Posted in Faith, Houston, Life

Just a Kid From Cleveland: First Year down in Houston!!!

Ever since I was a kid, I KNEW I wanted to experience all that life had to offer outside of Cleveland. I knew I would someday live in another place. And finally after a lifetime of wondering what it’d be like, a chance suddenly arrived, for me to do just that.

1 Year ago I arrived in H-Town, with everything that could fit in my car…ready to begin a new chapter of my life, career, but still very much in the midst of closing the previous chapter…I was excited and nervous all at the same time. On a whim I applied to a job (shoutout to my childhood friend who encouraged it!) and GOT IT. Next thing I knew I had 10 days (give or take) to move to Houston…and I arrived here on July 3rd, to begin a new chapter! 

 
WHEW words cannot even begin to describe how AMAZING this last year has been and how much HELL I went through this last year, professionally and personally.
 
I’ve experienced some AMAZING times here so far! I’ve:

-won tickets to see Peabo Bryson/Jeffrey Osborne
-seen Brian Courtney Wilson in concert (gospel singer, one of my FAVORITES)

-survived a Hurricane
-sat through HOURS of Houston Traffic LOL
-gone to a carnival randomly
-rode my bike through downtown Houston
-been to a Houston Astros game when they played the Indians
-lived on both the north and southside of Houston (and prefer the Southside lol)
-made some INCREDIBLE friends
-joined an AMAZING church, Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church
-taught the BEST group of kids ever, class of 2024
-been to Galveston and San Antonio

And the list. goes. on. that was only a partial list. lol

 
Not only have my friends back in The Land been INCREDIBLY supportive from a distance, but I’ve made met some AMAZING women here that I’m proud to call friend whose kids have also befriended my son this summer…I promise Houston has spoiled me in SO many ways lol. I’ve grown SOOOOO much as a woman, a mother, a teacher…part of me wishes I’d came here sooner but the other part of me knows God’s timing is PERFECT! As I’m getting ready to leap into the unknown yet again (details when the ink is dry lol) I am Looking forward to what this next year has in store for me!
 
#JustakidfromCleveland
36577212_10107130435352424_7201717727898107904_o
Buffalo Bayou Park, July 2017 Photo taken by: MissDei
Advertisements
Posted in Faith, Life, purpose, Spirituality

Teaching…a calling? Hmmm

They never lied when they said don’t chase purpose, purpose will find you.

I said before that I was a latecomer to teaching, meaning I knew I was supposed to be teaching awhile back, but held out to gain more experiences in different areas.

This year tried me in MANY MANY ways. SO many days I wanted to quit.

If you asked me at the beginning of the year, or even the middle of the school year, if teaching was a calling for me…I would have said no. I knew I loved teaching, but did I feel teaching was a calling?

Absolutely not. Even as recent as a few weeks ago, I still wasn’t sure.

But now? Having finished my first year of teaching and facing another major transition, there’s nothing else I’d rather be doing right now. Trust, I tried to look for other jobs. I tried to convince myself I wasn’t cut out for this, I tried to see myself doing something else.

But I could not.

As of right now I DEFINITELY view teaching as a calling for me, but I also am wondering what kind of mark I’ll leave, what kind of impact I’ll have on my students. I see all the other teachers on social media and they all have their thing they are known for. Some have started non profit organizations, others are coaches, motivational speakers, etc.

What will be my lane? I know I’m passionate about self-awareness and teaching my kids to speak up and advocate for themselves and what they need. I cannot wait to continue that and really refine it more as I move throughout my career.

But one thing I know for sure, my path will continue to unfold. I have unspoken dreams that I’ve barely mentioned to anyone that I’ve held close to me…I cannot wait to begin working on those dreams as well.

Life is full of twists and turns, I’m learning to learn as much about myself as I can, use it to my advantage, and to relinquish control in this great adventure called life.

Posted in Faith, Life, purpose

Where You Are…

I have my own struggles just like anybody else.

I LOVE to empower, encourage, uplift others, and sometimes I’m not in the headspace to do so, because I need it myself.

Sometimes I get discouraged by things happening in my own life. But then I remember, that I can make peace with where I am.

Life will never be perfect. Curveballs will always get thrown your way. Challenges will come. People will let you down. But you can still make peace with where you are.

Just remember you are not where you used to be, and that’s something to celebrate. The journey to becoming who you are meant to be…is what it’s all about

Posted in Faith, Life

Surrender

Surrendering is an interesting concept.

The dictionary definition is to cease resistance to an enemy or opponent and submit to their authority.

When you stress or worry, you allow it to have authority over you. When you focus intensely in a negative way over a situation you cannot control or have limited control over, you allow it to have authority over you.

