God’s Divine Plan: Failures, Obstacles, and Setbacks

 

 

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As a kid I was never any good at board games. Maybe I never had the patience to understand checkers or any of the like. That’s okay with me, I like being a bookworm anyway!In the game of checkers nothing ever stays the same. You are up against your opponent and you have to be strategic against the obstacle in front of you in order to come out victorious. In order to be victorious, things must shift. Sometimes things in our lives shift for the better or the worse. All of which conspire to make you prosper and withstand the next battle you come up against.

There has been some battles that I simply was not prepared for or found myself incapable of handling them. For example, after graduating from high school I was sure of two things, I wasn’t ready for college and I wanted to be wherever my boyfriend was at the time. I didn’t have a plan for my life, so I began the next chapter of my life blindfolded.  I loved him and he loved me. Naive ? Yes. Hopeful? Of course.

Life will shift you into the next phase without your permission. At twenty one I was giving birth to my son and by twenty three I was married. By now there were holes in my blindfold. I couldn’t see the future but the road ahead looked bleak. Things were shifting underneath my feet and I was falling. Falling so deeply behind my vision for my life that I grew disgusted with the woman in the mirror. This wasn’t a rehearsal, nor apart of the plan I envisioned for my life. My life was shifting. Shifting into a place of dim light. Finding it hard to breathe. To put one foot in front of the other. I was pushing forward, yet going in circles.  I thought I could handle whatever God sent my way. After all I had been through enough pain growing up, how could I not?

The next couple of years of my life would take me on an emotional roller coaster. One that would leave me wounded, broken, and damaged mentally,spiritually,and emotionally. Through it all God never let go of my hand. Sometimes I’d cry in the middle of the afternoon. Tears would cover my face and I’d be smiling. There was a wound inside my heart that needed to be mended. When it was hard for me to speak through my tears and confusion I found comfort in God’s arms. How do you rebuild your life when life has knocked you down so much?

 

Someone once asked me how do you do it without any tv, internet, and etc. for long periods of time. Well, all of those things are just distractions. Something to entertain your mind and distort you from connecting with God. I like peace and quiet. In those times I can be honest with myself and the Lord. I could have curled up and died and given up on my life altogether. That’s too easy. Why give up or give in when I know the Lord is not through with me?

For every failure there is a bigger victory, every setback is a setup for something better, and for obstacle is an opportunity to uplift, encourage, and praise his name. My past is my testimony. My bridge to what I have overcome to arrive to my next destination. People may say you’ve changed or you’re not the same anymore. Its all true. Anything that doesn’t change dies. Scars heal and wounds close. All things happen according to God’s divine plan. Remember on this day two years ago when you were crying, depressed, and confused over your situation. But, through it all you kept the faith and God changed your circumstance. He can do it, again if you remain connected to him. Instead of allowing other people drive your life get out of the passenger seat and allow God to drive you to your next destination. Trust me the possibilities are endless when God is behind the wheel.

 

Be blessed, not stressed!!

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The Girl I Used To Know….

It’s always been said that if anything that’s not growing will eventually die. Once upon a time dying seemed like the worse thing that could possibly ever happen to me. Your life ends and all the things you hoped to accomplish in between the dash dies right along with you. That’s the scariest shit I ever imagined. Yet, it was a reality I saw lived amongst the living. Slumped shoulders, heavy bags underneath each eye, liquid poison to numb the sorrow, and minimal paycheck to keep the lights on. After a while, I soon realized maybe death brought peace and the death that I once feared so deeply was actually amongst the living.

Not to long ago, I used to be just a girl with big bright eyes, a toothy grin, and dark brown extensions that kissed my shoulder. I saw life through a colorful lense and life would work out just way I imagined or saw on television. I was the girl whom carried books by various authors in her backpack next to a bag of flamin hot cheetos. As two dollars in change hid in between the nooks and crannies of my used pocketbook. The quiet wallflower that barely waved or smiled in passing.  I would stare shyly at boys and wonder self consciously to myself, “Does he like me?” I never talked much. Too caught up inside my own thoughts to filter them through my lips.  I didn’t fit in much with the other girls. I wasn’t enough for each category. Not smart enough to sit with the advanced students. Not promiscuous enough to share my dirty laundry. Not lazy enough to adjust to the lazy kids passe lifestyle. I stood out like a sore thumb. I was strange inside my head. Often wondering where do I belong.

I used to wonder why me. Why can’t all the boys like me? Why can’t all the girls include me into their inside jokes and weekend gatherings? So desperately a part of me wanted to fit in and adjust to my reality.  I became a people pleaser to a certain extent.  Despite my efforts, I was unsuccessful at every turn.

