Welcome Back…

Honestly, I don’t even know how to start this journey. I mean, I went ghost on y’all, with no warning or explanation. And now, it’s been four, unexpected, months of silence. I know I owe y’all some type of explanation, however, I don’t even remember my mindset in the beginning/middle of April.

I would like to apologize because, from the start of our journeys together, I promised you all transparency and consistency. And, clearly, I’ve failed on the consistency part. I promise to do better and hold myself more accountable to the “rules” laid out for this space.

The last four months, for me, have been so eye-opening! Of course, I took my annual trip home to visit family and friends. I’ve been, pretty consistently, involved within different ministries at my Church. And, most recently, I even accepted a promotion at my job! Referring to myself as blessed would be an understatement…

How have you all been? And don’t give me the generic elevator answer! Seriously, how are you mentally, emotionally, and physically? Any fun and exciting news? Well, I pray you all are doing absolutely marvelous! Now let’s journey together! Indulge & Enjoy!!

Friendships have never come easy to me. I don’t know if it’s because of my uncontrollable awkwardness, or maybe my abandonment issues. Or maybe, just maybe it’s my deep-rooted trust issues, maybe even my overwhelming level of suspicion. Whatever the cause, the effects result in me having very few (distant) friends and a couple of associates.

Now don’t get it twisted, I vibe with people easily. I have a natural ability to hold open conversations with practically anyone. And I’m not talking about elevator chat. Something about my personality makes it easy for people to open up to me immediately. Sometimes it’s overwhelming, however, I love the trust they instill in me.

So, why do those conversations never really blossom into genuine, long-lasting friendships? Great question… Honestly, I feel the majority of it translates to self-sabotage. I meet people and I genuinely listen to the part of themselves they choose to share with me.

While effectively listening, I also begin to see the unlimited potential the individual possesses. One characteristic trait most people quickly learn about me is, I love to encourage and uplift the people around me. However, feeding and pouring into beautiful souls can sometimes leave you searching for your own validation.

It is impossible to create genuine friendships when you feel unworthy of that individual’s presence. Now, keeping it real, there are some friendships I’ve walked away from out of sheer respect for myself. Also, connections have ended because of unmet expectations, on my part.

Sometimes, however, I distance myself from people who could potentially add value and much-needed support to my life. My insecurities begin to surface and I disappear before they catch on to how damaged I truly am. Oftentimes, this process happens unconsciously and up until recently, I had no idea it was even happening.

Being at the point of realization, I feel it’s very important I work on correcting my thought process along with my response to fear. I acknowledge this frame of thinking had a lot to do with unresolved childhood trauma. And, I accept, I cannot rewire my thinking on my own.

Therefore, I welcome therapy, coupled with prayer, to learn the steps needed to become a better me! I mean, what’s life without beautiful, loving, genuine souls to share it with…?

So, here we are, at the end of our journey and I want to say life is beautifully amazing! I am sincerely happy with where I am in all journeys of life. To everyone who reached out, and wanted to know why I stopped exploring, I just want to say THANK YOU!

Sometimes, I forget you all actually explore with me and look forward to our journeys. We don’t have a set schedule at this time, however I promise to explore at least once a month. Until next time, be blessed in all that you do.

(All new journeys will be uploaded at least one Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Not Again…

Okay family, this space is all about transparency, therefore, I have no choice but to be honest… This week has been a STRUGGLE!! I just don’t feel like me. Now, don’t get me wrong, my bills are paid, I’m healthy, my family is well, and I have a roof over my head… I’m blessed! Yet, my confidence has plummeted.

I feel incompetent in everything I do (hair/nail-stylist, writing, singing, as a woman, even as a Christian). My heart is full, and I’m so grateful for where I am in life thus far, but, my soul is burdened. My gifts aren’t fulfilling and my talents don’t feel good enough… I just feel inadequate, so to speak.

•••

Before we continue, I should advise, this feeling is very familiar. Yes, I know exactly what’s going on and why. It seems like every time I’m exactly where God wants me to be, this feeling of sadness and depression tries to consume my life. I begin pulling away from the very blessings I spend countless nights praying for.

