Are you living a life based on someone else’s interpretation?

Last night I was praying for my marriage.  Out of habit I prayed that my husband would love me as Christ loved the church (Epeshians 5:25).  I immediately laughed and realized that I have no idea what that scripture means or what that type of love looks like in a marriage!  I have prayed that scripture so many times over the 15 years of my marriage.

I asked my husband if he knew what it meant or if he knew how to find out what that scripture truly means.  We realized that our marriage had been based on someone else’s interpretation of the scripture because we never took the time to search it for ourselves.  I think that happens a lot in marriages.  We listen to the interpretation of a Pastor, Counselor, or friend and take his/her version as our own and we stick with it.

I realized that I had took the same path with my marriage.  My marriage has been based on someone else’s interpretation of what marriage should be.  15 YEARS and I am just realizing that I never took the time to create a marriage that is authentic to me.  I’ve allowed counseling, teaching, television, books,  other couples, social media, childhood, and Lord nows what else to define my idea of marriage.

I literally realized last night that my role as a wife has been a mask.  Someone told me what marriage should look like and I took the mask and wore it.  And I have been wearing that mask for almost 15 years.  I have always felt like something was missing in my marriage, but I could never quite put my finger on it.

I told my husband that I feel like that I should wake up and introduce myself to him in the morning because he does not know me and I don’t know him.  We have been wearing masks that were given to us and we weren’t aware at the time that we could actually decline those masks and go and create a marriage that we wanted to have.

Y’all I will be celebrating 15 years of marriage on May 17, 2018.   I feel like we should be starting over at day 1 getting to know one another.  Last night I told him that he married a mask.  Since the release of broken little pieces, I have been on a journey of constantly removing masks and desperately trying to get to the core of  WHO I AM!!!

According to Ephesian 5: 1-2, we should be imitators of God and that we should walk in love.  Although I’m not quite sure what that fully means either, I’m going to start by making it a point to daily “Walk in Love” and pray that I begin to gain clarity and understanding of my life.

Deep sigh.  I told y’all that removing masks is no joke, but I also promised to walk out this journey daily with you.  It’s a process and there is no looking back.  Whew!!!!

To be continued…

#brokenlittle pieces #selfcare #selflove #masks

Spark Joy Podcast Ep 22 | Inspire Someone Daily: Broken Little Pieces with Kizmat Tention

Listen in on my interview with the hosts of the Spark Joy Podcast.  We talk in detail of my journey through broken little pieces and how my goal in life is to inspire daily.

Listen below through the following links:

iTunes: https://apple.co/2Em9CPi

GooglePlay: http://bit.ly/2DNTF7N

Overcast: https://overcast.fm/itunes1278047404/spark-joy

http://www.sparkjoypodcast.com/episode-22-inspire-someone-daily-broken-little-pieces-with-kizmat-tention

Don’t let them see the other “YOU”…

Sooo… my daughter and I were walking to the car and she jokingly made the comment, “don’t want them to see the other YOU!”

I must say that her comment completely caught me off guard.  Now I must admit that I can at times not be completely present all the time.  Unfortunately, this is one of the moments where I was not present.  So I have no idea what the context of her comment was, and I was kind of afraid to ask.

I didn’t want to know who “the other YOU” was from her perspective.  So I thought about it for a moment…

What I do know about myself is that I can be a bit short fused.  Like I can go from calm to rage in a matter of moments.  But that’s usually after I’ve held it together for a long time, and it usually takes either the lack of food or sleep to bring out that rage.  I recalled earlier that I had been fussing at her about not keeping up with her planner.  I was having the repeated argument of how tired I was to constantly have to remind her of lessons, practices, activities, etc.

So as I’m rushing to get to take care of something that she failed to remind me of, I kind of lost it.  Now mind you, this wasn’t somewhere we had to be at a certain time, however it was something that needed to be done this week and she failed to remember.  The fact that I failed to eat lunch and was starving set-up the perfect storm for this moment.

Lately I’ve been focused on morning meditations in an attempt to control my level of calmness in all situations.  This particular morning I didn’t have my meditation because I left my phone in the car.  Later that day, while going through my meditations, the focus was on giving grace and compassion, even in situations that disappoint us.

I immediately questioned whether or not my level of frustration was warranted with her in that moment.  Could my same message have been communicated without the semi-rage?

I later told her, as I have told my husband as well, that I am working on this area in my life.  There are times when I don’t realize in the moment how escalated I have become.  I told them that my new safe word is ZEN.  Saying the word makes me aware of my emotions immediately.  It also gives me a chance to calm down in the moment through meditative breathing.

I must admit that I have a small fear that my safe word will be taken advantage of, triggering another level of rage for feeling unheard.  But hey, I guess I’ll deal with that mountain when I get to it.

