Thursday, December 20, 2012

A Brand New Kind of Me...

As I sit here and listen to 'Brand New Me' by Alicia Keys I'm just overwhelmed with emotion. The very first time I heard this song it spoke in volumes to me. Let me explain...

If you've been following my updates/posts these past few months you'll see that I have been working towards building my portfolio and getting signed to an agency. I don't know how else to explain this but people I found to be fimiliar in my past have become strangers recently. I'm learning that a lot of it is because, as they say, I'm "Different".  That word offended me and got under my skin in so many ways. I can't begin to calculate the amount of time spent trying to prove to people that I'm the same ol Desaree. Now I'm embrace different.

For those who I've met in the past few years they wouldn't know there was a time I was uncomfortable in my own skin. I wasn't very sure of who I was. I knew I possessed talent but it was hard to get people to see me through the glasses and my teeth pre-braces. I struggled to stay true to myself and still have friends. As a teenager I learned quickly that if you shine too bright around people who need to be the star in the room you become an outcast. On numerous occasions I would dumb myself down to maintain friendships and relationships. I don't feel badly because of this time because it was a deep lesson that I had to learn. Somewhere between the back roads of Cheyney, PA and I-295 I found myself as I drove back and forth from my alma mater. I stopped apologizing for who I am and who I'm meant to become.
The word different doesn't bother me anymore. I'd rather be different and memorable than to be the same and blend in. As I grow I'm glad I've grown from the little girl who used to argue and start a fight at the drop of a dime. She'll always be apart of me but there are BETTER parts of me. The intellectual. The lady. The geek. The weirdo. The talent. The everything.. the ME.

I can now be happy for my accomplishments and not be ashamed of my joy. Nothing has come to me without hard work and struggle. I am finally at a place in my life when I can say I feel closer to my dream and I'm the best me I can be. I'm a firm believer that everyone has the ability to reach their FULL potential but that can't be done by pulling others down or standing by watching everyone else accomplish goals. Get out there and FIGHT for what you want. I have no idea where this journey called life plans to take me but I can say I'm brave enough to find out. Stop letting moments pass you by where you don't stretch out to fulfill your dreams. Don't let life come and go without you knowing who YOU are. There are so many people in this world but you are the most important one out of them all. You are special. You are beautiful. You are GREAT. Stop letting others opinions of you stear you away from your dreams. Stop letting fear be your reason not to. Stop letting other people live your life for you! Anyone with a dream has been afraid at one point but they didn't let that stop them.

The word different doesn't bother me anymore. I'd rather be different and memorable than to be the same and blend in. As I grow I'm glad I've grown from the little girl who used to argue and start a fight at the drop of a dime. She'll always be apart of me but there are BETTER parts of me. The intellectual. The lady. The geek. The weirdo. The talent. The everything.. the ME.

These lyrics have the courage to say everything that I couldn't articulate at on point.

If I talk a little louder
If I speak up when you're wrong
If I walk a little taller
I've been under you too long
If you notice that I'm different
Don't take it personally
Don't be mad
It's just a brand new kinda me
That ain't bad
I found a brand new kinda free

Ooh, it took a long, long road to get here
It took a brave, brave girl to try
I've taken one too many excuses
One to many lies
Don't be surprised, oh, said, you look surprised

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The man outside the store...

Today was a bit tough and the customers at my job seemed to have recieved a memo that I wasn't in such a great mood. After being yelled at by not carrying extra beers, cokes and water I struggled to clear my mind. This week started off with someone stealing the last bit of money I had until I returned to work. I've been a little frustrated because I had plans for that money. Needless to say I was excited to head home, eat and climb into my most comfortable pj's.

