I have NOT been blogging much at all this month and for good reason:
I'm in New York! I mean, what can you really get done in this city, right? Well, actually a lot if you're focused and driven. I am both.
So, blogging took a backseat to this tremendous, awesome, transforming writing program that I've been a part of.
I'm forever changed by the experience of working with great authors [Percival Everett/Honor Moore], great staff [Ruth Danon, Catherine Barnette, April Krassner], and the best group of fiction writers on the planet!
As this experience comes to an end, I'd like to think of it as a beginning to a new level of writing, new opportunities, and new friendships.
I bet you can tell that I don't regret this one bit, right? Well, you're correct.
And let me ADMONISH you to continue to DREAM BIG and then chase those bad boys!
This is it. I'm up to bat. It's finally my turn. All I have to do is hit the ball. It's a simple motion really ~ the act of swinging. Actually hitting the ball - not so simple. That takes a little more than hand-eye coordination.
I'm not a baseball fan but I have tested myself within a batting cage. Not a pretty sight. But rather than quit, I kept swinging and eventually I hit the ball.
And it's the same with life. Keep swinging. You'll miss...possibly a lot. If you don't swing, you'll never hit the ball. But keep swinging and when bat and ball meet...it will all be worth it!
Any Little Rascal fans out there? Next to the Goonies, you can't find a funnier group of kids. In the 1994 Little Rascals movie, there's a scene where Buckwheat and Porky are overwhelmed with joy. Why? Because they got a dollar. The things that fascinate kids, right?
If you've never seen it, click here to watch it now.
I am a little more than a week away from my trip to NYU and I've yet to meet my fundraising goal.
If you can, I'd love for you to give just a dollar. Just click on the chip-in widget in the CHECK THESE OUT column to the right.
Then, join me in singing.
"We got a dollar. We got a dollar. We got a dollar....hey, hey, hey!"
Grey's Anatomy is a show about doctors, their personal drama, and the patients they encounter in-between.By far, the Grey's Anatomy season finale was one of the best I've ever seen. Not a fan? No need to be. The most captivating part for me by far was this question:
Did you say it?
I sat through the last minutes of the 2-hr finale, with tears in my eyes. Yes, real tears. Yes, I was choked up over non-existent people who endure the most horrible tragedies. But these characters work in a hospital - surrounded by life and death.
And just like those characters, we often wait until it's too late to express how much we love someone. The old adage proves true, "You never miss a good thing 'til it's gone."
I love basketball and I'm starting to love football more and more every year. Recently, I realized that there's one universal principle that applies to every sport.
No one likes to sit on the bench.
I played basketball when I was growing up. In middle school, I was one of the starting five. Pretty cool. I always knew I would be in the game. But my confidence took a blow the summer before I started high school.
Suddenly, I had to try out for the team. For most of the try-outs and scrimmages, I had to sit on the bench. Not a good feeling. When you're on the bench you feel powerless. There you are, watching a game. Steps away from the excitement and action. Yet, there's nothing you can do but sit there and wait on your turn. Hope that your name will be called soon.
It's frustrating. You knowyou can make a difference. You knowyou have something to add to the team. That you've too worked hard to acquire the skills you have just to sit on a stupid bench. Kinda like life, huh?
Patience is a must in this game of life. Sacrifice and reward can sometimes be distant relatives. Maybe you have been in the game for awhile and suddenly, you're called out to sit on the sidelines. Maybe you've been sitting for some time now. Waiting on that prayer to be answered. Waiting on those words, "You're hired."
Be encouraged. Good things really do come to those who wait. And sitting on the bench doesn't mean you're any less qualified or deserving. It means you just have to wait a little bit longer.
I have been granted the opportunity of a lifetime. In 18 days, I'm headed to New York University for a Summer Creative Writing Program. This is bound to open up many doors for me as a writer and for us as a community. All that stands in my way is $1,855.
If you can, I'd appreciate a donation in any amount.
All things are possible to them that believe!
God Bless & continue to Dream BIG!
I like closure. Finality. For things to be over or to be new. For things to be constant or to just not be at all. I like for things to be 100% black or 100% white. So you know where that leaves me most of the time right? ................Short.
There's a little situation that has been lingering in my life for the past three months. And I hate it. The thing is, I can't control it. I can't do a darn thing about it and at times I pout like a 2 year-old over it. Oh, don't you judge me! I hear your thoughts.
I thought you liked closure, Toi.
You said you like finality and all that good stuff.
Well, I do. And I've tried to obtain closure. I've tried to bring things to either an end or a new beginning. But my attempts haven't been too successful. And I'm on the verge of entering the danger zone. The I-don't-care-anymore zone. And that's dangerous for me because once I go there...oh, it's hard to come back.
So, a word of advice to us all. Don't allow things to lingerin your life any longer than necessary. If someone is trying to resolve an issue with you, let them. If you need to resolve an issue with someone else, do it! Don't linger 'cuz when you do, the next step is indifference.
You don't really know me. And that's fine. I lovemeeting new people.
Maybe you do. Maybe you're reading this and you're one of my best friends or a sibling or some other relative. But more than likely you're not. Again, I love this community we're building.
Even more, I love knowing that there are people in my life who really know me. They knew me as a 5 year-old with pigtails in Kindergarten. They knew me as a teenager who skipped school to go home and steal my sister's car. Only to come back up to the school to pick them up. Or as the girl who came to school with alcohol in her water bottle. The girl you egged houses with and skipped out on the bill with at IHOP.
Then there was the college Toi. The girl from Detroit who had to come all the way to Atlanta to find herself.
All of these friends and relatives...they knew me then and they still know me now. Exactly as I am.
For the new friends out here in blog world . . . welcome! I hope you'll be around for some time.
Many people don't have relationships that last a lifetime. But I do. And to those . . . I'm glad that you're still here. You knew me as I was AND as I am.
I think I just figured out why I love this candy so much. I have a box sitting on my coffee table as we speak. The little guy on the box is staring at me with a smile that says, "You know you want some more."
For me, it's the combination of bitter and sweet. That weird sensation your taste buds get when you eat them. First it's the sour/bitter taste and then the sweet kicks in.
Lemonheads are like life. Bitter and sweet. And I've had some bitter moments over the years. But I'm SO glad that the sweet is finally kicking in. It's makes life worth it after all.
Remember the clothing line FUBU? It's popularity was short-lived but they had a great concept (and a great spokesman in LL Cool J ~ my childhood crush :-P). FUBU was an acronym for "For Us By Us." Clothes made by African-Americans for African-Americans. A business to benefit the community and Black designers. Good in theory but not so good in production and longevity.
Whether you were a fan of FUBU or not, you've lived by the same creed. It's the inherent stubbornness in all of us that says, "My life is for me and by me." We can't help but think like that. Society tells us. Music tells us. Television tells us. And then we tell ourselves.
We were made BY HIM and FOR HIM. Let's check there for life, purpose, and all the things that we can never do for ourselves.