“Surprise, Surprise. Promises, Promises.”

Right now, I should be in the middle of Botany, confused out of my mind, instead Kim is and jotting notes for the two of us. I wait with Alexis at the airport for Derek.

I can’t believe we’re still together. All day I’ve felt like I’m in daze. Maybe, I’m in a coma and Derek isn’t coming in real life, just in my dreamscape… Then again, if I was dreaming I sure as heck wouldn’t be pregnant with the Jerk’s child, it would be Derek’s baby.

Alexis flips through a celebrity gossip magazine she has with her as I just sit rubbing my baby bump. I feel like the baby finds it soothing, but I do it mostly because it makes me feel calm.

“Poor Gina…” Alexis sighs referring to the famous Broadway Starlet.

“I don’t think she’s that bad off… I think it’s good she asked for help after a mental breakdown… That takes courage.” I say.

“Oh I agree, but the media just won’t stop talking about it. She doesn’t owe the public any explanations. She has every right to keep her life private.” Holding up the article about Gina, “They interviewed a friend of a friend of her cousin about her breakdown… the person wasn’t even there when it happened.”

“But yet, you’re reading the GUIDE TO THE STARS and supporting their exploitation of celebrities.”

Defensively, Alexis says, “I didn’t buy this, a co-worker gave it to me. I don’t buy stuff like this.”

I just let silence make things awkward between us. I scroll through my social media, which I haven’t done in a while, and notice about 75 comments on my post announcing my pregnancy. A lot of love from people with some drama from people who say I’m trapped in poverty now. I wonder how people would react if I confessed I would have rather aborted my baby… And the weird part is, it’s not because I don’t love my baby, but every night when I go to sleep I’m reminded of what that monster did. In my sleep, I’m haunted by what he did to me, some nights I can’t stay asleep. What will it be like, when the baby is here?

“I thought you both would be more excited to see me…” I hear Derek say as I sense his presence approach me.

I leap up as fast as I can and I spring into his reaching arms for me. I hug him tightly like my life depends on holding onto him. He smells a lot different. Instead of teenage male body spray that borderline mimics the fragrance of teenage girl body spray, he smells like he wears a grown man’s cologne.

Marveling at how his man mane is gone and he now sports a crew cut fade, I just stare at him. He even stands up straight with a posture like a soldier and his biceps actually have some muscle tone. He sort of reminds me of the jerk, I hate it more than I love it, but I love him.

I go to kiss him on the lips and he turns his head and makes me kiss his cheek. He takes my hand and intertwines our fingers. Then he gives me a soft peck on the back of a held hand.

“I missed you so much baby!” Derek says rubbing the back of my hand.

Did we enter the Twilight Zone and cross over into the 50s of America… How come he won’t kiss me like a normal teenage boy? If this has to do with Jesus, I’m gonna curse and I don’t swear.

Without asking, he cups the outside of my womb. The baby does move and then he retracts his hand a little freaked out.

“That feels weird…” He retorts.

“Imagine how it feels for me.” I say.

Alexis stands looking at us. I’m curious why we’re not leaving. I watch Derek give his mother a look and she slightly tilts her head forward, giving him a similar look back. Derek lets go of my hand and reaches into his blue, straight jean pants. I still can get over how he’s dressed. His red T-shirt is tucked in and he’s wearing a belt. Out his pocket, he holds a red ring box in his hand. As she opens the box as he gets down on one knee.

What is happening right now?! Is he proposing and Alexis knew about this? OMG, why is he proposing? Can we even get married? We’re teenagers!

“Savannah Lorene Moneymaker, will you marry me?”

Everyone in the waiting area stares at us, waiting to see what I’m going to do. If I say yes, and we get married, financially it will be a little easier, won’t it? Or will I get more money from the state being single? I really need to look into that… I know I want to marry Derek one day. I cannot picture my life without him. I don’t want to live life without him…

“Yes… I’ll marry you…” I say crying. I don’t like that I’m in tears, but I can’t help it.

He gently slides the modest diamond ring onto the proper finger and stands up to embrace me. He kisses me on the forehead and he shouts excitedly that I said yes. The crowd happily applauds for us.

This is definitely a surprise.

“Light and Dark Don’t Mix, Spiritually”

Kaylie’s silence worries me. I thought she would be happy for me and Derek. I hold my hand out so she can look at the ring, but she ignores it as she gets off her bed and crosses over to her closet on the other side. She slides her shutter closet doors open and the upper half of her body disappear behind a wall of her hanging clothes. She backs up and turns around holding a worn out shoe box. She comes back and sits down up against her cherry wood headboard. She pulls the lid off and the inside is cluttered with note cards, flooded pieces of paper, and pictures- polaroid pics, 4 x 6s, and a few wallet size pics too. Before she opens her mouth I know its her Trevor Box… I have an ALL-THINGS-DEREK-BOX too.

“Trevor will forever be my first love… but he’s not saved… he’s no good for me. Light and Dark don’t mix, and as hard as it was, I had to break it off with him for good.” Kaylie whines from her self-righteous soapbox.

I don’t need to hear this preachy stuff from her. I rock back for momentum and then I slowing roll off her bed. “You know,” I say, turning to put my tude in her direction. “I thought you would appreciate how Derek called my mom and got her blessing before he popped the question. That he secured a job through one of his dad’s friends before he came back. How Alexis and him are going to convert the garage into an apartment for us until we finish school… But no, your religion has to come before me… Moses wasn’t married to a Jew… she was from Media- not even his own kin. And Hosea married an unclean prostitute!” I pause for a second not sure why I brought the Bible into this… That’s what happens living with Netty and being forced to attend church twice a week. Plus, her and Dashuan talk about the Bible and their faith all the time at dinner- it consumes the conversation.

“I expected this from my sister, but not from you. And I don’t care if Jesus is a better friend to you than me right now… Knowing Him doesn’t give you license to tell people what to do with their life!” I yell.

Wow, I rarely yell, but hitting the 2nd trimester my emotions stay on high, in every single mode… And I can’t control it…

“It’s just I had a dream and I think it was about placing the baby in adoption…” She blurts.

“SO WHAT! I don’t care, I don’t care, I don’t care! I don’t have to follow God like you. I wish I could be as lucky as you and have this kid die in my WOMB!” And now I shut up.

Kaylie hangs her head as she trembles crying. Everything in me just wants to hold her and apologize until I really do die.

“I’m sorry…”

Not even looking at me, “Just get out…” Kaylie manages to say.

“The South Side-Again”

I like moving homes while being pregnant. I’m not really expected to do anything. Mom and I sit on the couch and we tell Bobby, Derek, the girls, and Bobby’s friends where to put things.

I guess Jewel and Bobby started talking right when she found out she was sick. He’s been seeing the girls every Sunday, since I moved back, and taking them to church. He no longer denies Genie is his. He can’t really, she looks like he spit her out.

The plan as of right now is that all of us live together until I marry Derek. Then I’ll go live with him and Alexis. Bobby has an extra truck that he’s letting Derek use, therefore, he can pick me up and take me to and from school.

I don’t remember a lot about Bobby, but I really hope living with him will be pleasant and as drama free as possible.

+Positively Unexpected – 8

…Christmas Continued…

Tasha held her breath. Waiting for Kingston to burst out in rage, to cuss her out, and to toss her out of the house into the cold because she just told him he wasn’t the father of the baby.

“Joseph wasn’t the father either…” Kingston whispered back. He winked at Tasha and told her, “I’d like to be the father, if you’ll let me.”

Stunned, Tasha just stood there. He wanted to pretend to be the father of her baby? Why???

Hope and John walked into the kitchen. John rushed to the stove as Hope went to the cabinets by the dishwasher. He got the food out of the oven as she got the plates and silverware.

“We weren’t sure when you’d be here.” Hope said.

“Good thing ham and all the fixings keep well in the stove on warm.” John said as he set a foil covered deep dish baking pan on the stove top.

Looking over his shoulder at Tasha, “Do you eat ham?”

Tasha was Jewish because of her mother, but her mother’s family was very reformed… and liberated from the law. Her maternal grandparents would be kosher for the holidays, but her mother loved bacon…

“Yes, I eat ham.”

Kingston took Tasha’s hand, “While the table is being set, I’m going to show Tasha something upstairs.”

John looked at Hope and they stared at each other wondering if that was okay for them to do.

“Okay,” Hope said keeping her eyes locked with her husband.

With a sprint in his gait, Kingston pulled Tasha along as he led her up the nearest staircase. Gently, he whisked her down the hall to a room on the very end. The room appeared to belong to a teenage boy.

“My parents want to turn my old room into the nursery. This would be their first grandchild, so they want the baby to have somewhere to sleep when we need a break. And this room over time will just become the child’s room.”

“Your sister doesn’t have children?” Tasha wondered.

“Ah… no…” He said releasing her hand as he walked to the center of his room. He explained Genesis had ovarian cancer when she was in college. She survived without being able to keep her ovaries. Due to her medical history of cancer she wasn’t eligible to adopt from the state or from anywhere overseas.

So Tasha still didn’t understand his logic. Logos was still single and had plenty of time to become a father one day… And as sad as it was Genesis would never be a mother, why did Kingston want to pretend to be the father to Tasha’s unborn kid?

“I don’t know if I’ll ever be the son my parents pray for me to be…” He went on to say, after the day they went to the clinic together, he started to do the math. He knew women were two weeks pregnant at conception, due to his mother’s work with NYSAPP. When the nurse practitioner said Tasha was eight weeks and the fact they were together about five weeks prior to that point, the nurse would have said Tasha was seven weeks along not eight if he was the father.

The night before Thanksgiving Day, Giles was delivered the photos by currier. Giles wasn’t so much upset with Kingston for being with a woman, but the continued infidelity. Giles wanted commitment, marriage, kids, and a life together. Kingston couldn’t do that no matter how hard he tried. He loved Giles but he wasn’t at peace marrying him.

“I know it’s crazy to think like this… but I’m just afraid if I marry the man I love I’ll officially be alone…” Kingston made a paradoxical statement, but Tasha suspected his reason was religious. She waited in the stale silence for his explanation.

He cleared his throat and took Tasha’s hands as he led her to sit down on the edge of his twin bed with superhero bedding.

“As a boy, no one could tell me God wasn’t real. But then I started getting dreams about kissing boys… My first crush was on a boy…” Nervously, he began to pick at the loose skin around his thumb cuticle. “I wasn’t ever molested which is what most Christians think cause homosexuality… And my dad was the best dad ever…” Pausing, he ran his fingers through his hair, then rested his drooping forehead into the palm of his hand, as the elbow to that hand rested on his knee. “I did everything I could as a teenager. I kissed girl after girl. I went on dates. I lost my virginity to an older girl. Though it bothered me to sin, I thought having sex before I was married wasn’t as bad as being gay…”

Kingston said the Bible was clear. Sin was sin to God, but in the church, Christians considered some sins more forgivable than others. Homosexuality was a sin a person had to be totally delivered from to be totally forgiven, and total deliverance meant getting married in the one-man-one-woman-way.