 On my way home I decided that I wanted to stop at the store to pick up a few things. As I pulled up to the store I immediately spotted a man sitting on the ground right in front of my parking space. Initially I think "Ut oh I don't know if I want to park here because he's going to ask me for money I don't have to spare." As I exit my car and walk towards the store the man says nothing to me. I didn't think much of it but braced myself for him to ask for something when I returned. After my purchase I approach my car and the man plesantly says to me "Have a nice night sweetheart" and that's it. I responded "Thank you. You too!" and climbed in my car. Seconds later I hear a voice say "Desaree give him money. $5 to be exact" Although there isn't anyone in the car with me I look to my left and right and think "$5?!?!?... I'll give him one." The voice then says "No. Five." As I sat in the drivers seat contemplating what to give to this man I began to check myself. "Desaree it's ONLY $5 and you will feel terriible if you leave without helping this man out. You've made more than enough money at work today so get over yourself." I shake off my initial selfishness, open my car door and walk up to the man with the $5 extended to him. As I approach he stares at the bill in my hand confused and I say "Here" with a smile. He then slowly extends his hand and in a confused but elated tone he says "Thank you SO much." After I said "God bless you" and climbed back into my car I watched him stare at the $5 bill, look up to the sky and say "Thank you". This man looked at the money as if I had handed him $500 as opposed to $5. As I pulled off my eyes swelled up with tears and I immediately began to thank God. In that moment I realized what that man had given me was worth WAY more than that $5 bill could ever be. He reminded me that we were all placed on earth to help one another. Our society and culture has people so wrapped up in the every day hustle and bustle along with the desire to acquire as much as possible that we have forgotten about one another. The lord blesses us not only for our own personal gain but to also help one another. Although money was taken from me this week and I was stressing about it I'm glad I decided to step out of myself and remember what was most important. There are so many occasions where we walk past a person in need and act as if we don't see it. The only way to make this world better is stop ignoring each other and lend a helping hand. I have never felt so fulfilled like I did in that moment. I didn't see that man as a charity case but a person trying to make it just like me. We always forget that there are people who would die for the lives that we are living. That was definitely a wake up call. A reminder that this world is SO much bigger than me and my little problems. A reminder that I am blessed and I must also be a blessing unto others. I am having a hard time putting this event that lasted all of 7 minutes into words because the impact was so strong. If you are reading this PLEASE take time to be aware of the things and people around you. If you can give please do so. It doesn't have to be in the form of money, it can be your time, your ear, your laugh. Give  of yourself today so that your life isn't in vain. We were all placed on this earth to do something great and what's greater than helping another? Be mindful of the voice of God. When you hear it, move. It took me a bit (the lord isn't done with me yet) but once I recognized he was speaking to me I did as I was told. Moments like that will happen every so often  and they are a simple test to see what you are going to do. The lord will test you time and time again. If you don't listen you may end up blocking your blessings. Please take time to listen. Until next time...

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Quick update. I haven't forgotten my blog!

Life has been a bit challenging these past few months. I started a new job in April and it required a shift in every aspect of my life. For those who work overnight/graveyard shift you understand that life is completely different for the individual with that schedule. I would wake up, drive 30 mins. to work, work midnight to 6am, drive home, sleep, wake up, handle business and then do it ALL over again the next day. Needless to say I had a few breakdowns lol. I had to take some time off from modeling to focus on saving and coming up with a plan to rearrange my career. It's funny how you learn different things about yourself and your surroundings when you step back.
During my hiatus I realized that I am giving more to a lot of individuals than I am receiving in return. As a model I found myself in the vicious cycle of "This show/shoot isn't paid but it offers exposure." Exposure is great but the question I should have followed up with is "Exposure to who?" There's a difference between walking in front of casting agents and a crowd full of family and friends. Don't get me wrong I appreciate every opportunity I have had but there comes a time when you know your worth... and I had to adjust accordingly. I am now building my portfolio to where I can be signed within the next few months prayerfully.
My hair has grown significantly. Praise Jesus! All of the hard work has paid off. I finally discovered what works for my hair and I can officially say I have a regimen!!!
Life has a way of making things come into perspective. Sometimes you need to slow down your pace in order to finish strong in the race. I'm seriously trying to get back to writing more... I've had a serious case of writers block. BANANAS! lol Until next time..

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Dear Aspiring Models [Part II]

As I attempt to get away from arranging my new room I came up with the idea to write a new post. Recently I have been contacted by a few more girls who expressed that they would like to start modeling. They each had different question but I was presented with the same ones so I figured it was time for a Part II to Dear Aspiring Models:

1. "Can you help me start modeling?"
This is the #1 question that I am asked. Unfortunately the answer is no. It's not because I don't want to help you or see you succeed by any means. Modeling is very time consuming and takes lots of work to get noticed. Although I would love to help I can't really help you start something that I'm still learning. One thing that I can offer is advice.
 Let me explain: When I first decided that I wanted to really pursue modeling I had NO idea what to do. After four years of college the one thing I knew best was "If you want to know something... do your research." I immediately took to the internet and submerged myself in the industry. I signed up for modelmayhem and contacted a local photographer who would shoot me at no cost. When I met people in the industry (models, photographers, makeup artist, etc.) I asked LOTS of questions.  I encourage you to network and use the connections you have. If you know a photographer who is starting off or your friend does try shooting with them to get an idea of where you are and work your way up.
I don't believe that another model can necessarily help you start modeling BUT I would ask them to let you know if they hear of any castings or opportunities.

