Through the Fire
This past year was literally hell. I could not sum my 2019 up any better than that. There were some high points, but to be really transparent, I spent the majority of my year fighting depression and oppression. I experienced hurt on top of hurt. The betrayal that I would experience last year, no one, I mean no one could have prepared me for. Imagine your so-called “best friend” completely shattering a pivotal trip and causing you to lose over $1500 and then having no remorse whatsoever in addition to slandering you, not making good on her promises, tearing you down verbally because she doesn’t want to take any responsibility in the demise of your friendship, and lastly threatening to sue you. Yeah, that all played out over the course of 6 whole months before it was all said and done. Let’s not even get started on the 31-day furlough that I was experiencing in the midst of that.
Shortly thereafter, my relationship ended and let’s just say I learned all about baby mama drama. From now on, I will be asking about 25 more questions if a man approaches me who has children, as a matter of fact, I probably will never date another man with children again just to avoid the unhealthy attachments many seem to develop with the mother of said children.
I experienced 3 brutal murders of close loved ones and the unexpected death of my dear uncle Jimmy whose funeral I was unable to attend.
My next major blow was so huge that only a few close friends and my mom know about it, but I will elaborate on that after much prayer and probably in my first or second book. To bring the tragedies to a close, a dear friend that I have known since I was eleven reentered my life in an effort to pursue me. I shared with him all that I had experienced within this year and asked him not to pursue me if he too was still attached to the mother of his child. He said that he was not like the other man and in typical “nigga” fashion pursued me anyway, only for the mother of his child to reappear out of the abyss after a toxic on again and off again relationship and this nigga folded like a deck of cards being shuffled by a novice card player. Now that one hurt because we matched so well or so it seemed and things with us were so easy and effortless, but I’ve learned those soul ties have to be broken from the past first and that after functioning in dysfunction so long, some people subconsciously tend to crave it. On top of that, I came under attack on my job. Let’s face it when that much happens in the course of a year something is bound to suffer and for me, that was my job.
The Saga Continues
A myriad of other things in between the big things happened, but I dare not give some of those things the satisfaction of even being mentioned. I gained the weight back I had lost and frankly, I had begun to really lose myself. It was harder and harder to get out of the bed in the mornings. It was even harder to get a sound peaceful sleep at night. My mind was constantly waring and my emotions were persistently unhinged. There were so many times that I thought I was literally losing my mind. I cried more tears than one could imagine. Yet so many had no idea how low I was and how deep and alone in the pit of darkness and silence I had fallen. I wasn’t able to be consistent at anything because I was so unstable. My life was literally “touch and go” every day.
Honestly, if it wasn’t for God, my faith, a praying mom, and the faithful few friends who were helping me cope and praying for me even when I did not know it, I may have chosen the selfish and alternative route to end my life. Wow, I can’t believe I typed that. I never thought that was something I would admit, but that is where I was. I’m so glad I can say WAS. It had gotten to the point where I was having nightmares about actually following through with it, but I knew that God would not bring me this far to leave me, so I decided to fight and start seeing my therapist again. I refused to let Satan win by giving him the pleasure of snuffing out my bright light. I have given myself so many pep talks even in the most random of places. I bet some people were quietly asking themselves, “is she crazy”. Little did they know I was just trying to make it to the next second, minute or hour of the day.
I know you all are probably wondering is there a point to her telling us all of this? Indeed there is. I’m telling you all this because I know I am not the only one who has gone through of plethora of tragic events in a short span of time and wanted to give up. I’m telling you all this to say, I am still here and so are you and as long as the good Lord wakes us up every morning, that means our purpose on this earth is not yet fulfilled. We must rise from the ashes of yesterday into the marvelous light of today and greet each day as if it is our last. With boldness, we must come from behind the shadows of self-pity and depression and walk-in pursuit of our destinies. No one said it would be easy, but I guarantee you that the promised land is ahead and not behind, so we must continue to press toward the high calling. We must rely on God and all of the resources he has given us to help us fight these battles: the Word, family, friends, and licensed therapist and or psychiatrist. There is no shame in doing what it takes to get your SHIT together because when it is all said and done you and I will be victorious. We must remember that the race is not given to the swift, but to the one that endures to the end and baby we are making it to the end.
