International Day of the Badass

* TRIGGER/SEXUAL ASSAULT CONTENT WARNING *

Today marks the five year anniversary of being raped – my rapeversary if you will. Last year was the first time since January 29, 2016 that I felt even a sliver of my “old” self on this day. I declared the 29th day of this month the official International Day of the Badass, making all things related to rape and the aftermath of trauma my bitches. No apologies. Sorry not sorry.

Always and forfuckingever nasty.

I was feeling really fucking fabulous. Seeing the world through my pre-Rapegate rose colored glasses again and ready to celebrate any and everything but most specifically, honor all things ME. This motherfucking badass bitch was back.

And then, that cunt Rona showed her ugly face a little more than a month later and my entire world (along with the rest of the global population) went to shit a matter of days.

Who the fuck invited you here?

My trauma ticks (as I call them) that I worked so fucking hard to kick in four years of therapy cropped up whenever the fuck they felt it inconvenient. Stuttering, leg and foot bouncing, incessant itching at imaginary hot spots on my skin, stress induced cortisol dumping into my system, insomnia, the severity of my anxiety was back at its skyscraper height and my stomach hurt 24/7 with a deep side of sciatica (a new place my stress manifests itself in my bod).

Fun self inflicted times on my wrist, inner arm and ankle.

Feeling these regressions bubbling up sent me on a downward spiral so fucking fast, I was constantly treading water that was circling the drain. For me, it’s been the hardest part of Rona because I was JUST feeling foxy again, ready to strut my stilettos and resurfaced sassiness all over the pace. I hate the feeling of going backward (but who loves it unless we’re talking about aging?) and the grief attached to my trauma ticks, along with being isolated when I was ready to mingle with the world again about did me in.

Thank fuck for emotional support animals.

I had a four year out-of-body experience where I had to mourn the loss of my pre-rape life, the death of myself as I knew me –  as well as construct my resurrection. I’d trudged my way through an avalanche of the five stages of grief—denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. But Rona took me straight back from a happier place of acceptance to the prior four stages any time she felt like fucking with me.

I think I chose my closet as my panic attack recovery space in 2016 because it’s small and sparkly for comfort.

Then, I was reminded that grief (and all of the shit that comes along with it) isn’t linear. 

Queen of the pivot turn.

I gave myself grace (or at least tried – still trying) and remembered Superhero Sheila’s sound advice. If you wouldn’t say it to one of the twins (that woman goes right for the dagger when she needs it), don’t say it to yourself.

It’s like Superhero Sheila is good at her job or something.

So I got my self talk back on some semblance of a cordial track and proceeded to make my way through the additional perils that 20fucking20 threw at every single citizen of the world in its own unique, shitty way.

I choose to wear sunglasses and fancy headpieces to cope.

But even as I try to forge ahead on this International Day of the Badass, my body and mind are constant companions leading up to this dreaded fucking day, kicking my PTSD into the highest of all gears. I wish there was a WD-40 for the bones because the worst is being in your body, not able to control it.

All because one thousand, eight hundred and twenty five days ago, I was raped by my best friend’s boyfriend while I slept on her couch, in her 600 square foot apartment after a wine and cryfest, grieving the sudden death of a young friend. I woke up to her boyfriend of five weeks on top of me, pajama pants at my knees, arms at my sides, his face in my neck. That was the moment the me as I knew her, died.

Later that day, I sat with my ass cheeks on thin paper, protecting me from any other prior ass cheeks that unfortunately found themselves sitting on the same exam table in the rape kit performance room. The overwhelming fumes of bleach almost resurrected me from the protective shock in which my body had retreated.

Emily Doe later revealed herself as Chanel Miller, the woman Brock Turner raped behind a Stanford dumpster.

“Do you want a rape advocate?” Detective Stupka (soon-to-be renamed Cuntka) questioned me after she recorded my statement of the illegal, intrusive sexual assault that took place several hours earlier. I couldn’t recall Shane the Rapist’s last name (that was listed in my phone, which was dead from being at the hospital waiting for eight hours on a rape kit), how was I able to know if I needed an advocate? What was an advocate? Did I need one? Detective Cuntka said she could not advise me and I somehow communicated that I did, in fact, want an advocate.

