Creative Writing, Featured, Motivation

Focus Friday: Losing to Gain Wisdom

As a “millennial,” I do believe I’ve been plagued by the “instant,” bug. I want it all and I want it all now. Granted my patience has been tested and without a doubt will continue to be tested  throughout my life. However, I still attempt to be in total control of the situations that occur in my life. Yet time and time again God and the universe remind me that the only control I can truly have is of self.

Aside from that there isn’t much I can do about outside or random circumstances. Of course I play a part in my present and future. I’ve also played a major part in my past but unfortunately there are things such as death for example that are inevitable no matter how much we attempt to delay it.

Yet time and time again God and the universe remind me that the only control I can truly have is of self. 

The other day after traveling all the way from Mexico and back to the northeast I noticed something had gone extremely wrong. On my way to pick up some food with my good friend Cala, I noticed my wallet wasn’t where I had assumed it to be. After dumping out the contents of my bag onto her car floor I broke down crying realizing that my wallet had more than likely been lost in the airport back in Mexico.

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I panicked like most would but the next morning I allowed myself to reflect logically. Not only am I privileged to have had the funds to travel to Mexico but I also landed there safely and returned home safely as well. There are so many unfortunate situations that take place when people travel internationally and nationally alike. Some people are robbed, physically attacked or worse. But not only did my friends and I enjoy ourselves, we also did that safely. Granted it’ll be a pain to wait patiently to see whether my wallet will be found and of course the process to replace those items will be irritating if necessary but at the end of the day I simply lost a thing not a life or person.

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So what does all of this even mean?

Things are replaceable. People are not. There’s this Drake line that goes “Wish you would learn to love people and use things.” Although not completely related to this subject, whenever I hear that line I am reminded that human life is way more valuable than tangible items. We complain about circumstances that can very well be adjusted with time, patience and work. A lot of us are afraid of all three of these things and the rest of us are too lazy to do the work. Then on the flip side, some of us hate not being able to turn the wheels immediately in favor of what we think we need and want in that moment. We want control. In fact our brains trick us into thinking that we need control.

Things are replaceable. People are not.

Losing my wallet really sucks, in fact it sucks a whole lot! Especially being in the current living situation that I am in, it won’t be an easy process to obtain some of my lost contents. However, while losing it was out of my control, gaining back what I lost is now under my control. Being someone who is extremely careful and responsible when it comes to important documents I am still baffled at how it went missing. But, it is not up to me to ruminate on the how’s and/or whys of it all. Instead it’s better I focus on solutions on how to retrieve it back or replace it.

Most of the steps needed have already been completed so the next thing I need to do is wait, be positive and continue going on about my life as normal.

These things happen. People lose things but people also lose loved ones. Yet I am blessed to say the latter did not occur.

We want control. In fact our brains trick us into thinking that we need control.

While this is unfortunate I am also reminded that things are replaceable and people are not. I am also reminded that God and the universe continue to find ways to teach me big lessons in small situations. Last year when I winded up in the hospital about 2 days before my college graduation I thought life was over. That thought was a lie. In fact, that experience was the cherry on top of my graduation.

I am continually being taught that I cannot control all external factors yet I still come back to this mentality that somehow I can. Regardless, no matter how much I may think I lose, in actuality I always win. I may lose tangible things but I gain intangible wisdom and life lessons to share with others around me. Overall, I thought I lost but I actually gained more wisdom than I had prior to this trip. Perhaps it’s not necessary to bring multiple forms of ID on an international trip or have them all in one place. So the next time I travel I will definitely be more prepared.

 

P.S. In the words of Fantasia…

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Thank you for reading! 🙂

If you’ve enjoyed this piece, make sure to let me know in the comments below. Have you ever lost something? If so, how did you react or did you just keep your cool. 

Also, although I didn’t specifically include it in my post if you have any tips on how to keep your cool in a situation as mine, please do share it below as well. I am sure other readers will benefit. 
Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 
Ms. Royale

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Black Blogger, Featured, Love

30 Days of Me Challenge: Day 13- Letter to Mr. Unappreciative

Today’s challenge was really difficult for me to write. All day at work I considered writing a letter to my 15 year old self instead but once I got home I realized that this was important for healing purposes. The challenge called for me to “Write a letter to someone who hurt [me] recently.” So I decided to go with an individual who I had considered to be a good friend of mine some time ago but things went sour real quick (actually it was a process but still).

Now this letter isn’t to talk down on them in anyway but it’s just the remnants of feelings that I have about the situation. I can honestly say that I am proud I didn’t cry throughout the duration of writing this letter even while listening to SZA. Below is the song that I listened to and for those who aren’t hip to her yet please do yourself a favor and listen while you read.

Welp here goes nothing, I guess this will be like my “Dear John,” letter or Aaliyah’s “4 Page Letter,” except it’s like 4 paragraphs…alright anyways I’m stalling, just go read it!

 

 

Dear Mr. Unappreciative,

 

 

You were all that I wanted and more. You were all that I thought I needed but actually less. You were just right for those moments when I just couldn’t bring myself to validate my beauty or my worth. You were just right for me to call when I couldn’t stand my own company and only yours gave me confirmation that I was desired. I needed you to cover up parts of me that I thought would remain untouched for life. My thirst for your quench superseded my ability to think straight. My better judgement died every single time our lips met. The closer I got to you, the further away my brain seemed to travel. 

