I Finally Got It Right

Have you heard about the new website called Scribd?

It’s called the writers version of Youtube.

Ever since I joined the community I have read so many great pieces of material and met so many like-minded individuals.

This morning I received an early morning call from my friend Kenya. I guess she reads my blog every morning before work. She called to bless me by reading a piece she wrote about understanding your need to give your gift/love/talent but failing to find a suitable medium/person who will receive it or appreciate it properly.

While she read it to me I felt like God was patting me on my back and telling me it will be okay.

I saw her piece on Scribd and I’d like to share it with you.

Check it out… HERE!

It’s late and I just got home from work.

Today was a magnificent day. I realized something very profound today.

I am definitely a JOURNALIST.

I wrote the hell out of my story today. My sources were responsive. My tone was just right. AND… it was a news story. Sadly, it was the story about the young man here in Houston who chopped up his ex girlfriend because she started dating someone else and then grilled her remains on his patio.

~shakes head~

I don’t EVER want someone to love me that much. I’d much rather be with someone who loves themselves.

I’m thinking that my problem with my writing lies in doing my stories the way my publisher instructs me to. I get so nervous when I’m trying to use her method of writing that my mind freezes. She’s so damn smart that I want to impress her. She has great ideas and an amazing teaching style. I’m grateful for the wisdom she has passed on to me and I can’t wait to receive more.

Thanks Lord for showing me that I’m versatile in my writing style when I have patience.

The Big GIVE

Some life lessons don’t take years to learn.

Some life lessons come hard and fast.

Today I faced up to one of my biggest downfalls.

I realized that I am abusive…to myself.

I won’t let go of situations or relationships even when I KNOW they are not healthy for me.

The reason I hold on is because I’m an overachiever and a perfectionist by nature. So when something (or someone) in my life doesnt quite fit right, I try my best to make it fit. I hang in there even though I’m hurting, consequently hurting myself more.

For years I have been a victim of my own self abuse. I can see now that I could have eliminated so much heartache if I had just let go of the thing that had been trying to let go of me.

But noooo…Ms. Tee WILL MAKE IT WORK! I would commit myself to seeing it through to the end, even though the thing was never committed (or promised) to me. I figured that if I was naturally a good person, a successful person or a tenacious person then my STRONG WILL, will get me what I thought I wanted.

I was wrong.

I was wrong.

Today I decided to follow my peace. If it doesn’t feel right, cut it. If it hurts too much to maintain, let it go.

Forget what people say, this is MY life. Forget the fear of loneliness or dissappointing others. I have to first make sure that I’m not dissappointing MYSELF.

I will learn to let go and follow my peace.

I love you Lord!

Thank you for teaching me this lesson. I only have a few bruises left to heal and I trust that you will dissolve them for me.

I was at work today and I checked out the BlackAmericaWeb website and lo and behold..behold and lo… Look what I found.

Oprah is developing a reality show aimed at allowing people the opportunity to live their wildest dreams of GIVING to others.

I couldn’t believe it as I read through her call for cast members.

Everything they are looking for is already in ME!

“We are looking for competitive, creative, and adventurous individuals who want to use their resourcefulness to help others and will stop at nothing to do the right thing!” the ad read.

I almost fell out of my chair.

I don’t know if you’ve ever done this but I have fantasized once or twice (okay maybe more) about what I would do if Oprah called me and asked to make my wildest dreams come true.

I already have a plan. I was just waiting for the call. I’ve written her a couple of times telling her about who I am and where I want to go in life. I’ve told her about my journey and how I live to GIVE.

So I quickly downloaded the application only to learn that…the deadline for entries has passed. The casting calls are over. I missed it.

I would’ve won that chance too.

So I quickly called Kim to tell her what I found and she said, “If it was yours by divine right, you would have it.”

That brought me peace, knowing that if that was an opportunity that I would have benefited from, somehow, someway, she would have found out about me, or I would have found out about the show and it would have been a perfect match.

I realize that God presents His gifts to me without pain or struggle. Look at how I found the job at the newspaper. I sent the publisher an email telling her about my journey and she offered me a full time job.

I didn’t have to fight for it. It came as a blessing.

I will continue to walk into my destiny by putting God first and maintaining focus on my goals.

I WILL be a philanthropist one day!

I WILL connect with millions through my writing and speaking gifts.

I WILL share my story and bring hope to the hopeless.

I WILL be a Cover Girl model.

I WILL meet a wonderful multi millionaire businessman who is completely enamored by me.

I WILL be able to give love and financial assistance to those who have helped me along the way and so many more!

I WILL write biographies, appear on television and inspire the masses.

I WILL ACHIEVE all that God has in my heart to achieve by my divine right.

