NEVER FINDING YOUR PASSION


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It all started in high school  with a  burning question that I had no idea would haunt me for the years to come. That question is “What’s your passion?” My teacher at the time, Mr. Carmicheal proceeded to circle the classroom, and made everyone announce their future aspirations. I sat and watched my entire classmates stand up proudly during their turn and announce “I’m going to be a lawyer” said one kid. There were a bunch of veterinarians, doctors, firemen, nurses, and financial advisers who stood up proudly that day. I wracked my brain trying to figure out exactly what IS my passion, and how come I still wasn’t sure of what I wanted to do. Finally it was my turn, and I thought the best thing I could do in that moment was lie. I stood up and stated “I want to be a nurse, because I’ve always enjoyed helping people.” That was the moment that whatever small amount of my true self was left from this brainwashing society, has evaporated into a cloud of doubts, beliefs, and false standards. From that day forward I started to hold myself to society’s standards instead of my own. Before that moment I was like a free bird. I laughed until my stomach hurts, and loved myself unconditionally. Until that specific day I was free of worries, and I was truly my true self. After that day I felt lost, and inadequate. I was no longer that free bird; instead I was a caged bird. I was now a prisoner of society standards; and even worst, a prisoner of my own mind. I convinced myself that I wasn’t enough; therefore I began looking in other directions towards the people who I thought were more like me.


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Looking back now I realized that I gave up on myself after that day. I went home that night, and cried to my mother asking her what’s wrong with me? How come I didn’t know what I wanted to do? In attempt to comfort me, my mother said something that I’ve held onto for years; she said “Don’t worry, you’re still young. You’ll find your passion soon.” Of course those words somewhat comforted me for the time being, but its once again left me searching and waiting for years to come for something that I would never find. School felt meaningless to me after that day. I started to question God, because I felt he left me passionless and I had no purpose here on earth. I went to college switching majors like I would switch my panties. Each time I went to see an advisor, it ignited that burning flame of shame and hopelessness inside of me; they all asked the same exact question, “What are you passionate about?” Each time I wanted to scream out loud I DON’T KNOW! STOP ASKING ME! DON’T YOU GUYS HAVE A CLASS FOR WANDERERS OR SOMETHING?!

Overtime I watched my friends, and family walk a straight path towards success. They knew exactly what they wanted, and they stuck to the plan. Then there’s me who bounced around to every single profession attainable. I’d always get the initial rush at the beginning of anything new and exciting; but once it becomes repetitive, I experience boredom and have the urge to break free. Actually, I get REALLY depressed when this happens, because I’ve always wanted to walk a straight path along with everyone else. After YEARS of searching I’ve finally come to the conclusion that maybe I’m not supposed to fit in. Maybe God has structured me with creativity and versatility purposefully, so that I can be one of the free souls who spread their knowledge and love all around. Maybe focusing on one goal is not my purpose, which is why I’ve been so uncomfortable for all of these years. Maybe I have so much to offer to the world that God couldn’t allow me to be comfortable with just doing ONE of those things. Maybe I’m meant to bounce around, and be the free bird I’ve always been to enhance the world around me. When I roam freely I’m able to spread bits and pieces of myself to those who need it the most. I’ve been blessed with THE GIFT OF FREEDOM.


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All of this time I assumed I’m suppose to be narrowed down to one passion, but that’s just not how my world works. There’s no specific box that us humans should be in, which is what society has taught us. I’m never content with doing what I’m supposed to do, but I’ve always been happy with doing what I desire to do. There’s nothing wrong with not having a passion. Life can be your passion; Life IS my passion, and I plan on being a career butterfly. If I can go back to that day in high school knowing what I know now, I would stand up and say proudly “I WANT TO BE CAREER BUTTERFLY, SO I CAN SPREAD MY TALENTS ACROSS THE WORLD.”  I have too much to offer to just be narrowed down to one goal. My passion is a lot broader than most; but I’m convinced that I’ve found my purpose finally after years of searching. My purpose is to give to others the gift of sight; as a wanderer I’m able to see things from different perspectives. I’m an Unrooted evolutionary tree in life who brings the true essence of creativity, love, and wisdom to those around me.

In conclusion, if you’re reading this and you’re like me; don’t let the word passion control your life. Be free. Be exactly what you’re created to be, because the universe makes no mistakes.

