Blogger Recognition Award

Hello, friends! If you recall, yesterday I made a post about how I was nominated for a Versatile Blogger Award, which was super cool, but looook! I received another award nomination! Continue reading “Blogger Recognition Award”

Advertisements

Harassment | My Stories

Trigger Warning: Contains stories of harassment. May be triggering for some. Read with caution. Continue reading “Harassment | My Stories”

Daily Prompt 7/5/2016 | Layers

My layers make me who I am, and I am pretty damn awesome.

[In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 7/5/2016 | Layers]

“We live beneath many layers. Some are for our protection, and some are for our control.” ~ Russell Eric Dobda Continue reading “Daily Prompt 7/5/2016 | Layers”

Daily Prompt 2/10/2016 | The Perfect Storm

The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 2/10/2016 | Sudden Shifts

“You’re at the beach with some friends and/or family, enjoying the sun, nibbling on some watermelon. All of a sudden, within seconds, the weather shifts and hail starts descending from the sky. Write a post about what happens next.”

Liam! Nooo!” I shrieked, as my one-year old son dropped a fistful of wet sand into my head. I pulled out my ponytail and shook my hair violently, trying to disperse the itchy particles from my scalp. My little terror smiled brightly, turned on his heel, and took off in the opposite direction toward his father, who was doubled over with laughter.

I rolled my eyes, giving up on my hair, and leaned back into my lime green beach chair. My eyes adjusted to the shade provided by my comically large beach umbrella, and I sighed in defeat. I looked over at my husband and son, who were happily attempting to build a sand castle, with little success. Life with a one-year old, never a dull moment. I smiled, and turned my head to survey the rest of the beach. Families and groups of friends, both big and small, were scattered across the vast, sandy beach, frolicking beneath the warm, July sun. It was the third day that week that we had spent the day at the beach, as the weather had been perfect, and despite having to dig out sand from every nook and cranny of my body, and having a slightly pink complexion, I was definitely not tired of it yet.

Is it supposed to rain today?” I heard my husband’s voice, and turned my head lazily to face him.

No, I think it’s supposed to be sunny the rest of the week. Why?” I asked him, sitting up in my chair to embrace my tiny toddler, who was now climbing into my lap.

He made a confused “hmm” noise, and turned away from me, staring out toward the water. I suddenly became aware that the sun was no longer shining brightly down on the beach, replaced by the shadows of storm clouds, dancing across the sand. A chill entered the air, and I wrapped my beach towel around my son and myself. Kyle turned to me, opening his mouth to speak, when suddenly, something heavy landed on top of my umbrella, startling us.

What the hell was that?” I asked, picking Liam up tilting my umbrella to investigate. A large ball of ice slid down my umbrella, and landed with a thud in the sand. Confused, I looked up into the sky, now dark with storm clouds, and shivered. Was that hail? Was it hailing? How? I heard a loud curse from behind me, and turned to see Kyle bending down to pick up another large ball of ice from the sand, while rubbing his head gingerly.

My eyes widened as he presented a baseball-sized piece of hail to me, and we stood there speechless. All around us, concerned voices, as well as cries of surprise, rang out, and families and friends ran to gather their belongings. Without another word, we quickly packed up our chairs, towels, and other beach accessories, and ran as fast as we could toward the parking lot. I held my umbrella over heads as best as I could, nearly tripping several times.

This is crazy!” Kyle shouted, but it was still hard to hear him by my side over the roar of hail falling around us.

We got to our car and quickly barricaded ourselves inside. The pounding of hail rang loudly in our ears, and I was surprised to discover that my tiny toddler was remaining calm, and seemed to be amused by the balls of ice raining from the sky. We sat in silence (well, not really), and watched hoards of people as they dove into their cars in desperation. I couldn’t help it, and I began to laugh at the bizarre shift in the weather. I turned to Kyle, and saw the intensity melt from his face, and he too began laughing, reaching for my hand, and squeezing gently.

He started the car, and we followed the herd of other vehicles to the main road. Less than a mile later, the sky opened up, and the sun made a welcome appearance. We drove home with smiles on our faces, both ignoring the fact that the outside of our vehicle now likely resembled the craterous surface of the moon. I glanced in the rear-view mirror at my son, now sleeping soundly in his car seat, and sighed contently. We drove home in a happy silence, hearing only the sound of our tires crushing the occasional ice ball on the road. What a beautiful day.

Thanks for reading, friends!

Jan

Imperceptible | Part 1

Wally, you can’t keep this up,” she whispered sleepily into his shoulder, “I need you. I need you here with me. Please, don’t go… not again…

Wally pulled her closer to him beneath the warmth of the blanket that draped lazily over them both. He did not respond to her drowsy plea. He had grown so used to her speech, so used to her pain, but there was nothing he could do anymore. They had never really been apart for more than a few days, a week at the most, but when they were reunited, it was electric. She was his home. He was really going to miss the spark that the two of them shared. He was going to miss her.

