this season

Tonight, I was encouraged during a dinner I had with some friends. Each friend possesses a different creative spirit – one is a musician, the other an artist/businesses owner – and they both inspire me to continue in my own creative field of writing/spoken word.

We talked about each of our own creative endeavors and experiences, our goals. We also touched on where we currently are in life – one of those friends and I are in the midst of a living transition as we try to find a place to live together. The other friend has this grand idea, and is wanting to execute it within a certain time, and involve as many creative/artistic people she knows. We briefly spoke of our college days, which now seem like a distant memory or even a dream compared to the lives we're living right now.

And as I sit here in my bedroom, thinking about the season I'm currently in and seasons that I've passed through, I am trying to think of the goals I have in mind for the future, and how I can make a plan, and start executing that plan. Honestly, I've been in the planning season for a while, and I've also been trying to prioritize other things, like my health.

But I don't want my goals and dreams to sit on the bench; yes, what I've been trying to prioritize is important, but I also need to make sure that I'm doing something every day to obtain my dreams. I think for the remainder of my night, I'm going to sit here and really ask myself what I want to accomplish / where I want to be this time next week, next month, next year.

It's scary to come up with a plan, sometimes. One of my friends pointed out tonight that there's just something about making an actual plan to reach a goal that seems intimidating, and it sometimes stops us from really thinking through the process and achieving our goals. Maybe it's seeing how many steps we have to take. Maybe there's one particular step that requires us to really get out of our comfort zone.

But if there's one thing I've learned, planning and process is so important. And tonight, I realized that in a way, I've kind of been avoiding the planning process probably because I'm a little fearful of it. I've been focusing on other things I need to focus on, but at the same time, I knew I should be working on my craft.

No fear, though. Time to take advantage of this season.

What kind of season are you in? Are you doing things that are actually productive to you and where you want to eventually be? Ask yourself where you want to be next week, next month, next year; sit down and write those things down. Now write out how you're going to get there, no matter how crazy or scary it seems. Get together with a close friend and share these things with them, and come up with ways to stay proactive within your plans. 

We got this, luvvies!

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

Enough is Enough.

*Disclaimer: I’m not bashing anyone who has said that they are “ugly,” “worthless,” “stupid,” and any other derogatory terms on social media. There is freedom of speech; you can say what you want on your account. I’m only saying that I wish better for those who do say these things (myself included). We are so much more than we think we are.

So…I’m done.

I’m tired of hearing and seeing all of this self-hate, and I’m also tired of being a part of it. Recently, I’ve seen a lot of my friends or followers on social media say in various ways that they’re ugly, unloved, or not enough. And I feel like there are numerous reasons why they say such things…(and this is all just generally speaking. I’m not accusing any of my personal friends or followers of doing any of these things said below. These are just thoughts and observations of what I’ve been seeing and thinking about)

1. A Joke. Some people say they’re ugly as a joke. And while I’m not trying to be that person who’s always so serious, I honestly don’t think calling other people or yourself ugly is a joke. Ugly is a hurtful, heavy word. You shouldn’t use it for others or for yourself.

2. Attention / Assurance. Some say they’re ugly for the attention. They want people to prove them wrong, to give them some positive feedback and attention because they’ve called themselves ugly.

3. Humble. Unfortunately, many people can’t/don’t know how to take a compliment, maybe because they feel like they don’t deserve the compliment being paid to them, or they’re just bashful. So instead of, or even along with, a “thank you,” there’s sometimes a “but…I’m actually [insert demeaning adjective or noun here].” When did we think that humbly receiving a compliment meant that we had to tear ourselves down to deny the positive thing someone said to us? Now, I’m not saying that every single time someone does this in particular, they are 100% serious; but the fact that they think it is a good way of being humble just doesn’t sit right with me.