In the meantime, I’ll continue to do the work so that my child doesn’t have to worry about people seeing, the other ME!

What areas in your life do you feel your family see a different side that you rarely show the public?

Thoughts… the silent dream killer.

Awareness.

Lately I have been so intentional with listening.  Not so much to others or to things around me, but to my thoughts.  I realize that the thoughts in my head are those that are closest to me.  It’s my thoughts that ultimately decide what I do with my life.  We are taking in information constantly, always listening and hearing, but the question becomes how are your thoughts translating those inputs of information.

I once heard someone say that new authors always ride around with boxes of books in their car, but aren’t selling those booksI heard it.  Once I heard it, I could have chosen to dismiss it or hold on to it.  I held on to that information and promised myself that would never be me.

Guess what?  It hasn’t been me.  I always sell out of my books.  But I also found myself running into situations where someone wanted to purchase a book and I didn’t have a single book on me.  Why?  Because I chose to hold on to a comment that I heard from someone else.  I made the decision to turn that comment into something negative that I didn’t want to identify with.  Looking back, I should have quickly dismissed that comment.  I’m a new author! I should always have books readily available to either sell or give away!

All of these thoughts around that one comment were in my head.  I wish I had spoken to someone earlier that didn’t carry the same doubt and fears of being a new author.  This person made the comment before my book was published, but that comment stayed with me.  I didn’t realize how much that one comment had affected me until my husband asked me one day why I didn’t have more books on hand.

I literally said, I’m not riding around in my car with a whole bunch of boxes of books!  His response was why not?  It was in that moment that I realized how that one comment had affected me.  I told him the comment and then all of the extra thoughts in my head that I used to validate such a ridiculous statement.

Sometimes, NO, ALL OF THE TIME, we have to be conscious of the thoughts that we entertain in our head.  Especially if those thoughts are serving us no purpose.  Or if those thoughts are keeping us from stepping out and trying something new or taking a risk.

What are your thoughts saying to you?  Are your thoughts constantly giving LIFE to comments that should have been DEAD the minute you heard them?

Talk to me…

How to Show up…..

This week I made a commitment to myself and a group of women to create a blog post every day this week. I have always resented blogging. I never wanted to call myself a blogger or accept the responsibilities attached to that title. I wanted to show up only when I felt like it was convenient, or if I had something meaningful to write about.

A friend of mine once told me that I was complicating the role. Blogging is about creating a space to have a conversation with people. It’s not about having a one-sided platform where the responsibility is all on you.

I had never thought about blogging as a conversation. I never saw it as an opportunity to have dialogue and connect with people outside of social media.

This week I removed all my blocks and decided to show up for my blog everyday. Ironically it is turning into a space where I can freely write how I feel. I don’t have to worry about the laws and rules of social media. I don’t have to worry about if my post sounds like a subliminal message, or if it’s politically correct, or too pro-anything.  I don’t have to worry about breaking social media rules or getting locked out of my page.  I own rights to everything that I write or post.

This is my space. My world. My words. My voice. And my conversation with those who love, support, and believe in the broken little pieces movement. It’s a space where you can connect with me. You can also join a private community of like-minded women who want to begin the journey of removing the masks.

We are not invisible in this space.

Feel free to show up here as often as you would like. I have a community that you can join and be a part of the foundation of broken little pieces. This is where it will start and where we’ll grow.
Broken little pieces community

Hope to see you there or here.

Kizmat

Are you teaching your kid how to fight fair?

My daughter and I had a big mother/teen fight a few days ago. I’m not sure who escalated the argument so fast. I’m going to assume it was me because that’s really not her personality. Now that I think about it, it was pretty much all me. She tends to get quiet and keep to her self when she gets frustrated.

Looking back on it now, my level of frustration far outweighed the issue. Today I realized that it’s possible her response to conflict is learned behavior. She lets it go and rarely voices her feelings to keep the peace. That’s how I was in marriage before writing the book. I kept it all in, rarely communicating my true feelings. However I would find my solace in shopping. A little retail therapy always made it feel better, but only for a moment. Or maybe I would treat myself to a nice meal because emotional eating is another temporary pleasure.

By the time we got on set, I don’t think either of us remembered how intense it had been minutes before. Typical teen stuff. But the lesson I hope she learned is that you can move on from a fight, quickly. You don’t have to walk around mad or with an attitude all day. However she also has to learn that it is okay to communicate your feelings, if not in the moment, later. I want her to know that how she feels is important, however if you shut down during every fight or frustrating conversation, no one will ever know. I’ll make sure she knows that no love is ever lost between she and I after an argument. And as she gets older and begins to form other relationships outside of the home, it’s important that she knows how to argue or communicate in a healthy way.

