It is so easy to get caught up in life and forget about stopping and smelling the roses, tullips, lillies or what ever flower it is you like. Personally speaking, I forget to stop, relax and remember that life is but a gift from God. Instead, my life is filled with the daily stresses of life and the typical obstacles that we encouter. One thing my mother tends to say, often, is “You make up reasons to worry”. And that is a character flaw that I am diligently working on- I have a worrying spirit and have had it for a long time now. However, what I have learned is there are a hand full of things that soothe and calm me: (1) The love I have from my child and seeing her smile, feeling her touch and hearing my name from her lips (2) My poetry as it is my passion (3) Helping others and knowing that I am making a difference in their lives (4) Feeling needed and wanted (5) And having a family that cares and supports me and my best interests.
Lately, I have tried to take advantage of life’s opportunities to share my joy. My daughter is one of those tools that I share with others. Her laughter is contagious, her beauty is timeless and her smile melts your heart. My mother and I share her innocence with our elders, her smile is contagious to them. Her presence warms their hearts and to some extent brings back some of their youthfulness, even for a moment.
I take pleasure in sending thank you cards, my daughter’s drawings and just because letters because, it makes a difference in others’ lives. You never know what someone is going through and when you send a card out of the blue, it makes a major difference in their day. I can tell you when I am hurting, upset or mad about something, my daughter running up to me sharing a picture she colored or painted, makes a major difference. It is wonderful. Share your joy, it doesn’t have to cost anything, just your time. Take the time to share your joy and happiness and it will come back to you two-fold.
Have you shared some happiness today?
Sitting here, I think about all the things that I want and need as a woman of color. It is pretty simple yet a little complex, if that makes sense.
I am a single mother of one beautiful daughter, gainfully employed, pursuing my Master’s Degree in a field that is always in need. Human Services Counseling is where my passion lies second to writing poetry. I love to help others who are in need, specifically those in domestic violence situations with a desire to get out.
I like to think, I am a good mother and father to my child. I give my daughter all that she needs and most of what she wants and I am able to do this through the grace of God.
As a woman, I try to be the best woman that I can be. Maintaining the morals and values that my mother instilled in me. Placing my faith in God as he guides and directs my life. Working hard to get all the things we need and appreciating them all no matter how big or small.
As a daughter, I place emphasis on the respect and love I have for my mother. There is seldom a day that passes without acknowleging and expressing my love to and for her. She made me the woman that I am today.
As a single woman, I await the mate that God has designed for me and rest assured that God will send him to me when he feels that I am complete.
Self-inventory, far from perfection but stocked well. On my shelf, you will find self-awareness, love, respect, independence, selflessness, honesty, faith and a kind and giving heart.
What’s on your shelf?
Many, many nights I revisit the moments of laying wide awake all alone.
Lately, I have found it near impossible to put my mind on a break and allow my body to rest and relax. Perhaps its because of all the activities that I have going on in my life such as: working, school, being a mommy, side projects, brainstorming over business ventures, my daughters and my future and how to ensure that all goes as planned.Countless are the nights that I have found myself “Sleepless in Atlanta”. Missing the embrace of my pillows and the comfort of my bed because my body and mind will not allow me to rest.
It is times like this that I wished that I had someone to talk to at this waking hour. You know, someone at the other end of the telephone line that will make me laugh, listen to how my week or day went, or someone to meet at Walmart and just walk around.
That reminds me, I had this friend, she and I would get up around 4 am and meet at Walmart on any given Saturday or Sunday and we would grocery shop while chatting for several hours and then visit IHOP for breakfast. I miss those early mornings and late nights.
I am such an lush for reminencing over “used to bes” and “could’ve beens”. Much of my time awake is spent lying in bed with my eyes wide open and thinking, thinking and thinking… and wishing, hoping and praying…
I’ve asked God for peace so that I may sleep. Against all odds, I’m a lush for reminencing over things I have no control over… yes, what a lush. But I have also found that my best pieces of poetry are created at these waking hours. As these hours are when I find I am very sentimental.
Sleepless in Lawrenceville, Ga…. yes, I am….
For those of you that have experienced this procedure or those are on a journey to having it done, I pay an ode to you. In 2006, I had the gastric bypass surgery. Weighing in at 327 pounds at my heaviest weight at the age of 30 years old, I had high cholesterol, was a borderline diabetic, and became a slave of my own body. Embarrassed by my weight, I limited myself to work and home. To me, I felt that I did not want to go on with life, unsure of how I allowed myself to reach such an unimaginable weight. So, I decided that I would no longer be a prisoner of my body and move forward with making change in my life. Diets, weight loss programs and exercise were not enough to kick start my weight loss and keep it going. My weight loss journey was a trying one, but I made it through.
