Thoughts Of A Goddess- Press On Into Greatness!

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‪#‎thoughtsofagoddess‬‪ #‎LoveIsMyReligion‬

We live in a world that tries to destroy kind, beautiful and sensitive people yet praises people who manipulate or do worse in the name of “being successful”.

If you have a great spirit they try to break it
If you have great relationships, they meddle and want to destroy it
If you have a great personality, they gossip hoping they will make you look bad so that others will like you less
If you are intelligent, they try to laugh at you so that you question yourself

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Don’t be fooled, nor take any of it personally. You’re not required to go with the status quo. And remember- anytime you wish to stand out and stand up for yourself, the pressure to conform will be great. Push back. That’s your job. Push back and press on into greatness‬.

Creative Parenting- Everyday Lies Parents Tell Their Children

I’d originally posted this to my facebook page, but it is so deliciously horrible I had to share it here too!

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The article published by DailyMail.com features a set of images which show the lengths parents go to trick their children into behaving properly. The list includes such fibs as parents telling their children that “Cola is black water- you’re not going to like it”. One parent said, “Chuck-E-Chesse is for birthday parties. You have to be invited to go there” (I can’t blame her- I wish I’d thought of that myself!). Another awesome one was “If you don’t behave in the McDonald’s drive through you will get a Sad Meal” Children are smart. No one wants a Sad Meal!

My grandmother was the BEST at this kind of thing- there were so many lies she told me to keep my little butt in line that I believed until I was an adult! Among my favorites were:

– “If you put your human hair products in the dolls’ hair, the dolls’ hair will fall out.”

– “If you swallow watermelon seeds, a watermelon will grow in your stomach.” (points to a pregnant lady)- “See? It happens!”

-“If you swallow chewing gum, your butt hole will plug up and the doctor will have to cut you a new one.”

-“Wining too much will cause your belly button to unscrew and your body will fall apart.” (There was a Rikki Jai video that demonstrated her point.)

-“Corned beef is made of old race horses AND children who left their parent’s house without permission after dark to go play in the streets…” (while she’s serving me corned beef and rice for dinner)

-“When it’s raining, you should lie down and get under the covers and be quiet like I do, otherwise the lightning strikes will find you and you will get struck by lightning. Glass conducts electricity- those lightning bolts will come right through the windows and zap you. You better get under those blankets fast!” (even more terrifying was the fact that I wore those Forrest Gump type braces on my legs that were made of metal. I was lightning’s #1 target!)

-“Thunder is God rearranging his furniture, and rain is him washing down heaven so it will be clean for when company comes over.” ( I think this one was so I would stop being so terrified by the storm…which was trying to take me out!)

I mean this list can go on forever. I don’t consider these “lies” as much as I think it’s Creative Parenting At Its Finest. I miss you, Mammy Leonie 

Summer Love

Wine Out Of Water Summer            Every summer has a love story.

There isn’t anywhere else in the world I want to be during the summer season in the western hemisphere than in New York City. The bright blue skies and warm air do something to my heart that I cannot describe. NYC itself is like a bad lover. Summer swoops in and takes me off my feet; my eyes light up like the stars and I can’t stop grinning madly. It’s enough to make me forget that only six weeks prior I had been shoveling through feet of snowfall to get out of my house, and that a mere twelve weeks from now I will be cursing the cold again as I pull my jacket around me just a little tighter while trying not to lose my life by slipping and falling on black ice. All I can see are the flowers, all I can feel is the warmth, all I want is the salty sea air in my nostrils, music in my ears, and the ability to stand barefooted in the earth. Summer brings me these things. True, I can have this in several other places, and once I tried my best to leave. But living in NYC spoils you for many things. Sucky public transportation that doesn’t actually suck, pizza and gyros at 2AM, and the ability to let go of my inhibitions and simply be myself because this city is huge and no one cares if you cry or wear pajamas or your favorite cosplay on the train because no one is paying that much attention to you …

When New York City calls your name, you come home.

So I returned, the prodigal lover, with all my battle scars in the sweet, sweet summer air, penitent for having left yet grateful for having had the chance.