2. Stay in your lane.
This is not to come off rude but it is reality. Everyone cannot do everything, especially when it comes to modeling. Let me explain... if you are 5'2 and you want to be a high fashion runway model that may be something you want to reconsider. I'm not saying you will not do runway but high fashion models are usually 5'9 and up so if you go to a casting and they say "High Fashion" that usually comes with a height (and weight) requirement. Do your research and find out where you fit in and then practice your craft.

3. Never Quit.
In this industry you will hear the word "No." more than you could ever imagine. I will never forget the first time I visited an agency and a man said "I'm sorry you're not what we're looking for", handed me back my portfolio and turned his back to me and walked away. I wasn't prepared for that at all BUT that was a pivotal moment for me. At that time I had a decision to make.. Am I going to run for the hills or am I going to keep going and find that one person who does love me? Later on that day I went to a few more agencies and two expressed interest in me! With that being said... there will be so many people who will tell you no with no explanation. You may feel empty or even clueless as to why they said that but that doesn't mean there isn't someone out there looking for you!

4. Beware of the Free Gift Bag.
Sorry but there isn't literally a free gift bag lol but you will have to be mindful of the word "free". Sometimes free or tfp (time/trade for print) can cost you in the end. When I first started modeling I was walking in every show and shooting with anyone I could get my hands on. I needed exposure and I needed to meet people in the industry. I don't want ya'll to think I just took ANYthing lol but I was everywhere possible. Soon after it started taking a toll on my finances because I was taking off of work to attend non-paid shows that would last ALL day and I didn't gain anything from being there. Free sounds good but not at the expense of your livelihood. I encourage you all to pick and choose what is more important... if you're spending $30 to get to a shoot you're not being paid for and don't receive quality images but you missed out on a day's worth of pay.. something doesn't equal out.

5. Quality.
I wish someone would have explained the importance of quality earlier on in my career. When it came to photoshoots I could pick out a quality image because of my time with Fresh Image Talent Scouts BUT I didn't understand it in other aspects of the business. There will be many designers who just need a body to put clothes on and a guy with a camera to shoot the look. I found myself falling victim to this scenario a few times and the result was pictures I couldn't use for my portfolio and awkward photos of me on Facebook :/ The people you work with should be bringing something to the table just like you are. On the contrary, you are responsible for keeping up your end of the bargain. You can't show up to a shoot or show with a half done weave, a gut because you've been eating McDonalds or poses that won't work because you haven't been practicing. As I said in Pt. I.. Your image is EVERYTHING and if you're not giving quality how can you expect it?

6. For some individuals, rudeness is mandatory.
There will be sooooooo many instances where you will encounter rude people. You will be confronted by not so nice people here and there because this is a cut-throat industry. There will be individual who will look you dead in your face and say "Your head is shaped funny" or "Your left arm is slightly longer than your right.. can you fix that?" As bad as you want to say "You Motherf*!king B@!ch"... you can't lol. Of course you will meet some amazing people who are genuine and have your best interest at heart but for the most past keep your armor on because it's a battle.

7.Model Bag.
I find it funny that many models don't know what goes in a model bag. Here are the basics.
A comb/brush.
A pair of black and/or nude underwear.
A black and/or nude bra.
Foundation (your color)
A pair of black heels (these are pretty much standard)
A pair of skinny dark blue jeans (for a casting)
A black or white tank/t-shirt (casting)
Lotion or baby oil/gel
Toothbrush (just in case the breath gets a little funky lol)
I personally take my full makeup bag to shows and shoots just in case I need to do my own makeup or if I need to touch it up when the makeup artist can't get to me. Also something small to eat like a granola bar will never hurt.. days can be a bit lengthy so you don't want to pass out from not eating.

That's all I've got for this round! Until next time :)

Open Diary: Who Cares What THEY Think?!?!

Having a bit of writer's block so I decided to do another Open Diary Post...

