IF AFTER READING THIS POST YOU NEED FURTHER HELP PLEASE REACH OUT TO ONE OF THE NUMBERS ON THE LIST LINKED BELOW. I am so sorry I had to share it this way, but I am tired so damned tired, of pretending that bad stuff only happens to kids, and then it’s over. Gang and traumatic life experiences don’t end when you exit gangs or escape abusers, it’s a lifelong battle that will never fully go away.
Keep Going…You Can Do It
“We were meant to rescue each other, not cut down the forest to rescue one.”
― shannon l. Alder
By all now you know why it was that I started this website, if you don’t well then maybe I’ll write a more detailed post some day but until then, it’s enough to say that I was experiencing the worst mental health breakdown of my life.
The person I am today is such a completely different but not quite so different version of myself. I am still and have always been tenacious, stubborn, creative, and in a lot of ways stagnant in my growth.
When I was at the church I basically just did what I was told, I wasn’t overly creative with my ideas and when I tried, my other coworkers would go out of their way to make me feel small and as if I didn’t know as much as I thought I did.
Loud Mouth Brown Girl has given me the opportunity to stretch my skills, to move forward, and to discover the things that are important to me, regardless of what OTHER people think should be important to me.
This isn’t just my anchor anymore, it’s this thing that I created, that I put my heart, mind, and soul into, that I spent the last three and a half to four years building up. Every day I am reminded that there are women who come from all over the world who stand with me, or at least read my work and sit with it, and sometimes they even feel impassioned enough to say something, which feels pretty amazing.
The person I am today knows that I can’t save people who are going to do evil shit, in order to make themselves seem like the scariest baddest thing on the planet, and the woman I am today isn’t interested in trying to save you, as you’re trying to slit my throat.
If you’re trying to slit my throat, you better make sure you cut all the way through, because if you leave one breath in my lungs, I will get up again. I may not come after you, but I WILL get up again. I am not dying, to make your life more comfortable. I also won’t apologize for that fact.
Too many times in this world people think they need to step on others, to make their lives better, instead of, and I know that this might seem revolutionary, doing what they can to make the world a better place, so that people like us/we/you, don’t have to suffer anymore.
And then they stand at their funeral, and they wonder why there are only half a dozen people standing there. It’s because half a dozen people were charged with making your evil ass is actually dead, so that the rest of us can relax and breath again.
People who thought they knew me, are genuinely surprised when they read this website and realize that they had absolutely no idea who I am, or who I could be, or more importantly, who I wanted to be, until they read this website.
This quote is exactly why. When I was younger and I didn’t want to be “Devon” I became one of a dozen people. Angel, Siddha Lee Saint James, X, I became whatever other people decided that I should become, because it was easier than trying to fight and tell them that the person they wanted me to be, was never going to be who I am.
“I’ve never fooled anyone. I’ve let people fool themselves. They didn’t bother to find out who and what I was. Instead they would invent a character for me. I wouldn’t argue with them. They were obviously loving somebody I wasn’t.”
― Marilyn Monroe
Prior to starting this website, I started smoking cannabis, for no other reason than the fact that I was volunteering at a radio station, I didn’t have a full time job, and I didn’t have any real responsibilities, so I figured why the fuck not? I didn’t really expect all the changes, and decisions that I would have to make, in order to be this version of me. I didn’t expect the flood gates of trauma and abuse to open up, and I sure as fuck didn’t expect that I would have to deal with all this stuff, largely alone.
Literally NO ONE on this planet was more shocked than me, when my brain was like, “oh hey by the way, this clusterfuck of bullshit happened while you were sleeping, and now that you’re awake, here’s all the files of all the stuff you’ve been ignoring for the last thirty-odd years.“
It was overwhelming, to suddenly have all these awareness’s about what I’d been through, it was all encompassing, for me to realize just how much I had been through, and I went through all the stages all at once.
Anger and grief became one and the same, and I lost my fucking mind, more than once, but I am better now, stronger now, and I am the me that I was BEFORE all this stuff started, but now I am the me, who is also awake, aware, and ready to fight to get a life that “I” want.
I knew that I wanted to be a Cannabis instructor when I was a kid, specifically, but I also knew that I was waiting for the industry to show up and be ready to teach me what I needed to know. I had to wait for Doctor Selnak to go to school, become a doctor, and develop a program that I could take that could make my dream come true.
Cannabis specifically because my mom’s boyfriend used to sell it when we were kids. If he’d stuck with cannabis he might be a more successful and happy version of himself then he is today, I’m sure. Sadly he chose to use other drugs, and those drugs destroyed the connection he had in our family’s life.
Today I realize there are a lot of people like me, who are waiting, for their lives to start simply because the world isn’t ready for them yet, and I know how frustrating that can be. For years I sat around doing what I was told, because the thing that I WANTED to do, wasn’t ready yet.
Now I am doing what I want to do, and people who used to know me, who used to know for absolute certainty that I didn’t smoke cannabis, are confused as to why I want to become a Cannabis instructor.
It’s because I’ve seen what addiction does to people. I’ve seen how it has destroyed generations of families, I’ve sat at meetings and watched a father, a mother, a daughter, and son ALL get up and talk about how their separate addictions, have altered and destroyed their individual lives, and the lives they have as a family.
