stepping up.

“Imagine all the people who would have been affected if Esther never stepped up. Okay, now imagine all the people who will be affected if you never do.”

– from @shespeaksministries Instagram, written by @worthyofgrace
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‭⬇️Devo ✍🏼 @worthyofgrace . Esther a woman who was not born into royalty, but was chosen by God to be queen to save the Jewish people from annihilation. Her story is a lot like ours, once an orphan, but now chosen to do the work of her Heavenly Father. Esther is easy to relate to. When Mordecai (her cousin, but he also adopted her, and raised her), came to Esther one night and said, that Haman has order the death of the Jews – her people. Esther was saddened by this news, and Mordecai encouraged her to speak up for the voice-less. Sometimes, we sin by what we know to do, but yet, we do not do it. Speaking up for truth and justice in the midst of great fear had Esther dreading this assignment. It’s easy to want to back down, because of fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of can God really use me, fear that the whole plan will be utterly chaotic and ruined if you do it, so you back down. Well, despite all her fears, Esther called for a fast, and God responded with great favor for her and the Jews. Is God calling you to do something hard? To speak up, to step into your purpose, to pursue your Heavenly Father’s business? Remember Jesus always went about healing people and doing good – ACTS 10:38 (I love that about him)! . You were made for such a time as this! It’s time to step out you are worth it! You and God got this! #shespeaksfire . Esther 4:14:“If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?”” ‬

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My coworkers all decided to wear red, white, and blue to work today since tomorrow we’ll be off, and the Fourth of July is this Saturday. If you’re not aware: with the recent events surrounding racial tension, and the increase of racial awareness, most Black people have decided to celebrate Juneteenth instead of July 4th for Independence Day, declaring the Fourth of July a “white holiday.”

So, all week I’d debated on whether or not I should participate because I definitely wasn’t planning on celebrating the fourth, and I didn’t want to symbolize that I was with what I was wearing, but I also knew that, being the only Black woman in my workplace, I’d probably be making people feel uncomfortable, and questioning me as to why I didn’t dress in the said colors. And since I work in a preschool, I didn’t need or want parents complaining to my boss about what I was wearing either.

Because I decided this morning to wear my “I Can’t Breathe” shirt instead.

I had so many thoughts: Would someone say I was trying to be political by wearing it? Would my boss be angry with me? Is wearing this shirt inappropriate for work? But why would it be? Why am I questioning if I can wear this shirt when I’m able to wear almost anything to work and be 100% fine? (I knew the answer to the last question)

I resolved that, if my boss told me to take it off, I’d just take it off and just have a different shirt on, but I would not wear the color combos red, white, and blue to work today. I was honestly sort of nervous…so much so that I texted the co-teacher I’m working with this summer about it to get her thoughts…not her permission. She fully supported my decision, and even said she wouldn’t wear the designated colors too so I wouldn’t be alone.

As I prayed this morning and prepared my heart for the day, the quote above popped into my mind. I’d read it yesterday, and was touched at how powerful it was, and I was grateful that it could resonate with me this morning. (If you don’t know about the story of Esther, definitely check her out in the Bible. Such an amazing woman!) What if I wore the shirt and was able to start conversations with my co-workers about what was happening, not just in our city, but in our country as a whole? Granted, we’ve been back to work for weeks now…I honestly feel like some of them are avoiding the topic of racial tension because they don’t want to say the wrong things or offend me. But I’d rather them say something wrong and I be able to help them understand why than to not talk about it at all. Because the reality is, they work with ME…I, a Black woman, am going to be with them five days a week, and that right there is looking and being with racial tension – what to say, what not to say. To touch my hair or not to. To make comments about certain situations, or to just be silent. I see all of that stuff, and I take notes, and act accordingly.

If I chose to just give in and wear what everyone else was wearing, I felt like I’d just be giving up, and not speaking up. And while I shouldn’t be the only person that my co-workers go to for Black questions, I feel a responsibility as the only Black woman there to be the voice for the Black community that is rarely if not at all represented in that area.

The result?

I went to work, had a co-worker ask what my shirt said, I showed her, and she said, “Oh, okay!” Had a few other co-workers see my shirt and they silently kept it pushing.

Feeling like I had to explain myself (which I shouldn’t have to, but anyways…), I talked to the same co-worker who asked me what my shirt said about why I wasn’t wearing red, white, and blue, and she fully understood, and said she wasn’t offended, and didn’t know why others would be.

