2019, how do I say farewell to a year that brought me to the highest of heights and it also brought me down to my knees in prayer? It was a good year, with lots of wins, but it also presented some challenges. Most years have their mix of ups and downs, but 2019 felt a bit more dynamic for me. The ups made me feel on top of the world, while the downs kept me up at night.
Nonetheless, 2019 is a year that taught me a lot. In fact, I believe that this year was a pivotal moment in my professional life, spiritual life, physical/wellness journey, and in my personal development journey as well. I’m happy to see 2019 end on a high note, but most importantly I’m ready to march into 2020 with my head held high, ready to grasp whatever life throws at me.
Without further adieu, here are the lessons that 2019 taught me.
When you meet me in person, you’ll think I’m the most jovial, outgoing person you have ever met.
I’m the co-worker who remembers everyone’s birthday and insists that we all go out lunch to celebrate. I’m the one at a party who can strike up conversations with strangers. People who don’t know us would think we’re long lost friends. I’m also the assumed host and coordinator of social events that occur within my circle.
What can I say? I’m pretty awesome.
What would surprise you about my social-butterfly ways is that I am very awkward.
To break the monotony of a day at the office, I often listen to Podcasts. I like podcasts that offer insight on a variety of topics, while still entertaining me in some way. Last week, I discovered How To Fix A Broken Record, a podcast based on a book of the same name. The podcast’s author, Amena Brown, discusses various topics in her book: natural hair, the importance of loving yourself, single life, married life, and the adventures of adulting in the social media age. Amena and her guests will make you laugh, reflect, or perhaps reevaluate life. So, S&T, if you need a pick-me-up during your day today, I highly recommend How To Fix A Broken Record podcast (and the book too)!
Last Christmas, my husband and I went to the movies to see Fences. We’re both huge Denzel Washington fans, so an opportunity to see his movie made the day enjoyable. This Christmas, Denzel’s movie, Roman J. Israel, Esq will be released, so obviously, I suggested we watch it. He showed some hesitation about going to a movie theatre on a holiday. His reason: Christmas will bring a huge audience to the theater, making it vulnerable to a gun attack.
I nodded sadly, acknowledging what life has been for us living in an era where mass shootings are becoming common. Nowadays, the simple act of seeing a movie in a public location is scary.Read More »
I’ve always loved the art of storytelling. But, I never thought that story-telling could make the large impact on the world that I’ve always desired to make. Perhaps, this is the reason why I never took it as seriously as my career in healthcare. Because healthcare is more noble than storytelling, right? Wrong. As Viola Davis so eloquently stated during a historical moment at the Academy Awards in February:
People ask me all the time, what kind of stories do you want to tell, Viola? And I say, exhume those bodies. Exhume those stories. The stories of the people who dreamed big and never saw those dreams to fruition. People who fell in love and lost. I became an artist—and thank God I did—because we are the only profession that celebrates what it means to live a life.
Storytelling is powerful. I cannot tell you how many movies have brought tears to my eyes or made me reevaluate life. What I do on my blog is tell stories of my life. I didn’t think of it as much, but when I stopped writing, I had a people ask me, “Why don’t you blog anymore?” Your blog is what inspires me. It’s those words that have brought me back to my first love – writing.
Lately, I’ve been contemplating my life purpose. I recently met a woman who I believe is living out her life’s purpose and I cannot tell you how much she has inspired me, motivated me, and helped me through life’s obstacles. She is truly amazing to be around and if that’s what living in your calling looks like, then count me in.
I want to get back to S&T, I can’t promise you a consistent blog schedule. But, I will promise you that I will go back to my first love.
I had my first “boyfriend” in kindergarten. I’ve place boyfriend in quotation marks here because I chuckle at how simple boyfriend/girlfriend relationships were in my childhood days. Feelings and commitment were foreign to me. My peers and I changed our boyfriends like we changes our socks. Boyfriends were only something we had in order to have something to talk about on the playground during recess.
“Do you have a boyfriend?” my classmate asked me one day on the playground. “No,” I said, “do you?”
Of course, my classmate responded as if I were an idiot to ask. I was a shy five year-old, but wondered to myself how I too can get a boyfriend. I started thinking about all the boys in my class. This one particular boy named, Carl, sat next to me in class. He was always so nice to me. He’d share his crayons with me in class and offer to help me with my arts in crafts. I liked Carl. He could be my boyfriend.Read More »
When the time comes for you to make a change, to grow, to do your life in a different way, the universe will make you so uncomfortable, so unhappy, you will eventually have no choice. If you insist on staying in a place you no longer belong in, if you do not grow the courage to do what is necessary to propel yourself forward, you will suffer the consequences, whatever they may be.
One of my favorite childhood memories is riding in the car with my mom on Saturdays, while listening to Kicks 101.5, Atlanta’s Country Music station. It was during these rides around my hometown of Marietta, where my mom and I would discuss the importance of self-esteem, earning good grades, and cultivating healthy friendships. Sometimes, my younger brother would join us and and our conversations would become more abstract, like discussing my brother’s interest in Gargolyes and Dragon Ball Z. Country music served as the background soundtrack to a time in my life when I didn’t have to worry about anything. Career goals were a thing of a distance future. Making friends was easy and my idea of establishing a long-term relationship was reduced to planning the most outlandish fairy-tale wedding possible. Life was good.
