It’s Not Always About Just Us: Transparency and Obedience To God 4/15/2020

Good morning, fam.  Praying each of you have an amazing day, today.  The following post is not something you would usually see from me, it may be long, and for the record, the HUMAN me DOES NOT WANT TO DO THIS, as it is VERY personal, and I am ULTRA private.  However, as I was standing at my sink 30 minutes ago, GOD spoke (yes, I LITERALLY heard Him out loud-1st time) and said to post, ON FB, because someone’s life may depend on it.  I MUST BE OBEDIENT.  So I ask that you pray with and for me. PLEASE take the time to read it, even if you have to get back to it later, all the way to the end, as I have NO IDEA who needs or this post.  Whew!  


I was standing at my kitchen sink this morning, looking for my peanut butter to make a sandwich and realized I had no bread.  No big deal right.  Here’s the thing…..I then looked into the refrigerator and the cupboard and something was off.  I then, in shock realized I haven’t grocery shopped in OVER A MONTH AND I DIDN’T EVEN NOTICE IT.  How does that happen?  Now, I know I don’t cook, but I am religious about shopping monthly.  It hit me like a ton of bricks the place that I have been in the house since 11/22/2014.  CLINICAL DEPRESSION!!!!!!!!!!!!  Yes, I am saying it.  Now, I pride myself on being very, titanium-like strong.  Shucks, I am a child of the MOST HIGH GOD AND the daughter Rosemary and Christopher.  You might shake me, but ‘cha can’t break me, right?  WRONG!  

When my Fred left here suddenly on 11/22/2014, on the heels of my Mommiekins going home 10/27/2013, KABOOM 💣🤯   I    SHUT   DOWN  AND WENT TO BED! 

Me! “Supergirl, no sleep, call me-I got you, Crystal”,  SHUT DOWN. 
Here’s how I did it, and no one was the wiser.  As long as I stayed in the bed, I was good.  I continued to take care of all of my business, run my companies, service my clients. and I talked to friends and family, I even stayed in Intercessory Prayer with folks, as usual (BTW, I think that’s one of the greatest things to do, pray for others), so by all accounts, all was well.  I continued to go to family functions, shop, doc appts. etc. , but when I stepped off the bed on the floor, I became immediately unstable, unsure, physically sick and dizzy. In other words NON-REALITY -BASED living, at it’s best.  Everything outside of that bed was DEATH, PAIN, ANGER, OUTRAGE, FEAR, CONFUSION, ILLNESS, FAILURE….
IT’S NOT REAL, I can stay in bed and this is all a dream, so when I got up, it got real.  So I did go out, and looked good too….lol……but inside, I was SCREAMING, RUSHING, RUNNING to get back to “safety” – TO THE BED.
Now, I got within two classes shy of a M.S. degree in Human Service Administration/Clinical Psychology, before I fell too ill to finish.  I knew what I was looking at.  I was very good at my job and still am (praise be 2 God), and have been a Life Coach for several years.  I KNEW I WAS IN REAL TROUBLE and not only could I not fix it, I didn’t want to. And my apartment??????????????  I CRAVE organization and clean fresh space.
My space looks like a robbery occurred in here. CLUTTER on MORE CLUTTER. 
Enter, my friend. I was returning home from a doctors’ appt and she called and said she was around the corner and wanted to drop in.  I wanted to get to the bed, but for some reason, I said SURE and she came.  We sat and chatted for a while and my living room is quite out of order for me, but not ridiculous,  no garbage on the floor, etc., but for me, too much clutter.  For some reason, I got up, and I said to her, I want to show you something.  I walked her back to my bedroom and she stopped DEAD IN HER TRACKS.  I said, “welcome to Clinical Depression, my name is Crystal, and I’ll be your host for this evening.  I saw the tears well up in her eyes and she said “OH, MY GOD!!!!!!!!!”  There was barely anywhere to walk (help me, Jesus!).  Me!  Ms. “It’s so organized, I can find it in the dark”.  My bed was a mass of covers and clothes and my computers and my phone, my note pads and pens………
She got angry and said “NO. THIS STOPS NOW.  Crystal, on 11/22/2014, Fred died, you didn’t and I’m not going to watch you commit slow suicide, now where do we begin?” 
She walked toward my bed and said let’s change the linen and, for a split second, I got nervous because she was touching my safe place.  I walked over to the closet, dug out a bin of the last of Fred’s laundry, took out his shirt, and buried my face in it, and took a deep breath. 
She said, “No, we’re not doing that.  You can mourn him, love him and miss him, but you can’t die with him.”  

