A Throwback: Truths About Activism

(First published in 2017, this post is just as timely today. )

This is our reality: Daily we are bombarded by loops of violence, threads of national chaos, and far too many hyperlinks to political debauchery. Millions are addicted to drugs, social media, and outright lies. Death sentences like poverty, racism, and inequality continue to plague people of color and the poor, while worthwhile solutions evade even the best experts.

Yet, through all of the mire, strength is emerging. Many have been forced out of denial and recognize that disconnection is leading to our destruction.  As such, countless of Team Me or Army of One advocates, or those suffering from unrequited love from political affiliations, have found themselves throwing in the white flag and opting for something greater.

A call to action has been sounded, in great part, for self and collective preservation. Serve or do or resist have become tunes that ring through our ears like the catchy hook of our favorite song. It all makes sense though, for the longing to live is natural despite the fact that death is inevitable.

This basic desire to do better – to have a part in cleaning up the rubbish and to rebuild some civil sanity – has led to an increase in activism. While many are snug in their roles and are earnestly and boldly doing their work, others are being planted and are just beginning to sprout. Then there are those who are trying to determine where they fit in and what they have to offer. Kudos to all!

But here are some truths about activism.

Activism is brutal and not for the faint-hearted. It’s a huge act of faith and war – a journey that requires steadfast commitment. You’re moved, so you strategically plan and act. However, one really never knows what the outcome will be, or which side the journey will leave you on. One minute, you’re negotiating and compromising, and at the next you may be adamantly refusing to do either. Hard decisions are made, people’s feelings get injured, numbers fall, and opposition occurs just as quickly as the hope that brought everyone together. Yet, just when you’re seconds away from throwing in the towel, everything comes together. It’s usually a win. Not an easy one, but one well worth it.

Yes, I speak from experience.

Activism is not something you bully someone into. It’s degrading to dictate what another should be doing or giving. No one is entitled to impose upon someone else’s skills, talents or resources even if those things will serve some greater good. And, nobody has earned the right to doom another for doing what may be perceived as nothing. Malcolm X summed it up perfectly: “Don’t be in a hurry to condemn because one doesn’t do what you do, or think as you think, or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today. “

On the contrary, activism is an act of love with the goal being to serve with dignity, respect and courage. Lead by example. Encourage through perseverance. Exercise patience. Then, mentor.

Most important, activism is not a monolithic act.  It’s layered and nuanced. Some will be the face and voice. Others will dutifully soldier when called upon. Yet, many will sit on their sofas with coffee (or something a tad stronger), firm shoulders, a first aid kit, and wisdom, waiting patiently for you to limp through their unlocked doors, standing ready to stitch you up and infuse you with strength for whatever comes next.

All are important. All are necessary. All matter.

If you’re moved to action, do so strategically and avoid being coerced into a role or a cause that your heart doesn’t bleed for. Determine your space and commit to being faithful from there. Never be ashamed or afraid to say NO. If  you long to sit at a table you can’t get an invitation to, then build your own table to plant your feet under. But no matter what, when you get in there be ready to fight hard. Because here are the ultimate truths about activism: It’s bred from your soul. It’s brutal. But, it’s always worth it.

Nice writing to you again! I’ll be in touch soon.  

Truly yours,

Mo~

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For Those Who Don’t Know Me

Hello.  I’m Monique Danielle, but just call me “Mo”.

I’m proudly middle-aged with a strong measure of good health, so I’m still in the running to attempt the one, two or possibly three things I should have done sooner. The question now isn’t about capability but whether I have the heart for the sacrifice.   Everything cost something.

I believe in love in all of its forms. I’m strong enough to be a part of someone’s life and discerning enough to know when to leave. I care immensely and love intensely, but it is evil to infringe upon another person’s happiness or allow them to interfere with mine.  So I do neither.

I have three expectations of others:  (1) be who you truly are; (2) live up to your standards; and, (3) demand the same from me.

I’m tolerant, even of some things that I may disagree with.  I tend to go left when everyone is going right.  I’m exacting and demanding and sometimes my patience runs really thin. Empathy comes natural to me, shallowness bores me, and human connection drives me.

I strive for an “A” even when I know that my best is a “B.”  I’m innately curious and can never learn enough. In everyone and everything there is a lesson: even a broken clock is right twice a day. (Cliché, I know.)

