Finding Motivation Is Key

I haven’t been writing a lot in 2018 on a personal level because I decided to focus more on the business side of writing. Though that wasn’t the only reason. I also felt like I’d run out of things to say. So often as creatives and writers especially you get your motivation from real life, I look at like a battery. The more you charge it, the more powerful it becomes. For me 2018 was a year of growth and learning. Taking in moments as opposed to sharing them.

I’ve become a father and when I tell you it’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever felt, I’m not even sure that does it justice. Just holding him and looking at him and realizing that he’s a part of me is something that changes who you are as a man. Not just your priorities but I’ve never felt love like I feel love when I look at him.

I thought it would gross me out to change diapers or get spit up on but I find myself excited when he takes a poop because I know it means he isn’t constipated or gassy. When he spits up and looks at me and smiles, it’s because I know he got a good burp in or he ate too much and now he’s relieved. I’ll be driving to work and laugh at something he did and it brings joy to my life. Being a father is amazing and he can’t even play outside yet. I can just imagine what it’ll be like when he’s walking and running.

Having my son and living life has given me stories to write about, stories to focus on. Not just when it comes to my blog but when it comes to novels and scripts. Sitting back and watching, listening, ingesting the world around me.

I once saw this meme that said, “Be careful what you say around me, I’m a writer and anything you say or do may be used in a story.”

I have never related to anything so much in my life. 2018 pushed a button inside of me, a button which reminded me that life isn’t as short or long as we think it is. Life is just life. You live in the moment, you live in the day and before you know it, years have went by. What did you do with those years? What did you create? Who did you help? What did you inspire?

I’m sitting in my office writing this on a Saturday morning and before I know it it’ll be February and before I know it, it’ll be August. 2018 will be my last year viewing the world from the sidelines. I’m tired of playing it safe. I want to take risk and try new things. Write new genres and push myself professionally.

Being unhappy or unmotivated for the sake of it isn’t the move anymore. Make this last month of 2018 count.

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The Forgotten Child

The Forgotten Child

When I was a boy I would sit on the laps of my mother and aunts, looking at the stars, fascinated by the night air. I wouldn’t stop crying unless they took me outside.

When she was a girl her father showed flashes of being the greatest man she’d ever known before he was the first man to break her heart.

When I was a boy I went to live with my mother after she graduated college, only to cry myself to sleep because I wanted to go back to the only home I’d ever known. My grandparents picked me up that same night.

When she was a girl she went and lived with a new family, learned new things, saw new things. A new father, a better father. Until she wasn’t there anymore, until she was back in the darkness. She felt like she deserved the darkness.

When I was a boy I thought I deserved the world.

When she was a girl she felt guilty for getting the world. What makes her special? Why the happy meal and her own room when they weren’t sure if the lights going to be on.

When he was a boy he wrote love letters to girls.

When she was girl she wrote love letters for boys, so her and her sister would have something to eat.

When he was a boy his parents took in the child of a friend.

When she was a woman she took in the child of a friend.

He saw that boy get bigger, healthier, happier.

She helped that boy get bigger, healthier and happier.

When he was a boy he saw his parents cry in the doorway as they took the boy away. The look of helplessness in their eyes knowing his life would never be the same.

When she was a woman she watched them take him away. His smile fading as the memories of his happiness fueled their disdain.

Compassion, compassion in it’s truest form often comes from the ones of those that received very little of it. The forgotten child is often the child that grows up to be the adult that wants to save the forgotten children.

True compassion and selflessness comes with heartbreak. You often find yourself protecting everyone, sacrificing for everyone, giving to everyone. When it’s all over, who has given to you? Who has sacrificed for you? Who is protecting you?

Even as a hero, the forgotten child is often forgotten.

 

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Random Thoughts to End 2017

Drake has this line in one of his songs where he says, “Sometimes I wish I can go back in time, not to change anything but to experience the feeling of those moments just one more time.” I’ll be thirty five in a month or so and 2018 will more than likely be one of the most life altering years of my life. It’ll also be the year where I become the man that stops believing in happiness and starts believing in obligation. What I mean by that is at some point in every adult’s life you have to stop chasing what you think will make you happy and start pursuing what will make you successful and provide a foundation for your family’s future.

