If you lost your virginity @11 yrs old, you’d be effed up, too | #DiggingInTheBag |@phettehollins #DITB

Digging in the bag is metaphoric for Digging in the soul. What I discovered as I was scavenging through old photos was how different I was “back then.” Of course, as time progresses the hope is to grow. But sadly, some folks don’t. They stay stuck, stagnant.

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I want to take the time to celebrate growth…and healing by sharing the head space I was in during the time of the photos compared to where I am now. We are who we are for a reason. We behave in the manner we do due to our upbringing, pre-disposition (genetics), experiences, what we’ve been exposed to, etc.

I knew I had serious issues shortly into my marriage. At a time when I should’ve been happy (especially since 3 of the men I dated previously got married after our breakup), I wasn’t. I didn’t know it then, but that took a toll on my self-esteem. Subconsciously, I didn’t feel worthy.

Prior to getting married, I blamed all of my exes for my failed relationships. I was absolutely, positively NOT the blame. They were all liars & cheaters and had issues, NOT ME. I was good.

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My childhood wasn’t traumatic like some of my friends’ was. My mom wasn’t on drugs. A relative didn’t penetrate me with his penis; he used his fingers instead. That didn’t count as molestation, right?

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I was good & grown when I learned that inserting your fingers inside an 8 to 10 year old’s vagina is a violation, and that a parent can live in the home & be just as absent as the drug-addicted parent in the streets.

Because my experiences weren’t “as bad” as those I saw in the movies or that of some of my relatives & friends, I minimized them, until they got too big for me to ignore.

I talk about patterns a lot. Mine was:

Meet. Sex. Relationship. Cheat. Break up. Get back together. Cheat. Break up.

I didn’t take the time to get to know anyone. In hindsight, that was because I didn’t care to. I didn’t even know who I was. Didn’t know what to look for. I was winging it and doing a bad job at it. All I knew was that I liked attention…from any & everybody. But baybeeeeeee…all attention ain’t good attention.

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I said it before –>HERE<– and –>HERE<– annndddddddd –>RIGHT HERE<– , I grew up in a non-affectionate family. So, I sought it elsewhere.

I lost my virginity to a 15-year-old. Though I didn’t look 11 (almost 12), that doesn’t negate the fact that I was a child.

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On the left: Ponytail w/bangs in the front & back. On the right: Farrah Fawcett feathered do w/the satin blouse AND brooch #iMgrown

Will you look at the transformation. Can you see it? The pic on the left, I had a little bit of innocence left. On the right…it’s GONE!

30+ years later and it still saddens me because I blame my mom for dropping the ball. My grandma, too.

Being a parent myself, I understand that we (parents) cannot be with our kids 24/7 & know their every move. So when I say they dropped the ball, I mean they gave up on me, for whatever reason.

I’m convinced that when I turned 13, my grandmother stopped liking me. I could surmise that maybe my attitude had something to do with it. But, shit, don’t all teenagers got a bad attitude?

My mom allowed me to come & go as I pleased, for the most part. She didn’t follow-up with parents to ensure I was over such & such house like I “alleged” to be. She was preoccupied. With what? I don’t know. She was a very private person. I knew very little about her life, but the little bit I do know speaks volumes.

She was still that wounded, hurt little girl who never healed. So, she felt all she had to do was make sure I was fed, clothed, and had shelter. Dassit. She could not pour into me because she was empty, which made her emotionally unavailable.

So she didn’t notice my bloodied clothes after a 15-year-old boy just popped my cherry. I came in the house and she didn’t even bother to look up, which I knew she wouldn’t. I just slid on upstairs and camouflaged my clothes in the garbage.

2 weeks later, I was happy to celebrate my 12th birthday AND my menstrual cycle.

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I didn’t know much about the birds & the bees, but I knew a period was a good sign. So, when I didn’t get one for 5 months, I knew that was a bad sign. My mom finally noticed and took me to the dr. I was 5 months pregnant and forced to get an abortion on June 2, 1990 –2 days after my 15th birthday. Because I was so far along, the procedure took 2 days. This still affects me.

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Afterwards, the dr. advised my mom & I that I rest for a couple of days. I did some crossword puzzles then got bored. I asked my mom if I could go around the corner over a friend’s house, the same house where I lost my virginity 3 yrs prior. Against the doctor’s orders, she let me go. Again, preoccupied. Unfazed.

