Now that quarantine is over

I am in an interesting space as we come out of strict quarantine and summer is upon us. Summer definitely looks different with COVID-19 and protesting happening all across the country. I saw tons of memes on my social media about if you didn’t come out quarantine having accomplished something then you were just lazy. I just don’t believe that to be true. Thankfully someone agreed because they changed it. This one makes a lot more sense.

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If I am being honest. I have not completed a ton of projects in the 2 months that we were forced to stay. Posting again was one of the things I wanted to accomplish, so Yay me! for getting that done.

I just felt really stuck with not working in the traditional sense, and my baby and husband being here and the days rolling together.

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I had been feeling really off spiritually for a while, and that’s another thing that quarantine helped me get on track. I have attended more Sunday school and bible study than I ever would have if we were not in quarantine.

I felt bad though. I was spending too much time on Hulu, social media and reading books. I was having a mini vacation from the world and seeing other people have something tangible to show for their quarantine efforts really bothered me.

In my noon day bible study that I go to, she told us to go back and read your old journals to see where God has brought you from. It wasn’t really a pleasant experience, like I see God answering prayers but I also see a lot of heartache. I also decided to go back and read some of my old blog posts. There are over a 100 so it was more a skim, but I came across this one. Its one of the first posts I did and it talks about the name I picked for the blog. That was three years ago and I am still having this same problem. I talk about being stuck in research mode instead of just taking the leap and doing the thing you said you were going to do.

I sat down about 6 weeks ago and laid out my plan of my hearts desires. I asked God to be with me in those plans because there a lot of things my heart desires. After I wrote them down and prayed some more I put dates that I wanted to accomplish them. I continued to pray about those things in my quiet time until my Pastor preached a sermon on fear. Click the link. It’s really good you should watch it. It had a lot of great points but the one that stuck with me is we need to quit praying and move! I felt like God had slapped me, like, Hey, I’m talking to you! All this research and worrying, you are not going to get anything done. Just do it!

Then I had a conversation with my friends one Sunday after a nature walk (more on that in a later post) about pursing your passions and how much people pay for content, how to get things done and my mind was blown. I left so inspired! So ready to hit the ground running.

My next few posts will be about pursuing your passions and how to ensure you accomplish the goals you set. Stay tuned!

p.s-COVID-19 is still a thing, wear a mask.

 

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This may have been in March but its still relevant. 

Can’t be the girl I used to be

Someone on a podcast I listen to said the above phrase and it really resonated with me. I have desperately been trying to go back to the girl I used to be. Back to a time when I was carefree and wasn’t worrying and second guessing all the time. I don’t need to be that girl anymore though. I can be better than her, different than her. 2.0 in fact. I don’t have to go back to where I used to be, to be happy or content. I need to own the space I am currently in and be ok.

Are you content? Are you happy with the space you are in currently? I’m trying. I really am trying. I want to not only be content but be able to celebrate others. I’m working on that too. Those people that I was worried about seeing a few weeks ago, maybe last month. I saw them a few weeks ago and it was good. Nobody asked where I had been or what I was doing. So progress has been made on the celebrating others piece.

Being content, that is giving me more trouble. I used to think that I didn’t want to be too happy because I didn’t want God to think I was satisfied with my situation. Sounds silly when I say it out loud. God knows how I feel. He knows everything about me. He knows me better than I know myself.

I heard a sermon a few weeks ago from Jeremiah 29. It was when God told the Jews they were going to be under captivity of the Babylonians for 70 years. He told them to get comfortable, they were going to be there for a while. In the face of these circumstances he also told them that he knew the plans he had for them, for them to prosper.

I knew God was talking to me when I heard this. He wants me to be comfortable in this current space I am in. First I heard this sermon then I got this scripture during my quiet time.

But the people of Israel, who tried so hard to get right with God by keeping the law, never succeeded.

Romans 9:31 NLT

Why not? Because they were trying to get right with God by keeping the law instead of by trusting in him. They stumbled over the great rock in their path.

Romans 9:32 NLT

This was me 100% I didn’t think I was trying to earn a blessing but I certainly was doing everything that I could control. Trust is the opposite of control. I believe this is true because if I have to be in control it means I don’t trust the person that is supposed to be guiding me. I say God is the guiding force in my life but then I pray and try to help him along or devise my own plan. Nonsense!

