Originally I wanted to title this weeks blog 'Live like Maya Angelou', but after watching the film 'Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' just a few minutes in she said "When I decided to speak, I had a lot to say.". How powerful is that, it hit me right to the core, my childhood, my struggles, my defeats, my rise led me to the same place. In August of 2016 I decided to speak by starting this weekly blog, honestly sharing my journey. Personal stories that prevent me from ever being hidden again or allowing my past to control my future.
Maybe my words would be more impactful if my circumstances were different when I was younger and my education was nurtured. Maybe If I was more focused on learning than running from the cycle, the cycle I later learned was in fact running. I could have read more books, learned more about art and fashion, all the passions I had when I was younger. Instead I grew up young, on my own when I should have just been learning about being a young girl.
I wish, I wish, I wish is what I used to say. Fortunately today I don't say that, I can read more books today if I want. I can nurture my creativity the way I've always wanted it to be nurtured. I have a faith that allows me to know that I am only an instrument for my higher power to work through me. So I write and take pictures and say my poetry as best I can, I tell my story.
"You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them." -Maya Angelou
When I saw this Phenomenal woman speak and tell her life from her lips, and describe how she lived, that's what I try and do. It's the simple things, having respect for others and a genuine love for people, she did things that made her happy, and stayed creative wherever she was led and spoke her truth very simply and to the point. Her words and her voice made you stop and pay attention, it made you feel. My words do this for me, and over the last year I've been so grateful that my blogs have touched others. To have someone reach out and say they needed to hear what I said, or they love following my journey, means the world to me. Another sign that being unafraid to release my story was a gift I was blessed with, almost like being relieved of an obsession for something.
Now this isn't a blog on Maya Angelou but a a sign I was given to take notice, a happy addition to this weekends lesson's. But I do want to add a final quote by Ms. Angelou.
‘That we may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated, that in fact it may be necessary to encounter defeats so we can know who the hell we are. What can we overcome? What makes us stumble and fall and somehow miraculously rise and go on? I know that a diamond is the result of extreme pressure. Less time and less pressure and it’s just crystal or coal or fossilized leaves – or just dirt. But time and pressure will create a diamond.’ -Maya Angelou
You are a diamond in the making.
Almost 20 months traveling with a small return for 5 months back in NY, I'm sure many people have their own opinions on what I'm doing or not doing. So here's the real reason, 20 month's ago I surrendered myself to higher power begging for a view of what my life can be outside of regrets, loneliness and fear. You may think my decisions currently are mine, some are but the will of my life isn't, when I let go I was then led. Opportunities appeared, chapters were closed, new ones opened and because I was willing; here I am. I am no longer full of regrets, loneliness, and fear.
I've been led for however long I am in Bali, and after this past weekend I've taken notice that maybe this is to help me strengthen my spiritual connection, make me stronger. Something I will need when I return to New York, as much good as I have going on I still have defeats that will happen in my life that I know I will rise from. The only difference now is I don't run on fear, I know I will need a job until my project takes off. I also know that maybe it won't take off, and life in New York might not be as peaceful and fulfilling as Bali and Australia have been to me.
So I think part of my spiritual strengthening will be on making any place I find myself at just as peaceful and fulfilling as Bali and Australia. But just know being led also requires doing work, something from time to time I struggle with, It's not all easy all the time.
Everyday I find myself growing into the person I am supposed to be and being among the kindest people of Bali that practice a spiritual life daily, I can only imagine I will also make this a practice.
"Om Swastiastu" is expected to be able to foster a harmonious relationship and strengthen the sense of brotherhood in the community.
Maybe one day I can write my story in full. Until then I want to thank everyone who has been and continues to be kind and generous to me. You are a big part of my recovery.
Faith | Equality | Human
Mucho Love, Jamie