My daily motto is: I will judge nothing that occurs today. Each day I get better at living this out. Though honestly, it’s a struggle.

My spiritual journey is sacred and personal, and so is yours.  The road you travel and how you arrive are not my concerns. Not because I lack interest, but because I hold in the highest regard your right to define you, your life and God.  I will never interfere with another’s journey, and neither will I allow anyone to impinge upon mine.

If you need to know what type of daughter, mother, grandmother, godmother, niece, cousin, friend or co-worker that I am, confer with someone who knows me well.

Have I done things that I thought I would never do, said things that I shouldn’t have said, made decisions that I wouldn’t make again, apologized when I didn’t mean it, refused to apologize when I should have, loved good people at bad times, left too soon, stayed too long, talked too much or didn’t speak enough?

Yes.  I lack perfection.

I am not etched in stone.  Neither is my life.  Who I am today is the sum of my experiences thus far.  But each day I seek out and thrive for moments that lead me to different places, new people, and purposeful events that could ultimately change it all.

Eventually I may have to reintroduce myself.   But for now, this is my snapshot.

Truly yours,

Mo~

P.S. – Feel free to introduce yourself.  I’m interested in getting to know you.

Wishes

(A Stream of Consciousness)

I wish that I didn’t panic when the the camera stares at me. For once, I would like to not worry about if my skin is too shiny or have to remember which angle will conceal some perceived flaw. Wish that my smile boasted the same enthusiasm that my laughter does when the moment’s not being snapped. Then I’d have an album of photogenic memories to choose from and could join those Facebook challenges.

I wish that I didn’t worry about if the rice will come out sticky, and if so, should I discard it or just let it be.  Because Lord knows just how badly one pot of mucky rice can ruin an entire meal – just how unflattering it looks on the plate. It’s a silly concern with very little truth to it, I know.  But, anyway.  I probably should just go ahead and buy that rice cooker and call it a win.  

I wish that I wasn’t overly concerned with driving through the state of New Jersey after dark. Worried that one wrong turn will lead me onto a winding exit that will then connect me onto a highway heading in the opposite direction of where I need to go. Then I’ll be forced to pull over on the side of a darkened road – probably stretches of miles away from the nearest anything – to catch my breath and start over. I mean, it’s not as if my high beams, or phone, aren’t functional. Wish that I could wander as boldly through my homeland and marvel at the newness when lost just as I do when traveling on foreign ground.

I wish that I didn’t put so much emphasis on whether my handwriting is as beautiful as the soft leather journals that I buy to store these reflections. Wish that the remnants of ripped out pages that once contained scratched through or misspelled words didn’t constantly remind me that my need for perfection made me miss the mark. Now I’m left with one too many empty journals and forgotten revelations.

I wish that these scraps of nothing didn’t often consume so many of my thoughts. And that whenever they invade my consciousness, I could swiftly dump them in the “Let That Shit Go” pile and set it ablaze. Wish that I could declare that revealing this to you has been cathartic and that I’m now healed. But, alas, not yet. Not tonight anyway.

I’m working on it though. Truly, I’m working on it.  

Truly yours,

Mo~

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A Half Century In

It’s been almost three years since I’ve last written to you.  The intention was never to go this long without sharing, but life and FaceBook has a way of interfering with the best of intents. 

However, here I am just a few days after my 50th birthday. For five decades now, I’ve roamed this planet. Admittedly, I’ve put plenty of miles in, worn down many soles, and have broken off a heel or two. But even if I could go back to twenty-one with the lead that I now have, I wouldn’t. Honestly, there’s not a slew of things that I would do differently because making another set of decisions would just lead to a different path of detours, dead-ends, close calls and everything in between before reaching now. What I’ve learned is that the journey is inevitable; it begins at the point any decision is acted upon. It’s how one navigates the process that determines how far one goes.

For the most part, I’ve played it safe and flirted with risk. My career has spanned over two decades and has catapulted me into some great opportunities, but it’s far from my first choice. And, I’ve left my hometown three times now, just to come back.  Yet, I still can’t promise that I’m here to stay. Life’s just too fluid to make such a vow. 

