Rocky road ahead

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His smile is what got me.

I sat in Monk’s, a local bar near my team housing in AmeriCorps NCCC. We were stationed in Dubuque, Iowa; a little town I had never known existed. And we volunteered at The National Mississippi River Aquarium and Museum.

I was dressed to kill that night so I wasn’t surprised when I caught his eye and he walked up to initiate a conversation with me. His name was “Rocky”. That fact alone should have been enough evidence for me to ignore him, but what freshly turned 21 year old lady could reject those looks? And he knew it too. He exuded confidence and charm. He was 25 years old, firmly built, and was just in Dubuque attending a local college. He was Nepalese and, to be honest, I never knew what that was or what the hell Nepal was for that matter until I met him. He’d always correct me if I slipped up and called him Indian. “Nepal is a little country above India and below China.”, he would say. And I never forgot.

We were the only two in the bar outside of the bartender. Our eyes firmly planted onto our laptop screens, fully taking advantage of the free wifi; only lifting our eyes to exchange sudden awkward glances. I wore my golden oriental printed dress that collected at the neck, exposing my bare shoulders. I ditched my nerdy, thick emo glasses that day and actually wore make-up and attempted to wear contacts. If it weren’t for my celibacy, it was practically a law that I had to get laid that night. Everything was perfect. I had been single for as long as I had been celibate so I was hoping to find a new boyfriend. I met Rocky a little before I started seeing Matt. Before Matt, Rocky was a devil, but I soon learned that Rocky was merely child’s play compared to what Matt put me through. There is nothing more lonely than being single in AmeriCorps. I was the only girl on my team without a boyfriend so, when he asked me if I wanted to go see a movie with him, I tried to control myself from yelling “YES!” It was my (very rare) day off from work and my only options that night were either:

 

A. Go back to my AmeriCorps “home” and go to sleep at 10pm on my day off like a loser.

or

B. Go to the movies with this insanely gorgeous Sex God.

 

The answer seemed pretty obvious.

I always seemed to jump at any chance to get away from my team. Relations with my team weren’t so good at the time. Everyone ganged up on our team leader and, when they weren’t ganging up on our team leader, it was either Matt or myself that they loved to pick at. So I jumped at any chance to free myself from my team. The only thing that would have stopped me from saying ‘yes’ that night was my celibacy promise. I knew putting myself in this position could potentially lead to disaster, but what harm could come from a movie date? Safe, classy, and traditional, right?

Right.

We didn’t even know the movie times or what movies were even showing at the time and I got the feeling that neither he nor I really cared about the movie at all. We walked up to the ticket counter and I paused a bit. That awkward pause that every girl does before buying anything on a date in hopes that the guy will be a gentleman and offer to pay. He bought his own ticket and looked at me like I was insane. That’s ok, right? I’m a independent woman, right? I can handle buying my own movie ticket on a date, right? My feminist views flare whenever the man is always expected to pay, but I do feel that whomever initiated the date should at least offer to pay. Am I wrong? After getting my face cracked, we walked near the doors to go inside and, not surprisingly,  there was no attempt at all on his part to hold the door for me. And, when I say this, I’m not saying blatantly and obviously holding the door in a chivalrous manner like they do in old movies. I simply mean holding the door normally like any human being would do for another human being. The door practically slammed in my face. I’m an independent woman, right? This is still a good date, right? Right?

We wanted to see Inception, but since Inception started at a later time, we decided to watch The Lottery Ticket first until Inception started. Our plan was to sneak into the Inception theater when it started. I had no desire to watch Lottery Ticket. You know, that lame movie with Lil’ Bow Wow in it. Or, at least, I thought it was lame until I watched it. It was actually pretty decent and surprisingly funny. I was a bit sad when Rockey nudged my side, telling me it was time for Inception to start. I didn’t want to leave and I was scared to sneak in to see another movie, but that was the plan so we did. It was a grueling two hours while watching the movie. You could tell neither of us were really into it and weren’t really interested in it at all. Our minds were elsewhere. Things I should have understood about the movie, I didn’t understand because I was too busy thinking about other things: “I wonder how his lips taste?” It was the same uncomfortableness you would have any time you sit two people who are attracted to each other together in a dark theater. And we were about the only people in the theater.

 

When the movie was over, we made a big sigh of relief. We were free to do what we really wanted to do. It was about midnight, really late at night. To be honest, I had no plans for what would happen next after the movie, but, I suppose, they should have been to take me “home”, give each other a big church hug, and go our separate ways. But that would be boring, wouldn’t it? He turned to me asked if I wanted to get a hotel room together and my mind exploded with all the doubt and questions. If I say “yes”, this would just be another Dani situation all over again. I would break my celibacy and I would hate myself. But I wanted to say ‘yes’. I wanted to feel him close to me and, most of all, I didn’t want this night to end. I didn’t want to be alone, I didn’t want to be bored and, most of all, I didn’t want to go back “home” with my teammates. I wanted him to stay so I said, “Yes.” And I was for sure Narada rolled over in his grave.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When we got to the hotel, I was impressed. It wasn’t a cheap Bates Motel room like Dani would always get. It was definitely a step up. “If you’re going to be a ho, at least be a classy ho.”, I thought. The room had two beds, a tv, a refrigerator, and a bathroom. I immediately jumped on the bed and grabbed for the remote. I might as well have screamed, “MINE!” I was a kid in a toy store. You may not know this, but having tv access, an actual bed, a clean bathroom, and hot running shower water are a rarity in AmeriCorps. It had been months seen I had access to any of these things. I wanted to sit on the toilet and stand in the shower for no reason at all.

After a while of playing with the t.v. and awkward conversations, he spared no time in getting the deed started. The lights were out and the only thing glaring was a muted t.v. screen. Just as Dani would do, he climbed on top of me and I almost threw up in my mouth reliving my past life and my late night escapades with Dani. My mind raced with thoughts, “Is this really how my celibacy is going to end?” “Did I just fail Narada?” and, most importantly, “Oh my God, does he notice how hairy my vagina is?!” I stopped shaving when I started my celibacy back in 2008 in a desperate attempt to stop myself from having sex and I couldn’t help but yell in my mind at the time: “IT’S NOT WORKING!”

He reached down into my underwear into the African jungle (aka my mass of pubs) and he, surprisingly didn’t say a word. He didn’t even flinch. He was merely inches away from entering inside me when he suddenly stopped. He just stopped and rolled over to the side of the bed. And I believe I let out the biggest sigh of relief in the world. I almost slapped myself right then and there for stupidly almost ending my celibacy.

