RIP to a Phenomenal Woman – Maya Angelou

maya-angelou-quotes-on-writing

Today, I am deeply saddened by the loss of Maya Angelou.  Aside from the amazing strides she made in and for society, black women primarily, but all women and the literary contributions, she made a huge impact on my life.  Mother Maya, as I’d always fondly referred to her as, touched my life greatly.  I possess many of her works, which served to inspire, encourage and uplift me into the woman I am today.  She rose above her so-called lacks, overcame much adversity, was a victor,  and a woman of high regard when many thought less of her.  She refused to settle for less and was inspired and encouraged to succeed against the odds…She did!

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Mother Maya was world renowned, which for a black woman is an amazing feat to accomplish.  Mother Maya taught us to be phenomenal, to be great, to be all that we could be and still strive for me.  Her presence, her voice, her will was awe worthy and commanding, yet dispensed with grace and dignity.

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I tend not to jump on the band wagon of those of celebrity who’ve passed, but in this instance, I’d be remiss if I didn’t.  Again, Mother Maya was and will continue to be a woman I honoured and felt greatly touched and influenced my life.  I’ve used her as a source of reference when mentoring young woman.  I’ve gifted her books to young woman so they, too, could be encouraged, inspired, and know their worth.

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The black community, the literary world, and many lives were blessed by her activism; her poise; her teachings and her passing is a great loss to them all. It is my hope that those who were touched, influenced, and affected by Mother Maya will continue her legacy in some form so that all she gave us will not be for naught.

STILL I RISE - MAYA ANGELOU

RIP Mother Maya, you’ll be greatly and sorely missed.

 

 

Yea, I said it!

Live the life you love; love the life you live…

frank zappa quote

I saw this quote last week presented under a different image, but it was the words and not the image that  moved me.  I couldn’t deny the truth of Mr. Zappa’s quote and I immediately thought about those people who fit into that category.

Of late, I’ve become the more annoyed with adults who defer their living for the sake of those mentioned in the quote; and others of course, and then whine and complain about their current state of being.  All you hear “how did I get here?”  “This isn’t the life I wanted for myself!”  “I deserve better than this!”  And similar rants and whining, without ever looking at themselves as being culpable for their misery.  Women are more prone to these expressions; however, I’ve heard a few men express themselves similarly.  We all get one life to live.  There are no encores, no do-overs, and life is certainly not an audition you show up for.  This is it! This is the real thing and no matter how you slice it, we have to make the most of it.  I respect and understand there are late bloomers; I’m one!  I respect and understand that experiences come with time.  However, if you’re not living, how can you expect quality experiences, good; or bad opportunities to learn from, and most of all, what the hell with the dash between your sunrise and sunset count for?

For those who’ve known me over the years and even recently know that I’m an about it person.  I’ve had my share of good and bad and with each experience, a life lesson was born.  I will aid in anyone striving to overcome their issues if and when I can, but what I won’t do is placate and babysit anyone; especially adults who refuse to hold themselves accountable for their lives.  Many try to live vicariously through their children, get married, have high-figured salaries, or whatever material gains that can amass, but even with all those things, they’re still miserable, dissatisfied, and envious; and sometimes judgmental of anyone who has substance and/or some bumps and bruises in their lives.  Da cuss?  Damn if you do and damned if you don’t comes instantly to mind with folk like that.

Well, my luvies, I’ve had about enough!  I’m is sitting in the front seat of life’s car and I’m riding.  I’m smiling because I’ve got God as my co-pilot and navigator.  I knows that even if I makes a wrong turn, I’ll find a new experience in my life’s journey.  Hell, I might find something truly amazing because I didn’t get mad, but accepted the change in direction.  I’ve decided that I’m not being anyone’s emotional sponge and will listen with a keen ear filter and only retain that which is actually worth listening to, and with those I’ve aforementioned, it typically doesn’t tend to be much for than bullshit and rhetoric.  This blog challenge opened my eyes to a new-found clarity.  It’s forced me to be a little more introspective and in doing that I’ve seen a new side of myself and I see people for who they are.  I pass no judgment because I live in a glass house; I just know where I fit in this gift called life.  In the infamous words of the lovely Ms. Nina Simone, “it’s a new dawn.  It’s a new day. It’s a new life for me.  And I’m feeling good”  I refuse to be anyone’s enabler.

 

Yea, I said it!

A question of faith…

It has been my experience that when faced with a trial that obviously seems contrary to what we’d want for ourselves, people tend to blame God for things not going right. A once faithful person, suddenly questions their faith and their God and lately, I’ve been experiencing that with a friend facing a divorce. Out of respect for her, I won’t air her business; however, I will say, I felt God manifest Himself quite openly through words I read in my devotions and through quotes that others had posted. Naturally, I shared these with my friend in an effect to open her heart and mind back to a positive state, but I realize that she’s in a downward state of being and needs to work through this phase in order to better receive what was shared.

Through my own life’s experiences, I chose to further trust my faith and listen to words of comfort and wisdom shared with me be they solicited or otherwise. I found it easier to trust my faith than trust man because it was man who created the pain or trial I was experiencing in the first place. I opened myself up to receive that which I may not have even been able to fully comprehend at that time if for no other reason than to plant the seed for fertilization and growth. The seeds eventually grew; as did I.