But, none of that mattered to you. None of it ever meant a damn thing because after all you told me what it was from the jump. I chose to ignore your siren signals by speeding off into the dark with no clear vision of where my next exit would be. Every time I got my legs to refrain from remaining comatose, again access to me was granted. Ignore me, diss me, hide me, take a bite of me and discard me from your mouth as if I were spoiled rotten. No matter how hard I pushed and pulled, none of that could’ve reversed the crash. I wanted to give you something that I didn’t even have the strength to give myself. 

So now, even though I don’t think of you as often I will say one thing, I’ve finally gotten to the point where I no longer hate you or hate what we had. Hate is a strong word. I thought I’d never feel that towards anyone but at one point I seriously did. I hated how anxious I had become over your antics. I hated how I allowed myself to get stuck to the hive of your monstrous lies. I hated that you told me exactly who you were to my face but of course I remained, where else could I have gone? 

When I think about you, I often time travel to when we were “just friends,” and how that little crush I had on you could’ve remained “just that.” But, of course I wouldn’t allow it. I wanted what I wanted and I would get what I wanted too. The mix between a hopeless romantic, a go getter and slight man-eater at the same time. As much as I’ve always enjoyed the sight of gold, you knew that I was truly diggin’ on you, diggin’ on you like TLC sang. Eventually time ran out and the referee of life rang that bell. I guess what I really want to say is that the thing that hurt me the most is that I truly believed our friendship was a solid foundation. It was genuine or at least it felt that way. But, once things took a turn and you literally shit on my name to others I felt that wound of betrayal open up in the middle of my back. That shit really fucking hurt. It felt as if I were caught up in the matrix for real. If I we were to ever revisit this conversation, I’d only want to know “Did you ever value our friendship prior?” That is all. 

But anyways, as you know we finally crashed but did not burn. I guess those 3 times we spoke afterwards was indeed closure. I’m assuming all is well with you and I really do hope it is. Sometimes I do miss our conversations and the dumb shit we’d say that made one another laugh. Funny that sometimes I think to myself that this was all my fault. I allowed attraction to become such a fuckin’ distraction that my priorities couldn’t even get me in order. I do appreciate the memories & I’ll never forget that one piece of advice you give me in regards to relationships. LOL funny you were giving me advice on that and vice versa. Man, we were two hurt ass people simply colliding like particles in a test tube of pure confusion.

I guess it’s now I’m realizing we both weren’t shit just in different ways. I refused to be honest with my intentions and you well…you were just being yourself. You’ve got a lot of maturing to do but we both knew that already. Regardless, I really do hope you’re doing well and that you’re reaching some type of level of maturity that will curb your desire to manipulate women. I know that’s a sore spot to hit but we discussed it almost all the time and you know it.

 

Splendidly Yours,

 

Ms. Royale  

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This challenge is a little difficult for readers to respond to but if you have anyone on your heart that you would like to write a letter to, I encourage you to do so. It’s refreshing to reflect sometimes when you’re in the position to do so of course. You don’t have to send the letter to them but just write or type it out. Delete it, throw it away or whatever it is that you need to do.

Is there anyone you would write a Dear John letter to? Just comment yes or no.

 

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Black Blogger, Black Girl Magic, black women, Creative Writing, Featured

30 Days of Me Challenge: Day 7-Latest, Greatest Inspiration

There are several people who have inspired me up to this point in my life. I could go on for hours about the phenomenal women and passionate men within history whose stories I seek for refuge and comfort to endure life’s many trials. However, for the purpose of today’s challenge “A picture of someone or something that has made the biggest impact,” I will choose someone who’s work I am extremely passionate about in the present time. My latest, greatest inspiration is the lovely, awkward black girl herself, the queen of web series and the queen of taking her writing to the next level by securing a TV deal with HBO, the Issa Rae.

 


As a fellow awkward black girl who also happens to be a writer, Issa’s discography truly inspires me to never doubt small steps. In one of her interviews I recall her saying that her success took about 9 years. Me being the impatient person that I am, I often look at my 23 years of age as if I should already be established. However, thanks to people like Issa I am reminded that dreams, much like plants, need to be watered daily and touched by sunlight in order to flourish. So if I am truly passionate about my writing then time should mean nothing to me. I want to inspire younger generations of Black girl writers to know that their voices are just as important as the voices of anyone else. Thanks to Issa, I have that inspiration and I will continue on that legacy once I stop allowing doubt and procrastination to fill my head with lies. Just kidding, through my blogging this is just the first step to many more dreams to manifest.

Can Issa Do Any Wrong? The answer is no. She’s dope beyond words.

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Thanks Issa Rae for simply being you. I know you don’t know me yet, but you are my 5th big sister in my head and also my mentor. Thank you for ABG and thank you for Insecure, both shows reflect my life in ways I can’t even begin to explain. Perhaps you’ll never see this but the positive energy is out there and I hope it’s finding its way to you!

Love & Light,

 

 

Ms. Royale

 

 

P.S. For the readers out there, who inspires you and why? 🙂

 

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Black Blogger, Creative Writing, Featured

30 Days of Me Challenge: September 1st

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Alright so Day 1 is “A recent picture and 15 interest facts about yourself.” Here goes nothing…

  1. I am the 7th & youngest child of my family. 

  2. My first official language was Cringlish (A mix of creole and english).

  3. I’ve been a creative writer since middle school. 

  4. I’ve lived in five different states.

  5. My first semester of college I got kicked out.

  6. I was a teacher once upon a time.

  7. I graduated on crutches.

  8. My first visit to the hospital since birth was due to the above incident. 

  9. I’m obsessed with old school music.

  10. I didn’t get my license or really learn how to drive until I was 20.

  11. Speaking of driving, I forgot how to ride a bike. Yes it’s possible to forget, don’t judge or laugh. 

  12. My middle name is special & unique to me especially because it’s a spinoff of my father’s middle name and according to him he went back to the hospital just to add it onto my birth certificate. 