Love, ELLiE

EXPOSED (REGAINING SELF AWARENESS)


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HI I’M ELLIE, AND I’M AN ADDICT…

Lately I’ve been feeling stagnant, so I’ve decided to go back to the beginning where I felt the most growth. I’ve never stopped working on myself, but I will say that I’ve gotten comfortable with being content. Going back to my foundation basically starts by detoxing my mind, body, and soul. I cut out coffee, alcohol, processed sugar, drugs(mary jane), and any other addictive habits or substance I relied on to alter, or even just enhance my perception of reality. This detox also included toxic relationships, and whatever else isn’t contributing to my growth. The next step after making the conscious effort to cut out external toxic factors is to retrain my brain.  The best way I know how to do this is by listening to inspirational podcast as my daily morning routine. Finally and most importantly, I WRITE. I write in silence sitting in my own thoughts. When all else fails on this road of life, this is my charging station; but it’s not as easy as it sounds. The moment I decided to strip away the crutches I used to carry some of the weight I was carrying through life, is the moment I crashed. Something as simple as not having my morning coffee nearly crippled me. Not having a drink of alcohol while socializing bored me, and I couldn’t even rely on food to fill that void. You notice a lot when you’re stripped of everything. I noticed that food and sugar was also my drug. I got really depressed and I couldn’t indulge myself in all of the foods I love to eat to ease some of the stress. It dawned on me that junk foods stimulate the reward system in the brain in the same way as any abusive drug. I hit ROCK BOTTOM.  I’ve always been super in tuned with myself and a overall conscious being, so making even the slightest changes in my life causes me to be extremely sensitive to these changes leaving me vulnerable. I had no idea I was using external sources to cope with my reality until I eliminated them. I thought by not over indulging myself in a particular substance or habit would prevent me from losing control, but this is not the case. Even if you’re a social drinker, you’re still a drinker. If you’re a social smoker, you’re still a smoker. I used the excuse of “only drinking while I’m hanging out, or when it’s the weekend,” but think about how often that can be. Monday through Thursday I wouldn’t drink, but I was still active in other habits like coffee, smoking, and eating a lot of sugary foods. All I did was switch from one bad habit to another and I found validity in doing so. The worst part of it all is I wasn’t even aware of it, until I decided to go back to my foundation. After three excruciating, hungry, angry weeks; I’m finally starting to feel the benefits of it. I think craving something and NOT getting it is one of the worst feelings any addict can experience. I’m finally at the point where mostly all my cravings have diminished, and my head is a lot clearer.

RECOVERING PROCESS-


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I’ve never gotten over certain traumas, and it’s affecting my life in the worst way. I don’t think I’ve ever recognized what I’ve been through as being traumatic, until I recently started showing signs of PTSD. My body has an automatic defense mechanism of going numb when it senses any signs of danger. For this reason, when I do experience something really traumatic, it’s almost like I’m not really there. Physically I’m present but mentally and emotionally I’m hovering over my body witnessing the most brutal attack. So it makes sense that I’ve never connected those situations to being traumatic; it never really felt like I was THERE, even though I was the one being assaulted. For the first time in a very long time, I sat with myself with nothing holding my hand. Nothing was keeping me from falling flat on my face suffocating in despair; and there I was drowning in years of pain that I’ve kept buried inside of me. OUCH… THAT SHIT HURT! I actually allowed ME to feel bad for ME. I never allowed myself to hurt, because I thought “shit happens; move on,” and that’s what I did. Well at least I thought that’s what I was doing. The act of “moving on” requires a certain level of acceptance, and embracing your emotions BEFORE you let them go. See, I skipped that part. I went through the traumas, dusted my shoulders off the very next day, and “moved on” to tomorrow while suppressing yesterday. I didn’t actually “move on,” instead I left my soul back in yesterday, and just took my body with me. I was a walking shell going through the motions without feeling anything. Knowing what I know now has me thinking “Damn, how could I have abandoned myself? Why did it take me this long to realize that I deserve to be loved?” I’ve abandoned myself for years. I didn’t love myself, because if I did I would’ve paid more attention to ME. How could I seek attention without first giving it to myself? I’ve neglected the hurt in me for so long that I turned into a zombie. I wasn’t living my life at all. I was living a life of who I thought I’m supposed to be. I thought I was being tough and resilient; but real resilience comes from facing your own truths. Being truthful to your self is the hardest thing to do, especially when the truth hurts. I learned about what triggers me, and why; most importantly I’m learning how to love me first. Did you hear that? I LOVE THE FUCK OUT OF ME! And you know what else? I’m finally free. Free from the prison of my own mind. Free of fault, and the feelings of inadequacy.  Breaking down didn’t break me down; it freed me. I needed my heart to break, and tears to fall.  I needed to feel my body go limp as I dropped to my knees. If I didn’t take away all those factors out of my life, I would’ve never been able to meet myself again. I exposed myself to get to know myself. I stripped myself naked, and walked into the dark; only to find out that within the darkness was always the light.

