UNFINISHED MELODY: Return to Forever


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It would have become greater still…the unfinished harmony
The lyrics, the music…the arrangement had promise aplenty
It had the makings of a hit…a transcendental classic caressing the airwaves into infinity
It’s incomplete…this rhapsody of souls, accepted to never be written to the end.
Will we hold it up and peruse it from time to time, and longingly wonder…was I wrong to abandon this could-have-been masterpiece?
Was this the one that would overturned life and time and transform into ethereal glory?
Should we have allowed it to gather dust and become scratched; removed its protective sleeve like an abandoned long playing record we thought would not become a classic treasure?
Should we have closed our ears to those who thought perhaps it wasn’t good music?
The music whose beginning strains woke us up to who we are, our composite of clay and gold; bad but incredibly good.
Made to love, made to glow, made to dream, and made to do…exemplary and extraordinary things.
Unanswered questions, unfinished melodies, atrophied music but still and always with the lustre of golden unexplored love.

“Space”… Not loosy goosy anything goes.


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I think the hardest thing in a relationship is to find

someone who understands their spouses need for time alone.

I think because most believe “time alone” is code for cheating or needing this time is an act of rejection.

“Getaways” are normally seen in a positive light because it means vacation, relax, and rejuvenate…just chill…but a getaway from one’s spouse is “Oh my God!” he/she needs space, something’s going on.

From what I’ve heard and observed, when something is actually going on, no one asks for space.

Getaways are very necessary for relationships, occasional time apart can actually bring longevity and harmony to relationships.

Time apart thwarts the “Law of diminishing returns effect”(I totally just made up this effect, but there actually is this “law”)

“In economics, diminishing returns (also called law of diminishing returns,

law of variable proportions, principle of diminishing marginal productivity,

or diminishing marginal returns is the decrease in the marginal (incremental)

Output of a production process as the amount of a single factor of production is

incrementally increased, while the amounts of all other factors of production stay constant.”

So in layman’s terms…picture you’re in a desert and you’re super thirsty… (and please keep your mind out of the gutter, this example is totally clean! A thirst for water people! You freaky bunch you!)…and you come upon an oasis, you rush to drink and your first gulps of water are soooo satisfying, you can’t believe you treated a glass of water before with such disdain; as you continue to drink however, it’s not like when you just started and soon you’re quenched and done…I guess what I’m trying to say is, everyone need a little space sometimes; to miss someone, to crave them like when you just met.

Girls night out, guys night out, alone time, sabbatical. (A sabbatical is a little long but who knows it may just be the thing depending on the situation.)

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder”…most of us have heard this before and it’s true; a nice little break from your spouse can have you jumping their bones when you come together, like it’s the first time and making sounds you’ve not made in a long time.

You kiss more, touch more…you smile more and love more. It’s like make-up sex without the breakup.

So the next time your lover says they need time alone don’t take it as an affront, just know that some people need it and it can serve to make your relationship more healthy and animated.

Of course there needs to be established trust and there also needs to be people who are reasonably secure with the one they’re with so they’re not suspicious of everyone who comes close.

I’ve lost friends because of insecure spouses and it sucks!

Don’t guilt your partner if they need to be away by themselves for a few hours and partners, don’t feel guilty if you feel that time away is important for you.

Everyone needs a little space sometimes. And remember; that space also includes your partner’s’ phone as well, for all the snoopers out there…just sayin’!

DO NOT snoop in your partner’s cell phones, personal privacy is a right for everyone, even if it’s your man/woman. Think about how uncomfortable it feels when someone steps into your physical personal space…well, phone snooping is a hundred times worse! Take it from me, this will not just rock the boat, it will overturn that vessel and set you adrift hanging on to flotsam and jetsam!

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all loosy goosy and anything goes, you need to make your expectations clear and dare yourself to trust each other, make sure wires aren’t crossed and areas aren’t grey and you go about thinking you’re in an open relationship when you’re really not (that’s called communication, but I’ll talk about that some other time!)

All in all just respect each other and remember that though you are two different people you’re on the same team working toward individual and corporate goals.

Keep it loving, caring and understanding and once in awhile break out the massage oil and the wine and have a party for two!
Now y’all go on and get loving!

Mental Illness: Please dont say “Bootstraps”


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**This blog post is dedicated to all the affected families and

the entire First Nation community of Attawapiskat Canada. **


People in crisis are often mandated to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. They are then left to their task which they must be able to do. It is an expectation.

If they seem and are unable, there is often puzzlement and irritation by the mandating party and their cohorts.

“Why the hell can you not!” What is wrong with you?!” “He/She is just lazy and doesn’t want to…they just want to wallow and feel sorry for themselves.”

