Dear Humans,

Stop being assholes. 

Seriously.

Stop.

Not because it's the holiday season. I understand we have bad days, but that is no excuse to treat people like garbage. It's an excuse far too many use to justify their atrocious behavior. You can't tell me the majority of the people at Publix and Target this morning were having bad days. If I'm in a funk or not in a pleasant headspace, I stay home. I don't interact with others. I don't text or talk on the phone. Venting is one thing, but full on acting like a jerk and treating others poorly is not happening. 

It isn't the cashier's fault you don't know how to use your new debit card. Even though she went around to help you and that wasn't good enough. Raising your voice and making the girl cry was oh, so helpful. Did that make you feel better? Awesome. You suck. The cashier apologized to me because she was wiping tears away with her sleeve. I told the cashier she was not to blame and to not allow that person to steal her joy. And never, ever allow people to do such a thing her because she's worth more than that and she's got this. She smiled, lifted her chin, and took a deep breath.  

It isn't the meat departments fault you can't find a cheap cut of pork, and you stand there forcing the employee to dig through packages of pork, you throw them down, block the entire area with your cart. When someone reaches for a package of pork chops you proceed to snap at them because they bumped your cart, even though they said excuse me three times and you didn't move. Cool. You're amazing.

I can't even discuss what I witnessed in the parking lot. How do some obtain drivers licenses?  

I don't care what your age is. I don't care who you are. If you have children or not. If you're in a hurry. If you feel some sense of entitlement. If you are someone I know or a stranger. I don't care. You look like a fool. 

Then people like me go home a write about it.

This is why the online shopping business is popular. People are tired of dealing with miserable human beings who want to vomit their nonsense all over others. Or oblivious humans who can't look past their noses.

We want a better society. We talk and preach about it daily, but it starts with you. It starts with me.

It starts with us. 

Stop the excuses. Stop the blame. We are all trying to get through the day unscathed. 

Is it that hard to be nice? To say a kind word. To smile. 

It's your choice.

Perhaps you are miserable because of you not because of others. What you put out there is what comes back. Think before you open your mouth. 

Sincerely,

A woman who is sick of your shit

  

Good Vibes Only Or I'll Cut You

Intuition. 

The gut.

Instincts.

Douchedar.

Call it what you want, most humans have it. The inner gauge which steers you towards positive people or situations or pushes you away from them. Nine times out of ten my gut has been spot on upon meeting people. I tend to observe more than fully interact in social situations. If the energy around me feels off, I'll try to shield my own. I don't want ew vibes. And I can usually pinpoint where they are coming from or more like who they are coming from.

Protect your headspace.  

Negative situations can veil the truth. You allow people to guide you instead of your intuition. I'm guilty of this. I was seeking acceptance within a homeschool group and I pushed my doubts and reservations down. Way down. Deep, deep down. Until I couldn't take it anymore. Once the veil was lifted the truth rushed in. The truth set me free. Free of the nonsense and drama. 

Sometimes your inner voice is a good thing. 

You know that voice inside your head, the one that criticizes, the one that drudges up past mistakes at 4 am, the one you want to silence when you try on clothes in the dressing room. Most of the time I hush her up, but in certain instances, I'm happy I listened. My inner dialogue is quite entertaining. Just remember to filter. It's easy to allow anxiety and negativity in, but you are in control. 

You're an adult. You don't have to do anything you don't want to do. 

I know. Crazy concept, right? If you know a situation will be negative or bad vibe people will be in attendance, you can say no. If someone calls and you are resting your energy and mind, and you know the conversation will drain you, don't answer. We live in a society where people feel the need to explain why they don't want to people or adult; we create reasons because we don't want to disappoint or upset anyone. This also applies to children, but that is for Logan to explain at a later time.

I do enjoy people. I do. But when ew vibes come my way and muddle my good vibes, seriously, I'm out. It's okay to say no. It's okay to leave early. It's okay because you have the right to be happy. Why should you be miserable? But we all have to do things we don't want to do. True but there are also situations and people we can choose to stay away from. The joys of free will.

Snip. Snip.  

Remember Mary from the moms group in 2005, the emotional vampire. Mary vomited her bad vibes all over you like Regan from The Exorcist. She found you on social media--thanks, friends you may know--and friend requested you. You cut off your friendship for a reason. Your instinct was right then and it's right now.

