I Work For Freddy Krueger
Freddy’s not dead.
I Work For Freddy Krueger
Freddy’s not dead.
And the saga continues…
So, there I was, walking away from my interview last Friday, disappointed and confused. I was trying to pep myself up but I had no peace, no excitement, no relief that I was finally employed again.
I was beating myself up pretty badly. “Girl, you’re so ungrateful. This job makes good money, it is easy, you can do this with your eyes closed. Why are you acting like this?”
I just didn’t like the way they offered me the job. First, they didn’t even tell me up front that I was being considered for a different position. They just called me in and switched it up on me. It’s like they set me up. I hadn’t had time to digest the fact that I wasn’t going to get the other job, I didn’t have time to allow myself to be dissappointed and then get over it.
The thing that really bothered me about this new position is the fact that the Director told me that she had already offered someone else the job, but they wouldn’t start for another week. She said, “I think things are going to work better with you, so I’ll call her and tell her that I am no longer interested.”
My heart dropped. I felt so bad for the other girl. This girl had probably already put in her 2 week notice and now she was going to have to hear this bad news. It seemed like a bad move to me. It seemed shady.
While my sister and my friends were hollering “FAVOR, FAVOR. Favor ain’t fair, Tee.” I’m thinking, “This is not right. It’s not supposed to go down like this. I’m supposed to be happy about it, not feeling like I stole something from someone.”
So all weekend long, I was sad. On Monday morning I didn’t even smile. I couldn’t. I didn’t feel right about this job. But I went in and got my training. It turns out that this job was just up my alley. All this stuff was already in my resume so it shouldn’t be a problem. The only thing about the job itself that bothered me was that I was required to work until 6:30 pm every night and when we had events, I would have to stay until they allowed me to leave which could mean anywhere from 8pm to 11pm. Weekends would also be taken up with events, so my Mama would have to take care of my sons more than I would like for her to.
On my first day we had a staff meeting first thing in the morning. The CEO was there and he was excited to see me. He introduced me to the staff and informed the HR director to get my NEW HIRE letter ready so that everything would go smoothly. As soon as he said that, the Director who hired me spoke up. “Well, she’s just here on a trial basis, so we don’t have to move so fast on that one.” She looked at me with this smug expression.
I’m like, Dannnggg! What a welcome.
As I went from department to department learning about everything and taking copious notes, each employee warned me about my Director. “This job is not hard at all. It just takes a lot of time and the hardest part will be dealing with Sharon (the director). When she gets frustrated she really goes off, she slams doors and will berate you at the drop of a hat. If you are thick skinned and can brush off her comments then you will make it. If you don’t cry the first week, then I think you have a good shot.”
They continued, “The position as her assistant is always empty. No one wants to work for her. She goes through assistants like we go through panty hose, but if you really want it, you can do a good job. Just ignore her. We all do.”
I’m taking all this in and I’m thinking, “They hired me, I will not quit. Not EVER. I need money.”
Yesterday she gave me a few assignments, which I handled with no problem. Then she gave me instructions for a letter she wanted me to write. I wrote the letter and gave it to her. She came back to me and said that the letter was all wrong.
Me: Ok, what do I need to add?
Her: You wrote this as if this was a new recruit when I TOLD you that it was a renewal.
I looked at my notes.
Me: Uh, I don’t think you mentioned it was a renewal.
Her: Yes I did.
Me: Well, how about this? When you give me instructions, You see that I write them down. Next time you give me instructions, before you walk away, let me read them back to you so that I can be sure that I got it right.
Her: I don’t care about what you’re writing down. I CARE ABOUT GETTING IT RIGHT!
Me: Alright Sharon.
She walks away in a huff.
I redo the letter and give it to her and she says she likes it better the way I did it originally.
She calls me into her office and says, “I don’t like the way you’re being defensive when I come to you with corrections. You’re not good at taking constructive criticism.”
