NEW YEAR, SAME ME.

Hello everyone. Yes, I know, it’s been a while. A lot has been going on. Time has not been on my side and at some point, I lost my motivation to do anything. As I get older I realize that life is a roller coaster. You can have so many ups and downs in such a short period of time. My mind slipped a few times because of this. A lot of days were rough. Mostly mentally. I would have a weird mood waking up and it would stick with me for the whole day. I can’t really explain what this mood is; I just know it had my mind state negative. Have you felt that way? When I told my grandmother about this feeling she said, “Everyone has those days. Some more than others.” So I assume we all do.
This year I want to live life to the fullest. I want to set a tone now for my future. I want something to show for my hard work. I think in the past I never celebrated anything I would do. I was just going day by day. Everything was “normal” to me. Nothing I did meant anything special to me. This year I want to do things differently. I’m treating myself. Self-care is REALLY important. I want to take care of me, my mental. I want to look in the mirror and not only love who I’m staring back at physically but I want to be happy for the person I’m becoming. I also want to take care of me. More doctor visits, gym/ hiking outings and more healthy eating habits. Take care of my foundation. I’m realizing that ERIKA is a collective not in individual.
We as a COLLECTIVE is realizing that you are more than you. You’re a worker, a family member, a parent etc. You are powerful. You mean something. You’re a piece of a foundation. This isn’t me putting pressure on anyone. This is me simply telling you that you are something. Every time I feel like I’m no one special I have to remind myself of this. Without you, something and/ or even someone won’t operate right. Thoughts like this motivate me to push through. My goals when I created my blog was to get my thoughts out and to give my audience a voice. Not only a voice but an ear to listen and even a shoulder to lean on. Last year I had quite a few people express to me how my blog is making an impact. Encouraging words are always great.
New Year, same me. I’m not changing. I’m just growing. I’m being a better me. A more motivated me. A more spiritual me. A more confident me. A more positive me. I’ve grown to realize being me makes ME happy. Being something I’m not only misguides me. It makes you lost. That’s not a feeling I don’t want to have anymore. I want to do the things I enjoy and I want to spread love to my foundation. I want to be a great me. I want to support my love ones in their endeavors. I want to make new friends and cherish the ones I already have. I want this New Year to be filled with positivity. I’m motivated this year and I can’t wait to take you all on this journey! #Thisiswhatdepressionlookslike

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Story Submitted by: Ja’miah Harris

gagh

Staying with a man you no longer love just to say your not alone. I remember being in a relationship with this verbally abusive guy. He would curse at me ,call me out of my name, and even cheated on me. Yet I still stayed. I stayed with him two years  the first year was good and the second year was hell. He would criticize how I dressed ,how I talked, the things I’d do. Whenever he be around my friends he would talk negatively. Deep down  I knew I had to break up with him, but my insecurities would win every time. I’d second guess my self and try to focus on the potential he had . He had a job,he likes helping others,he was real loving when it came to his family so I thought one day he would eventually be like that with me. As days weeks and months went on the verbal abuse happened more frequently and the more love and care I showed him the less I had for myself I gained more weight stopped caring about how I looked until one day I looked myself in the mirror and realized I haven’t been me . I haven’t been true to myself . I would give great advice to my friends and family about what true love was and how a good man will do this or that but to my own life I realized I became blind and settle for less than I deserved. God took the mirror and made me look at myself cause he knew I could lie and hide the truth from everyone except me. I took time away from my then boyfriend to analyze why I was so willing to settle for this emotionally draining relationship he took and I gave but never got anything back my hands and heart were empty. I had to ask why I set myself up why did I settle. Then it hit me. It was because I didn’t love myself. I didn’t love myself enough to fix myself up to keep myself looking good and doing the things I like to do. I was too busy giving my time and love away to the wrong person. After praying and praying God showed me the man he would have for me but he wouldn’t bring him to my life to love me till I loved me and loved God more. So I dumped that guy and decided to focus on me I lost weight went to church changed my style a bit and got back to loving me and especially my God. I told God I will be celibate till I get married if only had let me meet my husband. After many prayers crying learning more about myself my purpose and just before I had planned to let go of my hopes and dreams of having the right man, my husband my soulmate . We stumbled across each other just by a happy coincidence of setting up an online dating account. I don’t know how this is for or if this was helpful at all but this is one of my stories of depression and how I gradually over came it #thisiswhatdepressionlookslike

Happy birthday mom. ❤️

Hey mom,

First and foremost, happy birthday! This is the day that you were brought in the world and I’ll always celebrate that. You’re the reason I’m here. I still miss you . You’re like a best friend to me . I could tell you anything without judgement. I miss that. It’s a trait that’s hard to find in people. Last year was a long year, but I made it through. I work a lot. I enjoy staying busy as you know. Like you told me before, I’m enjoying my money I make and I’m also saving . This has been my first full year I only worked One job and I’m proud of myself. I also have a new boyfriend. He’s such a great guy. You’d love him. He’s a Scorpio like me. You know I love scorpios lol. He treats me like he should, I definitely know my worth now. I know I told you before about having kids before 30 but my life journey has changed since I told you that. I’m perfectly fine with waiting til after 30. I’m 27 and I’m just discovering myself . I’m perfectly fine with that and I know you would be too. I think I might have found my life partner. He makes me see life in a different light. I’ve definitely grown since being with him. I thank God for him .