When he came out in college, his church friends deserted him, and his home church excommunicated him. He had to find a reconciled church, which didn’t have the same teachings he grew up with. The sermons always made him feel good about himself and encouraged him to do good things, but the way the messages portrayed God presented a God that didn’t make any sense to Kingston. He stopped going to church because he couldn’t handle the inner turmoil. If God was the God he was raised to believe in, Kingston wasn’t getting into heaven, and if God was the God that the reconciled church preached about, Kingston would be better off following the devil.

At first, he felt free being away from the church, but then he just got depressed. His battle with anxiety got far worse than it was in high school and he needed to be on medication for it. When Giles went pro and asked for Kingston to move in with him, Kingston decided to live like there really wasn’t One God, and it worked.

But after six months of living together, Giles asked Kingston to marry him and immediately Kingston felt grieved by the thought and he didn’t know why. He asked if he could wait to give his answer. That’s when Kingston became unfaithful, and it was with a woman. He started telling himself he wasn’t really gay. That he had what it took to be with a woman. But then Kingston would suffer anxiety attack after anxiety attack with awful thoughts of suicide, and every time Giles pulled him out from the darkness, even forgiving him after Kingston’s adultery came to light.

And even this last time with cheating on Giles with Tasha, Giles had a plan… Giles was going to pay the photographer a bunch of money not to leak the photos. Giles wanted to pay Tasha off to say she was their surrogate and take custody of the child. All Kingston had to do was run away and elope with Giles.

With his face flushed red and tears dripping from his eyes, Kingston confessed to Tasha, “I told him I didn’t want to go to hell if God was real and that if I married him, there’d be no going back…” Kingston used his knuckles to wipe the tears from his eyes.

Tasha put her hand on his knee hoping to comfort him.

“He turned into a maniac. He called me awful things. He said horrible things about my family saying I listened to their organized-religion-brain-washing. He got so angry I thought he was going to kick me out, but he packed his things and left…”

That was the first time Giles left him. It was always Kingston breaking up with Giles because of the burden of guilt from his infidelity. But that was the first time Kingston was honest with Giles. In the past, he just told Giles he wasn’t ready to settle down yet.

“I didn’t want to live without him… I didn’t think I could…” He sniffled as he wiped his nose with his fingers. “I found every prescription pill in the place, poured them in a pile, and popped them one by one.”

Softly, he cupped Tasha’s face and caressed her cheeks with his thumbs, brushing them down and up continuously, “Then I thought of you and the baby and what the world would be thinking when those photos got out… And I didn’t want to leave you in a world of mess…”

“Your mom said you called 911 because of the baby.” Tasha said moving her head back out his hands’ embrace.

“I can’t remember why I really called 911.” He said standing up, “I just know that I want to have this baby with you and I know I can’t tell you what to do…”

“Look, I grew up in a divorced home, being split between two households… And I wouldn’t wish that on any kid.”

“We could live together. We don’t have to get married or ever be together like that.”

“What would happen if I do enter a relationship or you do?” Tasha questioned.

“Change happens, we’ll deal with it as that comes…”

“And I don’t follow any religion and I don’t believe imposing religion on any child.”

“Everyone believes in something and in the end, we’re all free to choose. Everyone in my family believes in God.”

“And because of that you lost the love of your life and nearly killed yourself…”

“If my family is wrong, it won’t matter when they die, but if I’m wrong, it will matter…”

Tasha never thought of it like that… She didn’t believe in a god. She didn’t believe in reincarnation. She was convinced nothing happened when everyone died. But what if hell was real and her failure to believe in God would put her there. She didn’t understand how a loving God could put someone in hell, an eternal furnace of torment, but maybe Kingston’s family could explain that.

“I don’t think I want to be a mom… I don’t know how to be one…” Tasha said with tears in her eyes.

Kingston kneeled at her feet, “I have no idea how to be a dad…”

The spirit of laughter hit both of them simultaneously and they laughed ridiculously.

Logos came into the room without asking, “Dinner is served,” he said. “What’s so funny?” He wondered.

Kingston took Tasha’s hand as he rose. He helped Tasha onto her feet. The two kept laughing as Kingston led Tasha out of his room.

Following behind them, Logos asked again, “What’s so funny?”

…New Year’s Eve… About a Year Later…

Tasha stood outdoors on the studio platform, bundled up in the freezing cold. The ball was about to drop in Time Square and she had to kill air time with her co-host until the next musical guest was ready to sing, down below, on the stage set up for the crowd in the square.

“Hadassah… That’s such a unique name…” Bryan, Tasha’s co-host, said.

“Yeah, Bible names aren’t so popular anymore.”

“How did you and Kingston decide on that name?”

Tasha smiled really big thinking about how to state the truth in the least offensive way. “We prayed about it and that’s the name we got afterwards.”

 “Oh… I didn’t know you were spiritual. That’s beautiful… Well, um do you think Hadassah is fast asleep at home while you’re here to usher in the new year?”

“No… she never sleeps, but she’s not my problem tonight. She’s with her grandparents.”

“Your parents or Kingston’s?”

“Kingston’s…”

The floor director holds up his tablet which reads: Throw to the musical act: SLOPE.

“They love it too though, she is their first grandchild. Bryan, I don’t know about you, but I love our next musical guest!”

“Yes! Here’s Slope everyone!!!” Bryan shouted flamboyantly.

The minute the floor director cleared them, Tasha checked her microphone was off, and then she got in Bryan’s face.

“Stop putting all of my personal business out there. How would you like someone to do that to you?”

“I’m not the one who turned a gay man straight by having a baby with him. You must be some miracle-worker. How about we take five in the outhouse? I think I might want my third baby with you.”

“You need to really work on your insults…”

“I know you have poor gay-dar but in case you didn’t know, Kingston was never gay completely. He couldn’t have been if he left Giles Bordner for you.”

“We’re back in two,” the floor director said.

Both Tasha and Bryan got quiet quick knowing their mics were hot and could pick up every slight sound. They waited and read the directions on prompter. Tasha was to speak first. She was cued to mention Kingston. Views went up when things got tense talking about Tasha’s home life.

“We’re just about to usher in the New Year, and I’m little sad I’m other half isn’t here to share a kiss. Kingston, if you’re watching, I love you.”

“Awe… how cute? Todd, my boo, I love you too.” Bryan added.

The crew suddenly parted like the Red Sea and Kingston appeared holding sixth-month-old, Hadassah. Tasha wanted to gasp outraged but with the cameras were recording live around the world she made sure she was excited as she could possibly be.

“O my goodness!”

“O my Buddha!” Bryan gasped mimicking Tasha’s surprised expression.

Kingston stood in between the co-hosts. Tasha didn’t hesitate to take control of her daughter and place Hadassah within her own arms. Swaying side to side, which was the best way to keep the baby calm, Tasha mentally prepared to handle the line of questioning about Kingston’s sexuality.

“Kingston, not to put your business out there… but what is it like being married… to a woman…?”

“Well, I’ve never been married before Tasha,” he put his arm around her and reeled her closer to him, “I’ve never been in love with someone as much as I am in love with this woman. Being married is wonderful.”

“How come you never settled down with Giles? Didn’t he propose like three times?” Bryan badgered on.

“I wasn’t ready… and I never planned on ever marrying Tasha… but after Hadassah was born we grew closer spending so much time together, and in this positively unexpected way, I fell in love with her. And due to our newfound faith, we knew the best way to be together was through marriage.”

“Wow…” Bryan didn’t know what to say. If he said anything offensive about Tasha’s and Kingston’s faith, they could sue him for persecution. “BEAUTIFUL!”

“IT’S TIME FOR THE COUNTDOWN,” Tasha and Bryan said in unison as cued by the prompter.

They counted down from 10, when the 0 appeared, the ball dropped. Kingston kissed his bride of two months and their kiss had that same spark it did on their wedding day. The kiss was not the same as their first time. Simply because Kingston wasn’t the same man, because of his restored faith in God, he was a truly changed man.


Note from the Author:

Believe it or not, I always planned on putting Kingston with Tasha, but I originally wanted to take more time so you could see how they fell in love, how believing in God slowly transformed them into new creatures as scripture talks about.

I believe homosexuality is a bondage. Just like a liar, a fornicator, or anyone that is sinning is an enemy of God and will not make into eternity to dwell with God. I do believe Jesus delivers and saves and in Him freedom can be found. I say give Jesus the Messiah a chance and pray to God in His name, and I believe you will encounter the liberating love of the Father and comfort of the Holy Spirit, but you have to choose to do that.


Only one more repost left! Catch it next week!


 

“Baby Buddies”

I’m an idiot. Roger, my case manager at school, advised me to take only one college course this spring. When have I ever listened to such sage advice? I signed up for three: Botany, Psychology, and Photography 1. The Psych and the Photography class were like made for me, but the Botany class happened to be other worldly… like info from another world with a language barrier I can’t crack!

Biology… why didn’t I take Biology? Well, for my third quarter in high school I’m taking it. Now, maybe taking high school and college Biology together would have enriching but at the time it seemed like getting put on a skewer and roasted over an open fire to me… In other words, just no. That wasn’t happening for me. I’m three weeks in, just past the point of the ability to drop the class without affecting my GPA and I’m in a sinking ship I need to make sure it gets to shore with a passing high C. If I flunk, I get my privileges to take college course for free revoked.

My two and half hour, twice a week class just ended and I’m frozen in my seat… looking over the notes I took during the lecture don’t have any fluidity page to page. I AM ON A SKEWER ROASTING OVER THE FLAMES OF HELL!

“Baby Brain got you bewildered too?” Kim asks standing next to me as I remain seated. She’s 28 weeks pregnant like me. We keep joking that our babies will be born on the same day. She’s half White and half Korean and her husband, Miguel, is half Mexican-American and half Japanese. She’s 36 and this is her fourth child. She’s been a stay at home mom, but not she’s going back to school to follow her passion and to become a teacher… She took Botany over Biology because she’s squeamish. I love the fact she pretends to be lost with me, but she totally understands this stuff more than me, and that’s why I sit next to her in class.

Pulling out her phone, Kim displays the latest 3D sonogram of her little one and hands me her phone so I can gawk over her growing miracle.

“Awe…” I say… Not really sure what to say.

“We finally decide on a name for her, it just came to us.”

“What is it?” I say handing the phone back to her. I close my notebook and pack up my things.

“Sonya Lucia Mary Soo Yun Tanaka… hopefully they count Soo Yun as one name or else we’ll be charged for a sixth name.”

Waddling out of class with Kim, I have to know, “Why so many names?”

“Well, my father is of Russian descendant and none of the other kids have a name to honor that… Then I’m really proud of my mother’s heritage. Of course, Miguel would die if we didn’t have a name that paid tribute to his family and Catholicism.”

That didn’t exactly explain why, but what more can I ask…

Right as we hit the parking lot, the gloomy rain clouds fulfill their purpose and release a steady rainfall. Kim whips open her hot pink umbrella with white pokadots and shares with me since all I got is Derek’s hoodie of his favorite baseball team.

“You’re not stuck taking the bus tonight are you?”  Kim wonders with genuine concern in her voice.

“Yep, I’m bussing it.” I sigh.

“The last think you want to catch is the flu or a bug. I got the flu with Junior and it’s the worse illness you’ll ever experience. You want a lift home. You live on the east side right?”

