Anxiety Takes Flight

Stomach tight. In knots. Literally doing flips.

Mind racing. All the what-ifs. All the bad.

Heart beating a thousand miles a minute.

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Me. This is me.

It creeps up when I least expect it. For the past 6 years it’s appeared most consistently right before I travel. By travel I mean, anywhere from reporting to work everyday to lavish all-inclusive vacations across the world.

I hate it. It makes me feel inferior, incomponent, weak, broken. Why? Why can’t I just be normal. Who doesn’t enjoy some alone town out on the town or a beach vacay with Bae? Not that I don’t enjoy it, but the process to get there is so mentally and physically draining — it’s exhusting.

Yes, I make lists. Following the advice of my therapist, I make the lists. I check it twice. My brain still tricks me into thinking about all the possible naughty, and none of the nice. {Even though I’m anxiety ridden, I’m still a human and just a tad humorous}. However, I can’t even find the joy in that.

Deep breath in. Deep breath out. Practicing all of my Dirga Swasam Pranayama, also known as the Three Part Breath. Now, I’m a little more calm. I picture myself on the beach, sun tanned.

I think I just saved myself from a panic attack.

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Love.

I just want to be loved. Yes, I love myself; I think I’m fucking fly! I can still pull the attention of dudes. My friends think I complete our circle of baddies. But, I just want to be loved.

I want to be told it’s ok if after 3 children my stomach is a little pudgy and soft. I want to be assured that “Damn, you look good” when I put on that little black dress for date night. I want to be kissed. I want to be touched. I want my hair to be played in.

It’s missing. It’s missing from the one person I want to give it to me most. Summer Walker “Girls Need Love” keeps playing on repeat in my head. And, “Honesty, I’m trying to stay focused.”

Journey

jour·ney

[ˈjərnē]

NOUN

  1. an act of traveling from one place to another:

VERB

  1. travel somewhere:

ORIGIN

Middle English: from Old French jornee ‘day, a day’s travel, a day’s work’ (the earliest senses in English), based on Latin diurnum ‘daily portion,’ from diurnus (see diurnal).
*Definition taken from Oxford Dictionaries · © Oxford University Press
As the end of this year ends and a new year begins, people often reflect. We hear about new plans, resolutions, changes that people desire to make to enhance their lives.
When I think about this time and about my life, I think of my journey. Over the past two years I have experienced some very rough patches in my life — with my mental health, in my marriage, in my family. I have dealt with depression; anxiety; thyroid tumor and surgery; weight gain; trust, loyalty, love; and death. I started personal cognitive therapy, medication, and couple’s therapy. This time last year, I couldn’t see past the moment. There were times when I wanted to give in and give up. I thought my marriage was going to end. I thought my life was going to end.
After a year of therapy I have gained knowledge, peace, and clarity. The moral of the story here is to never give up…on yourself.

Life.

There is more to life than life itself. You don’t really live until you die. It is at that moment you are FREE…from pain, hurt, suffering, oppression, regression. Because, how can you live being weighted down with stuff? So, your agenda, your platform, your movement, what does it all really matter? What happens on this Earth supersedes our time in this life. What matters most is your personal journey to life beyond this Earth. 

Throwing Stones

Wrong is wrong, yes we all know that. But  who are WE, mere mortals who have all fallen short in sin. This society constantly slays its opinions as if in some sort of d*ck measuring contest…Who can spur the best opinion? Who can get the most likes or re-tweets of their thoughts. We all make mistakes. There is no judge, to me, other than God. 

I say judge not lest you be judged.

A Letter to My Children

To my beautiful brown children:

I love you. 

From the moment I saw the two pink lines, I have loved you. Watching you grow, has given joy. Protecting you, has given me purpose. You are my world. I want the world for you and your children and your children’s children. 

My prayer, my wish, my hope is that this world sustains itself long enough for you to fulfill your dreams and desires. I am sorry for the people who judge you based on the color of your skin. I am sorry for the people who mistreat you because of your background and ethnicity. 

I know you are wonderfully made. I know you are intelligent. I know you have a purpose. I believe in you. 

