Birthday Month….

It is hard to fathom that next week I will be 38. 38 years old. When did I get so old? What happened to my roaring twenties? I am almost 40 years old. I can only shake my head because I still have the energy of my 25 year old self, well with the exception of craving my bed instead of the dance floor every weekend.

When I look back at my life, I have regrets, memories of triumphs, failures, successes, and struggles. Mostly I feel grateful. I feel grateful for making it to this age. I am grateful to be able to be present for my beautiful children. I am grateful for finally embracing who I truly am at my core and actively pursuing expressing the fullness of self each and every day. I am grateful for the next chapter and so much more.

As I reflect on the strides I have made from last year to now, I honestly feel joy and a bit of anxiety. I always wonder if I am doing all that I can to secure my success and if this path is indeed the path that I should be following. But, each and every time though doubts rise up, divine intelligence comes in and reminds me that I am following my own divine path. I must remain diligent as divine timing dictates the movement and progression of all things.

38 rotations around the sun. 38 represents happiness, growth, material abundance. This number combines the energy of 3 and 8. I am coming into my season. It is finally my time. And I am open to receive that which the universe has for me. The beauty of this birthday is also that I am taking others along with me through my divine assignment as well as with my soul tribe.

I am welcoming 38 with a smile, a wink, and a slow wine!

 

Peace,

Ashaki

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Missing Grandma

I buried my best friend, my teacher, my buddy, my dear grandma Lillie on this day 18 years ago. 18 years- how in the hell is that possible? It doesn’t seem that so many years should have passed by when her death is still so raw, so fresh, so painful to think about.

I still remember the call. I had been feeling sick at work the entire evening and just a week earlier, I had dreamed that she died. So, when my phone rung at around  11:30 that night, I knew what it was before I heard the dreaded words.

I never thought I would lose her in the tragic manner that I did. But, throughout my life, my grandmother had made it clear that she knew that she wouldn’t live to be a very old woman. She would say ” I ain’t gonna live as long as Mama”. “Mama” was her mother and she lived to be 87. Her death was bitter, life shattering, and mind altering. It rocked our family to the core and the damage from her passing created clear rifts that are beyond repair.

Typically, I am fine on Valentine’s Day and even reminisce about my eulogizing her. I still cannot tell you how I stood up in that church and spoke so eloquently about her. All I know was that I had to do it. I didn’t feel that anyone else could do her justice.But, I am literally sitting here now with tears in my eyes, missing her.

I always sing her praises and I always will. I miss her terribly, especially when I am not having the best of days. My grandma had a way of making me feel that all was well, even when it clearly wasn’t. “My Girl” was her song to me and hearing the Temptations song sometimes stings because of the meaning that song has to me.

The days that followed her death were filled with questions, tears, anger, regret, and disbelief. I just could not deal with the fact that I would never hear her laughter again, or hear her stories, or sit in her lap. Gone were the hugs and kisses, the encouraging words, the undying support. My Grandma Lillie meant so much to me and helped nurture me for my entire life.

And although I know she is always with me, guiding me, speaking to me, watching over me, even chastising me when I fall short, the pain of the absence of her presence still hurts me to my core. May my life make her proud, bring honor to her memory, and joy to her spirit.

 

Peace,

Ashaki

Divine Mothering

Greetings, greetings, greetings! I hope you are doing well this Tuesday. I am in full recovery mode after suffering all weekend with sinus inflammation, drainage, and headaches. Today, I am about 75% healed and actually feel well enough to get some things done lol.

Anywho, I wanted to share how the universe will deliver what we need when we need. I am a nurse by profession. I have spent my entire career caring for elderly patients in various settings but mostly long-term care and rehabilitation. I have no idea how many lives I have touched in my nearly 19 years but, I know it definitely is in the thousands.

Well, there have been times in which I have been affected by patients and families as well. Some of these people just grow on you and you end up connecting with them on a deeper level than just healthcare. Recently I had an Ethiopian man as  a patient. He only spoke about 3 words in English. His wife was there daily, staying by his side as he recovered after surgery. His children visited daily as did other family members.

