We’re Not Always Going to Like What We See, But We Still Need to See It

Before this year even started it was dubbed the year of perfect vision. It was supposed to be the year of clarity and clarification and of people leveling up in their lives. Then the world came crashing to a halt and between the Corona Virus that hit us like a tanker truck and the police brutality that has had a shiny spotlight placed on it which has led to social unrest that we haven’t seen the likes of possibly since the civil rights movement, people are just exhausted: mentally, physically, and emotionally.

We’ve essentially been on lockdown for the better part of this year and have had protests and marches to try to combat racial injustices across the country simultaneously. On top of that we’ve lost so many people as well as influential celebrities this year, some to COVID-19 and some to other illnesses like the most recent loss of Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther) which hit really hard for the black community and especially our younger black children who finally got to see a superhero on the big screen that looked like them.

Even with all of that I am still willing myself to see the positive somehow because it doesn’t do any good to dwell and sit in the negative. 2020 may have not been the clarity and clarification that everyone thought we were going to get this year but I implore you to see just how this has actually lived up to the year that people thought it would, it just didn’t look the way that people thought it was going to. I think that if people truly think about what they gained from this year instead of solely focusing on what they might have missed out on or lost then you may be able to see it the way I see it.

Obviously I’m not saying that we should have had the record number of deaths that we have had since COVID-19 hit us because in my mind nobody’s life is ever expendable. However, the lockdown that has transpired in light of COVID-19 has not only slowed some people down who might have needed to slow down a bit, but it also gave something to all of those people who I hear say they would spend more time with their family if only they had the time.

Well during the lockdown, unless you were a frontline worker, you had nothing but time to spend with your children and your loved ones and to focus on so many things that you would have ordinarily taken for granted. For writers with full time jobs who were sidelined due to the lockdown, you then had plenty of time to actually sit down and write the book that you always claimed you never had time for.

Also, during the lockdown, I’m not sure if you all are aware of this, but the hole that was growing in the ozone layer actually had a chance to shrink because everyone was at home and the earth could finally breathe. I read reports from people who lived in places where the air was normally foggy say that the air was actually clear for a change. For the first time in years Spring actually felt like Spring and not just an early Summer.    

In terms of the social unrest, I think that 2020 has highlighted a racial problem this country has that people had either started to believe had gotten better, or their eyes were just closed to the reality of the fact that there is a different American experience for a different set of people in this country. It’s not a reality that is new (especially if you are black in America), it is just a reality that people are actually paying more attention to now. 2020 didn’t bring about these realities, they did however, make people more aware of them.

This year may not be everything that you planned for it to be but that doesn’t mean that it didn’t make some things clearer for a vast majority of people. Hopefully it made it clearer to people what is more important. That there are things that we take for granted and that we have a chance to turn around so that we can refocus on what matters. I hope it made it clear how much damage we have done to this earth, that staying home and essentially not being outside in the world starts to actually heal some of the climate issues that we have been having for a while now. I hope that it peeled back the curtain on the fact that there are two American experiences happening here when there should only be one and maybe people can finally do something about the problem that they were closing their eyes to before.

It’s true, 2020 has been a hell of a year, one like no other, and it’s been hard. Everything that is hard and rough is essentially going to teach us something. The question is are you going to only focus on all that went wrong with this year of perfect vision or are we going to truly see the things that we had already been taking for granted for far longer than we should have been. Our vision was made clear this year, it just wasn’t what we had wanted to see. God always opens our eyes and gives us the ability to see what we need to, but he never said that what we would see would always be pretty. Until next time… #BeFocused #BeMotivated #BeGrateful

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

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Your Vision Is Not for Everybody to Understand

Not everyone sees your vision

I once was one of those people who got so excited about their dreams and their vision that I would tell any and everyone who would listen. I thought that if I was excited then surely the people that I hold near and dear to my heart would love to hear what goes on in my cluttered mind of ideas. Now I’m not saying that I didn’t have supportive friends who understood that I had a vision and I’m not even saying that they wished me any type of failure or anything but as I’ve gotten older I slowly (and I mean really slowly) have realized that everyone cannot see what it is that you see.

