Introducing, “The Opposite of Hew,” A Novella by Lisa W. Tetting

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Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer

opposite of hew cover

I would like to introduce my friend and author, Lisa W. Tetting. We met almost four years ago on the blogs here at WordPress. It has been a pleasure watching and reading Lisa’s writing journey.

I’ve read and reviewed many of her books. Click HERE to read my review of Egyptian Nights, one of my favorites, written under her pen name, L. Loren. Egyptian Nights is part of her LoveRotica series.

Lisa explains:

I write love stories with an edge of sexy that I like to call LoveRotica. To the rest of the world, they are erotic romance novels. This is adult content, so I have to insist that you’re over 18 years to read them. My stories will feature a strong female protagonist with flaws and challenges. Since I am an African American woman, I will tend to write from that perspective, however, as a creative…

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MEET AUTHOR LISA W. TETTING | #WriterCrushSeries

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authenticitee speaks

I could not be more thrilled to have interviewed today’s featured writer! Lisa W. Tettingis a rich blend of wit, intelligence, beauty and fire. Having had the honor of being a contributing poet to her early 2018 release: Love is Color Anthology(Adult Content), it was during that process that I got to witness her genius firsthand.

Intentional in her interactions with others, Lisa’s kindness is only enhanced by her seasoned professionalism. Years of experience and wisdom steadies her as she educates on the level of the hearer. Her ability to meet each person where they are without losing her footing is admirable and impressive.

I can’t wait for you to meet her.

Lisa speaks…

Lisa W. Tetting is the author of the novel, The Mistreatment of Zora Langston, and Southern Horror Stories. She is the creator of Rebirthoflisa, her personal blog. Lisa holds a Business Management degree from Mount Olive…

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Guest Blog – Childless Woman – Lisa W. Tetting

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Get Your Mouth Off of My Uterus

By Lisa W. Tetting

childless headerGuilt…

Societal Pressure…

Pleasing other people…

None of these are good reasons to have babies, yet plenty of women fall into the trap of doing just that. I’ve been asked countless times from mothers who look like they are on their last legs ‘when are you going to have some children?’ I usually scoff and reply NEVER! To that they usually look at me as if I grew a second head right before their eyes. When I was younger, it used to enrage me to be asked this question. I wanted to scream GET YOUR MOUTH OFF OF MY UTERUS! You can’t really say this type of thing and not offend people. Now that I am a woman of a certain age, I find their inquiries quite humorous.

It is not exactly fun to have strangers all up in your personal business trying to figure out a puzzle that doesn’t exist. I DON”T WANT KIDS! That is all! There is no complex equation to figure out, no further conversation to be had. People just can’t believe their ears. Their brains are so wired to follow society’s expectations that they start making up reasons why I should reconsider.

“You’ll change your mind when you get older.” – Nope, I may not look it, but I am 49. How much older do you want me to get?

“You and your husband would make beautiful babies.” – Yes, I am in an interracial relationship, but that doesn’t guarantee a beautiful child. Even if the baby was beautiful, is that supposed to make me want it? Vanity isn’t a reason to have a baby. What’s wrong with these people?

My favorite reactions are those of shock and disgust. They really entertain me for days061 at a time. The ‘you’re so selfish’ looks or the ‘what’s wrong with you’ disdain that shows is hilarious. These types are so set in their way of thinking there is no need in explaining. They will never understand. If you are one of those people, I implore you to please stop asking women questions you don’t want the answer to. In fact, please read this post and those of the other ladies who were brave enough to bear their souls for this project. You might learn a lesson in how to mind your business and stop judging people for their life choices.

I have never wanted babies. Sure I played with the creepy little dolls just like all of the other little girls. However, the brainwashing never took hold. As a child I was very observant. I watched while the other girls were feeding and pampering their Baby Alive dolls and it wasn’t appealing to me. I had the same doll and I preferred to play in her hair, but then I would leave her lying in a corner forgotten when the next toy captured my attention. As I got older I found myself annoyed by other kids. I preferred the company of adults. As long as I sat quietly and observed without interjecting my opinion, my parents would allow me to be present when they were entertaining. Most of the time, they never even knew I was in the room. At an early age, I acquired the skill to be neither seen nor heard. I learned a ton of information hanging with adults that I would have missed out on if I had been playing with the other kids.