“Um, I’ll take my chances… thanks though…” I sneak out of the covering of her umbrella. The cold, thick rain quickly drenching the hoodie

Locking elbows with me and reeling me back under the shelter of her umbrella, she makes it clear, “Oh nonsense. I live on the east too. I’ll take you home. Do you live on your own or with your boyfriend?”

“With my mom…”

“Your boyfriend isn’t in the picture anymore?”

We stop in front of a white SUV. “He’s in military…”

“I never pictured you to be the military man type?” Kim as she unlocks her vehicle. She walks me to the passenger door and makes sure I get inside.

Once she takes the driver seat, she tosses the umbrella in the back, that clearly looks like it belongs to young children. Two car seats sat in the back, food crumbs, a musty, moldy aroma, and toys of all kinds from actions figures and hot wheels to baby dolls and teddy bears.

Now would be good to clarify and spill the truth about me… but people assume a lot, and when I talk about my life, I just want to disappear…

“That’s sweet you’re staying with your mom while your man is away, will he be back in time of the birth?”

“Hopefully…” I say surprising myself. Do I have a clinical lying problem? Am I a pathological liar?

“You know what we should do together?”

“A mommy and me class when the babies are old enough, we could be Baby Buddies?” Kim says excitedly turning on the ignition.

“Can you explain something to me? If the war is over, why do we still send soldiers over there? And is your man a marine, an army man, an airman?”

“Um… I’m in high school. I get to take college courses for free. My boyfriend got shipped off to military school before I found out I was pregnant, and after I told him about the baby on FaceTime, we haven’t spoken since… I’m 16… I turned 16 two weeks ago.” The truth feels good to say.

We sit in a loud silence for a moment. The rain comes down harder. Finally, Kim speaks, “You’re so mature for your age! You could have fooled me the whole semester and I wouldn’t have known… If you want to fake being older the rest of the semester, I will totally go along with it.”

As she backs up erratically, she babbles on and on about how great Mommy-and-Me-Classes can be. We zip through the parking lot and through the rain way too fast for two pregnant women inside an SUV.

“Remembering Jewel is Mom”

Jewel made Saturday mandatory family day. We all get up by 9, we leave by 10, and go out to eat for breakfast. Then we go see a movie. After the movie we go to the park, if it is too cold, we go to the library. We go out for lunner (lunch/dinner). Then we spend the night playing board games as we over indulge with ice cream sundaes.

I barely remember this side of Jewel. She was a lot like this when I was super little, when she was married to my dad.

Even though she’s dying, and she can smoke as much as she wants to, she doesn’t have a single cigarette in the apartment. She drinks sometimes, and she’s not supposed to, but instead of being an angry drunk, she’s a crying drunk.

I sit at the kitchen table, organizing the movie tickets and printed pictures for the past three weeks. Scrapbooking is the art of memorializing life moments in a photo album, an art form Jewel will teach me tonight. We have color paper with quirky patterns, scissors, glue sticks, sticker letters, and a blank scrapbook album my mom’s had for eons.

Mom takes her seat beside me, at the head of the table, and looks through the paper… “I’m thinking pink?”

“Eww… just because were girls doesn’t mean we need to make it girly… how about red?”

“The male version of pink… okay…”

I laugh. I never looked at red that way.

“So… uh… what do you want to do for your baby shower?”

“What do you mean?” I ask.

“Well, do you want people to know the gender or not?”

I get what she’s doing… she wants me to tell her the baby’s gender…

“I think I’d rather get gift cards to buy baby clothes… so the guests don’t need to know, but who am I going to invite who can afford to bring anything? Do I have to have a baby shower?”

I watch mom cut and glue pink paper that looks like strokes of paint into the first page of the album. She takes the movie tickets and our pics outside the movie theater and arranges them in a manner pleasing to the eye.

“I never really asked you, I just assumed, but… do you fluffing want to raise the baby? Have you thought about adoption?”

She’s the third person to mention adoption to me. Last week, at work, I went to a grand opening to La Vie downtown to take pictures for Troy’s food critique, and he suggested Derek and I look into adoption. Then Kaylie brought it up yesterday saying that she felt led to bring that up to me. Now, my mom.

“Sniff, there was this sweet couple from church that wanted to adopt you… sometimes I think I should have let them…”

I hate it when she brings that up. It makes me loathe myself more. It makes me feel like she hates me and thinks I ruined her life.

“O fluff, are you crying, what for?” Jewel asks as she gets up. Coughing, she rips a piece of paper towel from the roll, hanging above the sink and comes back over to me. She hands the paper towel to me use as a tissue.

“I feel like you don’t love me when you bring that up…”

“If I didn’t fluffing love you, I would have aborted you.” She erupts into a long coughing fit as she covers her mouth with her fist.

Like on code blue alert, I shoot up from my seat, and worry, “Do you need your inhaler? Where is it?” I go to the bathroom to check the medicine cabinet. It’s not in there. I scan the bathroom counter and don’t see anything. I barge into her room and look on the dresser, the night stands, and then I remember she probably brought it with us… It must be in her purse. I think her purse is in the living room.

Before I can get to her purse, and I’m back in the kitchen, her coughing stops.

“I fluffing fine… You panic too easily.”

“How can I not panic? You’re dying… you’ve chosen to die and that can happen at any moment… how cannot freak out about that?”

“Oh Savannah…” Mom says embracing me. She squeezes me tight and kisses me on the forehead. “I love you…” She says with a shakiness to her voice like she’s about to cry. “I know I’ve been the world fluffing worst mother… A real mother fluffer mommy dearest and you don’t need to forgive me for the sniff I’ve done, the blick I’ve been, but please, do me a favor… don’t panic… everything is gonna be okay, okay?”

There’s something about being held by your mother. Listening to her heart beat in her chest. The scent of her, her shampoo, her perfume, her clothes, her sweat… and the peace that hits you and makes you feel safe… If I could stay like this with her forever, it would erase all the terrible things she’s done, and it would stop any future of her not being there. To not panic, I have to remember Jewel is a mom, she is my mother.

“Alexis”

Alexis Fabry… she took back her maiden name when she divorced Derek’s dad. She’s a nurse at the hospital right down the street from my mom’s apartment. When Netty wanted to cart me around and look at hospitals to see which is the best one to have the baby, I was actually praying we wouldn’t go to Alexis’s hospital. Dr. Varejao can makes to four hospitals within the city, and its up to us which hospital we want.

We nearly make it out unseen, when Alexis enters the elevator before we can make it to the lobby.

“Savvy…” The tall, skinny aging blonde can’t say anything beyond my name.

“Hi Alexis…”

“Ms. Shay?” Netty double checks she’s Derek’s mother.

“Yes, you’re Netty, right?” Alexis questions shaking my sister’s hand.

“The one and only… how’s Derek?”

“He’s doing much better… Um…” Alexis gulps as she nervously pulls on her ear lobe. “How, are you Savvy? Other than pregnant, I didn’t know you were pregnant… does… did… you tell… Derek?”

“That’s a good question, Savvy, have you told the father of you baby about his child?”

The doors to the lobby open up and I choose to escape. I barge in between them and book it for the exit. I’m not ready to tell Netty the truth… I will but do I have to on this day?

They both catch up with me outside the sliding entrance doors. Those similar blue eyes to Derek, gaze at me with a fused look of confusion and concern. I’m sure she sent Derek away to prevent becoming a young grandma. Good news, she’s not going to be a grandma any time soon. Bad news, I can’t go over that.

“Since Christmas, Derek’s been begging to come back home and to stay with me. He said you needed him, you told him, didn’t you?” Alexis wonders.

I nod yes.

“I don’t get it… If you told him about the baby, why didn’t he say anything to you Alexis?”

Alexis shrugs her shoulders… She suddenly grabs my hand and caresses my backhand with her thumb.  “I’d love to have you and your family over for dinner tomorrow night, your sisters, your mom, and whoever else, and we can talk about what needs to happen from here… does that sound like a plan?”

Netty agrees to dinner without my consent. She never declines dinner. But if Alexis didn’t work all the time, she would be a perfect mom. She’s thoughtful and caring. She does all the house work even though she works over 50 hours a week. I used to wish all the time Alexis was my mom. I looked forward to her being my mother-in-law. Who knows what she is to me anymore? I don’t even know if Derek is still my boyfriend.

“Texting Derek”

Savvy: Derek… I still love you…

Derek: SAVVY! I love you. I thought you were done with me. I just want you to know, I’m still here. You and me, always.

Savvy: What about the baby?

Derek: You, me… and the little bambino too😊

Savvy: Really?!

Derek: Yes, who else have you told… everything to?

Savvy: Just you… and my mom… no one else…

Derek: Did your mom believe you?

Savvy: I think. IDK.

Derek: …

Savvy: Why?

Derek: I got a plan, but it won’t work if my parents learn the truth… How did dinner with my mom go?

Savvy: I’m alive… the baby is fine…

Derek: LMBO. My mom called me and reamed in to me for not telling her that you’re having my baby.

Savvy: But I’m not.

Derek: For my plan to work, you are…

Savvy: Is Jesus okay with you lying?

Derek: Probably not, but I don’t care. I’m never living without you.

Savvy: COME HOME!

Derek: I will be, Monday night? Will you come with my mom to pick me up from the airport?

Savvy: I’d love to but I have Botany at West Campus.

Derek: I’m getting in super late… like 9pm.

Savvy: I get out at 8:30.

Derek: Okay… Will Jewel be at work, maybe I can drop by?

Savvy: She works day shifts now, she’ll be home. Sorry.

Derek: When will I see you then?

Savvy: I guess whenever.

Derek: Can’t you skip one class? We haven’t seen each other in MONTHS!

Savvy: I’ll think about it.

+Positively Unexpected Part 7

…Happy Holidays…

Tasha told herself she would tell Kingston the truth. When he could handle the truth. If he only called 911 for the sake of the child she carried, she did not want to give him an excuse to end his life for good.

Tasha’s mother sent an old fashion postcard from Cancoon. She and Pat enjoyed riding horses on the beach, eating shrimp cocktails by the pool, and getting massages from their room balcony whenever they requested one. Her mother made no mention of the scandal Tasha recently found herself in, and for some reason, Tasha was relieved her mother ignored the drama, but at the same time, felt like her mother didn’t care enough by ignoring the subject all together.

Jenny had been helpful… For the past three weeks, she had been Tasha’s best friend all over again. The paparazzi wouldn’t leave Tasha alone and bombarded the front doors of her apartment building. Jenny delivered groceries, pre-natal vitamins, and most helpful of all, Jenny and Humphrey had delivered comforting company. Tasha wanted to spend Christmas with Jenny, but Jenny suggested Christmas with the Rourkes was best, since Hope graciously offered. Granted, Jenny made the suggestion thinking Kingston was the father of the baby, not Dax.

On several occasions, Tasha nearly broke down and told Jenny the truth, but she partly feared Jenny would support her notion to lie and help Tasha perpetuate the lie of paternity. Jenny growing up was the one that said a good lie never hurt anyone. Tasha in her innocence said truth and transparency was the only way to live. Tasha wondered where that sweet, honesty hungry girl went, because she was a total stranger to her and the world now.

