Navigating the Blended Family

I was speaking with a loved one the other day. Let’s call him ‘Mark.’ He is the father of a teenage son whose mother, (let’s call her Mary) had married a new guy some years ago. Mark and Mary also have additional children with their current partners. Unfortunately, there is a great deal of friction between Mark and Mary. They have several philosophical differences on how to raise their young man in training. On top of that there is friction between the Mark and Mary’s husband.

In listening to the many stories I’ve heard there is a severe level of dysfunction. None of the adults are handling things as best as they could. In some cases the adults are behaving like children. This make life brutally unhealthy for the real child caught in the middle.

One of the things Mark said to me was (paraphrasing), “When it comes to ole boy, (the husband) I just ignore him and avoid him cause he is irrelevant.” From what I’ve heard the husband has said and done some highly combative things about Mark in front of his son. I understand Mark’s feelings. But I cringed on the inside because I knew that this attitude is also a part of the overall problem. I’ll explain.

Blended families (noun) …a family consisting of a couple and their children from this and all previous relationships, is more the norm today than at any other time in America. It’s challenging to raise children in a traditional family as it is. When combining families after the adults take on new partners, there is a special skill set that adults must learn to provide a peaceful and productive environment for the children.

There are so many variables for parents to consider for children when new partners arrive. There are educational, recreational, discipline, and financial responsibilities, just to name a few. The bulk of conflicts probably revolve around the last two; discipline and financial.

blended_family_video

There is no ‘one’ way to handle these challenges. Each group can decide for themselves. For example, some groups may decide that only the ‘biological’ parents can administer discipline. Some may co-parent equally in all situations. Regardless, there needs to be a certain set of agreements. And those agreements needed to be followed consistently so that the child know what is expected and what to expect. I could a lot more time on details and differing scenarios. Just know that handling the critical issues will help regulate the day to day.

Another thing biological parents need to consider as well is the gift of what I like to call the bonus parent. I can tell you from experience. Being a bonus dad is a precarious thing. One one hand I was expected to love and care for my exes children as if they were my own. This means providing not only financially, but emotionally as well. I was expected to make a holistic investment day in and day out. And I was happy to do that. On the other hand, there was also an inherent understanding that when there was a conflict of principles and beliefs, the reality that I was NOT the biological parent was surely pointed out. After stepping back and taking the ‘L’ in that episode, (and possibly looking like a second class parent in front of your bonus kids if they know you have a different opinion than mom) I was expected to pick up where I left off with the same level of devotion, without the same level of authority and credibility. The point is put some respect on the bonus mother/father’s name. Especially the one that’s willing to do it right.

So, when it comes to co-parenting in blended families, I said all that to say this to biological parents:

  • Be mature not petty! For whatever reason you broke up, you broke up. Fighting old battles is only going to hurt your children. That extra stress ain’t good for you either!
  • Sit down and come to an agreement to co-parent. Be realistic as far as schedules, incomes and so forth. But be flexible too! If things need to change or an adjustment needs to be made, have another meeting.
  • The incoming parent is not irrelevant. A blended family is just that. This new person is now a part of your family whether you like it or not. Further, they are providing a service to be there when you cannot. Don’t badmouth or put them down in front of the child. It won’t hurt for all four adults to be in on the agreements. This isn’t easy depending on history, personalities, and if there was some infidelity involving the breakup that led to one being a couple in the first place. I get it. Suck it up! This is a package deal. You don’t have to like them to set up a plan for your child/children.
  • Whatever roles you agreed the co-parent will have, make sure the child is aware and live by it. Don’t allow children to play you from the middle.
  • Finally, don’t bad mouth the other parent, bonus parent either. If your child is of age and an uncomfortable truth needs to be shared, do so without being an asshole about it. Keep it factual and not personal.

New Bonus Parent:

  • Humble yourself. Don’t go sticking your chest out trying to flex and claim territory. You already got the person you want to be with. Co-parenting is not about your ego. It’s an honorable service.
  • Back your partner without letting your partner become unreasonable. Be the mind of logic and principle when things get tough between biological parents. Listen, understand, and empathize. But if you need to offer some calmness and a reasonable alternative point of view, be courageous enough to offer it. You are not there to just signify, but to bring value.
  • Remember what I said about you not being the biological. You may be doing more than the biological. The biological may suck! As a matter of fact, you aren’t even broken in yet till that kid screams at you, “You ain’t my daddy/momma!” When you know you are right, hold your ground and ride out the process. If you hold fast and your partner and you stick together the child will benefit and appreciate it later. Know that more than likely, you may never get the due you deserve. Learn to praise yourself.

