Divorc矇e starts dating cyber style

The following letter I wrote to a young man who is not in free society. So far we have been corresponding and getting to know each other a few months now. He is in an extraordinary personality. Although I am more than twice his age, he is mature and smart enough to have and hold an in-depth conversation with me. He is wise beyond his years and a true pleasure to talk to. I wrote my first letter in my truest fashion. I told him a story about our first interaction. Today in prison are many highways to the outside world. Cell phones and the internet are a couple of those avenues. They are considered ‘contraband’ but they are a fairly easy commodity. I met D on the gram. He found me looking through hashtags and after examining my profile found himself interested in me. That’s what he told me. D is the guy on the bus. I shared with him my perspective on the day that we ‘met’. Rather the day that he DM’d me on Instagram for the first time.

I hope this letter finds you well and in good spirits. I would like to introduce myself, my name is Vickie, and I read about your story through change.org. I am intrigued by yours and many other stories that I have discovered mostly through my PoliSci course. My professor has an affinity for the underserved, oppressed and undervalued portion of society.

I am in college full time, and I am pursuing a degree in nursing. PoliSci is a requirement to earn a Bachelors degree and I am enjoying the class very much. This is my second round in the college experience. I earned an associates in science degree in 1998, and practiced dental hygiene from then until 2017 when I was forced to retire due to occupational injury.

The reason for this letter is I wanted to reach out because I believe that we could have a mutually beneficial friendship. You are a survivor of some tough circumstances and although I am not in quite the same predicament as you, I am also a survivor. It is my hope that we can be a source of encouragement to each other.

I keep typing and backspacing unsure of where to start! Lol! It is an awkward thing to write a letter, or even start a conversation, with a person that you dont know so I will begin with a day that I experienced just recently in late September.

It was the afternoon of a warm sunny day and I was on the noisy city bus. I had just left my school in a bit of a frazzled state because it was the middle of my week of midterms. Sometimes I will ride the bus off campus just around the corner to have a moment to get myself together! Then I go back to school and get it done. This day was crazy hectic. I had gotten the easiest tests behind me. My chemistry midterm was going to be tough for me, and I was having test anxiety. Many people suffer from test anxiety and I am no exception. For me it happens when I dont feel confident in the subject matter. Chemistry is challenging because there are so many steps and formulas to remember that it is a difficult subject to master. So while I was in a mid-panic on the bus I noticed a guy watching me. I normally keep my head down on the city bus. The types of people that ride the bus usually are strange. They reek of alcohol or body odor and some appear as if they just escaped 3B! This guy wasnt like what I just described. As a matter of fact he was attractive and appeared well kept. Normally, to avoid interactions I wear my beats and surf the gram on my phone. You know how if someone stares at you long enough you begin to sense it? Well this guy was determined either to memorize the structure of my face, or make me look his way! Finally after a while of his stare burning the side of my face I looked his way. He says, Are you a student or a professor? Im confused. I am a student I replied. I figured his confusion was because I dont look like the age of a first year university student. Anyway I was already frantically trying to center myself and he was bugging me so I didnt care to be cordial or considerate at that moment. He asked me another question and I just shrugged and blew him off. At that point it seemed like the longest bus ride I ever took around the corner! This guy was annoying me and I my only escape was to get off this bus! The bus driver pulled over to pick up a wheelchair bound rider and that takes extra time to put out the ramp! Dear God get me away from this man!! I finally say (in a not so nice tone)If there is something that you want you need to get to the point cause I dont have too much time or patience today! I am sure the typical guy would have copped an attitude in reaction to my dismissive demeanor which is what I was hoping, but that is not what he did. Him did not react, as if somehow moved by my actions. In full control of himself, instead he calmly responded, Whats got your swivel unbalanced? At that moment I wasnt even paying attention. I mean I heard him but I was listening really. I was focused on that shady bus stop just around the next corner. That was my place of solace and I couldnt wait to get there. As soon as I got to my stop I hurried to the door jumped down to the sidewalk and made my way to zen.

Sitting there in the shade. Feeling the coolness of the air and listening to the quiet I reflected on the man on the bus. I thought to myself what the hell is a swivel? I called my best friend and told her ,Girl! Got another one! She says Now what? Bitch I swear youre a magnet for trolls! I dont know what it is I reply I try to stay incognito on the bus! Al states, in her usual boisterous tone, I do! You shouldnt be looking like you look! To put it plainly my best friend Al thinks I am the most beautiful woman (inside and out)walking around. She says shed marry me if I had the right equipment but I dont so her husband gets that honor. I get to be the next best relationship in her life. Lol. Ill take it cause I know the love she has for me.

I go on about my day and dont really think about the man on the bus anymore.

A day or two later in my mind I recollect the interaction again. Not so much the conversation but it was his conduct that stuck with me. In my frustration that had nothing to do him I scoffed at him. The poise he held impressed me. So much so that I decided the next interaction we had I would apologize and hope that he would accept.

I learned something from the guy on the bus that day that I now practice. Instead of allowing someones behavior to influence how you react, stay true to yourself and demonstrate self control. Maybe I can, like my friend on the bus be a positive influence too! Well if you made it to the end of this letter I hope you learned something too. I hope to be able to write you again soon. Be blessed!

Sincerely me.

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Friendships

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Photo by Bess Hamiti on Pexels.com

In starting this movement of living while blogging I published my first post yesterday. After doing so, I thought about the people that I mentioned and what I said specifically about them. I panicked a little because I hadn’t proofread beyond spell check and grammar! In my panic I went back and read what I had published and thought it was sufficient. However I need to be more careful and watch my delivery. The intent of this whole undertaking is healing for myself and if possible, others who know me either personally or that share in like struggles. I’m not interested in causing anyone harm or embarrassment. I will share my experiences with care to protect those involved while doing so all for the cause of my growth and healing.