After I had the procedure, mentally I dealt with a lot of issues. Understanding my new stomach, adjusting my eating habits by force and no longer by choice and dealing with my ever-shrinking body. To some this might sound simple, but to someone who has always been on the heavier side, mentally it was difficult. Learning how to eat and listening to my stomach, so that I did not become ill was emotionally draining and physically stressful.
Once I reached the 200 pound mark, I plateaued and became depressed. In my mind, I wanted to reach my goal weight of 175 pounds. After a plateau of approximately 2 months, I began to lose weight again. As a matter of fact, I went from 327 pounds to 146 pounds. Of course, with my height that was extremely thin and made my family and friends think that I was anorexic. Interesting enough, I didn’t see my going from a size 26 to a size 4 as odd. I personally thought “Wow, this is great”. It was not until after I sat down and evaluated myself and how I looked then in comparison to now that I realized, I was obsessed with losing weight. These past few years, I have had a child and my weight has fluctuated between 215 (while pregnant) and 192 pounds. I feel I am most comfortable at 165-170 pounds which is the goal weight I am working towards at this time.
Opting to have the Gastric Bypass procedure was a serious decision and it was not an easy way out. However, it was the only way that I had for a better way of life; to survive and live the life that God created for me. Sometimes, the flesh is weak and as a result our weight can become our prison … if you are on your journey to having the Gastric Bypass or have had it, please feel free to reach out to me as I would love to share with you.
Sharing: A single mother’s random thoughts
Last week was my birthday week and I spent it doing things that were new, different and fun. I registered for and attended a painting class, went to a gun range, went to a movie, visited Daytona Beach, Florida with my mother and daughter, volunteered at a local food pantry and rested.
There is nothing more rewarding than quiet time with the ones that you love. It seemed that the one week that I spent relaxing and doing the things that I enjoyed the most was worth going an entire year with no break. Being a single mommy is a job itself not to mention working full time and then pursuing my Master’s Degree.
I will be the first to say that I fear the unknown. I cannot tell you how many nights that I have sat and wondered, are you nuts? Seriously, how am I going to be a full time mommy to a 2 year old, work full time and complete Master’s level courses (not to mention a full load). I can honestly say that I am afraid. With no real support team close by makes it hard, but I know when it is all said and done, I will be able to look back with a smile on my face and say “It was all worth it”.
Some people ask and wonder why I am doing this to myself and the only answer I can provide is that I want much more for my daughter. As a child, I was blessed greatly materialistically and emotionally. I had a mother that made her presence known and she loved me and my sister strong while giving us all that we wanted and needed. She is a hard act to follow, but I am trying because I know the kind of material I am made of. My mom reproduced some “Great” stock when she made me.
Another year old, another challenge, another day, and another way, God has me. And I am ready for whatever he has planned for me. My journey these past two years has turned and twisted in many mysterious ways, but needless to say I have no regrets.
As a mother, my strength has been challenged and my faith in God has only grown. I am so blessed to have a child that adores and loves me and even more so, a family that supports my decisions and has my back regardless of the choices that I make.
As a woman, my self-esteem has been tested; wondered a time or two if the single life was my destiny. But after re-evaluating my life and all that is in it, I know that God did not design me to be alone. This empty space in my life is temporary and will be completely full once I am where I should be emotionally, spiritually, educationally, financially and overall.
I know that I am a good mother; friend, daughter, woman and I deserve all that God has laid out for me. I will travel the path that he has laid out for me and will let him direct me to my destination.
In the absence of my father, I longed for his presence. And while I never had the chance to experience a father-daughter relationship, I continued to long for it. As a woman, one of the many qualities that I want, no need in my companion is a man that can love me strong like my man but rock me in the craddle of his arms like a baby.
Personally, I desire to feel safe and secure in the arms of the one designed for me. I think the average woman wants to be loved strong and protected by her mate.
In my heart, I already love him and the love has no limit. The yards between my heart and his are few and the chemistry is cosmic. In his absence, I am breathless and in his presence I am content and free as a bird.
The strength of his love knocks me to my knees and lifts me to my feet and carries me away. I love him even when I don’t love myself. Selflessly, I will give my all to him and surrender my love with out a second thought.
You complete me and I will anticipate your arrival patiently. You are my man, father and friend. I am your woman, friend and little girl. I love you where ever you are.