My annoyance with children continued into my teens. When faced with having to babysit my siblings’ children, I was not happy. However, as the youngest in the family, I really had no choice. Everyone would get dressed, leave their kids in my care and go out to have fun. I hated every minute of it and watched the clock like a hawk. When bed time came around, I couldn’t wait to put those kids in bed so I could be rid of them. I love my nieces and nephews, but I don’t do kids. That feeling only magnified with age. I have been asked a few times in my adult life to watch other people’s kids, and I cringe when I think about it. I try my best not to hurt people’s feelings, but you can’t really say I don’t want to be around your kid without angering people.

I get it. People are conditioned to believe that because it is their kid, people who are not into kids should make an exception and be around them anyway. Of course, their child is different. This is where I roll my eyes. Your child isn’t any more special than the next. As far as I am concerned, they are all in the same category: Speak, give them a toy or some candy to keep them quiet while I enjoy hanging out with the adults and then they go home. No matter how cute they are, I do not want a relationship where I have to be alone caring for them. I might be too honest here, but it is the truth.

It astounds me that people that I have known for years, some most of my life, will continuously try to get me to change my mind. Some try by forcing their kids on me. I had a work acquaintance once who was convinced that all I needed was to spend more time around children, and I would suddenly get baby fever. The chick had known me for a month or two, only at work mind you, and decided I was the perfect person to be her 12 year old daughter’s godmother. She must have been smoking glue or something because a preteen was the last thing I wanted or needed in my life. I tried to tell her it was a bad idea, but she was insistent and rather pushy! She pretty much forced her child on me. The poor child was told she was going to spend time with this strange woman who she had never even seen before.

florian-klauer-14840-unsplashTruthfully, I had no idea what to do with a twelve year old. My husband, who has no experience with kids either, was recruited to help. With the mother’s permission we decided to take the little girl to Dave and Busters for an afternoon of video game fun. We purchased a card and allowed her to play her heart out. I am not any good at games, but I like to play, so I joined in from time to time. My husband likes video games so he was able to relate more.

After we left the arcade, we decided to take the little girl out to eat. This was a treat for her because her mother was a single mom with four kids and they rarely went to restaurants to eat. Well, obviously I had no idea what I had gotten myself into. The child ate like she hadn’t eaten in days. I never should have told her to get whatever she wanted. That was my fault. It wasn’t that she was hungry, per say, she was just excited to be able to eat what she wanted. I guess she said she was going to eat until she couldn’t anymore. The child ate more than me and my husband combined. She had so much food that she ended up taking a doggy bag home.

After taking her home I looked at my husband and was once again thankful he didn’t want children. I hate to say it, but that afternoon just reinforced everything I already knew. Kids were not for me. Don’t get me wrong. The girl was a great kid, but I knew before taking her out that I didn’t want to do the godmother thing. Soon after the outing, the mother stopped working at my job and we lost touch. I felt bad that her daughter was put in that position. I know that children get attached quickly. That was another reason I didn’t want to get her hopes up. I wish her mother would have listened. Really, I think the woman just needed a babysitter.

After reading my post, I hope people will realize that not everyone is cut out to be around kids, let alone raise them. I really believe that there would be fewer abused and/or abandoned children in the world if their parent would have been strong enough to say no to the pressure of having an unwanted kid. If you are in this position, please do yourself and the possible child a favor by listening to your heart. There is nothing sadder than an unwanted child. Don’t have a baby to satisfy someone else’s dream. That is most selfless thing you could ever do.

Lisa Bio

Guest Blog – Childless Woman – Sonya Felice Jenkins

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Life Is Good Without Kids

By Sonya F. Jenkins

 

       childless header“Why are you still single. . .  and without children no less.”