I turned my head with my body still exposed, “What’s wrong?”

He sat on the edge of the bed with his head sunk into his hands, clasping his face. He was crying. “I can’t do this.”

I couldn’t believe my eyes (and ears) and I couldn’t have been happier. If I believed in God, it was like he had sent down an angel. I smiled, “It’s ok. Nothing wrong with that!”

At first, I thought he had erection problems, but that wasn’t it at all. He went on to explain how guilty he felt because of his religious beliefs and mostly because he loved someone else. He told me a story about how he loved a girl back in Nepal, but he had to leave her in Nepal because she was having visa issues. So he fled to America by himself for a better life. He felt like he was cheating on her.

He continuously apologized and asked if I were mad at him, but I was more than happy. I was happy I didn’t end my celibacy with him and I was happy I didn’t break my promise to Narada. What scared me the most about that night though is that if he had not stopped, I would have kept going and went through with it. That realization alone made my stomach turn. When apologies were exchanged, he demanded we sleep in separate beds so he wouldn’t be tempted to do anything he would regret and I gladly followed through. Luckily, the hotel room had two beds and we slept a mere few feet away from each other. I slept in my bed and he slept in his, and I was beyond amazed at his self control. And my own, for that matter.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The next morning was awful. I didn’t expect getting a hotel room and I certainly didn’t plan to spend the night. I had no extra clothes and I didn’t even have my glasses with me. I had contacts, but, of course, I couldn’t sleep in them so I had to throw them away. So, when we woke up the next morning, I was completely blind. I blinked furiously, wide eyed, and looked over at him.

I was greeted with the sight of him shirtless first thing in the morning. “Ugh, why are your eyes so baggy?”

 

—–_______—–

Well, excuse me. Just take me home now, please.

 

He took me “home” and quickly drove off to catch an early morning college class. He had no sympathy for me. He didn’t even drop me off a few feet away from my housing like I wanted him to. Instead, for once, he was courteous enough to drop me off right in front of my volunteer housing. Every good ho knows that’s a no-no. Why would I want anyone to see me? I had to do the walk of shame back to my room and prayed to Poseidon that none of my teammates would be up this early. It was like 6am and, of course, the only person up and walking about like it was 3pm was my roommate Kristin. Honestly, what the fuck, Kristin? Go to sleep. Can’t you see I’m trying to get away from judgement here? Normal people aren’t even supposed to be up at this time. Ho hours are specifically 3am-6am. Did you not get the memo?

Ok, jokes aside, I was expecting to be judged from head to toe by my teammates. It was nothing new to me. It was the same look of disappointment my dad gave me when I snuck in the house at the age of 17 after losing my virginity to Dani (my current boyfriend). The only difference this time is that I didn’t have sex and I was so proud of myself for that fact so I honestly didn’t care what my teammates thought. “Let them talk.”, I thought. AmeriCorps is no different than high school. There is no privacy and everyone is in everyone’s business. It is a given fact since we have to live with each other 24/7. I just figured, what ever a 21 year old woman does on her off day is her own business and I specifically remember the AmeriCorps director, stating during a meeting that sexual activity (or presumed sexual activity) was ok just so long as it was planned off campus/housing (which I didn’t do with Matt, but whatever : / ). I believe that was the only time during that meeting were my ears perked up and I actually listened.

The first thing she asked me when our eyes met was, “Where have you been?”

“None of your business”, is what I should have said, but, unfortunately, since birth, I’ve been cursed with honesty. I must always tell the truth so I immediately casually told her the truth like it was nothing. Like I just took a casual stroll to the corner candy store and decided to come “home” at 6am. “I was out with a guy, but it didn’t work out. He loves another girl.” Why on Earth would I say that? I wanted to face palm after I let those words escape my mouth. Surprisingly, she didn’t judge me (not out loud to my face anyway). She just said “oh, ok” and that was that.

Our team leader gave me a big speech in his team leader voice about how I should be a “role model” (I always hated this term. I’m not trying to be a “role model” to anyone. I’m being myself.) to my other teammates because I was the assistant team leader. I always felt bad because of it. I didn’t have sex with him, but I shouldn’t have went out with him at all. All in all, I was still happy with myself though because the old me would have had sex with him that night. Then a few days after the speech, when we were preparing to leave out the “house”, my team leader turned to me before leaving out the door and said, “I’m going to go get laid!” and winked at me.

>________> I’m done.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Rocky and I stayed friends briefly after the incident before I had to leave to Milwaukee for a disaster relief assignment. He was the third biggest asshole I had met in my life (Matt being the first and my first boyfriend, Raul, being the second). Whenever I called him, he acted obviously annoyed. I almost thought he was joking. That is, whenever he rarely answered the phone when I called and he rarely (if ever) called me. Once he even hung up on me complaining that he had to study for a test. I never had sex with Rocky and, despite how much I wanted to, I never even got the chance to kiss him. He would never let me kiss him. “I don’t like how I kiss.”, he would say.

He took me to his favorite walking trail and showed me the sights of the city. Then he went on to tell me about all the girls he seduced on the trail late at night. We had play fist fights and we would laugh at each other. It wasn’t all bad, but mostly bad. The worst experience was when he drove me home one day and explained to me how he doesn’t like girls who sleep around and how he prefers girls who are more innocent. I cringed on the inside and I immediately wanted to jump out of his moving vehicle onto the pavement. Understandable, but I see nothing more than the pot calling the kettle black here. In other words, I only see a hypocrite or, in my mind, even worse than a hypocrite: a sexist womanizer.

 

Then he asked me, “How many guys have you slept with?”

After a guy tells you he doesn’t like “sluts”, the last thing you want to tell him is the truth.

“Two”, I blurted out without thinking and I instantly hated myself for lying. It’s rare that I ever lie, but, for once in my life, I actually felt guilty enough to lie. I should have been true to myself. I should have been honest. I shouldn’t have been afraid to be myself. There was nothing to be ashamed of. The honest answer was four. I’ve slept with four men in my life, but I always wished I could subtract two of those men because they were assholes. So that’s what I did. I subtracted two and waited to see if he would buy the answer.

“Two? Really? No, you’re lying!”

Uh-oh. He caught on to me. Could he read through my shy demeanor?

“A girl who goes to a hotel room with a guy on the first night is not that innocent.”

Shit, shit, shit. This guy was good. He could read through me. But, eventually and surprisingly, after going on to ask me if I have STD’s (mother fucka, do YOU have STD’s?) and me denying it profusely, he bought into it. I smiled to myself as if I had won a war then I turned the tables onto him, “How many girls have you slept with?”

