Life’s lessons

Reason, Season, or Lifetime

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

When you figure out which one it is,

you will know what to do for each person. – Unknown

Knowing, understanding, and accepting the aforementioned is one of the most complex and agonizing of life’s lessons and experiences we will face and with age, I’ve found it to be one of the most liberating experiences I go through. 

In the past, I tended to rationalize the behaviour and actions of others and allow them to stay well past their expiration dates; in turn, providing them with a revolving door into my life and emotional capital of which was squandered.  There were too many Reasons and Seasons that I almost allowed to become Lifetimes. 

At this stage of life, I find myself closing doors more easily and more often.  I no longer allow myself to be held by nostalgia, chronology, and some misplaced sense of loyalty even when the other party finds a way; or at least attempts to reign me back in using those very same things to assuage their guilt for lack of contribution or participation. 

I favour and embrace the truth of where we are now, instead, of the role we each once played in the other’s lives and what we gained in those times or moments.  I recognize the varying degrees of relationships and the impression they had; however, to remain bound by that adds no gain.  My life is tantamount to an investment portfolio, where I have to regard the deposits made and the interest earned to determine whether I’m getting the most for my life’s relationship investments.  I choose not to live my life in the red or leaning toward emotional bankruptcy.  I reserve the right to close accounts and send statements of insufficient funds when people have overdrawn from my life and emotional well-being.  I refuse to continuously allow people to deplete me, be it financially, emotionally, physically, or mentally. 

I have to recognize the signs of the Reason, the Season, or the Lifetime in order to grow in every aspect of my life.  I cannot rationalize what doesn’t warrant the thought process because if I have to rationalize where we stand, I already have my answer.  What I must do is honour the Reason that became as Season for what it provided and reserve myself for those who are the Lifetime, and at the forefront of that is Myself. 

I’m currently liberating myself of someone who was a Reason, a Season, and what I thought would be a Lifetime.  I openly, fully, and wholly accept the Reason and the very many Seasons they played, and realize that Lifetimes are wholly reciprocal relationships.  Lifetimes are proactive, inspiring, uplifting, bullshit calling, and wholesome.  Lifetimes make others a priority and honour those who have bought the ticket with the true intent to ride until the end. 

This closure has been in the making for some time now; not entirely of their own making; however, and in spite of their words, their action has proven itself to be terminal.  There is nothing to wrestle anymore.  There is no taking into account the two plus decades of friendship (Reasons and Seasons) where we once saw each other through the others eyes, or saw each other through the myriad of life’s ups and downs.  All there is, is to let go. 

What was once perceived to be the embodiment of a Lifetime will become a fading memory shrinking further and further into the distance and will eventually set on the horizon of this part of my life’s chapter.  I am very much okay with that.  I honestly didn’t think I would be, but I truly am and in an odd way, I feel a bit relieved; exhilarated even as it feels like I reached past an emotional plateau.

So, here I am, older, wiser, and much lighter on my life’s journey.  I hear Ms. Badu clapping in my head and praising me for not being a Bag Lady.  (I told you before, music is always in my head!) 

If you’re struggling with Reasons, Seasons, and Lifetimes, take a moment to set your life up like a bank account or investment portfolio so you can see if you’re truly getting the best out of your life.

 

Honour thyeslf always! J

 

Firm or shaky ground…

When we sit in solitude sometimes we reflect on things, people, and situations that took place in our lives.  In and during those times, we often wonder how or why things go wrong and sadly sometimes we may; and hopefully realize, we are own our own worst enemy.  It is important to recognize that there are things that are out of our control; things imposed upon us.  However, there are many things and events that we do have a say in and instead of being proactive, we are instead reactive; thus, causing us to be the architect of your own destruction.  We sometimes absorb situations instead of filtering through them to see what’s worth our heightened emotional state and by doing this, we create a shade of grey in our lives that cause us to continually be on shaky ground.  When in this state, everything becomes an issue, we find ourselves in combat not just with others, but ourselves, which only perpetuates, the weakness.  When we are more rational, we are more able to discern the cause and effect of a situation and be less likely to be reactive and maintain our emotional alignment.  That is why it’s so important to build foundations that are on firm ground in order to endure the many tests life will through at you.  And on this ground, it’s easier to withstand the chaos than succumb to it.

Life is an ebb and flow and how we receive and deliver can be the major difference to how we go with the current.  Yes, it’s sometimes very necessary to be the salmon swimming upstream and there are times where it’s not and we’re simply just being dramatic.  Mastering our environment may sound like a laborious task, but it’s not.  It’s essential for ones well-being and something that can be handled simply by weighing what’s important against who and what isn’t.  The Biblical proverb of building ones house on solid ground is equal to the fable of the Three Pigs simply said somewhat differently.

No trade-true architect would recommend any structure build on unstable ground, so why would you build your life, which is considered a Temple on such?