Me: Well, yes I am. It is just the manner in which you spoke to me. Your tone was disrespectful and harsh. We are both adults, we should be able to communicate without being rude to each other.
At the end of the day she calls me into her office and tells me, “I don’t think this is working. We’re not a good match for each other.” I said, “OK.” Then I left, feeling relieved.
I thought about the other job that I had just interviewed for at a really nice magazine. Then I sighed.
During this interview, the publisher tells me, “People call me mean. You might cry a couple of times. And I don’t really like to fire anyone. When people mess up, I just treat them badly until they leave on their own.”
Man, what is it with these people? I KNOW I’m a good worker. I work hard and I am precise. I am a team player and I like to be held accountable to my job description. I keep daily status reports of the projects that I am working on so that I can have a record of my efforts and so that I can accurately report on my progress. No one TOLD me to do this, I do this because I want to make sure that I am on top of my work.
I began to wonder what was it about me that attracted such harsh bosses? Why couldn’t I find a place that would noursh my creativity and treat me like a human being, allowing me to learn and grow? All I want is to take care of my family.
So now I have to send letters of reference to this publisher and a letter stating why I want the job as Human Resources Director of her publication. I know you’re think, dang that’s a switch. But I told you that I have so much experience because of the newspaper job. I was handling Human Resources, Editorial, Marketing and Sales all by myself, not to mention my REAL job as the Executive Assistant. I learned a lot, but I was extremely underpaid.
My friend Marsha called me last night and after I told her what happened, she said that it was a spirit that was trying to attack me. A spirit that wanted to attack my self worth and push me away from God.
All my life I had dealt with this spirit. My parents would tell me I was worthless. My baby daddy would tell me that I would never get anyone else as tight as he was. I began to believe the words I heard from the people who were closest to me. I began to try harder to make them satisfied with me.
That is why I am such a people pleaser. I want someone to look at me and tell me I’m great. I want SOMEONE to be satisfied with me. They never are, always some complaint or instruction on how I need to be better.
So here I go again with another ruthless publisher. If she offers me the job I’ll take it and deal with her crap. I have to. I have a family. I can’t be selfish any longer.
I’m beginning to feel as if God has stepped away from me. But I KNOW that He promised never to leave me nor forsake me so I try to brush away these thoughts.
I’m not sad anymore. I know that I am trying my best and that’s all that I can do.
Single Parents- A Common Bond
This is a picture that I found on my friend Miguel’s website.
These are some of the people that I went to church with back in Gainesville.
This picture reminds me of the time I spent there. This picture was difficult to look at because:
1. It reminds me of the fun everyone was having while I was at home with my kids.
2. The man I thought was going to be my husband is in that picture. Whew…Seeing him brought back a little heartache.
It also makes me feel better about being here in Miami. Those kids were really sweet, very talented and lots of fun. They were around my age and so on fire for God. The only thing that bothered me was I could never participate in their fun because I had a family. It was rough seeing all the young people my age enjoying their freedom and knowing that I would never again know freedom like that.
Even when my boys were away and I would try to hang out with them, I felt like a foreigner because I didn’t really know anyone.
So here I am in Miami with tons of other young women who have children. And we all plan our activities around our kids. We take them to different events or sometimes we just let them play in the yard while we sit and sip on kool-aid.
I was chatting with Suzy this morning and we were talking about running away from the struggle. I met her when I was pregnant with my second son and at the time she was a single Mom too.
She was asking me if I thought that I had run away from the hard times I was having in Gainesville. I thought about it for a minute and I considered what she was saying. But as soon as I saw this picture I knew I had done the right thing.
It’s a different type of struggle down here in Miami, but at least when I want some down time I can pack up my sons and be around others who are struggling just like me. We uplift each other and can truly understand the life we face being single parents. It’s not always pretty but at least we know that we are not alone.
Here’s to single parents everywhere who share a common bond. Join together, help each other and keep on doing what is right for your kids.