Believe it or not, this feeling all surrounds my faith walk. It began just a couple weeks after deciding to not only join the Church, but to become an active member within the body of Christ. Now, the first time this happened was in New York, when I joined a powerful ministry, dedicated to bringing and SPREADING God’s love. The most impactful part of this ministry, for me, was though ”international” is in the name, their focus was right at home!

•••

It’s so unimaginable to realize now what was happening back then, and see it begin to repeat. I remember feeling so alone in that ministry, when literally EVERYONE was pouring love into me. I remember feeling as though the walls were closing in on me, and not trusting anyone enough to tell them what was happening.

I even remember the Pastor prophesying to me, telling me exactly how I felt, but I didn’t feel comfortable enough to tell him I was still dealing with it at that very moment. I had at least three close friends within the ministry that I shared a lot with, but I wouldn’t share this. Instead, I would leave Church, and other events, go home and struggle in silence.

•••

Needless to say, I didn’t make it far in my faith journey. It wasn’t two years before I had fully removed myself from the ministry. So, here I am, almost 3 years later, in a different state, just joined a new ministry, and this feeling of sadness is, literally, attempting to take over my mind while I’m writing this.

It’s strange because I have yet to have a negative interaction with anyone. From the moment I joined, everyone has been so loving and accepting. I mean, I even go to rehearsals when I’m not even on the team. What more could I ask for? So far I love this ministry. And, though I know it won’t always be roses and butterflies, this is where I’m supposed to be.

•••

Honestly, I don’t know how to fix it, however, I know the outcome won’t be the same. I refuse to run from the love and community, God has given me. I’m beyond eager to grow within my faith journey and I know this is the place for me to do so.

To ensure I don’t have the same result, I have to speak up and share what I’m going through. So, here goes nothing!

•••

Thanks for listening.

Love y’all!

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Boundaries

“Lack of boundaries invites lack of respect.”

-Anonymous

Gives you something to think about, huh? How many times have you allowed someone to violate your boundaries (for whatever reason). How many times have YOU violated your own boundaries? Or, here’s a good one, how many times have you removed a boundary because others felt it inconvenienced them?

If we’re being honest, too often do we deprioritize our boundaries. And if we’re really being transparent, those moments usually left us feeling disrespected, devalued, and disposable. We end up adding to our brokenness, in a time we’re working so hard to heal.

Over the last two weeks, I’ve been dealing with several feelings that continue to creep up in my life. Rejection, abandonment, isolation, and hatred have always controlled my life for the most part, but I’m tired. Actually, I’m exhausted.

It’s exhausting to search for happiness in between these negative emotions. It’s painful to grip the peaks of “happy” only for them to fade back to emptiness. I want to experience more peaks of happy and less dark valleys. This starts with boundaries…

I’ve allowed myself to be hurt because I allow others to do as they wish. This goes deeper than a romantic relationship. I’ve always been the friend, daughter, sister, mentor, auntie and/or significant other, available whenever I was called upon. I used to take pride in telling individuals to call me WHENEVER they needed me, because my phone never turns off.

I welcomed calls before sunrise, and after sunset, because “I’m always here to help!” I would lose sleep worrying about situations/events that had absolutely NOTHING to do with me. I was so invested in the lives of my friends and family, I would wake up out of my sleep, and answer the call coming in at 3 a.m. because “they need me.” (Insane, I know.)

I’m so proud to say I’ve finally set boundaries to allow myself peace! Some of you, who know me personally, may have noticed contacting me after 11 p.m. and before 10 a.m. is pretty much pointless. Those 11 hours are for me! Granted, 7 of those hours, I’m asleep but please DO NOT DISTURB!!

I never knew how beautiful a good night sleep was! I mean I wake up energized and ready to take on the obstacles of the day. I’m more positive. I mean, I’ve even made my bed every day this week (this is a huge deal)!

Another change I’ve made, recently, was to turn off social media at 10 p.m. and not log back in until after 11 a.m. I remember nights where I‘ve fallen asleep, phone in hand, scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. And, as soon as my eyes opened, I would start scrolling again. Looking back, it’s a little embarrassing. Like, why are you so attached to social media?

