Confrontation

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Anyone who has read my work for more than a month or two can likely tell you basic things about my character. My friends can tell you precisely who I am and what I stand for.

My own brother has described me as, “The last person I ever want to disappoint because you’re scarier than Mom and Dad combined. I’m more scared of your reaction than I am anyone else’s.” I was surprised to learn this, but it explains his behavioral patterns around me because he knows I see through all the bullshit.

Whenever someone describes me, these are the key words used: Honest. Loyal. She says precisely what she means; there’s zero sugarcoating involved. She’s not exceptionally forgiving, and that’s because she knows the difference between a mistake and patterns.

One of my own physicians said he knows I don’t hold back and he respects that because he sees other people do it and wonders what they aren’t saying, but never wonders with me because I’m not afraid to be forthcoming and extremely honest about everything. When I hear myself described like that, I know I am a solid person, regardless of what the occasional idiot may think or be stupid enough to say.

In life, forgiveness is something people have to earn. Once you break my trust, will I forgive you? Or will I listen, merely because I prefer closure? I suppose it depends on the person, but I am now faced with this in my real life.

Early this morning, something popped up in my Facebook memories that pissed me off. I was so angry for a moment, I saw red. Red is a warning sign. It’s like blood spatter to Dexter Morgan. Anger fuels me to be a better person, but that moment where I see red? That’s dangerous.

A former friend who made plans with me and then texted, weeks prior to arrival, to say her boyfriend had scheduled a private tour of the zoo the day we intended to meet up decided to pop back up with apologies. In truth and fairness, I baited her because I was enraged by what I saw.

When she had originally asked if I could make time during the month of May to meet up because she couldn’t wait to see me and missed me, I set an entire day aside, and not for nothing, it was the anniversary of my mother’s death which is SO hard for me. Lesson learned; I will never do that again, especially not for someone who flakes on me.

Quite frankly, I am astounded that anyone over the age of twelve, or someone studying certain forms of biology and/or science, would desire a tour of a zoo. 🙄 It breaks my heart to see animals in captivity. The only thing I do appreciate is the preservation of big cats. Leopards, certain types of tigers, cheetahs, and some of the smaller exotic cats are becoming extinct. This is not news, though. I don’t want to live in a world where these amazing creatures do not exist. I appreciate the wild preservation of their habitats in South Africa immensely, especially all the work being done in Namibia. However, that’s not what angered me.

It was not a change of plans, as she seems to believe, but the disrespect of my time and not immediately standing up to said boyfriend and letting him know that she already had plans that day. You can’t text me and say, “Just FYI, he scheduled a tour of the zoo that day. He’s trying to change it, but…” But nothing. I replied by saying, “I don’t even know how to answer that, so I won’t.” That moment, right there, is when you reschedule or call me about alternatives. You address it in the moment. Especially since she’s here at least 2-4 times a year to visit him.

The post in my “memories” credited me for the friend I am to her, and after deleting my initial response from two years ago where I stated that I’d always have her back, I let it be known that real friends learn how to apologize so they don’t lose their ride or die support system. She immediately replied with an apology and wanted to get into it. 😒 It’s pretty sad when someone waits and waits before they finally get called out. My anger was my error at seeing this proclamation which feels faker than a three dollar bill, and feeling as though a nearly eight year friendship was a total lie.

When a person says they were ashamed and too shy to contact you because they figured you needed time to forgive them, I find that a mixture of pathetic and laughable. I’m not a rabid beast; you just have to communicate properly. All she had to do was reschedule and be respectful of my friendship and time. That’s how adults resolve things. I would also love to know why she thinks I’m going to forgive her, because if you know me, you know forgiveness isn’t a likely scenario. I’ve got boundaries and self-respect.

Also, and this is important: I don’t permit men to tell me who I can and cannot be friends with. Nor do I allow men to make decisions for me OR disrespect my friends and family. I’d sooner stick a fork in his thigh. I’m not someone’s mouthpiece or tool, and I do not suffer fools. I’m not some delicate little flower. I am a lotus.

