March Book Review+ Women Race and Class

I decided to read Angela Y. Davis’ Women Race and Class because I wanted to celebrate her as an inspirational black woman. Do believe this is her first book. Surprisingly, I’ve never read it. I need some knowledge and inspiration this month. I guess you could call it a quarter life crisis or just my depression creeping back up but either way I’m trying to pull myself out of a hole of self-loathing.

I think the tough thing for me is remembering that everyone has a different life path. Last year I went through something really traumatic. I was abused everyday and had to live in a domestic violence shelter. I had a conversation with my therapist about how I feel left behind because my friends are growing in their careers. It’s silly because I’m doing awesome things as well. I won a fellowship for a writer’s residency. My therapist made the point that is having a degree a big deal? I’m doing great things already without one. But my mind always goes back to black excellence. Doesn’t having a degree equal black excellence in the black community? Am I really doing my community any good? Am I setting a good example?

I’m still trying to figure things out and maybe things will just fall into place. All I know is that I love being a writer and right now that’s the only thing I can hold onto right now.

Writer’s Residency+Update

I don’t think I’ve told you all that a few weeks ago I was unexpectantly invited to stay at Ragdale in Illinois for almost a month. long story short I applied in the spring but wasn’t accepted, a few weeks ago I received an email congratulating me on receiving the Creative Access Fellowship. Of course, I accepted it, I wanted it, but something kept popping up in my mind. I would be away from my mom and sister.

As you all know by now my family and I had to live in a domestic violence shelter for a good chunk of the year and for the other part of it we were homeless and abused daily. It wasn’t until August we had found a home of our own and could finally leave the shelter. This is the first time this year I’ve been away from my mom and sister. We’ve been together every step of the way during this tough year. I miss them and I know I’ll miss them every day but I also know that I have to do what will help my career. I’ve been given a wonderful gift and that is time to do what I’ve loved since I was a little girl.

I at a strange point in my career. I’ve been doing journalism and nonfiction since graduating high school, but before that I only wrote fiction, now I’m getting back into fiction (science fiction and horror) and to be honest I’m stuck, worried, and I’m trying to build up the confidence.  I just keep thinking to myself “I can do more then review a face mask, I can write good fiction if I really work hard at it” but that’s easier said than done.

I’m only 25 and I’m still figuring myself out and I’ll probably be figuring myself out for awhile, that’s life right? All I know is that I want to be a writer. I want to change the world in some way, I don’t know how yet. I want to make a difference.

Today I got up really early (5 am early) and got started on my day. I had cereal and fruit for breakfast and tea of course. I did my brand new “travel skincare routine” (I basically used my Chanel eye mask all over my face because I have no other moisturizer and I forgot my regular products back at home) and I decided to write but the weird thing is I couldn’t. As much as I tried I found myself just staring at the screen of my computer. I keep telling myself not to put pressure on myself but I was chosen for a reason and I should use this time wisely but all I could do today was read. Hopefully, tomorrow is better.

I Was Abused And Homeless+My Story

I wanted to share with you all something my family and I had to deal with these past few months. Back in April we had to escape our abusers and had to live in a domestic violence for five months.

It was one the hardest times in my life. But we made it through. Now we’re trying to rebuild our lives. Millions of people deal with abuse. Abuse can happen to anyone and there isn’t one type of abuse.

Living in the shelter helped a lot but we also dealt with abuse there.It was hard but it made me realize that assertiveness changes everything along with knowing what you deserve.

I hope this helps anyone who needs it.

http://www.thehotline.org/help/

https://ncadv.org/get-help

Anxiety And OCD+Life Update

With the recent passing of Chester Bennington I thought I would be open with you all about a recent diagnosis and something my family and I’ve been through. 

I have finally gotten medication to treat my OCD and anxiety. For a long time I’ve just been going to counseling. It has helped tremendously but my therapist and I agreed that meds would be beneficial to my treatment. I always want to be honest with you all and share my mental health with you all. I think it’s important for others to know that they’re not alone. 

My family and I have had to live in a domestic violence shelter because we had to flee our abusers. I’ll go more into detail about that in a future post.

