January 24th, 2023
Mask Off Monday!
On "Mask off Mondays," we are talking about things that require us to take off that mask and get real about our feelings, our thoughts, and our experiences. It ain’t going to be easy, but it is going to be worth it. You are going to be moved by raw testimonies that show what it looks like to remain very resilient through it all.
So, on today’s show, I am going to talk about a topic I rarely discuss because, honestly, it forces me to feel and process certain feelings I have overcome. It forces me to get real about my thoughts, my feelings, and my experiences, and because that is what we do on Mask Off Mondays, we are about to jump right on in with today's topic, which is learning how to heal after being in a long-term relationship that ended on bad terms.
I know we have all heard the saying, what’s for you is for you, but sometimes we forget that. We have got to act like we want it. Far too many times, we find ourselves in positions that we fail to own because of the fear we have inside that keeps us from stepping into our positions.
You can’t get what’s for you when you won't reach out and get it and own it like it’s yours. That position you worked for is yours, even when you don’t feel prepared. That position is still yours, even when you feel like you don’t have what it takes. That position is yours even when you think someone else deserves it more than you. That position is yours because what’s for you is for you and it isn’t meant for anyone else to have it, but you've got to believe that and stand on that with your 10 toes down.
Don’t let your fear be the thief that takes what’s for you, from you, and don’t let your fear stop you from getting what is meant for you! Remember, what is for you is for you and what’s for the next person isn’t for you, so don’t bother reaching for it.
If it’s for you, then why don’t you want to own it?
You Gotta Trust The Process!
Good Afternoon y’all, it’s Tuesday, we’ll Taco Tuesday in my world, but how are y’all doing on this beautiful day. You should be blessed because again you rose this morning and that’s a blessing for real. No matter what you have been through or what you gone go through this week. Trust the process.
I know some of us like the end result more than we like the process, but the process makes you who you are. It shows what you are capable of producing, it shows your strength and your ability to produce greatness amid challenges. Trust the process, even when you can’t immediately see the beauty of the finished product. Don’t give up and don’t give in, it gets greater later.
I’ve experienced moments where shit was looking kinda ugly, but I kept going through the process because no matter what I go through, I can’t give up. I was weary of the journey, but so happy to reach the destination because then, I knew I made it through and I accomplished that goal, I received that degree, I published that book and I started that business. I achieved that level of happiness and peace that I strived to achieve because I trusted the process even when shit didn’t look clear to me.
So, when you get weary on your journey, remember where you are tryna go and that you will eventually get there, you just gotta keep going and trust the process!
When you’re driven by fear, let ya faith take the wheel and you will get far even if you find yourself lost along your journey. It happens, just don’t get out of the car, keep riding till you make it to where you are tryna to go in life. Detours and roadblocks will try to deter you from making it to the other side of the road, but there’s always another path you can take to get there.
There were so many times, I’ve been on my journey to finding my purpose and found myself feeling lost and unsure of what path to take, but when I let go of fear and let faith step in, I kept on going. And guess what? I eventually made it and it felt damn good knowing that I didn’t let little challenges or obstacles stop me because I knew I had somewhere to be and if I needed my designated driver(my faith)to get me there, I moved on out the way and let faith do its thang. Don’t give up on your journey, even when you’re filled with uncertainty on how to get to where you are going, let your faith take the wheel and just get there!
How is it that you can believe in someone else’s greatness, yet you don’t even know them from a can a paint? Out here rooting louder for them than you do yourself.
Is it that you don’t know yourself well enough to know that you are great? Or is that you don’t have enough faith in your ability to produce greatness because you fail a few times along the way?
I mean, did you fall that hard, that you got amnesia or something because what you’ve been through and overcame, you should know you great even when the world doesn’t know. You better show up and show out even when you are filled with fear and doubt. Because again you are great!
You won’t be where you are for long, but you gotta start believing in who you are.
After losing my job of 3 yrs, being on unemployment for a year, losing my unemployment benefits and a car, and on top of that not having any income for 4 months, I found myself going through an emotional breakdown. I was worried about how I was going to pay my bills, how I was going to pay my rent, and everything in between. And In good ol’ human fashion, I couldn’t seem to see the light at the end of the tunnel because I was constantly focused on the challenges that seemed to come from every angle.
Life is nothing more than a lesson.
Study the challenges of your life and find the answers to overcoming those challenges. Take the knowledge you’ve acquired through past life experiences and the knowledge you have gotten from the word and use it to get through difficult tests of life.
Life is nothing more than a never-ending lesson that you are supposed to learn and grow from to excel to the next level. So it shouldn’t be a surprise when we are presented with tests of life because that’s a part of the course. I truly believe You only fail when you lose hope in your ability to get through and you give up.
Now, will it be easy, no and will some tests be harder than others to get through, yes, but give your all and do your best. And never give up, take what you have learned and apply it to each lesson you encounter because you have a skill that will help you along your journey.
You have what it takes, you just gotta use IT and IT is the resiliency that lies within you. It wouldn’t be a life lesson if you didn’t learn from it, and you didn’t gain something out of it. Whether you want to believe it or not, you get something valuable out of your struggles. And that’s the skills to go through something and make it out. Now let’s face our tests of life like we have been studying all night for Ms. Washington’s algebra test in the morning.
