The Tree that Grows in Brooklyn

For a while, I’ve had too many moments overcomplicating life. We are born, we develop a purpose and we leave hopefully doing some good in between. So pardon me while I let my insomnia take over and ramble some more things out of my head.

My transitions have created an interesting yet awry life. I’ve had mid-life crises in my 20s. I’ve gone from learning about God, questioning God, stating there are many paths to God, to realizing God is within me. I’ve learned you can’t hold on to time idly. One must create moments. That’ll be the only chance one can get to freeze and seize time. I’ve experienced being faithless and hopeless leaves one stuck in who you are, not who you should be. I’ve caused a lot of hurt I’ll never be able to help others heal from. Ironically, that’s a part of my conscious I think will hurt me forever. Those that are here in the moment, cherish them for the seasons they are in your life. No matter the relationship or how blind love can be, the everlasting lessons from friendship are clairvoyant on your journey.

My friends and family tell me all the time how smart I am. I think the ironic thing about that is the way life sets up your learning experiences, no matter how much one reads, listens, understands and communicates, you still awaken with ignorance everyday because of a new beginning driven to either move with purpose or still find it.

So far the only thing I’ve consistently found in life is a mortal’s way to immortality. One key to living forever the way we as human beings can:

“Do good. Be good. Be the right person.”

A lot of people list death as a fear or feel anxiety now trying to navigate living. Peace in life and death rely on the same thing: doing all the good you can and being the best person you were designed to be. Peace in life comes from the good you radiate and instill in others. Peace in death comes from knowing you’ve done all the good you could with the time you were given. This is the sure way to live forever because when you give your all…when you give your best into a world that needs it the most, your moments of good, love, sacrifice etc. resonate in those still here long after you are gone. The moments and memories you’ve created in them will tell your story forever. The good you shared inspires others to move with the same good in memory of you.

While I’m sure we all have our own specified paths, I believe this is the one trail where we all seem to converge.

“All things must come to an end. It is an inevitable part of the cycle of existence, all things must conclude. Take the analogy of a tree that grows in Brooklyn among the steel and the concrete with all its glorious branches and leaves, one day it too will pass on its legacy through the seeds it dropped to the ground and as the wind carries these seeds throughout wherever they might move a new life will begin for each one of them as they stand as a monument to the one that came before…”

To Be Free…To Be Me

It’s been a while. Honestly it’s been too long considering I had a myriad of things to sort out of my head yet little motivation to clear the mental space. I could put on the facade of “I’m just busy living life,” but truthfully I didn’t want to reflect on being unhappy when it seems like I didn’t have a reason to be. I’ve had a lot of vices I’d escape with whether it be sex or alcohol, and nothing positively gave me comfort like writing out who I am and what I have to conquer. Crazy thing about self-reflection is sometimes you are your ugliest when looking at the mirror alone.

I’ve been struggling. Internally, I’ve had this feeling of unhappiness for a while now. I feel proud of myself for being accomplished. I feel honored for being a provider. I feel blessed for being charitable. I feel determined for more of what I consider goals. All of that, and I feel….trapped. I feel caged in a cramped space of uncertainty and left starving for inspiration and some reason to feel a real sense of love for who I am and love for others that gives me a sense of forever.

I have this feeling not only something is missing, but also I’m not taking the time to find out what it may be. I feel I’m boxed into my obligations that I do know are my on path, but do parts of me get left behind on my life journey for the sake of one path? Maybe I’m rambling or getting really into the reach of my mental state.

I feel as if I’m not being all of who I am and I’m not given the chance or opportunity to feel/explore it. I feel like a few of those around me want me to be so many different things as it applies to their lives but not how it should to mine. I used to get lost in passion and expression. I used to have quixotic exploration of making the best of what I have in the moment. I used to be free.

I haven’t felt free in a while. I haven’t felt ok to feel not ok. I haven’t felt ok to acknowledge the fact that I don’t want to be “XYZ” to so many people. I just want to continue to figure out who I am and those along the journey to understand that. I feel like I’m worth more than titles given or being appreciated and loved conditionally for the things I do. Often I feel like if I don’t “uphold my end of the bargain” in the relationships I’ve built with others, I’m deemed the failure or the dreaded T word. Truthfully, these are probably people who either never took the time to get to know all of me and wanted to mould me into this being perfect for THEIR lives and not mine.