Now if that doesn’t get you excited to press on, then I don’t know what will, but let me leave you with 5 takeaways for you to meditate on and carry with you.
“The phoenix must burn to emerge.” – Janet Finch
5 Keys to Emerging as a Phoenix through Tumultuous Times.
Learn the Lesson
Every trial presents us with a test. A test that we either pass or fail. There is a lesson with every test. We must endeavor to learn those lessons the first time so that when we are faced with a similar test, we are well equipped to pass instead of repeating history over and over again. This is key to ensuring that we don’t self-induce our own misery.
Take Time to Heal
This world has a way of making us think we have to rush through the healing process or else we may miss out on our next big break or true love or whatever that thing is for us that we long for so deeply. Don’t drink that water. It’s not water; it is poison. The type of poison that keeps you bound to your past while trying to pursue your future. It is merely a mirage telling you that you are okay to move forward when in reality that still quiet voice is whispering “sit your ass down chile, you ain’t ready”. Many times we are afraid to be alone with ourselves, but let me tell you, once you get comfortable with that, that is half the battle, then the real work can begin. The great part is that you don’t have to do it alone. Talk to a therapist. I am an advocate for therapy. You have to do the work in order to become whole. It doesn’t just happen and it definitely does not happen overnight. As a matter of fact, I am consecrating my 2020 to healing and focusing on me and me only. No distractions and no pouring into everyone and everything else just to end up empty and unproductive. I’m doing ME!
Regroup and Refocus
This is the part that I love the most. Go back to the point in time where you were truly happy. You know when you were drinking your water and minding your business like Sarah Jakes Roberts behooves us all to do. Oh and don’t forget when you were exercising and eating right, had your finances in order, knocking out your goals like a true champion, and living life like it is golden. Yeah, that time period. Grab hold of that to help you regroup. Once you regroup, now you can refocus. All those goals you set that fell to the wayside are still there ready to be accomplished. Now get to it, they aren’t going to accomplish themselves.
Don’t Look Back
Often times when we look back and when we do, we fall into the same destructive patterns that left us in a very desolate place. In relation to people, we must start to understand that it is rare for people to change. It does not mean that people don’t ever change, but it is a rare occurrence for people to make that final decision to do a complete 180. It may not be super rare, but the real truth is change takes time and time waits for no one, so why should you? I was always the one giving someone a second and sometimes even a third chance because I just had this innate ability to see the best in someone or the potential of who they could be, but at the end of the day, they hadn’t changed. They had just learned to paint a pretty picture with some beautiful words and sometimes even corresponding actions just long enough to suck me back in. Unfortunately, it was never long before the same old person showed up again. Finally, I learned to simply let go and never look back even when it hurt like hell. Frankly, it has served me so much better than the draining repetitious toxic cycle that never helped me elevate or move forward. Letting go and not looking back has taught me how strong I am and to value the time given instead of wasting it on dead situations with people who do not serve me in a positive way.
This is not just for people though. It could be a career path or way of thinking. Whatever it is that you are trying to escape or you have escaped, please know that you can do it and if you have already done it, keep moving forward. The future is all that matters at this point and you have the power to shape it for the best.
Live life to the fullest, but more than anything live it in freedom. The freedom I am talking about is not average. It means freedom from guilt, self-pity, regret, unforgiveness, self-doubt, and any limiting beliefs that would hold you in bondage. What hurts to move forward from is often where our freedom lies.
First Day of 2020
On this day, January 1, 2020, I can actually say I feel amazing. I feel like myself again. I’ve cried because I’m happy today and not because some issue at work or some little boy trying to be a man breaking my heart or being betrayed by someone that once called me their best friend. I’m happy because I am the phoenix that arose out of the ashes of 2019 with no smell of smoke on me because the refiner’s fire is perfect. It shaped me for success and molded me for a glorious future. I’m not just stronger. I am now a warrior.
Arise lovies, it is our time to shine. It is our time to WIN!