Monday, October 1, 2018

Queens Don't Die, They Finish

There is nothing more wondrous than regaining one's faculties after a mentally disturbing life-jolt. Ahhh... 

There is nothing worst, however, than being pushed down and discarded as if you're nothing at all; as if your presence is no longer desired, and your services are no longer preferred. Being swapped out for something better can be, and is often, the lowest point of a relationship (be it work or personal), and is a death threat to any possibility of restoration. What happened to the accomplishments, the standards you once lived by? What happened to the queenly aura that lured feeble ones in for just a touch of your strength?

Gray women and queens whose lives have been abruptly halted, suffer mental trauma and loss of respect that most don't fully recover from. Not because it's impossible, but because the work to get back up, and restore your placement, is honestly disgustingly difficult. Men, on the other hand, tend to reclaim their store a lot easier, faster; White men, foreign men, Black American men - in that order - just have an easier time of it compared to women. That is not to say that they don't suffer mental anguish after trauma, too. They just tend to get past it a whole lot quicker as they work, while crazy, with a fair amount of proficiency! 

Seriously, can you imagine the queen of England being stripped of her riches, her authority, her regalia, and the kingdoms over which she reigns, and tossed out on her keister at midnight without her glasses and hearing aid, only to land in a far different land than any she's known before? She'd be sniffed out like Lemuel Gulliver was by a bunch of Lilliputians when he landed among them after being shipwrecked in Lilliput! Surely, you remember the very old classic, Gulliver's Travels, by Jonathan Swift. This fictitious character was caught by a surpris horrific journey that landed him in one strange culture after the other, after experiencing back-to-back life-mishaps. Through it all, he longed to be home with his family instead. Journeying among lands you can't identify with strikes your curiosity, but it can also strike you dumb; strange languages are as interesting as they are confusing, even frightening, when you're ill-equipped.

Okay, you're among commoners who have heard of you and watched you from afar for decades. Now here you are at their feet, on their turf, walking and existing alongside them. They don't understand your true identity because - due to exposure - you, too, have taken on a common appeal. So, what do they do with you? They clump you in with them and utilize your fear to leverage their own standards upon you. Will you let them, or are you too tired from the journey to care?
You may be naked on the outside, but the queen lives on, inside. Your hair may be disheveled and your lipstick faded, but you are still an honorable woman who stands firm within. Even if you've lost your signature scent, and the royals can no longer detect your presence, you persist. Others no longer have an assurance about you; they have doubts about your true essence; they've heard about your ejection, they've seen your nakedness, but your assignment is not up. It's still upon you, you're just in a far distant land where commoners are marveling because they sense something special about you, and don't know what to do with you. Nonetheless, you must work while they gawk. You still think like a queen who rules. You can't help that. But, unfortunately, you've taken on the commoner's scent. You've taken on their coif, too, since you no longer bear a crown. Their diet is now your diet - how else will you eat? You've become sick. Shaken. You must call on the strength that never left you in order to build a new kingdom among the commonplace; a kingdom that has awaited your wise abilities. It was willing to receive you by any means. They relished your arrival.

So, here you are now in jeans, and a bedazzled tee, ready to dispense upon them the richness made gentler with humility. You're a new improved queen minus a castle, minus a throne, minus the scent of the pure essence of roses once warmed by your silver temples that thumped out migraines on your journey to being restored. You're simply clean with a scent of calm and repose.

Know this... you cannot kill a queen. You cannot trade her off, either. A queen dies away when she's finished her course. 

She may no longer look like a traditional queen, or smell like one, either. Her smile may be chapped and her lips parched, but it remains colored in a fetching hue. Regardless, her assignment lives on, as does she. Her jolting journey would have killed a common woman. The mere fact that she walks on, upright, says it all. The palace may have ejected her, the nobles may have decided upon a new queen, but you can't discard one queen for another because queens don't die, they finish.

Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift (October 1726)

Nhat Crawford, author
Single For The First Time

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Though You Walk Through A Valley Naked - a poetic message

Though I walk through a valley naked, I have no fear of not finding clothes better than the ones I shed! 

