Category: Ramblings


Below is information from Forbes.com regarding the recent lawsuit against Navient.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2017/01/20/navient/#5a386df6c394

https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2017/01/24/navient-student-loan-servicer/#6d457e81468d

https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2017/01/27/navient-student-loan-questions/#5cb5cc855f60

https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2017/03/17/student-loans-navient-defaults/#20d62dc4684d

Remember interest rates may go up so settling any student loan debt over $30k may be a viable option.

 

Chakra Tarot Spread

I did the chakra spread today, but with tarot cards. I’m not that good at tarot just yet, but I’ll type what I think it means. Here’s a link to the article that explains what every position means. If an “R” is next to a card then it means reversed.

Chakra Card Spread

  • Root-Empress, 10 of Wands R, Death R-I have what it takes to succeed, but through sacrifice can I only start over.
  • Sacral- 6 of cups R, 3 of wands R, Ace of cups R-I am realizing what I want if I open up and not let myself down.
  • Solar-9 of cups, Devil R, King of Pentacles-I am making the best out of my situation that’ll pay off later if I resist temptation.
  • Heart-8 of pentacles, Temperance, Emperor-Keeping my emotions in check will profit from the work I’ve done to grow.
  • Throat-5 of pentacles, 7 of cups, 2 of pentacles R-Clear communication will allow me to not have to juggle resources anymore.
  • 3rd eye- Strength, Lovers, 6 of wands R-I know who I am, but I need to learn how to love myself to gain true freedom.
  • Crown- Page of pentacles R, 8 of wands R, 4 of wands-I am letting the Diving know my needs, but I need to slow down to nurture myself.

 

Again I am not an expert so if you see these cards communicate a different message then please comment below. I posted this to help myself learn more.

Chakra Card Spread

I was googling chakra spreads to use with my tarot and oracle cards, but I decided to come up with my own. Each position represents the 7 chakras: Root, Sacral, Solar Plexus, Heart, Throat, Third eye, and Crown, but it includes 21 cards in total. Cards 1-7 represent the current state of your chakra. Cards 8-14 represents what type of work that chakra needs. Cards 15-21 represents what you are good at or your tendency. Attached are pictures I did to demonstrate. I used playing cards because I’m still learning tarot cards, and playing cards make more sense to me. I simplified the meaning of each card from Cards of life. Excuse the photo quality, I need a new phone.

0405171321

These are my 1-7 cards; root-crown chakra.

0405171322

These are my 8-14 cards.

0405171332

These are my 15-21 cards.

Here’s a breakdown or simplified explanation

  1. Root Chakra: J of hearts (selfless love), 10 of spades (accomplishment in work), and 7 of hearts (spiritual love). I am grounded in selfless need, need to work on feeling accomplished in my work, and I am good at spiritual love.
  2. Sacral Chakra: 6 of hearts (responsible love), 8 of clubs (ambition and mental power), 4 of clubs (structural mind). I take pleasure in responsible love (read sex). I need to work on my ambitions. My identity is partly defined by having a structural mind.
  3. Solar Plexus: 2 of spades (union in work), 8 of diamonds (financial power), 10 of diamonds (financial accomplishment). I currently have the ability to take control of my work life. I need to get my finances straight. I also know how to obtain financial accomplishment.
  4. Heart Chakra: 5 of hearts (restless love), 5 of spades (adventurer), 9 of hearts (universal love). I am restless due to past hurtful experiences. I need to open myself to more adventures. I’m good at seeing the good in a lot of things.
  5. Throat Chakra: 8 of spades (work in power), 4 of diamonds (financial foundation), 6 of spades (responsible lifestyle). I understand the power of my words, need to use my words to attract or manifest money, and I am responsible with my words.
  6. 3rd Eye: 2 of hearts (union in love), 9 of diamonds (universal values), 7 of diamonds (spiritual values). I feel connected to my 3rd eye. I need to work on expanding it, and I am good at identifying my spiritual values.
  7. Crown Chakra: 2 of diamonds (union in values), 8 of hearts (social power), Ace of clubs (ambition or mystery). My consciousness if strong. I need to work on my consciousness when it comes to others, and I’m good at being mysterious.

 

In conclusion, I read those cards that way because I know me. If I were reading them for someone else then it’d be more detailed. I’ve noticed that it is mostly diamonds which translates to pentacles in tarot and hearts with translates to cups. In my waking life I do need to work on my material manifestations and figuring out what I want emotionally. Have fun with this spread. It can be used for many types of cards.

Sometimes I wish that I wasn’t an introvert. It’s isolating at times. I wish that I were that person who could walk into a crowded room and interact without having to feel it out 1st. I’m the one at work who sits towards the exit in a conference room just in case. It makes me feel safe. I wish that people would understand that, “Why are you quiet” is an offensive question. I don’t ask people why they won’t shut up. I have the ability to tune people out.
Sometimes being a free spirit is a burden too. It’s hard to follow the crowd when you don’t want to, and that’s one of the easiest ways to be left out. I like my freedom and individuality, but it makes jobs that require a lot of team work and recognition difficult. People don’t really understand being a free spirit because we are allegedly naturally social animals. People also think being a free spirit means promiscuity. I have sex maybe once a year. These two personality traits should come with a disclaimer. What that disclaimer would be, I’ll figure out someday.

Etsy

https://www.etsy.com/shop/HandmadeByBre?ref=hdr_shop_menu

new items added periodically check on my listings

6 Inch Women’s Anthem

Since Beyonce dropped Lemonade back in April 2016, “6 Inch” featuring The Weeknd has been the song that stood out to me. Immediately I realized the song is about a strong woman. Lately I’ve been listening to it in a different way. It feels like it has more meaning. I watched the video, and this is what I noticed.

Throughout the video, Beyonce is riding through the streets with a red light glowing. I’m assuming it’s the red light district of a city. There is nothing but men walking through the streets. It made me think of masculine sensuality. Then there is another part where Beyonce is standing in a dark room with women surrounding her but sitting on couches. Beyonce is holding a red light bulb on a cord and twirling it around her head as if she is  casting a circle of protection with a coven. She mentions “your greatest fears”. This to me seems like she is acknowledging the strength of women when we gather in numbers.

Another element that stuck out to me is a red cross that flashes throughout the video. Crosses symbolizes rebirth. The word “loss” flashes for half a second before the verse that she sings. The verse that she sings is accompanied by Beyonce dancing on a stage, but she seems to be in a glass box symbolizing being trapped.

Towards the end when “stars in her eyes” starts you see Beyonce laying in bed with a mirror above her. Beyonce is staring visually distressed in the mirror before curling in a fetal position. You can tell that something has been bothering her. In another clip a hallway with a door and small window with a triangle over the door catches fire. Fire can be a symbol of purification and destruction. To me this symbolizes a woman destroying something to rebuild it. Beyonce is seen walking in this hallway in the white outfit that she wore in the bed so maybe this is her purification. A cross also catches on fire.

At the end of the song, Beyonce says “You know I make you feel. You’ll always come back to me” before “come back” echoes. At the end of the video, she is standing in front of women and fire. The words of the entire song sounds like she could be singing about a stripper which is clever because many people think stripping is degrading. What they don’t realize is how powerful it makes some women feel. The “come back to me” at the end reminds women that we can take back our power or other things that have been loss. I used to think “6 Inch” was about men, but I see now that it is really a women’s empowerment song.

Book Excerpts

In order to send some traffic to my new ebook, I decided to give previews of them. This is from the 1st part of Handcuffs. The link to my book is available here. I hope you enjoy this so far. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M31CZA2

Beso isn’t your ordinary prostitute looking for a few tricks to pay her bills. This is simply for the thrill. See by day she is a detective at her Sheriff’s Office and spends her nights and weekends fulfilling the fantasies of others. She’s 5’8″ , 180 pounds, and 25 years old with curves that’ll make the Amazon River jealous. Her honey, caramel skin reflects her African American and Creek Indian heritage. Her chocolate brown curls reach out to the sky, and her light brown eyes reflects the sun’s rays. She goes by Beso Alma at night and Alise Brown by day. She has a Bachelor’s and Master’s of Science in Criminal Justice, a resume that includes political lobbying, and is one of the youngest detectives in the state. She started out as a trooper with the highway patrol straight out of undergrad at the age of 21. Her Master’s was completed online during her off time. She has helped prosecute the top drug traffickers by strategically performing her traffic stops at high traffic areas such as truck stops, rest areas, and welcome stations. This is also how she ended up in prostitution.
One afternoon after a routine stop and truck inspection she caught the eye of a Fortune 500 CEO driving the finest Porsche Cayenne. It was a cobalt blue with chrome trim and all black leather interior. See this CEO had pulled over to the rest area to rest for a while. He had been driving for 5 hours, and needed a break. Little did he know he’d be breaking off this young trooper sometime in the future. “That’s a nice car you’re driving. I don’t know much about cars, but I know a nice one when I see one,” Mrs. Brown said.
“Thank you”, Mr. Colt chuckled, “Am I in trouble or are you just complimenting my vehicle?”.
Mrs. Brown said, “It’s just a compliment. It’s a nice car, and blue is my favorite color”. Somehow this conversation about his car turned into a 30 minute conversation about life. She handed him her business card and pulled off to complete her routine patrol along Interstate 20. Later that night on her business cell phone she received the text, “You have a lovely smile, and I’d like to see you sometime when I’m in town for business. I can also make you my business if you play your cards right”. It was from Mr. Colt. She ignored the text that night, but the next morning she woke up to another text from him that said, “Good morning beautiful”.
She replied, “Good morning. I hope you have a nice day.”
Mr. Colt replied, “It’d be even nicer if I can see you”. Mrs. Brown was not the type to cheat on her husband, but she thought it’d be nothing wrong with having friends so she responded, “I’ll get back with you on that”. That night after Mrs. Brown got off work, she was informed by her husband that he had to work a double so he would not be home until well after midnight.
She made plans with Mr. Colt. One thing led to another and she ended up bent over his hotel bed receiving backshots while gripping the sheets as he struggled to keep his erection. They ended up having an orgasm together. He kissed her on his forehead and slipped $200 in her hand. “I can’t accept this. It’s illegal, and I don’t do this. I have a husband, and…”, Mrs. Brown said before being cut short.
Mr. Colt kissed her on her lips and said, “You earned it, and this will be our little secret.” She left that night and cried on her way home. She was crying because she felt like she betrayed her husband, and was crying because she enjoyed it. For one night she was able to do what she was taught not to do. She was able to be a bad girl, get paid for it, and feel powerful.

For Sale On Etsy

I want to expand my Etsy, but I can’t without sales. For a limited time, you can buy a candle and get 3 soaps for free. Shipping is free to anywere in the US. A link to my shop is below.

Thank You

https://www.etsy.com/shop/HandmadeByBre?ref=hdr

For 4 months I was a dispatcher for law enforcement. After seeing what all the job entails, I commend anyone who makes it a career. Five things that stuck out to me during this time was the emotional draining, public entitlement, wondering, lack of resources, and ignorance.

Working as emergency personnel is emotionally draining. As an adult, I know that there are a lot of people in the world hurting. Taking emergency calls amplifies the exposure to it. The people who have to go to those calls feel it too. I remember one call where a driver was driving on the interstate and said a driver on the side of the road seemed like they needed assistance. I dispatched an officer to that location. As soon as he arrive, I ran the tag to make sure the vehicle wasn’t reported stolen or the tag wasn’t switched which is protocol. After the officer walked up to the car, he immediately called over the radio for an ambulance to be sent to that location because the driver was unresponsive. Now over the radio, his voice was calm and authoritative, but a few minutes later he called dispatch over the phone. He said that he had been trying to revive the driver for 5 minutes, but they wouldn’t wake up. I could tell in his voice that he was fighting tears. It was hard to hear that because dispatchers are told to keep emotions in check no matter what is going on. A part of me wanted to comfort him even though he was miles away. All I could do was let him know that an ambulance was on the way. I don’t know what he saw that day, but it got to him. I say incidents like this is emotionally draining because while this may be going on, dispatchers are receiving calls about a family member who should have been home 3 hours ago and the news just reported an accident on their route involving a similar vehicle. So you have officers on the side of the road with unresponsive drivers while family members are on the phone crying not knowing that in 5 minutes a call will come in about a car that just overturned with a child who has been ejected and is laying in the middle of the street dead. So after sending the ambulance to the unresponsive driver and scanning numerous records to see if that person was in an accident, you have the news calling because they heard about the accident before you did, and they are on the way to the scene. Then an officer, his supervisor, and a public information officer gets dispatched to the scene. The latter two are there because the news decided they want all of the footage. I can go on and on about emotions involved in that position, but that’d take a long time.

The public think they are entitled to certain perks and services not available through law enforcement just because they “pay taxes”. Nevermind the fact that dispatchers also pay taxes. In fact government employees are taxed twice. They pay the usual federal withholding tax, medicare tax, etc., but many municipalities require as a condition of employment to contribute to a retirement system for the state or local government which in my case was 6% before taxes. Then if a person leaves that job and requests a refund per the IRS, 20% of that refund is taxed. So yes, the public does contribute to the salary of dispatchers, but dispatchers contribute to their own salaries as well. One situation in particular that I’m reminded of is when a male in his early 20s called because he had a flat tire but not a spare tire. The first question he asked was, “Don’t you all give out spare tires?” Of course the answer was no. About 10-15 minutes away was the officer who would respond to this call if he wanted a ride to the nearest exit. The man did not want a tow truck because he had no money. Because of the construction in the area as well as car accidents, it would take an officer 30 minutes to get to him. Of course he goes on a rant about paying taxes so he should get a tire for free for the BMW he was driving even though he had no money for a tow truck.

The wondering what happened after a call takes a toll on dispatchers. During the summer, there are a lot of calls about teenagers taking their parents’ cars without permission and getting into accidents. I remember one day, 4 kids did this. It was 3 teenagers who brought their younger sibling with them. Somehow the teenagers overturned the vehicle while driving causing all 4 kids to have to go to the hospital. Two of the 4 were hospitalized with serious injuries while the other 2 were released. I never heard about what happened to those kids after that, but I wonder how their parents dealt with the situation. I wonder if the other two are o.k. I wonder if the parents were able to get another vehicle. I also wonder what happens to those who drive their car 50 feet off the interstate, but escape the crash with only minor injuries. I wonder how the family is doing whose loved ones were burned in their car after an accident or the woman who had a standoff with police while threatening suicide. It seems like dispatchers get a lot of unfinished stories that there is not way to follow up on.

Law enforcement do not receive a lot of necessary resources. Someone who works 10 hour days with 6-8 hours of overtime should not have to beg for new uniforms or an air conditioner that works in 100 degree F weather. There is no reason that their vehicles should not be maintained better as well as the equipment inside. The technology in their cars are not always what it should be so officers may have to drive miles to get a signal to upload reports or use a cell phone to call dispatch to get a tow truck. I know that it is not a job of luxury. I know that they are out there to save lives, but those who make the budgets got to take care of officers better. Everyone in legislation who has not been in law enforcement need to do a ride along to see what’s going on. When cops don’t have the resources needed, the public also suffers.

Lastly, ignorance is bliss. Before I dispatched, I could get on the interstate or highways and drive without feeling uncomfortable. Now after hearing the 50 ways that people manage to get into car accidents, i am not so comfortable anymore. The speed limit on the interstate is 70mph. How fast are you going that you rear end 18 wheelers? Why are you driving that close to one in the first place? How distracted are you that you fly into a tree? I’m not talking about going heard first into the trunk of a tree. I’m talking about the vehicle going airborne and landing in the branches like a nest. Thankfully these scenarios are not usually fatal, but it’d make me very nervous to see a car fly off the interstate. I really did not want to know some of the things that go on.

In conclusion, these are some things I felt, observed, and questioned. So much more could be written, but it would take forever. Dispatchers are truly unsung heroes, and I appreciate all that they do.

Seasonal Jobs

When most people think about a seasonal job, jobs that are only available during the summer months or the holidays may come to mind. This is not what I am thinking about. On Friday, September 30, 2016 I received some news regarding my position with the company. Due to the review from the client I had been working with, I had to find another position within the company. This did not surprise me nor discourage me because it made me think about my past jobs. I will like to call this job as well as the ones before it “seasonal” because they have all served a purpose in their season.
For about a year and a half, I was a sales associate for a major retailer. My main duties included folding clothes, answering phones, and customer service. During this time I had the privilege with working with a very encouraging manager who actually planted the seed for my promotion within the company. I honestly don’t know why I had not thought about it. She told me that I need to be trying to get into Asset Protection since that’s what my degree is in so that I can get that experience. It surprised me the way that she said it because I thought she was going to snatch a knot on me. You know that look your mama gives you when you had better do what she just told you to do? That’s the look and tone she spoke to me in. I thought about what she said for a while and eventually applied to those positions when they became available. I ended up getting the promotion in the company and became exposed to much more than I thought I would.
During my time as Asset Protection with that company, I came in contact with a lot of interesting people. Most of the sheriff deputies who I regularly worked with became some of my favorite people. They seemed to treat the people that they work with like family. I got to experience what it was like to file charges against someone through depositions and subpoenas. You truly never know who pays attention to what you do because the magistrates commented on how well I worded  my narratives. I was just trying to explain what happened and why the charges were necessary. I was able to see how criminal trials work and other things. I also got to work with someone who made me remember what it’s like to naturally smile again. When I was little, I naturally smiled. Teachers would tell my mom that I smiled all day. As I got older I stopped doing it as much, but when I was around this person it came back out of me. I’ll let this person know one day what they did for me.
While I was a sales associate prior to that position, I interned with politicians during the week. Even though that internship was only during that legislative session, it taught me how politics really work. In undergrad I only took one political science class, but that class was nothing like the real world. The internship allowed me to meet someone who marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He told us about how he lived during the discrimination at the University in Alabama. Later on he said he eventually received his Doctorates degree and mentioned how his kids were lawyers. Growing up I wasn’t exposed to much Black history outside of the usual Rosa Parks, George Washington Carver, and Harlem Renaiissance stories that most schools teach so this made me more aware of Black history while encouraging me to try harder. One day I was able to speak with one of the security guards and he realized that 30 years prior to that internship he was in Vietnam with my uncle. I gave him my uncle’s phone number, and they spoke for at least 30 minutes. When he came back into the area I was sitting while watching the Legislature session, I could see the tears in his eyes. At that moment I was proud that I could help two war buddies reconnect. I was a mess during that hour drive home though.
After I left my Asset Protection job, I started dispatching for law enforcement so that I could get my foot in the door. I really didn’t want to apply for the job, and it took me a year to do so. My foolish rationale at the time was that I’ll stick around long enough until I can transfer into a forensic position. I didn’t last long enough for that to happen. During this time one of my supervisors mentioned that it was free to go to the Department of Archives and research your genealogy. Not only did I take advantage of this, but I found out a lot. One day I went to the archives and looked around at the exhibits. Even though most of the history was based on Alabama history, it also revealed the nation in different time periods. When I was finally able to go to the research room I found out that I’m the descendant of slaves and slave owners. I found out that one of the slave owners that I am a descendant of used to pay for a teacher to educate his slaves. After his death, he left land and assets to his immediate family as well as the slaves who were his children. If I’m not mistaken his assets after the Civil War were about $500,000 worth. I tried to check an accurate online calculator and today what he left behind is equivalent to $12 million. His slave children used what he left behind to build a town, to build churches, and to start their own businesses. It made me realize that that’s probably why that side of my family are hustlers. I would have never known that information had I not taken that job as a dispatcher. The job didn’t work out, but it served its purpose. I was also able to see how much stress is involved when working in public service whether you are a first responder, dispatcher, or social worker. Dispatchers have a little bit of eveyone calling them. Literally.
We live in a culture where we are forced to find a career. Some people find one straight out of high school. Some people won’t find theirs until their 30s or 40s. Others may never find theirs, and that’s ok. I too have been in the position here I did not feel like going to work, but now I realize that those seasonal jobs served their purpose.