What I would tell my younger self

Next March I would have live more than 40 years on planet earth.  It’s something about turning 40, that at this age, it’s inevitable that you reflect more deeply about what’s left of your life. In my case I’ve been let down so many times, that my faith and trust in God was limited, (without knowing), I wanted to do everything on my own, but now, I’m ready to make changes. God and I have been on a long journey together with many twists and turns, but I believe I am at a good place to look back and reflect. Reflecting on the past is good as long as you don’t dwell on the negatives, and for me I needed that to be able to move on, because I was holding on to people that added no growth to my life.  In the mist of my journey, I was sick, hurt, tired and ready for this journey to end, because it all felt like torture. But now, I am enjoying the journey more than ever, because where I am, I understand and know myself better, which renewed my faith. Today what would I tell my younger self? Although I must say, my answer would have been different and selfish 5 years ago.

So now I would tell my younger self, to take the Bible text, I will never leave you nor forsake you seriously, because it is truth. It’s good that God don’t let us know what our struggles are before we go through them, because just the thought will make us gave up. I would tell my younger self, it’s hard to speak up, but get the courage, because when you do, it’s empowering, people are amazed with your story and it is important. Accept yourself as God made you, never, ever, ever compare yourself to people around you, especially family. For me I did that, so most of my 20s I thought that my experiences singled me out as being abnormal. Looking back helps you reassess what you liked and disliked about your experiences, and help you come up with ways to improve them. Your hard work in school will be worth it.  You are not the only person in the world who feels this way, whatever “this way” is that you’re feeling. The church is made of different types of people; don’t let some of them make church bad for you. And lastly, stop watching so much TV, read. Remember one very important thing, everything happens for a reason, regret nothing, but find the lesson to help you grow.  Its amazing to watch God answer my prayer list, one item at a time and it gives me chills.

Carpe Diem

For as long as I’ve known myself, I have never live my life to its full potential, because without @intoxicatedinspirationally knowing I lacked so many things. Have you ever met someone who had so much potential but wasted it? That was me, smart, beautiful but didn’t know it because no human being had ever said those words to me since my grandmother died. I did not have any self-confidence, zero and got discouraged easily because there was no one to push me. I didn’t know how to be comfortable with being uncomfortable,and it made me more selfconscious. My self-confidence was so low I didn’t even knowr item how to except a compliment, about anything that concerned me. And looking back now, because of it, I never set specific measurable goals to work at and cross of my list to better myself, especially getting pregnant at a young age and being told I brought shame to my family. So I spent the time to reach my goals trying to fix ‘’that shame’’ by doing what they thought was best for me. I grew up in a straight Christiany family that was very militant., and asking too many questions, or talking back, was not an option, do as I say and that’s it, or find your own place. So maybe if I just do it their way it will all go away, I’ll fit in again and everything will be back to how it used to be, but were they though? No, Things had always been that way, I just always saw the good. So after my divorce, and the search for a second tattoo, I came across the phrase Carpe Diem, powerful two words that hit and woke me because; this was at the core of me finding myself. A Latin aphorism coined by the Roman poet Horace, meaning ‘seize or pluck the day’. I have never seized a hour, much less a whole day, or to know what that really means or feels like, because my moments were always done with concern for the future, how will my family view this decision. I had chills, I was in tears, and it had been at least 15 years since I really enjoyed myself on purpose. I see everyone around me doing things they love and I wondered how, what’s their secret? Even as I write this, I am in tears just thinking about all I’ve endured to please others and let go of me. Up until 2 years ago, I used to think I wasted my life, not today because I know I’ve touched someone somewhere. At this moment, I see it as gathering the flowers that God has allowed me to plant, I am plucking and placing them in the rooms of my life, bighting up every space.

 