Kingston would text Tasha here and there. He would ask her how she was and if she needed anything, but with Jenny taking such good care of her, she didn’t need anything from him.

Hope stopped by last week and brought Tasha some paperback books on pregnancy. The gift was significant because Hope selected the best literature from all that she read through all three of her pregnancies. Tasha felt worse about her looming lie on that day, but the fear of Hope going public with Tasha’s lie fueled Tasha’s silence.

Hope extended an invite to come a few days before Christmas and spend a few nights, but Tasha only agreed to Christmas Day and that was all she was going to do.

Tasha spent Christmas Eve with her father, Jenny, and Humphrey. After dinner, they sat in the living room and allowed Humphrey to open one gift. He selected the one from Tasha and was blessed with a dinosaur toy Jenny swore he wanted more than anything. By his reaction of sheer joy and enthusiasm when he tore the paper to reveal what the toy was, Jenny didn’t lie about that. The plastic raptor was the only thing Tasha could afford.

While Humphrey ran around the living room with his new toy from his sister, and Jenny went to get dessert ready, Tanner handed Tasha an envelope. Inside was a transaction slip for a large sum of money and the code to get the amount released to any account she wanted. It was enough to pay off her fines and legal fees. Accepting those funds would cancel her debt.

“Dad, you don’t need to do–,” Tasha tried to hand him back his offer.

But he walked away from her.

Humphrey sped toward Tanner making raptor noises as he led with the raptor toy out before him like a sword. Tanner crouched low and pretended to be a dinosaur whisperer and the two cautiously danced in a circle, waiting for the other to make a move first. Impatiently, Humphrey lunged first and Tanner rapidly picked the boy up as they spun in a circle. He held Humphrey by the legs holding him upside down. Humphrey giggled and begged to be put down.

“Please daddy! I have to go pee!” Humphrey squealed as his father tickled his stomach and he dangled by his father’s clutches. “DADDY!” Humphrey screamed.

Chuckling Tanner finally listened to his son’s request. Humphrey sprung toward the first floor restroom, dropping his toy on the rug by the tree.

“Children are expensive. Your money should be invested in your child, not spent paying for one mistake you happened to get caught doing.”

“What if I place the child in adoption?”

“Pay off your debt anyway… in case you ever want a child one day…”

“You’re so good with him…” Tasha said, safely placing the envelope in her purse.

“I wish I was better with you… I remember the day you were born as clear as day. When I held you I never loved anyone as much as I loved you then and still do… Every fiber of my being and molecule of my body loved you so much… I was so freaked out I was going to destroy your whole life… I was glad you were a girl… I figured you had a better chance of being sweet and innocent, I prayed to God that you would be…”

“You’re not religious…” Tasha wondered if Jenny finally convinced her father to attend mass regularly. Jenny’s entire family were devote Roman Catholics. Dean was always open about his faith, even in the workplace, that was part of the reason Dean and Tanner would clash in business decisions, when actions necessary to take would violate something about Dean’s religion.

“No, not really, but if you were to ask me with all the years I lived if there was a God, I would say there has to be one… For if humanity had the power we think we did, we would have already destroyed each other eons ago. There must be some power in the universe that loves us too much to let us do away with each other like that…”

That evening Tasha left her father’s house feeling loved. The words that he said about her. That he loved her with every fiber of his being and every molecule in his body. For a second, she imagined having a daughter and loving her the same way or maybe even more. Tasha couldn’t remember the last time she truly loved anyone or anything. Did she ever love someone? And the sad reality that she had never been in love made her realize she would fail as a mother.

After the Happy Holidays, Tasha was going back to the clinic to enter NYSAPP: New York State Adoption Placement Program. The greatest act of love she was ever going to do was find a family that functioned normally and knew how to love properly.

…Christmas…

Tasha arrived to a happy, cozy home in the suburbs outside Manhattan. The finest suburb upper-middle class had to offer. The two story home was modern age, with a flat top roof as sections of the home stacked like skewed blocks.

Blue, yellow, and purple icicle lights hung from the first and second stories. The walk way to the door flashed with strobe lighting with each step Tasha took. From the front door, Tasha heard Christmas music and laughter. She rung the door bell and the H.A.I. (House Artificial Intelligence) asked her to state who she was, without hesitation, the door popped open and announced her arrival.

“Tasha Turner has arrived…” said the H.A.I. with a soothing, female voice.

Kingston’s whole family stopped their fun in the living room, playing a virtual game on a holo-sphere and stared at Tasha, holding a tin of fruit cake. Normally, as a guest at dinner she usually brought wine, but as a pregnant woman, she thought wine would send a negative message. Plus, with how religious Hope was at the hospital, Tasha took a bold guess to assume the family didn’t drink wine.

Everyone in the room were adults. Only two people were familiar to Tasha. Kingston sat in a recliner smiling at Tasha. Hope stood near the foyer, closest to Tasha, standing by a man that had Kingston’s jawline and dimpled cheeks. He was too young to be his father, therefore, that must be his brother, Logos.

Looking over their shoulders to gaze at Tasha, sitting at the couch, were two men on each side and a woman in the middle. The man on Tasha’s left was black with long dreads. He had his arm on the back of the couch around the woman’s back. The woman had Kingston’s hair and Hope’s eyes and nose. She had to be Kingston’s sister, Genesis aka Gen. The other man with a bald head and a long gray beard was clearly the man where Kingston and his brothers got their eyes, Mr. John Luke Rourke.

“Welcome Tasha,” Hope said.

Kingston rushed over to Tasha. Logos took her coat and hung it up as Hope took the tin of fruit cake gratefully. Kingston greeted Tasha with a sincerely warm hug, which brought Tasha a great deal of comfort. Not just because he was a great hugger, but a hug like that meant the man had hope, and could bare to hear the truth. The truth she craved to get off her chest.

Immediately, everyone broke the awkward tension and sat her down on another recliner in the living room. Hope laid gifts at her feet and on her lap. Gen made small talk. Logos brought her fresh hot chocolate. John Luke introduced the black man. He was Gen’s husband, Cress.

Overwhelmed, Tasha asked where the nearest bathroom was. Kingston jumped to her rescue to show her the way. Through the kitchen and toward the garage. The door to a half bath was in the nook to a second staircase that led upstairs.

“I don’t need to go to the bathroom…” Tasha confessed.

“I figured…” Kingston laughed. He looked into her eyes with intrigue like he wanted to kiss her. “They just want you to feel welcomed.”

“Yeah…” Tasha averted her eyes, and began to pick at her thumbnail nervously. “I may not be welcomed here much longer, when everyone finds out…”

He took her by the shoulders and bent his head to catch her gaze with his, “Just take a deep breath and don’t worry about anything. You’ll learn nothing stops this family from loving anyone… That’s what make them pretty great.”

Tasha was about to blurt it all out, when a framed newspaper clipping caught her eye with the title: Wayd v. Rowe. Pointing at the frame of history, she asked, “You’re mother was alive during this case?”

Wayd v. Rowe was the very case that helped shape modern abortion law and led way to the adoption placement program across the country. A man sued the woman pregnant with his unborn child, and by some miracle won. The judge ruled for the woman to carry until the fetus was viable outside the womb.

The man’s lawyer was a genius. Arguing the fetus was not part of the woman’s body but was a life temporarily a resident in the woman’s womb. And that if the abortion was carried out, it should count as murder, since in Manhattan, if a pregnant woman was murdered, the murderer was prosecuted for two murders.

By the time the case made it to supreme court, the baby was born, placed in the NICU, where the child miraculously survived and was 9 months old when the Supreme Court finally ruled.

“Um… sort of…” Kingston huffed, coming behind Tasha. Standing so close behind her she could feel his breath against her neck. “My grandfather was the man who sued for the right to have a choice, whether his child should live or die.”

Shocked but not shocked, Tasha turned to Kingston, “Your mother is the fetus that reversed Roe v. Wade?

“Yeah…”

Tasha felt closed in a box. She walked toward the kitchen, needing the relief a spacious area brought. Hope’s passion for Tasha’s child to live wasn’t just for religious reasons but for heritage reasons too.

The urge to blurt out the truth ate away at Tasha’s soul. She was able to fight it off around Jenny and at home, but in this house it was like being placed in a furnace and the heat begged her to scream the truth. For the lie alone tormented her. Lies usually were easy for her to keep, but this lie was too heavy. Tasha no longer cared if her career died or survived, she wanted out from the weighty burden of her child’s false paternity.

Tasha rested her hands on Kingston’s shoulders as she stood on her toes to whisper loudly in his ear, “You’re not the father…”


A Quick Note from the Author

This section is short but sweet. Turns out there’s a law in Arkansas that gives father’s the right to slap an injunction to stop a woman from getting an abortion. The article I read on it was really biased and left-wing. A little interesting how my story may not be that far fetched after all.

Much love,

7ff3d5f1-fe02-465d-8a77-da682894d7e6

Can Death You Be an Angel?”

Death can you deliver me?

Can you set me free?

Will you come from for her?

Cancer. Incurable, just compressible.

The worst woman in the world,

Finally got what she deserved.

Cancer. Stage 3. Deadly.

I thought I’d be happy to see her go.

But I’m sort of sad about it.

Death can you be an angel,

And promise everything will be okay,

When my mother has gone away?

“Mottoes”

My job is the best, but working minimum wage for five hours, five days a week will not pay for bills and taking care of a baby. I haven’t physically gone into the office down town since I started showing. I’ve been emailing all my work, but I’m stuck going in today because Esmeralda refused to accept my photos for February’s Magazine without seeing me.

The jerk left his old camo jacket behind, which is super warm and majorly baggy to hide my baby bump.

I started working for Mottoes last year. I forged Jewel’s signature, so I could start working at 15. Only my counselor at school knows I work there. The job fits well with going to college classes at night.

Mottoes is a media group where young voices provide the content. Ages 15-26 either write for Mottoes magazine or take pictures or do both like I do. Then we have a radio show and a few podcasts. It’s amazing. But for all the work we do, we do workshops and get paid for it. Actual professional journalists and media moguls come and share their methods to their craft. We also do fun activities and hang out together.

As usual we circle up in the center of the meeting room, which just has boring white tiles and boring cream ceiling tiles, and we’re in a basement room so there’s no natural lighting. We’re going to spend the next 30 minutes sharing one blessing and one curse. This time gives us all some peace in our very messed up lives, and this circle time also makes us like family to each other.

Troy Eldridge, his entire left arm is burnt up like a crisp, and he has severe nerve damage in all four of his left fingers. Somehow his thumb is normal. His parents were cooking meth when he was four and their meth lab blew up. He caught fire while he was running out of the house and he was too little to stop, drop and roll.  Part of his body is burnt too, but no one can see it. He went to go live with his aunt who was married to an alcoholic. For years he was his uncles punching bag when he was drunk. In middle school, Troy was the bully, beating the snot out his victims. He got kicked out of nearly every public middle school on the Eastside. CPS finally figured out he was being abused and but him with his paternal grandparents his freshman year of high school. He grandpa was a retired minister and his grandma turned out to be a sweetheart saint. It took a couple years, a lot of counseling, and Mottoes for a few months, but now Troy is a creature he likes to call human. If I wasn’t in love with Derek, or pregnant, I would totally date him. He’s not the cutest guy, but he has a warm charm and kind, soulful sage green eyes. Nah, I would not date him… His scars are really cool though… maybe I would…

Alice is a recovering anorexic.