And I’m not just pointing fingers at my friends/followers/other people. I’m pointing the finger at myself too; I am just as guilty of saying that “I am merely a bean!” to people who say that I look gorgeous or flawless. It’s just something we’ve got ingrained in us; I feel like we can’t handle how amazing we all are, so we have to tell ourselves that we actually aren’t that great compared to the entire population.

But every time I see or hear someone I know say something negative about themselves, I always try to combat it. Because, whether it’s a joke or not, everyone feels ugly at some point, and if they’re talking about it or bringing it up, I want to take the opportunity to assure them that they are definitely not whatever negative noun/adjective they said they are, but they surely are “wonderful,” “amazing,” “worthy,” “loveable,” etc.

Am I angry at the people who keep saying they’re ugly on social media or otherwise? No, of course, not. I tweeted today that I’d fight those people…

…but I mean that out of love. We all go through moments when we don’t feel pretty or handsome or good enough. Some go through these moments more than others. And I am so adamant about assuring people that they are beautiful and worthy, not because I’m trying to flatter them, or because I just want them to like me. I say those things – “You’re gorgeous,” “You’re flawless,” “You’re worth it, luvvy,” – because I truly believe it and mean it. Because I’ve had those moments when I didn’t feel beautiful, and wished someone would look at me, and sincerely tell me I was worthy, beautiful, enough.

I’ve seen way too many physically beautiful people say they’re physically unattractive. I’ve heard way too many people with beautiful personalities wish they were more physically attractive because they feel like their personalities don’t matter unless they are what the world defines as beautiful. There is not more stock in physically attractive people, or in personality attractive people. Both are equal, yet the world wants us to think otherwise.

I’m sorry that the world has established these standards of beauty that are unattainable for most of us. I’m sorry that we may feel unworthy because the person we like thinks someone else – someone who looks nothing like us – is attractive. I’m sorry that we think that taking a compliment means saying we’re actually the opposite of that compliment. I’m sorry that you not getting the attention of someone you love made you feel less than.

But oh, dear luvvy, you are so worthy.

Enough is enough. I stand for beauty of all types, shapes, sizes. No person on this earth is exactly alike, and that is the most beautiful thing about us as humans; as God’s creation. We are each created in His Image, His likeness. We have no idea what He physically looks like, but there are so many adjectives in the Bible that describe His character – good, faithful, wonderful, mighty, powerful, the list goes on. Now, we are not all-powerful, or all-good; we’re still humans who make mistakes, and we won’t ever be perfect in this life. But if we depend on the Lord, we are capable of being as faithful, wonderful, good as we can where He has placed us.

You probably saw this coming…those typical Bible verses that everyone brings out when talking about self-esteem, beauty, etc. Psalm 139:13-14. Maybe some of you didn’t see it coming / don’t know them, but even if you did, I’m still gonna drop them here:

“For You formed my inward parts; You knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are Your works; my soul knows it very well.” (ESV)

You, dear reader, are beautiful, unique, wonderful, enough because the God of all creation created you, a wonderful work, a masterpiece. And He longs for you to know this very well, and to praise Him for it.

I know it’s hard sometimes; listen, I have just as much a hard time as anyone convincing myself that I am good enough in this world, that I am beautiful enough to be considered worthy of loving, that I am unique enough to stand out from the crowd. We beat ourselves up, and we have no reason to.

Also, the problem is not in wanting to be assured of how amazing we are; the problem is us being unable to see how amazing we are. It’s okay to want that affirmation from people, and I pray that there are people in your life to assure you of your beauty and greatness. But sometimes outside affirmation isn’t enough; sometimes that one person you want to hear it from doesn’t tell you what you want to hear. And this is why we have to be okay with ourselves, no, more than okay with ourselves; we have to see ourselves as worthy masterpieces. Not to the point of being prideful, but to the point of being able to see the beauty in other people too.

And I pray and encourage us all to look in the mirror tonight, tomorrow morning, right now, and say, “I am beautiful. I am worthy. I am unique. I am loved. And so is everyone else I come in contact with, be it face-to-face, or over social media.”