I now realize that the girl I used to know just needed confirmation from within that she was more than enough. Her smile needed to reflect the beauty on the inside. The curves of my hips defined my femininity. My laughter could heal a broken heart. My intelligence deserved to be included into a conversation.  Although I may not have been accepted into cliques and organization, the uniqueness inside of me was made to stand out. The girl I used to know used to be soft spoken, mild mannered, and vulnerable to other people trials and tribulations. I used to allow others to treat me the way that they wanted and with my permission. That was okay. It was okay to not remember my birthday or ask me out. Disregard my feelings or disrespect me in private. As long I held a title or perceived position in your circle of life things were okay.

It took a while for me to unlearn the negative associations had with seeking validation from others. The girl I used to know has grown up into a beautiful young vibrant woman. It took some healing and some hard truths that I had to come clean about. No one has the power over your life to make you feel small. You take back that power by defeating every negative energy thrown at you with positive thoughts. No one is me. I am beautiful, smart, funny, creative, and deserving of the same energy I put out into the world. My gifts deserved to be shared with the world.My best advice that I would give my younger self is to not give people so much power and control over who you are and your purpose in this world. You are you and that is enough.  Grow within yourself and give yourself the best chance to reach your fullest between. That dash is your opportunity to give this life your best shot by thriving within each second and moment.  You never know who needs you to keep going. Do yourself a favor and grow where you are planted and blossom in the sunlight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Date Like A Girlboss

It’s 2017 and you are not only conquering your goals, you are exceeding expectations.  When people see you they see a woman covered in favor, faith, and confidence.  You set your mind to living purposefully in 2017 and you are doing just that. Bravo! 

Are you applying that same fierce attitude to your love life? If not, you should. As a girl boss you have used your skills, wit, charm, and confidence to position you into key influential places. You set your mind to living fearlessly in 2017 and your goals of becoming stronger and wiser were at the top of the list.  Why not apply the same attitude to your dating life? 

Every girl boss deserves some companionship outside of her tribe. Don’t get me wrong our girlfriends are the backbone of sisterhood,  the pillars for motherhood, and the reality check that we sometimes need when life gets a bit rough and throws us off course. Where you are in life will introduce you to game changers,  visionaries, and creative producers that are connected to the dream God instilled within you. Let’s take that same fearless attitude and approach it to dating.  Here are a few tips to dating like a girlboss :

1) Invest your time wisely. Our time is our most valuable asset, choose how you spend it wisely. If you’re dating with the intention of marriage in the future. You have to be willing to make some changes to your social life. Eliminate any activity that could possibly put you in a negative light. Goodbye bars and nightclubs, hello conferences and networking events. 

2.) Preparation is Everything : Always keep some lipstick, earrings,  a pair of shades and breath mints handy. Your next client could be your future husband. Even on your worst day be ready to wow onlookers. You are your best representation, can’t nobody represent you better than you! 

3. Return and Exchange Policy: Thirty days or thirty minutes,  it’s your time. Don’t give anyone no more than that. There are no returns and exchanges on your time invested. Delete all the old pictures of potential bass, high school sweethearts, and  remixed ex’s.  You’ve been there, done that, and not going back. Deuces! 

4. Upgrade Your Dating Standards :  You are a E-news success story waiting to be told. Why are you dating in the kiddie pool?! Stop it! That cute guy on IG with the  tattoos, lots of followers,  school boy smile  and sexy selfies. Yeah, him..keep scrolling pass him. He’s just potential. We’re not dating potential. We’re looking for our equal and above. No more mediocre dates, dating apps, blind dates, situationships,  or its complicated.  Let’s upgrade our standards and stumble upon Mr. Right. 

5. Negotiations Not Applicable : When was the last time you settled for less than you deserved? Probably never, especially in business. Why are you negotiating your dating standards? The same rules apply in the real world as they do in the board room. Negotiate to get what you want and nothing less. If he likes you, let him plan the date. He likes to text only,  tell him you like phone calls better. You’re in control sis, don’t forget! 

6. Close The Deal: Every girl boss knows that you must close the deal in order to gain revenue and profit. When you’re dating you have to have a goal in mind.  Are you looking for a long term relationship,  friendship,  or marriage?  Be honest with yourself and what you want.  Don’t end up in a relationship that’s not going anywhere and deep you hope it will turn into a proposal.  Talk to your romantic interest about where you are in life and let that know upfront your intentions. When you meet the right partner set your mind on closing the deal. 

You are capable of anything you put your mind too and you’re deserving of the right kind of love. While you’re busy conquering the world in your respective industry.  Allow the right kind of love to sweep you off your feet. You are a kick ass rockstar and a girlboss… Never lose sight of that! 
#girlboss #beyourownboss #likeaboss #bossup #momboss #bosschick #theboss #fearlesswomen #beintentional #BelieveInYourselfLoveYourself #datingandrelationships #relationshipgoals #love #goals #marriage #couples #happilyeverafter #womensempowerment #truelove 

Reclaiming My Time : No Explanation Required 

For as long as I can remember I’ve been giving my time away. As a woman we’re more accustomed to emptying ourselves for the fulfillment of others.  As young women we pour into budding friendships enthusiastically. We embrace various lovers of hoping to enrapture ourselves in a fairy-tale. As mothers and wives we deplete every ounce of our being to support, guide, and nature the family. But in the end we weaken our core self and forget that the spirit inside of us needs just as much nurturing and self love. 