My passport is stamped with many fond memories. I’ve gotten lost (literally) in Italy, scorched in Belize, argued with a native in the Dominican Republic (he tried to charge me sixty US dollars for a bath towel that wasn’t even plush), and ate Pie and Mash drizzled (such a tourist move) with eel gravy in London. I’ve had fun, but I’ve been disappointed and felt the sting of shame too.  I’ve suffered through the agony of a stillbirth at one point and made a decision many conservative Christians wouldn’t approve of at another.  There was a friendship or two that expired, a few jobs that didn’t pan out, and I still haven’t written that book. Yet, today I proudly stand.  

Unequivocally, I am loved. I’m blessed with a mother whom I adore, a son who was kind enough to forgive me for not getting the parenting thing totally right, and a family with only a few members that I think about trading in every so often. (Beware though, there will be a holy war if you actually try to take them away from me.) I have strong friendships that span over cultures and decades, and a tribal family that rivals blood. And, in a few short days, I’ll be gifted a daughter through love who is intelligent and lovely and kind. That’s buttercream icing for me.

There’s nothing for me to complain about but much more for me to do.  My expectation for this life is another strong seventy years (yup, 120 minimum), so technically, I’m not even middle-aged yet.  But I’m wiser and happier. My tools are sharper, and my aim is more targeted.  That’s the foundation from which I build upon now. 

If you ask me what fifty years of wandering has taught me, it’s simply this:  Nothing works unless I do; mercy is the ultimate demonstration of love; and, life is nothing to fear.   

Happy 50th to me!  Cheers! 

Truly yours, 

Mo~

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The Calm and The Storm

I grew up on Huntingdon Street, an average-sized block off of 22nd and Lehigh Avenue in North Philadelphia. It was in a working class Black neighborhood with a playground, recreation center, swimming pool and quite a few Black-owned businesses. A staple was Mr. Herman’s – or Boogie Herm’s – as the kids called it.

Mr. Herman owned a corner store, and rumor had it that he picked his nose. But for a mere dollar you could get the best frozen burger in the neighborhood. I’m still not sure how true that rumor was, but it never hindered his burger sales. The grill was always clean so that was good enough for us. (Don’t judge us.) There were two video games that we were allowed to play each morning until 8:00 sharp. At 7:55 he gave a last call; at 8:00, he yanked the plug from the wall. We were ushered out to school and weren’t allowed by in until after 3:00.

For us, penny candy actually cost a penny, and instead of petty brawls were often the beginning of long friendships. We were part of a community where we were watched over, prayed over, reprimanded (hard when needed), and loved. Although, many of us have since moved away, life and Facebook have kept us connected.

*     *     *

Lorraine, or Peaches as we call her, is part of that experience. She’s just a few years older and lived around the corner and two blocks up on 22nd Street. You often saw her with her mother, Ms. Lena, a kind and dignified woman, or her constants to this day – Jackie, Tiffany and Dawn.

Time passed and a simple Facebook request connected us again. In a space that often feels overwhelmingly angry and depressing, Peaches’s page of warm posts is like sifting through a family album. At a time when many women wear their independence like a Purple Heart, she revels in a life that many thought only existed for our grandparents. She’s married to a man whom she adores even all these years later. Three cooked meals a day is her proud norm, and she’s delighted to have her children and grandchildren with or near her.  Even as she journeyed through school earning all A’s, or when she put in full days in a career that that she thoroughly enjoyed, nothing was, or is, as precious to her as her family and friends. She never claims nor tries to present perfection, but she boldly radiates happiness, thankfulness and love. She’s genuine, and that energy is infectious.

*     *     *    

 In March, Peaches revealed it to me. With the precision of a veteran oncologist speaking with a new patient, she explained the symptoms that lead to the diagnoses of a disease suffered by far too many. Treatment would begin almost immediately, and it wouldn’t be easy. “It’s a hard pill to swallow and it’s going to take some time to process,” she had said, “but I’m going to fight!” She’s been true to her word.

At a time when most would have cocooned into their most intimate circle and bid Facebook farewell (and rightfully so), Peaches let others in. She declared her strength – I am the storm – and committed to transparency. Since then, we’ve witnessed her shoulder length locs vanish, less pictures of her proud home-cooked meals, the effects of grueling treatments, and her truth about harsh moments. But what always follows is: But I’m still fighting or I’m standing strong or I’m not complaining.

Nothing has altered Peaches’ beauty or her heart. Her page still reads and feels like a cozy family album, now with a little more extended family added. She’s thankful for prayers and small reminders of how brave and amazing she is. She beams delightfully when someone surprises her with her favorite candy, or a card, cute pajamas or a head wrap. And when she posts her picture, her smile is never absent. Through it all she has remained grateful and full of love.

