Saturday, May 13, 2017

When Breath Becomes Air


#1 New York Times Bestseller When Breath Becomes Air is the true story of Dr. Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon on a quest to find the meaning of life through literature and experiences with his patients. That search accelerates when he is diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer at age 36. This book really pulls you into that situation, and more importantly, will make you ask yourself if I had only a year left to live, would I spend it doing the things I'm doing today? What would be important to me then?

This is the first book in YEARS that I've underscored passages from; literally took my pen and underlined shit, y'all, because one, y'all know I love all things existential. But two, there were things I need to remember for myself; things I want to relay to others in those crucial moments when you need more from me than just to listen. He simplified so many things - literally to the cellular level - that I stopped several times to just think about what he said. I mean, I gained so much perspective and honestly, it made me think a LOT about my mom.

Thankfully, my mother is not battling anything terminal - or at least to my knowledge - but she has been very sick over the years and for the last 2, it's just been like... non-stop. Thing after thing, and I've felt like she has been real preoccupied with her own mortality. Just shit she'll say, like how she is preparing to go on to glory and always positioning herself as being in her last years and I'm like DUDE. You about to be 64 this year, and yes, some people do leave us that young but it's not like you 92 on a ventilator. And maybe that's youngest child denial speaking - her health condition does complicate things - but whatever, I don't wanna hear that.

Now we on this whole retirement situation. She went from retiring January 2018 to retiring June 29, 2017 and out of the blue on Thursday, she like fuck it and put her two weeks in. WTF??? She's had enough of struggling through the pain to go to work and be at work all day and fighting to be paid properly when she has to be out and all kinda shit - I totally get that. But accelerating these timelines with no warning like that got me like WHOA! Like wait a minute, let's talk about this LOL.

I want my mom to do whatever it is she feels she needs to do in order to take care of herself, but honestly, she has me a little scared right now, like.... I feel rushed. You know what I mean? Is that crazy? She might be ready but yo, I am not trying to deal with any of that shit before I absolutely have to. The reality of the situation is with most of her close friends already being gone and me being who I am in this family, I am the one she talks to about these things and being there means steeling up to it but in my mind, the whole time, I'm plugging my ears and "la la la la la la" out the room LOL. Reading this book helped me in so, so many ways though and I think it could help her too, IF she was in the mindset to really receive it. I just don't know if she is. Religion, I think, might interfere with her ability to really get from it what I did because, you know, religion doesn't really allow for cellular-level simplicity. I also don't want it to backfire and have her thinking even more about dying. So I don't know, I'm torn. Maybe I will just mention the book in passing and see if she shows any interest.

Moving book though, brought me to tears. I definitely recommend it but I will caution you non-intellectual types - I read it in a day but it's a hard read. A lot of $50 vocabulary and hardcore literary references but even if you don't get them, it won't take away from the experience. Even if it doesn't motivate you to get up and do anything different, if it gets you to stop for just a moment to examine your life, it was worth the recommendation.

Monday, May 8, 2017

If I Could Turn Back Time

Sitting here watching the New Edition Story for the 50-11th time and having spent the whole weekend - AGAIN - watching all associated videos on Youtube, my mind has drifted back through time, taking inventory of ... all the years. I fantasized about being able to go back 20 years, knowing everything I know now. But oddly enough, i didn't have a long list of things I would do differently. I mean there was a list, but it definitely wasn't long.

20 years ago today, I would be about a week away from the breakup that would forever change me. It was the ending of my first real grown-up relationship; the first one that made me think about forever. I'd also be just a couple of weeks away from reuniting with the person who would turn out to be the love of my life and father of my children. It's so crazy to think about now. I wouldn't change either of those situations. I might do some things differently, but I wouldn't change them. I would not want to have children with anyone other than the man I had them with - he is a great father and co-parent - and I needed the experience before that to help me appreciate that.

20 years ago, I was also still hooping hard and one thing I do regret is stopping. There were several reasons for it but none that justified giving up the one thing that, even before writing, had always been there for me. But doing so put me in need of another outlet, which brought me back to this.

Actually, there are only 2 things I would change in 20 years and they both fall under the same umbrella. I would be a little more selfish with how much of myself I shared. Not so much in telling people stuff, but in trying to include them in some things that may have lasted longer if I had kept them for myself. Not all worlds should be merged. Lesson learned.

All things considered, I think I have done pretty well for myself. Yes, there are things and people that I COULD have done without but they are not such big factors as to call them regrets. Of those, I don't have many and I plan to live the rest of my life in a similar manner. But it's good to sit back sometimes and just think over your experiences in preparation for the next phase of your life.

I am so ready.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Multiple Choice




Which of these is true about me?


a) I've sold drugs.

b) I've done coke.

c) I've had an abortion.

d) I've stabbed someone.

e) All of the above

f) None of the above


Half the people who follow this blog don't know me in real life - you guys will likely hazard a guess based on things I've posted here - but 99.5% of those who know me BEST couldn't answer this question either.