Life is a series of challenges, joys, highs and lows, disappointments, hurts, love; etc. and in the words of Aldous Huxley, “Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you”; very true and very wise words. Without varied experiences we cannot grow. Our lives are like seasonal changes; essential to growth, sustenance, and progression. We must live to experience and experience to live or we remain stagnant, bored, and boring. We can’t and should not seek to control everything in our lives, but instead be flexible and learn to roll with that which we experience and encounter in order to be a part of the ever-moving life cycle.

We must further realize that God works in His own time and not ours. Oftentimes, we think because we are believers and follow doctrine, we are entitled to our prayer requests being met without first truthfully looking into ourselves to determine if we are in fact worthy or ready to receive what we’re praying for. Yes, according to The Word, God says He’ll give you the desires of your heart, but are our desires pure? Are they selfish? Has the requester done their part in seeking God’s invention or intercession? These are things many do not consider; hence, later questioning God and/or their faith. Delay does not mean denial!

Old folks always told me that the space or dash on our headstones should count for something and that we shouldn’t want someone to lie at our eulogy and say, “they had or lived life” if they hadn’t. It’s something that has remained with me for most of my life. Yes, I cursed many a bad day or experience, but I’ve learned that without them I would not be the woman I am today. I rode the rough seas, navigated through life’s detours and I have a tale to tell. I took leap of faith, celebrated my trails turned triumphs, and again, have tales to tell. I celebrate life. I celebrate my faith. And I celebrate being unafraid to face adversity.

The following links are what have been pulse points this week. I share them hoping they’ll inspire, encourage, and allow you to also grow or be a positive influence to someone you may encounter.

God bless!
Seeking Guidance

Can we Really Trust God?

God’s Sovereign Delays

How To Stay Strong In Disappointment

Resting in the Faithfulness of God

God Acts On Our Behalf

Yea, I said that!

A Challenge…

I saw this image recently and was blown away by it.  It’s simple; however, it says so much and have decided to implement doing this and want to encourage you all to do the same.

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Create your own card based on this one and post it in various places in your work and town.  Find a bulletin board at work and post it and then go back to see if any of the tabs have been taken off.  Do the same at your local library, bookstore, supermarket, church or any place you can.

I think it can and will make a heck of a difference in someone’s day; maybe even your own.

Do it and let me know what happens!

 

Live the life you love; love the life you live!

Lyrically Speaking (again)…Hidden Away

The universe is really trying to convey a message or messages to me, because once again, the lyrics are speaking to me.

I enjoy Josh Grobans songs and Hidden Away is one I’ve liked for some time.  While I’ve listened to the lyrics, I must not have really heard them as they were yelling at me this morning. 

Over mountains and sky blue seas
On great circles, will you watch for me?
The sweetest feeling I’ve got inside
I just can’t wait to get lost in your eyes

And all these words that you meant to say
Held in silence day after day
Words of kindness that our poor hearts crave
Please, don’t keep them hidden away

Sing it out so I can finally breathe in
I can take in all the same
Holding out for something I believe in
All I really need today

I want to free your heart, I want to see your heart
Please, don’t keep your heart hidden away

You’re a wonder, how bright you shine
A flickered candle in a short lifetime

A secret dreamer that never shows
If no one sees you then nobody knows

And all these words you were meant to say
Held in silence day after day
Words of kindness that our poor hearts crave
Please, don’t keep them hidden away

Sing it out so I can finally breathe in
I can take in all the same
Reaching out for someone I believe in
All I really need today

I want to feel your love, will you reveal your love?
Please, don’t keep your love hidden away
I want to free your heart, I want to see your heart
Please, don’t keep your heart hidden away

Hidden Away

The recurring theme seems to be that I need to speak up, let my voice be heard, stop hiding (thoughts, emotions, etc.,).  These are not coincidences, but instead intercessions I need to heed.  I’m guilty y’all, but I’m listening and I’m hearing what God/the universe is telling me.  It’s not going to be easy boys and girls because you’re girl has a lot on her mind and much  that needs to be released.  It’s not going to be easy, but I’m going to do it. Phew!

Live the life you love; love the life you live!

A Timely Reminder…

I received the following in an email, which served as a timely reminder of ways to 1) live, 2) improve the quality of your life, and 3) because it’s worth sharing…

1. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.

3. Life is too short – enjoy it.

4. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and family will.

5. Pay off your credit cards every month.

6. You don’t have to win every argument. Stay true to yourself.

7. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone.

8. It’s OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.

10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

11. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present.

12. It’s OK to let your children see you cry.

13. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.

15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye, but don’t worry, God never blinks.

16.. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

17. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful. Clutter weighs you down in many ways.

18. Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger.

19.. It’s never too late to be happy. But it’s all up to you and no one else.

20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer.

21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.

22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.

23. Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.

24. The most important sex organ is the brain.

25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ‘In five years, will this matter?’

27. Always choose life.

28. Forgive

29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

30. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.

31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

32. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

33. Believe in miracles.

34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn’t do.

35. Don’t audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.

36. Growing old beats the alternative of dying young.

37. Your children get only one childhood.

38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.

41. Envy is a waste of time. Accept what you already have, not what you need

42. The best is yet to come…

43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

44. Yield.

45. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.”

Live the life you love; love the life you live!