God doesn’t need me to do anything but trust him. That’s the hardest thing to do. You want me to volunteer 10x a month, feed the poor, give to charity, read my bible, do a 100 blog posts I got you. You want me to trust you… well I have some questions.

Help me in my unbelief. I know God can do anything but his timing never seems to align with mine. That’s ok. Trust requires the most work of all and it can’t be quantified. Trust is hard but remembering all God has done for me makes it easier. Everyday when I wake up I thank God for the things he is doing to build that great wall of trust. It helps me calm down when I am anxious about a situation, I remind myself of all the things he has done for me.

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Big or small, he has never let me down. I greatly appreciate that. I have walked away from God a 1000x but he has never walked away from me.

Summer is coming to a end

The summer flew by as it always does and now its September 1. I can’t believe it. This summer was definitely one of growth. I feel like I did less partying but I didn’t feel bored. The days seemed full. My birthday is in 12 days. It will be my Jesus year so I am excited about that. I’m fasting to prepare for my birthday as well. Get my mind, body and soul into gear. I have more thoughts on the Jesus year that I will get into as I get closer to my birthday.

My boss asked us to three questions that I think would be good for anyone to use as reflection for the end of a season.

What was the highlight of your summer?

Highlight of my summer was traveling, seeing Beyonce’ (twice!) and getting a new puppy.

 

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(Riveria Maya, Mexico June 2018)

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(Chicago, July 2018)

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(OTR II Cleveland, Ohio July 2018)

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(OTR II Columbus, Ohio August 2018)

(OTR II Columbus, Ohio August 2018)

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(Hunter James, July 2018)

His name is Hunter James and he is certainly a handful. He has definitely been a challenge but my husband and I have embraced him.

What are you looking forward to in the new year?

I’m looking forward to being a better version of myself. My best friend always calls it 2.0. I like that. I definitely want to do that as well. You guys would be so proud of me! I have really stepped out of my comfort zone in the last few months and the results have been amazing.

I want to continue to grow this blog, work on writing better and jazz up my website. My cousin who is working on being a brand ambassador said there is no “me” on my website. Which is true. At first I didn’t want it to be about me per se. I was worried about people wanting to know my business and using it to gossip. I didn’t want my message to get lost in talking about “me” all the time. I can see how the that would be impersonal though, so I added some pics 🙂

What are you happy to leave behind?

I’m happy to leave behind self doubt, self pity, self sabotage.

I doubt myself a lot. I may not say it out loud but I do a lot of second guessing and it can be exhausting. I want to be able to go with my gut, use discernment and be satisfied with a decision. I don’t want to replay conversations over and over again to see if I said something stupid, awkward or random. I want to pick out an outfit and just get dressed. Self pity is harder because it sneaks up on you. I can be moving along nicely and my mind will take me back some place that I don’t want to go or bring up a memory that from the past. Or have me worrying about things that have not happened yet. I don’t want to do that.  I don’t want to anyone else to feel sorry for me, so I’m certainly not going to feel sorry for myself.  Self sabotage is sneaky too. I sometimes don’t realize I am doing it until I am in the middle and realized that a better decision could have been made. Like I give up because I don’t see the results in the time frame I want.  Things don’t work that way, so I am just trying to remain focused and be patient. Rome wasn’t built in a day and Dominique 2.0 won’t be built in a day either.

HELLO SEPTEMBER

100th post (20)

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I can’t believe I’m here. I thought it would take me longer but 31 posts in 31 days (1) helped get that done. I never thought I would get a 100 strangers to read my story or anything that I write down. I have big writing goals. I have been listening to books on how people write and when they got started. I don’t feel so behind. I have so many ideas, I just need to pick one and start writing. I’m all over the place, fiction, non-fiction. I haven’t found an idea I really wanted to start.

I wrote 87 of my posts in 2018, which is crazy to me because I published my first post in October. I count that as my true anniversary not June when I purchased the domain.