Mental illness and other invisible illnesses are often overlooked and have a myriad of stigmas attached and those affected often suffer in silence for fear of being stereotyped and not wanting to suffer the ignominy often associated with the illness.

People often refuse to be medicated because this would somehow make it real and they would find that intolerable.

Those who suffer feel it to be a weakness on their part and that they are “broken” and asking for help (medical or otherwise) would validate this.

Where I grew up I believed mental illness to be glaringly obvious by all the “mad people” I saw living on the street; dirty and unkempt, several shades darker with not having bathe in years. Most were naked and unperturbed with genitals and breasts hanging out. They were not beggars, they just ate from the garbage or ate what some kind soul gave to them.

This was how I saw mental illness…in what I thought was the only form.

I would try to talk to the ones who didn’t look so threatening…I was thought “crazy” by my friends and the people who walked by. I was always curious as to what cause them to become ill.

At that time I thought causative agents could only be traumatic life events, I did not take into consideration heredity or other factors.

On many occasions they were lucid enough to tell their story; often disjointed but nonetheless coherent.

As I grew older, I understood. I met people who had jobs, friends and families but had periods when they locked themselves away because they could not be around people as they were so socially anxious. People who could not take care of their hygiene, not because they were “nasty” or “dirty” but because by themselves they just could not muster the energy to clean themselves.

People who perpetually wanted to die.

I met people who would get so lost in sleep it seems they are almost never awake. The ones who would eat to feel and those who would eat nothing.

There are those who lose themselves in drugs and alcohol to dull pains that they are unable to explain.

My mother is way past her retirement age and refuses to retire because her passion for working with and being a part of the healing of the mentally ill is everything to her. Some call her Mom and have adopted me as sister.

Mom is my hero.

There is constant work by individuals and organizations to try and bring awareness to mental illness and its challenges and to bring visibility to this invisible illness.

Mental illness does not show its severity with broken bones or bloodied and bruised. Many don’t ever realize or believe that someone is ill until there is an incident of self-harm, suicide or attempted suicide; or until someone suffers a publicized episode.

Even with the many programs to shed light on this illness and its ramifications, many are still in the dark.

As individuals, and citizens of the world, we have a responsibility to educate ourselves and to as best as possible be in tune to what mental illness is and how it can present. Let us keep an eye on those around us and help them heal. Let us understand that a bad mood is different from a depressive episode and that while you can snap out of your “blue mood” and pull yourself up by your bootstraps; but forthe person battling mental illness “bootstraps” is an insult.

There is so much shame associated with this disease that some will never tell, not even their physician.

Within the black community it is especially “secret”, families are afraid to acknowledge mentally ill relatives because they’re “shame”. As a community we have come a long way since I was a child and exposure to other communities has helped us to be more forward thinking in our outlook.

I hope we all come to the place where we are more aware, more accepting and more dedicated to identifying ways in which we can support and help the ones suffering to heal and live full lives.



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oliver wendel holmes

We often hear the phrase “change is good”, it is often an overused and clichéd phrase; a filler for awkward pauses.

Kinda like LOL.

We have to admit however that some change is good…great even!

We go through many stages in our lives and we have many graduations…some incremental and some larger than life so to speak.

As poet Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. once said:

“The mind that is stretched by new experience can never go back its old dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes

It can be decidedly uncomfortable to have this change occur, although the fact that it is happening means that, whether you believe it or not, it is an elective experience. While it is quite exhilarating in the midst of this change, to now go about your daily life in this transformative state initially can be quite painful and confounding.

Don’t worry, you get to be a pretty flower after or a marvel super hero of your choice!

You can find yourself in the throes of dissatisfaction because your conversations have changed and bouncing back at you… sometimes this can call for change in your choice of sounding boards.

You may even try to change back to your pre-metamorphosis state because “This is Bulls…t!” No it isnt…this is transformation.

You have expanded…your mind, your consciousness…what you look for in a lover, a friend…yourself.

Your expectations are a lot more discerning and you first and foremost set for yourself a higher standard.

I know what you’re thinking…”I have lost myself, lost who I am”

Not in the least…you are still who you are…you have just reached in and pull on your potential and dared yourself to grow exponentially.

You have experienced your summer.

Your petals have emerged and you have discovered that you are more than green stems…that you have vibrant color and soft silky petals and you have pollen to share that help others thrive.

Rally through the first stage of discomfort with the understanding that you might unfortunately lose friends and acquaintances and some might chose to examine you from afar as if you are moldy cheese.

Before you instinctively smell yourself, remember …you are now gourmet; artisanal even…

Now…I must emphasize that a true transformation has nothing to do with ego and hubris but has everything to do with growth and the expansion of your potential. The fact that this often comes with a change in our circle is completely normal and natural for our self-care, growth and increased potential.

