Displaced …I Thought That I Was Safe

 

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It’s Sunday. A Time For Worship.

It has been a full week since being berated like a 2 year old…Not once but TWICE in one day…within 1 hrs time. The shame that I felt. Not even realizing that I was offending anyone, I apologized repeatedly because I never wanted to disappoint anyone. But, nonetheless, I did. Questions were asked, assumptions were made, blame was laid. Have you ever felt so out of place and misunderstood that you are AFRAID to be around people who claim to love you?

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Flashback to about 1986…

…And this may be a little sensitive to some people so I won’t go into too much detail. But, let’s just say that I was the thin, odd, and slightly awkward teen that everyone in my mother’s church whispered about. I would get this overwhelming feeling like I was literally in a “hostile environment” during service on Sundays. The feeling was not just mental, it was slightly metaphysical. I would feel like I could see two different sides to a lot of the people there. (Or I could visualize what their “unsavory” thoughts were) It was like I couldn’t wait until service was over so that I could breathe and be around my real family that were at least “ok” with me. Needless to say, I left that church as soon as I could.
And over the years, this sensitivity grew stronger and stronger.  I remember being able to walk into a building of “worship” and it was either, I could feel the heaviness immediately or I would be cautious because I was expecting to feel that feeling. It was like I couldn’t concentrate on learning how to serve God…and I wanted to learn how so much. (I am one of those children who even though I do all of the time, really hates to disappoint their parent) I wanted to make my Father proud of me.
I guess over the years/decades, I would learn on how to develop a personal relationship with God without truly knowing an ounce of the Bible by verse. I learned how to pray and I have also kept a “somewhat consistent”  journal. I mean that’s something right? …Right?

Fast Forward

Around the end of 2015, while working on the set of a talk show…I happened upon an area of town that I had never been. I absolutely loved the location and I found out that it also doubled as the home of worship for this growing church body. There was so much opportunity. There were programs AND a community center!

I met the pastors and some of the members and I instantly felt this completely awesome feeling that I hadn’t felt in a long time. I felt welcomed. I felt like the people around me were also seeking God wholeheartedly…It was a match!  Finally, I had somewhere to worship where I felt like it is okay to be me. I didn’t feel that heaviness. I joined the church and was baptized for the 2nd time in my life.

Bait and Switch

Somewhere between my joining and the past 9 months or so…SOMETHING HAS CHANGED. I mean drastically changed. It escalated over time. I could feel it but I kept shaking it off. I kept saying “Nah, it can’t be”. If I would get one of those heavy feelings, I would sit and try to rationalize with myself. “No, this is my home. They welcomed me. They know that I am not perfect, but they love me” I was starting to feel like a leper. I was at one point offered rides from 3 church members and that cut down to NONE.

Anywho, by the end of the year I dealt with my condition and some bad news on the further deterioration of my joints that made it even more impossible to walk. Couple that with the Opiod Crisis and the fact that even though I am walking bone on bone, I have severe degenerative joint disease,  sever sciatica on my right side, and nerve damage, I was taken off of my meds. They took the only thing that made it tolerable for me to move about and try to have a somewhat normal life. (Because now EVERYONE is a bumbling, drooling opiod addict)

Long story short, I am mainly confined to my home because it is too painful to move or walk on my legs. (No one had come from my church to check in on me or offer me communion or a ride for that matter) Just a quick generic FB note every now and then.

When did this coldness get here?

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Back To It Being Sunday…

It became so very clear last weekend that there is no place for me anymore with this body of worshipers that I thought was my family.  
I thought that everyone was human.
So when did human error become cause for wrist slapping and public embarrassment. I mean, I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW THAT I WAS DOING SOMETHING SO WRONG. It was at that moment that I realized that I must not be “good enough” anymore. Have you ever wanted to fit in so bad but the ones with the pull and the clout give you the thumbs down? Yeah…that happened.
And so I am going to bow out…I digress.
So moving forward…I will go back to prayer and devotion at home. I am mainly confined to home at the moment but I am working on fixing that…with the Grace of God. Because, I still want to please Him.
I was given some advice on “church hurt” before. They told me to focus on “The Word”
…and so that is what it is.


And so here it is …a Sunday and I am officially DISPLACED. I truly thought that I was safe.


~KINU

 

What I Lost Today.

