Things I’m Passionate About: The Short List

flower

In no particular order:

10. The treatment and identification of children who speak dialects and other languages in the scope of special education.

9. The #BlackandMissing, including those young people forced into sex trafficking.

8. Writing a book/ Writing in General

7. Autism

6. Food and Cooking

5. Traveling off-the-beaten-path

4. Lack of diversity in providers of speech-language pathology services

3. Adoption

2. Family in the scope of mental health. My own commitment to self-care and self-awareness.

1. Books. But fiction is better. ūüôā

And one more: cultivating and maintaining my friendships.

What are some things you are passionate about?

Signature

Things I’m Passionate About: The Short List

Adjusting My Crown (5 Year Hair Journey)

Hair is a big deal to me. I’ve been natural for a bit over 10 years (which ¬†means I don’t use perms in my hair) however sometimes I find it difficult to make drastic hair changes and try new styles without damaging my own natural curl pattern too much. I love short cuts. I especially love straight-hair pixie cuts (think Halle Berry.) It is very difficult to maintain these cuts when you’re not very good at styling your own hair and when you don’t have a perm. This is the shortest I’ve come to a straight short cut, a bob from 2011/2012.

2011.JPG
Circa April/May 2011/2012

I had a texturizer in my hair then, which is how I maintained the style with the least amount of effort on my behalf. The texturizer made it easier to straighten my hair and kept it straight in the humid summer. I miss that style but I decided to keep the real harsh chemicals away from my hair. I’m also very partial to short hair period, especially in the summer time.

I wanted to chronicle my hair since my move to the DMV area. It’s been 5 years that I’ve been in the area, beginning in DC for graduate school. Here’s my hair journey from 2012.

Aug 2012
Faux hawk AUGUST 2012

I got accepted into Howard University and that was THE NEWS of 2012 for me. I was starting graduate school at 27 years old on a fellowship and was moving out of New York for the first time in my adult life. A drastic cut was necessary. A new start required a freeing of myself, a detachment from who I was to make room for who I was to become.

feb 2013June 2013May 2013Nov 2013

Above was the growth in 2013 (February-November.) I survived my first year in graduate school, I visited the beautiful island of Haiti, I witnessed a good friend get married and I gained more confidence in my clinical and professional skills.

2014 brought graduation (YAY!) and at end of October/ early November, #ISwipedRight and meet my current boyfriend. I also covered my blonde highlights with black. 2014 was a great year.

September 2015 brought continued hair growth and the tried and true pony tail. The problem with long hair for me is my “go-to” is the ponytail. The ponytail is A) boring and B) forehead-licious.

By 2016 I needed something new. I also missed the courageous person who just walked into babershops, under the bewildered eyes of men and women, and got rid of her hair. I chopped, but not too much.

After the chop, I also needed some bold color.

img_4285

2017 has been a low key year in terms of hair. I’ve been focused more on better maintenance habits (namely more conditioning), and growing my hair out. I think I’m finally ready to grow out my hair without major cuts for at least 2 years. I’ve been inspired by this beautiful hair blogger named Jewellianna whose hair is envy-worthy. I learned about her channel when I was reading about how some guy cut inches of her hair off and she’s been recovering from that loss. Right now, my bob is growing out which means the back of my hair is shorter than the front. The back takes thee longest to grow out, but I’m patient. I also know I want to eventually either get some layers in my hair when I get more length in the back. For now, I’ve been enjoying my big hair through twist-outs and rods as well as occasional blow-outs. I’m excited for what’s next!

2017 July
July 2017

Thanks for joining me on the journey!

Signature

 

Adjusting My Crown (5 Year Hair Journey)

I’m Nesting…

Hi you all lovely readers!! I’ve neglected to write in sometime, but I’m glad to see my page visits haven’t totally flatlined… Since my last day of work in a school-based setting (June 13th) I had searched and searched for apartments/townhomes/condos, packed and purged almost ALL of the paperwork I was carrying around since 2011 (finally!), signed a lease, and am ready for the next chapter. My boyfriend and I will be officially living together. We are moving to a new state. We have come a long way to get here. I feel blessed.

The glo’ up is real! Summer is officially here and I am ready to eat all the foods. I am ready to ride on some roller coasters, drink some wine, visit a new place, frolic in my bathing suit, and make plans for the next major trip. I am ready to celebrate 32! SO many great things to look forward to as I enjoy the summer off. I started this blog when I was turning 26! It’s been 6 awesome years, and so many accomplishments since then.