This co-parenting thing ain’t for children, punks and bitches. You have to be fully adult, self-aware and well grounded to succeed as co-parents.

 

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Behold! The Power of the Pussy

There are many disadvantages to being a woman in this culture.  Historically they have had to fight for their rights to be respected and cherished by the men who rule the world around them.  Still today they make less on the dollar than males.  They face discrimination and often lack the full respect they deserve in this society.  Tradition, religion, and just plain ole ignorance have slowed the progress of the woman’s ability to fully shine and blossom in all the ways she can.  When she’s ultra feminine she can be mistaken for soft thus downplaying her true inner strength.  When she speaks her mind she’s considered a bitch or a barracuda.  If she’s really about her business some call her a dike.  But God gave the woman the ultimate weapon to assure that she will be listened to and heard at some point in this game of life.  And when mastered properly, it’s a tool fitting to be called God’s Great Equalizer.  And what is this great equalizer? Behold the Power of the Pussy!

Now before your proverbial panties (pun intended for both male and females) get into a bunch – check out the facts and listen up!  When we observe the pervasive cultures worldwide, men do rule the world.  They have founded cities, started nations, ruled kingdoms and conquered civilizations.  They have created inventions that have changed the world many times.  They have created organizations and established even the name of the street you live on.

And now what is there to all of man’s great innovations and accomplishments? It’s vanity and all for nothing unless he has with him the experience that rivals no other.  For man wants to – needs to – have the right woman to share his dreams – to help him manifest his visions – and to find that place of comfort that nothing else can give on the planet.  No amount of money, no amount of power, can give the man a feeling that he has in the comfort of the pussy that embraces him like he is the king of the world.

Ice-T put it this way….

Power – its starts with P like Pussy
She knows she’s got it
She doesn’t worry does she?
Spending your cash – leaving you in the trash
While your little head’s thinking – they’re gone in a dash
They got it – know it – that’s why they show it
The power sex – if man could overthrow it he’d be king in a day
No way – we get rich, hard, give it away.   -Power 1988

Now – when I say pussy, I am not talking about merely sex.  I am talking about the femininity of a woman – The softness of her voice and the touch of her hands – Because of the pussy she has the ability to approve or disapprove whatever the man is working on.  And let me tell you – when your pussy is happy – the whole house is happy.  When it’s not – let’s just say there is no good night’s sleep.  A man can accomplish great things.  And his boys and comrades can applaud with great approval.  But if his woman, the one that has the pussy does not approve… it may as well be dead.

The right woman has the ability to make a man believe in himself.  Her influence can make him a king or a pauper.  That is the power of the pussy.  You see it’s not just a physical thing.  It’s totally spiritual as well.  When a man enters a woman – and he respects the place that she allows him to dwell – he’s lost in the realm of fantasy that is his greatest reality.  Remember he was born from a pussy.  And like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz he just wants to go home. The roles are just reversed.  Instead of coming out of one he wants to enter one.  And instead of the pains of birth he gives her (his new momma) the pleasure of the rod.  And he does so at great pleasure until he releases himself totally into the places that are so private and intimate that it bonds him to her soul.  After that there is nothing left to give.  And when she comforts him, lets him know that he is approved and that everything is alright – you could kill him and he would die with a smile on his face.

Check the math and the history – even biblically.  David had a man killed to get the one that satisfied him the most.  Sampson gave up the source of his strength to a woman he knew was trying to get him killed.  And yet what was it about Delilah that caused him to tell her how he could be defeated anyway. It wasn’t merely the physical pussy – it was the mental and spiritual pussy.  She understood him – studied him – mastered him.  See if you relegate the pussy to mere physical characteristics you’ll miss the boat.  The pussy is the all encompassing aura of a woman, her total womanhood and her ability to communicate to her man as only she can.  Once she has him – she’s got him. Because only the comfort of her welcoming spirit and body can satisfy his soul.

The worst thing that can happen to a man – is to get caught up in the wrong pussy!  That’s a whole nother story!

And so it goes – If he buys a nice car he doesn’t really do it for himself.  It’s for a woman.  A nice house is to put the woman in.  Someone asked Eleanor Roosevelt what her life would be like had she not married Teddy.  She said she would still be first lady – because whomever she married would have been the president.  In other words – she’s saying that her pussy is king making material.  And with her influence any man she commits to will reach his maximum potential.  It’s automatic.

