Where y’all at? — I ask, but I already know

I ask because from my West End Atlanta outdoor office (apartment patio) and while rush-walking my elderly, overweight dog through the gentrifying ‘hood, I see and hear a lot. I’ve seen your babies buying weed wrappers from grown-ass men. I’ve seen your teens riding electric scooters on major highways.

via @atlcouncil

But I already know because my baby just grew up (as if any of us are ever done growing) and is in the last of his teen years. …

Photo by Macky Mendenilla on Unsplash

I’ve been awarded the opportunity, through my numerous stints as a makeup artist, cocktail waitress, and bottle girl, to work in at least five Atlanta-area strip clubs over the past 10 years or so.

When I think about my current state of dating, a few things stick out (no pun intended) from those experiences: the music and the men. I believe they each play a role in how I view dating, relationships, and love today.

The women in the clubs have undoubtedly impacted me as well, but I will discuss them in an upcoming piece, Pu$$y for Profit v. …

I’m Sorry. Goodbye.

Photo by Houcine Ncib on Unsplash

You can take all the right next steps and still end up nowhere if you didn’t first forgive yourself…

I lamented over this title longer than usual. I wanted to address you directly, as before. I did not want to disrespect you, yet again, some might say. And, quite frankly, I didn’t know what to call him, your husband, at this juncture of our journey.

But, again, I won’t address you through him. Because this isn’t about him. This is about me, as a woman, like Barbara to Shirley, taking responsibility for… my share of some really bad behavior. …

On “Independence Day” —

@meaux_theemuse on Instagram (One of my favorite fellow Geminis and independent bad asses, Mo)

Happy Independence Day, Black Girl, Woman, Queen! How’s your patriotism hanging? You got on your red, white, and blue? Either way, I bet you look cute.

Well, I suspect you heard something in my tone, so let’s go ahead and address it; I’ve never been one for beating bushes. And also because there are always perceived additives to a black woman’s tone. Funny, she never attaches them herself.

First, please don’t get me wrong; I’m grateful, for America and whatnot, for independence and “rights,” for equal access to abundance, theoretically, at least.

I’m certainly not aiming to have my clitoris…

Confessions of a ghoster

Photo by Tertia van Rensburg on Unsplash

I almost ghosted my job yesterday (disappearing, without notice, into thin air, in lieu of actual resignation.) I’ve done it countless times before with jobs, relationships, strangers, blogs… I’m a serial ghoster. I’m not proud of it. And yesterday, as I crafted a wordy email (my second most common response to drama or confrontation after ghosting) explaining my decision to terminate our Independent Contractor Agreement, effective immediately, I thought, Why was I so close to just ignoring her indefinitely? Why do I ghost people?

I realized that it’s far more about me than them, the ghosted, and by sharing this…

Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash

MILFy or matronly, ho-ish or holy, divorced or never married, we ladies are all equally human and so occasionally, but to differing degrees (when we find a millijoule of energy not already directed at our kids or complicated lives,) hanker for some attention to our womanly physical and emotional needs.

Some believe that single parents should ignore those incarnate inclinations, devote all our focus to raising our children and put companionship and romance on the back burner until the kids are grown. And, to hint at part of the reason this in The Shadowwork Series, moms (especially single ones) are…

Introducing the Shadow Work Series

Photo by Tiko Giorgadze on Unsplash

It’s Monday. I’m less than 12 hours off a solo turn-around road trip to New Orleans to support my bestie and I’ve set alarms for 5:30 and 6 am. I rise with the latter and am already 30 minutes behind on my daily commitment to writing for an hour every day. …

Photo by Alex Holyoake on Unsplash

The reason it’s so incredibly excruciating to watch shows like This is Us and A Million Little Things, and the reason we can’t stop watching, all through our yearning and weeping, is because the longer we deny our heart’s desires, the more painful our impending death. It hurts to see the truth of our dreams reflected only in fantasy as our real lives fall so far beneath our best.

The stories these shows tell are certainly not of perfect people. These characters are saying, I am not in love with you anymore, I’m in love with someone else, I have…

Photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash

As Emily walks past several trash bags full of things to be driven to the recycling center, she sighs and makes a mental note to speak with her son, Noah. He’s an amazing young man, though, especially considering...

I’m so tired, she thinks, as she ascends the stairs toward her room. And I have so much to do today.

She picked up her laptop from the ugly and uncomfortable bean bag chair she’d been sitting in earlier. She’d almost finished formatting a book of poetry she’d been commissioned to edit. …

Photo by Caique Silva on Unsplash

Power, sexuality, fear, religion, and rape culture

When Harvey whoever and the by-now banged out prison booty formerly known as Bill Cosby first began their most recent (and perhaps steepest) rise to fame, and everyone was bravely(?) claiming, “me, too,” a friend and I were deliberating the rampant rape/ molestation/ sexual harassment charges in provocative and surely uncommon terms and phrases.

A bit later I was showing a home to a couple of strangers and somehow ended up on the same topic. Although, admittedly with them, I was more careful and conservative with my expressions. As part of an ongoing self-care practice, I don’t watch or read…

Donderlyn Cherelle

Practicing (Screen)Writer. Self-proclaimed self-esteem & self-care Guru. Gemini. Mom. Divine Feminine. Follow my self-care and rescue mission: @donderella.com

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