Just as me, he also answered smoothly: “I’ve just had sex with one girl.”

“A guy who goes to a hotel room with a girl on a first night is not that innocent.”

Both of us lied that night. The car had two liars planted in its seats riding to Liars-ville on the corner of Liar Central. But we just sat there and smiled and accepted it.

 

The night before our project ended in Dubuque, I went to meet up with Rocky at Monk’s, the bar we met at. I figured I should at least give a proper goodbye to him. Of course, he wasn’t there when I arrived. I bought him his favorite beer- some strong manly beer that only men drink- and waited for him to arrive. When he did arrive, he spoke with me for literally about a minute and gave me the most awkward church hug in the world. He didn’t stay long enough to finish the beer I gave him and I don’t even think he said thank you. He rushed to get into his car and I followed him thinking he would take me home; a mere five minute drive down the road. But he basically told me to get out, he closed the door, and that was the last I saw of him. I walked “home” by myself crying.

He texted me randomly and briefly during my next volunteer project in Macedonia, Iowa, but then he stopped. I didn’t hear from him again until AmeriCorps ended and he randomly sent me a message on Facebook apologizing for how he treated me. He told me that I was the prettiest and kindest girl he had ever met and that he would like to meet up with me again. Yeah right. I told him I was back in my home state, Georgia, and that I now have a boyfriend whom I love (Dani).

He said “ok” and that was the last I had ever heard of Rocky.

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This is the “wiki-up” my team and I built. We had to harvest cattails on the side of highway, thread the cattails together by hand, bend massive tree branches for support, and basically build this thing with our sweat, tears, and maybe a bit of blood along the way.

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This is Monk’s; where I met Rocky. This is by far the coolest bar in all history of mankind. It is so relaxed and chill inside. Very dimly lit with a basement and they even have a bed in inside… It’s almost as if they want you to do something dirty >___>

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This was our “home” for the Dubuque, IA project in AmeriCorps. Now do you understand why I continuously wrote “home” in quotation marks? I am one of the few people who can sing the “I’m on a boat” song and really mean it. It’s a dredge boat the museum would hold tours on. Sometimes we would be in our rooms sleeping or casually getting dressed only to be greeted by an 8 year old and his tourist dad with a camera. Most of the time, they thought we were wax figures so my teammates thought it would be funny to just stand really still and play along. Lol.

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The trolley cart. I would ride up a steep hill to get a good view of Dubuque. Scary, no?

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The view on the hill above the trolley cart.

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We worked with all sorts of reptiles and marine life (and bugs ^^;;;;) for our project. We helped feed them and clean their cages. I believe this was on about the very first day we volunteered there. This was the shark tank.

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Cute lizard ^____^ We mainly only worked with the smaller lizards though. There was a little komodo dragon at the facility that needed to be walked like a dog, haha. I was a bit scared of some of them because they can bite (obviously).

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Outside the entrance of the museum.

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One of the exhibits we would help with. It’s a water works exhibit were kids learn about different aspects of water and get to play around in it. It was always wet there so our main job was to really watch the kids and make sure they were safe and squeegie water off of equipment. We conducted tours and educated the public about the different exhibits while helping around the museum.

 

I’m sure the other teams in AmeriCorps were jealous of us. If they weren’t, they should have been. Honestly, in my opinion, we got the best projects over any other team within our unit. Just about all our projects were in fun locations. In my mind, I would joke and say it was because our team leader had sex with the AmeriCorps director. Haha, but, seriously, we had so much fun in AmeriCorps and helped so many people. It was a great experience.

Matt and the end to my 2.5 year celibacy (part 3)

traceycurtain1

The Tracey Fragments

Kayla was the average type of girl that the average type of American male would go crazy for; a petite white girl with long, brunette hair, a striking face resembling a model, and, most importantly, big breasts. I don’t think there was any guy in AmeriCorps at the time who didn’t want to date Kayla, but Kayla already had a boyfriend back in her home state (Connecticut) and, on top of having a boyfriend in her home state, she also basically had a boyfriend in AmeriCorps (John) and another soon to be playmate, Matt. And, of course, like all pretty girls, she was a bitch. No story would be complete without the bitch. And I don’t feel sorry for saying that because just about everyone on the team called her a bitch and I always stood up for her at the time whenever they did. Until she started being a bitch to me. But none of that matters because she was pretty.

And that’s all that matters.

Kayla could have stopped in the middle of a hall way, pulled her pants down, and took a dump in public and just about all the males on our team would have defended her decision. She could do no wrong. There was no one else who supported her more than Matt. Despite the fact that she was always openly mean to him, he bowed down to her and threw rose petals at her feet.

 

So it was no surprise that Matt sat with her over me during our road trip back to Iowa for transition. It was expected.

 

Because of Matt’s infatuation with Kayla, it always took me by surprise when he (supposedly) took interest in me. Once Kayla was bullying him as usual and he openly shouted something along the lines of him stop chasing her and pursue me instead because, as Matt always said, “Courtney is the only person on the team who is nice to me.”

And it was true. There was no one I looked up to and admired more than Matt. I put him on the highest of pedestals. Matt was my first Angel in The Angel Project. I attached to him because, just like me, he was bullied. The Angel Project is basically an experiment I created in 2010 were I pick one person a year to be a guardian angel to. I tend to pick people who are bullied because they remind me of myself. I wanted nothing more than for Matt to be happy. I bought him soup when he was sick (only to find out he didn’t like condensed soup), always complimented him, and always made sure to stand up for him when he was bullied. Falling in love with him was never part of the plan.

I just laughed at the time when he said it though. That was back before we kissed. Matt being with me was simply a joke. Despite his size and doormat reputation, Matt was popular. And I wasn’t.

 

 

During transition in Iowa, Matt hung out with his friends (one being Kayla) and did popular kid things while I stayed inside and played Small Worlds in the computer lounge by myself like I did for every transition. It was rather sick how big my crush on Matt became. It was almost awkward. My depression completely disappeared, I constantly smiled and giggled (Yes, giggled. You know that annoying laugh a girl makes when she likes a guy), and it was like a huge bubble of positive energy engulfed my body and spilled over onto anyone else near me. So big, that if you passed me in the hall way, you would either be eaten alive by the bubble or pushed to the wall and squished to death. My only mission during transition was to get closer to Matt.