I would go on to get pregnant again at 17 years old. On purpose. While kids were filling out college applications, I was planning to have a baby. Not because I was trying to “trap” a dude. Nope, nothing like that. But because I wanted someone to love & to love me back. I knew by the time I had the baby I’d be 18 and couldn’t be made to get rid of her.

For the next 25+ years I would engage in unhealthy relationships with men & women because I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. Now that I’ve gotten to the root of my issues and have been doing the work, I am clear about what I want & will no longer attract strays (those who have no place to go), cheaters (those who are married or in a committed relationship), or abandoners (those who are emotionally unavailable).

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Stories connect & heal us. Let’s get unstuck together. 😊😊😊

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Ray of Clouds #Ninja4 | #DiggingInTheBag |@phettehollins #DITB

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Unlike my last post, *you can read it –> HERE <–*, I got permission to post the photos I’m about to post without having to mask the face. The ones you see with the masks are, in this case, innocent bystanders. 🙂

OK, HERE IT GOES…

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I got so many pictures of this dude I had to make a collage, or else this would’ve been the longest post in the history of long posts. And these aren’t all of them.

I got so many pictures of this dude because he was my first love –in the eyes of my 14-year-old self.

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My Virginia Farrell hair do

This is what I looked like when he first pursued me, when I was 13 years old.

Low key, I think I was scared to give him a chance because he was so big & black. He looked like a 30-year-old man at the age of 17. I ain’t want no parts of that…but he was relentless.

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This is my favorite hairstyle EVER

This is what I looked like when I finally gave in, minus the fuchsia (this is how it should be spelled despite what’s written on the pic) tips.

I was a demure teen and he was an outgoing street ninja. I was squarer than a cigarette and he was cooler than a fridge. I liked that about him.

We spent a lot of time together…when he wasn’t spending it with other chicks.

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He’d invite me over and, by the time I walked the 3 blocks or so to his house, he was gone. I’d wait for hours. This was before cell phones, and before we could afford beepers.

I stayed with #Ninja4 for 4 years, off & on. You know how that goes. After he got a girl pregnant within 1 year of us going together, I was all cried out and decided to join him at his game.

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Told y’all this was my favorite hairstyle. Still holding on to dem fuchsia tips. Hashtag Spring Pic.

I was like Boy, I am too cute to be played like this. I quit you.

I had boys lined up. Fawk u thought?!? Forget you. I’m out!

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Tony was the 1st in a string of victims. He was so good to me. He was nice. He carried my books. Walked me to all my classes. Took me to the movies. Took me fishing. Just good to me. But you know we don’t like them nice ones.

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Plus, #Ninja4 was like “Broke up? Who broke up? Not us!”

It was like he knew my every move. He knew when I had company. Even knew when I was planning on having company.

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He taunted & tormented poor Tony for months, until he finally broke up with me. #Ninja4 won. So, I went back to him.

I tried dating 2 more people and he bullied them away. The 3rd one he actually got into an altercation with, on Superbowl Sunday 1993. But this one wasn’t so easy to get rid of, considering I was pregnant by him.

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5 months pregnant
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5 months pregnant. You can see the bump more so in this pic

Everything changed after this. I had #Ninja4’s full attention now. He stopped messing around with other girls (I think), and vowed to be there for me and my unborn baby, even though he wasn’t the biological. Turned out, back then, the biological didn’t want anything to do with his seed. He eventually changed his tune. I wrote about it in –> THIS POST <– a day after he passed away suddenly in 2012.

#Ninja4 kept his word. He was there for us. I had my #1stBorn on October, 11, 1993. I was going to name her Breyonna, but I dropped the “B” so that her name would begin with the letter “R,” like #Ninja4.

And whudduya know? After getting a girl pregnant while we were together, cheating on me incessantly, the break ups, the make ups…Now, I didn’t want him anymore.

It was in that moment as I sat in a motel room with him & my 4 month old baby with nowhere to go that I decided I wanted more. Being a street dude’s girl wasn’t cute. So, I left for good.