When my co-teacher came into work a little later without any red, white, or blue on, my boss asked her why she wasn’t wearing any, yet she didn’t ask me when she fully saw that I wasn’t wearing any either.

Apparently, she also made a comment out loud again about how one of the kids in our class looked cute wearing the patriotic colors, but my co-teacher (not me) wasn’t matching.

It sort of breaks my heart that no one really asked me more about my shirt, or tried to ask my opinion on what was happening, or even ask how I was doing (because since everything started in late May/early June, no one from my job has asked except my co-teacher) but it also doesn’t surprise me. I just wish people wouldn’t be afraid to have racial conversations that could possibly expose things they didn’t know weren’t okay to say, do, believe, etc. And maybe they are having those conversations outside of work, which is great! I’d just like to know that that information is being translated to EVERY area of their lives, NOT JUST to their black friends outside of work, or their black family members.

I will say that I’m extremely grateful for my co-teacher…she stepped up for me today, and I cannot thank her enough! It felt good to have someone stand with me in solidarity today. And even through these first few weeks of work, she’s been pro-active about asking me questions and talking about the racial events that are happening, and I believe it is not a coincidence, but a full-on blessing that we were assigned to be with each other this summer.

Just felt like I had to share that. There is SO much work to be done to undo all the racial injustice our country has held tightly to, and I’m grateful that the protests haven’t died down, and pray that the conversations everywhere don’t die down either. While my gesture of wearing a “I Can’t Breathe” shirt to work may seem small, it opened my eyes to just how deep the fear of being called out about my race is rooted in me. And in no way would I say that I’m ashamed to be Black! But I know that I myself need to shake out of being afraid to be a topic of conversation, or to have conversations with people I’m with on a daily basis, or with my friends or family.

I continue to pray that all my Black brothers and sisters would be able to step up wherever they are: in their friend circles, in their families (whether blood or in-laws), in their workplaces, etc. I pray for strength and courage. I pray for peace. And I pray that the spirit of racism would cower at the Holy Spirit, who favors no person because of their race or background, but lives within WHOEVER believes in Jesus Christ and His death, resurrection, and return.

BLACK BROTHERS AND SISTERS: What are some ways you’ve had to step up for yourself, either recently or in the past, in regards to your race? Where do you find the most support? Where do you find the most tension?

BLACK ALLIES: Have you been inspired by a Black friend, family member, co-worker, significant other, etc. who has stood up in the face of racism, or in just the isolation of being Black in a particular place or circumstance? How did you respond? Did you learn anything that you’ll take with you as the fight for racial equality and justice continues?

Mishy 🦋💙

weakness.

Strength. Weakness.

At the end of May, I did a Words with Women event based on these two things, discussing what it means to be “strong” or “weak” as a woman. The conversation was truly amazing…I loved hearing each woman’s perspective and thoughts on these themes. And it’s crazy how God will lead you to some topics, and then bring them back up as time goes on.

Last week, I thought about weakness.

It was my second week being back at work, y’all, and I was TIRED. My feet had been hurting from walking and standing around again after three months of resting them. I’d been getting back to my heavier workouts so almost each night, my body would ache from a previous workout I’d done. Not to mention, since going back to work, I’m now only getting about 5-6 hours of sleep a night because that’s just when I’m able to manage hitting my bed after getting off work, working out, eating, showering, and spending a little time for myself through writing, reading, or playing the game (I recently got a Nintendo Switch with my boyfriend, so that’s been fun to play for the past week-and-a-half!).

But one morning last week, I was just feeling so weak. Like I wasn’t prepared to get through the day because my energy was spent…and it was only Tuesday!

Then I began to think about these verses in the Bible:

“But He said to me, ‘My Grace is sufficient for you, for My Power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

“My Grace is sufficient for you…”

The context of these verses is that the writer Paul is discussing the “thorn in his flesh” that he’d prayed God would take away from him several times, but God replied with the verses above. While I’m not sure exactly what Paul’s “thorn in his flesh” was (2 Corinthians 12:7 leans towards a spiritual battle as he refers to a “messenger of Satan”) I know I can definitely relate to having “weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities” of my own, no matter what they may be!

But it is only through weakness that we can truly and fully become stronger, and that strength isn’t our own, but is solely through dependence on the Lord. We can’t sit in the comfortability of always being strong, wise, certain, or successful, and expect to learn, to mature, to grow, to become even stronger than we are now. There has to be a period of weakness. And through both times of strength and weakness, we have to lean into God.