Say this with me: “I am amazing. You are amazing. We are all amazing.”

Now say it, and believe it.

#MishyWrites

 

“The Cycle”

Yesterday, I was honestly in a funk. I had already had a mentally and emotionally rough week, and I think it all just peaked yesterday. As I've grown older, I've become more comfortable with who I am in all aspects, especially physically. But unfortunately, I still have those days – those days when I don't feel very beautiful, or when I don't feel like my personality is enough for people.

But I know that these thoughts are lies; I know that I am so much more than what I feel like sometimes. I am worth so much more than other people's opinions. Yet, I just hate that I still find myself in this cycle of being okay with myself, and then not being content with myself if something happens, or someone says something, or maybe just because I'm just not feeling who I am that day.

So, I just wrote a little something last night to reflect how I was feeling. I'm feeling better today, for sure. But I wish there was someway this mental, self-esteem cycle of mine could just stop, and I could be content with who I am all the time.

"The Cycle"

The cycle is treacherous.

I find myself confident, willing to see the beauty and value in myself for a good while. Able to understand that my worth and value don't lie in other people's opinions, other people's words. Who I am isn't based on the color of my skin, or the music I listen to.

It's based on the mere fact that I am part of the Lord's creation; a unique form to behold. And all that matters is He loves me unconditionally, no matter what happens or what I'm told.

But then as the cycle makes its course,
My esteem is emptied, wasted on caring too much about what others think of me,
Comparing myself to girls who look nothing like me, say things differently, listen to music or are a part of things that are more popular than what I am interested in.
The self I used to love becomes a self I now loathe,  and I can't bear to look myself in the mirror, and admit that I am beautiful.

It hurts too much.

The cycle must be broken – I'm over following this trend of constantly feeling great about myself, and then having something not go my way, or not hearing an affirmation I wanted someone to say, which causes my esteem to be at risk.
I'm tired of the negative, mental list I make about myself, all of it rooted in two words – "not enough."

Luvvy, that's a lie, and you know it.
The stuff you want to focus on is nothing but distractions wanting to chip away at the masterpiece you are. You're worth more than those empty declarations that want to crush you beneath those awful statements.
Break the chains of those harsh judgments that bind you to the cycle of loving then loathing then loving yourself. Be free to continue to love who you are, and who you're becoming. Why wait for someone to fall in love with you when one of the most beautiful things you can do is fall in love with yourself, and the Creator who made you?

Be free to believe these things – You are worthy. You are loved. You are enough. End of story. 💙

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

“Today I Affirm…” with Alex Elle: Day 1 – Love vs. Fear

So, there's this writer named Alex Elle whom I love, and discovered through Kehlani's latest album because she spoke in a couple of the introductions, and she recently did this email series "Today I Affirm…" in which she would declare something, and we'd do some affirmation writing based on what she declared. I wasn't able to keep up with it during the week she was actively doing it, so I'm going to do it this week instead!

Normally, this is supposed to be done in a journal or on Post-It notes, but I'll do that once I wind down for the day. I'd love to share my self-affirmations on here with you all, and maybe you can even do this for yourself!

Today I Affirm:

"To walk boldly in the light of love and not cower at the darkness of doubt." – Alex Elle

Words: "love," "prevails," "trials"

Honestly, this is sort of ironic that this is what today's self-affirmation is because today is Monday, which means that I do #MotivationalMishyMondays on Instagram live at 8pm EST. And tonight, I was planning on talking about fear, and how we are not called to live a life of fear, yet we so often do, and it causes us to miss out on opportunities, to regret things, to wish that we'd done or hadn't done things in certain ways.

And specifically today, I am going to preview a new poem I recently wrote entitled "No Fear," which actually delves into the fact that God's Perfect Love casts out fear, and if we rest in it, we can overpower the fears that so often have a grip on us.