If you’re in a controlling relationship, naturally that person doesn’t want you to be around friends who are loyal, honest, smart, make you laugh, and who, up until this occurred, I would have cheerfully shot in the leg and buried alive. I will never, EVER support a friend who chooses to remain in an abusive relationship simply because they see the abuse as a form of love. I assure you, I’ve lived it and witnessed it, and it’s NOT on the same plane of existence as love. Perhaps some beggars refuse to make the choice for themselves because they’re not strong enough.

An abusers’ ultimate goal is to isolate you from your friends and family almost entirely. The sad part is that so many people let the abuser win. If you confront that friend, suddenly you’re labeled as “jealous”. 🙄😂 No sweet pea, I feel sorry for you. No one sane wants to be in an abusive relationship, and I will absolutely give you credit if you have gotten out of one. By “you”, I mean whoever is reading this and nodding their head in agreement because they understand what I’m saying. They understand because they’ve escaped the madness and uncertainty of being in a relationship with a gaslighting, narcissistic, abusive, disrespectful jack ass.

Instead of letting this discussion become Facebook fodder, I replied by saying we should discuss it privately. I don’t do drama on my page at all. Also, I need time before I say anything, but I’m willing to hear the nonsense out. Perhaps I’ve already made my decision and DO want closure. I’m not entirely sure. In truth, I am still so angry that anyone thinks this is acceptable treatment of a friend who has been the highest quality friend one could have or hope for.

An old friend once said, “Lisa isn’t to be trifled with.”, and I think that sums things up nicely. People assume I’m nice, sweet, caring, kind, and a host of other things that nauseate me. Clearly, I have my moments and some good qualities or no one would ever be able to call me a friend, but the second you cross over the line, you’re going to meet the other side of me. The one I often refer to as “The Dragon Slayer”. When you meet that other person who is professionally icy, you might not know what to make out of her. That’s okay. She’s already seen you coming from a hundred miles away and she’s not in the mood to psychologically break you into bits, but she will, if necessary. Many women are as multifaceted as what I’ve just described. We can be your best friend, your biggest supporter, or we can be an enemy. The grey area is ambivalence. It always is.

When you call me your “sister”, that’s a fucking privilege. It’s not some cute word to throw around. Fact: I will always be someone’s sister. I was born a sister. I am a sister to my brother, and to several of my cousins. My best friend and I have basically grown up together, and she is 7000+ miles away. She is 100% my sister. 100% family. She wouldn’t dream of disrespecting our friendship in any way. She would never fly into town and NOT see me. She would never disrespect our friendship, our time, or our bond. I would never disrespect her, either. Alas, I now realize how one-sided this other “friendship” actually was.

I was the support system. The therapist. The one with a fully functioning brain. The one with the grace and maturity I’ve possessed for the majority of my life without truly seeing it until someone pointed it out to me recently. I got nothing out of this relationship, except the feeling that I was always on call, like a doctor. When communication stopped, I felt free. I felt like I hadn’t been able to breathe properly, and suddenly this drain on my life force was no longer present. I was relieved. I was done.

I don’t know if there’s anything salvageable here. The pretty words of apology and love are just that; they’re pretty fucking words that mean nothing to me. They are not the actions of someone who is truly sorry and apologized on their own. I forced it by calling her out, and she would have waited for me to make a move until she died if I hadn’t had that flare of anger. I can legitimately say nothing for the remainder of my life and be good with that. If you’re trying to play the silent treatment game with me, you will lose. It’s NOT a fucking game, it is real life. Friends are not expendable beings.

My closest friends often say, “You’re honest and direct, but you’re also supremely fair. So if someone has pissed you off or hurt you, they deserve whatever you dish out because they didn’t have any respect for you.” That acknowledgement and validation is like music to my ears because it’s pure and true.