Blaine suffers with severe depression.

Misha’s a former drug addict: painkillers. She used to be like a soccer prodigy, but a year ago she got in a car accident with her mom and they both survived, but due to injuries to Misha’s pelvis and left leg, she’ll never play sports again. She can’t even run and needs a cane to walk. After she got out of rehab, she was referred to this place and host’s a sports radio show, she surprising loves it.

Kyler doesn’t talk, and no one, but Esmeralda knows why… he’s the magazine’s current co-editor. He’ll write on notepads, send texts, and send emails, so he’s literate, but he simply doesn’t talk.

Fiona is a hot-head, she gets pissed off super quickly.

Then there’s me… I seem like the fairly, normal one. I’m honest about Jewel’s verbal abuse. I’m honest about being more of a mom to my sisters than Jewel. I’m honest about me and Derek, but everything else I sweep under the rug.

Mottoes has more meeting rooms with more groups similar to ours, but we meet in a small setting, with one leader. Esmeralda Ranaldi is our fearless leader. She has a gold nose ring in her left nostril. Her long, dark drown dreads are held back by head scarfs. Long flowy dresses with wild designs are her style. Bold and big gaudy, sparkly jewelry in her ears, around her neck, and on her wrists. And rain or shine, hot or cold, she only wears some form of sandals. Inside, she walks around barefoot as frequently as possible.

Trying to sit down on the ground without looking 20 weeks pregnant is a challenge. Troy notices I’m wincing as I squat low.

“Are you okay?”

“I’m fine.”

He reaches out to help me, but I smack his hand away. “Don’t help. I’m good.”

I realized kneeling on the floor and then slowly adjusting to sit down made it possible.

Esmeralda smiles ear to ear not taking her eyes off me, which means she wants me to go first.

“Savannah! It’s too good to have you back! In honor of your return, please, go first.”

I’m totally embarrassed. I wish I could curl into a ball and disappear. “Can I go last?”

Esmeralda cautiously nods her head yes agreeing. “Sure…” she mutters. “Troy, you’re up!”

“Curse: I’m flunking Algebra 2. Blessing: I’m getting A’s in every other class. This is my best semester academically in the history of my school career… so I guess I need to find a tutor so I can end the semester well?”

“Sav should tutor you. She’s a math genius.” Misha says. She’s lucky and gets to sit in a chair. I guess I could have faked a leg injury to get a chair… but then I would have to create a lie how I got hurt. Less lying this way, maybe no lying.

“I don’t know… I have like zero free time…” I say, which is true now that I’m living with Jewel and my sisters again.

One by one, everyone shared their blessing and their curse for the day. I zoned out after Troy, trying to figure out what I’m going to say. I think I have to go big. I can’t hide a baby from everyone.

“Okay Savvy, you’re up…”

“Did Kyler go? I hadn’t noticed.” I admit.

Everyone squeals yes in various ways as Kyler holds his little whiteboard aggressively. The top reads: BLESSING: I tried coffee and liked it. The bottom reads: CURSE: I PEE A LOT FROM TOO MANY CUPS.

“Peeing a lot sucks dude… but at least you can stop it by not drinking coffee… me however, I have like a little person growing inside of me that kicks my bladder a lot and makes me pee all the time. That’s my curse: teen pregnancy. Blessing: impending motherhood… I think.”

Misha, Blaine, and Alice think I’m joking. They laugh hysterically.

“Good one!” Blaine blurts out.

“I don’t think she’s joking. It may be winter, but you don’t need a military winter jacket for Tucson.” Fiona states.

I unveil the bump by opening the jacket, the laughing stops, and all eyes bug out except for Fiona.

Reluctantly, Esmeralda asks, “Do you…want to… share more with… us?”

“No, I’m good.”

Getting up from the floor, I let Troy help me up. He’s sweet. Everyone disperses to their battle stations, except, I join Esmeralda at her desk.

She leans back in her swivel chair, nervously clicking the top of her retractable pen without stopping. I struggle to find comfort in the modern, egg-shaped plastic chair.

“This is why you haven’t come in,” leaning forward and resting her arms on the desk, “You were ashamed of your pregnancy?”

“No… not totally… my mom has stage 3 lung cancer. She doesn’t want traditional chemo, and she doesn’t want surgery to try and live. She wants to die… So we maybe have a year with her. I just thought my time has been more important to spend with her and my sisters than coming here.”

Okay, so I tell a little white lie… but it would be true if I knew sooner. It’s more of an excuse than a lie, right?

+Positively Unexpected – 6

…Rm 1234…

IT was ironic Kingston stayed in a room with consecutive numbered digits. Tasha stood near with the door, with Hop standing close behind her in the threshold.

Kingston was still asleep. His complexion a pale gray, void of life. The strong aromas of cleaners made Tasha extra queasy.

The corner view of the city couldn’t be more depressing with a looming, dark overcast sky. Tasha wanted to blackout tint the windows, or change the view to a peaceful beach. However, with psych patients modern medicine overloads them with truth. And the truth was a blizzard was fast approaching and the sky said so.

Incredibly intimidated by this circumstance and her thoughts about work, Kingston, Jennifer, Hope’s threat, Manhattan, Giles, her reputation, the baby…

Oh no, she referred to her pregnancy as a baby in her thoughts…

Then murder rung loud in her ears. The nightmare of battling Hope in court flashed visions in her mind of the possible torture. The term “legal fees” made her heart hurt. What if she lost the baby due to stress? Could a miscarriage be a blessing?

How insensitive of her thoughts?! How insensitive of her? But if she did miscarry the world would sympathize with her. But not once Kingston was dead though, because that’s probably what he would do! …He would die, if she lost the baby…

But none of this would be a problem if she was honest to begin with. She held a secret in her purse that could dissolve any further connection to Kingston’s life. But then, the chaos would collapse on her and all people would focus on what a liar she was… Yet, the longer she stood in that room, the truer it became that she was and always will be a deceiver.

“I’m sorry…” She turned to Hope behind her. Tasha clutched the straps of her purse, and clung them tightly.  Avoiding eye contact, Tasha explained, “I shouldn’t be here…” She rushed to the door, expecting Hope to move out of the way but she didn’t.

“You’re family now. You’re welcome here.”

Gasping with a chortle, Tasha snickered at that statement. She didn’t feel welcomed.

Hope’s eyes finally caught Tasha’s gaze, which made Tasha realize she was welcomed in that room.

Hope explained earlier she didn’t know how to cope with her gay teenage son all those years ago and now deliverance stood in the form of pregnant Tasha. Tasha wasn’t easy when it came to affairs, but she knew when a lover enjoyed sharing the sheets with her, and Kingston most likely didn’t… Tasha’s curiosity and Kingston’s anger is probably what made it worth while, will there be a repeat? Probably not.

Awkwardly, Tasha reached inside her purse and glanced at her phone, hoping to find an excuse to suddenly leave. She did miss a gazillion fresh calls from Rodeheaver, yes that was his name, Dax Rodeheaver executive producer for the Deets– her boss.

She held up a paper thin, Pure G XXI, the size of an Ace playing card that can expand to an 8″ x 10″ tablet, when placed in a Pure Tab XI shell. Tasha pointed to the missed Vid Chat notifications on the surface as she faced it towards Hope, “Work calls, if I don’t go I’ll be out of a job. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t be here. I should be putting this fire out at work.”

Hope stood out of the way stating, “All you do is slander and gossip about people…”

Defending herself, “I vowed to not lie on TV again. All I do is place reasonable doubt based on factual information I find. People watch my show because I’m a famous liar.”

Hope allowed Tasha to exit the room.

As Tasha stepped into the hallway, Hope asked, “What do you plan to do?”

Tasha slipped her arm through her purse handle straps. The purse slid down into the nook of her elbow. As sincerely as possibly, she said, “Tell the world what you told me… And announce my pregnancy. I won’t say anything else.”

…Rodeheaver’s Office…

“[Bleep] no,” Rodeheaver refused to stream Tasha’s pitch.

“I told his mother that I was going to do it.”

“The public doesn’t care why he’s still alive. Stories about why he tried to off himself is trending.”

“We can get ahead of the crib–curb…” Tasha cleared her throat after correcting herself, “by shifting everyone’s attention to the fact he’s still alive, not that he almost died.”

“Still [BLEEP] no,” Rodeheaver said puffing on his e-cig. He blew the vapor into Tasha’s face.

She couldn’t fight her nausea anymore. Grabbing the waste bucket next to Rodeheaver’s desk, Tasha placed the round trashcan on her lap and threw up in it. She dry-heaved out of disgust with vomit splattering in her face.

Rodeheaver went on a cursing tangent, grossed out.

Tasha put the bucket on the floor, next to her seat. Rodeheaver, stood up from behind his desk and set his e-cig down. He crossed to the front of his desk, and sat on the desk surface before Tasha. He loosened his crimson red tie and rolled up his sleeves to his navy blue button down. With the back of his hand, he rubbed the beaded sweat off his forehead. Squinting his hazel eyes, the more defined the crows feet on the outside corners of his eyes were. Lastly, he crossed his arms and the light bounced off his shiny bald head as he stared at Tasha with scrutiny.

“I thought, according to our contract, your tubes were tied…” He pondered.

“The Network Contract does not say that,” Tasha never signed a document she didn’t read thoroughly.

He grumbled and Tasha knew he meant their private contract.

“No, that contract required me to be on birth control and if we ever became exclusive said I would agree to tie my tubes… By the way, I don’t see why you just don’t get snipped yourself.”

“I wish I could, but I’m the last Rodeheaver of American descent. Until, I have an heir I can’t get the procedure authorized by my insurance. I can’t do it illegally, because I could lose everything if a doctor found out at one of my quarterly check-ups.”

“Right… and you don’t want any heirs to take everything from you and leave you in a senior home.”

Grunting subtly to Tasha’s last statement, he pressed forward, “A lot of stories are spinning the same gunk. You were sited at his club hangout kissing him by the bar, went back to his place while Giles was in Japan last month. Last week you were seen going in and leaving the clinic, you’re what? Seven to eight weeks with child?”

“About nine weeks actually…”

“You’re two weeks pregnant at conception… We finished our private contract seven weeks ago, on my desk remember?”

She remembered, but she didn’t realize the technicality.

“A source told Now News that Kingston was posing as the father to co-sign. Did you get the results back?”

“No…” Tasha lied. She knew he’d ask to see it and if he saw it, she could kiss her career and her life good-bye. Sure, getting the abortion would be easier. Because Kingston definitely wasn’t the father… Now, Tasha suddenly felt worse for lying to Mrs. Rourke. Carter couldn’t be the father… because he was snipped. And well, the father just made it obvious he didn’t want the kid to usurp his throne. But if it got out Kingston wasn’t the father of her baby, she would become a home-wrecker and a gold-digger…

“Any other candidate other than me and Bordner’s leftovers?”

“No…” Tasha sighed rolling her eyes. She should have stayed at the hospital.