Sadly, transition only lasted a few days so it didn’t give me much time and, even more sadly, my phone was being a little bitch at the time and didn’t work so I couldn’t contact him that way. My only means of contacting him was to meet up with him face to face so I was determined to find him. However, being a popular kid, he was never in his room when I visited. Once I sat outside his dorm room waiting for him, but he never came. I was tempted to knock, but I was afraid who would answer or if he would answer and think I was a complete psychopath. And, whenever I would meet him, he always busy talking to a friend and rejected my offer when I asked to hang out with him. It got so bad I one day randomly read a list sitting on a counter top.

(Wow, typing this out is making me feel crazy)

 

It was a list with all the signatures of people who wanted to participate in a volunteer service activity for volunteer hours. We needed a certain number of volunteer hours to graduate from the AmeriCorps program. I read it diligently and, low and behold, Matt’s name was on the list. I already had more than enough volunteer hours so I didn’t even need to sign up, but I signed up anyway just on the off chance that I would get to see him. And it wasn’t just any ol’ feed the hungry type volunteer activity. It was the type of activity any Southern girl such as myself would dread. It was an activity to build cardboard box houses out in the freezing cold with the possibility of sleeping in them over night to ‘walk in the shoes’ of the homeless. My first thought was “FUCK THAT SHIT!” But my desire to see Matt was so strong, I basically signed my life away.

 

 

On the day of the activity, Matt was there alright. But not once did he ever talk to me or acknowledge my existence. I even looked at him dead in his eyes and smiled. Still no reply. It was like we were strangers. We were instructed to separate onto teams to build our cardboard houses and, of course, I wasn’t paired onto Matt’s team. Instead, I was thrown onto another team with members of other AmeriCorps teams. Being paired with members of other AmeriCorps teams is like someone deserting you in the middle of a foreign country. It was like someone cut my limbs off and told me to swim. You get so used to working with your teammates, it’s hard to envision working with anyone else. Every team has their own drama, but, when you’re forced to work with other teams, it’s like a part of their drama gets stuck onto  you and you suddenly become drenched in Maple 4 drama or Maple 3 drama or Maple 7 drama (our unit was named after trees: Maple)  and somewhere along the line you actually become involved in their drama and passionate about it and you can’t figure out why.

I was paired with Allie and Greg, the two love birds, and a peaceful girl by the name of Autumn. I didn’t get to help build the cardboard house though because I immediately jumped on the chance of working on a volunteer project that required me to work inside. I almost shouted “YES!” when they offered me the position. You know, inside where the normal people are and it’s not cold. Yeah. To be honest, I didn’t care much about the project anymore since I didn’t get the chance to work with Matt. I didn’t get the chance to work with my temporary teammates for the project either because I worked inside, but I did get the chance to talk with one. His name was Greg. Greg Cowan, to be exact. He was the only person who made an attempt to talk to me throughout the whole project. My first reaction upon meeting Greg was, “Oh my God, this guy is crazy.”

Greg would soon become a key factor in my life and he is the very main reason why I am alive today to write this. I owe my life to this guy. But I didn’t know it at the time. I just thought he was crazy. We stood outside in the freezing cold preparing to end the volunteer project and Greg stood next to me with a mere white t-shirt on. The organization gave out free coffee and he clenched the coffee cup to his chest. “If you hold something warm over your heart, it warms your blood up when it’s pumped.”, he said while obviously trying to fight the urge to shiver and doing a good job at it, if I do say so myself. He moved around and jumped while explaining that the movement would warm him up and I couldn’t help but think, “Why didn’t you just bring a coat?!” Then he went on about building endurance for the Marines and blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda, yadda.

 

 

If you don’t believe in being talked to death, Greg could prove you wrong. Greg could slip and fall and still be talking while in the motion of falling. Nothing could stop him. While, on the other hand, I was eerily quiet. So quiet, you would forget I was in a room even if I was the only person in the room. If there is anything Greg loved to talk about, it was the military. When he wasn’t talking about the military, he was talking about drugs, and when he wasn’t talking about either, he was talking about me. It seemed that ever since our meeting during that project, Greg grew an immediate infatuation with me and followed me around wherever I went just as I had followed Matt around. It was very rare that anyone ever spoke to me in AmeriCorps. I was weird and I was quiet, but Greg didn’t seem to care.

In fact, just as Matt was crazy about Kayla, Greg was crazy about me. I became Kayla (without the looking like a model and the being a bitch part) and Greg became Matt (without the being fat part). For once, I finally saw life as Kayla had saw it. If I had jumped off a cliff, Greg would have jumped too just as Matt would have jumped off a cliff for Kayla. Just as with Kayla, I could have pulled my pants down and took a shit right on the middle of the floor and Greg would have defended my choice until the day he died.

“Leave her alone! She couldn’t get to the bathroom in time! Let her shit in peace!”, he would yell while waving away the disapproving crowd.

In that moment, in Greg’s eyes, I could do no wrong. To him, I was perfect.

But I didn’t know it at the time. Just as Kayla only saw Matt as a friend, I only saw Greg as being my friend as well. He would watch me play Small Worlds in the computer lab and he would actually watch my favorite movies with me. It almost became a religious event: Heather (another one of my rare AmeriCorps friends), Greg ,and I would spend nights watching movies together or having long talks (which I called “therapy sessions”) and for once I felt a real friendship coming together. Despite my quiet demeanor, Greg actually made an attempt to break through my barriers and ask me personal questions about my life. “What is your favorite color?” “What type of movies do you like?” And it surprised me every time that he would even care. Questions that I wished Matt would ask me, but he never did.

If you are confused, let me break it down: I chased Matt, while Matt chased Kayla, while Greg chased me. Got it? Good.

 

 

I figured on about the second day of Greg talking to me that he saw us as being more than friends when he offered to pay for my meal at McDonald’s and continued asking me to go places with him. I could see it in his eyes. He practically had cartoon hearts in his eyes. I immediately explained to him that my heart belonged to someone else while trying not to sound like a bitch. I explained to him that I had a crush on Matt and that Matt had been ignoring me all transition. Surprisingly, he wasn’t offended or sad. He was really nice about it and gave me tips to attract him.

“If you like a guy, sometimes you have to be bold and up front. Some guys don’t pick up on hints.”

Letting him finger my pussy wasn’t evidence to him enough that I like him?!

I always took Greg’s comments to heart. He was like a guru. Once he looked me in the eye and said, “Courtney, you want to know how to can get a man to fall for you?” I actually erected my back and I stood up to hear his answer. I actually hoped that he would give me some hidden secret as to why I had been single for so long and couldn’t find a man. He took a deep breath and said, “All you have to do is smile at him.”

And I sunk back down in my chair in defeat.

