Dealing with Mental Illness & What I’m doing about it…


I was diagnosed with chronic depression in 2009 before my first deployment. Initially, having problems falling and staying asleep was my issue. I eliminated the fact that I was in a new country, because I had been in country for almost a year and my body was acclimated. I also eliminated the rigorous Basic Combat Training (BCT) and Advanced Individual Training (AIT) I had just went through because that was a year ago. Before the joining the Army, I had issues with sleeping too often. Personally, I figured it was me being an adolescent teenager, working and attending school. So when they diagnosed me with depression, I was confused to say the least. No one at least no one I knew in my immediate family, friends or my community talked about depression; or any mental illness as a matter of fact. "Black people did not get depressed", was the stigma that surrounded my community. And yet here I was depressed.
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Experience the power of Tarot…

Now, I know that some of you may be skeptical about reading this post whether it is due to religious or just ignorance of what tarot really is.  What comes to my mind when you think of a tarot or palm reading?  Chances are you’re imagining a woman dressed as a gypsy with a crystal ball in front of her or a voodoo priestess from somewhere in Louisiana.  You might even think of the pyschics on television that state, “If you call now, the first xyz minutes are free then it’s xyz price per minute afterwards.  But you’re wrong!  

Last night was just a confirmation for me of things I already knew.  We all have the innate ability of intuition, some more heightened than others.  Then there are those who see beyond this realm, connect with ancestors and align with the stars.  This man (who will remain anonymous) opened my eyes to something new.  Not only did he connect with the things that were going on in my life, he connected with my grandmother who was recently passed away last December.  That’s when I knew he was legit!  He described the woman sitting in front of him as someone with short, salt and pepper curly hair, warm and inviting and very spiritual.  Over the past few years my grandmother had become very spiritual and she’s always worn her hair short for as long as I can remember.  But what brought me to tears is when he told me that she’s always near me.  And how she knows that I’ve been trying to contact her, not to worry because she’s near and eventually I’ll hear her talking to me when I need it because right now I’m blocking it unintentionally. 

He also knew that I was unemployed and looking for a job.  He told me that I am too picky when it comes to jobs because I don’t know what I want to do; and he was right.  He knew that I was in school, that I love to write, that my finances are a mess and I always try to help others even at the expense of putting myself on the back burner.  This man knew me, down to my personality traits. Now, keep in mind that last night was my first time meeting this guy.  He has given me confirmation for my life and with my grandmother passing on a message to me, “Every thing will be alright.”  

What did this cost me?  Absolutely nothing!!! 

I’m not religious in the sense but I am very spiritual. I believe in a higher power, I believe that the Universe gives us what we put out into it.  Never be so closed-minded that we dismiss the idea that someone somewhere connects with the Divine powers of the ancestors and universe.  Society calls it “New Age” but its been around for centuries.

Fitness Journey 2016

Last year has been interesting to say the least. A lot of changes in my life took place over the year. I separated from the military after almost 7 years of service. I moved back home (big mistake) and things have been downhill since then. I have been chronically depressed. I have been on and off with my yoga practice and workout regime, that I gained 20lbs and been having severe insomnia. Now I know 20lbs might not seem like a lot but to me it is. It is the most unflattering  

So I made a promise to myself before the year ended I would start doing yoga again and go H.A.M in the gym. As a member of I registered for their #250KChallenge. I intend to complete a 12-week body transformation program using the and the app BodySpace which is available on iTunes and GooglePlay via Android.

I will be posting videos on my YouTube channel, short videos on SnapChat and Instagram; as well as pictures. All the links to my accounts will be available to catch up with me and track my progress. I realized that working out puts me in a euphoric mood. I’m relaxed afterwards, the tension is gone, I sleep better at night, my depression is down. And that for me is a big goal. Studies show that exercising is known to be great for all the issues that I stated. 

Children & Nappy Hair

This topic has always bothered me.  Why do we as adults criticize children’s hair; especially our little brown girls?  It is not okay to tear down a child’s self esteem.  Which brings me to the this:

My child’s father came by the other day to drop off some of her Christmas presents.  Upon leaving he rubbed her hair and whispered that her hair was getting nappy.  Wait one damn minute!!!! As a mother, who is also natural; that statement didn’t sit well with me at all.  I wanted to deliberately slap the words right out of his mouth.  Though my daughter at the age that she is, clearly don’t understand that her dad is causing her to hate her hair.  I had to set him strait by telling him her hair was not nappy or bad.  Check out my youtube video on this topic. Continue reading

keep your mind, homie.

Check out this piece from my girl Devri. She doesn’t sugarcoat!

devri velazquez

true tee 1

Say a little prayer, trust instincts, and find your voice in the midst of millions of other voices attempting to overtalk you at once.

Watching the news breaks my heart. But hearsay and seesay causes it to shatter. Working in the media/public relations/marketing field for almost 6 years now has allowed me to understand a few points that the average ‘consumer’ (TV show viewer, newspaper/blog reader, radio listener) may not notice off the bat. It is so crucial to keep these points in mind next time you let a newscaster feed you bits of information:

  • They are just bits. There is so much more going on. There is always an agenda to be fulfilled. Propaganda is a real thing. We witness the use of sensationalism every single day.
  • It really all comes down to economics and business–money, to put it plainly. Nothing in news or media happens on accident… nothing…

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Vaginal Health & Maintenance

This is a touchy subject for some people.  Everyone has genitalia; some have penises, others vaginas.  Some were born with one and surgically switched to the other.  But we are here today to talk about the health and maintenance of the vagina.  Yeah, that’s right I said Vagina! Be glad I didn’t say the other word that it is so commonly referred to as.

Women we have got to start taking better care of and paying attention to our vaginas.  It is of the highest importance that we do so.  It is so easily for us than men to get infections and diseases.  We can always tell if something isn’t right down there with us.  How?  Because we start to smell.  And what I always say, “You can smell that odor before someone else does”.  They have all types of products out there to help with everything from cleansing to grooming to helping out with those yeast infections on the market.  Products saying that it will help with your pH balance in that area.  Because we all know that any little thing can throw off that pH balance in the vagina.  Use myself as an example.  For me, since every part of my body is sensitive; especially the vagina I can’t use soaps with artificial fragrances, douche, or those fragrant deodorizing sprays.  You know exactly what I’m talking about.  One of the most popular ones that most if not all women swear by is Summer’s Eve products.  Even there unscented washes or medicated douche throws my pH balance off. What I found that worked for me was eating right, exercising, keeping my stress down by meditating and using a product I have come to love.  “What is this product”, you ask?  It is the Honey Pot Feminine Wash.  This is an all natural product, the cost is $14.99 for an 8oz. bottle.  Some might think that this is expensive for a feminine wash but do you really want to put a price on your vagina or on your health.  Go to the website and check out this young woman’s story. Continue reading