Tula’s strength.

Those who follow me on social media know that Tula, my pink hibiscus plant, has finally bloomed after about a month of being barren. She would have buds form, and then they’d fall off. I was so crushed that she wasn’t blooming, and I even wrote a poem about this phase of her life cycle as a metaphor for the phase I was in with my poetry (which also seemed to be lacking). But after researching and experimenting (i.e., making my own insecticide to spray on her) she opened up a big, beautiful pink flower a couple of weekends ago, and surprisingly, it stayed around for about 2.5 days.

My yellow hibiscus plant (Reyna) has flowers that only last about one full day and start to shrivel and close back up. When I mentioned this difference to my boyfriend, he said that maybe after being dormant for so long and fighting off those pests, she came back stronger. Tula has become yet another metaphor for my life, and maybe even for your life too!

We all go through phases of weakness, and it looks different for each person. The phase could be long or short; it could deal with different aspects of life. It could be something you really have to persist through, or something that takes one moment of getting over. In any case, we must be able to withstand the phase to become stronger. But, how do we do that?

embrace it!

It is good to actively do something about your weakness! The first step should be to go to God for wisdom on which steps to take, and He will graciously show you the things you need to do. It could be setting boundaries, doing more in an area, getting help, admitting weakness to someone close to you, etc. In this, I believe that we truly need to embrace the weakness, and understand that it is not our own power that will carry us through.

A lot of times people will cry out to God only when they’re at the end of their rope: when they’ve tried any and everything to improve their situation. When really, as soon as we realize the weakness we’re in, that’s when we have to understand that it is an opportunity for God’s strength to shine through us. He may be allowing you to go through something so that your testimony of that time will point back to Him!

So, as you go through your daily life, and as you encounter different times in which you feel weak, remind yourself that it is a time in which you can really see God work in you and through you! Don’t be so quick to beg Him to take it away, but allow Him to teach you through the weakness, and to show you just how powerful He is!

Mishy 🦋💛

lessons from Itachi.

“He who forgives and acknowledges himself…that is what it truly means to be strong!”

“If you want to know who you are, you have to look at your real self and acknowledge what you see.”

– Itachi Uchiha, Naruto Shippuden

***Disclaimer: I finished Naruto Shippuden with my boyfriend recently, and I truly fell in love with the whole Naruto franchise. There is so much depth in that show, it’s crazy. While I understand that identity crisis can truly only be healed through understanding our identity in Christ, I just thought it was awesome how these two quotes were brought to my attention, and have helped me do some self-reflection about my own identity. Just had to say that 😁

I was looking up a specific Itachi Uchiha quote for the pictures I took yesterday in my Akatsuki tank top (because Itachi is my favorite Akatsuki member in Naruto. I went through a lot of emotions regarding him, but he truly is amazing), and I found these other quotes that I resonated with heavily. This past week I had to come to terms with some things I’d already come to terms with previously, but had to think about again. And it honestly made me annoyed and irritated at myself; like I couldn’t get it right the first time, so here I am, having to start over again, or so it felt like.

There were so many things last week that grabbed my attention: the message I heard from God about looking through His eyes, several devotionals I’d read through this week, hard conversations that needed to be had, being by myself and facing things on my own, writing habits down that I needed to break, hearing yesterday’s sermon about my identity in Christ, how I am not to love the world and what it stands for, but to be in the world, and speak the Gospel, the Truth, and now these quotes. Everything that happened last week needed to happen before this new week began, before I went back to work, and back to possibly being busy again (I hope not).

Both of these Itachi’s quotes, I believe, are from when he was fighting with Kabuto, another main character, one of the villains, whose whole story is about finding out exactly who he is. He struggles by trying to take on traits and skills of other characters in the show, and ultimately, does his best to become just like another one of the main villains, Orochimaru by transfusing some of his blood into his body, and doing other experiments. He does all this because he is unsure of what his true identity is.

Itachi’s words were directed at Kabuto’s story, telling him that he needed to acknowledge who he was outside of all his efforts to try to become someone else.

Let’s talk about the first quote…

As I said before, having to face some issues I had already been dealing with again just made me irritated with myself. It made me want to mentally beat myself up, like, Seriously, why have you not moved past this yet? It can be hard to forgive other people, but for me, it really is hard to forgive myself for things I’ve done or said. And I use the excuse sometimes that because it’s me and not another person, I can be more harsh about it, which isn’t right. It’s that perfectionist side really trying to get at me.

