Mixtape Poetry: Self Care

And tonight

I choose myself

Tonight I decide

I’m going to love myself

I have declared this before

Except this time I realize

Love is not a noun

There is action to be taken

Tending to my own needs

Nurturing the soil of my soul

Cultivating the ground for growth

 

Pouring into my cup

Wisdom

Pouring until it spills over

Tenderness

Tonight I choose to pay attention

To the language of my own body

What is it saying?

The foreign tongue of my emotions

What are they reflecting

About the world around me?

 

Tonight I choose me

Under the stars

I see my own reflection

In the faint light of the distant moon

I stand looking for no one

Waiting on no one

Because I am all I need

Sitting in the echoes of my essence

Basking in the ambience of my being

 

Tonight?

I choose me.

A new video is posted every Thursday for my Mixtape Poetry series! Subscribe to my Youtube channel to stay up to date with new videos! This is video 6 of 7

My Own Heartbeat

Sometimes I don’t trust my own heart.

The desires planted in the soil of my soul, I look at them with suspicion in my eyes.

Ignorance leaves me blinded to the bigger picture. I hesitate with every decision. I chastise myself. I punish myself.

But why?

I am realizing to listen to what these desires are telling me. I am learning that I am growing, and my passions are evolving. I am discovering I was created by an intentional God.

So, why do I find it hard to believe He created me to be moved by certain things? Things that escape others. Things they don’t even notice keeps me awake at night, causes me to remain restless until something changes.

I am learning to allow my heart to beat. To trust the goodness that is was made in. If I trust the creator, why wouldn’t I trust His creation?

 

In The Silence

In the stillness I am coming home.

I am discovering this magnificent person and realizing she is me.

I am finding a firm foundation upon which to sit and meditate.

I am learning to trust my process.

I am not talking as much. I am not sharing as much. I am evolving from a say-er to a do-er. Plans are moving and goals are being accomplished.

I am still available to friends, but I’m taking a break from community. Instead, I am learning to build a community within myself. I am learning to listen to the silence, to be a student of  loneliness. What is it teaching me?

People ask how things are going. It’s hard to explain that everything is better than it has ever been, but I say it anyways. I am starting to lose interest in who believes me or not. As my recognition of my own identity grows, I am more secure in the unanswered questions. Others do not have to see the vision, because I can finally see it for myself.

Ambiguity, because I hope you will find pieces of my puzzle in your own life. I pray you shall discover what makes you, you. I know you will choose to love that person. I know you will choose to love the quietude.

God is giving me a season of self. Away from the noise. Away from the fast-paced movements. Away from the demands of life. Inside the folds of my own heart, I find His presence. His still, small voice. Epiphanies fill my thoughts as I understand what it means to be made in His image. To share His desires. To know I am a part of the divine, and He is the best part of me.

I temporarily traded independence for my passions, and it was the best decision I could ever make.

Moments

What I have learned is that my story is not going to mimic anyone else’s. There may be similarities, but ultimately my journey is unique. I cannot measure where I am by comparing my state of being to anyone around me. I cannot judge based on the opportunities others capitalize on or the methods in which they pursue their dreams. Our timelines will not be identical.

This is a common lesson always being taught, but I didn’t really understand until faced with the temptation to compare. I have a friend who already has a beautiful brand she works on during the day and funds by working at a restaurant at night. I have another friend who looks for every opportunity to perform in front of a crowd in order to build their audience. They are both gloriously pursuing their passions, and I applaud them. However, I don’t do either of these things. Is there something wrong with me? Am I lazy? Am I sluggish? Why don’t I even have a desire to explore either of these methods?

Because that is not what God is calling me to do in this moment.

I have to be honest with myself and where I am. I have to focus on placing one foot in front of the other. I have to turn my ears to intentionally hear what God has to say. Where He wants me to go. What He wants me to do. I am a poet, and I thought that meant I had to start performing at every open mic. But if I am honest with myself, I do not want to do that. Not because I am afraid of being on a stage (although it can be anxiety inducing I can push past that when necessary). I simply want to present my work through another medium and I am still learning how exactly to go about it.

What is my point in this post? Because I am beginning to ramble. Basically to remind myself not to compare myself. Or to not let the opinions of others dictate how I measure myself. Or even better….not to measure myself at all. I must only focus on being a good steward of every single moment granted to me. I must make a commitment to myself to live fully and completely in each moment. To hear the opinions of others and allow their words to flow gracefully in one ear and out the other. To fill myself with affirmations and not depend on the compliments of others. To just keep swimming. No matter what…I must only keep swimming. And take life as it comes.

You Don’t Have to Have it All Figured Out

God: You don’t have to have it all figured out.

This is what God has been whispering in my ear for years now. In subtle ways. A nudge here. A reminder there. He has been right beside me every time I feel an anxiety attack forming in my  worrisome thoughts.

How will I get there? What path will I take? Which turns should I make? When is it okay to rest? I shouldn’t rest because life is a race to success! But where do I start? I’m not prepared. Maybe I should turn around.

Doubts form in my mind and weigh heavily on my shoulders throughout my days. And today, God tapped me on the shoulder once again and tenderly told me for the 100th time, “You don’t have to have it all figured out.” So, here I am writing to you (readers) with the hopes these words will stick with me this time.

I am a dreamer. I am a writer. I am a Christian. I am a realist with an optimistic attitude. All of these seem like great qualities until I’m standing in front of someone….telling them what I’m going to do next….and watching as their face twists into judgement. They pester me with questions I don’t have answers to. They almost chuckle when my reason is always, “Because God told me.” This has always been a stumbling block for me. It feels like little seeds of doubt are thrown into the soil of my heart, and I struggle to pluck them before they are able to take root.