 

 

“Smile? I’ve been doing that for years and it has got me nowhere.”

My new car

Finally, at the age of 24, I can say that I have my very own car now :)

It makes me even more happy to know that I bought it with my own money… Ok, my brother helped by paying $300 of it too >___> but whatever! I paid for most of it and I’m so proud of myself. I’m one step closer to becoming fully independent.

Some of you (ok, most of you) probably think “Well, you are twenty four. You should have been had a car by now.”

And you are right. I should have. But we all know life never goes according to plan.

I’ve always been embarrassed to admit this, but I never even got my driver’s license until I was 22 years old. Most teens are eager to learn to drive, but I was always TERRIFIED of driving. The fact that Narada died in a car crash didn’t help my fear. Having control is what scared me. Too much control, in my opinion. I could end my own life and someone else’s with just a mere turn of the wheel.

I had my first driver’s test when I was about 18 years old and literally bombed it. I passed the written portion with a 95%, but I failed the driving portion. You know, the portion that meant everything. I wasn’t prepared at all and I was beyond nervous. In fact, on the way to the driver’s test, I almost crashed into another car that was in my blind side and died on the way to the driver’s test. When the test started, I got nervous and didn’t even know how to honk the damn horn of the car. It was definitely one of the most embarrassing moments of my life. It didn’t help that the lady giving me the test seemed like she just got out of military school. She gave no fucks that day and I don’t blame her. I was awful. She wouldn’t even let me drive off of the parking lot and sent me home immediately when I couldn’t parallel park. Running over a cone didn’t help.

“That could have been a child”, she said looking at me with a stern face.

“Well, it was clearly a cone”, I thought.

 

My self esteem plummeted straight to the floor.

When I hit the age of 22, after years of enduring awkward, polite silences when I told people I still didn’t have a license, I figured it was time to officially face my fears. There’s an age you reach when it officially becomes creepy when you don’t have a driver’s license and I’m pretty sure 22 is that age. A girl can pass for not having a driver’s license at the age of 18. You’re still in the phase were it’s considered “cute” and people excuse it because you’re so young, but 22? Being 22 and not having a driver’s license is like walking around with a pedophile beard. It just becomes awkward and painfully obvious.

This is for you, Narada“, I said as I stepped into the car and sat in the drivers seat.

It was my mom’s car; the car I would do the test in. A burgandy red Envoy. My dad was preparing to send me through a two week boot camp for the driver’s test, aka hell. Whenever I didn’t go fast enough on the road, he forced me to press my foot down on the gas to go faster. Invisible tears rolled down my face and, if you were quiet enough, you could possibly hear my faint cries for help. to this day, you can probably find blood stains somewhere on the steering wheel where I gripped it too hard trying to save my life.

I took the driver’s test for the second time and literally passed with a straight 100%. That was one of the happiest days of my life. Absolutely nothing went wrong on that driver’s test and parallel parking was the very first thing she had me do. I was completely confident and ready that day. It also helped that the lady giving me the test wasn’t Satan.
Two years later, I now have this:

 

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It’s a 2000 Volkswagen Beetle. The love of my life, next to Dani. I think I slept walked the night I bought and went outside in my PJ’s and humped it. That’s how much I love this car. It may seem lame, but a beetle has always been my dream car. I wanted black, but grey will do just fine.

Dani and I have went back and forth on what to name the car. “You can’t have a car without a name,” I thought.

Vegeta  was all I could think of.

“Give me a day to think about it.”, I told Dani.

The very next day, Dani called me and asked me “Have you decided yet?”

“Yes.” I paused for a bit. “I’m going to name it Bug.”

It wasn’t the most original, but it stuck in my head more than Vegeta.

Dani just smiled and sarcastically said, “Well, I’m sure no one else has ever thought of that name for a beetle.”

And we both laughed.

To this day, he still refuses to call it Bug and calls him Vegeta instead.

Mother’s Day

I feel extremely late writing this, but it’s better late than never, right?

Mother’s Day was not too long ago and I just wanted to give thanks to my mom for all she does. Then I realized that no matter what I do, nothing will ever be a big enough gift to suffice to what my mom has sacrificed to raise me. That in itself is a bit depressing. I looked down at my card and flowers and for a minute thought, “Why even bother?”

It was insulting that my mom was even happy that I gave her a gift. Like, “Oh yeah, I gave you life and basically sold my soul for you, but I totally wasn’t expecting anything today! Flowers and a card? Oh boy, this is my lucky day! Thank you! You are the best daughter ever!”

>________>

That just added salt to the wound.

Is this all it took to win the “Best Daughter Ever” trophy? I thought it would take so much more to earn such a title. Or, at least, it deserves so much more to earn the title. I should have named a star after her or cured cancer, but, no, I just stood there with a card and some flowers.

With that said, does it help in any way that it was a funny card? Funny cards should at least give me 10 cool points. At least.

Then I found out about a lovely website called Kangu and became completely inspired. As the website put it, “Kangu is an online crowdfunding platform for safe births… you can fund a specific pregnant woman’s access to clean, life-saving healthcare services.”

How awesome is that? If there is any great Mother’s Day gift it is this and not just for my mom, but also for the mom I would be helping. I found out about the website from a link that Maggie Doyne posted on her Facebook. If you didn’t know, Maggie Doyne is my ultimate hero. I look up to her in so many ways. When she graduated high school, she took a gap year through an organization in Nepal where she did service work and she felt so bad for the children there that she built a whole school starting with merely $5000 of saving from her baby sitting summer job. She is the founder of Blink Now and the Kopila Valley School. And she did this all before the age of 25. How awesome is that?

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I actually first found out about her from the back of a potato chip bag while I serving in AmeriCorps NCCC.

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Of course, the description on the chip bag is a bit dated. Since reading that in 2010, she has now already built several schools. It is my ultimate dream to be like her one day and start my own non-profit organization to help others.

So, when she mentioned Kangu, I had to jump on it. I immediately dove it and took on the task of selecting a mother. It was harder than I thought and tugged on my conscience more than I thought. I thought it would make me feel better, but donating a measly $20 seemed like nothing when I spend so much on myself every day. Every time I buy make-up or wigs or anything pertaining to gyaru, a little part of me dies. I always think, “None of this means anything.” It’s all just material things that I will soon lose interest in. I could be saving my money to do something great like Maggie, but, no. I spend it on gyaru shit. Well, I do save $200 a month, but is that enough?