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Back in October 2016, I spoke with #Ninja4 and it dawned on me that I didn’t fully gain closure from ending our relationship. I bounced and jumped and hopped into numerous relationships after him. Repeating the same patterns. Never resolving anything. Not sitting still long enough to listen for the next, right move. If you hurt my feelings, I retaliated. I was good for doing tit for tat. Not knowing that I was only harming myself.

Stories connect & heal us. I share my stories as a means to celebrate growth with the hope that we can get & stay unstuck –4eva! Share this site with those who are looking for a laugh & a lesson…and some healing.

Until next time…

I live with my baby mama but I swear on my kids we ain’t f@cking – #Ninja2 | #LetItPurge #PurgeItThursday #DiggingInTheBag | @phettehollins #DITB

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Purge

1. to rid of whatever is impure or undesirable; cleanse; purify.

2. to rid, clear, or free (usually followed by of or from). ~Dictionary.com

Stories connect & heal us. Sometimes we’re stuck and don’t even know it. It becomes a new normal. Second nature. But if you find that you keep ending up in situations that have you questioning who you are as a person, go against your morals/values, or, to put it plainly, just don’t make you feel good about yourself, then it’s time to get that shovel, and dig deep (within).

When we repeat patterns, we’re stuck. There are lessons to learn from these experiences. If we don’t get them, they will keep showing up until we do…for however long it takes. Took me almost 20 years.

We teach people how to treat us

Initially, I was going to do this –> #DiggingInTheBag <–series in chronological order, but I changed my mind. It didn’t feel organic. I’m into things happening naturally, flowingly. 🙂 (If you don’t know, I make up words. It’s better this way) If it don’t fit, don’t force it. So, however the experiences come to me is how I will convey them.

Congratulations, you are officially a side chick

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There was no paperwork signed inducting me into this new position. I acquiesced. I accepted this job, oblivious of its opening. By the time I peeped my new job duties and questioned them, I was told to read the fine print of the figurative contract and refer to where it states “and other duties as assigned.” Nobody reads that shit. Well, I didn’t.

Let the patterns begin

It fascinates me that I can playback a particular event and see it totally different than I did before. That’s because I have –> new eyes <– and over time as we mature, we see things for how they are…and not how we want them to be.

When we gon’ get to the good part

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Me @21 yrs young. Rocking the creamy crack do, Mary J. Blige honey blonde, asymetric cut w/my spring jacket from Winkleman’s. Couldn’t tell me nada.

The guy in the pic is #Ninja2 (in my attempt to keep folks anonymous, I’ve given everyone an identifier so that I can keep track). Ok, so, this is #Ninja2.

We were teenagers in love. I was his first. He wasn’t mine’s, though. He’s one year older than me, but 2 grades ahead (had them smarts). I met him in the Spring of ’89. He was cute & little, but sexy like Big Daddy Kane.

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Yup. He looked like this.

We hung out at each other’s houses. Went to Cedar Point. Met each other’s moms. This was for sure for sure gonna last…until he kicked me to the curb my first week of high school. Guess he couldn’t dare be seen with a freshman. 😦

That was it. We were done and didn’t talk for a few years. Buster.

The “Contract”

Jump ahead to 1996. I’m 21; he’s 22. We saw each other. We’re geeked up. We reminisced. We promised to stay in touch.

We kept in touch. We linked up. We screwed.

We linked up. We screwed. Repeat.

We linked up. We screwed. We went to the movies. Repeat.

We linked up. We screwed. We went to the movies. We went to concerts. Repeat. As a matter of fact, in the above pic of us we’re at a concert. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

Few weeks went by and I noticed he would come to my place, but I couldn’t go to his.

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That’s when I was hit with the “I live with my baby mama but we don’t f@ck no mo.” Not only were they NOT having sex, but they also “sleep in different rooms.” 

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Silly Mortal

I’m the type that believe what people say until it’s proven otherwise. If you tell me you’re going to call me, I believe you. If you tell me you’re sleeping in another room and are in the process of getting your own crib, I believe you. If 6 months has passed and you’re singing the same song on repeat, theeeeennnnnnnnn it’s a prollem.

According to my journal entries, I felt early on something wasn’t right, which, I’m glad I revisited what I wrote because my recollection was a wee bit different (we all know that memory alone cannot be trusted, right? That’s why we need RECEIPTS, which in this case is JOURNALS). I forced myself to believe that he was being truthful. I would page him and he wouldn’t respond for days. *sidebar: How many of y’all remember beepers doe? I had a cute purple one.

