fifteen things from 2015.

I think I’ve already told you how important dates are to me. The start of a month, the anniversary of a major (to me) event, etc. So I’m sure it comes as no surprise that the beginning of a new year puts me in a pretty retrospective place. I write letters to my old self, I say goodbyes to others, and I look to the new year with hopes of being better than the last. This post may be a bit premature, but I have it on my heart.

Since March I’ve been calling 2015 a year of reconstruction. 2014 was hell for me, so once I made it out alive I promised to make all necessary changes to ensure that 2015 was my best yet. I don’t know if I can say that it was, but whatever. Here we go:

 

1. Don’t be ashamed when shit doesn’t go as planned.

While I’m always happy to share my experiences to help others, I feel like this lesson is applicable to every single person at any point in life. Sometimes things just aren’t meant to be, and that is totally fine. Any person who truly loves you will be in support of your efforts, regardless of how much your journey changes.

2. Some people ARE irreplaceable.

Ok, so “irreplaceable” may be a bit much but I will say that no matter the reason for the distance, you will miss certain people.  This year my “you crossed me once and now you’re dead” attitude pretty much disappeared and I felt myself missing people that pride told me I shouldn’t. Even when the chapters remained closed, I had to deal  with the affects of their absence.

3. What you want and need won’t always be the same, but that doesn’t mean you should settle.

I think this one is pretty self explanatory. If anything is for you, that’s exactly what it will be. You don’t have to settle for the things you actually need.

4. You’ll never become what you say you’ll never be.

Telling yourself what you can’t do is more damaging than learning through trial and error. This year more than ever I learned the power of the tongue and how we have the power to create our reality. Now, I’m not saying that you can shout “I WANT TO BE RICH” to the heavens and wake up with money to blow the next day but I am telling you to watch what you put into the Universe. You could be the only thing blocking your blessing.

5. There’s great solace in silence.

In my darkest hours I detached myself from the world and just about everything in it. Though it wasn’t the best course of action at that time, I’ve benefited from those quiet moments greatly. I now speak when I actually have something to say and am comfortable with silence. This newfound trait also prevents me from having to apologize when after saying some wild shit haphazardly but of course, I’m still a work in progress…which brings me to my next point.

6. You are entirely too old to be arguing in the street.

This is a very specific statement that applies to quite a few events this year. I’m a hot head and everyone knows it, but at 24 there is absolutely nothing to gain from showing someone that I’m “not the one.” There is also nothing cute about fights, arguments, or threatening to spit on a manager at Joe’s Crabshack because she wants to be a condescending prick. I mean seriously, do you know how hard it is to explain why you’re banned from a community establishment?

7. None of someone is better than some of someone.

I say this  often and will continue to say it until there is no breath left in my body. You deserve the love you desire. What you seek from love can mean sweet texts and soft sex or booty calls in bathroom stalls. Regardless of what it looks like for you, YOU DESERVE THAT SHIT. All of it. Every single bit of what you want and if someone is not willing to give it to you, let them go. There is no sense in waiting around in hopes that they’ll become what you need someday. Being selfish with your time, love, and self is your God-given right. Don’t let God (or me) down by sacrificing that just to say you have somebody.

8. Trust the timing of your life.

Every single time things don’t go my way I yell “WHYYYY” to the skies internally…only to have the reason revealed to me once I can actually handle that truth. I feel the need to control everything and often I cannot understand why God, the Universe and I are in constant disagreement. So understand that this message, me saying trust the timing and your process, is advice to both us.

9. Keyshia Cole will never unblock you for the comment about chicken dinners. 

I really don’t know how my chicken dinner comment even reached Keyshia Cole to piss her off so much. I mean, she even got her fellow Hoodrat Tears and Hennessy sister K. Michelle to block me too and I’m in complete disbelief. “Love” was the ringtone on my chirp phone for Christ sakes. People just can’t understand that fans are flawed too. Whatever.

10. You’re a star even when your hotline doesn’t bling.

I’ve loved boys for as long as I can remember. One day I was into barbies and then BOOM, puberty struck and cute boys became my obsession. I liked them, they liked me, and I liked attention. I liked the rush of waiting for a text or call. I enjoyed meeting them and flashing my coy smile that makes them believe I’m some kinda goddess on earth. The “chase” has always been more interesting to me than sex and relationships…well at least it was until recently.

When I hated who I was inside, I felt stripped of every single piece of “beauty” some random guy would compliment. I questioned how a person could claim to be into someone damaged and that’s when I realized how superficial these “thrills” were. How much I sucked at raw exchanges and emotions when I couldn’t hide behind fake grins and foolishness. Treating men like pawns in my strange games hurt no one more than me of course and I didn’t feel empowered by trying to be “better than the boys”; I felt like a complete idiot. I finally forced myself to stop using people for my own entertainment after feeling like a puppet for someone else. When you don’t really want anything from someone, just leave them the fuck alone.

11. Do not underestimate the power of friendship.

This is always on my list. Why? Because every time I think my friends have loved me to full capacity they do something to show me how full their hearts are and how grateful I am to be surrounded by a circle of superwomen. I don’t have to call you by name, but you know how much you mean to me. Thank you.

12. People are always watching.

Having people come to me and say what my words mean to them is a feeling that will never get old. I have written many things and I still have no words to express how much support and acknowledgment of my work means. I have contemplated ending this so many times (just ask Steph) and the love is really all that keeps me going sometimes. So if you ever come to me about it and I respond with a huge Big Mama hug, please don’t be alarmed. You’ve been here for my worst days…you are family.

13. “Be the girl you love”

It’s so important that to me that I can face the person I see in the mirror. Even when my actions are not accepted by others, I need to know that I did the best for who I was at the time. As long as I can always say that I acted in an effort to make myself happy without harming anyone else, I can sleep at night and be proud of who I’ve become.

14. It’s ok to forgive. 

I have never in my life been a forgiving person and I didn’t realize how bitter it made me. How I carried so many bags filled with hurt just to say that I “cut people off” instead of working through my issues and extending forgiveness to people when necessary. Let’s place emphasis on “when necessary.

15. Maybe writing is for you? 

Writing scares the fuck out of me. I questioned my ability because I can only do it when I actually feel something. Like, could I really do articles or pieces about things that mean nothing to me? and if I can’t, does that mean I’m not a “real” writer. My answer to that is now “no.” I’m writer because I feel the things I share. I’m a writer because when I hear comparisons to others I get upset and ask people to keep in mind that I’m an artist and I’m sensitive about my shit. I’m a writer because you believe in me enough to read this and lastly, I’m a writer because I finally believe in myself.

-Rif.