About Dragthepen

J. Floyd, a New York resident, currently works as a Writing Consultant and creator of the podcast and YouTube channel, Conversations with J R Floyd. A recipient of the Audrey Lorde Collective Award, and a winner of the Jacob A. Weiser playwright award for her work, The Conversation. She was a freelance writer for Street News for several years. And she appeared in the gospel play, Oh Lord; Why Did I get Married? She is a member of the BMCC Downtown Chorus. The author of two novels , The Waiting Game & A Different Flavor of Love. Both books can be found in Amazon

Individual versus the Group

Dear Readers, just because you belong to a group doesn’t mean you stop being an individual.

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Recently, I had an experience that taught me a profound lesson. The experience wasn’t tragic, but it lasted long enough for me to understand that it was time to disconnect, step back, get still, turn inward and have a deep conversation with my inner self. The old me would have reacted differently and became angry, and ranted about the experience to anyone who would listen to me playing the role of the victim. The old me would have carried my anger around like a badge of honor for my wounds. But I am not that person anymore and I have learned to step back and critically think about an occurrence that my mind and heart want to immediately conclude as negative.

So, what did I do? I spent a week in silence, meaning, no TV, no soical media, no chatting on the phone, and I didn’t mention the incident to anyone. I journaled, prayed, and kept silent. On the 3rd day of my silence, I arrived at the conclusion that the incident brought attention to an area of my life that I wasn’t nurturing. What I’ve learned is that I need to pay attention to my behavior and thinking when I am in a group setting, more important pay attention how I attach myself to this group. Humans naturally have an instinct to want to belong, no one wants to feel left out. However, it is out of habit that when people join a group, team, organization, or tribe, whatever name you give to your people. It is good to connect to like minded people, but be careful that you don’t make a habit of changing your mindset or behavior to match that of the group because you want to belong.

The group is an amazing collection of ages, culturally mixed and like minded. Since being in the presence of this group I discovered that I am not as depressed as I use to I be. I am surrounded by loving people who verbally express and show love, and when we meet usually twice a week it is am amazing celebration. I often leave our meetings happy and looking forward to the next meeting. The incident that happened singled me out, but only a few people witnessed the interaction. It left me wondering why me? I have found my tribe, why me? I wasn’t going to play the pitty game, and I didn’t feel the need to confront the other person. I am glad that I simply took a step back and examined what really happened.

I know that your asking yourself, am I going back to the group? Yes, I am going back with new knowledge and better awareness. It was a teaching moment that lead me to examine who I am.

Thank you for stopping by dragthepen ❤️

The Cost of A Life

Dear reader,

The unjust attitude of Landlords ( slumlords) or LLC companies that hoard real-estate in New York City, should be rendered unconstitutional.These greedy and heartless proprty owners target low income people from under served communities such as,  immigrants, single parent household, people of color, low income wage earners, and many more marginalized groups who live in fear of being homeless. The majority of these groups do not under the housing laws or that their basic human rights are being valided, thus becoming victims used by Landlords as a means to an end.

The principal standard used to be that once a tenant and Landlord enter into an agreement, he/she is bound by the contract of the lease to render basic services such as, repairs, heat and hot water, safe electricity, and to maintain a clean environment free of rodiants. However, overtime a lease agreement has become a useless piece of paper and housing court tend to defend Landlords over the rights of tenants. Furthermore, as the immigrate population increases this gave way for Landlords and property management companies to rent illegal apartments, to practice rent gouging, and use intimidation to  trap undocumented and low wage earners into living in horrible conditions. People are afraid to call heating hot lines to complaint or to withhold rent because of lack of repairs in fear of eviction or being reported to immigration.

We see news reports about slumlords who fail to make repairs or who are notorious for not supplying tenants with heat and hot water. The most recent tragedy in New York City, on January 8, 2022, 17 people died due to a fire caused by families using space heaters to stay warm. This situation was complicated by the fact that the building did not have smoke detectors or proper fire doors that would have kept people safe until help arrived. The publics opinion is to judge the less fortunate by reversing blame because these victims should be able to live in better housing. Well, naysayers, let’s be realistic not everyone can live the promised luxury of the American Dream, and not everyone can afford a house, condo or to live in an upscale neighborhood.

It is the duty of our American system to keep a certain class of people from improving the quality of their lives. Our political leaders accomplish this by keeping wages low, corporate take over of the farming industry keeps food prices high, increase rate in utility services, high cost of public transportation, high rents, and  the lack of low income housing. The government believes that there is no profit in developing affordable housing. The American way of thinking is that only a privileged few deserves to enjoy basic amenities such as shelter and food.

Regardless to the fact that some of the most dangerous fires caused by property owners neglect there hasn’t been a single person held accountable. I’ve experienced living without heat because the home owner didn’t want to pay the cost of heating. But, they expect rent on time each month. I am heading towards retirement and ridding myself of Landlords by building a tiny house. I am lucky that I can afford to build my dream home, but I am just one person. When I lay down at night in the comfort of my warm clean apartment free of rodiants, I whisper a prayer asking God to help the people who are not as fortunate as I.

