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I LIVE SO I CAN LAUGH THIS IS AN EXCERPT FROM MY BOOK. IT IS ABOUT THE BIRTH OF MY 1ST BORN SON. July 5th 1987. It was hot and sticky and I was sooo restless it was crazy. My swollen belly seemed as if it was ready to pop. Anything that touched my stomach hurt like hell. I got up early and began cleaning everything in site. My Grandmother came into my room and told me "you're just about ready to have that baby". I asked her how she knew and she said "because you're cleaning everything". There's something maternal in every mom-to-be that causes them to clean their surroundings in preparation for birth. Animals also start cleaning their nests and dens preparing for the birth of their offspring. When I thought about it, it did make sense. Although everything around me was clean , I was still trying to make sure my baby came home to nothing but cleanliness. I would have blown away a dust bunny with a shotgun if I saw one under his crib. Everything in my room was sacred to me. I often had friends who would visit and immediately pick up his little teddy bears and other baby things. If they knew the rage I felt when they did that, they would have dropped everything and ran the hell out of my room. I was always thoughtful of other people's belongings and made sure I didn't invade their space. I was never one to overstay my welcome either. Howcome they couldn't do the same? As the evening arrived, I noticed that I started having contractions. I didn't think much of them because I had started actually feeling them in my 6th month. They were false contractions. I guess my body was practicing for the real thing. I was early as well. I had at least an entire month more to go. Late that night I tossed and turned. I talked to my son. I sang the ABC's, sang the 123's and other nursery rhymes. I talked to my baby boy and told him that we were going to be ok. I promised him that I wouldn't allow anyone to hurt him. If I could have rolled out an ancient scroll and signed it with my blood I would have done so. I knew I was going to give birth to someone that would change the world. Society was already against my baby. He had 3 strikes already before he was even born. He was male, he was black and he was going to be smart as hell if I had anything to do with it. I knew how I would raise him and I knew all the values I would instill in him. I would teach him about the world and all the bullshitters in it and despite what society would say about him , I was going to make sure he wouldn't end up a statistic. The Heavens began to move. It was time. I got up early in the morning, around 5am. My contractions were coming harder and faster. My back was killing me. I had already heard about all the horrors of childbirth so I was trying to prepare myself. I took a cab by myself to the Hospital, they checked me and saw that I was in active labor. I was afraid because I thought it was too early. Please God protect my little man. My cousin showed up. I was glad because I didn't want to go through childbirth alone. I think that is the saddest thing for a mother-to-be to go thru. Giving birth with no one there to help you. I had labor pains in my back. That is the worst kind of labor pain you can have. It felt like someone stuck a knife in my lower back on the left side and continuosly twisted it. That's the only way I could decribe it. I went through 12 hours of labor and decided near the end to get an epidural. When the anesthesiologist showed up with that big ass needle I immediately changed my mind. That needle looked like something out of a horror movie. There was no way I was going to be stuck with that shit. I just started breathing and trying to get through the labor. My Doctor came back in and after a quick exam, said I was 10 cm's. I was happy as hell. Then I was scared shitless. Wait a minute, I gotta push a baby out! Holy shit! I gotta push a baby out! Why hadn't I thought about how he was going to get out? Oh no! I don't think I could do this! It was time to push. How do I push? Push what? After a quick how-to session, I began to push. My heart felt as if it was going to burst out of my chest! I pushed and pushed and pushed and pushed! Finally his head began to crown! That's what the Doctor was saying. My cousin was saying that she could see his hair. I didn't give a shit at that moment, I wanted him out of me! I pushed real hard again and he was half way out. OH MY GOD! Is that MY son? My eyes began to well up with tears. I couldn't believe it! I started crying as the rest of him was birthed. He was so red, like an indian. He had a head full of hair and had my juicy lips. My heart swelled with an unbelieveable amount of love that couldn't be measured in a billion years. Amazingly, there was a knot in his umbilical cord. He was bouncing around in there like crazy. I watched the nurses and Doctors like a hawk. They weighed and measured him and cleaned him up. The nurse asked me if I wanted "rooming in" or if I wanted him to stay in the nursery. I looked at her like she was crazy as hell and answered "rooming in". There was no way I was letting him out of my sight! As I was cleaned up and prepared to go to my designated room the Nurses told me that they were going to take him to the nursery to put him under a light and to perform all the necessary tests for a newborn. I think they saw the look on my face so they elaborated a lil bit more on what they were actually going to do to him. They had to reassure the hell out of me because I wasn't having no bullshit. What surprised me was how protective I had already become. It was scary. I was thinking all kinds of crazy thoughts. I thought