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.

March Madness

Hey family! It’s the last Saturday in this crazy month, and can I just say… THANK GOODNESS! So much has transpired for me this month, (some good, some bad, and some not yet categorized), I feel it’s necessary to this self-reflection journey, and fully close the door on a few chapters in life. Are y’all ready to explore with me? Indulge & Enjoy!

My Past…

You seem to creep up on me when I least expect it,

Reminding me, I’m not far from where I started.

You encourage me to give up,

And, revert back to the sins I used to love.

You wrap your arms around me,

As a reminder, I’ll never be free.

Yet, daily I push on…

And on, I will continue to push.

Today, I officially say goodbye to you. No more trying to fix relationships that just won’t work (romantically or platonic). No more holding on to moments, unworthy of my attention.

Today, I change the locks on my heart, to make sure your key no longer works. I accept you, I love you, and I appreciate you. Please don’t “drop by,” or “check-in,” I promise I’ll always be okay… Be blessed.

My Present…

I constantly ignore you,

As I check-in, to see who’s come back around.

I pretend it’s not that serious,

As I slowly drift back to my old ways.

I always repeat this cycle,

Walking away from you to reminisce.

Yet, daily, you push me to push on…

And on, I will continue to push.

I’m here! I’m presently present! I want to pour into you and admire our time together. We both know this isn’t going to be easy, but I’m here. I promise to be committed to you and appreciate what you have to offer.

I know I’m a lot to deal with, and at times I’m all over the place, so thank you for never giving up on me. Please, continue to force me to keep my head up… I love you!

My Future…

Damn, you are always in the back of my mind,

Knowing every choice I make alters a different time.

I wish I could see more of you,

Just to show me what it is I need to do.

To give up my past is such a risk,

What if I don’t enjoy the unknown that doesn’t yet exist?

Yet, daily, we push on…

And on, we will continue to push.

I do not own you, therefore I promise to let you be and to stop trying to control you. I also promise, to enjoy the precious moments that are passing me by. I know it’s not easy for you to sit and watch me make the same mistakes over and over again, so I’ll try to make better choices in life.

You are so bright and beautiful. You have so much potential! Don’t let me or anyone else dim your light! As the days, months, and years pass the one thing I always want you to remember is, I love the strong, vibrant, beautiful, woman you grow into daily. The best is yet to come…

March showed me some really dark days. At times, I felt as though my voice had been taken from me, again. I struggled to see my beauty. I struggled to feel loved. I even struggled to love myself. In the midst of all of my struggling, I knew if I just continued to go through the motions I would feel again.

If this month was a struggle for you, I want you to journey through why. When you have your why(s), I want you to sit down and truly reflect on them. Are they true? Are they changeable? Can you change them? Can you remove them from your life? From here, make the necessary changes to protect your peace. No one on this earth can overcome your struggles but you. I love y’all.

(All new journeys will be uploaded Saturdays by 12:30 EST)

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

February’s Favorite Moment

Hey Family! Can y’all believe we are already wrapping up the 4th week of February? I mean, this year is flying by! This week is supposed to be a recap of the month, but honestly, I’m not in the mood for a recap.

Don’t get me wrong, February has been beautiful. I just don’t particularly feel like reciting all the blessings the month has showered on me. So, instead, I want to share what’s on my heart. Let’s explore. Indulge & Enjoy!!

This month I have met/reconnected with some interesting people. I’ve had some amazing activities transpire. And, I’ve had some wonderful conversations (at work and just out and about). One of my favorite conversations came from a series of text messages.

Here I am, at work passing the time asking questions to someone I’ve actually known for years, but just recently reconnected with. It became fun because they actually seemed genuine in what my answers were. See, most people enjoy talking about themselves, therefore, when you ask them a question they never give you a chance to answer that question. This conversation was entirely different.