$10 OBO Purple Pager
Kinda like this one

He would called at 10pm/11pm almost every night, not giving 2 damns about me having to work in the a.m. When we did link up, he stayed out all night, sometimes not going home until midday the next day. So, in my young, naive mind, ain’t no way he had a woman who would tolerate that. I was wrong.

Shredding the Contract

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6 months later. Wash. Rinse.

There was this spot that everybody in the world (well, in Romulus 🙂 ) went to every Thursday night called The Ultimate Sports Bar.

We met up as usual. But on this night, I declined for us to “hook up” afterwards. I thought that would tip him off that something was up, but it didn’t.

We went out separate ways. Instead of going to sleep when I got home at almost 3 am, I sat by the phone, waiting for it to ring…because I knew it was going to ring. He never called after the club for two reasons: #1 Often times we were together, and #2 When we weren’t, he went home to her. He definitely wasn’t going to call then.

My nerves were shot. I kept checking to make sure my phone was plugged in, and that the ringer was on. I obsessed like that for an hour…then the phone rang.

He was cussing me out before I got the phone to my ear. The time I spent with him in my youth and over the past 6 months, not once had I ever heard him curse. But that night, he used them all, and also spewed “Bitch, I’ll kill yo hoe ass.” That’s when I knew it was really real.

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I…WAS…CRUSHED.

Yes, I expected him to be a little mad, but not big mad. Not cuss me out & call me out my name. Noooo, not that.

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A couple of months prior, he called me from his house phone but forgot to press star 67. For those of you who aren’t old enough to remember what that is, –> Google It <–. I wrote the number down…just…in…case.

I called his baby mama the day I was to meet up with him at the sports bar. I knew he wasn’t home. I didn’t bother blocking my number…’cuz I’m a G & real G’s do gangsta…sike. Let me stop playing. But when a woman’s fed up…WATCH OUT!!!

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I chickened out and hung up when she answered the phone. She called right back and asked for me by name, politely.

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She knew who I was because #Ninja2 casually told her that we ran into each other a few months back. They’d had a previous convo about me taking his virginity when we were younger. She didn’t suspect anything…until he started coming home…late.

My version:

We’ve been messing around for 6 months and he’s working on getting his own place so we can be together forever and ever.

Her version:

Me & #Ninja2 never broke up. We sleep in the same room, in the same bed. Every night. Had sex last night. And we’re moving to a bigger place soon.

She thanked me for sharing and apologized that I had to go through that.

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She was the one who urged me to carry on with my plans to meet up with him and act as everything was “normal.”

This experience caused me to close myself off and trust no one. I went on to be that chick who didn’t care if you had a chick because I was going to use you just like you were going to use me, and not invest my feelings.

While I may have shredded the contract with #Ninja2, there were more side chick contracts to come. And this time, I signed on the dotted line.

What betrayal taught me | @phettehollins #WritingThroughIt

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Karma means action, work or deed. It also refers to the spiritual principle of cause & effect, where intent & actions (whether good or bad) of an individual influence the future of that individual.

I believe in good & bad karma. Most of the time, folks just say “karma” and that’s indicative to mean bad, automatically. We forget there’s another side of the coin. However, this post is about the bad side, though. 🙂

THE BETRAYAL

I’ve written about some of my wrongdoings before, and will continue to do so as a means to heal. In one of my posts, I talked about how I tried to date a married man. Last year, I betrayed someone who I considered a friend (without really knowing how to be one) by sleeping with her ex-girlfriend. I still cringe thinking about that. It still makes me uncomfortable, but I’m #WritingThroughIt.

friend is a person who you bond with, typically a non-family member, who you hang out with and confide in.

I repented for my actions and then spent the next several months learning how to not only be a friend, but also a better person. I was on a roll. Doing the damn thing…then…Karma’s ass showed up. The convo went like this:

Karma

“Hey girl hey! First, let me just say, I see you and you’re doing a good job making sure your intent & actions are aligned so that you’re maximizing your cause & effect. Keep up the good work, girl.”

Me (blushing)

“Hey Karma heeeyyy! I truly appreciate that and thank you for noticing. You don’t know how much that means”…

KARMA INTERRUPTS

Karma

“But…do you remember back in February 2015, when you did X to Y?”

