Well, I've officially lived in San Diego for one whole week and I love, love, love, love, love, LOVE it! More amazing than anything here physically is the fact that I am living an answer to my prayers. For the first time since I was 14 years old, I don't have a job to report to, but I have no financial worries. Thank Jesus for the grace of unemployment benefits!
Anyway, it has long been my petition to be able to have the time I should have had in my childhood and adolescence restored to me; the time to nurture and pursue ALL the things God gave me the ability to do without having to strive for survival. In some small measure, I can say it is finally here, but this blessing does not come without responsibility.
I moved to California, in part, to pursue the incredibly ambitious goal of attending the Debbie Allen Dance Academy in the spring. This school specializes in developing the "triple threat;" the perfect place for a girl who dreams of Broadway. At any rate, I am definitely not in the shape I need to be in right now. Before I moved, I met with Leah, a dance instructor and member of Ballet Afrique. Together we mapped out a plan of attack which included a diet and exercise regiment: cardio 3 times a week, pilates and yoga once each. My, my, my.... can I just say that I haven't been on top of my game since I got here. It's been tragic, actually. "I'll start tomorrow." That's what I keep telling myself. 5 tomorrows have snowballed into one week and I'm still not in my routine.
We've all heard that you shouldn't put off for tomorrow what you can do for today, right? What about being faithful with the little things so you can be trusted with the great ones? I have always wanted to work for myself, be my own CEO, make my own schedule. I've never liked being the person who counts thousands of dollars of other people's money, especially if they don't really work. That's for suckers as far as I'm concerned.
So here I am in a very favorable situation. God has cleared my plate; reduced it to a few key things for me to focus on. How many times in our adult life can we truly say our days consist ONLY of things directly related to our purpose/vision? Honestly, all I have to do right now (and the rest of this year) is prepare for school by training and conditioning, eat right, sleep right, write songs, send out demos- you get my drift. I am so INCREDIBLY BLESSED. Do I still have to fight? Is it still hard work and discipline? Yes, of course. But I asked for this; begged for it even.
And I finally get it- not just as head knowledge, but my heart gets it too. Everything I choose not to do for myself is ultimately MY loss. That seems so obvious and simple, but how many times do we cheat ourselves when we're the only person to be accountable to? Every time I cut corners and decide to eat the stuff I know I shouldn't or surf aimlessly on the internet when I should be writing or sleeping; every time I don't finish the tasks I create for myself and push them off for another day- this is ultimately MY loss.
I had a real honest talk with me today. Enough is enough. Why am I treating myself in a manner I would not allow someone else to treat me in? Why do I value the commitments imposed on me by the world or the ones I make to others above the ones I make to myself? Is it because they have more immediate and recognizable consequences? Whatever the case, I don't want to be the kind of person who makes a habit of lying to themselves all the time. I don't want to feel restless and unaccomplished each day because I chose not to focus and make moves with purpose, even when they're unpleasant. And I cannot bear being the person who falls short of the goal because I did not take all the little steps required to get there.
I am the hardest person I've ever had to discipline. But I'm ready to get on with it, regardless. I've accepted that this won't be easy or pleasant at first, but so what? I asked my Dad for the freedom to manage myself and my time. I asked not to have to slave away behind a desk or counter for someone else doing something I'm not fulfilled by. And I know this is a preview-a small taste, if you will- of that life. What I do with all I've been given in this season will directly relate to what I get to do in the future. And there is no such thing as "I'll start doing it differently when I get to where I wanna be." Why do people think that the remedy for being unmotivated to swim is to move from a pond to the ocean? Why did I buy into that for so long? O, how I laugh at myself!
I'm glad that it's 3 in the morning because my tomorrow is officially my today. So today, I do what I know I should be doing, regardless of whether I want to or not. Time for me to start being a no nonsense manager of me. I WILL get in 3 cardio, 1 yoga and 1 pilates session(s) starting this week. I will make a schedule for myself each day and stick to it as best as possible. I will write songs and other material regularly. I will read and store the knowledge I need on this journey starting with the Word. I once naively thought the glory of the freedom I enjoy was not having a schedule at all. Now I realize the glory of the freedom I have is this: my schedule is purpose filled and it's created by me :)
I finally realize that the abundant life is not an unbusy one. It's one where you have the privilege of deciding what to be busy with.
In conclusion folks, I've learned this valuable lesson: Foolishness is being the victim AND the thief. If I break the commitments I make to myself, I'm the Loser. What sense does it make for me to cheat and steal from me???
Turns out the person treating me with the most disregard was in the mirror all along.
"I'm looking at the girl in the Mirror. I'm asking her to change her ways. And NO message could have been any clearer. If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make that change."
-Michael Jackson (sans the change of gender in the lyrics)
Great song. TRUE message.
What's your mirror showing you? Moreover, if it's something unpleasant you have the power to change, will you love and respect you enough to do it?
Signing off for now,