Hello! I hope you are doing well! In this blog post, I am sharing some of the things I learned this year. Everything I learned is from my own experience. Enjoy 🙂
The unknown is uncomfortable, unsettling, but it is okay.
I don’t know how many times I am going to be learning this, but I need to stop rushing my life. Stop thinking that I need to have everything figured out by this age. I am only 23. I only have a few things figured out. It took me five years to finally decide which career path I want to go into. You were probably told this multiple times. Well, I guess we have to keep learning this same lesson. Last year, I wanted to be married with at least one or two kids. I know- unrealistic right? But, it was a dream. I realized I wasn’t even ready for all of that. It is okay to not know. The unknown is uncomfortable, unsettling, but it is okay. You don’t have to know everything. Where’s the fun in that?
Live in the present, not the past and definitely not the future.
I love living in the future. The husband, the kids, the house, the career. As if those things equate to happiness. I couldn’t wait for those things to happen- the wedding, the childbirth, getting a house and the job will finally make me happy. But, how do those things guarantee happiness? Who told me that I was finally going to be happy when I reach that point in my life? Well, don’t answer that. It was me. And then, I snap out of it all. I blink a few times and look at my surrounding. Look at the people around me, think of the job I have now, basically, everything I have and I breathe. I can dream and want things to happen, especially to accomplish certain milestones. But, guess what? It is okay to live in the present. Try to enjoy your present. I do understand that sometimes, it is hard to enjoy the present, especially with our current circumstances. Just pause, and breathe.
If it was not meant to be, and you know it wasn’t, stop forcing it.
You know how many times I realized something was not meant to be and I STILL forced it?
When I did this, I was honestly hurting myself. Sometimes, we know when something is not meant to be. We know. Yet, we force it because we do not want to let go. This can be for anything. Why force something that is not working out? Sometimes, it is wasted energy and effort.
I attract broken people because I am broken.
And that is the truth. I didn’t learn this until months ago when I realized there was this pattern in my dating life. The constant need to help someone even if they never asked for the help. The people I had in my life were still trying to figure things out, and I always thought I could help. Yet, I didn’t even have my shit figured out. I kept deflecting, not really focusing on myself, but always on my partner. This, of course, was not fair. I had to learn to stop. I am not a healer. My garden isn’t flourished yet, so I cannot water another person’s garden, especially when I am running out of water.
Being petty takes too much energy. Ion like dat.
I am so proud of myself for the amount of times I apologized when I was in the wrong. I grabbed it, owned it, and gave myself a pat on the back. However, I cannot lie and say it was easy. Sometimes we let our pride get the best of us. Should I really apologize or should I be petty? Being petty takes too much energy. When you are wrong, it’s important to apologize. What harm will it do? Accountability will not come and bite you. Your actions may have hurt someone, and if you know you were wrong, take the first step and APOLOGIZE.
Setting goals with action steps is crucial.
I always start the new year with long term goals but throughout the year I also have short term goals. I can create a list of goals and FEEL accomplished for writing them down, but if I do not have action steps behind those goals, it feels harder to accomplish them. Action steps have made my life so much easier. Think of action steps as the baby steps of reaching your goal. I can say my goal is to publish a book, but if I do not plan it and create the steps necessary to help me succeed, then my goal and I will just have a staring contest. To be honest, this takes time to get used to, and it can be time consuming. However, it makes accomplishing your goal easier.
My culture will choose my future husband.
So I wrote about my people’s long tradition of the caste system. But, I wrote about it regarding marriage (there’s more to the caste system). And get this! That was only half of it. After talking to different suitors this year, I finally settled on someone. I was super excited, and ready to do things the right way. At the time, I thought I found my “perfect match.”
Homeboy pulled out all of the tricks, and was romantic, in his own way. I told my parents I finally found someone. For some reason, when I did that, I immediately regretted it. My heart broke in so many ways when my parents gave me the red light. Not to be dramatic, but I thought my world ended at that point. I want you all to know that my parents told me two years ago I can marry anyone I wanted as long as they were Muslim and African. Here we are. According to the people that brought me into this world, I can only marry someone within my tribe and is on the same level as I in the caste system. I’m still processing it because there’s a big part of me that wants to get rid of these traditions. Yet, I do not have the power to do so, especially when I do not have support behind me. This lesson was a heavy hitter, almost as if I was in a boxing ring with my culture and the more I fought it, the more I kept getting KO’d. Will I keep fighting? Yes, I will. I can’t give up.
Some of the characters in your book do not always enter the next chapter.
This one is hard. Sometimes, when I am entering a new chapter, there are characters that cannot enter the new chapter. Throughout my life, I have learned that a lot of people come and go. It hurts especially when your relationship with that person was meaningful. It is honestly just life. And guess what? It is okay. As you grow, there are people in your life that grow with you and others who do not. Sometimes though, it can be the other way around. You may not enter someone’s new chapter. And guess what? Did you guess? Need more time? Well, it is okay. I’ve accepted that some of the characters in my book do not always enter the next chapter.
Embracing my new self.
I recently questioned my relationship with myself. I was wondering why all my other relationships were failing.
How can I enhance my relationships with others when the relationship with myself is terrible? Am I learning more about myself? Not just binging The Office or Grey’s Anatomy, but actually doing activities that help me learn more about myself. Am I taking care of my body? Am I giving the same empathy and caring for others to myself? It was not fair to provide so much love and attention to others, but not to myself. It didn’t even make sense. The other day, as I was reflecting, I laughed at the fact that it took a coaching session for me to realize I was a different person. I have changed, and for the past year, I felt so uncomfortable because I did not accept this new Diakha. She’s different. And for so long, I held onto the old Diakha, as she was stopping me from so many opportunities. As I flip through these next few pages in my book, I want to embrace this new me. I want to work on my relationship with myself. It will be rough in the beginning, but the journey will be beautiful and worth it.
I have come this far, and for that, I am grateful.
Thank you for reading! Your support means everything to me. Remember to take care of yourself and stay safe. Love, Diakha.
Written by Diaka Thiam.