His wife is one of the sweetest spirits I have ever met and she truly gave me something that I have been missing for so many years. She mothered me. Every single exchange between she and I was one filled with concern, compassion, and genuine love. She fed me fruits, traditional Ethiopian foods, breads, and more. Each time I entered the room, she called me to her, holding food and feeding me as her own child.

In the settings in which I work, sometimes lunch does not happen- medications have to be passed, doctors are calling you to inquire about patient’s conditions, supervisors need you, etc. She observed me going without and out of concern, she fed me. But, it was so much more than just giving me food.

When she fed me, hugged me, and thanked me, she gave me the nurturing that I have been missing. She had the same feel as my grandma Lillie- warmth, love, joy, and divine feminine energy on high. She was graceful in all ways and her inner light shown bright. I am the one always giving so to be nurtured in that way was salve to a sometimes weary soul.

I am sure that she doesn’t even realize how impactful her simple kindness was to me in my life. On the day of discharge, I spent time in the room with my patient and his family, ensuring they had everything that they needed. The husband embraced me and kissed both my cheeks before leaving. I felt tears well in my eyes because they naturally embraced me as their own-even if it was only for a short period of time. May we all incline to treat one another as our own. Because the world certainly can use more love.

 

Peace,

Ashaki

Stepping Up My Game

Greetings fam! As always, I hope this message finds you well. I am coming to you all on the brink of explosion, well probably more like an implosion because I am usually very non-confrontational.

I know that I have to make some more major decisions. And they are not going to be easy but, they are so necessary. I have had to make other adjustments over the past 2 years that have brought tears, anxiety, and more unpleasantness.

These new changes are probably going to induce some of those same emotions but, I always follow my first mind. If my first mind tells me to let something or someone go, I do just that nowadays. I spent many years denying those thoughts and suffered much in the long run because of my “kung-fu grip” approach to people.

Some of these changes involve my lifestyle. I am going to push myself more physically, increase my overall care of myself, and really focus on improving myself. I am currently sipping on a nice smoothie as I type this (insert wink here!). I am actually considering heading back to the gym! Even if I only make it to the gym a few nights a week, I think it will be good for me to just get out of the house, focus on making improvements, and build some new self-care practices in addition to what I do already.

I am also going to work towards putting myself out there more. I must admit it is frightening to expose my spiritual business to the entire world, approaching new potential clients, and sharing my gifts. I am just like anyone, I feel self-doubt, unworthiness, and small compared to others that I see. However, there is something within me that will not allow me to not move forward. So, here I come- out in the open for the world to see.

This is just a small snapshot of me stepping my game up. I have so much more to do….

#staytuned

 

Peace,

Ashaki

5 Ways to Improve Your Focus

Greetings! I hope you all are well and that life is not just happening to you. Today, I wanted to share tips around a topic that was very popular on both my IG and FB. I posted a meme with the title “Please take one”. The picture  included 5 empty glass containers, each with a label. One bottle was labeled “joy”, one was “magic”, and then they were followed by “love”, “focus”, and “calm”.

So many people said that they needed focus so I decided to share practical tips to help them with improving their focus. Here they are:

  1. Meditate, meditate, meditate. I will forever sing the praises of the practice of meditation. The benefits are endless but, for the sake of time, let’s just say meditation definitely helps improve focus
  2. Get clear about where your focus needs to be. We all have a lot of responsibility but, it is necessary to determine the priority of those items on our list. Is it really important that certain things be done right this second or can they wait until tomorrow. Not procrastination, prioritization.
  3. Focus on one thing at the time. I know, I know, it is easier said than done, but in order to be efficient, you have to stop trying to do everything at the same damn time! Cook dinner, then study, then read, then do all your other shit. Trust me, you will drive yourself crazy trying to do all and be all, all the damn time!!
  4. Keep the distractions to a minimum. Log off, unplug, detach, put your phone down and focus…
  5. Keep practicing. Continue to strive to get better at focusing, put the previous steps into action, and be consistent. Your focus will improve over time.

I hope this helps someone. If it isn’t for you. share with a friend or family member who you think needs it  (insert smile here). Until we meet again…take care of you and yours!

 

Peace,

Ashaki

A Nap, No Makeup, A New Normal?