You Never Know
You never know how significantly a total stranger can change your life.
When I sit back and think about how I met my children’s father, I am amazed. If I knew then what I know now, I would have probably ran the other way.
The first time I saw my future baby daddy was at an auction. You know, when organizations auction dates for charity. Someone had convinced me to be in this auction. When I got there I saw this guy standing behind the podium, it was him. He was the auctioneer. We never spoke to each other. I had absolutely no opinion of him.
Next time I saw him was at the Black Student Union Pageant. My friend Jason had asked me to bring my friends to show him support as he tried to win the title of Mr. Black Student Union. I was happy to do it. I brought all of my girls out to cheer for him. My future baby daddy was in this pageant too. Jason didn’t win. He came in first runner up. My future baby daddy won. I was impressed by his speaking skills. He seemed like he was very charming.
After the pageant, I went back to my dorm room, got undressed and ready for bed. I called Jason up to congralulate him and he asked me if I wanted to go out to celebrate. It wasn’t that late, so I said Okay, got dressed again and went outside to wait for him. When he pulled up, who was in the car? My future baby daddy. It turned out that they were good friends.
My first words to him were: “Congralulations. You did a great job.”
He looked at me non chalantly over his shoulder and said, “Yeah, thanks.”
We picked up this chick, one of his friends, and the four of us went back to Jason’s place for some drinks.
I never thought about him again.
It was summertime and the Alpha’s were throwing a 4th of July pool party. I had just turned 19 two days before. I went, cuz I loved the Alpha’s. I was there sitting in my bikini, trying to stay dry. My friend Jason walks in with my future baby daddy and Jason flings off his shoes and dives into the water. Future baby daddy walks by and goes and sits in the corner. He never moves from that spot.
We officially meet
This same summer I auditioned to be the host for our school’s Black Student Assembly. It’s a welcome assembly for all of the Black students which introduces them to the African American community on campus. My freshman year I had gone to that assembly and I just KNEW that I wanted to host it the next year. I made it my mission to find out when they were holding auditions.
I auditioned and I got the job. The event organizer informed me that my co-host would be none other than my future baby daddy. I had no feelings about this. I knew that he was a good speaker and that he was Mr. BSU, that’s about all I knew about him.
At our first meeting I walked in and he was sitting there with this bored expression on his face. “Hello, Ms. Patterson,” he said to me. I smiled and said Hi.
The event organizer asked us to get together to write our script. She also suggested that we hang out sometime so that we can get to know each other and it won’t seem so fake when we hosted the show. “Go to a movie or something,” she said. “Go to the mall, whatever, just get cool enough to seem friendly when the show comes.”
He never called me. And since I wanted to be tight, I ended up calling him to work on our part. He promised to meet me at my dorm the next day at 3:30. The next day I was waiting and my phone didn’t ring until 4:30pm.
“Uh, you’re late,” I told him. “Are you downstairs?”
“Naw, I’m home. I’m tired. Can we do this over the phone?”
We ended up getting off topic quite a bit. Everyone knows that I am inquisitive. I learned that he had a few weeks left in school before he graduated and started law school. I also learned that he was only 20 years old. I was impressed. I was 19 at the time and just starting my sophomore year. I hadn’t met too many many men, scratch that, I had not met ANY man who was as ambitious as I was.
I think we hung out that night at his place. He cooked some fajitas for me and we told stories about growing up in Miami. We’re both from Miami.
I had a great time and I decided that I liked him. He was cool.
We hung out all the time after that. I would bake cookies for him and we would watch movies. By the time the summer session ended I had started to “like” him but I didn’t tell him. This was really weird for me since I didn’t find him the least bit attractive. I was used to dating pretty boys and he was far from pretty. Still I found that my heart ached when he wasn’t around. I missed him when he wasn’t near.
Summer school ended and I checked my account. I had exactly $55 in it. The one way bus ticket back to Miami would run me $53 which would mean that I would be broke for the entire 2 week break between summer session and fall.
