Joy was woken up by the noise of Stacey’s singing bowl. Sundays belonged to Stacey. That was her self care day. She practiced it daily but Sunday she was extra heavy on the self care. As soon as her eyes opened, she would say thank you to the Divine for allowing her to rise. She would wake-up have her tea, light her candles or incense and let it all go on the pages of her journal.  After that she would pray and mediate while her singing bowls played in the background. This is what woke Joy up. Joy stumbles down the hall and approaches the den where Stacey was. As she approached the door, she could see Stacey seated at her alter with her eyes closed, hands over her heart chakra with tears streaming down her face. Joy backed away from the door, giving Stacey some privacy. Joy goes back into her room to get some more rest. She came in around three am from Metamorphosis.

Stacey finishes up her meditation. She goes into the kitchen to grab a piece of fruit and a bottle of water. She would normally make a smoothie, but she didn’t want to wake Joy. Little did she know Joy was already awake.

Joy walks into the kitchen where Stacey was. She says “Good morning, Sunshine” Stacey turns around and replies “Good morning” Stacey sits down at the kitchen table right by the window. Stacey looks out the window to see seven birds lined-up on her deck. Stacey says, “Good morning” Joy replies, “Good morning” then she says, “didn’t I greet you with a Good morning already” Stacey continues to look out the window, never taking her eyes off the birds and says, “I was talking to the birds” Joy looks at Stacey and say who? Stacey repeats that she was talking to the birds. Joy says, “well did they reply” Stacey turns to Joy and says, “they sure did”, sticks out her tongue and laughs at Joy’s silliness.

Stacey asks Joy if she, Michelle and Christine enjoyed their night out. Joy gives Stacey the rundown about what happened when she left the lounge. Joy asks Stacey where she really went when she left Metamorphosis. What Joy really wanted to know was who Stacey was with when she left Metamorphosis. Stacey replied, “I came home took a bath and went to sleep” Joy looks Stacey in the eyes and says “girl you sure? You sure you didn’t call Eric? I wont judge if you did” At this moment Stacey became very still and quiet. Joy could tell something shifted in Stacey. She tries to search for Stacey, but Joy couldn’t read her at all. Joys says, “Stace are you okay? I woke-up earlier because I heard them bowl things. When I got to the door, I saw you crying. Did you go over there? Did you sleep with him? Are you mad at yourself?” Stacey looks at Joy and says, no I really came home, took my bath and went to bed”. Stacey understood why everyone thought that this was like every other time she and Eric broke up. Stacey uses to be weak for him. She had no boundaries whatsoever. He’d call and she would go running. That’s’ the part that hurt Stacey the most. She was angry that she didn’t love herself enough to walk away before things got as bad as they did. She was learning through therapy that you really do teach people how to treat you. Joy repeats her question. Why were you crying earlier? Stacey explained that she was fine and that she was working to remove some blockages. Joy looks puzzled. She says, “blockages? Girl if you had to shit why didn’t you just go?” Stacey says, Joy what the hell is wrong with you?” They both laughed. Stacey explains that her heart chakra was blocked, and she was using the singing bowls to help balance it out. The tears come because shes truly searching to find herself again and to feel love again, and that starts with her. Joy thought Stacey had lost her mind because they didn’t grow- up with no singing bowls and meditation.

Stacey didn’t know what her normal was, but she knew that her previous relationship was anything but normal or healthy. She didn’t need the help of anyone to help her to stay away from him or anything that made her feel like shit. She was loving herself fully. She had already forgiven Eric, but most importantly herself. Stacey renewed her relationship with the Divine. She was at peace, and this made her happy.

Oh She’s FR FR

Stacey and the ladies pull up at Metamorphosis. Metamorphosis is a posh lounge with great music and drinks. Stacey hadn’t been out since her accidental run in with Frank Gallagher’s extra. Stacey was game to have a good time. She promised herself that she was going to live her life and live it out loud. That was until she walked in. The place was packed and way to loud, but Stacey was determined to have a great time. They head over to their reserved section.

The ladies make themselves comfortable. Joy immediately pours all the ladies a shot of run. She raises her shot glass; the ladies shortly follow. She yells out “to new beginnings and to getting Stacey some”. They all laugh. Stacey rolls her eyes at Joy and sighs. She takes her shot and sits down. Joy and Christine make their way to the dance floor leaving Michelle and Stacy in their seats. Michelle asks Stacey if she was having a good time. Stacey replies “yeah, it’s just a little loud.” They both make another drink. Michelle leans over and tells Stacey to give her, her phone. Stacey reaches in her purse to hands Michelle the phone. Michelle then puts Stacey’s phone in her purse. Stacey looks at her and says “ummm why did you put my phone in your purse?” Michelle leans over and says “I didn’t want to say anything in front of Joy and Christine, but I know you’re going to get drunk. I don’t want you to have a weak moment and text Eric. Stacey tells Michelle to give her, her phone back and say’s “I don’t need you to help me stay away from a person that no longer resonates with who I am.” She takes her phone, gets up and heads to the bathroom.

