My Default Settings (Part One)

I hate daytime talk shows such as "The Talk," "The View," and "The Real," but I got sucked into TBN's "Better Together" before work July 19 because Laurie Crouch, Victoria Osteen, Deedee Freeman, and Holly Wagner were discussing bad habits. The fact the show aired the day after my birthday, when Charles Stanley started a … Continue reading My Default Settings (Part One)

Praise Music for People Who Don’t Like Praise Music

Lately, God has been prodding me to praise him. Given everything I've been through, that's difficult. And when I googled how to praise God, site after site said to sing. I'm so not a gospel girl. This is more my style, particularly after the three-minute buildup: and, of course, this: If I could be as … Continue reading Praise Music for People Who Don’t Like Praise Music

How I Sinned Against God (and Became His Home Improvement Project)

I've always tried to live up to the name Miranda, which my mom bestowed because her book of baby names defined it as "deserving of admiration," but I have some flaws. First of all, writers' grammar and punctuation mistakes nearly give me an aneurysm. Second, I spent over 20 years bouncing from one relationship to … Continue reading How I Sinned Against God (and Became His Home Improvement Project)

Two More Reasons God Sends Us to Scary Places

Last Friday, Facebook page "Humans of New York" reminded me of two more reasons God sends us to scary places. Reason 1: He Wants Us to Know Him A woman told "Humans of New York" photographer Brandon Stanton that she wants to meet her father, but her mother isn't volunteering information about him. “I hardly … Continue reading Two More Reasons God Sends Us to Scary Places

Why God Sends Us to Scary Places

Thus far, dozens of people have read the previous two posts, but very few people have liked them. I get it. We don't like to think that God would send us back to someone who hurt us or might hurt us. But as Joyce Meyer said during a program that aired July 4, 2019, the … Continue reading Why God Sends Us to Scary Places

God Sometimes Sends Us to Scary Places

While writing my July 9 post about things that have happened because God ordered my steps, I mentioned that God sometimes sends us to scary places. For me, that was my father's doorstep last July. If you read chapters 1, 5, and 6 of this memoir, you know he had some anger management issues. For … Continue reading God Sometimes Sends Us to Scary Places

Judgmental Christians (My Story – How God Led Me to Become a Christian)

Despite graduating summa cum laude as an English and communication double major in 2009, I worked a $10/hour retail job for the last four months. To make the best of a bad situation, I used my creativity and organizational skills to improve the store's appearance because, pre-me, Google reviews described it as sad, decrepit, and … Continue reading Judgmental Christians (My Story – How God Led Me to Become a Christian)

Two Reasons I Still Binge Eat After God Delivered Me from a Frosting Addiction

While reading “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” last night, I stumbled upon two reasons I still binge eat despite the fact God delivered me from a frosting addiction that escalated as I worked part time for a bakery last summer. First, to break a bad habit, you … Continue reading Two Reasons I Still Binge Eat After God Delivered Me from a Frosting Addiction

Creflo Dollar on the Differences Between Love and Selfishness (or Who You Been Talkin’ to?)

I'm about to post a sermon I bought from Creflo Dollar Ministries in 2006 even though people think Creflo's a "prosperity preacher," criticized his fundraising efforts to buy a private jet to replace his 31-year-old plane after an engine failed during an overseas trip in 2015, and read that he was arrested for domestic violence … Continue reading Creflo Dollar on the Differences Between Love and Selfishness (or Who You Been Talkin’ to?)

Adventures in Homelessness: Part 2 (or God Wants Me to Come to the End of Myself)

When my mom first fled to a domestic violence shelter with my 20-year-old diabetic, epileptic, and mentally disabled brother July 24, 1999, I feared that they would eventually become homeless. She only earned $19,000 per year as an aide on a bus for handicapped students, my brother's prescriptions cost over $1,200 per month, and they … Continue reading Adventures in Homelessness: Part 2 (or God Wants Me to Come to the End of Myself)

French Fries with My Father (or The Day I Played Prodigal Daughter)

The day I moved out of my abusive father's house in 1996, he predicted I'd "come crawling back someday." Being a prideful, independent woman, I swore to myself that would never happen. Over the years, I became even more prideful and independent as one guy after another screwed me. First, the mama's boy I'd moved … Continue reading French Fries with My Father (or The Day I Played Prodigal Daughter)

