Peace

I have the urge to be your peace in your life.

I don’t want to argue or fight. I just want to make you happy and bring peace to your life.

 Pour into me and I will pour into you. Stick by me and I will never leave your side. 

A mature love.

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Love is terrifying 

Have you ever looked into someones eyes and saw your whole future in them? 
The idea of openly loving someone is terrifying me. 
But for this certain guy, my feelings are so strong for him that I wish there was an alternate universe where we could escape space, time, death, and responsibilities. Just be. Just to be. 

This sounds so corny to me  and I’m never the type to over share. I’ll probably never share this with him, because deep down inside I’m terrified of being hurt. I also cannot picture anyone actually loving me or choosing to commit to me. I have received so many “lets let things grow naturally” and “let’s see what happens”. Maybe I’m difficult to love but for once I just wish someone would choose me. The thought of it kinda makes me sad that I know in the end you won’t choose me.
Ivy

Self-Doubt

 

24-insecure-lede.w710.h473I know I should be thankful for where I am at in life but currently I have been full of self doubt. .I am currently applying to doctoral programs in Clinical Psychology at different schools around the country. I just came from a meeting with my advisor that increased my self doubt even more. He looked at my undergrad and grad GPA and noticed that it is a 3.6 not a 4.0 unlike most of my peers and suggested that I don’t apply to PhD programs and instead try PsyD. I instantly became defensive and offended. I have taken 3 semesters of different forms of Statistics and have worked as a research assistant the past 4 years to prepare me for this a PhD. Why else would I take high-level regression if I was not intersted in pursing a career as a researcher? He noticed I made As in my humanity classes and B’s in my Stats classes and told me this means I’m a noncompetitive applicant. Hearing him say that really hurt my feelings. Its hard enough being a black face in a white space. Applying to programs that only accept a black student maybe once every other year. My advisor is also a Black man, why did he try to stir me away from my goals?…

Im just wondering should I even apply anymore. I believe that I can get into a doctoral program because of my holistic application makes me competitive not isolating my test scores alone. I am only applying to programs that I believe I am a good fit for. As in I have something I can contribute to their research team from previous experiences I have gained. I also have clinical experience. I know exactly what I want to do. I want to open up my own practice in my hometown of New Orleans East, a predominantly Black area, that lacks a clinical psychologist after Katrina. Idk whats going to happen with my life the next 6 months to a year. Thinking about it freaks me out. But what I do know, is telling me to not pursue a field that I am passionate about will not help me feel adequate. It makes me feel like maybe I wont get in after all.

 

 

Losing a friend.

This is kinda a free hand writing type of day…excuse the errors.

 

Today I thought of you and I instantly started to miss you…I don’t think about you often but when I do it makes me sad. I miss our friendship.. Genuine friends are so hard to come by these days. We had a strong foundation of respect, love, and empathy. We were there for one another at each others worst. We traveled the world together, spent holidays together, and was a shoulder for each other to cry on. I don’t think I appreciated you as much as I should have when we were together. The same goes for you. We were young and didn’t know much about relationships or love. I personally did not grow up seeing healthy relationships around me so I had no framework to model after. I thought about you recently after watching the finale of Insecure when Lawerence and Issa finally talked to each other. They had an mature post breakup talk ybut the scene where Issa and Lawrence parted ways really spoke to me.

Yes we dated for years but you was also my best friend. At times like this when I feel like my world is crashing, I wish I could call you. It makes me cry that you’re no longer around. You were literally always there for me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I thought you sucked as a boyfriend but now after dating in New York; you look like the angel Gabriel compared to everyone else. I never told you enough how much I love and appreciate you and your friendship. One thing I will never forget is your communication. You never went a day without talking to me.

I hope you’re happy where ever you are,

 

Ivy

 

In The Mist of it All … By Taj Omari

DSC_0052-e1502399248302Submission from close friend. Film maker Taj Omari who I love so much!  Also check out her interview WatchBlossom.

