It’s been a while since we’ve got deep. I mean real deep. I’ve been in this reflective phase for the last few weeks because several important days have passed. And, it got to me to thinking about how everything that has happened which has led me to be right here, right now. I think we all have those questions floating around our heads. Especially as we age. Why am I here? What the fuck am I doing? Is this the right path to take?!?
I remember constantly asking people: can you tell me what I need to do? The good ones, the best ones, and most knowledgeable ones would tell me that they indeed cannot tell me to go right or left. That I’d have to use my skills and talents to figure that shit out. I’d sulk in my own misery. Wondering if they were indeed so great and knowledgeable, if so, then why couldn’t they just give me a straight answer and tell me WHAT I NEEDED TO DO TO GET MY LIFE TOGETHER!
Now, now, I know the answer to the question I so desperately was seeking from others. I had those answers all along. And, so do you. You just haven’t discovered it yet.
The two days in question that have me thinking so deeply was my 31st birthday and the 2nd year divorce anniversary. Which are only two weeks apart.
Because, I didn’t have any money left over and still waiting for checks to clear from my awesome yet tiring European travels, I rented a cheap hot tub and pondered what life was as a newly 31-year-old fat, Black, and Muslim woman living in the states.
It was deep. Because last year, only twelve months prior to that day, I was very down. My face in an overly spicy bowl of chili. I was more broke than I am now but also with no prospects. Everything I did seemed to fail. I threatened to quit modeling. Quit blogging. Quit it all. Just like my marriage went down. That’s how the rest of my life would follow.
The ‘You’ll never be anything without me” was finally coming into fruition.
I was afraid. But, I accepted my faith. I was going to be another soul-less professor locked in, teaching eight courses, and making student’s lives a living hell because I was unhappy. I was prepared to live life as an overly educated person working a dead-end job that hadn’t offered benefits. I mean, I still don’t have benefits but that’s another story.
What I noticed that in my own ignorance I was living comfortably in my misery and self-doubt. The world had pumped so much negativity into me that I couldn’t even see beyond it, see what others had seen in me. I was stuck in between a rock and another rock. It’s hard to be uncomfortable. Experience rejection. It’s hard to be vulnerable and to put yourself out there for everyone to dissect and gawk at.
Whoever said success, personal or financial or spiritually was easy? This shit is hard. It’s hard to look at yourself and be like: yeah, the world is fucked up, but you are your own worst critic. You are the one that’s stopping yourself from progress and greatness.
A lot of us are. And, so was I. That hurts. I know it hurt me.
Because doesn’t society already do that? Why would we want to dim our own light?
September 1, 2018. The 2nd year anniversary of our 10-year relationship. On that day, I had a podcast interview.
The interviewer asked me when was the moment that I just didn’t give a fuck anymore about people’s opinions where I’ve truly been able to become my best and true unapologetic self.
Honestly, I had many moments throughout my life where I was just like nope. I’m tired of being stereotyped and placed into these boxes. But, I thought about the end of my marriage. That was the epiphany, that ‘light bulb over the head’ moment.
“I’m afraid to leave you because you might be somebody one day,” he said. The ex. I will never, ever forget that. Ever.
That is something that I hold onto and use to push when I can’t push anymore. When I get too comfortable when in my head I know I can be greater. To prove to myself that on the other side of fear is greatness and that there is nothing behind that wall, that door, that barrier that I can’t take on.
By looking at me, you’d never know my story. You’d never imagine the things I’ve seen or the abuse I went through that still stick with me today. How much of the abuse was from myself at times.
Just in this year alone, I’ve made leaps. I’ve jumped across mountains, mentally and metaphorically. I’ve done the impossible. Without the people that I thought would, should’ve been there. I’ve broke down several times because of Imposter Syndrome and recovered. I’ve allowed myself to sit in those feelings of lowness but understand that it’s temporary.