WHAT NOW?-

Initially, this journey was only supposed to be for one month. The fact that I’ve just had another breakthrough 1 week prior to finishing on my detox journey, tells me that there’s much more work to be done. Although I do miss having my occasional glass of Grand Marnier, and stuffing my face with ice cream; oh yeah, and coffee in the morning (UGH)!  I’m choosing to continue on this journey, and see how far it takes me. It’s time to dig those skeletons out the closet, and do some spring cleaning. After all, what ALREADY happened in the past cant hurt me anymore.

Cheers!

-ELLiE

THE GIRL IN MY INBOX (PART III)


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Weeks have gone by and justice and I have grown closer. Our friendship has blossomed spending every waking moment with each other. Justice began telling me that she’s tired of being in her line of work, so she saved enough money to pick up and move out of state. I was happy for her. Justice had a tough childhood dealing with absent parents, and growing up in foster care. My emphatic ways felt every inch of pain she harbored beneath her tough exterior. Every time I looked into her eyes I saw pain; a long stream of disappointment, and loneliness. Her lifestyle drew me to her, but her tainted perception of the world kept me interested in helping her paint a different perspective. I thought I could introduce her to a new way of seeing things. I’ve always had a passion for helping people, and she was thus far my biggest challenge. Looking back now, I was naive for thinking I could alter the perception of someone who’s seen more than I’ve ever imagined, and not get caught in the rage of fire. Even though Justice had a tough upbringing she was still the softest person I’ve ever known. Beyond the tough exterior resided a girl who loves wholeheartedly. Someone who I could laugh and joke with all day and night, and not grow tired of; we were inseparable. The closer we grew, the more she let me into her world. It wasn’t about her lifestyle anymore; it was about HER. I was rapidly falling for the sensitive girl underneath the exterior. There were two sides of Justice that I knew about at the time; the side she presented to the world, and the sweet side she presented to me. I understood that her way of operating in this cruel world is by putting up a wall, so that nothing gets in and nothing gets out. I always felt bad for her because she was too young to feel this way. It was like her past has robbed her of her childhood, and the ability to trust. Me on the other hand, I was always such a free spirit. We were complete opposites, and no one could believe we even ended up being friends. I think Justice was attracted to my free flowing personality as I was attracted to her boundaries.  All I wanted to do was break down those walls so that the world can see how beautiful the girl underneath was. Most importantly I wanted Justice to see how beautiful the world IS, and all she had to do is see it through different lenses, as I did. That’s what happens when you’re happy; you want to share it with the world. Although I was carefree, no one warned me of the dangers of carrying someone else baggage. I didn’t realize that trying to revise HER story would only turn her pain into my own. No one warned me that by looking into another person lenses, it would eventually become my own reflection. I was on the path of self destruction by trying to reconstruct someone else.


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Justice ended up moving to Boston, and I helped her with her moving process. We were both happy. I remember being on such a natural high, and thinking that things are looking up for her. She got an actual legal job, and we spoke daily. I stayed in NY but it never stopped our communication. She often begged me to move to Boston with her, but I knew that moving in with someone wasn’t a good idea. I decided to visit her instead. When I arrived in Boston I knew from that moment we were going to be more than just friends. We had an infatuation with one another that didn’t disappear with the decision of being just friends. I understood Justice, and she understood me. Everything felt perfect.  That same night I arrived to Boston while lying side by side, she told me she loved me. I saw a tear fall from her eye, knowing that those words were difficult for her because it always led to disappointment. I felt the fear in her voice, and the pain surfaced for me to see. That night I saw her soul bare naked like I’ve never seen it before. I fell in love with THAT girl. If I had any doubts of who Justice was, all of those doubts were gone. All I knew in that moment is this is someone I want to love for the rest of my life. I thought I had it all figured out, but I was brutally WRONG. That girl I connected with wasn’t the only one present underneath her exterior. There was a manipulative, angry, pained person hidden waiting for just the right moment to appear. I didn’t revise her story, instead I combined our stories. Her story is now my story.


