Monday, December 29, 2008

You Can Do Better! Why Settle?

We can do better. Why settle?

Now, some would ask, "Why settle for less?"

Well, we find ourselves in situations where we are so in love or so into someone and they seem like the right person, but find out that this may not be true. Sometimes we are so interested in the one we love that we forget our own standards. We forget what morals and values we learned when we were growing up. Or did we forget? Some of us have not forgotten, it's what we see and what we saw as a child.

I learned in biology/pre-med that most of our values, characteristics, etc. are learned before the age of 7. We are who we are because of what we learned before that age. Since we were so impressionable, some of us have learned some interesting things. I want to take you back in the day when I was a child. This will help to explain why I have accepted things and in certain instances have settled. I even settle today for some things, but tonight, I am excited about my options and my strength to not settle and want better. What do I mean?

Well, I grew up in a pretty violent household. My mother took her frustrations out on us as children. Honestly, I thought that everyone grew up in a household where beatings were normal. I was mentioning to a friend tonight that my mother used to "whip" me badly and then take me in the bathroom and then apologise. Wow, I was definitely confused. I mean, why beat me if an apology was forthcoming? It confused me. My mother went through so many emotional spurts. She was in a turbulent relationship with my father and when he was in prison, she went through a turbulent relationship with friends. I mean, do not get me wrong. She had great relationships, but I often saw arguments, fun, dancing, fighting, etc. Life was great for her, she thought. She was a young person. She was only 30 when she died. I can relate, I am near her age now. I still have childhood tendencies, lol. I do.

Growing up with all of these influences around you will certainly shape your world as you grow. After my mother was killed, I was influenced by my grandmother and peers mostly, but it was almost too late. I was heavily influenced by my childhood. First, I was molested several times, once horrifically. Something I would never wish on a child. Today, I look back on these times and I am so glad to be alive. There is space for rehabilitation and true rebuilding of your life.

In some parts of my life, I have settled for mediocrity though. I have settled for things that I know I do not approve of. But, it's difficult, right? It's just so damn difficult. Let's take my weight for instance. I did not grow up eating healthy food. We grew up eating the soul food and other food that is simply listed in the worst food category -- fried chicken on a consistent basis. I mean, my diet is not good at all. I rarely exercise now. At least when I was on the tennis team, I exercised regularly. I feel like Oprah. I have got to come clean about that. I am definitely not perfect and I want to make that clear.

We have to work to get better. We can do better. We have to hold ourselves more accountable. It's necessary to preserve our lives. I would love to have more years on earth to be a positive force. But, that starts with making decisions right now that enhance our lives. No matter what, we must aim. As I continue to blog, I will reveal my plan. Please stick with me. You will see. With you and me working together, accountability will creep in our lives and hold steady.

You know, when I blog, I am not just talking to you. I am talking about the things that I have gone through in life and what I am going through right now. Life can be difficult sometimes, especially for those of us who've suffered tragedy. We have to fight that much harder in order to survive and push ourselves to do better.

Believe me, I am down on myself sometimes and I cannot hide that. I want to be honest on this blogsite because life is a journey. It's the only route we have in order to be born and then move on to the next level. Remember, birth - growth - maturity - decline - death? That's the physical journey, but even in decline, we can grow. We can define this timeline for ourselves.

So, we are in this journey together. And no matter what, we must press on.

I cannot help but think about my Godsister tonight and her battle with her ex-boyfriend who killed her. She fought to the end. Evident by her bruises, her nails with blood under them, her hands and her face -- she fought. She wanted to live. We cannot wait until death is staring us in the face to make a change. Tiffany was at her last stand for survival and she lost the physical battle. However, her battle is not hers alone. It is the battle of all of ours. We must work hard to avoid last ditch efforts to stay alive. Let's give ourselves options.

Why settle for hurt? Why settle for pain? It does not feel good at all. Why settle for someone who does not value the goodness in us? Why settle for someone who does not support us positively? We can make that change. We can do better.

Reach out. We cannot expect someone to reach us. We have to help. Let's reach out for some assistance to get our lives on a positive track. I am committed. The ball is in your court.

Why settle? We can do much better.

Til next time.

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