Back to Pluckin Cows and Milkin Chickens

Although, I’ve lived away from the farm and in the city for many years, I’m not really like Lisa Douglass. Whew……I had ya’ll scared for a minute!

My parents always said, “you can always come home,” but I never thought that my life in the city would leave me running back to the farm with open arms. After years of hard work with a job and company I was passionate about, my mind and body were exhausted. My ego, self esteem, body and heart were shattered, fragile, and torn after fighting the “Good Ole Boys Club” for years. Of course, parents always know whats best and they knew my heart and soul needed some repair. The best place to get that repair work on your heart, soul, body, mind….was of course, the family farm.

I’ll be honest, living with limited internet service and no cell phone for almost a year has been challenging to say the least. Off the grid living isn’t for the faint of heart, but you can learn so much about yourself. You also have time to think about the other people that have been in your life and their positive or negative impacts they have made on you.

Eventually, I’ll get back in touch with the real world and get a cell phone and Facebook. When your “off the grid” it gives you time to think and actually reflect on the friendships that actually matter. The people that probably checked the obituary section frequently to see if I had passed away would be tops in the friends category. Seriously, tops in the friends category are the friends that stand by you, no questions ask. Because as adults they understand we all need time off the grid.

That’s not the down and dirty nitty gritty story of how I got back to the farm. (I wasn’t fired, so you can throw that idea out your window). If you keep reading, there is no telling what kind of adventures, excitement, heartache, and craziness you will read.

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For Sale: My First House

Wednesday, my big city house will be sold to a new couple. The old memories will only remain in our minds and on photographs. It’s the start of a new chapter. A chapter That I am partying leads me to bigger adventures outside of the farm. I’m not ready to just “settle” for planting my boots in one place. My boots want to travel through towns unknown, meet new people, and fall in love with beautiful little place.

So here’s to all the wonderful memories my old house brought to me and my friends, may the next owners have half that much fun!

Love, Positivity, and God β€οΈ

My dog and I have transitioned well to living on the farm. He is taking it best, of course, due to the upscale living quarters he acquired, a sassy older girlfriend, and more food. I do love living in the country, but I wonder among the people I am surrounded by, where do I fit in?

The conversations here aren’t upbeat and positive. They are always negative, so I find myself staying quiet and daydreaming a lot. There is an excessive amount of talk about other people in a negative manner, which causes stress to the parties that are discussing the people and they do not discuss the topic once, it’s repeated many times. So here we go again, I have no use in discussing others or putting them down. Once again, I stay quiet blocking out the negativity, reminding myself of my devotional readings, and daydreaming. I long for more stimulating and intellectual conversation.

I wonder if my positivity comes from not allowing myself to be as bitter about situations as others. With God by my side, I have worked through the bitterness and anger and learned to forgive which in turn leaves me with no one to talk about in a harmful manner. I didn’t allow the anger to turn into poison in my soul. I filled the hole in my sole with love, positivity, and the word of God.

Sexual Harassment and Assault and PTSD

Today has been a year, since I was sexually assaulted at my job. It wasn’t the first time I had been sexually assaulted at my job, but it would be the time that broke me. I worked 11 years for the same job as a government employee with a prestigious University in which I was sexually harassed, sexually assaulted, bullied, and in a hostile work environment. I had always been an excellent employee with outstanding work ethics, but I was a woman in a mans field and I was also in the land of the Good Old Boys Club.

The assault happened between 8AM and 8:30AM in the morning. I remember the last words the man told me before leaving me in a deserted part of campus were, “I would hate for your mother to have to take care of you for the rest of your life.” These words rang in my ears that Friday on til Monday. I reported the attack, but was ignored. I couldn’t eat, sleep, I was paranoid, scared to leave my home, anxious, nervous, nauseous, I couldn’t sit still, couldn’t think, cried constantly, and was in a daze. The doctors diagnosed me with with a nervous breakdown. After years of keeping everything bottled up about the sexual assault, bullying, hostile work environment, and sexual harassment that was happening to me at my job, something in me broke.

I had reported the sexual harassment over the years, but I was told Human Resources didn’t handle sexual harassment and I was to report it to the Equal Opportunity Office. I did report the sexual harassment, hostile work environment, sexual assault, and bullying to the federal EOO and the University of Georgia EOO where they ruled it was a generation issue. This ruling left my boss to do as he pleased with me and caused me to be harassed more. Of course, when retaliation was mentioned the EOO stated no retaliation was happening.

I attempted to get another job, but my boss always made it impossible for me to get good reviews. My boss even stated in a meeting that, ” I would never leave my job. He was sure of it.” I wanted to leave. I didn’t want to work for a boss that massaged my shoulders and touched my breast, that rubbed my thighs while on car rides to meetings or game day patrols, and grabbed my butt while walking across a construction site or street.