  13. I rarely if ever take my own advice (I’m working on it y’all).

  14. I’m a Gemini and no I’m not evil just very creative (most of the greats are). 

  15. I’m vegan which for a Haitian that is quite the anomaly. 

 

Alrighty! That’s all folks, I hope you all enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed writing this. If you’d like to make your own list and would like to share it with me please let me know in the comments below.

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Featured, Motivation, Self-Care

Focus Friday: You Are Not Burdensome…You Are a Blessing

Do you ever feel as if you are a burden to others in some way?

I hope and pray your answer to this is no BUT if it is not, that is okay. I have felt that way for most my life and the great news is that we are not alone. (Come on now, you know misery loves company.)

Alright let’s get serious here. As a child I often had this strange feeling that I was in some way a burden to others. This feeling of being burdensome extended from friends to family. While no one in particular ever expressed that I was a burden to them, somehow deep down inside I always felt that way anyways. As I matured into a young woman this feeling of being burdensome grew right alongside me and followed me into the relationships I formed with men and platonic friendships as well. No matter how much other people have attempted to convince me otherwise, in my head it was always this idea that I held others down (and not in a ride or die kind of way).

FYI: This post isn’t going to be some major “Here’s how I got over it,” story, but it is meant to be an outlet for others who may feel the same.

In recent conversation with someone close to me I had to be reminded of the beauty that exists within having loved ones around who are there to support you. As an individual who has a lot of pride, is EXTREMELY independent, and who enjoys being fully self-sufficient it is difficult for me to be vulnerable or anyway dependent on others. However, within the past year it appears the recurring theme God is revealing to me is the need for “transparency,” and “vulnerability.”

Sometimes it is actually okay to depend on others. This does not in any way make you a leech or a horrible person (unless of course you can provide for yourself but choose to use others but that’s another story). So, no matter how much I desire to be completely independent, unfortunately in life that’s impossible. There will be a point in time when we all will need help from someone or somewhere. When those times come we shouldn’t assume that we are being a burden to others.

We are all in this world together with different strengths and different weaknesses. We are supposed to help lift others up as we also climb and vice versa. There is never a reason you should ever feel as if your existence or mere presence is a burden on others. By definition the word burden means “a load, especially a heavy one,” and burdensome means “difficult to carry out or fulfill.” Now when you see those two definitions side by side, does that sound like something that can be applied to a person and more importantly does that sound like it applies to you in the least bit? I know when I read it; it most certainly does not define me or my existence.

“There will be a point in time when we all will need help from someone or somewhere.”

I want you to really think about the aforementioned definitions, “Am I a load? Am I difficult to carry?” While we may all have our emotional and mental baggage, none of that is too difficult for us to carry when we have the proper support. Now if we choose to carry it all on our own then I can understand a feeling of heaviness within ourselves. But, this is why we need to be open to being more vulnerable with those who we trust.

“There is never a reason you should ever feel as if your existence or mere presence is a burden on others.”

Now, I know we may not all have someone in our corner directly so perhaps reaching out to strangers (yes strangers) might be helpful. There are hotlines or now even apps where you can reach out to volunteers and professionals that will help you sort through issues you may not be able to sort through with family or friends. Nevertheless, I want you to understand that you and I, we all come with our own personal issues but we also come with just as many solutions for this world. You may not feel it or see it now but you help move the world forward every single day.

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This quote resonates so much with this topic but it is not a quote of my own. Source

We contribute just as much to this world as the next person does. It may not be regarded as grand as the Oprah’s, Obama’s, or even Beyoncé’s of the world but it still damned good. We all have our individual purposes in this world and if you are a believer you know that God sent you to earth with an assignment specifically designed for you. So whenever you begin to view yourself as a burden in anyway, please remember that you are needed, necessary and most certainly NOT a load for someone to carry. We have burdens in life but we are NOT burdensome. We should be allowed to take up space and fill this world with all of our awesomeness. You have a space in this world and you have a place designated just for you.

With that said, I want you all to keep these main points in mind:

1) You are in NO way a burden

2) You deserve to take up space in this world

3) You have a place & purpose on earth

4) You are a blessing to others

5) Sometimes we need support & that is okay

 

Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 

Ms. Royale

 

P.S. For those who may not be comfortable with reaching out to family or friends about any feelings of being burdensome or any other issues below are a few links of helpful resources.

TalkSpace (An app for therapy on iOS and Android)

 BetterHelp

MentalHelp.net

PsychCentral

 

 

 

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Black Blogger, Creative Writing, Featured

stuck in these damn 20-somethings

For Your Enjoyment While Reading 🙂

Remember how as a child your first real dream was to just be 18? Then your next dream was to be somewhere in your 20’s. It never really mattered the exact age but you just knew that once your hit your 20’s it would be lit asf (as fuck…for the digital age illiterates *insert eye roll emoji.* We dreamt up all the things we would have done by now. If you wouldn’t be a super famous songstress or fashion icon, at the very least you’d already been in college or have graduated by now. A doctor? Tuh, you would be one by 21 duh cause that’s how life works, right?

