“2016, you were heavy and I needed you to be. I needed you to weigh me into the ground so hard that I was forced to learn the lesson of what it really means to let go of something.” — Luba
I read that quote, over and over and over again. This year, I was forced to learn a lesson I never wanted to learn. During that lesson, I discovered so much more. Take a look at the 10 things I learned this year:
10. It’s crazy how we love those who we think can love us back. That’s not love, in fact, that’s reciprocity.
9. Do not be afraid to ask for help. At times this year I felt I ran out of believers. I questioned friendships and loyalty. My ex went on to have one of the best years of his life, in turn, people wanted so badly to be associated with his highs, they forgot the lows I held their hands through. Luckily, those people opened my eyes to the plethora of people who genuinely wanted nothing more than my happiness and success. I opened my mouth and hands and turned those friends & family members into Mentors, partners, and sounding boards.
8. My mom is still the same superhero I believed she was my whole childhood. The mother/daughter relationship has got to be one of the most complex relationships a family has. There’s this desire to find the perfect balance of love, authority, respect, friendship, adoration, and support. This year reminded me that not only will she always be MY Superhero, I’m hers as well. Let’s be honest, I’m the only one who knows what the inside of her soul looks like.
7. White Nationalism is alive and well. Let’s be clear, White Nationalism & White Supremecy are VERY different. President elect Trump sparked conversations about racism that hit too close to home. When I went home in October and saw the Trump signs that lined my tree line block, I felt defeated. I had followed my moms instructions, I left, I saw the world, I used my strength & intelligence to align myself in a space where I would never feel less than, but in reality, I just changed surroundings. The world I left, tried to forget even existed was right there. The mother and father who let their daughter play with me, but wouldn’t let her go to prom with the black boy who asked her. The store clerk reminding me of the price of the item before she even scanned it. They ladies in the mall telling me how dry & damaged my hair is when in fact it’s just different. I had left the area but that didn’t mean that anything changed, I was still the little black girl in the area, and they were still the premiere race. Confused? Check out this worthy article.
6. Never stop reading. There’s nothing a good book can’t help cure. Hungry and tired of eating the same thing? Cookbook. Upset about the current status of your life? “Self help” book. Lost your faith? Bible.
5. Rihanna and co. wrote “Needed Me” just to reinforce everything I ever thought about myself. Confidence back in check.
4. You are not your thoughts. You are your thoughts. You are not your thoughts until you decide to become your thoughts. Think about that.
3. “It’s so easy to throw you under that bus that you’re riding on. It’s so easy to knock you off that cloud that you call home. It’s so easy to expose those that you loved the most. But it’s so hard to disregard and keep your mouth closed. I’ll take the bullet… You can pull it.” -The Dream
2. Exhibit endless, boundless, grace. Always. I cannot count the number of people who applauded my grace this year, grace I didn’t know I had. But as people began to draw my attention to it, I thanked God for the ability to showcase grace when doubt, fear, and anger overwhelmed me.
1. Life goes on. It doesn’t stop when things get hard, it doesn’t follow some magical plan you’ve mapped out, it continues, whether you like it or not. Let’s be honest, what’s the alternative?
“When you start to feel like things should have been better this year, remember the mountains and valleys that got you here. They are not accidents and those same moments weren’t in vain. You are not the same. You have grown and you are growing. You are breathing. You are living. You are wrapped in endless, boundless, grace. And things WILL get better. There is more to you than yesterday.” — Morgan Harper Nichols
I wish you all nothing but love, success, and tons of happiness in 2017. Thank you for reading, growing, and glowing with me.