I've Grown. I'm Grown.

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"It’s been a long road | Been at it 7/24 | People think they know but they don’t even have a clue…”Lyrics from my new song..

It has been a long road and the older I get, the more thankful and appreciative I am for this journey. The roads might not always be enjoyable but they have helped me grow. I had to grow up A LOT over the past 5 years, especially this last year and it all led me to this place I’m at right now…

It’s been so long since I’ve dropped new music but I’m thankful that the wait is finally over. When life comes at you fast, the time goes by even faster. But I’m stronger, I’m wiser and I’m ready to share like I’ve never shared before. 

I hope you all are Ready, because I am! 

Stay tuned… 

What 2017 Taught Me

This year has been full of ups and downs for me. As I take a moment to reflect on everything that has taken place in 2017, I'm really proud of the strength I was able to gather and thankful for the lessons I've learned through it all...

I went to great lengths to seek peace and pursue purpose this year. When I lost my mom in 2016, there were so many goals I made for myself for 2017 and although I have plenty more things to work on, I learned so much in these 365 days. 

2017 was a year that taught me how to listen to my heart, and I faced the fact that my heart was broken and needed a chance to heal. When my mother passed away, I was 8 months pregnant and was unable to mourn in a healthy manner, I didn't allow myself time to grieve. This fall, after the year mark of my mother's passing, I decided I needed to take some time to seek peace with all that had taken place and that pursuit led me home. During this season of my life, I've been able to find incredible inspiration. Being around my family and the city I love the most, has energized my soul and has allowed me to learn more about who I truly am and see pieces of my purpose much more clearer. Although the scar from losing my mother will never fade away, my heart is becoming whole again and everything seems to be falling into place for my purpose as a human being, as a wife, as a mother, as an artist and everything in between.   

2017, your lessons weren't always easy but they made me better. And for that, I am thankful. 

2018, I'm Ready. 

 

Taking the Stairs...

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We've all heard it before...  "There is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs."   And that has seriously been the story of my life. But the more I think about it, the higher I get, the view I'm beginning to see, I'm thankful my path has lead me up these steep stairs.

My set of stairs haven't always been built strong, sometimes they don't always seem sturdy or safe, but I continue to climb. The higher I go, the stronger I get. When a person takes stairs on a consistent basis, It's amazing how the body reacts. The body begins to "get in shape" and get stronger. The more consistent we are, the easier it is to breathe. By the time we get elevated to higher levels we are able to breath easier. Much easier than when we first began.

While living in California, I've climed some amazing stairs, like Runyon Canyon and the stairs to Amir's Garden. I've also complained and questioned why I put myself through the torture of climbing the side of a mountain, yet even though I end up sore, thirsty and out of breath, I never ever regret how I physically feel because of what I see once I get to the top. The sense of accomplishment, the sense of pride when I look and see how far I climbed, the joy of accomplishment, the beauty that I'm able to see because I put in the work, that nobody could have done for me... all of that makes it worth it.

The stairs may be tough at times, they may be unforgiving... the stairs may seem like a bad idea, and the elevator may seem pretty easy... but the strength we gain, the time we take and the sacrifices we make, allows those stairs to lead to something much greater than an elevator could ever bring.

Each person's path leads to something different. The journey of life has various types of stairs within them and at times we may be graced with a few elevators but as I navigate on my journey, I want to take my time with each step because I don't want to slip and fall. I've come too far to go back now and I'm beginning to like the view of where I'm at so far and how peaceful things look where I'm going.

I hope all of us are able to gather up the strength to keep stepping up, following our hearts and continue to climb to greater heights...

 

Gains...

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Every single day, for the last 21 months, I have been sharing my body with my son...

I carried him for 9+ months (he was cozy past his due date) and have been breastfeeding him since the day he was born. 

I've given every ounce of myself to motherhood since my son arrived and recently it showed up on the scale . . . 

Being a first time mom has been the greatest & most rewarding sacrifice I've ever done in my entire life. But I am definitely guilty of putting myself in last place here lately . . . 

For those who have been following me for a while, you know I love living a healthy lifestyle and I've documented my workouts a lot in the past. I was in the gym faithfully before & during my pregnancy. I was literally in the gym on a Monday and was in the hospital to have my baby two days later. That's how committed I've always been.

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After I suffered a devastating knee injury, the gym had to become a part of my lifestyle in order for my legs to stay strong to avoid any further injuries. The gym also became a safe haven for me to release stress during some of the hardest times of my life . . . 

Lately, the gym has not been so easy to get to and home work outs have been hard to accomplish. A lot of change has happened in our lives and I've began to get the "you lost a lot of weight, are you doing okay?" comments from my family. Although my breastfeeding appetite is crazy and I'm eating constantly, not being able to lift weights and workout like I used to, has caught up with me physically. I have a small frame, always have and apparently always will (sigh). It was always my hopes to hold on to as much of my baby weight as I could, but I'm far from my fitness goals, yet again. Yesterday, my husband did everything he possibly could to make sure I didn't have any mommy excuses to not make it to the gym and it felt SOOOO good to get in the gym and lift some weights again. I made it back in there today and I'm ready to get my gains back . . . 

Not only physically, but gain more control of balancing my time... gain more confidence in this new season in my life and continue to strive to gain peace along this journey of pursing Purpose.  

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I'm posting this today, not to complain about being small because I know NOBODY wants to hear that... but to simply be accountable. I know if I post about how I want to get stronger and gain muscle, I'll be more likely to make it a point to continue to balance motherhood and my workouts, along with all the other things I have going on... Working out is therapeutic for me and I didn't realize how much I missed it and needed it until yesterday. So I have to say thank you for my husband, my forever workout partner, even if it’s through text while he watches the baby (lol) for encouraging me to take time for me. And I also want to say, just because a person is skinny, doesn't mean they are healthy or happy. We all just have to work with what we have and not be so hard on ourselves and each other . . .

