Eminem is a hero for me. Strange right? Because so many of his lyrics are “misogynistic”, “sexist”, “violent”, “negative” right? But I never heard them that way. I was riding in a rental car through Texas with my sister and my two nephews (tween and teen at the time- now one is a proud papa and the other is a marine 🙂 listening to Em’s  Album “The Marshall Mather’s LP” wondering “should these kids be listening to this music?” I answered myself quickly. Yes. They should. And I was happy they were. Because they were experiencing, just like I was, blatant courage. 
The song “Kim” came on. My heart WRETCHED. I’d never heard so much pain, never been put into such a frightening and dark place heard hope so desperate before, a maddening and relentless resilience to kill the badness, not the subject of the song (Kim). This was his SONG. It was his way of making his hurt go away. His own personal battle with his own evil, his own hurt, his demented and primal self that wanted to kill what was causing him so much pain. He was desperate. He was out of control. And probably the bravest person I’d encountered. I listened. Through the crashes, the screaming, the sirens, the screeching, and his other voice, his pleading female voice, that revealed how closely he really must be listening to her when they fight. I listened to his “kill”, I listened to his murder and I listened to his pain. And I understood.
What would this man have been without his music?
And that was the part of him that was brave enough to seek the outlet.
That’s goodness. An intrinsic good that was primal to him too. Something that NOTHING, not even his demons could subdue.
He was brave.
That album was unadulterated courage. And brilliance. Because of how he directed that pain into pure hooks and rhythms. 
And most of all, a role model.
Yes. Eminem- a role model.
For people like me.
Who are not perfect.
Who are fucked up.
Who are dark and who suffer
And have demons that torment them.
A role model, modeling hope. Hope of healing,
despite the challenges.
Hope of love, despite the demons.
Hope of success, despite the obstacles.
Or maybe, no- NOT DESPITE- 
BECAUSE of the challenges, the demons, the obstacles.
Only goodness can use those things as building blocks. 
Because only goodness can make um lie down, and do what they’re told.
That’s pure. And that’s untouchable.
I’ve had a run in with a blog reader. He was looking me up, probably for selfish reasons and got a rude
awakening about who I ‘really am’. Funny, because I never thought he knew me to begin with. We’d just started to get to know each other. 
For the record, I never saw him as a romantic interest. I do believe he saw me that way. What ever the case may be he was sorely disappointed with the person he discovered through this blog. And I took that personally, at first. Then I realized, NOPE; He wasn’t disappointed in me. He was disappointed I wasn’t who he wanted me to be. A beautiful young thing with “twelve boyfriends chasing me”. 
Look somewhere else for your ego boost. 
My life is gritty. It’s not nice, easy or pretty.
But it’s real.
And my experiences are invaluable. And my blog is Art. It’s my way of being everything that I am, without fear, and DESPITE judgement.
Criticize me if you will.
Hope it makes you feel good.
Throw me away if you will.
Hope it make you feel clean.
But what you won’t do is tell me I’m disappointing because I didn’t live up to your expectations.
Expectations based on what? What you wanted? It’s silly to expect something from someone you don’t know to begin with.
Imagine a talent scout walking up to a complete stranger saying- “sing like Mariah”. Why would they do that? They’d never even heard the person sing. Just because they looked the “right” way? And then would that talent scout have a right to be disappointed because they didn’t get what they wanted? They hadn’t even taken time to listen. Looks are deceiving. Sight is our WEAKEST sense. And light is the most easily interrupted and mailable energy. It’s easily manipulated. If we’ve judged somebody based on their look or their “presentation” then I hate to say it but, we deserve to get disappointed.
How can you draw a conclusion before you look at the whole picture?
And then you go googling people and learning things that you THINK you have a right to judge people for because it’s on full blast Online.
And it would be as ignorant as all those critics who judged Eminem for his lyrics. Judged him as a criminal, a misogynist, a creep- because it made them feel safe at night to put those labels on him.
And now he’s sober. And a good father. And a role model.
It’s like that scene from Minority Report- Tom Cruise’s character roles a ball to demonstrate to Colin Farrell’s character the inevitability of an outcome once things have been set into motion. But what the rest of the movie teaches us is this- we are humans, not balls- we are not inanimate objects. We possess free will, and that means, that even to the last moment, we have the ability to change our direction, very unlike a rolling ball. 
It’s that simple.
So judge me if you feel you have the right; because I “put myself out there” on line everyday. Judge me today.
But do not judge my tomorrow. That fate is for me and God to decide. We’re working together everyday. And yes, we do butt heads. It’s a way he helps me to learn; those occasional skull knocks. But he never knocks me out. I always have the ability to choose my next move. And to keep moving. That is what I do best. And it’s paying off.

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