SIKE!

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Meanwhile most of us are living like this gif…(Source)

In your 20’s you’d be able to drink, and party to no end. You’d be privileged with all of those adult friendly fun moments that adolescence simply couldn’t afford you with. Your 20’s? You mean the “age of paradise right?” cause that’s exactly what it would be…that’s exactly what you thought it should be. But here you are. You have arrived. If you’ve been granted another birthday and landed somewhere in these 20’s you are blessed. Not too many people make it to this age or any age but out of trillions you are here.

“Your 20’s? You mean the ‘age of paradise right?’ “

So as of late I’ve had endless conversations with some of my besties, homegirls, and such about how we are feeling at this age. For myself, I am 23 years old so of course most of my friends range from about 21 and up. A recurring theme I’ve found in our conversations is one of anxious filled-depressive-fearful-sad-unfulfilled thoughts, feelings and actions. We’re either ruminating about it all on our lonesome assuming that no one else will understand or can relate. Then on the other hand we begin to get so consumed by these feelings of hopelessness. Those same thoughts and feelings soon manifest into actions which are often self destructive or harmful to others.

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How A Lot of Us Look Before Bed or At Lunch tbh (Source)

A lot of us are just starting out in these new careers, grad school, new jobs in general, new environments, and just new everything. High school may have given us some consistency and college too. We had a routine down pact with nothing to really affect it (unless of course like myself you had to keep moving from place to place during your teenage years & essentially was homeless in college so every summer you bounced from place to place….that’s a long story though).

Regardless, I had a routine and it kept me grounded and sane. For the most part I had some type of status in school. My teenage years were filled with accolades from peers, family and teachers alike. These accolades continued in college as well. For some of us, this may have never been the case but just having a schedule that worked or the freedom of adolescence gave us a certain type of peace.

Now we hit this “golden age” of I am now of age to drink and once I hit 25 I can also rent a card, fuck yes! Then once I get to my late 20s I should definitely be married. But most of all I should be happy? After all, I’m an adult now. Right? Right? Isn’t that how it works? Wait…it doesn’t work like that…does it?

NOPE! Newsflash, growing pains is still a thing and welp we are all grown up now.

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Meanwhile… (Source

There are so many expectations and assumptions for these damn 20-somethings that we over analyze every part of ourselves to see what is wrong with us. Why haven’t we gotten to the next level or step of success in academics, love, spirituality or personal development? Why are you still living at your mama’s house and you’re 26? Why hasn’t s/he proposed yet? There’s gotta be something wrong with you.

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Maybe Max had a point (Source)

Why are you still single and you are damn near 30? Hell why aren’t you dating and you’re 23? There’s got to be an issue with your approach, your style or a major flaw in your personality. Maybe your chakras ain’t right sis and you’ve got to work on readjusting them. It’s got to be something wrong with you!

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Married by 20 Something? Ha yeah right! (Source)

But in reality, it is not you. It is all of us. All of us 90’s babies, and yes even some of you 80’s babies (88-89). We all have this constant sinking feeling that we “aren’t doing enough,” or that perhaps “we’ve failed ourselves,” or even our family. You haven’t got that big white picket fence with an American standard family and a dog named Spot (yet). You’re watching everyone on your timeline get engaged, married or at the very least enter into a very serious relationship. You’re watching people at your age even buy houses or go back to school. You said you’d go back to school by 24 but you haven’t even applied (shade at myself). Anyways, once again this is not just you. It is US. All of us are here stuck in these 20-somethings trying to figure it all out. Also, just because you see people “seemingly” having their lives together does NOT mean that is a fact.

Some of us are just having kids and I know for those of you have children that transition into parenthood is quite difficult. I may not understand that struggle fully but I see it for my siblings and friends. Granted, years ago many of our parents had several kids by their 20s, our generation is slightly different. A lot of us are having children much later. Regardless, this whole idea that you should already be married, barefoot and pregnant by a certain 20-something years old is hella scary. I may not fully relate to the struggle of men but I’m sure for some of you your parents are starting to ask when you’re going to pop the big question to that special person in your life. Your mom wants grandkids damn it! Give the woman what she wants. Your dad is ready to give you endless words of advice on the road to marriage.

Everyone is waiting for YOU to get YOUR shit together. What are you waiting for?

Truth is, no matter how much you may feel that others are waiting on you to accomplish all of these things, many people actually aren’t. In fact, most of these thoughts of failure are simply misconstrued ideas we’ve been conditioned to believe must happen by or before certain age. All that is bullshit. Just like many of the shows and movies we’ve seen growing up that largely hammered in the idea of “romantic,” love being the ultimate goal. As if any other type of love is irrelevant or silly to work on.

Just because you haven’t found your “disney inspired prince charming or princess beauty,” (those terms are largely problematic btw but that was on purpose) doesn’t mean you haven’t accomplished much already. Also, there are other types of love! We need to show the beauty of all types of love, whether it be familial, platonic/friendship, or most importantly self-love.

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Friendship Love Matters Too. (Source)

This is going to sound bizarre to some people but to be quite honest for some of us just being here and making it each day alive is an accomplishment. Some of us battle with depression on the daily and it takes everything in us to keep going. Some of us are constantly targeted as threats to society based off of how freely we live our lives or simply for being born with a certain amount of melanin in our skin.

“All of us are here stuck in these 20-somethings trying to figure it all out.”