About a month ago I moved back in with my parents. I kept my move very low-key.. not because I was embarrassed but because I didn't feel like enduring the looks of disappointment or awkward conversations where the person I'm speaking to thinks I'm "moving backwards". I didn't have time to let what other people thought steer me from doing what I knew was necessary. I didn't move home because I was dirt poor or I mismanaged my money.. I moved because I'm 24 and I'm TIRED of having to live paycheck to paycheck when it's not necessary.

This is a time in my life where I should be seeing the world, enjoying my life and preparing myself for my future. One day I looked up and I had gone from the girl who worked to live to the girl who lived to work. After having to buy a new car my budget was tighter than ever and I was exhausted from stressing over finances.  There will come times in our lives where we have to make decisions based on what WE know is right and not worry about what other people think. I won't lie and say I didn't have the idea that people would look down on me..because I did. I feared that people would judge me for moving back to the town that I was dying to leave. I was scared that people would think I failed or I was broke or I bit off way more than I could chew. I will say I matured tremendously during the year I lived on my own but in the end I had to remind myself that no matter what others say.. I know who I am.. I know my situation and most importantly the people who matter know why I'm here.

With all this being said... I challenge everyone reading this to really rearrange your thinking and practice blocking out what "They" say. "They" don't pay your bills and "They" surely don't make the rules in YOUR life. I'm working on changing my thought process and learning  to drown out those negative sayings that play over and over in my head. Enjoy your life... you only get one!

Until next time :)
I'm not a fan of Wiz but this quote is #real

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Dear Aspiring Models...

Two and a half years ago I decided to venture out and pursue modeling. It has definitely been a ride to where I am now and there is much work remaining to be done. Every now and then I am approached and asked questions regarding the modeling industry. I am no expert but I have my many experiences and tales of my journey thus far. I have always been the type of person to give advice and honest opinion when it comes to anything. After being asked the same questions several times I figured it was time to write a blog telling aspiring models what I wish someone would have told me and what I feel you should know.

1. Your image is everything.

Often you will be approached by "photographers" asking you to work with them. Most of them will be just starting like yourself and can only offer TFP/CD (time/trade for print/cd). This was how I started my portfolio and learned my angles. I had the opportunity to go back in those cd's that the photographers gave me and I could see my mistakes, weaknesses, and what I needed to work on. As I progressed and gained experience I learned the importance of quality in the work of the people I chose to work with. Lighting, angles and chemistry are very important on a set. There is nothing more grueling than seeing several pictures of yourself looking awkward and ugly on Facebook because the photographer posted EVERY shot from your shoot, good and bad. The photographers you choose to shoot with should be concerned about their image and yours. Any self respecting photographer will not post multiple pictures of you looking cross-eyed and pigeon toed because that is a reflection of their quality of work. Once people view those images of you they are now the representation of you and you're capabilities. It's ok to be picky with who you shoot with. If you're approached by a guy with a camera and you know they won't give you the results you need for your portfolio... it's ok to kindly say "No thank you. I'm looking to take my portfolio in another direction."

2. What are your deal breakers?
What do you want to be known for?

Starting out I wanted to do EVERYTHING! Runway, print, commercial, glamour, acting, etc. I quickly learned that if you don't set your boundaries you will be asked to do EVERYTHING, literally. On Model Mayhem I had photographers asking me to model for nude projects left and right. Once I posted "I do not do nudes but all other creativity is ok" I had people asking for partial nudes, bondage shoots, etc. Needless to say I declined BUT I learned the lesson. So here comes the time when you need to ask yourself... what kind of model do you want to be? Do you mind nudity? How about lingerie? Swimwear? Know your boundaries. If you are uncomfortable with something that is fine. I highly recommend that you don't participate in any shoots that you are totally against because it will read on the camera. If I'm butt naked and exposed to the camera I could see me freaking out lol. On the flip side implied nudity isn't hard for me.. I'm actually rather comfortable. Those are my personal feelings and I know myself well enough not to take it to where I wouldn't be comfotable and confident with what image I am putting out of myself.

3. You never know who knows who.

I've seen many models miss out on a booking or job because of something they did publicly. It could be your tweets to your portfolio that turns a designer off from you. The word of mouth plays a strong part in making decisions on who is chosen to work on a project. The industry is smaller than you think and the mention of your name can either be your biggest or worst enemy. Be mindful of the things you say and the images you choose to represent yourself. Half naked pictures in your bathroom mirror aren't always the thing that makes someone say "I NEED HER" lol.