Last year was the year of forgiveness and growth. I was going through a lot mentally. I took off from school because my head wasn’t in the game. I promise you that’ll go back. I want to be focus when I do so. I like the work I do but I want more . I deserve more. I work really hard. I want to make you proud even though you always told me no matter what I do you’ll be proud . I’m coming out of my shell too. My boyfriend Djs and I manage him. When he first asked me I was nervous but after booking him I realized that I enjoyed doing that kind of work. Fashion and music have both been something I loved and I thank God I’m working in both. I also have a blog now. You know I love writing. I share my stories about me dealing with depression and I been getting great feedback. I can’t believe I could reach others and make them feel comfortable enough to tell me things that they went through. It’s a great movement. Malik was concerned at first when he saw my blog but now he embraces it. He miss you too. He grieves differently. He’s not comfortable enough with visiting you yet and I understand. He’ll get there. I know it shocks you that me and him are so close . We couldn’t stand each other lol. We have a lot of similarities and love for each other and our relationship grew because of this. Derick and I too. He’s more to himself than us but he’s opening up and I love it. I love my brothers . I haven’t seen Semaj recently but I do love him just as much as my other brothers. You have great kids . You did good. My grandmother raised me like you wanted and I thank you both for everything. I have so much more to say but I’ll save it for a later time. I love you always and I can’t wait to see you again. I’m enjoying my time down here so hopefully not soon but when God is ready I will be too ❤️

Love your only daughter,

Erika Starr Hale

Toxic Audio.

Hey guys!! I recorded this piece because I wanted to let you know that it’s ok to let people go. This will be a series. I often tell people that you are who you hang out with. If you want to be a positive person, than you have to surround yourself with positive people. You can’t move forward holding on to relationships that drag you down.
I know first-hand how it is to let go of a friendship with someone that you’ve been friends with for a long time. When I was friends with her, I found myself mentally drained. For one, when she would tell me things she would do or say to others, I would often be disappointed and even disgusted in her actions. I wouldn’t do most things she was into, but I, as a friend, accepted her for who I perceived her to be. Two, I often found myself getting in arguments with people justifying her character. I believed in my heart she was a good person. I was so focused on the friend she use to be that I didn’t realized that she had changed for the worst. Once I snapped into my senses, I had to let her go. It was harder than any breakup I’ve went through but also more cleansing. It was a big weight lifted of my shoulders. I’m telling you this story so you can see that it’s not just me being judgmental. It’s me growing.

I would like to have an open discussion about this topic. Let me know what you thing and ways you handle toxic people in your life. We can agree to disagree.

Music: “Cozy in Bloom” (Album) 2018. By: Cozy Collective
If I had to recommend a couple of songs from this project it would be “Take me there” & “Dream”. Enjoy! #thisiswhatdepressionlookslike

Random. (Hey Guys)

Sometimes I forget about taking care of myself. I always get caught up with helping everyone accomplish what they want out of life. I don’t expect everyone to be like how I am either. People are going to be selfish and let you put your dreams on the back burner if you let them. Not just anyone, but some of the people you’re really close to….
Yesterday I was thinking about the stuff I’ve done this year and realized that none of it truly benefited me. I been working on others’ goals and my dreams were getting lost. In the mist of this, I forgot what it was that I actually wanted to accomplish. I often forget because I want my love ones to succeed. Writing was my first love, reading being close second. It often calms me and could never do anything to hurt me. I realized today that putting them two on the back burner is why I’m never truly happy. I can’t ever express myself properly because I’m over shadowed by others hopes and dreams.
When I decided to write a few things today, I was really calm. I was in my element and I felt good about it. I remembered why I decided to blog in the first place. I wanted to express myself in a way that others, who related, would be comfortable enough to express themselves too. I often tell my peers to start something, whether it’s a business, a blog, YouTube channel etc. Have something for you created by you; something that you can make how you’ll like. Self-expression is important when trying to keep your sanity.
I love being around others. I love doing what others like and learning something new. I love seeing people get out their comfort zones and expressing themselves. It’s time I expect others to give me that same energy. We’re not working as a team if everything is one sided. I’m done settling. I’m done sitting on the sideline while others accomplish their goals. I love and support my love ones, but I have to do what’s best for me. I can’t isolate my dreams anymore. We have to support our peers as well as do what we want to be happy. It’s all about balance. Once you learn that, then you’ll gain the real happiness you’ve been seeking. #thisiswhatdepressionlookslike