According to Genesis, God created man in His own image and in His likeness. But ever since, no man can be born except through the womb of a woman.  She is the passageway to the earth.  And there you have it – God’s great equalizer! Man may rule the world.  But a woman who understands the power of her pussy – will never lack any good thing.

Radical Acceptance, Desire, Suffering, And the Ways of the Universe

As a child I had a great sense of fairness in my mind in the way I thought things worked in the world.  For one I was a good hearted kid.  I liked people and found comfort and strength in relationships.  I was also raised in church.  From the pulpit things always seem to turn out right for God’s people by the end of any given sermon.  The preacher never hooped and hollered a sad ending when climaxing the point of his message.  Then there was Hollywood.  In movies and television, the good guys always won at the end.  Justice was always served.  I recall the first time I saw the good guys ‘lose’ and a bad guy get away was in an episode of “Hill Street Blues.”  Though I don’t recall the exact details I do remember feeling jarred emotionally with a sense of loss and injustice.  Nowadays that’s pretty common for TV.  Seasons 1-5 of “The Wire” crystallized the realities of life more than any other show in television history.

For me there has always maintained this inner struggle between right and wrong, truth and justice, fairness and hardships.  All of these factors mentioned above made muttering through life mentally and spiritually difficult many a day.  I struggled with questions like why do people hurt others on purpose?  Why do good things happen to bad people?  Why do bad things happen to the good people?  Why would an elected official do evil things to the people he/she serves?  Why would a friend betray you or someone hurt you if you gave them your all?  All my life I’ve heard that doing the right things, working hard and treating people justly will bring good fortune and a good life.  I’m almost 45 years old now and through the study of history, events from around the world and life in general, it feels as if I’ve seen it all in some form or another.  And all that I’ve seen show that life is way more complicated than this.

The above mentioned formula didn’t seem to work true to life.  And most of my internal struggles have been an attempt to decipher the ways of how I fit in within the schemes of constant contradictions and suffering through good intentions.

It was my counselor and life coach Mrs. Francis Thomas (Miss Francis I call her) who first introduced to me the concept of ‘radical acceptance.’ Sitting in her office she forced me to consider ‘Letting go of fighting reality and accept your situation for what it is.’  Sounds simple doesn’t it?  Folks have a term for it nowadays.  “It is what it is.”  How many times have we heard that one?  Taking a closer look however, the concept of truly accepting things as they are is not natural to our culture.  There is and always has been a push and pull to try to influence or change reality.  And why not?  That what this country has been since immigration.  People came to this land to be what they wanted and live in a fashion empowered by personal ambition.  Those causes weren’t altogether pure either in that often living a chosen life rarely included allowing others to do the same.  And so there was and is conflict for the remaining up and comers, even till this day.  (See Colonization, Slavery, The fight for Civil Rights and Immigration)

And so we live, we love, we compete, and we pursue a vision not for what we accept but for that which we desire personally, vocationally, culturally, and institutionally.

This is our living.

And yet the midst of pursuits in happiness there is always a fly in the ointment of the oil that flows through what we call life.  Suffering.

No matter what we do, suffering seems to be inevitable.  I’ve tried to minimize mine as much as possible by following the golden rules.  But that’s too simple in the scheme of things.  So I sought knowledge.  How can I eliminate or reduce suffering?

Buddhist teaching reveals that the very cause of suffering is the attachment to ‘desire’ or craving.  The Second Noble Truth for instance include:

The Cause of Suffering– samudaya
The principle cause of suffering is the attachment to “desire” or “craving” (tanha). Both desire to have (wanting) and desire not to have (aversion).
1. Desire for sense-pleasures–kama-tanha
The desire for sense pleasures manifests itself as wanting to have pleasant experiences: the taste of good food, pleasant sexual experiences, delightful music.
2. Desire to become–bhava-tanha
The desire to become is the ambition that comes with wanting attaiments or recognition or fame. It is the craving to “be a somebody”.
3. Desire to get rid of–vibhava-tanha
The desire to get rid of the unpleasant experiences in life: unpleasant sensations, anger, fear, jealousy.
The clinging to desire comes from our experience that short-term satisfaction comes from following desire. We ignore the fact that satisfying our desires doesn’t bring an end to them.

Part of the Third Noble Truth simply says:

The end of suffering is non-attachment, or letting go of desire or craving.

