Version 2.0

Culture, healing, politics and bullshit - Not necessarily in that order

The general, socio-political and very personal rantings and ravings of a hip hop head from the hood hustling for change... Of himself.

You all know me and are aware that I am unable to remain silent. At times to be silent is to lie. For silence can be interpreted as acquiescence.
—Miguel de Unamuno


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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Blows To The Head... From The Inside

It's been a minute, I know.

I haven't been myself lately. I've received a few internal head shots lately.

Nah, it's not that I've trying to be someone else, it just took a minute for me to get my ish together, mentally. I've had fatigue of some sort, so I did what I normally do when I have mental farts and thangs, I ignore my blog.

I don't ignore my blog reading, though. I still stop by all of yall's spots and lurk for a quick minute. I feel a kinship with some and just need to know that others are doing alright just for alright's sake. I hope folks don't take offense to that.

I have been hanging out at home, hitting few sporting events, hosting get-togethers and even spending quality time with my other half. That shit right there... Harder than hard. The more we spend time together, the more we both realize that staying married will be hard as hell and if we really want to be happy, we'll have to put a whole lot of work in to make it happen. Being married is something that will not be figured out anytime soon.

Straight up.

Another shot to the head. But you bob and weave, right?

When two people from such diverse backgrounds as ours get together and make attempts to make it a permanent thing, sometimes it works, other times it just ain't a smooth transaction or transition. Being near 40, I was used to living alone and being somewhat of a free spirit and I didn't like folks doing things for me, whereas my wife just is the opposite. I have to stop her for doing things because sometimes she'll overdo ish just because. I do for others, but there is a limit. There are also expectations in thoughts and actions that we still stumble around. Notice that I mention thoughts:

The power of all things is in the intent to do them.

Rope A Dope if you have to.

We'll be married 9 months in a few days... Shit is supposed to be like this I think. I hope it gets easier in time. Until then, we still go out on dates, argue over money, cuddle ourselves to sleep only to wake up on the other side of the bed. Have bad phone conversations over shitty cell connections that turn out to be misunderstandings and 2 minute phone gems, debate over who will drive on errand day, and avoid washing the dishes (well, she does, I scrub them joints and put em in the dishwasher)... So, it's all where the Creator wants us to be right now.

Rumble young man, rumble!

One thing contributing to my brain farts is the fact that for the sake of compromise I have to put some of my ish on the back burner while wifey does her business thing. It's hard to know that there are probably things I'll never get to with the kind of creative flow that I have, but we both profit from her business ventures so I gotta hang back and support her joints.

Right?

Plus, it's been hard to hold my tongue in the past couple of weeks with the election and all. No matter what happens, I am still an educated black man that chose to get my blue collar on because corporate America marginalizes, undervalues and underestimates me, my brothers and my cousins. Sometimes I feel like a fool for even thinking that I was to go the educational route because all that money borrowed and time spent did nothing for me.

Yes, I know that education is the main element for our progress but I'm talking about me here. I have so many other talents and I feel like now that I have to hang back when all that time spent in attaining the suit and the time spent in it was a waste.

Shit.

I been having the feeling that while things are going well for me now that something tragic is about to happen. I'm healthy, working and have a life partner that loves and puts up with my stankin' ass. My family is annoyingly well and everything seems to be lined up and perfect. It doesn't even matter if John McCain wins the election in November, me and mine are going to be alright.

That's the problem. The waters are a little too calm and I had some sort of PTSD episode last week that would have scared the average Joe or Jill. I experienced something like it during this same time period last year dealing with folks that chose to deal with me in a disrespectful manner. See, I joined the Army on September 13, twenty years ago. From the moment I arrived on my training post I was gently insulted and treated in such a manner that it became easy for me to do what I was asked to do by my government and then go on living with the consequences of dealing death, coping with it in my immediate circle and then coming home years later with no outlet in adjusting to the regular shit y'all experience all up and thru the lower 48, as Sara Palin likes to say.

I never had an outlet in which to get that shit off my chest back in the day and sometimes it fucks with me. I've been holding in the burden of those I affected and those that have affected me and it took the actions of a woman I wasn't romantically involved with but held in close regard to trigger some strange shit that was buried deep in the recesses. Isn't it funny how when folks do you favors it can turn into a huge humanitarian effort in their eyes, when when before you had to swallow your pride and go to them for said help you probably would have been okay if you would have bit down and just took the bad shit and just muddled thru?

Well, after them sacrificing and helping me, I was pretty much dared to venture out on my own and do for self like I should have done in the first place. I wasn't helpless but let them tell it, I damn near was. What had happened was... Basically, when the realization that romance wasn't a part of my immediate plans while I was being helped (appreciation goes out because that was cool), emasculation and disrespect started to happen as a form of payback, culminating with being dared to leave and me... Leaving. I originally had every intent of getting back to Texas and continuing that line of kinship based on friendship but a chain of events happened causing me to lose employment here in Chicago based on what investigators gathered from certain folk in the Lone Star State.

I was livid because I thought that even though my position changed geographically that I was still appreciated and respected in some respect even though I thought I was being treated like a Herb (remember that from the 80s?) but I guess when the bus fumes faded after leaving Texas the treatment intensified...

I wanted to hurt something. Someone.

When I was there, there were times where I felt isolated and unwelcome. I sucked that shit up and pushed forward. It felt like I was back in uniform, going through 'the shit'. It's psychological shit that only folk (um, Terry, Frank) that have been through it knows exactly how it feels.

Did they deserve to feel my wrath?