Because she chose to be obedient, God used her to save my life.  There’s a lesson about walking in HIS will and being obedient, even when you may not want to….you know, like this very personal post I’m doing.  Thank GOD, because I ACTUALLY heard her and I knew she was right.  I was taking the passive way out of this life.
Fast forward to three weeks ago.  I am doing better, feeling amazing, but I got sick with Bronchitis and went into the hospital for a few days and I’m still battling it, but now, I get up out of the bed willingly, freely, etc.  My aprtment looks better but not great (it’s a Fibromyalgia process). When I came out of the hospital, different people, ones who were not connected in any way, all began to tell me the very same thing about myself……eerie. 
All of a sudden, everything I have busted my hump for over the last 15 years, prayed, cried, begged, studied, sacrificed, stood alone, been called a dreamer, disregarded, devalued for, ….. ALL STARTED TO POUR FORTH, and it hasn’t stopped since.  I am in my purpose, I have no more questions or doubts, I am completely empty so God can totally use me to bless others, who want to bless others, and I FEEL AMAZING!  Bronchitis and all.
Wrap up:  I have amazing friends and everyone is NOT invited to that club, said this Scorpio woman. THEY are my extra layers of skin, going way back. Lots of great and awesome acquaintances and colleagues and strong connections, no doubt, but FRIENDS, the list is small  Cherish your relationships, they can save you.  When God tells you to do something, it ain’t always about you, just do it.  Mommiekins, Fred, I miss you and ache dearly, but I’m finally understanding my purpose and I KNOW you’ll be proud of me.  Thanks be to God for the time I had with you, what I learned, and I’ll see you when I have completed my work down here.  Save me a seat in Glory. I’ll join you, many and healthy years from now, I pray LOL.
I’m spent.  I pray that His will be done with this post.  You will probably NEVER get this close to my vest again (nothing personal) but if ANYONE is blessed or saved, I’m good.  Now, gotta take my coughing, exposed feelin’ self out, right now…..out of the bed, because the water’s just fine.  In fact, it’s clearer and better than ever outside the bed.    Hmmmmm….. this may become a short-story ( I can’t turn it off, can I?  LMBO)  Love you all, no strings attached.


UPDATE 4/2/2020

I am currently in the best place, Spiritually, RIGHT NOW, TODAY, than I have ever been in my entire life.  My journey with God has gone from my head (knowing Him intellectually), to my heart (feeling Him), and NOW, FINALLY, it’s in my SPIRIT and I am COMPLETELY SOLD OUT! 

#StayEncouraged
#NeverLoseHope
#Obedience2God
#TransparencyCanSaveLives
#NotAlwaysAboutJustUs

Fibro Funnies: Episode 1

Good evening, sports fans, and welcome to the Tuesday Night Body Competition. I’m your Host, Cryss. Joining me is my every faithful personality, fifteen year veteran, and Fibromyalgia expert, Chrissie.

Cryss: Good evening, Chrissie. What an exciting evening.

Cryss: Chrissie, you said a Dionne Warwick set of teeth mouthful ( what?). Just about everyone who’s ANYONE is here and they’ve come to play.

Chrissie: Oh, yeah. This has been brewing since Crystal made an unscheduled grocery store run, and didn’t use a scooter (Gasp!).

Cryss: Ruh-roh. In a post grocery interview, I asked if it was a wise decision. Crystal said, emphatically, that she WOULD NOT cower to Fibromyalgia.

Chrissie: Gutsy move, but let’s get to the action.

Tonite, The C.J. Body Parts are taking on the Aspercreme Heating Pads, to see who can hurt, swell, or become detached from its usual place, with the most ferocity vs. I can take it, I’m God’s child, with a prescription.

Cryss: Do you think the backup meds will be a factor, tonite? They’ve been successful before, but have been riding the bench, intermittently, due to non compliance issues. Remains to be seen.

Chrissie: I know the hip is gonna go hard, but the ribs are the wild card, so don’t count them out.

Cryss: Those knees? Now, they’re veterans; they can stay in the patella pocket and cause swelling, or run and slide.
Gotta have double coverage (heat and ice) on the neck, clavicle, and shoulder. They are very talented. The neck can get off the edge, to the shoulder, with quickness like I’ve never seen. Clavicle is just soft. You look at him and he swells AND turns red. He doesn’t play the position with verve.