Another Reason I Nearly Killed Myself One Christmas Morning: People Suck (or How My Parents and Boyfriends Caused PTSD: Part One)

A week into my underemployment at a grocery store this summer, a freshly tattooed 20-year-old in the deli department borrowed a pen from me in the bakery after showing me his forearm-long tribute to his grandfather and telling me he was tired from playing softball with his family before work. Maybe 10 minutes later, he … Continue reading Another Reason I Nearly Killed Myself One Christmas Morning: People Suck (or How My Parents and Boyfriends Caused PTSD: Part One)

One Reason I Nearly Committed Suicide One Christmas Morning: Adverse Childhood Experiences

For years, I swore I would never kill myself as my so-called Christian father predicted I would when I was a kid, but stubbornness was no match for everything I'd endured by age 27, when I bought three boxes of sleeping pills Christmas morning. Although Psychology Today irresponsibly reported that "[p]sychiatrists believe" that over 90 … Continue reading One Reason I Nearly Committed Suicide One Christmas Morning: Adverse Childhood Experiences

My Fur Family and I Have Been Evicted #GoFundMe

If you've been reading this memoir, you know God has been putting me through a lot since I became a Christian in 2014. The latest trial is eviction. If you could spare a few dollars to help me accrue a security deposit and first month's rent, my fur family and I would be eternally grateful. … Continue reading My Fur Family and I Have Been Evicted #GoFundMe

Few People Talk About Why They Want to Die Before They Commit Suicide. I Blame Journalists for Three Reasons

Last week, 104-year-old scientist David Goodall told the Associated Press he was going to "take advantage of Switzerland's assisted-suicide laws" after contemplating suicide for 20 years and bungling it three times. That night, 36-year-old Frightened Rabbit singer Scott Hutchison tweeted, "I'm away now. Thanks," before killing himself. Investigators found his body three days later. Last … Continue reading Few People Talk About Why They Want to Die Before They Commit Suicide. I Blame Journalists for Three Reasons

Feeling Suicidal? I Can Relate … Because of My Family (There’s No Home for You Here)

In January, 21-year-old Washington State University quarterback Tyler Hilinski killed himself. Although he left a note, suicide investigators began interviewing people he knew to figure out why a young, successful football player who'd been carried off the field "Rudy"-style after helping his team beat Boise State in triple overtime last September would end his life … Continue reading Feeling Suicidal? I Can Relate … Because of My Family (There’s No Home for You Here)

Chapter 13: How Domestic Violence Affected Me: The Never-Ending Search for Love and Stability (Love Languages and Discord, Exemplified or The Player Who Loved Me. I Think.)

In his book “The Five Love Languages,” marriage counselor Gary Chapman says humans show and crave love in the form of compliments, time, gifts, acts of service, such as helping around the house, and touch, but we all prefer one or two ways over others. Marital discord occurs when we don’t get what we want. … Continue reading Chapter 13: How Domestic Violence Affected Me: The Never-Ending Search for Love and Stability (Love Languages and Discord, Exemplified or The Player Who Loved Me. I Think.)

Chapter 12: How Domestic Violence Affected Me: The Never-Ending Search for Love and Stability: Part One (or Bad Boyfriends and Horrible Bosses: The Sum of My Experiences (Part One))

In addition to food, water, shelter, and clothing, parents are supposed to provide security and affection. If they don’t, any shrink will tell you, their children spend the rest of their life looking for what they lacked. Since my father threatened to burn down our house with my mom, brother, and me inside, to kidnap my … Continue reading Chapter 12: How Domestic Violence Affected Me: The Never-Ending Search for Love and Stability: Part One (or Bad Boyfriends and Horrible Bosses: The Sum of My Experiences (Part One))

My “Unique Blogger Award” Nomination (and the Importance of Telling Your Own Story)

I've been broke and unable to shop for anything beyond necessities since October 2014, so I didn't know tax-free weekend existed until I walked next door to Target during a break from my retail job a couple of weeks ago and saw a sign portending service workers' impending doom on the sliding glass door. Friday, … Continue reading My “Unique Blogger Award” Nomination (and the Importance of Telling Your Own Story)

Happy Birthday to Me?