Currently the world is in an abysmal place with so much to process and I can’t process my own feelings about myself at times. Even in this moment of self-reflection I just find it difficult to get it all out in order.

You want to know the ironic thing about self-reflection? You take the time to reflect who you are, eventually come to some existential meaning for your life to change, and the person yourself and others have come to know, no longer exists. You reflect on your existence in order to change your existence and don’t have the same connection you had with yourself and others. The idea whether that’s good or bad depends on the life and interpretation you want to have…at least until your next reflecting moments.

I didn’t seek to inspire or uplift anyone this time. I really wanted to write out how I’ve been feeling and my navigation as high functioning melancholy person. Hopefully time will be on my side, God will continue to guide me, and life will be kind to me as I try to make this escape out of my head. To be free…to be me. Oh to be free.

Confessions of Justin Lamar: My Fears Pt 2

One could argue facing fears strengthens your self actualization to ascend to the person you think you are. I’m not one for arguing. However, facing fear cannot be conquered without a confession of what fear is. Confession is a sense of accountability. So here I am ready to air out my fears in my own worth, love disconnects, and struggles with romantic love.

Life feels great when you know your place in it. Among all the influences we’re exposed to constantly, it feels great to remain true to who you are and live for now, the right now and nothing else matter. Throughout life, I always knew who I am yet, I wanted others to see. Going further, I wanted to feel love and appreciation for beyond what is saw on the surface. I wanted my worth defined by my all I am willing to give rather than an image or persona I’m portrayed to fit. So much of my life has been proving I can be loved for the total package and not just for the things others pick to love or the idea I can be molded into someone to love. I have always known my worth professionally and mentally. The self worth coming from love and intimacy always seemed to lack, and I never had the confidence to be who I am due to not being seen. For a long time my love and intimate life formed habits and behaviors of holding on to people way longer than I should because I wanted to give them a chance to see me. I wanted them to love me. I wanted to at least hold on to what they thought of me and maybe more will come.

That’s never come. It takes an amazing person to love through the dark in you. At a point your worth becomes so alienated, you begin to turn to anyone who can love you even if it’s just for a few things. Rather than love and intimacy in totality, you settle for anyone who you can seek affirmation in. It leads a life to believe either one person isn’t capable of seeing your worth or all of you is worthless together.

It wasn’t until a few years ago I came to grips I didn’t know my worth when I comes to intimacy and I don’t know how. I still struggle with this and honestly the fear isn’t knowing my worth but repeating the pattern I’ve grown accustomed to: settling. I really long for intimacy deep down, but I can’t force it. I need to first understand it for myself before I take my first steps into intimacy.

A lot of my worth issues have only allowed others to love one side of me. My hand in this is giving other the option to pick and choose what to love and not the take it all or leave it option. I believe this is why I either had a false sense of love or I never feel in love with those who romantically grew to love me. I only had one romantic relationship come to make me feel love, but I realized I loved the temporary escape that woman provided. I won’t beat a dead horse and closure is closure. I feel this fear of love and with has carried over into my dating life with the idea of not ONE person has been able to love all of me so why chance it? Why give up all of who can love bits and pieces of me to make me whole for a person who may think they can love the whole me? Am I willing to give true intimacy a chance or am I still in a high from the idea loves gives only waiting time crash and got another quick it or go through withdrawals?

It’s said healing cannot begin without looking and addressing the problem. Healing cannot also begin without a treatment plan. Right now I’m not sure how to cure the feeling of fearing love or the habit of feeling I just love the idea of love. You can’t hug, kiss and stroke my head and expect this shit to go away. I really just want guidance on MY love and intimacy I feel most times it’ll take a higher power or more time alone experiencing the same mistakes until I learn why I’m making them.

