I Don’t Know How to Say Goodbye

I lost someone, they said he passed yesterday. He was more than a friend, he was my confidante. No matter how much time lapsed from talking, we always picked right back up. Of course we’d have to catch up with who was new in our life and how much Miah has grown or when he finally became a dad. He would have done whatever I asked of him without question. He was the type of friend that would help me hide a body or just listen to me go on and on about how I thought I was failing at the whole mom thing and he would confidently tell me I’m the best mom he knows and how lucky my son is. He always greeted me with “hello beautiful” and ended our conversation with “have a blessed day”.

In recent years we had grown farther apart than we had ever been. I reached out when my world was falling apart and it seems his was too. He had just gotten a horrible health diagnosis and was spiraling downward too fast for me to catch him. The cheery positive man I knew was nowhere to be found. Almost 30 years of friendship and he was pushing me away because he couldn’t lie to me and I didn’t sugarcoat shit with him. We were real with each other always. I kept trying to reach out and was met with silence or opposition until two months ago when I received an apology and what seemed like my friend back. He was still sick but willing to seek help for his other issues for the sake of his son. I contacted him a few days later and never heard back. Caught up in everything with my Nana, I’ve been distracted. I thought of him yesterday and now maybe it is because he was with me at that moment, having already left this Earth.

My brother told me over Messenger and I’ve been a crying mess all day. I am numb and mad and in disbelief. I actually started to text him to tell me this isn’t true but stopped myself before I hit send. The people in his life they only took from him, used him and tossed him aside until he was needed again and now they are all distraught. I hate this for him. I hate that his son will not know how wonderful his father was. That yes, he made mistakes and fought many demons and he may not always show up but he always did when you needed him. He was loyal and kind and just a kid that was trying to find where he belonged.

We both took turns in life having a crush on each other but then we became adults and we ended up so much more than that. We were kindred souls, forever friends and this just sucks. He has seen me through heartache and all the things that have gone wrong in my life. He never tried to rescue me from it, only gave me patience and understanding as I worked through it on my own. He knew that I always faded away but we would catch up eventually.

I don’t know what life will be like knowing I can’t randomly text him ever again. That he left this Earth not the man he wanted to be… his demons had too strong a hold on him. I thank God that it was his health that took him while he slept instead of his vices. I find comfort in the fact that he can now always be with his son and that he is no longer suffering. This doesn’t feel real. I can’t believe that if his family holds a funeral, the next and last time I will see will be in a casket. It has been probably almost 10 years since we’ve seen each other… God, why did I wait so long?

It really makes me think about who I want in my life and what am I doing about it. We don’t have time to wait or else we run the risk of it being too late. Make sure your people know how much they mean to you. Show up, even if they push you away, show up and if you’re the one pushing…stop. I didn’t get to say goodbye. I don’t even know how to. My friend, I thank you for being such a big part of who I am. Thank you for being someone I could count on for anything. Your friendship meant so much to me and I pray I have the opportunity to share stories of you with Jack Jack one day. Rest in peace…. be blessed. ♡

To be or not to be…

I am struggling, I mean really struggling with my speech. It is due in two days. I haven’t finished writing it which means of course, I haven’t practiced it. Trying to tick all of the boxes off the list I was given does not give me the freedom to write or speak how I do. Having to cite a kajillion sources and create a outline with each point as only one sentence. This isn’t fun. Tomorrow I think I may just write what I want and go with it. I don’t need an A on this speech, I don’t need an A in the class. A C will do. But, the thought of me caving, makes me want to drop the class and forget it all. I can’t do that.

I can’t sacrifice who I am to benefit someone else. Especially if that someone else is a professor. We all have our own way of doing things, and unless there is a particular process necessary to get us from A to B, it shouldn’t really matter how we get there as long as we do. I had this issue with my Government professor last semester and it appears to be my Speech professor this semester. I mean, she is amazingly supportive but, there are so many rules that I find more confining than required. My creativity doesn’t seemed to be welcomed.

My mom told me I needed to do what was being asked of me. I am unable to oblige. I’ll take the hit and write something worthy of me presenting. I am not trying to be disobedient, I have learned that I have to be true to myself though. That is a must for me now. I have to be proud of the work I do. Speaking of that, this flows in to all areas of my life. What I dedicate my time and energy to, it is what I believe in, what I’m willing to fight for.

