Tag Archives: #bloggingfromA2ZApril2018

Blogging from A to Z April 2018 Challenge: “X”


Blogging from A to Z April 2018 Challenge

So today, I was all set to write about the horrible epidemic of XENOPHOBIA that has overtaken the United States of America in recent years. But then I said to myself, “Gregory, it is Friday so let’s post something fun and positive.”  So, here you go:

I want to be playing my Xylophone in some exotic XANADU location such as those pictured below!!!!




That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!!



Blogging from A to Z April 2018: Wonder


Blogging from A to Z April 2018


Throughout your life have you ever wondered why you are who you, or why you have become the person you are with all of your faults and  all of your assets?

So, if I ever took the time to write my autobiography, it would be a tear jerker, a thriller and definitely a roller coaster of emotions. But before I can ever do that, I have to make some clear statements/inquisitions regarding my lifelong wonders.

To begin with, I am very well aware that I was a mistake. My mother was taking the pill when I was conceived in December 1965. My father was in the United States Navy at the time and I suppose he and mother did what most Navy couples do while the seaman is on leave. I wonder why it took me until the age of 3 1/2 to 4 to learn how to walk and even talk? My parents, grandparents and sisters say that I would just sit and grunt or cry if I wanted something up to a specific age.

I wonder why throughout my childhood, it seemed that my parents never wanted me around. I spent an awful lot of my childhood at one specific house locked in my bedroom – which really was a half room off of the garage. I remember distinctly that the cockroaches would come in from the garage and crawl all over the rom and sometimes on me. To this day it is my husband’s job to deal with roaches and any type of critter that gets in the house. I wonder why I never lived a true childhood? What I will say about my childhood is that I never had to guess whether my sisters Lori and Cindy loved their baby brother.

I wonder why at the age of six, I knew that I was different because when I looked at my uncle’s Hustler or other magazines that portrayed both men and women, I never looked at the women. I was so enthralled and excited even at that young age to be looking at a naked man’s body. I wonder why it took me so long to stop wetting my bed or even crapping in my bed? Was it for attention, I only received bad attention and my parents would make me go to school smelling like piss and shit.

I wonder why when I was in grade school, I would steal other people’s lunches and lie about – knowing the punishment at home would be to eat five or six jalapeno peppers and then being locked in my room. When I was in middle school I would steal from the little convenience store because I was always hungry. Ironically, when I was 22 years old I worked at that same convenience store as a Circle K and was accused by my manager of stealing while he was on District Manager ordered vacation. When that happened, I decided to show him how it was done and embezzled over 10K dollars in cash, money orders and merchandise in the period of two days. Mind you, I turned myself in on election day 1988 when George H. W. Bush was elected president. And was sentenced to 18 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Institutional Division. I ended up doing almost two years – but I digress.

I wonder why at the age of 12, while my parents were going through a bitter divorce, again neither one of them wanted me. Mind you, yes, I was a troubled child and pre-teen, who wouldn’t be considering the lack of love and positive attention that was not received. I wonder why during the divorce proceedings the judge determined that it would be best if I were placed an institution for troubled and mentally challenged children. On September 13th 1979, after having spent the better part of a year in multiple group homes, I arrived at The Devereaux Foundation in Victoria, Texas. By the way, this was the day before my 13th birthday on September 14th. I asked if I would be able to talk to my mother on my birthday and I was told no. No calls or visits for the first 90 days. I guarantee this 12-year-old threw the biggest hissy fit to the point that my father who dropped me off with my current case manager insisted that my mother be able to call me on my birthday.

I wonder while at Devereaux, why I was allowed to what at the origination of it was a molestation of me by a boy who was two years older than me. His name was Randy Maggard and I still remember the day he told me that he wanted to plug me. I didn’t know what he meant but I was to find out. I will say that Randy and I had what I would a very consensual sexual relationship for almost three years until I left Devereaux in October 1982. Mind you, I was only supposed to be there for a year and yet my father felt compelled to pay the $2K a month to keep me there. In 1982 I went home to my mother and my sister Cindy.  

I wonder why at the age sixteen I continued to feel unwanted other than by my sisters. I started high school and I began that first job at McDonalds. I wonder why one night when I came home from work I learned that my mother had pawned the only possession that I had bought with earned money at Devereaux, my stereo. It was bad enough I had to sleep in the living room and then at one point because I wanted privacy, I slept in the bathroom. I wonder why at the age sixteen I became almost professional at shoplifting, clothes, books, cigarettes, meats – anything I fit into my clothes – was a target. I wonder why my mother encouraged me and often made requests of what she wanted me to shoplift. I wonder why I also became a pretty good check passer for a time. But both of these came to a quick halt after a couple of arrests.

This is just a taste of my earlier years. What I do not wonder about anymore is why me? Why did I have to become infected with HIV/AIDS on New Year’s Eve 1995 going into 1996? I know longer wonder why I am the child in our family who has been hit so hard with the addiction/alcoholism gene that runs on both sides of the family I believe. I no longer wonder why I am so beat down sometimes because of my bipolar affectation disorder and depression. I no longer wonder why I absolutely continue to sabotage myself every time something good is happening for me. Ok, that last one was a lie – I will never stop wondering  why that continues in my life.

