Yesterday, I was talking to a friend who’s expecting a birthday soon. She wasn’t feeling good about it. There was nothing inherently wrong with the number. She wasn’t feeling good about it because she wasn’t thinking good about it.
She didn’t believe she could conjure up or invest in any wholesome, generative, progressive, affirming, enlightening, or empowering thoughts about her birthday.
Because some of the social markers ascribed to the number (i.e. having a loving partner, cute baby, two degrees, a thriving career, a gorgeous house, a fancy car, completed world travel, an athletic, thin frame, and a flock of amazing friends) have not (yet all) been attained.
So, she was feeling down, like she missed a deadline, with no hope of a do-over.
The pressures of performing womanhood, according to society’s norms and internal desires, can be heavy…and scary…if you think you’re not doing life right, getting love down pat, seeing impressive, quick change happen, or feeling juuuuuust so.
Investing in the belief that the life you’re living must adhere to the approved examples handed down to you is a recipe for disaster. It’s not a recipe for disaster because the examples are “wrong.” They’re not “wrong.” They’re “right” for some people.
This “must”, “should”, “ought to” energy is a recipe for disaster because:
- Life isn’t easy and it’s not fair. Life doesn’t unilaterally and continuously fit into prescribed or predictable forms, based solely on our desires or the desires of others. Life doesn’t work like that. It has a higher orchestration. Whether we like it or not (and, as an aside, Life gets MUCH easier and more peaceful when we learn to like and sincerely celebrate Life’s nature, even when the people in our immediate sphere don’t know how to do this and don’t even imagine it as possible). So shoving, twisting, arguing, and lamenting the status of a day-in-your-life will only frustrate you, construct more fear in you, and stoke your rage, resentment, and erect shame. This will not change Life. It certainly won’t change your life…at least not for the better.
- That negating approach to Life will also blind you to the gifts you have been given. I’m talking about the novel, creative, unexpected, dynamic, and constructive gifts only Life can (and does) give to and for us. Remember! We all get the same spiritual gifts with different packaging and bows. We get our gifts ::::: which we need to be humans on earth ::::: when we’re born. All of us…same gifts. Just different packaging and bows. We may open our gifts and use them at different times and in different ways…nonetheless, we all get the same gifts. The point is, when we invest in thoughts of disappointment about how our life was, is, and could be, we get stuck and spin, becoming static in toxicity.
- NOTE ——-> I’m not talking about experiencing our thoughts ——-> feeling how they make us feel, learning how they point to beliefs, and seizing opportunities for up-leveling internal systems.
- NOTE ——-> I’m talking about wallowing and forming a wrought iron grip on what should have happened, how you should have been treated, how you should have gotten this or that (wallowing, beyond experiencing = recipe for disaster).
So, what do we DO to not create and be disasters? What do we DO to open up ways to see who we are right now in space and time, where we are right now in space and time, and what we have right now in space and time, with different eyes? With eyes that are clothed in Wisdom, Faith, Peace, Temperance, Longsuffering, Gentleness, Kindness, Power, Grace, and Truth?
- An Answer (because there are many): We recognize our ability and right to make different choices and employ different parts of our Self differently. We honor our Creator above men, women, children, and all other beings. And we honor ourselves in relation to our Creator.
Because, “everything will be Ok in the end. If it’s not Ok, it’s not the end.”
IF we choose to fight the good fight and embark on a venture to embody a better being (by “better,” I’m talking about a way of being human that blesses, serves, strengthens, enlivens, opens, cultivates, and invigorates your holiness…I chose to cultivate a Supreme Lover Identity), THEN we can see whoever we are, whatever we’re doing, whatever we do (or don’t) have with Supremacy. This vision and understanding grant us access to new vantage points. They afford us new positions, from the supernatural to the natural realms. We can see more. We can see differently.
- Such vantage points fuel empathy.
- Such vantage points engender new belief systems.
- Such vantage points incite for us new powers to address what WAS from higher heights, define what IS with greater strength, and influence what WILL BE with deeper faith.
>>> Then, you don’t have to be afraid of your calendar.
>>> Then, you don’t have to be afraid of your surroundings.
>>> Then, you don’t have to be afraid of people.
>>> Then, you can say, with deep assurance that you don’t have to make up:
“Everything will be Ok in the end. If it’s not Ok, it’s not the end.”
Jeanine Staples is Associate Professor of Literacy and Language, African American Studies, & Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at the Pennsylvania State University. Her book, The Revelations of Asher: Toward Supreme Love in Self, is an endarkened, feminist, new literacies event (Peter Lang, 2016). In it, she explores Black women’s t/Terror in love. She produces research-based courses and methodologies that enable marginalized girls and women to realize internal revelations that fuel external revolutions.
Dr. Staples’ next book details the evolution of her acclaimed undergraduate course, The Philadelphia Urban Seminar. In it, she explores Supreme Love in schools. She shows how she generates curriculum and methodologies that incite anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-ableist pedagogical stances among teachers interested in urban education and equity for all people in schools and society.