“Well, until those results come in or we figure out how to spin this [bleep] the way I like, you’re on paid leave.”

“What?” Tasha was confused.

“I can’t fire you, you’re pregnant.”

“Whoa, wait, you want to fire me?!”

“We hired you because you were the most, beloved, trusted liar in TV… Now you’re just a liar and potentially a money-leech with that parasite you’re carrying. We need your story to somehow be historical to blow all this [bleep] out of the [bleep]-ing water. Depending on how Kingston Rourke’s name trends, will determine if you get canned once you don’t have a reason to be on paid leave.”

Tasha couldn’t believe him. Normally, Rodeheaver wasn’t like that with Tasha. He would let her spin anything she sunk her teeth into, even after their private contracted ended, he granted her favor. And Tasha was fine with renewing the contract, he was the one that decided the terms and bylaws for their affair was played out.

Tasha stood up grabbing her purse. He took her by the arms and told her, “You know insurance won’t authorize the procedure if I’m…” he cleared his throat, “if I’m the lucky candidate…”

“I won’t say anything. I’ll say I don’t know…”

“We had a contract, they look up that kind of stuff…”

“Well, then I either go to Canada and get it done or I just give the kid away because I said it before and I’ll say it again, I will never be a mother and I may be in debt until I die, but I will walk in front of a cab before I take money from a man for child support.” Shoving herself away from his grasp, she snapped, “You’re not contracted to touch me like that anymore. Keep your hands off me you mother [beep]er!”


Author’s Note:

I get that this is a very controversial topic, filtered through more controversy. I am honored to have freedom of religion and speech in America. I don’t feel thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs should be forced on anyone, but I do feel like it IS MORE than okay for every individual to express how they feel, what they believe, and show what they stand for in life.

I do believe the Bible is the Word of God and I don’t think there are any loop holes in the pages. God’s love isn’t gray and SIN is SIN. The Holy Spirit inspired the author of John’s Gospel to write, “the Truth will Set You Free” because Jesus the Messiah said it… Truth is like fire. It needs the wind of our voice to catch or pages to spread across, and the truth is warm to those inside the inner courts of God’s throne room, but a burning furnace to those outside the temple gates.

Real truth can burn and a soul either becomes gold in that honesty furnace or ashes. Repenting from a lifestyle apart from God, and turning towards God leads a soul to life with an eternity filled with gold, but not repenting and staying away from God leads a soul to death and in death a man becomes nothing but dusty ashes.

If you’re a fellow saint who struggles with a desire that grieves the Spirit of God, forget about what the people of the church say, forget about what the world says, and think about you and our beautiful Savior and how amazing His love is and what He meant when He said “It is Finished” on the cross. Your struggle is finished, take that ungodly desire to God and embrace the freedom the Blood of the Messiah purchased for you! I pray you’re free right now, in Jesus’ name. There is no greater name, no greater power.


I’ll be a little transparent…

I grew up in a mostly Christian family. We didn’t always go to church, but we believed in Jesus, the Bible, and God. I would say since I was 6, I had faith in God (still do). Yet, when I was 8 years old, I found myself disgusted with being a girl and I actually formed crushes on girls… not boys. I would have dreams about dating girls my age and looking in the mirror at certain points in the dream and being a boy. This conflicted feeling stayed with me well into my adult years.

When I came to the point where I believed I was meant to be a woman. I started getting dreams about being a lesbian and dating celebrity woman, that I was attracted to in real life. And this was a time in the church where the LBGTQ community was being accepted by branches of Lutheranism, Catholicism, Black Churches, Methodism, etc. I wondered if I could be a lesbian and not practice and become an advocate for the LGBTQ community.

I constantly suffered from anxiety, and I wasn’t fretful of getting sent to hell… I would just get random panic attacks. I would wake up in a cold sweat from night terrors. And I never had any peace feeling like a dark presence was following me.

When I came to the conclusion in my own faith, that homosexuality and changing genders is not biblical and that God could transform me… I got to a point where I cried out to God for deliverance and I got it.

To this day, I have not had same-sex attraction nor have I felt like I was a man. I embrace my womanhood and I’m excited to walk out this life as a woman, a daughter of God.

Much love,

7ff3d5f1-fe02-465d-8a77-da682894d7e6

“Without You”

I don’t want to be here

Why do I exist?

For the longest time-

I felt like I was for you

And you were for me

Like we were cosmically meant to be

But now, I can’t talk to you

I don’t deserve you

You’re clearly fine without me

Better even now that you have a savior

I wish I could be like you

I wish I could believe in magic

I wish I could believe in a god

But all I’ve ever known is-

FLUFF

I don’t even know what I know

I wish I could get drunk

I wish I was heartless enough to get high

Without you I feel like I’m drowning

Without you I want to die

Without you I mean nothing

“With You”

Your heartbeat keeps me going

You’re the one good thing in my life

With you, the future is bright

With you, I can weather any fight

It’s crazy how we’ve never met

You don’t even have a personality yet

And when I close my eyes

I dream of your smile

I listen to your possible little voice

Saying, “I love you.”

Hear me, if you can

I love you

I sort of want to wake up tomorrow

I can’t promise I’ll stay with you

But my life looks better with you

So here’s to the next day

Me with you in me 

“Belated Merry Christmas”

Jewel messaged me online today, my last day of Winter Break and asked if we could meet up at Gimmel Park by Brink. The girls missed me and wanted to give me a Christmas gift. She promised the jerk wouldn’t be with them. At first, I was so angry and I made up my mind that I wasn’t going to go because she’s still with the jerk… but I missed Genie and Albany like crazy.

When Netty asked me where I was going, I told her to meet up with Kaylie. Lying to her is getting easier and I’m not sure why… I thought for sure the other night when I yelled at Derek on FaceTime and told him the truth that Netty and Deshuan overheard everything, but they didn’t. The just new I went ballistic and I lost my phone privileges for a few days.

Derek won’t stop calling and texting me, but I just ignore him. I can’t take preachiness from him. I’m used to it from Netty, but not from him.

For the first time, in a long time, I take the bus. An old man gave up his front seat for me. Being pregnant has some advantages.

I forgot how soothing this bus can be. The loud hum of the engine. The warmth the overcrowded-ness brings. Looking out the window, watching the buildings along the road blur together, just peaceful.

The bus driver lowers the bus to make it easier for me to step off. Bussing isn’t so bad. I guess it depends on how you look at things. I could find a million reasons to hate taking the bus, but I could easily find things I like about riding the bus… and even though the good may not out way the bad, the good reasons are better, and have more value than the bad things… This baby must be producing good hormones because I kind of love my life right now.

Jewel sits at be bench by the playground. Genie and Albany are too absorbed in their imaginary world to notice me. Or maybe they do see me, but they’re ignoring me. They rarely ever get to go to the park. The fact that Jewel is with them, at the park, they’re busy making a good memory while it lasts.

Jewel loudly smacks her gum as I take a seat next to her.

“Look at them. If I knew taking them to the park would make them this fluffing happy, I would have done this sniff fluffing forever ago.”

“Yeah…” I’m scared. Like, how quickly will this get sour?

“So ah, you want to come back and live with us? The fluffing jerk is gone. That butthole was stealing from the store and tried to pin it on me… he didn’t get any jail time, but he’s got a record now.”

Jewel’s been stealing from the store since she’s been working there. Did she frame the jerk for me?

“Oh yeah… when did that happen?”

“A few days after you left… I noticed you left your shoes by the door… Your feet okay?”

“Yeah… Netty patched me up really good. She took me to a doctor to make sure I didn’t do any permanent damage.”

“You like it at Nurse Netty’s?” Jewel wonders.

I shrug my shoulders. I’m afraid to admit yes. Staying neutral is safe.

“I quit smoking. I got those nicotine patches and gum. I wish I could afford the pill.”

“Mmm…”

“Yeah, turns out getting burned by a fluffing cigarette hurts like sniff!” Jewel laughs.

I catch the contagion of her laughter and together we crack up uncontrollably. The baby kicks like crazy. I put my hands on my belly and beg the booger to stop.

“What?! SNIFF! You alright?” Jewel says leaning across the bench, holding her hands in front me like she’s about to catch me from falling forward.

“I’m fine. The baby was just kicking…It annoys me.”

“Ah, babies do annoying sniff all the time and there’s nothing you can do really to force them to stop. And if we’re being honest, the annoying things are the cutest things.” Jewel smiles… “When I was seven months pregnant with Genie, any time Mexican music played, she would just go wild in my womb. She had to be fluffing dancing, because now, any time Mexican music is playing-,”

In unison we say, “She dances like crazy.”

Laughing in sync again, Jewel adds, “She’s not even Mexican!”

“We still lived on the Southside, before Bobby lost his house. Remember how, there were always parties going on?”

“O my God! I felt like we were in Mexico… not that I hated it. Maria, in 2431, made a mean margarita!” Jewel covers her mouth trying to force herself to stop laughing.

“Savvy!” Genie screams running towards me.

I lean forward to swoop that little beauty into my arms. I hug her so hard I don’t care if I break her. I smother her ridiculously in kisses. When Albany comes up, I spare an arm to hook her in my clutches too.

“Come home Savvy,” Genie says with her adorable pouty lip, and puppy dog blue eyes.

“Yeah Sav, we miss you.” Albany says.

“It will just be us girls. No jerks. No fluffing men. Just us.” Jewel says.

Hey there fans! So I don’t know what happened- but I lost part 5 in the series. And I myself can’t quite remember everything that happened…

What I do remember…

In section 5, Hope Rourke was introduced. Kingston got his dashing good looks from her. She ran the adoption placement program at the hospital. The adoption placement program funded by the government for mothers who agreed not to get abortion.

When Tasha arrived at the hospital, before she went in to see Kingston. Hope takes Tasha on a tour of the maternity ward and then her office. In Hope’s office, Hope kindly threatens Tasha that if she get’s an abortion, she will sue Tasha until the Rourke Family gets custody of the child.

Tasha was shocked that Hope knew she was pregnant, and asked how Hope discovered the information. Hope knew the dispatcher that got Kingston’s 911 call after he attempted suicide by taking too many pills. He said he needed to live for his baby… that it would be awful to live knowing your dad killed himself.

At this point, Tasha found out the results to the DNA test and based on her behavior…  He was NOT the Father as Maury would say.

And that’s all I can remember about section 5.


Blog Follower: Why not re-write part 5 Bri?

Me: Well, I’m writing a punch of things write now… plus it’s kind of fun to fill in the pieces like a detective! Do you remember anything from part 5 from it’s original posting.

Blog Follower: Sorry, no… why didn’t you back it up on your computer or a flash drive…

Me: I think I did, but I can’t find it write now. I’ve moved a lot lately!

Blog Follower: Thanks for filling in what you can… how do you remember this much?

Me: As a trained actress I must have a good memory. LOL!


Much love,

7ff3d5f1-fe02-465d-8a77-da682894d7e6

“Dinner 38”

              Netty firmly believes the family that dines together, stays together. Eating dinner at the table isn’t up for debate and absences from dinner is only excusable when sick, out of town, at work, or invited to someone else’s house for dinner. I’ve been to 37 dinners since living with Netty and Deshaun. Tonight makes the 38th dining experience.

