Changed My Name, Change My Life…

I recently heard someone mention how names are so important. They said something like this: ‘Names introduce a certain ‘honor’ into your life when you inform people how to honor your name.’

So this blog piece is about naming and changing – and how changing my name to “Make Me Happy” when I went to South Africa, changed my life.

In May of 2003, I searched out my own happiness, and began a new personal journey. I don’t believe I shared much about my full transformation. Interestingly enough,…I found it in Kuma, South Africa.

I found myself having a greater purpose in another country. Teaching and ministering to kids and adults and helping them thrive despite being in poverty situations and helping those who suffered life challenges and found themselves having little hope. To be honest, my own hope was at its lowest. I was trying to decide if I should continue with my first marriage. This journey would be telling.

My “BOUNDARIES of Blessing”, began here, in South Africa. It was a journey that redeemed my worth and my significance. I found I actually existed for a greater cause and purpose. And when living in my purpose, I FELT SO WORTHY. Maybe it was the Resolve I felt. And that, resolve could change a Nation. If I had the team of women around me like I had in South Africa, with me in the U.S.A., I would have more than enough support.

My name change in South Africa – or the African name given to me – was “Nthabiseng “. Nthabiseng means : “Make Me Happy”, and this name became a personal mandate of my own, or a personal mission – and I began the journey for myself first, and then for others. I realized walking in Purpose, in my own Happiness, and in my own purpose and living for myself, my youth was renewed. I felt alive again! Almost as if I’d been resurrected.

Well first of all… my first lesson learned – I had to acquiesce, to get there. (I yielded without protest.) I am learning most blessings come via surrender. I noticed once I stopped trying to make life be something it really was not… neither had the potential to be; and stopped sacrificing my peace for others who didn’t value it as highly as I did – my life became better. I learned so much when I discovered this. I had finally began to live for myself.

I wish I had learned this lesson earlier in life. I would often contemplate and hesitate in my life and ponder were things worth it or was “I worth it” Sure, I was worth it! Should I move on with my life – or keep trying to love where love was not returned? I finally came to the decision love can’t be embraced with someone it was never taught and cherished , with humility. And that life is too short. You have to keep living. Because you can stop living for yourself to the point you are almost dying. And then, what good is that? For your dreams die with you.

 

Secondly, I began to appreciate and be grateful for new experiences learned and used them as stepping stones to get me to higher places. For instance I began to challenge myself and ask myself : “Why  work in Syracuse just because I lived there?” I then found myself searching for jobs I liked outside my ‘four walls’ and found a good one in a small town in N.Y. working with adolescent boys in foster care and this began a new trajectory for me in terms of my work. I realized that loving and nurturing boys who had never been truly nurtured before was definitely a passion of mine, and fulfilling work. That they needed this love; for them to be full grown men. Perhaps innately and most unconsciously if I loved them this way – as a social worker who worked with boys; perhaps then, I would not help some women then- not waste time loving them, as broken men.

I believe I also learned what it meant to be Free. To live and have fun for the very first time in my life. I learned I could enjoy company and make good decisions and make friends miles away in another culture and country and it felt good to not need permission to do that.

These were new beginnings for me. I learned I could live and survive on my own. Eight months later I was moving to a place I loved: Washington, D.C. It completely changed my LIFE.

 Then, I decided to look inside. I went a little deeper; & began to self- evaluate.

I believe in the power of naming. Naming can change perspective and change life commitment. In my book, Red Sea Situations, I speak to powerful names of God and how altars – like the places I’ve been to – these representations of love and struggle in life are not always negative places – but places that ushers God’s true presence in your life, so you can change your life and perspective.

Get a revelation on how changing your life, your purpose, and your direction can change your life. It may also change YOU.

To dream a bit brighter, be a little lighter and smile a little happier.

Selah.

Being Imperfect.i

I kind of like being imperfect.

To be imperfect means to: ” be flawed,  someone  blemished or broken.  Many  tend to think often there is an embarrassment  or shame to being flawed, but it’s not a bad thing at  all.  It shows you have a little  character. And  it makes you  appreciate the work  you need to do on the  “unrefined you”,   & still appreciate it. And   refine  yourself, all the more.

It’s less pressure, you know. You don’t have to worry about what it means to be anyone but to be you.

I like being me , I’m feeling fifty. It took me a minute and I’ll almost be 51 in three months, but it’s all good. So what, it took me nine months to feel it?

I’m here , though.

I haven’t been blogging. I haven’t been very engaged in living. I think I got away from it for a minute because I was stressing and being concerned about life’s pressures. You know those feelings you get when all things in life begin to “press in”, and life screams: “I need you!” And you acquiesce …

Yet i just had to head for ‘any’ escape route possible….in full rebellion.