Thank you for stopping by dragthepen.

Its Okay Not To Push Through

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What do you do on the days you don’t want to push through? I get it when people say “this too shall pass, and feelings don’t come to last”, but today I don’t want to push through.

There’s not a dark cloud in the sky making me feel blue because the sun is shining through.

Why is it on this day I can’t push through? I don’t want to drag this weight on my back, This burden of emotional sack, why have you come to attack?

Yesterday, I was on the right track, but today, things just don’t seem right.
I close my eyes and breathe hoping to reset, recharge, energize, only to realize today I just can’t push through.

Then a thought occured, why am I asking myself to do something I am unable to do? Maybe, I don’t need to push through. I said, ” self It’s okay to delay the deadlines or not to be all that I can be today.”

After all who am I hurting? What harm am I causing? No one will be disappointed if I can’t push through today. And even if there is a moment of disappointment, oh well, ” this to shall pass.”

To the people who arrive at a day that you can’t push through, it’s okay. It’s a burden to be strong and smile everyday. Sometimes the rain is too much to bear and when these days come it is okay not to be okay. It’s important to recognize what your feeling and why you can’t push through, most important be kind to yourself.

People will say to you push through and you will be okay, they mean well, but this is horrible advice. You don’t always have to be strong, brave, smiling, positive, superwoman or superman,or the life of the party. How you feel on the days you can’t push through is important. We live in a society that has adapted bad habits of ignoring the warning signs when our bodies and spirits signals us to slow down, and pay attention before hitting that brick wall.

On the day you can push through don’t. Take a break.The world will continue without you. It always has and will. Remember, Self Matters.

Thank you for stopping by dragthepen ❤️

The Trend of Handballing

Dear Readers,

As many times as it has been said and will be said, Happy New Year! Todays, conversation is not about keeping New Year’s resolutions or encouraging you to make a bucket list. I Think people are more focused on making sense of how to endure this on going pandemic.

Today’s topic is inspired by a sister friend who sent me an article from the New York Post, “What is Handballing”? The newest dating trend for singles, by Josie Griffiths. The term handballing is a dating method used when an individual meets a prospective partner, he or she is very clear, and in some cases aggressively forceful about expectations on how they are willing to pursue a relationship. Ladies I like to speak to concerning this subject because nowadays, women are changing their approach about relationships. The trend that I see is that women are taking steps to establish a foundation of friendship, leading to a relationship and then marriage. Today’s generation of women are clear about not want to be trapped in the cruel cycle of the dating game, messy situationships or entanglements. The article is clear that handballing is the new method that single people are using to avoid wasting time because these individuals are dating with a purpose.

The million-dollar question and concern for women is when is too soon after meeting a person of interest should they handball? After all isn’t the goal of dating with a purpose is to get him interest in you? The answer to that question is no because this is the old way of thinking and pursuing relationships. Handballing isn’t about getting the person to be interested in you,

“handballing” is about digging deep and investigating whether the person is thinking on the same level of emotional maturity, setting standards and boundaries, monogamy, children, no children, marriage, and knowing the importance of compromising fairly. In other words, ladies be up front about the qualities that will be the foundations for developing a lasting relationship. If after having engaged in a hardball question and answer session with your date and he doesn’t call again, oh well, you know what he was after.

I enjoyed the article it is refreshing to know that there is a population of single people who won’t settle and are willing to wait for a suitable partner. To my female readers don’t be afraid to speak up, stop being “ Handballed” by individuals who discourage you by using the myth of the biological clock, or encourage you to take who you can get rather than who is more suitable to your desires. And it is ok to disconnect from dating men who will only want you to “go with the flow and see where things go.” Don’t cheapen yourself by keeping deadbeat men around who will only sweet talk you into being passive and trapped in relationships that don’t fulfill your needs.  Its better to find out where you stand by using “handballing” method than to lower your standards and end up with less than you deserve.

Thank you for reading.

New Year. Newed hope.

Dear Readers, I can happily say that during 2021, I’ve had more highes than lowes. After many challenges my 3rd book was published, and I completed a cross country drive from New York City to California ( thank you Tate for being my road warrior). I became a member of the Central Brooklyn Lions Club and discovered two Ministries that helped me to revive my dying prayer life and Bible study. I joined a gym enjoying my workouts and renewed physical energy. I am deeply thankful that I was able to visit my mother in South Carolina for Thanksgiving. Finally, it took time, therapy, tears and prayer, but I battled through depression and regained my drive and focus to continue with my goals on my vision board.

Looking forward to the blessings of 2022, I am thrilled to leave behind the old negative narrative, people who gossip, and others who want to hold onto old pain. There is no room in my new negative for useless drama, distractions and holding onto yesterday’s pain. It’s been a long time since Ive walked in the light of hope and it feels amazing.

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Happy New Year from J. R. Floyd, creator of dragthepen & Conversations with J. R on YouTube and Amazon Music.