Today… I lost my biological father. I didn’t know him well in my youth…but we grew into an oddly, eccentric relationship. I still felt important to his life…he said “you are my one and only daughter and I love you, love you, love you Kish” I know that he meant it.
The last time that I got to hear his voice was a couple of weeks ago because he called me to reassure me that even though he was about to go through a 10 hour surgery that he was going to come out okay he said, “because I am strong, and Kish, I am going to be here for a very long time”. My sister Cherlya Chey Tonge-Thompson heard the whole conversation and afterwards, I cried like a baby because I was totally frustrated that I couldn’t be there with them. I am in Charleston, SC and could not make it to PA for the actual surgery date.
Well, he did survive the surgery and he was healing and getting stronger every day. My brother James Johnson kept me updated throughout everything…no matter the hour …we spoke and I felt like things were going well.
Then this week he was moved to rehabilitation facility for recovery and HE DID NOT LIKE IT. Even though he was unable to speak he made sure that he texted to let my brother know and he talked to management and he called me with him on video…I was able to tell him that I was coming April 2nd finally. So, I told him that he looks good and he reacted like he was glad to see me. Once again…I thought that everything was going well.
Yesterday, I texted to wish my father HAPPY BIRTHDAY…I didn’t expect a text back, but I didn’t think that it would be because he was fighting to breathe. And this morning was supposed to be the normal routine. 1) devotion 2) COFFEE 3) conference call 4) brand ignition, editing, publishing, etc.
That was until my mom kept calling my son Corey from her bedroom and I said “Mom he is still sleeping …what do you need?” and she wouldn’t answer me. I asked again…no answer. Then I get to the room and I ask her what’s wrong and she starts calling out for my son over and over (but this time in a frantic manner) and I ask again…and right before Corey gets to the room she looks at me with this strange look and she says “there is only one way to tell you this” and I caught a big lump in my throat and I saw her form the words but I couldn’t hear her because I couldn’t stop screaming. I honestly don’t know how I made it from my mother’s room back to my work space. Thank God for my son. (Now, I know why she was calling him).
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I am in a serious state of unrest tonight as I sit here typing away.
There is so much more to this story. As the days and weeks go by I will reveal what I haven’t shared yet about this heartbreaking new chapter of my life.
It’s almost midnight so…I guess I will turn in since this infamous day has come to an end.
~KINU

My Many Shades of “Black Friday”

I had trouble with the title of this one because I kept changing the number of shades as I began to map this post. That or maybe I am just a tad bit tri-polar.

For as long as I can remember, I never felt the need to indulge in the “Black Friday” phenom. In my young adult days I used to dread this infamous day because I worked in retail as a visual specialist and it always meant spending the days afterwards having to strategically “remix” mannequins and windows before their scheduled changes because of the level of disrespect that would take place during shopping. Some mannequins would be missing pants…some missing body parts (don’t ask). Some windows would end up looking like a diorama of the LA Crenshaw Swap Meet!

After my divorce as I began to grow into my current career, I would spend my holidays including Black Friday, New Years, etc reading, researching, editing and sketching. I am a natural introvert so those were the things that gave me the most joy. I would throw on a classic movie that I have seen a million times or watch one of the many marathons and drink coffee all comfy in my yoga pants and a messy bun. That was the ultimate for me!

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No matter the day my set up is always about the same. My task list, a pencil, highlighter, my glasses, coffee and a good movie.

Now this year was a bit different because so many things have changed for me so drastically over the past few months. With the new additions to my career I have been working on trying to be more “social”. Thanksgiving day was not so bad because I did spend time with my grands but as the evening wore on I began to realize that I am very alone. I really wanted to go to the movies but I didn’t want to go by myself…who could I call…yup that’s right…NO ONE.(Thought that I had someone but it was a false alarm)

So instead, I went to bed early after reading several posts via social networks on people being out with their significant others starting their Black Friday shopping early like,right after dinner.

When I woke up I started my normal routine of checking my mail and watching the news there were interviews of some people who had been shopping since the night before! Really? They seemed happy and excited and my watching the look on their face made me wish that I at least had the option to do something so asinine. My so called Black Friday was starting out at 7am to resemble Pantone’s Lavender Blue. Not good. Let me explain.

Being a “creative” I am fascinated with the idea of the psychology of color. Sometimes I like to associate a feeling, emotion or start inspiration boards with colors that I react to. For that, I like to utilize Pantone’s color finder. Back to my point. Lavender Blue is like a quiet, sad color. It is like feeling down but not really drastic enough to want to end it all. Well, that is how I felt on the morning of Black Friday. You could call it the “mourning” of Black Friday.

As I stated in the beginning, my moods/shades were “a plenty” so by mid- afternoon when I realized that I wouldn’t be having any company or going to see “Creed” like I was dying to do, my mood moved to Pantone’s Dark Gull Gray. Let me elaborate. Gloomy…moody heading towards distraught. This “Wack Friday” sucked beyond the beyond!

I went on with my uneventful afternoon into early evening doing some editing and research, casually peeping a post from one of my virtual friends sharing their horror stories about being out with the maniacs at the mall when my mood lifted somewhat. I realized that I had only had one cup of coffee all day, so that is when I made the ultimate cup of joe! You have to understand…COFFEE = CREATIVITY! Mood: Pantone’s Coral Gold an earthy contentment. A slow, continuous, mellow and soothing lukewarm flame. My comfort zone. My persona. (most days)

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This vintage percolator belonged to my Nana and makes the best coffee! Cafe Bustelo…is the best coffee!