In my spirit I totally understood and resonated with the substance of these words.  I sensed a light or a glimmer of hidden wisdom that I had never seen.  This was especially enlightening because by nature I am a doer, a man of action.  If I want something to be a certain way, I did what I could to make it happen.  I used action in an attempt to gain the reaction I desired. (Good deeds, hard work etc.) The thought of letting go of desire seemed to be a game changer.  A freeing experience if you will.  I started the process of embracing this concept slowly in my life.

Reading this may give the impression that by letting go of desire we are to just stand pat and allow whatever happens to happen in our lives.  That brings me to another teaching form Miss Francis.  “A life or inner peace will not consist of embracing an all or nothing paradigm.”

My journey of living is a continuous evolution of learning that the colours of life are rarely black and white, but shades of varying schemes that paint the world.  If there are no desires, there is no progress.  I believe we were created and the Universe calls for us to make contributions towards giving and receiving from the earth, as well as it’s inhabitants.  We can’t make a difference without having a ‘desire’ for something better.  Our humanity provides that we are creatures with feelings and emotions, as well as creativity and logic.  We not only want to survive, but thrive in serving and fulfilling a purpose all the while enjoying pleasure and senses of accomplishment.  The key is balancing all of life’s journey with a certain brevity and perspective.

In the bible Paul deals with this dichotomy.

In Philippians 3:14 he says he continues to press toward the mark of the high calling of God in Jesus Christ.

In Philippians 4:11 he says he’s learned to be content with whatever state he’s in.

Ecclesiastes 3 goes in great detail identifying the cycles of seasons and change in our existence.

The reality is that as long as we are living there will always be this struggle in understanding the push and pull of life; What to try to change and what to accept, how to love in the midst of hurt, pain, or rejection; Whether we are indeed living in a season or if it’s within our power to change the climate.

For in our flawed sense of justice through our blurred lenses the wicked do often prosper, good is not always rewarded, the good die young, love is not always returned gracefully.  Neither the good nor the bad are always what they seem.  And even the very best of us are often guilty of doing to others that which hurt us the most.

I submit that walking in the balance of universal harmony in the midst of it’s seemingly continuous contradictions is impossible for the natural life.  Indeed it requires a supernatural experience and existence which must be practiced if not perfected.

We should desire to be significant though not necessarily popular.  (Though being significant can bring fame.) By focusing on the process of living as well as the intent and ramifications of our actions rather than the results, in the end, I believe the Universe will balance and pay, and regulate accordingly.

And if not,… well then hey, it is what it is.

Of Parenting, Fatherhood and Grace

It was June 5, 2010.  My son Christian had just graduated from East Paulding High School in Dallas, Georgia.  The ceremony, held outdoors at the athletic field was hot, crowded and awesome.  It seemed like more than a thousand graduates.  Caps and gowns covered nearly the entire field.

 Soon after the festivities, I told my son Alex (one year younger than the older graduate), “Just think, this will be you next year.  And you will be wearing the white robe and sitting in the front where the honor students sit.”  Alex said, “Well dad I don’t know about that.”  I assured him that there would be no doubt. 

 Alex is my fourth of 5th biological children.  And it seemed as each one began to grow up, I became a better father and a better teacher.  I don’t know if I helped my two elder daughters at school much at all, other than to offer encouragement and help with a homework assignment or three.  Not that I wasn’t interested.  I went to parent teacher conferences, showed up at whatever activity they were doing, and followed up on all of their progress.  They were motivated young women in regards to their primary education. 

 Charelle

 Charelle, for instance, was always a “Five-Tool” type of player. (To borrow a sports analogy)  She was excellent in math, science, english, reading, art; you name it.  I recall checking on her progress with her teachers in high school.  One teacher in particular looked at me and said, “You’re Charelle’s father right?  Don’t bother wasting your time.  Nothing I can tell you about this girl.  She’s got it!”  In addition, she was tremendously popular too; something I never was in any level of schooling.

Chrystal, talented in her own right, I recall being especially great at art.  My biggest challenge with her was fighting over what items she created that I could keep for myself after the art exhibits.  I wanted them all.  She was also popular and was able to hang with literally any crowd and thrive.  Something I also could not do at her age.

Back to Christian, he was always a decent student.  But he seemed to thrive more on the creative.  He could get an A in any given class if he wanted to; if he was interested enough.  What was really impressive about the time of his graduation is that his journey was featured in a local newspaper detailing what it took for him to graduate overcoming many obstacles.  Oh and did I mention, he too was very popular among peers.