It is fucking hard out here and I came here to remind you that “you are enough,” even in all your 20-something anxious filled-depressive-fearful-sad-unfulfilled thoughts, feelings and actions. You are quite literally not alone whatsoever in this fight. This battle is not yours to fight alone. Of course we have to face our own skeletons and issues alone at a point BUT don’t hold it all in until you feel ready to break.

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Don’t Hold In Your Emotions, Get Them Out (Source)

There are many people like myself, your friends, and others you can find in an online community who are battling the same issues. We’re here ready to embrace you with open arms about the issues you’re going through. Life can be pretty hard and I know for a fact that generations before us struggled a whole lot. In fact, some may even argue that they went through more than we did. Plus, they didn’t have access to “life guides” like some of us may seem to have through blogs, vlogs and think pieces galore. But regardless of all this access to information being alive can be quite difficult to begin with. A guide won’t do much to change anything if you don’t even have the will to live or try.

But I want you to remember that we don’t have to be stuck anywhere. Not a dead end job. Not in a fucked up ass relationship. Not in a difficult ass grad school program. Not around people who don’t have our best interest at heart. We are not obligated to struggle or suffer in our 20s. We are obligated to make the best out of it. We are obligated to stop with thinking about “where we should be,” and we must learn to embrace where we are right now.

Meet yourself halfway. Give yourself some credit (you should be building credit though if you haven’t already lol….no but for real though it’s helpful for a whole lot). Anyways, we might feel stuck right now but one day we are going to look back and be like “damn my 20s were poppin’, why was I complaining again?” or if you’re like me you’ll say “man that shit sucked I would never go back to it.” (just jokes)

“But I want you to remember that we don’t have to be stuck anywhere. Not a dead end job. Not in a fucked up ass relationship. Not in a difficult ass grad school program. Not around people who don’t have our best interest at heart.”

Listen! You may feel stuck right now but there are ways to get unstuck. For starters “GET OUT YO DAMN HEAD,” cause we magnify our issues by constantly putting them at the forefront of our minds. This is not to say that you must ignore your problems but it is to say that you cannot continue to dwell on them. Give yourself a break. Drink some water. Go outside. Twerk a little, hell do something -constructive or self-care worthy- that will help you get through it but please do not ruminate over it for too long.

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Go out with your friends! Twerk somethin’ (Source)

“We are not obligated to struggle or suffer in our 20s. We are obligated to make the best out of it.”

You deserve to be filled with joy even in some of those sucky moments. Yes this sounds like a contradiction but if that’s the case, I’m a walking one and that’s cool with me.

OKAY! So this post got way longer than I thought it would be at first. But before you go, here’s a few things I want to leave with you. If you didn’t get shit else from my rambling, remember these top three things:

  1. Stop ruminating about your problems all day every day and for the love of the WorldWideWeb…STOP googling those damn articles about why this or that ain’t working out (MAYBE IT’S NOT FOR YOU RIGHT NOW OR EVER…just relax basically)

  2. You cannot find your life’s purpose or passion by constantly putting it on a measuring scale with others your age. STOP that shit like right now.

  3. You are actually really fuckin’ dope and I need you to acknowledge that.

Now, I need you all to do me a huge favor. If you read this, skimmed through or hell just liked the concept of the title please, please, please share this! If it impacted you in anyway share it! Even if it just made you giggle or smile share it 🙂

Share it on all your social media or just one at the very least. Send it as a message to a friend who’s going through something rough. I want this message to reach at least 5 people, that’ll be enough for me but if it reaches more or less I’ll still be content.

P.S. This post was largely inspired by a few close friends and you all know who you are. I’ll tag you when I share this. Also, SZA’s song 20 Something was the creative force behind this idea as well. If you haven’t heard her album CTRL by now you are doing yourself a disservice. So go stream/buy it now. 

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Queen SZA (Source )

Also, quick plugs for the show Insecure and Living Single which were used in some of my gifs above. Those are two awesome shows with a main black cast that are extremely essential for the 20 Something soul! You won’t regret indulging in them both 🙂

As always…

 

Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 

Ms. Royale

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Creative Writing, Featured, Motivation

Focus Friday #6: Unleash Your Power

So now you know what you’re good at and you’re ready to take a hold of it by both hands. You are ready to flourish! But there’s one element missing. You’re not sure how to make it all work.

Well let’s start this off in the right lane, slow ya roll. The first step should be for you to consider what are some ways that you can actually apply your craft to the world. A lot of us may think we are creative beyond belief but that doesn’t mean anything until we make it work. No movie is any good trapped within the grooves of its creator’s brain. Allow yourself to perfect your craft through daily practice. No one can know who you are or what is that you bring to the table until YOU make them notice that.

Begin to do your research to see where your niche can be applied. Perhaps there are industries in dire need of your expertise or simply based off of who you are they have a space that needs to be filled. Use that to your advantage. However, it’s okay to create your own lane from the ground up. You just have to be okay with knowing it’ll take a whole lot more work than finding an already built up company.

“No movie is any good trapped within the grooves of its creator’s brain.”

Either way there is work to be done. Unfortunately in our society the easier route is to just fall in line with all of the other workforce employees. While there is nothing wrong with that and I do believe that God grants us all a purpose wherever we are meant to be in life. I also believe that some of us are far too eccentric to remain within the 4 walls of someone else’s dream or stuck in a tight cubicle next to Jan who is obsessed with her cat Gary.

“Begin to do your research to see where your niche can be applied.”

