that we remind those that we love just how much we love them.
You never know what people are going through.

I love you guys with everything I have and then some.

✨🖤✨

Day 5 Of My 2 Week Mental Institution Stay

May is Mental Health Awareness month and after coming across the journal I kept while being a resident of Compass Behavioral Health, almost three years ago, I’ve decided to share something.

I’ve never been hesitant to talk about me being in that place but I have been hesitant about talking about what went on in that place. The things I, as well as others experienced was just something I didn’t want to talk about. I used to think places like this were for the betterment of people like me-and while not everyone was horrible-I just don’t think that anymore.

This is a picture of my day 5 journal entry. ✍🏾

Here’s an excerpt,

“Speaking of writing, I was given the task of writing an inspiration quote on the whiteboard every morning. That gave me sooo much joy. Did they know I loved to write?”

I was still the new kid.
But for a moment I was on top of the world because even when I was at my lowest, people still wanted to hear what I had to say.

And I had written down quotes I thought of in preparation of writing them on the board every morning. Because ya know being prepared on a three meals a day/ forced interaction/ cigarette breaks kept me sane type schedule got me a fresh pair of socks 😉

And there was this one particular quote I created which was, “choosing to display your art even when it’s messy and colored outside the lines is such a beautiful thing to do. Replace the word “art” with “self” and I’d feel the exact same way.”

And when I went to erase it one of the other patients (who I by the way butted heads with on like my 2nd day there) asked me to wait a second and I looked down at what he was doing and why he wanted me to wait— well folks, he was writing my quote down. He wanted to remember my words.

Now he checked out of there before I did and I have no clue where he is or if he still carries around that piece of paper he wrote my words down on— BUT in that moment I told myself, “WRITING IS WHAT YOU WERE MEANT TO DO”

I’ve become okay with not being okay.
Because it is in fact okay to not be okay..
I just want people to know that when you find what you are passionate about-LET NO ONE try and convince you otherwise.
I don’t give a damn about popularity and likes and yadda yadda blah 😑
If it makes you happy, keep doing it.
People who truly love and support you will see the way you smile when you do the things you love and in return they’ll be all you ever need to just keep swimming.

Just keep swimming friends.
Until next time-keep writing ✍🏾🥀🖤

It has arrived!!

It’s here!!!

“Poetry 365-March 2021 Edition”
Thank you @rdw.world for creating a platform where writers such as myself can be heard.

I’ve never had my work published in a book before so I am just so honored to have been chosen to be a part of your project
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Be sure to swipe through the pictures to see the most absolute beautiful Dedication and Foreword written by @rdw.world

Be sure to follow him and his other account on Instagram @rdw.projects to keep up with all new and upcoming projects
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Keep swiping through to see my featured poem that I wrote which was inspired by Ryan’s writing prompt, “Wonder Woman”
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If you’d like to purchase this book, that includes my featured work along with many other talented writers from all over the Instagram writing and poetry community, you can do so by clicking here
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This is only the beginning. I am incredibly excited for all the things in store for my future.

As they have already been claimed as mine, I will continue to work hard and pour my all into my writing and wait for my blessings to unfold.
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Be sure to follow me on Instagram @ihave_writes to stay tuned in with all upcoming projects!!
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If you purchase the book from Amazon in support of me, I’d love for you to take a picture with my featured work (which can be found on page 242) and tag me in it on your social media!!
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Never stop writing friends!
These are our writes and they will NEVER be silenced!
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From Writer To Published Writer And The Fear That Comes With It…

Do you remember the first time your work was shared somewhere other than between the lines of your journal?

Or the semi perfectly formatted pages of your website?

I guess technically we are published writers every time we become brave enough to let our words take shape on its own, releasing them from the pages we keep them captive on.

However it’s a bit different receiving an email informing you, that the poem that you submitted has been published on someone else’s website or in their book, or wherever else we loosened our grip enough to watch our words travel.

I GOT THAT EMAIL YESTERDAY!!

I am a published writer!!!

I am a published writer. Like an actual published writer.

It was surreal to scroll down and see MY bio under my poem on someone else’s website. You can see my featured poem here on PhoebeMD

It was also very scary…and before you think I’m crazy let me explain why.

For years, writing has been the one thing to remain constant in my life. No matter the length of the hiatus between us, I could always come right back to it. Comfortably-with no awkwardness and resume right from where I left off as if I had never left at all.

My journals never judged me about the ways in which I coped. I was never made to feel less than or labeled the “black friend” as if that was all I had to offer the world. Writing was/is/and will always be MY SAFE PLACE.

With that being said, deciding to open up my home-where I feel the safest-to other writers, and really the world is both exhilarating and absolutely terrifying.

What if this becomes something I no longer enjoy doing?

What if I get caught up in the superficial things and I no longer feel safe writing down the stories begging to be told?

Those are some scary thoughts and they are with me constantly….

Want to hear how I deal with those thoughts and how I try to keep my writing as sacred as the day I opened up my first black and white composition book?

Tune in next Monday to an all new episode of the iHaveWrites Podcast as we discuss the fears surrounding the things we love the most.

