New Year, New…Never Mind – Day 001/365

Let me start by saying, “Happy New Year!”

A bit of reflection about what I’ve been up to since the last New Year’s Day? I had more [paid] photography gigs; took my first flight to Vegas; graduated; and I started therapy. I ended the year by revamping my photography website to prepare for business in 2020. There are some other things that I have placed in motion, that I hope to be able to share soon. But, that is not the reason for me resurfacing on this blog.

I made a decision…

I woke up this morning, and my first thought was: I need to change my diet. For the last 13 years, I have been struggling with adult acne. I’ve tried so many different routines to try and correct it, but nothing works. The one thing that I have never tried is changing the way that I eat.

I spent the morning researching low and high glycemic foods, as well as foods that can cause or worse acne. I also joined a PoC Skincare group on Facebook to learn more about products that would work best for my skin. The one thing about living in South Carolina is that it is hard to find a Black dermatologist. The products I’ve been prescribed so far by dermatologists don’t work for me at all.

So starting today, no dairy or sugar, and limiting caffeine and meat. It’s also time for my Nexplanon to be removed. I’ll be trying to work out more and drink more water. I also picked up some vitamins, a new face wash, and moisturizer.

So hopefully, I’ll see some improvements within the next couple of months. I just need to be healthier overall, and losing weight in the process would be a win.

2020 is going to be a year of reflecting and changing how I navigate life. I’ll be back soon.

What is happiness?

My therapist asked me this question about happiness two weeks ago, and I have yet to truly answer.

Truth is… I don’t know what happiness is outside of the Merriam-Webster definition. It’s not something that I’ve truly considered. Happiness is something that I’ve thought about, then immediately said to myself that it’s outside of my reach.

  • What is happiness to me?
  • What will I do to change the things in my life?
  • What makes my happiness less important than others?
  • What is my dream?

When I told my therapist that I didn’t know how to answer this question, she responded:

You are the one who has so much going for herself, but you don’t feel empowered by your position.

Dr. Keshia Keith

And it’s so true! I recently told a good friend, that I have been “dumbing” myself down to make others feel comfortable. When I think about my life, I notice a trend of always putting others before myself. I always think about how others will be affected, or how they would feel about me if I said, “Fuck this! I’m going to do something for me!” I have to start putting myself first. It is my nature to encourage others to follow their dreams, but I struggle with following my own. I struggle with opening up and showing the real me. I have so much potential to be great, but I’m choosing to be mediocre. I’m choosing to keep myself down, instead of forcing others to keep up.

With this is mind, I was able to somewhat answer the questions. Here is what I came up with:

What is happiness to me?

Happiness is living! Having breath in my body. Focusing on the good in my life and not the negative. Being positive and giving my all. Not being resentful of those around me, but appreciating their progress and positivity. Celebrating successes. Striving to be the best version of me.

What will I do to change things in my life?

In order to change things in my life, I need to change my way of thinking about life. I have to stop being so negative, and take time to think about my actions. Write more. Set daily affirmations as a remind to find the positive in all things, and think about my feelings.

What makes my happiness less important than others?

In reality, my happiness is not less important than anyone else’s. I am in control of my own happiness. It is not something that I should look for in other people, but something that I should find within myself.

If I cannot create my own happiness, then how can I expect others to make me happy?

What is my dream?

My dream is to have a job that I love. To have a home that I love, and a happy and healthy relationship with someone. To have my children grow up to be successful in life. What is your dream?

Why is it so hard to be a Black woman?

It’s a dreary Sunday. I’m listening to my “In My Feelings” playlist on repeat. It’s a thought that I’ve had often over the last week. Why is it so hard to be a Black woman? Why do I feel as if I have to work 10 times harder than non-POCs, even though I’m better than them? Why doesn’t anyone care about Black women?

Every day that I’m alive, I am constantly reminded that I’m different from everyone else. The more I live, the more I realize that it doesn’t matter how well off my family is, how qualified I am, or how many white friends I have… I’ll never have a fair chance.

As a Black woman, I have been overlooked for jobs because of being overqualified. I’ve seen jobs that I applied for be given to people with no experience. I’ve seen people get promoted faster than me, when I’m the one who taught them everything they know. I deal with this every single day. Then, I have to come home and raise Black children. Children who are afraid of being approached by a police officer, because they are afraid that they will be killed.