 Chrystal

By the time I had any clue of what I was doing to help with my kid’s education; since Charelle and Chrystal were already accomplished, my focus was on Alex and Christian during their latter school years.  While I wasn’t sharpest knife in the drawer and half of the work they did was way past my expertise, I focused on what I was good at.  Simplifying the process and helping them to see the big picture of life lessons and personal accountability.  These are what I would offer them: 

  • By the end of the first week of school, you should know exactly what it takes to get an A out of each class you take.  If you don’t know by the end of the first week, ask.

  • I honestly could give a damn about whether you make an A or a D.  The issue is to never ever cheat yourself.  Never be lazy or content.  If you got an A only because of your ability but did not maximize your efforts in the class, it doesn’t do anything for you in the long run.  But if you got a D and worked your ass off, you can be proud of it.  Only YOU know the difference.  And that’s the person who counts.  Just be excellent and let the results speak for themselves.  This is what being a leader and not a follower is all about.  Be a leader!

  • Some teachers are great, and some suck.  Those that suck still have the pen that you will be graded with.  That grade will follow you.  So you must learn to make the best of those classes as well, if for no other reason than to get your grade and get the hell out.  Teachers are like bosses and co-workers.  Even with the ones that suck, you still have to learn to work with them to be successful in life.

Christian

Thus were the abiding principals I would hammer home regardless of the situation or circumstance.  Every year we would have long conversations revolving around these somehow. I tried to capture their imaginations.  I wanted my sons to envision themselves as adult men in life, not just boys in school.  Most times I couldn’t tell what they thought of it.  And I didn’t spend too much time wondering.  I felt I did my job and gave them what I had.  Ultimately they had to decide for themselves.

Then it happened on May 30th 2011.  I’m back at East Paulding for Alex’s graduation.  The ceremony had just wrapped up. There were several hundred students, parents and family members walking on the field taking pictures and celebrating.  Alex seemed as pleased as I was to soak up this moment.  Then he pulled me to the side and offered this to old dad. 

“Hey!  Remember what you told me last year?  You said that I was going to wear the white robe, sit in the front and be an honors graduate.” 

“Yes I do remember,” I told him.

“You also said no matter what you do, always be excellent. I can’t believe I graduated with honors.  It was hard work man.  But I did.  I always listened to you, though I know most years I didn’t act like it.” 

We both laughed.

That moment for me was one of significance because it dawned on me not only how important it is for fathers to be in their children’s lives, but how important I was to my children.  That through all of the struggles, mistakes, and second guessing I’ve done as a man and a father, my presence and support in my children’s lives makes a difference.  Then I wondered what would have happened if I had not been there.  What if I never taught my sons to be leaders and not followers?  Wow, my job has been important.

I have four adult children from ages 18-24 and they are all in college.  I give them way more credit for making their own breaks and striving for their own goals than anything I’ve done for them.  I give credit to their mothers who were there day in and day out.  I’m very proud of them all.  With each of them as well as the ones still coming up, my focus is always to train them to be adults on their own making their own contributions.  I consider myself very blessed to be a part of their lives and being able to witness their transformations.

Alex

Suicide, Is It Ever a Viable Option?

Suicide:  Let’s talk about it.  I know someone who recently had a suicide in their family.  As the family started to put the pieces together, they learned that the young man had elaborately planned his demise.  This in spite of the fact that his secret was revealed prior to the day of decision and help was offered. 

So I have a few questions as it relates to this:

Is suicide ever a viable option for the hopeless?   What would you say to someone who told you he/she was contemplating suicide?  Would you try to convince them not to go through it?  If so what would you say?  Would you use bible scriptures or call the authorities? 

Have you ever thought about or considered suicide?  I am not ashamed to admit that I’ve been there.  I have strongly considered it before and planned it as well.  I consider it a miracle that I am here today. 

Have you ever thought about it or planned it?  Will you share?

From what I see, the stories of these kids who have killed themselves because of bullying have been sensationalized.  But several folks young and old end their lives daily and we hear nothing of it.

 Suicide is real and it’s here in a serious way.  So let’s talk about it!

Daddy, Daughter, and Transitions

I’ve always looked forward to my children being adults.  That’s what I train them for.  In everything I do I do it with the purpose of seeing them be free and successful as adults. 

I also look forward to relating to them as adults.  Sharing secrets and grown folk talk.  Respecting them for being adults while still bonding with them on this new level.

For the first time such the occasion happened over the weekend.  My daughter and I got to hang out as adults.  And it was beautiful.

