I don’t do superlatives. The hardest, the best, the most exciting… you get what I mean.
However, I will say that 2022 offered up deep emotional and personal challenges I have never had to face up until now.
Yet, my gratitude knows no bounds.
Beyond all the incredible news, opportunities, and collaborations that peppered this year of firsts in many ways, I also crawled back into a private space I know all too well.
With my long time friend… Isolation.
In those quiet moments alone. In those delayed responses to WhatsApp messages.
Wiping tears before a presentation.
Doing box breathing to calm down before a call.
Working harder than I wanted to.
Realizing as an empath, I can’t solve everyone’s problems, and more importantly, I don’t need to.
Understanding that pouring all of me is still and will never be enough for some.
Witnessing people I deeply trusted leave when I needed them the most.
Sharpening my boundaries and strengthening my resolve.
Being the best mother I can be while protecting and providing for my loves.
Using my gifts to support, inspire, and build others up.
This year has taught me a lot, but the overarching virtue that keeps popping up is just how brave and audacious I continue to be.
As I pondered what to share to wrap up 2022, I stumbled across NYT bestselling author and therapist Nedra Glover Tawwab’s list of questions below.
Throughout the year, I traveled vastly and counted many blessings publicly. You can see many of those moments splashed across my social media accounts – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Yet I fought so many battles privately.
For this post, I’m answering Nedra’s questions as rawly and transparently as I can because my focus word for 2023 has already come to me, and I’ll be sharing it in the new year.
- What’s been hard for you to admit to yourself?
That despite knowing my core professional strengths, I still have to fully trust and depend on others to grow. It is a very scary space to exist in, especially when it requires relinquishing that intuitive vision you have, and understanding people may not be where you are. This year has been one of expanding and retracting my teams (rinsing and repeating) across all initiatives. Now I understand why many people stay solopreneurs.
- What was the hardest thing you said to someone?
“I want a divorce.”
Not because you don’t love them. I do and always will. But because, after close to two decades together, you see no clear path for evolution and growth without making each other less than who we are, or wanting a life the other doesn’t.
Coming to this realization has been the hardest part of my love story.
- What is different about you from this time last year?
Despite going through this difficult time, I feel lighter, happier, truer to myself. After close to five years of doubt and therapy, the clarity behind my decision is palpable.
- Who do you want to build a deeper relationship with?
I am deeply intuitive. I instinctively pick up on energy and those around me have sensed this. I feel deeply, I sense the unspoken deeply, and I connect deeply.
I have also been told I “see” beyond this surface and all the synonyms that come with that gift.
I know this about myself, but it is nothing I have leaned into or plan on leaning into now, mostly because of the emotional energy that comes with it. This also means I have to protect the energy I allow within my spheres too.
So, I will keep building a deeper relationship with my own spirit, the Holy Spirit which resides in me, and our source – God.
- What internal challenge has taught you the most about yourself?
Understanding the nuanced difference between compromise, sacrifice, and self shrinkage. Realizing that what I truly need, so I can continue to be 100% me, is not too much to ask for.
And for this, I will no longer stay apologetic.
- How do you align your behavior with your values?
Watch out for my 2023 focus word in January.
- What did you find most challenging to work through this year?
Realizing that if people truly wanted to, they would.
Meaning, proclamations of support when all they had to do was drop your name or mention the joint cause within their spheres of influence. This has also helped me dig deeper into the fact that I may not want support from people who are triggered by my very existence.
Triggered by the very fact that I’m living out my purpose and that the universe is responding in kind.
So as I go into 2023 with a heart filled with gratitude and love for family, close friends, and strangers who have become family, I wish you all God’s blessings, mercies, and grace.
I wish you finally find the courage to make the difficult decisions that have been preventing you from showing up fully in your own lives.
I hope you find the grace to be gentle with yourself during these trying times.
And above all, I hope you rediscover and fall deeply in love with the person you currently are and will become in the next transition of your life.
May the Lord bless you and keep you; May the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; May the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace. (Numbers 6:24-26)
See you in 2023 by God’s grace!