Thursday, August 23, 2012

Leaps and Bounds

To leap:  to spring free from or as if from the ground : 2 a : to pass abruptly from one state or topic to another b : to act precipitately <leaped at the chance>

One of the differences I noticed with the word leap and words jump or bounce was that a leap has a destination. You can Jump and Bounce aimlessly, but if you leap somewhere it's almost like your trying to get somewhere or you have an intended outcome in mind.

When I started this journey of self discovery I realized early on I had no idea which way I should leap. I wanted to make the right choice early on, in hopes the outcome would be easier to obtain. I think this thought is a common hangup for a lot people, we get so worried with which way we should go first we forget to take the trip. After some thought, I decided I would tackle either the most feared leap OR the leap that I believed would get me the farthest in the long run. Marriage is my most feared leap for various reason (long story- I'm yet praying). I feel like going to school would be the most beneficial but also the hardest for me.

For years I have wanted to go to school but I have strategically placed grand supposedly insurmountable fears in my way. My mind would ponder questions that I had no answers for; What do you do with dreams  fulfilled? What do I do if it's not as fun as I think it will be? What do I do IF it is too hard? Isn't it easier to never try than deal with the agony of defeat? What if I'm more like the Hillman dropout Denise and not the Princeton Graduate Sondra? So for years I sat around pondering questions over and over again, never risking the chance of answering them or taking a minute to discuss them. I would just hold on to them scared that even acknowledgement of the questions would bring me closer to a end I was unsure of. I notice that most of my angst would come in August and September whenever I would take my daughter school shopping. It also got worst as 2 of my siblings proudly started their academic journey.

 I would find myself in Target walking and daydreaming of days at the Pit with Mr. Gains, Kim, Dwayne, Ron, Freddy and Whitley, even hanging with Lena and Charmaine in my later years. How I would be close friends with Lena and we would talk about her life and she would grow and change from a roughneck Piccolo/Tupac lover to a Dorian/Church-boy virginity stealer to finally finding true love and marrying Will Smith a homeboy we meet in Philly one weekend on vacation. I should have went to college! Whenever I would watch reruns of A Different World  I would berate myself for never applying to Spellman like I intended 10+ years ago. The journey of a thousand steps starts with one so, I decided to apply. No, not to Spellman because that plus my dreams of being the first Black Female President are long over,  but to quench the yearning in my heart I needed to consider Culinary Arts School.

Obviously, my first step was to find the school,  I decided to use the magic problem solver, we all know as Google and find out if there were any viable options in the area. Much to my surprise, I live 10 mins away from a Top Culinary Arts School. After some research I discovered they are a great fit for me and great option for my intended career plan. Classes don't start for a few months so I even have enough time to apply for financial aid and admissions.

I know what your thinking! All signs that I should LEAP, but to be honest, I've been here before. I am very comfortable in the "Got my information but no commitment needed" place. This is the place where you have all the information you need to make the change, but you still falter with the follow-thru. You want to go but you don't actually go because you want to make sure the green light you see is not really darkish bluish yellow so you wait for fear you may cause an accident. I have received many information packets from local universities and I've read more college applications than a promising 12th grader. I can very well, stop my journey now with the information and fill somewhat accomplished with at least finding out some options, but this time I feel different.

This time I want to leap! I need a place to land so this time decided to follow thru. I actually spoke to the admissions office. I told them my goals and got the steps for admissions.  The first problem to tackle would be money. I need to fill out a FASFA application and this can be time consuming, decisions decisions, I decided to spend my next few minutes on me. I would pull my taxes and complete the forms and submit the information. However, I couldn't find my taxes from last year. Not a big deal, I let the ball of productivity keep rolling and I called yes CALLED the IRS to get a copy of my transcript. I sat a nervous ball of energy waiting on hold for at least 32 mins, finally I spoke to a lovely tax agent that basically said, "We've been looking for you Ms. Williams I'm so glad you called, your taxes were never processed from last year so we were about to put a levy on you for the amount you owed in 2007 and 2009"

What da what and take da what? YOUR GLAD I CALLED!? Don't ya'll have my number? Ya'll couldn't send me a e-mail or text or something? a Letter? Nothing!? You were just waiting on me to call in? Now, I don't want rumors to start that I'm bout that cursing at the IRS life, cause I'm not. Those were all secret thoughts,  when i truly said "Oh, Really? Ok, um, do you need my address?" I realize that may make me seem like a punk, but there are very few people that have enough guts to yell at the IRS, and I'm proud to say I'm not one of them. I might be willing to sell bibles in China or fight a thief if they tried to steal my purse, I may even chase a kid down if he bumps into me on the sidewalk but there is no way I'm going to yell at a tax agent. Nope not gonna do it! After a few minutes on hold and a few questions from the very nice Tax Agent, my account was placed on hold and I was given a date to look for my information so I can submit my taxes. 