Greetings, greetings, greetings,

I hope this post finds you well, secure, and in perfect peace. I am feeling refreshed myself. Today, I did something I haven’t done for a very long time- I took a nap. I know that may sound simple but, for someone like me, taking a nap requires a detachment that I do not know and a feeling of guilt that I do not particularly enjoy.

However, today, I decided to do a few things different. I decided to take today off – a day off from my regular. After getting everyone off to school, I went to the market and my favorite botanica, I returned home. I prepared a light breakfast and then decided to lay my tired ass down. LOL, just typing that makes me giggle.

I chose not to work on anything in particular. I chose to only wash and moisturize my face and not wear any makeup. Yes, I absolutely loathe the areas of hyperpigmentation on my cheeks but, my skin needs a rest from all of the chemicals. And though not wearing makeup makes me a bit self conscious, I know that my body needs it. I have learned to listen to my inner wisdom.

And then, I chose to take a nap. Sometimes we have to just stop- stop running around, stop with the neverending to-do list, stop with the marketing and advertising, stop with the workout- just stop and be.

I am beginning to see the power in just be-ing. You have to be still in order to hear the still voice of the divine. You have to just be in order to feel, to process, to accept, to let go, to release, to move on. There is much power in the being.

So, today, makeup-less, I decided to go within, rest, and be. And the being feels so damn good. Strive less to do and more to be. You will not regret it.

Wounded, but Standing

Greetings,

As always, I hope that this post finds you well. I have honestly been struggling over the past few days. I had to come to the realization that although I am healed from certain traumas, I will always carry the scar and those scars can be quite tender and can still cause pain, even be reopened when not guarded and protected. I have had to make some decisions regarding those I allow in my personal space this week. It is painful but necessary. There is no way that I can subject myself to anyone who questions the validity of things that I openly shared with them- things that have forever changed me as an individual.

We have all had experiences that were painful, even traumatic. Hearing the stories of so many women who have experienced similar trauma is heartbreaking and it also peels back my own scars, causing me to really seek solace and peace within. In years past, a bottle of liquor was salve, but now I have other means of dealing with my anxieties and pain from all that has happened. It seems every time that I have sought what I needed outside of myself, I have been left feeling more hurt and regret for not only what happened but, for who I would have been if that ugliness had never occurred.

I know that this year holds much promise but, there will also be strife. I am already feeling it and it is not comfortable. But, I also understand that space must be created in order to make room for all that is to come. I have felt that I was on the brink of something big for the past few months so, I am being patient until it comes to fruition. I also am going to make even more efforts to be of assistance to all the black girls and women who have suffered or continue to suffer because of what was done to them.  The world can blame them and shame them but, I will uplift them, love them, encourage them, and enlighten them.

I have been fortunate enough to have the courage to speak, to share, to write, to do about things that a lot of people would not dare to. I  used to see my life as one big tumult- a never-ending story line of tragedy and pain. But, not now. I see my life as a testament to a spirit that refuses to give up or give in. My life is decorated with times of near death, almost this, and wouldn’t have that. In this society , I have been labeled almost every stereotype that is- the child born out of wedlock, the welfare child, the teenage mom, the battered wife, the rape victim, and so on. But, I am a creator and the author of my life. I am a woman, an overcomer, a survivor, a conqueror, a writer, a poet, a spiritual guide, an oracle, a teacher, a leader, a mother, and so much more. And I am just getting started.

Peace,

Ashaki

 

Wrapping Up 2018

Greetings!

I hope this post finds you well. I cannot believe that we are sitting at the end of 2018. So much has changed, been realized, been released, and so on this year. I learned a lot of lessons this year and am striving to apply those jewels of wisdom into my future.

This year was filled with new life, loss, death, pain, regret. I honestly still am processing a ton of it, but that is the way that you grow from so-called “negative” experiences. So many of us try to fake our way through it, deny how we feel, and refuse to release what truly bothered us, hurt us, and changed us.

There’s a process in progress and though it can be fun, exciting, and more awesome adjectives, it can also cause anxiety, tears, disappointment, and more.  However, what I have learned it that you are entitled to feel how you feel- just don’t remain in that state. Take every obstacle, every setback, every difficulty, every unfavorable situation and flip them on its head. View them as lessons and opportunities for your own growth.