Some of us don’t know how to surrender. We’re hell-bent on trying to control things. Maybe it’s because at some point in our life we felt controlled. We felt suffocated and stifled and then got old enough to insist that we would never let anyone or anything control or stifle us so we decided we needed to have all the power…or so we thought.

This led to health issues, relationship conflict, financial issues, etc.

But what if we surrendered?

What if instead of trying to control what is, what if we surrendered to what could be?

What if we decided to trust? Trust that everything will work out for our good?

I know some of us have major trust issues. But what if we forgave those people that broke our hearts, disappointed us, stifled us, tried to control us? What if we set them free?

What if by our setting them free, we liberated ourselves?

What would life be like if we decided to surrender? To not fight those battles that were never meant for us to fight in the first place?

Surrendering is not a bad thing. Sometimes we hold on so tightly to a good thing that we could delay a great thing. There are false assumptions and fears around surrendering.

It could be the best thing we ever did.

Do you need to surrender?

Posted in Faith, Kanye West, Music, purpose

Intuition and Greatness

“You can still be who you wish you is, it aint happened yet and that’s what intuition is”

-Kanye West, I Wonder

I have always loved Kanye West. Even in his crazy antics (because in many times, he was telling the truth…not always, but often), I appreciated his candor, but most importantly I’ve always appreciated his confidence and his desire to share that with the world.

I wonder how young Kanye was, when he knew he would be great? I wonder how young he was when he found a sense of purpose, direction?

Graduation is one of my favorite albums of his. And “I Wonder” is my favorite song on that album. Perhaps my favorite song of his, period.

“I Wonder” is a song that that has always resonated with me, because I often ‘wondered’ about my dreams.I wondered, if I was crazy for the big goals that I have. If I was being unrealistic. But that song? Has kept me dreaming. And that line, that I quoted above? Has kept me pushing forward.

what if what you want to be, your deepest desire is your intuition telling you of your destiny, what you are meant to be? That innate desire, that inner drive, is where greatness is born.

Only you have the power to make that happen.

True greatness, starts with your intuition, with your thoughts, and with your desires. Many have a desire to be great, but quickly dismiss it. We make excuses. Too poor, too fat, not enough time, not enough luck.

And those excuses become our mantra. And it remains our reality until we dare to do something about it.

Many never will. They’re convinced that their circumstances have already predicted their future. They are sure that their history determines their destiny.

I can reassure you, with that thinking, you are absolutely right.

Proverbs 23:7 says As a man thinketh, so is he.

Your thoughts control your destiny. If you think you can’t, you are right. If you think all hope is gone, you are right. If you think you are poor, you are right.

You see, your thoughts don’t just speak to your current reality; your thoughts are prophetic as well. You have the power to shape your future, your life, using your thoughts and words (Your words are the second part of where greatness is born, that is another post for another time). That’s right, you, are POWERFUL.

Greatness, starts, with your intuition and your thoughts. It’s why you must guard your thoughts. Your intuition is never wrong, you know. If you’re not careful, you can second guess yourself if you are bombarded with negativity, with messages that go directly against your intuition. Your thoughts are a direct byproduct of the people you hang with, the tv shows you watch, the books you read, the music you listen to, the environment you live in, the places you go, the things you pay attention to.

Do you desire to be great? Dare to pay attention to your intuition. Dare to let that inner drive, that desire, push you towards it. Block out naysayers. Turn off social media if you must. Limit your time around people who speak against your desire to be great. Read books that feed your spirit. Listen to music that affirms who you are (not who you are currently, but WHO YOU ARE, prophetically-remember, your intuition, your thoughts are prophetic!).

Greatness does not occur without work, I am not minimizing the importance of hard work, diligence, and good habits. I am saying, it all starts with your intuition.

If you have a feeling you will be great, pay attention to that. Follow it.

As long as you are given the greatest gift of waking up to see another day, your intuition is always right.

Posted in Faith, higher education, Life, purpose, Religion

No Regrets on Purpose

“If you could go back and change one thing in your life, what would it be?” is a common question asked on a regular basis on a variety of different platforms and situations.
My answer? Nothing. Because the smallest change could literally change the course of my entire life.

My freshman year I [briefly] attended a HBCU in Virginia. And while now, I look back on my experience and time there fondly, at the time I was depressed, homesick and unhappy while I was there.

Years later I am able to set aside the depression I experienced and remember mostly the valuable lessons I was taught there, both in and outside of the classroom. Those lessons stuck with me and even shaped me into who I am at this very moment.