Delete.

You may not live in the same city as Mary anymore but negative energy can still seep in. I've seen it. I've experienced it. If you have people on your social media accounts who constantly have nonsense or unsupportive comments, you don't have to remain connected to them. Back to that whole adult thing. 

                                          This hangs right as you walk into my front door.

                                          This hangs right as you walk into my front door.

I am on a journey of healing and empowerment. 30 days. 30 truths. I am on day 4 and once I have completed my 30 days I will share with you what I've gone through. With my son graduating next year, I'll no longer homeschool him and I feel the transitional shift. I'm positive you'll see posts from me as this emotional shift continues.

How do you handle negative vibes? People? 

 

 

 

A Glimpse Of Violet

The Red Roots released April 2015. In a perfect world, The Violet Veins would've released the same year or early 2016.

In a perfect world.

Death. Illness. Relocation.

These are not excuses but reality. I wanted more than anything to release the second book in the series but the voices silenced. As my depression and anxiety consumed me, I couldn't sit at my desk. I begged.

Bargained.

Plead with the people within my mind. I don't see them as characters. I don't see them as another story. Each book I write has a purpose-- meaning. The words are personal. They are attached to either an experience I had or someone else's. They are fiction but with a thread of truth in each story. I was advised to write with the standard formula; it's what sold books. I refused. In doing so, I made a noticeable dent in my author career and not for the better. I don't regret my decision. I reached out to other authors who had taken a break or only publish books every 2-3 years. Picked their brains. Sought advice. Instead of making me feel like an afterthought author, they lifted me up. They encouraged me. At times, such an act is rare in the writing industry. Many are quick to tear down and slander your name if it raises a threat.

When I wrote Deadly Deception, I did it because I love telling stories. It was my motivation to publish the book. Through the process, I lost sight of that. It's business. Publishers want to make money. Authors want to make money. Who doesn't but I forgot the feeling of sitting down at my laptop and allowing the words to flow because all I could think about was what my publisher would think? How will this be marketed? What genre? Is the genre saturated? Is there enough romance?

Questions.

Doubt flooded my mind. My heart rate kicked up. Muscles tight. Fingers numb. There were times I thought I was in the midst of a stoke, but it was an anxiety attack.

I stopped writing. I stopped reading fiction. I stopped feeling anything. I didn't want to feel the pain or disappointment.

I failed. I gave in to it all. I was exhausted, and I didn't want to fight it.

But I did.

I continue to fight.   

I continue to claw my way out of the hole in the ground I dug myself with my own bare hands. The dirt beneath my fingernails, I continue to climb. Ribboned tears. Gritted teeth.

I climb.

I climb. 

I introduced you to Crosby Dawes in The Red Roots. She is The Violet Veins. And just like me, Crosby hates to feel but does so with intensity. She is climbing out of her own hole of loss and anger. Crosby is navigating through a familiar yet foreign terrain. She knows what she must do but hesitates. Isla arrives right when Crosby needs the push.

I know people doubt my commitment to completing the book. I understand. However, I'm in a different place and the voices have returned. I will earn your confidence back with my actions. This I promise. I'd like to share a bit of the book with you. 

This is the first chapter (unedited) of The Violet Veins...  

She refused to fall apart.

Not now.

Not ever.

Emotionally electrocuted, Crosby's teeth grinded through the pain; she pushed her way through the horde of photographers and reporters. Their shrill voices shouted out at her; their words chased her down the sidewalk. Police waved back at the hungry predators who wanted to carve her grief into time.

Crosby’s storm of dark waves swayed in front of her face. Late winters wind exposed her smeared liner. Delirious from lack of sleep; her feet stumbled, but she gathered her posture before she folded to the concrete.

Her family lived their lives out in the open and what the world wanted to see was Crosby’s breakdown. Her dismantled life, the media would air out her family’s dirty laundry on the Internet clothesline without a second thought.

“Whose body was found? Was it a robbery?” “Any suspects?” Reporters shouted. 

A journalist sidestepped the police. “Where’s your father?”

Crosby’s nerves sizzled, fists shook. There was no escape. She halted and turned to face the media buzzards. “He’s dead. My father is dead.”