While walking back to the table, Stacey runs into Joy and Christine. She proceeds to tell them how Michelle tried to take her phone so that she wouldn’t get drunk and try to call Eric. Joy says, “oh I forgot to do that before we started drinking.” Stacey just shook her head.

The DJ is jamming. He starts playing “It’s Getting Hot in Here” by Nelly. That use to be Stacey’s jam. She immediately ran to the dance floor. Stacey was cutting up. She was dropping it and dipping it. Joy, Michelle and Christine join her. They dance the night away.

The ladies go back to their section, they must walk by a group of good looking, good smelling men. They all sit but when they look up there are a group of men approaching. Michelle says, “ladies we have company.” They all adjust themselves, all except Stacey. She pours another drink and looks the other way, because she wants nothing to do with the opposite sex. She also has a rule about meeting men in nightclubs.

The men have their eyes on the woman they’re about to approach. Stacey gives the guy that was headed her way a glare of warning to walk in the other direction. He must’ve thought the look she gave meant please come talk to me. The guy comes up to the edge of the couch where Stacey was. He says “Hello” Stacey looks at him and says “Hello” ever so dryly. Then Mr. Can’t Get a Clue just stands there. Stacey continues to sip her drinks. The persistent guy asks Stacey if she had been to the lounge before. Stacey replies, “No.” The guy continues to stand there and at one point she believes she heard him say ummm out loud, as if he was thinking of the next thing to say. Ummm Stacey thought. She was ready to go. Stacey knew that her spirit no longer connected with that atmosphere. She hated being around all those people, it was too loud, and she didn’t want to come off as a rude uptight bitch in a social environment. She kind of felt bad for buddy. The courage it must’ve taken for him to walk over to her. She decides to entertain the man with a little conversation for a few minutes. She then excuses herself to interrupt Joy’s conversation with a guy that was way to close. Stacey says, “excuse me”, she leans into Joy and says I think I’m going to call a ride and go home. Joy says “come on Stace it’s only eleven forty-five. Stacey replies “I know, but this just isn’t my thing anymore.” Joy then tries to get Christine and Michelle’s attention. Stacey grabs Joy’s hand and says, “what are you doing?” Joy replies “I’m letting them know we’re ready to go”. Stacey says “no, you guys stay. Here’s my key fob. I won’t set the alarm but set it when you get in.” Joy looks concerned and asks Stacey if she sure. Stacey assures Joy that she’s okay.

Stacy runs herself a hot bath. She adds her favorite lavender infuse bath salt. She lights her candles and tells Alexa to play her bath time play list. She reflects on her night out. She was proud of herself. She removed herself from an environment that made her uncomfortable she didn’t ignore her own needs so that her friends and family were comfortable. She also chuckled at the thought of them trying to take her phone. She breaths, releases and soaks further into her bath. Stacey finishes her relaxing bath. She grabs a towel from the heated towel bar. Stacey wraps herself in her warm towel. It makes her feel even more relaxed. She walks into the kitchen to make some tea. She goes back into her room and over to her vanity she grabs her whipped Shea butter and smooth’s it all over herself. She wraps her head shortly thereafter. Stacey says her prayers and falls asleep. Stacey sleeps well at night, especially after her baths

Psssssst Sunday’s

You’re never alone. I promise you’re not. In your darkest moments, when you don’t understand you’re right where you need to be. It sucks at times, but if you can just make it through, I promise the other side is beautiful. There are times when nothing makes sense and there are times where everything does. We should be grateful for both.

To all my misfits, the broken, the discarded, the used and the abused. Don’t give up, I promise you it gets better. The traps that were set for you, the things that were supposed to be your downfall, use it to propel you forward. You were created by the Divine, so no mistakes were made. Just tap in!!! I love you!!!

Wine & BOB’s

Michelle and Christine arrived at Stacey’s with champagne in hand. Joy grabbed four champagne flutes from the bars cabinet. As Joy popped the cork, Christine asks where Stacey was. Joys says you know she changed her clothes a million times. They all sighed. Joy goes on to tell them how she tried to wear a knit worktop with jeans and flats. I told her to change and when she came out she had better be looking like a whole snack. Joy always teased Stacey about her need to layer and cover. Stacey had all these rules about not having everything exposed at once. Stacey was really conservative when it came to clothes. She did however start buying sexier dresses for situation as these.