You don’t have to cut people from your life, you just need to change their gradient of impact on you…to increase or decrease that is the question.

I believe our ultimate goal is to be better humans, to develop ourselves, share with others, save the trees (we all have a little tree hugger in us) and in our lifetime experience world peace!

It all starts with us being our most authentic, putting our best foot forward (I don’t even know what this means, both my feet are best! I have a good side, but a best foot, I don’t think so!)

Anyway… my point is…grow, bloom, find out if you are a purple flower or a pink one, or yellow or…

You are much more than green stems.

Yours Truly,

Purple Flower and sometimes Storm and Cat Woman.

When I was 13…a hair journey


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When I was 13…


 When I was 13, I announced to my very conservative mother that I wanted locks in my hair.

This declaration was pretty bold but I have always been clear about what I wanted; this doesn’t mean I’ve always gotten it but the people who mattered and were the “powers that be”, knew.

I did not get my hair locked that year or any of the ensuing years.

(To be fair, I also wanted to enter the convent and become a nun, which also didn’t happen.) Oh well…

Living in Jamaica, one did not just wear locks unless you were a musician, artist, Afrocentric artistic executive or your average madman (mentally ill) on the street.

I think more than an average loc’d hairstyle, what I really wanted was to wear my hair in its natural form with the ease of “wash and go”.

As the years passed I went through many hair stages and none of them were locks!

For a number of years I wore my hair natural…under duress because it was a requirement of my then church.

I despise weaves and wigs but nevertheless have worn them; I find them cumbersome, hot and a pain in the ass! Excuse me if I have an affinity for touching my scalp and washing my hair outside of a rigorously planned hair insurrection!

In 2013 I began wearing braid extensions fulltime and allowed my natural hair to grow and be free of chemical processing.

I loved it!

So began the drooling for locks once more and I set about researching.

This time I didn’t have to ask permission!…Who’s a grown girl…?!

It was decided…locks were a definite go!

Opinions were given, stigmas reawakened but I was resolute…locks it would be.

I began loc watching and approaching complete strangers that had loc’d styles that I loved; I needed a referral. There would be no random Google search to help decide who would have the happy privilege of locking my tresses.

I decided on the Sisterlocks method of interlocking, where individual locks are created using a specific tool.

After a few months of doing my “pre loc” investigations, I found my licensed Sisterlocks consultant, had my initial consult and secured my 2 day appointment and waited!

The day came and my loc installation took 34 hours! I have very thick hair and I wanted tiny locks…egad!!

I knew from my previous research that I would not be wowed right away but had to be patient and wait for the look I wanted.

Fast forward to 10 months in and I am more pleased by the day, I have a full glorious and coily bush (hee hee) grazing my nape and tickling my ears…I am happy and growing happier with each inch of new healthy growth!

I love my “unfooled around with” hair and its definitely loving me back!

My advice to anyone thinking of having locks done is to research, research, research! Find looks that you like (on real people!) and don’t be afraid to stop them and ask who did their hair (compliment them first!), I collected a lot of contacts before I finally decided on a loctician. People are generally very proud of their locks and happy to share stories and encouragement.

Everyone usually has high praise for their loctician!

Remember…not all locks are created equal and your best choice for this permanent and pricey hair installation is a trained and certified consultant.

The curl patter of your hair and the size of your locks will mostly determine the look of your locks. For me , I have coily pipe cleaner tendrils which are awesome sauce!

Suffice it to say, there is a lot of “running hands through” and hair twirling going on.

Hair love lives here and its a beautiful thing!!

LOVE…Gotten. Understood. Seen


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“Why would he love HER! she is no youngin’ and she’s not rich (in money)
I don’t get it.
She doesn’t have a ‘bangin’ bod’ with booty inserts…well rounded. She is not ‘light skinned’!
I don’t understand.
What does she bring?…I cant see.
Why her!?”
You don’t get it because your view is flawed.
You don’t understand because you’ve been mind raped and your thoughts are not your own.
You have been captured; held for ransom yet unpaid. ‘Bamboozled, hoodwinked…Led astray and ran amok.’ ”
You can’t see because you are blind; you do not know Queen.
Your royalty sailed away from your shores with shiny cheap trinkets in its place. Birthright sold on the backs of oiled and shiny men…women…children.
He loves her because she loves herself. She regales in her womanhood; her royalty…the fact that she is Queen.
She is confident.
He loves her because she KNOWS love, energy and respect.
Because he feels her across time space; across distractions.
This is why he loves her.
She feels his joy, anger, sadness…she is wind beneath his wings
Balm for that which ails him.
He loves her because new age lover she is not; tit for tat lover…never.
He loves her because she is easy to love and with her he is free…really free.
I am not unclear. I know why he loves me. 💜
– A.s.Goulb