              “At the next visit, we’ll know the sex of the baby. We should have been able to find out today, but the technician couldn’t get a clear view… but everything else looks really good.” Netty says passing Deshaun the serving bowl of sautéed green beans.

              Dishing out a hearty scoop onto his light blue plate, Netty’s favorite set of dishware, Deshaun asks me, “What do you want, a boy or a girl?”

              I hate that question. I hate that I’m pregnant. I hate that I dream about having a little girl and treating her like precious gold. I hate that I’m afraid she’ll look exactly like the jerk and I’ll detest her existence and treat her like the scum of the earth.

              “A boy.” I lie.

              “Really?” Netty seems surprised.

              “A boy, you want a little D running around?” Deshuan hands me the bowl of green beans.

              The whiff of the veggies makes me super nauseous. Normally, I love veggies, but lately I only want wings and rice. I take a little bit because Netty will lecture me about how bad it is to eating according to cravings and not a well-balanced diet.

              “I just want a healthy baby.” I say honestly. “Maybe, we shouldn’t bother finding out the sex. Letting it be a surprise could be fun.”

              Netty nearly choked on her meatloaf at that thought. Netty plans everything to a tee. Knowing the gender will help plan for the baby shower, how to decorate the nursery, and how to pray for the kid’s destiny. Gulping her food, she says, “Well, if that’s what you want… okay…”

              That must be the opposite of how she feels on the inside.

              “What does D want, huh?” Deshaun wonders.

              “Um…” I can’t lie about this one. Netty confronted me in the car, on our way home from the doctor’s visit, asking me if I told Derek yet. I told her the truth, that I didn’t. I almost broke down and told her about the jerk, but I can’t. “I don’t know.” I shrug my shoulders.

              Deshaun chuckles when he concludes Derek knows nothing about the baby. He sighs as he bites the food off his fork. Though his mouth is closed, we can hear him smack his food as he chews. It’s super annoying. The baby flutters and kicks me as I eat the meatloaf. This baby is a total carnivore.

              Deshaun takes a swig of his beer from the green bottle. He sets his beer down on the table and after he swishes his gulp down, he asks me, “You plan on raising this baby on your own?”

              “I don’t even know if I want the baby, so I until I know what I want to do, I don’t see the point in telling him.”

              “He’s the father, he should know about his child.”

              “D’s no more ready to be a father than I’m ready to be a mother.”

              “You should have thought about that before being careless and getting knocked up.” Deshaun snaps.

              Crying, unable to hold them back, I plea, “May I be excused.” I wipe my suddenly runny nose.

              “You need to finish eating.” Netty mothers me.

              “I’m done. I feel sick anyhow.” Guilt like a brick hits me. I’m a horrible sister for lying to Netty and Deshaun. I’m a terrible girlfriend from hiding this pregnancy from Derek. I’m an awful person. “May I be excused please.”

              “Yes, you may.” Netty says.

              I wish I could just leave my dishes behind, but that isn’t earning my keep.

              While I rinse my plate in the kitchen, I overhear Deshaun rant how unfair I’m being to Derek. Netty defends me a little bit, but she backs off the more heated Deshaun gets.

              In my room, I lie on my side, like a good pregnant woman, and I wish I just knew what to do. I wish I could stop crying, but I can’t.

“Post Trevor”

Kaylie’s been a doll. To spare me from the horrors of bus travel as a pregnant woman. She picks me up whenever. I text her my location and she pops up there as soon as she can get there.

I’m surprised at how well she’s coping. She broke up with Trevor before she miscarried, but I really thought she would go running back to him after she lost the baby, but that’s not the case. I also thought she’d be in utter despair. Netty confessed to me the other night she’s had two miscarriages and she still grieves the losses. However, Kaylie’s thriving in school. Her dark brown hair chases her crimson hair away as time goes on. She brings her guitar to school and plays in the park before and after school. In Social Studies when we talk about politics she boldly tackles the topic arguing from a biblical viewpoint.

I sort of have no idea what happened to my second best friend. She continues to be a different person. When she smiles, it doesn’t seem fake. When she sings, her voice brings a peace. When she laughs, she makes me laugh.

In class and in the hallways, when Trevor tries to talk to her, she kindly says she doesn’t want to talk to him. But when we’re alone, she says nothing bad about him. She wishes nothing bad upon him. Kaylie has become a saint. Kaylie’s life post Trevor is great!

I wonder, would I fair in life so well post Derek?

“GPAs”

College GPA: 3.9

College Algebra: A-

College Writing I: A

High School, Junior Year GPA: 3.89

“FaceTime w/ Derek”

DEREK’S long locks are gone. He sports a clean cut, close fade. He looks well.

Derek: I miss you so much babe.

Savvy: I miss you too.

Though SAVVY is burning up under a pile of covers, she makes sure to hide her bulging belly.

Derek: So my mom picked up a lot of extra shifts, because a lot of nurses took the holiday off, so… she isn’t coming out for Christmas after all.

Savvy: That sucks hon, I’m sorry to hear that.

Derek: No, this may be a good thing. Maybe my dad will let me go visit my mom and then I can see you.

Panicking, SAVVY blurts-

Savvy: NO!

Derek: (confused) No?

Savvy: Like I miss you like crazy. I really do. But you look really good… I can’t really remember the last time you looked so good, so happy…

Bashfully, DEREK smiles as his cheeks flush red.

Derek: I am happy. I’m really happy. Do you know why?

Savvy: Why?

SAVVY waited for him to be romantic and to say something along the lines of seeing her face, but what he said surprised her and made her angry.

Derek: Jesus the Messiah.

Savvy: (rolling her eyes) Really?

Derek: Yeah, like um, last week, before I got released for Winter Break… in our last chapel service I accepted Christ Jesus and invited Him into my heart… Like I have no doubts anymore God is real.  I don’t have nightmares anymore. I don’t want to get high anymore… and um… (whispering) I don’t think about sex all the time or look at porn anymore. (Returning to normal volume) And I don’t feel alone anymore… I have this peace constantly that doesn’t make sense. God is SO AWESOME.

Savvy: I’m happy for you… I’m happy that you’re doing so well.

Derek: Why don’t you believe in God?

Savvy: What?

Derek: I mean, do you believe in God, like Netty does?

Savvy: No. I don’t but I haven’t really bothered to study religion.

Derek: But knowing God isn’t a religion, it’s a relationship with Jesus.

Savvy:  I kind of don’t feel like the preaching right now and if that’s all you want to talk about, maybe we should just talk another time.

Derek: So you’re going to ask me to not talk about something important to me because it makes you uncomfortable. I asked you a question just trying to learn more about you so maybe I can help you and you want to avoid it…

Savvy: You want to know why I don’t believe in God?

Derek: Yeah, why?

SAVVY pushes off her heavy blankets and points the phone at her stomach as she pulls up her flannel shirt.

Savvy: Because I got fluffing raped by my mother’s boyfriend and I’m stuck having the jerk’s kid. (Pointing the phone at her cigarette burns on the upper part of her abdomen) Because my mother abused the crap out of me. (Crying, and yelling, she holds the phone back up to her face) Because you got taken away from me, the one good thing in my life and now there’s more than a physical distance between us. It’s like I’m not important to you anymore. I don’t believe in God because I have nothing good going in my life and I haven’t really seen anything to convince there’s such a thing as a good God because life sucks. I wish we had fluffed and I wish I was pregnant with your baby, because at least I would be excited about this and maybe I would have you back in my life and maybe, just maybe I wouldn’t feel like dying. Like I hope I die giving birth because I don’t want to live anymore, but I can’t kill myself, because I don’t want my mother to have the satisfaction of getting rid of me nor due I want my sisters to miss me… and truth be told I’m scared as SNIFF of death because I can’t help but think you and Netty might be right, God is real and because I HATE HIM SO MUCH FOR MY CRUMMY LIFE I’LL GET STUCK IN HELL. This life is hell enough. I don’t want to live forever in hell, but if God is real He better do one good thing for me. I don’t know what that is… but it better be something fluffing good. And you know what, I get enough God Talk living with Netty, so I don’t want to talk to you until we can just be ourselves and talk and if you can’t be the new you without Jesus Fluffing Christ, than I don’t want to talk to you. GOODBYE Butthole!

SAVVY hangs up the phone and throws it on the bed. It bounces off and falls to the ground. Fortunately, she didn’t crack the screen of the caseless phone.

Positively Unexpected-4

…Waiting…

AFTER the DNA samples were taken for the paternity test, Kingston and Tasha were told the results would be in 5 to 10 business days upon arrival to the lab. They went to the clinic on Friday…

Since they left the clinic, Kingston hadn’t made contact with Tasha, which she understood. Giles was back in town and New York’s favorite Major League Baseball couple had many galas and events to attend being the holiday season.

On Monday, she interviewed Blaire Sage, the famous church girl gone wild, seeing that her father was the preacher of one of the largest churches in America. In Tasha’s opinion, Blaire hadn’t gone wild, she simply chose a career in a secular market and not ministry and the church had criticized her and ostracized her for it.

Much of her songs were about love, not about lust. And she proudly proclaimed each love song was about a deeper level of love she had been privileged to love her husband. Other songs on her albums were about life’s ups and downs and when she wasn’t making music or touring, she and her husband checked up on the orphanage they started in China and they also go on other mission trips.

Seeing that the Deets was a savage show seeking the latest gossip, Tasha interrogated her about Blaire’s cousin, Paisley Adamsen, who had a child out of wedlock about eight years ago at the age of 19. The father of the child went to jail for aggravated sexual assault, but rumors were floating around that Paisley lied in order to protect her family’s ministry.

The Deets never needed the interviewee to say anything about the chatter on the rumor mill, they just needed a facial expression that would create a cluttered buzz on every social media outlet. Blaire’s face was filled with panic and her eyes cut away from Tasha’s. The songtress struggled what to say fumbling for her muffled words under her breath. Finally she stated, “The truth can never stay concealed, if that were true, I find it hard to believe my cousin would go along with that.”

On Tuesday, Tasha sat at her desk from 5 am to 1 am the next day looking for enough stories to cover for the next two weeks.

On Wednesday, the studio had an early Thanksgiving meal catered to serve as a friendly potluck.

On Turkey Day, that’s when everything got interesting…

Against her better judgement, Tasha went to her father’s for dinner to avoid her mother. Maybe she freaked out being around the woman that gave birth to her while she was pregnant. Like, an experienced pregnant woman can detect a newbie pregnant woman a mile away, right? Like the woman’s baby-senses get all tingly and go off, right? Maybe not… Tasha had no clue she just knew the thought of being around her mother stressed her out.

Regardless, Tasha liked her odds with Dad and Jenny over Mom and Pat.

Everything was going fine. Tasha only could stand to drink half a glass of wine before she grew queasy and so far, the bird and dressing was staying down the shoot. Foolishly though, she made the grave mistake and  she offered to help Jenny clean up in the kitchen.

Tasha’s father had plenty of wealth to hire help like a maid to tidy the dishes, but Jenny found cleaning to be therapeutic and refused to have a maid and a nanny. Instead, she preferred housekeeping over being a typical high society trophy wife. It was Jenny’s dream since grade school to do the House-Wife-Thing-In-Jersey, even though her inheritance as heiress for the King of Apps for Mobile Devices was enough to set her up for life three times.