Well, I still can’t answer that question. But what I can share is, so much pressure and anxiety has been lifted since I limited my social media intake. I’ve been able to complete so many small goals that I just couldn’t find the time for, prior to setting this boundary. It’s almost as if I’m thinking clearer!

As I glide through this year of healing, I’ll add additional boundaries as needed. What I always keep in the front of my mind is MY BOUNDARIES ARE FOR ME!! They aren’t to impress anyone, nor does it matter how anyone feels, good or bad, about them. It’s about creating a safe space for me to feel, grow, and heal my wounds.

Happy Healing, Loves!

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

A Piece of Pieces

Today, I accept reality. A reality, at least 27 years in the making. A reality, easy to mask around others. A reality, meant to force the stigmas of the world on me, in hopes to keep me shackled in defeat. But, today I accept reality, breaking the chains of the generational curses attempting to drag my soul into the darkest pits of hell. So let’s talk about it…

I’ve used everything in my reach to hold my heart together, for all these years. I started with glue, tracing the cracks of abandonment, formed by the selfish acts of an unavailable father. Next, I used tape to realign the shattered pieces of neglect, caused by a mother simply stretched too thin. Afterwards, I found rubber bands to hold the falling pieces of rejection caused by, well way too many events to name. Truth? My heart is broken…

So how do you love with a broken heart?

You don’t…

You can’t…

It’s impossible!

Honestly, as I look at 2021, my only goal is to mend my brokenness. To, not only, forgive myself of my transgressions and my transgressors, but to genuinely let go of the pain. I have so many emotions bottled up from my past, I thought I had let go of, yet they constantly show up in my thoughts and actions.

I no longer want to be responsible for my own self-destruction. And, I no longer want to wait for anyone to correct their actions with me. A lot of the individuals that have hurt me no longer have access to me and that’s perfectly acceptable. However, I still have to do the work to fix the crack the interaction caused in my life.

The most nerve wracking part for me is creating my own closure. It makes me realize I haven’t had closure from several obstacles in my past. Instead, I built walls that allowed me to become numb to everything. Shutting out not only people who have hurt me, but the ones who haven’t also. Now, I’m ready to live… vividly. Breaking down these walls will be so difficult, but I’m ready. After spending the majority of my life only operating on surface level emotions, I’m over it. I want to feel! I want to enjoy and experience life in wholeness.

Mending my heart is the only obligation I have, this year.

So, y’all ready to explore this crazy journey with me!

Stay tuned & look out for more pieces!

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Lessons

Attraction…

Connections…

Vibes…

The feeling that goes through my whole body when you look into my eyes…

Temptation passes through my mind while you’re caressing my thighs…

I’ll give anything in the world to hear your lies…

Our love, tainted…

The smiles on our faces, painted….

When you told me you truly loved me, I nearly fainted…

A look of sorrow in your eyes as if your poisonous heart was now sainted…

But I looked up and knew I was too good…

You walked away in disgust as I knew you would…

Not soon after I got a text saying “Please call me ’cause my love, you misunderstood…”

Now I’m wondering if I should…

I denied the urge to call…

Afraid that again I might fall…

Somehow you read my actions as me asking you to beg and crawl…

Now your promising me you’ll give it your all…

I tried to explain that the game was done…

You looked at me and said “Well I guess you won…”

All I could do was smile and say “Take good care of your son…”

I wanted to cry but couldn’t because of the brightness of the sun…

As I walked away my inner beauty came to me…

And right then at that moment I grew closer to who I wanted to be…

Alyshia- Mae even the name shows my true beauty….

I bet you wish you saw then what I couldn’t even see…

Strong…

Unique…

Beautiful..

Simply me…

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Twenty Twenty-One

So here we are! The beginning of a new year. How are you guys feeling? I’m sure you’re ready to see what 2021 has in store. Honestly, while optimistic, I don’t really have any requirements or expectations for this year. I mean, last year exposed so many insecurities for me, I honestly just want to focus on digging deeper within myself.