I still can’t wrap my brain around my bff not believing me nine hours after being raped, do I look like I can make a goddamned decision about anything?!

I believe rape victims should be assisted with an advocate, period. No questions asked. Just have one show up and let them do the talking because it was a good three years before my typically decisive as fuck ass could make any decision about ANYTHING.

I will just have one of everything on the menu because what do I want?

When Barbie the advocate tenderly walked into the room, careful not to touch me (when I just wanted her to sweep me up in her arms and tell me everything was gonna be OK – although that would have been a disservice on her part because nothing about being raped is ever OK, so, therefore, no hug took place). She spoke with the same amount of tenderness she used when she was inching toward me.

Where was one of my goddamn pussies when I needed them?!

Barbie resembled more of a Skipper than the actual Barbie doll with a petite frame, carrying a Louis Vuitton bag (that naturally, I admired and wondered if she had a phone charger tucked inside I could use) and was such a pleasant sight after the day kept spewing like uncontrollable bowels. After a few minutes of fill-in-what-horrible-thing happened to you, she looked at me straight in the eye and said, “Honey, there is going to be a before rape and an after rape moving forward in your life.”

It was one of those moments that you just know what’s being said is true, no matter how much you want it to be a lie.

My immediate thoughts of life after rape.

Barbie left the room to sit with Dada CBXB who was most likely wondering how in the fuck his Friday turned out so inexplicable. I sat waiting for the rape kit exam to commence after yet again being hazy on decision making when asked, “Do you want the Plan B pill? Did he wear a condom? Do you want to take the HIV preventative even though it will rob you of 30 days of your life since its effects are so brutal? Do you want to be tested for every STD in which science is aware? Have you eaten anything today? Here are crackers to take with the handful of pills we are giving you.”

I seriously can’t compute.

Upon completion of my rape kit and consumption of no less than 51 pills, I was handed a folder of information with numbers to national hotlines I could call, pamphlets of what to expect in the coming days, and instructions of when to take the next round of pills to rid my body of any other foreign substance left behind when Shane the Rapist raped me. It was like onboarding at a new job or getting every class syllabus on the first day of college. It was literature on what my life after rape was going entail.

I had no inkling of what the fuck I was up against.

Open ended ticket for one, please. @deepfriedfreckles

Nobody wants to be in this club. Nobody wants to be an expert on matters in which we never want to be associated. But rape happens. And there I was and here I am.

All too familiar when I wish I had no clue.

I miss my pre-rape life in the way your heart breaks when someone your world revolved around dies. The me I’d always known, died on January 29, 2016, and I had no idea how to bring myself back to life. Thing is, I was still breathing. I wasn’t dead. I just had no feeling left inside, which made me feel like a shell. Hollow, empty and alone.

You don’t have to cry for me because my eyes leaked enough fluid for nine lifetimes.

I found out who could withstand the shell of myself and who needed an exit. I immediately realized I was going to become a walking, talking rape victim stereotype (the victims that report, anyway) when interacting with Detective Cuntka when she told me 37 days after being raped over the phone that I was “one of 29 other cases she was working on. This was a he said/she said case so not much will come of it.” Oh sorry, this is my first time being raped and dealing with anything that accompanies. Please excuse my incessant questions about how this shit works. Chasing my case and any details became a second full time job.

Daily routines ceased existing and the depression bombarded its way in. Brushing teeth, washing my hair, applying make up (I was Ronafied ahead of the times), no polish on my claws because they became unbearable chores.

This is my version of silent screams for help.

No more hot yoga. No more running. No activities where I was alone with my own thoughts. I couldn’t get off of the couch and into my bed for six months to sleep, further exacerbating the endless cycle of depression, anxiety, nerves, self-loathing, shame, blame, fatigue and stress leaving me empty. Literally dead inside.

I gave zero shits.

Therapy has given me life-saving coping mechanisms. Medicines have made my daily life manageable. The kindness of human beings has been astounding and reinstated the belief that simple acts and words of love can do some serious healing. The outpouring of support once I was able to openly talk about my rape case after the grand jury found insufficient evidence to take Shane the Rapist to trial was astonishing.

