My birthday passed last week, and with it came some revelations. I’m a real life adult(Yes, seriously), and with age comes wisdom. The biggest part of wisdom is learning to accept certain things about life and yourself. So I have compiled a list of what I have learned to stop fighting and running away from. I hope this list gives you as much as peace as it has given me.
1.Strong Women(and their abusive counterfeits) are drawn to me.
I am a magnet for strong women who like to have their way. This is a part of my life that I’m still coming to grips with because frankly, I’ve never been happy about it. As a kid, I felt sorry for myself when girls were mean to me. As a young adult, I learned to stop tolerating disrespect. Apparently my inclination to stand up for myself causes two responses; attraction and respect from strong women, and a personal affront to the world view of emotional bullies who sometimes even resort to physical abuse to keep a man “in his place”.
Trust me, I prefer the former. Strong-minded people in general are the most reliable, honest people you’ll ever meet and it stands to reason that a strong woman makes a loyal and honest partner. So if a strong woman is a bit argumentative at times, but brings a world of other benefits, such as kindness, passion, and honesty, I’ll work with her. Nobody is perfect, and I’m sure I have flaws that she will have to work with too. That’s how all relationships operate. If you can’t love someone for who she is, you just can’t love, and I realize that now. Strong women, flaws and all, are the main inspiration for the main protagonist of “The Nephilim Chronicles,” Achilla Johnson. Though she is not without vices or mistakes, she generally fights for what’s right and tries her damnedest to protect her family. She, and real-life women like her(albeit less dangerous), are worthy of love and respect.
However, if you’re a toxic emotional bully/abuser, get lost. I don’t have time for you and will do everything in my power to expel you from my life. You have no idea how serious I am about that, but if tested, I have no problem showing you. Be forewarned. I have a law degree and know how to use it. However, your intolerable behavior has at least one redeeming quality. You’ve inspired Ailina Harris, the main antagonist of my novel series. Feel free to read a short story from her point of view. It’s not flattering.
Ailina Harris is many things. Relationship material isn’t one of them.
So there it is. I’ve accepted that I attract women with strong personalities. If that applies to you in the future, I’m learning to love you for who you are. With that said, I’ll still say no to certain things, but I’ll always call you later. I promise.
2. I’m called to write.
I’ll never stop writing. Every day new ideas pop in my head so often that I have to write them down or risk losing some really good material. “Achilla The Strong“ and “Angel of War” aren’t new ideas. They’re the culmination of years of writing short stories and sharing them with my friends before I gathered the courage to display my talent to the world. Now I have a novel series, and when I finish that, I’ll write another. I can’t speak for all writers, but writing doesn’t feel like a choice for me. I must write. I can’t go a day without typing, journaling, researching something to write about later, or editing. I plan to get paid for it, but I have a habit of getting lost in it for free(kind of like right now). The only thought that drives me more than publishing my writing is the fact that my writing improves every day.
“Achilla The Strong” was a good effort, but I noticed some areas of improvement and applied them to “Angel of War.” After releasing “Angel of War,” I will find more ways to improve and release the next novel. It is my goal to write a better novel every single time. Writing is what I live and breathe and I am getting better at sharing my life with you as my readers.
As I grow, so does Achilla Johnson. So far, it’s been an awesome journey.
However, fiction isn’t my only form of writing. I grew up as an avid spoken word poet(Shout out to Poetz Realm in Bridgeport!) learned legal writing well enough to impress seasoned attorneys, and I love writing about sports(see my articles on boxing, MMA, and basketball here and on Elite Daily). I’m a writer through and through. I don’t see it changing, nor do I want it to. I love what I do and love myself to much to give it up.
3. I don’t like all soul food.
I will always and forever hate the smell of chitlins(properly spelled chitterlings, but nobody says that). Sorry, my people. It just smells nasty, and I can’t get near it. I promise to make it up with loads of fried catfish, macaroni and cheese, and sweet potato pie the next time I have dinner with my family. Honest.
