I’m not really one who’s into broadcasting to the masses about misfortunes that occur in my life, but at the same time, I’m a human being and I’m not without my downfalls. I worked a job for 1 year, 11 months and 11 days before I was let go. This was not a decision based on how I performed in my position, but one that involved other factors beyond my control. It sucks, it hurts, and I thought I was able to mentally move on, but when you’ve been conditioned into a routine for damn near 2 years, it’s hard to break from (vacations not included). I won’t state the employer, since they don’t really need the airtime, but you can read this link and find out. This job was the first time since 2013 that I worked with people who looked like me and the majority of my coworkers were in and around my age. I was able to feel included in a workspace where traditionally, and historically on my own accord, I’d felt like an outsider. Now, those moments did happen, but I was able to healthily vent instead of suppressing the feelings while absorbing micro-aggressions and backhanded compliments.
Living in the now has been a theme that has been relevant in my life since the beginning of 2017. That started when I witnessed my mom in the hospital, and when I thought that was the catalyst for a challenging year, it gradually got better and ended up being the best in my life to date. I won’t get into a lot of details, since I don’t exactly like to focus on my accomplishments on a grand scale, but they were solid wins for me, and I was happy. That’s why the devastating blow to my life’s progression that occurred on January 25th, 2018 (11:34 AM to be exact) was out of nowhere and has me in a current state of a funk, because I thought that my life was going well and that I had more things to accomplish at my place of employment – other plans were made. I know that life isn’t a straight line. It’s jagged. It goes up and down, but the most important direction it moves, is forward. That’s how I have to look at it, and it’s also important to be appreciative of the ‘now,’ and not to get too hung up on ‘what was’ or ‘what will be,’ but focus on ‘what is.’
My fiancée, Sydney, is a great person to be inspired by, because of the life experiences in which she’s had to battle her entire life. She’s a big reader, and recommended a couple of books for me to read, both written by Eckhart Tolle – The Power of Now and A New Earth. She read the latter first, and told me to read it after I finished reading How? By Daniel M. Lewis, which also had a theme of living in the now because of his life experiences and how they molded him to the person he is now (it’s a good read). A New Earth speaks about acknowledging the Ego and how we, as humans, can break it down to maintain a way of living that is beneficial for all of us. It goes into detail how most of the world’s misfortunes are a result of egos clashing with one another going back centuries, using examples of wars (and the various travesties that play a part in them) to help navigate that example where power struggles are primarily based on Ego. It’s a good read thus far, and there have been a lot of things to learn throughout. The Power of Now is a book I’m definitely looking forward to reading when that time comes, because of its primary message. An episode that I edited for Funny How? talked about this theme and it’s funny how (haha) it’s always travelled with me. Can’t ignore the signs forever, and I certainly understand why.
It’s certainly difficult to not look forward to what’s ahead when you’re living in the present, and this incident that shook up the ground beneath my feet reminded me that anything can change in an instant, although I had the gut feeling of being removed from the situation a few days before it happened. The weirdest part of it all was that I was gravitating towards Big Sean’s I Decided album before I even knew that it would serve as a coping mechanism for me.
Halfway off the Balcony was stuck in my head for some odd reason and I hadn’t listened through the album since the first couple of times when it initially dropped. It was like that faint piece of music in Inception that was cued up before the dream was about to end. Maybe that was my wake up song for what was a dream-like situation for damn near 2 years, and what an eventful 2 years it was indeed.
“I’m hangin’ halfway off the balcony
Overthinkin’ ’cause my job is way more than a salary
Everything around me gold like I just practiced alchemy”
After I was let go, and was effectively stewing in my own emotional distress, I was washing the dishes and I threw up I Decided on Spotify. You know when you first listen to an album and don’t really live with it, then you come back to it and you’re greeted with a pleasant surprise? That happened. Depending on what your belief system is, the path in your life is formed through the decisions you make in life, which is why it’s important to live in the present tense and not take any opportune moment for granted. From start to finish, Big Sean takes the listener through his journey as he experiences life in one direction through a decision not to answer his phone, and bury himself in work, and thus certain things happen to him. When he decides to commit to himself and make a decision to answer it, he feels as though he gets a second chance at life. What are the odds that exactly on the anniversary of its release, I’m here giving it a review of sorts? It’s hilarious how the universe works, but everything’s for a reason, which brings me back to my current life situation where I’m looking ahead to what’s next. It’s great to have options, but everything in life comes down to decisions to be made. Some are harder than others, but I feel like in 2017 and prior to, I made some good ones to put myself in this current position where it’s less difficult for me to make a choice in terms of what to do next.
Don’t let these niggas see your emotions
Stick to the notion, stay in motion
Remember soon as you stand still
So will everything else you notice” – Voices in my Head/Stick to the Plan
Sticking to the plan (as Sean says) is the main thing to always remember, and I had to remind myself (and the advice of a supportive partner as well) that although this is the end of something really good (the best I’ve had at this point), it’s the beginning of something new, vibrant, and exciting. I’ve understood that I’m not meant to stay stagnant in one location for an extended period, because of the things that I want for myself long term. It may feel disappointing at first, but after the dust settles and reality comes back in the clear, it’s another opportunity to grow. That’s the most important thing.
“Thank you God for all my set backs
‘Cause he the reason I’m able to get back
This feels like my Sunday morning jetpack
Feel like I sent the prayers up and got blessed back” – Sunday Morning Jetpack
It’s hilarious to me that of all artists, I didn’t expect it to be Big Sean to be the one who would be helping me get through this. Well, one of the artists. Kendrick is obviously a staple in my everyday listening and serves as my therapeutic escape when I feel a bit down and out (FEEL is a go to favourite lately), but in this instance where the theme of being in the now was the most evident, I’m glad that ‘I decided’ to revisit this album because of a lingering song that grew in the back of my mind and travelled forward to help me transition to what new challenges await for me. Sean Don for real. Blessings on blessings indeed. But for now,
That’s My Word & It STiXX