After all of that recovery, after all of the therapy, after the shit show of 2020, now more than ever I understand that we all carry invisible wounds. And Rona brought all of my luggage back but this time around the baggage felt excruciatingly heavier.

Others can’t see the shame I carry. Others can’t see the guilt I hold (did I somehow ask for it?). Others can’t see the blame I assign myself every single second, minute, hour, day, month.

The year 2020 made it achingly obvious that people I love haven’t been listening to me and can’t – or worse yet – DON’T WANT to see mental anguish caused by society and the normalcy of rape culture.

Judgment is a fucking beast and after rape, it becomes an unwanted daily acquaintance at your breakfast, lunch, and supper table. I started eating at this fucking buffet again last year.

One thing I know to be true is that people who love you – really love you for you, don’t waiver. It’s been my family, my rock-solid friends, the folks who have come to my rescue via virtual friendships (silver lining of 2020!), the people who have re-entered my life to lift me up when I was sure I was going to drown…that all exists.

Here I stand five years later, my heart beating the last 1,825 days, feeling like a motherfucking badass once again. I now understand that grief is an emotion that exists even when life still is within. I died but I lived.

When I think about the people I love and the fur babies I’ve lost, I choose to celebrate them. Drink their favorite drinks, watch a favorite movie, look at photos, read old cards, love on my current Pussy Posse, share fucking funny stories with others that loved them, too. After forfuckingever five years, I am back to celebrating ALL THINGS ME again.

Sorry not sorry.

Join me in celebrating the International Day of the Badass.

This pussy grabs back.

“I won’t back down. I will stand my ground.” – Tom Petty

What are you celebrating on this International Day of the Badass? Because if you’re reading this, you’re one too.

Cheers to all of my best Badasses.

BELIEVE SURVIVORS.

CBXB

BUY ME A DRINK

All of Us, Together

WHAT. THE. FUCK. 2020?

How hard can a year be? We’re not halfway through this one and wow. Just a gigantic motherfucking wow…for all of us.

I mean, peeps all over the world are having to be reminded to wash their hands, (that we were taught to do as wee lads, so a major fail on the adults in this world) as well as a reminder in the harshest way to treat others the way you want to be treated (as we were also taught as kids, shame the fuck on us).

Wash your hands. Live by the Golden Rule.

Some of you didn’t watch this as a kid and it shows.

Collectively, the world is mourning what was life before fucking Rona. There is going to be a before Rona and after Rona. Whether you want it to or not, your life will never be the same. That’s a grieving process and it’s really fucking difficult to grieve something that is still alive. No matter your thoughts on the pandemic – whether you are practicing wise caution, freaked the fuck out or carrying on as nothing is going on around you.

Maybe you know someone who died from COVID. Maybe you contracted COVID and will have lasting aftermath in your body forever. Maybe you lost your livelihood, your business, your house, some relationships, missed prom, rescheduled your wedding, virtually graduated from school, or/and lost your goddamn mind.

This pandemic is real whether you know someone who has been touched by it or not.

RIP Lindsey. 11/23/87 – 3/23/20

Whatever the case may be, When All This Is Over (WATIO) there will be a new normal. Folks may be wearing masks in public forever.

Protection from a pandemic. But make it fashion.

Restaurants and businesses may not be at full capacity for a while. The hard part of this process is the unknown. And lack of leadership in this country. But know that whatever and however you feel Rona is being handled in America, you’re processing some sort of grief about it.

Hello yes, this is Karen. I would like to speak with a manager about the new fucking normal. Thanks.

While America was still thick in the adjustment of Rona, a Black man by the name of George Floyd was murdered on Memorial Day by a Minneapolis police officer.

This injustice at the hands of authority sent should have set your stomach on fire. And yet, Black men being killed by law enforcement is not new and we Americans know that. Fuck, the entire world knows it.

America started that week with New York City resident Amy Cooper, a White woman, calling the cops after a bird watching Christian Cooper (not related) asked her to put her dog on a leash. In Central Park, where leashes on dogs are required (and we all know how I fucking feel about dogs not on leashes). Her exact words to Christian Cooper, who was videoing the episode for his own protection, no doubt:

“I’m taking a picture and calling the cops,” Amy Cooper is heard saying in the video. “I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life.”