My most favorite summer in NYC was the summer of 2002. I’d just gotten here from Trinidad where I’d grown up and spent most of my life. I’d gotten a job at a local discount clothing store in the Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn, and was living with a family, a mother and her son, whom I had never previously met and to whom I was not related. My days and nights were filled with equal parts excitement and dread. I’d never spent more than a couple nights away from my parents’ home, so being alone and completely on my own with no chance of going back was as terrifying a prospect as it was liberating. I never slept. The sun didn’t ever seem to set completely and Brooklyn was perpetually noisy. I would begin my first semester of university soon but for the moment, I was very small in a very big world I’d only ever seen before on television. I visited the church where I was baptized, went to Mass there and was astonished by the aesthetics of the building and the grounds. I considered trying to find my older sister and her mom, but reconsidered it because I figured they must have moved away from that address by now. I went to work everyday and never called in. On my days off, I would explore as much of the city as I could. I got a subway map and would randomly ride a bus line or the train to the last stop, get out and explore. One of those bus rides got me lost in the neighborhood of Brighton Beach, which is close to the beach, but the bus as I soon discovered doesn’t go directly to the beach, and though I could hear the waves and smell the salt, I couldn’t find the seashore. I got a ride back to Flatbush with a trucker named Chuck (yes, Chuck owned a truck…thank you, peanut gallery!) who gave me his worn out map book of the Five Boroughs, and warned me to never, ever take rides from truckers.

I went to backyard parties and concerts with my coworkers, got my first tattoo, got promoted to “Assistant Floor Manager” (which meant when the Manager went on her extended lunch breaks I got to hold the cordless phone. I also closed the store more often than not because I was the only person who could ever account for every single pair of unsold jeans in the place, thanks to my photographic memory. Apparently “doing inventory” had never been less stressful!). I hung out with that one coworker who lived in Bed-Stuy and whose mother gave her money to buy pot and us permission to smoke and hang out on the fire escape on the condition that we didn’t draw attention to ourselves nor cause the cops to come to her door. I still have no idea how I got home some nights.

Then there was BJ.

Every Summer Has A Story...

He walked into the store one day and upon seeing him I simply couldn’t catch my breath. I hid behind a clothing rack and chided myself for blushing so hard, but I couldn’t help it he was so gorgeous. He saw me hiding awkwardly behind the clothes by the fitting room and sent one of my coworkers over with a piece of paper with his phone number on it and instructions to call him. So I called him that night. We talked for a couple hours and he came by the store again to say “hello” the next day. We had lunch together (this time, I took an extended lunch!), the conversation varying across several topics. I loved his face, his voice, his smile…he was tall, rugged and extremely handsome. He said he was intrigued by me, that he thought I was “cute”. His name was John, but they called him BJ in the streets, which stood for “Black John” but I didn’t need to know why. That summer, John became my black knight.

One night in particular we met up after I got off work and hung out with some of his “boys” on the block. He hoisted me up and placed me to sit on the hood of someone’s car that was parked at the side of the street, and we stayed outside way past midnight drinking malt liquor and talking. Our conversations always seemed to stretch on forever. He put his arms around my waist and began to recite a poem he’d written. Truth be told, I wasn’t listening. I was looking at his lips move but I couldn’t hear the words. Instead, I was aware of everything around me. The rhythm of his voice floated through my body. I felt the warmth of the hood of the car radiating upward through my hips and up my spine. I felt the intermingled warmth and coolness of the summer night breeze flowing through my hair and caressing the back of my neck. I imagined kissing him and felt the strongest case of butterflies I ever remember experiencing. He stopped talking and asked me what I was thinking about and I told him. He smiled, said, “Word?” and nodded his head. That night he walked me home and before he left, he kissed me, right there in the lobby. That night I slept.

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Something about BJ drew me in. Somehow, he knew everything about me- that I loved deep, analytical, philosophical conversation, that I enjoyed staying inside and watching movies after work and on the weekends; he knew how to touch me and where and for how long; how to kiss me and where and for how long. He was a thug in the streets with a revolver in his belt, always in the ‘hood uniform- a white t-shirt and blue jeans and white sneaks- but in the apartment behind blackout window shades, he was a boy. I thoroughly adored watching him go from gangsta to lover once company left and the door was closed; he would simply melt in my arms, and I relished every moment of it.