Outside of that, it also killed me just simply picking a mother. Whenever I picked a Ugandan woman, I felt racist and, when I picked a Nepalese woman, I felt like I was a traitor. Then I tried focusing on new, young mothers because I figured their lives would be harder. Then I felt awful for thinking that too. All mothers need help regardless of whether they are a new mother or not. It’s odd how something so generous and sweet seemed to have brought out my nasty side. I didn’t want to be bias in any way about the mother I chose. It got so bad, I ultimately decided to pick at random. I literally moved my mouse up and down and pointed at the screen randomly with my eyes closed. Whoever my finger pointed to, that is who I helped.

I opened my eyes and this is who my finger pointed to:

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Her name is Radhika.

Radhika is a 20 year old first time mother. Though she has not decided on a name for a her child, if she has a girl, she hopes she will study computer technology and become a Computer Technician, and if she has a son, she plans to have him study to become a Doctor. She advises other mothers to monitor their health and deliver their baby at a hospital if possible. She will be transported to Bayalpata Hospital for her delivery by ambulance, or jeep. Radhika would like to thank funders from her inner heart, she feels that they are like god for helping people like her.

My shoulders shuddered at the fact that she would want her son to have a greater career than her daughter and the feminist side of me almost picked another woman, but the intelligent side of me stopped that thought. Some of the women’s descriptions are eerily repeated so I’m assuming these aren’t their translated words or probably aren’t their opinions at all.

I quickly opened my purse, pulled out my debit card, and helped this random lady become one step closer to obtaining a safe birth.

I was relieved.

And filled with happiness.

Gyaru nails vs dolly kei nails

While looking through pictures online on Tumblr and postings of the Grimoire shop staff, I couldn’t help but notice the differences in gyaru nails and dolly kei nails. I apologize if any of these nails are anyone’s personal design. I just searched random images on Google and collected these through image sites like Tumblr. If you want me to take one down, please let me know.

Which style do you think is best? ^^

Gyaru Kei Nails

Think Cat Woman and imagine the girl you don’t want to get in a fight with. Deadly, sharp, and (at times) long. The nails are as loud as the style itself.

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Dolly Kei Nails

Short, neat, and clean cut. Rounded tips. Definitely the type of girl whose ass you could whoop in a fist fight. Dark and morbid. Think fairy tale gone wrong.

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Both styles are beautiful in their own way, but I think my heart points more towards dolly kei nails. They just look so regal and, just like the style, they remind me of morbid fairy tales. I wish I didn’t have to wipe asses for a living. I can’t wait until the day I can decorate my nails instead of seeing them deteriorate from use of latex gloves. I don’t think all gyaru nails must be overly decorated and super long though. Some styles are cute and short. I’m not such a fan of the super long gyaru nails. They remind me too much of the stereotypical “ghetto” nails that black women are always portrayed wearing.

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Why is that it’s “cute” when Asian girls do it, but, when black women do it, it’s considered “ghetto”? :x

Any Black Woman Can Get the Video Model Body

Olivia Rochelle:

This post was a life saver <3

Originally posted on Hip-Hop Fever's Weblog:

melyssa_ford42PAY ATTENTION BEAUTIFUL

You can have a gorgeous body like Beyonce Knowles, Ashanti, Melysaa Ford or Kim Kadarshian.  It is absolutely possible at any for any Black or Latina women to have a gorgeous body.  I don’t care about genetics.  I don’t care if you had a baby.  I don’t care if you had three babies.  You can have a gorgeous body; it just takes a bit of work.

I know what you are thinking, “I don’t have the energy for too much exercise.”  Cut it out.  You will only need twenty minutes of exercise daily, if you follow the right diet.

In order to win the war for the perfect body, you need the right weapons.  If you are slim and you are trying to become more voluptuous, your most important weapons are protein, a pair of dumbbells, and a strong will.  If you are heavy, your biggest weapon…

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Chinatown and my birthday

I turned 24 years old on April 22.

I’m not sure what to say about that. I’m getting old, maybe? No? Not sure.

Nothing was done on that day. I just stayed home all day by myself. My mom did bring me a card, cake, and ice cream though so that completely made my day. That was all I needed… Or, at least, I thought so.

What I really wanted to do was go to China Town in Atlanta.

Yes, I said China Town in Atlanta. I didn’t know there was one. Ok, it’s not a “town”. It’s no China Town in California so don’t expect anything fancy. It’s just a little mall strip that caters to Chinese customers. I know my birthday was a while ago, but I wanted to wait until I got the chance to go to China Town to write a blog entry about it and, in my family, we don’t usually celebrate birthdays or holidays on the actual day of the birthday/holiday. We wait until pay days or days off or sales.

Today was that special day so off we went.

Unfortunately, we went immediately after I got off of work so I didn’t get to dress gyaru or anything. I was literally in my work uniform. How boring. Some of these are my own photos and some of these are photos right off of the website. I’m sure you can tell which ones I took (the shitty ones).

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^ The “entrance”. See what I mean?

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^ Their beautiful garden! Old Asian men play Chinese checkers here and they are very serious about the game. Don’t mess with them.

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^ Shiseido… Are they a popular name brand? I have no idea. I couldn’t afford any of their items anyway.

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^ The food court. Just about all the menu’s were in complete Chinese so I had absolutely no idea what was what, but they had hanging featherless ducks and chickens so I figured it must be good.

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^ I finally decided on this store called “China Kitchen”. That huge wall back there with Chinese written all over it is their menu. I clearly exuberated the WTF face so the kind Chinese lady working the cash register was nice enough to hand me an English menu. Thank you.

The best thing about this trip was the book store. They carried just about every Chinese book you could think of. They even had books on how to learn Chinese and I was going to buy it until I saw this in the magazine section:

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It’s the April and March issue of Popteen (sadly, no May issue) and they were only $5 each. My eyes lit up like a kid in candy store, but my mom didn’t understand.

“Why are you buying it if you can’t read it?”

She will never understand.

They also had ViVi and a bunch of others magazines, but no other popular gal magazines like Happie Nuts or Egg. I was actually hoping for a magazine with more heavier gyaru make-up. Popteen was always too light and simple in my opinion and I almost thought I wasted my money until I opened it.

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I was sold. I love Popteen now :)

While looking at the magazines, the lady at the cash register walked up to me (out of everyone in the store) and asked, “Can I help you?” Translation: “What the fuck are you doing here?” I must have looked completely lost TT_______TT I looked around me and everyone else was Chinese reading Chinese books. They fit in perfectly. And here I was. Some 5’10”, fat black chick in scrubs. I stood out like a sore thumb.

