In an earlier blog, I mentioned that I take time out for myself. Taking time out to enjoy our own company is therapeutic and refreshing. When we allow ourselves time alone to rejuvenate, we can offer a better version of ourselves to others.
I wanted to share with you some of the things I do for myself...when I hit rock bottom in 2010 (a time when I was laid off, ended my relationship, my house was robbed, and I had to take my cousin to court for hurting my kids), I knew I didn't want to dwell in that negativity caused by unfortunate events happening in my life. So I submersed myself in reading and then I got into painting my nails.
Painting my nails sounds so trivial but that small act really made a huge impact on me. It felt like a form of meditation. For 10+ minutes, I was able to focus on making my hands look nice verses what was happening around me. It forced me to pay attention to something other than the events that were unfolding. Also, I was doing something that made me look more "polished" which every time I looked at my hands, I felt good.
For those 10 minutes, I'd focus on filing the shape of my nails, cleaning my cuticles, and polishing (which was my favorite part). If you don't like color, swipe a clear coat on top. The act of polishing really makes you stay focused...
I must be honest...I've had a rough couple of weeks. It got so bad that I actually had to call in sick this past Monday. All of the stress I've been experiencing could be caused by or is caused by numerous events happening in my life. For instance, I recently moved, my daughter's car needed a whole new set of brakes for the back and front, my oldest daughter's wisdom teeth are growing in which I need to get pulled out, my commute has gotten an hour longer since I moved, I was pmsing, someone in my new neighborhood took it upon himself to make a u-turn and let me know I was in the middle of the road while driving, yet how he was able to pass me if I was in the middle of the road, I have no clue, and my middle daughter will be leaving to college this September. Her friend who was supposed to get her acclimated on campus passed away last week by a drunk driver. Such a tragedy. My condolences and heart goes out to the family and my daughter for losing a friend at such a young age. I mean so many unfortunate events and a tragedy...but that's how life works, right?
Well, I didn't balance my time sufficiently or take care of myself properly during all of this. I kind of let myself go because I gave myself the excuse that I was going through a lot with the move and all, etc, etc. I stopped making my morning shakes, my bed, and going to bed early. All of which contributed to me calling in sick I figured. I felt like shit. And since I felt like shit, I started feeling sorry for myself. Oh it was bad...I was beating myself up mentally all day Monday. I felt guilty for calling in sick. I moped, I cried, I said, "Why me? Tired of being strong..." Then I cried because I was thankful for being so strong. I was a mess...
A lot of my friends ask me how do I stay so positive despite all that has been thrown my way. Here's a little background about myself...
I was a teen mom at 16 and by the time I was 21 I had three daughters who were five and under. I was in an abusive relationship both mentally and physically, and a high school drop out. Needless to say, my future did not look bright. I also grew up in the projects of one of the toughest urban cities at the time. But here is what kept me alive, sane, and positive...it was my mind, my thoughts, and my self-communication. I always felt there was better for me. I could feel I deserved better. I always had a pretty healthy communication within myself. I remember specifically one day asking myself, "How can you be a better mom?" Well the answer to that was to take care of myself first and remove myself from the abusive and negative environment I was in. I knew I could no longer deplete more of my energy by staying in such a toxic relationship. I needed to save that energy to take better care of my girls. When my ex started becoming violent (after my third daughter), it wasn't long after when I decided to leave. However, I understand everyone has their own timing.
Yesterday, I wrote about how the guy I was supposed to meet in NYC didn't work out based on our last conversation. Well, we had another talk last night, and it has been confirmed that we will no longer keep in touch. Such a bummer. In fact, it touched me in such a way that as soon as I got off the phone, I cried. He told me since he travels a lot for work to different countries, a long distance relationship would be too difficult and not a part of his plan. Based on his past experience with long distance relationships, it never worked out for him. After he explained his thought process and how he felt, he asked me about what I thought. Here is what I said, "It's hard for me to talk about how I feel." And here's why...
At this point, he seemed to have already made up his mind about us. To me, his reality was now my reality, and at this point, I felt like my feelings and opinions were invalid. I have been in a situation before where a man told me he wasn't ready for a relationship. I spent three years trying to convince this man otherwise. Three whole years... Like NYC guy, I didn't want to repeat history. What I realized is if a man truly wants to be with you, he will be willing to work on it regardless of the circumstance. He'd want to talk to you and include you on working it out. Not just make the decision by himself of where the relationship is headed. NYC guy didn't include me on the outcome. He already had an idea of the disadvantages in being in a long-term relationship and made a decision for both of us. When you couple both of our past experiences, what you have is one person who doesn't want to make effort and another who doesn't want to have to plead their case. With all this being said and done, when it came my turn to "plead my case" I threw in the towel. I didn't even want to put up a fight. Some of you may be asking, "Why?" So let me clarify...
Last time I wrote about how I was supposed to meet a guy I'm dating in New York. Well, it looks like our plans aren't going to work out. In fact, it doesn't look like we'll be keeping in touch for that much longer, based on the conversation he had with me. Which is a shame since I really liked him but I have to understand and do understand I cannot force someone to feel something that's not there for them. I am upset by the situation because I do have strong feelings for him but I have to remind myself, based on my history, that things will continue to work out in my favor. If not with him, of course with someone else.
The first couple of days following our last conversation was not pleasant. I couldn't sleep well and just was really sad about the whole thing. I kept replaying the events that led up to that unexpected unpleasant conversation and analyzed what went wrong or searched for hidden messages. Due to my lack of sleep, I was overly sensitive, which I had to remind myself of. I knew that the outcome was not what I wanted. So I allowed myself some time to just be sad, and eventually, I knew I had to talk my way out of it soon, and that is what I did. I gave myself the adequate amount of sleep I needed after those two days, regrouped myself and my thoughts and started confirming that everything will be fine and work out in my favor even if without him.
Now that we are in the heat of the moment...summer, I wanted to share my current favorite five beauty products with you.
1. BB Cream- Currently, I use Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector in medium/deep. I've been using this bb cream for quite sometime now and every time I buy something different, I end up coming back to this. A little goes a very long way. When I first used this product, I applied too much and didn't like it at all. But when I use just a pearl size amount or less, it really gets the job done with coverage and has an SPF of 20 for oily/combination skin. I set it with a powder and depending on my day, it does a good job of lasting 8 hours. There are multiple bb creams from Garnier dependent on your skin type. I have yet to try the other types though, and the price is pretty affordable at around $10-$15.
2. Mascara- I used to love Victoria Secret's mascara and still do. However, it's hard for me to make it to the mall when I run out. So I have converted to a drug store brand which is Maybelline's Lash Sensational. I am really impressed by this mascara. This mascara is really comparable to that of a department store, possibly even better. Its price point is around $7-$10. It doesn't flake or smudge and really separates and lengthens lashes. I even wore it during Bikram yoga on accident and it didn't budge. The room was 105 degrees! I am super impressed by this mascara.
A little about me...
I'm learning how to look at everything with love, even if it seems impossible, like rush hour traffic. I want to share my journey of self-love so that others may want to emulate and pass it on into the universe. Ohh...and sometimes people call me Suzie.