Compassion

Instead of reacting with anger, instead, come back with compassion and understanding. Sometimes a knee jerk emotional reaction kicks in when our buttons are pushed, and sometimes our emotions cloud our judgment and we say things that hurt, they cut like a knife, and when the smoke has cleared, we hang out heads in shame about the daggerish words we have used to cut others down, regret is a heavy consequence of this battle of words.

So instead of throwing salt on the wound, I choose love and compassion even though others may be blinded by rage and hurl treacherous words, They say these things because inside they are hurt, they are hurt because I’m finding ways to heal and they are still on the ground in agony. I choose not to hurt them any further. Because bitterness only serves as poison; eating away at my insides, it’s killing me and I just want the poison out of me. I want to love them; although they may hurt me.

We hurt others because we are hurt ourselves, I’m not better, I’m guilty of it, not a day goes by where in someway I haven’t hurt someone, either through my actions or my sharp tongue ( which is my own worst enemy) I pray for redemption and forgiveness. I am not perfect, father but I take comfort in the fact that no matter how far I stray from your path, you’ll lead me back and can give me the strength to have compassion when it seems so damn hard on some days.

 

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Losing my social media accounts

Every day I find myself connecting online with more and more people; I struggle with over usage and it’s something I talk about often.  But it is amazing how my social media presence is growing like crazy and in a positive way.  This morning it took almost half an hour to personal respond to my blog, Instagram, Facebook and twitter; all full of notifications; it wasn’t always this way. And while it takes time; I love responding to messages and I try to get back to people promptly.  I can only thank God for giving the opportunity to reach out to so many people all at once; there was a time where I tried so hard to connect with people online and usually got ghosted pretty quickly; comments and messages never got responses; posts never got reactions and now people are responding; maybe because my posts are  more positive; I try not post things that make people sad but inspire them. Some days I need to post about depression but I use my blog for that and not Facebook. So yes the support means a lot to me.

So today I met this person on Twitter who pretty much went through the same tragedy as me and I was messaging her; she had just added on me on Instagram and my other social media. I was look forward to seeing her posts. All of a sudden Instagram was asking for a phone number to verify the account and so I put in my number and no text; I panicked.   Here’s the thing: most of my interactions with writers, mental health advocates are on Instagram. I use it to network, share my writing, meet like minded people and maybe just maybe meet other writers in person or they could suggest ways of connecting with writers in my area; it’s a great tool.  So I put in my phone number in again and still nothing.  I uninstalled the app because I thought it may have been a hack of some sort and I opened up again and got the same message and again no text. I was getting concerned at this point; I would lose everything. I got home and I tried to log in with my laptop; same thing. And to make matters worse; I couldn’t get past the security screen; so there was no way to even make a new account; I felt helpless.   I felt myself explode in anger; I felt that this means of support would be gone in a seconds because Instagram were assholes ( and they are).   I finally decided to give them someone else’s number and they finally got a text. I have no idea why Instagram locked me out; I add a lot of people but it’s the only way I know how to make my Instagram grow. My posts are positive and I don’t bully or harass people; in fact I do my best to encourage and uplift others.   Instagram is terrible and has the worst support system when there are issues with our accounts and they are a monopoly; it’s just such a mess; which shouldn’t be a surprise since it’s now run by Mark Zuckerburg. Anyways my account is back and I am now calming down; what an ordeal. It may not seem a big deal to you; but it’s the equivalent of someone erasing all of your emails, phone contacts and deleting all of your photos, videos, online conversations all in 5 seconds.  I shouldn’t have acted out in anger but I felt like I LOST everything!!  It’s the worst feeling.  Like this blog; I have no idea how I would respond if I woke up one morning and this blog was gone; all those writings and supportive comments; gone.  It makes me realize how fragile our online lives and it can be gone in seconds; it really scares me.    Anyways I just needed to vent.