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Months have passed and we are both more in love than we could’ve ever imagined. After a while I decided to stay in Boston with Justice; the long distance relationship started to weigh heavy on the both of us. Besides, I loved Boston! I’ve always loved to travel, so it wasn’t a hard decision for me to make. We made friends out there, and I landed a job as a photographer. Everything was perfect. One night we were both drinking; it was hot and muggy and our central air wasn’t working. The power went out in our entire neighborhood. We both laid there by the window holding on to any little breeze that came flowing in, brushing against our sweaty skin. The heat carried us both into a peaceful state of sleep. Suddenly, I was abruptly awakened by a heavy weight on top of me, and my arm twisted behind my back. I opened my eyes, and to my surprise it was justice. I couldn’t understand what was going on, as I tried pushing her off of me. She had my arm twisted behind me while I was lying flat on my stomach, and she grabbed my thumb to use my fingerprint to unlock my phone. Once she had the phone unlocked she hopped off of me and ran into the bathroom and locked the door. I was shocked. I began banging on the door yelling “GIVE ME MY PHONE BACK PSYCHO!” I was shocked that someone would do such a thing, but my focus was more on the fact that she had my phone unlocked. I was young, and definitely a flirt. I knew that she would see conversations I couldn’t take back. Eventually I gave up trying to get her to open the door, and I went back in the room and waited for her to come back out. I started to think about what she did just to unlock my phone. I was convinced this girl is CRAZY, and once again I needed to leave. Justice came out of the bathroom and threw the phone at me and proceeded to walk out of the house. Although I should’ve thought more about how she obtained my conversations in the first place; my energy went into feeling bad about the conversations she’s read. I knew I’d broken her trust. The trust that was so hard for her to give, because of her past. She was hurting, and I wanted to fix it. She came back in the house and I could tell she had been crying. I hugged her, and consoled her letting her know how sorry I was for what she’d read. It was weird because in that moment, although she forgave me right away, something switched in her eyes. They went dark like a light went out. I saw pain, and anger all at once. I wasn’t thinking rationally because instead of thinking about WHO is this person who nearly broke my arm to get into my phone; I thought about the pain I caused her. I felt like this is my fault, and I have to fix it. Things weren’t the same after that night, and they were never going to be the same. No matter how much love we had between each other, the light in her eyes never came back. I didn’t realize that I would spend months trying to fix something that didn’t start from reading the conversations in my phone. It started from years of trust issues, and disappointments. I didn’t know that I was making myself the target of her pain. I was now the REASON for all that she felt just because of that one incident. I was just like “everyone else” to her. This was the motive that the manipulative, angry, pained person that was hidden underneath needed in order to surface. This was her moment, and she timed it perfectly. I thought it was just a wall I needed to tear down, but it’s much more than that. Her past circumstances has created a monster, and she was living inside of my girlfriend.


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STAY TUNED FOR PART IV OF “THE GIRL IN MY INBOX”

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THE GIRL IN MY INBOX (PART II)


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It’s Friday night, and Olive Garden is jammed packed with people who’re just happy to be off of work for the next few days. As for me, I’m just looking forward to the food. I’ve always been a foodie and anyone who knows me knows that food is the way to my heart; I guess the girl in my inbox figured that out early on. We’ve grown closer within the past couple of weeks, and I’m really starting to get use to the attention she’s showering me with. She’s made her entrance into my world in a bold way and I adored her. Her name is Justice. I couldn’t help but think about how I’ve made the best decision in my life to walk away from my previous relationship, because if I hadn’t I would’ve never gotten the chance to meet such a beautiful soul. As justice and I stood in line waiting for our name to be called, we talked about my future with writing. The night before today we hung out with her family, and I got so drunk that I decided to join the rap cipher her cousins were having to show some of my talents. I always knew I was a talented writer, but I never had the guts to showcase any of my talents until I met her. That night she made me feel like I should be writing lyrics for Nicki Minaj or something; I mean shorty had my head BLOATED. The host called for “Justice Party of 2,” so we followed her towards our table. As we sat down we waited for our waiter. When the waiter approached he was a tall medium complexion slender guy. “Hello, my name is Eric and ill be your waiter for the night. May I start you off with something to drink?” We had already been drinking so we thought why not continue the shenanigans. I ordered a margarita on the rocks with sugar on the rim, while justice ordered a long island iced tea. We continued our conversation over our drink, and I could tell that we both were feeling the affects of the alcohol. The night was going great, and we were ready to order our food.


