For the better part of my life I have done my best to be what I thought everyone wanted me to be. Even at that I’ve failed miserably. I read all the books on how to be the best mother. I listened to everyone on how to be the best friend. I watched all the shows on how to be the best baker/chef. I’ve even read all the magazine articles on how to be a good wife. Well, at this point my house is a mess, my teenaged son hates me, my cake is dry and I’m on the verge of a divorce. So, to say that I have done it all wrong, is a gross understatement.
One day I had to sit down and analyze what was really goings on.
Let me pause here and tell you that I am a huge fan of Bernie Mac (may he rest in paradise), Katt Williams, Kevin Hart, D.L Hughly, and Steve Harvey.So, if at any time you don’t understand my inferences just know that you need to get some black friends.
Now, back to what I was saying. I was trying my best to please everyone and only succeeded in nearly destroying my own life.This blog is about my journey back to me. I will show you how I used my love of food to regain my self confidence and prove to myself that it is NEVER too late to start again.
In 1983 I was at a fork in the road. I was a gifted student with the potential to do great things. All of my teachers remarked about how, if I applied my natural talent, I would have colleges begging me to attend their schools. Everyone saw my potential except me. I had an ainty who was excited to finance my education and a cousin who adored me (and still does to this day) and was willing to help guide me into greatness. Fast forward a year. I now had a baby. My mother was not angry. She was hurt. She had spent her life creating opportunities for me and I had shunned every single one. At 13 years of age, when I had not yet learned to properly care for myself, I now had an infant to care for. Over the next 4 years I fought to kill the notion that my life was over. I was determined to take care of myself and my child. I tried working at fast food restaurants and mom and pop stores (after forging my mother’s signature on a work permit because I was too young to work). In the mean time I had another baby who subsequently passed away from S.I.D.S. I went into a deep depression after losing Desir’ee. All paths lead downhill after that.
The money was never enough. I still felt like my daughter and I were a burden on my mother. I had to do something. I, along with a few friends, decided that working was not enough and that it would more profitable to start shoplifting. This solved the issue of clothing my child but my friends and I were too stupid to turn our hauls into cash. So, in natural order, we began “snatching purses”. Now, understand that 1986 technology, of course, was not what it is today. It took awhile for credit cards and checks to be traced. We wrote fraudulent checks at grocery stores and sold gas at what used to be called service stations. We would give the person a stolen credit card and have them pay for the gas and they would pay us half in cash or we would have them give us the money and we would pay for the gas with the credit card and and pocket the cash. This was okay but being the greedy hoodlums we were, we needed more.
One day I got three phone calls back to back that proved to be prophetic, potentially redeeming, and (finally) damning. The first was from my favorite cousin. She asked why I wasnt in school. I gave some stupid excuse and she told me that if I wasn’t where I was supposed to be that I made myself vulnerable to all kinds of situations. I could be accused of doing something that i had no part in or I could be easily influenced into doing something I wouldnt’t normally do. I blew her off.
The second call was from my then boyfriend (not my child’s father) who wanted to meet me for lunch. Tyrone, in my mind, was a nerd. He had a job. He listened to his mother. He got good grades in school and was destined for success. Who wanted to waste a day being good?
The third and most pivitol call was from a friend who had a car and nothing but time on her hands. She had two small children as well. She wanted to go “boosting”. She was going to go out and get new clothes for the kids and groceries. This was the call I had been waiting for. It was also the call that ruined my life. To sum it up we ended up robbing a lady of her purse; she was severly injured and I was arresested, convicted and sentenced to 10 years in the Virginia state penitentiary for women. I had just celebrated my eighteenth birthday two days earlier.
After being released I envisioned a new life armed with a new appreciation for freedom. I hit the ground running. I got a job as a truck driver, got my first place, fell in love,and had a son. Life was great! Then my mother told me she had breast cancer. My life came to a screeching halt that day and I knew then that I would never be happy again.
Okay, now that you have somewhat of a back story, I can begin to tell you how I am attempting to climb out out the pit of dispair that has been my life for the past twelve years.