Well, I may have not been in total rebellion, but I was sorta starting to fade… (he was too)… and then hubs and I did this fun get away… just because.

I kind of ‘ high-jacked ‘him, told him he didn’t have a choice, actually, because he was starting not to be too familiar to me, ya know?

Yeah… you know and then we hit reset. And our bodies  felt the ‘relief’ of  release.

And then… after all that… we were back at it, with greater clarity, accomplishment and focus.

Yep. It worked.☺️

Memories from My Moves: The Value of Writing During Life Transition.

I have moved  approximately nine times in my life.  I  know it sounds like a lot, but  several of those moves were  within state and  needed for job transition .

Doesn’t make it any any easier, nor  does it make it  less of an issue.  I  have to admit – I don’t really lke moving per say, but I have  enjoyed  learning  new cultures and new places and people where I have lived.

I have moved to  get a  new start on life maybe  three times.  The others were due to the fact I was running,  I  just did not like my life there anymore, and three  times I have moved with issues  surrounding “a man”. I never wanted to follow a man, but I  twice moved once because  I  wanted to “get away ” from  a man; and I must’ve learned from it;  because the other I’ve involved wanting  to be ‘near’ a young man, and that man eventually became my husband. And that was a  really good move.  To Texas.  Texas enlivened me.  I  flourished there. I had  friends I had never had  anything like before, and  they were supportive of me.

Moves are hard though if you’re a introvert. I’ve found that getting involved with groups helps me spread the love around and have a more active social life.

backlight grapes.jpgWith every move,   I  have had, ‘journaling’ has  given me a sense of place and  recogniton of the move and  resolve and acceptance. Writing became my mainstay. I later found  it to be a way I coped with transitions.

Here’an old post but good one  that reminds me where  I  find  resolve with  my every  move.  It was never publlshed, just  something I found in an old newsletter   I’d  made.

I Will Be Transitioning!

 I have found value in my writing lately.  I am  in a transitioning phase.
At the end of this week, I  will be moving to a new home. I am a bit sentimental,  and have begun to take pictures as I transition for this home, to the next. Thusly, I’ve been doing a lot of writing.

One of my last sessions  this past summer, we spoke about the  value of journal-keeping. Lately that has been a struggle for me, in terms of consistency, but I have been  keeping a voice diary. It’s like a journal, but  just easier. Stay tuned for examples of  my e-course I am making and my Soundcloud voice diaries I keep,  and desire to share or you to think about rest easier. Though my course isn’t finished yet, I do desire you hear the diaries to think about  the perspective I have on the relationship we need to have with rest for our soul-care.
 
Journal writing has several values.While studying these facts, I discovered why the act of writing  is such a consoling practice for me. I literally believe keeping a journal has SAVED MY LIFE. I am sure some of you can relate.  Here’s what Peg Nolan,  has found as  a few truths:   

1. “Journal  writing  brings me clarity.” – It helps me to see myself and acknowledge my fears, so I can begin to work on them.
2. “Journal  writing  helps me focus.” Nothing better than knowing that my mind can settle because I now have it now on paper, and can return to that thought, and it won’t be caught out in oblivion.
3. “Journal  writing is for my own personal  accountability.”  – Sometimes if there is no one to tell that dream to, it helps to be accountable to myself by writing it down.
4.“I can yell in my journal and no one will hear me raise my voice.”  – And I do yell – mind you, with LOTS of exclamation points for those things I struggle  to comprehend.
5.“ Journal  writing  increases my self-awareness.” (Oh yeah,. and my self confidence…)
6. “Journal  writing reduces my stress.” It keeps my blood pressure regulated. I believe once it saved my life. Kept me sane…
7.“ Journal  writing a place to sort through my struggles.” I am always focused on maturing my SOUL… it’s an ongoing battle and I need it in order to be self actualized.
8.“Journal  writing gives me peace of mind.”  And an ability to listen intently to my thoughts, and  to  talk  softly with God about them. (Love it! I am such a deep thinker!)
9.“Journal  writing  a vision illuminator !”-  My dreams grow and incubate and simmer… some more…and  then they do something else…they  ‘crystallize’ – which when defined means to become definite or clear . I  found this with every move, to be true. 
10. ( This one is mine! )…I can hear God speak, when I write: I believe God is ALWAYS speaking, we just aren’t quiet enough to hear Him.
11.“ Journal  writing is an idea incubator.” –  Man oh man, I have so many ideas, I could write about a book about ALL OF THEM!!
12. “Journal  writing is a judgment-free zone.” –  You’re  definitely  not  going to find anyone peering over your  shoulder – unless you give them  permssion  – to  look, or   leave cause for that to happen…) And no one can give me feedback and I can sit with myself and my own thoughts and keep them as private as I want, til they are born and put into practice…OR NOT.