Why do I no longer wonder about the above? Because I am unapologetic for being me because GOD does not make mistakes. I am who I am and yes, I am created in his image, only with flaws which makes me a continuous work in progress!!!

That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!






Blogging from A to Z April 2018: Thankful


Blogging from A to Z April 2018

So, to be cliché, I am very thankful that God woke me up this morning sober and clean. I am thankful for my husband Cruz and our seven four-legged babies Missy, Crissy, Little Bitty, Zailey, Sadie, Stitchy and Tippy. I am thankful for my father and stepmother and for Cruz’s mother. I am thankful for my sisters Lori and Cindy, their husbands Nicky and Doug; my nieces and their partners Rachel and Bryan, Britney, and Cassie and Ricky, Ashley and David, Tasha and Bubba and of course my great nieces and nephews Madi, Skyler, Hailey, Sophia, Bryson, Kyle and Colton, Nathen and Kaden.

But to be un-cliché, I am thankful that I have THRIVING not just SURVIVING with HIV/AIDS for over 21 years. I am thankful that I am able to be rigorously honest about my alcoholism and addiction to cocaine of which I am a daily work in progress in recovery. I am thankful that I am clinically diagnosed with depression and bipolar affectation disorder. I am also thankful that as I get younger and prettier (BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA) that my body is falling apart and that other surgeries could be in my future. Why am I thankful for all of this? Because it gives me a voice and plenty of writing material.

That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!




#SoCS April 21/18 & Blogging from A to Z April 2018: Spoke


                                  #SoCS April 21/18 & Blogging from A to Z April 2018


How often have you been listening to a song and you feel that you are being spoken to? Better yet how often have you been at a church service and during the sermon you feel as though God himself has come down and spoke to you?

I remember on December 31, 2011 my sisters and I were in Lamar, Missouri for the funeral of our Uncle Kenny, the youngest of our Grandma Wanda’s three children and the second that she had had to bury. Our mother was the first in May 1998. During the service the preacher was not performing a normal funeral, it was more like a lecture to my cousins and although I did not realize it at the time – I also was being spoke to. I wish I could say that it did some good. Unfortunately I was in  the beginnings of a new addiction to cocaine and very much so in my alcoholism – unbeknownst to my sisters and grandma.

My favorite times though are when I am attending either a face to face or online meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous. So many times I am listening to others sharing their own experience strength and hope and it seems they have just plopped themselves in front of me, speaking directly to me and reminding me that I am worth it and that it does continue to get better.

Yet, the greatest feeling is not knowing who I have spoke to and given my experience , strength and hope to in those same meetings when I share. My inner voices often say they spoke to me long before I picked up a drink or did a line and told me not to and that I just did not listen. Imagine that, me not listening when I am being spoken to!!!

That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!


Blogging from A to Z April 2018: Rarely/Rigorous


Blogging from A to Z April 2018

Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path. Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program, usually men and women who are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves. There are such unfortunates. They are not at fault; they seem to have been born that way. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty. – Chapter 5 “How It Works” – The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous – Fourth Edition, p. 58 

When I attend a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous, whether face to face or an online meeting with Global Steps AA on In The Rooms an online meeting place, I love having the opportunity to read “How It Works”.  This important reading is an important reminder that yes I can continue on my journey of recovery if I am rigorously honest with myself and others regarding my alcoholism and addiction to cocaine. That being said, life can happen so often that the rigorous honesty can and will take a back seat which in turn will cause either slips or full relapses. I have had both happen.

When a slip or full relapse happens, it is normally caused by my own inability to deal with whatever life has been dealing me. I am ever reminded that all I have to do to deal with life’s dealings is to get into a meeting or two, three or four on any given day to be reminded by my fellows tat yes – rarely have we seen a person fail in our program if they are rigorously honest with themselves and others. I am truly blessed to call Alcoholics Anonymous my group that keeps me honest so that I am not one of those rare cases.

That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!!

Blogging from A to Z April 2018: Qualified


Blogging from A to Z April 2018


What makes a person qualified? Who determines that a person is qualified to do a specific job, to speak on a specific subject or to share their experiences. Ultimately it is the individual. One will apply for positions because they feel that they are qualified. Most people will not discuss topics unless they truly believe they know what they are talking about, because no one likes to seem like a fool. There are those of us who just have that gut feeling that they can possibly touch others by sharing their experience, strength and hope by telling their entire story with no reservations.

Let me preface this by saying, I am not arrogant nor do I think I have all the answers when it comes to recovery from alcoholism and addiction. What I will say is this, my story is my story and I am proud to say that while there have been many ups and downs in recovery and life in general, I am here and that is through the grace of my Higher Power whom I choose to call God and because I am unabashed about sharing who I am and where I have been along with where I want to go – I feel this makes me extremely qualified to share.

I am always blessed when I can speak of my troubles with my alcoholism, cocaine addiction, being bipolar and of course that double edged sword of depression. I love that I am a work in progress, I will never be perfect but with the help of my fellows and my faith, I continue to grow in recovery every day.

That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!


Late One Liner Wednesday April 18, 2018 & Blogging from A to Z April 2018 Challenge: Politeness

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One Liner Wednesday April 18, 2018 & Blogging from A to Z April 2018 Challenge

POLITENESS is not inherent, it is and must be TAUGHT!!!!








      That’s what’s in “My Rattled Cage” today, thanks for stopping by!!!