In The Mist of it All …

By Taj Omari

Now that the hustle for finishing “Ghost” and organizing “No Ghost Writers” is over, I can take a min, sit back, and reflect… and all I can say is DAMN!!! The event was better than I could ever imagine. The energy in the room was positive and supportive, the talent showcase was amazing, and my film received nothing but love and constructive criticism to help me grow as a film maker and artist. But I have to acknowledge the fact that the day before “No Ghost Writers”, word of Charlottesville broke loose. In the mist of preparing for my event, I intentionally ignored the news because I did not want to be consumed with anger. And when I finally looked up what happened, I was not surprised by the ignorance in my country. The incident reminded me of a very disappointing conversation I had with a young black man a few weeks back. He said, “ I don’t understand why black people are still mad. I wasn’t a slave, You weren’t a slave, our parents and grand parents weren’t slaves, why are we still mad. We need to get over it.” I was shocked by his Tom Fuckery. How can you NOT feel enraged when white people of all ages are still waving confederate flags high and mighty. How can you NOT take note of white people ignoring the fact that they too were immigrants into this country and yet they claim this land as their own. How can you IGNORE the micro-aggressive comments, the social unrest, the political scrutiny, and the systematic injustices . So YES I have a right to be mad! But what I do with that anger separates me from the ignorant. In many ways I stopped believing white people were the sole problem here. Don’t get me wrong, they started all this bullshit, but how can we end it if we are not united and educated. White people can be foolish and ignorant, and they proved that to us when Donald Trump was elected into office. So I expect Uncle Tom Fuckery from them….. but not US!! I believe we are and need to be better than that! For African Americans ( black people and culture) our history begin with slavery. We come from pain,suffering, and oppression simply because we are black. And yet here we are! Black and Beautiful as ever. So YES I expect more from my people because we have been though hell and back. But in the same breath… we have the bandwagon black people who simply are mad because they think they have to be (The  “I’m black so I believe OJ didn’t do it” type). We have the “woke” but really just quote memes from Instagram black people ( typically the self proclaimed woke).  Then black people that are comfortable living in modern day slavery ( the ” I mean…. I gotta job so I’m cool”) . And then we have black people like me. The creative minds who can’t hurt fly ( unless that fly start some shit) and would rather mold minds with art then climb the up hill battle of protesting and yelling back at ignorant white oppressors. So Charlottesville did not surprise me one bit. I am surprised when black people think that our country has changed since 1808. In a way I feel like many of us are still living in the Matrix of social reform and equality. So I ask myself and others, in leu of Charlottesville, what are we going to do bout it? My homegirl wrote a blog post called “Woke” on her page Anxiously Ivy , and she provided many therapeutic ways to deal with the bullshit of this country, and I praise her for that. We need more of THIS!!!! Lets talk about it AND be about social change…. which started with changing ourselves as individuals. Doing the spiritual work to see beyond what America has placed in front of us and find love and triAs for me, I want to make a movie about it. The strongest, most powerful prison is then within our minds so I feel my job is to continue to create. And I encourage other creatives to continue to use their art as a vessel for peace and UNDERSTANDING!!!!!!!! Spread knowledge not ignorance! Develop the community by getting them involved indoor projects. Host events, poetry nights, art galleries, and fill them with content that will expand consciousness. As a black people we are not yet free. Some/ many of us are still held captive in their minds. And if all of us aren’t free, none of us are. 

Say goodbye to weight gaining pasta…

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IMG_2123Hi Everyone!

After a rough weekend I finally had time to cook. This past weekend my wallet was lost/stolen while I was walking to meeting off of 125th in Harlem. I leave for Cuba in a few days so it’s a lot of work trying to recover new debit and credit cards. Today I cooked Salmon and zucchini noodle recipe I jazzed up. All items were bought from the new Whole Foods off MalcolmX which I loveee so much.  This was my first time trying to zucchini noodles and it was AMAZING. Im don’t think I can ever go back to regular pasta after trying this. Plus regular pasta makes me gain so much weight! A lot of recipes don’t cook the zucchini in skillet but I did and it tasted really good.

 

Ingredients:
SALMON ZUCCHINI SPAGHETTI WITH ARUGULA PESTO
  •  Whole Foods ready-made Zucchini and Squash pasta
  • 1/2 Tomato (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup diced mushrooms
  • Pesto (pour as much as you like, I kinda went a lil loco on it)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (minced)
  • 1 half of a lemon
  • Olive Oil
  • Greek Seasoning

PASTA

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon  olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add Whole Foods ready made zucchini noodles an.Add  pesto and minced garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add tomato, mushroom, and sprinkle with Greek seasoning; cook, squeeze a half of a lemon while stirring occasionally  for 15 minutes or until you’re personally satisfied. (peep my lower pic)

SALMON

  1. In another skillet heat olive oil. Add lightly seasoned salmon. Cook until fish starts to brown on sides. Make sure fish is no longer raw in the inside. I personally cook it about 20mins

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Woke.

