The Fall 

by Dr. Sheila Pope

On Thursday of last week, I fell down in the mudd. My nails and toes were on point before the fall. I had a French manicure style on my feet. My nails were metallic pink. My hair was fresh and my jeans were starched.

Before the fall, I was literally walking away from a guy I thought would be in my life for sometime. I was feeling good about myself as I walked to my clean SUV. For those of you that know me, my SUV always needs a good shine. Anyway, I was talking to myself about my next step in life and down I go. I stepped off the curve and fell down to my knees.

I catch myself, but not before my fingers and toes were covered in mudd. My toes hurt so bad. The two people walking in front of me quickly turned around and helped me up. I was so embarrassed. The white woman had a look of terror on her face. The white man had my hand in his. I was just trying to gather my thoughts.

My butt was in the air, my body and mind were fighting against each other. I was thinking, ” Dr. Sheila Pope YOU need help! Your behind is in full view of the folks in the restaurant and the people going into the Westin hotel can see you.”

To top it off, I think the person I was walking away from saw me fall. That thought almost ripped my heart into shreds. You never want your ex to see fall or fail at anything! You want your ex to see you with your Super Girl cape on. No, I think my guy saw me in mudd. To be honest, I did not see him, but I thought I  saw his vehicle drive by as I got up. My mind could have played tricks on me in the moment. My thoughts were racing.

I got into my clean SUV and put mudd on the seats, floor, and stering wheel. I needed a moment to grasp what happened. I needed a moment to cry. I did not cry; but, I did say a few expletives. My toes were chipped and scrapped. My nails were nasty. My pride was at zero.

I can laugh now, but Thursday I was filled with shame. I have had to pick myself up from falls before, but this fall hit home. No matter how accomplished you are professionally, you never want people, especially your guy to see you appear weak and helpless. I found out in that moment, it was ok to appear weak and to need help. I thank God for the white couple that helped me. I quickly received the help that was offered. I replayed the incident too many times in my mind and each time the shame was worse.

I shared the story with a few girlfriends and we laughed. I was finally able to laugh at my foolishness. I am resilent; I may fall again. However, I will always get up and find a way to laugh at my crazy!

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The Storm: Hurricane Harvey by Dr. Sheila Pope

Our power was restored yesterday evening! It was difficult to maintain three days without power. My four children enjoyed their gadgets, but I had to do so much to keep things going. I have been “The One” to lead my family for years.

It becomes harder during difficult times to make decisions for everyone. It is difficult to get up and do for everyone else when you are running on empty.

I realized three months ago, I needed a partner for life. I am and will always be a strong woman, but I am tired of being without a real partner to go through the storms of life with. I hated getting out in the rain to find ice and food for my family. My hair was a mess from psoriasis and the rain. I hated having to answer the questions the children had about the hurricane. I wanted a hug yesterday. 

I need a place to cry without having to explain my emotions to my children.  I hated driving through high water and wondering if my SUV and my  house would flood. 

This storm is not over, but having the power restored gave me a chance to sleep in a cool space. It made my children appreciate electricity. My girls slept in my bed last night, my baby boy was on the floor in my room and my oldest disappeared to his room. Yet we all understood we were a family. We knew things could be worst!

This morning, I am still “The One”, but today I am clear on the fact that I need a partner for life. I need a partner that is committed to battling the literal and figurative  storms of life. I need a partner that will love me unconditionally and is willing to fight for the safety of this family. Until, he comes, I will continue to battle storms. I know God is always there. However, it would be nice to have a partner there too.