Health Over Wealth.

Health is the greatest gift,

Contentment the greatest wealth,

Faithfulness the best relationship


I use to believe that success was measured in how much you had and how much you were able to do in a short mount of time. However, lately I have been taking my head out of the stand and I noticed something. Better yet I realized something, you don’t always have to be first out of the blocks first or fastest to win the race. I use to think, because I was taught this, that all you had to do was make it early, then success for a lifetime was guaranteed. Also, with my heads in the clouds, I thought that all you had to do, was do the “right thing”, be a “good person” and things were guaranteed to work in your favor. Now for me this mindset has led to many disappointing dead ends. I had to learn the hard way that life does not take place in a vacuum.

Bad things happen to everyone, and no one can ever be perfect.

There was one idea of success that I was told about when I was younger and only one that mattered. It was the success based on working hard, not ruffling any feathers and being a team player. Now maybe nothing is wrong with each item on its own, however, for me, what happened was that I interpreted it in such a way that it affected me badly, not only physically but mentally as well. So I spent my 20’s trying to fit into where I thought I should be and now it feels as if I first have to unlearn all the things I told myself I needed to learn even if it killed me, literally. I need find out what works for me, in a world that can and will happily leave me to be me.

Being mindful of what you do is more important than, running with it. When things happen that you never expected, stop and think what you want to do with this sudden twist. I made mistakes in how I handled sudden changes, impending changes or sudden windfalls, and I have many regrets; regret, it is a bitter, brittle pill to swallow. It doesn’t matter what it is, before you react, especially to something unexpected, good or bad, stop and take the time to think things through. Pray about it and take the time to check in with yourself before you react. Once you have come to a decision don’t change your mind or you could waste time trying to do damage control.

It was always important to be the best at everything. So I tried to be perfect. Perfect daughter, niece, friend and worker. However, this is impossible. Also, perfection takes too much work and second guessing your choices, until it makes the thinker crazy and lonely with bad choices. Plus, I don’t think anyone was measuring my level of perfection.

When you try to be perfect, people always expect you to be a certain way and when you can’t maintain it but try to, the only one to suffer is the person working around the clock to keep that perfect phantom perfect alive.

So, I have decided to stop.

To stop and take a break, and procrastinate from procrastinating from being real.

Being real is much harder than faking it. When you are real you have to be honest. I now confess that many times I did stuff, not so important stuff because I wanted to be on the “right side”. I said a lot of stuff, really unimportant stuff because I wanted to, “be good”.

So It’s health over wealth. No more trying to be the success that I think I should be, but, the one I can be. The world I occupy is too small for me, so out the door I shall go and see what peace lies behind it.

Wish me luck…

Bird Standing on Shore Line during Golden Hour

Prove Yourself!

What does it mean to prove yourself? Also, who stands to benefit the most from your doing so?

Sure there are persons who don’t care what others think of them or what they do. However, there are more persons who do. Those of us who do spend too much time worrying of been labeled a “bad persons”. Too much time is spent trying to appease everyone whose opinions we think matter and none on discovering things about ourselves.

Many feel they have to be constantly proving their worth based on the expectations of others or even their humanity. It becomes a tragic tale of trying to keep up with the Joneses when the Jonese do not really care. When we cannot keep up, many persons decided that there are things inherently flawed about them, that they are broken and irredeemable. Having this mindset, has led many persons to fall into the rabbit hole of a depression that is nearly impossible to ever truly get out of. Therefore, it is important to be aware of when you begin this descent, to break the fall so that you do not go too deep.

Image result for don't prove improve

It’s difficult to be like someone else, because we are not suppose to. It’s hard to be successful, because we are operating on someone else’s idea of success. It’s hard to define who we are, because we think we have to be defined. It’s hard to prove ourselves, because we have nothing to prove.

In high school I had the bestest friend ever, and I often saw her as the complete opposite of me. When I was still loud, immature and still a tomboy, she was quiet, mature and lady like. When I was thrilled by a good cuss-out and fighting she was not amused. However, I loved her; she was nothing like me, at times she was so nice she made me so sick, in the best way possible. But I appreciated her because she made me realize that it wasn’t always necessary to be loud and rough and a general wild child. I on the other hand, think I helped her to be a little less uptight. At the end of the day, I did not see our differences at that young age as a barrier, but as a way we complimented each other. I had nothing to prove to her and neither did she to me, we just got each other and loved each other for our differences.