I really want to talk about this because I don’t want anyone to feel alone. Sometimes it become a lot, trust me I know. You may be at your lowest but know that you’re not alone. Mental illness is nothing you should be ashamed of. So many people live with it. It doesn’t matter which one you have, you’re human and you deserve kindness and understanding just like anyone else.

This wasn’t a planned post so I apologize if I seem to be rambling. I just want to make sure none of you feel alone. 

National Suicide Prevention Hotline

Call 1-800-273-8255

Available 24 hours everyday

http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

Box Of Shadows+Review

Being Wiccan and being a witch are two really big parts of my life. When I’m having a bad day (like today) these two things make it easier for me. I guess that goes for anyone who practices a religion. I was really excited to work with Box of Shadows.

Box of Shadows is this really cool subscription box that sends you Wiccan products right to your home monthly. There are three different types of boxes you can choose from the Initiate box, the Priestess box, or the Supreme box. It’s filled with tools and pieces for your altar.


As you can see I received a lot in my Supreme box. I’m really excited to put all of the things on my altar once I move into my new place. I also excited to have gotten this book in the box because I really want to celebrate Litha this year and the book gives a lot of amazing tips plus recipes. I’ve been loving all things lavender lately so I’m very happy about the incense. Overall I’m very pleased with the box. I think it’s a great way to practice your craft and learn more about it.

Box of Shadows is really sweet and offered you all a discount code for 10% off your first box and free shipping. The code is: SABOS

I’m really happy with this box and I would definitely buy myself one in the future.

Follow Box of Shadows on social media:

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Twitter

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*I received this box to review. All opinions are my own.

Cupi Essential Oils+Review

This blog is gradually turning into a self-care blog and I am completely okay with that. Since recently getting out of a domestic violence situation I’ve been trying to heal from the damage my abusers caused. I did a post about self-care already so you guys probably already have an idea on how I’m coping with my anxiety and depression. One thing I didn’t mention was essential oils.

Cupi Essential sent me out six of their oils plus a sample of their lavender (which has been my favorite lately).

With the lavender I’ve been using it to relax before bed and get better sleep at night. I’m not an expert so I can only speak for myself when I say that it has been helping me out a lot. The best part about all of the oils is that they are all 100% pure and natural so you can feel comfortable using them.

I’m still new to using essentials so Pinterest has been my best friend when it comes to figuring out how to use them. I strongly recommend doing your own research when it comes to possible side effects especially if you’re pregnant.

I want to open this blog post up to you all share with me what you all like to do with your oils. I’m looking into getting a humidifier to help release more of the scent. Like I said earlier, the lavender is my favorite and I personally feel like it helps me sleep better and feel less anxious. Tha

Thank you again, Cupi Essential for letting me try your oils. If you want to try them for yourself visit them at https://www.etsy.com/shop/Cupiessential?ref=profile_shopicon

 

 

*I was sent these products to try, all opinions are my own.

 

Bullet Journal+How To Start One

I’m currently taking art therapy to help with my anxiety from dealing with domestic abuse and one of the things I started was a journal but not your typical “dear diary” journal, this is a visual/bullet journal.

I write a lot for a lot of different reasons and as much as I enjoy love it I need a break sometime to relax my mind. That’s one of the reasons I started the visual journal because it’s more art based. I’m not an artist in the sense that I can draw or paint or even sculpt but I do love to just have fun with and being a victim of domestic abuse leaves a lot of room in my mind for the negative things I went through to pop up. Doing a bullet journal keeps those thoughts away even if it’s only for a little while.

I found a definition for a bullet journal so you can have a better idea about what it is before I get into how to start one.

“A bullet journal is just a notebook that accommodates a huge variety of planning schemes. You can create calendars and to-do lists, and you can also use it as a diary, a brainstorming notepad, and more.”- Life Hacker

  1. Find a notebook. They actually sell “bullet journals” but you can honestly use a regular notebook the way I did.
  2. . Decorate it and customize it. It’s yours so you can have it as plain or heavily collaged with Mod Podge like my journal.
  3. It can be as organized as you want or not organized at all. Some people make an index and color coordinate their to-do lists. But that is all up to what you want to do.
  4. Don’t feel obligated to write in it all of the time. Use it when a thought comes to you. Or you could make it into a planner to keep you updated.