Blu

Blog Challenge: Day 30 — A letter to yourself, tell yourself EVERYTHING you love about yourself

quote

 

Dear (former) Me:

I’m so happy that you’re happy!  I like that you’ve been able to accomplish so much in spite of your past, your pain, and your trials. God did as He said he would, and turned them all around and made you triumphant and victorious.  You tripped and fell many times and questioned yourself, your direction, and even your purpose in life, but you stood up; you fought on and stopped berating yourself for the choices you made.  You came to truly love yourself and for that you should be very proud.

intelligence is sexy

You always relied on your smarts and not your looks to make it through.  Not society, not people, and most importantly; not yourself allowed you to be “just a pretty face”.  As you would say, if you were, you’d be f*cked in life…lol!  You focused on what is truly important and that’s your brain, your content of character and your ability to see beyond what’s so obvious.  Intelligence has gotten you out of many a compromising situation, not an ability to play dumb.

be nice

In spite of the pain others have inflicted, you were never a hurt person; hurting others.  You remained compassionate and kind to other’ even those unworthy of your kind heart.  Your random acts of kindness weren’t always random, but planned and intended to make a difference.  Why?  Because it was important to you.  You are an inherently good person who took all her pain and transformed it into something beautiful; something positive.

u r special

Even though you weren’t always told you were special or made to feel as such, you finally found a way to tell yourself that.  You opened your heart to the most important person…YOURSELF and allowed yourself to feel, know, and believe you are special.  You no longer allow others to make you feel what they want you to feel.  You’ve come to stand up for yourself, know yourself, appreciate yourself, and be the wonderful person God created you to be.  I’m so very proud of you for that.

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Given that your modeling in life was rather questionable, you learned to stand firm by yourself and for yourself.  You became your own advocate and ultimately, you’re own hero.  You don’t look to others to honour or validate you because you don’t need it.  You are uniquely and beautifully made and you’ve embraced it fully.  You’ve fought the championship bouts in the ring of life and came out the victor; not necessarily for your strength, but for the weakness you felt and needed to overcome.  You armoured up and said, “I refuse to back down.  I’ve taken too much for too long and now I’m fighting back”. That, my dear, is worth the title of (s)hero!

with god

When all else failed and people let you down, God was always there with you.  Too often you tried to go it alone, but you always had the good sense to open your heart back to  Him.  You allowed Him to take the wheel and steer you on your course and it paid off. You trusted.  You believed.  You held your faith.  You trusted. You suffered, ultimately you were rewarded. God’s grace is exhibited in and through you because you knew that you are better off with Him than without.  Hats off to you for that!

journey-butterflies-vi

So, here you are now, a transformation from a broken and wounded child to a strong and beautiful woman whose battle scars serve as honour badges for the victories won.  I am so very proud of you and I love you more than you know.

 

(current) Me

 

Yea, I said it!

Blog Challenge: Day 29 — Something you hope to change about yourself. And why

being me

I’m not sure there is much I really want to change about myself.  I’ve worked hard and overcome much to be at peace with the woman I’ve come to be, so, by doing that, why would I want to change?

being me quoteFurthermore, if I change, would I still be authentically who I am?  That’s rhetorical at best, so we’ll conclude with the fact that I don’t want to change anything.

 

Yea, I said it!

Aging with grace…

I look at my female contemporaries and realize that for the most part, I’m in the minority when it comes to make up. I’m a minimalist; always have been and always will be. While I’ve worn make up in the past; mostly for modeling purposes, I’ve always shied away from it. Eyeliner and mascara are pretty much the extent of my wearing makeup. I wear lip gloss, but rarely does it even have any colour. When I was asked to be a part of the media campaign for Gilda’s Club South Jersey, I was mortified with the amount of makeup the makeup artist applied; all while she’s complimenting how nice my skin is…Go figure! I called my girlfriend to complain and she told me to wipe it off to an amount I was comfortable with; I did. During the shoot, the damn woman decided to reapply…Lord knows she came 1) dangerously close to getting her hand slapped and 2) me opting out of the shoot.

I dress in fashion I deem personally appropriate and have never really prescribed to the dictations of Tommy Gunn or whoever the fashion critic is of the moment. In college, I was called “the Lisa Bonet of Stockton” because my style was a mix of bohemian, eclectic, and whatever mood I was in that day. I liked being me in that regard. To date, my style varies, but I have always leaned toward classic, feminine, and classic styles. I’d have fared well back in the 1920s through 1950s as their fashions were rather tasteful and very stylish.

I look through magazines and see this beauty product to clear your skin, that beauty product to reduce or minimize wrinkles; you name it, it’s out there. How’s a woman to keep up? This one doesn’t! I use a natural soap to wash my face; unscented baby wipes to remove eyeliner and mascara, and an unscented natural moisturizer on my face. Since my hair is natural, I likewise use natural hair products, which have reduced my getting breakouts as a result of the chemicals. Easy is as easy does in my book! I strive to eat well, drink lots of water, and exercise when my lazy ass musters the initiative. I’ve noticed changes in my skin over the years; some of it due to the medicine I no longer take, some due to life, and some due to the aging process; none of which I even overly concern myself with. I’m aging with grace and I accept it for what it is.

Yes, there are days when I look at myself and am not always pleased with what I see, but is anyone visually happy with themselves everyday? I accept that day regardless and move on. There’s more to me than my face and I accept myself with my flaws.

With media and society doing their best to make me feel less confident about myself visually, it actually inspires me to be the more defiant; much like the petulant child I know I can be sometimes. I took a hard road to get where I am where I let others tell me what I should or shouldn’t do to qualify as pretty or beautiful. Though I’ve never truly considered myself beautiful on the outside, I damn sure know I am on the inside and that alone is grace and the real definition of beauty in my book. My looks may not make me Ebony, Essence or the like; cover worthy and I’m truly alright with that. As long as I see myself as such; as long as my man sees me as such; and as long as those who truly know, love, and care for me see me as such, then I’ve got it going on.

I’m 45. I’m 153-155lbs (depending on the day…lol). I’m mentally, emotionally, and spiritually fit. I’m whole. I’m secure. I’m able. Most of all I’m happy. All of those things age me with grace and I love it!

That is all!