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No matter how far along I get in life, I'll always refer to myself as "That chick that grew up poor in the drug-filled streets of Port Arthur, Texas." Always a bad ass!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Neck ties turn me on

Today when I arrived home he was wearing a neck tie.

That is all.

I may never be able to look at a man's tie again - especially not a blue one - without becoming aroused.

Not bad for a Monday.

Monday, June 9, 2014

This morning I questioned my own love for you

I woke up this morning thinking, "What the hell am I doing? Do I really love this person that I spend all my time with? The person that I share my life with?" So, I took a few minutes and did an audit of the way that I feel, and this is what I came up with.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
We've had sad days. We've had mad days. But since I've been with you, we haven't had a single bad day. 

Never have I had someone who has given so freely, completely, thoughtfully, and unselfishly to me and my family. 

I've never smiled so much. I've never laughed out loud so much. I've never felt so loved and accepted for being Plane Jane Tom Boy Me. 

You inspire me to want to push a little harder, to try again, and see it through. You are my Fountain of Youth. 

Since my spirit has joined with your spirit my faith in love, happiness, and goodness has been restored. And my belief in God's grace and mercy has been fully renewed and no matter what life has in store, it now stands unwavering. 

I have so much love for you I could sprinkle a small portion into several lifetimes, and still feel completely fulfilled in each one.

I know this is meant to be. I know this story is written. And I rejoice in the fact that God chose me to co-star next to you in this lifetime of love.

Yes. I love you Titus.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What am I going to do with this hair?

I am done with the days when I refuse to work out because I'm afraid to ruin my hair. I am also done with the days that I ease my hair maintenance saga by allowing a beautician to braid my hair so tight that I have back-to-back migraines for weeks (and half of my hair falls out when I un-braid it). I have enough migraines as it is. I just can't go back to days in bed filled with painful headaches. What kind of life is that?

I am an active black woman with processed hair and it's becoming a serious burden because I sweat it out everyday when I'm walking, running, and playing tennis. Then, I have to wash and condition it at least every other day to keep it clean and smelling good. And with a perm, it seems like after you've washed your hair about four times, it just begins to return back to its pre-processed state. It costs me $80 a month for the beautician and 3 hours of time. That's all I have to give. What do I do?

One answer just rolls out of some people's mouths: "Go natural."

For a black woman, going natural means discontinuing the process of chemically straightening the hair. Perming your hair is a really awful process anyway . Those chemicals could eat through cement, but we put them in our hair because we don't want to be seen with a kinky, nappy, uncontrollable mess on our heads. I know I don't.

And if the truth be told, I'd LOVE to go natural! No, really I would. I have this vision of waking up in the morning and in a few quick steps being done with this thick mane.

But I work in an industry, in a geographic region, in a facility where the expectation is that you will come in each day looking. . well, like everyone else. I think they would be OK if I came in one day with a full afro. I'm sure I'll hear, "Anasthia, you look so exotic." That's what "people" say when you test the boundaries of generally accepted standards of beauty by doing something a little different.

But I know I will get some negative feedback on coming in to the office with hair that's transitioning from processed to natural. It just doesn't happen overnight.

You think the Pentagon has rigid rules on how Black women should keep their hair? The un-spoken rules that prevail for a woman like me who is not only marketing an organization, but also marketing herself, are far more stringent. And not walking the line can be down right un-forgivable as far as your career is concerned. Yes, sad. But true.

I'm not sure what to do.

Well, for now, I'm going to continue working really hard to keep my hair looking good while I decide a long-term plan, but if you want to reply with some ideas, give me a shout. I'm at a crossroads, and am willing to listen.

Monday, March 24, 2014

3 bedroom 2 bath home for rent in Sherwood, Arkansas

I've lived in Mississippi now for over a year, and my house in Arkansas sits empty. I'm ready to change that, so I offering my home for rent.

The home is 1,434 sq ft with 3 bedrooms, 2 full baths, and a garage with a fully fenced back yard. All rooms have vaulted ceilings, and with the insulated windows there's plenty of light coming in to each room. One of the bedrooms has built-in bunk beds and shelves; and plenty of room for kids to play.

The kitchen has a new (electric) stove, recently purchased refrigerator, fireplace, new central air and furnace. Separate laundry room with washer/dryer connection.

Storage building in the back yard is large enough to accommodate lawn equipment with plenty of room to spare. There's also additional storage off the garage.

I want to help someone get into their new home by the end of April.

Rent will be $950 every month, first and last will be due up front. There will be a NON REFUNDABLE pet deposit of $250.

Download a rental application for my home in Sherwood, Arkansas here to get started.

For more information:

Monday, February 24, 2014

What unemployment really feels like


I've been unemployed since December 27, 2013. . about two months.

