To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
I first came across this scripture in 2005 right after my uncle was in a fatal car accident. No one in my family could understand why.
Why was he taken so soon?
He’s a great driver, there’s no way. What was he doing speeding like that?
He was a good guy caught up in the wrong lifestyle, why not give him the chance to change?
The questions went on and on, and this scripture was the closest thing to an answer we could find. For everything there is a season. And similar to many things in life, God had other plans.
Now, I know this doesn’t explain why loved ones die so early or get sick, etc. But it does explain a few other things, and right now I am going through the biggest growing season I’ve ever experienced.
Here’s a brief recap: I lost my best friend and my pup. They’re both gone and out of my life. After 5 years, we don’t communicate at all. Most days, I’m a hot mess. Not because I’m constantly thinking about them, but mostly because I need to figure out what’s next. Also, I need to learn everything about myself and figure out who I want to be and what I want to do. Then there’s the whole bit about recreating myself without him. Oh, and I need to make new friends — which I haven’t always been very good at. For the first time since I was 15 years old, I am completely single.
Of course there are good days and bad days. But here’s what I’ve learned thus far:
1) It’s OK to be sad.
It is necessary to feel absolutely everything in order for you to move on. I was in a pretty dark place for about 3 months and I’m finally starting to climb my way out. At first, I buried myself in work — I was literally working 7 days a week — until I got burnt out, I avoided going home because absolutely everything reminded me of Voldermort (name has been changed), and I cried. A lot. I’m talking before bed, when I woke up, throughout my day, and at the most random times. And then one morning, I woke up and decided to not feel like absolute shit anymore. I slowly started to accept that Voldermort no longer wanted me, so I chose me because God chooses me every day and since then, it’s been a work in progress, little by little.
“You are beautiful because you let yourself feel, and that is a brave thing indeed.”
2) “Oh Honey, he didn’t dump you, he freed you,” said Kalei, also known as my awesome eyebrow lady (no really, if you want her contact info, let me know).
Of course I miss him. I had our whole lives planned out and at one point wanted nothing but him. But now, I have this clean slate and can do whatever I want with it. When a girlfriend calls me and invites me to do something at the last minute, there is no one I need to check in with, no one’s feelings I need to put first. The hardest part is that at the end of the day, I still want to tell him everything, but that comes with losing a best friend, I guess. Being “free” is definitely taking time to get used to, like I still feel guilty when a cute guy hits on me at a bar, and I still wonder what would Voldermort think about this? But as cliche as the word time is, my freedom is here and it’s fresh and I am trying to take advantage of it.
3) Try new things. When I feel like planning a trip overseas, I plan it, and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing — Saying yes to absolutely everything. It’s pretty ironic because everything that I have been trying, Voldermort never wanted to do with me — Antigravity yoga, going to every concert imaginable, different types of workouts, staying out late, hiking every week, etc.
4) Jesus. I’ve always considered myself Christian but since Voldermort’s been gone, Jesus has literally forced his way into my life, and I love it. Throughout the first month, I would constantly text my closest girlfriends and cry to them and ask them for advice on how to make Voldermort want me again (shoutout to all the homies who put up with my incessant whining), when the truth is, Jesus is who I should have been going to. Before I started this newfound relationship with him, I didn’t really know how to pray or what to say, so I started with this simple prayer: Lord, please bring me peace and wrap your arms around me to give me strength in order to get through today. And it worked, everyday, until I could say more than that, and now I feel his presence and feel him working within me and I can’t wait to continue this journey.
5) Headstands. Spend a little time everyday with Jesus and practicing headstands, and all will be good. Every night before bed, I practice headstands — mostly because I am obsessed with accomplishing yoga poses. But it’s not just about being able to do it, it’s also about being present and putting all of your focus and energy into one thing and actually being able to forget everything else around you. And now look at me, being able to stand on my head and shit.
6) Hiking is actually really good for your soul. One of my goals for the year was to go on one hike every week. I’m doing pretty well so far and even found an adventure buddy. Her name is Anne and with our healing hearts, we trek through Oahu’s wilderness, talk, dream, do yoga and take pictures. All is well when you’re on top of a mountain overlooking the Pacific.
7) Surround yourself with people who inspire you. Life has a funny way of putting the people you need into your life at the right time. I’ve recently had the pleasure of getting to know a few young women who are going through similar struggles and their strength gives me strength and their drive inspires me. And then there are the friends who have been there with me since day one who continuously show me love and check in on me even if some of them are thousands of miles away. And last (and least) there are the friends who are no longer friends, not because of a huge fight or anything but simply because their negative energy and constant bad mouthing is no longer needed nor wanted.
8) Write. I know that there is a chance Voldermort might read this (shoutout to him because he used to always edit my posts for me), so this bit is for you. For the first two months after you left, I wrote to you. I wrote you a letter, sometimes more than one, every day. Whenever I missed you, wanted you, got pissed at you, or broke down, I took out my composition book and I wrote to you everything that I was feeling. I know you will probably never read any of it, but in a way you helped me to heal. The hardest part about all of this was losing you as a friend. What I miss the most is talking to you and laughing with you, so essentially, writing to you was my last hurrah. When I got to the last page of that composition book, I gave myself closure and said goodbye. And although I am not healed, I am growing.
9) Read. Sometimes I feel like an old lady because I’ll admit, I read self-help books. I read books about Jesus and what he did for us and continuously does for us and I am slowly learning how to love and how to be loved, how to accept and most importantly, how to forgive. I’ve also been reading a lot of books by people who inspire me, and books about getting through this God-awful yet amazing decade of my life. I am always reading and writing and I am grateful to have the time to do so.
10) Control only what you can control. Gone are the days where I would plan every second of every minute. Although I am still very organized, I stopped obsessing over what other people do and how it affects me and started focusing on what I do and how it helps me. Stop dwelling on what you thought should have happened and start living with what is happening.
11) Love. I joke around a lot about being forever single and having a cold heart. But one of my greatest characteristics and sometimes biggest flaw is loving too hard. I am no where near ready to date but I find myself falling more and more in love with the universe. I’m blessed to watch the sunrise every single morning and to live in such a beautiful place. I meet people and want to get to know their souls, I want to learn about their passions and every conversation that I have, I want to be full of meaning.
12) Don’t be bitter, (even when seeing photos of your ex and his new girl makes you want to throw up every time). Sometimes I catch myself getting really mad. But then I realize that the only person I’m hurting is myself. I’m learning that letting go is a tough thing to do, but it’s necessary to move on to what’s next for me. What’s meant for you, will not pass you.
13) Create a morning routine, and stick to it. Every morning, I workout at 6 a.m. If you came up to me a year ago and told me that I would be working out at 6 a.m., I would have laughed and ordered a pizza. But really, this has been so good for me and I am excited to be progressing and getting so much stronger (still don’t have abs though *cries*). My morning routine consists of working out, cooking myself breakfast and packing my lunch while rapping to G-Eazy, showering, taking a little too long to get ready, and then heading to work. I have been doing this for about two months now so I’d say that’s pretty consistent.
14) Stay hungry. This transition has definitely forced me out of my comfort zone and I’m ready to take on the world and follow my dreams. There is not a minute that passes by where my goals are not on my mind. Going through this huge loss has also given me the green light to chase my dreams and accomplish what I set out to do. So, let’s go.
There is a season for everything, and this is my season for growth and finding myself. Every day I have to make a conscious effort to be OK, to choose happiness, to choose progress. I have my goals. I have my dreams. I have my family and I have my friends.
And for that I am grateful.