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This is 40

Can y’all believe it? Ya girl is 40! Wow! 40…. Like 4 whole decades. January 15 has come and gone 40 times since I’ve been alive. This is crazy! When I was younger, playing Barbie with my cousins, we used to talk about what life would be like when we got older. The things we would do, the places we would go, the jobs we would have, and so on. Well, needless to say, that ain’t how my life happened lol.

There were a lot of things that transpired which I could not control. I had to endure A LOT. Often feeling like problems were my fault and I was the cause of pain made me want to prove who I was. I wanted to change the way people saw me in my eyes. I think that was a hard lesson for me to learn in my younger years....everything is not my job to change or fix. Over the years I have lost a great deal of people, love, support, hair, lol and some mo shit. Nevertheless, I'm grateful I'm here....

How did I get here?

Let's take a look back at the first 4 decades of my life!

So the first ten years are a blur honestly. There was a lot of trauma there so I’m pretty sure my mind started to block stuff out early as a defense mechanism. I was born January 15, 1982 to Marlene and Robert Tyus. Although they both had children prior to marriage, I am their ONLY child together. (That was a weird dynamic when I was old enough to understand it.) My first traumatic experience was at age 5 so most of my life from that point comes and goes from my memories. I can recall a lot disappointment and sadness but not as many happy times. I remember traveling with my dad a lot. He would drive us to his hometown of Brownsville, TN every summer. That was a highlight of my childhood. Those trips meant a lot to me. My dad wasn't much of a small talk kinda guy so when he said something, he meant it and he was straightforward. My mom was busy working a lot from what I remember. One thing she made sure of was that our needs were met at all times! We didn't really have a relationship at this time but I was constantly trying to be under my momma.

The next ten years are at little clearer. Still full of trauma lmao but I was learning about how to express myself and release what I felt. My nieces were like my babies until they started school. I was responsible for them from the time I was 9 till about 13. I had to grow up really quickly. I had to be responsible and take care of myself a lot since my siblings were 6, 10, and 15 years older than me. My mom was still working a lot and I spent time with my dad whenever he wanted to pick me up. I taught myself how to cook and how to cope. This is also the time of my life where I started writing. My mom was not prepared to have a child that reminded her so much of herself. I didn't know it at the same but I was her all over again. She struggled communicating with me. I was always straight forward even as a child and my mom shut down on me as a result. When she started writing notes to me, we started to work towards improving our relationship and communication skills. Family life was crazy during these years. I hated being home and always tried to be with my cousins who were more like my younger sisters every chance I got. My mom's family was still really close and we still had family dinners, holiday plays, and family outings. I love that! In those moments I didn't feel alone. I had a blast in high school running track, cross country, and dancing on the pom pon team. I loved going to school because it was like an escape. After high school I was headed to Cal State - Sacramento until my dad vetoed that move. I ended up going to Oakland University instead.

The next ten years were wild! Smh. During these years shit got REAL! I reached my third year in school with good grades and some really cool friendships. I also met this dude who I thought I could show what real love meant. Within a few months of us getting together, I had to leave school due to funding so I moved close to campus into my cousin's house. I got a job at the local Burger King and I was working on saving money to pay my balance at school so I could return. My plans changed when I found out I was pregnant. I had to leave my cousin's house and move back in with my mom. Although that was the last place I wanted to be, I was grateful to be there. The guy I met and I decided we needed to do something to prepare for the baby so he joined the military as a last resort. When I was nearly 9 months pregnant, we got married. I moved to Georgia two weeks after the baby was born and started our new life as a military family. We had two more children fairly close to the first one. When the youngest child was 3 the marriage was ending. The hardest part of these years was the marriage and it’s demise. I never saw myself in those shoes, walking those miles, or carrying those bags. Looking back always provides insight…. So I’ll take pride in saying I’m grateful I’m able to look back. By the end of it I was focused on making a better life for me and my children.

The most recent ten years have been a journey.

I fought hard while living in Decatur, GA to thrive. That was really hard. I moved up there when I was selling cars and that didn't work out. I went to a few other dealerships but there just didn't seem to be a good fit for me in the car business. I stayed out of work for a little while then I found a temp agency that helps you get permanent jobs with state agencies. When I worked for the state, I was salaried but I was still earning below poverty level. I petitioned for a raise but I was told I would have to take an increase in work BEFORE they would CONSIDER a raise.That is where they had me fucked up.

I was floored by what I was experiencing at that job. I called my former job in Warner Robins and checked if they had openings. They did and I put in my two weeks. Prior to all that happening, I released my first book. I was really proud of that. So I moved back to Warner Robins and started over. It was an interesting set of events that transpired but after a few years there I moved us to McDonough. We were there nearly a year before I couldn't take it anymore. The struggle was the realest it had ever been and I couldn't do it alone anymore. I called my siblings on my dad's side and let them know what was going on. One of my brother's offered to let us live with him so we decided to move to Nashville.

These were also the years when my parents transitioned. My dad was first and my mom followed 7 years later within a week of my dad’s anniversary. That was rough. It was so bittersweet to purchase my home at 39 and not have my parents here with me to share the moment. Especially when I closed 7 days before my mom’s 1 year anniversary.

That move with my brother was the catalyst for a lot of changes in our lives. I was able to live for free and get back on my feet. I was able to take my time and get things in order so that when I stepped back out I would be set up to only step forward from that moment. I’ve learned so much about myself and life in general. I’ve learned how important my peace and my presence are and I protect them more. I’ve gotten through the rough parts of child rearing alone and all of my children are in high school. I’ve published several books and started a few businesses. I've traveled out of the country and seen things I've only dreamed of. I have performed on stages that most could not imagine. My children have been able to travel and experience the wonders of the world. For all these things and more I am abundantly grateful. When I turned 39, my theme for the year was Peaceful Expansion and I believe I accomplished that.

Now I’m here. Present and focused. I’m proud of myself and the growth I’ve made. I’m grateful that I’m thriving despite what was sent to destroy me. I’m honored to be a vessel of light, love, and peace to others. This year my theme is Intentional Elevation cause it’s time to glow up! Glow up in every aspect of my life. I’m looking forward to what Yahweh has in store for me and my circle. I’ve been waiting for this shift and it's here. So with that I say…..


The celebration of life never ends! #liveintruth


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