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21 more things = 42

The last post was the 21 things I KNOW at 42. At the end I said I'd consider writing 21 more things to make it 42 in total & then ...


Brought to you by the letter 'R' for Reflection

It's been a minute, but I've been struck by all the out with the old, in with the new energy that bubbles over at the end of every year. If there's 1 thing I know, it's reflection &, while DC isn't 1, it's the state I'm living in right now. Last year I specifically recall being anti the anti 'every year sucks ass' bandwagon. I'm not gon' be 1'a those people who goes in at the end of each year about how truly fucked messed up it was, cuz I don't know 365 days of full on feces of bulls. This year, things were different. 2014 was the clusterfuck of all clusterfucks. I don't know 1 person, personally, who didn't feel like they weren't having their ass handed to them on damn near a daily basis. The water was rising fastly & finding air pockets was difficult #denamug. & the end of 2014 is showing out, letting us all know it was tougher than leather.

For those of you familiar with this space, you know I pay attention to what's going on around me, the patterns occurring in my life, & look for the larger message. I often say 'I read the road signs' & 'I pay attention in English.' Right now, in this very second, the message is typed out, on my body, in the form of an upper body rash. I look crazy. I'm itchy beyond reason. & I'm quasi-quarantined while on "vacay" to visit the BFF. THIS is all in the midst of a ri-damn-diculous month, that was a part of at least 5 months of pure What. Thee. Fuck? I'm tired & needed the ref to call time so I could go to the chair for water & a pep talk.

So, as I sit here, covered in a most unattractive rash from face to thigh, I'm struck by the ability to smile right now. I must capitalize on this energy & figure out what I'm going to do with the shit storm that was 2014. 2014 left a stinking pile on my doorstep but, because great things rise out of ashes, I think Imma set it on fire. It's time to assess, reassess, & then kick off an action plan. Let the reflection begin.

1. While in a parking lot or an aisle of a grocery store, it dawned on me that I used to have a bunch of nicknames assigned to me & aliases I'd assigned myself. All the names captured the essence of the different parts of my personality. They were parts of me that I appreciated & fed in different ways. The Southern Belle had self care down to a science. She gave herself spa-worthy pedicures, facials, soak in hot bubbles, & had tea rituals. There was DeJa (club name) who was queen of the dance floor & would burn up a space with or without a partner. There was Suzette the Homemaker, who planned out weekly menus & handled grocery shopping like a Bawse. She prepped food in advance, made meals for the week. Packed healthy lunches. She cleaned house on Saturday mornings. There E-yasha, my hood booga side. She was always down for the get down & was too rowdy for the other parts of me, but she wadn't (not a typo) "no punk, no pu$$y, no bitch, or no shit like that." There are more layers to me but no need to run 'em all down. The point is, I MISS THOSE CHICKS! Somewhere along the line they got buried under the minutiae of cleaning of my credit score, trying to be excellent in my career, enjoying living alone a little too much, etc. As I'm thinking out loud all over this screen, I'm having a moment of wanting to go all full disclosure but I realize I'm not prepared to see the words I'm thinking. So, if you know, you know. If you don't, just know that January 1, 2008 probably marked a major shift in my personality & potentially the beginning of sealing off those parts of me, leaving behind the uber focused, predictably responsible, party pooper version of me. Perhaps it was the driven part of me that sent us back to school that killed the others; I'm not sure. Well, whatever the spark was, I want her ass voted off the island. She can't dominate this space anymore & will have to learn to play well with others cuz I'm working on bringing them back, or exploring who else may currently be residing in here.

2. The things that I hear & see on a daily basis are often stranger than fiction. I chronicle them thru microblogging on Facebook, but they need to be paid proper respect. I'll be embarking on yet another adventure in just a few days. I'm entering year 3 of my [ridiculous] 3 year Master's program & it's internship time. For a year. I'll be working with addicts & repeat offenders trying to get off (or stay on, depending on the person) the hamster wheel of substance abuse & using jail for staycations. HIPAA laws dictates that I can't be out here writing songs about individuals, but a year in this environment can NOT go undocumented. That means the party pooper & the writer in me have to work together to get disciplined about chronicling this experience for the masses, for posterity, & for paper.

3. Once I unlock the Southern Belle, I gotta get back into my self care routines. I need to revisit the list of things I do for self care, post them somewhere visible, & commit to doing a couple of things each week. Maybe a self care journal should be a part of it as an accountability measure. Or maybe I just need to decide on the specific time & routines I'm going to be about. A professor stated that she has call zones on certain days. If you call on those days in the times she deems off limits, you'll have to wait til the next day. Her Sundays are off limits. She only works on certain days. While I can't fully adopt her unbreakables, I gotta figure out what mine are. Firstly, I WANT MY SUNDAYS BACK! Don't worry, I'm yelling at myself for reinforcement. I want to set aside writing time. I want to keep my dedicated exercise time. I want to establish date night with The Beau. & I need to devote dedicated time to nurturing my friendships. I keep coming back to this every year. The introvert in me can be tired out by too much human interaction, but I need some & my friends are super important to me.

4. Today I was invited to do a transformation challenge. It was issued by a crafty woman who suggested we find an object that we can turn into something else. My mind started churning, I picked out what I'm going to do, & then I started thinking about the need to challenge myself more. I challenge myself academically & this internship will be my latest professional challenge, but I need to challenge my mind to engage in things that force me to problem solve more. I'm positive that I'm always in a state of problem solving but I want to go outside of my comfort zone much more.

5. There are 2 blue Jays on the tree just outside my window. the slow pace of my current surroundings is doing something for me. It's making me think of my birthday & my birthday is making me think of traditions. A couple years ago I celebrated my birthday with friends at house in the mountains & partook in some winter activities. I said I wanted to do it again the next year but by then I was back in school, which meant my money was back in school, & couldn't afford to do it. Well, me & my money are almost out of school & it's time to get some traditions started. My older sister was always creating personal rituals & I wanna create some personal traditions. It would be nice if I could bring along a DJ friend & make it a true party but ya gotta start somewhere.

Pause for the Cause- You know what? I'm bored. This isn't the creation of a bucket list, but something that involves true reflection & stillness. I'm tired of sitting & this itching is driving me insane. If you too are bored, remember that maybe all you needed was the reminder that you too should be in a state of reflection & personal assessment. While I'm sure there's more, I'm not going to force myself to do it all in 1 sitting, but I did need to START. So, I've started. I'll be back.

Next post I think I'll try to reflect on what actually was good in 2014 (in my New Orleans accent) cuz, Baaaybee...

Watch me move.

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