I haven’t said much of anything lately. There is no denying it; but, I have been quite intentional about being button lipped as of late. It’s the word of the year, for me. I’m finding more ways to house my actions; my thoughts and behaviors, with intent.
In hindsight, I have actually took the past few weeks to notice that in many ways I haven’t aligned myself with all that I’ve purported myself to be, as a brand, and for that I’m remiss, because it does good for none. My purpose is the oneness of the human experience, the gift we have to share in the fact that we are so much more alike than different and The Sunday Afternoon is a way to take note of that. Well, so much of that realization, of coming to terms with the fact that we are all the same, is in being transparent. Honest.
My friends and I have been talking about it so much. The fact of the matter is that it is way more easy to be faux transparent. You know, where you talk about how you’re completely unlike so many other people on social media because you’re transparent? You’re still an artist but what makes you different is the fact that you’re not “faking” it, that you are open and honest about your “real” life and you are showcasing it for all the world to see in hopes of encouraging people. Well, as cute as all of that is, you’re not. Let me speak for myself, I’m not. I thought I was, for the longest, but the more I think about it the more I can see how easily I sweep around the rug with a pile of dirt underneath. Now, don’t get me wrong, its apparent that I’m a pretty open person, I just don’t want to ever be in a space where I find myself augmenting segments of my life for fear of shame, judgement, etc.
I 100% believe in the power of my testimony. We all have to come into that realization, all on our own and as soon as we find ourselves ready to be honest we’ll communicate our truth without having to thinking about it, thats transparency!
As follows is an excerpt of mine:
I find that as much as I have learned to enjoy being alone, as far as I have come to learning to be alone without the sting of loneliness, I spend at least 80% of my time alone, and I don’t like it. I’m in an environment where I can’t find the ability to make friendship or acquaintances that are stretching me and I don’t even know if my growth is being stunted. At 28 years old I am a gay Black man with
zero prospects. However, I thank God for Jesus because I know my worth and I own my sexuality. Knowing the two keeps me from dating sites and prizing the possession of my sex. (it aint for everybody.)
Most people have no clue what it means to support someone else until they need it, and that bothers me.
I started a new job in July of 2015. My car insurance cancelled that same month. My license was suspended shortly after, or before, which kept me from reinstating said insurance, I had got a ticket in December of 2014 in North Carolina, headed to my baby sisters graduation from East Carolina University. I never stopped driving, illegally. (riding dirty) I felt like I didn’t have a choice. I had to get to work and for me that meant being especially careful on my approximate 2 hour travel time, to and from work. The expenses of adulthood are ceaseless and while I was making ends meet, I could not find an opportunity to resolve my situation. Particularly because that ticket from NC required that I come to the state and see the District Attorney for it to be paid, thats a chance I was not willing to take and while I knew I needed to find time to make a way, I was more concerned with being present at work, being seen as prestigious and meeting expectations. There was not one time when I doubted that God would make a way. I can remember the prayers I would say everyday before leaving, just praying that I would get the day done, make it to and from work wrapped and cloaked in the will of God, surrounded in favor. And, each day I rejoiced in its completion, its hard to believe this went on for months. In October of 2015 I got notice from the VA DMV that they knew I had been riding dirty, had no insurance, and therefore would be fined the $500 uninsured motorist fee. In November my tags expired and I became increasingly anxious about my situation, still I could not find fit a solution. By this time I’m crunching numbers, and somethings just aint adding up, I could not afford to get my license because I could not afford the risk to go to NC, the ticket there, or the fee and fines to comply with Virginia. Well, I kept driving, I kept excelling at work, and I kept praying.
December 2015 I’m heading to work, trying to get through the HRBT and the day I had been dreading, yet preparing myself for, all the while, met my chest with angst. I saw those pretty blue lights behind me and I pulled over to the right shoulder. I exhaled, and I prayed.
Lord whatever this is, whatever happens I accept what you allow. I know that this is in the will you have for my life and I continually surrender myself to you. If it means going to jail, I’ll go, whatever it means lord I thank you for your grace and your mercy, Amen.
Then I text my mother and I told her my whereabouts, just in case. The officer, a black man greeted me at the passenger door of my car and asked for license and registration. I was honest, I was completely transparent in saying that I had none, that I knew the risks but I had to get to work and I understand that he would have to do whatever he would. He left and came back shortly later. He told me that since I was honest with him, that was the only reason, he would let me go. That he didn’t condone my driving without a license, that it was illegal, how I could face jail time, and that he needed to be quite clear in stating that he was not telling me to drive without a license. But, “it doesn’t cost anything to be kind, be safe, get to work, and get your shit back.”
Listen. I was flabbergasted. All I could do was thank God, won’t he will? I couldn’t and I cannot wrap my mind around the amount of grace and favor that continually surrounds me. Undeservingly so, but I digress. I said all that to say that through it all my faith didn’t waiver, I did not question God or even my bad decision making. I consistently give praise and I continually press towards living in greatness even knowing that I don’t have it all together. I’m a lazy christian a lot of the time. I still haven’t found a church home. I don’t remember the last time I sat in a church or watched online for that matter. Yet, all things work together for the good of them who believe.
It’s February 29, 2016. I got insurance on my car last week. I went to North Carolina and paid way more than I expected in tickets. I am finally in a position to pay to get my license and registration. Oh, and I got a promotion at work. Aint God good? I’d tell you how good he was if I thought I could, but I can’t.
Life has been no crystal stair for any of us, but I am still here and its by the grace of God.
Don’t ever forget it and remember that you have the ability to completely change your life by changing your thoughts, in an instant.