We did a food run this evening. My Uncle and my boy wanted Popeyes. We took Raiyhn for the ride. It was nice to be silly and sing to music and enjoy the time. The sky on the way back, it was serene. The clouds were white with the blue sky above them and hints of pink below and the mountains right under that. It was a breathtaking sight. I felt so calm and at peace. I found it difficult to drive because I just wanted to take in all of what was in front of me. Closing my eyes now, I can still picture it. Just beautiful.

I try to live simply. To focus on what matters and push the rest aside. I wasted too much time worrying and it got me nowhere. Now I give all that to God and work on what I have the ability to control. As I consider my next career move, I fear being boxed in by rules and regulations that do not give me the opportunity to find my way. I pray that’s not the case. Take each day as it comes I suppose.

I’m not sure where taking this stance on my speech is going to get me except for me being true to myself. It is the best I can do and the only thing that feels right. I hope that my professor understands and doesn’t grade me too harshly. Let’s see what magic i can make happen.

Do what feels right to you…notice I didn’t say what feels good. Good and right may not go hand in hand. Can you look at yourself in the mirror? Are you proud of who is staring back at you? Are you living in a manner that makes you feel more you? Stop being who you’re expected to be and be who you are meant to be. Not sure? When you’re living authentically, you’ll know it. You won’t be bothered by judgements and your gut should not feel like it is doing somersaults. You’ll feel more at peace, teaching you how you should feel for future decisions. Be true to you and everything else will work itself out.

Now back to this speech….

Stamina

How’s your long game? This thing we are doing, it is a forever kind of thing. Growing and learning, it never stops. We never reach perfection, and thank goodness because that would make life boring. We have to pace ourselves, still recognize our small victories but understand that anything that comes easy is probably not worth the effort spent to attain it.

While I have come far, my life is still not where it should be. I have plenty of setbacks each and every day. Most I discuss here but, bigger things, those are kept close to my chest. I am always juggling many things at once. I have admitted that I am struggling to keep me and my schooling a priority during this time I’ve needed to help my Nana. Today again, I had to choose being here with her over doing other important things, schoolwork being one of them. I am just sitting watching TV with her but, she enjoys the companionship and I enjoy being the one to give it to her.

Don’t assume you know what someone is going through, don’t judge unless ye too shall be judged. I had to have some tough conversations this evening and it is frustrating.

I tell you one thing though, I’m blessed to have the children that I do. Man, my Miah, he’s got a good heart and he really steps up when he knows I need him to. He is having a hard time this week. Something he was super excited for didn’t pan out for him. I got his hopes up but, he’s not mad, only disappointed. The other day we were comparing bellies, I don’t know why, because we are silly and I said something about how I need to work on mine. He said for me not to worry about it. He knows I’m dealing with a lot but he has no doubt that when things settle down that I will work on losing weight again. He saw how hard I was working before. I swear, this kid doesn’t say much but what he does say, he never ceases to amaze me.

We’ve got to keep going you know? We can’t give up and we can’t run out of steam. We can however, reward ourselves. When all this is said and done, I see a mini vacation or shoot, maybe a whole one in our future. No sweating the small stuff. Life is meant to be lived…live, love and be happy! Yes, let’s be happy. We may get knocked down but let’s not stay down. We deserve more than that. Well, I think this is where I leave you, until tomorrow that is. Wish me speech writing luck! Xo

Lost and Low on Hope

I know all too well what it feels like to get knocked down again and doubt if you have the strength to pick yourself back up. I’ve done it so many times. Add depression into normal life circumstances and things become even tougher. I’ve stayed down longer than I should sometimes, conserving my energy because I knew the climb up was going to be harder than I’ve ever experienced. But, it’s in that unwillingness to admit defeat spirit that I have always been able to dig my way out of the darkness, regardless of how tight of a grip it has had on me.

I refuse to have a victim mentality and don’t really accept it from anyone else. Yes, bad things happen, sometimes shit doesn’t go our way. That is life. How are you going to choose to react to it? You’re just going to give in? Wallow in self pity? Let all the naysayers have their way? I will not allow another’s opinion of me define me. I will always get back up and find a way to keep going. God never gives us more than we can handle, we have to be willing to roll with the punches.

I know that hope is hard to come by and that the darkness tries to consume the light. The world is a mess and it is easier to go with the flow than go against the grain. But, being a follower, making stupid, selfish and irresponsible decisions, well, that doesn’t look good on anyone. Everyone is your friend when you’re having a good time, when life seems easy but, who is there when the going gets tough? Who can you count on when you’re wandering around aimlessly in the dark? To lift you up off the ground and support you in your times of need? Those gems are rare.