My boss wasn’t the only one who touched me inappropriately. A contractor put his hands down my pants and another grabbed my breast to see what they felt like. My ass was slapped, my breast and nipples pinched. Going to work everyday for a job I enjoyed doing was dreadful. It was a nightmare to think what could be in store for me each day. I turned bitter as the years passed, cold hearted, and I a man hater because of what was happening to me in my work life. I never let my emotions show and was always very business like. I thought my strong stone cold exterior would defend me from falling apart on the inside. Boy, was I wrong.

After having a nervous breakdown, my internal medicine doctor sent me to psychiatrist and psychologist whom diagnosed me with PTSD. My parents packed me up and took me back to a place of piece, our family farm. They got rid of all reminders of the assault and the University, which were triggers, including my nonstop ringing cell phone with business calls. They also fought for what was right and wrong during a time when I didn’t know the world was spinning. It took months for me to feel somewhat normal again. So, here on this one year anniversary I realize I’m not the woman I once was due to actions of men and a University system that would not protect their employ, but I’m the woman God wants me to be and where he wants me to be.

Love Me Like My Dog Loves Me β€οΈ

Have you ever been loved without judgement? I have, but I can’t say this love comes from another human being. No, this is a love a lover, a parent, or a friend can not provide because at some point they judge you and their love is not always constant. On the days you are in their good graces their love is overflowing, but when the days come that you have done wrong in their eyes, the love becomes less and the tongues and attitudes sharp.

The one who loves me without judgement is my dog. He’s been there through the good and the bad and his attitude never changes toward me. His love is pure and he loves me whether I do right or wrong in this world. I’m never punished by him for making a poor choice. He comforts me when I need a shoulder to cry on, listens when I have no one trustworthy to explain my feelings too and makes me smile while humans are busy judging me and knocking me down.

You could take my fancy shoes, paintings, and the shirt off of my back, those material objects are meaningless compared to the love and companionship of my dog. He’s loved me through times that humans will always judge me for, but in his eyes I’m perfect.

Joy is better than happiness

It’s almost been a year since I went completely off the grid, living without social media such as Facebook and a cell phone. This sounds too outrageous to be true, but it is. It’s been difficult at times, but I discovered a lot about myself in a year with these items we deem necessary to function. I’ve realized they just make me happy for a few hours or minutes, they never bring me joy.

Joy comes from the moment. Living in the moment and not living in the moment by taking a selfie. Yes, you can be happy as well in that moment, but years from now will you cherish that occasion as much if your living in the moment full of joy or just by being happy which only last til the ‘high’ wears off.

Over the past few months, I’ve looked back into my memory bank of all the joyous events that make me smile. None of these events have a photo or selfie because that would steal the joy from the moment. There all locked in my heart and in my mind. I’ll list one of my joyous occasions I have stored in my memory bank and maybe this will help you start your own.

The birth of my best friends twins and the look on her father’s face when he got to see the boys and hold them for the first time. It was priceless. He was one proud Grandfather and there is no photograph that could have captured what was felt and seen in that moment. It was pure joy. It always makes my head smile when I think of that day.

New shoes can make you happy for an hour, more money may make you happy for a week or two, but living in the moment with your friends and family will bring you true joy!!

My brother, the life coach.

Let me explain my brother to you, the daily side of him. He wakes up dresses in a colorful T-shirt and skinny jeans with a belt that coordinates perfectly with this outfit. He fixes his bleach blonde hair and if it doesn’t fall into the hair do perfection he desires, it will be a disappointing day. Then there comes the expensive cologne, a spray of Ralph Lauren or Prada to finish of this new found brother of mine.

He makes his way up to my parents home. He dramatically states, ” I don’t know what I’m doing today, but I am not staying here.” Don’t worry you aren’t invited, he requires a lot of “me days” to de-stress from family. At least six out of seven days.

On these times he has a “me day” a trip to Starbucks is a must, a TJ Maxx run, maybe a whole day shopping for new preppy outfits or an addition to his home. You’ll never know because you aren’t allowed to know what goes on his life, but you must tell him what goes on in yours and let him critique it and tell you how you did it wrong and he would have done in better.

I call him a life coach, full of useless wisdom that he enjoys telling you about in a harsh way, that is nothing short of the truth.

Flirting for a Starbucks Discount.

Since I moved back home,my brother has become the poster child of preppy/pretty boy. He can no longer ride dirt roads on the gator because that involves dirt. He has to “smell good” before going to Starbucks and he can’ t have any wrinkles in his shirt. He has to wear designer jeans and must have a “me”day twice a week.

He still complains about everything and occasionally makes plans for a reunion of the original UGA crew that he babysat, but he states this time will be in the Boro and he will have strict rules and guidelines ( good luck with that in the Boro …….). Then he talks about a road trip to the coast in which the girls would have to ride in a separate car than the guys because he’d have to “educate” them on things. I think we’d have to swap off at a gas station so the females could get educated as well.

I know he wants these trips or at least 1, so keep your fingers crossed that he sticks to what he states, we need a “crew” reunion. Drunk JGP and JF laughing,RW just hooked on Bob and his hair and wine ( I need to get the 80s playlist started) and SD and TO dancing to “take me home tonight and giggling like noting is happening here……

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