St Louis:Science Museum:King Tut (Pt. 3)

20170622_142245

My thoughts when I walked through the automated/self automated guide of the King Tut Exhibition at the Science Museum in St. Louis: Mind Blowing! It was so engaging my 16 year old and children that look to be about 8 years old were fully engaged.

 

20170622_143756

20170622_151540

~Nikki

St. Louis Love 630 ft up (Pt. 2)

20170620_161125
My view from within the Arch. Photo Cred: Nicole Jackson of Posh Photography
20170620_161434.jpg
Illinois is over there somewhere!
20170620_161159
I like this shot. We could see pools on top of some buildings. (Must be nice!) Photo Cred: Nicole Jackson of Posh Photography

It was my daughter’s idea to go inside and up The Arch. Initially, I was going to let her and my niece go, but decided I had to go to insure their safety. The next thing you know, my brother and nephew were game and we all went. It was crazy being inside this tiny pod that seated all 5 of us. It was tight quarters and they ask if you are claustrophobic! It was weird as you could hear the ticking and clicking, and feel the bend of the arch on your way up. The Arch sways about a few inches on regular days, but up to 9 inches on windy days. Thank God it was not a windy day! Our ears popped a little, but once we got to the top…those views were lovely!

~Nikki

St. Louis Love (Pt. 1)

20170619_130356
Photo Credit: Nicole Jackson of Posh Photography

Last week I went to St.  Louis for a convention with my mother and some of my family. While my mother and I went to classes and lectures, there was still plenty of time to explore and enjoy some of the things St. Louis had to offer like Sweetie Pies aka The Crust! The day we went Oprah Winfrey’s camera crew was there filming for the show Sweetie Pies that comes on OWN. We had to sign waivers and take pictures. The line was down the block, but it was well worth all of that standing when I got my fried chicken and sweet tea to perfection! LOL!!! I made sure I wore comfortable shoes because I knew it would be a line. We also went shopping at one of the outlets that day. I was beyond tired each day so I never got to unpack my swimsuit and get in the hot tub. My family was really supportive, understanding on this trip and did everything on this trip to make sure I was comfortable (I have Rheumatoid Dis-ease). I also did not overextend myself much. I slept like a log each nite and was refreshed each morning. Oh and I was cute each day in class! I also met some wonderful people I hope to see next year in Oklahoma.

19400431_10156326654148266_4959679561704119581_o
My twist out turned out perfect this day in St. Louis! 😀 It was photo worthy!
19553978_10156367672598266_7211390385112040949_n
Found these at the Nine West Outlet for $30

I’ve been to St. Louis many times as a child and a few times as an adult. It was always a rush as an adult. Six flags, zoo, eat, relax at the hotel, go home. But, this conference allowed me to see St. Louis in a different light. There was much more to see and do for a week and I did not feel stressed or rushed. However, I must return for a week without a conference and do much more! I’m an advocate for visiting a place a few times and doing something different each time.

20170619_131748 (2)
Martin Luther King Bridge

 

20170619_204905.jpg
Magnificent Sunset on my first night in St. Louis. Photo Credit Nicole Jackson of Posh Photography

I took a photo of the sunset each nite from my hotel room.

~Nikki

The Language & Attitude of Believers:Oh Ye Tares!

lessons-from-the-parables-the-parable-of-the-tares-gods-field

The language and attitude of a believer in the body of Christ should be a language and an attitude that reflects Christ. It should be evident that you are absorbing the teaching and preaching going forth in that church. You represent Christ. You represent your church. You should want to represent the best version of yourself.

If your language and attitude is baptized in negativity it is because you have heartened your heart and the Word of God can not penetrate your rocky, stony heart! Every time the church or others want to do something you open your mouth to speak: “That will not happen. They don’t want to advance. They will never be able to do that! This church is not going anywhere!”

Dear, tares of the Church, don’t you want to be a wheat? We are going to grow up around you and God will remove your negative, bad energy spirit. How God will do it? I am not sure. But it will be done.

I wonder why these people sit in a church with such a terrible attitude and such language of gloom and doom. And as I mentioned it is because their hearts are hardened, they do not allow the Word of God to penetrate their heart, they are tares! Either you are going to continue to speak this way and produce this in your own life and in your church making it difficult for the church to advance or you are going to do the WORK of changing your stony heart and funky disposition. Don’t be a HINDERANCE to the body of Christ, be a HELP!

~Nikki

Rich and Wealthy Now

19055580_10156291397873266_8589554370167577224_o

My heart is just filled with gratefulness and love this morning. Like up to the top. I even feel a little misty eyed. Thinking about how rich and wealthy we already are if we would take the time to stop and smell the roses. Totally immerse ourselves in the moment of a conversation with a friend without looking at our phones or immerse ourselves totally in the pleasure of a cup of tea or glass of wine. If we would look into the eyes of our family when we see them and hug them each time with all of our might. If we would reminisce about the fun times of childhood we would laugh and feel good about all of those good memories…rich irreplaceable moments with friends and cousins. Wealthy in our small homes and apartments surrounded by objects we adore and that are priceless and meaningful to us even if we got them from a dollar store or if it were passed down to us or given to us by a friend. Wealthy in the events of accomplishments big and small, public and private. Wealthy in nature. Yes, money cometh. Yes, wealth and riches is in your house. But just know, we are rich and wealthy in the now. -Nicole Jackson

In the MEANTIME of A SET TIME

771094fa293ee20c72ce587255a9f7ed

There is an appointed time for certain things and no matter how bad you want it to hurry up and arrive, no matter what you try to do to speed up the time, it’s not going to get there any faster. God, the Universe, has a set time for certain manifestations, destinies, freedoms, and victories.