2017 was a good year for me. I achieved some goals, fell short on some other ones but overall I kept pushing, kept going in the direction I needed to go in. That was professionally. Personally a part of me feels as though I took a step back. I’ve went days and weeks without talking to anyone. I’m not sure I have any meaningful friendships and mentally I worry that I’m giving up on the idea that life always balances out.

I breathe words and this is my first time writing in weeks if not months. I used to wake up and do it every morning. I used to feel like not writing was like not brushing my teeth or drinking water. There are moments where I’m driving or sitting at my desk and I worry that this is how it starts. That one day I’ll walk past a bookstore and linger for a second, wondering what happened to my aspirations of being on those shelves.

In 2017 I’ve been to Cuba, Paris and Belize. They all had their own charms about them and they all the things that were not so great about them but I understand one fundamental thing. I was blessed to be able to be there. I was blessed to make it back home from each and every one of those locations. Not everyone can say that.

I try my best for each of my blogs or articles to have a theme, a point that I build on and wrap up all tight and neat in a bow. I’m not sure this one will. I guess these past couple weeks everyone keeps asking me, “How have your Holidays been?” And I respond with, “They’ve been good.” I think I just wanted to come somewhere and say out loud, “They’ve actually been sort of crappy.”

I miss my grandmother. I miss coming home from work and being able to walk into a house that smells of freshly cooked food and warmth. This is the first Christmas I’ve ever had where I didn’t receive a gift and it’s weird because it’s not so much about getting anything as it is about the feeling or exchanging something with someone and that…. I can’t explain it.

On social media and to my family I have to be upbeat and glass half full. Because it’s about more than me, it’s about those around you not having to feel as though they need to save you from yourself. But sometimes you just need to tell your truth even if it’s to a couple strangers on a blog you haven’t written on since Thanksgiving.

Be safe out there this weekend and Happy Holidays.IMG_3740

Dreams Are Just Reality Waiting to Happen

My actual writing career started with Facebook notes. I would write them every morning before work. I literally mean every morning. I had this whole routine where I couldn’t sleep so I would just lie in bed and look at the TV on mute; then I would get up, go to my computer and write a story.

The first six or seven months no one really read them and I would tag people and talk about it but nothing and then something really cool happened. I was at work and my phone started to blow up and one of the stories I’d written was getting shared. Now I would wake up and write and people would look forward to my words.

I could literally see them sitting in traffic or at their desk, drinking their coffee or orange juice and reading my words, my words. I would live and die with every like, share and comment.

Those Facebook notes at the crack of dawn got me a book deal, a blog that does good numbers and changed my life. If I’m being honest I have no idea if I would be writing on the level I am if it wasn’t for that.

I didn’t take any literature or English classes. I still confuse sentence structure and tenses to this day. I never loved writing because I thought it would be cool to have my name on a book or it might get me cute shy girls. I loved writing because it always came so easy to me and it feels like the most natural thing in the world. Don’t ever give up on your dreams.

Men Don’t Have Biological Clocks That Tick But That Sense of Urgency A Week From Your Mid 30’s May Beat Here and There

I’m turniI feel young 34 in about a week and a half and though I don’t believe men have a biological clock I very much believe that men get to a point in their lives where they start to want to move forward. I used to write about wanting a son often in my earlier blogs years ago. I let social media bully and manipulate me into stopping.

“You’re thirst trapping with the whole nice guy routine.”

“If you wanted a good woman you could have had one by now.”

The list goes on and on. So I stopped. I stopped writing about wanting a wife and a son and the house with the neighbors my age and good public schools. Just because I stopped writing about those things doesn’t mean I don’t still very much want them. It doesn’t mean that with each day that passes by I don’t come to realization that I won’t have four or five children. I literally sit at my desk at five am and think to myself, “Self, you’ll need to get married in the next year and you’ll need your wife to get pregnant every year so that she isn’t 40 plus popping out babies that have a 50% chance of having birth defects.”

Do I have a biological clock that pounds a little harder every time I see a picture of a cute baby or see someone that shouldn’t be having children having them with ease? I doubt it but I do have a sense of urgency creeping up on me just as fast as the number 34 is.