       “You should start thinking about having children, you aren’t getting any younger.”

      “Sure, it’s hard to be a single parent, but at least you will have children to look after you in your golden years.”

                These were some of the snide remarks I would hear throughout most of my adult life, but after a while I just learned to tune it out. There was no need to entertain people with my personal reasoning.

                Sometimes in life there are some circumstances that happen to you for a reason, and some caused by your actions. Well, for me, it is a combination of both.

                As a little girl playing with dolls, I dreamt one day that when I was an adult, I would be a mother of three children, two girls and a boy. Yep, I had it all planned, what their names would be, which one would be the older and the others would be twins; The schools they would attend, what their professions would be and so forth and so on. Unfortunately, this vision would not come to fruition.

                Here’s where the circumstances of my actions come into my life, as well as the reason for the circumstance. When I was in high school, my life changed in the most dramatic way, no one saw coming. During my Junior year, I became involved with an older man. This involvement was an experience for a shy, naïve, virgin, who wasn’t popular in high school, but somehow overnight became popular. I was the girl who was dating an older man. But dating this older man came with a high price tag for which, I would be paying until the Lord calls me home to glory.

                Five months into this relationship, I contracted a sexually transmitted disease that will be part of my life forever; and no it isn’t HIV/AIDS, it is something else.  Just to make that clear, so whoever is reading this doesn’t jump to the wrong conclusion.

                Now, back to my life experience. After having numerous moments ofstd unprotected sex with the older man, my body, especially the genital area, felt like something was wrong. It felt swollen, ultra-sensitive and painful during urination. Days later, there was an itchy rash with large red blisters, shortly after the blisters became open sores, they stuck to the middle part of my panties. After a while, it had become uncomfortable to sit for long periods. This went on for weeks, until my Mom took me to see a OB/GYN for the first time.

                After what seemed like hours upon hours; it was actually forty-five minutes, the doctor told me what I had, the type of STD it was, the details on care and maintenance for the rest of my life. No more unprotected sex, no more silk panties only wear cotton. Now here’s the heart wrenching doctor talk. The doctor told me, the idea of having children would be next to impossible, if not difficult without consequences. Having children with this type of STD could pass it on to the child via the birth canal because if the sores are exposed, the child’s head, eyes, nose and mouth would come instantly in contact. There would be no way of knowing what the effects would have on the child. The child could be permanently blind, have a speech impairment, brain damage, or would not survive at all. After hearing all of this, plus other concerning health issues, there was no way I would have a child, knowing neither one of us could possibly survive what should be a joyous event in a woman’s life.

                Unfortunately, years later, I did become pregnant, but because of my own health issues, the pregnancy had to be terminated. Due to a large mass blockage, the fetus never made into the uterus. The combination of these two events caused me to have constant dizzy spells, not able to keep food in my stomach, abnormal hot flashes, you name it, I had experienced it. Once, the pregnancy was terminated and the mass removed, my doctor strongly cautioned me. From that day on, I never put myself in a position like that again.

                When, I turned forty, I thought of having a child with my then fiancé. He and I talked it through and decided against it. My doctor, who was with me from the beginning, had since retired. I had to get a new OB/GYN who reviewed the assessments  of my previous doctor. My new doctor agreed…  nothing within my body had changed. The risk was still high, not worth taking the chance. Yes, it was a little disheartening, but not surprising.

                Since then, I have made peace with it all. Sure, I could adopt or become a foster parent (as so many people, especially women have so kindly pointed out to me) but it just wasn’t in my heart to want to do so. Now, I am fifty years old, single and childless which is alright with me. I have accomplished a lot of great things in my life. I’ve graduated college, published two books, traveled outside of New Jersey, hosted an Internet talk show, was engaged to the love of my life, developed new hobbies, and so much more.  There are some amazing older women in my life who are either married or single, and they do not have children. These women have no regrets, as well as live awesome lives.