Once we figure out what in life is our passion, we are on our way to finding our purpose in life. Then from there you can begin to flex those purpose filled muscles with pride! You can help save the world in your own way by unleashing your superpower into the world.

If you are a writer, why not start that blog or start writing that book? You’ve got to finish that book though so stick to it until it is COMPLETE (oh don’t mind me…I’m just scolding myself). If you are an athlete make sure you conditioning your body as much as possible within the limits and needs of that sport.

If you are a student…STUDY (no the word “study” is not equivalent to ST.udent DY.ing). Instead it stands for Striving To Uplift Discipline Yearly. Now that might sound weird when you first see it but really meditate on that for a second. Every single day we should be elevating our minds, bodies, and souls through the necessary means we know are good for us.

So by making sure that you are building yourself up along with your craft, by next year and every year after that you should be on a new level. If we remain on the level we are on at year 1 in year 5 then we have done ourselves a disservice. So every single year we should strive to uplift or better our discipline to focus on our craft. Make focus your main habit!

Unleash your power in the proper place. Do what you must to get what you desire and deserve.

So we’ve now established two things so far:

1) Find Your Superpower

2) Find A Place to Unleash Your Superpower

For more on what you need to in order to live in your purpose with passion stay tuned for next week’s More to Life Monday post! 🙂

PS This was initially meant to be just one post but I’m feeling like I want it to expand beyond that so make sure you check out the first part of this series by clicking here 

 

Serenity, Positive Vibes & Smiles,

 

Ms. Royale

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Featured, Monday, Motivation

More to Life Monday #4: Your Super Power

Alright let’s play a quick game, I’m going to say a word and you are going to think of the first thing that comes to mind when you see it.

Doctor

Superman

Wonderwoman

Dentist

Mechanic

Professor

Garbageman

Annnd time! Okay so I assume that for some of these the first thought that may have occurred in your mind may have easily been fear. For me it went something like this…

Doctor- Healing

Superman- Flying

Wonder Woman- Bad Ass!

Dentist- SCARY!!! Cavities 😥

Mechanic- Fixed cars

Professor- Educated

Garbageman- Helps clean

All of these titles resonate with us in different ways. For some doctors and dentists may evoke negative emotions due to past experiences. Superman and Wonder Woman are most people’s childhood super heroes so we already know that will remind us of someone who is powerful. Professors while educated can sometimes give off a negative vibe to students depending on their personality in the classroom which stands true for any educator. Mechanics and garbagemen get shit done! Usually the things we can’t or don’t care to do.

The first thought for you when seeing the word garbageman might have been “dirty,” or “smelly,” but think about it, we’re the ones who contribute to their job being so dirty and smell. So in essence we’re the smell dirty ones. Garbagemen help keep our neighborhoods clean and they don’t get the recognition that they deserve.

While all of us are going through life nit picking every possible opportunity, there are people out here taking advantage of what is already available or creating their own opportunities. You see, each one of us has the motivation to be just like all of these great people aforementioned. But, none of these achievements will simply walk up to us, tap us on the shoulder, and cradle us until we reach our success. We’ve got to reach down within our own selves and pull out that super power that keeps our dreams alive.

What is your superpower?

What keeps you up at night or crowds your mind as you are working your 8-4:30?

What is that one thing that if you weren’t paid for it, you’d do in a heartbeat?

Thought of it yet? Yes? Awesome!! Well guess what, you’ve just taken the first step of being your own superhero. Congrats to you! That thing you are so passionate about in life is your key to unlock your future, the very hoop you need to shoot ya shot in and most certainly that super power you’ve been blessed with. So what if others have a similar talent, goal or dream MAKE THAT SHIT WORK! No one can be you no matter what they do or try.

So when people ask you “If you had a superpower what would it be?” You can tell them I already have a superpower…if you’ve discovered it already that is lol…don’t start making things up. But, even if you have discovered it that doesn’t mean you have to share it with them or anyone else for that matter. Share what makes you comfortable.

So moving forward, when you find your passion I promise your purpose will follow. After all, one’s knowledge of their purpose plus activation of momentum equals power. Meaning that once you discover your purpose it is then time to find a way to add some fuel behind and get things moving.

And if anyone doubts you, remember that you are SuperPower(full) and can dispel the evil energies of haters with every step that you take into your purpose! 🙂

P.S. Stay tuned for the second part of this new You Are Super-Power(FULL) Series on this week’s Focus Friday

 

Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 

Ms. Royale

 

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Creative Writing, Featured

Are You Ok With the Struggle?

There’s always this part of me that is full of regret when it comes to my talent or creativity. I’ll think to myself well I’ll be damned folks like Keke Palmer are literally my age doing the things I’ve always desired to but I’m nowhere near their status. I really love and admire Keke by the way. She’s one of my favorite people in the industry and in general. 

Anyways, I think to myself “Man what if my family had the means while growing up to truly invest in my dreams. Where would I be?” Then I also consider “What separates me from those who dreamt it and achieved it?” Perhaps money is a thing. Perhaps it’s the connections. Perhaps it’s my lack of clear direction now as an adult. Perhaps as a child I could have been more vocal in my desire to be an actress and a writer. 

However, I must also recall that these outlandish dreams didn’t really make sense to me as a kid. I didn’t see too many fellow Haitian creative or actresses on the TV. Of course there were was Garcelle and Wyclef (two people whose talent I truly do admire) but in my direct line of vision people like me didn’t go out on a limb like using their talent for work. Rather I was accustomed to seeing my parents and other adults in my community go to their hardworking jobs simply to provide for their families. While this isn’t an issue per se, it limited my faith in a way. 

