Body Language

Men and women are so different. The contrast fascinates me all the time, until sometimes, it doesn’t. Like when men and women cannot read each other’s signs or body language they are giving off.

There is this little grocery store down the street from my neighborhood that I frequent because it is so convenient. Well, one of the workers there recently took a shine to me. He works behind the seafood counter and maybe he interpreted my questioning him what type of salmon was the best to buy as an interest in him, I’m not sure. Well, the next time I ran into him in the store, he asked me for a hug. Being a little taken aback and not wanting to be rude, I said sure. So we hugged. Well, that quickly escalated into him exhibiting stalkerish behavior. Every time I go into that store, even when I’m nowhere near the seafood section, he will pop up right beside me and start chatting. And now he goes in for a hug without asking me. It’s making me hesitate as to whether or not I even want to go there anymore, and I hate that because it is so convenient for me! I know the best thing for me to do is to tell him straight out that he needs to tone it down because my silent hints of avoiding that side of the store are not carrying over, but honestly, that is so much easier said than done. Ugh what to do what to do 😕

On the flip side, I tend to read way too much into something when I like a guy, especially if I’m not certain if he likes me back, and I’ve certainly lost my sh*t before in former relationships where I misread or overthought a situation. You would think that with all this information at our fingertips in this day and age, we would certainly learn how to communicate more effectively, but nope. We revert to our lizard brain when certain chemicals are triggered in the brain.

Scattered — Coffee Flavored Thoughts

Ahh..if my love for traveling and how it makes me feel can be immortalized in verse, this is it ♥️

I left bits and pieces of my heart in all of the places I have been. I close my eyes and find myself in the labyrinth of my mind. There, the sunlight glinting off of the bronze statue as you drive by, your head resting against the coolness of the window. There I am, splashing…

via Scattered — Coffee Flavored Thoughts

The Visitor

It happened late that Thursday night after all the guests had gone home. Technically, it was already Friday because it was sometime after midnight when the visitor came. That year, I had volunteered to host Thanksgiving dinner at my parents house and I had gone to great lengths to ensure that the evening would go off flawlessly—arranging the table centerpiece with care, decorating the house with Fall and Winter hues to inspire coziness and conversation, and putting just the right amount of red paprika on the deviled eggs. The guests had started arriving, filling the house with laughter and conversation and a steady stream of food being brought in to the kitchen. There was a sense of contented relaxation in the air, with soft music playing in the background and twinkling lights hung up in preparation for Christmas to further add to the ambience. Even I was able to sense the joy in the evening through my haze of hopelessness. The evening progressed and we said our prayers, thanking God for everything He had given us that year, and then we proceeded to have a fabulous Thanksgiving dinner. After the tea and dessert were consumed and the guests were warm and sleepy, the families started packing up and heading home. It was approximately after 10:00pm when the last guest had left and I didn’t want to go to sleep without first bringing the house to order and cleaning up after the entire affair. By the time I had washed the last dish and was ready to retire to my room, it was well after midnight. My parents had long since gone to bed so I quietly let myself out of their house and stepped out into the pitch-black and deathly silent night of the countryside. Situated on 5 acres in a farming town, they lived well out on the outskirts of the town amidst their neighbors who also owned large swaths of land. I picked my way through the yard to where a small guest dwelling sat on the very edge of their property, bypassing dark shapes in the form of bushes and skeletal trees that I kept reminding myself were not reaching for me in the dark. Making it safely to the small dwelling place, I quickly stepped inside and locked the door. Turning on the electric fireplace mounted on the wall in the room, I started preparing for bed. Feeling chilled and somewhat jittery, I sensed that something about the night felt off, but I couldn’t quite put a finger on it. My skin felt too tight on my frame, like it was trying to shrink itself to become less visible. Chafing my arms with my hands, I forced myself to start thinking about how positive the night had gone and thanking God for helping to pull it off. Not feeling comforted, I started thinking about all the things I was grateful for while still resuming to put away the dress clothes I had been wearing that evening. Then, an ominous cold descended on the room. I felt myself starting to hyperventilate and cast about frantically in my mind about what to do. I knew that running outside into the freezing, deserted night was not an option, and yet I was alone in the room and possibly the only one awake at that hour. The ominous feeling turned malicious, and I started fearing that I was going to be hurt in some way. I darted to my phone and with shaking hands turned on some music. Rising up and spinning around to the closet, I was standing there attempting to calm myself when I heard something angrily hit the heavy drapes hanging on the window. Jumping clear out of my skin, I turned with eyes wide as saucers to see the drapes go flying from the force. Time froze. I was a solid block of ice for what seemed an eternity and yet only lasted for about 3 seconds. In my frozen and shocked state, I also happened to register that after that angry outburst from the invisible presence, the ominous feeling of danger had lifted and was no longer present. Still shocked and not quite believing what I had just seen and heard, I tiptoed to the drapes and forced myself to peer behind them to see if there was anyone there. There was no one.