                I believe there is a larger divine plan for my life without children, and who ever reads this, don’t let society make you feel less than because you are childless. Don’t be down on yourself either. There may be a much larger divine plan for your life, and the world will surely continue spinning as well as movement of time. So enjoy your life to the fullest it can be. . .

Amen somebody!!

Sonya Bio

 

Guest Blog – Childless Woman – Twyla Turner

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A Childless Woman…By Choice

by Twyla Turner

childless headerI am a woman. My choice not to have children doesn’t make me any less of one. Luckily, I either surround myself with amazingly non-judgmental people or those around me seem to know better than to say the standard line of comments when they find out that I don’t want children…

“That’s selfish.”

“Don’t you want a baby of your own?”

“Your life would be so much fuller with a child.”

So, on and so forth.

Although, I have heard, “It’s different when they’re your own.”

Yeah, I know. When they’re your own, they’re there pretty much 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You don’t get a break. Or at least not many. That’s very different from the freedom I have 24/7 right now.

But I do commend and admire those who can raise children. If not for them, the world would not be populated and I would not be here.

I will say this, though. There are a lot of moms out there who dupe unsuspecting potential mothers. They always talk about how wonderful it is being pregnant or the joys of every stage of their child’s life. The way they talk about childrearing is like an Instagram feed. All the highlights of your life. Not until you’re pregnant (and too late) do they start dropping truth bombs…

“Ugh! Isn’t sleeping horrible?”

“Oh, have you gotten gestational diabetes yet?”

“Yeah, aren’t blowouts the absolute worst?!”

“Have you ever been more tired in your life? My baby didn’t sleep through the night either.”

“Oh, I forgot how painful sex is after giving birth. It’s terrible, right???”

Yeah, no. You ladies aren’t fooling me. Misery loves company. I know, I know. There is no love like the love a mother has for her children. But my motto is: What you don’t know won’t kill you.

I believe it’s a conspiracy. These women who don’t tell the whole truth just want their friends to be as equally stressed and miserable as them, so they have someone to talk to about it. I mean, for real! Have you ever been a single woman in a room full of women who are pregnant or have children? They CANNOT stop talking about their experiences. Bonding over the joys, but mainly the misery and frustrations. Comparing how swelled their feet are to see whose is bigger. Or whose kid had the worst blowout. Don’t fall for it, childless women. The Stepford Wives are just trying to pull you into the abyss. If you want kids, go into it with full knowledge. Find one of those moms who tell it to you straight, and maybe even begs you not to do it so she can live vicariously through you as a single woman having fun adventures.

Personally, I’ve never wanted children. Even as a child, I knew I didn’t want kids. I think part of it was being teased for being chubby. I didn’t want to have a child who could potentially go through that. And I also felt like the world was going to hell in a handbasket and didn’t want to bring a child into that. That was back in the late 80s and early 90s. The world has gotten a heck of a lot crazier since then and raising kids a heck of a lot more complicated with the advent of the internet and social media. It’s just too much.

There have been a few times that I considered the idea of having children. Those times always involved a damn man. Ha! I daydreamed about what our kids would possibly look like. But wanting to know how adorable your kids will be is NOT a good enough reason to have them. That cute shit wears off and you’re stuck changing diapers, cleaning up vomit, helping with homework you don’t understand, running them around to soccer practice and ballet classes, and everything in between all because you were curious about what your kid would look like. Nah…snap out of it Twyla!

It also helps that I’m infertile. It’s not something that was diagnosed, I’m just pretty sure of it. Not that it stops me from being careful. Accidents do happen.

Even as I write this, I stumbled upon a post on Facebook that fits this subject matter perfectly…

twyla

The caption reads: “The weight on a mother’s shoulders created into a piece of art work.”

I know some childless women would kill to experience that. To know what that life is like. And I respect their dreams to have that and I respect those who live the life of a mom depicted in this artwork. But that life is NOT FOR ME!!! Looking at this photo gives me anxiety. Call me lazy, but I just don’t want to put in that kind of work. And I believe that a child deserves a mom who will put in 100% about 85-90% of the time. For me, it would feel like a prison. I love my freedom. I’m a nomad and love to move from place to place when the mood strikes. You can’t do that with a child. Or you can, but it wouldn’t be fair to the child, who needs stability.

