Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lies

In the recent year of intense self-reflection (maybe borderline navel-gazing) I have come to the realization that I am a liar. In my lack of boundaries, need to take care of others, fear of abandonment, avoidance of shame and guilt, I lie. I have lied to others and I lie to myself. I lie often. 

There is one lie in particular that I have long promised myself to write about. I lied to someone that mattered to me out of fear of rejection and shame. I lied about something that really was of no fault of my own but casted me in an unfavorable light. This was a light I was afraid to stand in, for him to see and for me to see myself. Almost a year later, he traveled to visit me (out of now where mind you!). We were speaking in abstract though I knew what he was referring to when he said, "what if the guy likes the girl so much, it doesn't even matter?" I reiterated my lie, a year later, even in abstract. This was less lying to him and much more lying to myself. Not that he didn't know I was lying. He knew. That's the worst part. Some one offered acceptance and I couldn't take it.

As I have gotten older, I regret that lie more and more. Everyday actually. It's of no consequence now. I have vowed if I ever saw him again, I would confess. Get it off my chest and be free. I've seen that over the years it has been my pattern of telling a lie, keeping up a lie and actually believing a lie that has brought me to where I am now. It sounds so awful and dirty as I describe it here but in actuality these lies include:
  • doing things to make someone feel better, or being guilted into actions
  • honoring a commitment I no longer wanted to keep,
  • sparing shame to my parents and myself
  • believing someone to be better than who they've shown me to be a.k.a. giving the benefit of the doubt when it is no longer gift giving but robbery
  • denial
  • hiding my feelings or refusing to own them
  • running from problems
  • giving more than I can comfortably give


In the last few months I have been working intently on standing in my truth. It's part of my establishing boundaries, facing/ overcoming shame stuff. I just don't want to lie anymore. I've been lying for 5 or 6 years, most of the lies have been to myself. It has been exhausting and I've felt like I've been in bondage. So I'm doing that, at the least being honest with myself. I didn't include keeping secrets in the list. My truth is not a secret, but it's not exactly anyone's business either. 
LiesSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Fact is...(I Need You)

It's been a long time.
It's been a very long time since I have been in the space to honestly write here. It has been an amazingly beautiful, challengingly painful year and a half. In so many ways my life is different now. I didn't think it had a place---that I had a place---in this blog anymore. I am a mom, I'm no longer in graduate school pursing my Ph.D (which I've found was one of many ways I defined myself). My love for Jay-Z has waned. I now live in the city that I've been madly in love with, though from afar, all of my adult life. Washington, D.C. Thankfully, the city is everything I'd hoped it would be.

When I first started writing here I was in so much pain. I can barely relate to that space I was in New Orleans months pre-Katrina. When I picture it and I feel terribly sorry for that girl and for what I put her through. During this entire year I have grown into a place of responsibility.  Firstly, being a mom will do that to you and it really did that to me. The Fact is... I never had any real personal boundaries. A great deal of the issues I faced and hurt I experienced was not simply because of the loss and initial lack of respect from others, but primarily because I didn't respect myself.

Now, if you knew me---or at least believed you knew me---you would find that hard to believe. I come off incredibly confident, at least at first. But the truth is, I wasn't. If you ever got really, really close to me you could see it was true. I was confident about a few things i.e. I am not ugly, I am not dumb. But how 'not ugly' or 'not dumb' or not bad or desirable...I was terribly unsure about. Sure, everyone has a little uncertainty about those things but I Chinonye, was always looking for someone to answer that question for me.

If I didn't get a job I would wonder what was wrong with me. If a guy decided he wouldn't call me back I would think he's a jerk sure, but that he was a jerk to me. I could never, ever, externalize anything.  So much so, that I unknowingly took other's issues and insecurities, as my own including that of family and friends. One of the most freeing things I have found about taking responsibility for myself is realizing what is NOT my responsibility. And the truth is, I feel free in a way I have never felt possible.