Question: Do you look at your struggles as valuable experiences.
Learning how to live alone, so that you can move along your journey peacefully and purposefully.
I’ll never forget the conversation I had with one of my older cousins where I referenced that I felt alone and her response was, “ you ain’t alone, you just ain’t got nothing to do”. Now, this response may have gone over my head in that moment or anyone else’s head who may have been expecting her to say something different. I know it may have gone over my head because she referred to my loneliness as a result of me not having something to do rather than not having someone around.
Even if that wasn’t the response I wanted to hear, it was the response I needed to hear and that is why, out of everything she may have said to me on that phone call, this statement seemed to stick with me the most, especially in those moments where I felt myself feeling “lonely”. It’s like every time I felt myself going into “lonely” mode, this statement would suddenly pop in my head and I would realize that I needed to find something to do and quick. I mean quick like when your mother told you to go find you something to do before you get hurt and you got out of her way as fast as possible quick.
Being able to reflect on this statement, made me realize that my feelings of loneliness didn’t stem from not having someone in my presence because I could be in a room filled with people and still feel this sense of loneliness. I could even be laying next to my significant other and still feel lonely as hell. It’s because my loneliness stemmed from a lack of fulfillment and not living in my purpose. Simply put, I was not doing what it is I should be doing to fulfill that sense of loneliness, and the conversation I had with my cousin helped me put this in perspective. Therefore, I’m sharing this story with you to help shed light on those feelings of loneliness you may be experiencing at this moment.
I encourage you to find your peace, your joy, and your fulfillment to eliminate those feelings of loneliness and the best way to do that is by finding you something to do and quick. Also, realize that sometimes solitude and being alone is necessary to focus on what it is you need to be doing for yourself, and loneliness isn’t cured by having someone around. You can have company and still feel misery, but be alone and have immeasurable peace. So take the time to reflect on what you need to move along your journey peacefully and purposefully.
How do you not live a bitter life when you have experienced your own share of loss and hurt?
How do you not live a bitter life when you have experienced your own share of loss and hurt?
Last weekend, I attended the home-going service of a very special woman to me, Valerie who touched the hearts of every person she had ever met because of her beautiful spirit. You wouldn’t know from the way she carried herself that she too experienced her share of loss, hurt, and pain at an early age. However, after reading her obituary, I learned that she too lost her parents at a very early age, just like I did, but the way she lived her life, you wouldn’t know that was her story.
She lost her mom immediately after she was born and as a result, she ended up having to live with other family members, just like I did, but again, the way she lived her life, you wouldn’t know the negative effects she may have experienced from losing both parents because of how positive, encouraging and hopeful she was. I rarely saw her get mad, she was always so mild-mannered and filled with joy even though she grew up in this world without the two most important people in her life too. This never seemed to interfere with her ability to connect with people and build meaningful relationships. Even though she didn’t get the chance to develop an attachment and bond with her parents during her infant and childhood years, it didn’t appear that she had an issue with building healthy and long-lasting relationships, as I did. Usually, they say that children who fail to develop a bond with their parents or caregivers end up having issues with connecting with others and developing healthy relationships.
As I continued to read her story, reflect on the person she was and how everybody who knew her, knew she lit up a room with her radiant spirit. I asked myself, how did she not appear to live a bitter life? Although, I didn’t know what other challenges she may have faced along her life journey. Nor did I know what living without her parents meant to her. I knew for me, losing my parents affected me in more ways than one and it kinda made me develop a bitter spirit at times because there was this void in my life that I couldn’t seem to shake. I asked myself again, how did this woman not live a bitter life? How was it that, I never picked up on a sense of resentment or pity in her demeanor even though she never got to experience what it’s like to be with her parents?
Seeing the way she lived her life and the way she made others feel and the way others felt about her, inspired me to want to live life like her, bitter-free, loved, and loving to myself and others. To be honest, I felt like losing my parents and experiencing a multitude of hurt and pain along the way, caused me to fail to love myself and others properly. However, that didn’t seem to be the case for Ms. Valerie and it was evident by the way she treated others with love, kindness and care.
Although she was truly a southern belle at heart due to her upbringings in the South, she was just so graceful and hospitable to others and again, I just wanted to know how did she not develop a bitter spirit? Because the bitterness that I developed from losing my parents at an early age hindered me from connecting with others and truly being the joyful and calm person I wanted to be and know I was destined to be. That is why I was dying to know how Valerie didn’t let the traumatic experience of losing her parents diminish her and keep her from still being a loving person? I wanted to know because I needed to know what I needed to do to stop living a life of bitterness, so that at the age of 53, I wouldn’t still have a bitter heart that I’d leave this earth with due to the hurt and pain I’d experienced and never healed from at an early age.
So how does one not live a bitter life after experiencing pain and loss? I say choose to live a life like my good friend Valerie, carefree, bitter free with the ability to love and be loved even when you have experienced, loss, hurt, and pain.
Verlisa is a writer who has a passion for encouraging others through her story.
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