Marathon Running…No More. 

While lacing up my Nike Air Max a thought came to mind on how we place so much emphasis on life and running this rat race of a marathon that others created. Why? Most of us have no clue of exactly what we were sent here to do, yet we continue to rise each day in hopes of finding that one shrewd answer. Who laid out the timeline and/or blueprint for us to follow as it relates to accomplishments? Who said we had to have it all by Oct. 18th 2017? Who told us that? So many of us are racing against an imaginary clock that we feel at any given time, the sand in an hour glass, once empty, so are we. Done. 

We’re discouraged by false expectations that are set either by others or ourselves. Again, I ask why? With a plan, a strategy, execution, and PATIENCE you’ll eventually reap the fruits of your labor.

Every positive thought, every move of the chess piece on the board moves you closer and closer to the winner’s circle. You know what word comes to mind when I think about the leaps and bounds one takes for success; PERSEVERANCE. While on this road you may take several routes, make multiple pitstops and/ or change direction numerous times, but the key is to keep going. Keep forging ahead with the same passion as you had when you set out on your path. 

 

In the last few months I have learned and accepted my version of atonement. Each day that I rise will not be like the day before. Each day that I rise I do not have to have a set plan on what should be done. One things for certain and two things for sure I will never stress myself on taking some much needed “me time” and not having ALL the answers. In the bigger scheme of things I deserve this time of not knowing. I deserve this time of “taking my time.” One may never understand the hard work that took place, nor how long it took to get here, just know, I’m here. 

It’s a beautiful thing to know that life is meant to be lived and not enslaved to the thought patterns or blueprint of your fellow man/woman. There are #NoFinishLines as long as  you have blood running through your veins and breath in your body. Gone are the days of feeling like I must “show and tell” why I am the best of the chosen. I now operate in the know. Knowing that I am great. Knowing that I am in a great space. Knowing that if what I deem as good enough for me does not fit the bill for someone else, that I too have a choice.  Knowing that it’s ok to not know, but to keep trying. Knowing that in this very moment, I’m alive and all the dreams and aspirations has not died, is more than enough. I can, in fact, wake up and push to do it all over again.

So in closing the next time someone asks me what do you do or what are you going to do? My answer will be take care of me, unapologetically, for as long as it takes until I get it right. There are no deadlines or finish lines while you’re still breathing, but in the meantime don’t forget to breathe. 

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Who’s Raising You?

Ok, first I want to start off by saying  I am not a “nosy” nor am I an “helicopter parent”, however, I do believe in “paying attention”. Now, by definition, my actions does not fit the bill.  Now that I have gotten that out way…

Recently I was chilling, doing what I do best, when I happened upon a conversation (because I was minding my business) that my sun was having with a young lady. Normally, it’s not within my auditory confines to listen to his conversations, but this time it was different. 

As I sat up, straighter, in my bed,  I constantly heard his side of what was a one sided conversation. At least from my standpoint…

Him: What you mean?

Him: So what you trying to say?

Him: So you saying I’m like all the other guys? 

Him: My name is __ don’t categorize me.

Him: You keep doing it, I’m not like them. 

Keep in mind I’m only hearing one side of the conversation. In doing so, I was so disheartened. Why you may ask? Well, let’s set the scene, you have two teens, ages 15-17 yrs of age trying to PROVE to one another their worth and reason for lack of trust from the other party. Sad state of affairs if you ask me.

Here I am a grown woman of age, *clears throat* 39 years old to be exact, and this conversation is reminiscent of conversations of old between self and my sista girl groups. Hearing this kid repeatedly attempt to soothe this young lady over to believe that he was “not like the others”, had me wondering at 15-17 yrs of age, who has let you down? Who’s raising you? 
At such a sweet, tender age of teen anything, what have you experienced that makes you not trust a kid, because they are KIDS, your age? Grant it, there’s a slew of things that may trigger the lack of trust in humanity, but I’ll start with the home on this one.
Often times, what one sees/hears within the home becomes the bible belt of their ways, until they learn to relearn for themselves. I’ve sat amongst many women with the “these men ain’t shyt” mentality. While doing so I have shared, because lawd knows I have some stories, but I do not subscribe to it. How can you when you continue to lie and/or allow them to lie in your/their bed?! Why do women choose to push the negative epitome, yet say they want a positive ending? (Men do it too, but in THIS intance I’m speaking from a woman’s perspective, mine.) When does one revere positivity and love as one? Seemingly it doesn’t start until “that one” piques your interest and you attempt to start anew until your next disappointment then it’s back to the hate.
Young women are unfortunately being raised with the same mentality of their “I wish I met you before you were hurt” mothers.  Stop spewing such negativity into the ears and onto the minds of girls who have yet to experience life, in its fullness. Unfortunately, we emulate what we see or hear most often. Good, bad or indifferent. Change the narrative, change the outcome. Allow them and yourself to love, freely, those deserving of it, without walls. Will you be disappointed, let down, angered by, the opposite sex somewhere/somehow along the way? Certainly! Must you live there? Most certainly not! 
My hope for the future is that we “change the people, in order to change the people.” I hope to not stumble upon another conversation of someone attempting to prove themselves because someone can’t see their value or worth . If so, cash me out, in totality, go where the appraisal is plentiful and never depreciates or if so, slowly. That’s when you understand and see your value, when it’s removed from the deprecation elements. There’s enough hate in today’s climate of the world. Don’t allow it to start in your home. Change the trajectory of your lifestyle and environment by changing the mindset. It’s not hard to see the forest through the trees when resolution is placed in your pathway. Be the change you want to see, adjust the frame.