I don’t do disrespect in my relationships. I don’t make plans and leave people hanging without a word. I will never intentionally flake out on you. I’m not rude and disrespectful. I will be on my best behavior when you drag the uninvited boyfriend along without telling me in advance. Basically that means I won’t poison his food or accidentally, on purpose, stab him in the neck when he says something disrespectful to you that makes me want to slap him while you sit there and take it. Ultimately, I’m YOUR friend, NOT his, and I reserve the right to judge him. 😉 #BarelyKidding

The one time I had a huge disagreement with a friend, I apologized because I was wrong, but the friendship was very much like this one. I realize that now. I overvalued it because to me, friendship is a commodity I don’t play games with. But there I was; the rock she was desperately holding on to, until a bigger rock came along and I was tossed aside like garbage.

I don’t like leeches and I really don’t like psychic vampires. They are referred to as such because they drain you. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. To the point where you eventually avoid them or cut them loose. Dealing with them causes disabling fatigue. Unfortunately, you can’t increase your iron intake and be good to go. The only way to stop the drain is to deny them access to you.

I have never seen any relationship successfully recover fully from disrespect and a breach of boundaries and trust. I’ve tried with one person in particular. Repeatedly. I inevitably decided five years ago that enough was enough and that if they came back tomorrow, I’d listen, but the friendship would still be over. Essentially, I feel the same about this situation. There’s no emotion involved at all, except the previously aforementioned ambivalence, and that’s no way to rebuild something, or start from scratch with. You can’t slap me and tell me you love me. It doesn’t work that way. It never has.

I’m in control of how accessible I am, so she will be sweating it out for as long as it takes me to be patient enough to listen without rolling my eyes. I make no promises, though.

I am not afraid of confrontation. Not even a little bit. I know who I am. I know where I’m coming from, and I know where I’m going. I can’t save every broken birds’ wings. That is not my job, nor is it a role I want to take on. I wear many hats, but it’s time to send the wrong people packing. They were never meant to be a part of my long-term tribe, and that’s okay. I’ve grown and changed, and the last thing I want to do is take on any type of false superhero aspect. In life, your ultimate, true savior is YOU. Grab a sword and take a stab at it. Please don’t wait for someone to rescue you on a white horse. This only exists in fairytales. Perhaps before you buy into such bullshit, you should read about faeries and learn something.

© 2020 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 

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By the way, Peace Talks by Jim Butcher is now available for pre-order. FINALLY! Release day is July 14th. There, I promoted something for another writer. Jim’s a badass wordsmith who shares the same birthday as I do. Give him a shot, and start with Storm Front. You won’t be sorry. #DarkUrbanFantasy

Days On The Ledge

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I’m not a good actor, ask anyone who truly knows me. I don’t excel at faking things with bullshit, smiles, and pretend laughter in an attempt to project that “Everything’s great.” When people try that with me, I wonder what they’re trying to prove by lying.

This morning, I was on that ledge. I’m not off of it, and I might never be. Everything in me was trying to push forward and plan my day, which had been planned for weeks, but my body was screaming at me to stay put. My best friend talked me down and reminded me that it’s okay to cancel if I don’t feel I can do something. So after hoping medication would help (it didn’t), I made four calls and cancelled my appointments. Part of me felt immense guilt (I rarely cancel on anyone. Especially last minute. It’s even more rare for me to cancel a medical appointment, or in this case, two.), but another part felt calmer. I’m still NOT okay. I just know that when I feel immense dread, I have to listen to my body and my intuition. Whatever Higher Power intervened on my behalf today, despite making me feel like a basket case, did the right thing. If pushing makes you question your safety, LISTEN. My intuition is NEVER wrong. It has kept me alive during natural disasters, and one unexplained disaster. You can be strong and smart, and still say, “Not today.”