PRIDE

Pride – a feeling or deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements. Nothing’s wrong with being proud as long as it doesn’t get to ones head. Pride is a poison because it’s the basis for disrespecting others and for creating suffering in our lives, especially excessive pride; it can be y huh an exaggerated appreciation of oneself by devaluating others. Proverbs 11:2 – When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom. The saying do unto others as you would have them do unto you, goes far beyond simply being kind to people, or going out of your way to be available or helpful to those in need. Treating people with respect is a key component, everywhere. But in my experience it has occurred to me that respect might mean different things to different people, and isn’t a simple concept as I thought. For some people this is driven by self-worth, but is it? Some of this can be from ourt childhood, or life experiences that we try to composite for. Pride is often considered a negative force in human existence, opposite of humility. Our pride makes us care about how others see us. When we avoid signs of disrespect, such as constantly interrupting, or belittling them, speaking in a condescending matter, and facial gestures such as grimaces or sneers, we show respect. At work I have experienced the following form of disrespect, bullying, harassment, and backstabbing, although these behaviors suggest more is going on than “mere” disrespect, I ignored them and carry on. All of this happens because of pride, the pride of being nice to the new kid, the smart one who can take away my job. The women in my family and my co-workers have a lot in common; they are so proud it’s smothering even them. I’m sorry is one of the first things we learn to say as children, yet some adults refuse to apologize even when they’re clearly in the wrong. We can be prideful without even knowing, so my goal is to let my readers know the pride that describes a feeling of happiness that comes from achieving something, is what we need. In the Bible, pride does not mean simple arrogance or ostentation, instead hubris: preferring self-will to God’s will. When we put our pride aside, we are selfless, everything we do is for God’s will.

 

The Core of Self-Improvement

Per Google, Self-improvement is the improvement of one’s knowledge, status, or character by one’s own efforts. It’s the quest to make us better in any and every facet of life. I needed to build myself back up to where I was in my late teens and early 20s, but how do I go about doing such a hard tasks, (so I thought at the time) when I had so much hurt and pain, was the million dollar question. I had lost my touch, everything I loved to do I had put aside and was living my ex’s life, while waiting for someone’s kind words, a phone call for the validity or accuracy of how I lived my life. But of course I didn’t know that at the time, until therapy, and after the entire trauma I had experienced. I had to identify my blind spots, which at the time I had no idea what they were. Blind spots are things about ourselves that we can’t see, but that are weaknesses or need improvement. I didn’t know that my thoughts were key influences or “blind spots’, for how I was felling and existing. Like the way I felt so sorry for myself all the time and thought other could see it and they would view me differently also. Butonce I recognize the power of my mind, I was able to redirect my energy and slowly started to rebuild what I had torn down with my negative thoughts, and started to get back to things that interest me. Now, I believe that God placedusall here to live fully, to expand and grow, and that thought energize me to my very core to keep working hard, and not giving up. Because worrying about what everyone, (especially my family) thinks about my every move is their issue. So to get back to myself I started avoiding negativity, setting boundaries, reading and writing, challenging myself, knowing it’s ok to fail as long as I get back up, and lastly the one I’ve struggled with all my life, excepting people for who they are, especially family. So I decided to spend time with people that were always around and who inspire me. My self improvement is as big as the cartoon”s hair.

Mood

Every once in a while we all get into a bad mood and, eventually, snap out of them, but mine has been unusual because I have been in a good place. God has been so good to me that I cannot tell it all. During this pandemic with lots of unemployment, I am working, and my children are healthy. Everything is good until the devil realized it is and sends his personal friends to try and interrupt the good God has placed on your lap. There are even individuals at work that are trying their best to keep me in this bad mood, and the attitude of management has changed towards me because of it. But it’s not working because they don’t know whose I am. I am also still dealing with other personal things like guilt, a feeling that can change a mood quickly. Another is rejection, the one I struggle the most with, and I learned it is an extremely common emotional injury, that has caused the “mood.” We know that rejection hurts, especially when it’s from people close to you because we all have a fundamental need to belong, and when we are rejected, this need becomes destabilized and the disconnection we feel adds to our emotional pain. So for the past week, I have been in that bad, hard to explain, mixed feeling. A funky mood if you’d like to call it that one I just couldn’t shake. I couldn’t shake it because I wasn’t giving myself happiness; I was seeking it from those close to me. So I decided to live in the moment, enjoy everything I have worked so hard to achieve up to this point. All I want is to be happy, so I started doing things to change this mood, like talking to people that have always brought me positive vibes, and keep me smiling. Eating some chocolate, (Lindt Lindor) one of my favorites to be precise, while thinking about that special person.