I’ve seen friends die, I’ve heard stories of mothers who give drugs to their kids, and then the kids die, from an overdose. I’ve seen it all, and I want to help people who are struggling the way that I was struggling, with trauma, find a better outlet.
I want to create programs that help people move past the minefield that is mental health and trauma, and the best way for me to do that is to get educated.
“I love you,” he says again, “and no other man will ever say those words and mean them the way I do.”
― Krista Ritchie, Ricochet
The words “I love you,” used to be enough for me. They used to mean the world to me, today they don’t mean shit. Oh you love me? Really? Why? How? When did it start? Why? Give me reasons, show me behaviors that PROVE you love me, or get the fuck out of my way. I am not interested in diamonds and platitudes, I want to know that I GENUINELY matter to you, because I don’t have time to waste on pretty lies that are ugly beneath the surface.
That quote sounds beautiful on the surface, but then you look deeper. How do you mean them? Do you mean that you will support me and let me focus on making my dreams come true? Or are you going to badger me every single day for attention because you getting your dick knobbed is more important on me achieving the goals that I put aside for thirty-five years?
Are you going to love me when I am overweight? Or are you going to pressure me to lose weight because you want me to look as good as you think you do in your ripped baggy sweats that you just crawled out of bed in, and your over stretched white shirt that you unironically call a “wife beater”?
Are you going to stand beside me when I am at my absolute worst, or are you going to be pissed off when I won’t support your obvious lies, when I know those lies are going to put people and their lives in danger? HOW DO YOU LOVE ME?
As we get older, our expectations get higher, and our needs become more imperative, because we’ve seen what life has been like when we’ve let people walk all over our dreams, and we decide that we’re not doing it anymore.
I was about twenty-three when I decided that I was going to save my damned self, and I am not damned anymore. Over the last five years I have been incredibly blessed, by people, by Angels, by Gods, and by Goddesses, who have witnessed the fact that i am NOT giving up MY life to make other people more comfortable, and who WANT to see me succeed. Does that scare you? Good it should fucking terrify you.
Growing up I heard hundreds of stories, Disney has millions of them, where the princess, ALWAYS has a man beside herself. Even Moana, even Moana has a male hero who has to protect her, who has to encourage and challenge her to prove that she can be the hero she promises her village she can be.
Where the fuck are the stories of the women who save themselves?
Maleficent was betrayed by a man, and she grew up to kick his ass, repeatedly, AND save his daughter. She was and will always be one of my favorite hero’s and yet the world wants you to believe she’s evil, because her wings are black and her majick is green.
Color has always confused this world, Red and Black means Hell’s Angels, and if they are Hell’s Angels are always bad right? Guess who it was that came to hear MY story, and decided to stand against my rapists, BESIDE me? Yeah that’s right. Guess who ignored my pleas for help, the cops, who wear Blue and Black, who are supposed to be the good guys.
“She had been called mi princesa hermosa, but the tales her mother had told weren’t only about the pale blond ones locked in towers waiting for a prince to come. Janeta had heard tales of African princesses, brave and strong, fighting to protect their people.”
― Alyssa Cole, An Unconditional Freedom
We have stop teaching our kids that the way the world works currently is how the world is supposed to work. I was raped in my school, a school “devoted to the teachings of Jesus Christ,” by teachers, vice principals, and students, and no one gave a fuck. Jesus in his way, taught me that I was going to have to fight for myself, and I am doing that every single day that my dreams come true. And I’ve been doing that, and I am not going to stop just because a bunch of guys who used to think they knew me, even though they never did, are seeing someone emerge that they thought was never going to be possible.
HUNDREDS of men AND women in my lifetime, have tried to stomp on my dreams in one way or another, some directly, others indirectly, some on purpose, others accidently, but not a single one of them has been able to stop me from being the woman that I am today, because THIS is who I want to be.
Does that offend you? Good.
I want you to be offended, I want you to be curious, worried, and afraid of me, because God damnit if you’re afraid of ME maybe you won’t try to destroy the lives of any more people in your world. They deserve better than you, they deserve better than the people who will send them dreams of you murdering their kittens, just to keep them afraid.
I’m not afraid of you, I never really was, if I Had been, I’d be dead, and if I wanted to be dead I would be. I don’t want to be dead, I want to rise and to show the world that it can be done, and I am not going to be able to do that if you keep getting in my way. So get the fuck out, I don’t have time for your bullshit today.
Sending all my love,
Devon J Hall
If you’d like to help me continue to build Loud Mouth Brown Girl, please consider donating by clicking this link to head on over to Go Fund Me to Donate to help keep the growth growing.
The Goddess Sessions staring Allison Gaines, Devon J Hall, and Renita Quirls take place on February 10th, 2022. Each ticket invites you to sit at our table and discuss all the topics we’ve been holding onto. So come join us, Tickets are free.
The Loud Mouth Brown Girl Shop #604North is OPEN again and while we only have the Stay Lifted Sis collection currently, many more are on the way in the coming months.
Uncomfortable is an Uncomfortable read of un-edited essays written by the Loud Mouth Brown Girl, during the start of the 2020-2021 pandemic era on planet earth. It’s a difficult read filled with reminders that no matter how much the universe tries to squish us, we keep pushing through and moving forward to become our best selves. Grab a copy from Amazon on Kindle or Hardcopy Here.