Although the green valley turns into desert, I will fear no heat. I will survive though the lilies about me have already shriveled and died;
My Helper rains justice and favor upon me;
Although the walk is long, I know it is not forever, only my hope is ever before me...
Though the shadow of death looms and harrows, I must  upraise my voice and change the directions of the arrows - discharged toward me;
Though I walk through a valley naked, I will fear no chill by the longest night though it be bitter toward me;
I will fear no rapist. My Helper, my Life is within me; 
I walked and walked the scorching sands. I fell and fell til my knees burned and blood covered my hands. I folded my oozing hands in prayer, arose and ran til sweat doused the sand - weary...
But, Life didn't leave me, lest I died like the pretty lilies did before me;
Instead I cleaved as it was not my time to ascend into the wind although I walked through a valley naked.
Now for you my friend, I tell you, have no fear of finding new clothes better than the ones you shed!
Though your green valley may turn to desert sand don't fear the torrid heat.
You can survive. Just stay beneath His rain, it'll restore your muddled mind like no other can.
Although the walk may be long, know it's not forever.
Keep hope awake, don't let it sleep. Keep the vision before you for one day you shall leap - into the cool dawn.  
Though a shadow of death looms, walk by what you know, not by what you see.
Work til your change comes;
Though your voice be cracked or hushed, cry quiet like Hannah did and wait;
You will give birth again.
Though you walk through a valley naked, fear no chills during the long unfair nights;
Don't fear those who desire you and cannot afford you.
Your Helper is within you and rides upon your voice;
So, though you walk through a desert naked, call.

Nhat Crawford, author
Single For The First Time
Black Coffee, One Sugar
Atlanta, Georgia

Monday, November 27, 2017

You May Stand Alone Awhile But Stand Tall, For Goodness' Sake!

Think it can't happen to you? Think again. Proof is in the American pudding that women (and men) over fifty, after divorce or widowhood end up standing alone, in droves, in the struggle of their lives, especially in this current administration. Recently, I read an article Unemployed, 55 and Faking Normal. I was shocked! Even I identified with much of its content, at some point in time, during my ten years divorced over forty, sometimes employed, sometimes not, sometimes contracted to write, sometimes not, sometimes well, sometimes ill, sometimes able, sometimes not.  It's way too easy to do-- to become homeless and alone!

Well, I guess I should define "homeless" first. 
  • If it's not your own... you're posting up in someone's bedroom in their house and they are scowling at your situation... you're homeless.
  • If you're on the streets, nowhere to lay your head, but the park bench... you're homeless.
  • If you are penniless and shelter bound... you are homeless.
  • If you have lost your home and are temporary parked on someone's sofa... you're homeless.
  • If you are still employed, but come home from work to the sofa in the corner of the living room of someone else's home because you're temporarily displaced... you're as good as homeless.
I've learned that there is an art to struggling after a life of stability. There's an art to keeping your head above water when its gray, and perhaps unmarketable. There's an art to maintaining your sanity when your future looks like it could very well be roof-less. There's a method to the madness of being over fifty, under divorce, widowed, with insufficient income.

I saw another heart-wrenching article called The Graying Of America's Homeless, and immediately thought, but that doesn't have to be! Who am I to judge, but it looked to me like they'd given up and resigned to homelessness. Struggle or not, at least in the struggle there's still a roof over your head, so don't resign! I couldn't understand a seventy-year-old woman on the streets after being evicted five years earlier. What I could understand was the threat of being evicted and having my faith in tact, and prayers in order, with my belief in tow that I would have a place to stay, and I did. So, the only thing I could offer was real-life advice on how to save oneself from becoming homeless. The potential is real.

In Single For The First Time, page 137, I wrote:

"A mature, newly divorced woman has her best days ahead of her, but she must know it, and breathe life into this fact. Statistically, an older dependent woman will live out her days on the meager side of life after a divorce, or the death of her husband. However, it is most unfortunate when that forty, fifty, even sixty-year old, unemployed, friendless, newly single woman believes that she must be lumped into these stats, feeling she's got nothing much to live for. That kind of woman could buy into this lie, and unwittingly walk herself into a dejected place that blinds her to her favorable future."