 

Being woke and conscious has its pros and cons.

While I am blooming as a young woman becoming the person God wants me to be, I can also feel myself wilting from recent events. I am consuming and immersing myself into my Blackness and appreciating where it comes from…but to also be aware of the current state of Black people in this country can drive one mad; such as what happened to my favorite artist Nina Simone. The most recent event in Charlottesville has left me mad, angry, and disturbed. If you also feel this way, you have every right to. However it is so important that we keep a level of sanity and know when to remove ourselves from situations that may effect us internally.

I wrote this blog for people at work or school this week that may feel disgusted by recent events and don’t feel the need to always smile when society isn’t giving us a reason to. As Solange  would say “You got the right to be mad“.  This blog was inspired by Alex Elle most recent blog post  (click here) where she writes “In the face of adversity, we must bloom, even when we feel like wilting“.

Journal Question via Alex Elle blog: How am I self-caring and showing up for myself + others with everything that’s going on in the world?

1. Everyone doesn’t deserve your response. Over the years I have read many post from “friends” and strangers via Facebook that are insensitive and downright racist. One thing I don’t do is argue online with people about current events. I used to be open to discussing current events with bewildered white classmates but I emotionally do not have the energy to explain to people their privilege anymore. It appeared my white classmates thought I was their translator every time a Black man was shot by police, in which I am not. I believe Stokely Carmichael  words are so timely “In order for nonviolence to work, your opponent must have a conscience. The United States has none.” I believe that our oppressor has no soul, is evil, and lack conscience and for me to have to explain to you why Nazis marching on a college campus is traumatic for POC is an issue alone.

2. Unplug yourself from the world. Its okay to leave your phone on airplane mode and log off of social media. Try reading a book before checking your phone in the morning. Turn down weekend brunch and try finding a near by park to reflect in. Don’t watch the news or click on videos that may upset you. Sometimes we forget what life was like before phones. We were never meant to stay connected and be assessable 24/7 to the world.

3. Know what makes you happy. Get to know yourself and do something that makes you happy when you are stressed. Go for a run in a park. Google near by waterfalls in your city. Visit a local museum and find an art form that you may surprisingly be good at. Journaling or blogging can also be helpful.

4.  Talk it outCommunity is important. Calling a friend or family member can be extremely valuable. I believe having a network of similar minded friends to discuss current events with is important.  If it’s hard to concentrate in  the workplace, don’t be shy to ask your supervisor for a safe space, to check in with other people of color to make sure everyone is ok. Also joining a sister circle in your city can also be supportive.

5. See a Therapist. Talking with friends and family can be extremely beneficial however a part of caring for yourself I believe is also taking the step to get professional help. No one will ever listen to you as honestly and open as a therapist. Their job is to give clients their undivided attention. Look for nearby psychologist and therapist in your area. I personally believe that having a Black psychologist is important to decrease distrust in the clinical setting but make sure that psychologist is also competent in their work. Utilize Psychology Today (click here)  to view what they specialize in and read their reviews from previous patients.

6. Get your spirt together. Feed your spiritual self what it needs to thrive. Root yourself in a higher power.  Find a church to join.  Read religious text. Join a meditation class or near by donation based yoga classes.

7. Identify and activate your inner activist. Immerse yourself in the community. We have so many problems stacked against us. Everyone is able to point out the problems but If we ourselves don’t do something about it then who will? I personally get so much energy from helping people and seeing people happy. For example if you’re an painter your inner activism can be doing a monthly painting workshop with kids in your community. This is my personal “inner activism” agenda which is also rooted in my field of work. I hope it inspires you to develop your own agenda.

-Conduct workshops for women at church that discuss  Anxiety and Depression

-Creating a safe space on campus for African American women to be able to develop a sisterhood among each other.

