Been a minute but don’t worry I am in fact still alive and living the dream and being Black and great and all those things. This past semester was soooooo busy in sooooo many ways that I’ve never experienced before in prior semesters. I did school work, as always, but I did a lot of emotional and mental work too. I have to say I’m better for it because every time I dealt with something I made it out alright. I made it out happier and more fulfilled and knowing more about myself.
Here’s a few lessons the latter half of 2015 has taught me. I plan to carry these on in to the new year.
1. It’s fantastic to not be strong.
I’ve said this before, but I have to contstantly repeat it to myself. Crying because you’re sad, or disapponted, or cuz it’s Monday is not weak. And even if it were weak, being weak is not the worst thing in the world. It’s completely unrealistic to expect to be on ALL THE TIME. Never showing any type of emotion or letting anyone know you’re not okay. There have been several times througout the semester where people have asked me how I was doing and I gave them an honest answer: I’m stressed, i’m bugging out because of this one class, I’m just overall lethargic and wish I would’ve stayed in bed, I’d rather be anywhere but here, or I’m great, having an awesome week, etc. Some answers may be downers but they were authentic and what could be more freeing than telling people the truth? Yeah, people may not see me as strong but they can at least write me off as being me. That’s all I got for you at this point. The end goal is to not end up like this:
2. You’re of no use to anyone drained
Self care is important. If you spend all your time in work or school or helping others and you do nothing for yourself. If you take no time to just breathe or go get your favorite ice cream (y’all know Blue Bell back right?) or watch a couple episodes of your favorite show you’re going to be miserable and sad and probably anxious and depressed. We live in a world where it’s all about being productive and only after all the work is done may the kids go out to play. That’s not healthy. Break up your work or your chores or your tasks and take some moments, even if they’re tiny, to do something you enjoy. Whether it be peeking at fanfics about the latest Star Wars movie or watching vines of people falling out of chairs, do something for yourself. We can’t all be outchea working 750 hours a week for a paycheck that we can’t spend on anything worth doing cuz we’re always busy…do things to keep yourself level.
3. Stick to Your Self-Care Guns
That being said, when you begin to start doing stuff for you and focusing on your mental and emotional wellness people may notice….and they may not like it. If instead of dropping your older cousin off to visit his second baby’s mama, because there’s always some drama when you do that, you decide to go to spin class or run some laps around the track at the gym, big cousin might feel a way. Maybe like this:
But you can’t always feel guilty for taking care of yourself. Should you give your cousin fair warning? Sure. But after you explain that you can’t listen to him whine about how “he can’t believe that heifer won’t take him back even though he had three babies with three different women after meeting her” and he can’t understand your need to take care of yourself, it’s all fair game. You can’t live your live completely at the service of other people. Always remember, all martyrs live in folklore and legend but die alone in reality. Meaning it may be cute to be known as the person that’s always there for everyone else no matter what but if you’re never taking care of yourself, who’s looking out for you.
4. It’s more than okay to be happy
It’s a weird but common phenomenom where we get to the point where we feel like it’s not natural for us to be happy and content for long periods of time. Like if we enjoy ourselves too much, something terrible is bound to happen to ruin it all. So we spend the times where we could be happy and propsering and being the hope and dream of the slave worrying about what’s going to come along and destroy our peace.
It’s very possible that may happen but there’s no guarantee. You got the same shot at staying unbelievably, blissfully happy as you do something screwing it up. Actually your shot at staying happy may be significantly greater if you focus on the happiness instead of letting anxiety about the unknown float over you like a rain cloud. When you find yourself looking for the next thing to ruin your peace just hit that anxiety with a nice, strong ‘NOT TODAY SATAN’ cuz that’s exactly where that worry comes from. Just saying, you gotta tell the seeds of worryand move on with your day. You deserve happiness. It’s not a crime to be at peace.
Happy New Year my loves!
Be great and stay strong in the struggle,
B.Alexandra aka how long you got left in that program aka so you smart and stuff bka ‘you okay sis?’
“But even the darkness of death won’t make me silent. When the darkness of the grave covers my face, I won’t be quiet.”-Job 23:17