This year, I want to actually set goals, and see them through. Things like: spending more time with family, staying positive when things don’t look good, and setting an obtainable sleep schedule. Of course, fitness and eating healthier are also on the list, however, I’ve learned fitness is more than just working out and eating right. It has to do with your mental state as well.

With that being said, before I dive into a workout/eating schedule I won’t stay committed to, I want to tap into why I think the way I do. Why I shut down randomly and isolate myself from my family and friends. What about certain seasons cause me to be much more sensitive than others. And, what I can do to genuinely change my perspective.

One goal I have for this year is to be more creative. Between writing, makeup, nails, and hair, I should have more than enough to keep my creative juices flowing. These avenues are not only creative, but with so many different looks and styles available, I can challenge myself, endlessly. Plus, my family is more than willing to let me practice on them!

Another goal I have for this year, is to hold myself accountable for letting others know how they’ve impacted me. I’ve noticed, I tend to be “on the fence” when it comes to telling others how their actions have affected me. I become quiet or pretend nothings wrong while over analyzing my actions and value to the relationship, whatever it may be. Honestly, my overall goal is to continue to be the best me I can be!

Alright you cool kids, I don’t want to elongate this journey, unnecessarily. With 2020 wrapping up, and the new year just starting, I genuinely just want to say HAPPY NEW YEAR! I pray this year brings you endless blessings. May you remain healthy and continue to work on you!

I love y’all!

(Photo Courtesy of Google)

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Over and Out

Dear 2020,

I mean, where do I start? You genuinely rocked the entire world, pulling us out of our comfort zones, and forcing us into a new way of life. You normalized working from home, and you prioritize hand washing (which is still mind boggling to me).

You forced life to take place behind the screen…Stripping away many of the activities we view as “a right of passage,” such as proms, moving up ceremonies, and graduations. Church, and even school, became isolating chores, dreadful to most.

Community and fellowship now take place over conference calls. Traveling comes with even more risk. And, simply leaving the house requires a face mask. Yet, with all the drama and trauma you’ve caused, I simply want to say thank you.

Thank you, for reminding me to appreciate the little things in life. Yeah, I miss being able to get together with family and friends, hug and fellowship in close proximity, without taking each other’s temperature or wearing a mask. However, this forced time alone has made me realize the importance of using solitude as a self care practice.

In the past, I’ve required myself to stay busy by submerging myself in Church, work, or a multitude of issues around me (one time I even wished for jury duty just to avoid dealing with my own feelings). When life suddenly changed, in March of this year, I was wrecked! I had so many mentally overwhelming days because I was stuck with my own thoughts and feelings.

You forced me to admit that I wasn’t “okay,” and that I couldn’t heal on my own. And more importantly, you showed me, no amount of busyness can remove the pain I’m dealing with internally…

At the start of this year, I remember everyone saying this would be the year of clear vision, I didn’t believe them. All I wanted to do, this year, was make a friend or two and explore. I had zero expectation for you. But, now I understand what they meant by clear vision.

After this year, I trust myself more. I appreciate my flaws more. I acknowledge my mistakes, and challenge myself to fix them. I respect and stand by my ‘no.’ And, I hold on to my ‘yes’ tighter than ever before. I’ve finally realized, the only person I’m living to impress is myself and God.

So, 2020, as your time runs out, and everyone celebrates moving into the unknown of 2021, I want you to know I am so grateful for the lessons taught throughout this year. I will cherish them forever. Thank you.

Over and out,

Alyshia-Mae

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

Letting Go

…Closure is just an excuse to hold on to what’s no longer for you…

-Someone’s Twitter account

Man, those words hit so hard when I read them. I mean, I felt as though the author pried into my deepest thoughts, reviewed the intimate details of my most recent lov- no, lust connection, and saw how my heart was begging for answers it will never receive.

What happened? Why is he so upset? How do I fix it? What did I even do? How can he just ignore me like this? Is it really over? No, it can’t be… I’ll do anything to fix this… PLEASE JUST TALK TO ME!!!