Thanks for listening

Dave

 

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Learning to hold back my anger

I am still grappling with what happened with this person that I knew from Church growing up; I am trying to understand it but I feel angry and hurt because I know this person wronged me; it’s not warped perception or my anxiety looking at the worst of things; this person clearly hurt me and it was probably intentional.  The silver lining is that I choose to not say hurtful things or shake my finger at people; I choose not to let my anger consume me; instead I try to see this person as ill and have more understanding.  I see that line of thinking as progress. Yes, I still say things impulsively out of anger but I do much less so than in the past; I have learned to hold my tongue instead of responding to hurtful words with a unkind retort; which is exactly how I handled this situation; I kept my mouth shut.  I’m very proud of how much better I handle myself

I talk about this a lot but I volunteer helping young adults with disabilities serve a special lunch we have at the church every week; I help a young man wash and dry dishes.  I talked a to friend about this but this young adult at times seems to annoyed at me. If I try to direct him; he’ll say “I got it!!” which is his way of saying “I know what I’m doing stay out of my way”  We had a little battle about whether he was putting in enough soap in the dishwasher; he was very short with me but I was patient.  My friend stated that I should ease up a little and just “guide” him instead of Micromanaging him and so I have been trying that; with varied results.  Last shift; he just wondered around; talking to people and someone directed me to go find him; I was a little embarrassed that I wasn’t on top of things.  So anyways  I said something like  ” Wow, this water ( from the dishwasher) is so hot).  I have a slight speech impediment when I pronounce certain words with R  like water or words crayon etc; it’s due to the fact that i had trouble hearing as a kid. I was bullied merciless as a for it and you never forget those things.  Anyways after I said “Water”  he began to mock me; asking if was from Boston and laughing; saying water over and over again in a mocking tone.  My first reaction was to tell this kid where to go; I was triggered. I could feel that anger building because it had been 20 plus more years since someone made fun of the way I talked; it was like being bullied all over again.  But I calmly took a second and realized this guy was disabled ( like me); he didn’t know any better.  So after a minute; I very nicely said “Johnny, that wasn’t very nice; you shouldn’t make fun of the way people talk”  He didn’t seem to notice but apologized the best he could.

I know it seems small and I wouldn’t have gotten angry regardless but I was so proud of myself but I always have a knee reaction to those things ( and it doesn’t matter who says it; disabled or not)  Not only was I able to control my actions on the inside but I was able to sort of slow down those angry thoughts. And later on when I heard another young adult mock someone; I calmly told him that it wasn’t nice to say mean things to people and that Jesus taught us to love everyone. And that was the day when my friend didn’t show up to the lunch; as if God was sending me the message to let go of my anger; have compassion for this woman who is clearly sick and to follow my own advice.

God works in mysterious ways and he wants me to be learning something right now. Despite the painful experience; he wants me to practice love and forgiveness even when people go out of their way to hurt me. He wants me to hold back my anger and instead speak with a calm tone and think carefully about what I am going to say before I say it.  It takes a lot of work to control anger but it’s worth it.   I am a work in progress and I am taking baby steps to manage my anger in healthy ways. With that I can rest my head on the pillow; knowing I can let go of anger and have to freedom to spread love in this world; instead of hate. With that I bid you good night

Dave

Speak out

You gotta stand up for what’s right; you gotta fight with all your might and never let them out of your sight.

Never give up; never give in; when you quit; you don’t win and they persevere; they thrive on your fear.

If we don’t have our say they’re here to stay and with our votes we can make them go away and make this a better day.

But we have to make ourselves heard even when we’re bored with all the rhetoric and the lack of respect; we expect better from our leaders. We gotta be avid readers of the news and use it make a difference in this world and do something instead of staying at home curled in bed. So do you get the jest of what I’ve just said?