So, back to the title of this post. No, I’m not pregnant (as far as I know…) I was trying to find the word for the intense feeling you get when you move into a new place and you want everything clean, readied and perfect! I am in love with our new condo! It has nothing in it and it’s perfect. We are not officially moving until next weekend but my feeling is because it’s already paid for… I want to be there right now, every minute, every hour…even if it’s sleeping on an air bed, drinking out of red Solo cups with no Wi-fi. I want to make the place my home. There should be a word for that. What do you think?

Minimalism-the-less-that-owns-you.

Besides that, this move has really gotten me to start thinking about what I really want for our space. I want a minimalist space. Right now, I don’t have minimalist tendencies so this is the issue (I currently have a mental list of the things we NEED for our space.) We get a clean slate with a new place and I really, really want a Less is More attitude and feel. I’ve started listening to the Minimalists podcast to guide me. There are so many perks to embracing this lifestyle; spending less, focusing on more important things, getting on track with finances and saving…I’ll keep ya’ll updated on the status.

In the meantime, I wish ya’ll a happy Fourth! ¬†Enjoy family, friends, and stay safe!

Cheers to new beginnings,

Signature

I’m Nesting…

What’s Rockin’ My World: Is it Over Yet?

stress.jpg

SO! It’s that time again. Close to the end of the school year, a busy time indeed. The school year ends ON TIME this year and we do not have to make-up snow days so I am ECSTATIC. Sort of. School year close out activities are not my favorite. I currently have running to-do lists in my head and I want a moment to breathe. But…gotta do therapy, enter daily notes, IEP meetings, testing, still filing documents. The fun moving never stops.

What am I lookin’ forward to?

  • I put in my resignation. I’m excited for what’s to come next.
  • We have a trip in a week! We get to go to Cali!
  • I love prepping for trips, and my hair has been dying for some attention. I’m thinking a trim is in order.
  • I am looking forward to moving out of my apartment and downsizing. To be free of all the “stuff” I’ve been holding on to for the past 5 years.
  • Wedding season.
  • June 12th aka LAST official day of school.
  • Having a weekend in which I don’t think about work.
  • The weather warming up. It hasn’t been feeling like spring at all!

What’s currently rockin’ your world?

What’s Rockin’ My World: Is it Over Yet?

Spiritual Laws for a Distracted World (Part 1)

Clear-your-mind-640x156.png

I’ve been trying to continually read and be intentional during this time off. I began reading The 7 Spiritual Laws of Success (thanks to Cliff for sharing the link) by Deepak Chopra. I usually don’t stick with books like these for long, something about the new terminology,¬†the synthesizing and then figuring out how to apply the suggestions to my life can be become a bit much. To be honest, I like things in plain language when it comes to self-help. But there were some things that spoke to me as soon as I started trying to decipher the wisdom in this book. The first Spiritual Law it touches on is the Law of Pure Potentiality and the difference between self-referral and object-referral.

To quote the book, to experience the pure “Self” or self-referral basically means that you refer to your own soul/spirit (not your ego) for a point of reference, as opposed to being affected by things around you. In object-referral, you guessed it (you’s smart!), you are not referring to Self, but are affected by objects; people, experiences, situations (a.k.a things you cannot control.) In self-referral you experience your true being (void of fear, full of respect and humility) and in object-referral you feel an intense need to control or to have “power” over those things that drive the ego. Cool. Makes sense. But how exactly do we operate in the Power of Self daily?¬†I’m glad you asked.

The first tip the book gives is…tapping into creativity through consciousness. What does this look like? Daily practicing of “silence, meditation and non-judgment.” Oh, sounds easy enough, right?

Silence. Withdrawing from speech and basically letting your mind run miles until eventually it quiets down. And it will.

How am I trying to apply these principles?

I already mentioned that I’m on a self-imposed Twitter break. This past week, I noticed myself just scrolling for scrolling’s sake and posting things just because a thought came to me. But what am I really talking about? Is it worth posting? Do I have to post everything I think about? Although I do prefer Twitter because I don’t spend hours on it, how much time am I really “not wasting” if I’m opening the app every 10 minutes because I’m wondering if I got a a new notification, or for FOMO(fear of missing out)? I don’t like the feeling of being addicted to the screen, or being out with friends and having to record everything we do. But what happens after I take 30 days off Twitter? I get right back on and build back up to the same habits that lead me here in the first place. Something has to change.