What Are You Waiting For?

Dear Readers,

This may appear to be a picture of an expensive handbag, but when I look at this handbag it represents waiting for a special occasion, the perfect outfit and broken promises. I purchased this handbag March 1, 2021, I carfully stored it away and promised myself that I would use it on my birthday trip March 25, but the trip didn’t happen. Then I said, I’II wait to find the perfect outfit and special occasion to use my beautiful new handbag. Needless to say, I never made it to the mall and the special occasion didn’t happen, so I thought.

What I am getting at is this some of us are guilty of putting things off waiting for the right time, and making promises to ourselves or others breaking them because we dont think about the conquences of not keeping our word. We wait and wait for that big occasion to wear a specal suit, dress, shoes, piece of jewelry or in my case to sport a handbag. Each time I went to my closet and looked at this handbag, I didn’t feel the same excitement as I did when I purchased it. I thought about the price, and how I had to make special room for it to sit on the shelf, with its matching wallet and key chain. When I purchased this handbag I imagined how all eyes would be on me when I walked into the room.

That was nine months ago and today is the day that I wasn’t going to wait any longer to use my handbag. You see I already had the perfect dress, shoes, and place to flash my handbag. It’s Sunday, I visit my of worship and afterwards I usually meet friends for brunch or an early dinner. How foolish of me to put so much importance on a handbag that I could have taken to the market, on my trip to visit my mother, girls night out, and to the nail salon. I forgot that the reason why I purchased the handbag was to use it. After all it’s just a handbag.

Bottom line. Stop putting off living in the moment when the time is right. No material item is worth worshipping, and each day that we live is a special occasion, especially since this pandemic continues to hold the world hostage. Tomorrow I will take my handbag to work and be thankful for being employed.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Happy New Year.

THE YEAR IN REVIEW

The year 2021 is coming to an end and some people are very vocal about this year being another wasted year due to this on going pandemic. I agree that this continuous mutating virus is ignoring. No matter, I am thankful for all that I have been blessed with throughout this year. I am in good health, emotionally, mentally and physically. Most thankfull for employment, and that none of my family or friends have died from this virus. Our family was blessed to welcome a new addition to the family, my great niece MeMe. I accomplished a long time dream to drove cross country, and published another book. My apartment was flooded by hurricane Ida, I am blessed to have an amazing landlord and my apartment has been restored better than new. I was able to visit my mother in South Carolina for Thanksgiving we had an amazing time just the two of us. I can go on and on, but I won’t. I choose to see the good that happened this year. We have had enough of the bad. I hope when you taking a look back you will count your blessings.. Merry Christmas and hope your looking forward to another wonderful New Year.

Thank you for supporting dragthepen ❤

J R Floyd

Relationship Experts. True or False

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Have you noticed the new movement of motivational speakers and relationship experts who claim their sole purpose is to help people discover the hidden secrets of how to have a loving and lasting intimate relationships. There are thousands of books and videos posted on soical media by these self proclaimed relationship experts who earn income form speaking engagements, books and relationship workshops all at the expense of broken hearts and lost souls searching for love.

Women are pouring into relationship conferences that charge a fee to hear what they are doing wrong in their relationships, and how to attract the right partner. I’ve been unsuccessful in love, so I began to pay attention to these relationship experts, and invested money in books and workshops. For the most part I found some of the information useful and discovered areas in my life that needed improvement. But, I am not going to shoulder all the blame for not having successful relationships. Why? Because overtime while attending these relationship workshops I began to notice a trend, most experts heaped the blame for failed relationships on women.

The ideology of these experts seems to centered around advising women to be better, raise their standards, don’t date out side their league, stop chasing men, stop making life easy for men, stop having sex, stop wanting marriage, and wait for the man to make the first move. There theory is that It is the duty of women to guard their virginity because men don’t women who’ve been around the block too many times. Men want good girls, you know the saying, ” sugar and spice and everything nice.” While being a nice girl, women should concentrate on securing an education, building a career, and a solid credit score, and finances in preparation for Prince Charming. And when he comes all her aspiration should shift to serving her family and creating a happy home. I say, most of their expert advice is ” B. S.” and sexism.

Most of the dating resources and advice claim that woman are not supposed to change the rules of dating. A womans position is to be meek, humble, submissive, and attentive to her mans needs. Some relationship experts explain that women contribute to the deterioration of a relationship due to them pursuing careers over a relationship, marriage and children. The experts also suggest that most men leave their homes or have outside relationships because their current partner is not meeting their needs.

I won’t bore you with a list of books, YouTube channels, and podcasts focused on educating women in the ways of how to get and keep a man. I don’t want my readers to think that I am discouraging women from seeking advice to help them find a partner or to save a failing relationship. I am suggesting” let the buyer beware” before dooming themselves to a life of being a spinster. Ladies decide for yourself the information that will or will not be helpful because the bottom line is it takes two to tangle.


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Thank you for stopping by dragthepen ❤️