Me

“Uhhh…yeah…but…that was a mistake. I felt real bad and I learned from it.”

Karma

“Shh!!! I understand. But here ya go. And, remember, stay the course.”

She plopped that payback in my lap and vanished. This is a true story. Are y’all still following along?

THE PAYBACK

The payback came from someone who I considered a friend. Not just any friend. Not the friend you talk to every now and then. Naw!!! I communicated with this friend 1,2,3, & 4 times a day/week. Hung out with. Shared secrets with. Yet, this same friend is heard calling me every name in the book ‘cept “Boo,” which is what she used to affectionately call me.

Instead, she called me a gay bitch. A dyke bitch. A bi bitch because I like girls & dudes, judged my sexual palate, but never once judged me to my face. Divulged very personal information to the person she was talking to.

I listened to the 2 messages, which were approximately 3 minutes each, at least four dozen times. I was in disbelief. I went through 3 temperaments: shock, anger, and sadness. Once I accepted those emotions, the smoke cleared.

Tell me, what are the odds of my ex-friend calling someone, not getting an answer, and forgetting to hang up the phone? Apparently, the person she called had a vendetta to settle because he texted me, asked for my email address, then urged me to be on standby because this was something I “had to see.” Well, in this case, hear. And indeed it was. Again, what are the fuggin’ odds?

#BczOfSelina

My mom could be the sweetest, most soft-spoken person you ever met…until you crossed her. Or ME. She knew how to hold a grudge tighter than some African braids. She didn’t like my ex-friend, but knew I had a hard head and a soft heart. So, she allowed me to make mistakes so that I could learn from them. She told me to sever ties numerous times. But, in my natural fashion, I…DID…NOT…LISTEN.

TRANSFORMATION

So many things have transpired and manifested since I lost my mom. While I do forgive my ex-friend for her egregious (I like that word 🙂 )conduct, this situation had to happen in order for me not only to close the chapter, but also the entire book.

I vow to continue growing and learning and assuring that my intentions and actions are rooted in LOVE. “If it’s not an absolute YES, then it’s a NO.” ~@PeaceMakita

Why no matter how hard I try, I can’t quit humans: The Holiday Edition | @phettehollins

Growing up an only child, I always wanted people around. Cousins, friends, mates, whomever, long as I didn’t spend a sprinkle of time alone. Then something changed.

Over the past few years, I realized that I’m not as extroverted as I’d once thought. I was padding myself with people to mask what was going on internally. Once I minimized the chatter, and listened…it was clear. I was depleted.

I wasn’t surrounding myself with the right energy. I was too busy avoiding stewing in ME that I was letting any & everybody up in my space. Eventually, I got selective and allowed in only those who nurtured my spirit.

This is taking some practice because my old ways  keep poppin’ up when things don’t look like they’re going as planned. But, that’s to be expected. I just press onward.

So, fast forward to present day and me being the hermit crab & social (media) butterfly that I am (since I can’t people for real). I posted this rant on Facebook:

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I rarely rant. Rarely. But a chain of events happened that caused me to have to take my 10 year old daughter out of the acting/modeling classes that she loves. When she started crying, that took me over the edge. So I took to Facebook :-).

Honestly, I wasn’t looking for a handout. I wanted to subliminally shame the culprits. Just call me Peppermint Petty. Petty Boop. Petty LaBelle. Petty Wap. Any of those work fine.

I received an outpouring of texts and inbox messages from folks expressing their concerns. I appreciated their concern as well. But one message stood out.

Like most of us, I don’t interact in “real life” with all of my 1,755 FB friends. I can count on one hand how many I do see in real life. So, when I got the inbox from my classmate, who I hadn’t seen since high school, I didn’t think anything of it.

She asked what was going on. I told her. She asked how much my daughter’s classes were. I told her that, too. She asked if she sent $500 would that be enough.

**insert record scratching sound effect**

OK, let me back it up just a bit and just say that it was 7 o’clock in the morning and I thought I still had crusties in my eyes. So I sat the phone down, went & brushed my teeth, washed my face…then picked the phone back up. And, yup. That’s what the message had said. OK, let me back it up summore and tell y’all how I almost missed the message, ENTIRELY!!!!