It also makes me not want to acknowledge who I am; to be transparent, I’ve been having issues accepting the fact that I’m just not like everyone else. There’s this silent pressure I put myself under to be a certain way, either because I’m a poet or because I’m dating a rapper, or whatever, and it’s been difficult for me to learn to just be who I am because the people who are actively in my life are there because I was authentically myself, and not trying to be like anyone else.

Admittedly, it’s taken some strength to embrace myself as I am. So Itachi’s first words here really hit me when I read them. And I strive to continue to be strong in forgiving myself even when I still stumble into comparing myself or desiring to be something or someone I’m not.

And now, the second quote…

I feel like a lot of people could read this quote and be like, “DUH, Itachi!” But how many of us look at ourselves in the mirror and wish we looked like someone else? How many times do we do something or act a certain way, and wish we could be different? Do we wish we could be more or less of anything…loud, quiet, brave, creative, etc.? Or, how many times do we watch someone else behave a certain way, and long to be similar?

When Itachi says “real self,” I’d like to think it means seeing me stripped of all outside opinions…what is left? How do I see myself, not in relation to anyone or anything? Then, can I slowly add on outside factors that are true to form my identity – the things that I personally believe, that stand for who I am, and not things I claimed are a part of me based off of anyone or anything else?

Knowing who we really are is understanding our character traits, personalities, and physical features, and accepting them as they are because that’s who God made us to be…not because we changed ourselves to fit in someway, somehow. It doesn’t mean we can’t mature or change, but here in this moment, we have to acknowledge ourselves, and be more than okay with the way we are.

And most importantly, we have to know that God acknowledges us as we are. He loves us so much, that He longs for us to come as we are to Him. We don’t have to be all “cleaned up,” we don’t have to have a perfect performance history, we don’t have to have perfect church attendance, He’s just asking us to be vulnerable with Him, and to surrender our identity to Him, because He sees us as we are, and He desires for us to see ourselves the way He sees us – fearfully and wonderfully made.

Who says an anime can’t help you learn something? 😉

Have you ever felt like Kabuto: searching for your true identity by taking on other people’s characteristics, styles, views/beliefs, routines? Have you ever tried to make yourself physically look like someone else because you didn’t like what you saw in the mirror? How would you define your “real self”? When was the last time you went to God as you are: not trying to ask for things, not trying to appear “better” than you are or feel, but truly calling on Him in vulnerability?

Mishy 🦋💛

through His Eyes.

A couple of nights ago as I lied in bed, trying to get to sleep, I began praying for all the things I’d been so focused on last week. All my frustrations, all my concerns…and I’m not sure if I dozed off a little bit, or what, but all I know is, my mind began to think and then sing this song…

Just take a look through my eyes.
There’s a better place somewhere out there.
Just take a look through my eyes.
Everything changes, you’ll be amazed what you find,
When you look through my eyes.

Guys…if you know, you know. That’s a song from the Disney movie Brother Bear. 😂 And while it’s comical that that song popped in my head, and I hadn’t seen that movie since I was probably around ten years old, the words were significant enough for me to shoot my eyes open, and lie in bed to briefly think about them.

Not only that, but I prayed, asking God to help me remember the next morning that this song was in my mind the night before. And it brought me peace. Because I wasn’t think about the song and how it related to the movie, I was thinking about how it related to my life.

Here we are smack dab in the middle of the week, probably still reflecting on the events of last week, and even the events of the last few months – coronavirus pandemic and the racial pandemic our country has been in, but has now resurfaced due to recent murders of black people. And it’s easy to look at things through so many perspectives, and then react to those perspectives in anger, hurt, sadness, etc. Not to mention that lately, it’s been personally easy for me to see myself in a perspective that isn’t uplifting, and then I sometimes react in the ways I named above.

This is just a reminder to see ourselves and our lives through God’s perspective, through His eyes. How would He want us to perceive the things happening in our world? How would He want us to react to it all? What would He want us to say when we have opportunities to speak up? What would He not want us to say when we have opportunities to speak?

Asking all these questions is like the deeper version of “WWJD?” (“What would Jesus do?”), and as a Christian in this broken world, I have to ask myself these things before I respond to anything that’s happening around me because I’m not just representing myself, I’m representing Christ as well. That doesn’t mean I won’t make mistakes, because I’ve definitely had some wrong reactions or said some wrong things due to just viewing things in a selfish way, but it doesn’t mean I should just give up and not work on it at all.