I spent the majority of my childhood awkward and shy. I didn’t really learn the art of socializing until recently. It took me forming a friendship with a woman who can talk and make a friends with anyone to acquire the skills. Watching her interact with others and getting feedback from her about myself taught me so much. My favorite lesson on my journey so far is how to make friends. It may sound silly to you but I didn’t know how to make friends. I never knew what to say. I would stand around and watch others interact in amazement. I’d wonder how they could think of things to talk about so easily. I could do one on one with a person if they approached me, but mostly I was a wallflower. It wasn’t until my friend Thea shared with me that I made this face when we were around a bunch of strangers. She said my facial expression would suggest that I was detecting a foul odor and that is why no one would approach me. Lol! I never knew that I was doing that! I made it my mission to have a smile on my face when amongst the living. In doing so, everything began to change for me and I acquired a new skill. I know how to make friends. Now that I am able to make friends I am learning more about myself and others. I’ve learned that as human beings we want to be heard and we want to belong. I spent a lot of time feeling like no one could hear me. Even when someone did hear me, often times they misunderstood me. The art of communication soon became the next skill that I determined to gain. To belong to someone or something I can say that I have always had. I don’t recall a time when I didn’t feel like I belonged to someone. I could always depend on my mother. She was not perfect but I knew that she would do anything for me. My family loves me and that I’ve always known.

In my process of living and growing in this new season of my life I am enjoying getting to know people. All sorts of people. Nowadays in what is called “The information age” it is more possible than ever to make a friend with someone on the completely other side of the planet! Through social media I have met people in Russia, Senegal and many different cities in the U.S.. People from many different walks of life. Some of my most interesting stories are shared with people who are not living in free society.

I remember in the late 90’s I read an article in Ebony magazine. I am not sure about the exact subject of the article but it mentioned a woman who was on death row in Texas. I don’t recall much detail about her or her case. What I do remember is her mailing address was included at the end of the article. I wrote to her and she wrote me back. We corresponded for a while and I got busy with life and stopped writing her. I remember receiving a letter from her in which she let me know that it wasn’t ok to begin a friendship with her and just stop. She expressed her plight with being forgotten because she was incarcerated. It was easy for everyone to forget about her. Out of sight out of mind. For her the though, it was hard to forget. Time was something she had too much of to fill and corresponding with the outside world kept her closer to feeling normal. I will never forget her letter because she was very good at making me understand that although my intentions were good it wasn’t so good to make contact and just walk away. Her plight stuck with me. I didn’t write her anymore but I never forgot her our brief interaction.

People who are in prison are not all the same. People in prison are not subhuman. They are people who for whatever reason found themselves on the wrong side of the law. I don’t believe that you can throw everyone in a certain group into a basket and paint them all with the same brush. Some prisoners (the majority) are indeed deserving of their stay in the correctional system. Some of them shouldn’t ever be returned to society. I don’t believe they should be forgotten. My feelings towards inmates in the correctional system was influenced by my own experience with someone that I love. He was my high school sweetheart and he had gotten into trouble which landed him in prison at 18 years old. I didn’t just decide to write to some random offender out of the blue.

With J is where I started my journey into adulthood. It began with a knuckle head teenage boy intent on conquering the female world. J and I have experienced a lot together though he spent 29 years in prison. We are no longer married but I continue to learn from him. That relationship is A whole story in itself that spans a lifetime of 33 years and counting.

True friendships never die and I look forward to sharing some of our memories. I’ll be returning soon!

Saltofthaeearth

The beginning of a reinvention of self

advice-advise-advisor-7096It’s a lazy Sunday afternoon and I have plenty of studying to do. Final exams begin for me on December 6 with Political Science. Professor has decided that we are to write an essay explaining what are the powers of the President of the United States. We must consider how these powers are restricted or not by the Congress and, Judiciary, formally and informally. Following closely behind will be my Biology, Chemistry and Art final exams. This all could have happened just a couple of weeks sooner and I might have been alright. Every semester it is the same thing. It is the last few weeks and feel a crash and burn coming within my frontal lobe. It is as if my brain is in overload with too much information. This class load of thirteen units is considered full-time. I have classmates that are doing as much as twenty-two units, but they are at least half my age of 48 years, if not more so. I have one classmate who just graduated high school last may and is taking seven classes including the Biology and chemistry that we share. I mention him because he bares and uncanny resemblance to Philip Michael Thomas and I have a great time sitting next to him in class and examining every inch of his beautiful face.

Returning to school at 48 years old was not my first choice. I attended college in my twenties and graduated in 1998 with an Associate degree in Science. I became a registered dental hygienist and practiced for twenty years until my hands began to feel numb, tingly and weak. About ten years after I began my hygiene career these symptoms began and I saw a neurologist who after conducting muscle and nerve conduction studies gave me his professional opinion. “To put it plainly” he stated, “you have two choices. Surgery (this is not guaranteed solution), or change profession.” At that time I had three babies to care for and a husband who for all intents and purposes was more like a room-mate. We split our bills in half and he wasn’t much help to me. I knew that I had to fend for myself, so I kept practicing until I couldn’t keep from dropping the instruments. After being fired from my last two jobs because of my inability to keep up I decided that I should go back to school and pursue my dreams.

For most of my life I have held two dreams for myself. One practical, becoming a registered nurse, and the other seemingly impossible, becoming an author. I love to care for others. It comes as naturally as breathing. I see a need and I jump in to help. I also love to read and write. This blog will be my first attempt to write to someone who may be interested to read, and not just a captive audience of a family member or a friend who is trying to be supportive.

That’s it for today! I’m going to keep chasing my dreams and writing down the journey as it unfolds!

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. Izaak Walton

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