If you have a hankering on your heart, an urgency to do right, you will have that opportunity and so will I.

Thank you Lord for the gift of spiritual and emotional growth. Continue to connect me to people who are TRUE because I stand for TRUTH.

All those who fell away did so because they are not true to themselves and therefore can not connect with me.

I know who I am.

I like who I am.

I am Ms. Tee…naturally.

Conflicting Spirits

About a month ago when I started my job at the newspaper my life took a new, more peaceful direction.

Ofcourse my new found peace had a direct connection with meeting Juanita, the publisher who is one of the most amazing women I’ve ever met in my life. It my have also had to do with the fact that I left Kia’s home.

It all started a couple of weeks before I started my job at the paper.

I was working hard at The Breakfast Klub, praying and trying to figure out what my next move would be since the Young CEO that I had come to work with, dissappeared as soon as I arrived in Houston, never fulfilling any of his promises.

Kia and I had enjoyed several weeks of hanging out and really realizing that we are too much alike. Being just as quirky as I am, I felt an instant connection. There was just one thing that bothered me. Soon after I met her she made the dreaded statement, “I never stay friends with girls for long.”

I sighed.

About a week before I started my job at the paper Kia and her friend Dave kept inviting me to a party. I kept telling them No thanks.

Understand my number one pet peeve is: SOCIAL OBLIGATION.

I HATE HATE HATE to be socially obligated. That’s no fun. How can you have fun at an event that you don’t really want to be a part of? And you know my personality, I really don’t like to be TOLD what to do. All my life people have tried to control me and push me where they want me to go but I have resisted because I am stubborn and I like to choose who I associate with and how often.

So it was Sunday afternoon when she and I were just hanging around the house like we usually do. I followed her into a room that I had never been in and I saw a table set up in the corner. The table had all kinds of interesting things on it. Various rocks, flasks of water and candles and pictures and at least two kinds of books that looked like Bibles.

“What is all this girl?” I asked her.

She shrugged. “It’s just a prayer table. Those are my bibles and that is the Holy Koran.”

“Damn girl. Damn girl this looks like a shrine,” I laughed. “What do you believe in?”

She sighed. “I just acknowledge my ancestors and I look to them for guidance.”

I laughed playfully, “Girl you are crazy! I thought God does that.”

“God does that but my ancestors are my guides and their spirits guide me too.”

“Girl you’re crazy!” I laughed and walked out.

I wasn’t offended by what she believed at all. I’m open to hearing about what brings peace into the lives of others but she wasn’t really giving me a good explanation or a name of what she practices.

All day she kept asking me to go with her to the party and I told her that I wasn’t in the mood to meet any new people and I just wanted to stay home and hang out.

In the evening I was outside on the phone with Marsha when Kia came out and said, “Tee, I never ask you for anything, please come with me.”



So I went upstairs to my room and got dressed. I was upset about going to the party but sometimes you have to do what people are asking you if they are doing things for you.

As we rode to the party I felt this bad feeling. When we arrived at the house I felt something say, “Pray over yourself.”

So I prayed that whatever would be going on in the party wouldn’t affect me and I texted my friend Kim: Girl, pray for me right now.

When I walked into the house I noticed that it was a family event. There were parents and little kids talking and hanging out. Everyone seemed to be Cuban and were speaking Spanish.

I followed Kia to the back of the house and noticed that all of the windows were covered with blankets. I walked through a doorway and saw Kia’s friend Dave sitting in front of a drum and another man sitting next to him in front of a drum.

The man looked at me and said, “You’re just in time.”

I smiled at him and chose a seat in the corner as he began to play.

I saw that a corner wall of the family room was decorated with streamers. There was a big heart shaped balloon that said, “I LOVE YOU” and a smaller balloon that read: It’s a boy.

Beneath the streamers were pictures and toys taped to the wall. There were toys on the floor as well as plates of food and candles. It looked like some kind of shrine.

I snatched my Sidekick and begin taking notes about what I was seeing. Then I texted Kim to describe what was going on.

Kim. There are people here and they are doing some kind of ritual thing.

The people would lie on the floor and a man came over to tap them on the shoulder in a specific way and they would get up and give him a hug and a kiss.

Then everyone got on the floor and bowed down in the direction of the shrine thing. They laid there for a while while the lead guy said some words but I couldn’t understand because they were speaking Spanish.

Kim, I think they are worshipping. That’s what this feels like.

Kia was sitting next to me as the people bowed down and I saw a guy across the room look at her and she got down on the floor and bowed down too.

I know he didn’t think I was going to do it so I sat there taking notes and watching.

The drummers were playing and everyone started dancing around.

As I continued to text message Kim she shot back a quick response.

