I am a blogger who has always had a passion for writing. I feel as if writing is a way to relay my sometimes crazy, and sometimes profound messages. I believe that one day my words will be famous and I will be able to help someone by utilizing my gift.
Los Angeles has served its purpose for my life. You see, I used to take the term “promised land” literally. I never knew that the term was actually a state of mind. A state of being free, freedom from bondage, a feeling of escaping what was holding me down. You see, there’s nothing wrong with Memphis (or Collierville), but I felt held back and kept from the wonderful things that are in this world. I used to think that moving to Los Angeles was the answer to everything. Little did I know that this city was just the doorway to multiple possibilities. If I could move halfway across the country for over a year, I could move anywhere.
You may be thinking what is going on, but stay with me as I bring you to my point. One way that will help you understand all of this is my career expectation. I want to become a philanthropist and I want to show the WORLD that there is much to gain from positive thinking and doing what’s right. It’s the “light” I often speak of when I express my goals in life. It’s all of our goals if we didn’t know, but I take it seriously. You see, I want to spread the gospel of Jesus to everyone on this planet. I thought coming to Los Angeles was the answer due to the Hollywood platform. I quickly realized that God can let His light shine anywhere and was with me anywhere I went. That’s why I decided to make a more feasible move.
I used to look down on moving to Atlanta. I often thought it to be overcrowded with people on a mission. But when you understand the Bible and your purpose, you come to the conclusion that God can work through you wherever He pleases! After that bit of knowledge, I decided that “Black Hollywood” was a better fit for me due to already being a city that’s set up for blacks people to thrive. Yes, I bad mouthed the South several times, but God brought me right back to reality. To be honest, the cost of living in Los Angeles was a slap in the face!
All the planning in the world didn’t prepare me for the prices you’d have to pay for simply a studio. It made me realize what I wanted out of life and what was important. Did I want the fame with living paycheck to paycheck or did I want to have some wiggle room to actually live? I chose to live! At some point you would rather THRIVE than merely survive. Another lesson I learned was that people are going to talk about you no matter what you do. They talked about a 33 year old who was still staying with her parents. They talked about the same 33 year old when she moved to Los Angeles to experience adulthood in its truest form. And they’ll talk about that girl again who decided to explore the life of philanthropy in Atlanta. Oh well, stay tuned for my success story where only God gets the glory because eventually you realize you’re living for the approval of Him not man.
If you’ve ever experienced a toxic relationship with someone, you can agree that when it’s time to let go…LET GO! We can sit back and think of all the wrong that 2020 wished upon us, but we made it through. So here’s my breakup letter to one of the worst years of my life and that’s way worse than any crappy boyfriend I’ve ever encountered.
I hate your stinking guts. You are scum between my toes. Nah, but really 2020, you were a train wreck that couldn’t be avoided. You ruined my birthday, traveling plans, social life, and career plans. You’re truly worse than my worst ex. But before you begin to gloat, I have to say that you didn’t take me out. Oh you tried several times, but you weren’t successful you little devil you. You actually shed some light on some things I needed to see. You made me realize how tough I am. You see, you 2020 are a beast, but you didn’t count on me being one too. In your face! I got to see what truly mattered, who actually cared, and I grew stronger in the midst. I couldn’t get away from your craziness, so I learned how to focus on the positives instead. In the end, it turns out that you’re not so big and bad after all. So in conclusion 2020, you can kiss my *drops mic*
*picks mic back up* Now what do you do after a breakup? Noooo, not cry and binge watch romcoms with a bottle of wine! I meant after that. You get yourself together and you GLOW UP!!!!
I did it! It’s funny that a year later and I’m still in awe that I decided to move after living in Tennessee for 33 years. Seems like half of those years were spent dreaming of what life would be like elsewhere. I’ve always been an adventurous person, wanting to see what was beyond the familiar. I would be engulfed in movies where characters lived in California or New York. I guess that’s why when I finally got the chance to fly, I made the comment that I was moving to California before the plane even landed. It was something about it that pulled on the strings of my heart. Four years after that, I was trekking halfway across the country in my Kia Soul to start a new life.
Since I’ve been here, I’ve learned some helpful and funny things:
1. You’d be surprised at how much you appreciate manners. A simple thank you or excuse me makes my heart smile. It’s some rude folks here.
2. It’s funny when people just want to hear you talk because of your Southern drawl. Yes, I sound country compared to everyone else.
3. Southern food is a gem. Period.
4. I used to think my family was too close. But you’ll be surprised at how much you miss the get togethers when you’re hundreds of miles away and seeing posts on Facebook.
5. Speaking of social media, it has truly kept me sane to see what my family and friends are up to daily. I felt somewhat in the loop.