I didn’t get to dress gyaru while I was at China Town, but I did get to practice the day after ^___^

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Then my dog, Poopie, snuck in a shot or two *^____^*

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He just looked so cute with his head popping out of my blankets. Like a hybrid rat or something, lol.

The best birthday present of all though would have to be me getting to spend three whole days with my boyfriend. We hadn’t seen each other in about 2 months. I had the most fun ever with him and his friends. Those three days went by entirely way too fast. I can’t wait to see him again <3

Narada: My Guardian Angel

I promised I would tell the story of Narada so here goes. I was snooping around on my old Xanga blog and found this. It is a letter I wrote to him on Yahoo messenger when I was 16 years old. Blacksheep80897 is my old Yahoo messenger name (emo, much?). It is completely unedited. I wrote this on the exact same day he died so I may have said some things that were… “off”. I decided to keep the grammar errors and all. I continued writing letters like this to him on MySpace years after his death updating him on my life and telling him ‘happy birthday’. He was never my “boyfriend”, but, in a way, I wish he was at the time. He was a truly great guy. I viewed him as my guardian angel. He is the main reason why I started The Angel Project (I’ll explain this later). I even cry while reading this now.

 

 

Hey, this will be my last entry in this journal. I just wanted to say that Narada Bonds, my bestest friend in the whole world, passed away yesterday at 8:35 p.m. in a car wreck…He was on his way home from work. I just found out about it a few hours ago today. It was also on the news. They said it was a head on collision with an SUV…They said he didn’t feel anything, but that’s what they always say to make you feel better.

Here is a letter I wrote to him on Yahoo messenger…Even though he will never be able to read it.

blacksheep80897: Narada, I’m sorry. I know you will never get a chance to read this, but I just wanted to say that I love you. I always wated to tell you that, but I guess I waited too late. I’m so sorry. You were the bestest friend I’ve ever had. Seriously. You never left me. You were always nice. You were always there. I will always love you. You were the greatest person I ever met. You didn’t deserve this. Not now. Not so soon. And I wanted to tell you that I love black men just like how you told me you love black women. I should have went to that party with you. I really shoud have. How could I have been so stupid. I said that I wanted to go to see that stupid peach drop. I said that I wanted to go to Downtown Atlanta to see that stupid as peach with my brother before he left to Valdosta.

blacksheep80897: But I can still talk to my brother. I can’t talk to you anymore. I’m so sorry. That was the worst mistake I’ve ever made. I should have went with you. I miss you so much. I was going to call you today. I watched the Gungrave anime. It was great. It was the best anime I’ve ever watched. My favorite. I was going to call you and tell you that. I told yuor grandma that you loved her so much and that she was your best friend…Well it probably didn’t come out right cause I was crying, but I told her as best as I could.

blacksheep80897: You didn’t get to finish your story. It was the best story I’ve ever read. If I can, I will get your journal from your room and put it in my memories drawer. I promise. Along with those kewl Marvel posters you gave me. You didn’t get to finish reading the Gungrave manga series either. At least you got to read up to book 3 or 4. I miss you so much. You were my best friend. My only friend. I wanted to tell you “I love you”. You deserved it. But I was too busy wasting my “I love you”‘s on that bastard, Raul- Someone who didn’t deserve it. Your parents love you Narada. Your mom too. Even if you said that they were mean to you sometimes, they love you. I’m sure they were just being strict on you ecause they love you so much. They didn’t want to see you get hurt.

blacksheep80897: Remember when I wrote you that message on Xanga that was all Oprah-ish? I meant every word I said. You told me not to talk like that, but I am so fucking glad that I did. You deserved every word of it. You were the only person who left me messages on Xanga. You were the only one who cared. Thank you so much. Bad things always happen to good people. You were so good. You didn’t deserve this. I promise, when I grow up, I will avenge your death. I will. I promise. Everyone will know about you and they wil say, “he was a really great man”. Even though you didn’t get to fully develop into a man physically, you were always a man mentally. In every way. I’m so sorry that you died a virgin. You said that you didn’t want to find some random girl to fuck. You wanted a girl that really loved you.

blacksheep80897: I know this may sound too provocative, but I wish I would have let you take my virginity away. It would have been great. But nooo I always said that I didn’t want to be your girlfriend. You died without ever having a real girlfriend. All those other girls never really cared about you. I did and I still do. I change my mind about that whole “friends with benefits” thing. You were my boyfriend all along. The best boyfriend I’ve ever had. But I was too dumb to see that. I feel so cold and so numb right now. These words are just pouring out of my head. I have 81 people on my Yahoo messenger list, but it doesn’t even matter anymore. You were the only one that list that really counted. I miss you so much. Is this all just a dream? This can’t be real. Why you?? Of all people.

blacksheep80897: I promise that I won’t commit suicide. I will stay strong for you. I won’t get depressed either. No more cutting. No more mental hospitals. You said that you were always depressed and that you wanted to commit suicide, but, no, I’m glad you didn’t. You went out like a true man. I will never forget you. I never did get to draw that picture for you. I’m so sorry. Before I was told about your death, I was laughing and at the movies watching The Chronicles or Narnia. Narnia?? Who gives a fuck about Narnia, now? I should have called you. My dad called my mom while in the theater. I said, “ugh, mom, your making black people look bad. Turn your cell phone off.”. Then my mom told my brother and I that we had to leave the theater. I knew it was something serious if we had to leave the theater.

blacksheep80897: My mom was on the pnone with my dad saing things like “oh lord no”. I cried. I didn’t even get to hear the bad news yet, but I cried anyway. Then she hung up the phone and said,”something terrible has happened. You will never guess who it happened to.” I automatically thought my uncle Mark, but then se said that you died in a car crash. I knew it was something bad, but I didn’t know it was something THAT bad. I just yelled no over and over again out loud and cried. I didn’t care who heard. I just didn’t care. You know, I kinda wish that it was my uncle instead of you. I know that’s mean, but god, anyone but you. We were going to go to Georgia State University together. You said that you were going to throw a huge birthday party on your brithday this year- March 15-

blacksheep80897: And you said that I was invited. I was looking forward to that party. And, trust me, I will still throw that huge party you were talkin about on March 15. We also said that we were going to throw a “I hate V-Day” party, too because we both hate Valentine’s Day. You said, “Courtney, I promise you that you won’t be lonely this Valentine’s Day. I will make this your best Valentine’s Day ever”. Now I hate V-Day even more than before. I went to your house as soon as I heard of your death. Your parents, your grandma, your step sister, step brother- Everyone was there. I don’t think it kicked into your parents yet that you are gone. I think they are in shock. Luke is still smiling though and he’s so smart. He’s too young to realize this pain. Usually, when I’m sad, I listen to music or pet my cat

blacksheep80897: to drown out the pain, but I can’t do that now. I don’t know what to do. Please, help me. I miss you so much. It seems that every time I get close to someone, they either go away or die- Just like my grandma. Just like Raul. Just like Chris…Just like you. I wanted to start this year off on a good note. I wanted to start over. I knew something bad was going to happen this year, But I didn’t know it’d be this bad. Just like what I said in my recent journal entry on Xanga, something bad always happens to me during the second semester of school. I cursed God. I challenged God. I told him to bring it on. Well, he surely did bring it on. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I think I have a curse on me. I literally, truely do. I didn’t even get to go to your church with you like we planned to do.