HE ASKED HER TO LEASH HER FUCKING DOG IN A PARK WHERE IT’S REQUIRED.

What a fucking ass clown.

How many times have White people called the cops on Black people for mundane, ordinary things? It is fucking outrageous.

America started the week with Amy Cooper. America ended that week with police officer Derek Chauvin murdering George Floyd over a $20 bill, coming freshly off murders of Ahmad Arbery while jogging in broad daylight to Breonna Taylor being shot eight times in her own home.

I believe that when George Floyd called out for his mama in his dying breaths, it was instinctual because his mother had died a few years prior. He wanted her comfort. I think all of us who have a mama want her when we’re sick, scared, vulnerable, dying.

While I haven’t carried a child in my own belly, I have maternal instincts. I know that I love with my entire being, unconditionally. We are all aware that I love my fur babies as if I had birthed them myself and I would honestly, die for them.

But there are also two little kids that my world revolve around and I couldn’t live without either one of them in my life. I would burn the entire world to ashes if anything resembling a George Floyd situation happened to them and lay my life down to protect them from growing up in fear of their lives for daily tasks. I assume you would do the same for your children no matter what the color of their skin.

Can you, as a White person reading this, imagine telling your five-year-old that when they see a police officer they should immediately put their hands up? No. Because as White children, we are told to go to a police officer for help or if we see something bad happening for our protection.

Three years from learning to put their hands up if a police officer approaches them.

When does this little boy become a threat to society in America?

Too cute?

When is it not safe for him to jog on his own?

Still too cute?

What if he has his ball cap on the wrong way?

What about now?

What about her?

Will she always be safe in her own home?

Racism is real, obviously alive, rampant, and raging in America – even if you are not a racist. My eyes were forced open to my own ignorance of it being ever-present since 2017. When my sister called to tell me that White frat boys in khaki shorts and golf shirts were marching with the KKK in Charlottesville, VA, I first thought the images my brain was trying to absorb must be scenes from another country.

White privilege is real. And if you’re a White person in America, you are privileged simply by the color of your skin. It doesn’t mean you grew up with a silver spoon in your mouth or didn’t work your ass off to get where you are today or have unspeakable shit happen to you. It just means that you had a leg up. History has just shown us that the system is a hell of a lot more flawed in favor of White privilege when it comes to police officers, law enforcement in general, and the judicial system.

Because I am White I can do the following without fear of being killed:

This is especially true if you are a White man in America.

The Constitution was written by White men, for White men with no consideration of any other race or sex in 1789. It doesn’t mean it hasn’t been amended and adapted over time of course but that’s where our country as we know it began. It aided America’s history of systemic racism.

Police brutality is real even though you and I both know outstanding police officers. Stand up citizens serving their communities. I have the utmost and mad respect for people who choose to be a cop. But that still doesn’t mean there aren’t bad ones that make horrible choices and as we are finding out, have had disciplinary problems, yet still allowed to work and end up killing innocent people ( Breonna Taylor officer Brett Hankison was and still currently accused in an ongoing civil lawsuit in federal court regarding harassment and George Floyd’s murderer had 17 misconduct complaints and still at work). What kind of system allows behavioral misconduct where you can still carry a gun and work the streets? I have three write-ups and I’m out at an office desk job.

I have heard a lot of my friends say “I just don’t pay attention to it,” regarding the Black Lives Matter movement in America and that is unacceptable. Because it is White people who have the most to learn and comprehend. Education is where we can start. Uncomfortable conversations will be required to move forward. And that’s all OK. This doesn’t mean you are a racist.

It’s imperative that we listen. We learn. We absorb. We educate ourselves and others. Because when it boils down to it, this is a very black and white matter. You are racist or you are not.

White Americans can and must do better. Show the fuck up for one another. To live by the simplest of all – the Golden Rule. How and why is that so fucking hard?

See something, say something.

This isn’t the kind of country in which any kid should grow up.

@repvaldemings

We can do better. We must do better. We owe it to our future generations to be better.

It’s going to take all of us, together.

Black Lives Matter.

CBXB
CBXB!

