Dating Chronicles: Cancer

Troy* was a Virgo and overanalyzed everything. He was the type that would sit in bed at night and think of ways to seek revenge or manipulate a person while the potential victim was sleeping well without a second thought of him. At the time, he was my FWB, but I began to discern that he wanted more. I wasn’t interested in a relationship, and even if I was, he wouldn’t be the one. Besides consistent penis, Troy had nothing of value to offer. There was nothing that he could have done to make my life better, so there was no point in him taking up space in it as a boyfriend.

He suggested that we start dating, and I politely declined while wondering how I allowed him to think he had a chance. Now that his emotions were clearly involved, I decided to cut him off as an FWB. He came over for one final session. We were in bed afterwards, and I was waiting for him to leave. Instead, he got depressed.

“So this is it?” he asked lightly. I shook my head yes. After moments of silence and me wondering what time he was planning on leaving, he revealed, “I have something that I’ve been wanting to tell you.” His voice was cracking in the process of him saying it.

My mind immediately goes to STDs, but we’ve protected ourselves, so then I began to think he was full of shit and stalling the end of our FWB situation.

‘I have cancer,” he proclaimed. Continue reading

Let’s Talk About Menstrual Cups

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Let’s talk feminine hygiene.

I finally got with the times. I was one of those ladies who began wearing tampons later than everyone else. Pads were my go-to for many years, then I made the transition. Then I discovered organic tampons and pads, and that started a new wave for me. Now, I’m trying the DivaCup.

There are two versions of the DivaCup. Size 1 is for women who have not given birth or are under the age of thirty. Size 2 is a bit bigger, and is for women who have given birth or women over the age of 30. If you have not given birth and are over the age of 30, then I don’t know what to tell you.

When I looked at all of the feminine products I was packing for my trip to Mexico, I knew something had to change. I love that the DivaCup supports my “pack light” initiative. So here is my play-by-play for the DivaCup.

7:00 pm
I sit on the toilet, and open the box. Inside is the DivaCup, instructions, and a pouch to store it when not in use. The instructions say to wash hands and the DivaCup thoroughly, so I head over to the sink sans underwear.

Back on the toilet, I continue reading the instructions for insertion. I fold the DivaCup twice, insert, and turn it 360 degrees (more like 720 just to be sure!). I make sure the stem isn’t sticking out and then I compare the illustration to how it actually is in my body. I mentally evaluate if I can feel it or if it is uncomfortable. Yes, I can feel it. No, it is not uncomfortable.

7:09 pm
I eat a slice of king cake, and text #CountryBae.

7:26 pm
I still feel it. Surely, this isn’t right.

7:35 pm
I google “are you supposed to feel divacup.” The answer is no 😂.

7:37 pm
I go back to the toilet, and try again. I definitely didn’t insert it correctly the first time because it was starting to slide out a bit. I remove it and notice that it caught a droplet of blood. I reinsert. I can still feel it, but not as much as before.

7:46 pm
I eat another slice of king cake, and text #CountryBae.

7:59 pm
I walk around for a moment, and realize that I don’t feel a thing. VICTORY!

10:52 pm
I start getting ready for bed and decide that I don’t want to sleep with this thing inside of me. I decide to remove it. I’m supposed to grab the stem of it and sort of wiggle it out, but it has slid in a bit, so I have to use my kegels to push it down a bit in order to reach the stem. I grab the stem and gently pull until it is out. Continue reading

Dating Chronicles: Ghosting

img-6774Dating can take a toll.

I’m in my late 20s, and it seems like all of the good ones are already taken. All I am left with are bums with no ambition that live with their moms, have baby mama drama, are highly insecure, don’t have any stability, and don’t have any potential for being a quality man. Had I known that this would be the crop from which I would pick, I would have done a lot more “thot shit” in my college years.

The pickings were slim, and the crop was not even worth harvesting. It was draining to go through the motions of dating just for it to result in a waste of time and a wasted pump of NARS foundation. After the umpteenth failed date, it just all seemed to frustrating. My breaking point came in the form of Daniel*.

Daniel came out of nowhere. (Sidenote: I say this a lot about men, but it’s true. I don’t look for them, and they always see me first.) It was phantasmaghorical! He told me that he was gonna be my future bae when we had our first conversation, and I laughed at his attempt to run game. He said he was serious. I rolled my eyes at his attempt to spit game and kept it moving.