blacksheep80897: I just don’t know what to do anymore. But, just like I promised, I will stay strong. I promise. I will keep my head up. I won’t be depressed. I will love myself. And while I’m doing this, I will be thinking of you. Thank you so much, Narada. I must go now. My head hurts from crying. My eyes are red and puffy. I can’t stop shaking and I feel so numb and cold. But, hey, guess what? I drove around the neighborhood today. Finally. I did good. I stayed on my side of the road I promise to send you messages like this daily. I promise. I will kep you updated on my life. Goodnight, Narada. Well, I don’t even think I can sleep now. I don’t know what to do. R.I.P. Narada. Best friends forever.

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I drew the Sailor Moon on the pic for him ^__^ Heheh, I remember laughing about this with him.

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This is a picture of me when I was 16 years old and I look completely hideous, but I don’t care right now. I’ve come a long way from being the ugly duckling.

NARADA(Grave) BONDS
March 15, 1988-  January 6, 2006

My protector…My guardian angel…My best boyfriend…My best friend.

Before AmeriCorps, part 4

Just copy and pasted these last few entries from an old, dead blog : /

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It took almost a year for my status to change from pending, but I’d be damned if I gave up. “I can wait as long as they want me to.” It’s not like I have anything else to do. I religiously commented in the NCCC group on Facebook and a lot of people dropped out because they got a job or started school, or just simply got tired of waiting.

Why would I get tired of waiting? I have nothing better to do.

But there was no school for me. There were no other options. I put all my eggs into one basket and hoped for the best. I tried joining the military, but that didn’t work out. Job prospects also weren’t looking so good for both me and my mom and we consoled each other. My mom became my best friend in these months and I to her as well.

One day, I nonchalantly brought the mail into the house and I saw a thin envelope from AmeriCorps. I could have fainted from the excitement. I opened it and it read “Congratulations, you are accepted into AmeriCorps NCCC on the Vinton, Iowa campus!”

Accepted wasn’t scratched out and decline wasn’t written next to it, and it was signed at the bottom. This was legit. I was ecstatic, but my mom was more vocal about than anyone else. A “congratulations” to my mom meant yelling it so the whole neighborhood could hear and calling all our relatives to let them know. It makes me wonder what would have happened if I weren’t accepted. To be honest, I applied to AmeriCorps in 2009 and didn’t get the chance serve the 2009 term, but they kept my application and it rolled over to the 2010 term. It was heart breaking to see all the 2009 prospective AmeriCorps members write on the Facebook group about how happy they were to be accepted. I felt like everyone was accepted, but me. I’m so glad I persevered through all the difficulty and rejection and was finally accepted to serve in the 2010 term instead.

I smiled while I read the paper over and over again, and watched my online status change from “pending” to “accepted” as the days passed. Everyone in the NCCC facebook group who stuck through the long wait posted with so much excitement saying that they were accepted and I followed suit.

This is the day I decided to change my life completely.

The last time I had sex was some time in September of 2008 right before my ex dumped me over the phone (it’s funny how guys always dump you right after they fuck you). From that day forward, I decided to refrain from sex completely. This included both oral and vaginal sex. No penetration what-so-ever. I wanted to remain celibate which was my dream ever since I first had sex at the age of 17. I know how much it hurts to be cheated on and used and I never wanted to feel that feeling ever again. I wouldn’t go as far as saying I was saving myself for marriage. I was never the type of girl who dreamed of being married. I never wanted to get married and I never even thought I would live long enough to get married, if I ever were to find any guy who would want to marry me anyway. Also, the whole “saving yourself for marriage” thing was always a bit sexist to me and it reminded me too much of the Christian girls in college who bullied me. I never wanted to be like them. The least I could say is that if any guy were to ever enter my body ever again, he would have to love me. That is all that I ask for.

Outside of being celibate, I also decided to become a guardian angel to any person I met who was being bullied. I, more than anyone else, should know how much it hurts to be bullied. The extent of it was far worse and continued for much longer than what I squeezed into a few paragraphs in 10 minutes. I know how much it hurts for someone to belittle you and call you names and everyone around does nothing but watch and laugh about it. I want to be that person who stands up for them and stops the bullying. I also made a promise to myself to stand up for myself more and not be such a doormat. Confrontation was always something I avoided, but I had to change if I wanted my life to be better. I should never have let the bullying in college continue on the way it did.

So I made three promises to myself before the start of AmeriCorps:

1. Remain celibate until I found the one I loved and he loved me in return.

2. Stand up for all those who are bullied.

3. Stand up for myself when I am bullied.

I took the ring Narada (I’ll describe him in another post) gave me, said a prayer over it- the last prayer I would ever pray in my life- put it on my finger, and the promises were sealed in stone. To be honest, I didn’t know who I was praying to or if whatever I was praying to existed. It was the most awkward prayer in all history of mankind. It probably got intercepted by the religious goalie or Jesus somewhere down the line. I planned to wear his ring all throughout my months in AmeriCorps to remind myself of my promises, but I was too scared that I would lose it so I bought a cheap $1 store ring to replace it which was a good decision seeing as I wore that ring every day in AmeriCorps until I lost it around the first month of wearing it TT_________________TT  I was just glad it wasn’t Narada’s ring. If it were Narada’s ring, I would have died.

The start date for AmeriCorps NCCC was May 2, 2010.

AmeriCorps sent a booklet in the mail of all the details about the program and the Vinton, IA campus. I studied that book religiously like how I should have studied in college. AmeriCorps was my exam and I was determined to pass it.

I celebrated my 21st birthday, bought all my needed essentials, and boarded a plane headed to Vinton, IA- a town I never knew existed and not even knowing exactly what the fuck I would be doing there or who the fuck I would meet.

But that is what made it so exciting :)

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