Man, what a day today has been! I’m stressed. My period starts tomorrow and finals are upon us. As I get through my second to last semester before I graduate with my Masters (!!!), I have to just exude some gratitude in this moment because I’m not feeling it. I’m overeating to cope with the stress. Everything is a bit too tight these days. I’m excited and scared to see what my students are about to bring me this week during finals. I’m watching all my classmates bounce in and out of callbacks because I decided NOT to be in any school productions next semester (with good reason but STILL!) All my friends around me are headed into new chapters of their lives with MAJOR blessings and I’m feeling a tad left behind and I’m just OVER IT. So, not that I got that out my system, it’s time for some gratitude and I thought I’d share. I’m forcing myself to put 10 things out in the world that I’m grateful for because this funk just isn’t cute! I’m supposed to working on a Male Singer Assessment right now that’s due at midnight but I can’t even talk myself into getting started because my brain is all over the place SO, I’m going to do this gratitude exercise, meditate for 10 minutes and then press play on the last episode of the 4th season of Gilmore Girls while I power through this Pedagogy assignment.
1. Who am I and what is my family that you bless me in this way, Lord? (2 Samuel 7:18 NYLA version) Like a MASTERS at NYU in Voice. Who do I think I am? I am from no man’s land in the middle of the hood in Cleveland and here I am, strutting my oversized stuff in these NYC streets, walking to this world-renowned school everyday, learning how to teach folks out their larynx and stuff. What is my life?
2. I am typing this on a beautiful 15-inch Mac Book pro that I purchased almost 4 years ago that is in beautiful condition. I got the screen fixed for FREE over this past summer and it’s still kicking out assignments and allowing me to live my dreams and helping me teach voice lessons using YouTube tracks because my piano skills are WACK and everything. This has been my dream computer for a WHILE and it’s still everything that I ever thought it would be.
3. Thank you for people who know me and love me and deal with my funk. I left the church that I was visiting today after praise and worship and one of the ministers pulled me to the side and hugged me and prayed with me when she just felt something was OFF. Thanks, Holy Spirit, I needed that! After that, I walked to the train with my friend and was able to vent to her. Went to lunch with a different friend and was able to vent to him. Thanks, Jesus, for those 3 divine appointments that I needed today for my own sanity.
4. I’m so grateful that I’m not who I used to be and that I would even use this as a platform to host my gratitudes out into the world (because I don’t have social media) and not just throw everything aside and cry and eat and sulk. I am really on a journey to Nyla 3.0 and I see that my practices along the way are manifesting into parts of my character that I really enjoy. Though I have a long way to go, I am so not little Nyla anymore and I really LIKE ME. I like the person who would say, “No! You don’t just get to feel bad all day and NOTHING’S really wrong! Journal it out. Affirm yourself. Find community. Pray! Use the tools that you know, to get you to the place you want to be.
5. I thank God for a SOUND, RIGHT, STRONG-WILLED mind. As I read back on what I’ve already written, I’m just thankful to be able to spell and construct sound thoughts in sentence format and use noun-verb agreement. There are some who can’t, who never learned and who choose to not know, that find it unnecessary and counter-productive to know effective written communication. They find it even to be endearing to misspell words and have a cryptic language all their own. Though it can be dope to have a language that feels like a secret-handshake through text, I love to write. I’m always and forever grateful for my vocabulary that is lush and limited at the same time.
Okay I know I said 10 but I’m feeling better and I think I want to give myself a reason to come back to let’s stop at 5 for now and I’ll be back tomorrow or probably over the weekend with a finals week update and some more gratitude to through around.
Peace and love, family.