Excuses are like assholes, everyone has one. I can give you excuses… so many as to why I should be able to lay in bed and never get up. I don’t have the luxury because I have children depending on me…looking to me for guidance and love and to set an example. Boys that I have to show how to treat a woman and set the standard for their standards and girls that need to see a kick ass Auntie and know that woman are powerful beings. Even in my worst day, I chose to keep it together for their sake.

Drowning in sorrow is not my cup of tea. Turning can’ts into cans…well, that I can work with. I’m all about breaking habits and being my authentic self. It is frustrating especially at a time like this when people are dying because of a virus and so many others are frivolously living their lives. I think it’s a slap in the face to those that have gone. Be respectful of the life God has given you, live each day to the fullest. Not foolishly but by being the best you possible. We make mistakes but, I’ve learned that God rewards effort. If you don’t feel that God is on your side at the moment, chances are, you’re not doing your part. What a shame that is.

This day took a lot out of me. I’ve been lacking the motivation to do my schoolwork and just feeling like my own worst enemy. I find a way to give little pushes forward but I also know that I have to be patient. As long as I can remain a priority regardless of what other issues I am facing, God will find a way to guide me to what needs to be done. Talk to Him, He can help you too. Well, I have a speech due in 3 days and it isn’t even written. I need to clear my head and get back in the game. I’ve just been reminded lately that not everyone is as strong as I have been and I want to say it is possible. You just have to believe in yourself. Anyways, we are still having a hard time with Nana and my focus isn’t where it should be. Sorry I am all over the place. Have a good evening.

Happy Easter

Man, this shit’s unflatterin’, all up in my head again
I don’t feel myself right now, maybe I should just lay down
If vanity’s my vitamin, well, I don’t feel the difference
I don’t like myself right now, gotta find a way out. What you feel is natural
But I don’t wanna feel this anymore
Pick yourself up off the kitchen floor
What you waitin’ for?Girl, won’t you stop your cryin’?
I know that you’re tryin’
Everything’s gonna be okay
Baby girl, don’t you hang your head low
Don’t you lose your halo
Everyone’s gonna be okay
Baby girl

Channeling a little Marren Morris this evening…. bare with me. First and foremost, Happy Easter my friends! Who woke up this morning feeling refreshed and like a new beginning was upon you? Just me? I hope not. I started the day with some RedBull and straight in to making deviled eggs and potato salad at the same time. I was excited to be responsible for Easter dinner. I sang my heart out to Spotify, of course mom and dad had to comment on the range of music that played and kind of rolled their eyes when I blasted and loudly sang one of my favorite worship songs. Come on… I love This is the Day! And… today IS the day God made for us and I was making full use of it.

After some convincing of the parents, we were able to pick up Charlie to spend this afternoon with us. Nana still isn’t feeling well, she’s actually been too weak to even leave the bedroom. I’ve been praying and hovering while trying not to get discouraged. My Uncle kept her company for a few hours so, that was a good thing. It was a relaxed day and I received many compliments for the meal. I felt so honored, it was neat. We had then to rush the Charlie home to meet the time we were given to drop her off…. and had planned another stop that didn’t happen.

Honestly, I was angry. More for Miah than me. But, I had to remind myself that everything happens for a reason. I bought some cute dresses yesterday. So, I threw one on and was going to get all dressed up. I decided against it because I love who I am and how I look. I rocked eyeliner and mascara and my natural wavy hair. I think I killed it and felt beyond beautiful. I didn’t want to waste time with family to get dolled up and for what? I was happy already. Peace has given me clarity.

I’m not at a point in life where I am looking to change anyone’s mind…. well, until my persuasive speech that is! Lol I don’t want to change people or convince them of anything. I can love and support and encourage but, that is it. People in glass houses should not throw stones. While I do not mean talking about people, I mean that I am still learning and growing so, I am not going to try to act like I know it all. I know what worked for me. I know how to be a good listener and to loyally support my people in a judgment free zone.

So, a little off track but, I got in a little funk and then talked myself out of it. I do what I do for the right reasons and with good intent. That is all I can do. I am happy with myself and my ability to understand my limitations. I have come so far from where I started. I should make something to put on replay. What’s meant for me will find a way…. over and over. And not to stress over things I can’t control. Man, when did I turn into sunshine and rainbows? When did my little raincloud go away? I am no longer Sadness, by golly, I think I am Joy!