Facebook messenger be on some bull shiggity. So, you know how you can see notifications on your phone’s lock screen? That’s how I knew I had a message to begin with. But when I went into messenger to fetch it, the message WAS NOT THERE!!!! I scrolled and swiped and absolutely could not find it. Naturally, I thought I was bugging. It’s early in the morning. I could be seeing things, right? Nahhhhh!

So, I typed in the friend’s name in the search bar –YES I HAD TO DO ALL OF THIS. Her name came up. I clicked on “MESSAGE” and there it was.

After I picked my mouth up off the ground, I replied “Heck yeah,” and thanked her ad nauseum. She asked for my email address and sent the money in minutes, with a note that said “Happy Holidays.”

I was DONE! Do you hear me? DONE SON (in my New York accent). I was so happy I squealed like a mouse and was bouncing up and down on my bed. I asked if I could give her a shout out and she said yes.

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This woman got it going on. She’s a BOSS (literally) at Coca-Cola. She has a beautiful 10 year old daughter, and a mighty handsome husband. Toya, again, I thank you. Most of all, Rica thanks you. ❤

INFP – The Authenticator

Surprising things about INFPs you may not know

Source: INFP – The Authenticator

Detox: For real for real, this time : Day 2 #WritingThroughIt | @phettehollins

Blocked your calls.

Blocked your text messages…

but I know you’re messaging.

Work…phone…write…phone…sleep…Netflix…check blocked messages…write…eat…phone…check blocked messages…check blocked messages…sleep…check blocked messages. #repeat

Blocked your calls. Blocked your text messages…but I know you’re messaging.

slowly…blocking…you!

*Disclaimer: My #WritingThroughIt posts are raw emotions with very little editing. I’m not super pressed about grammar, but will give the content a once over and decide accordingly if changes should be made. Just an FYI.

Demons: #WritingThroughIt | #BczOfSelina @phettehollins

I swear I’ve never felt so much pain as the pain I feel since I lost my mother. Almost 8 months later and I’m still in shock.
Some days all I wanna do is lie in bed, balled up in the fetal position, and cry for days. That’s it. Not take a shower. Not get dressed. Not worry about what’s for dinner. Not go to work. Nothing. Just be left alone.
Then others days I’m amped up. Motivated & ready to propel to the next level…keep pushing forward so that I can make my mom proud, because she’s still watching me, right? Well, I feel like her spirit is around me, and I’m constantly shaping & exercising my brain and shifting my mindset to ultimately become a better me. An empowered me. A strong me. A FREE me.

I have a demon that I’m struggling to rid myself of, that keeps me up many nights thinking of creative ways to dead it. Been fighting with it for almost a year. The bottom line is I have to JUST DO IT!!! No bells and whistles. No gradual process, JUST DO IT.  Cold turkey…detox style. Whenever I ask myself What would Selina do? The answer is always the same.

I’ma really need to write through this one #BczOfSelina, she wouldn’t want this for her baby girl. 

*Disclaimer: My #WritingThroughIt posts are raw emotions with very little editing. I’m not super pressed about grammar, but will give the content a once over and decide accordingly if changes should be made. Just an FYI.

#DiggingInTheBag – The Intro |@phettehollins #DITB

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Because we’re in an age where cell phone camera pictures are all the rage, I thought it’d be fun to take pictures (with my cell phone’s camera) of actual Polaroid and 35mm camera pictures and whatever other types of cameras that were used…back in the day. But while digging in the BIG bag (see image above…it’s the for real for real bag where I dug up the pics), I was taken down memory lane. I found myself saying I remember this day. Me and so & so went to the Ultimate Sports Bar… (All my Romulus folks know exactly what I’m talking ’bout), or That’s my bestie since elementary…We used to be besties…That was my first boyfriend/girlfriend.

I smiled looking at many of the pics, while some made me sad. Loved ones who are no longer here in the physical realm, and love lost. The writer in me will find a way to write about something, anything. Sooooo…I thought it would be a cool idea to share the story behind the pics, the head space I was in, the patterns I repeated, and, ultimately, what I learned. Who doesn’t like to hear a good story?

