The Road I Travel

With Mother’s Day hours away, I thought it would be an appropriate time to say goodbye to A Righteous Revival. I began this blog back in the summer of 2013 when it seemed like everything that could have gone wrong in my life had gone wrong. It served as a platform and medium of therapeutic outlet. My dedicated readers – you know who you are – have been supportive and encouraging these last almost four years and I hope that you will follow me on to bigger and better things at my new project.

I recently launched The Road Linds Travels to merge my two passions of writing and travel. Similar to A Righteous Revival, I continue to share my personal growth through candid stories, anecdotes, and memories. My dear Mother is still very much a large part of the motivation and subject of my posts. I believe she’d be very proud to see how far I have come since laying fetal position on the floor of my bedroom in Eternal Sunshine. I am very proud of myself.

Much of my strength is innate and learned but much of it, I got from my mama. She stressed how important it was to be a self-sufficient woman, never relying on a man’s emotional or financial support or anyone’s support for that matter. She showed me what hard work meant – the literal kind and the figurative kind that comes with simply living life. She was why I was able to remove myself from a toxic marriage, to pick myself up off of the floor that night, and keep on keepin’ on. She was a much-needed reminder in the form of an electrical wire when I wanted nothing more than to just give up. She’s forever my deepest inspiration.

With that being said, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the comments, dedication, and energy you all have put into following and reading A Righteous Revival over the last few years. I do hope you’ll make the transition with me and subscribe to The Road Linds Travels, as it is sure to be one hell of a journey! Much Love and peace.

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Being Human

I think sometimes I get so caught up in writing something of substance that I forget that I actually have solid, strong feelings on a day-to-day basis. I think my feelings are a part of the reason why it takes so goddamned long, at times, to generate the next blog post. Needless to say with that introduction, I’ve been feeling all the feels as the kids say nowadays.

It’s a daily struggle whether or not I’m going to opt for a distraction in the form of fermented grapes and an hour’s worth of some fictional character’s drama or if I’m really going to go head to head with all my shit, which usually entails some form of incessant introspection and typing, deleting, typing, deleting, typing – I think you get the picture.

Being gentler with myself, allowing myself to do and/or say things that before, I may have brutally, undeservingly, chastised myself for is something I am intently working on. Realizing that I’m human and permitting myself to behave as one reminds me of realizing, on multiple occasions, that my mother was also human – not just a mother or a parent but a woman with a past and experiences that I had nothing to do with. This, thankfully, made our bond stronger, essentially building a strong foundation for a magnificent friendship and I can only foresee the same happening with myself. The gentler I am with myself and the more I can understand about the things I say and do without lashing out will hopefully, in time, create greater inner peace and harmony – a friendship with my soul, if you will. By no means am I tooting my own horn because I have a lot of work to do yet but I can say I’m off to an impressive start.

Have I mentioned that I go to therapy twice a week? Well, I do and I find it necessary to keep my anxiety at bay. My mind is constantly thinking. I have never been able to master the art of meditation if there’s anything even there for me to master. I would love to be able to switch off my mind the way vampires can switch off their emotions in the CW’s Vampire Diaries – yeah, I watch too much TV. I couldn’t even begin to imagine what it would sound like – the nothingness of my brain. If I didn’t believe that everything was possible, I wouldn’t be convinced of the possibility of not thinking – not with the way my mind has worked for the last thirty-one years at least.

I tend to be an open book but to be honest, there is quite a bit that I do not share, that I don’t feel I can or should share for various reasons – the first and most important reason being that I do strive to maintain some semblance of a private life. As writers, especially as writers of the personal experience, non-fictional type, the lines can become so blurred that, at times, it feels as if one is cautiously writing which can feel limiting because while I cannot speak for all writers, I can say that this is therapy for me, too. Sometimes, the cathartic need to share is so intense yet so inappropriate and not sharing something can unfortunately create a deep and powerful sense of loneliness. I’ve been so busy sharing all of these personal stories that so many people can relate to but what happens when I can’t share something for fear of invading somebody else’s privacy or for fear of the negative social backlash? As I said earlier, it’s so easy to forget that I, too, have feelings. I’m a writer, a woman amongst so many other things – I am human.