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Our waiter Eric came back over to our table and asked “Are you ready to order your meals yet?” We told him yes, and I began telling him that I want the steak and shrimp combo with a baked potato on the side. I looked over at Justice and I noticed a change in her appearance. Her eyes weren’t as bright as they normally were, and her demeanor seemed to change. I asked her right away if she was okay as the waiter waited for her meal choice. Her eyes were pierced looking directly at me. Her pupils were enlarged and her face was tight as if she had just been possessed. I asked her again if she was ready to order her meal, and then it happened. She snapped. “WHY ARE YOU STARING AT THE WAITER LIKE THAT, YOU WANT TO FUCK HIM?!” The waiter stood there in disbelief, and I sat there confused. I automatically responded “What are you talking about?” The waiter sensed the tenseness and offered to come back when we’re ready. She never looked up towards the waiter. The entire time her eyes were on me, but this wasn’t Justice. Whoever was staring at me was someone I’ve never met before. Without blinking her eyes were still pierced on mine as she said “You were staring at him like you want to fuck him. Is that what you want? I can walk away and you guys can get to know each other a little more.” I was shocked, and I didn’t know how to react to this sudden switch in personality. She went on to say “Don’t ever disrespect me this way; you’ll have me kill someone out here.” I assumed she wanted me to look down when someone other than her was talking to me. At this point I was completely turned off, and shocked. I told her I needed to go to the bathroom, and ill be right back. Needless to say I walked so fast out that damn restaurant and walked my ass home. My fight or flight response kicked in and flight took over. I hauled ass, and I had no intentions on talking to this girl ever again. During the walk back home she called my phone back to back. She sent text messages like “You stupid Bitch. You left me here looking dumb.” I don’t think I’ve ever been so afraid in my life. I admit that I was afraid. Although she had never shown this side of her, I knew that in her line of work she always carried a gun with her. At this point I had no idea what she was capable of. I started to think about how much I don’t know about this girl. I started to question my saneness. Why would I take gifts from someone I barely even know? How could I trust anyone who carries a gun, and more importantly, WHO WAS I SITTING ACROSS FROM AT THE DINNER TABLE?! Either way, I got my ass out of there and made it home.

When I arrived in my apartment I looked back down at my phone. Now the threats have subsided, and she started to text saying things like “I’m sorry I snapped at you. I’ve just been hurt so much in the past that it’s hard for me to trust anyone. Please forgive me and please, please, please pick up your phone.”  I still ignored her because it was way more than I could handle. Suddenly my doorbell rang and my step brother asked me if I wanted him to make her go away. I told him yes, and he opened the door and told her I wasn’t here. I sat quietly in my room wishing that she would just go away, and I would never talk to her again. She continued to call and text me, but I blocked her number and decided that I would never talk to this girl again. A few weeks went past and I decided to reunite with my ex. It wasn’t long before I realized that going back to my ex wasn’t the right decision. I was once again bored with life and it’s only been 3 weeks. At this time I haven’t gotten any messages or calls from Justice, but I still thought about her frequently. I begin to think about what she might’ve gone through to have so much trust issues. A month went past and I received a message from an unknown person. It was justice using her cousin’s facebook. She wrote,

Hey, I know you don’t want to talk to me and I completely understand why you wouldn’t. I apologize from the bottom of my heart, and if you never talk to me again I don’t blame you. I would really like it if we could just be friends. It was my own insecurities that made me get so jealous. You’re such a beautiful person, and I just felt so lucky to have you that I was afraid you wouldn’t want me anymore. If you ever need any money just let me know and ill send it to you. I don’t want anything in return, please. I just want to be friends because no one ever understood me the way you do. Again I’m sorry, and I promise that will never happen again.”

I read the message without responding, but I started to feel bad. I felt bad for not knowing what she may have been through. I thought to myself maybe I can be her friend. Maybe she needs help. Within the next week she sent daily messages saying things like “Good morning beautiful. I hope you have a great day. Any time you need to talk I’m here.” Still, I didn’t respond. I was miserable in my relationship. Here I was young, and tied down playing house with someone I no longer wanted to be with. I made the decision to leave my ex again, but this time I wasn’t going back. I needed to be alone, and I needed to be comfortable with being alone. When I arrived back to my moms’ house I closed the room door, and broke down crying. This was my first time in a long time I was alone. In the midst of the tears flowing I picked up my phone to come across another message from justice.

Hey, I hope you’re doing okay. My mom wanted to invite you to her dinner at Red lobster, and I hope you can make it. She said she misses you. I hope we can still be friends.

I thought to myself maybe she really is sorry. Maybe it’ll be okay if we’re just friends because we did have a dope connection. I wrote back and asked her for the time and address; but little did I know this was just another form of manipulation. I was playing right into her game, and I was just too naive to notice it. I got dressed and hopped in the cab to head towards red lobster. This sparked the beginning of a new chapter in my life. The next chapters are covered with blood, sweat and tears. Could I have seen what was coming next; maybe, but for now it feels good to not be alone.

Stay tuned for Part III of THE GIRL IN MY INBOX. 

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THE GIRL IN MY INBOX (PART I) GOOD READS

Warning: The following content is intended for a mature audience.

I often hear women say “If I were gay, I’m not allowing a woman to put their hands on me! We’re both women, so we can throw hands.”  Okay, let’s start from there. Hearing those words is the reason why I kept the abuse I’ve endured in the past a secret. It brought feelings of shame, embarrassment and loneliness, which made it really difficult for me to speak up about it. Well, when I created this website I made the decision to be very open about the shit no one wants to talk about. There’re enough of us silent. Abuse within the LGBTQ community is REAL and often overlooked. Because of comments like that, most of us choose to stay quiet. I’ll take you along with me in my journey, while highlighting some red flags that those of us who end up in abusive relationships choose to ignore, or just didn’t see it coming. Some of us don’t have the words to express what we feel because of a lack of support or just plain naive. Either way it can happen to anyone, and before you know it you’re a victim of abuse.