Also utilize networking! The man you're sitting next to on the train could know the agency director of Ford or Elite. If people ask you who you are and what you do .. say it with confidence. If you find yourself at an industry mixer pay close attention to the people in the room and try to find out who people are. There is nothing wrong with meeting new people.. they lead to new opportunities. The daughter of Ralph Lauren's booker could be in room! Just to think you could have the chance to meet someone who has the potential to change your life in an instant just by one conversation. You may not meet someone major every time but you could meet the one person who opens the next door you need.

4. The smallest seed can grow into the strongest tree.

Starting off you will quickly learn that modeling isn't all glamorous as you thought. It involves a lot of waiting, sacrifice and caffeine at times. There will be many unpaid shoots and fashion shows that you may see as pointless. Although they may seem strenuous and the lack of potential can be overwhelming you never know what can come from the smallest planting of a seed. Example: I auditioned for a show over a year ago. I was doing this a favor for a friend of my mothers who owned a boutique and needed models. After having to pay $20 for registration and hours of torture backstage I deemed the show pointless and a waste of time. A week or so later I was contacted by a designer who I walked for in that same show. She was in need of a model for a shoot in a few days and I happily agreed to her offer... and that my friends is the beginning of the seed growing. I didn't know it at the time but there was much more in store. I am now the muse for that very designer, Latasha Hall of Lillie Designs. Had I not agreed to attend that show I'm not sure if I'd have the opportunity to meet her.

5. You will make mistakes... and that's fine.

A lot like life, in your career you will make mistakes. I want you to drop the idea that you will always be "the best" and will kill it every time. Of course I want you to always do your best but there will be photo shoots when you think "Yea that wasn't my best shoot" and that's ok!
There may also be times where you are left high and dry. You may find yourself working with someone who didn't fulfill their end of the bargain but there is no contract saying they must complete the agreement. I had that happen to me and now when I deal with an agreement I need something signed so both parties are clear as to what is expected and if the jobs aren't fulfilled legal actions can be taken.

6. "Where do I start?"

I think this is the most frequently asked question..

I don't feel as though there is one specific way to say how to begin modeling. Every model has their own story BUT the ultimate goal is to be signed to an agency, working and making major bucks ;) I started off on my own. I called a local photographer I knew through a friend, got a few outfits together, went to his house, did my hair and makeup and shot away! This was my way of starting to build my portfolio which is very important. Your portfolio is your way of showing what you are capable of. Soon after I googled agencies in New York and found out their times for open calls and went to as many as I could. This was a great experience because I had the chance to speak to a few agency directors personally and they informed me on how to attend open calls (what to wear, no makeup, bring snapshots). Model Mayhem also opened the realm of modeling for me. Designers, photographers and makeup artists are always looking for models and I found many shows and photo shoots through this site.

7. You are you.. OWN it!

As a model you will experience a lot of poking and proding. Many people will say the words "I'm sorry you're not what we're looking for" and not care what you feel after that. Others will criticize you to your face and say you need to change things about yourself. I've learned to accept who I am. It's easier to live with that than spend time trying to change myself to what others expect me to be. I'd love to be the typical high fashion model but my body type doesn't allow that. I've been told to get a breast reduction, I need to lose weight and that I need to lose my hips. These things can be pretty disheartening to hear at times but I found a way to make those very things what I love most about myself. I can change my bust size by going under the knife but I love them just the way they are. You will have to develop this same mentality because the people in this industry can and will try to break you down. It's ok if one person doesn't like you because there are 10 others waiting for someone JUST like you!

I pray this helped some of you. If you have any other questions please ask.. I will make a part 2 :) Until next time...

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Single Lady's Guide to Valentines Day

Valentine's Day. The two words that can instantaneously fill your heart with joy or rip it from your insides. For the past few years I found myself single around this time of year. Each year it seemed as if February 14th crept up on my calendar just to remind my of my extreme singleness. I remember thinking "This is such a stupid holiday!" "What kind of people celebrate this crap?!" and "Ughhhh I'm so lonely (insert teardrop)" Every year there are people suggesting things for couples to do but I think we need to change that! So, here I am to mix it up a bit and give the single ladies a shout out! These are a few things I've done for myself during this trying time of year.

1. Take it easy on yourself!
     You are single for a reason but that doesn't mean anything is wrong with you! You don't need to be in a relationship to flaunt it on this one day and be miserable the rest of the year because you decided to settle! Don't tell yourself you're ugly, unworthy, unloveable or anything else that will hurt you to the core. Encourage yourself and appreciate the place you're at in your life.