Finishing what I started

Every day we juggled multiple balls to keep our business and personal life going, but it’s hard to focus on one task at a time to see it through to completion because of all the distractions. Taking that first step for me took 10 years because I was so wrapped up in my so call marriage and forgot myself. One thing I didn’t know was the first step was really to make the decision, so I did without even realizing it. I told myself I’m going to alter my behavior and approach to actually complete what I started. This will mean missing out on a lot of get together, family and friends’ vacations. But being the spontaneous person that I am, I didn’t make any plans so I don’t be overwhelm, I just stop everything and enrolled in school. I’ve never had the habit of starting projects, and not finishing them, so this was hard for me every time I was reminded. I’ve personally embarked on many projects in the course of my life, but pursuing my personal goals always came first, and I always made it my business to successfully complete them. There were a lot of things that would give me hiccups to finishing school. Like, my age, financial resources, time and effort, to name a few. I had a realistic idea of how much time and effort needed to complete school. I was very enthusiastic, but underestimated my strength and drive to finish what I had started. I had no job, not enough money saved up, but I knew God, He was bigger than anything I had ever known in my life, and I trusted Him to see me through this journey.  This was not just any project, it was my life, I needed my boys to see and know education is important. So I thought about the reason I abandoned school in the first place, and that reason made me even more determined to go back. Every time I saw my boys I push myself more and more, I went to school for three years straight, no breaks. It was the most important and rewarding thing I have ever done, besides accepting Christ. For me this was not just a project, this was my life, the project to complete the ultimate of all goals.

This was important to me because I had two beings God has entrusted into my care that looks up to me. I was ready to continue my education, no matter what. See at this point, I was separated, no job, no car, but I had a goal and wasn’t letting anything or anyone get in the way. I prayed and asked God for his help with any and every challenge that will keep me from completing my goal, and He came through for me. I did it, I went to school for three years straight and got my bachelor’s degree.

The spontaneous express

Spontaneous – performed or occurring as a result of a sudden inner impulse or inclination and without premeditation or external stimulus. I was just minding my business and came across this word and realized this has been me for the past 4 ½ years. I have been doing things (like vacationing) in the spur of the moment, not putting too much into it, and it feels good. The one good thing about this is it is stress-free. Is being spontaneous a good thing? Yes, I read that spontaneous people make the best of every situation they face and take full advantage of everything life has to offer because this mindset allows you to always see the bright side of things and optimize your ability to keep a positive outlook. And all this keeps you happy and had a smile. I remembered when I planned everything; when one thing goes out of place my whole vacation or night out is ruined. But then I realized before, I married a man who had me in “ a box” and took away a lot of the things I loved. But because I’m spontaneous, I‘m always up to try some new things, even at work. I‘m more flexible, ready to do something new at a moment’s notice, and my-go-with-the-flow attitude helps avoid conflict and confrontation. The idea of waking up without a clue what the day will holds, but with a color-coordinated agenda, scary but exciting. Being spontaneous also thought me that I don’t have to wait on anyone to have fun. That brings me to my birthday 2018, oh boy that was a mini vaca I will never forget. 

My two BFFs decided to take me to DC for my birthday to relieve some of my stress. On that trip, an individual I do not really associate with forced herself to come. Mind you, the last time I saw this person she insulted me like I was a dog, belligerent, using profanity all because, (I later learned), she was jealous and thought the guys (my BFFs are two tall dark and handsome African men), were giving me too much attention. I’ve known these men longer than she did; we talked about everything, because I’m going through a divorce and they are there for me, and I’m seeking attention? Somebody better tell her these are “MY” guys. I could have used that opportunity to pay back and completely ruin my birthday, or be the spontaneous, fun, and outgoing Barbie that I am. I chose to have good memories. I didn’t only show her how grown I am, I showed her the Christian woman I am, and how irrelevant she was, because it seemed like she wanted me to get mad that she came, because one of my BFFs told her about the trip and didn’t want to hurt her feelings when she asked about coming. I ignored that lady, and had the best time I have in years in DC. I noticed being spontaneous, I tend not to stress out over much, about 80% of things, and I understand that’s because I lost myself in my marriage and worried about everything, finding myself back was one of the best things I’ve ever done. And this lifestyle was one thing I needed. To be clear, me being spontaneous is not for everything in my life, especially for a grown woman with children. I don’t just make crazy decisions; it’s regarding things like vacations, trying new foods, and music, things that were beneficial to my and my children’s lives.

Starting over

Starting over again is hard because you have to hit that reset button in order to go through what you already went through. After having everything I wanted and needed, I lost everything and had to start all over. Its not like I was granted the choice at a fresh start, I was forced into it. For me, my fresh start didn’t just involve starting something new, it means letting go of the past, getting a job, a place, furniture, everything, because I had nothing, and worse, I was in a new city and knew not a single soul. I was the person that wanted to help and fix everything and everybody but never made time for myself, even after I had children. This was supposed to be the time I stop and focus on them as number one priority, but I didn’t, I kept doing the same things, putting them aside to help everyone especially family. For a lot of people who plan to start over, when they hear the word will be fill with fear and excitement, for me I was filled with fear, anxiety, and questions. Like what do I do? How do I do this? Will I mess up? What will others think/say? Most people can tell when they need a do over, and because they know they make plans on how, but not me. I was thrown into it, (so I thought at that time), and went into a deep depression, blamed myself for loosing everything.