The circumstances of why this poem was written actually seem more shallow than the poem itself is. I wrote it because I had sent a message to someone that I cared about, and I was afraid of how they'd receive it / how they would view me. Overall, I was mostly afraid of rejection; I was afraid the person would take my words negatively, and reject the care that I had for them.

As I debated on whether or not I should delete the message I'd already sent before the person read it, I was assured by friends that I should just take a risk; that maybe it would be a good thing, and that rejection wasn't something I had to worry about. And, even though their encouragement was sweet, I was still on the fence about the whole thing. Hence why, I thought about what God says about fear and being afraid.

He says, "Do no fear, for I am with you."

"fear not, for I am with you;
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." - Isaiah 41:10 (ESV)

And reminding myself of that verse led me to think about all the things I was afraid of in the past that I went through, and realized I had no need to be afraid of. It made me think of how God knew exactly how things would turn out, and I worried my little self over everything, but all I had to do was rest in the fact that God is behind me and before me; He doesn't reveal everything to me because He longs for me to trust that He is good, no matter the outcome.

God knows me so well; I mean, He created me, after all! And He created you too. He knows us all so well, and in the past few days, I was reminded of how well He knows me through Psalm 139. I won't write it all out for y'all, but you should definitely get a chance to read it! We long for someone in our lives to know everything about us, and still love us despite the ugly things. And God does that. It blows my mind, really.

So, I declare that I will walk boldly in the light of my Father's perfect Love that casts out fear (1 John 4:18), and refuse to cower at the darkness of doubt, rejection, fear, hate, etc.

Ahh, I'm so excited, I want to write to you all the words from "No Fear" right now, but I told myself I wasn't going to release it until after it's all recorded and whatnot. Tonight on Instagram is just a sneak-peek, but I am so excited about it all.

God is good, despite all the fears I have, and I pray that we can all walk with confidence knowing that He knows everything that will come to pass. It does us no good to sit in fear of whatever we are scared of if we know He is in control of it.

#MishyWrites 🦋✨

To Be Honest…I Thank You.

Another small break from the Postcard Prose series. I know a series is supposed to include consecutive pieces on the same topic or subject, but sometimes life and the choices you make just don’t allow for it to happen.

So, I’m going to write very quickly on some things that have been on my heart lately.

Mishy, Are You Okay?

Yes, I am okay. When people ask me this question, I always say, “yes,” not to put up this facade that nothing is ever wrong with me, but because over all, I am okay. Sure, I may be busy. Sure, there are a lot of things on my mind, lots of decisions to make, and prioritizing I need to do. But (and I feel like I’ve written this to you all before) I am not sick. I am not going through an extremely difficult time. Praise the Lord, the troubles I have really aren’t that major; just every day struggles of being an adult who is trying to pay the bills and still do what I love.

That doesn’t mean there aren’t hard days because, I promise you, there are. And I am tempted to put up a facade sometimes, and say I’m okay when I’m not. I do want to admit that I do struggle; nothing is easy.

I’ve had two people recently ask me if I’m okay, and while my overall answer has been yes, I also explained the things on my mind…

PRIORITIES

I feel like this is a constant chapter in my adult life. I’m always prioritizing and re-prioritizing my life. And it’s hard, because just when I feel like I’ve got a good schedule or routine going, I realize that I haven’t prioritized in the best way, and I’m back to Square 1.

First and foremost, I’ve been praying that the Lord would continue to mold me into the person He wants me to be. Because I don’t want to just be comfortable in my faith; I long to grow and learn from Him. I want to have that child-like faith; I want Him to be at the forefront of my mind at all times, and I have just been super convicted that I haven’t been living my life for Him, and have been distracted by a lot of other things.

Which brings me to the second thing: social media. I’ve been “teased,” and actually been seriously told more than once, that I’m on my phone way too much. For years, I’ve brushed off the comments, defended myself, tried to make excuses as to why this is such a problem for me. And recently, when I was told again about 2-3 times that I was on my phone a lot, I was super convicted.