Everybody always posts the before & after pics for #TransformationTuesday, but today I've decided to put up a post dedicated to the process.

It's not always easy, but I'm #Ready

Good Grief

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I took some time offline to start the healing process, but I think I’m ready to start posting again...

It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I lost my mother to breast cancer in August last year. I didn’t take the time to mourn in a healthy manner because I had to give birth to my son a couple of months after she passed away, in October. The year mark of my mother’s passing really sparked a lot in me. Made me really realize how hurt I truly was and how I had been holding things back because I wanted to be present with the joy of having my son and not deal with the pain of such a tremendous loss.

It was effecting my creativity and I just felt uninspired. This new chapter in my life is allowing me to take time to think about what really matters in life. It’s so easy to get caught up in things that, at the end of the day, really don’t matter. Especially when you're living in LA. But over the last couple of months, In my most broken moments, I was able to really think about my life, my family and what truly matters. It has led me to make some big decisions and go through incredibly challenging lengths to pursue peace and live in purpose. And I'm happy I've decided to walk along a path that positions me to take better care of myself and my family.

I know my lack of engagement on social media over the past few months has caused some to lose interest, but I’m thankful for those who stand by me through it all. If I’m going to be on social media, I want it to make an impact on people in an uplifting way. I look forward to connecting in a much more authentic way and start rebuilding.

I’m Ready.

#WorldMentalHealthDay #SelfCare #GoodGrief

1 Year. 1 Bond.

On 8/29/2016, one year ago today, my mom passed away....

But I'm convinced she's still here. 

I feel her spirit daily. I see her in my son's smile. I hear her in my voice. I feel her when my brothers are around me.... the list goes on and on.

On days like today you never really know what to expect. The greatest feeling I've felt today is thankfulness... I'm so thankful that this year has brought me and my brothers closer than we've ever been. One thing my mom always expressed is that she wanted her kids to get along and love each other. Well mom, that's what we've been doing. 

When my mom passed away, I was 8 months pregnant and my brothers were so concerned about me. My brothers and their beautiful loves, have traveled thousands of miles, on several occasions to see me, check on me and love on my little family. I know my mom is proud of us. We've had to grow up a lot over the past year. Not being able to call our mom three times a day for every little thing has been hard, but we've been leaning on each other through the grief and the growing pains and our bond is unbreakable. 

We miss our mom more than we could ever express but we are doing our best to take things one moment, one step at a time...

We love you Ma! When we shine, you shine. 

No Pressure... just Purpose

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I haven't posted much this month, I've been navigating through A LOT of emotions!!! I visited Kansas City (my home town) during my mother's birthday week. I had my first performance there without having her in the crowd and the weeks leading up to that was way more difficult than I imagined. But I made it through it all.

Being home... in Kansas City... feeling the warmth from my family is always something I cherish. Seeing my aunts, uncles and cousins play with Kendrix and how happy my son is with his family (even at 9 months old) just gives me a sweet peace and makes me feel closer to my mom and my grandmother.

I was up early this morning thinking about my two beautiful guiding lights...

I have a lot of big decisions to make within the next couple of weeks and I'm trying to think of what I believe they would say to me... what they would want me to do... and what would be best for me and my family. My mother and grandmother sacrificed SO much for their children and now that I'm a mother I respect their dedication to motherhood more than ever. Although the mourning process has not been easy on me this month, I'm shifting my thought process to a positive place of peace and determination to continue on the path of living a life full of legendary love (that lasts for generations to come) and positive energy.

My grandmother and mother were women of faith, integrity and compassion... there's no pressure for me to live up to what they were able to do with their years on earth because it's already in me. I get it honest and I embrace it as Purpose. I embrace it as a Gift. And I'm going to shine bright,  just as they did, in my own way. The legacy continues...

When I shine, it's a reflection of them ✨ 

August Ambition

 

August is here and my goal to Get In Tune is in full effect. I don't want August to be a sad month for me I want it to be a month of honor, celebration and reflection.

Not too long ago, I saw a little girl in the grocery store with her mom. It was clear her mom was going through chemo therapy and my heart just sank for them. The little girl looked like she was around 12 years old. And all I could do in that moment was be thankful. Thankful that I had my mom for thirty three years because not everybody gets that much time. Although my time with my mom seemed short to me, it was so amazing, meaningful and beautiful. 

I always told my husband, when we have children I want to start a bunch of family traditions. And I'm feeling like August needs to be a month where we have family traditions to honor my mom's legacy every year. I'm not sure what I'm going to do just yet, but her birthday is the 15th and I'm sure I'll come up with something. Meanwhile, I want this month to be a time where I'm able to take the time reflect on my life, make changes if need be and celebrate all the things that I am thankful for. 

I've learned over the years that when I really need a boost of energy, counting my blessings around me, even if it's something really small and simple, always helps me from going to a low place. 

I'm beginning to get excited about this month because I expect growth and getting closer to a new place of peace. This month, my goals are to go the extra mile for my health, my marriage (b/c the rookie parent romance struggle is real) and also finishing up some new music.

My mom would like all of that. And I do to. I carry her light with me, but I also understand that I have a light of my own that I have to be responsible with. So when I shine, she shines no matter what. 

My mom always wanted her children to live our lives as full as possible, which is why all three of us are so creative, and I'm determined not to let her down.

My prayer is that August is full of more smiles than tears and when they do fall, it'll cleanse my soul in a beautiful way to continue on stronger and wiser with more peace to pass on to those who long for it too.