Most years I task myself to create as many goals as ‘years old’ I am turning.
This year I wanted to switch it up and take this post to share what I am grateful
for now ending my 26th year after having some time to reflect.
THINGS I AM GRATEFUL FOR
- Aurora! She is my angel from God + my little blessing. My motivation to continue to be a better person and reminder to enjoy the little and BIG moments in life.
- My health: I was really sick for a couple of years; struggling to breathe and my quality of life was decreasing in the environment paired with those health issues. I am able to breathe with no issues on a daily basis without relying on medicine or having constant anxiety about my health issues.
- My family. I couldn’t have gotten through the past few years without them. I love that Aurora is able to have relationships with my family members + be surrounded by a family who is committed to loving and supporting eachother. I feel like I can see growth in all of us after we all had been tested with many new situations this year we had not previously had experience in.
- My chosen family (my friends). Paul Sandy Candace Darah LaNae Kelli. You have been constants and consistent throughout the past few years. Thank you for not letting anything create distance between us, always being there and showing patience, empathy and love even when I don’t feel like I deserve it- or I am being stubborn.
- art | art supplies. I have found so much joy in crafting and creating, I just told my sister yesterday that I use art and crafting as a healthy outlet for me to let out my feelings when I have felt like I had too much going on and no words to express how I feel.
- girl. salon, clients: hair. When I realized I would be a single mum I took the risk to go on my own in business while going through a divorce. I really stepped out in faith in this decision + I am so grateful that I took those steps even when it looked irrational to everyone on the outside. I’m grateful for the studio that holds a safe space for me everyday & clients who have been with me and been patient with me on days I couldn’t be 100% myself or present- their loyalty, business and empathy means more than they know.
- divorce. I realized how far away I had drifted from who I was in order to try and fit into a mould I was never meant to fit + please people who will never be satisfied. getting the divorce + going through this divorce saved my life + has propelled me back in the direction and path I had drifted so far away from. I have an opportunity to help others who have survived toxic abusive relationships. I have the opportunity to have a fresh start. Divorce can easily make you feel like a failure but it’s an opportunity to find happiness and peace.
- quietness. I used to feel so rushed or pushed to live a busy lifestyle that felt like I was constantly surrounded by noise all around me. heavy emphasis on peace + quiet. being able to find peace within myself —in situations — allows me to sit in quietness. Learning to quiet the negative thoughts that would naturally want to flood in when i have felt I was in uncomfortable situations, is something that helps me protect my peace. still working on it, but Ive learned to appreciate and understand the saying peace and quiet on a whole new level + have started to really look for more moments by myself to reset and enjoy the quietness.
- creativity! I have been sooo inspired and have had many ideas continue to flow that I want to create while I took my -photoshoot/hair- hiatus most of 2021 to allow (really honour/force)myself to rest. I wanted to honor myself when I promised myself I’d take a break, while ideas have kept coming I have been moodboard-ing & planning to return to the creative world refreshed and grateful to have opportunities to work with new creatives + resume creating with people who inspire me.
- boundaries! you know what- this may sound exhausting for some people but it’s something that is still overlooked & i’m excited for this to be adopted into our daily vocab without having such a jarring impact when mentioned. creating boundaries around myself to feel secure and loved and to avoid burnout has been something I’ve worked on throughout the last year + I’m excited and more confident to continue this year. I realized how many people had unlimited access to me + drained me, I took inventory when I left not feeling fulfilled or made me feel like i wasn’t enough as-is. I’m still learning to honour other people’s boundaries, even if that temporarily hurts my feelings. I’ve know that I can still root for someone else’s progress even if I’m not involved in their journey + it’s okay to allow things to come to a natural end.
- God. I wish I could express how much calmer and peaceful I feel daily. I love the saying “you’re not blessed, you big blessed.” since I’ve focused on my relationship with God. I don’t feel the need to prove myself as much I did in the past, I don’t find myself craving external validation as much I used to as I begin to feel more secure with who I already am in Christ. Geez who am I, I would never have thought I’d be typing these words.
I have such great expectations for this year. I haven’t felt so hopeful + excited for the unknown in such a long time. This time last year I was busy being ‘goal-oriented’ on things that involved me filling up cups for other people while still neglecting myself – trying to make myself fit in spaces I was never meant to be in. I am really grateful to have the opportunity to step into who I am confidently + calmly and make space to surround myself with people and things that remind me to be grateful every day.
Photos are by Isa Gonzalez you can find her work here: visualsbyisa.