Stand Tall in Willpower - The struggle will kill you without willpower. No time to lay down, cower down, or sit down. Period.

Stand Tall with Your Words - When you've got nothing else, you've got your words.
"I don't know what I'm gonna do,"
"I don't want to bother my kids," or
"I guess I'll just…"
Listen, put away the notion that words don't matter. I PROMISE YOU… YOUR WORDS MATTER. They matter so much that when you speak them, things around you change. Things around you come in alignment with what you say, see (internally) and believe. You can literally speak and believe yourself into a better situation!

Stand Tall, Respect The Struggle - It is important to stay present; accept where you are, but see yourself where you want to be. Some people fall into fantasy and only see themselves living so far beyond where they are, that they lose focus on the work needed to literally get them in a more progressive place. Then others only see where they are. The struggle is not forever, it is only for now. You have the power to speed up, or slow down your pending change. Keep at it. It's coming!

Stand Up and Know That Money Is Everywhere Get yours! Your grey top may scare away some would-be employers, but keep looking. Pride will cause permanent poverty, so find a job or solve a problem (start a business), quickly! You can get hired somewhere if you have the right countenance.  OR, you can do your thing right from home. The day we live in makes it très easy! Go to YouTube, for starters, and look up info on streams of income to earn right from home, or with your hands! Or, if someone wants to pay you to clean their 10, 000 sf area, do it! Sew, cook, crochet, knit, bake, babysit, become a Nanny. Become an influencer and offer great info and content. You have it because of your experience! Or, simply go to work somewhere until you can do better. Being homeless is unnecessary when you're still able-bodied. 

Prayer - Worry will disjoint you. Choose prayer and meditation instead. Not complaining, just prayer. Not casting blame, prayer. It's true that you don't have to worry about anything at all, but in every single issue in your life, if you put your tears and anguish with prayer, and show thankfulness, make your requests known in prayer to God. Yes, I said God, not G-d. He is Life. He and we are actually ONE. So don't frustrate yourself by thinking that He's out there somewhere in the unreachable yonder. Quiet yourself and LISTEN within! He is as close to you as your very breath!

Nhat Crawford, author, suffered displacement after illness and grey divorce for many years before things finally turned around, so she knows first-hand the woes of standing alone, and the necessity of standing tall, regardless. Her book, Single For The First Time is a go-to for those threatened with the plight of grey divorce, temporary poverty, and displacement.

Contact information:
Atlanta, Georgia

Friday, May 20, 2016

Single For The First Time : Gremlins In My Belly!

Single For The First Time : Gremlins In My Belly!: The Long Grey Divorce Walk There is always room for help to those in the throes of Grey Divorce  where shock abounds. As you're slo...

Gremlins In My Belly!

The Long Grey Divorce Walk

There is always room for help to those in the throes of Grey Divorce where shock abounds. As you're slogging about, numbed by the disruption of a life that was supposed to be forever… until 'death do us part'… it looks grim. Twenty, thirty years of marriage investment, even longer for some, gone in the firey puff of one decision. And, you weren't prepared.

They say that a person's placement in life is their own doing; that they put themselves right in the midst of the divorce… the breakup… or any other malformed occurrence in one's life. If life is a struggle, it's their own fault. If life is glorious, that's their own doing, too - they say. For a long while, I disagreed with this. It made no sense to me. I figured this conclusion came from mere over-zealous self-help stuff. I was stuck on blaming my outward forces; my introspection was limited.
"Nope. Sorry! Tell that to someone who doesn't know better," I argued.
"I was thrown into divorce. I didn't ask for it," I sadly sang.
"I'm displaced because of him," I had cried.
"I'm poor because of him!" I shouted.
"My life's calling has been disrupted because he threw me away to struggle on my own,"I cried some more.
"I didn't do this to myself, he did!" I complained.
"I'm without a home because of him," I thought.
"I live at rock bottom all because of his decision. He put me here!"