Once done invading my mind, the writer of this tweet, must have felt overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and utterly confused. Instead of smacking the hell out of me and telling me to get a grip, she formed a tweet gracefully telling me to let it go! I’m so grateful I stumbled across those words.

Honestly, the details of what happened don’t matter. What’s important is I was so intrigued by the attention I was getting from this young man, I didn’t realize I had literally allowed my life to be consumed, in a very unhealthy way. I mean, we would literally talk all day, only giving each other maybe 3 hours of “me” time.

When we weren’t talking to each other, on the phone, we were enjoying one another’s company in person. We even fell asleep on FaceTime together. Honestly, I don’t blame either one of us. This whole COVID life makes it easy to become codependent on someone else’s presence, especially when the chemistry’s there.

One thing’s for sure, there were some red flags that were ignored on both parts. Now, I don’t like to view red flags as bad or negative. For me, they simply allude to incompatibilities between two individuals. In this situation, yes I genuinely cared about him, however, there were several characteristics, I knew weren’t compatible with my personality, but, I chose to overlook them just to have someone around.

Needless to say, we didn’t last long at all. Long story short, after several months of constant communication, he ghosted me. I was completely distraught! I cried off and on the entire weekend. And, when Monday came along, I called in to work just to stay in bed and cry some more.

By the time I woke up, halfway through the day, I was feeling better but still displaced. You see, he filled all of my free time. So with us not talking anymore I was lost. What was I supposed to do to fill that time? That’s when it hit me! While he was a good guy, our connection was toxic. We had no time to live our separate lives.

I wasn’t reading anymore, nor was I writing. I wasn’t even creating new makeup looks. I definitely wasn’t reading my Bible or praying as I should. I simply didn’t have time to. So now that the situationship is over I’m finally getting back to me.

When everything first happened, all I wanted was answers. I wanted to know why I wasn’t good enough. I wanted to know why it was so easy to throw me away. I wanted to “fix” myself to make ”me” better for him. Then, I didn’t care about us fixing things, I just wanted to know why.

But now, I’m so content! I’ve accepted, we simply weren’t compatible and that’s that. I’m overall, grateful for the time we spend together, and wish him nothing but the best. And, I’m so thankful to know, closure is not finding out “why.”

For me, closure is about accepting your uncontrollables, making a conscientious decision to work on your mistakes, and learning when to know the difference. Hmm, that sounds like the Serenity Prayer. Never heard it? Well here, indulge & enjoy!

“God grant me the serenity

To accept the things I cannot change;

Courage to change the things I can;

And wisdom to know the difference.”

(Source: Google)

I love y’all!

(All new journeys will be uploaded the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month by 12:30 EST)

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

A Year Already?

Hey BPL family! It’s the last week in September, which means, as of today I’ve been in Kentucky for a year!! Can you believe it? Some days I still forget I live here. Well, this journey isn’t long or extraordinary, however, it’s necessary. Sometimes, on our life journeys, we forget to point out the awesome milestones we’ve accomplished. I refuse to continue down that road. Are we ready to explore? Me too! Indulge & Enjoy.

Dear Beautiful,

Today marks a year since you’ve moved to Kentucky, and I just want to say, I’m so proud of you! I mean, a year ago today, you drove away from everything familiar to you, to embark on a journey of the unknown. What a rewarding journey it has been thus far!

You’ve learned so much more about yourself, and you continue to take risks, daily. I mean, you went from learning how to do makeup, to learning how to do your own nails, and now relearning how to do hair, all at the same time. Not only are you saving money, but you’re also exuding a self-sufficient, determined attitude that’s genuinely inspiring.

On top of keeping your peace and self-reflection at the forefront of your goals. You’ve learned to embrace your flaws and flaunt them with pride! You’ve expanded your tolerance levels, to allow others to unapologetically be themselves around you, at all times. And, you’ve allowed your light to shine brighter than ever before.

You’ve learned to stop worrying about the opinion of the masses and do what makes you happy. One quality you’ve gained, which makes me so proud, is the ability to disagree without destroying. See, you used to be so quick to destroy friendships/relationships over simple disagreements. (I believe you refer to it as your “cut off game” being strong.)