Mother’s Day 2016

I just wanted to let you all know I sincerely tried – I tried to write something, anything that might suffice for today is Mother’s Day.  I’ve got nothing – not today.  And not nothing in the sense of there is nothing of significance in my heart or on my mind but nothing that could possibly do my beautiful mother’s legacy justice.

My intentions with this blog, from the very beginning, have been to keep my mother alive through my words, stories, anecdotes and memories and I intend to continue doing so.  As of late, I have noticed a depletion of my energy and finding the appropriate words to share with you right now will completely wipe me out whilst doing no one any good.  Again, it is not for lack of trying and I know my mother would understand this as I recall watching her determinedly operate on fumes quite a few times.

So, with that being said, and not in any particular order, I wish all of the mothers, the mothers to be, the mothers lost, the single fathers and the mothers of furbabies a happy and wonderful Mother’s Day.

From my heart to all of yours,

Linds.

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Mama & I, 2003

Dear Readers

Dear readers, I simply wanted to drop a line, this evening, as I am diligently writing to complete a story that is near and dear to me. I have a couple of weeks to meet a deadline, for a prominent literary magazine and to have my story repeatedly edited and polished for submission. I do not wish to neglect my blog nor especially my readers so please accept this as my humble apology for the fewer and far between posts as of late.

When I decided to embark on this new chapter (no pun intended) of submitting my writing to professional literary magazines and other media outlets, I wasn’t certain if I wanted to share it or keep it under wraps for fear that “nothing will come of it.”   I realized that nothing coming of it was impossible because I can submit my writing over and over to a hundred different places and they can all end up rejections but at least I’ll know I have tried. And most importantly, at the end of the day, I am doing what I love, what ignites my soul. That is certainly not nothing!

I also had to remind myself that I have an amazing support system of people, near and far, dead and alive – people who wish me well and want to see me happy – people who read what I have to say. I will never take you for granted.

So, this is a blog post of my sheer gratitude for your patience, your kind words throughout the last couple of years and your curiosity. Please don’t ever hesitate to reach out. I will always do my best to respond in a timely manner to each and every one of you. If there were something you want to hear more about, something you have a question about, anything, I would love to hear from you!

In the meantime, I am going to leave you with this letter I stumbled upon during my recent collection of my mother’s belongings in Kansas City, a trip I tried vividly describing in Pi Miles to My Destination. I thought it befitting considering my mama was and still is my biggest cheerleader.

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Dear Mama,

By the time you are reading this, I will be on my way to Los Angeles, California, where I will be living on my own for quite some time. This is not meant to be some sort of cheesy letter telling you how much I love you, but more like a “I’m growing up and doing my own things” kinda letter, an appreciation expression letter…though if it makes u cry or feel any other sort of “sappy” emotion, I apologize. Haha…Anywayz, I know it’s not like I’m not going to talk to you often or anything, but there are just some things I want you to know before I leave for such a long time and we are unable to see each other. I know that I have done some things that neither of us are very proud of, but I’ve also done some things that we can both be very proud of. Well, I hope that my moving to Los Angeles to attend Fashion school and do whatever else I choose to do will not only make myself proud, but I hope that you will be proud of me, as well. It is amazing how you learn something new everyday and since the day I was born, I have been learning new things everyday in Kansas City…Now, I will be learning new things everyday that I can’t just “come home” and share with you. I just pray that the outcome of whatever I learn and do will make you proud. I know that what I do from now on is my own decisions, but you really have been an inspiration, and I think everyone wants to make that one person happy and proud. It seems that no matter what I am doing, even if it is making me happy…I have to have the approval of my mother. And as annoying as that can be, it is inevitable. All the times I said that you weren’t supportive or encouraging, I realize that you always were and always have been…in more ways than one. I hope that someday you will realize how appreciative I truly am that you are allowing me this opportunity to go to California and attend this Fashion Institute. It is hard to describe the gratitude I feel. I dream that someday I will be able to repay you monetarily, but through your own little country home and all the other material things you’ve aspired of.