He gazed down at the now sleeping woman lying wrapped in his arms, sighing with a mixture of relief and sadness. She was so beautiful, and too good for him. Too good to be wrapped up in his life, in his problems. She deserved better, and that was why he was leaving.

I love you, Wenda. Always,” he choked out quietly, brushing a strand of deep, auburn hair from her face, before gently pulling his arm out from beneath her slender frame. Walking quietly to the other end of the room, Wally gabbed his wallet, his hat, and a bottle of water from the fridge, before slipping out of the apartment that they had shared for the last four months, leaving his lover, and his entire life, behind the closed door.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The cold streets of New York City were packed with people. Wally breathed into his hands, trying to get any feeling back into his frozen fingers, before shoving them into the pockets of his sweatshirt. He stuck out like a sore thumb in his red and white, striped hoodie, but it was all he had. He owned very little, even after moving in with Wenda, he couldn’t attach himself to anything. He always knew he would have to leave, he just didn’t think it would be so soon.

Wally ducked into an alley, and exited into a large, empty lot. There was an old man sitting with his back against the large, brick building, huddled beneath his filthy coat, trying to keep warm in the cold, November night.

Wally, my boy!” the man exclaimed, reaching out his hand as Wally approached, “What brings you, lad? Come to give an old man some company?”

Wally smiled, “I wish I could say that were the case, old man. I’m here to say goodbye.

The smile faded from the old man’s grimy face, and he stood abruptly. His mouth opened in protest, but Wally held up his hand, and he relented.

Leaving? What about Wenda? What about your life here? You can’t keep running from-”

I’m not running, old man. I am protecting the woman I love, and my friends, from them. I am leaving to keep you all safe!” His clenched fists trembled in the pockets of his sweatshirt, “After what happened to Wilma… I can’t put Wenda through anymore. I can’t keep looking over my shoulder, worrying about when the next move will be, or who they will get next. I can’t do it anymore.”

The old man sighed, his eyes filled with sadness, and something else. He shook his head, “What would your parents think? Running away like a coward, instead of staying and defending your people. They wouldn’t want this life for you, running from city to city like this. You belong here, son. You belong with Wenda, with others your kind. We are stronger in numbers, and losing you-”

Losing me will be the best thing for everybody,” Wally choked through clenched teeth, “I can’t be here anymore, Whitebeard. I just can’t. I’d rather run on my own, than put everyone around me in danger. I thought you, of all people, would understand that.”

He regretted the words as soon as they left his mouth. Whitebeard had left his life behind him years ago. He was once a successful business man, with a wife and a young son, and now lived on the unforgiving streets of New York City, living the life of a vagrant to protect his identity. He had sacrificed so much to keep his family safe, so why couldn’t he understand that Wally needed to get as far away as possible? If Wally’s parents had just run, instead of staying to fight, they would still be alive. They would be there to protect him, to keep him safe. But they were gone, and had been for nearly 6 years, taken away from Wally just days before his fifteenth birthday. And poor, innocent Wilma… He missed them every day. He blamed himself every day.

Goodbye, old man,” Wally said quietly, turning away from the old man. He did not respond.

Wally ducked back into the ally, and headed in the opposite direction of the apartment where the love of his life lay alone. Tears stung at his eyes and he quickly wiped them away. The Watchers, and their leader, Odlaw, had taken too much from him already, too much from his kind. He could not allow them to take anything more. He pulled his red and white, striped beanie from his pocket and pulled it over his mess of ebony hair. The matching hat and hoodie had been a gift from Wenda for his nineteenth birthday, while they were still living in Boston. While he secretly hated the bold colors and pattern, he wore it every day to show her how much he loved her. Hopefully, she would be able to see that he was leaving for the very same reason.

To be continued…

Random Prompt | Siblings

“What does having siblings mean to you?”

Talking about my family is, and has always been, a weird topic for me. I’m more than open about all aspects of my life, the good and the bad, but there is something about talking about my family that is weird. I guess I just think my family is a bit weird?

I consider myself as having 6 siblings (some by blood, others by marriage, or something else), though I’ve never really felt a connection with any them. This might be because I haven’t seen any of them in anywhere from 8-18 years (with the exception of my youngest sister, who I saw in 2012 when she was a year old). I’ve spoken to a few of them somewhat recently, but it never seems to go over well. I’ve always wanted to feel that bond that you’re supposed to feel with your partner in crime, your first best friend, your brother or sister. But, it will never happen for me. Get ready, this post is about to take all kinds of turns.

I always claimed to be an only child, despite having a pocket full of sibling-esque people in my life. My mom and my dad had me, and only me, together. During the brief that time my mom and dad were together, my dad cheated on her with another woman, and got her pregnant, resulting in my older half-brother, Dustin.

