Just for today…

Just for today, I will not worry.

Just for today, I will not anger.

I will give thanks for all my blessings.

A couple of days removed from the armed robbery in front of my building and following yoga and meditation on this glorious morning, I am in a much better place.  There is something to be said for ritual and its ability to bring you right back to the heart of it all.

This morning, I realize that anger, fear and worry will not buy me one moment of peace or safety.  So, I let it go.  And I am thankful to this person for reminding me to be present and aware, even as I am walking from my car at night.  Sounds all mashed potatoes and Pollyanna, I know.  But it’s the choice I make today, for myself.  Am I 100% at peace? No.  But at least I can be present to what I am feeling and free to choose who I want to be in response to this.

Have a great day!  It’s a gorgeous one.

I will do my work honestly.

….so I can get out of the office as quickly as possible and enjoy the sunshine!

Love, loves.

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Robber jackass can get hit by a truck

My neighbor was robbed at gunpoint last night right in front of our building.  I’m pissed.

I went to great lengths to find a place I could afford in neighborhood I felt safe coming into alone at night.  My rules for qualifying residences were simple: no rats, roaches or rapists.  I guess  I should have added robbers.  I have been robbed of my peace of mind and that pisses me the fuck off.  Seriously!  Can’t people just behave?  What the hell is wrong with folks?  Who the hell do you think you are, robber jackass, to steal the peace of mind a whole community for $42 fucking dollars?

I was happy here.  It’s my sanctuary.  I used to do a little happy dance when I turned the corner to come down the hill into my complex.  Tonight, I turned my high beams on and looked between every tree, looked at every car, between every car, pulled into my parking space then pulled out again, back up the hill and did a u-turn and made my approach again.  Why?  I don’t know but I thought it made me look suspicious enough to leave the fuck alone.  I still couldn’t get out of my car though.  I had to call the wife of the guy who was robbed last night to ask if she minded sticking her head out her door while I walked to mine.  She did willingly.  Thank God and her.  Before I got out of the car though, I blew my horn a few times.  Then I called out to my neighbor all loud as if to say, “Hey, robber jackass, we’re out here.  We are talking to each other and are on our P’s and Q’s tonight, jerk off.  Don’t try it again!”  When I got to the stairs and thanked her, my 2 next door neighbors were sitting on the stairs, cell phones in hand asking what was wrong.  I told them nothing but that I was freaked out so I blew my horn to draw the attention of the neighbors and, hopefully, discourage another assault.  They thought it was a good idea and planned to do the same.  We promised to come outside when we hear each other blow the horn to make sure everyone gets in safely.  A damn shame and pretty neat all at the same time.

It’s a damn shame we are all afraid to walk to our own front doors.  That’s some bullshit!  I’m pissed as hell about that.  Now, instead of relief when I approach home, I get fucking anxiety!  Fuck you, robber jackass.  Fuck you and I hope you get hit by a truck.

My convictions have been challenged a lot this week and this is just one more challenge.  I found out a couple of weeks ago that I’m allergic to well, just about everything: wheat, milk, eggs, yeast, peanuts, mushrooms, asparagus, air…  My naturopath and herbalist agreed on an elimination diet/detox/cleanse for 40 days.  So, essentially, that leaves fruit, vegetables, whole grains and beans.  I’m vegan!  Tah-dah!  Just like that.  I decided to embrace it wholeheartedly and try on the whole concept of not harming any living creature.  In my heart, I’m a pacifist.  In practice, it just doesn’t pan out that way all the time.

Like Saturday when the herbs growing in my kitchen seemed to become a nesting place for some little larvae looking things writhing around in webs between my sage leaves.  Well, conflicted though I was, harming no living thing went out the window as I feverishly searched for a non-toxic to ME remedy I could spray on those things to snuff them out before they hatched!  Whoa — this sounds like I’m setting up the abortion debate but I swear that’s not where I was headed.  Anyway, I extinguished the larvae.  The day before, I carried a stink bug outside on an envelope and shook it to freedom.  I felt like such a hypocrite.  But I am a complex being and I can live with my complexity.  Fear of pests living in my home won and I was a killer.

And, this morning, I started to consider buying a gun.  I live alone.  Someone was robbed at gunpoint 50 feet from my front door.  Would a gun in my home have helped me in the parking lot? No.  Would I actually use one if I had the chance and my life were at risk?  I have no idea.  But the sound of having one made me feel a little less fearful.  The fact that the neighbor I called to watch me come in does have one, helped me feel a lot less fearful. Then I realized, for as much as we hear about people getting shot during a robbery these days (at least in my neck of the woods) you never seem to hear about people getting shot because they were trying to rob someone.  So, what are all these guns for personal protection for?  It’s not like I can carry it around with me everyday.  Not legally at least.  Hmmmm…Texas…?

I know, in my heart, I’m not a gun person.  I despise violence.  But I hate fear pretty damn much too.

I read 3 pieces I wrote tonight at a poetry event for Sexual Assault Awareness Month.  Any kind of violation is horrifying and so unnecessary.  I’m so tired of being afraid or worried.  I work in Baltimore, for the love of god.  I deliberately chose not to live there so that I could come home to a place that felt safer than where I work.  And now this.

I’m rambling, I know.  I’ll figure it out.  I lay in my bed wide a wake in a tense ball all night last night – afraid to go to sleep.  Ridiculous? Maybe.  But I can’t just flip a switch and turn the fear off.  I wish I could.  And I wish I didn’t wish the robber jackass would get hit by a truck.  But I do.  Quick, simple and minimal expenditure of my tax dollars.

Sigh.  There’s more I want to say about the racial dynamics of the whole situation but that’s more for another day.

That’s it.

Peace, love, light to all.

Oreos are Brown

Happy new year!

I’m going to blog this year.  I love it and I miss it and I don’t care who finds out what about me and my life because I write it here.  So, there’s that.

And, Oreo’s are brown!  That statement has inspired me to blog again.  My friend posted, on Facebook, a question to settle a debate between herself and her husband about Oreos.  Black or brown?  On her status, brown won.  On mine, black is winning.  It’s all about perception.  As completely 100%, unwaveringly convinced as I am that chocolate Oreo’s are brown (DUH!), there are those who are convinced that they are black.  Perception is your reality.  And that inspired me to write again.

I attended a panel discussion today with youth from Baltimore.  It was an interfaith discussion about peace in honor of MLK Day and an effort to gain understanding and identify common ground among youth from different religious communities in Baltimore.  On the panel sat 3 Jewish youth, 1 Jewish youth with a Catholic father,  3 Christians, 1 Buddhist, 1 Muslim from the Nation of Islam.  It was a fascinating discussion to behold among a generation, I can only hope, will do a better job of respecting differences among faith traditions than my generation has managed to do.

That discussion, accentuated by the Oreo discussion, has solidified my belief in the hokiness of anyone’s claim to have cornered the market on absolute truth.  My eyes were opened tremendously to the Jewish religious perspective.  I have learned, if nothing else, that I have been a fool to allow Christians to define Judaism for me.  I hadn’t realized that this had been the case until recently — sitting in a service, listening to a minister who claimed to be open to all faith traditions who, actually, painted Jews with the old, familiar, anti-Semetic brush of the Christianity I know so well.

Life is a journey of discovery.  It is a discovery of Self and a quest for the meaning behind all that is.

Peace and blessings to everyone along that journey.

Shalom.