Surgery Tomorrow

I have a small surgery tomorrow morning, so I may not be as active on the site. For those who didn’t know, back in October of last year, I horribly dislocated my knee while crossing the street. It has been a very long and grueling road but on the positive side of that, it gave me the opportunity to get serious about my passion for writing. The hopes of tomorrow’s procedure is to get a better bend in my knee using manipulation while I am under anesthesia. When I am rested and feeling up to it, I will post a detailed story of one the most traumatic days of my life and explain exactly how this injury came to be.

You can find some before and after shots of my knee below.

Until next time, keep writing.

This is what my knee looked like after the accident. It was completely off track. I tore my acl, mcl, and pcl. As my therapist says, “All the ligaments that keep the knee in place–you tore all of them!”
This is the after. It has healed quite well in the last four months. The doctor is pleased with how it is healing, however I don’t have much of a bend in my knee. So tomorrow’s surgery will include manipulation while under anesthesia in hopes of being able to bend my knee again and walk without using a walker/wheelchair.

Have you ever forgotten the sound of a loved one’s voice?

While getting ready for bed last night, out of the blue, I realized something. I could not remember what my mother’s voice sounded like.

I was seven years old when my mother passed away from breast cancer.

No matter how tightly I closed my eyes and opened my ears while thinking of past memories, I heard nothing.

It was as if I was watching a black and white movie with no sound. With my eyes still closed, I smiled at my remembrance of her face.

She was so beautiful, and then she started to talk but there were no words that followed.

If you would’ve seen me you’d think I was watching a sad movie, and in a sense I was. How could I forget such a sound?

Of all the pointless things that live in my head rent free, how could her voice not be one of them?

And in a state of panic, I started to remember all of the other things I had forgotten.

What were the last things we said to each other?

Did you die knowing how much I loved you?

Did you know that I promised to always be there for Caitlyn?

You don’t have to worry.

When was the last time we cuddled?

There is no black hole big enough to fit my questions nor strong enough to catch me at the speed that I am falling.

So still is what I was.

Still is what I am.

Still hoping your voice comes to me like the cold in the night…abruptly, quickly, fast.

the longer i stare at this picture, the emptier i become. i can hear everything BUT the sound of your voice and it is a pain like i’ve never known.

Undivided Attention, Divided Comprehension

In August 2020 my friend, Kayla, reached out to me asking if I wanted to collaborate with her on a poem she really wanted to create. It was a poem that would serve in memory of a dear friend of hers. After listening to her and hearing how passionate she was, I of course couldn’t wait to bring this poem to life. Kayla, knows that I absolutely love to write and I do so passionately. However, she also knows that most of what I write stays behind the doors of my many designed notebooks and journals.

I’m thankful that she approached me with this and made sure that not only did I write piece for the poem but she also wanted me to RECORD myself reciting it. If you know me at all, you know that recording my poetry is so out of my comfort zone. I’m glad I was pushed out of it though because I found something on the outside of where I am comfortable. I found many doors, yet to be unopened. I can’t say what is beyond the doors, but I know I’ll never find out settling on comfort.

Here it is, my first ever recording piece of work along with a dear friend of mine, Kayla Mabry. Our poem, Undivided Attention, Divided Comprehension, in memory of Quamaine.

Enjoy

Undivided Attention, Divided Comprehension

(Kayla) Excuse me while I stand on my soap box for what I believe I’ll SHOUT from the roof tops “NO JUSTICE-NO PEACE” The media’s made sure this has our Undivided attention We’ve all read, seen, and heard it – the problem comes from divided comprehension This isn’t patatoe/patatoe this is human life “I hear what you saying!” BUT YOU’RE NOT READING IT RIGHT If your skin looks like mine, you have no first hand experience If you’re ONLY listening to reply, you’re not really hearing it Now close your mouth, Open your mind put away the twitter fingers this don’t even need a reply Do I have your undivided attention? Because as you continue to listen – The world needs you to comprehend There’s no hidden meaning – IT WAS NEVER SUPPOSED TO BE US AGAINST THEM

(Candice) I hope my words are heard just as clear as the ones spoken before me A black woman speaking her mind, Lord I hope they don’t ignore me Checking my watch cause time is crucial, and I got a lot of shit to say Watching another black brother getting shot in the street is now considered “Just another day” While you’re on THE FENCE, I’m on DEFENSE and I promise it is not the same thing It should not be the norm to read in headlines about the death of another Black King And yes, crime is crime and a wrong is wrong and in that aspect you are right But you mean to tell me if my Black brother has a criminal record the price to pay has to be HIS LIFE And for the mentally unstable who are not able to communicate what is on the mind Should they really be silenced with bullets because they could not comprehend a command when it was given the first time Two men with guns, but only one is killed and not because the other was tougher Two men with guns, only one is killed, simply cause one was a brother You focusing on my anger makes you blind to my pain and in result you’ll never hear my message Why when a white person is passionate it’s deemed okay, but a black person is labeled aggressive There can’t be unity in you and me because we aren’t treated the same You can’t blame the media for racial issues when behind closed doors your hatred remains Listen, I mean really listen. Can you hear the pain dragging on the heels of these words Countless Black brothers, sisters, and even CHILDREN are dead. Don’t you think a little justice is what we deserve? People weighing in on black tragedy, telling us how we should feel when you haven’t a clue on what we’ve endured When all we’ve been trying to say is that black lives matter just as much as yours