Dave

 

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I will not give up ( school update)

Today has been such a frustrating day; I have been struggling with this math course. All my life I have struggled with math; I could do everything else but Math makes me want to throw a fit.  In fact I passed all of my courses with really good grades; half the time without even trying; to be honest.  If I didn’t know how to write I would have never passed my courses. I avoided math until the end because I knew that it would make me so frustrated that my other classes would suffer as a result.  I have learning and emotional disabilities and I get flustered very easily when I don’t understand something and math is my aquiles heel. In fact I am on the Autism spectrum ( or so they tell me)

I got to class today; prepared to take a few mini tests and do some vocabulary worksheets; I was pretty optimistic I could figure it out. I had written down notes from all the chapters including examples and diagrams.  Oh and I forget to mention that for the first 2 weeks of this 4 week math course; I cannot use a calculator.  I cannot multiply or divide large numbers without the use of a calculator; so  to not have a calculator only adds to the stress. A lot of my math works has to do with fractions; dividing; multiplying and simplifying ( it might as well be Chinese because I don’t fuckin get it)  I sat there; problems after problem and I couldn’t figure it out. And I could feel myself getting angry; I was muttering curse words under my breath; giving the computer a middle finger; I was obviously upset. Like a little kid I’m writing in my notes “this is total bullshit”  “fuck this” etc; because when I do math; I’m a little kid again. The girl next to me seemed to be disturbed by how angry I seemed; which really helped :(.   I closed my notebook, threw it into my backpack and walked out. I called my mom and told her I was ready to drop this course.  I sat waiting for my ride ( I’ll share that journal later) and wrote how I was feeling at that exact moment.

I got home and I talked to my mom and she contacted the disability counselor at a different campus who suggested I email someone who specifically helps those who are learning disabled in math. Since it was past 5 pm; I couldn’t get her on the phone so I sent her an email. I let her know that i was struggling; I had learning disabilities and how could she help me be successful because I only have math left. My mom also informed that if I have learning disability specifically in math then I can substitute it for a different course. I am not quite sure if I have specific disability but I know I was in LD math classes all my life; that counts for something, right. So I called work and took the day off and I am going to take care of this school thing tomorrow because I am determined to get this degree.  I just feel so frustrated at myself sometimes; I am so confident when it comes to every other subject but it hurts when I see people figuring this math shit out and I can’t get it.  I felt like crying; like less than a man.  But I will pray about this and I appreciate all the support.

But I want to end this on a positive note and say there are things I do have now that are helpful that I didn’t have before.  On my social media; I often talk to my old friends who no longer live near me; people who I grew up with. I share my struggles with them am very open about my disabilities ( aside from being on the autistic spectrum) and they have been so supportive; I get so much love from my friends and that makes a huge difference; to have that support system.  So even though they are far away and we can’t go to lunch or talk about it; I know I can post about it and I get words of encouragement; I am truly blessed. And what’s even more helpful is some of my favorite people who I were friends with are now in the disability field; they understand me and accept me for who I am; which means so much. The other resource I have is my writing and the encouragement I get from my followers; I love having this outlet to express my frustrations. It’s much better than flushing my math notebook down the toilet; which is very tempting by the way. I opt for writing about it; I hope someone can read this and understand where I am coming from. Maybe they want to give up and I hope that they try to overcome their struggles and to push themselves to do better.  Even if I have to fail this course; I want to know that I did everything I could to succeed.  I can do this and whatever it is you are struggling with you; you can do this too.

For now I am going to relax, get some unhealthy junk food in me and try again tomorrow.

 