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. I have to adjust my crown 👑 real quick and remember who I am. In the words of Drake, I’m a motherf#&$ing legend! Haha… yes, feeling myself today. But seriously, I’m doing what must be done and remaining true to myself, sometimes those can’t be accomplished simultaneously. Hard as it is, it is so worth it. I am worthy of my crown, I am worthy of where I am at and the things coming my way. Trust and believe that God is guiding the way. Pause, take a deep breath, you’ll feel it too. May you all stay blessed. Love ya!

Do Everything with Meaning

I’m an all about the little things type of woman. I take time to pick out just the right card and really put thought into my gifts. I don’t just buy some random thing off Amazon and call it a day. I think it’s because I never had too much to spend but also, I wanted to make it count, make the recipient feel special.

I think that I accomplished that for my boys this Easter. I am proud of the gifts… Miah already has his of course (I’ve learned not to buy things without him present). We had a great day shopping. It has been forever since we’ve been out like that and although we are exhausted, it was much needed. Charlie got to come with so it was very nice. I hid empty eggs for them. The one with the most eggs got to pick where we ate lunch and the one that found the golden egg 🥚 got $20. Miah technically won both but Charlie pushed him out of the way to get the golden egg.

We ended up getting sushi for lunch and ate it in the car in the parking structure at the mall. It was nice though and the California rolls were super fresh. We shopped in many stores and I must admit, although waiting in lines was the name of the game today, the customer service in every store was impeccable. I am impressed. Everyone was mindful of the social distancing and did a great job of wiping down the counters before ringing up a new customer. I could get used to that level of awareness from retailers.

Overall, we had an awesome day. We did learn that we are not built to wear masks for an extended period of time. We did have some great conversations and got to be silly. Charlie wanted pictures with the Easter Bunny so bad but Miah wouldn’t do it. I took picture of them though so…. she got those. I wasn’t able to get my little’s stuff to him. I have to figure it out by tomorrow. Ah… lol

I think it is time for a new tattoo. I need something to hurt so good. Well, shit, I’ve had a years worth of that but, I need some new ink. I found the perfect tattoo and now it is just calling for me. All of my tattoos can be hidden, thats kind of what I like about them. I choose if I want them shown. This new one will not be able to be hidden. So, I have to choose wisely, again do everything with meaning.

Tomorrow is Easter. I will be preparing most of the food. Yes, you heard that correctly, I, Stephanie will be making most of the stuff. What da hell? 😄 I’m actually looking forward to it. Beyond the Easter Bunny, I know that the day has a greater importance and that has been weighing on my mind.

Jesus rose from the dead. He died for all of our sins and then rose. We cannot take that lightly. Tomorrow is an opportunity to wipe your slate clean. What better day? I have worked out most of my issues so I don’t have anything major to let go of. I have noticed many forgotten things have risen to the surface so I will be forgiving people and circumstances to free myself of those burdens. I don’t have the time or energy for such negativity.

I am still here, working on this. Contemplating what my next step is. I am thinking about a social media sabbatical… but, this doesn’t count. I don’t get caught up here. This is my happy space. My me time. Speaking of me time, I have a speech due on Thursday that I haven’t finished researching or writing. Ay… wish me luck.

Anyways, I think I got off topic. I am tired but today was a taste of normalcy and it was all good. Just remember to do things with meaning. It may not be a big deal to you but it won’t go unnoticed with others. Even a small gesture is something. ♡

To Be Known

If I’ve learned anything over the course of this last year, it is to share my knowledge. I went through it my friends, that doesn’t mean I have to stand by and watch others experience the same when I can help them grow through the process faster. I believe that God teaches us so that we may in turn become teachers ourselves. We are not intended to be selfish with our wisdom but share it to elevate others as He has chosen to elevate us.

I am far from perfect, this is for sure. I am nowhere near to knowing it all. All I do know is that I have not only survived but thrived through everything that has attempted to break me. I come out of the fire stronger and more determined to prove the devil wrong. It is possible to be a good person and get ahead in life. You do not have to sacrifice your dignity, loyalty or respect for yourself and others. Those that do, that is a choice they made.

Starting over at my age was scary as hell. I cried so much I honestly don’t know how I have any water in my body. Growing through everything I was forced to deal with was difficult. I can sit here now and tell you what a healing transformation it was though. I see things from a completely different perspective. I surprise myself when things don’t trigger the same responses they once did. I can easily pull the positive out of a situation and leave the negative behind.