So, to the moms out there, including my own, I salute you. What you do for your children and the world is astounding. To the childless women who want to be moms, I wish you luck, but don’t forget for every childless woman there are probably 2+ momless kids out there who would die for a mother…http://bit.ly/loving_family

But as for me, it’s a no go. And if I ever do change my mind, there are tons of children looking for good homes. I’ll take any age from 5-17. Yep, I said it. Seventeen is perfect. They’re out the house in one year. Ha! And five is great because they’re potty trained, can speak, and mildly self-sufficient (or at least usually). But in reality, I think I’d make a better mentor. I’d much rather take a few kids, probably teenagers, under my wing and give them life advice and the like. Now that would be fulfilling enough for me.

Twyla Bio

Guest Blog – Childless Woman – Laura Hull

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Childless Woman

by Laura Hull

childless headerI am 43 years old, I am married, and I have no children.

Lately, my husband and I have been discussing the possibility of getting a dog. I love dogs. If I see a dog in public, I want to pet it, and I want it to like me. Even so, I’ve never owned a dog, so the prospect of connecting with and taking care of one myself is a bit daunting, since I’ve never had a front row seat to observe dog ownership. After all, I can’t mimic something I’ve never seen done.

Children are great too. I admire and respect families for the work they put in to raising babies through all the stages into terrific adults. But I have barely the slightest idea how that happens because I didn’t see it modeled as a child; it just wasn’t part of my experience.

When I was young, my father was an officer in the U.S. Army so we moved around a lot. While this nomadic childhood took us many places, it also severely restricted my time spent with younger cousins and even small children of neighbors and family friends as I grew up. As a rule, my brother and I were the youngest kids in any neighborhood we moved into, so my time spent with babies and younger kids was all but nil.

Knowing how to interact with kids of various ages, especially the younger ones, always seemed to come naturally to everyone else, but it never did to me. Even as an in-demand babysitter in several neighborhoods where we lived, I didn’t click with kids. I was good at keeping them safe and fed and getting them to bed on time, but I struggled to connect with them. It was like they spoke a different language.

In my teens and early 20s, many of my peers already knew they wanted children in the future. I would joke that I’d wait until someone came out with a machine-washable model. During those years, I didn’t feel the driving need to be a mother. Meanwhile, in public places, like supermarkets, toddlers in grocery carts would always stare wide-eyed at me. It felt as if they knew my maternal instinct was somehow lacking.

My husband of ten years is a dozen years older than me and has two sons from his previous marriage. When he and I met — about two weeks after my thirtieth birthday — his older son was twenty years old and the younger was just about to turn eighteen. As our relationship got more serious, we talked many times about children. He told me he loved being a father but liked that the chaos of babies and children was behind him. Meanwhile, my biological clock was ticking. That “now or never” feeling was hard to ignore, even though I still wasn’t completely sure I wanted to commit to being a mother.

When we decided to get married, he acknowledged that he wouldn’t mind to be a father again. I figured whatever was lacking in my knowledge of babies and children would be filled in with books and online resources and whatever natural instinct might still be left in my DNA. After the wedding, we tossed the birth control. We figured I was healthy, so I’d be pregnant in no time.

Months went by. Then more months. After a couple years passed, we looked into medical intervention. At my first appointment, the doctor informed me I have “inadequate ovarian follicles.” (Great, one more thing to feel inadequate about!) Based on the odds of our situation, and faced with spending tens of thousands of dollars on a “maybe” plus a lot of injections and invasive procedures, we passed on fertility treatments.

Realizing we weren’t going to have our own children, we briefly looked into adoption. It didn’t feel like the right thing for us.

At that point, we considered maybe we weren’t meant to have children together. After discussing it, we chose to move forward and pursue other life experiences, rather than continue to keep our lives on hold while trying to get pregnant.