It feels so good to be seen, and showered with love and affection. Although I was already getting all that I needed in other areas in my life, this felt extraordinary. It gave me a thrill, and excitement that I wasn’t getting anymore in my daily life. I admit that I can be an adrenaline junkie, which is probably why I felt hypnotized by the appearance of something different. I was happy with my relationship, but I also felt bored with it. It started off by viewing a face book message of a women coming on to me. Now it’s evident that I was currently in a relationship, but this didn’t seem to matter to this girl. I’m intrigued by her boldness. I passively declined her offer. While this should’ve been the end of the conversation between the two of us; she began explaining how she knew my current girlfriend at the time, because my girlfriend was also intimate with a close friend of hers. She went on to say how I deserve better and she felt that I should know. I’ll pause here by saying this was the very first sign of manipulation. I was young and easily manipulated but it can happen to anyone, younger or older.  Being that I’d been with my girlfriend at the time for a while, I didn’t believe her right off the back so I asked for proof. She told me to ask my girlfriend about Jane (which was a friend of my girlfriend,) and ask her if she’s ever dealt with Jane sexually. So I asked, and my girlfriend got really defensive. I left the topic alone and continued on with my life, while still keeping constant conversation with the girl in my inbox. I think deep down inside I needed an escape, and I was looking for any reason to exit my seemingly boring relationship. I’ve outgrown my partner, and I didn’t know how to walk away without a drastic reason to leave. While I continued to have secretive conversations with the girl in my inbox, she continued to bash my girlfriend every chance she was given. Me and my partner lived out of state, so when we went back home to visit our family and friends (which is also where the girl in my inbox lived,) she would say things like “I was talking to Jane and she told me your girl came over while ya’ll were in NY, and they Fucked.” I’ll pause here again. This was starting to get convincing to me because while we were in our hometown, we separated and left to be with our own family and friends. I didn’t tell the girl in my inbox that we weren’t sleeping next to each other, so I thought it has to be true otherwise how else she would know she’s not currently next to me. I didn’t know at the time that she had a page following my current girlfriend to clock her every move. Read on, it gets juicier!


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At the time I don’t think I cared enough to keep pressuring my girlfriend on the situation, so I ignored her comments and continued to have casual conversation with the girl in my inbox. I began getting threatening random inbox messages from people who would also bash my girlfriend. Looking back now I realize that I started to get really overwhelmed. I was already in a relationship I outgrew, on top of the fact that I felt like I could no longer trust my girlfriend, and now I was being harassed daily. I really just wanted OUT of my relationship at this point. So I decided to meet up with the girl in my inbox. It wasn’t a tough decision for me to make because she was acquainted with a lot of my family members, and also some of my friends. We grew up in the same area, so we had a lot in common, so I didn’t feel skeptical about meeting her. She invited me to a small get together that her friend was having, so me and my cousin at the time hopped in the cab and went together. The first time I met her it was ALL connection. I was so attracted to her, and it was easy to feel comfortable with her because of the familiarity; she knew almost everyone I grew up with so we had so much to talk about. Pause: This is where all the signs started to come in, and I ignored them. Note to Readers- Don’t ignore the subtle, yet alarming feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when something doesn’t feel right. After meeting her, our conversation grew intensively. The second time I went to meet her she offered to pay my cab to her house to hang out. Everything about hanging with her felt exciting. When I arrived to her house she handed me gifts; designer jackets and also a few hundreds. She told me she just wanted to give me something for my time, and also she thought I deserved it. Pause: TOTAL RED FLAG!


