Self Life

This Is Your Life Let Others Do Their Own Thing

Social networking sites enable you to connect to people from your past - from high school, a workplace, college, or another social group. Blackplanet was the first site I ever spent a major amount of time on and before that, it was IRC chat-rooms. As the web continues to evolve and social sites thrive, I find myself coming in contact with people I know from WAY back when.

I’ve never been one to compare my life or accomplishments to others. I’m not often envious of material things because anything someone else has, I know I can have if I really want it. Some people obtain or “collect” things in their lives because they’ve been told that’s what they’re supposed to do. I’ve always had a problem with that. Where is it written you are to do things a certain way, in a certain order, to have a “successful” life? If I were to define myself by what I don’t have (that everyone else thinks I should), I would surely come up lacking.

When I first started connecting to friends of old on one network, I discovered most were married with children. I looked through photo albums and saw people I used to drink beer with, bug out with… all grown up with responsibilities, beautiful spouses and children… and I felt a pang of something…. envy? Not really. As long as they’re happy, I’m happy for them. Jealousy? Like, how did they manage to get career, the family and the picket fence? No, no… not that either. I too want a family and would love to have at least one child, but I accept that it may not happen – especially as the years go by. I’m cool with that. Really. I’m not saying my friends settled, but I know for me, well, I just haven’t met the right person.

As I turned this over in my mind, I thought… do you feel bad about not having the significant other, children, mansion and a yacht, career, etc? Spinster! No, because I have lived my life and my creative skills have taken me places I would not have imagined I’d go. I work with exceptional organizations and people, and most of the time, feel very fulfilled. I’m blessed to do what I do. Being creative is life… but I admit that I imagined I would share the lows, the struggles, the triumphs and successes with someone significant. Some people are only there for the highs and disappear for the lows. When you don’t do what’s expected, what’s “normal,” you sometimes feel like you’re so separate.

A Different Drum

Nevertheless, I made a decision and commitment to walk my own path, but have not ex-nayed the possibility of family, children.. I’ve done what I wanted, when I wanted, and faced the consequences, good and not so good. I’ve taken extraordinary risks and have had people shake their heads at me in disbelief, like you eeeeeediot. I’ve been called a loser, chastised because I should have XYZ material possessions by age __, called obstinate and selfish, and my personal favorite, “stubborn to the point of ignorance.” These have bothered me, but not for long… their doubts fuel me. I’d call it persistence and perseverance. They don’t see what I see. They don’t hear what I hear. They’re not me and what they want for me… may not be what I want for me. I’m both an idealist and a realist.

If I sound defensive, I am. I’ll try to be gracious if you force your opinions about how I should live on me but don’t sleep. I’ll crack your jaw like Jheru the Damaja. People will judge you, want to know what’s wrong with you, ask why you haven’t “got it together yet” – especially when you have the audacity to go your own way. Call me “special,” a “little off,” or “different” because that’s exactly what I am. It’s the way I was divinely designed. There’s nothing wrong with me. All I ask of anyone in my circle is a little respect and acceptance. I could follow the masses but it would only be for acceptance…and I would be miserable. Worse, I would be going against everything I feel in my soul and life is too short to live every day discouraged.

I do what I do because I believe in me and am doing what I’m called to do. My ultimate goal is to do everything spirit-led. That means I’m accountable to no one but God and myself. I’m not looking at you and saying yeah, well I’ve got more than they do or they’ve got more than me because there is no competition… you are doing what you’re supposed to be doing and I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing. Like Rocko said, “You just do YOU, I’ma do ME….” Yes, I quote rappers – true artists and poets of my generation.

Disclaimer: I’m allowed to butcher and mix song lyrics because this MY site so: It’s your thing, do what you want to do and whatever you do, do it to death.

Originally Written: December 28, 2008

OneHipSista

Hi. I'm Valerie. Glad you're here – come on in and sit a spell. I've never put so much of my writing online but I share my personal experiences in hopes that I help someone in some way. I hope you find something you read thought-provoking, amusing or encouraging. Reach out or comment if you like. Please forgive the typos, grammar and cussing. Thanks for stopping by.

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