Those were the cries of the frightened lost soul I'd become and I've heard other grey divorcees chant the same. As for me, I actually believed those accusations and spewed them for a long time. Those thoughts encircled my mind and nearly smothered me to death. Whatever I could no longer do was because he'd taken away my cushion, my provision, my stability and devastated my children in the interim. I was convinced!

That was my mantra. Period. Then one day I woke up.

Wow! How mentally ill I'd become because my attention had turned towards me, my and mine. I'd been thrusted into a maze and didn't know which direction to try first to escape. But, while standing there, confused, sulking, I was forced inward and found my own faulty gremlins rejoicing inside my belly because they'd won! After further self-observation it occurred to me that they couldn't claim total victory because I was, after all, still standing.

When any of us find ourselves at an impasse, the very first thing we MUST do, is find how we contributed. 

It's an imperative that we cannot circumvent. If we do, we are subject to die like a dog for no good reason in the midst of an already gross disruption in life. It's likely that we will not have to search that deep or wide to find ourselves at the core of the problem!

Your spouse can be 80% at fault, but it's probably your 20% that tipped it over.

No fair? It doesn't really matter, unfortunately. In the struggle against death (which is what divorce mimics), fairness flies away as present reality demands all of our attention. In this case, kill pride, face yourself, bow down and heal slowly and thoroughly. If you don't, your unhealed thought life, or decision making, will impede your progress. Up ahead there lies the new person you'll become, so be deliberate.
What you do today…
How you handle the real truth about your fault in your marital demise…
The words that leave your mouth… 
These fill your new world, affects your future, and how well it goes for you. Who you will become rides on these!  
Grey Divorce can feel like the end of the world, but it isn't. It's just the end of the world YOU had grown accustomed to. I tell you, once I was out here - in Single Land - I found it to be massive, cold and nearly impossible to navigate through. Too many women lose their way there and are never found whole again. Their view becomes misted with fear and all else that is wrong with this new world. The easiest thing for a grey divorcee to do, after being tossed out on her bum, is to spin out of control, dizzy, because she doesn't know what's right anymore.

She likely doesn't know that the first thing she must do is protect herself and keep the rest of her life from being ill-judged and toppled over.

How in the world does a new "grey head" do that? Here's how: Read, pray and listen… A LOT (for starters!). Counseling, too? Of course! 

On this journey from marriage and co-dependency, to first-time singleness, I've done just that. After a few years living divorced, I even wrote a book [that I hadn't seen in bookstores; one that would serve as a handbook of sort to get other over-forty first-time divorcees through the maze], entitled: Single For The First Time. I'm happy to report that the book has become an invaluable key to enlighten women spiritually, emotionally - for starters - after the death of their long-term marriages.

Nhat Crawford
Here's a quote from one of Wallace D. Wattles' books that blew me away, then brought me back!:
 "You have nothing to keep right but yourself; if you keep yourself right, nothing can possibly go wrong with you and you have nothing to fear. No business or other disaster can come upon you if your personal attitude is right, for you are a part of that which is increasing and advancing and you must increase and advance with it…. If you see the world as a lost and ruined thing you will see yourself as a part of it, and as partaking of its sins and weaknesses. If your outlook for the world as a whole is hopeless, your outlook for yourself cannot be hopeful."

This quote was a game changer for me. As grey divorcees, we are way too old, too seasoned to stagnate ourselves in victimization. Look inside, find it, learn what this world has for you as an individual, then live!

   Next, I read: 
"If you see the world as declining toward it's end, you cannot see yourself as advancing. Unless you think well of all the works of God you cannot really think well of yourself, and unless you think well of yourself you can never become great."

The point is, women who have been discarded, or have felt as if they have been, must think well of themselves regardless, all the while remaining humble, in order to reach the greatness that is still theirs. Realizing her errors is a victory, not an encumbrance to offend her, or weigh her down. Humility, not anger, will open up this new world to share its wonders and welcome her aboard.