Saturday, July 15, which was my abusive father's 64th birthday and the 10th anniversary of my mom's suicide, I walked three miles home from a library and grocery store in mid-day heat and humidity to find two bracelets that an ex left hanging from my doorknob in a gift bag. Having discovered some upsetting-yet-not-surprising information … Continue reading Happy Birthday to Me?

Chapter 11: How Domestic Violence and My Relationship with a Mama’s Boy Affected Me (Part V: An Outspoken Personality, Problems with Porn, and Trust Issues—or How I Became My Parents)

According to Psych Central, children of alcoholics typically suffer from low self-esteem, wind up in unhealthy relationships, and tolerate behaviors that other people find unacceptable—presumably because they're used to them. It got two out of three right where I'm concerned. If you read my blog post about Facebook Live killer Steve Stephens or any of … Continue reading Chapter 11: How Domestic Violence and My Relationship with a Mama’s Boy Affected Me (Part V: An Outspoken Personality, Problems with Porn, and Trust Issues—or How I Became My Parents)

Intermission: Let’s Play a Little Game of Never Have I Ever

If you’ve been reading my memoir, you know my father beat and choked my mom for 15 years until she and my mentally handicapped, diabetic, epileptic, and autistic brother fled to a domestic violence shelter in 1999. You also know I started dating an alcoholic before I even moved out and that I unwittingly moved in with … Continue reading Intermission: Let’s Play a Little Game of Never Have I Ever

Chapter 10: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part IV: Debt and Codependent Relationships)

Breaking up with a blackout drunk in favor of a guy who'd practiced tang soo do for years wasn't a difficult decision. Whereas the latter would protect me if my father tried to kill me as he'd threatened a number of times since he started beating my mom in 1984, the former would wake up … Continue reading Chapter 10: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part IV: Debt and Codependent Relationships)

Chapter 9: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part III: Unhealthy Relationships)

In high school, I envied girls who had boyfriends and developed crushes on football players and nerds who sat beside or in front of me and talked to me as they used my desk to do tricep dips or passed me papers. The year my mom said short stories I'd written to make her proud … Continue reading Chapter 9: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part III: Unhealthy Relationships)

Retail Therapy (Three Ways a Job at the Mall Improved My Self-Esteem—and Why You Shouldn’t Rely on One to Do the Same)

If you lived in a small town pre-internet and f'd up your future by worrying more about your father killing your mom than your grades, you had four job options post-high school graduation: salesperson at the local mall, burger flipper at a fast-food franchise, pump jockey at a gas station, or kennel assistant at a … Continue reading Retail Therapy (Three Ways a Job at the Mall Improved My Self-Esteem—and Why You Shouldn’t Rely on One to Do the Same)

Chapter 8: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part II: Loneliness and Low Self-Esteem)

Comedian Louis C.K. once said men are "the No. 1 threat to women. Globally and historically, we're the No. 1 cause of injury and mayhem to women. We're the worst thing that ever happens to them." You don't have to convince a domestic violence survivor of that, but we still want to be loved. So, … Continue reading Chapter 8: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part II: Loneliness and Low Self-Esteem)

Chapter 7: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part I: Sound Sensitivity & Eating Disorders)

At the risk of riling up the self-righteous writers of nearly 2.6 million articles that surface when you click Google's autocomplete suggestion "stop blaming your parents for your problems," the domestic violence I endured as a child affected my adulthood by shaping my personality and impacting both my physical and mental health. For example, much to future … Continue reading Chapter 7: How Domestic Violence Affected Me (Part I: Sound Sensitivity & Eating Disorders)

Intermission: Bishop Noel Jones on Control Freaks, Jealousy, and Selfishness

I started writing CLEvangelism to promote some of the preaching I’ve heard on Radio 1000 since I became a Christian in 2014. It's been helping me get through the tests and trials God is putting me through, so it may help you. In light of the last chapter, I thought I would share what Bishop … Continue reading Intermission: Bishop Noel Jones on Control Freaks, Jealousy, and Selfishness