Pretty Little Daggers

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I’ve seen the power of a pretty face and body work magic on men. I’ve been skipped over, looked over, pushed out of the way to get to the prettier girl. I’ve been not spoken to standing next to the prettier friend. I’ve been in mid sentence and a man sees a hotter option, a bigger butt (in my community), a smaller waist, longer or straighter hair, and rushed to end our good convo to get to what his eyes are attracted to. I’ve had men get my number and constantly ask me about my friend. Let me be real and raw, weak and emotional in the eyes of others and un-christian like for many…but that shit used to hurt and every now and then those pretty little daggers grazes my self esteem. Either being out right told you’re not cute, you’re cute, you’re “alright”, if only you had a bigger ass, did it’s wear and tear on how I viewed myself and how I allowed the misuse of my heart, body and emotions. Side Note: If you have this super self esteem and can’t relate then this article is not for you and you’re “I never felt that way” is not welcomed here.

Well, Nikki, what did you do? It’s a long story, but basically after a series of bad relationships, mistreatment, emotional and mental abuse, via the Holy Spirit and God, books, positive women, self will, I slowly built my self esteem. Last year, I excavated my authentic self and boy did that take my self confidence to another level. Look, I just stopped by to tell you that you really do have other things to do than to be weighed down by if you are pretty enough or pretty at all. Like, who gives a damn. Are you dressing your best, are you doing the best you can with your hair (permed, weaved, or natural), are you a good woman, are you a positive being, are you going after your dreams, visions, goals? Are you building others up, clapping for their success? Are you not letting a man mistreat you and take you “down through there” (southern for drag you down a very bad road filled with heartbreaks aches and turmoil)? Are you choosing life over death? Are you a great mom, friend, sister, auntie, co worker, etc? You got “stuff” to do.

God made me perfect. God made me beautiful in every way. God made me beautiful inspite of.  God also made me strong. God also gave me an assignment. I had a friend who was extremely beautiful. She said to me one day when I asked her why did you sit by me in class? She said “Why not?” This was college. I replied, “I thought maybe you would want to huddle up with the prettier girls.” She laughed. “I thought you were smart and I am smart so I wanted to be around the smarter girl. The one that was asking questions and writing down notes because that is what I do. Pretty girls that are stuck on their beauty can be ruthless. It’s not all that it’s cracked up to be being amazingly beautiful.” Later I learned about her being in a relationship with this guy. She talked about how bad he treated her. She said, it doesn’t matter how fine I am, men still cheat. When you are in that group of fine girls who only care about looks, it’s all about competition. Then you have to deal with women thinking you want their man. I’m only in my 20’s and I am just like every real woman. I want to be seen for my heart, my mind, and not my body. You’re prettier than any of those women in that group in class. I saw how they flocked to me and I was like…nah…I’m just gonna come to school and go home.”

When a man is looking at my boobs and not at my face, I understand. When he talks about my body parts more than he talks about my brain, my geniusness, my dreams and goals, the current state of America, or about getting out and enjoying life, etc…it’s an automatic turn off for me. So, as the pretty little daggers sometimes hit, mostly miss these days…I am reminded…I’ve got so much more to do than to be weighed down by pretty or beautiful. My heart is fiery. My brain is wicked.

~Nikki

 

Using Scents for “Such a Time as This”

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In a time where your spirit is feeling some type of way (upset about the choice of Hate over Hope for me), or you need to get back on track and focused on your goals, dreams, and the TRUE vision of your religion (which I hope is UNITY and LOVE and TREATING EVERYONE WITH RESPECT AND THE RIGHT TO SERVE WHO THEY CHOOSE), I have received these two scents to burn in my home: Cinnamon and Vanilla.

You can burn oil, incense or a candle (and if you don’t like the strong smell of those the candle would be a better option). The aromatherapy and power of smell is underestimated by many because they lack knowledge in that area. And to be honest I never liked neither of the smells I mentioned. However, the urge to have those scents have changed and change according to the what is in my atmosphere or the atmosphere of the world. It is all about energy and I am not feeling the energy in my country.

Why Cinnamon?

Cinnamon can be overpowering and that is the type of energy  you need to conquer strong emotions/energy of DIVISIVENESS, HATRED, RACISM, PREJUDICE, MISOGYNISTIC-ISM, EVIL and so on. It is an invigorating sent. A come alive scent. A bring you back to LOVE and POWER scent. I read where cinnamon was added to Holy Oil and burned. Cinnamon is powerful for healing and yes, I feel there will need to be some serious healing in this country all the more. Cinnamon makes you feel warm, safe, and protected. With minorities feeling unsafe, not welcomed and unprotected  I can understand why I was spiritually lead to this scent. Our children are afraid and this scent in the home can help with reassuring them. Perhaps if you are wonderful educator, not biased or prejudice, you could use a little in your class room. It is very uplifting. I have some cinnamon scented pine cones and you only need two or three. It is very very overwhelming in a small space if you use more. It also sharpens the mind by taking a whiff of it. I use it in my coffee.

Why vanilla?