2. Look good for YOU.
    Being in a relationship and should not be the only reasons you get dolled up. If you can't love yourself enough to look good for you then how can you do it for someone else? Go get your hair done. Dance to your favorite music in your underwear. Shed those few pounds you've been trying to. The better you look, the better you feel and the more men to drool over you as you enjoy your single life ;)

3. Don't close yourself off.
    One year I made the big mistake of shutting myself off from the world. I locked myself in my dorm room so I didn't have to witness everyone enjoying the "day of love". When I resurfaced I didn't feel any better than I did when I left and I missed out on a few good laughs at the expense of the random couples being caught "in the act" by the dorm director lol. It's not the end of the world... couples go back to being normal in a day or two and argue over "Who was that girl calling you love on your Facebook wall?!?!" At this point you'll have comic relief!

4. Do something nice for YOU!
    In my singleness I vowed to myself that if I had no valentine I would treat myself the way a man should treat me on that day. This idea helped me learn what I would expect my future boo to do for me and it also gave me a GREAT feeling. There is nothing like ripping the tag off a very sexy dress that you purchased for yourself or the smell of those new pair of shoes that will catch everyone's eyes as you step in a crowded room! Don't wait for the "knight in shining armor" to appear to do these things for you (but when he does show up make him spoil you lol)

5. Lean on your friends!
     Two years ago I asked my friend Ky to be my valentine. I was involved with a guy who didn't even acknowledge Valentine's Day and I felt like crap! To say the least I called on my friend and she was there. We went out to eat at the Cheesecake Factory and laughed our hearts out. We spent a pretty penny but like I said earlier we spent it on ourselves and WE DESERVED IT! Life was easier that day in the midst of all the couples with their candelight dinners and googley eyes because I had support. I wasn't hiding under my comforter and eating icecream.

I hope these things help you single ladies because they helped me tremendously! Enjoy Valentine's Day and Don't forget it's Self Love Day too! (I soooo made that up lol)

Until next time!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Open Diary: You Think You Know But You Have No Idea

I was encouraged to write a blog talking about the things that are currently going on in my life, the struggle I face in pursuit of my dreams and my everyday happenings. After hearing the idea I knew it was a great concept but I was terrified to say the least. As I always say, I'm not one to get too personal and expose my life to the outside world. Not because I don't want to expose my flaws but the sense of vunerability is a bit uncomfortable and vunerable is not something I just do. Although my stomach is turning as I type.. I know this will be a great read sooooo HERE WE GO!

Everyday I fight. I fight to be recognized, acknowledged and thought of. I'm a model and I'm great at what I do but I haven't found the right person/people to propel myself to the next level. There is nothing more disheartening then knowing you possess talent and the world seems to be blinded to it. 4-5 days a week I put on my T-Mobile shirt to sell and troubleshoot phones for customers but while I'm helping them all I can think is "Damn this is not my dream.. While I'm helping them I could be in NY going to agencies and getting my name out there!" Don't get me wrong.. I thank God for my job and all it has provided me with BUT this is not the life for me. I'm not meant to work here for the rest of my life.. that's just not in my cards. Everytime I visit New York City I feel as though someone has returned the breath to my body and a great fire has been lit inside of me.

With the daydreaming of being on the covers of magazines, starring in major motion pictures and envisioning myself on the Victoria's Secret Runway I am faced with my reality. I am a 24 year old college graduate working in a field that has NOTHING to do with my degree and I am tired of watching others obtain "success". I don't have the time to sit at my computer and promote myself all day and I don't have the extra money to pay someone else to do it. It can be a bit frustrating watching others living my dream although I know I'm here for a reason.

Growing up adults would always say "Stay young forever" and I would respond "Nope.. I can't wait til' I'm grown!" but not I wish I could go back to the days where I had no cares. No responsibilites. No student loans. No car payments. No rent. No drama... just fun, the 3 ft. pool in the back yard and Now and Laters lol. I don't regret any of the decisions I've made in my past because they've made me the mature adult I have (by the grace of God) turned out to be. In spite of my struggles and everyday battles to get out of the bed and do the very things I don't want to do until I get to where I can do the things I want to... I remain happy.

To anyone with a dream.. keep going. You never know how close you are. Listen to the voice of God.. it won't lead you astray. Keep me in your prayers and I will definitely keep you in mines! Oh and do me a favor.. if you see me promoting myself help a sista out and tell your friends because I can't do this alone lol!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

There's Only One You... Everyone Else is Taken.