Stacey walks into the kitchen and the ladies jaws drop. Christine looks at Joy and says “she really took your advice”. Stacey decided to let what she felt like on the inside shine. She felt amazing,but she didn’t want anything to do with the opposite sex so she would purposely wear unflattering or oversized clothes to keep the creeps away. Tonight she decided on full glam. The ladies all say damn girl in unison.Stacey chose a short tight black number that hit all the right places. Before heading out the door. The girls toast. As the ladies raise their glasses, Michelle turns to Stacey and says “here’s to new beginnings”.

Stacey deserved this night out.

The ladies jump out their Uber and walk into Perch. Perch was a neeFrench Restaurant Stacey wanted to try. The host asks their name and reservation time. Stacey replied “ Arlington, seven-thirty”. The host grabs four menus leading the ladies to their booth. As the ladies made their way through the dining room. It seemed as if all eyes where on them. The ladies were very stylish. The ladies sit. Water and Fresh bread are then brought to their table.

As the ladies finish up their meals. The waiter walks over with a bottle of 1970 Freemark Abby Cabernet. He places the bottle on their table and says “courtesy of the gentleman at the table right ahead”. The ladies look in the direction of the man sitting at the table alone. He nods and the ladies all wave and say thank you.

Michelle picks up the bottle and says. This guy just sent us a five hundred dollar bottle of wine. They all say “ five hundred dollars”? Joy teases the ladies, in her most annoying voice “who he liking over here”? The ladies laugh.

The ladies pay their bill and they all stand to prepare to leave. As they walk out one behind the other.They pass the gentleman’s table that sent the wine over.They all say thank you again but as he turned to say of course, no problem he locked eyes with Stacey He also accidentally touched her hand. He smiles, Stacey looks at him blankly and continues to walk away. The guy signals for the waiter. He hands the waiter his identification and car keys. He lets the waiter know that he’ll be right back and he takes off in the direction of the ladies. The gentleman calls for the women. They all turn around. The gentleman catches up with them. He asked them if they enjoyed the bottle of wine he sent over. The entire time his eyes never left Stacey.They all reply yes. Stacey slowly turns and walks to the elevator leaving Michelle, Joy, and Christine chatting with the overly nice gentleman. Joy noticed that he had tunnel vision. His eyes were fixed on Stacey. Joy walk around Michelle and plants herself right in front of the gentleman and says “you see something you like don’t you”? With a devilish smirk. He smiles and replies “it’s that obvious” Michelle says “sir it was that obvious when you sent over a five hundred dollars bottle of wine”. The man is now looking bashful. Christine asked him his name. The mystery man says his name is Michael. Joy says well Mr. Michael we have to hurry. Our ride is outside. Michael looks as if he’s thinking of the next thing to say stalling for time. The ladies can see the desperation in his face. Joy abruptly says her name is Stacey give me your number and I’ll pass it on. He hands her his card. He walks the ladies to their ride and say “Good night ladies” but he makes it his business to tell Stacey good night by name. Good night Stacey while looking into her eyes. Stacey politely says “Good night sir” it’s Michael, “Good night Michael.” Stacey says as she rolls up the window. She then immediately turns to Joy and says you told him my name didn’t you. I sure did Joy replied. I took his number for you too as she hands Stacey his card. Stacey looks really annoyed at this point. Joy ask Stacey when was the last time she got some. Stacey fires back at Joy. I have a drawer full of BOB’s. The ladies all look at her and say BOB’s, what’s that? Battery Operated Boyfriends. Well in Stacey case they’re chargeable. She didn’t want the nuisance of running out of batteries. The ladies all laughing. Even Stacey had to laugh at herself. She didn’t care though. She was happy and at peace.

But I Have Plants

Stacey was looking forward to her upcoming weekend. Her cousin Joy was flying into town to visit her from Michigan.Joy and Stacey were inseparable as children. Stacey enlisted in the Army and was stationed there.

Joy had it all planned out for them. They would paint the town red like they did when they were in their twenties. Stacey would normally be with it. In fact, in the past it would be Stacey’s go to after a break with Eric. She would make one phone call to Joy telling her to round up the crew. Joy would get Michelle and Christine on a three way conference call. She would just blurt out “Welp dude tripping again, so where we going”?They would agree on a date, place and time.

These night out often ended with Stacey drunk, crying and waking up to a massive hangover. If it was a real crazy night she would open her phone to find that while she was in her crying drunken state, she sent Eric a drunk text. And if it was a crazy, crazy night it would often end with her in his bed.

