In February of 2010, I walked/jogged the Houston/Chevron Marathon 5K. It was my very first attempt. It was unplanned. And, I was totally unprepared for it. Physically, I felt up to the challenge but mentally, I did not realize what I was doing. I just knew that I had to do it. Even though, I have a string ofYOU CAN DO IT accomplishment behind me, I still felt as if I was under achieving. It I took the Marathon to change all of that.

I have a sign the size of the medal that I received for completing the marathon.  The medal and a small post-it-note are almost the same size.

My sign sits on my computer monitor as a reminder that “I CAN DO IT!” whenever I have those “That’s a crazy idea! And “It will never work!” moments.

While walking the Marathon, my thoughts began to race ahead of me. What are you doing? Why did you think you could do this? Don’t you know how old you are? What if you don’t finish? Your family won’t know where you are to identify the body when you pass out. (I disclosed my private heroics to my oldest son the morning of the race).

It seemed as if I was at the very end of the runners as my mind continued on to tell me that “millions of people” were passing me by. I even noticed a gentleman who appeared to be in his 80″s zipping past me. I felt so disheartened.

Then my moment came. I heard a man remark to his young son who was jogging with him as they passed me by, “There are thousands behind us.”  I knew then that I was not doing this for me but for the “thousands” behind me that needed to see me finish —proving to them that they could finish.

I no longer felt as if I was lagging behind. I was actually ahead of thousands!

Whenever I look at my post-it note it tells me to keep forging ahead. Don’t stop dreaming or achieving because of my age.

It is a reminder that “I Can Do It!” Furthermore, there are thousands watching my back.

Strategic Transformation Specialist & Christian Woman Motivation Speaker 

Education * Motivation * Support

Ages, Stages, and Grands!

Ages, Stages, and GrandsLet me say, first of all, that it was not my intent to be a single Mother. I am a product of a Mom and Dad who were married for over 60 years. That was not my life’s goal.

I married my middle school sweetheart. We dated through high school, and four years of college, then got married. However, after 5 years of marriage I found myself filing for divorce.

So, here I was 28, with two kids under the age of 2, divorced, and no transportation. That was not a pretty picture at the time. Gratefully, I had a college degree which provided a resource for financial support.

I had a couple of sister friends who were also single parents. They were, like me young women who were trying to build a better life for themselves and for their children. Not, woe is me, and how could this happen to me women; but ladies who were career minded professionals.

The stats were not lined up in our favor.Citing a 2012 editorial by Harper and McLanahan: Controlling for income and all other factors, youths in father-absent families (mother only, mother-stepfather, and relatives/other) still had significantly higher odds of incarceration than those from mother-father families.

Boys raised in a single parent home were destined for the penal system. I determined from that day, that by GOD’s power and my forthrightness this would not happen to my sons! Our current sitting President of the United States, President Obama was raised in a single parent home, by his Mom.

Education– As an educator, it helped me to support my sons with their school days. My youngest was labeled a special education student due to some behavioral issues – another dilemma of black boys.  At one particular meeting with the counselors, they scoffed at his desire to attend college, advising him on a career that required more brawn than brain. I stood in his defense at the meeting! Today, he is one of the leading professional salespersons in the Medical Device field.

We must be the number one advocate for our children.

Mom Dating and Sons – I was strategic in who I let come into my home and speak into their lives. They had to have an image of strong Christian men who publicly respected and loved their Mom. This mean I was dateless for many years. LOL! However, these two young men have strong marriages today.

Dating and Sons – For a Mom this is emotionally tearing. Your son is listening to other females. You are no longer the main voice of wisdom.  I was no longer Numero Uno. To get through this time, I began to list and pray over the qualities that I desired for their wives.

The Mother-In-Law – As a Mother of two adults, how do I handle this new role? Still praying!  More importantly, I keep my mouth shut when it comes to their marriages and running their households; unless I am directly asked for advice. I am no longer the parent; I am now the adviser — coaching from the sidelines.

I used to lament at the “loss” of my two sons, the “empty nest” syndrome. I know the adage of gaining a daughter, but that does not ease my pain. And I have two wonderful daughters-in laws.  This lamenting almost cost me the joy of having grandsons. I have three.

I believe that GOD is pleased with the works of my hands with my two sons and has allowed me the privilege to pour once again into other men of GOD.

Strategic Transformation Specialist & Christian Woman Motivation Speaker 

Education * Motivation * Support

The Heart of the Matter

The Heart of the MatterI was about to undergo an ultrasound of my heart, a procedure that had been recommended by my Cardiologist. The Nurse explained that this device had the ability to show areas of my heart where there was a clogging of the arteries and the flow of blood was being restricted.

I lay on the table hearing the thumping of my heart as I watched this wand pick up and display my inner physical traits.  I now pondered, “What if this machine could not only pick up hidden abnormalities in my physical heart but also the ones I had hidden in my emotions?  The anger, I had concealed from the day before, or my impatience with this very test?

We are cautioned through popular magazines and blogs to not give an entrance to the agitators and stressors of everyday life. No doubt you have put into practice many of these formulas: Five steps to a healthy heart, or 7 ways to forgive.

Even I myself have attempted to correct my stressors with the 10 ways to right thinking. Finally, I find myself succumbing to the fact that it is indeed healthy stress when I maintain a distance from the ones causing this agitation. Healthy not just for me but, for the both of us!

The heart of the matter is that our perceptions of any given situation will arouse feelings of stress and emotional upheaval, or joy and happiness. Was your performance appraisal really that bad? Did it come with a pink do not return to work tomorrow slip? Or, here is how you can do better? Did he say, “I’ll talk with you later?” or “I’ll call you tomorrow?” The two are diametrically opposed. Are you tumultuous pounds away from your long term weight goal or did you actually surpass your short term weight loss goal?

Many times we hear what we want to hear and believe what we want to believe, regardless of the truth.

Rather than allowing our hopes lead us down the same path of discouragement and heart break, try changing what you have been hoping for. Let me suggest one step, it is from the popular lyricist, Michael Jackson, “Look at the man in the mirror. And change your ways.”

Strategic Transformation Specialist & Christian Woman Motivation Speaker 

Education * Motivation * Support