4. Family and friends are everything.
Speaking of my family, I will always love my family and friends. They never cease to support me when I’m down, praise me when I’m up, and make me laugh. We enjoy each other, and considering some of the families I’ve seen, that is a blessing that I cherish more than anything. As a kid, I was shielded from a lot of drama, and at one point I resented that. I resented that I grew up not knowing some of the things I know now, but the more I learn, the more I appreciate how much my parents protected me.
My loving, protective family.
I can’t think of a single event in my life that happened when I wasn’t ready to either conquer it or handle its consequences. I would like to take credit for that, but that would be disingenuous. My family filled me with their wisdom and continue to do so. No matter how educated I become, no matter how many degrees I earn, there is nothing I’ve seen in human behavior that they haven’t. As a result of their intentional teaching and unintentional example, I always feel like I have a leg up on the world; even when my situation isn’t the greatest. My family is awesome. Call it bragging because it is, and there is no shame in that.
5. Your dreams are worth fighting for.
You have to be willing to fight for your dream. This blog’s motto, “Rule Your Nation,” is based on the tenacity we should all have to push for the life we want. Everyone has a dream, but not everyone believes in it enough to hold on to it. Instead, we let dream killers take them away, and that is an unfortunate tragedy. I’ve dealt with my fair share of dream killers, and they can be a challenge until you learn how to beat them.
If you don’t hit back, dream killers won’t rest until they beat the confidence and ambition out of you.
A dream killer is anyone who seeks to destroy your aspirations, and he or she will do that for a multitude of reasons. Your dream killer could be a family member who wants you to pursue a career that you hate; so much so that he will cut you off if you make decisions for yourself. Your dream killer could be a fake friend who is jealous of your success and makes it his personal business to knock you down to his level of misery. Your dream killer could be a partner who is more concerned about what you can do for her instead of how you can support each other. Dream killers come in many shapes and sizes, but they all take their job seriously. They will murder your aspirations if they can, along with anyone else’s. Fortunately, I have a solution.
You don’t have to be nice to people who attack you. So why compromise with those who attack your dreams?
Dig in your heels and don’t budge. Pursue your dream no matter what, and if anyone doesn’t respect that, stop giving them a place in your life. You see, dream killers are never comfortable around people who believe in themselves. So they make it a point to kill your confidence and extinguish your goals so they can feel better around you. Make sure you’re more serious about your dream than they are about their comfort level. Let them know that you won’t go down without a fight, and then make sure the fight you bring isn’t worth appeasing their insecurities. After that, watch them scatter. It’s kind of fun proving haters wrong once you get used to it, and at the end of the day your supporters will be there waiting after the battle is over.
Naruto is one of the best characters ever because dream killers couldn’t beat him. So they joined him instead.
6. You are who you are and you might as well love it.
If you couldn’t tell already, I have learned to accept myself for who I am. When I created this blog with the title “No Apologies,” I wanted to inspire people to be cool with themselves. However, I’m not exempt from growth. For example, I grew up hating my body. I got teased a lot for being skinny, and as a sensitive kid, I took it pretty hard. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t put on weight and it was a source of frustration for me. In hindsight, I should have been happy with the fact that I was getting stronger every day, but my young mind couldn’t see that yet.
Now that I’ve learned to come to accept myself for who I am, I love my body enough to treat it well. I eat healthy. I work out four days a week( on two of those days I work out twice), but I don’t do it to get bulky. I work out and eat clean to create the healthiest body that is natural for me. As a result, I’ve gotten pretty muscular without gaining a tremendous amount of mass and I’m getting better every day. I hope my story is an inspiration enough for you to accept who you are. That’s the original purpose and mission of this blog, and I’m sticking to it with no apologies.
My birthday was a blessing this year. I hope it was a blessing for you as well.
Keep learning, my friends.
Disclaimer: I own none of these videos.