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It brings about joy and relaxations also!

If you have vanilla oil you can take ground cinnamon and sprinkle some in. A duel effect of energy flowing through your home. And as I mentioned before, candles are a more softer form of the scents than oil and incense in my opinion.

~Nikki

From Breakdown to Build Up

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When I gave birth to my daughter, I suffered from post partum depression. Suddenly, my worst fears took over and I felt incompetent as a mother. I felt she would be better off without me because of the things that happened to me in the past. No one protected me and I couldn’t protect myself. I thought there is no way I could protect her. I had an irrational fear that the same things that happened to me would happen to her. I was on the verge of a serious breakdown. As a matter of fact, I was having a breakdown.

As I was getting the help I needed, the doctor asked me what is the one thing you gained from this ordeal, the one thing you feel about yourself? I thought for a second and out of my mouth came these words “I am stronger than I think.” She looked directly at me and said “Yes you are. You are stronger than you think.”

I have used those words throughout my life to get me through some serious tough times and some pitch black moments. I use those words often when I feel as though too much is happening and I am losing the battle. I use those words to push through. I also have realized I am smarter than I think. I am also braver than I think. When you say these things to yourself over a period of time, even at what appears to be the worst time, they take root in your core. And it’s as if the Creator or angels take hold of that anchor in your soul and help pull you through. I have learned if you just try a thing, learn a thing, you can do it. Especially if it’s your calling or your gifts and talents. I want you to know today…

You are stronger than you think or believe. You are smarter and you are braver. Look at all that you have survived and now it is time to thrive. You survive by living your best life, by walking in your destiny with confidence and becoming the beautiful being you were created to be. You are more than a conqueror. The build up is in what you tell yourself in the dark times to get you back to the light. The build up is in what you say and not what you feel at the time…you say it until you feel it and you recall the other times you pulled through to give you strength.

~Nikki

Mood: Strong

Epic Failure? No Problem.

An epic fail is an accelerated course on how to get it right the next time. It’s like you learn what not to do, what to do, what to do better in a few weeks verses a year or years. An epic fail can create epic success. I’m going to keep creating.I’m going to keep speaking my mind without hurting or harming others but always with the intent to inspire and heal. I am going to keep being me with the open mind that I always need improvement and that I am wrong sometimes. Do your work without the spot light, without the support of others, without the fan fare, without the glitz and the glamour, and the light will shine in perfect timing and it won’t be 15 minutes of fame. When God, the Creator of the Universe’s glory shines upon you it’s eternal.And it ain’t nothing “they” can do about it. -Nicole Jackson

~Nikki

Facing Trauma (s)

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When bad things happen, what do you do with them? I know we say we get over it but, I am talking about really really bad things such as trauma. Do we really get over it or do we bury it somewhere deep in the psyche (or at least think it’s buried deep enough)? Only to have it resurface in the oddest or “triggering” moments. Has the results manifested into “personalities” we label as “this is just the way I am/always have been” to the mysterious “I don’t know why I do “that.”

We tend to believe, because it’s been said that if you are over it, you don’t talk about it. Well, if you never talked about it in an environment or with a person that can help you, certainly you are nowhere near over it. I don’t necessarily buy if you are over it you stop talking about it or don’t think about it. I think a sure sign that you are over something is when you can address it properly when it does show up. And it takes skills to do such.

I was embarking on a journey to write about how I got over some things but, then I realized in order to address those things, I had to think about other things in my life. The light went off in my head how connected one experience can be to many other experiences. Imagine living a life of multiple traumas…well some of us don’t have to imagine. We did live them and we are still here. I also realize the degree of trauma varies based on the individual. This should be obvious because we all handle things differently in our lives.

Well, when I realized I wasn’t as healed as I thought I was or perhaps, old wounds may not hurt but the memory does, I realized I was going to need support. I hate to say this, as a Christian, sometimes a “talk” with your spiritual leader is not always enough because they are not equipped to help you on the level you need assistance. It is not their area of expertise and if they were honest, they would tell you that and help you get the help you need. I do believe God works through professional counseling just as God works through doctors, teachers, the mechanic, the designers, etc.

I am reminded of the story where the man is drowning and asks for help, and when God sends several boats the man refuses help. Well, sometimes we may take a boat that can only take us so far.Maybe the boat can get us to land but, they can’t take us to the hospital. All I am trying to say is, if you need professional help, to help you face whatever you are going through, take it.

~Nikki

Stay in this Earth School

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It gets a little rough sometimes and sometimes too often but you are strong enough to live this life. Stay in this EARTH SCHOOL and grow and learn and play big and do all that you came here to do and shine and love!!!!!!

Sunday Morning Coffee Musing:After A Series of Unfortunate Events

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Jorden Keith. Follow him on Instagram. Photographer. Style blogger jordenkeith.com

I know I had plans for my life at a very young age. Some people at a young age were dealt a blow that would change their course very early and some seem to have set their goals and achieved without much hindrance. We should have enough common sense to realize and comprehend that we all start our journey from different points with many things to factor in from the supporting parent to the non supportive parent. From a prestige education to surviving an environment where a parent didn’t care if you made it through school or not. It’s clear to me how these things and many more things affect each one of us differently. This blog is for those of us whom have had a series of unfortunate events.