Have a good night,

Dave

Dealing with learning disabilities in Math

All my life I have struggled with math; to the point where I find myself enraged every time I have to look at a math problem; I used to throw my math book on the ground because I got so frustrated; 25 years later; in college I find myself doing the same exact thing. Throwing a fit like a kid because I just don’t fuckin get it. I don’t know what the exact diagnosis is but I have a learning disability in math and it used to make me feel so stupid. I will never forget when I was about 9 years old; they moved me from my special education class to a regular classroom; I had no idea what so called “normal kids” were like. Anyways this teacher made me go up to board and solve a math problem in front of all the students; I can still remember turning red and hearing them laugh when I couldn’t figure it out and the more they laughed; the angrier I became at them but also at myself. I was angry at this teacher for putting a child with disabilities on display; knowing I struggled with it. In fact I hope things in school have changed since the early 90’s.  I felt so stupid because the other kids understood math with ease and I would look at a problem a million times and I still couldn’t figure it out. Due to the bullying they moved me back to the special ed class ( at least for Math) and I was given easy math assignments I could understand and got plenty of one on one help. By the time I hit high school I was still getting help for my learning disabilities and by that point; I don’t remember any math courses; then again it was a chaotic time in my life. I just remember now having to deal with math from 7th grade on; I figured I was free and never needed it again; I couldn’t have imagined at that time going to college in the future.  I got kicked out of high school and ended up in a bunch of alternative schools and their only requirement was that I showed up; not a lot of expectations. I look back and I feel cheated but I was a troubled kid and I needed to be there.

So fast forward to 2018 and I am so close to my degree. I have all of my classes passed; all the internships done; a good grade point average and I have taken 1 developmental math course (  passed by the skin of my teeth)  Now I am in the second class and it has to with prime numbers and simplifying fractions. mixed numbers etc; probably basis shit to most people, but for someone with maybe 6th grade knowledge of math ( and that is stretching it) it is all complex.  I don’t know how to divide or multiply without a calculator and the class requires that I not use a calculator for the first two weeks ( I had a assumed i could use the calculator from the start)  A lot of the coursework is done online ( thank god) but the tests are done in the computer lab ( which does not help my anxiety)  Yesterday was ok; I took notes of all the basis concepts and was able to finish some assignments; i felt confident.  Today I worked all day ( I am in retail and cannot take weekends off) so I was already tired. I came home again and started on my math work; took notes and tried to limit distractions.  When it came to taking the practice tests; I drew a blank and had to google the answers just to finish the assignment; it doesn’t help because I still don’t understand the concepts and I again feel like that 9 year old kid; I feel stupid, frustrated and incapable of learning this math.

I asked my family for help and said because of my temper they refused to help ( which is understandable) but that just frustrates me further; I feel helpless sometimes. I just say to myself I can write a 10 paper in a few days and get and A, but I can’t solve a simple 7th grade math problem; it hurts.  It’s the weekend; I am working; I can’t go to the school so I am sitting here; trying to calm myself down and take it a day at a time ( or in my case; a fraction at a time). I am going to get the right documentations and ask for accommodations because I need help. I NEED HELP!! There is also free tutoring and I am going to take advantage of that too.  I know I can do this with the right help and resources; I am not stupid; in fact I consider myself quite bright; I just have a disability and it isn’t my fault. And I’m not 9 years old and no one is laughing ( as far as i know)  I hope someone out there understands where I am coming from. The lesson of all of this is never be afraid to admit you have a problem and don’t be afraid to ask for help and never ever think or allow someone to make you feel like you are stupid due to a disability. You are not stupid; you just have a different way of learning things and need to find a way to adapt. With that ,I am emotionally drained and I am spending the rest of the night watching movies and leaving the math until tomorrow.

Good night

Dave

 

Don’t interrupt me when I’m writing

I am by far not a perfect person and one of my major flaws is anger; many times in my life I have overreacted and it has come with some pretty serious consequences; when I was a  teenager I punched a wall in school and was sent to a treatment center for 6 months; where my stomach problems began; to the point where I was so sick; I passed out onto a table.  Anger for me is so hard to control but I have no excuse when I act out.  As I have started writing and working on myself as a person; I have grown and have better control over my anger but I have my days; and today was one of them; I am not proud of myself right now.