After a series of questions, I decided to ask them what their idea of a perfect day would be. They gave me two scenarios, which were both really dope. But then, I was asked to answer the question… Check-out what came to mind…

My perfect day would be waking up, in my husband’s arms, to our children rummaging through the kitchen cabinets. As I try to get out of bed, without waking him, he pulls me closer and kisses me on the back of my neck. I giggle, telling him I have to check on our babies and he says something slick like “I’m trying to check on my baby, but she won’t be still…” we tease each other back and forth for a little, then I get up and take care of the little ones.

I cook breakfast and begin to make plates. But, instead of eating at the kitchen table, the kids decide Daddy should have breakfast in bed. So, we go wake him up, and sit in bed while eating blueberry pancakes, bacon, eggs, grits, and fruit. Of course, the kids made a mess but no one yells no one is upset we just enjoy our family time.

Finally, we’re up dressed and ready to start our day of exploring. We take the kids to a museum or the zoo and take what feels like a billion pictures to add to our photo albums. Once the kids are exhausted, we take them to their grandparents’ house so mommy and daddy can have some quality time together.

Hubby decides he wants to go out so we go home and get fancy on ‘em. I slip on a little black dress (skin glowing). Looking through the closet for the perfect shoes, I decide on some red pumps. As I’m standing in the mirror admiring my outfit and flawless makeup, my husband walks up behind me… Wrapping his arms around my waist, and kissing my neck, he whispers in my ear how beautiful I am. As I feel him raising my already short dress, I know our plans have changed… We never made it to our destination…

(All new journeys will be uploaded Saturdays by 12:30 EST)

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

January’s Reflection

The 4th Saturday of the month already? Geesh, Where has the time gone? Well., Welcome to our First monthly reflection!! This is where we will journey through the highs and lows of the month. Also, this is where any questions regarding previous journeys throughout the month will be answered.

We don’t have any questions to answer thus far this month, so this week will focus more on my feelings throughout the month. Cool Beans? Well, let’s explore! Indulge & Enjoy!

New Beginnings…

What better way to start a new year than with a new exciting business venture? Well that’s exactly what I did when I introduced the beauty aspect of B.P.L.! I was Over the moon excited to share a talent I enjoy so much with the world (still am). The truth is, it didn’t take off the way I wanted it to.

At first, I was discouraged and frustrated. I wanted to post random rants on Facebook. You know like, “Support those who support you…” and blah, blah, blah. (Petty, I know.) I’m so glad I didn’t though. This expansion has taught me so much about myself! I realized how fearless I am and how resilient I’ve become.

Foundations…

With every journey you embark on you should always start with building a foundation. What are some words that come to mind for you, when you think about the foundation you want for this year? Here’s a few for me: strong, faith, growth, humble, courageous, focused, and consistent.

The relationships blooming in my life are amazing, and a solid part of my foundation! A few years back, in New York, my Pastor, at the time, would always advise on the importance of community. Honestly, at that moment in my life, I was content with being alone, therefore I didn’t take his teachings to heart. Now, here I am in 2020, telling myself, and anyone who will listen, the importance of having a Godly community! (If you’re reading Pastor Mel, thank you!)

Faith…

My goodness! I can’t even begin to explain how amazing my faith journey has been this first month of the year! I’ve become more honest with myself, which allows me to be more open with you all. Not that I wasn’t open before, but I will admit I feared being judged by readers who didn’t understand where I was coming from or where I am going. But now, I’m free! Judge me, love me, hate me, adore me, I couldn’t care less!

I’ve learned to trust God in all aspects of my life (another lesson, I could’ve learned from my previous Pastor had I actually listened). One of the greatest flaws on my walk of faith was, only giving God access to what I wanted His help with. So, I would give him access to my finances but not my relationships or give him my relationship with my parents but not my significant other. Well, towards the end of 2019 I gave him access to my entire life and it was the greatest decision I’ve ever made.

Future…

Would you believe me if I told you I don’t really have a plan for this year? I’m not going to say this is the year I’ll lose 100lbs, or this will be the year, I meet my future husband. I don’t know what this year will bring my way… What I do know is with God by my side, I know it will be a year full of blessings and amazing opportunities!

Well, I guess I do have a plan for the year… Move out of God’s way and let Him work!

(All new journeys will be uploaded Saturdays by 12:30 EST)

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