These next few days, I’m going to try to be calm and focus on me. I need the break. I need quality sleep and to not be in physical or mental agony. It’s OKAY to not be okay. I lead by example. You should try it.

#MentalHealthMatters #EndTheStigma #Depression #Anxiety #Intuition#RetrainYourBrain #TalkAboutIt

copyright © 2012-2019 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Written work by author may not be shared or posted anywhere without express written consent from the author. Excerpts and quotes from the material also require consent. This authors’ work and personal photos are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws. Further protection is under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

She Was Made From Intuition

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Today is my neuro consult I’ve been waiting for since April. I’m going in with my guard up, having read reviews on several different sites that were less than stellar,and that’s polite, for me.

If I didn’t desperately need to be seen (I had exactly two migraine-free days last month) and taken seriously, I would have canceled the appointment and asked for a referral elsewhere, but I want to see how he behaves since this visit only costs me thirty minutes, or less, of my time. I don’t want to be too pessimistic or too optimistic. He could be a great doctor for me, or not. All I can do is show up and find out.

Maybe I’d feel better if I wasn’t so exhausted, stressed, etc. But the truth is; I am all of those things, and more.

Good or bad, I’ll probably write about it. We shall see. I hope everyone has an amazing Tuesday! 🙂

A Writer’s Most Powerful Weapon

“A writer’s most powerful weapon, his true strength, was his intuition, and regardless of whether he had any talent, if the critics combined to discredit an author’s nose for things, he would be reduced to a fearful creature who took a mistakenly guarded, absurdly cautious approach to his work, which would end up stifling his latent genius.” ―Félix J. Palma

There’s A Good Book

“There’s a Good Book about goodness and how to be good and so forth, but there’s no Evil Book about how to be evil and how to be bad. The Devil had no prophets to write his Ten Commandments, and no team of authors to write his biography. His case has gone completely by default. We know nothing about him but a lot of fairy stories from our parents and schoolmasters. He has no book from which we can learn the nature of evil in all its forms, with parables about evil people, proverbs about evil people, folklore about evil people. All we have is the living example of people who are least good, or our own intuition.” -Ian Fleming

It’s Called…

“It’s called an inner voice for a reason. It’s the gnawing feeling inside your stomach telling you yes or no. It’s the one voice in your life that isn’t tampered by other’s biased opinions, scars, feelings, or thoughts. Go with it, you know yourself better than anyone ever does.” ―Hope Alcocer

Speaker Of Powerful Words

“Speaker Of Powerful Words” was recently added to my professional bio. It makes me laugh because I don’t always realize how much power I put into the words I use. If you heard how I say things in my everyday life, you’d quickly learn it’s not any different from how I apply my voice to the written word.

One of the things I like about myself the most is that I don’t have dual-personalities. The way I write is the same way I speak in every format possible. Be it e-mail, letters, text messages, phone calls; I remain the same. It’s one of the things my closest friends have pointed out to me, and it’s one of the things they most love and respect about me.

Not everyone can handle unadulterated honesty or unfiltered realness. I, occasionally, struggle with the things people say to me when they are said with malice, disrespect, or a severe lack of clarity. 95% of the time, I wouldn’t say something with malicious intent to someone I care about. The tiny back-end percentage would be higher, but you haven’t met my extended family. I’d believe I was adopted if I didn’t know with absolute certainty that I wasn’t. I used to dream of being rescued by my “real parents” for many years, but now I know that the only person who can rescue me is…me.

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Words do have incredible power. It’s important to use your words wisely, even if, on occasion, it turns you into a hypocrite. No one is perfect and there are often moments in life where we don’t always practice what we preach, or follow the path we’ve personally suggested.