Yes, people are talking and bringing up your past - your calamity. But, hey, deal with it. They've seen you fall so what else do you expect them to do? They will talk! Perhaps, they've seen you living poorly in your time of transition. Your mistakes and patting to find your way in the dark was done before their eyes and became gossip material for them. Now, make it a point to live well, too, right before their eyes. And, if at all possible, don't stay down too long after you've searched yourself and found hidden peccadillo gremlins within! That was all in the past. You made wrong decisions and it costed you. Own them, first. Discard them next. Be better and move on. If the past wasn't meant to be gotten over, the world would hang motionless in the universe. But, instead, it is an ever revolving mass of life and reproduction. So must you be, too. Just keep walking with your sights toward the light up ahead!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


There's no feeling like getting an email, Facebook inbox message, or phone call from a woman whose seen or heard of my book, Single For The First Time, asking how they can get a copy because their husband of thirty years wants a separation, or divorce. It's heartbreaking. Where is this epidemic spawning from? Is it from deep within the wife? Has she become slack in her femininity, or something? Perhaps her eyes have become dim and she no longer sees her husband's needs, or his wandering eye. Maybe the light's gone from his eyes, and he wants to be alone. Bored maybe? What if he's just tired and wants a change of scenery. Who the heck knows?

But, there is a harsh reality that I do know: Women over forty, married and content had better learn that, no matter how lovely, nothing lasts forever. Have your personal ducks in a row so that life won't wipe you out should you have to go it alone. Period.

'Oh, Lord! Nhat, how dare you say such a thing! And you call yourself a God fearing woman?!' 

Yes, ma'am and sir, I sure am a God loving, trusting, and fearing woman who lives in a fallen world surrounded by arms of flesh that fail every day. When my arms of flesh walked out the door my ducks were not in a row. Heck, I didn't even have any ducks, so I thought.

Look, I know that women these days are a lot more savvy; they're career focused (after their family, I hope), co-partners in business with their spouse; even the stay-at-home moms are taking on virtual jobs, and the like, to earn a little something between chores and the responsibilities of marriage. The truth is, it is smart to put some focus on self-care and self-love. That includes income… savings… investments… something!

 One day you just might have to carry yourself. You may even have to carry your husband. Stuff happens! Roles switch!
 (Sometimes, right before walking out the door)

This is not a day and time for wives to trade duties for financial stability. I'm not always sure if women who get such horrible news are working women, or at least a contributor of more than food, sex and cleaning, but I do know that a man wants to be able to differentiate his wife from his kids. They all have their breaking point. We all do.

Would I say to the nearing fifty marrieds, 'Don't get too comfortable'? Uh, yes. I'd be bold enough to say that. 

The only comfort you should relish in is making sure you're working as hard and as smart as he is. God forbid, he isn't! Stay practiced. I don't care if you're the good Christian, the devoted Buddist, the unsure Agnostic, or the apathetic Atheist. The matter here is being a woman whose life could change by the whim of your man's emotions that you will not be able to figure out on your own. Fortify YOURSELF, first. If being first is good enough for a plane ride-- you know, when the flight attendant tells you to put the oxygen mask on YOURSELF FIRST, then your child, or neighbor-- then this principle will work well for you in life. Besides, helping you, helps you to help him. Selah.

Copies available -


Monday, December 14, 2015

Self-love Never Hurt A Greyhead, Yet


Too many times women, even men, of Grey Divorce (who I often call Greyheads) suffer needlessly in the areas of esteem, and various self-disciplines. Their strength wanes until they are not much good for themselves, let alone another. However, I've learned that SELF IS FIRST, not a new 'other' or the one who left you behind!

Let's face it, divorce over forty, fifty, and beyond, is a grungy place to end up. It's like living under an eternally starless night. What a weakening place to be!  
(but you gotta keep walking)

(but you gotta dig for it)

(but you must trust and believe it)

(but you must [we must] never give up)

These possibilities all point back to you and me, however. There is no proverbial six-pack, or real one, without discipline, which is nothing more than self-love. This is a lesson I'm learning with you!

When I ran across this article How to Grow Self-Discipline, by Robin Sharma, I had to share it with you. Take the meat and leave any bones, of course, but check it out nonetheless. Don't just be inspired there in your seat, either. Get up and do this in the name of self-love. That ballerina above didn't get that way by giving up, lacking discipline, or not loving herself, that's for sure. Let's do this together!