They’re not going to express the same level of excitement, or have the same ambitious drive to stand by you while you struggle to achieve that dream. However, I do think that there should be a certain level of support that is there whether they understand or not and that the people around you shouldn’t constantly try their hand at talking you out of your dream or worse, trying to shape your dream for you into something that they can accept. I don’t really reach out to people like I used to anymore. I have some select people in my life who I hold very dear to me but still, even to these very important people I will not ever go into detail about my dreams or my vision because I’ve grown tired of people giving me the what if’s and trying to either talk me down from my dreams or shape my dreams for their own comfort.

I read a quote once that said to stop letting people who weren’t given your dream and your vision talk you out of yours because they were never meant to see what you see. God gave the vision and purpose that you have for your life to you, not them and sometimes you have to protect that vision. Granted I didn’t adhere to that quote when I first read it, I certainly do now. It can be a little lonely at times, keeping all of these visions for my future to myself and I did have a friend I was very close to who I was able to share those things with because she got it, she really understood, but life happened and she got married and her journey began to really propel forward while mine stayed stagnant and we drifted apart, but I wish her well and I am still cheering her on from the sidelines.

All of this was to say that if you are feeling down because you feel like no one understands you or your goals, don’t let it get you down, let it make you work harder. Your goals and your dreams aren’t meant for others to understand because they’re not for them, they are for you. Sometimes you have to go after your dreams quietly so you don’t lose the focus and the drive that you need to make things happen the way you want, or rather, the way that God intended for things to unfold for you because truly, God’s plans for you will always be bigger than yours are. Don’t feed into what others think you can’t do, or how people may think your dreams are too big to be possible. Be quiet about your moves and let your results speak volumes!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

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Still Standing

We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot.
— Eleanor Roosevelt

When I started writing this blog post the other day I was questioning everything from whether I am really as good of a writer as I think I am, to if I really had enough strength in me to do what I believe I am destined to do.  I was beginning to feel as if the tunnel that I am in is getting longer and darker with no light at the end.  It felt like all of the walls were closing in on me and that I was going to be suffocated underneath the rumble.  I was completely defeated, feeling all out of my share of miracles and the devil had a tight grip on me.  I had almost surrendered.  Almost.

And then I had a conversation with my best friend in which she said something that reminded me that I already knew all of the answers to the questions that I had and that the one thing that I am not is a quitter.  As I was talking to her I got a link in my e-mail to her latest blog post, The Vision Cannot Wait, which was just the icing on the cake of what I needed.  It reminded me that what I believe I am destined to do is a part of a vision that I have had for myself since I was six years old.  In twenty four years I had never let go of that vision and I was not going to let the devil take my vision away now.

The devil is always busy but it seems like he’s been really working on me a lot lately.  He has been throwing every obstacle at me that he knew would stop me dead in my tracks.  Picking away at any part of me he knows to be vulnerable.  Plucking away all of the petals of a purposeful flower, holding it back from its full bloom.  I have been up against so many walls lately, hell it seems like my whole life has been an obstacle course.  But lucky for me, the devil is no match for God.     

God has his way of stepping right in when you feel yourself sinking under.  Just as you throw your hands up to tell him that you can’t take any more, he is already there relieving you of your load.  He may not come to rescue you before the storm passes, but he will never let you drown.  While I know that I shouldn’t, there are times when I forget that.  There are times that I forget the strength that God instilled me with.  I just have to keep reminding myself that those walls that are blocking my view of that light at the end of this tunnel won’t always be there. 

I have faith that if I just keep putting in the work and jumping over all of the hurdles that come along that my vision will become a reality.  There is a reason why I am still standing, still surviving, still dreaming, and still pushing and its called purpose.  That phone call from my best friend reminded me of the strength that I sometimes forget that I have inside.  My determination to see my vision become a reality is stronger than any attempts the devil makes to take it way.  If nothing else I am a survivor and this storm too shall pass and I will still be standing when it does.

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

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