Chrissie: Indeed, but, the Kankles are pretty reliable. They definitely give different looks: bilateral pitted edema, golf ball look on the side, which really wreaks havoc on the interior cute shoe, and, of course, they shrink, when going to the doctor.

Cryss: We MUST factor in the king-sized heating pad, and the Aspercreme. They’ve added lidocaine to their defense, a veteran loner, out of WALMART State Pharmacy aisle.

Chrissie: The back up, Ultram (Tramadol) has been successful at getting to the nerves, and sacking them. But there’s still the issue of sleep.

This is going to be one heck of a nite! No commercials. Good luck and stay tuned.

Now, the national anthem:

Oh, dang, did you see
How my left knee collapsed,
And I fell to the ground,
Grabbing any thing in sight.

Saw some folks standing there.
They were laughing at me.
Not a one offered help!
Lucky I can’t reach that weave.

And they let me let lay there
With my hands in the air
Which proves I was right
That you folks ain’t worth…

I guess I’d better get up
Be-fo-ore I.I ge-et ro-obbed (high note-hold, do runs)
For li- it-tle I’ve GOT (really high note, then breath)
And I split someone’s
(dramatic pause)
WIGGGGGGGG!🎤🎼🎶

P.S. Can’t take a knee, as I have no meniscus, but love u Kaep.

Fibro Funnies ©2018

Pain and Gratitude

My hands are swollen from trying to massage the shoulder, clavicle, rib, elbow, hip, and low back pain away. BTW: I took my pain meds 2 hours ago, and have 10 hours, until I can take more. I will get worse, as the night progresses, because I’m in a Fibromyalgia flare up.

So, what’s the testimony? I praise God, in the midst of this agony, because He’s gotten me through before, and He’ll do it again! There’s NOTHING my Savior will do for me, that He won’t do for you. I lie in wait for my relief, and I KNOW it’s coming. Until then, Blanche, Rose and Sophia, Dorothy, and I will crack up, I’ll continue my intercessory prayers, as they take the focus off of me, and know that, Lord’s willing, I’ll know joy, in the morning.

“It won’t be as long as it has been.”
-Prettyface-Mommiekins

#BeEncouraged #Joy #Peace
#BeatingFibroOnePrayerAtATime
#YoureNotAlone
#GodLovesYou
#GodIsTheUltimatePromiseKeeper #NeverLoseHope

Basketball: A Mind Game

I’ve been asked, many times, why I don’t watch basketball, or whether I even like it. I grew up watching BBall.

I have TWO reasons for not watching. Please do not think I’m not aware of the sheer talent in the league, since I watched. I am.

Reason#1

I LOVED the Boston Celtics’ fab five:
Larry Bird
Kevin McHale
Dennis Johnson (R.I.P)
Robert Parrish
Danny Ainge

The Celtics, the Lakers (Magic, Kareem, Worthy), The Pistons, The Jazz….THAT was worth watching. Lost interest, after the Olympic “Dream Team”, and those guys retired. Never to be duplicated.

Reason#2

I grew up with the greatest player never known; my brother, Larry. He was a young phenom. He was grace and granite, fluid, and steel, flight, wind, water, FIRE.
When I was about 5/6 years old, my brother went to the Youth Olympics. At Friendship Airport, now BWI-Thurgood Marshall, you could watch them board the plane, near the tarmac. He was so handsome, in his gold sports jacket (HOF-like), perfect fro, and killer smile. I was so excited, as he, and the other young men, boarded the plane. I waved frantically, yelling, clapping, shouting, “that’s my brother, my ‘stepping partner’ ( I got that name because he rarely got to leave the house without me attached to his leg)”. Funny thing happened…they closed the doors, and I could no longer see him. Prettyface-Mommiekins said we were leaving. Well that can’t be right. Where’s Larry? Why didn’t he come back, yet? We have to wait for him. How’s he gonna get home? My young mind could not process that he was not coming with us, or that he wasn’t gone, forever. In the words of Adele, I set FIRE to the rain, dropping to the ground, screaming, begging for my “brova”. REAL LONG NIGHT for my parents.

A knee injury took him off the fast-track to basketball history. BNBL(Baltimore Neighborhood Basketball League) wanted him, BADLY, and he was barely out of junior high.

In later years, my brother had gained a lot of weight, but still had a love for the game, so he joined a local group. They were all about 5-10 years his junior, and in great physical shape. The games were played at Lake Clifton H.S. One day, my sister-in-law, and my nieces went to a game. I hadn’t seen him play since I was a kid. As they began the coin toss, people began to say things: ” I know that fat guy isn’t playing”, “look at ‘Fat Albert”….they laughed, not knowing they were sitting near his wife, children, and sister.