Jenny washed the dishes, yes, she washed every dish by hand from the sink, while Tasha dried the dishes to stack them in the dishwasher so everything could be disinfected.

Just barley starting the dishes, while the rest of the family and guests enjoyed the football game, Jenny tried to reconnect with Tasha, “How is Carter?”

“I wouldn’t know…”

Jenny left her hands submerged in the sudsy water as she tilted her head toward Tasha and raised her brow, “When did you two break up?”

“We were never together. It was just causal.”

“Well, your father and I were casual until I got pregnant with Humphrey.” Jenny shined a plate sparkling clean with her sponge. She handed that plate to Tasha to rinse and dry.

“Please, stop talking now before you make me sick.” Tasha sighed as she stacked the rinsed plate into the dishwasher.

“I’ve never seen you go ham on turkey like you did today. Are you sure you’re not carrying Carter Jr.?”

Tasha froze as a rush of nerves shot panic straight to her heart. She knew it was dumb to spend the holiday with anyone who once was in the state she was in now… Her trips to the bathroom have been minimal… How could her pregnancy be so obvious?

“JK,” Jenny laughed clumping a bust of suds into her palm and then she flung the suds at Tasha.

The foamy white bubble suds fluttered to land on top of Tasha’s hair all pinned up in a bun. Much of Tasha wanted to flick water back at Jenny from the running faucet on the empty side of the sink, but that would be like the old days… and no matter how much Tasha has tried to rekindle her life long friendship with Jenny, their bond cannot recover from Tasha’s best friend marrying her father. And Jenny marrying a man approximately the same age as her father wasn’t so bad, but she was Tasha’s father’s mistress while he was married to Lucille, Tasha loved her stepmother more than her actual mother. But what really stung, was that everyone knew about the affair but Lucille, for she passed away before Tasha’s father and Jenny went public.

Jenny’s father, Dean, was ticked and stopped communication with Tasha’s father, Tanner, unless business manners meant the men must talk. Dean may be an app genius, but Tanner is the grandson of a ranching TV mogul and many of Dean’s apps flourish through a deep pocket partnership with a huge subsidiary of a major monopoly telecom company. Tanner’s grandfather sold the subsidiary in his retirement years, but Tanner Turner,managed to buy the TV incorporation back and created another monopoly telepictures company.

Tanner, however, could not buy back the famous news station that was the first to constantly broadcast and now streamed nothing but news. Ironically, that news broadcast company’s parent company canned Tasha Turner when she got sued for defamation, because of a story she spun that her bosses knew was more gossip than fact.

The ladies cleaned side by side only talking to communicate how to pick up the table or where to put away the silver. In under an hour, they picked up the dinning area, cleaned the dishes from dinner, and got the coffee, tea, and dessert ready for roughly 20 people.

To bring Dessert Time to everyone, Tasha helped Jenny place items in the silver three tier trolley cart. Tasha set things in place on the cart and Jenny handed Tasha the items to be set in order.

For seven years, Jenny has publicly been with Tanner, Tasha’s father. For six and half years, Jenny hand been the third Mrs. Turner. For just over six years, Jenny has been the mother of Tasha’s only sibling. Tasha and Jenny may have been best friends since private school in Pre-K, but clearly they lacked something because a true friend would never betray Tasha in such a way.

Handing Tasha a stack of small plates, Jenny asked, “If we can’t go back to the way we were can we at least get to some place new to get a fresh start?”

Taking the plates gently, Tasha rolled her eyes and pointed out, “For seven years we’ve been trying….” she went on to question, “If you were me, could you?”

Remorsefully, Jenny averted her gaze and turned her back to Tasha. Tasha knew leaving things with that rhetorical question was enough to guilt trip her oldest and once dearest friend. Somehow, Tasha was thirsty to see Jenny suffer, therefore, she decided to lay it all out.

Crossing her arms, Tasha stood behind Jenny and leaned into her ear, “How would you like having a father who barely remembers you exist? When my parents were married, he never spent the holidays with us, and my mom flew us off somewhere for her to have a shopping spree extravaganza. Then, your parents get divorced and you find out you get to have two Christmases, and they actually turn into zero Christmases because your mom figures you’re old enough to be left alone and when you go to your dad’s there’s a nanny standing by the Christmas tree because daddy and his new wife are off on a beach somewhere avoiding the cold…”

Tasha went on about how eventually her father began to cheat on Lucille and neglect her too like he had her mother and Tasha herself. But unlike Tasha’s own mother shopping away her pain, Lucille spent time with Tasha and took an interest in her. Then, Lucille got deathly sick… Tanner Turner once again was nowhere to be found, but there was plenty of evidence he was cheating on a dying woman…

“You announce you’re pregnant and marrying my father three weeks after Lucille’s funeral and you have the audacity to joke about getting pregnant on purpose to trap a guy to break the ice?!”

Jenny turned around as she backed away from Tasha. A little teary-eyed, Jenny wiped her eyes with the back of her hand.

“To make everything worse, since Humphrey was born my father takes every holiday off to spend it with the son he always wanted. Right now, they’re watching television together, building a precious memory that I can’t recall even having one like it.” Tasha complained.

“Oh yeah,” Jenny raised her voice, “You act all jaded like you’re the only spoiled heiress who never got daddy’s attention!” Jenny suddenly back-kicked her bottom black kitchen cabinet with the heel of her boot.

Tasha jumped a little fretful over that bipolar-like reaction.  She stepped behind the cart to serve as a potential weapon incase Jenny lunged for her. Not that Jenny would ever physically harm Tasha. And Jenny was definitely not bipolar to Tasha’s knowledge.

Crying as her face flushed red and the vein in her forehead bulged, Jenny shared her side… “I know what it’s like being ignored by my father too. Growing up DJ got all the attention. DJ got to go to the office with dad, DJ got to go on special trips, and DJ was taught the keys to the app-making kingdom. How many people create a network of apps dependent on one another to fully enjoy the features by the user. Only brand cellphone makers were known for doing so beforehand. I may stay at home and bake cookies all day but I graduated from MIT for God’s sake!”

“Clearly you have daddy issues, but you could have found any other older man but my dad!”

“No I couldn’t!”

“Yes you could have, there are plenty of dirty old men out there. How would you like it-,”

“It’s called love Tash, GOSH! I fell in love with your father over my summer internship. And lower your voice before we become screaming chicks in a cat fight.” Jenny combed her ginger stranglers of hair out of her face and rubbed the back of her neck. Taking a deep breath Jenny stepped closer to Tasha, which made Tasha roll the cart forward to keep Jenny back.

Jenny leaned over the surface tier of the cart and whispered loudly, “I really was just joking. I wanted Humphrey when I got pregnant but I didn’t get pregnant on purpose. Being pregnant one day and then not pregnant the next day… well… sucks…”

Seeing Jenny struck with sorrow made Tasha pull the cart back. On behalf of a shred of compassion, Tasha moved toward her friend, but she could not bring herself to embrace Jenny for comfort.

“What do you mean by that? Did you have a miscarriage or something?”

Shaking her head, “No… It was intentional, three times…”

Okay… maybe they weren’t best friends like she thought. Who hides three abortions from their best friend?

Jenny went on to explain she had one in high school. Smith Wilson, her high school beau helped her through that one. In college, she wasn’t sure who the father was due to a wild night at a crazy French Court styled party. From the shame of that alone she bared that by herself. The most recent one was last summer. Jenny and Tasha’s dad found out the child she was carrying was highly at risk for down syndrome, they both agreed they didn’t want to subject a child to such a difficult life.

Tasha didn’t know what to say. But now Jenny was further made a stranger in Tasha’s eyes than she was before this confrontation.

“What are you going to do?”

Tasha was done. She wasn’t going to stand in her father’s home and let another 31-year-old woman mother her. Immediately, Tasha held her tongue and fumed with rage deep inside as she headed for the door to leave. Jenny hurried after her, begging Tasha to sort things out with her. Tasha was set in her lane when the commentators, during the Half Time Show, dropped Kingston Rourke’s name when she entered the living room. The wall has a built-in screen that dissolved when not being viewed and looked like an average wall.

Kingston was about six years younger than Tasha. In college, he played football, but decided not to go pro because the football community didn’t embrace the LBGTQ community as well as the baseball community did, plus… with Giles going pro Kingston didn’t need his own career in football.

Rex Hollinger, an alumnus of the same alma mater as Kingston, and happened to be a retired QB for New York City’s best team, who everyone thought Kingston would have replaced had he gone pro, was a guest commentator.

Rex and another ex-football player, Tank Burke, and analyst Shanna Wright sat in the advanced studio with mainly interactive green screens with hologram integration interfaces— but to viewers it looked super stellar and had rich realistic looking content and the commentators controlled it all with the flicks of their fingers and programed body gestures.

“I can’t believe it about Kingston Rourke. I know all of New York City is sending positive thoughts and vibes up to him and his family right now. Those who pray, I’m sure are lifting him up in prayer to the universe and the powers at be.” Rex stated.

Tasha rushed to the foyer and dug through the closet to pull out her cellphone, which she stupidly kept tucked in her purse. A gazillion messages from her boss exploded on her lock screen and trending on every social media outlet and gossip news feed was the same information. Kingston Rourke attempted to take his own life.

TO BE CONTINUED…


Yeah… Can you tell I grew up watching Daytime Soap Operas?

How could Jenny and Tanner abort a child that might be born with Down Syndrome?

Did you know in Iceland, the passed a law to abort babies that would be born with Down Syndrome? If any country needs revival, it is that one! They’re a huge humanist nation and big on self-awareness. They essentially are gods of their own lives.

But aborting pregnancies due to possible deformities rapidly increases. In many places across America, such abortions can be made up until 23 weeks pregnant. I know it’s like that in California…

My facts are not sought out myself. I learned about Iceland from USA Today, a political activist, and Twitter. The fact about America, I got from the remake of “90210” and an indie movie called “23 Weeks”.

I have know three women, whose parents were told to abort them in the womb because they would be born with Down Syndrome, but their parents were believers in Jesus the Messiah and trusted Him to do a miracle on their behalf. All three women were born normal at birth and healthy. If God is not a miracle-working-God, then what is He?

All life is valuable and whatever genetics or life throws at us, God leads us through and He uses our pain, our struggle to impact someone else’s life and lead them to undergo an extraordinary life with God.

Suicide is also no joke. Every person is important and anyone with suicidal thoughts should reach out. You may feel alone, but the reality is that you’re not!


Comment below your thoughts. Feel free to include questions. If you want to share, I would love the support. Also, are you a blogger, YouTuber, author, actor, singer, entrepreneur- something I didn’t mention- post a link in the comments and I may follow you! (I have to make sure we Gucci w/ G-O-D, and that doesn’t mean you have to be a Christian… but I censor my own content… I really don’t want to see anything obscene, but I also watch things like The Handmaid’s Tale on hulu… so… I just have to decide if I can be in your corner, just like you freely decided to be in mine!)

Much love,

7ff3d5f1-fe02-465d-8a77-da682894d7e6