So, I just encourage my fellow Christian brothers and sisters to look at the world and to look at your life through His eyes, and act accordingly. What do you see, and how can you respond in a way that closely resembles how Christ would?

Also, don’t be surprised if God speaks to you through something like a Disney song. It may sound strange, but sometimes it takes something as simple, and what might seem somewhat silly, to grab our attention, and to have us hear His voice.

Mishy 🦋💛

intentions.

It’s June 1st, which means for me, a new color for the month (even though I’m a little behind on the #BrownSkinGirlProject, it doesn’t hurt to have a few more brown girls on my feed, especially in the times we’re in right now).

Today wasn’t just a change of color for my social media though; it was a change of color in my spirit. With everything going on in the world, we all still each have our own personal battles we deal with, and honestly, mine have been pretty heavy and consistent. You may think, What? You don’t seem like it… but it’s true. I may not portray on social media my internal struggles, but I still have them.

And as I cleaned my entire apartment (I’m talking…from bathroom to bedroom, the bed sheets and kitchen towels, the counters and inside the fridge…DEEP CLEANING), my spirit just kept bringing up this word and phrase: “intentions”, “set your intentions.”

Now, of course, we all have goals and plans, and of course, many of those goals and plans went straight out the window from March to even now. We’re entering the second half of 2020, and there are a lot of unknowns still. A lot of heartbreak. A lot of changes and movements happening. And underneath this all is an overarching theme of healing…we’re all still trying to heal from things, whether it’s COVID-19 related, racism related, or something else personal going on in your life.

I looked up the definition of “intention,” and Oxford Languages via Google not only gave the “aim” or “plan” definition, it also provided this one:

“the healing process of a wound”

How ironic is that? Or maybe it’s not ironic at all; the Holy Spirit set that word on my heart for a reason or two. And I aim to write down every intention I have for this last half of the year, and to pray on each one and work towards those things coming into fruition, and healing after so much negativity, pain, and hurt.

I refuse to settle in this place I’ve been in.

Last month as I was mentally preparing for June, I was thinking about what words were brought to mind when the color yellow is seen. Of course, we think of the obvious ones: bright, joyful, exciting, inspiring, bold, confident. And now, the word I have for yellow is intention. The beautiful thing about this is that this isn’t just another project or set of posts for my feed, but it’s something personal I’m setting my mind to doing; I’m actively choosing to engage in this healing process of the wounds I’ve been digging my fingers in for way too long.

As my sis Cydney would say, I was manifesting my own downfall. And today, it’s time for that to end in ALL AREAS of my life.

Today, I cleaned my room. I prayed for God to clean my spirit. I cleaned my mind. I am abounding in my intentions.

What are some intentions that you have set for the last half of 2020? How are you healing with everything going on in our world? What steps can you take in your healing process?

Mishy 🦋💛

halfway there – bsgp. (+ a special announcement!)

I actually write this, and I’m over halfway done with the Brown Skin Girl Project. But let’s dive in to how I’m feeling / what’s been happening while this project has been going on, shall we?

it’s official…

I’m officially quarantined. Not just “oh, we suggest that you quarantine, stay 6 feet apart, etc.” no, I’m legit, “cannot go anywhere, not even the grocery store, you need someone else to do that for you,” quarantined. Due to a circumstance that happened last week while I was at work, it’s possible that I could be carrying COVID-19, and develop symptoms. Even though I took the test earlier this week, and it came back negative. 14 days, y’all…I’m now on day 6, and it’s been, meh. 😭

And during this time, I’ve also had some other health things going on that are causing me and my little anxious heart to want to cry out in fear, if I’m being honest. I’m grateful that I’ve got all this time to work on my creativity, to finish up the Brown Skin Girl Project, but it’s hard to create when I’ve got a lot of things going on in other areas, and I’m really trying not to panic about it all.

But, “God doesn’t give us the spirit of fear,” and while I know this, and I’m reciting it to myself to keep me calm, all the while, I’m still battling the worry. Pray for me, please, if you think of me!

as for the project itself:

Y’all, the project has been doing so great, in my opinion! I’m really glad that I was able to take my time on this, and learn and create so many awesome resources, and give these women an opportunity to talk about themselves in all sorts of aspects!