However, I have noticed that it is as we get older that live really does a number on us. As we get older we are expected to be a certain way and be living a certain live that just is not realistic; we are not the same. We all cannot pursue the same dreams and care about the same things. Persons who are trying to have that universal dream , have to be honest enough to know that in trying to prove something they may end up being impostors. The need to wear a mask becomes one of the by-products of proving things to others. We become ten different versions of a self we cannot come to terms with and end up being far from our compass.

Image result for quote aboutbnot proving yourself

Anger becomes another by-product. Many who are angry at the world, reach that point because it seems no matter how hard they try, they always fall short. So they become angry at friends, family, the old lady down the road, the man walking pass them, the children making too much noise and the lucky few who boast about their accomplishments. Everything and everyone becomes a problem, until the only thing they have is their anger.

In a fair world we would know we don’t need to prove a thing to anyone. Our worth and value have always been there. Who we are has been known to us from birth. To question this, means that we either have or we are trying to prove to others that we are who they think we should be. What we all need to do is temper our expectations of what we can do; not trying to be all and have all, but confident in being your natural self.

There is no need to be ashamed of who you are. Stop trying to convince yourself that you are that label you have been pinned with and realize that you can never be anyone other than who you are.

Image result for we were born to be real not perfect quote

Seeing the Light

It feels sometimes like life is one long sentence that seems to carry no full stop.
You then begin to wonder
at the wisdom of some of your choices
just when you're ready to stop,
you hear a voice telling you,
you're approaching the light.

Nothing is forever.

IS this a positive or negative?
Change is good whether you get what you wanted or not.
It's good to approach your challenges with the knowledge that
change is just around the corner.
This change that will ultimately lead to where you want to go.

Now should we wait to reach the light
To live?
The light is ready to be lit no matter the situation.
A smile to block out the pain,
a word of kindness to erase a wound
thoughtfulness and love to cure all incurables.
These are all
perfect ingredients to see the light,
to be in the light.

When you decide not to hold on for dear life,
maybe then you can live life until you can't.
It never pays to stop
to wonder what road will lead to success,
that vision has been
Better to be led by the light.
Close your eyes,
see and trust what you cannot see
with your eyes wide opened.

The less you know of those dark places,
the more likely it is to feel
the power of the sunshine
the wonder of the moon light.
To never wonder at miracles
likely to happen when you stop
looking for all that is wrong and celebrate
that one good thing.

Just think,

this life will never be yours again.
This smile last for only a while,
these hands can only flow for a moment.

Stand straighter
step strong,
move with fluid movements.
celebrate this one good life.

Feel the wind
lift you higher
and no matter what,
don't look down.

Your destiny does not lie in looking down
but flying higher and higher.
No one said the flight would be smooth.
Ride the wave
of the turbulence
laugh in the face
of storms past,
and those to come.

Allow the wonder of finally seeing the light to be
the eighth wonder of the world.

Better yet make it the only wonder that counts.

It is hard to begin,
but once you have started to see,
you can glimpse the beauty that was already there.
When you have lost much,
put the brightest and loudest colors on what you have left.

Those are what matter.

When you finally rest in the light,
you made it.
Finally, you have seen the light.
Image result for light

We Do Not Have to Stop.

So today has been one of those days; when you have a choice to either allow things to get you down and interrupt your day or just go with the flow and roll with the punches.

On Mondays I get up early as usual, but not for work. I get up at 4 a.m. to go to up to the good ole U.W.I, a struggle I hope to overcome soon. I did everything I would normally do, but apparently not everything.

I got to the bus park and guess what the line is super short. This means I will be getting a comfortable seat today! As I stand in line a thought comes to me: “do I have my ID?” And you guessed correctly, I did not. Upon realizing this, couple of thoughts flashed through my mind. Should I just go home and use this as the excuse why I can’t go to school today, after all I can’t use the library without my ID and going there will take up a large chink of my day? Or, do I call my aunt to see if she can get someone to get it to me? Or, do I call a taxi man I know to get it from her to take to me?

Image result for failure is not falling down but staying down

Now normally before I think of what to do, I would spend some time cursing the day and fate that caused me to forget my ID! I would probably cry for good measure, because poor me, I did everything right and things are still not working out for me. But i surprised myself today.