Don’t ever forget that your mommy and daddy are always in your corner…no matter us near or far or gone forever from this earth. 

You are our beautiful brown children. We love you. 

Acceptance

Thinking back to a time, not so long ago, where I longed to be accepted…

I wanted to fit in, be liked, be loved. I would do almost anything to feel like I belonged. This behavior was mostly displayed in relationships with men (or boys) but it sometimes spilled over into “friendships.” I remember always being jealous of my friends’ friends and wondering what people thought about me and why. This mind-set single-handedly ruined my relationships. I came off as clingy and needy. After several failed relationships and some strained friendships, I figured out maybe it was me. The moment of realization was most apparent when these behaviors started to wreck my relationship with my husband, my best friend. Arguments and interrogation became the norm for us…it created some dangerous tension in our house. We went to therapy, we planned exotic date nights, but the real fix was when I took at look at myself.

I had to ask …why was I concerned with external things that really didn’t matter?

I had to tell myself…my marriage and my friendships weren’t going anywhere. These relationships are with the people that care; these are the people that have been there for me and will be there in the future. The bonds created between my husband and I and my friends and I are strong. I am valuable, what I bring to the table is absolutely worth it to those seated at the table with me.

This realization, has really helped me know who I am in my marriage, friendships, and professionally. Sometimes, people might even say I come off with an IDGAF attitude…it’s true! Not because I’m mean or calloused, but because I truly don’t give a f*ck about the externals — what people think, say, or how people feel. I know my worth and the value that I add to the relationships and situations that matter to me most. I feel good about that. I now come with zero apologies and no filter.

Finally Free.

Adulting

The older I get the more I realize, Adulting is real shit! 

As a mother of 3, wife (of 1…lol), worker outside of the home, entrepreneur, friend, daughter, and the list goes on – I have so much responsibility. I welcome it with open arms. 

I’m at a point in my life where I just appreciate grown folks who are grown folks… People that just get shit done. I’m less a fan of grown folks with child-like levels of responsibility. If you are a parent – be great at parenting. If you are a socialite – be great at socialiting. If you’re a bum – be great at that. Don’t however, put off your responsibilities on others. Know what it is you’re good at and do it. Understand what you contribute to the greater good and give that. When you reach 30 and beyond…give up the helpless act and just…Adult. The. Fuck. Up. 

Spidey Sense

A woman’s intuition…is it a gift or a curse?

It feels good to know things before they become known. In a way it prepares you, kind of like soliders going into battle – they know the enemy well enough to create a defense strategy but don’t quite know the logistics of the fight.

On the other hand, you brace yourself for what’s coming like you do when you see a car in your rear view preparing to rear-end you. Tensing up in that situation causes more hurt to your body than just simply being oblivious.

Call it strong willed, a gift, a curse, or genetics…when I get a sixth sense, I get it. Evidence supporting my internal claim ALWAYS falls into my lap. My disapproval for biting my tongue just won’t let me keep quiet.

When one experiences the fall out (for lack of a better term) of this sixth sense, my hope is that they learn the lesson that comes along…

Be it to you a gift or a curse, I appreciate my spidey sense for all that it’s worth.

There is NONE like you

We are born into this world alone and will depart from it alone. There is none like you. We are created uniquely and with reason. No one is going to love you – like you or care about your best interest – like you. This was a hard lesson for me to learn (at times I might say still learning). When I face tough times or am celebrating success, there is no one who is in my corner like myself. Yes, I have a support system, a strong one. However, personal failure or achievement is so internal. I set goals for myself constantly. I am in perpetual competition with myself. When I conquer my goals I am ecstatic. When I fail, I’m disappointed. While my supports can lend a listening ear, shoulder to cry, or word of advice – there is nothing like the internal dialogue that happens with myself. I’ve always heard, “zero expectations lead to zero disappointments.” I get it. When that becomes a motto I live by, my relationships with others will become richer; my expectations of them lower – allowing me to deal with people at face value and understand that they can’t be in my corner like me. It’s a difficult concept to internalize, because human nature craves partnerships where all parties approve, pacify.

In reality, there is none like you.