6. I liked Netflix before moving, but it has truly been my saving Grace when I’m bored. I get engulfed in the movies and series nowadays.
7. When family and friend come to visit, I try to hold back tears of joy. It’s good to see my loved ones!
8. I don’t go to the beach nearly as much as I should. That’s going to change when it warms back up. I love the water.
9. The Valley sucks! That is all.
10. Roommates can make or break your experience of LA when you’re new to the city.
11. Yes, I’ve had 4 jobs in less than a year’s time. I refuse to settle ever again.
12. Speaking of not settling, dating in LA sucks more than in Memphis. Blah!
13. This may sound weird, but the earthquakes I’ve experienced were fun.
14. At one point, I got depressed and thought about going to my backup plan. Being in a new place in a pandemic is Overwhelming at times.
15. I still can’t cook all that well. And to think, I stay in the grocery stores. Dang!
**Bonus: Los Angeles is a beautiful place to live and I like it so far. I guess I’ll continue to make it work for me. I will be successful with the help of God.
“Rejoice always, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16, 18 NIV
A lot of people think that with all that’s going on in the world, it would be hard to find things to be thankful for. But I beg to differ. In fact, I have even more to be thankful for during this pandemic. Life has been different for the last several months. We have had to do things we’ve never done, have conversations we’ve never had, and think thoughts we’d otherwise not think. But through it all, it’s a blessing to be able to be able to relay the things that I am thankful for nowadays. I’ve narrowed it down to five things that I’m thanking God for this year:
1. Family: I used to think it was crazy how close we were. People would laugh at how many cousins I had. And it would sometimes be annoying how we were always together every weekend. But when you don’t have the luxury of going to the birthday parties and the Sunday dinners, you feel different. It’s like a part of you is missing. So I have to say that I’m very appreciative of the way I grew up close to my aunts and cousins. The sleepovers, grandparents buying us back to school clothes, and the countless cookouts. My family is absolutely amazing!
2. Friends: I always say that our children will truly think we were crazy with the stories we have. And Lord knows we have endless stories about the craziest things ever. I’m almost afraid of whoever does the speech at my wedding. Anything that starts with “remember the time” will have me unplugging the microphone! I love my friends, the girls and guys. We have surely lived a fun life.
3. Church: Anyone who knows me can tell you I stayed at the church house. Whether it was rehearsal, Sunday school meetings, or second service, I loved being in the house of the Lord. Ever since I was a child, I wanted to go to church and never miss a Sunday. It pulled at my spirit to get amongst other believers to worship. From New Bethel to New Life, I have truly been blessed. From singing with Kevin Davidson to Tennessee Mass Choir, I’ve enjoyed being with the Saints in the presence of God.
4. Job: I must give a shout out to my coworkers in LA. In the midst of a pandemic, they were all that I had that remotely resembled family. I was feeling very low at one point, but the laughs were very much appreciated. They gave me kind words, fun times, and advice of where to eat. Everyone knows I love a good meal. I’m glad to have met such good people at PATH and The Center.
5. Sorority: Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority has been super clutch since I’ve been in LA. From Sorors inviting me to brunch to helping me have somewhere safe to stay. Lord knows I am thankful for kindhearted and intelligent poodles! I am glad I made the decision to join such an elite group of women.
One gospel song says count your blessings and see what the Lord has done. Well, it would take a lifetime to truly state the things I’m thankful for on a blog. Yes, things have been rough and people have lost loved ones and careers. But I’m so glad that God saw fit to keep me in the midst of it all. One thing is for sure, I’m still alive and will give God the praise every day. This week, let’s focus on the things that matter most and have a posture of thanksgiving. Be sweet!
I wonder if parents truly believe it when they tell their children they can be anything when they grow up. I think of the black parents who patted their sons and daughters on the back when they mentioned wanting to be the future president. The parents were being kind, but all the while thinking of all of the unfortunate situations the black race has been through over years. Then a miracle happens and Barack Obama shines light on the dreams of those who shoot for the stars in the dream world. I believe that same sentiment occurred when they announced the first black woman Vice President in this country’s history. The fact that my VP looks like me truly gave me an inspirational boost.
If it’s one thing I know, it’s that no one can keep a determined person down for long. When a road block appears on your journey you have to take one of two options. You can either let it deter you from your purpose, or you can find new avenues to get to where you know you’re supposed to be. In the words of VP, this is truly an example of what believing in possibilities can do for you. This is what happens when you work for what you want with conviction despite what it looks like. Oppositions will always show up when you’re on the right path, but you have to have a determination within you that pushes through no matter what.
