Know Who You Are

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The well known phrase “If I knew then, what I know now” is one of the truest sayings I’ve heard in my life. I often look back at my past and I can’t help but shake my head. I know I’m not the only one but it still amazes me all I went through. Although it helped mold me into the woman I am today, so much of it could have been avoided or handled differently. Yet how could it when I didn’t know who I was? I entered college as a teenager and matriculated as a young woman and mom torn, still struggling to find her true identity, and a lot of it had to do with insecurity.

Like a lot of people, I grew up in the church, encouraged to live a christian lifestyle. Attending my small HBCU, Huston-Tillotson University, I was able to surround myself with other young women seeking to find themselves. I would attend the women’s bible study, learning and leaning on those around me going through or having been through similar situations, only to allow myself to get off track when I was in a relationship. I never stopped praying and talking to God but I would never remain consistent. Most importantly, I would never do more than the occasional, quick prayer of thanksgiving or praying majority for my wants. It took some time but I realized that I was searching for love, instead of focusing on knowing and loving myself.
 
 
In the summer of 2015 I attended a Women’s empowerment conference that changed my life. 4 years and a nasty break-up later, I knew I needed to focus on my spiritual walk instead of trying to live as a perfect Christian, the thing that stops a lot of women from reaching their full potential and purpose. I began writing my thoughts out on paper, reading devotionals, and focusing my energy on quotes and things that brought me encouragement. I realized that I didn’t just want to be a Christian, someone that focuses so much on doing right that they look down on others, but I wanted to strengthen my walk spiritually so that I could understand myself, my past, and my purpose in life. 
 
The moment I decided to do what made me happy was the most terrifying and freeing experience at the same time. I struggled for a while on my decision because I was a mother to a 2 year old so it wasn’t just me I had to think about or make a decision for. I was so caught up in what I didn’t have growing up, and what I thought I should do, that I was willing to risk what I knew deep down was best for us all. It was tough; I cried a lot, went back and forth on if I was truly making the right decision, and wanting to just give in to the easier option, but I couldn’t. I stuck with my decision, and although it hasn’t been easy, it’s been the best decision I could make it, especially because I know I’m following the plan and purpose for my life. For the longest I battled with who I thought I was and made decisions with good intentions but led by the wrong focus and source. Once I let go of what I thought I needed and was right, that was the moment I began to realize who I was. I found me.  

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Courtney Pool

    *sigh* I love this. Especially because I am going through something that I feel is so similar to this post. This is confirmation and reassurance that I am moving in the right direction. It’s difficult right now, but seeing this gives me some hope and relief. Love You!

  2. Jecil

    “The moment I decided to do what made me happy was the most terrifying and freeing experience at the same time.” That spoke to me on another level. I am currently in the stage of life where I am doing what makes me happy and like you said it’s so scary. I was scared because I was use to doing whatever made others happy. What were they gonna think when I start saying no? After, I got over that then came freedom. I am no longer bound by other people and don’t only what pleases God and then myself. This was so goooooood!

  3. Joy

    Wonderful post! Yes when we finally come to a place of surrender – everything falls into place and life becomes a wonderful journey…

  4. Cinneah

    I am so appreciative of this post! I wish I’d known about my own power earlier in life. Everything you’re saying here is spot on!

  5. Alana Browne

    I think a lot of us struggle with the same thing as you! You are not alone. Black women especially have to deal with other things other’s don’t. I can totally relate to growing up in church and knowing of God but not totally committing to getting to know him. It took some time and I do now and it is the bet thing ever. He is always there. I am happy that you got to experience him like that.

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