WHO’S HOUSE!?! (Title credit: Someone’s Inspiration)


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I haven’t written on the blog in a long time so as the New Year begins this is somewhat of a reflective posting.
I’m sharing with you some insights I have gained throughout the past year.
All of my experiences I try to learn from and 2014 was a year of many lessons.
As I walked through some personal experiences; the people around me who were privy to it shared their thoughts and only a treasured few saw it for what it truly was; a time of growth and blessings.
I’m not knocking the ones who had a different vision…they are all my friends and people I treasure in my life. They however, showed me things that made me sad.
They showed me that a lot of people are living very limited lives akin to gangrene, upon which they put the prettiest, brightly colored bandage and ignore the fact that an appendage or two may fall off and that they face imminent death.
I found that people place an inordinate amount of importance in the material things of life while they ignore their heart, mind and their inner peace.
Now don’t get me wrong…I’m not advocating for a pious life of poverty and downtrodden-ness (is that even a word!?); having material possessions can certainly make ones’ life easier and more comfortable and you can buy more shoes!
What I indeed advocate for is perspective and the understanding that in the grand scheme of things; you the animate, is decidedly more important than things.
The charge is to take care of your peace. Erase drama from your life and do not welcome it. Shut the door in its face.
As someone said; probably for different reasons…”who’s house!?” Understand clearly that your life is your house and you and you alone have the responsibility to keep it free from crap!
Some of the decisions you have to make to “clean your house” are sometimes not easy but it has to be done and only the strong ones can make this call and follow through.
On the outside these things may look selfish to others but again…it must be done.
So while this posting is somewhat of a reflective one; it is also one bearing hard on the future, on happiness and peace and in the pursuit of such.
This state of being does not rest in our families, lovers or God forbid! Our careers!
It lies in the naked evaluation of ourselves (which we have no obligation to share with anyone), and admitting things to ourselves that we may never admit to another living soul. Our Sh**ty ways most definitely included! The things that are usually so hard to face about ourselves.
The man/woman in the mirror!?
Do not make a resolution; that Auld Lang Syne cliché on New Year’s Eve is not a resolution; it’s an eighty percent drunken promise you won’t remember in the morning!

With a clear head, DECIDE to protect your peace, (recapture it, for those who have given it away or sent it off with the rest of the garbage to a Michigan landfill) Protect your dream and pursue it.
Decide to be happy.
Now, before you go all ape sh*t on me; this is not a promise of some kind of Nirvana, Utopia where there are no sad days and that some moron isn’t going to come out of the woodwork; open the door to their car and ding the hell out of your ride and drive away!
Life is beautiful, and yes it is a rose garden! But for those who don’t know, there are quite a few thorns on rose bushes, but they are amazing beautiful and smells divine.
💜 Andrea.



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Here I am on a Sunday afternoon actually heading out the door and this thought came to me, “why do some women, by default or something else, give men permission to make them a sex object?”
Before I go further, let me clarify that I’m not by any stretch implying that those women “asked” for it by the way they dress or otherwise.
These days especially with the proliferation of social media, the objectification most times take place in writing, photos etc. and this public forum is an immediate invitation for other men to join in.
The most disturbing aspect for me is that some men do this with the woman they are “seeing”.
Now, I’m no prude and my man can be dirty with me, and talk dirty to me; as a matter of fact I believe this can be a critical part of foreplay. What I won’t “allow” is the public objectification of myself on social media or any media or in social groups and I certainly won’t “like” it!
Is the ease with which these women accept this as natural behavior rooted in a lack of self confidence or self esteem?
And for the men with the penchant to do this, is their need for this rooted in affirming their sexual prowess; a kind of badge of honour?
So, at this point I will answer the question on your mind; No I am not a feminist; Neither am I misandric
My growing fear for the men who continually objectify women is that they will eventually devolve into misogyny and then…I don’t know; they become lost men?
I am not naïve to the fact that just as some women discuss their sexual encounters with their best friend, some men do the same; with their best friend. I personally have no objection to that; but that’s me.
My observation has been that not every woman who sexually entrance these men are dealt the same cards; some women are treated with the highest respect and they would never dream of objectifying them.
As a matter of fact, these women are completely desired, sexually and intellectually and not seen as a walking vagina.
My question is; what is the dividing line?
I believe it has a lot to do with how these men perceive women and the cues that they pick up on interaction. They then attached a value.
Could it be that some women are afraid of that man walking away that they acquiesce and become “okay” with being a sex object? Hmmm… Food for thought.
Obviously I don’t have answers; maybe I never will, but these are some of my observations, questions and concerns. Maybe the thought has entered your mind as well…?