I realized that while she scratched at the surface of some deep seeded anger... The weight of long dead folk I didn't even really know, rumbling inside of me waiting for a reason to come out and probably manifesting itself in the form of unnecessary violence, it's not her that should be the target, so I repressed that shit got back to familiar ground back home, knowing that my family and friends in Chicago would treat me like a person and not like a commodity.

That was until last week, when over the phone my wife chose a totally random set of words that eerily sounded like something ol' girl said to me last year... Causing those feelings of anger and resentment to resurface.

This time this is my wife speaking and I love her. There is protocol, respect and new rules in dealing with my other half meaning I could not snap at her or just walk away and repress like I did before. I could do nothing but get to the root of my anger and find an outlet to rid myself of whatever this is. And find out why such a disrespectful tone triggers an almost uncontrollable amount of anger.

It doesn't help that we're finding out that most Americans are war mongerers hell-bent on destroying Iraq for no apparent reason. It ain't helping that every time I turn on the TV either some actor has a gun in his hand or the news is showing some gangster wanna-be that took shit too far... It ain't helping me to know that gun violence, war and self hatred is a part of our culture. Finding an outlet will be harder than I thought.

So I called a bare knuckles gym a friend took me to years ago when I worked for the post office and told him that I wanted to unleash a little of the unholy hell that still burns a fire in my belly.

I'm still internalizing things, trying to figure out how I could let some things go and totally lose track or forget other things and why some of the visuals from way back then still flash with lucidity and vividly from decades past. I agree that violence cannot cancel violence, but until I feel good enough to address my angry reactions with words and kind thoughts, crashing my hands into another man's flesh will just have to do. I get my first shot after a training session later this week.

Maybe I can let these feelings go via a little controlled violence. Maybe if I get my ass whooped I can learn to avoid the ass-whoopings of life and figure out how to place the things that matter in my life. Maybe I'll learn patience and resistance after landing or receiving my first crushing blow. Maybe bare knuckles brawling and MMA style fighting just ain't my thing. Maybe it'll humble me and help me find inner peace and a way to rid myself of thoughts twenty years of life should have washed away by now. Maybe it'll give me balance so that nothing anyone can either say or do can set me off to the point where I have to isolate myself again.

I have no friggin' idea, but I'm willing to do something other than lash out at the whole damn world.

The redundancy in that leaves me at a loss...

If I can't create, I have to find my usefulness somewhere. I had to find out what is fueling this anger and find an outlet so I can get back to normality. I have a life to live and a family to create. Maybe in my waiting and compromise I can experience a little self discovery (a hobby) and be supportive in my endeavors and not harmful to them or myself.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

I really look up to you. You are a model for me about growth. I do not at how are you, I look at how you try to be better and improve. You admit faults and try to work on ways of improving them. Thank you for sharing your life with the world.

Anonymous said...

I rarely comment on posts about me....I feel like this is your space and it should remain uninvaded. (Is uninvaded a word?)

I too think that some of this is to be expected. Two grown azz people are bound to be set in their ways and not eager to change. And whether we admit it or not, people enter relationships with subconscious expectations (and sometimes we don't even know it). We get excited about cuddling together at bedtime without taking into account that it means getting accustomed to stepping over bigger pairs of shoes and other things.

BUT....the key is to hold on to the good stuff....the cuddling, the date nights, the sweet blog posts (I especially like the ones that make me blush)....and being willing to put in the work required.

I am really happy that you recognized that you need an outlet and are getting one. And I hate that you are putting aside your own work as a sacrifice to someone else's (even if it is mine) because I know the talent you have. I've seen it on your blog and it's part of what drew me to you years ago.

I think the secret to being a newlywed is to keep working towards the good stuff.....cause once you stop arguing over the same stuff, there's nothing else to argue over. Right? Just more time for stuff I can't talk about in public....like trips to Vegas, 151, you know.

Sorry for the long comment.

Gallis said...

I think you're doing the right thing. The only way out is through. You might as well get 'er done.

LadyLee said...

Well I am glad you are seeking an outlet. We should ALL seek outlets (I have several, and they have been a lifeline to me.)

I love when you self-assess. Reminds me to do a little self mental chin checking from time to time.

Excellent comment from the Mrs... There was much wisdom all up through there. I think ya'll gonna be alright:) And I am glad of that!

Darius T. Williams said...

Awww - you're such an inspiration! And um, I like your wife...so I'm happy you're devoted to this. This is good stuff. Um, it's cool - take the time you need - but if you're gone for too long again, I'm gonna have to give you a headshot or two.

I thought I actually saw u in person the other day. I'm not sure what side of town you live on - I live in South Shore. If you don't live in South Shore or don't visit South Shore then - um...disregard this - lol, it wasn't you.

LISA VAZQUEZ said...

Hey there!!

I have been doing some drive bys in the blogosphere lately and I just came across this blog!!

I really like the honesty that you bring to your writing!

Please feel welcome to drop by my place and jump into any conversations that interest you!

Peace, blessings and DUNAMIS!
Lisa

Relevantlystaying said...

The beauty in blogging is how our words are "relatable" I stop here to see what’s going on with you because the things you say, encounter and feel are a microcosm of many of our everyday lives. I think its beautiful you are so free with your mistakes and reactions. I can definitely relate. I think what you and your wife have is a beautiful thang, and gives a realistic perspective on marriage and life inside of a marriage. I’m inspired…..

BZ Ward said...

Thanks for that honesty. You have a gift. With words. Passion.
I followed Jamey Johnson's link over here.
Glad I did.