A friends of Genre: Urban Arts family recently had a book release party for her novel entitled Maybe.
A word from author Bunny Writer aka on IG as@bunnywriter:
Maybe is indeed like a roller coaster because of the sudden turns it takes. It is fast paced, easy to read and entertaining but still quite deep and challenging at times. It has two parts: 45 chapters and 33 steps and it follows this soulful blabbering of a Moses-like character out of its own Egypt, all throughout its own desert until it finally reaches home. It is a fictional story based on pieces of life I have witnessed over the years in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. It speaks about love, death, politics, mistakes, confusion and in its essence. It bears the following message: Be! No matter how lost, hurt or hurtful life makes us, as long as we break the chains of ‘maybe,’ we can find peace.
Knowing your boundaries is a challenge for many of us. It takes time to identify what those boundaries are based on what we have experienced or seen or what is valuable to us and what can be let go.
I have been contemplating whether I am establishing boundaries and with whom or why with whom? More like, why was I not letting folks go?
It turns out I have been, or I thought I was; it started with my FB.
I have an average day to day X# of folks I keep in my Fb family. It took years to identify this group of people based on positivism, humanism, and inclusion. It was OK to let family members go from Fb because I did not want the negative energy. I needed to identify what negative energy meant to me, and what did that look like via a social media outlet? What does that feel like or sound like? Bottom line, it came back to learning to trust my instinct – a woman’s intuition- if you will and trust.
Literally, I am learning to trust myself to know what is good for me based on what my conscience and my spirit are telling me.
Fb was a good starting point to build that trust within myself because I had a tangible method of measuring what is engaging me and how I am engaging in dialog with others. I will admit. It felt HORRIBLE to press UNFRIEND with folks who were, well, horrible in their posts and in their comments; unfriending is an intentional decision. A deliberate act to sever a connection with another person who is more than a name on the screen. Sometimes the detachment went easy and quiet and simple..BAM the person is gone and I am no longer accessible to the energy she/he is sharing publicly. Other times it was not so simple and is followed by a personal IM or a text or worse-a call.
Some folks just do not want to go. Ok, I get that.
And this is where the next step came into practice. Talking-communicating and holding a dialog, my daughter calls these ‘difficult conversations’ my son calls this ‘being real’. Either way-for me, it was an exercise in courage to articulate the personal boundaries that I have which ones are being crossed.
Through time, my boundary setting is preceded by conversations regarding boundaries-nothing formal-rather a series of rapport building dialog’s where my boundaries are shared and clarified with folks I have identified as valuable to me for their thoughts and ideas and time and companionship.
Upon reflection, I see it was about liking myself and valuing myself to be treated fairly, justly, kindly and through the lens of humanity via social media. A act of love for myself that I do not believe I understood holistically. Where I held ethos and more; however, I did not have the courage to articulate those thoughts and ideas to others because social norms for me did not permit that level of engagement or authenticity with others. I just sat back. Patiently waiting to:
A. run away.
C. just go w/ the flow and let it all unfold in front of me despite how I am interpreting what is happening.
C. is the worst option. As you, no ‘I’, was sitting by as if ‘I’ were a passenger in my own life vs an active member or participant actively making decisions of what I am letting into my environment.
Shame on me right?
No, not shame on me. I had to experience this to know now I am not sitting by and watching this thing called life go on past me and I have control of what comes in-of what I permit to come in.
Dare I say I live life in a courageous manner now.
A manner where I am identifying value in myself and how my surroundings are influencing me.
I have had my heart broken. Heck, I have most likely broken my own heart. And maybe, I’m at the brink of doing that again. And I thought I knew what endurance was, until now. Nothing beats the present circumstances, not even heartbreak. My endurance is being tested at the ultimate level, being away from all things familiar, and the safety of comfort zones. Living in a place I am not sure I can ever truly call home. I am left alone, to feel invisible because I chose to step out of my mind and voice the things that cause me to self-destruct. Yet, it feels like I should’ve stayed quiet and turned my gears to suit the mechanics at the behest of everyone, except myself. My endurance is confronted with the lonely feeling of having no one to fall onto, to tell me “it’ll work out”. It’s just me trying to tell myself, trying to tell my body that “it’ll be okay, you just need to focus on what you’re here for.” But, that’s not always comforting. And the only outstretched arms I see, are the ones limping at my sides, yearning for a reprieve. So my eyes droop low, tired from crying, rendering my blood to sweat acid, burning away at my organs. I guess that’s just what’s called “being hard on myself,” as I try to see past my vision onto everyone’s point of view. Hoping I’ll be strong enough to see through the fog when all these voices surround me, yet none addresses me. I thought I knew what endurance was, but now, I truly know what it means, because there is no escape in sight for me. And my organs bleed, as the blade stabs through endlessly.
I hope when you look up at me
you see more than surviving.
I hope you can smell gunpowder
on my torn open flesh-
see the wounds dripping from me
and know how hard I fought
to be your mother.
I pray you will fight, too,
because you are worth the war.
Worth should not have to claw
out of your bodies and make itself known.
Worth should live in the pit of your bellies,
festering and felt by you always.
You are not here for one reason;
you are here for a million.
Fight tooth and nail for these if you need to.
Do not survive this world, my daughters;
When we are young we think
time is brimming with endlessness,
looking upon it with an insolent interest.
We are crowded with naive wonder,
that, in retrospect, is a touch frightening.
Should we pay our dues for blindly trusting
because we were deep in the
misguided haughtiness of possibility?
No. The world has gone ahead since then.