28131_1295500467094_4299832_n

Dustin is exactly 8 months older than me, and is now 26 and living with his mom is Florida. He has been in and out of jail several times in his life already, and has two baby boys named Phoenix and Ryker, my handsome nephews, who he never sees, because he is a deadbeat, just like our dad. I will probably never meet them. I haven’t seen Dustin since we were 6 or 7 years old (whenever that picture was taken), and I intend to keep it that way.

In 2008, and every few years since, he added me on Facebook and gushes about how much he loves me, and how much I mean to him, despite the fact that we have been nonexistent in each other’s lives since… ever. We talk for a couple of days, maybe a few weeks, before he snaps, and says or does something completely stupid, causing me to sever ties with him. Again. Examples include beating his girlfriend/mother of his sons, stalking my fiance and pulling the “big brother” card (a.k.a. inserting himself into my relationship and threatening my partner if he ever hurts me, etc.), or writing me letters from prison, asking me to “hook him up” with one of my hot friends so he can get nudes. Yeah. The guy is a winner. We’re currently not speaking. Moving on!

My mom met a guy named Larry when I was very young, maybe in kindergarten or first grade? Larry has a son who is two months older than me, also named Lawrence (though we always called him Michael growing up, but he has since changed it back). My mom moved us into Larry’s trailer in the woods very early into their relationship, and my life changed completely. They are still together, but were never married, so we actually aren’t technically related, though I still refer to him as my step-brother. Some days, it was neat having someone my age to play with, except for the fact that Lawrence was a spoiled rotten terror who made my life a living hell most days. Things got better as we got older, after I gave him several ass kickings for being a dick to me. We would watch WWE together, jump on the trampoline, and secretly watch South Park when my mom wasn’t home. We even had a few of the same friends in school, and sometimes hung out together. By the time we got to high school, we were almost friends. Until I caught him spying on me getting dressed one day after a shower by sliding the shiny side of a DVD above my bedroom door. We were 18 and had just graduated high school. I told my mom, who shrugged it off and said, “He used to do that to me when he was younger.” and that was that. Luckily, I left for college a week later. I haven’t spoken to him since.

*Sigh*

And now, for some of the sadder stuff.

In 2004, when I was almost 14 years old, my grandmother came to visit from Florida, and took me to visit my dad. This came as quite a shock to me, because I was not aware that he was out of prison, and hadn’t seen him in several years. What was even more shocking, however, was that he had had a baby with a woman who was just a few years older than me (she was 21 when I was 14), and I had a new baby sister named Desiree.

My dad’s girlfriend, Anthena, also had two other girls named Brianna and Miranda, who were around 7 and 9 at the time, who were from two previous relationships (yes, she had them both as a teenager). My dad and Anthena never got married, but I always considered these two girls to be my sisters, even in the short time we knew each other. I mean, my dad did ruin all of our lives, so it made sense.

In the same year, my dad and the girls were evicted, and moved into a campground. Child Protective Services got involved, and found that my dad and his girlfriend were doing heroin, among other things, and that some really, really bad stuff had happened because of it. The three girls were taken from them, and my dad went back to jail. Luckily, all 3 girls were adopted by the same woman and her husband, who have treated them very well. Miranda and Brianna legally changed their names in the adoption process, but Desiree did not. I tried to see them in 2012 when I went back home to visit my mom, but my grandmother told me that I couldn’t. She told me that Desiree, who was going on 9 years old at the time, wouldn’t understand who I was, because she didn’t understand adoption. Yet, she seemed to have no problem understand who our grandmother was… I was also informed that the younger of the two girls was living in an institution for children, and I couldn’t see her. Both of the older girls have since sought me out on Facebook, and we talk occasionally. I haven’t seen any of them since 2008, when I went to Desiree’s birthday party at her adoptive family’s house.

28131_1295502667149_3234609_n

And lastly, we have the youngest, Makaela. Makaela is also my dad and Anthena’s daughter, conceived after the other girls were taken away, and my dad got out of jail. And, just like the others, she was taken away after they both violated their probation and sold/did illegal drugs around the baby, after swearing up and down that they were going to get clean. I met Makaela in 2012 when I went to Maine, and fell in love with her.

11133757_10204092515972661_1696958399865951730_n

Makaela has since been adopted by a loving family. Much like the family of the other girls, her family talks to my grandmother regularly, sharing stories and pictures. My grandmother keeps me in the loop as well. She is 5 years old now, plays soccer, and loves dancing.

12434219_10206892203161662_615786261_n

I hope to meet her again someday, though I’m sure it is unlikely.

So, you can see why the topic of family and siblings is a bit of a downer for me. It makes me so sad that so many people take their relationships with their brothers and sisters for granted, when it could be so much worse. I would love to have a positive, involved relationship with all of Liam’s aunties and uncles… but it just doesn’t seem possible.

And now I’m sad.

Thanks for reading.

Jan