Overcoming a series of unfortunate events in your life is not an easy feat. I have learned not to expect it to be. I can’t tell you why some are born and seem to have things knock them down back to back to back with barely enough room to catch a breath. I can only offer my philosophy like anyone else. I do recommend taking a philosophy that helps you to become stronger and to persevere verses one that teaches you to blame yourself without forgiving yourself. I can tell you what I did that probably brought Rheumatoid Arthritis out of remission but, I can’t tell you for sure why I developed Juvenile Arthritis in the fourth grade. I could say it was my lot in life. I could blame myself for the Rheumatoid but, that would only keep me in a state of stagnation. You could blame yourself, God or others for what happened to you or where you are but, that will only keep you in a state of stagnation. In other words, you won’t move or progress. Even if you manage to achieve great things in the realm of education and career, you will still be stagnant emotionally/mentally destroying relationships and self carrying anger or resentment.

During unfortunate events in my life, here is what I have learned so far in no order:

Cry. Don’t cry. Be upset. Be angry. Yes, feel and then make a deliberate decision to take the necessary steps to heal.

Do I need to know why? Yes. I find my why. I decide to acknowledge it. Learn from it. Sometimes I feel bad about it but, I move on into a productive action. Sometimes swiftly, sometimes eventually. If I am stuck I seek help. From God, friends, therapy, meditation, a book on what I am going through, etc.

Do I need to know why? No. Just keeping going I tell myself. The why will come later or it may never come. I still must keep going.

It just is. Deal with it now or later but, you must deal with it.

Do I know better? Then I must do better.

Helping others go through what I have experienced makes me feel good.

Survive the ordeal first then thrive.

Baby steps can turn into a brisk walk then a jog, then a run and then leaps and bound and now you are flying!!! This is thriving!

Dang, I’ve been through so much. I am still here. I am strong.

I don’t have to be strong all the time.

To love myself and to love others after what I’ve been through, going through is what being strong really is about. Bitterness makes me ugly. It makes me vulnerable to hate. I can hate what happened but, I can’t let hate reside in me.

Rest.

Learn.

Eat, Love, Pray, Meditate, Create.

Pain is energy. Energy can be transformed.

Let go. If it’s negative, bad for you.

Hold on. To yourself. To your children. To God. To Peace. To laughter.

Healing hurts. But letting a wound go unhealed hurts worse and could kill you dead (ha).

Some unfortunate events can lead you to a fortunate journey.

~Nikki

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The Unwelcomed Mat

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God has not called u to be a doormat. Not for friends, family, relationships, marriage, church folks, kids…nobody. Get that. Saying no is the beginning of self love and teaching others to respect your feelings.

~Nikki

Sunday Morning Coffee Musing: Don’t Crowd Fund Your Self Esteem

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Cup of coffee and clementines. Photo by Natalia van Doninck on Getty Images

It’s not possible you would know everyone who walks along a crowded street or those standing with you at a concert.Crowd funding consists of strangers and a few people you know contributing to your cause or project. It’s not likely those people know you from the eyes of a good friend or the perspective of a wonderful family member. So, in this life why do we seem to crowd fund our self esteem? I know I am guilty of this from time to time but, oh I remember the days where I relied heavily on the opinions of others and even sought after validation. Thank God! Thank God because I did the hard work and made it through the mistakes to get to this point to talk to you, unashamed, about crowd funding your self esteem.

What people don’t understand about those who struggle with self esteem issues is it didn’t start yesterday. They also don’t understand the complex journey it takes to go back in your life and discover where the seeds were planted and the hard work it takes to cut the roots of low self esteem. Crowd funding your self esteem is when you rely on the contributions of others opinions to fund how you feel about yourself. You should cancel this fund raiser (thought) each time it pops in your mind. I could go through a bunch of steps on how to do this but there is this one saying that sums it up and you could tape it to your forehead or mirror. Which ever is more fashionable for you!

The quote is: Comparison is the thief of joy-Theodore Roosevelt

Why are you sad now? Why are you feeling defeated now? Why are you feeling bad about yourself now? You just compared your progress, success, where you are, to someone else’s progress, success, how farther they are in life than you are and now your joy has been stolen by comparison. Stop that. Learn to admire others and set your OWN goals. If June buys a million dollar home don’t try to buy a million dollar home simply to measure your success by June’s. Look at your bank account, do the math, and buy what you can afford. If Courtney just ran her first marathon and you just made it running a mile, how UNFAIR is that to compare yourself? Your diligence and her diligence is simply diligence. I tell you “a truth” as Jesus said in the Bible when he was about to introduce a new concept: If you learn to CELEBRATE YOUR VICTORIES AS WELL AS OTHERS you wouldn’t need to crowd fund your self esteem.

Don’t compare yourself with others. Instead, celebrate yourself and others.

~Nikki