I was a bit surprised at how calm I was. I did not complain, curse nor cry. Instead, I picked what I thought was the best solution. I stepped out of the line and called my aunt. But she did not answer the phone. What next could I do? I had called her several times and still not answer. if I went home now no one could blame me, after all I did try. Right?

Image result for how long should you try? until

However, I decided to try another number. My plan worked. I got her and she was able to get to a good taxi friend who could drop it off so I could collect it. As I waited for him I realized I had to use the bathroom, but I did not want to miss him. But I had to go! I went and quickly did my thing and just as I came out he was already there looking around for me, ready to leave. I ran and collected my ID and ran back to the bus park.

Two buses had come and gone since I left and the line was still short. A real miracle. In less than a minute another bus approached. I was able to get a comfortable seat and I was on my way!

Image result for it does not matter how slowly you goso long as you do not stop

Sitting in the bus I thought of the me a year ago. The me who would have been so frustrated at this seemingly insurmountable blockage. I would have given up and called it a day. I would have wallowed in self pity and thought of all the past incidents that prove once more that no matter how hard you try, things just don’t work out sometimes. I would not have been able to see beyond my disappointment to other solutions, to get what I needed in order to go where I wanted to go. However, today I could and I did.

Though I am still affected by things that I should not be affected by, I realized that I am no longer as stressed out as I use to be. I am more realistic in my approach to situations and therefore more rational in how I react and choose to get things done.

A disappointment does not have to result in lingering and all consuming unhappiness. Things do not always happen the way we imagine but that doesn’t mean they will not happen. We may have to shift our plans, take a different route or delay a bit, but we do not have to stop. We do not have to let the actions of others affect our mood nor our dream of where we are headed. We do not have to beat ourselves up when we make mistakes that delay our plans. Maybe we will have to adjust how we get to where we are going, and that’s okay. In the end let nothing stop you from getting there.

Image result for bible verse about completing the race

It’s Fun to Generalize.

I think we enjoy generalizing, because it’s fun.

It is also easy to do and therefore we are more tempted to do so than not. If we had to take the time to consider and admit that “everyone doesn’t do the same thing”s, not “everyone think s the same way” and not “everyone care about the same things”, then we would have less of a concrete argument for some of the assumptions that we have.

Image result for generalizing quotes

It may seem that I am pointing the finger, and I am. However, it may comfort you to know that it is also pointed at me too, because we have all done this (or am I generalizing?). Sometimes we do it subconsciously and sometimes we are very deliberate about it. When we do not want to consider that there may be another side or some other reasonable explanation we sweep all doubts aside by generalizing. At this point we are unwilling to listen and we don’t care much about the truth.

So, we go around, sometimes not knowing that we are the hosts to faulty and over generalization, until we are forced to unmask it hiding within us. By that time, as is often the case, we have caused some direct or indirect damage to those who have to content with these generalization, because they have developed into prejudices and discrimination. And poor us for not knowing that using those sweeping generalization would result in a language of hate and sentiments of division and “othering”.

Image result for stereotypes quotes

Also, can you imagine thinking that because someone is from a specific place or does a specific job, that you are better than they are. Only to find out, years later, that while you have been dangling on your last shoe string, they have been happily and successfully going about their business. That’s the irony of life, when we get caught up in the lies that have become truths in society. Many miss out on the opportunities because of what they thought of a place or of “certain” people!

I came across this quote and I think it is something that we all need to think on:

we cannot all become geniuses [and] we cannot all reach the same level.

The Joke’s on You:

I was talking to a friend who asked a students a while ago, how he would feel if he and the garbage collector got the same pay, if he was able to get the material things we’re told to aim for, such as the best car, a grand house and so on. The student was adamant that he would not accept that, because he and the garbage collector should not be getting the same pay, because he is more academically gifted. But then my friend also made the point that some bright or even brilliant sparks who look down on persons with technical skills, will never achieve as much as those persons. He further made the point that the act of looking down on persons for perceived shortcomings could be their way of addressing their own sense of inferiority.

Image result for generalizing quotes

Sometimes in generalizing we feed the us- versus- them complex. With this complex people are vilified, and their very complex and real problems are distorted because we refuse to accept that everything is not black or white. No one is completely good or bad and often times the most interesting accept to a person, and the part we need to pay attention to the most are the grey areas. However, many dismiss the possibility of grey areas in favor of half the truth or no truth.