You may not see it, but you’re an encouragement to others. Okay, so your faith may not be where you feel it should be. Your self-esteem may dwindle every now and then. And, your finances may be a little thin, at times. But guess what, YOU’RE HUMAN! All of these negative attributes make you more relatable to the world.

Sometimes you forget how powerful your presence is and you distance yourself from loved ones. Stop doing that. They need your light just as much as you need theirs. When you’re not feeling social I need you to push through and love on your family and friends. Do not allow the enemy to steal your voice, again.

I could go on and on about the beautiful young woman you’re still blossoming into, however, I’ll cut it short for now. Just remember to always let your light shine. The world needs it, now more than ever. Stay authentically YOU, my love.

I love you more than words can ever express!

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.

One Last Goodbye…

B.P.L. Family!! My goodness how I’ve missed you! Yes I know it’s been a little over two months. And yes, I know most of you thought our journeys were over. But, WE ARE BACK!

We’re definitely going to start off slow with more of a free form flow until I get back into the swing of things. Thank you so much for being so patient with me and know, I love and appreciate you all!

Ready to explore? Indulge and Enjoy!

I allowed you to penetrate the depths of my heart, expecting you’d know how to handle it this time. But, you didn’t. I held on to every word you said, imagining them all coming true. But, they never will. I was open… More open than I’ve ever been with anyone before because I knew you knew where I came from…

You knew the little girl that hated herself. You knew the childish teen that used her body to feel a love she could never find. You knew the young woman that would give anything in that world to be beautiful. An, yet, you loved her. You loved her through her pain and you pushed her to genuinely love herself. So, I just wanted to show you the love you once showed me.

Allow me to caress that pain, lying beneath the smile you wear daily, pretending everything’s just fine. Let me wash away the feeling of doubt, written in the wrinkles of your forehead, you think no one sees. Allow me to serenade you with stories and fantasies of a life together, as you drift into a deep slumber. Relax baby boy, I’ve got you.

You want me to wait? I’ll wait for you. I’ve been waiting for yo-… Hold on… Wait, why the hell didn’t you wait for me? You could have waited. Love… True love… Would have waited for us to actually finish before moving on. Before getting married. But now, four months before your two year wedding anniversary you want to tell me you’re still in love with me.

Yeah yeah yeah. You waited to tell me because the timing wasn’t right. But what’s so right about this timing? NOT A DAMN THING! But, it’s you and I’m the new me so let me allow you a moment to explain yourself. Go ahead, I’m listening… Right, now you don’t know what to say. Well, I’ll help you get started.

Start with the fact that you’re still the young man I fell in love with all those years ago. Having virtual relationships and promising women stuff you know you don’t plan to give them. You see, what family and friends didn’t know was, when we were together you did that dumb shit to me. I remember the messages in your phone. I remember crying because you just didn’t “know what to say.” So we stayed together…

Here’s something you can say… Tell me about your brokenness. Tell me that you’re so broken you don’t know where to start unpacking. Talk about how you pour all of your time and energy into fixing someone else because you’re afraid to heal yourself. That’s the key as to why you’re not “happy” in your marriage.

I’m so happy, conversation was all I was able to provide you in your time of unhappiness. I’m so happy, I’ve grown from being the Side Chick, I was once so very comfortable being. I’m so happy, for the reality check I so desperately needed to break me from the fantasy land I resided in, with you.

I’m so happy…

I’m so happy…

I’m so so happy…

I bet you’re wondering why I’m so happy, huh? Well, I’m happy to finally close the door on the last piece of my past that was haunting me. I’m happy, my heart is still pure and as genuine as before we met. I’m happy, I learned to love myself like no other will ever be able to. And, finally I’m so happy to know you never genuinely loved me. Now, I can stop comparing every man that has interest in me to a young love that simply never used to be.

And no, this time around, we cannot be friends.

God Bless & Goodbye…

I am BEAUTIFUL. I am PASSIONATE. I will LOVE.