As we celebrate Juneteenth today (148 years ago), what strides have you made to improve yourself, community, family and build a lasting heritage to leave to your children? We are people of color with a rich history. Are we living up to the standards that our martyrs have set, preached and lost their lives to allow us to have inalienable rights like everyone else. This question is for me, too! We need to be more community oriented, stress to our children the importance of education and respect, take our streets back, stop killing one another, demand drugs be removed out of our neighborhoods and away from our sons and daughters. We have a responsibility and we all know there is strength in numbers. Mentor a child. Help your sister and brother who are in need. It is our duty as a people to do so!!!
When You Feel…
When you feel like giving up-press forward
When you feel alone-look to the people who love and support you
When you feel discouraged-remember those words that uplift you
When you need strength-remember how far you’ve come
When you need anything-CALL ON GOD!
Blessings and be encouraged,
MY BEFORE AND AFTER PICTURES
Why do we worry? We worry because we don’t believe in a power that is greater than us. God orchestrates everything. It is not based on how many degrees you have or if you are poor or wealthy. There is one God. We depend on jobs and people to make us feel important. God does not not deal with your status; he deals with your mind, body and soul.
We trust Him when it is convenient. When things are going well, we forget about the One who has blessed us. Yet, when things in our live’s fall apart ,then and only then do we cry out to God.
Last year,I learned a very valuable lesson about trusting God. Two weeks prior to my hospitalization, I had sinus surgery; my sinuses were impacted so bad, that the MRI showed evidence of fluid in the sinuses and thickened mucous membrane. On January 14, 2011, I was taken by ambulance and rushed to Dekalb Medical Hospital because I was too weak to make it to the prestigious Emory University Hospital. All I remember about that cold snowy night was telling my husband that I felt funny and I used my nebulizer twice. He called 911. The paramedics placed me on the stretcher, placed the oxygen mask over my face, wheeled me to the ambulance and placed me inside. I kept taking the mask off ;afterwards, everything was a total blank.
I arrived at the hospital. The doctors realized I was hallucinating because of low oxygen levels. In addition, I had a partially collapsed lung and pneumonia in the other one. I was panicking and screaming because they asked me if I had ever been intubated. Well, according to the doctors, nurses and my husband, I was hysterical and I told them to “get away from me and I will not be intubated again.” I was not conscious of my erratic behavior. Later, the doctors told my husband that I was very ill and I would not remember the incident. I was in ICU for nine days and a regular room for three days.
The respiratory therapist put me in a medically induced coma for five days so my body would heal . My husband stood vigil; they had to make him go home and get some rest. He was concerned that if I woke up no one would be there. They had to reiterate that the coma was controlled by them and he would be notified. Finally, I was taken out of the medically induced coma but I was still intubated. Confusion set in; I realized I was in the hospital but I didn’t know why so I started crying.
My sister, Tammy flew from Dallas, Texas to Atlanta, Georgia to check on me . My husband, Vargus did not know if I would live or die but he prayed and read the bible to me. Then, I heard my sister’s voice, turned my head and tried to sit up. They had me restrained because I was pulling the tube. Then, I tried to speak and instead I gagged. I was terrified because I was trying to figure out why she was in Atlanta and why I was in the hospital. I started kicking my legs and of course the monitors went crazy: my blood pressure rose, my heart was racing and I was confused. I lost five days of my life.
No one wanted to tell me what happened; they felt I would not handle the severity of my condition well. My sister begged the nurse to take one of the restraints off and promised that she would not allow me to touch the tubes. Tammy and Vargus told me to calm down and that I was okay. How was I okay when I’m hooked to a respirator, intubated and weak? I cried until I couldn’t cry anymore. Later that day, the nurse told me very little about my diagnosis and prognosis; however, it was enough to keep me calm. One of the nurses, Helen sang daily to me “Nobody Greater” by Vashawn Mitchell and I began to believe that He’s the greatest.
On day seven (Friday), they tried to remove the tube but it was stuck in my throat. Finally on Sunday morning, the respiratory therapist came in, cut the switch off, released the tube and it came out. I was excited but it was difficult for me to speak so I had to write everything.
Then, I remember when my sister and I were growing up we learned the alphabet in sign language. So , that’s how I communicated with my sister because; no one else knew it. I kept signing “I love you” and she interpreted to my husband. I felt so much love from my husband and sister . Of course, my children came after I was released out of the hospital. I did not want them to see me. I’d lost 29 lbs. in 12 days and I looked like hell. Nevertheless, they gave me the courage to live because I was emotionally unstable. It was so traumatic!
I had a long road to recovery; I could not walk because my lower extremities were weak and I had difficulty speaking. My mother-in-law and husband took care of me. From February to April, my physical therapist Crystal and R.N. Rhoshima helped me with the healing process and I am indebted to them for their love and care. I went back to the hospital this year to personally thank everyone who took care and prayed for me. I cried tears of joy and I prayed for the individual who was in the same room in ICU.
A friend of ours said,” I was so worried about you being at DeKalb Medical.” My response to her was God does not limit himself to certain hospitals; he also visits DeKalb Medical plus my life was saved and I have no complaints. My situation was not a disaster; I experienced God’s healing power.
As a result, I lost 61 lbs. God healed my body and I am no longer a diabetic, have hypertension and after 14.5 years of steroid dependence for asthma, I am free. It took those series of events to genuinely trust God will all my heart and might. He allowed me to live and He made me whole.
Today, I don’t worry because I know for myself that God takes care of His own.
Are you really happy with yourself? Is your happiness based on your economic status, material wealth, level of income or someone else i.e. partner? According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the definition of happiness (happy) is enjoying or characterized by well-being and contentment; having or marked by an atmosphere of good fellowship and expressing, reflecting, or suggestive of happiness. For some women, we have been conditioned to be dependent on others for our happiness.
