I'm Still Blessed I wade in wader almost to my head I'm still blessed. I walk bare on these embers I'm still blessed. Frost bites on top of frost bites I'm still blessed. My tears grow each day uncountable I'm still blessed. Grief stuck a blade deep in my heart I'm still blessed. I crawl across deserts unable to walk I'm still blessed. My eyes gorged out by injustices I'm still blessed. slowly I bleed out everywhere I'm still blessed. mutilated for my humanity I'm still blessed. In chains I must rise daily I'm still blessed. Thrown over cliffs to swim or sink I'm still blessed. Into an empty I've been caste I'm still blessed. Left to starve on my own bile I'm still blessed. My anchor holds me down the sun still rises in the east each morning My tremulous heart still beats A light guides me comes out of me and tells me you still have a reason you're still blessed.
Just letting you know this is an appreciation post for all the good friends out there!
In this the year of our Lord 2021 at 30 something (maybe one day I will share that), I can now say that this piece of gem is pricelessly true. Looking back at the friends I have chosen to gather to myself, I can say that nothing in this world is as priceless and more important than having good friends. These are the friends who love you for no other reason than you are you and because they want the best for you. My friends see my flaws and yet still they can see the vast potential clearer than those flaws and not just observe but help me to shape them.
If there is one thing I have been good at in this life is choosing the right friends for me. Ladies and gentlemen, who never expected anything from me except to show up as myself. I may have disappointed some of them in the past but that has never stopped them from defending me, loving me and cheering me on. Because of them I realized how blessed I am. Because of them I have learned how to be stronger mentally and spiritually, how to pick myself up and carry on after a fall and how to graciously accept my victories. When I think about primary and high school, university and work, I have met people I consider friends who have added to the tapestry that is me.
As I sit here and think about all the friends I have now, real friends, I feel blessed. In my most difficult moments and at my lowest, even when they did not have the full story, they were there for me. When I was having a mental breakdown, medical issues and a spiritual crisis they were there. When I needed to finish my book and find my confidence they were there building me up. There is no way I can repay them, all I can do is love all of them and support them when their turn comes.
A friend sent me this meme below, and it really highlighted the value of a good friend:
In a world where too many friendships are transactional, it is good to know that you have people in your corner who see you, hear you and just let you be you. It reminded me of Proverbs 18:24: “Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.” Good friends are hard to get and we need to remember that and count our blessings.
Right now is not so great for me. There are s many unforeseen events and issues that can derail my journey. It’s not so great for so many. Sometimes all I want to do is hide somewhere until everything going wrong passes and the good times come back into season. However, I recently found this quote that I felt was timely:
we are not here to wait for the storm to pass but to learn to dance in the rain.
We can’t stop now, we can’t wait for things to be better and that is the mistake many have made in the past. Many persons wait for things to get back to normal, the way they use to be. They never will. What we have to do is look at what is happening now, where we are and figure out how to move forward despite all the things that could hold us back.
We certainly cannot look to another person to make things better for us but we have to learn how to make things work for us in this season. Instead of sitting back and waiting for something to happening, we can do things that will enrich our lives in this season. We do not need “good news” the good news is already within us, we just need to believe that it is there and that we can harness it and use it in a way that can be beneficial to us and others.
Don’t wait for the storm to pass to start living, making plans or being happy. Do things that make you happy, live a life that brings you joy and make plans and do your best to see them come to fruition. Now is the time to be brave and make the most of what you have to work with.
Step away from the screen or whatever you feel you must do or where you feel you need to be. Step away from things, places and people that mean you ill. Just stop get up and step away. This is necessary if you have become obsessed lately with being dialed in. When you are plugged into everything happening around you, you may become weighed down with all the disruptive things that can attach itself to your mind. This is turn will affect your health as you become so focused on crowding your mind with things that tear a little away, each day at your spirit.
Instead find a space where you feel safe. You must do this to protect your overall well being. Now, when you are away you may be tempted to check who called, check messages or the latest news. Do not give in to the urge. Stay where you are until you have recovered. Think about how you will work on not needing to escape another time. Think about all that you currently do -things within your control – and reevaluate the value they add to the quality of your life.
Now think about the people around you. Think of only one thing. Do they add to the enhanced quality of your life? If they do not ease a little away from them and do not make their company a habit. Instead think about all those who bring joy, hope and inspiration into your life and make sure to be more in their presence.
But above all, always take time to step back and be away from anything that will steal your joy.
When I was younger I was the center of attention and I loved it. I would show up and show all the way out. You want a dancer? I will be the best. You want someone to cuss? There will be no other. You want a singer? Mariah Carey who. And all of this before I was 10 years old. But the older I got the less I showed out until I stopped showing up.