Peaches is my reminder of the beauty of creating the life that you sincerely want. She’s an echo of the value of committed love and human connection. She’s proof that while you can’t control life, it’s in your power to choose how you respond to it. And everyday, she reminds me that the simple things are amazingly beautiful, and that they matter just as much.

Peaches is the storm, and I’m honored to be in her path.

So long for now.  Until the next time, live each day to your fullest!

Truly yours,

Mo~

P.S.: Peaches, thanks for sharing your journey with me. And, yes, fuck cancer!

You can reach me via Facebook@Monique Danielle; Twitter @MoDanielle_08; Instagram @Mo_Danielle8; and email @ modanielle8@gmail.com.

Truths About Activism

This is our reality: Daily we are bombarded by loops of violence, threads of national chaos, and far too many hyperlinks to political debauchery. Millions are addicted to drugs, social media, and outright lies. Death sentences like poverty, racism, and inequality continue to plague people of color and the poor, while worthwhile solutions evade even the best experts.

Yet, through all of the mire, strength is emerging. Many have been forced out of denial and recognize that disconnection is leading to our destruction.  As such, countless of Team Me or Army of One advocates, or those suffering from unrequited love from political affiliations, have found themselves throwing in the white flag and opting for something greater.

A call to action has been sounded, in great part, for self and collective preservation. Serve or do or resist are refrains that ring through our ears like the catchy hook of our favorite song. It all makes sense though, for the longing to live is natural despite the fact that death is inevitable.

This basic desire to do better, to have a part in cleaning up the rubbish and to rebuild some civil sanity has led to an increase in activism. Many are snug in their roles and are earnestly and boldly doing their work. Others are being planted and are growing in their particular positions. Then, there are those who are trying to determine where they fit in and what they have to offer. Kudos to all!

But here are some truths about activism.

Activism is brutal and not for the faint-hearted. It’s a huge act of faith and war – a journey that requires steadfast commitment. You’re moved, so you strategically plan and act. However, one really never knows what the outcome will be, or which side the journey will leave you on. One minute, you’re negotiating and compromising, and at the next you may be adamantly refusing to do either. Hard decisions are made, people’s feelings get injured, numbers fall, and opposition occurs just as quickly as the hope that brought everyone together. Yet, just when you’re seconds away from throwing in the towel, everything comes together. It’s usually a win. Not an easy one, but one well worth it.

Yes, I speak from experience.

Activism is not something you bully someone into. It’s degrading to dictate what another should be doing or giving. No one is entitled to impose upon someone else’s skills, talents or resources even if those things will serve some greater good. And, nobody has earned the right to doom another for doing what may be perceived as nothing. Malcolm X summed it up perfectly: “Don’t be in a hurry to condemn because one doesn’t do what you do, or think as you think, or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today. “

On the contrary, activism is an act of love with the goal being to serve with dignity, respect and courage. Lead by example. Encourage through perseverance. Exercise patience. Then, mentor.

Most important, activism is not a monolithic act.  It’s layered and nuanced. Some will be the face and voice. Others will dutifully soldier when called upon. Yet, many will sit on their sofas with coffee (or something a tad stronger), firm shoulders, a first aid kit, and wisdom, waiting patiently for you to limp through their unlocked doors, standing ready to stitch you up and infuse you with strength for whatever comes next.

All are important. All are necessary. All matter.

If you’re moved to action, do so strategically and avoid being coerced into a role or a cause that your heart doesn’t bleed for. Determine your space and commit to being faithful from there. Never be ashamed or afraid to say NO. If  you long to sit at a table you can’t get an invitation to, then build your own damn table to put your feet under. But no matter what, when you get in there be ready to fight hard. Because here are the ultimate truths about activism: It’s bred from your soul. It’s brutal. But, it’s always worth it.

Nice writing to you again! I’ll be in touch soon.

Truly yours,

Mo~

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Hello, It’s Been A While…

It’s been a while since I’ve last written, and much has transpired both as a nation and personally. I could rehash the atrocities plaguing the United States and even some of those of other countries. But you’re well aware of those things, and you’re probably more interested in viable solutions – solutions, to me, that are as varied and multilayered as each and every human. Collective and creative solutions, that frankly, I don’t have to offer you.