Some things have remained. I still love the color green. I'm still loyal. I actually still like to write, no matter the long periods of silence here at Purple Rain in a Drought. Jill Scott's "The Fact is (I Need You) is still one of my favorite songs. It still soothes me as it did in Louisiana in 2004. It reminds me of what I long for. It reminds me of who I am. But most importantly, it reminds me that I have come a long way.
The Fact is...(I Need You)SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Hustle Mode

    Happy New Year folks!  I am not going to give you a long list of resolutions. I am NOT going to promise to start blogging more often. (I only posted 10 times last year. Seriously?) I still suffer from that painful affliction of Procrastination and the FDA has yet to approve a pill for it. But I do want to tell you how I was inspired for almost a week to become an entrepreneur, well to get myself a side hustle. If you knew me, you would know I am allergic to selling things. I break out in hives and a rash of insecurity. I have sensitive skin not thick skin, meaning I don't take rejection well. I can't even sell things people actually want. I couldn't sell Girl Scout cookies when I was a Girl Scout. Hated it! So color me surprised when I got the sudden urge to sell my handbags on eBay. Fearing I would ultimately run out of product (I mean, my bag game is not on Victoria Beckham's level) I decided to look for additional items. What do I love just as much as handbags? Lip gloss!!! So I have been Super hyped up about selling Mac lip glosses on eBay.
      Today I found on CNN that some girl in Brazil had a great idea of auctioning off her virginity. Seeing that I am married with a 5 month old, that ship has sailed for me. I gave mine away for FREE! So yeah, I'm kinda jealous. In society today all that stuff about 'special', 'honor', 'respect' and even *cough* 'love' no longer applies. Hell, it's a recipe for being broke and brokenhearted. All that time I spent trying NOT to be your garden variety Slore and accumulating degrees I could've  put that same energy into getting my Evelyn Lozada on. Straight hustle mode. I like handbags, shoes and lip gloss! My needs are very simple. And Mommy was wrong. Men do like loose women. Kanye West is having a baby with Kim Kardashian ON PURPOSE! Yet my student loan payments are as high as my morals. How is that fair?

Nonetheless, 2013 is the year I'm going to make hustling my hobby. I gotta figure out what it will be though. I found out that the liquidated Mac glosses I ordered may be fakes.


Hustle ModeSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Step 4: Join Twitter

So I haven't been in the proper mental space to blog. I was busy quitting leaving graduate school and having a baby to put together witty blog posts. If had written about how I felt, this blog would have morphed into a sad first hand account of falling off the deep end or worse... a mommy blog. (NOT that there is anything wrong with mommy blogs, I mean how else am I supposed to know that my son is not the only baby in the world who utterly despises his car seat? It's just not what I do.) I decided my next step would be to venture out, try something new so I joined Twitter...finally.  I didn't JUST join Twitter now, I may have done so weeks ago but I got bored really quickly and forgot about it. That was until I received an email staying "We missed you on Twitter!" I'm so vulnerable, I was immediately flattered and why looky-here? I even blogged about it. Baby steps. (no pun intended)

You can find me ( it's follow me, right?) @ChinonyeCO
Step 4: Join TwitterSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Step 3: Be Honest

I haven't written because I've been afraid to say what was on my mind.
And I think my writing sucks.
But that is because I have to censor everything in my head.
That's a tough thing when you have a blog.
The internet has become so much bigger and greater than it was 7 years ago when I began this. Stuff you say or do will be here forever and surprisingly...people actually read my blog!

I have been doing a great deal of reflecting the past 6 weeks and I have been having to ask myself  1) How many times have I really been honest with myself about the big decisions and issues in my life and 2) Can I commit to being honest with myself from here on?

I have honestly had the most difficult year of my life. Things have not gone the way I have planned or expected, no matter how elaborate or well constructed those plans were.I realize that I am a lot of what I said, fought against and promised myself I wouldn't be. I do not feel in control of my own destiny. I don't always feel like God is with me. I have never felt more defeated in my life. As I type that last statement I realize that it's not quite true. I have felt more defeated before. No that doesn't exactly make me feel better. It's more a factual observation that, yes, I have felt much more suckier than I am feeling right now. I look at myself without any recognition and a lot of disappointment. Yet, this is a time in which I should feel amazing. My husband is settled and has great job. I have a baby boy in my stomach who kicks me in the side and occasionally has hiccups that I can feel. But the devil moves. He sees impending joy and plots to rob you of it. It's working sadly, and I haven't the strength to fight him. At least not the past few days...weeks. No, it is not my hormones. 