Stacey picked Joy up from the airport. Joy’s party apparently started on the plane. She was already tipsy and ready to party. She hops in Stacey’s truck. As soon as she shuts the door they look at each other and and say “COUSIN.” Joy also had a bewildered look on her face. One of concern. She says “cousin, girl, umm what do you have on, why is your hair not done. I thought we were going out? Stacey had on leggings an oversized t-shirt, a old hoody and a scarf. Stacey looked at Joy and said “Do you mind if we stay in tonight?” Joy say of course we can.

They arrive at Stacey’ s condo. Stacey gives Joy a tour and shows her to the guest room.

After Joy gets comfortable they meet in the kitchen. Stacey grabs two wine glasses, a bottle of Riesling and popcorn. They make their way to the den. Joy was amazed. Stacey’s den was so peaceful. Stacey was very intentional with the space. It had the ambience of a spa. Stacey and Joy sat down and poured a glass of wine. The two catch up. They discussed Stacey’s card line and Joy’s up coming nuptials.

Saturday morning Stacey wakes up to find Joy still sleeping. She does her usual routine of meditation and affirmation. She also decides to workout so she leaves a note for Joy letting her know she was headed to the gym. Stacey grabs her key fob her, water bottle and phone. Stacey worked out for an hour then she heads back to the elevator to go back to her condo. Once at the elevator door, they open and Joy walks out. Stacey asked her where she was headed and she says. I was going to walk to the coffee shop on the corner. She asks Stacey to walk with her. This makes Stacey is uncomfortable. Joy is unaware of the amount of anxiety Stacey feels around people. Stacey goes anyway.

Stacey and Joy walk in the coffee shop. They both order a vanilla bean expresso. While the waited on their drinks. Joy finally asked Stacey about dating. Stacey rolls her eyes and sign. She looks Joy in the eyes with the blankest stare and says “I’m not interested.” In the past Stacey didn’t sit around to long. One man definitely wasn’t stopping any show she had going on. Stacey vowed that things would be different in her life and she meant it. Joy says “for now, but isn’t it someone you have your eye on”? Stacey replies “yes, in fact I do, me’! Oh, and my plants. She lightly chuckles as Joy rolls her eyes.

The barista calls their order number. They grab their coffees and grab a table by a window. Joy asks Stacey to hand her her phone. Five minutes later Joy hands Stacey her phone back. Joy says by the way the code word is coffee. Only go out with them if the ask you to meet for coffee. Stacey looks confused. She looks at her phone and realizes Joy has downloaded a dating profile on her phone. Stacey is horrified. I’m not interested in meeting anyone. Joy isn’t listening. Joy looks at Stacey and says. “Look I’ve been here less than twenty-four hours and this ain’t it. We need to get you out from under your plants. If you cooperate I’ll let you hug a tree while we’re out”.

Doing the Work

Stacey has had it with Eric and his bullshit. She vowed that this was the final goodbye. She has also said that before but this time was different. Stacey was tired.

Settling into her new space Stacey knew things had to be different if she wanted real change in her life. She found a African American therapist that could help her sort out trouble spots in her life. Eric had been a major issue for years. A constant state of fuckery that needed to end. It was time for her to look within to see why.

She also sought out, the help of a reiki healer, self help books, yoga with goats, which she vowed to never do again. She literally did anything to help herself heal.

Stacey set herself on a strict routine. She would wakeup, meditate, do her affirmation, workout, then off to work. She did this everyday. She looked up one day and realized she’d been doing this for six months straight. The more she poured into herself the more she wanted to. she loved this point in her life.

Stacey’s girlfriends were ecstatic that She was finally moving on from Eric. Nobody was a fan. Well, he had one fan on that side, but even she was over him. This also meant they all wanted to hook her up with this guy and that guy. A friend of a friend, their husbands friends. Hell even her mother tried to hook her up with her single pastor. Stacey wasn’t interested at all. She had been through a lot. she was being very selfish at this point in her life. Stacey decided she was to busy loving on herself to entertain anyone.

One day, at one of her therapy sessions. Dr. Goodwin gave Stacey some homework. The homework was to get dress and go out alone for at least an hour. For six months Stacey had been using all the tools the therapist and self help books had given her except going out. She was traumatized. She didn’t want to be around people, especially people of the opposite sex. She told Dr. Goodwin she would do her best to get the assignment done.

As Stacey drove home from her appointment she remembered that she didn’t take anything out the freezer for dinner. She decided to stop by this cute diner near her house. She’s ordered food from there before but she normally orders DoorDash or Instacart . She literally didn’t go outside for anything that didn’t have to do with her healing. Anyplace that offered delivery services was her friend.