The finale of the project is a Words with Women event that I plan on doing virtually so that there doesn’t have to be any 6-feet apart, only 10 people can show up madness. Because I want ALL THE WOMEN to participate in this with me! It will definitely be different since it’ll be done virtually, but I’m still excited to see who will show up, and the many different perspectives that will contribute to the conversation!

So, without further ado, I present the official Words with Women flyer!

If you’re a woman reading this, and you’re interested in participating, please email me at the email on the flyer, and you’ll get a Zoom link for the event meeting! I’m really excited to have this event again, even considering the circumstances, and I hope you all are excited as well!

Mishy 🦋🤎

tired but grateful.

You may have already heard their names…Sean Reed and Ahmaud Arbery. More names to add to the murdered black males list. And while anything I write may not be different than anything else you’ve read or seen today, I feel the need to write about it on my blog because honestly, I’m so tired of being angry at things like this, sad at things like this, tired of all of this.

I’m tired of incidents like this having to be spammed all over social media before the news or the authorities talk about it, and before murderers are arrested. I’m tired of having more names become hashtags to get people’s attention. I’m tired of parents, siblings, significant others, children, and friends having to put the face and name of someone they love on a t-shirt, in a casket, and on a gravestone.

I’m tired of having fearful thoughts in my head sometimes when my boyfriend walks or drives to the corner store or gas station near my apartment, because I never know what could happen between here and there. I’m tired of being fearful for any of my fellow black friends, male or female, when they’re leaving from a party or event by themselves (and that’s even after walking with them to their car, and telling them to text me when they’ve made it home safe).

And I know I’m not the only one who’s tired of these things.

It’s during times like these that I’m grateful that my hope is not in this world, or in the people who are in this world. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t speak up, or try to hold people accountable for their actions, but I trust that God will deal with it accordingly, either now or when Christ returns. And the latter may not satisfy some who want to see justice now, but the unfortunate reality is that sometimes we may not see it all the way through in our lifetime.

I would love to see the slaughter of black people actually taken seriously before my lifetime is over. Shoot, I’d love for the slaughter of black people to NOT HAPPEN before my lifetime is over! I pray this to be so, and trust that God’s timing is better than mine. And I continue to put my hope in Him, and not the systems or those running them, since clearly, they have failed time and time again.

I pray that we all keep fighting for justice though; that our righteous anger wouldn’t burn out, that we would never hesitate to speak up or act in whatever way we can when murder occurs. That we keep fighting for actual equality to happen every single day. And that we love on the ones we have in our lives right now, near or far.

Mishy 🦋🤎

reality.

Well, y’all, it’s official. A set date has been made for when I’ll be returning to work, and it all seems so surreal. Part of me wonders how I’ll be once I do return; will I go back to the same habit of being constantly busy? I really hope not; seeing the hours I’m going to work though, I’m nervous that it’ll just be going back to same old, same old for me.

But I still have about three weeks left of social distancing, so I’m going to take advantage of it as much as possible!

Even though going back to work seems like going “back to reality,” I know for a fact it won’t be the same. Already, we’re having to change so many ways in which we need to do things; I’m afraid the place that I worked at before will never return to be the way it was even months after we return.

Don’t get me wrong, it will be sweet to reunite with my coworkers, and to see what new children I’ll get to have this summer. But a part of me does wish I could have had just one more week with the kids I had for this past school year. Even if I was rippin’ and runnin’ this semester (well, most of the school year), I still enjoyed my kids. I enjoyed teaching with my co-teachers, and getting to talk with them, not only about school things, but also about our lives.

And I could say that the routine was bearable, but maybe now I can have a better handle on how I do things from here on out when it comes to the time I do have outside of work.

Another part of me feels sort of selfish because I know that while I’ve had practically ten weeks off, there have been so many people who have continued to work, either on the front lines as essential workers, or from home. For some, it has picked up their workload even more so, and I do want to say how grateful I am for those who have been continuing to work through this whole pandemic time.

I can only continue to pray that even before I go back to work, things will get better. Life will return to when we can all be in large groups together without face masks, and without the concern that we may be endangering each other. And I can also pray that, when it is time for me to return to work, that I won’t return to the same habits that I had, but will be more present, more aware of how I’m feeling, more willing to sacrifice a routine or schedule to do things I feel led to do instead of doing things I “have” to do outside of work, and more grateful for the way things are, because things change quicker than we can blink our eyes.