I was laid off. . whatever that means.. At the end of the day, if you have been trained to appreciate steady employment, regardless of the reason for an extended lapse in employment, it always feels the same. Like Failure.

I've worked since I was 16 years old: 22 years. I've built up this provider persona that I can't really live up to right now, and it's got me really questioning my identity, my faith, my goals, and how I ended up in my current situation.

That last part doesn't really matter. How you end up in the hole is really an empty question. How are you gonna get out of it? That has to be the focus. That's my focus. But I'm struggling.

I wake up every day, and the first thing I do is look up new job openings. I send out 2-3 applications; if I can find 2-3 relevant positions. This all happens before I step out of bed at 6:10 am. And before the day is over, I read 2-3, "You didn't make the cut" emails, and pray that I can go through the process for at least one more day. . to give God just a little while longer to work this whole messed up situation out and to get me on a team where I can do some good.

That's what I'm starving for right now. After taking care of the kids, the house, the dog, the boyfriend, the entire world.. I have to feel like I've done some far-reaching good. And right now I just don't. I feel helpless, useless,

I've been waiting for about a week to hear back from an employer that I just really really felt was a good fit for me: the interview went really well, my potential boss was really pleasant, they contacted my contacts on time. During the final interview, I actually thought they were going to offer me the job. Then, they told me I was one of 6 candidates (out of 72 applicants) that they were considering for the position.

Everything seemed to be going so well.

Then, I received the dreaded "You didn't make the cut" email. Yes, I've read it dozens of times. I can almost recite the text verbatim. But it hurt me SO bad. Oh my. I prayed on this job. I begged God. I was well-prepared for the interview and picked three strong professional references.

I still don't know what happened. All I know is that I feel like I've been kicked in the gut because I have somehow failed again.

I will brush myself off in a little bit and get back at it, so I restart my career in the position that God has just for me. I'm just licking my wounds. . They hurt. I have to go tell the kiddos that this one didn't work out either and answer to their looks of disappointment once again.

This is SO hard. But I'm strong. And I have to be, so I will be. But ouch. This one got me good.

Monday, November 18, 2013

You do not know me if. .

Over the weekend, I realized that there are some people I've had in my circle for YEARS, who don't really know me. To make it easy for you to tell whether you really know me or not, I decided to take a few moments to put together a list of traits for people that may think they know me, but who really do not.

You really don't know me if. .
1. You pronounce my name the way it's spelled.
2. You knock on the front door when you come to my home.
3. You come to my home uninvited, and expect me to answer the door.
4. You think that my baby boy I'm always referring to is less than 10 years old and 100 lbs.
5. You think because I smile and speak to you, I'm flirting with you. I really believe that when you smile, it adds just an extra glimmer of hope to the world.
6. You call and I don't answer (ever), and you think I don't know that you called.
7. You think that I'm always happy when I'm smiling. I'm a lady. I was not raised to say something negative every time it comes to mind. Refer back to #5.
8. You think that I have to not love you to cut you out of my circle.
9. You think that I don't love my kids to death. I do. I do. I dooooooo.
10. You are constantly recommending that I watch a new TV show. I'm not into TV. How about you recommend what I'm into? A BOOK
11. You think that I have forgotten a lie you told me and I caught you in. Forgiven (maybe), but not forgotten.
12. You think I don't notice and appreciate the little things. . and expect you to do the same.
13. You say really negative things about people I cherish and think it doesn't make me dislike and distance myself from YOU.
14. You think that when I say I forgot, you can hint me into remembering miscellaneous facts. Look, generally when it's gone, it's GONE. But I do remember the important stuff.
15. You think me walking away while we were in mid-conversation on a meaningless topic means I wasn't listening. Mmmmm, I was. . that's why I walked away.

OK. I've made it easy. Now, let us both stop pretending.

Monday, October 7, 2013

You just never know who you touch

Today is a rough Monday. I guess it's typical for a Monday, but I was getting so caught up in frustration that I almost forgot. . This is the norm. It's supposed to be crazy after you've had not one but two virtually stress-free days to recover at home with the ones you love.

I had just arrived at the point when I asked myself, "Why am I doing this?" and "Why do I care?" when I looked up and saw this little gift from a patient. This little adorable package was sitting on my keyboard when I turned on the lights this morning, but it didn't really have weight until I started to feel unappreciated. As soon as I realized that someone I've served thought enough of me to spend her time and money on me, I got all teary-eyed. Honestly, I cried.

Once I pulled myself together, I called T to thank her, and here's what she said.

"Anasthia, I come in there sometimes on the brink of giving up, and your attitude is what saves me. I don't know why, but just the way you care about me reminds me that I'm worth it. Don't stop Anasthia. I need you."

So, you know me. That's all I need to snap out of this funk. Back to work I go. . with a smile on my face. . that will (hopefully) inspire someone who's having a worse day than I am to keep going.