People often come to me with problems. They require advice and they need a trusted ear. I almost always find that they’re struggling between logic and intuition. As someone who lives an intuitive based life, I struggle with their issues because no matter what I say, they desperately want to see the good in the behavior of others, even when they’re being hurt and disrespected, or worse. I don’t care what other people may think: Good does not reside in the heart and soul of every single person in this world. Hell, jails are full of rapists, murderers, and all sorts of living proof, but it clearly bears repeating. Not everyone is good, not everyone has good intentions, and not everyone is 100% genuine. It’s sad, but it’s a fact.

In life, I take everything and everyone on a case-by-case basis. I can be a really nice person (No, I’m not kidding. Get to know me.), but if I’m shown the ugliest side of someone, the niceness goes away in 0.1 seconds. If you throw the “bitch card’ at me, you’re showing me an ugly side that isn’t something I respect. If you break it out once and I never see it again, I move on, the relationship continues in whatever form it resides in, but I will NEVER forget that I saw it. There’s a reason Scorpio is attached to my on-line profile, it’s not just my astrological sign; I can and will see through your bullshit. I have the power to sting, and I’m incredibly self-aware. I cannot unhear or unsee red flags, whatever they may be. I attribute that to being intuitive and living my life based on sensory perception.

I don’t understand people who will spit on you and tell you it’s raining. I don’t understand passive-aggressive people who turn the tiniest comment into the issue of the century. Far too many people struggle with difference of opinion. It’s their way or the highway. Unfortunately, they don’t understand that life is full of grey area. I’m a person of extremes, but I spend a lot of time in the grey, so I understand it maybe too well. I am baffled by people who refuse to expand their own minds and learn. How else do you grow? The stagnant life is pitiful indeed.

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Whenever I see “Speaker Of Powerful Words” on my bio, I feel as though it comes with immense responsibility. People talk a lot about athletes being role models for our children, but WE should be role models for our children and our children’s children. We should be the teachers who inspire them with words and actions to be better people. There is an exceptionally long list of ways to go about that.

I believe it’s important not to treat children like babies and talk to them like they’re morons. By all means, allow them to have their childhood, but do not be afraid to tackle the tough stuff. Uninformed children, or children that spend their entire lives being lied to by their parents, become insecure and completely unsure of themselves with age. They lack much-needed self-confidence. I have seen this carry over into adulthood, so please, avoid the bullshit and be real.

No one ever spoke “baby talk” to me, so when I started speaking, I spoke in full sentences. That was one of the ways I knew that adults took me seriously. I wasn’t encouraged to be the “next President of the United States” (who the hell would want that job?! No one sane!), but all of my talents were fostered.

My athletic ability was not ignored. I spent a huge chunk of my life as a gymnast, starting at age 4. Later on when my voice teacher called my mother and told her that I could sing, really sing, and that she wanted to tutor me privately, I got voice lessons. To this day, I still sing.

When my writing ability became my voice, it was not ignored. I was enrolled in a performing arts school at the time because of my singing, but every English, History, and Science teacher was completely blown away by me. I have incredibly fond memories of them and how encouraging they were of me. They all wanted me to move on and shine.

When I moved on to major in journalism and creative writing, that’s when I came upon my first real critic. When a professor tells you you’re “ruining the class” because of what you write and tells you he will continue to fail you until you drop the class, you can either keep going or you can laugh. I did both. He’d belittle me three times a week and I’d go home laughing because I was being published for thinking outside the box. In a room full of roughly 30 of the best writers in that part of New York City at the time, he singled me out constantly. Nothing I wrote was ever “good enough”. It only made me better. It gave me incredible vision for the future.

The years have come and gone and I have yet to meet someone who agrees with him. And if I did…I’d laugh.

I may not be everyone’s cup of coffee or tea, and that is perfectly acceptable to me, but at the end of each day, I am a speaker of powerful words. I salute you for reading my work and clicking LIKE.

Enjoy the updated bio and by all means, feel free to follow me on Twitter. Anyone that would also like to connect with me on Facebook can message me.

Thank you to #ChiropracticDaily for featuring my second article on migraines. It is most appreciated.

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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