Eventually, I got over the fact that I didn’t hit the stores for yet another year or get to go to the movies but it was a little harder to deal with the fact that just when I thought that my holidays would no longer be spent watching others bask in the joy of one another that I was going to end up going to bed with the sobering realization that I may still be in the “spectator’s section”. So  right before midnight my Coral Gold  turned to Pantone’s Majolica Blue as I tried to close my eyes. Translation: Majolica Blue is the color of an absent hug.

It’s a good thing that I had my magazines and my stuffed caterpillar Patrick to keep me company. …Don’t judge me. Should I vow to try harder next year to experience the traditional Black Friday? Then again maybe I will do another stylish color combination of my very own custom “shades of emotion” which were absolutely COST FREE that is at least until I get the bill from my therapist!

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This is Patrick the patakiller. (caterpillar) I can’t count on one hand how many times I have slept without him since my Dad passed away in 2013. ( I promise I will make an appointment with a therapist soon.)

 

 

 

415 Moons

It’s the early morning hours of Thanksgiving 2015 and I have failed miserably at keeping up with this blog. Doing the math, it has been roughly 415 moons with no activity to this blog. I should be ashamed. I should be…but I am not.

It has been more than a year since my last post but within that time my life has changed so much that I can not even imagine a better time for me to pick up blogging other than right now. Thanksgiving seems to be so appropriate being that I have so many things to be “thankful” for.

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I love late night research when the house is quiet and I can read without interruption.

I think that I may have grown more in these last 415 days than I have in over a decade. Reflecting on all of the major changes in my life from people coming into my life as well as people leaving (at the time it felt like abandonment), changing the way that I work, sharpening my skills, organizing my daily life through the use of task lists and just simply taking in all of the beauty around me visually and mentally.

I had lost touch with the simple most basic functions in life. I forgot how to smile, my penmanship sucked (because today we tend to type and text everything) and I have to tell you that I have always boasted the neatest handwriting (similar to a computer font)! I even remember having trouble picking up a book to read or study and even a magazine article could not hold my attention…very bad KiKi!

It took many phases of change to bring me full circle to where I am today and I can not be more content at my growth. Yes, it took me 415 moons to  relearn how to read, write, visualize, think, learn and smile.

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It feels good to be organized. The task list has been an amazing tool for me to strengthen my accountability.

I want to challenge you to reflect today to see where you are and where you would like to be. Did you lose touch with the simple things in life? Are you taking the time to take in full complete breaths?… Or are you, like I found myself, which was barely breathing because I didn’t have time. (Think about it)

As I wrap up this brief post, I want to thank my spiritual mentor Aisha Thurston of The Journey with Aisha for teaching me how to take my time to breathe again.

What if anything can you say that you are truly thankful for? To whom or what do you credit notable changes in your life today?

Back On My Bike

Here we go…

So, Like…Right after my 44th birthday on September 21st I had the worst experiences! Okay I’m sure no one wants to hear about those but since your here …

Well, everyone (including myself) tend to create all of these new revelations when their birthday comes around. They are going to stop smoking (I don’t smoke), start saving money (you actually would need to have money to be able to save some right?) and the all time favorite…”I’m gonna do me!” (yup that was my declaration of choice)

Low and behold, (not more than 5 days after my birthday) Someone breaks into my car!!! They broke into Sassafras! My brothers brought me outside to show me the damage and I lost it! Those barbarians sliced into her like animals. My poor Sassy! They stole my MAC makeup case, my lighting equipment and broke my emm-effin printer in half! …IN HALF! From that point on I laid on the couch in the living room for 3 days!

Next, when I decide to come to and that there is hope…I finally get up and it feels like I just got grizzly slapped! My face was swollen and hot and my head was throbbing. That bought me a nice midnight trip to the ER. I spent the next few days trying to heal from an infection in the face from a bad tooth. (Guess who doesn’t have medical coverage)

Fast forward to yesterday and I decided that I was tired of wallowing and I need to just get back up on this bike and try again. So that’s what I am going to do! What’s funny is starting a new blog was not in my plans but it feels pretty good to let all of this out so that I can get back to work. Looking forward to the days ahead of editing and research while drinking my coffee and watching my classic movies for inspiration!

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This is a normal setup for me. I always have my checklist & highlighter, coffee, my reading glasses and sometimes an article from one of the back issues I’ve collected over the years. (It’s a slight addiction)

I promise you that the rest of my posts won’t be as dismal as this one. You have my word. (Unless Murphy’s law decides to rain down on me again)