Typically this would be where I respectfully backed down off the ledge and traded my leaping shoes for standing and helping others leap shoes. This struggle would be what I used as my get out of commitment sign. However, like I said earlier this time something will be different. A little discouraged I sat and I recalled something I read and was reminded that whenever God calls you to do something, it's the enemy's job to try and stop you. We shouldn't take it personally it's what he's supposed to do, kill, steal & destroy. But check this out, the enemy can try but he can't succeed without approval. He can only do what he has permission to do, and if God has called you to do something - your supposed to do it. Therefore, if you quit a battle you've already won, you forfeit. That would be a Win you treat as an Loss, not to mention that's just a waste of time. You don't have to fight battles you've already won, you won! You show up and get your trophy/prize/spoils of war/etc. The good news is, there is no statue of limitations to pick up your prizes. If there was a battle you won but ignorantly forfeited, don't worry go get your stuff.  You can even start the celebration now because basically you've won you just never acted like it. SO all that to say, my plan with my new found IRS/Financial Aid/Admission issues will be thus:

I'll make the food you bring drinks and Tommy will bring the paper plates, My graduation Party will be roughly sometime in April 2013 or so. Save the date!

And Lastly, Does anyone know a good accountant?

Love you!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Taking the Leap

Last night as I went through my typical night-time routine, I got mad at Toni for something she probably didn't do, grabbed my nook from in front of the TV, went to the bedroom and turned on my DVD player and began to watch my latest HIMYM DVD I received from Netflix. I got comfy in bed as I waited patiently for sleep to overtake my mind and introduce me to non eventful night of slumber.

Instead, I watched episode after episode of what has become my new favorite show. I am currently on the last disk of the 4th season. The last episode of this season is called Taking the Leap. It is centered around a few characters taking some proverbial leaps in their life, Barney - Relationships; Ted - career; Marshall - an actually Leap (lol very funny stuff).

At the end of the episode I was motivated to take a Leap - any leap, I wanted to Jump off my bed, or start a ministry (even though I'm currently in charge of at least 2) I wanted to get up and bake a cake from scratch or start school or find a new job I was motivated! WHICH is probably mostly why I'm even bothering to write a post today (see! it's all about the leap!)

SO as I was debating jumping off my bed into my closet mimicking a 30 year old version of Gabby Douglas I was reminded and sadden by the years I wasted waiting for some sign or some Green light to live my life. I've wasted so much time waiting to go that I forgot to just go. Waiting to live your life is a waste of life, time and energy. We want our kids to have healthy self images, to be kind and caring and happy and fulfilled but we wait to live our lives until they start to lives their own, we wait and sit and take care of so many people and put things not only in front of ourselves but God in order to please others and not God. Listen, God wants us to be fulfilled to be happy, to lean on him to fix all the issues we have and to live burden free. Our chief concern should be focused on the how to Love each other more, and how to make sure the ones who feel unloved know the truth is they really are.

But I digress, my point is, (please excuse the language) I'm bout to live. I'm going to travel, my daughter and I will leave the country, We will taste other food, we will meet other people, we will work not to pay bills but to give to God, and others. We will experience life and find our passions. I will go to school, I will try all the things I think I like untill I find the things I love. I will wake up early (This is going to be the hardest) and spend Time with my Lord, I will commune with him and Pray out loud. I will lose all cool when He blesses me. I will speak up. I will laugh more. I will remove all the things that weigh me down and I will run to the mark and fulfill the destiny I AM purposed for. I am excited and I will no longer have more excuse than progress. Today my friends is the day it will all change, today I will make my leap.

 Now, which way do I leap? Because I honestly have no idea! lol