“The Level Up” – Reflections of the Past, Embracing The Future!

Hey Everyone, thought I fell off the grid huh? Nope! Well, I kind of did for a month, but that’s what vacation does to you. You travel, spend time with your family, totally overdose on Starbucks and any other caffeine related beverage within 2 blocks of your US residence, run the streets with your sisters, and suddenly return to the 268 become inundated with work and life priorities, and suddenly realize “god damn” I haven’t blogged for over a month. But that’s life right? sometimes we become so engrossed we forget the little things that make us happy.

This post reflects 2018, not only for myself but I’m sure for many of you. This is the time where we all sit back and try to rehash the year from start to finish (with any luck if we still have our brain cells left), we try to remember all the good and the bad, where we “effed up” and where we were stellar in the upward movement in our lives. We remember what we lost and what we gained, and try to figure out how we can become better individuals and do well in our lives for 2019.

For me 2018 was a year of more growth and somewhat of a learning curve, one in the sense that allowed me to push myself beyond boundaries where I didn’t think I could handle at age 41. I went back to school, (Grad School) where I juggled both a hectic job and late night assignments and presentations for literally eight months. At one point I felt like WTF did I get myself into??? like seriously did I really think my brain still worked the way it did in my twenties at University?

I plowed through months of paperwork, inter-library book loans, asking my professors a million questions (thinking I must be a dweeb for not understanding things), late nights, coffee, and falling asleep with my computer on my lap (luckily escaping being Antigua’s next burn victim). I finally made it and received my Grad Certificate in Strategic Communications Management from Purdue University at the end of September 2018. I am proud of myself because this is something I have deliberated for years and never thought I’d have enough willpower to do, but sometimes you have to suck life up and act like NIKE; “Just Do It”.

To celebrate this achievement and one of my girl’s 40th Birthday we planned a girls trip to Las Vegas, I figured I worked like a Hebrew slave half the year the least I could do was finally get myself to Sin City and let my hair down. Our trip was awesome and I will definitely go back again.

During all of this time, sometimes your year doesn’t always have happy endings, for me I lost two very special people, One whom I loved very much and who always made me feel like her own (even though I am through blood), every time I visited the family Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving won’t be the same, but our family remains connected and I have my Aunt Thelma to thank for that.

The other, my closest girlfriend’s mother was literally like a mother to us all growing up, her untimely departure really took a toll on me for weeks, and it really made me realize how much we need to appreciate those in our lives, yet still encouraging us to live our lives the way we see fit, and to not allow those on the outside regardless of their beliefs or opinions to influence our personal journey in life.

For me I don’t learn any one lesson in just a particular year, I am a learner of things gradually through time, some of these learning experiences focus on people who walk in and out of your life, I have learned every year how to asses these individuals, the ones who are genuine, fake, pretentious, bi-polar, self absorbed, attention seekers, power hungry, humble, liars, etc.

The one great thing about evolving as an adult is that you learn how to classify these people, you learn that not every comment deserves a response; you learn to observe and say nothing and handle them on your own terms; you learn how to avoid gossip and allow them to ruin their own character; you learn how to not make people feel they are more important than you when they think they are, last but not least you learn to play the game of life. All these lessons I continuously learn and carry them over into a new year wiser.

So now I am 42!( I say with great enthusiasm) moving into 2019 there has been a lot of self reflection as I am sure the rest of you have done so. There were a lot of eye openers for me towards the end of 2018 and for that I am eternally grateful, it allowed me to think about what I want more for my future, spending time and seeing my siblings and other family members blissfully happy was one of these moments and I think to myself there are still good devoted people in this world, you have to open yourself up to new beginnings and change your present aura. You cannot be afraid of the future and expect to have it if you still hold on to the past.

Throughout 2018 I learned that it’s ok to put myself first and love me more, I learned that I have some of the most supportive friends and family in my life who are always there for me even when I crash burn, and for that I am eternally grateful. As I battled with a myriad of decisions, I decided that I would do things differently in 2019.

The thing about life is that nothing is ever promised to us, and so I have lived my life exactly how I think I should live it without caring about anyone’s expectations of me or judgement. With that being said, dance like no one is watching you, let go of the things that no longer serve or bring you happiness, embrace new beginnings, pursue more dreams and turn them into reality, never seek validation from anyone but yourself, work hard but play harder, 2019 just may be our year.

Let’s Get em in The 2019 Guys!!

Love E!


3 thoughts on ““The Level Up” – Reflections of the Past, Embracing The Future!

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