But you know what? This is me. I am beginning to realize I don’t owe anyone answers. I don’t owe people explanations. I can only tell the truth. They can accept it. They can reject it. But they cannot change it. Truth is….when God tells me to move  I move. I might hesitate out of fear, but I always end up moving. When God tells me I won’t be living in a place a year from now, I start packing my things. When God tells me to move back to Atlanta, I make arrangements for where I’ll be living. When God says to pursue writing, I search for my pen and pencil….and I invest in a Macbook 😉

Why?

Because God said so! And if that answer isn’t good enough for “them”…this conversation just isn’t going to go anywhere productive. They don’t have to believe what I do to support me. People should judge my life by the fruit that is produced….and right now this fruit is tasting pretty sweet.

So I write this as a note to self: Don’t think you have to have it all together. Don’t let others make you question your methods. And don’t for a second doubt that God is going to do exactly what He said He would. Just keep placing one foot in front of the other.

Be a Poem

In a world full of calloused hearts

And ulterior motives

Be passionate

Be authentic

In a generation known for building walls

Be transparent

Feel every emotion

Be rage

Be disappointment

So that you can be the evolution

So that you can be the joy

The rainbow at the conclusion

Of a storm

In a world that falls back

And falls short of human connection

That fails terribly

At fostering communities

Be open to varying opinions

Be accepting of freedom of choice

Be gentle with yourself

And your neighbor

Be full

Be raw

Be hope for a new day

Be sadness during darkness

Be exposure to all that is the human experience

Be the embodiment of life

In a world full of empty words

Be a poem

Conversations That Challenge

*written February 10, 2016*

God: Obedience. If I were to command you to trust me and walk in faith, what would have to change in order for you to obey me? What (false) opportunities would you walk away from? What mountains would you begin to climb? What would shift in your life? That is what you should be doing. Right now. Go.

At 8 am this morning, God decided to come for my life….ya know…the usual. Haha that’s my best friend though, so I can’t even be mad. I just felt like I’m probably not the only person that needed these words and wanted to share this spiritual nudge to keep moving forward.

Sometimes we don’t go after certain things our hearts desire because of fear. If we know God. If we know how mighty He is. If we know He loves us and works things out for our best interest. If we know He would not cause our feet to stumble. What is stopping us from getting what belongs to us? What is stopping us from taking a leap of faith and going after what our souls crave? What is stopping us from living up to our full potential of who God hand crafted us to be?

Only ourselves.
So, get out of your own way. Take that first step. And let God do His thug thizzle. 😉

Good Morning

Depression is my cross to bear. It is a process of God showing me how to walk in my freedom. It is an ocean with high tides and low, and everyday is a chance for God to show me how to balance the two.

Going through the shadows of life sometimes makes it hard to have hope in a new day. For so long, I had no motivation or inspiration to get out of bed in the morning. So, I asked God to give me a relationship. He did. It stressed me out and failed miserably. When it was over, I found it even harder to rise for a new day. So, I asked God to give me friends and activities to do. He did. They disappointed me with their wavering loyalty. One minute they wanted to crowd my space. The next minute they disappeared. Multiple friends. Not just one. Then those friendships faded to black, and I was left with the ones I started with in the first place. The activities? Well, they didn’t work for my benefit either. Even the bible study group I was a part of left me feeling isolated in my own thoughts. Once again, the sun peaking through my window only made me dread what was to come next. The monotony of it all. So, I asked God for my purpose. He gave me my artistry. Helped me discover the gifts hiding behind what the world tried to tell me I was. It was beautiful! It was hard at first, but I fell back into the practice of writing before I knew it. I’m still here. Writing. I still love it. It still gives me such a sense of joy to release emotions I don’t always have the courage to say. It’s amazing.

…But I still found my body turning to lead as I tried to rise each day. Writing, did not make me want to jump out of bed in the morning. It did not fill the hole I thought it would. It was great, but my soul was still thirsty. Still dehydrated. So, what was left?

God.

God allowed me time to discover that He is the only one that will give me the type of joy my heart desperately longed for. That in the dark corridors of my emotions, He is the light. That joy only comes in the morning, if it’s Him I’m counting on. The rest of the world? Well, it stops short. There are so many beautiful things in this life, but beauty is a fading flower. And I need something a little more permanent when I’m constantly fighting off the black fog in my mind. The only thing that has been unwavering throughout 23 years of life has been God. So, I wake for Him. To hear His voice. To see His face. To sit in His presence just a little longer.

Now, I can rise. Now, I can fight. Now, I actually want to get out of bed in the morning.

I pray you will also discover what makes you want to pull the covers back and start a new day with new hopes. Because that’s what life’s about. One new day after another. One new opportunity. One new chance. One new hope. Life is a series of starting again. So, seek and find what gives you the new energy to start again.

Rise and shine! 🙂

Rapid Eye Movement

Drifting between levels of consciousness

I want to stay alert

But sleep is so enticing

His warm touch causes my muscles to relax

My guard to drop

My thoughts to unfold

And stretch themselves

Until they no longer reflect reality

But instead a bloated form of the truth

Present tense becomes past

And past tense becomes distorted

Until the sand loses its order

Causing the glass to shatter

 

My eyes flutter

With the ferocity of a butterfly’s wing

Fighting to escape the sandman’s grip

Batting away the delusion of fantasy

It’s not real!

…but it tastes so sweet

My senses are failing

But my desires are still felt

Still real