Friday the 13th

Before I started working at the hospital, I was convinced that superstitious lore like Friday the 13th was entirely just that—nothing more than superstitious ramblings of overactive imaginations. I chalked full moons into that category as well, because, why not?

Fast forward to when I started working in the Emergency Room admitting patients into the hospital. I started noticing odd things that defied the course of “normal” life that the ER staff treated with a callousness that spoke of being entirely too exposed and desensitized to this sort of phenomenon. Mainly, the weird and creepy things that would go down on Fridays that fell on the 13th, and full moons.

Whenever we were scheduled to work on a Friday the 13th, there was always an electric charge in the air of the Emergency Room. Staff was always on high alert because we would get a heavier-than-normal influx of traumas and car accidents that would occur that day. But the really intense stuff usually started more towards the evening. I remember one evening, a man ran in through the sliding doors carrying his girlfriend in his arms who had a large knife sticking out of her stomach. She had apparently stabbed herself for no reason. Our lobby had already been full to brimming with patients who were unable to keep their hallucinations at bay and people whose suicidal ideations were driving them crazy. The silent man sitting in the corner suffered presences that followed him around that looked like the Dementors from Harry Potter, while the lady sitting next to the fish tank couldn’t stop seeing black cats that ran up the wall and disappeared into the ceiling.

Soon after, a squad of Sherriff’s cars sped into the ambulance bay with their lights flashing and an ambulance hot on their heels. A gang fight had erupted with several members of the opposing gangs being wounded by gunshot wounds. The lobby became a hotbed of tension and hostility by two rival gangs both vying for space while waiting for their respective gang members to be treated behind the closed doors of the ER. Another ambulance brought in a patient with severe drug withdrawals and hallucinations that was strapped to the gurney, bucking ferociously trying to get off, and screaming obscenities at the top of her lungs. Since there were no more available rooms in the ER, she had to wait on the gurney in the hallway.

This is just a small sample of what the ER would look like on a Friday the 13th and a night whereupon a full moon was shining. One evening I had clocked off for the night and happened to be driving out behind a vehicle that had just left the ER. The lady sitting in the passenger seat of the car stuck her head out the window and started screaming obscenities at me and then started throwing glass bottles at my car. Luckily, I stomped on my breaks just in time and the bottles smashed on the road right in front of me. I quickly took a detour to get home.

So wherever you are tonight and if you are preparing to go into work, especially in the service industry, please be careful and remain cautious on this odd night that tends to bring out the stuff that’s not so easily explained.

Curious, has anyone else had any strange experiences that couldn’t be explained?

Good morning ☕️

I wish I could stay cocooned in my blankets for a few hours longer this morning. My alarm rang at least a half hour ago, but for the life of me, I cannot muster up the energy to face another chaotic day at the office! Thank God it’s Friday and I am up against a 3 day weekend 🙌🏻

To all of my lovely bloggers: May your coffee be just right this morning and your day successful.

You are beautiful if you are brave enough to believe it

Reading the comments section of a youtube music video really stopped me in my tracks this morning. Someone’s carefree comment of greeting all the beautiful readers spurred an onslaught of responses from people claiming they are ugly and awkward and everything opposite of beautiful. It really caught me off guard and left me wondering how many of us are walking around believing the worst about ourselves?

Our beliefs are intangible, yet they have the ability to wreak so much havoc or bring so much joy to our lives without us doing anything more than simply believing it to be true.