I really want to love and no one gets hurt. Unfortunately, any chance or risk on love will lead to someone getting hurt from my habits about myself. It truly takes an act of God and determination amongst myself to realize the God in me is all a foundation of worth and unconditional love. I’m not sure who’s up for a journey like that and this journey one of the biggest fears I have.

Strength and guidance be with me. I have a long road ahead of me. Looking forward to meeting you there

Life: The Baddest B*tch

It’s been a while since I’ve taken the time out to write down some thoughts. I’m not sure why staring out of my window on a semi-gloomy day in San Juan, PR sparked anything, but hey, here goes. Life has been the baddest b*tch in my life thus far. After the constant tricking off like most men feel the need to do with women out of their league, my replies from her are coming back faster, finally spending some quality time and yes, every now and then she fucks me and I don’t even get to come no matter how great the sex might be. I made an extended metaphor just to say life has been great for what I’ve been trying to put into it, and most of the uncomfortable parts have me transitioning to find better parts of me to deal with rather than my usual vices of seclusion, sex and alcohol.

It’s 2019, and while the world seems to be in turmoil, this has been one of the most fruitful and peace producing years for me. I’ve traveled a lot more over the past couple of years. A lot more than someone from the hood would ever dream of at least. My career and academic milestones that were long term are now short term in arms reach. I’ve made a lot of peace with my past or recently enough, a lot of my past has been finding its way to making peace with me. I still have a long way to go to improve myself, but I love this moment since, for the first time in my life, I’m not being greedy. I’ll NEVER stop being ambitious, but I’m not mentally wanting it ALL I just want all of what’s meant for ME.

Right now God and the universe are telling me I’m in a fixed point of time to understand the word “transformation”. Now more than ever, I can NEVER go back to who I used to be. I literally have to kill habits and a former me in order to be the better version of me God designed me to be. Peace and Prosperity have been the main things on my mind for months now. Anything and anyone preserving the two, I’ve kept my eye on. In this transition period, these are the things I need the most. I feel for me, peace and prosperity will be the foundations of happiness, respect, and love in myself as well as others for years to come.

I’ve had another P on my mind a lot but I think I’m just hormonal or I’m a rare case of men where the older I’m getting I’m finding my sex drive is going up. Probably a combination of analyzing my sex life had come with a lot of mid grade sex and lack of exploratory women. It’s got to the point were now I’ve gotten to be so selective about who I get involved with that way out of fear when post nut clarity comes in and I realize calling up Handgela would have been the better woman for the night since she knows me so well. This section had absolutely nothing to do with growth and probably is the most random part I’m writing, but I feel I needed to get it out anyway.

I think my struggling relationship with God and physical health have been the main negatives I’ve been experiencing. In short I feel like I’ve been too busy for God granted God and the work ethic he’s instilled in me is the reason I’ve been in this position as is. I want to change that; I just have to find own way towards doing that. To know God is to know love, and the lack thereof is felt in your soul. As for my physical health, nothing is wrong…I’m just out of shape. I’ve made more excuses to not exercise and eat right and that HAS to change. This is something I need help on as there are a lot of habits to break here. I’m willing and it’s going to take a rewiring to get myself together.

If you’re waiting on my love life…keep waiting. I said I’m not writing or speaking on it until I’m in love again. As of now it’s still just me, still single, still searching for that spark. I am willing to find it at least. I just need someone’s daughter to act right well enough for me to act right. Maybe I need someone to spark a change in me. Maybe I need someone to challenge me. Maybe I need a woman with a really good safe word. I’m not sure, but I’m here in the mean time.

I’ve come to appreciate everything my decisions have turned me to. Overall I feel great about where things are going. I hope all of you are blessed with the chance of evaluating your life and loving how good you are in the fixed points in your life. It’s been a blessing to actually write something from a good place for a change. I always felt my best time to write was at my lowest when my emotions were raw. Peace and happiness have been in rare form and one day I hope to transition writing from it more. That means I’ll have more of it to give.

Long story less long, I’m living life the best way I can: the way it was given to me. I hope you all can find your own way of navigating yours. Peace and blessings.