As I keep taking steps to better myself, to understand how to live my life the way God intended, I pray that He will allow others to be moved by my story. I want to inspire hope. I want people to understand that they can’t change the past but, each day is a new day full of possibilities. We choose how we plan to spend it but, once it is gone, that’s it. I am proof that sitting on the sidelines doesn’t get us anywhere. We have to step down into the arena, we have to be willing to fight for our life, for ourselves, for what we want.

When we pass, we live through the memories of those that know and love us. I think about that a lot… since my Cheese is obsessed with Coco. If you were not blessed with a tomorrow, would the story you want told of you be the one that people remember? Think about it? I’ve changed my story and the way others view me. I don’t look for approval or acceptance but the more confident in myself I become, the more others take notice. I’m proud of how my son views me… can you say the same?

Happy Anniversary, Desperately Seeking Stephie!

One year, WOW! I am in disbelief that one year ago I pushed publish on my first post and thus started this journey of self discovery. I never thought this blog would turn in to what it is. I expected something more lighthearted and fun. Instead, I fell apart and put myself back together within these pages. In writing daily, I discovered hidden thoughts and feelings, recounted memories that had been pushed aside or hidden, I learned to love myself and found the courage to make my dreams a reality. Every single post is real and me and what I was going through that day.

I have proven to myself that I am valuable of choosing me, of making me a priority. There were days I didn’t want to write but, even a few sentences counted. I wanted to give up and delete the whole thing more than once. I wanted to erase the pain. I couldn’t do it. This blog has required me to make time for myself, for my thoughts every single day for a year. I am empowered by this milestone, for my followers near and far and the countless others that pop on from time to time.

I’m not sure if I’m desperately seeking Stephie anymore. I’ve found her and through a lot of hard work, we are one and the same. I haven’t decided what path I plan to take now. I know I do want to revamp the pages, pay more attention to them than just the blog. I have some big things happening that I haven’t shared because… I’m still working towards making them come true. I am on the right path though and I know that I am fully equipped to make them happen.

As for my life, while I have changed, what I want and need to be happy has remained the same. My family, they are what motivate me, they are the breath in my lungs and the reasons my heart beats. I may only have half of my family but, I am still very grateful. I think that’s the point of life. We learn that it is not about the destination but the journey… we are meant to live life to the fullest because each moment is a gift. We must be grateful for what we have before we can be blessed with more. Everything happens for a reason if we just pay attention to the signs lighting our way. God is good all of the time. Even through our darkest hours, He is there. Lessons have to be learned and sometimes they are unpleasant but, He never leaves us to go through it alone. Through Him, we can do all things.

I am confident in the woman I am. While doubts flutter about my mind, I have been equipped with the tools to understand what is real and true and what is attempting to persuade me off course. I understand that life is a roller coaster and to have the highs, we have to ride through the lows. If we close our eyes and take a breath, we might be lucky enough to speed through those lows just like on a real roller coaster.

Everything is different, the world has changed. As we prepare to come out of isolation, I am ready to show the world that Stephie used this time wisely. I started this journey as a caterpillar, this year I’ve been in my cocoon and now, I am emerging as a butterfly, ready to fly and show the world what I’m made of. So, what do you say? Are you willing to continue with me? To find out what’s next in my life? I hope so. Thank you so much for the company… here’s to another year!

When in Doubt, Look Up!

I feel like I’m coming and going. I take a step forward and then one back. I get hood news and then bad, I think things are going my way to then find out maybe they aren’t. It is difficult not to be frustrated. I have wanted to throw my hands up more than once. So, I decided to do so. Not in anger but in praise. When I am not feeling peace, I pray for it 🙏.

These last couple of days I have been extremely hopeful and working towards a balance of accepting what is. Some twists and turns have me doubting myself and my intuition. Every single time I feel like that, I get a sign, reminding me to keep going. Ill be driving and the sky is painted in beautiful colors forcing me to revel in its beauty, to appreciate the moment and give thanks to up above.

This evening, I was in the middle of thanking God for my perfectly imperfect life when lights lit up the sky. They looked like fireworks but they didn’t disappear. They held their shape and light for quite a while. Just another sign that He is lighting me way as long as I trust in Him and don’t give up. I got chills and my heart felt a kind of full that it has been missing. I am so blessed to be in a place to recognize and acknowledge all if these signs. My angels work hard on my behalf.