 

 

 

 

Buy Me a Drink

 

 

Weekend What Day Is It Does It Matter Winks

Well, I for one, started this Ronacation off on the right foot. I wasn’t gonna let a worldwide pandemic keep me from fabulousness.

Safer at home day one.

I am fortunate to have the ability to work remotely and got my home desk all prepped and set.

Home office in the pussy room.

My desk is located in The Pussy Posse wing of the Mini Manse so, naturally, I have to display all things feline as to not wound the fragile feelings that cats pretend they own.

For those of you wondering, of course, I have pussies crawling all over me every damn day and I do not hate it. Not one bit.

But as the days rolled into weeks rolled into a month and then got all kinds of blurry as to what day of the week it actually was started taking a toll on my sparkly look. I morphed fairly quickly into a greasy-haired, messy bun, I-took-a-bath-so-I don’t-need-to-wash-my-hair-for-three-weeks, whatever-I’m-wearing-must be comfy-lady.

I’ve woken up like this precisely 32 days in a row now.

I’ve even taken things down 1,876,899 notches when taking Zoom calls, forgetting there’s a fucking video camera attached to the computer call. Blonde is hard.

I think many of us hold literal press conferences when we can say…

I mean, showering is not hard, right? But it’s so easy to skip washing my hair if I take a bath and because it’s long, I choose to wear the grease trap in a whale tail (a halved ponytail) or messy bun. If I get to feeling really fancy, I will shower AND wash AND then put deep conditioner in my hair, resulting in a wet bun for another five days (I am always cautious when taking my hair down from said wet bun, as I am not sure if it will have molded or if a kitten is hiding in there).

But the most impressive feat comes about every 14 days when I actually wash AND condition AND dry my locks.

There she is!

My Iowa twins are home from school the rest of this semester with planning for fall classes to resume. Like almost every other person I have seen on social media, the kids have started tie dying. Actually, I think this a prerequisite for Rona quarantine.

Am I the only one not doing this art?

If there’s anything my family knows how to do, it’s snack making. And Princess B is on it. She made her first batch of Rotel last Sunday and it was so tempting to get into my car (that wouldn’t make it down the block right now) and drive the nine hours to taste it.

Chef-boyarprincessdee

While Sister CBXB is teaching her kids how to cook, I’m letting mine snack when, where and on whatever they want to get them to shut the fuck up.

Rocky gettin cheezy.

I can’t stuff anything into my mouth without the prying puppy dog eyes from Prissy. I’ve conquered making a hot dog not fit into a hamburger bun. Rona probs.

A dog wanting a dog.

It’s a motherfucking shame that it’s taken a global pandemic to get family and friends to virtually gather. It’s not hard and why weren’t we doing this long before Rona?!

Virtual happy hours with friends near and far have helped me with my missing of in real life human connection.

A day in the life of quarantined CBXB looks a bit like the drawing I so accurately rendered below.

The Pussy Posse has a love/hate relationship with me right now.

While Tennessee is under a safer-at-home mandate until tomorrow, Nashville is under one until further notice. Mayor Cooper isn’t going to open the city until there are 14 days of COVID cases on the decline. Everyone has such mixed feelings but I think we can all agree it’s a fucking shame that kids are missing out on life milestones. In my apartment complex, it was shared that one of our resident’s daughters was turning 18, missing prom and her high school graduation. So her mom asked residents to decorate their balconies and come out of our places that evening for a surprise parade.

I still don’t know her name. But what a fucking fabulous feeling, helping spread a little joy with a community of neighbors whose names I mostly don’t know either.

All in this shitshow Rona prom/birthday/high school graduation parade together.

Speaking of prom, actor John Krasinski hosted a virtual prom last weekend for those missing out. On Instagram he wrote, “That’s right class of 2020, I’m DJing your prom with some friends this Friday night 8EST/5PST!!”

Best idea ever.

Due to it being a virtual prom, anyone could attend and Sister CBXB did it up right.

Prom Prince, Prom Princess, Prom chaperone.

Princess B got to wear one of her dance recital outfits, as it’s been canceled. Obvies looked adorbs. Prince B opted to go with a business on top, comfy on the bottom ensemble. Also, obvies adorbs.