One of the lessons I had to learn in the most brutal way was that my emotions and everything I think about myself are master manipulators. It’s as if they take on a life of their own and start telling you things about yourself that are not true at all. One day I decided to revolt and start acting in a way that was completely opposite to what I actually believed about myself and what my circumstances were reinforcing to be true. I would consistently talk to God about this as well and ask Him to help me reinforce positive beliefs and self awareness. One thing that I did not count on is the sheer amount of bravery that would be required to consistently wake up and choose to believe the best about myself in the face of overwhelming odds.

Social media, Instagram models, and our own doubts (to name a few) are giants that have the ability to morph into monstrous proportions if we give them the slightest ability. (I wasn’t able to keep any social media accounts for the longest time due to this.) Let’s agree on one thing, if we must agree on anything at all, and it is this—the world is just waiting to pounce on you and tell you that you are not good enough, do not meet anyones standards of beauty, are not interesting enough to merit anyones attention, and are generally a failure. But there exists a small truth that, if given the opportunity, will change your life forever. You don’t have to agree with the world’s definition of you.

I recently started noticing a difference in the way people have been approaching me, and it has caused me to stop and take note. It revealed a dynamic about ourselves that we too often forget:

We are mirrors.

And people will always mirror our own beliefs back to us without even realizing they are doing it.

If you truly allow yourself to believe that you are beautiful, people will notice your beauty and treat you accordingly. If you respect yourself, people will treat you with respect. If you are kind to yourself, your kindness will overflow to other people and they will in turn react kindly to you.

So ask yourself—are you brave enough to take a stand about what you believe?

Perceptions

This poem was inspired by Sabrina Benaim’s “Explaining My Depression to My Mother.” all I had to do was to leave the car, but my hands froze,and my heart beat faster and fasteruntil terror rose above melike a boat facing a threatening wave until the wave capsized the boat,and my breath stuck in my chest […]

via Social Anxiety — An Alien at Sea

Sometimes it’s just easier not to share things with people who are committed to misunderstanding you. I read a quote once that read, “I stopped explaining myself when I realized people only understand from their level of perception.”

One of the most bizarre experiences I had dealing with depression is when I had to explain to a close acquaintance of mine why I was unable to attend an event with her one evening. I told her my monsters were incredibly fierce that day and I didn’t have it in me to be brave and face anyone else. Her response was, “Oh man, you’re still depressed?!”

How do you explain brokenness to someone who has never experienced it for themselves? It’s like trying to explain the color blue to someone who has been blind all their life. Inevitably, there comes a point where you just stop trying to make people understand.

A Box Full of Darkness

Depression will often make you believe that you want to die, when what you are really craving is to feel alive. There have been so many times over the years that I desperately wanted to put an end to my misery and I mistakenly thought that looked very much like suicide. I couldn’t find my way out of the darkness and pain I had fallen into—yet my overwhelming desire to end it all was a response to my inability to obtain life and joy from everything that used to bring me fulfillment.

I would gaze in bewilderment at the people around me, going about their everyday lives, and I would scream at them internally, “Don’t you feel it?! Don’t you feel the disaster of my existence, the utter annihilation of my very soul? How can you not stop and stare in shock and horror at the destruction of everything I once was?” I was bleeding out my very essence into the universe and yet no one had the slightest clue. They blithely kept on living while my life had come to a sudden and unexpected halt.

Being on the outside looking in engraved some of the most brutal lessons into my shattered soul. Mainly, how important it is to notice the people around you. Not just their outward appearance or the expressions painted on their face—but to really see the person underneath. Being forced to a complete stop in a world that constantly rushes forward at the speed of light showed me how often I would trample over people in my climb to the top—never once noticing or even caring if my actions hurt someone in my rush.

Learning the simple act of kindness came with a terribly steep cost and one I am loathe to ever have to learn again. But unexpectedly, I was also left with invaluable gifts that could not have been obtained in any other way than making my way through that darkness.

darkness

Memories

Arrested, you stand still as a familiar feeling grips you.
A well-known scent, the flirtatious laughter of a passing couple,
and you find yourself drifting slowly into her memory.
Like gliding into your favorite pool of water on a hot summer night,
the sky a black velvet blanket with diamonds strewn haphazardly across.
Whispers of lovers drift past your ears as her laughing green eyes tease you with their depths.
The love in her burning brighter on those nights than all the stars combined.