I never asked about his girlfriends even though I heard about them and realized slowly that there were several. I never saw any of them despite being at the apartment with him every time I had a spare moment, and never calling before I showed up. I never asked him what his last name was, nor did I ever find out. He never took his socks off, not even that one time in the shower when he swore he just knew I was going to sneak in there to find out what his feet look like. I never asked him for anything (except repeatedly to see his feet, and he ALWAYS said “No”.), and he never asked me for anything (except to please, get nicer underwear because I still wore “little girl” cotton panties at 20 years old, and he said it made him feel like a pedophile).

It’s as though our souls met in that space and time and simply knew each other- we connected in ways I’d never understood before. I had never experienced that level of intimacy before or after. I always knew, too, that he wasn’t meant to be with me forever. We never argued (except about his feet). I didn’t want to own him and apart from asking me once to move down to Maryland to be with him, he never tried to own me. We were both simply present, in the moment, loving and taking delight in every moment and every little detail about each other. He appreciated my mind and every inch of my body, and I savored being in his presence, hearing the sound of his voice, picking his brain for weird facts and sayings, and lounging in his embrace. That summer, I was drawn to him over and over and over again, and I relished every single instant- every breath with him, every touch, every kiss, every conversation. The last time I saw him was the Thanksgiving break during first semester freshman year when he traveled up from Baltimore and spent one night with me. The next night, before he left to return to MD, he called briefly from some other girl’s phone, “just to say “hi” and I’m thinking of you”. I ended that conversation by saying, “…I just want you to know, I love you.” He replied, “Thank you”.

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I’ve never seen or spoken to him since. I sometimes think I dreamed him up. I close my eyes and in an instant I can feel him and hear him again; I’m back in the apartment in 2002, in the armchair, wrapped in his arms with my head on his chest. Whenever I feel the night time summer breeze caress my shoulders, I’m sitting on the hood of that car again, fantasizing about my sweet, sweet Black John, whose voice filled my ears like a Nubian siren.

Sweet Prince of the ghetto…

This summer was one of my first summers as a truly single woman. I made the decision to remain consciously single, and to spend some time consciously loving myself. One of the conversations I had with BJ that has always stuck with me was centered around me learning, understanding and loving myself.

I still remember him asking me, “How can you expect a man to love you when you don’t know how to love yourself? How is he supposed to know what to do to please you when you have no idea how to please yourself? How is he going to give you an orgasm when you don’t know how to give yourself one? He’s not going to know, and you won’t know what to tell him. You have to learn yourself. Learn yourself first and then you’ll have something to teach the world.”

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Ironic then, that I never had to tell him anything and yet he seemed to always know what I wanted and needed and with the exception of maybe a couple things, he was an expert in pleasing me. Unconsciously, after that I lived expecting the men in my life to instinctively know what I wanted and demanding that they deliver by reading my mind..or perhaps some novel…or possibly by watching The Notebook & The Time Traveler’s Wife…

I crave the ease of that relationship today, the deep, unspoken connection I felt with him, the way he always left me satisfied- physically, emotionally and spiritually. So many years later, I still remember how being with him made me feel even though I can hardly remember what he looks like. It’s possible that I’ve seen him on the street or on the train since then and completely overlooked my long-ago lover. But I will never forget the way he made me feel, and the conversations that stirred my heart and my passions so many years ago. I will never forget the many, many things he taught me, the secrets he unlocked inside my soul for me to find so many years later.

And this summer, I spent my time and energy loving myself, caring for me- spending time exploring my body and examining my physical, mental and spiritual health, filling my heart in anticipation of meeting my soul partner, the one with whom I will spend the rest of my life- because I know deep within my soul that he is coming. He is the lover of my soul, the one whom my soul loves, and I am excited to meet him. Summer in the western hemisphere may be almost over, but for me, it is just beginning.

Photos courtesy google images

Art by Patsy Stirling, courtesy Sageword on facebook. 