In my personal life, I’ve had some hard conversations and have made some uncomfortable decisions. At the pinnacle of a career that spans over two decades and in a firm that offered me “home”, I gracefully walked away. To a city that has served me well, taught me that fine line and small space between love and war, a city that offered my grandparents and immigrant father hope and opportunity, a city that educated me from elementary through grad school, a city that allowed me to sit at tables and help positively impact communities – I’m saying farewell. Thank you, Philadelphia; I appreciate your care. But, it’s time for me to go now.

Talk about uncomfortable. I’m 47, have earned my accolades, paid my dues, and could nestle in this life. And, I wait until now to bow out? Yes, because the truth is I’ve created a hell of a life that I merely settled for and into, and while I am eternally grateful, I want to do more.

     *   *   *

For years, I’ve had the honor of instructing adults in a training program. These are adults who after decades have stepped back into the classroom. Adults that – through their fears, doubts, insecurities and other lies they may have bought into – return Saturday after Saturday for 11 weeks and stay for as long as six hours. Honorable, committed, courageous adults.  I truly admire them.

During one class, we discussed the difficulty of change and the ease of settling. It occurred to me that just as the fear of the unknown often keeps us complacent, so too have the zigzags of our journeys. It’s impossible to forget the triumphs and defeats, the love and tears, the one win followed by two losses, and the repetition of it all in no particular order. Just when we’ve gotten to the point that we have it all managed and all under some sort of perceived control, we realize that while the space is safe, it’s far from great. Then, if we muster up the heart to reimagine the possibilities, we look back, remember, and think, who wants to endure that shit all over again?

     *     *     *  

For those who find themselves at a crossroad frozen and agonizing on whether to nestle in or to bow out, there is no right or wrong answer. There is only your answer, your choice, your life to live out. I chose what was right for me. In the middle of my life, I now know what to expect: a journey that will be unpredictable yet exhilarating filled with hopes and disappointments. That’s fine though. I’ve been there before, and I’m willing to live it out again.

I’ll be writing you more often. Until the next time, live each day to your fullest! Feel free to leave a comment!

Truly yours,

Mo~

P.S.:  You can reach me on Facebook @ Monique Danielle; Twitter@MoDanielle_8; Instagram@Mo_Danielle8, and via email @ modanielle8@gmail.com.

 

Those Times Will Come

There comes a time in everyone’s life when one must say goodbye.

That was the first line of my high school graduating class’s farewell address 28 years ago. I should have written, “If you live long enough, there will come many times when one must say goodbye.” But I didn’t know that then.

Saying goodbye wasn’t hard that day.  For most of us, those four years had been an exciting time filled with new friends, many firsts and the creation of unforgettable memories.  However, we had reached the point where we had nothing more to gain.  Leaving was non-negotiable.

Yes, non-negotiable.

“All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on,” said author Henry Ellis.  As adults, we struggle with bidding farewell to situations that no longer serve us. We’re experts at complying with comfort and justifying our presence. I’ve earned this.  It pays the bills. It’s cool for now.  Pigeon-holed into preconceived or dated notions of responsible adulthood, we convince ourselves that our discontentment equates to restlessness, boredom or worse, immaturity, which are all unacceptable because, well, we’re supposed to be responsible adults. It doesn’t matter if we’re unfulfilled, unhappy or uninspired adults.  What’s important is that we behave maturely and responsibly.  Right? We hold on to those beliefs until they can no longer justify the discontent. Then frustrated, we recklessly let go and leave chaotically, leaving us strained mentally and emotionally.

Letting go and leaving is a process with mandatory provisions along the way, with timing a pivotal factor. My graduating class was not prepared to leave with previous ones because we lacked the necessary social and academic requirements. Leaving too soon would have left us ill-prepared for the next level, just as staying longer would have lulled us into mediocrity and destroyed our drive.

Therein lies the fine mingling: Staying long enough to fulfill your needs and leaving soon enough to keep you inspired. Staying long enough to gain confidence and leaving soon enough before fear sets in. Staying long enough to enjoy the experience and leaving soon enough to avoid cynicism.

Rarely in life will there be curriculum and standardized testing to nudge us forward. We will only have our experiences, and the reality that we can ride the fence for only so long before we’re forced to a side. More often than we may desire, that side will simply be to let go, to leave, to say goodbye. Sometimes our departure will be in pomp and circumstance. Other times in quiet retreat. And, if we’re not careful, we will exit through total chaos.