My spirit has been broken, heart rejected, and my time wasted. I gave all of my power away. After all, isn’t that what you’re supposed to do in a relationship  friendship and life?! Who made these rules? 

Time is our most valuable asset. We give it away so freely and frequently that we rob ourselves of it’s very essence. My time belongs to me. I choose to live in each moment as if it was my last. Know longer will I apologize for broken relationships. They were just lessons. Things to experience and push me towards growth. Nor will I allow myself to be broken down into dust until nothing exist of me beyond the figment of imagination. I am worth more than that. 

Reclaiming my time means being cognizant of how I choose to enjoy my time. Not allowing others to abuse and disvalue what belongs to me. Saying no does not mean that I am being selfish. In fact, it means I am being selful. Refueling my body and spirit with things and people that empower and rejuvenate my spirit to it’s fullest potential.  

To be in this world means to give constantly whether as a mother, sister, friend, lover, and a public figure. We deplete our time and energy into things that too often leave us empty and hopeless on the inside. 

I’m declaring and decreeing that my time is valuable. I am a resource to others.  But I will selectively choose how to pour into the world without leaving nothing for myself.  I am a life force that breathes life into every room and thing. Reclaiming my time means reclaiming my life. 

To anyone or anything in your life taking up real estate in your heart and mind. They are not contributing to your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical being… Do them a favor and set them free. Sometimes the things we hold on to is the vary thing we need to release in order to grow. I’m reclaiming my time…no explanation required. 
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My father’s daughter 

My father died on February 28,1996. I was ten years old.  I was in the 5th grade. My sister in the third grade. I’d nervously performed a Maya Angelou poem in front of the school.  I remember trembling on stage as my mind went blank. Dressed in my white leotard,  sheet white stockings, and  red calve length skirt.  Relieved, I rushed off stage and back to safety inside the teachers lounge.  
After the performance I went back to my classroom and my life began to normalize again.  I don’t remember if it was an announcement or if my teacher pulled me out of the classroom.  Next thing I knew I was sitting across from the school counselor. She said your father passed away this morning.  My sister began to cry immediately. I didn’t know what to feel or think.  I just remember a bunch of adults trying to comfort me.  All I wanted to do was wipe the tears from my baby sisters eyes.  There was nothing I could do.  We went home for the remainder of the day. 

A few tears fell from my eyes later that day.  A part of me felt relieved. I’d be lying to you and myself if I said my father was perfect.  Truth is,  I didn’t know my father.  He knew me more than I knew him.  For most of my childhood he was in jail. Vague images of him cloud my mind of him hurting my mother. As a kid,  you try to filter and organize the chaos. I could not.  I just felt things.  Things I couldn’t explain until I went through them in life. 

The only person I’ve ever known is my mother. We didn’t go to a funeral. We said our goodbyes days before as my father layed inside his hospital bed.  He was dying of H. I. V.  I didn’t know the disease at the time. I thought we had more time together.  Although he was sick during my final years,  I knew my father loved me. He knew I love chocolate cake,  cheeseburgers,  and could stay up late til the sunrise. That was my secret. 
Apart of me strongly disliked my father.  Mostly for what he did to my mother.  He questioned my love for him constantly.  I loved him. I just didn’t know how to love a distant stranger.  I wrote letters to him in prison.  That was for him not me. We share a birthday month,  January.  Our birthdays are seven days apart.  For my tenth birthday he bought me a jumping jack doll with a trampoline.  I loved it. I remember vividly whispering in his ear on his death bed that I had passed my science test. He replied ruggedly,  I’m proud of you. 

They say time heals all wounds. I’d like to thinj it does. There were moments that I replay in my mind.  My dad bought me my first pair of K-Swiss. He warned me about boys with a strong look and his belt. He made me feel like a princess for my 5th grade prom. I remember calling him to overrule my mom saying no to Six Flags. He didn’t question me,  he just said yes. We had our battles.  My smart mouth and his firm hands.  I was stubborn just like him. Nothing will ever take away sitting on my fathers lap. 

I have my father’s forehead and eyes.. My mother’s smile and nose.. My complexion is a mix of the two hues.  Although my life was not planned, I was made with the intention of love.  It has taken some time to appreciate my father, his mistakes and embrace the love he had for me. I gave my son his middle name.  Today I welcome him fully into my heart.  Forgiving the past. He was human.  Humans can make mistakes.  I just hope he’s proud of the woman I have become today.  After all I am my father’s daughter.