Sometimes I feel guilty about not having children. A part of me says we should have children (or adopt or foster) because we have a good income, because we have a nice house with some extra space, because I don’t have to work, etc. Furthermore, my husband and I are both intelligent, moderately healthy and attractive, and well-traveled. We have varied interests, access to experiences and education, as well as a functional and loving extended family. It’s not hard to argue that our choice to remain childless is pure selfishness.

Sometimes I feel sad about not having a child, about not experiencing motherhood. Occasionally, I feel a little twinge of heartache — a fleeting thought of “what if” — when I attend baby showers or interact with other people’s precious babies and children. Children represent hope for the future, and everyone needs a little hope in their lives, right? With each year that passes, I worry more and more about who will look after me when I am old. The gap in our ages all but guarantees my husband will leave me widowed. Having an adult child to look in on me would likely reduce or eliminate my fear of the loneliness and uncertainty I will face when my husband passes.

My only true regret about not having a child is that my mother did not get to be a grandmother. (My only sibling, my brother, is also childless by choice.) My mother deserved to have grandbabies. She once told me that she got herself through a lot of hard times since my father died by focusing on the idea that someday she’d have grandkids and it would all be worth it. I hate that I didn’t make that come true for her.

While I still occasionally experience a little guilt, sadness, and regret, I realize none of them were the right reason for me to have a child. To commit myself to parenthood out of a feeling of obligation, or for fear of missing out, or to provide myself a caretaker, or to entertain my mother would have been the ultimate self-centered act and no child deserves to be the product of selfishness.

Overall, I’m happy with my child-free life. I think I could have been happy either way, but I’m grateful for how it all worked out. My husband and I spend plenty of time with family, especially his grown sons and their wives, we travel at a moment’s notice, we support the arts, we volunteer with local charities, and we read and learn constantly. Bottom line: My life is full; it is complete.

Laura Bio

 

Guest Blog – Childless Woman – Shari Edwards

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No Regrets

by Shari Edwards

childless headerI’m a 49-year-old, single, black woman . . . with no children.

Over the years, I’ve been asked “when are you going to give your parents some grandchildren?” or “why don’t you have children?” Personally, I think these questions are invasive, personal and often very offensive.  People fail to think before asking a woman such questions because they don’t know the woman’s personal situation. Perhaps she’s unable to get pregnant, suffered a personal medical trauma, or just simply chose to not have kids.

For me, having kids was part of my “I plan to get married at this age and have kids by this age” stage, but I knew that having kids without being married or in a committed relationship was not an option for me.  I grew up in an old school household with old school parents. I can remember hearing my parents comment or have conversations about women (sometimes family members) who had children out of wedlock.  And believe me, those conversations entailed some choice words. So, deep down, I didn’t want to be under their eye of scrutiny and disappointment.

As I grew older, I chose to not let my parents’ opinions weigh me down. But,honestly, bearing children just never became an obsession. Not having children never made me feel less than a woman.It just became my own personal choice. However, as time went on, my parents became my focus.  As far back as college, I visited my parents twice a month, and that routine never changed — no matter where I lived.  Now, what has changed is the frequency of the visits.  Both of my parents are up in age and require more time and attention.

Fortunately, I work remotely (from home) which is a blessing in disguise —allowing me to be able to work from their home as well.  Given their advanced age, we (my brother and I) must attend their medical appointments, assist with their bills, etc. So the tables have turned. The roles and responsibilities have reversed as my parents have, in a sense, become my (our) children.  Although they can be quite challenging at times, they raised my brother and me to be patient, caring and empathetic people.

I think back and realize that not having children has allowed me to freely and unconditionally care for my parents.  I’m doing for them what they did for me growing up, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  My brother doesn’t have children either, so I often wonder who will take care of us when we’re advanced in age.  Certainly, my parents are blessed to have us. But, without kids of our own, I often wonder who will take up this mantle for us?

Shari Bio