The picture is becoming more clear. My dreams are staying after I wake and my manifestations are more focused. I am more intentional with my asks and in the way I pray, give thanks, etc. Now that I have found my way out of the darkness, I must be the light for others. Proof that if we are willing to choose ourselves, God will guide us through our healing.

I may have down days and that’s okay. There’s no rainbow without a little Raiyhn. I’m thankful for those too, they’ve helped me appreciate the good days so much more. When I’m lost, they help show me back to my happy place. I pray that things will work out how they are supposed to. I’m so ready. I’ll never give up though. At this point, I don’t think God would let me. He has invested too much into the woman I am to just walk away.

Let God invest in you, choose yourself. It is never too late to be who you were meant to be. Keep looking up and think of something you’re grateful for. Start small. One day at a time. Because… what do I say? It is the tortoise that wins the race, not the hare!

The Worst Day of My Life

This marks the anniversary of the hardest day of my life. It started off great, waking up to my Honey leaving for work and my little nestled into the side of me and one of my pups at my feet. I helped wash dishes as my mother in law made homemade tortillas and we had one of the best talks we had ever had. But, after an argument, I left the house. I didn’t know then that it was for the last time.

You think back at all of the things you would have done differently… my last kiss, I would have kissed him a little longer that morning, my little, when his mom picked him up, I said goodbye, I should have hugged him too. My pup, oh, I should have loved on him before I left. But more so, I wish it had never happened at all.

Then, I think about who I am today. I was struggling internally with myself. I didn’t think I was worthy of all my wishes coming true. I had an amazing family, my Honey and our boys, they completed our family but then we had our two awesome pups, we were planning our wedding, and I was blessed to have a man that wanted to be involved in all the details. I had stopped working and we were trying to have a baby. I mean, everything that I have ever wanted was coming true and yet, when I looked in the mirror, I hated the person staring back at me. I can’t even repeat the awful things I used to tell myself when I looked in the mirror. Even thinking about it makes me want to cry. I try to comprehend why but, I think it is because I blamed myself harshly for everything bad that befell me. Especially one thing that I did and didn’t believe in. I blamed and punished myself.

So, even though externally, life was what dreams were made of but internally, I was a mess. I didn’t have what it took to fight for my family the way I always did and it fell apart. I had to learn to fight for myself in order to be who they deserved, so that we could fully enjoy the life God planned for us. It has not been an easy road and I’ve wanted to give up more than once, even recently. Then I think of them and I find my strength, they are my purpose.

I thought I would be a crying mess all day. Because, honestly, I thought my family would be reunited by now. I have no expectations though, only my hope and faith. God doesn’t go by my timeline and I know he is working in our favor. There is still healing and growth taking place every second. We are being faced with challenges and opportunities to be better and do better. While, I have been very anxious all day, I have not cried. I am steadfast in my faith and what I know is true. I’m allowing God to carry me through this.

We are human and we will make mistakes. We have to learn to forgive ourselves as we forgive others. We have to look within for answers that we think are eluding us. We have to trust our instincts and take a bold leap of faith towards good even when we are scared. When we are used to bad things happening, it is hard to trust the good but, it does exist and we do deserve it. Facing our demons and letting go of the past is difficult and somehow not impossible. Carrying unnecessary baggage only slows down our progress. No sweeping stuff under the rug, let us be the ones to pull the rug up and get to cleaning. Proactive instead of reactive.

I’ve learned a lot. The most important is to listen to the universe. Wake up grateful for a new day and go to sleep blessed that you lived through it. Our minds are a powerful thing. We must learn to trust in ourselves and not rely on the opinions of others. Sometimes the people that are in our corner turn out to not have our best interests in mind. They are the ones releasing snakes into our garden. Remember the old saying, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Don’t confuse that you may be someone’s close enemy and you’ve given them the keys to your kingdom. Stand up for yourself. Be authentically you. Those that love you for you, they will praise you for it. I learned that with my mom. I am unapologetically me and I finally got the respect I craved. It is possible.

Anything worth having is worth the risk. We need to always have a student mentality. Be willing to forgive and be forgiven. Learn from your mistakes but never be afraid to make them. Mistakes mean you’re trying and I rather try and fail than sit on the sidelines. Choose you. Choose life. Choose love. Fight for what you want and never, ever give up.

I’m about to embark on the fight of my life. I am strong and bold and confident and I’m not going to back down. I am a good woman. I am a worthy woman. I am a deserving woman. I am ready…here I come!