I work a really frustrating job in retail; I don’t have weekends off; I work an erratic schedule on my feet and the whole shift I am on the go from one end of the store to the other ( it is a department store with 2 levels) and one minute I may be getting a pair of shoes; the next lugging a pool table into someone’s car; it is exhausting and makes me so anxious; which of course makes me feel even sicker.  Anyways today was a bad day at work; it was extremely busy and I had a lot of anxiety. Sometimes I’ll check Facebook a billion times to try to get some relief; other times  I try to write in my little phone notepad; blogs or poems; writing helps to calm me down.  And someday it seems that the more i try to write; the more I’m interrupted; by customers, by orders, by pickups and I realize I am supposed to be working but I have this thing about writing; i’ll have these streams of thoughts and they come to me randomly and all of sudden I have this urge to write. I’m very ADD about it and I get nervous because if I don’t write it down; I’ll forget it. In fact a lot of my blogs are written under stress at work; my best poems are written that way. I must appear crazy to everyone around me; they wonder why I’m on my phone all the time. In a way I feel like saying ” this phone and my writing is the one thing that’s stopping me from telling you to fuck off”; so it’s great tool when I use it.

I have a routine when I get home; I throw off my shoes; put my regular clothes on and check my social media and write any blogs I have made on my phone; it’s a cool down period for me.  Today I was writing my previous blog; a facebook post I had copied from a friend; which was very moving by the way; and I kept getting interrupted. The first time I managed to bite my tongue and answer nicely although it probably came across as a low growl. The second interruption came when I was trying to edit a post so I was not using a person’s name ( i like to protect anonymity) Someone start complaining that I hadn’t moved my car; and I wasn’t listening; something about me being too focused on my writing; and I lost it. I slammed my phone down; kicked over the chair; slammed the door and yelled to never interrupt me when I’m writing.  I have gotten so much better at not losing my temper and yet here I was; out of control. There’s no  excuse but writing is so important to me; it’s not some trivial thing that I do for fun; it’s my therapy and who knows maybe I could make money from it one day. Writing takes a lot of concentration for me; i find myself zoning out when I am writing a long blog and any noise or distraction just sets me off; maybe it’s because I am on the spectrum or maybe it’s that I take my writing seriously but I need that time as soon as I get down to wind down; it’s part of my mental health.  I get frustrated that I don’t have a place of my own to write; I get frustrated that I don’t a Sunday off to sit and write; I am too smart to be working this shit job but my disabilities make it difficult to find one that is 9-5 with weekends off. That being said when I act out in anger in hurts because I know I can do better; all I can do is hope tomorrow is a better day.

 

FYI- I had to write this once everyone was asleep and I could write in peace without any interruptions

 

 

If I don’t stand up for myself; no one else will

If I don’t stand up for myself no one else will; I won’t keep everything bottled up; I am going to say how I feel; but people don’t want the truth and turn their backs when shit  gets too real. They say don’t rock the boat; stay quiet; it’s a real crock and I don’t buy it; when I’m pushed I won’t keep my mouth shut; I react from the gut which may not be the best option at times but how I will I ever get out of this rut if I don’t stand up; so cut the crap; I’m not just some poor sap; you can tell what to do; if you only you knew what I thought of you. So piss off, it’s break time; always have the last rhyme.

Peace,

Dave

Burnt out

Im burnt out, i need a break, I dont how much more I  can take, a smile to you i will fake just for your sake. Im tired as hell cant you tell,do i have to spell it out, leave me alone, my covers been blown and now my feeling are known for all to see, im not happy. Give me some space, get out my face, i want out of this place of frustration, i need a vacation to some far off land, im burnt out and fed up, how hard is that to understand?. Peace

A workers poem

Someday I’m gonna get out of this place and you won’t see my face no more; im headed out the door; bigger and better things ahead. The future is bright but for now I’m stuck here tonight, trying to stay out of sight. I’m alone, buried in my phone, wanting to go home, wasting my life away, me they don’t want to pay me what I deserve, the nerve on the bastards who run this joint, you get the point. But I won’t mope cause i have hope with love, god and humanity, they are the cure to the insanity of society who thinks I’m worth nothing but I’m worth a hell of a lot more than they think; which is something they can’t take away from me. Sometimes I’ve felt I had enough and life is too tough but I won’t give up cause i got god on my side, I know what’s right and I will survive.