Is that really what people think of me? Is that how they view me?

So, I’ve been diving into that problem within me. Honestly, that was hard to type to you, but I need to admit it – I have such a problem with being so connected to everyone online, and I’m afraid I’ve missed so much around me because of it. I have “FOMO” (fear of missing out, to those who don’t know) when it comes to things happening online; if one of my favorite artists dropped a new single, I want to know about it! If one of my favorite writers is doing a contest for a free book, I want to be the first to know so I can enter before it’s too late. Clearly, I have a problem.

I’ve taken steps to really cut myself back from the phone usage – turning off the social media notifications, and not being on social media at all on Sundays. Putting my phone on silent, and burying it beneath my bag. Putting it inside my wallet when I’m hanging out with friends, especially if there’s some deep conversation happening. If these prove to not help, I’m determined to try other ways. Because I’m tired of being that person missing out on real life, but being up-to-date on things outside of the realm of my personal world.

And lately on social media anyway, there’s just been some slight negativity that’s been affecting me, causing my heart to ache. None of the negative things are about or toward me, but it’s draining and sad to see how the tearing down of others, or the sadistic nature of people’s thoughts can be. I feel like opening myself up to that has made me vulnerable to do the same – to talk bad about people, to be more pessimistic, to be distant in a bad way rather than a healing way.

These things are only scratching the surface of what’s been going on in my heart, mind, and life. I haven’t even touched the matters of balancing having a social life/doing the things I love with the people I love, and focusing on my writing – what I feel called to do. And trying to fit in my health (physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional).

I talked to Pa (my stepdad) about this all tonight, and he made a good point – all of these things are good problems to have (first-world problems, as he put it). I have a lot of good things going on in my life, better than real problems other people are having, and I am grateful that the Lord has blessed me with problems such as these. I don’t want to discount them as struggles, but I do want to acknowledge that these are not terrible things.

And I’m grateful because, through all of this, I am learning to be less dependent on myself to get things done, and more dependent on my God to just teach me and show me that He is good – even if I can’t finish it all on time, even if I have to say “no” to something, even if I feel exhausted beyond belief – He is GOOD.

Grateful

I had someone ask me if I was okay tonight. I don’t know her personally, but through my friend Silas and his music, I’ve been able to message her, and get to know her a little.

And I told her a little about what was going on. She told me she felt like I was distant lately, and since our communication is via social media, I told her about me trying to separate more from social media.

It meant a lot to me, though, that she was brave and willing to ask me that question: “Are you okay?” People ask that all the time; it’s one of those typical conversation openers, whether it be face-to-face, texting, or on social media; but in the current season I’m in right now, that question really helps me.

Having someone ask me aloud, or even through text if I am okay makes me stop and really process and think through whether I am really okay. I answer that question with honesty, because I know answering that question honestly is a good step towards making the changes I need to make, or keeping the things I need to keep.

So, I am overall grateful – for the Lord placing in my heart this want to strive to be more like Him. For those people and their snarky and serious comments about me being on my phone too much. For the people on social media who helped me realize that to have my head all in that world isn’t all that great all the time. For people like my stepdad who support me, and remind me of the great place I actually am in. And for the girl who asked me if I was okay tonight.

Thank you. From the bottom of my heart.

Forward I go!

💙 Mishy 🦋

“I used to think…”

Still trying to re-work the next Postcard Prose post, but here’s a little something I wrote in the creative writing workshop I attended tonight.

The prompt was just writing our thoughts beginning with the phrase “I used to think…”


 

I used to think that poetry wasn’t for me.

It was for all those people I took writing classes with, who had that special kind of love for coffee and
thinking and style that got to weave words together to make sense of the world through metaphors and imagery, all the while
also being capable of eloquently speaking what was
on their minds and in their hearts.