TEE! That’s not a party that’s Santa Maria! It’s Spanish Voodoo get the fuck out of there NOW!


It’s the Spanish version of Haitain voodoo! GET THE FUCK OUT OF THERE RIGHT NOW! What the fuck is wrong with that bitch! She screamed through her text message.

Kim is Haitian so she knows a little about the religion.

I was stunned because I didn’t know too much about any of this stuff and I couldn’t understand what they were saying. I didn’t want to be rude, but I didn’t want to be a part of something I knew nothing about. I walked over to Kia while everyone continued their unique dance.

“Dawg.. This is some craziness. I want to go home.”

I immediately walked out of the house and stood next to her car. She didn’t say anything to me as we drove home but I needed understanding so I asked her, “Tell me why you would invite me to something like this? What about this did you think I would enjoy?”

“I’m not going to talk to you right now because you are aggravated,” She said.

“I’m not aggravated I just don’t believe you would put me in a bad situation so I’m trying to understand what was going on and I need to know WHY you thought I would enjoy being there.”

She sighed. “It’s just a party.”

“No it wasn’t. And they weren’t even speaking English. Why are you a part of this?”

She was silent for a minute. I don’t even remember her response.

She dropped me back to her house and I was shaken up. I called Kim and we both logged on to the internet to try to figure out what I just experienced. Since Kia offered no real explanation, we had to figure it out for ourselves.

I googled Santa Maria but found nothing. Then I googled Spanish version of Voodoo and saw the word, Santeria.

“Kim, it’s not Santa Maria, it’s Santeria. Google that,” I said to her over the phone.

As I read, my heart pumped a mile a minute.

The sacred belief system of the Lukumi prevent non-adherents from participating in ceremonial rites. Nearly all Lukumi ceremonies are reserved for priests and the newly initiated.

Drum music and dancing are a form of prayer and will sometimes induce a trance state in initiated priest, who become “possessed” and will channel the Orisha, giving the community and individuals information, perform healing etc.

Was this why she was so pressed to have me there? Were they trying to initiate me? Were they invoking a spirit to possess the priest?

Without a proper explanation from her I could only assume that what I was reading was correct.
I remembered that her friend Dave told me, “Kia is learning to speak to her ancestors.”

And that girl I met at the restaurant, Girl 7, told me something similar. She said that she speaks to her ancestors and that they tell her stories from the time of slavery.

I was amazed as I listened to Girl7 one day as we sat smoking out on her porch.

“I spoke to my ancestor and she told me that she was a slave and others were trying to escape. But since she wasn’t a field slave she said she didn’t have a desire to run because she didn’t want to deal with all that running and possibly being killed. She felt fine with her life. She said that she had her room that wasn’t so nice but at least she slept in a bed. She had real clothes to wear and real food to eat so she had no desire to be living in fields, ducking through the woods trying to get her freedom.”

I was blowed.

Is that what Kia is involved in?

It’s not like I can’t accept people with different beliefs. I just…need to be TOLD what I’m getting into before I get into it.

The whole situation made me feel as though I couldn’t trust her because what would happen the next time I got into a car with her? Where would she take me next?

The whole thing made me feel sad because I’m all about open communication. I really liked her and wanted to continue the relationship but without trust I knew I couldn’t.

I tried to explain it to Tamara and I said, “It’s like what if she offers me a cookie and I asked her, ‘What is in this cookie?’ and she says ‘It’s just a cookie.’ I won’t be able to believe her after all of this. Because she wasn’t open with me, because she didn’t explain to me that she was going to introduce me to her religion, it bothers me.”

After that I just went numb. I was fearful about my next step.

Should I leave Houston or should I stay? Where will I live? What will I do?

I was sick for most of the week. I was trying to stay to myself and not be in her way. I was dealing with so much inside that I spent days in my room crying, not knowing what I was going to do.

I asked to talk to her and she gave me some time. I told her how I felt, that I was looking for a roommate and I wanted to figure out if this was a good situation for me and her. She told me that she felt like I was telling her to kiss my ass because I was no longer hanging out with her, as I consistently stayed in my room after the whole party thing. She called my behavior rude and she felt that I was doing things to annoy her like leaving the bathroom door open and other little stuff like that.

I’m looking at her like, “Why would I intentionally try to annoy you? That’s not me at all.”

I wondered if this was a sign that it was time for me to go.

It was.

On my first day of work she sent me an email that read: I don’t believe your place of blessing is in my home. Please leave immediately, someone else in interested in the room.

I called her up and asked her why she would email me something like on my first day of work, instead of talking to me. “OK, after work I’ll come by and get my stuff,” I told her.

I went over there and packed up my things as quickly as I could. I didn’t have time to clean because just like with the Professor, I didn’t want to stay a minute longer in a place where I was not wanted.