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I’m not going to lie and say that this didn’t seem unsettling to me, but blinded by the money I chose to ignore it, and continued hanging with her. Now I won’t go into details on how she was getting the money, but I will say that I was attracted to the lifestyle. We got drunk, and had a fun night together just hanging with her family. This was the most excitement I’ve had in a while. When I left and went back to my girlfriend, we were growing more and more distant. I finally made the decision to leave my girlfriend, and I moved back home to my hometown. It felt like the very same day that I left my ex is when I ended up blindly falling into another relationship with the girl in my inbox. The next day after leaving my girlfriend, the girl in my inbox offered me comfort. She assured me that I did the right thing. I started to hang out with her more, and the more I hung out with her the more she showered me with gifts. I ate lobster and shrimp for lunch, because anything I wanted she provided for me. I also had a whole new wardrobe because she brought me clothes every time she went shopping for herself. Although the words never left either of our mouths, it felt like we were in a relationship already. Almost as if I was her property and taking care of me was her priority. She was so sweet, and she catered to my every need. I felt safe and loved with her.  Everything was happening so fast that before I knew it, I was in another relationship. A relationship that didn’t even make sense to me, but the extravagant lifestyle felt good. It’s like one day I’m enjoying the thrill of meeting someone new, and the next day I was in a relationship with them. That’s literally how fast it happened. Everything was just SO FAST that I couldn’t even make sense of my own feelings. At the time I felt like I didn’t even get the chance to separate my authentic feelings from infatuation. The moment I started to wonder if I should slow down, she sensed my hesitation and blinded me with more and more gifts, money, and whatever else I wanted. Although it all happened so quickly, I was still enjoying the thrill of easy money and great sex. Until one day I met a total stranger, but his time the stranger didn’t appear in my inbox. She was within the same girl who showered me with gifts, love and affection; but she wasn’t the girl I met. She had a totally new face, and her eyes were unrecognizable. Who is this person, and how did she appear so fast? It was like a switch went off and now I was sitting across from a demon. What happens next is the beginning of the worst moments of my life.

Stay Tuned for part II of the “THE GIRL IN MY INBOX” where I take you along with me and my journey. Subscribe for weekly updates.

REDEFINING OURSELVES


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Suffering in silence is common within the African American community. If you’re a woman we’re taught to be tough, hence the common phrase “A strong Black Woman.” If you’re a man you’re taught to hide your pain, because it can be seen as a weakness. I remember being a very emotional little girl, but it was hard for me to embrace that because I would get teased for being “too sensitive”. I learned early on that if I feel offended or hurt by something, the best way to deal with it is by burying it inside, and displaying a tough exterior. As an alternative to displaying vulnerability within our community we joke. We’ve managed to turn our pain into what we like to call “Cuttin Ass,” which basically translates to teasing. This is our defense mechanism. You know the saying “I laugh to keep from crying”? Well, we basically mastered it. If you didn’t grow up within our community, you wouldn’t last a minute without leaving feeling less than you did upon arriving. Walking into a room with my family is similar to walking into a room with Madea and Joe. There’s literally a ROASTING SESSION (another term for cutting ass) every single time.


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When there are serious matters on hand we revert to saying things like, “I’m good, and I will always be good, because I got me!” Which also translate to, “I’m hurt and I need help, but I feel alone.” I guess ill be the first one to admit that, at least the first person I know. Our pain is not seen as being pain because we display anger more often than any other emotion; hence the term “Angry black woman.” How could we show any other emotion when that’s the opposite of what we were taught? Remember that sensitive little girl I told you about at the beginning? Well she needed to survive her surroundings, so naturally she developed an alternative to displaying vulnerability by putting up a wall. What happens to our emotions behind the wall over time is they start to build up. This is why suffering in silence for me is no longer an option.

I know some of you were wondering about what’s the big deal on being vocal about dealing with a mood disorder, or dealing with anything for that matter.  Well, there you have it. We are so quick to post on social media about someone elses suicide, or suicide attempt, and say “suicide is real. Bullying is real,” but fail to realize that it is also real inside of our own homes. Burying our own feelings can lead to suicidal feelings as well. We say “Black people don’t attempt suicide,” but that’s not true. Why do we give more props to the woman who post things like, “I’ll always be good, no matter what! I never crumble!”  Than to the woman who post “I’ve been depressed for a while now, I wish I had someone to talk to.” We pride tough exteriors, and we judge and belittle sensitivity. We see it as being annoying and weak so no one wants to be affiliated with a weak person, right? If you think about the strength it would take to show your true emotions, you’ll realize who the truly weak person in this matter is. It’s very easy to hide behind ANY wall, or tough exterior. It takes guts to show who you truly are, and what you truly feel. It took me until this year to realize that I am now tougher than I’ve ever been in my entire life. I’ve cried more now than I’ve ever did, and I talk about how I feel and what’s going on. I’m subjected to criticism and being judged, but you know what? I’d rather be myself in this world, than to hide behind a character I’ve created to mask who I truly am. That’s all we’re really doing in life. Putting on a character for those to see what we assume might be a better version of ourselves, but it is not truly ourselves. We are not who we display, even to the closest people in our circle.