The Love Life of Justin Lamar: Closure

I once saw that seeking closure is really a fear of facing your past and doing better for the right now. I’m here to say that closure for me has a one way, self-healing path towards the better portion of my emotional and mental health. I’ve talked about my love life in various forms from what it was, how it currently is, and all of the self inflicting hardships I needed to let go just to be an emotionally healthy person who’s able to function. I’ve done a lot of harm to myself, but to a lot of innocent hearted bystanders as well all for the sake of comfort and protection.

I’m making the change to close a lot now. Out of everything I’ve done it’s time to be amicable with myself and give myself closure from a love I thought I really needed because I knew nothing better. Now more than ever is time to focus on maintaining my emotional health so I can give whatever sense of what love is to the true person deserving of it in my life. I question myself a lot. How do I know what love to give? How do I know the love one may be giving is right for me? How do I know this love is here forever?

People say real love never dies and I have to say I disagree to an extent. Love, like people, is a lot like seasons. It’s forever changing, unpredictable and only lasts as much time as we have here on earth. The rest of what we consider as love when we leave goes to moments and memories in others. I guess now that I think about it, love and death lead to similar fate. Think about it. Both share unpredictability, both happen in various forms, both evolve over time, and both evoke many emotions at others. The key similarity of both love and death is understanding that life goes on and only your impression on others is what continues the cycle or how it plays out in this case.

I say this all to say that I look back on a past relationship where I felt this person was truly my forever and that was the reason I could never move on properly. I think deep down I didn’t want to let go the memory of her because I never had anyone love and care for me like she did outside of my grandmother. She understood my passion, my plight, my quirks, my just about everything. I think I was so drawn to her being a damaged soul and since she was such a giving soul it seemed to heal me temporarily. When you’re constantly hurting, you latch on to anything that can ease the pain. She did just that and I loved her for that. I wanted her to create a life with me out of temporary fixes because at that point it was all I knew to feel love.

Honestly that wasn’t fair to myself and I think she knew that. Although she’d always mention how much she cared and loved me, I sensed that degree of separation from her because I think she wanted me to be free and she always knew maybe love for the both of us had changed like the seasons. I felt betrayed for a while thinking why the one I felt was “the one” didn’t want to be the one. I was fortunate enough to get the space I needed towards the end of last year to really evaluate a lot of my life. End of the years are tough on my mentally, but I do my best reflecting to hope for a better me each year.

I gave myself the closure. I felt like I didn’t need her for that. I needed to do that on my own. We had some of the greatest memories together and I can’t thank her enough for that. Those small city trips, Memphis, Ross, everything I remember, and I’m truly blessed to experience the love you’ve given me.That love, that giving kind of love is a love I feel mine is evolving into. Hopefully on my path of BEING the right person, I’ll have that love to give to another on their journey BEING the right person as well. I think I owe myself, the world and someone in the future that kind of change.

My questions I originally asked in the beginning of this still remain unanswered. I think I’m ok with that as this closure doesn’t give answers to everything, but a rebirth to experience love like a child…baby steps. It’s all an inevitable part in the cycle of existence. I hope my love stands as tall as the tree in Brooklyn. As this tree withers away, the seed given should spread and sprout into new earth and a new place. As the new blessings of love come to grow, starting its new cycle of life and love, it won’t forget that it stands a monument to the one that came before.

To you, the old love of my life. Thank you for everything. You’re truly a 1 of 1 in this world. I hope you grow beyond measure and spread your wings to explore more of how you can give and how you can love. Peace.

Kaleidoscopes (Poem)

I knew the minute I saw you, I’d find euphoria,
as eyes give you a peek in the soul, I saw colors, shapes, the imaginary,
everything I knew we could be..

Because there’s something about the love you give that,
makes me feel like a kid all over again,
back when friendship bracelets meant forever,
pinky promises meant security and chasing ice cream trucks was life’s purpose..

You sparked a way to see the same you in many different ways,
that no matter how much I turn,
patterns of you never get mundane..

I know the older we get, we put away childish things but,
Can we go to Terabithia? Just you and I?
and lose everything we were made to believe,
just to go and make our own beliefs,
to live in this world where we can control forever, together..