Most importantly, have fun with it. It’s yours and you control how you do it what you put into it. Pinterest is a great way to get some inspiration to update your daily logs.

 

Self Care+Why You Should Do It

It’s such a cliche thing to say but it’s really true that you can only take care of others if you take care of yourself. Try not to look at it as being selfish but instead look at it as making an investment in yourself.

Self-care is important for your overall health. Mental and physical. There’s also no wrong way with doing self-care you should do it the way you feel it will benefit you the best way. For me taking a long hot shower and doing a skin care routine makes me feel a million times better. I feel refreshed and renewed.

A big mug of hot tea also helps me feel more relaxed and a  comfy sweater and good book even makes the mood better. You definitely don’t need an extravagant routine it can be as simple as taking a walk or painting your nails.

For a  long time, I always felt like self-care was a selfish act but it’s actually the complete opposite. It’s okay for me to better myself and take care of my own needs. I can give to others and still give to myself.

Below I have a list of things you can do to practice self care:

  • Take a shower/bubble bath
  • Make your favorite recipe
  • Give yourself a manicure
  • Do a face mask
  • Take a nap
  • Look at the moon or stars or clouds
  • Take a walk
  • Have a cup of tea
  • Light incense or candles
  • Read a book
  • Meditate
  • Keep a journal

 

Finding Happiness+How I’m Moving Forward

 

“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”- F. Scott Fitzgerald

I’ll be completely honest with you all and tell you that a couple of weeks ago I went through something extremely traumatic. It’s amazing how abuse always makes its way into my life. From having an abusive ex to this current situation (which I won’t be discussing on my blog).

But I’ve made the decision not to allow anyone to hurt me anymore, not emotionally and not physically, not ever. I won’t let anyone humilate me, or make fun of me, or talk down to me.  I don’t deserve that and there will never be a time in my life when I will deserve that.

Ironically with my 25th birthday coming in May I feel as though I’m entering a new chapter in my life:finally.

I sleep better, I’m able to eat better, and I overall feel better. I know that I won’t be healed overnight because even with my growth I still get the ocassional knot in my stomach. My heart flutters and my appetite may go away in a quick second only to return.

But I can only move forward and get stronger. I can only live this new life and never look back.

I truly believe that one day I will be the best version of myself. I’ll smile the way I used to. I won’t have nightmares. I won’t be afraid of the outside world. I’ll be okay.

Life Update+I Have Bacterial Vaginosis

I kind of owe you guys an update on my life since its been awhile. I’ve had some ups but a lot of downs. I’ll start off with the bacterial vaginosisIt’s NOT a STI it’s basically when the bad bacteria outnumbers the good bacteria in your vagina. Your pH balance gets thrown off and you have a gross colored discharge and an odor. The discharge also burns so you may feel like you have an UTI when you urinate.

This is how I got it, or how I think I got it. A few weeks ago ( yes this had been going on for almost a month) I had an urodynamics test and since I’m prone to UTI’s especially after using catheters I was put on antibiotics before the test. My best theory is that the antibiotics killed the bad bacteria along with the good. I’m not a doctor but since the doctors can’t give me a reason right now I think my theory sounds pretty reasonable.

This is actually pretty common but women don’t talk about it. I felt alone but now I’m learning that a lot of women deal with it and I feel a bit better about it. It’s important to go to the doctor if you think you have it just in case it could be something else.

I have seen numerous doctors, been to the ER , and given medication which helped for the time I was on it but the BV came right back after the treatment ended. So now I’m waiting for an appointment with another doctor and it’s so frustrating as you can probably imagine. My energy is nonexistent. I’m in constant pain and I feel gross from the discharge. 

My anxiety and depression have both been awful. I’m moody and just not myself. Some days I wonder if I will ever get rid of this. I cry all the time and when I’m not crying I’m trying home remedies. It’s stressful and I just want it to leave. Have any of you dealt with this? Any advice?

I think the silver lining from all of this is the love and concern I feel from those around me, especially my mom. She’s the best.