I used to think that that was impossible for me to do.
To write something so
vulnerable and true,
And have the courage to not just let it
sit between the lines,
Squished between the pages of a journal that I’d find
years later, tucked underneath the rest of my scribbled on books.

To be where I am now took courage; it always takes that.
There are days I struggle to pick up a pen and allow all these words to
pour forth
and stick and fit together.

I sometimes wonder if this poetry is just a phase,
Or something I was forever created for.

So, I hold onto hope,
Praying that God keeps
closing and opening the doors,
And gives me the strength to allow the unfolding of everything to take place.

And overall I pray, that He helps me seek His Face.

💙 Mishy 🦋

Yo…Blogging is Hard. – More Writer’s Thoughts

I interrupt my blog series to give you an important message…

I’m struggling here, guys. 

Starting this new series, I knew it would be a challenge. I mentioned this in the introduction to the Postcard Prose series, I think, but writing fiction is a little difficult for me since I’ve become so comfortable writing nonfiction for the past several months. These past couple of blog posts have been the first fiction writing I’ve done probably in years, and I am so uncomfortable. 

I feel like I shouldn’t be here, like I shouldn’t be writing what I’m writing. Not in a bad way, necessarily, just in a very weird way. I can’t tell if I’m being authentic, or just writing to put content out there. Or maybe I’m just getting discouraged because writing all this fiction isn’t coming easy to me like it used to. 

My perfectionism is also creeping back up, like it always does when I write. Only this time, I feel like it’s worse. 

As I write these fiction posts, I feel like I’m back in my Intro to Creative Writing classes I took in college, struggling to really grasp the concept of concrete details. Like, how much detail is too much again?? Truly, people don’t care about the color of the carpet my character is standing on…or do they? I feel like these posts are becoming longer than I thought they would because I’m inserting all this detail, which I know is necessary for the reader to really envision what I’m writing…but gosh. It’s causing me to overthink what I write and rewrite the original story I had in mind because I’m not sure if it’s good enough or believable or [insert whatever adjective] for the reader. 

See, I was writing a Postcard Prose piece for tonight, but after several hours of having the draft open and adding, deleting, writing, rewriting, scrapping, taking a Netflix break, then beginning again, I just didn’t feel like I could really write something that would make me satisfied as a writer to post to all of you. 

Instead of posting tonight, I tweeted this: “Yo…blogging is hard.” and was just going to leave it at that. 

Because blogging really is hard. If you think I make this look easy, it isn’t. It never is. 

I’ve written this before, but I really feel terrible if I post something that I don’t feel genuine about. That may seem too sentimental to some of you readers, who think that I just need to keep posting every day to keep getting the views, getting the likes and the follows, but posting just to post has never sat right with me. How are people supposed to be into my work if I’m not into it from the beginning? Doesn’t make sense to me. 

Which leads me back to what my friend on Twitter said to me about how people who truly support me will be patient for what I write instead of pressuring me into writing or releasing whatever I can. 

At this point, I’m just opening up my writer’s thought process to you all, hoping you’re hanging on tight, and still reading this post. If you are, thank you for sticking with me. If you’ve stopped, well, it’s okay, my mind works itself through a lot of crazy thoughts, so I don’t blame you! 😂

My friend Taylor Young is currently writing a novel, and she’s talked to me about how she needs to just keep writing, and not worry about all the mistakes she’s making as she’s writing. And in some way, I feel like I need to take this advice too; I’m too nervous about the details, the plot, the characters, when I really just need to get the story out first and then insert those concrete details later. 

So yes…this may not be a Postcard Prose post, but all of this – getting these thoughts off my chest and out in the open – this feels good to me. 

And it makes me feel better about diving back into the uncomfortable fiction writing tomorrow. Because I’m not giving it up. I just needed to re-assess it all. 

Thanks for reading, luvvies. 💙

💙 Mishy 🦋