I know that I am not the nicest, sweetest daughter that I always could have been and I am truly sorry for all the times that I seriously hurt you and your feelings. I always say that I have no regrets because everything happens for a reason and u learn from your mistakes, and I still believe that with all my heart, but I learned in an unsatisfactory way. I am sorry.

No matter what I do and where I go, I will always remember where I come from and I know you are thinking that that is easier said than done, but you have taught me the simplicity of life. You have taught me that you truly can be happy with the “bare minimum.” You have taught me so much. I’ve watched you, for 18 years, now, go through so much shit and still come out strong and I just hope that that is a characteristic that I possess of yours. I am going to try so hard, every day, to not take anything for granted! I know that I still have to learn from my own mistakes, but at least, I have someone to look up to.

If I had myself as a daughter, I probably would have killed me before, but you didn’t and you would never. Do you know that I feel like I don’t deserve you and some of the things you’ve done for me? In fact, I know I don’t and of course, I’m not finished. There is more to be said. It is amazing to me when I think about the past years and how fast they came. I mean just six years ago, I was throwing a “Sevvy” party with Jen at her house. Now I’m throwing a “going away, we’re gettin’ out on our own, movin’ to California” gathering. Haha J I know that it is going to be hard not seeing you for a long time but if I have your motivation, ambition and strength, then I should be just fine. J

Call me whenever you want to, remember to set the alarm EVERY NITE please! Also, remember to do the things that make u happy…gardening, painting, being creative…where else do u think I got it? I will miss you and I love you so much. I thank you for the first 18 years of my life, and being the greatest mama you could. Once again, I’m at a loss of words, but I think you get the point. I love you.

Much Love Forever & Ever,

Your one & only daughter,

<3 Linds

What If

American writer and essayist, Flannery O’ Connor once said, “I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” I believe this is why I write and more so right now than ever.

Yesterday afternoon and again, this morning, I was presented with that ugly two-word question that’s usually followed by some sort of action I didn’t take. That question that no one enjoys asking oneself because if you’re asking it, it probably means you’re conjuring up the unrealistic possibility of an alternate reality that only could have come to be had you made a different decision or series of decisions in your past.

Cognitively, we’re all aware that “what if” only serves as a self-loathing mechanism, right? Because the truth is even if you had made another decision or series of decisions, you may still be sitting right there on the living room floor of your Toluca Lake apartment, in front of your computer screen, typing these words and enjoying the company of your two felines and the taste of your Trader Joe’s dark roast coffee.

I believe the problem with asking ourselves “what if” is that we’re implying that at the historical time of judgment, we must have made a poor decision that led to an undesirable outcome today. But maybe if we ask ourselves, instead, why we made the initial decision in the first place, we’d discover that it was a perfectly sound and sensible one given the circumstances of that time and in turn, we’d be being kinder to ourselves.

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Trusting the Universe or God or whatever guiding spirituality or lack thereof it is that you follow is not a simple task but once we do, asking ourselves “what if” kind of falls to the wayside. We’re more confident in our past and present decision-making because after all, being conscious and present leads to better, more informed decisions.

The belief that our souls are here to learn lessons has always resonated loudly with me and perhaps this is one lesson that my soul is to learn – I can ask myself “what if” and I’ll probably never have a good enough answer to justify any, even minute, amount of self-deprecation so why do it? Why make myself miserable in my now? I can only trust that I’m right where I’m supposed to be and better off having made the decisions that I made that delivered me to this now.