about someone trying to kidnap him, I thought about some Nurse playing herself and trying to sell him on the black market and thought of some woman who's child wasn't that cute trying to switch my baby with hers. What ever negativity there could be, I thought of it. As soon as the Nurse brought him back I checked every inch of his tiny body. I looked for his birthmark as well as memorized every hair on his head. I couldn't sleep at all because I was up watching and waiting for someone to come in my room and try something stupid. I was so tired but my fear wouldn't allow me to sleep. I was like a zombie in that bed. I was ready for anything. I kept my eyes on him all night long. I kept kissing the hell out of his face and lips and arms and legs and smelling his breath and hair and just kept checking his fingers and toes and knees and ankles. I couldn't believe he was mine. When I thought of how his fucking Father wanted me to abort him, my rage grew to an all new dangerous level. From that moment on I knew without a doubt that I would kill the first person who tried to hurt my lil man. That fear scared the hell out of me. All of a sudden I started to think about all the craziness in the world and really started to worry. For one brief millisecond I wondered why I even brought him into such a crazy fucked up world. I thought about my past and what had happened to me and was so scared for my baby boy. I knew I had to literally become a superhero of a Mom in order to protect him. I begged God to protect him . I begged like nobody's business. Lord please don't let anyone try and hurt him, I really don't feel like spending the rest of my life in jail. I also knew I had to curb my own temper so I could remain in my lil man's life. Where could I run to If I had to kill someone. I thought of the world and where we could be safe. I was thinking of the future and what it would bring. We were going to travel and go places. I wanted to make sure he never ended up starving or hurt. I already knew what that felt like. I knew I wouldn't allow him around certain family members, so that part was taken care of. I was a Mother bear on the highest alert ever. I was on defcon 4. Red alert. I would have brought down the heavens if something came our way. There would have been a new chapter to the Bible. I left the Hospital with my precious cargo. It seemed as though it was the hottest day of the year. I flagged down a cab and looked at the cab driver with the meanest look on my face letting him know not to try NO SHIT! Most of the cab drivers in NYC were foreign. I had heard about people and kids being kidnapped and taken overseas where their organs were harvested to the highest bidder. We made it home safely and I retreated to my room where I stayed there staring at my lil man. I don't think I slept for a month. I couldn't keep my eyes off of him. How could something so precious turn a person into a stark raving paranoid loving lunatic? That was what I had become. Why hadn't my own Mother felt that way about me? What was wrong with some Mothers? I'll never understand that crazy bullshit. The love I felt for my son was u n b e l i e v a b l e. It grew by the second. I couldn't wait for him to understand what love actually was. God I love my lil man. Fuck his Father.
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Why I Became an Expert Home Inspector

While working as a Public Insurance Adjuster I would often get phone calls from young single mothers hoping I could help them get money for repairs to their homes. Unfortunately, when I would arrive I would find that they were improperly insured but most often the damages they had weren't insurable damages but major defects and safety hazards to the home they just invested every dime they had into. What made this even worse is these young mothers usually had just purchased their homes within the past year or two through some kind of government "First Time Homeowners" program, and those that did get inspections, the inspection were performed by a contractor friend of the seller who usually was an investor flipping the property.I visited one house and from the dining room could see that the kitchen floor had a major slope towards the outside of the house. The young mother told me she doesn't go in the kitchen because it felt like it was about to fall off the rest of the house. Another house had one strip of paneling on the wall, not one wall with paneling, just one strip of paneling. When I looked behind the panel I could see straight outside. Then there was the house I visited one August, it hadn't rained for days weeks,as a matter of fact. The minute I walked into the house I could smell the mold. When I went into the basement the walls were soaked, the floors were damp, the joist and subfloors were wet. We could barely breathe while down there and she has a son in elementary school. This house had wires sticking out of the outlets and her porch roof was beginning to collapse from wood rot. (which is why she called me) I gave her some suggestions but couldn't really help her. She had only been in the house for 6 months and I had to tell her it wasn't safe for them to be there. With tears in her eyes she says "I hate this house". I don't think I need to tell you that I was fighting back tears myself.When I left I sat in my car for awhile trying to figure out what to do. All I could think is "Oh boy, I wish I was Oprah and could knock the house down and just build her a new one." But, I'm not Oprah. The next morning after praying and while talking to God in the shower, I decided to become a Certified Home Inspector and save the world!!!
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