He suggested that I stay in Gainesville for his graduation and then ride back down with his family. I felt weird about this because I didn’t want to be seen as his girlfriend. I already had 2 “friends” at the time. Playa, playa.
But I agreed to stay. I really did like him, though I was afraid to admit it to myself.
The day his people came up I was at the salon, getting my hair done. I called him to come pick me up and he said he was out and would send his roommate to get me and bring me back to his place.
When I got to his apartment all of his friends were there and I knew none of them. But I’m cool, so I just get cozy on his bed and start talking to his friends. When he walks in, I am amazed. Brotha had flipped it on me. He had a brand new hair cut, he had a whole new wardrobe and he was looking so good! I was shocked. I raised my eyebrow when he came right up to me and kissed me on the cheek in front of all of his friends.
I had an amazing time with his friends that night. The girls all gushed about how much they loved him and have loved him since they were kids. His family made me feel so comfortable and he was so sweet, I let my guard down.
After his graduation, I rode home with him in silence. We just smiled and acted all nervous. Things were transforming between us all in one weekend. I gave him the best graduation present he could ask for and I cried afterward. I thought I was crying because it was so good, but I now realize that I crying because in the spirit realm I had created a soul tie and I didn’t even know it.
A soul tie that could never be broken without the power of God.
My feelings changed immediately after that. We had talked about having a relationship before.
Him: I want you to be my girlfriend, but if that’s not what you want, then that’s cool.
Me: No, I don’t want that.
Funny how things change after being intimate.
I went to him and said, “OK, I think I’m ready to be your girl.”
“Are you sure?” he stammered.
I rode back to Miami with his girlfriends. I remember as we were leaving he stood in the doorway of his building just staring at me with this weird expression.
Wow. I didn’t plan to be with him. It just happened.
Six years and two kids later we can barely speak to each other without arguing.
We had both been so young when we met that we were still growing and changing into the adults we are now. Relationships formed so early have a bad chance of lasting because both people are still trying to find themselves. The person I was then is ridiculously different from the person and I am now, and the same in his case.
We didn’t grow together. We grew apart. We grew up.
But because we have children we are tied forever. There’s no walking away now. Like it or not we are family.
My hope for us is that one day we will develop a mutual respect for each other. I’ve forgiven him for the hurt of my past and I hope he has forgiven me too. I don’t ache over our failed relationship. I ache because the generational curse of single parenthood had been passed down to me and my sons.
I learned a valuable lesson about generational curses. The only way to break them is with the scripture that says:
Revelation 12 :11 They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony;
This speaks life to me because it means that by giving your life to God (being covered by the blood of Jesus) and not being afraid to share your testimony, you can be an overcomer.
Don’t hide your past mistakes from your children. Tell them the truth. And hold them accountable. Let them know that this curse is upon your family and they have the power to break it by serving God and choosing to do what is right.
Tell them that they hold the key to happiness in their decisions. If they choose righteously, their families won’t have to go through the heartache that they had to go through. It’s a huge responsibilty, but so is life.
When they want to date or have sex, remind them that they can break the curse by making a wise decision. When they want to go drinking, remind them that they have a choice to be a part of the string of alcoholics in your family. Ultimately it is up to them, but by living a Godly example and sharing the truth about your past, you are equipping them with the right tools to do better than you did.
Don’t be ashamed of your mistakes. Your lesson learned is the STOP sign for the next person when they are at that crossroad.
That is why I am so free and easy when it comes to sharing my heart. I may not get it right, but someone who reads this may see themselves in my situation and choose to live differently.
Your testimony is powerful and necessary. Your struggles were not for you, it was for someone else. To help them get through the tough times because they see that you made it through.
Don’t turn down the light on your past, shine it bright, so that others can see the way.
I cut off my afro.
I couldn’t take it anymore. I know, I know. Patience is a virtue so I guess I’m not 100% virtuous. I was frustrated. I was torn between following my ghetto fabulous friend’s advice by getting a perm or chopping it all off back to my teeny weeny afro.