Leaving that school was devastating, as I looked at it as coming home empty-handed. No college credits under my belt, no degree, nothing. Just feelings of failure and embarrassment as I enrolled at the local community college.

But who knew that in the moment of my despair, the foundation was laid for my personal and character development? Who knew that depression I went through would strengthen me and position me to encourage others later on? Who knew coming back home would lead to even greater opportunities, meeting my husband, and discovering my passion for education?

God knew. Just like He knew in the Old Testament story of Joseph, that Joseph getting sold into slavery by his own brothers, being imprisoned and punished, would set him up to be one of the highest ranking officials in the country, putting him in a position to save his family’s life during a famine, one of the worst ever.

I’m sure Joseph never saw any of that coming. But I’m sure if he were alive today and you asked him if he could go back and change anything in his life, his answer would be the same as mine.

“Nothing.”

And how do I know this?

Genesis 50: 20 told me so.

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

You may have lost a loved one. Or some friends. or a job. You may find yourself in a situation you never expected to be in. But God allowed it to happen. It all has a greater purpose.

You losing your job led to a career change, or allowed you to be able to take care of a sick relative. Losing friends allowed you to make new friends, appropriate for the season of life you are in now. God knew what you needed before you did, before you even opened your mouth to ask Him.

Your pain, your frustration, has purpose.

God is interested in our happiness, our success, our triumphs, absolutely He is. But He is more concerned with making us like Him. And whatever He has to do or use to do that, He will.

Take comfort in knowing that God wants you to be the very best version of you possible and He will bring you to unexpected places so that can happen. Trust that God knows better than you or any of us ever will.

And in times of trials, frustration, devastation, despair…know there is a purpose, a reason for it all.

Posted in Faith, Life, Motherhood, Religion

Forgetting What is Behind…

But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

-Phil 3:7-14

I’m transparent when I feel it’s necessary to help someone else. So here we go…

I am not the greatest at letting things go. I’ve held on to certain hurts, certain mistakes and regrets for YEARS now, some of them dating back to 10 years ago.

Something happens when you are weighed down by those things. It paralyzes you. It makes it harder to move forward.

Ever try to run with weights on your ankles? Or try to get somewhere dragging a bunch of bags? You might move forward, but at a MUCH slower pace. You won’t make as much progress. And if there’s a small window of time to make it towards your destination, you may not make it in time.

I’ve made mistakes. Hurt people. Some people hurt me. I made unwise choices and decisions. I’ve allowed it to slow me down, distract me, sometimes paralyzing me altogether and causing me to change direction.

I’ve been beating myself up a lot lately, because I’m not where I want to be or where I think I should be. Not because I’ve been comparing myself to others, but because I’ve always had this ‘timeline’ in my head of where I should be and when. People have been telling me to let it go, before it makes me sick. And they’re right. Yet, I’ve still been struggling.

Then I realized-I’ve been so focused on the regrets, the mistakes, bad decisions that I didn’t even notice what I gained. I was focused on what I’d lost. I didn’t even notice that I’d grown stronger, wiser, and gained more knowledge from everything I’ve done WRONG. Trust, I’ll need that knowledge in the days ahead, to pass along to my son and to others, to write about in spaces like this, and for my own personal journey that will make use of all the experiences I’ve had up to this point.

Everything around me is changing. Friends I swore would be lifelong friends, are now just people that I know and share fond memories with, nothing more. My career is in flux, not going exactly the way I planned. And anybody who’s a parent knows that things never stay the same with a kid, just like those who are married know that you and your spouse and your marriage never remain the same-change is ever constant.

People who REALLY know me, know I don’t do well with change. And, I have to do something about that. Because it’s causing me to miss out on some really great moments.

I was so focused on what I’d lost that I failed to notice the lifelong friends I’ve gained in the midst of missteps. I failed to realize that because of these mistakes and regrets, I know myself better enough to know how to handle certain situations, things vital to my future. I now have lessons to pass along to my son, to others, because of the mistakes and regrets that I have made. I know now what I don’t want, and what not to do. I know when God is speaking, and I’m learning when to speak up and when to shut up. I’m learning when to ask for help, and when I must do things without help. I’m learning to place my trust in God and follow His lead, even when it doesn’t make sense…and when I do make mistakes, to lift up my head and look at what has been gained.

Most of all, I’m beginning to feel lighter and look at my mistakes and regrets in a whole new light, in a way that gives me life and propels me forward towards my destiny. I can move on, knowing the past isn’t holding me back, it isn’t weighing me down…instead I can shake off the feelings that slowed my progress, and know that today is as good as day as any to turn over a new leaf, have a fresh new start but have wisdom, knowledge, a better understanding of myself and God and keep moving!