The actual answer is irrelevant, I'm just illustrating a point: you not knowing about something, doesn't mean it didn't happen. What you know about somebody is limited to what they've chosen to tell and show YOU. So watch yourself, being so quick to assume the best OR worst about people who might only be selectively sharing chapters of their story with you.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Doubt

I just want it to be right.

It doesn't feel "done" yet.

This isn't the story I want to tell.

I'm in a different head space now.

I can't relate 12 years later.

I should start over.


These are all the things I say to myself about dragging my feet on publishing. Every single one of these statements is true, but that doesn't mean they're not also excuses. At the end of the day, I don't have to publish THIS particular work. I have plenty of shit near enough to completion
that I could run with. Hell, if nothing else, I have an entire blog with 8 years of material (damn, 8 years???? wow!). So I had to sit down and ask myself, what's really going on here, Dig? My response both surprised and terrified me....


What if it's just not good enough?


Saturday, March 25, 2017

A Week in the Dig Files

This week has been a damn doozy, lemme tell you.

So Monday, a friend of a friend introduced me to a staff assistant at Kensington Books. Now we’ve had this lunch/meeting scheduled for a couple weeks now, but we get there like 5 minutes late ourselves and this dude is nowhere. So the girl I’m with calls him like “where you at?” and this nigga acting like he had no clue what she was talking about, and gon hit us with the “uh….. hang on, let me take a look here…… yeah, I guess I could come down for a couple minutes.” Really? Like REALLY? I suppose its possible this girl didn’t really “set up a meeting” as much as she told him she wanted to “introduce him to her friend” so he didn’t take it as such, but my whole scan of this dude when he did come down read “other shit”. He gon tell me its gonna be a lot of waiting, IF I even get a look since I don't know anyone - bitch I'm suppose to be knowing YOU! WTF we here for??? SMH He did give me some paperwork though– advice and query instructions basically – which were helpful. Shit, I thought I could just email an editor like yo, I wanna write, what's up? LOL Apparently it don't quite work like that.

Then Tuesday, I decided I was gonna take advantage of the free training session being offered at my gym. I thought he/she would just talk to me about what I was trying to do and suggest a routine for me. Nope. Lucky me gets the one chick in the place who fucken believes in me and shit and not only takes me through the workout but takes me through it like it's a light damn day after 2 tough mudders and a tour in Iraq LOL. Now I aint mad at her pushing me, but can I ease into it please? She had my arms hurting so bad that I couldnt even use them to get myself up off the floor. I literally had to roll onto my stomach, prop up on my ELBOWS, and then get on my knees to eventually stand. My ceps - all of em LOL - and my quads hurt for 3 damn days. I'm talkin bout LOCK tight. But the hour massage I got yesterday REALLY helped. I slept soooo good.

Thursday I go to Red Lobster which is only my favorite place in the world, no big deal LOL I order a dinner to go for my daughter and decide to also surprise her with a chocolate wave. Waitress brings out the bag and sits it on the end of the table. I'm looking at the check and Im reminded that the location in Times Square has the audacity to figure in 18% tip FOR you, like they just know their servers gave 18% service. Whatever - wasn't my money and two mojitos in, I wasn't bout that math life so fuck it. She was alright, 18% it is. I get home and tell my daughter to go ahead and get her food because something in there might melt. I'm waiting for her to get all excited about it, she comes into my room with the cartons like "um.... what exactly in here is supposed to melt?" The heffa aint give us our chocolate wave. Bitch, I gave you 18%!!

About an hour later, I get a text from my girl upstate. It's a picture of my mother's apartment building on fire. What THEEEEEEE fuck??? I call my moms, get her machine. I call my sister, get her machine. I call my aunt, she's in a panic. My cousin calls his brother who finally says he spoke to my mom about 10 minutes prior and she was out with my nephew. PHEW! Well at least she's okay. Turns out the fire was 3 floors above hers and in the back side of the building, a ways from hers, and the building has fire walls so the blaze was contained in that one apartment, although it was burned clean the fuck out. And by the time that was over, I was worn the fuck out.

Friday's massage was CLUTCH. Shout out to Andreas at Massage Envy. Booty-squeezin self...

Friday, March 10, 2017

Post Shaming


So I get a FB notification of someone’s birthday. I go to wish them well and notice people posting about Nicki Minaj finally dropping some kind of response to Remy Ma’s "Shether". People definitely didn’t seem to be feeling it but I admit, I was curious. I’m on the job so I’m trying to find a quick hit – I ain’t got time for reaction videos and people trying to break the bars down, I just wanna hear the damn song. STILL ain’t found it but in the process of looking, I come across an [IG?] post where Nicki’s addressing taking her sweet time or whatever, and then also says for Remy to stop surgery shaming.

*blink*

Surgery shaming? Sooooo I guess we can just slap “shaming” on the back of any word and make it a thing now. How bout NO. We are not about to parlay surgery into a movement, okay hun? Bitches not taking to the streets with their "All Surgeries Matter" signs, marching for all asses to be treated equal. Have a fucken seat.

Oh wait, am I now post shaming? Is that how this works? LOL

FOH.