These ideas are supported all around us. in the exchanges that people have on a daily basis. We see it in the archetypal, good guy versus bad guy. Then we perpetuate these beliefs in our interactions with others. We look for certain signs and wonders and deem those to tell the story of who a person is, until we are presented with a puzzle. But instead of interrogating our beliefs we deem it an anomaly and continue along in our faulty assumptions and generalizations.

Image result for stereotypes quotes

But, we should also never forget that while we may not make generalizations about ourselves we buy into them. Based on how we look, what we have achieved and where we are from, we have accepted and live out a certain image of who others may think we are.So, not only are we prone to generalizing others, we also can become co-conspirators of our own generalization, without realizing the damage it has done to us.

I think that is why I love novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s speech, “The Dangers of a Single Story”, so much. It was listening to this speech that make me really question what I do not know about people and places. And while there is much that I still do not know or understand, at least I am more aware of this. Therefore, when I hear about such things as Ebola, I do not assume that all Africa is affected and when I hear about Haiti, I do not only visualize temporary tent camps. Live is complex because people are complex and you can never fully represent everything that is life and every person in your telling, even in a story that involves them. There isn’t enough time to consider all the facets of a person or situation and you can never fully complete the story of someone’s life. Something will always be missing.

While it is hard to prevent ourselves from always generalizing people places or a situation, we should never accept those information as the truth. We should never be complacent in making authentic the injustice of reducing someone’s humanity to a single idea. A single fable.

Image result for stereotypes quotes

Sad Tales.

There are sad tales that do not need retelling.

We get so caught up in the wonder of them, that we do not know that we have become trapped by them. Many persons may find comfort in these sad tales, even though they hurt because at one time, all we had were those experiences and the hope of better days. We realize that some of those sad tales mean more, when we no longer live them and looking back we can see things about them that were so real. We felt things that were so real. Sometimes, because we yearn for real things we relive those sad tales and sometimes they bring us comfort.

Image result for quote about sad tales

They become nostalgic mementos, like pressed flowers between pages that we have an urge to take out and look at from time to time. However, sometimes we get carried away with remembering and forget that we have to keep on living. We forget that those tales are a part of the fabric of our lives that we do not need to keep tucked tightly under our hearts. The tale of all our injuries and an account of every slight ever committed, can do us more harm than the real act, if we choose to stay in it.

Image result for quote about sad tales

You see, it is often those stories of near death experiences, or of almost losing it all that inspire us to grow and reach further than we ever had, or thought we could. But, there also comes a time when we must reach for new tales, of happiness and laughter, of solitude and peace. There is always room not just for the sad tales, but also for those that burn a fire within us, that can never be extinguished.


What If…

What if you just take the leap and go for what you wanted?

What’s the worse thing that could happen?

Is what if better than If only?

Image result for what if quote

Being able to look ahead and operate from the what if may be a lot more promising than looking back at what was and regrettably sigh, if only. Sometimes we think we have made the only logical decision there is to make in a given situation. However, when we honestly cross-examine ourselves we admit that that logical decision was made from an illogical fear.

There are many of us who only recognize this after the fact, when there is nothing else to do but learn and do better. Some, hold stubbornly to the mistake and refuse to admit the naturalness in making decisions out of fear that we end up regretting. You see, when we think of what ifs, we are thinking of all the possible problems- as if life does not always have problems that we have to deal with. We may think it more sobering to think up all the possible obstacle before they happen so we maybe prepared.

Image result for what if quote

However, we will never be prepared from the real thing, because at the heart of all our logical reasoning is a heart that desperately wants things to work out the way we want it to work out. We may say it doesn’t matter, until it does. Regret is terrible and can be debilitating when you see the possibility of what could have been if only we fought against your fear of what you do not know.

Staying on the shore and watching all the swimmers is not how you learn to swim. Therefore, staying safely indoors and watching everyone else make various attempts and doing stuff, is not how life was meant to be lived. Many persons love the internet because they can live vicariously through someone else. many sit and watch and wish they could be that person, go where they have been and do what they have done. How profound it would be for each of us to realize that what we get is the remains from their yesterday. That while we are there saying some day we will do the same. They have already moved on to the next thing and if we try to following we will get lost in the shuffle to the next thing. While we are there trying to catch up to a lifestyle two days old.

It’s an open field of what can be.

So what if we really take that leap of faith.

Image result for what if quote