27: The Year of Enlightenment 

27 is a number, specifically an age, that has always scared me for some odd reason. It could be the series of unlucky events tied to the number – such as all the celebrities who die questionably at that age – but so far it has been one heck of a ride for me; and I’m only five months in. I saw this quote on Facebook yesterday and felt an immediate sense of relief wash over me. Apparently I am not the only woman who feels like everything is simultaneously falling apart and coming together at this current point in my life. My tolerance for people is at an all time low, but at the same time things that used to bother me don’t affect me as much anymore. Once you recognize which friends are really beneficial to your life and you to theirs, you begin to focus on building those relationships more efficiently instead of wasting time trying to make certain people the way you wish they could or have potential to be. If I haven’t learned anything else, I’m beyond hip to the understanding that you can’t change people. Recently I’ve found myself praying for others more than anything.

I used to randomly shoot texts to people I considered associates just to let them know I was thinking of them, but I’ve since replaced that with daily prayers. There’s that quote that flies around so often saying “people will forget what you did for them but they will never forget how you made them feel”. I don’t even believe in that anymore because as soon as you make someone feel some type of way, they replace all the good ways you made them feel with that one memory. I’m not sure what it is about human nature that makes us desire for our pain to resonate in others, but if they feel it then they want you to feel it too. I used to do a lot of justifying and explaining myself. So often I have good intentions that are misinterpreted and later used against me as a reminder of how I made someone feel when the entire time I was coming from a good place. It’s been within this year I stopped trying to help others personally and instead began to pray for them. There’s nothing that knocks the wind out of you more than doing all you can for someone just to be told it wasn’t enough or they didn’t receive the gesture in the way you intended. It takes so much energy trying to make other people happy that you forget about your own; trust and believe the people meant to be in your world can see past your flaws and appreciate you for who you are.

This year is bringing on new revelations in my love life too. People change over time and I’m nowhere near the woman I was in my early 20’s. There are certain things I used to let slide, but if you tried it today I’d be gone in a heartbeat. On the flip side, being in a relationship had made me realize more about myself than anything. I’ve never been an affectionate person; sometimes it’s even hard for me to be affectionate to Trey who shows his love in a touchy, feely way that I can’t relate to but had to learn to adapt. It’s the same in relationships. There are some things you know you’re not willing to deal with and some things that drive you insane but you deal with out of respect and love. I’m still in the process of learning if I don’t want someone to change me, I shouldn’t try to change them. At this point you know what you’re willing to deal with and what you want to avoid. You also know the flaws you have within yourself. I’m STILL learning that I can’t come at my partner nagging him about everything he does or doesn’t do, then try to run for the hills when he does the same to me. So yeah I’m just now learning to maintain that monogamous relationship as stated in the quote above… hey I’m human too!

Although I grew up in the church and was forced to go faithfully two or three times a week, have said my (quite redundant) prayers regularly as an adult, and attended church (quite irregularly) on my own, it was not until 27 I actively sought God everyday. The journey has been both exhilarating and full of self doubt. Sometimes I find myself leaving things for God to handle, but often I still find myself responding negatively to situations on my own and immediately regretting not resting in God’s promise to handle it for me. In my strive to be a better woman, people are dropping out of my life like flies. For every step forward, there’s always going to be someone, whether intentionally or unintentionally, reminding me of old habits I’m trying to shed. Once you get to a certain point in life, you realize that you can’t hold on to people or things that prevent your spiritual growth. I’m a very emotional person and I take everything to the heart; so when someone cuts me off and I feel like I’ve been a good person to them, it used to really affect my spirit. Finally at 27 I’m learning to be ok with myself and for ME , well let’s just say it’s probably the most difficult journey yet.

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