What’s your WHY?

Wine Out Of Water Summer One of the things I’ve had to think about lately is my why.

Why do I blog? 

I love to write. I’ve been writing for as long as I’ve known myself and I think my family members consider me a scribe by default. Early on in my career, I would supplement my work- whatever it was, whether I was a retail sales associate, or a financial recovery specialist, or employment support specialist, or more recently as a case manager- with writing. I always found journaling my thoughts about my day to day understanding of the world around me to be an exercise in catharsis. Though I may not be as disciplined about it as I would like, I still enjoy wrangling the thoughts that run wild in my head and putting them in order on a page, or online. I’ve been immersed in creative writing and poetry since I was six years old; I have a “bunion” (is it a “bunion” if it’s on your finger? A callous? Not sure what the terminology is here but my finger is permanently deformed…let me know in the comments if you know what it’s called!) on the middle finger of my left hand from grasping my pencil tightly during early attempts to turn out rough drafts. I also drew a bit and colored a lot, but writing was always my drug of choice.

During the several iterations of this blog, my why has changed significantly.

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When I first started, it was to heal a broken heart. I needed to scream. Screaming into cyberspace was all I could do so I wouldn’t turn my pain and anger at the thought of losing what I thought was love inward on myself. So I wrote and wrote until I felt like I could move forward.

I archived some of my old writing here, too, which is why some of my older work waxes religious; at the time I worked at a faith-based organization where I blogged for the organization’s website, a weekly spot we called e-Motivational Weekend Words. I blogged for posterity.

Now, I blog for my health.

On my worst days, I find it difficult to recall easy words. Sometimes I know I understand a concept but have a very hard time articulating what I am thinking, much to my embarrassment. My children often help me to remember things that I know I know- names of people and things, being able to accurately describe what I am doing or would like them to do. They are usually good at poking humor at my inability to recall, or the way the words fall out all jumbled and nonsensical, my frustration at myself always apparent. I blog now to keep my mind functioning. I record things for posterity, but not out of a sense of admiration. There is always a looming sense that these are things I will want to remember, things I will want to recall but will not be able to, someday in a not-so-far-off future. I blog for my health. On my foggiest days I continue to write even when it doesn’t seem to make sense. On clearer days, I look back and realize it wasn’t half as bad as I thought it was. I’m not looking for perfection, or for some crazy idea that will shift all of mankind into a new paradigm of existence. I simply wish to record the thoughts that make sense to me. In the event that I can no longer find myself on command, I hope that I would have left a trail for someone else- my children, their children, a curious lover or student- to find.

For those of you who enjoy reading these thoughts, or who share similar experiences, feel free to leave comments, or to reblog- I’d love to hear from you! What’s your why?

A Letter From the Editor

Respiratory infection (third one in the last two months) plus an eye infection means I’ve been forced to slow down. BUT I shall still hope to get Wine Out Of Water up and moving as promised!

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Summer Edition 2015

Happy Summer!

By now I hope everyone has gotten into the groove of Summer 2015- barbeques and days off and lounging in the sun at the park, by the beach, or at home with or loved ones. Isn’t it funny how quickly we forget how cold and miserable we were just a few weeks ago waiting for the sun to make an appearance? Personally, I am a lover of sunlight, even and as much as I love the moon. Without it, my life takes on a dreary kind of feeling, the kind of feeling out of which it is difficult to pull one’s self and spirit. These days, I’ve been doing much better physically, so I’ve decided to put some of that good energy into Wine Out Of Water’s Summer 2015 Edition. Thanks so much to everyone who has joined us on facebook in the past seven…

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Your summer reading list: 70+ book picks from TED speakers and attendees

I just acquired “Thinking Fast And Slow” and “Labyrinths”.

“The Art Of War” is one of my favorite books; it was part of my reading list last summer and I’ve read it three times since then.

What are you reading? Do you have a list? Currently, I’m reading “The Motivation Manifesto” by Brendon Burchard. Share your list with me!

