Here and Now

I thought this would be a really cool way to kick off my favorite time of the year. October is kind of a pivotal month of the year, where the air starts getting crisper, the leaves start falling, and everything just feels okay. Soon enough, I’ll be buying candy for half price and then eating enough turkey to make me want to sleep for days and then sharing gifts and memories with the people who mean the most to me.

I tend to think ahead. I jump ahead into next week, next year, hell, sometimes I’m thinking about being 80 years old chillin in a rocking chair. I don’t often take time to appreciate the moment I’m in because so much of my life, I’ve spent preparing for the future.

I challenge you to be present, for one month. Yeah, I’m a few days late… what are you gonna do, sue me? Good luck, you won’t get a dime. Take a few minutes out of each day and be present. Give yourself a break, and enjoy where you are right now.

I sat in my bed tonight trying to be present and I would be lying if I said my mind didn’t jump to my test next week. I would be lying if I said my brain didn’t try to run through the Foley catheter check-off list one more time before tomorrow. But part of this is catching yourself. Bring yourself back in. Center yourself. Take a moment to appreciate who you are and what you are doing.

If you’re struggling during this season, like I happen to be, take a breath and enjoy whatever still moments you can. The struggle is when you need it most. 

If you’re having the best month of your life, succeeding in your business, in your school, in your wellness… whatever it may be, please do yourself a favor and be present. You want to remember the way this felt.

Take in this moment. Feel the feelings. Do not rush life. For a few minutes out of each day, for one month. I promise you will not regret it.

P.S. The back porch of the Amicalola Falls Lodge has some beautiful sunsets. Shoot, go be present somewhere with a view, y’all.

ANOTHER P.S. Comment on this post — or click the “Contact” tab above this post — and tell me how you chose to be present this month! I would love to interact with y’all and share some of your tips!

Enough

I have been so excited to start nursing school. I literally bought my scrubs four months ahead of time to make sure they would fit perfect and I would have everything ready by August 19th.

Yesterday, I drove to my school’s bookstore to purchase my textbooks and when I was walking out of the door with what felt like 50 pounds of books on one arm and a bag full of syringes and saline solution on the other, I felt defeated. I felt alive and defeated at the same time because here I am with my future in my arms but I just charged a thousand dollars to my credit card.

Today, I have been so down and out. My emotions have been all over the place and I am doubting myself. What if I’m not smart enough? What if I’m really bad at nursing school? What if I can’t make friends and allies throughout this journey? What if I can’t even afford to continue? I have spent today getting my loose ends tied up before class starts and cleaning my space. I have also spent today trying to talk myself down and questioning my own self worth. I opened my textbooks and words started flying off the pages and I became so overwhelmed by how much I will need to know.

I am writing this post now though to lay my fears to rest. I am speaking it into fruition, because I truly believe that what you put out into the world is what you will get back from it. God hears and He delivers. 

I am smart enough for this. I have brought myself to this point and if I have to crawl on my knees to bring myself through it, I will. At 16 years old, I was taking community college classes to become a CNA and during that, I knew for a fact that nursing was my future. Caring is something I’m good at. People are my passion. With that being said, I can do this. I will do this. 

I’m going to make friends, I already have made two friends who are in my program and it hasn’t even started yet so why the hellll am I so concerned about that? I am a good person, and a great friend. I am so excited to gain some lifelong gal pals over the course of this journey. 

And as far as the money goes, I can take loans out. I’ve been lucky enough to not have to do that so far but I just had to put a grand on my card so maybe a loan would have been best anyway. Oh well, now I know what to expect next semester and hopefully I can save up my money throughout this semester while I work. The thing is, God is in control. God has my back and He will pull me through deep waters. Not to mention, paying for school is why I’m working over forty hours a week some weeks. 

The point is that I am my own biggest critic. No one will ever judge me harsher than I judge myself. I know a lot of people just like me in that aspect and we need to trust that we are on the right path and making the right moves. We are good enough, smart enough, strong enough, and pretty enough. We are exactly where we need to be when we need to be there. I really hope I can help others realize that because I know that if I’m struggling with this, others are too. 

I really need to stop questioning myself and just trust my own abilities because I can do this. I will do this, and I will be a great nurse. 

Queens

I am incredibly lucky right now to be able to say that I have many friends, some I’ve known for a long time and some I’ve know for a month, but I have people that support and love me. And I feel so so lucky. This post is dedicated to y’all.

I haven’t always been this lucky though. When my ex and I broke up, my family had my back but I had no friends. Absolutely none. So I started reaching out to people and rebuilding my life.

I take that back. My sister, my lifelong best friend, has never left me to suffer alone. She has been there through some of my toughest times, for my entire life. When I was 16 and got stood up for the first time, she made me take her and her boyfriend out since I was dressed and didn’t need to waste a decent outfit. Even tonight, she took the nail polish off my toes for me because I was too lazy to do it. I don’t know what I would do without her and I will always be grateful that God chose us for each other.

Thank goodness also for a coworker of mine who I truly think of as a best friend. She doesn’t judge me and I’m thankful that I can come to work and talk her ears off OR say nothing at all, and she still supports me.

I messaged his ex from before me. We couldn’t stand each other for years but we’re so much alike and our friendship works so well. We found out that he treated us the same. That he talked us out of doing things to improve our lives because he wants the girl he’s with to be below him. We found out that our shared experience with this boy was something that we could bond over for the time being but now we have so much to talk about. She’s smart, bold, and successful. I consider her to be one of my best friends. I’m even going to her wedding, and if that’s not a friendship turn around, I don’t know what is.

Then I reached out to a sweet girl from high school. We went to eat Mexican food for lunch and ended up sitting in that booth, laughing and talking until almost 5 in the afternoon. That lunch was the most I had laughed in months, and I will always be grateful to her for making me realize that I was still in there. She’s funny, nice as all get out, and has such a sweet soul. Another best friend.

I worked with a kid at Subway years ago who had a girlfriend (at the time) that I looked up to so much. She was working as a CNA at the time and working on getting her pre-requisites done. I was thiiiinking about pursuing nursing but little does she know, she is the one who really inspired me to do that. Fast forward to the summer my life felt like it was falling apart, and there she was in my anatomy class! She’s intelligent, hard working, and so caring. We became close again and we still keep in touch because our journeys are so alike in so many ways.

And tomorrow, I’m meeting a friend of mine who I went through CNA school with for dinner. We wiped butts together y’all and now we’re both going to nursing school… she’s almost done actually and she’s going to do so well. She was my clinical partner for a semester, but a friend for life. And I am thankful to still be able to reach out to her and know that she would still be here for me if I needed her.

I have had people who I trusted that broke my heart. I have had best friends who told lies about me, turned our mutual friends away from me. Some of these people have reached out to me since, so we’re rebuilding our friendships and are closer than ever! Sometimes our friends hurt us without the intentions of hurting us, and I get that. Some of these people, though, pretend like I don’t exist and that’s fine too because I am not for everybody.

I am honest, and loud, and boy once I start on something, there’s no stopping me. I’m opinionated without being judgey… but I’ve been shushed for a long time so now I’m out here making my presence known. I have my share of flaws, I’ve done things I’m not proud of but I will own up to it. I am so thankful that I have a few close friends who accept my personality, and love me even more for just being myself. I am so warmed by the people I have around me and for the first time in a long time, I am happy to say that I am 100% okay if you want to judge me by who I surround myself with because I am surrounded by strong, wonderful people.

Real queens fix each other’s crowns.