We had our first date. He was so dreamy, so handsome. so polite, so soft-spoken, such a gentleman, so swagged out, so intellectual, so mellow, such a man. I was giddy like a school girl, and couldn’t stop smiling and giggling after I got home. My cheeks were hurting from cheesing so hard.

Although I was excited about the possibilities, he scared the shit out of me.

Being vulnerable is a struggle for me. especially after wasting so much time on lames. I just didn’t know what he was doing here, how he got here, what his purpose was in my life, and how long he would be here. I was filled with so much nervous energy because of him. Everything about him was so genuine and kind and calm. I just kept thinking the worst. Something had to be wrong with him because he was too good to be true. Something bad must have been about to happen because everything was too perfect. I didn’t want to get my hopes up but I was willing to let my guard down a bit.

But things continued to go well. I was smitten by it all. Every inch of him. The way his hands touched and caressed me. The way his kiss was so passionate. The way he was so soft spoken about it all. The way he knew what he liked. He had me thinking about changing my player ways! I had three other dudes in my rotation. Seriously though, I didn’t know how he found me, but I was glad he did. I didn’t know where he came from, but I was glad he was there now. He was right on time and when I expected the least.

I have a lot of energy to put out into this world as triple fire sign (Aries sun, Sagittarius moon, Leo rising), but he gave me a bit more balance because he was mellow. He was so caring and so nurturing. He checked on me everyday when I travelled without him to Miami, and made me pray with him at the airport before I left. He was praying man! Maybe I got everything I asked for and needed in a caramel-colored package.

Fast forward a few months.

I was not ready. He set me up 😂. He came over one night with the romantic Spotify playlist, and was ready to eat the box and get cuffed. He asked to make it official. We discussed expectations in detail, and I told him I was scared. He said he understood. He explained that there would be some ups and downs, but questioned how we could appreciate the ups without the downs. I asked what he wanted and he said me. I told him I wanted respect and honesty. He said he already gives me that. True. #FutureBae turned into #PresentBae. Sealed with a kiss – on both sets of lips.

And two weeks later, I got ghosted.
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The Charm of Dublin

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Ireland isn’t on a lot of people’s wish lists, but I was eager to see the beauty of the country. After strutting my way through Amsterdam and Bruges, I made my way to Dublin on RyanAir. RyanAir probably wasn’t my best idea. It was a short trip, and I didn’t have any problems with being overcharged for luggage, but I couldn’t even find the check-in counter. Since I spent so much time walking around the terminal searching for it, I had to rush through the rest of Amsterdam’s airport with no time to take a break in a lounge.

Once, I arrived, I used Aircoach to get to my hotel in Ballsbridge. It was pretty simple, and I didn’t have to book in advance. Once I stepped out of the airport, they were located right out front and to the left. I told them where I was going, paid for my ticket, and waited about ten minutes for the bus to arrive. It cost €14 roundtrip, and there was a space under the bus to store the heavy luggage. The bus wasn’t crowded at all, and was pretty quiet. There was wifi, and a charging port.

One thing worth noting is that Ireland drives on the left side of the road. My brain never quite adapted to it, and I was always looking in the wrong lanes before I crossed the street. There was no way that I would have been able to drive in that country, but I noticed that a lot of travel packages to Ireland come with a rental car.

Navigating Ireland was pretty easy to do without a car. I mainly used the bus and taxis. There was a specific Leap card for tourists, which provided access to the buses and metro. The problem with this was it was only sold at certain places, and all of those places close around 5 pm. I wasn’t able to obtain one until my third day in Dublin because of this. The first day, I arrived right after it had closed. I spent my second day at the Cliffs of Moher, so wasn’t able to get it then either. They offer 1-, 3-, and 7-day cards, but I would do the math first to determine if it is even worth it. ​The buses run regularly, and I never had to wait more than five minutes for one to arrive. They were all pretty full, but not extremely crowded. I always had a seat.

Since, I couldn’t get a Leap visitor card, I chose to walk on the first two days. Sure, I could have taken a taxi, but my feet worked just fine. I strolled from Ballsbridge down to Temple Bar on my first night in the city. taking everything in. Dublin really is a gorgeous city. I did a musical pub crawl that first night. The concept was just what one would expect – traditional Irish music and several pints of beer at local pubs. There was even a special riverdance performance. I don’t drink beer, but I think I would have been more impressed if I did. Continue reading

A Day Trip to Cliffs of Moher

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When I saw a photo of the Cliffs of Moher, I knew I needed to visit Ireland. It was just beautiful, and I wanted to witness it for myself. While I was in Dublin, booked the Cliffs Of Moher, Atlantic Edge Ocean Walk & Galway City Day Tour with Wild Rover tours. The bus was equipped with wifi, and our guide was entertaining. He walked down the bus and chatted with every passenger. We spoke for a while about the beauty of Haiti, and the time he got high in Jamaica and almost missed his bus.