I think I may take a few pointers from her as well. Sometimes it is best to walk away and address the issue at another time. In the heat of the moment, when emotions are high, there usually isn’t anything productive coming from it. My daughter just turned 13 and I refuse to accept the narrative of how awful the teen years can be. We will continue to have an amazing relationship and we’ll learn how to navigate the new waters.

They say married couples should never go to bed angry. I think that should apply in all of our relationships.

Don’t miss your moments to Inspire

This was one of those days…

I had literally been on the go ALL day long. From a morning biz meeting, to rushing my daughter to a fitting to be on set ALL day tomorrow, to dropping off a broken laptop UP 75 North (y’all already know traffic is insane) to back down 75 South (equally insane traffic these days) to the mall for a few hours in one store (Apple… never an in and out process) and then back UP 75 North at 5pm, in the middle of rush hour traffic (Jesus be a fence) to pick up my repaired laptop.

**insert screaming emojis because that’s how I felt on the inside**

I didn’t feel as productive as I would have liked, but it all made sense when I ended up pouring life into a college student in the repair shop. She was searching for answers and wanting a glimpse of hope that she was on the right path in life. Every event led up to that moment with her. She immediately bought the book on her kindle and as I was leaving I remembered I had copies in the car (thanks to the advice from my tribe). I blessed her with a copy and spoke words into her life when I signed it.

Sometimes the delays are set-ups so that we can be where we are supposed to be in the right moment. She was my ONE for the day.

Thank God I didn’t allow all of my inconveniences to make me miss a moment to be the light. That moment was more important than working on my course, the workbook, the retreats, the everything. It was more important than the traffic and the delays. 

Don’t miss your moments.

Slow down.

Be present.

Be at peace.

Your ONE needs you.

TIME and Expectations… deep sigh

We all have them.  No matter what we are doing in life, we have expectations and then there is time.  Sometimes they are spoken, sometimes not, but we all have them.

I just published my first book and I have so many expectations.  Expectations of sales, events, book signings, meet-ups, book clubs, lists, you name it…  We speak it and try to convince ourselves there is a difference between actually wishing and manifesting, but often in denial of which thought or feeling is the dominant one.  Sometimes wishing wins.  Sometimes doubt wins.  Sometimes I see a glimpse of the manifestation, but not fully.

Time.  I’m learning that time is often the killer of dreams.  When we actually JUMP (the latest buzz word for taking a chance or risk on something), we expect TIME to accelerate with us at the same rate that we made the impulse decision.  No matter how hard we try, we can’t really force the hand of TIME.  Time says that your book may eventually end up a bestseller, but it may not happen overnight like the celebrity Gabrielle Union who wrote a book about her truth as well.

Time says that your expectations for sales, bookings, and events may not happen at the pace you expected.  But why are my expectations so high?  Is it to fulfill a mask of validation? Does the word “bestseller” written across the top of my book validate who I am or what I’ve done? Does it validate how great my book is? Does it validate the impact my book will have on people as they read it?  Will I feel the same way if my book only changed the life of one woman versus the lives of one million women?

I’m back to face the question of, who did I really write the book for?  Was it for them or was it for me?

I think this is the defining moment where dreams die.  Expectations and Time are dream killers.  I can allow the unmet expectation to push me forward or stop me in place.  I can allow the ticking of the clock to either slow me down or speed me up, but that’s only me and my actions, it has nothing to do with the clock.  We all are allotted the same 24 hours in a day and it’s up to each one of us individually to decide how to best maximize that time.

broken little pieces.  You are my story, but I refuse to give you the power to define or validate me.

No. More. Masks.

#MeToo

#metoo as a 19 year old college student with way too much alcohol in my system. At a party completely intoxicated with the room spinning, unable to walk or stand. However, I was coherent enough to realize what the older college student was attempting to do. Thank God my no was strong enough to convince him to stop. 

I never told… I never confronted… But I never forgot. #metoo

I don’t really drink as an adult and this is why.  It was the first and last time that I have ever been drunk again and I’m 44 years old now.  It scared me enough to realize that alcohol could make me lose control.  It could create outcomes for my life that would haunt me for years.  I can still clearly remember him attempting to unbutton my pants.  I’m pretty sure his girlfriend was in the same room, but I think she was already passed out from her drinking.

I was a very feisty girl back then, but I don’t know why I never confronted him.  I don’t know why I never told anyone what he attempted to do to me that night.  Maybe I was afraid that I would be reprimanded for underage drinking.  But whatever the reason, it’s not okay.  It’s never okay.  I don’t know why it took me so long to realize that I was a part of this movement.  #MeToo