I can hardly believe today is my 30th birthday. It seems like just yesterday I was graduating from college. Time has gone by so quickly, but as I have been thinking back over my life these past few weeks, I realize that I've grown so much throughout the years. A lot of growth and maturity has taken place during my 20's. There were some tough moments and as well as victories. I feel like today is a perfect day to tell more of my own truth and testimony. It's important for me to share my story with others so that you know that you are never alone in things you may face.
Five Lessons My 20s Taught Me
1. If family abandons you, you will survive.
I haven't seen my father since I was eight years old. He paid child support, but he was never physically in my life. He never came to any of my graduations and after college, the last time I heard from him was to tell me that he'd be stopping by monthly allowances. This was in 2008 and I haven't heard from him since. My father not being apart of my life never really affected me until I was actually in college. I was being exposed to so many different guys all the time and I began to look for men to fill the place where my father was missing.
Not only did I have to deal with my father not being there, but my only sibling decided to abandon me too. He would get upset with me and stop talking to me for years at a time. He has not spoken to me since 2013, has never met my husband and doesn't want me involved in his life. I'm sure you may be surprised that I am sharing this on such a special day. The truth is, I had to share because I want people to know that things like this can happen to anyone and you can survive. It makes me sad sometimes, but the majority of days, I realize that their mistreatment of me has nothing truly to do with me. It's their inner issues. As long as I have God in my life and the ability to pray, I can make it to another day regardless of who is or is not in my life.
2. Never apologize for who you are. Be you.
My twenties were definitely a time of self discovery. I can't say that I ever truly acted like someone I wasn't, but I also didn't divulge some parts of myself. That may have been because of an ex-boyfriend that always called me weird, but over time, I began to love my "weirdness." Everyone has their own quirks and unique qualities. I've learned over the years to embrace who I am and just be myself. True friends will appreciate who you are and not try to change you. God gives us all our own personality for a reason. There is something in you that the world needs. If you're busy not being yourself, how can they ever see the gift God has placed inside you?
3. Fear is a liar and growth doesn't come from comfort zones.
Can I be honest with you? Becoming a full-time entrepreneur was the scariest thing (and still is) I've ever done. I tried to talk myself out of it many times because I wanted to stay comfortable. I wanted to get my monthly paycheck and not have to ever worry about money. Notice two things here. I was afraid and I wanted to stay comfortable. Those two things just don't work when you're really trying to excel in life. Fear is common and wanting to stay within your comfort zone is understandable, but growth doesn't happen in either place.
Fear is a liar and you can't reach your full, total potential if you keep doing what makes you comfortable. I never saw the true potential in myself until I stepped out of my comfort zone. Being an entrepreneur is the hardest thing I've ever done, but I couldn't imagine myself doing anything else. Walking in your purpose opens the doors to what God really wants to do in your life.
4. Not all friendships last and that's OK.
A reason, a season, a lifetime. I know we have all heard that statement before. Not every person that enters our lives is meant to stay there for a lifetime and believe me, it's okay. Some friendships may end because of moving, a hurtful moment or just growing apart, but there is a lesson in every relationship we have with others. I have had wonderful friendships with co-workers, but when I moved, it was tough to maintain them. Although I may have felt disappointed that the friendship couldn't be maintained, I knew that that friendship helped me during that particular time in my life. There is always something to be learned and just because a friendship may end, doesn't make that a negative. Look for the positive in each situation.
5. Having a relationship with God and a prayer life are the keys.
If you follow me on Twitter, you're probably used to my quotes and scriptures I share throughout the week. I often talk about God, but honestly, I wouldn't have made it this far without Him. God has really helped me when I felt unworthy and that I couldn't make it through tough situations. He has helped me realize that you can make it through anything with Him. Prayer and devotional reading is a part of my daily morning routine. It wasn't always a part of my routine, but in the last few years, I've realized the importance of it. Prayer sets the foundation of the day. My twenties were not perfect, but I'm going into my thirties feeling more healed and more capable of conquering anything that comes my way.
What is one lesson you've learned in your 20s?
God bless & stay fab,