RATIONALE: Happiness is making choices or decisions that can increase your joy. It comes from within. You make the decision to be happy no matter what circumstances you are facing. In other words, even in a storm there is always a silver lining. Happiness is knowing that the situation is temporary and there is a valuable lesson that will improve the quality of your existence.
TESTIMONY: I remember in my 30’s and early 40’s , I based my happiness on the way others treated me and/or if I had someone in my life, I depended on them to make me feel happy, whole and complete. But, when the relationships ended, I would become depressed because I felt there was something wrong with me so I was not worthy of being happy.I was always afraid to be alone. I would watch couples holding hands at the mall or watch them have an intimate moment at a restaurant and wish it were me. I found it hard to be happy for someone else because I was so miserable.
Then, one day I made the decision to stop placing my happiness in someone else’s care. I was miserable and entangled with fear of men leaving me and they always did. I had to learn to love and value myself. It was a process. So, I unearthed those skeletons, looked at each situation for what it really was and I started enjoying being alone and not feeling lonely. I asked God to teach me to appreciate my life and to stop being a victim of my circumstances. I began reading self-help books; one of my favorite reads was Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyers. I also went to counseling. The greatest lesson I learned about being happy was if I radiated the love of God, it was reciprocated from my family, friends, and colleagues. I spoke love and acceptance over my life. I volunteered at the nursing home, took interest in the elderly at my home church and I did not have time to think about “poor little Gwen.” Someone else needed my love and I was able to give it without reservation.
MANTRA: Do something different; try new things. Enjoy taking yourself out to eat or to the movies. Get involved with an organization or women’s group. The best medicine for learning to be happy is volunteering and seeing that your situation is really not that bad. Take a walk, pray, get enough sleep, love on yourself, have a sense of accomplishment, reconnect with your friends, get a massage and most of all choose to love yourself unconditionally.
Today, I choose to be happy. My happiness is not based on someone else but____________. I will open my heart to others who are in need. I will forgive______ so that my spirit is free to receive love.
- Me, Myself, And I? No Thanks: Why Are Women Happier In A Relationship? (madamenoire.com)
- What is Happiness? (coca-cola.com)
- Women and Relationships Day 1: Pledge (gwenrelationshipsstartwithyou.wordpress.com)
- Single not desperate (mzsistagrl.wordpress.com)
There are so many women who don’t love themselves because of society’s perception of BEAUTY or because someone has told them they are unattractive. What is beauty? According to Merriam-Webster, beauty is the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit. So, beauty is not only physical appearance but the spirit that exudes inside of you.
Somewhere in youth, a girl has internalized every negative word that a cruel person has spoken to them and it has carried over into womanhood. So they internalize those words and are so uncomfortable with themselves that they resort to cosmetic surgery not realizing that the inner woman is still the same. The work begins on the inside. So, no amount of surgery will change the way you feel about yourself until you embrace the inner you.
“My primary relationship is with myself – all others are mirrors of it. As I learn to love myself, I automatically receive the love and appreciation that I desire from others. If I am committed to myself and to living my truth, I will attract others with equal commitment.” Shakti Gawain, Reflections in the Light
Every relationship you will ever have with someone else will mirror one or more negative aspects of the relationship you have with yourself. That’s why it is so important to embrace, love and accept your uniqueness. According to the Law of Attraction, we draw to us the manifestations of what we feel. So, in order for you to draw in loving people, you need to know how to love yourself first.
The formula for loving yourself is not to accept or say negative things about who you are as a person. Always affirm and reaffirm that you are valuable and have worth. Speak love over yourself until it becomes a part of you.
“Love yourself—accept yourself—forgive yourself—and be good to yourself, because without you the rest of us are without a source of many wonderful things.” ~Leo F. Buscaglia
RSWY Mantra: I must know my worth, love myself unconditionally and not allow anyone or any situation to make me doubt my worthiness. I radiate because I am comfortable in my own skin. No one has the power to control my feelings, thoughts or beliefs. I know who I am.
Start loving yourself today!
What can you love about yourself today that you may have struggled with before?
Diane, you continue to walk by faith! What God has for you is for YOU!!! All the imps, critics, naysayers, backstabbers and liars can’t block God’s blessings. My mantra is ,”when one door is closed, God ALWAYS opens MORE doors.” There is a business/company that needs your expertise. Pray for your enemies and allow God to deal with the rest! Praying for you!!!
My additional $.02:
“No place, person or condition is your supply.”
Yes, I am on a roll!
Last year, January 14, 2011, God healed my body. Since then, I’ve had gall bladder surgery; I was diagnosed with pneumonia and was in the hospital in Houston, TX. from last Tuesday to Saturday. I flew home tonight. Do you think for one minute that I buy into the notion that I am NOT healed? NO! I trusted man with my livelihood and feared the worst all the time. When I could not wipe my butt, walk, talk or feed myself, I had to look up to God! He healed me! He restored me! He made me whole!
After 14 years of teaching, I was told that I was not a “good fit.” Those who have worked with me, KNOW that I was a caring and compassionate teacher who had skills!!! Yes, I got angry at the beginning. Then, I remembered WHO I belonged to and each day I went to work with love and forgiveness in my heart; I taught with everything I had until the last day of school.
Then, God placed Relationships Start With You on my heart. He chose me! So, I am starting a new phase in my life and I am excited; I will not look back because it is the past.
Why worry? Don’t you know God is big enough to see you through?
Okay, you may pass around the collection plate!
Love ya’ll!!! Goodnight!