When did the definition of being human become flawless? We are meant to be flawed. If you’re a man who is told not to show your emotions, please understand that you are not just a protector of a household. You aren’t just the muscle of the family, but you are also entitled to having emotions as well. My nephew came home from school one day and said to me that he and his friend made a pact that when they got in trouble, no matter what they wouldn’t cry. My nephew was 9 years old, and it’s something that stuck with me because he’s already learning, just as I did about sensitivity being a weakness. I could understand how as a parent you wouldn’t want your child to display any type of vulnerability in front of other people because then he/she will be a target. I can also understand why our parents were doing the best they could to protect us growing up, and teaching us those same techniques. Without having any words left to say to my nephew about his new pact, mainly because I understand that it’s a survival technique inside of our community. I still feel for him and every other child who has to be taught to survive, rather than just be the best version of themselves, in order to maneuver in the world outside of our homes. I’m not sure how it works in any other community outside of my own, but I know that where I’m from has taught me resilience.

Being vocal about anything personal is a BIG DEAL. I guess you can say I’m stepping out of my comfort zone, and into the unknown. My goal is to set a new trend within our community. This trend will hopefully alter our perspectives on what we view as being weak, and ultimately allow enough space to be who we were born to be. This obviously won’t happen over night, but it will open the door to freeing our souls from hiding behind the expectations of our community.

-Love, ELLiE

F*CK YOU! (PMDD DIARY)


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The moment I decided to separate Effie from Ellie marked the start of a new journey. For years I’ve blamed myself for being inadequate, and seemingly weak. I never understood the revolving question “Why me?” It wasn’t until recently, after years of searching outwardly for answers that I finally decided to ask a different question. Why Not me? What entitles me to being exempt from the defects that come with being human? After all, no one is perfect right? In my world dealing with PMDD is the worst thing to live with, but is it really? Well, of course not. Still, this is my truth and my struggle, so I deserve to express that too. I’ve searched everywhere for my own truth. I’ve looked towards doctors, family, drugs, alcohol and money for definition. I needed to define myself because I couldn’t differentiate who I am, compared to who I thought I was. Who I thought I was is nothing more than a comparison of myself to society standards. I’ve spent so much time feeling as if I wasn’t enough; but who set the standards? Who am I building myself up to be enough for? When I realized that the answer to those questions is ME, it totally changed my perspective. If I’m living up to my own standards, why do I care about what anyone else thinks? What is the pride in hurting in silence? Why can’t I be beautiful while displaying all of my flaws?


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The thing is I’ve known all of this, but at the same time I didn’t apply it. I’ve posted inspirational quotes on Facebook, but was I living in my truth? No. I only displayed what I thought people wanted to see and hurt in private. I displayed the fun, inspired, party girl; while hiding the depressed, suicidal broken girl. Now I’m not saying that everyone should go and tell all of their business on social media of course.  What I’m saying is if pain and suffering is a part of being human, why are we only talking about the upsides? Why are we taught to hide our flaws, instead of embracing them? The truth is embracing our flaws leads to a wholesome, more complete feeling. So why does society teach us to hate ourselves? The reason why is because businesses feed off of our emotions. Their job is to make us feel as if we’re missing out (FOMO), or missing a piece of ourselves because it’s the only way they can make sales. Weight loss commercials aren’t even about health at all; it’s literally about image. Why aren’t there more commercials about coping techniques and support groups? Society does a good job brainwashing us at an early stage. It took me 29 years to figure it out, so BRAVO! For 29 years I basically was a slave to my own brain. I’m rambling about all of this to say this is what led me into falling prey to the effects of PMDD. Everything in my world up until now consists of problems, and quick fixes. I see a problem and guarantee there’s a product out there to fix it, or at least mask the symptoms.

So for years I’ve searched for quick fixes to my problem; only to realize there’s no quick fix, only “PAUSE.”  I can press pause on my problems, but I can’t fix them. Why? Because you can only fix what’s broken, and I am not. I’m only human, and being human is beauty AND flaws.

Separating Effie from Ellie for me meant taking ownership of both sides. No matter how much I hate the down side of dealing with a mood disorder, I also embrace it. It’s no longer a hidden topic.  What I didn’t expect is what happened next after embracing my WHOLE self. After years of searching for happiness, guess what happened next? This might sound like a bit of a cliché, but the moment I consciously stopped searching and found peace with all sides of me; that’s when it all stopped. I was no longer a victim searching for answers. For the first time in my life I had control of my own life. Instead of searching for a quick fix, I started to record when I experience shifting in my mood, and what it feels like. I also pin pointed when I felt closer to my true self (Ellie), and I separated the two while still embracing the oneness of both identities. Doing this granted me full control over my life. I no longer see PMDD as the enemy, but as a tainted part of my being. It’s my flaw in this imperfect world. My storm because the sun doesn’t shine forever; my darkness until there’s light. The more I acknowledge the differences, as well as the oneness; the less control Effie (PMDD) has over me. So here’s my F*CK YOU to society Standards.

-Love, ELLiE