What are some things you’ve learned that you can take with you once a routine away from social distancing starts for you? How can you be sure that you’ll stick to those things moving forward?

Mishy 🦋🤎

meet pops. 🌿

Story time!

It’s been a minute since I’ve told a story on here, so I’m excited that I get to indulge y’all in something different!

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I posted a picture of this little guy on my story this past week, asking who wanted to hear a story about him…

I also asked my followers what I should name him, and after only several good name choices were offered (Xavier, Edward, Jeffrey, Pops) I decided to go with “Pops” because of what this plant has gone through. And here’s where I’ll explain…

it looks like the end…

One night, my boyfriend closed my porch door. Normally, Pops is on the complete opposite side of where the door shuts so that he isn’t in danger of getting shut by the door.

So, you see what happened then…

Yes, my boyfriend accidentally shut him in the door, causing many of his little leaves to come off, and the top half of one of his branches completely came off. I felt many emotions…sad, upset, frustrated. I had watched this little succulent grow in over a year after my stepdad gave him to me for Valentine’s Day 2019. He was the only plant that I kept alive since Reyna and Tula 1.0 were unfortunately not taken care of properly last summer. And suddenly, he’d been crushed because, as my boyfriend put it, “He got up and walked toward the door without him seeing.” 😭

I honestly felt like Pops was going to die after that, and I was so sad about it (this was before I got my hibiscus plants, Reyna and Tula 2.0). I loved watching him gain new leaves, and I eventually wanted to repot him this summer.

pop go the new leaves

You read it right!

After several days of continuing to water Pops and give him as much sun as he needed, I took a good look at him, and noticed that there were little new leaves popping up where the old leaves had been (I guess those old leaves were dead).

I couldn’t have been happier! I’m really glad I didn’t throw him away when he got crushed, because now I get to see the new growth happening first hand! 😍🌱

let’s talk about us

As I thought about Pops’ story, I thought about us as people. There are a lot of things in life that can and will crush us at some point, and in those moments, we have choices to make. We can either throw all the potential we have stored within ourselves away, and give into what crushed us, or we can choose to try to keep growing and striving toward moving past it.

Of course, I encourage us to do the latter; we are so much more capable of healing if we give ourselves time. But too often, if we don’t heal in the time we desire, we can tend to give up, or try to take shortcuts to healing by just pretending everything is okay.

A plant may be able to pretend things are okay by looking okay for a small period of time. But then what happens? One day, it starts to droop, or it loses leaves, visibly showing that it’s not okay, that it needs water, sunlight, or fertilizer. And the same goes with us as people!

Pops was a great reminder for me to keep going, even when I’m being crushed by a heavy emotion or event in my life. He also is a great reminder to keep taking care of myself with whatever I may need spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. And I hope you’re reminded of this as well!

What’s something in your life that’s been a great reminder? It can be a plant, an animal, a game, an event, etc. What was the lesson it reminded you of? Did it change the way you view yourself or others?

Mishy 🦋🤎

put to practice.

And just like that, y’all…I write a blog post about how things change, and today, things went and changed up on me! 😂 God must’ve been like, Okay, so you writing all this stuff…let’s see how well you put it into practice when it happens!

Some of the meetings I’d set up for the Brown Skin Girls project had to be switched around, leaving me another free day to do what I needed to do! In my mind, that just tells me that God thought I needed an extra day to prepare myself, and I’m grateful for that. Because I was excited, but also low-key nervous to start this project up, and having another day allowed me to truly be ready!

How do you handle change? Sometimes it’s easier to brush it off when it doesn’t inconvenience us, but when it throws a whole wrench in matters you’d already planned, it can be many things: annoying or frustrating. It can cause us to place a whole raincloud over a day that can still be just as good even if things didn’t go as planned.

I could go into how we’re all doing this thing that none of us ever planned, but I’m sure you all understand by now. I’m sure many of us have gone through different phases during this time, and are still going through those phases as it drags on longer and longer. I pray that you see each day not as an inconvenience, but as opportunity. That we allow ourselves to see the silver lining when a cloud comes through.

Did anyone write down their end-of-the-month check-up based off my blog post yesterday? If you missed out, you can find it here. It’ll help you think about all the changes that have occurred, the ways in which you’ve changed, and what should leave or stay in regards to May being tomorrow!

Not too much to write about today, BUT I’ve decided to tell the story about my succulent plant here on the blog tomorrow, so stay tuned!

Mishy 🦋🤍