Stranger In My House.

Day in and day out, I wake up to this woman. I fall asleep to this woman. I leave my home and return to her presence. Hell, she tends to even tag along at times. She’s like a fly in my ear at a barbecue, just buggin’ TF out of me. Her walk. Her talk. Her high yellow ass walks around like her shit don’t stink. Head all high with that damn smirk on her face and that one eyebrow raised. Phone rings, she got the nerve to look at the screen and put it back down like she can’t be bothered. The moment she opens her mouth, you’d assume she was a sailor. Cuss words coming from both sides of her mouth without a filter in sight. She has this confidence about her that’s too loud for me and I believe others are starting to feel it too.

Truthfully, she seems like a woman who’s unapologetic in who she is. She knows she’s made mistakes in her life and she’s held herself accountable. From those mistakes, she’s learned. She’s learned who is really there for her and who isn’t. She’s learned how to say “no” without further explanation. She’s learned to set boundaries and stand firm in them. What really trips me out is how she acts like she doesn’t need anybody. I guess you can say she’s learned how to enjoy her own company but if you ask me, I think she’s just gotten to be “too good”. She done removed the wool from her eyes and started seeing people for who they really were … now she’s out here, just cuttin’ everybody off. I mean who does she think she is? We all need somebody, right?

Honestly speaking, she’s who I’ve always wanted to be … who I was scared to be. I used to make myself smaller for others to feel comfortable. I used to belittle others with false confidence to make myself feel comfortable. She exudes love yet leaves plenty for herself. I admire and envy the way she loves herself loudly whereas I’ve looked for love in all the wrong people, just trying to fill that void. What I envy most about her now is her lack of fear. Whatever she thinks or feels, she does. She doesn’t ask for validation. She doesn’t look for reassurance. She just does it. She seems so free and that’s what I’ve always wanted out of life … freedom.

I always kept myself so confined in my comfort zone, never thinking I was able or capable of the things she’s accomplished. I was scared to go through the things she went through to get where she is now. I can only imagine what life came to look like for her once she removed those rose colored glasses. I cringe at the thought … it sometimes even brings tears to my eyes. Yet still, I wanted to be her.

It wasn’t until one evening, I was having one of my crying sessions, locked away in the bathroom though no one else lives with me. The bathroom always served as my safe space. She opened the door without knocking and I saw her hand reach into the darkness where I was. I sniffled and she said, “it’s okay little one. Come on out.” As I crept closer to the light, her face came into view and the stranger was …

Me.

Comfort Zone is Dead Soil.

This piece has not been edited or revised. This is literally my thoughts on paper (or keyboard, for that matter) as they form in my head. Enjoy the ride!

We are about a month and a half into 2021 and I must say … this shit is starting off pretty damn good *runs around knocking on every piece of wood I can find.* Though I still have my days, this internal work and healing is starting to pay off. Today I was sitting on my couch, sipping my tea and while driving down my boulevard of thoughts, I happened to look to the side and say to myself, “Self … are we happy?” Like, I really had to look around and think, “Is this contentment?” Trust, there is probably plenty of shit I can complain about but I just choose not to. So yeah, let me get to the topic at hand to help y’all understand how I got here.

Comfort zones. I have always been a fan of comfort zones until recently. Growing up, I was a full blown tomboy. I was comfortable in my jeans, tshirts, hoodies, and the newest pair of Jordans that had just been released.  I think the most girly thing about me might have been my joy in getting my nails done, Coko from SWV style. I floated through high school that way until I met my first REAL boyfriend. Even then, I still had no idea how to be “girly.” To this day, my “beat face” is some eyeliner, mascara, concealer, and lipstick/gloss. It does not go beyond that sis because I have no idea what the hell I am doing. I do actually want to learn how to do makeup though so please, if you’re reading this and you got tips, help a sister out. Please though, don’t let that tip be “just buy some makeup and go play in it.” So you want me to look like Pennywise’s illegitimate lovechild out here, huh? Don’t do that.

Moving on, this trend of non-girly shit followed me all the way to college. In my freshman year of college, I still had not a clue how to dress, do my hair, or anything of that nature. Think I’m lying? See the pic in the collage below of what I wore to my first speed dating event my freshman year. Don’t scroll now, finish reading first … RUDE. Anyways, as I was saying …

This is where my problem lied. I wasn’t confident in myself whatsoever. I chose to “play it safe” as I wasn’t comfortable doing anything that I did not feel okay doing. I told you a few posts ago that “sexy” and “Shayna” did NOT go together. Why? I did not feel good about myself!!! I sought validation from others and I was not giving it to myself. I was scared to step out of my comfort zone because I was nervous of what others would think. I treated my size as a hinderance for me to do things. I’m not even going to lie, I still have my moments of hesitancy because that little bitch “doubt” likes to creep her ass up on me from time to time. I had to let her know NOT TUHDAY SIS!

2021 is when I decided to make changes for myself. I started truly investing in myself. I was already in therapy (checks that off the list). I purchased a self love planner and the first assignment was to write a love letter to myself. I believe that was the task that really set shit into play for me. I wrote it and when I finished, there were some tears but they were happy tears because I finally told MYSELF all the things I was looking to hear from others and IT FELT GOOD. Though we in a panny, I started venturing out and doing activities SOLO DOLO. My first solo activity was a socially distanced speed dating event and BRUH, the social anxiety wasn’t nothing to play with. Still, I went and I enjoyed myself. Though I didn’t meet the love of my life, I went out and allowed myself to meet new people and interact without the comfort of having a friend with me. 

The next event for me to step out of my comfort zone was a Valentine’s Day COED Sexy Lingerie & Pajama Party hosted by my big sister. I was all for it until I realized, “Bitch! You about to be ass out … IN FRONT OF MEN?!?!?” ***inserts dramatics*** My anxiety started kicking in. My overthinking started rearing her ugly ass head and I was losing it. It wasn’t until I was driving there and listening to music did I think, “Girl, you got this. You bout to look good as FAWK in this red lingerie!” Here’s where my confidence decided to exit stage left … PICTURE TIME. I looked the part but when it came time to pose, I was somewhat lost or if I did do anything, I felt awkward. Still, I pushed forward and honey, I DELIVERED! My sister, the other girls and even some of the guys were complimenting me. Did it feel good? Yes. Was I also screaming internally and anxious to take it all off? YES! LOL. I changed into a nice onesie and my soul was at ease.

Moral of the story is … step out of your comfort zone because life begins at the end of your comfort zone. We hinder ourselves from truly experiencing what life has to offer. Shit, we even hinder ourselves from reaching our full potential when we sit and “play it safe.” I told myself I can’t keep playing it safe because it leaves me stuck with no progression. My anxiety and overthinking has stopped me from doing so many things because of fear of opinions. I had to realize that what doesn’t challenge you, doesn’t change you. Try doing something that scares you everyday and watch how things begin to unfold. 

Step out of your comfort zone, baby … Nothing grows there.