It’s 3:53 in the morning and I can’t help but realize that I see myself in you. We may see something inadequate, or something broken. We notice all that is wrong yet have no idea how to feel like we’re worth something spectacular. That’s the thing, we can’t see how worthy we are of life sometimes. We define who we are by what we’ve done or how bad we’ve screwed up something. Over and over we may come to a place where we can’t see the value we possess.
Here is a message I tell myself daily and would like you to know too: You are of value no matter what you are doing or what you’ve done. You wake up withpurpose and will always have purpose. Adequacy, worth, value, peace, joy, calmness, balance, and wholeness is all that is you already. You just have to believe it to be true. Believe in your healing. Believe in your recovery. I love you guys.
You’ve been called weak and pushed to the sidelines.
You’ve been underestimated.
You weren’t taken seriously.
You’ve gotten blank stares.
You’ve tried to be perfect.
You’ve tried to make yourself favorable.
You’ve felt less-than.
You’ve felt unattractive and ugly.
But I’m here to rewrite the script for you.
No matter how you’ve shaped your self-worth or what thoughts you thought you got over but in dark times resurfaced, its time to let it go. You are all the things you’ve convinced yourself that you are not. You are beyond worthy of life, love, acceptance, peace and compassion.
Retake your life from the thoughts that hold you hostage. It doesn’t matter anymore. Live in today. Live in right now. Whatever pain you’ve gone through has made you into the beautiful, empathetic, caring, ruthless, ambitious, untouchable, unstoppable creation that is you. You are a progressed product of what has happened and all of that is now over. You lived in the pain and now you’ve learned. Stop picking at the wounds that are healing. Don’t make your wombs bleed again. Sometimes it feels like the same things are happening again, but guess what? Now it’s time to use what you’ve learned. Don’t fall back into the cycles that amplified your depressive or anxious thoughts. You have the power. You have all the power. I will keep telling you until you believe it for yourself.
What does it mean to reflect, grow, transform and in return become a better, more grounded empathetic product of your experiences and trauma?
“Storytime” allowed me to not only reflect on my past transformations and continuous growth but also listen to true stories of warriors. There were survivor stories, growth stories, pain stories, reflective stories, and stories that showed true perseverance. I applaud and thank those who attended this event. Although the group was small, it still contained voices that spoke with courage and bravery. This group of people was no doubt a group of heroes.
As I too am going through a time of painful transformation and reflection, I can’t help but look up to those who attended and shared at “Storytime.” I think about their stories daily in order to help me make brave choices that allow me to see my worth.
The Theme: The Tree and the Butterfly
When planning and organizing “Storytime”, I wanted to create a space where others can bring an artifact to represent or supplement a moment in their mental health journey that symbolized growth or transformation. What does it mean to grow and transform through mental trauma?
The tree or symbol of growth and the butterfly or symbol of transformation became fit in becoming the theme of “Storytime”. To transform is to move past a prior state and into a more comfortable, enlightened state and to grow means to change, adjust, and become better in whichever ways fit your life and experiences.
In order to be able to reflect on your experiences and become better and more comfortable in yourself, you must first open your perspective. Allow yourself to move past the pain and complacency of heartache and struggle.
I learned in ” Storytime” that speaking out loud and speaking confidently as you share can help in understanding who you are in your experiences. Leading with a mindfulness breathing exercise also allowed a space where reflection became fit and vulnerability more accessible. Live only in the present moment.
Although the stories were stories of mental struggles through big experiences, my guests were products of growth and transformation. I’m proud to know that these people exist. They need to know constantly that they are worthy of life, love, compassion, and acceptance.
I thank The Mighty for opening up the door for me to do these events as well as helping me to learn my passion. I’m constantly learning as I experience with others. Continuously reflecting on the “Mighty Mic” and “Storytime” has opened my perspective and my heart to the lives of many.
Some morning are particularly hard, but this morning made it to top 5. I had to write myself out of a potential downward spiral into depression. I forced myself to see my self-worth and value even in the midst of heartache and self-doubt. A love letter of sorts to keep going even when feeling emotionally weak.
The face that I look at every morning is powerful and deserves peace of mind and joy amongst other things, but most important she deserves to know that her life is worth something.
As long as her heart beats, purpose flows through every vein all the time. Standing is hard, but I can’t stay down for too long.
In this context of healing, you are progressing, letting go, moving on, and allowing yourself rest from constant mental turmoil. What does that look like for you? What do you need to come to terms with to allow the healing process to surface and take its course?