I didn’t and even still sometimes don’t believe in my ability to be different or make a career out of my dreams. Rather I become focused on simply going back to school to obtain another degree because that’s what “I’m” supposed to do. Plus it will afford me an ordinary career. 

So I get wrapped up in this world of confusion where I want to exert all my energy on manifesting my true dreams BUT also fearful those dreams aren’t stable enough to afford me an at least decent life. 

I become almost involuntarily immobile due to the focus on what can go bad. Instead of considering all the good that could come out of my attempt at success, my mind (usually caused by my depression)  helps me to fixate on the negative. 

Well that’s honestly what most creatives and humans in general struggle with. We constantly feel like we’re running out of time or that we’re not good enough so we cower in fear from even the good in life. Afraid that it’ll be ripped from our grasp as soon as we receive it. 

We fear so much that we can’t even see that before we try our dreams already die. No legend or great person in history was known for their awesome couch potato skills (don’t mind me, I’m dragging myself here). 

Every single thing in life is a process. Your birth was one, the thing before your birth was one as well (but let’s not get sidetracked here). The truth is we can’t expect to get anywhere without putting some miles in. Like the memes say, Beyoncé wasn’t built in one day! 

Folks like her put in time and effort to achieve their level of success. Whether you like her or not that’s a fact jack. So for those of us who are rushing to get somewhere, just what are we in a rush for? Trust me in life there are stop signs, red lights and hell sometimes even yellow lights cause we need to SLOW down. 

But one things for sure you should always be on green in your efforts. Always be on go! Of course there are times when you may mentally, emotionally and physically need a break BUT never stop imagining and working on how to get to the next level. 

Overall, we can’t expect to simply hop in a car and reach the next street. It may be quick to get there or it may be slow but either route will involve some sort of process. Keys gotta be in the ignition, cars gotta go from park to drive and you’ve gotta put your foot to the pedal consistently. 

Yes there’s going to be some mountains to ride around, a few potholes here, there and damn near everywhere (especially if you live in Jersey or New Orleans…ijs). But that’s all apart of your adventure to achievement. It’s cliche yes but it’s also try to say “Nothing good comes easy.” If it did we sure wouldn’t appreciate it much. Imagine walking into college the first day and getting your degree the next. Boom 4 years in 2 days, where’s the parties?? The booze?? The free food and t-shirts?? The all nighters? There’d be no stories of triumph to share. The degree wouldn’t even be worth it at that point.

So tell me, are you afraid of your struggle? If so, when are you going to stop fearing it and begin the process of appreciating it. In the words of one of my fav rappers, J. Cole, “There’s beauty in the struggle, ugliness in the success.” 
Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,
Ms. Royale 

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Black Blogger, Creative Writing, Featured, Inspirational Quotes, Quotes, Self-Care

Focus Friday’s Post #5: Free Ya Mind

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Imagine a life where you did not worry what others said about you. I mean like for real NOTHING anyone said could phase you. Now think about how much we criticize ourselves simply so that other people can tolerate us or accept us in this world.

We go through great lengths to be treated right and by no means do I think we shouldn’t be treated right. But some of us can become stuck in a negative mentality because we are so worried about what someone else might think about us.

Today’s post will be shorter than usual because I am realizing that even on my blogging journey I have created this thought bubble of worry that is directly related to me heavily considering what other people think about my writing.

Granted I am interested in becoming a professional writer and it is important for my blog to reflect my writing skills but blogging should also be a bit more lax than I’ve made it out to be. Since my childhood I’ve been accustomed to being the “Honor Roll,” student. I’m constantly stuck in the mindset that I have to be the best at what I do. As a Black woman who is not only racially profiled but also a target of misogyny, I must work three times as hard as others who do not fit this description. So perhaps that is where some of my drive derives from BUT I also have to understand that I need to focus on being the best that I can be for me. Not for accolades. Not for the praise from others. Not because I am fearful that others will critique me in the most negative of fashions. Rather I need to do the best for my life and live up to my own standards.

 

This may not necessarily work for everyone depending on what chapter of life they are on but as I am nearing chapter 23 I am realizing that my main theme needs to be “Free Ya Mind!”

Free ya mind from the shackles of what others think of you. Free ya mind of worrying about tomorrow when today is right here and you haven’t even given it a second look. Free ya mind of inevitable stress and circumstance. We may not be given a reason for everything but things happen. Unfortunately sometimes they just do. BUT free ya mind of trying to calculate why or how they happen.

Free ya mind for space to breathe. Free ya mind for peace to live. Free ya mind of doubt. Free ya mind of the past. Free ya mind of those who doubt you. Free ya mind of that little voice telling you to give up. Free ya mind for your health, and free ya mind for wealth.

You deserve to have a mind that is clear of stress and most importantly you deserve to clear your mind of fear regarding how others will look at you.

Live life on purpose because it is worth it for NOT for other people.

You are beautiful. You deserve peace. You deserve to free ya mind!

 

Serenity, Smiles & Positive Vibes,

 

Ms. Royale

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Featured, Monday, Monday: MamaDay Motivation

MamaDay Post #2: Celebrating Foster Care Mothers

The month of May is a time of many national celebrations and among them includes National Foster Care Month. While foster care and adoption can sometimes seem very similar, they are not. In fact foster care is often seen in a more negative connotation than adoption. Unfortunately, there are a lot of horror stories that have been attached to the foster care system. Although some of these cases are very real I think that is important that through this #MamaDay post we discuss the highlights of the Foster Care System. A lot of individuals have gone through this system and received some of the best care possible. So in the tradition of She.Is.Splendid we will focus on the positives.