So, slowly as I got older I learned to have a filter, until I had filtered out everything that would make me stand out. I started to doubt myself, when I did not get the response I expected. Then I started to think maybe if I was real quiet things would work out better for me. I no longer wanted attention because there are the wrong ones that will get you into so much trouble. Then maybe if you are too bright there will be more to pick a part.
But when then will you celebrate your life? Whether you achieved all you thought you could, would or should achieve, it is important to celebrate yourself. We must learn to celebrate who we are and where we are at that moment knowing that we will not remain there. There are many lists on offer out there on how you can celebrate yourself. However, there is no right formula, no specific recipe and no set timeline. But each day we get up, we need to celebrate ourselves, we need to regain the confidence we once had and be grateful for all we have been through and enjoy the journey we will be on that day. Take along those who will celebrate with you and let go of those who will not.
Life is beautiful only if you see the beauty and not only the pain, but both. Life is transformative, only if you are willing to grow. We may each have a reason not to but celebrating who you are ensures you never lose yourself.
When I was a child and asked what I wanted to be, I chose the most popular at the time. I wanted to be a nurse, a teacher, a doctor, a lawyer. Then when I got older I wanted a glamourous job, a flight attendant (at least it was marketed as glamourous), super model (though I barely reached past five feet), an actress (though I never joined drama club), a singer (though I did not develop on my natural singing voice). Then I wanted something related to the subject I loved, I wanted to do journalism, travel the world and write about these places. Then I went to university and wanted to be whatever could pay for my student loans.
So, I ended being a teacher and have been doing this ever since. Along the way I have been inspired to write for different reasons and seasons. I write when I am happy, sad and mad. When I think I have something to say and when I know I have nothing to say but want to get out what is in me before it explodes from me. Writing has been something I have always done. Being the only child in a household of adults, great grand parents to be exact, I really did not have much option. I use to read four books in one day, write in my diary every day and read every box, bag, tube or bottle with words on it. Writing has always been my friend.
So when life throws something at me I have to write it down but in my own way. I had to tell my stories as I saw fit and poetry was the most beautiful way I could.
So I wrote and published a poetry book with poems that I have been writing for over ten years. Over the years I had promised myself I would write a book, but it was not gonna be a poetry book. It was gonna be novels like the one Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie wrote or Toni Morrison or Edwidge Danticat or Jamaica Kincaid. However, all I ended up writing were my poetries. I would read them to myself and be amazed that I wrote them. But that was all.
Then people saw them and told me I should publish them and I was mystified as to what they saw that gave them the idea that I could write anything great enough to be published. Then, much later, I realized that I was only finding excuses not to try. Excuses based on my own insecurities.
So this year I finally found the courage – with the support of some great people and dear friends – to learn more and grow, to put myself and my work out there and leave it there. I have a long way to go but this book is the step I needed to get out of my head.
There are many videos on YouTube around the issue of regret. There are videos about things I regret from my 20s, 30s and so on and so forth. However, I wonder if laying out those wounds, past hurts and disappointments really accomplishes much. Maybe for many persons, regrets from their past have given them the impetuous to work harder and push further. But, there is the real danger that regret can become our lifelong companions and deprive us of the joys of now.
There are many things in my past I wish I had done differently that at the time seemed perfectly sane and absolutely necessary. There are things I knew was wrong but did anyway, because life is complicated. However, does it now make sense that I allow those past decisions to control my decisions now through a sense of making the same mistakes or having similar results?
I have determined thus far that no one can every make the right decision for you and nobody wants to. Therefore, the decisions that we make must be in our best interest if we aim to do something anything along the lines of our purpose here on earth. When I tell you I regret not having financial literacy, not listening more to my intuition and not getting out of bad relationships quickly, ask me what am I doing now having learned those lessons.
It is easy to get stuck on our regrets, especially when what others think of us matter too much to us. When we compare ourselves with everyone and wonder why we are not further along. When instead of using our past as a blueprint to live the rest of our lives, we find ways to relish those disasters by taking them out from time to time and having a “poor me” party.
- I wish I had spoken up for myself – you still can begin now
- I wish I’d let myself be happier – you are still alive BE happy, do what makes you happy
- I wish I had the courage to life a life true to me – you can it is not too late create moments where you do
- I wish I had stayed in touch with more people – if you can’t reach out to them now treasure the ones you can and make it a point to keep connected
- I wish I had not been so focused on what others thought about me – it may be hard but start taking that approach now, work towards being as unbothered as you can be!
Regrets are a part of life, we all have them, but do not let your regrets overshadow your life.