TED Blog

Summer reading recommendations from TED

The tables in bookstores can be overwhelming: Every book cover looks appealing, every blurb glows with praise. Sometimes, you just need a recommendation from a human, someone you trust. Below, 10 members of the TED community — with very different points of view — share the books they think you’ll enjoy this summer. Their selections are wonderfully untethered to new releases and bestsellers, with a little something for everyone.


David Eagleman and TED
Mind-bending fiction, picked by David Eagleman

David Eagleman is a neuroscientist whose sensory vest may just expand the limits of human perception. But this TED speaker is also a writer  — of both fiction (his Sum: Forty Tales from the Afterlives has been translated into 28 languages) and nonfiction (Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain was a bestseller). His recommendations highlight mind-bending fiction:

Labyrinths by Jorge Luis Borges. “An inspiration that never runs out of batteries for me…

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Dear Future Husband, Never Give Up

Jeremiah 29:11 says “I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (New International Version).

In my first letter I told you that I was living out Gods plan and pursuing him. As God keeps revealing His plans and purpose for me each day, I sometimes wonder what are His plans are for you? What is your journey like? What plans do you have for yourself? Then I just pray for you because it’s all I can do and will keep doing for you, always.
Prayer is how we communicate and meet each others’ needs.
Tell me now- what are your plans? Do you have a short term plan or life time plan?
I am a planner by profession and gifting, so I have a 5 year plan and a lifetime plan. It’s basically a list of goals I have set for myself to be achieved in a certain time period. In my plans you fit in, but knowing God, He has His own plans and timing, which is perfect and beyond my wildest dreams. I’m yet to see how and when He reveals us to each other!

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In this letter, I just want to encourage you to never give up.

#1.Never give up yourself. You are your number 1 fan, cheerleader and success story. So chin up, suit up and smile. You’ve got this!

#2. Never give up on God. He will never give up on you, even when everyone else has. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. He loves you like that. He also is your biggest fan and cheerleader. He is your pillar of strength, support system and provider of all things. Ask Him and you shall receive.

#3. Never give up on your plans. The heart racing and ever burning plans I believe are the ones God has placed in our hearts. His plans. If I had given up on being an Event Planner, I would have never discovered the great plans God has beyond event planning. God sees the tree in a seed, while we look for the fruit or flower. Let your plans (seed) be planted and rooted in God, nurtured by God and grow into a tree that will produce an everlasting harvest.

And I am encouraging you with words that I am using on myself. Our plans, visions and dreams may be different, but the one who approves them is God. His approval comes with prosperity, hope and a future. He has approved the plan for when we will meet, fall in love, get married, buy a home, have children. He is the architect of our lives and keeper of our time. I have asked Him for you and He told me, “Soon” and I said, “thank you”.

I pray that as we draw near to the point where our journey’s cross paths that God will be there with us and lead us on the path we take together to reach our goals and dreams. I pray that as you continue on your journey that God leads you and His angels guide you, always.

I pray that you will seek Him in every way and for everything as He is your provider of all things.

And lastly I pray that you may grow spiritually as you read God’s word and commune with Him.

I thank God for you and your ability to fulfill the plans He has for you.

You are a conqueror. You are the head and not the tail. You are filled with great wisdom and knowledge to be the best in your field and capacity. You have the power and strength to be a great man of influence and impact.

Now go out there and be You, in prosperity, hope and a beautiful future!!

With love,

Harmony

#DearFutureHusband notes started last year (2014) as love notes to my Future Husband.  God has not brought him my way yet, but I am still believing in Him for my gift.  Putting the notes on social media was a way of hopefully grabbing his attention. I was basically making conversation and in doing so, inspiring other women to empower and encourage their Future Husbands before meeting them, to see the good in a man and want the best for him. Some of the posts are personal and for my #DearFutureHusband and some are for #DearFutureHusbands and Husbands out there.

About The Author: 

10428640_10205536827637733_491797516647396958_nHarmony Zenande Botya is an inspirational writer from Western Cape, South Africa. She is a first year student at The Aleit Academy and aspiring Events Coordinator. She loves good books, good food, good music and being surround by people with good conversation and energy. One other thing she loves is sending words of love, encouragement and empowerment to others. Says Harmony, “God is my first and last love, desire and focus.  I am who I am today because of His love, grace and blessings.”