As women we are expected to do all of what is considered to be the “light,” lifting of the world. All the while, we are still held to this standard of impossible perfection. We are told that we must cook, we must clean, and most importantly we must be that one special “man,” happy. But don’t forget we must also become mothers somewhere down the line. This general thought leaves out women who are unable to reproduce for several reasons and that is not fair.

In the same token there are millions of kids in the world who are in dire need of a home. That is why systems such as Foster Care and adoption agencies are in existence. Sweet children can find homes and parents who desire to have children or simply want to extend a helping hand can do just that. So let’s dive into some of the core reasons Foster Care is important and why we should celebrate Foster moms all over the world, whether they are formal or informally fostering as one’s mother.

  1. A Safe Haven

There are several reasons why children end up living with a foster family. Often times these reasons include abuse, neglect or other severe familial issues within the biological family’s home. Therefore, when the state becomes involved some children are separated from their families. However, thankfully within the U.S. there are numerous foster care homes available for these minors. A lot of times this new environment becomes an instant safe haven or safe place for a child who may have just escaped a horrendous situation.

  1. A Real Home

Now the term real can be subjective here because who is to truly say what that looks like. But, as a society we can mostly agree that for a child a home is a place where they feel/are safe, are well fed, clothed and have the resources to cover their basic needs. Nevertheless, Foster Care moms are amazing in their ability to create a loving atmosphere for the children of someone else and making sure that they feel comfortable. As a requirement there are certain safety precautions that foster parents must adhere to within their home. With that said, foster mothers are able to give their foster kids a house they can call home and that can put them at ease away from their past situation.

Now I do want to acknowledge that not all foster moms are formally within the Foster Care System. Everyday there are countless women who pick up where other mothers may have slacked off at or were simply unable to continue taking care of their child/ren. So we have many aunties, grandmothers, other relatives, and close friends who take on that new responsibility but with love in their heart for that child as their own.

  1. A New Beginning

While this can tie into the first two points, children from the foster care system can be given a new opportunity at life. As many negative stories exist within the scope of the system, there are also several success stories of children who were raised within the foster care homes. Some children may have felt that life was completely over for them or that they would never be able to succeed in life based on where they were prior to their new home. Furthermore, foster care mothers may have a different perspective on life that the child isn’t familiar with which can serve as a motivator for their foster kids to go above and beyond in life. Take for example a few public figures that were raised in foster homes such as Malcom X, Simone Biles, James Dean and Cher. Where would some of us be without some of these awesome individuals?

  1. Learn Key Social-Emotional Skills

A lot of times children who go through the Foster Care System are constantly moving from home to home but fortunately within those moments they are afforded the chance with learning some key social-emotional skills. Perhaps in their biological family home or even in a prior foster care home their guardian may have lacked the ability to teach them these key skills. However, there are foster mothers who can serve as an in home educator for their foster kids to learn what it means to channel their anger into a more positive force or even how to simply express when they are feeling certain emotions. These skills can truly help children later on down the line and life.

  1. College Benefits

In most states, there are college benefits such as tuition assistance or even free tuition for students who have gone through the foster care system. According to research, most of the time this free tuition can only be applied to community college which is a great way for students to kick of their higher learning experience. In addition, there are several scholarships available for students who are from foster homes or have been adopted. In some cases, emancipated youth are even eligible for funds to help cover their costs of housing, transportation and other necessities as they are emerging into the stage of young adulthood.

  1. Health Insurance Benefits

According to childwelfare.gov “the majority,” of youth from foster care homes are eligible for Medicaid through state programs that fund health insurance for citizens with the lowest or no income. For some states, such as California foster care children and youth are given Health Insurance until they are 21.

  1. Emancipation Programs

Last but certainly not least, there are specific programs setups locally for children and youth from foster care programs to learn necessary skills as they are growing into adults from their adolescence stage. Take for example the Independent Living Program or IPL that can provide youth as young as 17 years old with an apartment to learn independence skills with a case work and care provider. Within programs similar to IPL children from the foster care system are afforded with services that can educate them on how to find jobs, housing, scholarships and other ways to live a productive adult life.

We are thankful to the all the foster mamas and foster papas out there who welcome foster children into their home. As aforementioned, women are expected to keep the home together in more ways than one. So it is no surprise when countless women go above and beyond in their daily life to give up their homes to the children of others to give those same children a new chance at life. To all the foster mamas, whether or signed up for it or not, who take good care of their foster children, we thank you for selflessness, dedication and warm heart. Also, I especially commend those foster mothers who are also women of color and specifically Black women. There is a large number of black and brown children who are in the foster care system, and are often left behind. But with you they are not only given a home but a chance to live in a space that they may feel more connected to.

For those of you who might be interested in becoming a foster care parent, here are some resources you can access for that. Also, some of these resources discuss ways to get involved with foster care even if you aren’t able to take kids into your home and you would just like to help in other ways.

Resource 1

Resource 2

Resource 3

Sources:

http://www.kidsdata.org/pages/fostercarewhytopicimportant

https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/health_care_foster.pdf

http://www.fosteryouthhelp.ca.gov/10facts.html

Featured Picture Source:

http://www.connectingheartsva.org/foster-care-month

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