Men and women have been profiting for ages trying to tell people what husband or wife material means. Writing definitions and standards that will lead you to the promise land of the alter and a perfect life. The truth is it’s all a lie. What you want is what you want and if that’s shallow and materialistic then that’s what it is. And if it’s beautiful and passionate then that’s what it is. Someone can be the ideal image of perfection to 93% of the world and to you they aren’t. You have to let them go because no matter how hard you try and convince yourself otherwise; you can never make apple juice out of lemons.

I’m not good at being friends with women. At least I wasn’t in the past. Maybe I flirted too much, maybe I made them feel as though they were more than friends. It could just be that I wasn’t a good friend myself and didn’t realize it. Either way what I’ve realized is that I need my wife to be that friend. I need to like her, I need to want to share good news with her. I need who she is as a woman to make me smile. I need to trust her above all else. Things I didn’t think about when I turned 30 or even 32.

My writing has shifted over the years. I don’t really give my opinion anymore about relationships and dating. I simply write about what I’m feeling or going through. Maybe someone reading will relate and find their voice in my words.

The surreal thing about life is that no matter what you tell yourself, no matter what you tell other people, you know the truth. And as cliché as it sounds, the truth will always set you free.

Stop Blaming Social Media or Outdated Stereotypes for Bad Behavior

385448_213663785373354_118911191515281_532154_1408080341_nI’ve been in a relationship for about two years now. You know how many women that I was friends with or that I knew casually have approached me in a manner that’s flirtatious or disrespectful? None. Not one. Every text, phone call or message has been to congratulate me or simply to catch up or say hello. Women don’t find men in relationships more attractive; often times men in relationships let the world know they’re still available.

There’s perception and then there’s reality. You can’t flirt and be accessible and friendly and then complain that women or men aren’t accepting of your relationship. I have some amazing friends that I’d hang out with. Happy hours, long conversations, dropping them off at the airport. Once I got in a relationship or they got in a relationship that friendship dynamic changed. They had a long day, they call their man. They go to happy hour or talk about it, with their man. The same for me. They aren’t acting funny or being fake friends, it’s just called growing up.

I want to ask a serious question. Have you ever seen someone that was in a dope relationship talk about other people’s relationship or problems? I don’t mean casual pillow talk with your man or woman. I don’t mean casual gossip with your girls. I mean, it’s every day and it’s not just one or two couples but it’s all the time. You don’t see that type of behavior out of people that are good. But you see it out of people that are lying to themselves.

If a woman compliments my writing at 2am and I respond in her inbox, “Thanks, I love when women are up late reading my words.” With that one sentence I just told her I was available. I can try and tell myself I didn’t do anything wrong and that’s the problem with women these days, they think every guy is flirting, etc. But I’d be lying to myself. There are lines you don’t cross and you shouldn’t want to cross. Not if you’re happy with what you have at home.

The Arrogance of A Man

dwhiteEven the smartest man can be a fool and not even know it.

Living life blind to the resentment, to the needs of those closest to his heart.

The arrogance of believing that Camelot won’t come crashing down.

The arrogance of believing that what was once pure cannot become tainted.

 

The best of intentions become clouded by the worst of judgements.

The most confident decisions become blinded by moments of insecurity and inadequacy gift wrapped in lies and deception.

The most memorable moments become soaked in insincerity.

The love becomes resentment.

 

Her own arrogance, her own ego, tell her what she needs to do. Tell her what she has to do. To not only win but to survive.

None of those are stronger than her heart. For heart betrays her and her resentment doesn’t push away love but embraces love and makes the hurt that much more painful.

“Do you know how many I have turned down?”

“Do you know how they look at me?”

“Do you know what you did to me?”

More questions than an SAT exam and not nearly enough answers.

More doubt than a tied football game in the closing seconds but there can be no winner.

 

Looking into her eyes, her tears tearing a hole in his soul, her anguish ripping at the fabric of his manhood.

Wanting to fix it all in one night, wanting to heal it all in one moment.

Needing to turn back the hands of time and give her the time she’d been cheated of. Give her the opportunities taken away from her like a thief in the night.

Wanting her to hate him so that she wouldn’t seem so perfect, even in her pain.

 

The arrogance of a man goes against forgiveness.

The love of a woman embraces it.

Knowing that a man could touch her or inhale her after him cuts like a sword through flesh and bone and hurts just as much.

Knowing that her love was no longer guaranteed.

His arrogance died.