All dressed up with somewhere to go!

Thankfully the weather in Music City has been pleasant (I mean after the tornado and whatnot). These two outside babies had their own kittens two weeks ago.

Rolo and Girlie Girl post-delivery of kittens.

These two petite sisters were born last April. I didn’t get them into the clinic in time for spaying before the tornado and then Rona hit. They got pregnant in the meantime and had kids. My little babies had babies. Eek. I have yet to see the kittens but I can hear them under the stairs. The Nashville Humane Society is going to take the kittens that I haven’t homed once they’ve weaned and socialized. As for the mamas, Rolo has found herself a home with my girl Rocky Ryan! We’re gonna meet up for the pussy exchange when it’s safe.

Going to be an Iowa Hawkeye!

Girlie Girl is still looking for a furrever abode. She’s sweet, petite, a purrer and I’ve finally gotten to pick her up for cuddles. Also, she and Prissy touch noses every morning, so she’s cool with dogs, too.

A pose for your consideration.

Social distance drinking is one of the events that can be done with nice weather! Last weekend, First Mate and I were able to enjoy separate boxes of our beloved Bota Box Rosé together but apart.

Two girls, two boxes, two dogs, safe distance.

When I put the above photo on Instagram, I was trying not to piss my pants pleasantly surprised when the actual Bota Box company “liked” my photo. It’s not like I rushed to any conclusions or anything.

While I know we are all dealing with this pandemic on different levels, it’s comforting to know that we’re in this together, apart. I can’t begin to express my gratitude for all of the essential employees and those working in the medical field.

And if you are safer-at-homing it but must go out, be sure you have the appropriate attire for Rona. I mean, this may be a tad extra but you get the point.

Not letting Rona steal my fabulousness.

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Love ya, mean it.

CBXB

CBXB!

Buy Me a Drink

 

My Viral Birthday

Holy fucking shit.

The tornado that ripped through middle Tennessee wasn’t even one month ago.

While the region was reeling, the global pandemic made its debut the day after the tornado with the first confirmed diagnosis in the state.

Now, I know many folks who showed up in droves to volunteer after the tornado are starting to test positive for COVID. I think this is largely due to the massive amount of good humans who showed the fuck up to help neighbors after a natural disaster. Since then, the Coronavirus has thwarted a lot of the efforts being made by organizations, supplies, volunteers, hard-hit businesses, etc.

But here we are in the throes of a global pandemic and we all have a fucking front row seat. My VIP ticket happened to include my first ever birthday in quarantine.

Oh hi! You feel like celebrating with people now? Too bad.

Since Rapegate, I would have been down to par-tay in isolation on past birthdays.

But not this year. Oh no. This is the first year where the bitch is baaaack to finding all things joy and ready to celebrate the entire year month week day. So I did just that in spite of a fucking global pandemic. I celebrated my face off.

We partied and Prissy force loved it.

While the circumstances were not the most epically fabulous, my peeps far and wide celebrated with me. Boston Barbie had a bottle of champs with me via FaceTime and sent a pizza for supper.

Quarantined prezzies were sent and loved hard.

Text messages and social media wishes kept a smile on my face.

First Mate tapped on my window and brought her own airplane sized bottle (is that what they are really called?) of fancy vino over and poured it into her own glass.

I almost burnt down the Mini Manse baked my own gluten-free birthday cake. While it was not on the top ten (or top 100) sweets I’ve ever tasted, it went down the hatch like a charm (I think it was because of all the sprinkles). Please feel free to spoil my hips after this shitshow is over with all of the gluten-free goodies. I won’t hate it.

Look the fuck out Martha Stewart.

While I’m now certain I can star in my very own baking show of failures (waiting for the phone to ring cooking channel), my gal pal in Scotland came up with an acronym for “when all this is over” – WATIO – and posed the question on her Instagram.

What I want even more WATIO, is for you and your loved ones to be alive, healthy and ready to celebrate your faces off with me on my half birthday bash on September 25, 2020.

Until then, stay the fuck home. Let’s make my half birthday party go viral for reasons other than a worldwide pandemic.

Love ya, mean it.

CBXB

CBXB!