I stared in the mirror a little longer today as I observed the last bits of this 2021 version of me. Eyes a little sad, but still hopeful. A few extra pounds settled in some good places. Hair still unruly and a little shorter, but now free of dead ends much like my life. There’s so much still left unresolved and other things that may never find closure. Even still, there’s a sense of peace lingering around. Not because everything is alright, but because each day things do get better.
And so, my rosemary and mint tea has finally cooled down a bit. Now I have decided to do what I do most nights—sip and reflect. 2021. The year where difficult decisions had to be made in situations we could’ve never prepared for. Many of us lost love, but found ourselves. Many of us took our power back that our ancestors gave away along time ago. We showed up for us and ugly cried all the way through it! 2021. It wasn‘t all bad! Depending on the way you look at life though, no whole year actually every is.
Recently, I actually got a chance to dialogue about life a bit. On Dec. 27th, I was honored to be a guest on FM 101.5 RHEMA for the Strength for the Journey segment hosted by Val J. Reed! We reflected on the year and the ways that it shaped us even in ways we didn’t want it to. Through every adverse encounter, there was something to be learned! So, when Val asked me to bring my Top 5 Lessons from 2021 I had no idea where to start but here’s at least how I finished…
1. Never try to convince someone of your worth.
This is a mindset that I apply to every aspect of my life—career, friendships, relationships and anything in between. I know my value and it’s high! I‘ve climbed in, through, and out of some very troubling spaces to become this person. This person is a once in a lifetime type of beautiful! If a person doesn’t see that, I refuse to help them.
2. Life can change in an instance.
Whether in the best way or the worst way, in a blink of an eye your life can be forever changed. My whole life I heard people say that “everything happens for a reason”. In this season of my story, I may need to reconsider! Sometimes life just happens, and you can search your whole life for a reason or…you can accept, adjust, cope, and somehow keep going.
3. You learn the most about life and people when you’re quiet.
Let’s be real, sometimes we talk way too much. You’ll almost always miss what’s being revealed if you never pause, step back, listen and observe. One day, just decide to be silent, friend! Watch how God speaks to your heart and provides answers to unspoken prayers. Heads up! There may be some people who take your silence personal, but those aren’t really your people anyway. Don’t believe me? Just hush and watch…
4. Avoiding pain just makes it hurt more! There are a bunch of broken people walking around with masks on. I know because I’ve been one of them! It’s so easy to place Band-aids over the wound. It stings when you touch it! I can honestly say that the longer you avoid tending to it though, the longer you’ll delay true healing! This year I took a step toward my own healing by joining a grief peer support circle. It was the first time that I didn’t feel like I had to try to glue together all my pieces! I showed up every week, broken, without the pressure of holding it all together. I needed that…
5. It’s okay to not always be okay. I’m leaving false positivity behind this year. No, I am not a problem that needs to be fixed. I’ve endured a lot and I’m still enduring. I’m entitled every once in a while to stand in the rain and give myself permission to feel it. I don’t need people to whisper while looking out their windows or anyone shouting for me to come inside. Some days I just need someone to grab an umbrella and come stand in the rain with me until the sun comes out. Because I know that eventually it will…
Always healing. Always dealing. Always elevating.
What were your Top 5 Lessons from 2021? Drop them in the comments! I’d love to hear!