My second pet peeve: Indirect communication.

Just talk to me. Tell me what’s on your heart. Tell me if I am annoying you or communicating improperly or if I’m offending you. JUST TALK TO ME. Once you do you’ll find that I will apologize and change my behavior because it’s never my intention to offend or make anyone feel uncomfortable.

I mess up sometimes but…I do have a heart to make things right again.

When I left her house I drove back to the Museum District and checked into the hostel. I stayed there for four weeks until I received my next awakening.

Uh Oh…She’s Up Again

I have been staying at the hostel for the entire time I have been working at the paper. It was kinda hard to do because everyone at the hostel is on vacation since it’s a place where people stay while they are traveling so everyone is always having fun.I slept in a room that has four bunk beds. It’s actually the same room that Ruby and I stayed in when we first visited Houston.

I had the bottom bed in a bunk and my roommates rotate every few days as people roll through Houston and move on to their next adventure.The only downfall is the lack of privacy and the fact that I had to share a bathroom and shower with so many people. I was annoyed that through all the madness I couldn’t get my masterbate on. That really sucked!

I’ve been exposed to all kinds of foreigners. I met some really cute guys from Saudi Arabia who showed me this WILD youtube video called Saudi Road Skating.

I would be up late at night sitting in the common area with my laptop just blogging away and I can hear all types of languages being spoken. My pulse raced when I heard a guy from Russia on the phone. You know how in American movies, the bad guy is sometimes Russian so hearing the language scared me. LOL!

I got to know the people who worked there pretty well. The hostel is owned by a family and one of the sons, named Gordon would keep me company sometimes when I was in need of a friend. He had all kinds of stories to tell. He loves to cook and barbecue and every so often he’d buy a whole heap of meat and cook for everyone.

On those days when I was penny pinching while I waited for my first check to come in…I’d consider those barbecued meals a gift from God.

There were others there who were in transition just like me. I really felt like I was among “my people” all looking for adventure and meaning from life.I had so many conversations where people said their friends and family thought they were crazy because they didn’t settle down. We would laugh together at that notion.

The interesting part about the experience was the fact that I was usually the only Black person staying there besides Ms. Norma who helped with the cleaning. It seems that Black people don’t travel the way other races do, or at least they don’t know that there is a safe place to sleep outside of motels that are clean and cost less than $20 a night.

I stayed at the hostel for so long that they gave me a membership! The membership comes with a discount at any of the hostels in America that belong to the association.

As the weeks rolled by I continued to collect my clips from the newspaper. Through that job I met so many people and was even offered jobs on a few occasions. None of them felt right to me so I wouldn’t even consider although I knew that a newspaper wasn’t where I wanted to be.

I would sometimes fear my next assignment when it involved too much research because I’m not comfortable writing about things I know nothing about, including politics and world issues.

I’m more inclined to write about people. I love to tell their stories. I love to paint a picture of their life and the issues that they face.I wanted so badly to do a good job that I placed extreme pressure on myself. Sometimes I couldn’t sleep at night as I tried to figure out why writing these stories took so much effort and why my writing style didn’t flow easily anymore.

Over the last week, my spirit was so low everytime I went in to work. I had these three stories hanging over my head that I just couldn’t find the right voice for. My publisher was patient with me, explaining what she wanted but the words wouldn’t come.

On Thursday I became so frustrated after she told me that I didn’t do it right…AGAIN, that I ran out of the office crying and sat down int he stairwell.

I talked to God about it. If I know I’m a writer and I can’t get this right, what does that say about my future? I want to do so well so badly and I am consistenly dissapointing myself. God, I would never want to quit before I had another opportunity coming but…this hurts too much. Please give me a sign. Tell me if you have something else for me to do.

I walked back into the office and told my publisher, “I don’t think I’m a good fit for this.”

She agreed calmly but then she said the most amazing thing.”You have to know when to let go. When it’s something that is FOR YOU, it won’t stress you out like this. News reporting is not even a part of your goals in life. Whatever God brought you here for may have already been accomplished. If you want, I’ll help you find another job and you can stay here until you find one. I’ll put in some calls for you and we can still be friends. Just don’t ever stay in a situation that is hurting you this much. You will end up having a nervous breakdown!”

I felt relieved as I packed my things and went down the elevator. As I drove away I knew that this would be the last time I would drive away from this building.

When I got to the hostel I paid for one more night and I went outside to write and talk to the people out there.

I soon grew tired and went to bed. I woke up early Friday morning and I knew what I had to do. I was already on my way to visit another city. I had planned a trip for the weekend. As I packed my car and drove away I felt peace that I would not be returning.

Goodbye Houston.

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We’ll see where Ms. Tee ends up next.