They don’t mention this in the tour description, but we stopped for a break at the Obama gas station before we arrived at the cliffs. I didn’t know this was a thing, as I was entertained by the fact that it existed in the Irish countryside.

When we arrived at the cliffs, our tour guide recommended that we walk to the area with the best view right away in case the weather worsens. The hazy fog blocked any clear view of the cliffs, and I was disappointed because that was the most convincing reason for me to visit Ireland. I kept walking along the trail, glancing at the sky every once in a while. The haze was moving slowly, but I could tell that clear skies were approaching.

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A Day Tour to Northern Ireland

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I’m not ashamed to say that I didn’t know Northern Ireland was a part of the U.K. and not Ireland. So when our tour bus was halfway to our destination, I was surprised to hear the tour guide announce something about having our passports. My heart sunk immediately because I didn’t bring it. I’m usually good about these types of things, but I didn’t know it was needed. What were they going to do? Throw me off the bus at the border? Shouldn’t that have been something they checked before I even got on the tour bus?

“Oh, shit!” the guy seated next to me exclaimed as he turned to his wife to announce that he didn’t bring the family’s passports with him. I didn’t feel so bad at that moment. At least I’d be sitting at the border with other people. I realized at that moment that the entire bus had gotten silent because no one had their passports with them.

“I’m just kidding!” our tour guide said in an Irish accent after a long pause, and there was a huge sigh of relief all over the bus. A distinct border between Ireland and Northern Ireland didn’t even exist. Bruh, you can’t play with people’s emotions like that!

My trip to Northern Ireland with Wild Rover tours included a trip to Giants Causeway, Belfast City & Carrick A Rede Rope Bridge. I normally don’t use tours because I like to go at my own pace, and I like to visit an attraction before the busload of tourist arrive. However, I used this company for Northern Ireland and my trip to the Cliffs of Moher as well. One thing I noticed about Wild Rover was that they had problems overbooking. There were two pickup locations in Dublin for the tours, but the bus usually filled up at the first location. There was an instance where a couple that arrived at the second location couldn’t do the tour because the bus was already filled. They were furious because they had already paid and planned for the day. The guide explained that the company had seen a surge in bookings, and hadn’t been handling it well. The issue may have been resolved by now, but I would arrive early to the first pickup location just in case.

When we made a break stop at a gas station on our way to Belfast, our tour guide recommended we buy something for lunch there because of the time constraints and the lack of available food options at the causeway. There was a restaurant at Giant’s Causeway, but he warned that they moved slowly and most of the time would have been spent eating lunch and not viewing the causeway. I heeded his warning and grabbed a random sandwich.

The first part of the tour started in Belfast. There was the option to take the black taxi tour or visit the Titanic museum. I chose the black taxi tour without a second thought because I hadn’t had any interest in the Titanic since fourth grade. Everyone except for the family seated behind me took the black taxi tour as well.

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Find a Friend

IMG_8389Solo in Dublin, I hadn’t been on Irish soil for more than a few hours before I decided to leave my hotel and grab some food. I had been running late for my flight out of Amsterdam earlier, so I didn’t get a chance to eat that day. I walked over to this burger joint in Ballsbridge and found a table inside for lunch. Once comfortably seated, I glanced around at my surroundings and noticed another black woman also sitting alone at a booth adjacent to me. She had her head down while looking at her phone, and her overall vibe gave me the impression that she was on holiday. I was wondering if she was American because she was rocking a small afro and a shirt that said something quirky.

I ordered and received my food, and looked her way every once in a while to see if she noticed me. I was trying not to stare, but I wanted to make eye contact so I could start a dialogue. I needed a friend, and she was about to be it.   I checked her body language and assumed she was an introvert. Me, too! We already had something in common, BFF! I eventually heard her speak to the waitress, and confirmed by her accent that she was definitely American. Oh yeah, she was about to be my bff for the next few days and she didn’t even know it.

I had navigated my Eurotrip without making a single friend. It was unusual for me, even as an introverted solo traveler, to have experienced all meals by myself. I didn’t realize how much I missed the sense of friendship until the possibility of it presented itself.

I was chewing on a really good burger when I noticed her gathering her things and standing up to walk out. I’m socially awkward, so I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t say anything because my mouth was full, but I was still staring her down, hoping she caught the energy of my eyes watching her. I slightly waved my hand hoping to get her attention, but she escaped without seeing me.