I asked about classes or training and I got some good info that I will be checking out. I’m excited to take the next step. It’s comforting to hear writers you really respect say, “I threw away 4 books before I had one good enough to publish”. – Janet Evanovich

I know that I’m on the right track. I just need to do it. Failing is so hard and not something I do often. I don’t fail often because I don’t like to do things I where I am not great. I hate to be one of those people that talk about writing a book but never do it. I don’t want fear to hold me back. What’s the worst that could happen? If nobody wants to read it, at least I finished it. That is a big deal. It doesn’t have to be perfect and I am ok with that.

Faith over fear (15)

What are you afraid of? I just realized that I am afraid of change. I never really thought I was a person afraid of change but one of the ladies in my caregroup asked me yesterday if I was of change and after thinking about it I had to say yes. We are doing a bible study on faith in a larger study on the fruit of the spirit by Beth Moore. Beth asks when you are afraid to have faith what is holding you back. Everyone said fear of disappoint, myself included but after we started talking about prayer requests, I realized I am afraid of change. I haven’t had many changes in my life. I worked in the same department at the same company for eight years. I also worked their in Undergrad, so there was no true change for me there. I lived in the same apartment for 3 years before I got married. I hate moving. As I look back over my life, I realized that I don’t take the opportunity to change very often.

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My fear of change could potentially be blocking me from my blessings. An opportunity came up at work and I was thinking of all the reasons that it could be bad. I never thought for a moment of the positives that could come from the change. There is growth in change. I realized that if I let my fear of change hold me back, then I am telling God he can’t be with me wherever I go or whatever situation I face. Its a control issue. The longer you stay in a situation, the more you have control over, you can anticipate the variables. I say God is in control of my life, but if I let fear rule me then truly, I am saying I control my life and not God. That’s not the life I am trying to lead.

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One of the girls in the group said that I was just creating a lot of this in my mind. I created a story. It doesn’t have to end that way. I am projecting my feelings onto a situation that had not happened yet. What if it was good? I have never even considered that. I chose to focus only on the negative. What if I chose to focus on the positive instead? I also made a pros and cons list. After looking at the list, the pros were definitely outweighing the cons.

Change is something that is inevitable. I am working hard to embrace change and not run from it. I don’t want to block any blessings because I am afraid. I trust God to work everything out for my good.

Dream on (12)

I have always believed in the Lord sending me messages in dreams. Often there is lesson or something practical I can take away. I once had a dream that when I use mean tones in conversation with my husband, it hurts his manhood. I knew that in my head but seeing the visual of him crumbled over in my dream after I said something to him really gave me the visual I needed to change what I was doing. Since then I have been working on how I speak to him. A dream inspired this 31 posts in 31 days (1) God told me if I stop treating my writing/blog as a hobby and started treating it like a job I could really start to grow.

I had a terrible dream this weekend but it definitely helped me. My husband was out of town over the weekend and I went out with some friends. I had a good time with them, came back home, got in the bed went to sleep. I had a dream that seemed so real that I was afraid to get out of bed after. I dreamed that I woke up because a man slid in my bed and he wasn’t my husband. He clearly was there harm me. In my dream I immediately started praying please Lord let this be a dream. Then I woke up. I was shook! I needed to check and see if anybody was in my house and thank God it wasn’t but I couldn’t sleep for a long time after that. When I finally went downstairs and checked my house. I realized, I had left my front door unlocked. Not good! That was certainly a warning from God. You better believe I will be checking my doors twice before I go to bed at night from now on.

God uses dreams all the time to speak people in the bible. I used to worry if a dream was from God or just my own subconscious. I believe it can be from both. I recognize God in my dreams because I know his voice.

I saw some really interesting articles online about dream interpretation. I know people who go to dream books and try to see what their dreams meant. I have done it on occasion myself, but I don’t do that anymore. The article I read online says that, the symbols in a dreams are primarily ours. Nobody can interpret them for us except God. There are common dreams that everyone has like falling or being embarrassed in front of a crowd but typically God knows us and uses symbols we will understand. If I have a dream that I feel needs further explaining I will write it down and ask God to explain it me. Lord was there something in the dream I needed to know? Was it a warning? Was it prophecy? Writing them down has been great because I can see things come together later on.