Besides the social media silence, I have experienced silence at home this past week. I’ve had minimal TV intake. By nature, I’m not a big TV watcher, I tend to prefer doing more creative things when I’m motivated. Sometimes I’m just overwhelmed and I need to do something that doesn’t require much effort, so I turn on the TV. I actually finished watching 13 Reasons Why on Netflix last night and I was disturbed by some of the scenes. What happened to the time when events were inferred and not necessarily filmed? I’m reminded that everything everyone is watching might trigger certain¬†things for me, and I should be more prudent before I consume. Same goes for the things we are subject to “auto-play” on Facebook, Twitter, and the like.

The book goes on to point out what silence brings out of us.

What happens when you go into this experience of silence? Initially your internal dialogue becomes even more turbulent. You feel an intense need to say things. I’ve known people who go absolutely crazy the first day or two when they commit themselves to an extended period of silence. A sense of urgency and anxiety suddenly comes over them. But as they stay with the experience, their internal dialogue begins to quieten. And soon the silence becomes profound. This is because after a while the mind gives up; it realizes there is no point in going around and around if you the Self, the spirit, the choice-maker are not going to speak, period. Then, as the internal dialogue quietens, you begin to experience the stillness of the field of pure potentiality.

Silence is powerful.¬†We lead very distracted lives. Can we control that? I believe so. It’s difficult, but it’s not impossible, if we are intentional.

-She

Spiritual Laws for a Distracted World (Part 1)

Staying Home, but not on Vacation

Every vacation at home is not necessarily a “stay-cation.” This week I got to stay in my house and do what I wanted. Except, I looked at my to-do list and it read all these things EYE didn’t necessarily want to do:

  • Finish Progress Reports
  • Work on IEP’s
  • Update my blog
  • Finish current book
  • Start a new book
  • Submit resignation
  • Take a break from Twitter
  • Finish listening to the podcast Missing Richard Simmons
  • Find a new OB/GYN

You get the idea… Basically, I’m still busy, just in a different setting. As far as how to manage the time, I tried my best to reduce my TV intake (even though I’m falling behind on a lot of shows!) and attempted to do the least-desirable things first. Well, that didn’t work out too well. I really wonder how people who work from home get anything productive done. I guess for money’s sake, it gets done.

Firstly, I looked around my apartment Tuesday and decided I could not relax in mess. I had to clean the living room, take care of the bathroom and finally clean out the trash bin (you know, get all in there and wash out those smells.) After that, I didn’t want to do anything else that day. I cooked the night before, so that covered us through Tuesday.

On¬†Wednesday, I overslept and was feeling off. I really hate waking up close to midday, as it feels like I almost lost the whole day. I talked to my cousin in Costa Rica, as she happened to take some “sick days” and is usually good with cheering me up. Then I texted my therapist (“I know I said I was taking a week off…but…”) I ate some cereal, however really did not have much appetite. I spent most of the day scrolling through Twitter, thinking, I really need a break from this. I caught up on some paperwork, and looked at my work email. There was a request in there. I dismissed it, annoyed.

Today, I woke up in a better mood. I took my braids out, put a little make-up on, time for a new vlog! I spent over an hour trying to get the video right, but my iPad and its shitty storage had another plan for me. Then I had to go from 12 minutes, to 8, to a little over 6 minutes. After the 6th take, I still posted the vlog. I’ve also started this new habit where I want to run around my complex at least 2 times a week. I know this will get a little harder as it gets warmer, but it’s a nice challenge as my complex is about 1.3 miles with hills and the like. Right now I’m doing a combo of fast walking and a little running. I’m hoping to build my stamina. So I ran today. And I was reminded how social media really takes us away from the moment before the moment even happens. For example, before I even laced my sneakers I thought about how I was gonna Snap my scenery. For Who? For the stalkers SnapChatters. For Why? Because. I want people to know I’m out here doing stuff. It’s all for show. So I’m back on a “scrolling” break.

I did cross some things off my list this week, but it was nothing close to a vacation or the most productive week off work. Just a break from waking up early, getting dressed, working my magic, and passing out after work. Which was needed, God knows.

Staying Home, but not on Vacation