But getting a perm just sounds like a headache to me. My hair is not long enough to try different styles so I would have been up in the hair store dropping $30 on fake hair just to be cute. I’m not into that. I buzzed my hair down to about a quarter of an inch. So, it’s just like my pic on the right again- I feel so relieved! All the weight of the world dropped to the floor as my orange/brown afro slid down the black drape tied around my neck.
I like it better than that mess of an uneven afro I was trying to pass off as a style. No, I’m not staying natural because I’m a deep thinker or philosophical. Actually, I’m broke and I’m lazy.
And a teeny weeny afro requires a tape every two weeks, that’s it. Three of my brothers are barbers so you know I get the hookup if I feel like chasing them down for a cut. Plus, my head is not too big and my face is not too ugly so I can wear this style. Most people are afraid of the TWA because it brings too much attention to their faces. I just went out and picked up a bunch of new earrings (Oh, how I LOVE accessories!) to go along with my new cut.
It’s finally time for the wedding
Mimi’s wedding is finally here. We have been waiting over four years for this. This is a pic of her and her man. Her wedding is next Saturday and I will be riding up to Gainesville with my boy Reggie and his friends. They are stopping through Gainesville just for a night before heading up to Jacksonville to see the FL/GA game. I wish I could go with them to J-ville, but Mimi’s wedding is an all-day event that I can not miss. They are gonna come back through Gainesville on Sunday to pick me up.
My only dilemma that I have yet to resolve: I don’t have a place to stay once I get there. I have no friends In Gainesville. Ok, I know some people. But no one that I actually talk on the phone with or even feel comfortable asking to spend the weekend. So…I’m wrecking my brain trying to remember if there is someone I am overlooking.
Ouch, my mouth!
I have a bad habit of grinding my teeth. I never thought of it as a habit but it is. The dentist told me so. I remember when I was just a little girl I would lie awake at night with my finger clamped between my teeth because I was so tired of them grinding together. I hate this. It gives me a headache.
My 2 year-old son is almost there. He’s been using the potty for a good 3 weeks now. He still has an accident every now and then and ofcourse he’s still sleeping in pull-ups but he’s gotten the hang of pulling down his underwear and stepping up the stool onto the potty. Some people say he’s late but I don’t rush him. With my older son, I didn’t potty train him at all. One morning, he woke up and took off his diaper. I looke at him and he said, “I want to wear underwear.” That was that. My 2 year old is a little different, but I try to let him be himself and not compare.
My 4 year old can write his alphabet and spell his name. He’s learning how to blend sounds together as a precursor to reading. He loves to write! Most days you can find him with a crayon practicing his letters and numbers. I love their private school! It’s a Christian Academy and they have already learned so many scriptures and Christian songs and they have a habit of praying over things. It was so encouraging when my son came home and said, “God loves you Mama.”
A friend’s advice
Spoke to my friend from Gainesville. He had me trippin out. I love talking to him because I’ve found that I don’t have many people around me who will hold me to a higher standard in Christ. He does. But I had to roll my eyes when he said, “I know you’re probably feeling like you’re in the wrong place, you know, with all the things that are going wrong…” ~sigh~ Basically, he’s saying that since I left Gainesville, things haven’t been going smoothly so it could be concluded that I am not where God wants me to be. ~double sigh~ But yeah, I know, he loves me and wants me to be where God wants me to be. So, I let him talk.
In a email conversation earlier this summer he asked me, “What if God requires you to come back to Gainesville?” I’m like, “For what?”
This man is crazy
Anna’s boyfriend, (excuse me, her friend), is a hater. Now, you know I met him the other day when I went to go visit her after the job fair. No big deal right? Well, you’re gonna fall out over this. Dude- LOL- He- LOL, wait, hold up. You won’t believe this one! ROFL! Dude, actually said that he thinks Anna is gonna leave him…. for ME!