(Author’s photo used with author’s permission)

Editor: Asa-Mari Thompson 

Photo credit: google images

What Is Your Definition Of Love?

As seen on a tee shirt on the Uptown 2 train today.

I think most people would argue that this is a pretty pedestrian definition of love…that love in and of itself cannot be defined. I say love can be defined and should be defined by everyone, individually. There are 7 billion people on this planet. 7 billion different definitions should suffice.

I’m curious. What’s your definition of love?

Post in the comments below, and I just may use your definition in an upcoming article! ❤

Love

You can do it. Start doing it now.

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Whatever is calling, drawing, leading you forward right now into the New is doing so for your absolute Highest Good, and that of everyone else in your life.

You absolutely have the capability and strength to make these changes and to go where Life is taking you next. You really can do it, despite the intense, gut-wrenching fears and anxiety about what your life will look like if you follow your intuitive heart.

You must do it.

There is no turning back, and simply no staying still, because your energy field has already make the change. The decisions have been made in consciousness, and the steps actually already have been taken in higher vibrational reality.

Now, your body just needs to follow. You simply need to keep putting one step in front of the other and walking on towards the Light that is heralding such immense and joyful transformations for you.

You can do it.

It may feel like it is, or will, take every ounce of courage that you have ever mustered, but the energy inside you just has to flow freely: without restraint, without self-doubt, without the toxic pressure of other people’s reactions, without endless worry about the consequences of following your Truth.

When you follow your truth, sometimes it causes temporary chaos. It stirs up the dust and brings emotions to the fore that have long needed airing. Other people get to see that you are a person with needs, with passions, with ambitions, with dreams and with a life path that may not be just about looking after them.

What you feel is calling you now is not a selfish path. It is, in fact, a path that is ultimately more giving and more aligned with spiritual service than the one you were previously on. This is because when you are living from your true spirit you give back to the world expansively, without limits, from the pure wisdom of your heart, with a deep and clear quality of presence that only comes from a person who is humble enough to realize that they are divinely magnificent.

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You are divinely magnificent.

The world needs your magnificence to be sweetly flowing from your body. The world needs you to be glowing with love uninhibited. The world needs you to be nourished and supported, so that you can give from a place of balance – not burned out, resentful, jealous, frantic, unfulfilled, depleted or self-sacrificing.

You can make these changes that call you to put yourself in the center stage of your life and live from your authentic Spirit. You can do it in front of everyone that knows you. You can continue to do it even if they don’t like it and complain. You can keep doing it even if they have complete meltdowns and tantrums in the face of you shifting the patterns that have stood firm for so long.

People who have been used to receiving the endless giving from Earth Angels and Lightworkers don’t generally like it when you begin getting assertive with your own needs for freedom and individuality. It disrupts the nice, safe place that they have been living in for so long. It forces them to start taking responsibility for their own lives and personal issues. It makes them stand on their own two feet, and realize that you are not going to take their burdens any longer.

This frees you up to have much healthier relationship dynamics – and it also makes it rapidly clear who is now meant to be in your life and who isn’t. You are not abandoning people by getting stronger in your personal boundaries, or by taking new paths that resonate with your real energy. You are actually giving them a great gift – the opportunity to create their own lives, realise how powerful they really are inside, and to experience a new, more balanced and positive life of their own.

You really, really can do it, beloved Earth Angel. You can be strong, stronger and even stronger still.

You can accept the love and support of legions of etheric angels and other powerful guides who surround you at all times. You can receive the help of earthly angels who are all around you also.

You can trust the pulsing of your own precious, sensitive heart when it says that now is the right time to leave the old ways and move on to the wondrous and miracle-filled New.

You can do it, you are doing it, and you will continue to do it with nothing but encouragement and acceptance from the Universe. You deserve this life that is beckoning to you. You are entirely worthy of every drop of happiness that now comes your way.

Start doing it now.

(Originally written by Sophie Bashford and posted on Keeper Of The Platinum Ray)

Photo credits: Asa-Mari Thompson & google images