Stories connect and heal us, which is why we like reading books, watching movies, listening to that one relative talk about his pimp days, Kevin Hart –he’s a storytelling Master, along with Charlie Murphy. Have you ever heard Charlie tell the story about him playing basketball with Prince? It’s one of the funniest stories I’ve ever heard. Click to watch –> The Shirts against the Blouses <–

Digging in the bag is metaphoric for Digging in the soul. What I discovered as I was scavenging through old photos was how different I was “back then.” Of course, as time progresses the hope is to grow. But sadly, some folks don’t. They stay stuck, stagnant.

I want to take the time to celebrate growth…and healing by sharing the headspace I was in during the time of the photos compared to where I am now. We are who we are for a reason. We behave in the manner we do due to our upbringing, pre-disposition (genetics), experiences, what we’ve been exposed to, etc.

Stories connect & heal us. Let’s get unstuck together. 😊😊😊 

#StayTuned

(Finally) Taking A Stand Against Abandonment Issues | @phettehollins

About a year or so ago, I really started noticing something was off when it came to me and romantic relationships. Before that, I thought I was unlucky af and just was not cut out for the foolery, not knowing that I was bringing the bulk of the foolishness. But not intentionally though.

The thing with patterns and cycles they’re so regular that they become second nature. We can perform them with our eyes closed. What I was doing for a long time, as far back as 19 years old or maybe even sooner, was making it my duty to keep folks out. I was a walking DO NOT ENTER and NO TRESPASSING sign.

I was almost 40 years old when I looked at my track record of broken relationships. I had to get real honest with the woman in the mirror, the common denominator…ME. Now, don’t get it twisted, what I will not do is take the blame for those who were on some bullshit. I’m  strictly referring to the ones who genuinely cared for me, but I did not have the mental capacity to receive it. Here’s why…

I have a fear of intimacy, which stems from me having abandonment issues. There you have it!

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Aside from my father not being active in my life, my mom was somewhat absent, too. She provided me with food and shelter, made sure I had clothes on my back and shoes on my feet. But emotionally, she was unavailable. I don’t recall ever engaging in conversation with her growing up. Not once. She was not mentally present. There was maybe a hello when I got home from school but that was it.

Now that I’m an adult with kids, I get it. I have since forgiven her (Rest peacefully Ma). She was going through her own shit, trying to sort things out. Dealing (and not dealing) with childhood trauma. So, I get it. I think she believed that as long as she provided me with the basic needs (not knowing that emotional stability is an essential need), I’d be good…but I wasn’t. And not for a long time.

Since my foundation for emotional connections was damaged, I went on to live a reckless life of promiscuity. Sex was my drug. I learned quickly to compartmentalize sex & intimacy, which, sadly, led to me breaking many hearts. I’m not proud of that, by the way. It was only a matter of time that when things were going good, I’d bust that up expeditiously (In my Morgan Freeman as Joe Clark in Lean On Me voice). No one ever broke up with me because I didn’t give them a chance to.

So what happened was, I labeled myself a commitment-phobe and began attracting “abandoners,” a.k.a., folks who are (emotionally) unavailable #RecreatingThePattern.

For years, I indulged in situationships with married men (abandoners). It was perfect (sarcasm). I was not interested in a relationship anyway because I was a commitment-phobe so I could get what I wanted without the hassle of being tied down and having to announce my whereabouts and gain permission to go places. You know…that confinement that happens when you’re in a relationship? I ain’t got time for that. Well…that’s the lie I told myself for most of my grown life.

After a while, this became a very lonely life. I have more to offer than just “hooking up.” All I had were a collection of superficial encounters. I kept saying I wanted love, but simultaneously kept pushing it away. Something was blocking me from believing I deserve it.

I made a video over a year ago about energy and what I’m emitting into the universe. I was close to the answer then. Now, I’m there. I’ve been crying out for help for a while now. When it fell on deaf ears, I resorted back to my old ways, which we often do because it’s familiar. But I’m responsible for making changes, no one else. If I want something different, I must do something different.

I’ve been reflecting and doing some research. What I learned is that my heart was closed. I come off as shy & reserved, but the truth is, I’m really difficult to get to know because I don’t open up (emotionally) easily. This is by design, of course. Because people have mishandled me. Thus, I was afraid to let anyone in.

As I get older, I long for that feeling of true love. Love without conditions. Romantic love. This time, I will open my heart…and trust. Because now, I believe in the possibility.

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