Than I had to ask people I’ve always been there for to help me, and that was an experience I will never forget. Everyone, including family turned their backs, it was hurtful to the point I hated them, every single one of them. I love my family and I want them to be happy, but I can’t stop wallowing in my misery. I was numb and couldn’t pray or concentrate to even form a sentence about what I wanted to pray about to God. For the first months all I asked for was strength, Lord please grant me the strength needed to keep going. Until one day He did and I started praying little by little and eventually fasted, and God spoke. I wanted to hear from God, I was desperate and wanted to know what my next step was, what God wanted me to do and why I was at this point? But God was not ready to show me until I was really ready to listen and pay attention to everything, I trusted it was all for a purpose. So I started to listen during my prayer times and the one thing I was never able to do happened, God spoke and I heard Him. After all the headache, pain and suffering, all God wanted me to do was start putting my children and me first. Helping is good, but not at the expensive of our livelihood. Stop worrying about what others think about me, God is the only one I’m suppose to please. From that point on, my job was to make sure the wolf pack was always in tack.

https://inspirationallyintoxicated.wordpress.com/2020/05/11/a-warrior/

My Perspective Phase 5

On my journey God is revealing things to me that will connect the dots and I’m still worrying and stressing. Like people that came up to me who I didn’t know and would say, “you are blessed”, “God will replace everything you have lost”, or just bless me with tips, even though I was a cashier and tips were not monitory. Even with all that God was doing, I was still running out of gas because of my choices, the choice I made to continue to doubt, stress, and not let go of all the burdens of everything I was and had gone through. I can’t move, its dark, everything hurts and I cant think well enough to make any decision, why am I in this situation, how can I get out? Thoughts of what happened made me frustrated, angry, and nervous because they were replaying over and over again. I blamed myself for all of this, and the thoughts of, I should have, would have, or what if, kept me up every night. They made me sick to my stomach, to the point I couldn’t live, I just existed, taking up space. I was also just surviving without feeling the actual reality and emotions of life. I believed I was fighting to live all because of my children. I didn’t understand what was happening, I couldn’t rap my head around all this pain. Felt like everything had been decided for me and I had no choice in what I did, wore or said. My emotions had a big role to play in all of this, and at that time I had no idea.

I never thought about how routine my life had become, and how I never found meaningful things that would continually make me happy. I was in relationships that I didn’t like, defending or proving myself to people that never cared about me. Without knowing, I had started doing things only because of habit and not because I liked or loved them, or for myself. I didn’t know how to end all my pain, be the one making the decisions in my life. Until God took it all from me, and that opened my eyes, then I realized I needed to change. I needed to take back my life, the one the devil was parading around America and (my enemies laugh and point finger behind my head) making me feel like my God will never let me see the light of day. That’s when I fasted, prayed, focused on letting go, and asked God to forgive me, so I gave it all to Him. That was the beginning, the beginning that lightened my burden and I started to see a little light in the tunnel, and started to walk a little faster.

A Warrior!

Dealing with the unexpected is part of life, but knowing it doesn’t make it any easier when you’re going through difficult times. I have lost everything in a relatively short time frame. I’ve since started my whole life over. Fear took over my life, and blinded me from all the good things God had for me. I was depressed, unsatisfied, scared, and most of all inpatient. But God was about to show me how to trust Him (and I was not prepared) When I separated from my ex husband, I was still finishing school without a job or a car, but I had faith that God would take care of my children, and He did. I got a car worth $5-6,000 for just $2,000, got a good job a few weeks later and got on my feet. But I still worried about how my family felt about what happened, and how everyone viewed me. In therapy I learned that I was holding so much of my trauma in that it was destroying me without me even knowing. These things started to surface in 2018 so I can deal with them. I was also (and still am) blaming myself for every time I let someone in and they mistreated me. But the God I serve has never failed me yet. He comes to me in my dreams and shows me the way. When I pray, He respond, and I can hear Him so clearly, every time and that helped me get through, every single time. Staying strong amidst challenging, and painful times was not easy, but I had to give myself some credit for my resilience and how far I’ve come in this journey. I am modern day Deborah, a Bible heroine, a Judge of Israel, not a judge who passes sentence on criminals, but a leader and adviser in times of trouble. I am not a worrier; I am a warrior, of prayer, faith, hope and most of all love. I will not dwell on others and things they have done to me. I will pray for them and ask God for his continuous forgiveness, because my response is always more powerful than my circumstance.