-Volunteering at Black urban gardens

-Next week I get to participate in a training to be a Mental Health First Aid Instructor. With this license,  next semester before I graduate I plan on implementing the training with the Women at Rikers Island prison.

 

Perfectly Lonely

img_4639-1The title of this post is Perfectly Lonely.  Sounds kinda sad right? Its not. Its the title of a song from John Mayer album Battle Studies albums (One of my favorites). I haven’t been on here in awhile. I have so many post I’ve been waiting to blog but I have not got around to it. I’ve been caught up planning for my future. Networking, researching, studying,prepping for doctoral programs and Peace Corps applications.
I was watching a SZA interview and she said:

“Focus on yourself focus on the glow: drink water, exfoliate, moisturize, get your cardio, get your blood flowing…. praise God Thank God for the day. Make a plan for the week and cross a few things off. It’s better than Niggas already. It’s Self Love and You Lit“. -SZA

 

This quote really spoke to me. I’ve been feeling lonely lately. I guess this is the first time ever that I don’t have anyone to date or talk to. It’s weird. Im ok not having anyone its kinda calming to belong to myself my body and spirit……. but its hard not having someone of the opposite sex anymore to look forward to talking to everyday or be a constant reminder that maybe this world isn’t so bad after all if we have one another.

This past year I dated. I mean really dated. I dated someone a year younger than me. Someone 10 years older than me. A few flings here and there. I even attempted to get to know a male best friend. My best friend eventually started to become the guys I used to complain to him about, lacking care and communication. I KNOW I deserve so much more than halfass-ness Out of those experiences I’ve learned a lot about myself, self worth, and tolerance. One of them I actually did fall in love and I don’t fall easily……..but it ended so bad because he was a liar, manipulative, and verbally abusive. So now I’m prepared to focus on my future and  the glow up. Physically, mentally, and spiritually… I even want to practice being celibate. Over the past year Ive had satisfying sexual experiences but where did that leave me? Lonely with  empty  promises and false hopes. I know I’m young but those experiences almost broke me…. they left me feeling like maybe I’m not worthy of being loved. So this season is about growth and it’s important for everyone to know what they want in a future partner. Personally I need:

Trust

Respect

To Communicate with me if theres an issue

Attention

Supportive

Commitment

 Acts of Service

Love me really Love me

Until then I wont settle and I would rather be alone then stressed out with someone who does not  care about me. Ive also learned that you KNOW when someone doesn’t care about you, you can feel it. I’ve also learned to believe a guy when he shows you who he is the first time. I want that feeling SZA describes in Garden off Ctrl or JCole in Shes Mine. Right now I just I feel like SZA in Twenty Something:

“How could it be?

20 something, all alone still

Not a thing in my name

Ain’t got nothin’, runnin’ from love

Only know fear

That’s me, Ms. 20 Something

Ain’t got nothin’, runnin’ from love

Wish you were here, oh”

 

Which I am ok with… I’m not sad. I like the quietness and I love taking time out to be alone. I know everything happens for a reason and thats why those guys didn’t work out. You may be one of them if you’re reading this. Idk where my future husband is but I pray for him already.

Signed,

A Recovering Over Lover

Curry Chicken- Ivys version of Jamaican style

Time: 1.30 hour

Preparation:10 mins

Ingredients:

How much seasoning you want is up to you. I use a lot.

Disclaimer: Im not Jamaican but I know how to cook. Ive combined recipes from my friend Deidre who is from Jamaica, YouTube, and online recipes to make a version of what works best for me.

Add a little water to cabbage, lightly season with Greek Seasoning

Add bread crumb to thicken gravy if needed

Prep:

  1. Dice Tomato, Scallions, Garlic, Pepper. Put chicken thighs in a bowl and season it seasoning pepper and curry seasoning.  Mix diced vegetables and Chicken in bowl to marinate about 30 mins-1 hour. ( curry and veggies should be sticking to chicken)

Dice Potato for later

  1. Heat oil and 2 tablespoons of curry powder in a large iron skillet over high heat until oil is hot and curry powder changes color. Add chicken and veggies to oil. Once chicken start to turn brown. Reduce heat and add water to skillet. Add potato.
  2. Covering is optional. Cook until chicken is cooked and gravy is thickened.
    Trust me you will know the its done. I let it cook for about 40mins