The game began, and the derisive chatter grew into, “these boys gon run him into the ground”, “he’s gonna have a heart attack” (laughter), “he can’t hang”. We said nothing. The ball comes to Larry. To this day, I don’t know what he did, or how he did it, but he moved so fast, he had to catch his own rebound, as the others seemed to be standing still, trying to figure out what happened. He proceeded to do more of the same, throughout the ENTIRE game. The chatter turned to chants of “Go big man”, ” Fat Albert is schooling dem boys”. Yes, they won,thanks to my brother’s triple-double.
After the game, I asked HOW. You out-maneuvered them all.  He simply said, “finesse”. HUH? He further explained that the essence of the game is mental, and that the physical is merely the manifestation; the execution. Further, he taught me that you MUST ALWAYS know what your opponent will do, before they do. HUH? “I out-thought them, Tigger (that’s me).” Oh, I see. That advice has served me well.

Why is this on my head? It’s playoff time. In the spirit, I just watched a great documentary called , “Magic & Bird: A Courtship of Rivals, on HBO On Demand. It was awesome. It took me back to the airport tarmac, to the bleachers at Lake Clifton, to the reason I don’t watch; I’ve seen the best.

I miss you all day, every day, my Tommy💔😥🏀.

Why I Want to Meet Dave Chappelle

Why I want one hour with Dave Chappelle.
I often quote my second fave Philosopher, Heraclitus (Immanuel Kant #1), as having said, “All is flux. You cannot step into the same river twice.”
Turns out, not only I, but Plato misquoted this pre-Socratic Ephesian. His actual quote?
“In the same river we both step and do not step, we are and are not”.
Interpretation:
“…the world is in a constant state of change and, while one may step from the banks into the body of a river one has always known, the waters flowing over one’s feet will never be the same waters that flowed even a moment before.”

I am, indeed, evolving.

What does that have to do with Dave Chappelle? He’s become my favorite contemporary Philosopher, disguised as a Comedian. Many are; but Dave, his mask IS his masterpiece, because there’s really NO MASK (Cryss-ism). Geez I’m lucid this time of night😲. Anyhoo,

See his Netflix special
“Equanimity”
Not to be confused with the two released late last year. You’ll see what I mean, especially in the end.

#OneHourMrChappelle

Humanity Lost?

I am, and have always, had a humanistic view of the world. All humans are basically good. Circumstances, environments, learned abhorrent behaviors, cause us to shift away from our innate goodness. Fixable.

Over the last ten years, my rose-colored glasses have been stepped upon, but they’ve never been destroyed. I repair them. I keep looking for the good, even when I notice the horror.

Over the last five years, I’ve found my glasses have escaped my awareness, at times. I find them, dust them, put them on. I purposely seek the good.
Over the last three years, I’ve had to use duct tape on my rose-colored, war-weary glasses. I put them on and pray to find a snippet of goodness.

Sidebar: I began to wonder where social media, and the inundation of information factored into this negativity. Were we always this EVIL, DECEITFUL, DUPLICITOUS, FOUL, DISMISSIVE, DIVISIVE, DISHONORABLE, HORRIBLE, EVIL, HEINOUS, UNCARING, ARROGANT, BOASTFUL, EVIL, UNGODLY, WARMONGER-ISH (Yes, I made up a word. If Betsy DeVoss is education secretary, I can create words), DISENFRANCHISED, FAKE, PHONY, ANGRY?

Over the last year, I’ve found that my patience became shorter, my mood more foul than pleasant, and I kept repeating the phrase, ” Awww, come ON!” My rose-colored glasses, removed from the case where they were kept, sat gingerly atop my nose, red from crying, as my search for goodness elicits more sad tears, than happy results.

Over the last few months, I’ve lost more and more faith in the human race. Not by the day, but by the minute. Not just on a macro level, but micro, too. Shock and anger have been replaced with heavy sighs. Numbness has set in. The absolute worst is the expectation of the day.

Hey! Where the heck did these glasses come from? Huh. Must have worn them once. Back in the junk drawer with ya.

HAPPY NEW YEAR

What are your goals for the new year? Have you started your vision board?

What are the things most important to you? Family, Faith, Politics, Career, Love, Financial Stability?

Drop a note. Let me know what you’re doing, and what changes you’d like to see (personal, professional, political, policy, etc.) in 2018!

One of my goals is to unleash my creativity. No more stifling my imagination. Stay-tuned.