As a Black woman, I’ve seen my people get disrespected by law enforcement more times than I’d like to admit. I’ve watched multiple times as their lifeless bodies are left on display in the streets. I’ve spent many nights wondering why no one cares about the thousands of missing Black girls in this country, but can find the body and killer of a white woman [and present a bill in her name] within 48 hours. The only thought that comes to mind is why is no one bothering to protect us? Black women are constantly on the forefront of standing up for our people, but no one stands up for us.

I’m tired. It’s sad that Malcolm X’s words still ring true decades later.

The most disrespected person in America is the Black woman. The most unprotected person in America is the Black woman. The most neglected person in America is the Black woman.

– Malcolm X

New Year, New…Never Mind

Happy New Year!

I came in to this year with disappointment and excitement. I’m disappointed with my current state of employment, but excited that I only have a year left in school. I decided to buckle down and increase the number of courses that I’m taking. It’s going to be hard work, but I’m determined to have a degree sooner rather than later.

My job? I hate it. I hate that it keeps me away from my family. My old boss extended the offer to come back, but I don’t want to be a paper pusher. I want to do something…meaningful.

I was supposed to choose a word for 2018, and I came up with…nothing. LOL! Absolutely nothing. I currently feel defeated.

I did opt for goals to accomplish instead of resolutions. Let’s be honest…how many of us can really stick to a resolution? I felt like creating goals was a much better alternative. I plan to create a vision board for my office space.

I’m trying to make 2018 the year of change. I just have to find the motivation to make those changes, because they won’t make themselves.

What about you? Did you set any goals for 2018?

Life Is Rough

December 10. The rain has cleared and blue skies are back. I am one day away from Finals Week. One week away from being done with this semester from hell. I haven’t had a life outside of Humanities and Precalculus. As of yesterday, I’ve completed 65+ hours of Precalculus work and spent countless hours working on content for my Humanities course. I abandoned social media, posting less than 10 pictures a month. I hadn’t touched my planner in 4 weeks prior to yesterday. My life has consisted of going to work, homework for myself and the kids, and sleep.

I decided to switch my minor back to Programming. Over the summer, I switched it to Web Development, because I felt like programming was too hard. What I forgot is that I LOVE programming, and that I already know how to develop websites. I decided to stop being a punk and do what I need, instead of what’s going to be easy to get.

Work sucks. In two weeks, I’ll be working the late shift and won’t see my kids for a week. While working in IT is my dream… Working for a help desk isn’t. I’m the only woman in my department. I earned an exceptional rating for my yearly review, but I still feel like the world is against me. Everyone seems to have placed themselves in a competition with me. My supervisor says this is a good thing because I make the team better. Sometimes I have to take errors that are mistakes on someone else’s part because,

Even though you had a few points taken off, and we know that this isn’t correct, we have to keep it. Your scores are the highest on the team. If we were to dispute this, it would hurt the team.

Yeah, still don’t see how that’s my fault, but it is. I’m frustrated. I want to move on, but I keep feeling like now isn’t the right time. I keep feeling like I should finish my degree before I try something different. I keep waiting and waiting… For what?

Overall, I’m tired of being an adult right now.

Goodbye 31, Hello 32

Today is the beginning of Life: Chapter 32. I am currently sitting at work, but I did take the opportunity to go out and have some photos taken. I met up with my sister at one of my favorite parks with some of the most disrespectful balloons ever. Yes, they beat me up. I also made my way to Best Buy to pick up a shiny new iPad Pro. Happy birthday to me!

Even though, I didn’t get to celebrate today, I did get to spend some time out with my family on Wednesday. We went to the movies to see War For The Planet Of The Apes, then had lunch at Buffalo Wild Wings. It wasn’t much, but for a weekday, it ended up being perfect.

Goodbye 31

As I look back on 31, I realize that I’ve accomplished more than I set out to. I enrolled in college last August to finish my Bachelor’s in Information Technology. I made the President’s List twice, and I’m on the Scholar’s List now. In February, I secured a new job in the IT field. Despite the fact that it may not be permanent, I’m enjoying the experience. In July, we took our first family vacation. We cruised for 5 days to The Bahamas. I also booked our next vacation to Washington, D.C. in October. Life is also looking a lot healthier, financially and physically.

Hello 32

I’m going into 32 as a much happier and less stressed person. I’ve learned a lot about myself and what I want for my life over the last year. I’m grateful for all of the support that I’ve had in making decisions about doing what’s best for me. My goal is to make 32 a million times better. It’s past time to get those bucket list items checked off, or maybe even time to create a new one. I’m so excited about what this next chapter has in store.