She says he is going crazy over this and is getting on her nerves. Yeah, Anna and I are pretty friendly, hell, she’s my BESTFRIEND. We can talk about anything, no problem, girls do that. But for some reason he thinks we are too close. Too close? Whatever…I can already tell he’s on his way out the door.
Let her in!
Suzy is on her blog wildin out. She IM’ed me this morning asking me about Blogz By Black Women and why she can’t join. In case you didn’t know, Suzy is white. I never thought about it being an exclusive club, I just enjoyed meeting other Black writers who share similar experiences.
Check out her blog and offer an explanation, if you can.
Are we wrong because we belong to a blog ring that caters to Black women?
Changing the Subject…
How about those (insert favorite sports team here)?
Good season, huh?
Yeah, this weekend’s game is gonna be good.
Let’s get together to chug some beers and whatever else you do when you watch sports.
Oyyyy….This is not right. Today I picked up the mail to find a check from the company that I worked with last week. The amount that I was paid for TWO DAYS was equal to 2 weeks of pay that I got from my job while I was in college.
I can’t believe that I actually had a job that was paying me this amount of money and I lost it because I couldn’t keep my mouth shut. Why did I have to go and tell that lady that she was being disrespectful to me? Why do I always have to make sure that I put people in their place when it comes to treating me how I should be treated or giving me what I deserve? Why the hell am I such an idiot?
Oh my gosh! TWO DAYS of pay. I.am.a.loser.
I could have sucked it up, put on a show like a happy go lucky clown and made that paper. I sometimes wonder where I go wrong and I realize it is because I stand up for myself. There is no place for this in the working world. If you’re working for someone else you basically have to kiss their ass and do things THEIR way in order to keep your salary. Why do I think it should be different for me?
Now come on, don’t think I am a slacker, I’m not, not in the least bit. I’m very obedient in the work place. I just have to let go of this attitude that everyone should treat me how I treat them. For some reason I expect everyone to have the same beliefs that I do about relating to people.
Everyone is not me.
Some people gossip, some people steal, some people lie on others and backbite. But if they’re in a position to take away your pay, who are you to call them on their wicked ways? Why am I always trying to change people?
Damn. This hurts so bad that I can’t sleep. For real. I COULD be working but I’m not because I decide that I need to confront my former publisher about my meager pay. I COULD be working but I’m not because I decide that my new boss needs to speak to me respectfully.
Now everyone could talk about how we need to demand the respect we deserve but get real, you all have kissed ass once or twice to keep things cool on your job. I need to kiss more ass. I need to stop thinking about myself. I need to squash my pride in thinking that I will have what I DESERVE every time. You won’t get what you deserve everytime. Plenty of people out there are in bad job situations and deal with it cuz they love their families more than they love themselves.
I can’t wait until this damn year is over.
I’m learning too many lessons the hard way. But I guess all lessons are learned the hard way.
SO I have to thank God for the lesson learned and hope for another chance.
My Little Man
My sons and I were driving yesterday and we passed by a Mercedes dealership. My 4 year old looks out the window, “Mama, do u like those cars?”
“Yes I do.”
“Do you want one?”
“Sure would,” I responded while humming along to Eminem playing on the radio.
“Mama, I want to be a man NOW,” my sons says.
“So I can get a job and buy you a new car.”
“Naw, don’t worry about that. My car is fine. God takes care of me.”
“No, I want to be a man so I can take care of you.”
Damn. And I be sitting up here wondering if a man will ever love me. My little man loves me to pieces and he wants to take care of me. What a blessing.
The Countdown Has Begun
Why do I feel like I’m in a spelling bee and the word announced is onamonateoapia (arghh!)
National Novel Writing Month is about to begin on November 1st. I’m scared out of my mind and no one is even grading me on this.
I’m up for the challenge though. 50,000 words in one month. I can handle that.
Come on everybody, write with me!