Stacey pulled up to Mattie’s Midtown Diner. She pulled into the parking lot and parked. Stacey walks in and walks up to the to go counter. She gave the man her name and she waits for him to return. While waiting, she noticed the diner had a small stage. There was a woman with a guitar and a man with a keyboard setting up. Stacey was a music lover so as soon an she heard the young woman strum her guitar she knew she had to stay. She recognized the song the woman was singing too. Ironic by Alanis Morissette. Stacey tapped her foot and quietly sang along. It was at that moment she decided to stay and eat her food there

Stacey finished her food. She was having such a good time she ordered two glasses of Merlot. Stacey looked up to notice a man standing at her table. An old man that resembles Frank Gallagher from the show Shameless. He says “Hi how are you? I noticed you were sitting here alone. She acknowledged his statement. The man nods at their exchange then goes towards the restroom. As she’s finishing up her glass of wine, she see the same man heading her way again. He say “so I forgot to mention they play the game her on Sunday’s if you’re free you should come down.” As the words left his mouth. Stacey was having a complete meltdown on the inside. She wasn’t ready for that and the man looked like Frank Gallagher. Frank is the worst father She’d ever seen on a TV show. Stacey paid her tab walked to her car. She thought to herself this can’t be life. Frank Gallagher tried to pick me up as she chuckled. She also realize that her homework was complete. That made her feel great.

My Miss. Luma (DRER)

I’m so grateful for my Miss. Luma. I’m not sure how many of you are familiar with the character Miss. Luma from from the show “Cherish the Day” but I love this show. Along with Miss. Luma’s character, there’s a younger woman, a character named Gently. Gently is charismatic and ready to take on the world.

What I love the most about this show isn’t the obvious love story that’s told between the main male character (Evan)and Gently, but the love story between Miss. Luma and Gently. Miss. Luma is a retired actress who has lived a full life. Miss. Luma is full of wisdom and experience. Gently is the caretaker and helper of Miss. Luma.

While this job that Gently has taken on helps her financially, she has no idea how much Miss. Luma is guiding her and helping her to navigate through certain situation in her life. Gently’s character is a little rough around the edges and when I say rough, let me paint a picture for you. A cookie that you may’ve let cook a minute to long but when you bite into it you realize they taste better this way and from here, you decide you want to prepare your cookies this way. Not everyone can appreciate this tough cookie but she’s warm moist and gooey on the inside. Gently’s issue is she’s a tad naive and inexperienced when approaching love but she’s amazing.

It was nice to see an older woman teach and guide Gently. Miss. Luma is loving, caring, stern and supportive most importantly. She is unwavering and stands by Gently. They do this for each other.

Do you know what’s better than watching this relationship play out on a tv show? Living it!!!

My Miss. Luma came into my life at a time I felt was the happiest I’ve ever been. It was an instant connection. When I looked at her I was in awe. This older woman that looked like me had obtained a level of success that I only dreamt about. She was smart, professional, fun, and real. Most people were intimidated by her success. Shit in my eyes she was a rockstar. She lived her life so free and unapologetically. Some of the things she was into people would turn their noses up at or think it was weird but not me. I’m thinking where was this woman when I was growing up…lol We literally just call to check on each other and end up on the phone for hours.

When my life flipped upside down she was there. Outside of my best friend I’ve never let anyone see me so unraveled. Hell, I don’t think I’ve ever felt that way before. This upheaval that was occurring in my life broke me down badly. How do you go from fighting for your life to wanting to take it. (Another story for another time) This woman literally hid me and sheltered me from the chaos. Even from the pitfalls of my own mind. She replaced the negative thoughts I was telling myself with words of life and comfort.

All of my life I’ve had woman around me. None of them have been vulnerable enough with me to share their story. Their hurt and pain. Their bumps and bruises. Not my Miss. Luma. She let me know one, that I would be fine, and two that she saw me. We spoke on another level. Woman to woman but also spirit to spirit. She put herself on the line, and let’s face it, most people ain’t about that life. This woman took me to the water, nurtured me and place my slipped crown back on the top of my head. I don’t know honestly what my Miss. Luma see’s when she looks at me, but when I look at her I see possibilities of what life could be. I see a woman that has been through somethings in life and came out on the other side. I just love her. She speaks life into me whenever I’m in her presence. She’s fun, adventurous, well educated, well travel, a straight shooter and open minded.

I hope and pray you get to experience this kind of connection. We all could benefit from a Miss. Luma

I dedicate this to my Miss. Luma and all of the healers in the world.