I remember wanting to be free from a certain contract and it took almost a year because the person refused to sign a release form. It was hell waiting it out. Until, I decided it would get here when it got here. I went on doing the best I could to live my life, focus on the good times, and being a mother.

A few days ago I received the exact court date of my hearing for disability. I didn’t know how I felt about it as I was hoping the judge would approve without me going to court. It’s been 2 years and 6 months. The proof is before him. I opted to have a neutral feeling about it until I could process my emotions. I’d already talked to my therapist about my feelings. So, the next day, I decided to claim it as a day of victory and not obsess over it. It’s the set time, an appointed time, that I cannot change. I have to remind myself that I and my legal team have done everything in the natural. It is up to God to do the supernatural at the appointed time.

~Nikki

Adults Who’ve Survived the Critic Parent

02c48c47679a31f7e5c532fbf509d7a8
The artist name appears on the photo. 

Some of us grew up in loving and caring environments and some of us did not. Some of us grew up in loving and caring environments that were flawed on some level. Sometimes deeply flawed or sometimes tumultuous depending on the problems the parent or parents had. It could have been an ill parent, an unfaithful parent, it could have been arguing all the time, or the parent could be one that came and went. Today I want to speak to those that grew up with the Critic Parent. The one that ALWAYS had something negative to say or critiqued everything you did or every choice you made.

I grew up with one. Every choice you made, there was a better one. When you did your chores, there was always something you could have did better or forgot. When you did things to try to impress that parent, they were not all that impressed. Each time you did your hair or got dressed, they would frown up at your attire or choice and I am not talking about the typical parent-child disagreement about clothes and hair. This is beyond that. This is a tear down of the child. A ripping of their power to make choices and to feel good about their choices and themselves. All of this is about that and the child needing to be supported, guided, and free to be an individual. I felt singled out from all of my siblings. The boys in the family didn’t have this problem, but the only sister I had said she would experience it from time to time, but as soon as she was able to she left the house.

The constant stares, criticism, correction, and questioning of everything I did, said, or chose literally destroyed my self esteem. I was already an outsider with my red hair as an African American child, my brainy self, my extreme shyness, and artys personality. I wasn’t accepted in many circles and to be home and not accepted was traumatic to my sensitive soul. Did you know, that those who are artists and creative types have a spectrum on the emotional scale as more sensitive than normal and that can swing to more depressed than normal? I had no idea until I started seeing a psychologist. My mother always said “If you just look at me, I would start crying.” I wonder if she created that insecurity within me or fostered it. I don’t know.

I second guess everything I did, said, and every choice I made as a young adult. It caused me to be paralyzed with fear. I had no confidence. If this is normal mines was twice as bad. Even after choices were made I worried that I was wrong, I didn’t know what I was doing, there you go again…not getting it right. I was surprised when things worked out. An even then, I was not sure that things would be okay.

Many things contributed to my bouts of depression and need to want to escape this world by suicide. I know this was one of them. I equated a wrong choice in anything I did as a reflection of how I could never and would never get it right. Even the simplest things. I was beyond self conscious and not just in the way I look, but in the work I did. Even now I have to say “Hey, it’s good enough. You did your best.” I also had to learn to not do what was did to me to others and when I had my daughter, I vowed to not utilize that aspect of my parent. I did take all of the good from that parent, which was a lot, and use it.

I believe there are many reasons a parent does this. I think we expect parents to be perfect or to know better, but the truth is they are not perfect and they do not know “how to” always do better. Hurting people hurt other people. When we are children we don’t know or think about the fact our parents have lived some type of life before us and has experienced some type of childhood…both of these things either good, bad, or traumatic. These things have an effect on the parent as a child, as an adult, and as your parent. Many hurt parents have know idea of the psychological effects of their behavior on their children and we grow up to think many of the things we experienced were normal and acceptable until we meet other children and other adults. If you can’t recognize the signs of your behavior as detrimental to the shaping of the child, then you as the parent continue to do what you do. The generation before me were not privy to psychology or child psychology. They were too busy trying to make a living. The way they dealt with things were to not talk about them. But, guess what? Buried feelings and events of our lives are still alive if they are not dead. However, we as the children who grew up in some sort of tainted or warped environment, now have the privilege of that knowledge that we may be better parents and better human beings. We also have the work of healing ourselves from these scars.

I am now realizing that I survived by learning through trial and error, my commitment to not repeat those mistakes by taking different actions, some education about parenting, my relationship with God, the wisdom of the Spirit, other wise souls, and yes, therapy. I survived by accepting the relationship I have with that parent, sometimes calling them on their behavior and holding them accountable, and other times letting it go. I survived by releasing my anger and hurt. I survived with knowledge of the effects of trauma on people who never admit or talk about what’s really going on, but instead choose to respond with some outward action or to remain silent and bottled up.

However, for this leg of my journey at 42, I am here to be liberated this year and to be legendary in my doings. I need to THRIVE and not just survive. I thrive by forgiving and by forgiving I am free (liberated). I thrive by realizing that parent may never seek counseling, deliverance, or healing, but my choice to not feed into it or to have some compassion for the hurt child inside that parent, is liberating my emotions to choose happiness even if they are miserable. And all of that is a legendary step for my soul’s journey.

~Nikki