Dress Rehearsal is Over!

As I pile the last remnants of excess weight, meaning too big clothes, I can’t help but feel nostalgia. This overwhelming feeling is not because I can no longer fit the clothes but because with every article of clothing thrown into the pile, there was a memory attached. Everytime I grabbed a shirt, I had a flashback of where I was or what I was doing when I wore that piece. 

Ahhh…memories. The mind has a way of showing you what was, and faith helps you with what WILL be. Funny how we hoard things, people, and/or feelings, in fear of losing it or yourself in the process. When you delve a bit deeper, what are you willing to lose in order to gain?

I’m not only cleaning out my closet, but I’m also cleaning out this internal motherboard as well. You see, whats left hanging in this closet isn’t just an item of clothing. What’s hanging is a new sense of love of self, new faith, and new beginnings with me at the center of it all. No longer, will I hold onto the “what use to be” but instead make room for what will be. Your gifts will make room for you they say, so with that said…I GOT TO CLEAN OUT MY CLOSET. I have greater gifts waiting in the wings for me.  #NewBeginnings

“X’d Your Name Out Put Jigga On Top.” NEW MUSIC FRIDAY: “4:44”

“4:44” is LITERALLY Jay-Z taking us through his maturation from a boy to a man, from “Kill Jay-Z” to “Hello Carter” all while “Killing the #persona to building a “Legacy”. 

There’s a boatload of vulnerability engulfed throughout this album, especially the title track. Mr. Carter opened the window and allowed us to breeze through his subsistence. Guess what? I’m thankful for an earful.  We may have never seen this side of the self proclaimed “BUSINESS MAN.” I peeped it. LOVED IT! #JayZ #444 a classic via my eargasm, that I’ve experienced on this night. Thank you for putting the real in rap.  Check out a short overview of each track below. If you get a chance to listen, let me know your thoughts. #RealRapRaw

New 🎵🎶🎼 Alert: D’Angelo “Black Messiah”

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DAYAM YOU D’ANGELO!!!! Much like the long awaited albums of some of his counterparts in music such as Lauryn Hill, Jodeci, and Dr. Dre. D’Angelo has finally decided to bless us with his musical genius. So for the last 3 days I’ve been reading different writeups  regarding the hopes of “Black Messiah” dropping…soon. There was even speculation that he would hit the people like Beyonce did with her last album, well dammit he did!! Questlove said soon and soon is now on ITunes. DAYAM YOU D’ANGELO!! I DON’T HAVE AN IPHONE!! I hope this damn “funk soul/rock soul” he has going on is worth the wait. #Coppage
If you snag a copy, let’s talk about it. Was it worth the long anticipated wait? Could you have waited longer? Talk about it.

Check out his first single “Sugah Daddy” off the much anticipated album below: https://m.soundcloud.com/dangelomusicofficial/sugah-daddy

We Are The Champions My Friend…

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Congratulations to the Jackie Robinson West little league team on clenching the  US World Series Championship title.  They came, they saw, and they conquered.  Chicago is extremely proud of these young men and their coaching staff. Amidst all the negative “history” being made in other parts of the country, these guys are making positive history and representing the southside of Chicago at the same time. While doing so they are changing the face of the game as well. Good job JRW! Onwards and Upwards!!!

Commit To Be Sit…ing!

The wind down is real. Coming off of a busy week to finally land on a lazy Sunday feels so good. I never realized how much I enjoy just sitting and relaxing until now. These days my life is comprised of running, I mean running…Marion Jones style (still haven’t lost weight, but I digress).

Let’s see, I’ve had a chance to visit my local beach for the opening ceremony of the team USA basketball team. Great time, nice location, and a great atmosphere. 

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Imagine a single woman amongst a slew of men, of whom shares the same sentiments of being an avid basketball lover, talk about great atmosphere and some fine men to boot. Sheesh…ok back to what I was saying, I had a chance to share the same space on the beach as a spectator of team USA. I must say I was over joyed to see Derrick Rose in all his fine glory and the spectators there were as well.

Moving on to the closing of the week and my experience at the Chicago Westside Music Fest. This has been my third year working with my current employer as a representative at this event and I was extremely proud of how well it turned out, yet another year. This event brought out people of all ages, and all walks of life for a nice enjoyable night. Also, it was without incident. Who says that you can’t have pure unadulterated fun in the inner city(Chicago) without incident? This event has proven, yet again that it is indeed possible.

The organizers of the event brought various companies that provided freebies to the spectators.  There was also great entertainment from various genres of music. We were also treated to a concert by R&B recording artists “Brownstone” and “112”. Talk about a great show! I was sold out, yet the concert was free. Lol. Listening to the two groups brought back quite a bit nostalgia from my teenage years. The era of great R&B music, bka THE 90’s! If you grew up during this time, then no further discussion is needed. Just great music, period.

Nicci Gilbert, Maxee Maxwell and Teisha Brown of “Brownstone” opened the show.

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I was excited to see them together as I am aware of the dissolution of the group from years prior. I was taken back to the days of belting out tunes such as  “If You Love Me, and Grapevyne” in my bedroom my senior year of high school. (Did I just date myself? Nope! Them, I dated them, they’re old…er. lol!) These were great memories and they helped me bring them back to my remembrance.

The headliners of the night were former “Bad Boy” recording artists “112”.

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Now, I can’t lie “112” had me in an R&B choke hold as they sang a few of their hits such as “You Already Know, Peaches & Cream, and Player” to name a few. Great to see them back together doing their thing. So overall, a great week, and great memories to be tucked away in my “Back To The Future” bottle, until next time that you allow me to LetHerTellIt.