Damn. As quickly as the excitement of navigating Dublin with a friend had come, it had also gone.

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I Watched All 80 Episodes of the Celia Telenovela and I Still Cannot Speak Spanish

An 80-episode telenovela loosely based on the life of Celia Cruz was released on Netflix last year. Each episode is about 45 minutes, and I was hooked after I watched the first episode. It began when Celia’s Aunt Ana has a baby girl who dies. At the funeral, a priestess tells Aunt Ana that children never die and the baby will come back as someone else. To know who she is, Aunt Ana breaks the baby’s pinky finger to leave her mark. Her sister gives birth to a baby girl three months later that has the finger. That baby girl is Celia.

There were things in the show that were added for dramatic effect, and didn’t actually occur in Celia’s life, but the show was great nonetheless. It was easy to root for her. I’m going to talk about the characters and scenes from the series, but I also know that it may be different from her actual life.

My favorite characters other than Celia were Aunt Ana and Mirelys. Poor Mirelys! She just couldn’t pick them. All she wanted was somebody to love her and provide her with regular orgasms. After Pedro ditched her, she thought she found it with Mario. Now Mario and Pedro had been close friends, and he was grieving the end of his relationship with Raquel, who had run off to Mexico with her ex-husband. Raquel’s ass didn’t even like Mario until he surprised her by bringing her mom to see her from Cuba. Then he helped her get her career off the ground. Call a thing a thing – she was curving that man left and right. She only fell in love after Mario did all kinds of shit for her. Well this is where Mirelys comes in. Mirelys and he only fell in love because they were both heartbroken and lonely. Both relationships were doomed. Continue reading

Dating Chronicles: The Restraining Order Part II

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Read Part I here.

I tried to fall asleep, but I kept replaying the events of that morning in my head over and over again. I cried quietly in my old bedroom, fell asleep briefly, woke up, replayed the events, and repeated until Monday morning when I drove to the Clerk of Court’s office to file a protective order. I had no reason to be ashamed, but it was embarassing to ask for directions to the right office for protective orders. It was embarassing to request the forms from the clerk, and sit in the open hallway as I completed several pages of information. The clerk and I went over the information on the forms, and she directed me to a judge to get my temporary restraining order approved.

I sat outside the courtroom on a hard bench in a long hallway, waiting for the judge to finish a trial so that I could get my TRO approved. The hallway was stuffy from having so many people inside, and not enough air vents blowing cool air. There was a man seated next to me who had so much nervous energy that he kept shaking his legs, causing the bench to vibrate. Another woman on the opposite side of me sat motionless with her head down. Suddenly the doors of the courtroom opened, and Charles’ niece (the daughter of Marcel, whose dick I had allegedly been scoping) and cousin exited. IS THIS REAL LIFE?! The niece smiled and asked if I was there for traffic court. I told her no and laughed nervously. They both smiled, accepted my answer, and went about their lives without further questioning my reasons for being there. Certainly, they were going to snitch.

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An Extended Weekend in Biloxi

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The New Orleans airport has always been a bit hectic during 4th of July weekend because of Essence Fest, and I wanted to avoid it. Instead of flying somewhere for the holiday, I decided to take a spontaneous road trip with a friend. We decided at the last minute to take the scenic route to Biloxi, Mississippi.

Now, I hadn’t been there since the summer before 7th grade. I only remember because I had just gotten my braces, and I have a picture of my brace face with my parents at a pizza place in Biloxi. The last time my friend had been there was immediately after Katrina destroyed it. Needless to say, things had changed a lot. Poor Mississippi suffered through Katrina and the BP oil spill and it took a gargantuan hit on the economy.

I honestly never held a positive opinion of Mississippi. That state is always competing with Louisiana to take the crown on the “worst states” list, and usually wins. I know that it isn’t a bunch of racist hillbillies stuck in the antebellum, but I just never felt that it had anything to offer me. I’ve met a lot of men from Jackson. Apparently, the dating scene there is horrendous and there are lots of black gays with and abnormally high rate of HIV.

We stopped at a couple of markets on the side of the road in Louisiana as we made our way to Mississippi. Can I just mention how much Louisiana makes me smile sometimes? Where else can one see a sign on the side of the road that says “FRESH GATOR JERKY?” How can one not stop on the side of the road and buy some? It was good, too. We bought gator jerky, cracklins, liquor, and chocolate covered strawberries.

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