Say whatever is bothering your peace of mind out loud. Speak in order to establish the pain. Do not remain in denial or give excuses. What is it that bothers you the most?
When you put together the pain you feel into words affirm and declare something different. Speak in terms of what, why, and how in order to establish contact with the pain and negative thoughts.
What now? What do you need in order to let go? How will you take a step forward from that point of pain?
Start with yourself. Turn pain into peace. Establish peace in pain.
In moving on in self-awareness, I will move on to a new cycle of 2019 with learning and improving my control and compassion.
As I write I declare and affirm that I will be able to control the thoughts that may consume me and practice self-compassion. I may also make conscious and progressive decisions and reach the success I see for myself. I will take my time and do my best in my journey.
Self-love will lead my continued journey and I will find refuge in self-care as I’m working toward my goals.
The Mighty Mic was an amazing experience. I’m extremely grateful that I was able to collaborate with The Mighty to help my community as they find strength in their mental health struggles. Here are some highlights from my event and a message that I learned. I will be planning and hosting more events so stay tuned!
My Open Mic Poem: A Messy Masterpiece
I look up to the rainbow that extends from one end of the equator to the other.
The rain that just passed has drenched me with growing pains as the flowers sprout from my insides out.
A messy masterpiece they called me.
As I feel the thunderstorms inside my gut, my tears run frantically like uncontrolled children in the playground.
A messy masterpiece they call me.
I can’t breathe like someone is putting duct tape on my mouth as I try to scream, my surrounding get blurry again, I can’t see
A messy masterpiece they call me
I’m a mess I say
They look at me confused because I’m in one of my silent spells, they think I’m upset but really I’m in this deep dark place in my head, my body is free but my mind captive
A messy masterpiece they call me
Sometimes my bed arrest me
I’m in trouble from the thoughts that told on me, I broke the law
Now I’m confined to my pillow and blankets, I got life but I’m planning on breaking out Sooner than later because I deserve to be free
A messy masterpiece they call me
You see, my footprints tell a story
It’s not just an abandoned trial
It’s meant to be a pathway for other people like me
How I walked that walk and now they can see a way they can go
They too are messy masterpieces fashioned together to make beautiful poetry learning that their voices too do still matter Because ears that need to listen will be drawn to the sounds of their voices in the distance
The Mighty Voices
A messy masterpiece they call me
My Story and Advice
After some mighty poets and speakers shared I was compelled to share my story to them as well. I noticed a pattern in the themes that recurred in the poems and pieces everyone shared and thought I would give some advice based on what I learned.
Late Night Talks With Nina: Final Thoughts
Purpose, worth, self-talk, and identity were themes that recurred while I sat and soaked in the message of each story. While we are faced with difficulties with our mental health, it’s often due to mental conversations about those themes. As we continue on in our journey and our battle we must let go of the notion of a single purpose or single mission conforming to the standards of the society we live. Instead, we must continuously walk in our own self-fulfillment-whatever that looks like-while also navigating our peace through the opportunities we are able to take up. We live our life through how much we are filled with happiness and satisfaction with what we are doing. Let’s not waste ourselves with expecting purpose to manifest without manifesting ourselves in the process. We manifest purpose by being alive and continue fulfilling our own talents. Learn yourself, love yourself, and find peace through appreciating your life and the opportunity to live it.
I’m extremely excited about being a contributor writer for another website —DefyingShadows.com!
Defying Shadows Logo
My first article published on Defying Shadows is focused on two consecutive symptoms of depression that are often frustrating to comprehend for those who experience depression as well as their loved ones.
If you experience these symptoms, communicating can help others understand how to best support you.
As time progresses and I’m learning to live better, taking care of my mental health and growing in my self-acceptance, I declare, confirm, and affirm that I will not allow anything to set me back. Although it’s been rough and I’ve been tired, I will continuously push myself to my potential. I’m able to be the advocate, writer, leader, influencer, and speaker I want to be.
Don’t allow anything or anyone to steal your motivation or stunt your ambitions to make the difference you know you can make. Push yourself to be better, to know better, and show others what progress looks like. Be the light for someone else.
Your life is your story, and your story gives birth to your purpose (or I should say you realizing your purpose). Who you are and what you are is what gives you life and what will make you feel joy. Find yourself as you navigate your story, find power, and know your greatness. Be open and vulnerable, but only when you’re ready. Be ready for all the opportunities that will open up once you venture into the realm of self-acceptance.