Love is said to be more than what you see,
yet you’ve helped me see so much more,
I see now that souls come in all designs and the more you gaze with time,
the excitement lights up any darkness I’ve ever felt inside..

I just hope you feel the same when you look into mine.

Confessions of Justin Lamar: My Fears Pt. 1

Facing fears is said to take a bout of courage. In my case, I think this is about me coping with inevitably. Unfortunately with my track record I’m terrible at coping, but writing is the closet feeling I can get to freedom and release. Leaping out of a window of pain, here I go.

There is no one on this earth I fathom I love more than Dorothy Jean. My grandmother has been more than an inspiration to my life. She’s been the reason I’ve kept my life going for a while. She has been the cornerstone on how I’ve built my relationship with God. She’s shown me how to show love through action. Crazy how I see so many of her ways deep down in me as years continue to progress. I want to simply say I love Dorothy Jean unconditionally, and even when I’ve strayed to make trials and tribulations of my own, everything she has taught me always seems to haunt me in this roundabout in my mind.

I remember when I first saw how strong AND weak you were. You called me late into the July night to tell me my grandfather passed. Your voice didn’t shake. When I saw you, your demeanor didn’t waver. With others around you trying to comfort you, you kept it together better than anyone I could know who would lose a partner of close to 30 years. I think deep down you knew to remain calm for the sake of others. I think you knew your marriage was far from perfect, but you being the person you are, you loved with your actions and did all you could to keep the good in mind.

In time, I saw how the loss began to consume you. You wouldn’t sleep for days at a time and plenty of nights I heard you crying yourself in the morning. I guess when you felt alone the most was when you could be your most vulnerable. The stress of helping take care of my brother and I started caving in. As a teen then, I felt it was time to become a young man. It was time you had someone to lean on for a change.

I know I’ve stressed you beyond measure. The main thing I always remember you saying, “Take the time to really live and enjoy life. I never took the opportunity to skip those things. I always cut my life short to take care of the people and things I love. Sometimes I look back and wish I did, but sometimes sacrifices are made for someone who may need you better than you need for yourself”. One could call this a foolish love. I know I have at times. However, this never stopped my grandmother from living accordingly. She gives and gives with little in return all because she finds her purpose in it. You don’t find many people like that. Sacrificing self for the happiness of others is sometimes foolish and rare, rarely foolish, and foolishly rare.

So that’s what I did. I set out to live life in honor of you. I went to obtain things you never had in your blessings. You didn’t go to college. I’m going for my 4th degree. You didn’t see the world. I feel like I’ve been almost everywhere and still nowhere at the same time. Money was something scarce. Now I’ve been blessed beyond measure. All of it is because of you. All of it because God felt I needed my guardian angel here on earth watching over me instead of in the heavens above.

This is why it’s so hard to ever think about you leaving me, but I do. When we talk, I hear your voice a little weaker. You’ve been so stressed all these years to keep going and you’re so tired. I see it. Your health isn’t the same and sometimes it’s really God keeping you together. You never sleep and through the years you’ve been more sick than well.

Truthfully…I NEVER want to lose you. The thought of you not here with me is soul tearing. I immensely fear losing the one person I feel who’s cared about me more than anyone I’ve ever come across. I’ve had a lot of temporary in my life. I’m used to that. You Dorothy Jean, have literally been there since my forever and forgive me if I want to be selfish and have the one person I felt showed care, love and God with me forever more. I feel like the day I lose you is the day I’m truly alone and that shakes my core. I love you lady, and it’s crushing knowing you won’t be here forever. I’d gladly give anything I have to know the remainder of your life can finally be spent in some peace. I only fear I may run out of time trying to do it. Losing you, even when I want to repress it, will be inevitable. I don’t know how to shake that fear. I don’t think I ever can.

Dorothy Jean has been a monument of love and sacrifice to me. I pray I’m able bless others the way you’ve been a blessing to me. I’m so glad you’re here with me now because it’s so hard to think about you gone away. Let’s make life a joy. I hope you find happiness here and now.

Thank you grandmother, for all you’ve instilled in me and thank you for the strength to keep holding even when I’ve felt like letting go.