There was a slight pause and then an assault of voices exploded all around her.

“Was he using again?”

“Drug deal gone wrong?”

“Did he overdose?”

“Ms. Dawes, give us a statement.”

The loss consumed her, devoured organs and muscles. The rage. The sickness. Crosby was a lost woman who belonged to no one.

God help me.

Raw and exposed, Crosby approached the closest reporter, wearing aviators, and a press nametag dangled from around his neck. “You want a statement—Korbin?” Crosby yanked the recording device from his hand and launched it over the crowd, the device bounced and shattered onto the sidewalk; shiny bits fired up into the air. “There’s your statement.”

“You’ll pay for that.”

“Bill my attorney. Lily Graham. Michigan Avenue.”

Typical societal behavior, curse the woman who, for the past sixty-seven minutes, stared at Lucas Dawes’s body on a sterile slab.

Loving father. Devoted husband.

Addict.

The incessant reporters thinned Crosby's tolerance. She turned and walked away from their questions and accusations to an idled SUV. It didn’t matter how Crosby pled her father’s case. To them, he was a relapsed junkie who died with a needle in his vein on the West Side. Another executive plagued by corruption and guilt. Amaranthine fell, as did the families—hers wasn’t the exception.

Crosby gulped her fury. Revenge was her business. It was a pill swallowed, in hopes of it killing the other person. Crosby ingested hers—slowly.

Softly. 

She refused to fall apart.

Not now.

Not ever.  

 

I People Therefore I Drink

North Carolina. 2012. Homeschool event at a local farm. 

Corn maze. Apple cider. Pumpkins.  

We weren't meeting new people, in fact, we'd grown close to a few of the families who were going to attend.

My anxiety differed. I had to people and the thought terrified me. 

An hour before we had to leave the darkness surrounded me. 

Numb hands. Quickened pulse. Gut twisted. 

The pain is real. I grip my stomach and focus on my breathing. Every cell within me wants to cancel but I fight through the darkness. I'm not always successful but I promised Logan we would go. 

This is me everytime I have to people. Social gatherings are my Kryptonite. Even dinner with friends slice up my insides.

This isn't new. I've molded my emotions over the years. Learned to suppress. My therapist calls it unhealthy.

I call it survival.  

Introvert. Socially inept. Anti-people.

I've heard it all.

Take meds, they said. Meditate, they said. Train for a marathon, they said.

It's not simple. It's an everchanging path through rugged terrain.

This week my dear friend forced me to people. She's learned to only give me a handful of minutes to ready myself because that way I don't have time to overanalyze the situation. My husband was out of town but I text Phil to inform him of my new plans for the night. Logan encouraged me to go.

She picked me up and we headed to Panera.

We were meeting up with 6 other women. A couple I am friends with but the others would be new to me. I prayed within. I asked for strength and for calm. In my heart, I felt Phil's love and encouragement. 

We walk into Panera and I filled my lungs. 

shutterstock_292236983-2.jpg

2 hours later...

I left with a smile on my face and happiness in my soul. The women were friendly and awesome. I laughed. A lot. Throughout I processed conversations, observed the interactions, it's what helps me. Also, it's great for my writing.

Later I text my husband to let him know I was home.

He responded with "Super proud of you."

Oh, the feels. 

And I was proud of me

For some people interaction is easy, for others it's torture. Even to call to set up a doctors appointment is hard. 

I've been asked, how are you an author? Don't you have to interact with readers? 

I do and the author events that I've attended were terrifying. 

Please understand I love people. I do. Well, most of them. I have a close circle of friends but as a homeschool mom and author, social events are difficult for me. I've been accused of pushing my social anxiety onto my son, I promise I haven't. Not intentionally. He's socially quirky which is part of the Autism Spectrum but he's more comfortable around others than me.

Anytime people talk openly about such a topic there is judgment. I don't care because this is reality. My reality. I'm not about rainbows and kittens 24/7. I don't fakebook or glitter up Instagram. This is me even though I use filters for some of my food posts but I digress, this is who I am. This is my life.

Imperfect. Weird. Dysfunctional.

But it's mine.

Some people I still ew. 

Full on ew.

Ew entirely. 

But I will take the social victories as they come. 

One day at a time.