I'm being honest.
Step 3: Be HonestSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, May 18, 2012

Step 2: Read and Be Smart

This was always my default plan in life, school. I enjoy reading when it is well first, interesting and second something I selected for myself. I like writing when I am writing for myself, as you can see blogs are great. Venues that don't include malleable self-imposed deadlines are the the pits. As I mentioned before I saw myself as a opinion writer/ political analyst/ black intellectual. I didn't include black intellectual but that is certainly on the list of aspirations. Oddly today as I resumed my efforts in reading for pleasure I came across Te-Nehisi Coates at The Atlantic a blog that I frequent and he made a comment in response to him considering himself a Black intellectual. A commenter said essentially "I gotta get one of those gigs" Coates responded...

Step 1 Drop out of college.

Step 2 Get a bow-tie or ascot or (in my case) fancy hat.

Step 3 Mix high concept notions (Dialect of Hegel will do) with an admiration for The Real Housewives of Atlanta. Better, publish a piece in a major magazine outlining the Hegelian Dialect implicit in The Real Housewives of Atlanta.


Clearly, I am screwed on all three efforts. Unless the ruffles on my beloved tuxedo shirts count.
Step 2: Read and Be SmartSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Step 1: Write

Well...

I am back from hiatus. No more hiatus. I am back writing with that same feeling in my gut...as when I first started this blog. I'll never forget years ago when I was many dress sizes smaller, this blog is what got me out of bed. I had (at least I thought I had) new and clever way of putting words together, stories together about my life. I remember what I wanted to do, what I wanted to be... I wanted to do political commentary on the television and opinion writing. That's what I thought would make me happy, my ultimate dream job.  But see I have this insatiable desire to chase degrees I am not good at and probably not passionate about AND I like fine leather goods and airplane travel and cannot fathom the idea of giving that up entirely in pursuit of some damn dream. (But if you are following, chasing degrees also requires similar sacrifice...thus my perpetual state of swirling the toilet bowl.)
 I am faced with a few decision points in which I have absolutely no clue what or how to decide. On one hand the world is full of options but unfortunately I lack the wide-eyed naivete that I had many years ago when I graduated from high school. I thought the world was my oyster and high school graduation was one of the happiest moments of my life. (Isn't that sad?!?) I am drowning in uncertainty and indecisiveness. I am not sure how I will get an answer. I figure the first thing I can do is return to square one. Write.

Step 1: WriteSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Seriously?

Burger King is pulling their Ad featuring Mary J. Blige for some chicken wrap because there has been some controversy about its "racist undertones". Um...huh?

There are people dying in the streets, children being ill-taught and ill-prepared for the real world because of systemic racism in this country and folks are up in arms about a chicken wrap commercial!!!????!!!



Honestly, this is because we don't all have the ability to process the more complex issues of our society, so some of us go after the low hanging fruit. (or rotting fruit already on the ground).  This unfortunately cheapens the fight against racism. I mean somehow no one seems to think the Real Housewives of Atlanta has racist undertones...

**EDIT** After further discussion with my colleague I get that the issue is that Mary J Blige is singing about chicken. Not just singing but singing her heart out about the ingredients. His response was, "Would Jennifer Lopez be singing about enchiladas?!? (Clearly, J.Lo is Puerto Rican and not Mexican but I get his point) It's not like I didn't get that before but he compared it to the 1992 commercial featuring MC Hammer for KFC. I get that! I believe Hammer's commercial was a lot worse than the MJB commercial. This Burger King commercial was not about a bucket of fried chicken but it was a poorly executed one nonetheless.

Seriously?SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend