The other day hangin’ with the Retired Housewives of Baytown (RHOB), we were heading East for a day of “relaxation” ching ching style. $$. RHOB consists of my mama, Aunt Kat, Sue Ella and Ms. MJ- all housewives living their best retired lives. The weather for the last week had been full of rain, a sprinkle of sun then back to rain so we expected a bit of it all. What we didn’t expect, however, was panic, lightening, side-eyes from the passenger sides and the back-seat riders calling on Jesus. We loaded up the whip, Momz led us in a quick prayer and we headed down I-10. “And let us win, Lord!”, Sue Ella concluded with. She understood the assignment.

White-puffed clouds and the morning sunlight shined through the sunroof as we cruised. This weather was a much-needed break from all the heavy rain we’d been having. About 45 minutes in we were coming into a few dark skies and rain ahead. Light sprinkles turned into heavy rain and windshield wipers dancing back and forth making a squeaching sound. We knew it was coming but didn’t expect it so go from 2 to 10 so quickly. Out of nowhere the driver blurts out, “I CAN’T SEE!”. The passenger gave a slow side-eye, “the hell you mean you can’t see?”.

“I can’t seeeee” the driver said in a drawn out effect. Should we turn around and go back home?” as she looks at the passenger.

“No we aint’ going home. How the hell you pray and ask God to get us there safely then get worried when he come. You ain’t givin’ him a chance to work.Turn your defroster on, that’s what I do” Aunt Kat said from the passenger seat. “And watch this 18-wheeler over here to my right.”

Sue Ella and I looked nervously ahead from the back seat. Eyes glued from left to right between the 2 while silently praying for the storm to past and lowkey wondering if now is a good time to speak. The windshield wipers and gospel tunes from the radio seemed to be the only ones allowed to speak. Moments of silence passed as we drove another few miles of stormy rains. We hit a few puddles and passed 2 cars parked to the right with their emergency lights on. I looked to my right, Sue Ella’s eyes were glued at the storm ahead. In a calm tone, she gave the driver a few instructions as we slowly trucked through the last of the rain.

The wind-shield wipers slowed down as the rain decreased, the sun was shining again! We pulled in for a quick breakfast stop and a chance to breathe. Felt like we all needed a cig for a minute after going through that monsoon, but thankfully we made it safety and securely. I thought to myself, God reminds us in the smallest moments what trusting him looks like. Why we pray, meditate and stay in our spiritual bag. What going through our own storms look like, how we react, what it looks like to have faith at a time we can’t see our way to the end of the tunnel.

Outside of 9-5’ing, my joy and therapy through writing continues. And the book is coming along, with a few new added short stories. I’m finalizing a piece titled, ‘Women Through My Rearview’ highlighting the women in my village circle in a way I’d never done before. Writing it made me ask myself if I’ve shown enough appreciation to those women verbally, and the answer is no. Putting into a few pages the amazing-ness how watching them has helped shape me into the lady I am today. I’ll likely change the title 17 more times, but so far ‘Women In My Rearview’ is beautifully written! I shared it with my therapist last week, Ms. Lady was speechless!.. in a good way speechless. To see her reaction and hear her specific feedback as someone who’s never read any of my previous pieces was heartwarming. My pen game has grown since this time last year, and continues. It’s a relief finding your purpose and so exciting! Here’s a snippet:

Women In My Rearview

“From my point of view, a woman is a female over the age of 40. Any woman that’s past her 30’s and beyond the “lady” years but not quite at the elderly phase. My visual of women started from childhood as the leading ladies were my mama, Big Mama and 2 God-Mama’s. They all had unique upbringings but were your everyday women: Godly, held down a job, could cook a meal from scratch, cleaned and knew how to make a house a home. 3/4 had husbands but all the kids knew the women ran the house. If mama is happy, everybody in the house is happy! But if mama having a bad day or somebody got on her left nerve, proceed with caution! Then there is my biological mother and Grandmother, my 2 sisters, Aunt’s from both sides of the family, family friends and church members. Whether a single woman, married or widowed, I viewed women as being natural-born nurturers as one day I too would follow in their footsteps. I learned with my eyes, ears and a pen. I was a proud blessing to the family as they were to me. Watching them through the years showed me what togetherness looks like, untouchable love, perfect imperfections and most importantly, the power of a praying woman.” ….. to be continued.

As I was checking my email the other day, Facebook reminded me of upcoming birthday’s and it just so happened to be my Aunt Kat’s birthday. She’s straight-forward in a side-eye, loving, cussing Christian kinda way. A petty favorite that will read you DOWN and still keep you in her prayers. She’s truly one of a kind. Anywho, one of the things I appreciate about her is always remaining true to herself. The black lip liner and Vaseline around her lips is a classic. And lips were to perfection every time!

One Sunday evening we were leaving a pool tournament then I was heading back to the parentals before driving back to Nacogdoches the following morning. My guy at the time walked us to the car and he and I exchanged goodbyes as he proceeded to close the door. Aunt Kat gave us that look like, the hell you AIN’T! “He need to be giving you gas money hell” she said. You driving down here, gas ain’t cheap shit.” Without second thought, he opened his wallet and handed me a few bills. Her tone didn’t too much change but I received a learned lesson in money, playing your part and maintaining a stash of your own.

We all want to win!

Happy Sunday,