The biggest take away from this win is never say never. They never thought black people would survive the tribulations they went through from slavery to the civil rights movement, and now we’ve turned some heads. Our first black President showed us that we can and we will win. They never thought a woman would make it, but here we are again with the win. The only person who can stop you from getting to where you want to go is you. That means you have to do a self check and see how bad you truly want to succeed. Ask yourself what the one thing you need to do to offset your road to success. Then work for it with everything within you!
Why is she acting like that? What gives her the right to shine? Who does she think she is? Those are things things we as Black women are going to hear from the haters. I hardly ever say the word haters, but anyone trying to stop your glow up is a flat out hater and they need to get somewhere and sit down. Matter of fact, they need to get up out of your business and mind the business that pays them. Yes, that escalated quickly and you’re probably thinking what is Monica B talking about today. Well, I’ll let you know now beautiful black women. Most of us will get a boost of confidence from the news of the first Black Vice President of The United States. With that will come the side eyes and questions that I started this blog off with very soon.
I’ve come to realize that the phrase black girls rock makes other races feel some type of way. Take notes y’all. This is in no way a phrase that is meant to diminish any other race of women, but to shine a light on our own. You see, black women have had to fight for the spotlight that they have so deserved for decades in this country. This country is used to the Rosa, the Maxine, and the Michelle. But we’ve grown up with the Big Ma, the TeTe, and all the other inspirational women who have made a difference in communities for ages. So our black girls rock mentality isn’t new, it’s a reminder that we needed so we can keep moving forward in excellence. We won’t apologize for being a positive voice to our own. Take it or leave it sweetie pie!
So the next time you feel the need to try and extinguish a black woman’s fire, be careful that you don’t get burned. We’re on fire and this is a very motivating time for us. Another black Miss USA, along with Kamala Harris…you can’t tell us nothing. So don’t try! If a person even tries, read them from cover to cover so they’ll know not to do that ever again! This is a call to black women who have felt like their brightness would never be as bright. This is for the ones who have even dimmed their own light out of fear of the brightness. Girl, it’s time for you to step into the light and show this world of many possibilities what you’re made of. [Drops mic, exits stage left]
Recently, I have been enjoying life and realized that I needed to write a relevant blog. I was thinking heavily on what the topic would be. Then I remembered the conversation last night with a good friend. I was very honest about how I was slipping into a slump from March to June due to this whole pandemic. I also thought about how I did a short PowerPoint for my sorority sisters about coping skills. So I thought it would be best to tap into ways to cope during all of what is going on. From the country being in slow motion, to working from home, to the children being homeschooled, it has been a bit much. Then to top it off, we have a very critical election that will determine our fate going froward into the pandemic. It’s a whirlwind of events going on that we have never encountered and we need a manual or guide to stay sane. So, I came up with a few things to consider. Pull up a seat and take notes!
First we need to pinpoint the things that have been wearing us thin…
Being in the house more than usual isn’t too fun unless you’re an introvert, and even then you want to have the option to go out.
Many of us are seeing just how “active” our kids really are. Maybe the teacher wasn’t lying on little Katie or Johnny.
Running errands has turned into you being a contestant in The Hunger Games. May the odds ever be in your favor. Germs everywhere!
You want to hang out with your friends, but you suspect their every cough or clearing of the throat as being the Rona. I will body slam you bestie!
Working from the house isn’t what we all thought it would be. For heaven’s sake, please learn how to mute your mic on these darn Zoom meetings.
No vacations!!! I am in a fetal position after typing those two words.
So now that we have come up with a few things that we are all mostly dealing with, let’s come up with some solutions to stay sane:
It may be hard, but try to focus on and work on some of your goals. Life hasn’t ended!
Take care of your body, eat heathy, take vitamins, and wear the freakin’ mask over your mouth AND nose.
Learn to say NO and stand by it. Don’t stress out with other people’s mess.
Start a side hustle or get a new hobby. Learn something new.
Cook your favorite things at home. Postmates, UberEats, and DoorDash are rich because of us. I promise it’s about $7 extra for the delivery.
Check on your family and friends and tell them you love them. People are passing away from this virus.
Get rid of things (and people) you don’t need. Downsize and prioritize!
Limit your social media time because it will depress you. Folks are wild nowadays.
Don’t drink too much because wine belly is a thing. (Goes to Google tummy tucks) Okay…settle down, don’t kill me!!!
Please try to stay calm when you’re repeating that Math problem for the third time to your kids. (Rethinks…Maybe drinking isn’t so bad!)
Don’t isolate yourself because depression will set in. FaceTime a friend to uplift your spirit.
Please stay home if you feel sick. It’s not worth it to contaminate everybody else.
Finish the degree honey, you owe it to yourself. Plus, you’ll probably get more money. Millionaire status!
Get some fresh air…not every place is contaminated.
Don’t let this pandemic limit your growth! You deserve the best!