There’s no avoiding it.  If we live long enough, there will come many times when one must say goodbye. Prepare to do so gracefully.

Truly yours,

Mo~

 

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They Matter

I’m middle-aged, and I can live with that. Actually, I’m empowered because through the good decisions, not so great ones, fortunes and uncertainties, I’ve created memories and had experiences that form a strong foundation for my second act.

As the curtain rises, I am firmly positioned and understand that a huge part of my future success depends on those who I invest in, those who I allow to mentor me and those who I spend personal moments with. Every holy book attests to that, and every experience has solidified as much.

To now, every encounter has sculpted my truths, with one recurring theme – the value and sacredness of human connections. Connections that celebrated each act of faith and each success. Connections that were vital during times of bewilderment or when my mind magnified life’s grievances, or when past decisions haunted me. Connections that provided a strong presence, an encouraging word, or a constructive criticism.  Connections that safely guided me through some of life’s most treacherous land mines.

But I had to be open, and I was. I still am. But not just to anyone, and never to everyone.

Those surrounding me must challenge and dare me to rise higher, to dig deeper. They must accept my decisions, even when they don’t understand or agree with them. They must recognize their significance, value their uniqueness, and defer to my boundaries.   And, I am obligated to extend the same to them. Our sameness must compliment our differences.  Respect must be mutual.

I have not pledged allegiance to “Team Me” because, I am not my most powerful operating as an army of one. No one truly is. Therefore, the close company that I keep is not a decision that I take for granted or make lightly. It is not a decision that I leave in the control of others, nor is it one that I waiver on.

Because they matter. Every chosen one.

They matter because intermission is over, the curtain has risen and I am half-way through my production with much more to accomplish.  I don’t have the leisure to make up for past time (though it was pretty well spent).   They matter because each one can impact how far I rise, or how low I fall. They matter because each character will be tattooed in my story, the part in which I have control of the pen. They matter because I will invest in them and their journeys, devoting to them my most valuable assets: time, energy and loyalty.

The stakes are high, and everything matters now.

I feel the same for you. May your company always reflect your worth, and may you never lose sight of your possibilities.

Until next time, be great and choose wisely. Trust your wings and fly high.

Truly yours,

Mo-

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Simply Speaking

Some say that I oversimplify things, that I break down profound truths using a few sentences, shrug casually and sum it up with, “That’s all I got.” Some believe that I often neglect the variables that create an adverse situation and that my reasoning at times belittle one’s past experiences.   That is far from my truth and extremely distant from the truth.

I have been impacted by unfortunate circumstances both within and beyond my control. Love has shattered me, grief has overwhelmed me, and loss has robbed me. In my pursuit of happiness, fear has gnawed at every inspired thought, every possibility, and at one time procrastination was as addictive for me as Pepsi.

If you have lived long enough, you too have suffered. No matter how safely you have played, how firmly you have adhered to the rules, or how strategic your plan was, some things just fell apart. Great decisions for one stage turned out to be disastrous at another. Or maybe the decision was never quite a good one, but you gambled anyway. Regardless, life has at some point exhausted you.

I get that, and I do not diminish any of it. However, through the ebbs and flows of my life, I have survived with two clear advantages – a sound mind and a relatively healthy body. So have many of you. Those two strengths carry a definite constant: the ability to make a new choice at any given moment. Therein is my truth: The power to choose is within my control, at least for now.

You, too, can choose differently.

There I am oversimplifying again. As if making a new choice doesn’t come with its own set of new consequences. As if it doesn’t carry with it a brief, sometimes lingering, nauseating discomfort. As if a new choice won’t garner guilt or grief or shame – or all three. As if choosing differently is just that easy to do.

Certainly, it can be a daunting, even heart wrenching, process. But it is the only option I can offer. I am merely a reflective observer viewing from a lens narrowed by my experiences and broadened by the experiences of others.  My perceptions of another’s journey are blurry at best. What is clear, though, is that more often than not we can decide whether to continue on that trampled, unfulfilled path we have followed or choose an alternate route. Ultimately, the decision is yours. Only you can decide the timing. Only you know if you can accept the consequences. Only you can determine if you are willing to put the work in. I can only remind you that you do possess the power, and do not need permission, to make new choices – even if it is in the middle of the game.

That’s all I got. 

Truly yours,

Mo~

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