Nowadays, when life becomes challenging and decisions become overwhelming, I revert back to the days when life was simple. Music has an amazing ability to help us remember our yesteryears. Country Music serves as my personal time capsule, helping me travel back in time to when life was simple. I listen to Country Music daily. In fact, I not only listen to it, I sing along with it. Loudly. While driving around my city.
So, today, I’d like to welcome Friday by sharing my all-time favorite Country Music songs with you. I hope these tunes help you relieve the tension you may have stored up after a stressful week. And I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.Read More »
The article below articulates my thoughts on marriage and long-term relationships. Our choice of a life partner is the biggest decision we will ever make and as such, we should choose carefully, not hastily. Furthermore, our goal should not be to get married before our biological clock runs out of time, but to marry the right person. We should take our time; there is no need to rush.
I thought I was being heartless, but apparently I am not the only who is without a heart. Many people feel the same I do and in fact, psychological studies have demonstrated that this way of thinking can be generalized to an entire population. In other words, I am totally normal!
Yesterday, I did something I have never done before: I left my smartphone at home for the first time since I purchased it in May.
I didn’t realize my phone was not with me until I was in traffic on my way to work, but by that time, I was already 20 minutes in my commute and turning back around to pick it up, would guarantee that I would be late to work. I could not be late to work again.
I became anxious initially, as my thoughts bounced from how could I leave my phone at home to I’m going to drive 35 minutes during my lunch hour to pick it up.
I arrived at work early, with a plan to pick up my phone during my lunch hour. Two hours later, I realized that my day was coming along well without the addictive device. For once, I could think clearly without the interference of notifiers that frequently sound on my Android phone. A day away from phone was delightful and helped me accomplish the following things.Read More »
To most, Halloween is a day to dress as someone (or thing) else, but to me, Halloween is just an excuse to delight myself in all the candy I can stomach in one day. My perception of October 31st changed when I relocated to Boston. A co-worker of mine invited me to his annual Halloween house party. I decided to give his party a chance and convinced my homegirl to come with me.
We arrived at the party fashionably late and dressed in “regular” clothes. We were greeted by cat girls, police officers, and a banana. We knew we were in for a treat when we saw two guys painted in blue: one guy had a blue cross painted across his chest, while another guy had a blue shield painted across his chest. When I asked them to name their costumes, the guys replied, “Blue Cross Blue Shield.” We couldn’t help but give them some daps for their creativity. But that wasn’t the most creative costume we saw that night.
Mingling makes me thirsty, so my friend and I sauntered over to the bar to grab a drink. A man who stood about 6 feet tall wearing a light blue jump suit with white cotton balls scattered across his outfit walked by.
“Excuse me sir,” my friend said, “What are you?”
He replied, “I’m cloudy…” He paused for a second, grabbed her hand and a syringe filled with water. He release a drop of water on her hand and finished his statement, “…with a chance of rain.”
I know, I know. I’ve skipped posts and as the months of 2014 unfold, my posts are becoming more and more sporadic. I apologize for my lack of consistency. Life offline has a way of interfering with one’s ability to blog the way she once did. Things are changing. I’m changing. And anything that comes to mind to discuss on a public platform seems a bit too personal. While I value transparency on my blog, there some moments in life that are best left unsaid. I really think that as things settle down and I am more comfortable in my situation, or perhaps gotten over this large hump in front of me, then I’ll be back to consistent blog posts.
In the meantime, S&T, I want you to get what you need from my posts. Is there a particular topic you’d like me to blog about?
I was literally beaming when I read this article! Having a love affair with yourself is the best love affair you’ll ever experience. Love yourself, not only when you’re doing well, but love yourself through your failures and weaknesses. Love yourself unconditionally.
I’m happy-go-lucky personality, who always tries to find the silver-lining in any situation. But, sometimes, I’m tempted. I’m tempted to grab my boxing gloves and show off the not-so-nice part of Yaa in order to let people know that it’s NOT okay to say everything to pops up into your mind.
It’s almost as if people speak before they think and if you’re like me, you’re often on the receiving end of thoughtless comments. I still believe that people have pure intentions; they don’t mean to offend you, but they do. Why not keep a running list of things to NEVER say to someone. I’ll list mine, and you can list yours in the comment section.Read More »
I was 9 years old when CrazySexyCool hit stores in 1995. For a little girl with aspirations of being a singer, TLC had a major influence on me. I’d watch MTV while singing their songs at the top of my lungs. One day during a sleepover with my closest friends, we dressed in baggy jeans and mid-drift revealing tops and sang and danced to “Creep.” I can’t believe that was almost 20 years ago.
CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story not only made me a bit nostalgic for the 90’s, when fashion was colorful; Left Eye were condoms on her eye; and wearing baggy jeans were sexy. But the movie also inspired me. The movie portrayed a story of how three young ladies blossomed into beautiful and strong women, who overcame numerous struggles. From Chilli’s relationship struggles, to Left Eye coping with her father’s death, to T-Boz’s determination to win her battle with Sickle Cell Anemia, I found something tender about each of the members that I could identify with. Read More »
My job description has not always been this diverse; but, after being let go from a job unexpectedly a few years ago, I’ve learned to master the art of hustling. I hustle; I work. I work, while I hustle.
Like most US citizens, I relied on one job to meet my every need. Out of the blue one Thursday in May, I was called into a boardroom and told, “I’m sorry, Yaa, but we have to let you go.” Read More »