So, do not lament about what 2018 was. Instead, rejoice in what the year taught you, how much you have grown, and how much wiser you have become over this last year. You have so much to look forward to, if only you get into the correct mindstate.

Next year is a 3 year. In numerology, 3 is an action number, a highly creative number, one that represents self-confidence. This number is an indication that next year, we all should focus on working on our passions and making our dreams come true. This next year brings tons of activity, movement, and new starts. So, get ready and stay tuned for more from yours truly!

And remember, you are a co-creator. The world is literally your canvas.

 

 

Peace,

Ashaki

Simply Be

Greetings fam! I hope this message finds you well and I hope you are not feeling overwhelmed about all of the holiday madness. I wanted to just drop in really quickly to check up on all on you all and speak briefly about a few things.

Can you believe that 2019 is as close as it is? I certainly can’t. When I look and think back on 2018 and how quickly it all went by, I can’t help but to remember my grandma Lillie saying that the older you get the quicker times goes. I remember saying that it wasn’t possible but, I swear it’s the truth.

Maybe it is because we are always so busy doing – working, cleaning, cooking, talking, texting, posting, checking in, running around, supporting, and so on and so forth. Which begs the question, how much time have we spent simply being?

I remember when I was a married twenty-something. I would spend so much time shopping, cooking, decorating, wrapping, and working, and mothering, and wifeing (I know this isn’t a word lol) but, I never stopped to just BE. It left me feeling resentful trying to be Polly Perfect and neglecting myself.

I suppose from the outside looking in my family looked ideal. The smiles on the pictures covered up the dysfunction that lurked. And my heart was simply heavy and my spirit was being dragged. I truly do not know how I survived it all back then. I was driven by this need to create a family that I never had as a child.

Now, I am at a place in my life that I must be and do and think and feel and express myself as I see fit. I have learned the masterful skill of detachment- detachment from people, places, things, ideas, mindsets , habits, and more that are not serving my highest good. And I realize that in my imperfection, I am perfectly perfect.

There are mantras posted by my bed that I read nearly every day. One of them goes as follows:

“I release attachment to all that is not serving my highest good”.  This simple mantra has empowered me to let go of all of the ideas I had of how I should behave as a mother and now ex-wife.

The fallacies we hold about how we should be and act can be damaging, but only if we allow it. We have the power to change the narrative at any time we so choose. So, this is my encouragement to you- if you feel chained in your life, hostage to your “titles, and bound by tradition, choose you over all of it. You deserve to live every day joyfully, no matter how unconventional it may seem to others. Do it for you.

Release.

It is absolutely sweet.

 

Peace,

Ashaki

Red Lips & Fingertips

When I was a little girl, I was fascinated by red fingernails and red lipstick. I would sneak outside and paint my nails a blazing red color and admire how the red looked against my deep brown skin. I thought it looked pretty but, that notion was quickly shot down by a family member. 

“You too black to wear those colors”, “that makes you look like a clown”, “don’t wear no mess like that again”. Those statements became embedded into my mind and for years, I downplayed my own beauty, refused to wear particular colors, muting myself and admiring others who were bold enough to take chances.

But, I have shifted. My perception of beauty has changed and I am finally healed from the ugly messages that marred my childhood. So, I went to my nail salon and chose a bright red for my manicure. 

I had written previously about my red lipstick and all that it took for me to wear it. Now, here I am rocking red fingertips lol! I have come a very long way. For some people, wearing red lipstick and fingernail polish is not a big idea but, for me it is a revolutionary action. 

This is me standing fully on my own square, feeling the reverberation of my own beauty, power, and strength ripple through my body- free from the demons of the past, free from small mindedness, free from other people’s judgments.

It is not easy to overcome the lies that you have been told as a child, especially from loved ones. You often take what they say as gospel. But, be encouraged that no one can define you except you. You are as good as anyone, as beautiful as anyone, and as capable as anyone else in this world. Find your purpose, find your joy, find your hope, find you and celebrate you as often as possible. 

Live your life on your own terms and live it out loud!

Peace & Light, 

Ashaki