I have so much respect for her as she is extremely both mature and free.  A wife and a mother, she is so far ahead of where I was at her age.   She is wise and sure about herself in ways that amaze me.

Through this transition in our relationship I am also understanding a new how much she loves me and how protective she has always been of me.  What a blessing she is.  I tell you what:  All of my children are so special and they each hold their own special places within my soul.  The experience I had with her last night and the transition to the next level of our relationship is truly something every parent should be able to experience.

(Pictured: me and Chrystal)

Kingmakers

 

Every man has a path to take.  And within that path is the journey that he has set before him.  I believe that we all have a certain destiny/destination within us though sometimes its hard to figure out.  Of course all men have both their similarities and differences as well.  We are motived by different things.  For some of us its money.  For others its pride, and for others even love for the purpose itself. 

Along that path a man gets help from variou sources.  You see there is no such thing as a self-made man.  It just doesn’t work that way.  I was laid off of a position I held for 11 years and during a class where they taught us how to get a leg back up in the job market I learned that 85% of all jobs filled in America are because of word of mouth.  That means that no matter how ‘qualified’ one is, the likelihood that he will get that position solely based on his resume’, experience and interview skills, unless he knew someone who could influence the person making the decision hire, out of say 100 applicants, he only had a 15% chance of getting the job.  This is just one example. 

Even in starting a business people have to favor you in lending advice and or capital.  Perhaps you catch just the right deal on that building or leasing plan.  Something has to happen when the universe gets behind you to push a successful vibe your way.

There is another element that I would like to talk about when it comes to the success of a man; his inner circle – specifically the woman in his life.

In today’s society there is often more of a competitive spirit among couples than there is unity.  Instead of having a cohesive unit where vision is shared and built upon together, there is a push/pull of egos for power and influence.  I believe there are many reasons for this.  Most of them have to do with our own insecurities or trying to make a person do something that he/she may not be ready for.  For example, a man can’t convince a woman to stand by him and support his vision if she has no desire to support him.  And a woman can’t convince a man to have a vision if he is not motivated to have one.

I heard a story years ago where a reporter asked a former first lady what would have happened if she had married another man she had been with previously.  Her answer was that the previous guy would have been president instead of the then current president.  Why is that?  Because she was a kingmaker.  In other words, whoever she married was going be president, or great.   Because it was something about her love and motivation, her ability to touch her man in the secret places where his greatness lie dormant or in seed form and bring his greatness out.

Some women are just the opposite.  Instead of king making they’d rather destroy the potential in their man because of fear or insecurity.  They spend their time putting him down or crushing his spirit because they are afraid that if he were to reach his potential and be great he may leave her behind.

A kingmaker is not insecure in her man’s potential of success.  In fact, she demands it.  She will not settle for less than for the greatness she sees in his spirit; or the thing she recognizes as his gift to the world.  She will not be fearful of the consequences, possible popularity or notoriety that are the fruits of success.  For she feels it’s more important for him to be empowered to make the mark and the difference he should for his time and dispensation on the earth.  (Even if it adversely affects her)

A kingmakers reward is the king.  She sees purpose and destiny first.  She sees the calling of God and the importance of making an impact on society that is needed.   The people who need to be touched and lives that need to be changed. 

And if the king is smart, once he reaches the level of his greatness he will not forget from where he came. Not only will he be humble in the midst of the blessings surrounding his gifts in expression he will treasure those who helped him to get there…. especially his kingmaker.  He will fully understand and appreciate his kingmaker cause she believed in him and encouraged him when no one else did.  When everyone else questioned his worth, value and intentions.  She was the one who believed and remained faithful to the vision he didn’t even know he had yet.  She will be the one still there once the mission is completed or if the opportunity to present those gifts are taken away.

Some men like myself have lots of potential.  I have gifts to give to people and blessings to share.  I do that now mostly everyday.  But there is something greater ahead.  A greater level of influence.  And I admit that I am learning to accept and love myself more and more all the time as it relates to these gifts.  Getting therapy has helped a lot and I am seeing more and more my potential.  Equally true is that I would like to thank my kingmaker.  The one who demands that I get the help and assistance I need to be the best I can be.  The one who believes in me even when I am not sure of myself.  The one who always encourages me in the midst of my greatest challenges.

To her I would say, “Thank you for believing.  Thank you for encouraging.  Thank you for listening without judgment.  Thank you for pushing in all the right directions.  Thank you for demanding that I be great!”