Lately I've noticed the amount of young ladies gravitating towards looking like what tv says is "hot". When I say "hot" I'm referring to the girls in music videos, on reality tv shows, and the demeaning lyrics in the music we hear everyday.

Through life I have always been the girl who marches to the beat of her own drum. To me there is nothing like paving my own path for others to recognize there are other ways to accomplish things. We all have our moments of losing sight of individuality. One day I started to notice the way guys drooled over girls in the limelight and I wanted to see what that was like. I tried my best to look like the girls on tv so guys would find me attractive that didn't last long because I looked so out of place. In high school I was excited to go to a club because I was 17 "and grown" so I put on these extremely short shorts and a shirt that exposed every bit of my bra and stomach and you couldn't tell me I wasn't cute! That night I ran into a guy who I really liked and he was flirting with me so you know I was hype! Long story short he asked if I wanted to go home with him after telling him I wasn't that kind of girl he said "Well that's not the message you're sending with that outfit." I will NEVER forget those words because that was the moment I realized I wasn't representing who I am as a person. I'm not saying you have to cover up like a nun but there is a way to look sexy as a lady and sexy as the girl you want to take home.

Too many girls make the mistake I made that night trying to get guys to like them based on their body. Often we hear guys talk about how fat a girls butt is or how nice her boobs look and for some reason that sends off a signal to our brain that says "I have to be that". As I sit here today I wish someone would have given me this quote: Be yourself... Everyone else is already taken - Oscar Wilde. We live in an era where girls want to be the Nicki Minaj's, Snooki's, or Lady Gaga's of the world but they already exist. No matter how goofy, crazy, loud, weird, book loving, or awkward you may be YOU ARE SPECIAL. You were created to bring the light you have to this world, not try to shine like someone else. There will always be beautiful women in entertainment and guys will always love to look at them but trust me.. those beautiful women don't wake up red carpet ready lol. They get out of bed, brush their teeth and put one pant leg on at a time just like you. You are worth so much and should never give it away just to be accepted or seen as beautiful. Love yourself more than anyone else can and always stay true to the real you.

Until next time :)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Open Diary: A must read.

I don't know how long its been but I've been in a funk for way too long. It feels like weeks, maybe months since I've been able to really appreciate my life for what it is. Over a period of time I became the person who was more focused on what I couldn't obtain than the plethora of accomplishments I have.

As I reflect on my feelings of yesterday (literally yesterday) I can say I'm happy I've decided to take my life back. For those who know me (or follow me on Twitter) you know that I have been having car trouble. Long story short my car needs a new motor and I'm not in the position to pay for that. For the past 2 months I have been contemplating how I afford to pay for it and have been caught in the whirlwind of  'to buy a new car or not to buy a new car'. Worried about what I don't have I didn't stop and see that I'm still blessed because my boyfriend has allowed me to use his car until I situate myself. Here I am sooo concerned about what I need to do next that I didn't even see that I if it wasn't for him I would be walking everywhere.

You see... we all have our troubles, our times where we want to quit and our times where the world can seem so big and we're so small. It's easy to be captivated by the have nots and wants in our lives. Although I've had my share of let downs this past year I had to reflect on the many things I've accomplished. I have my own place, I've made a name for myself with my modeling career and I've done it all on my own. There are very few people who can say that they've done so much for themselves in so little time. Of course there's always more work to be done but if you don't take the time to say "Self, you've done well!" You'll spend life being miserable.

For a while now I've had the feeling as though I was floating through life. No real destination, no concept of time and an urgency to get through the week before I make it through the day. This is NO way to live. Today I decided that this way of living will never be good enough for me. I will no longer subject myself to being unhappy when I have SO  much to celebrate. I am surrounded by people who love me, I have a job that provides for my life and most of all I have my health. I refuse to not celebrate the things that God has blessed me with any longer. I encourage every individual reading this to rearrange your thinking and start smelling the roses. Don't allow yourself to be consumed with the things you cannot achieve and what you don't have. Enable yourself to look around you and see the beauty in the life you lead. There are people who don't have food, family, friends, a place to live, clothes amongst MANY other things and would switch places with you in a heart beat! If there is anything to take from my story it is to cherish the things you possess and pat yourself on the back for your accomplishments. Refrain from be too hard on yourself. Life is too short to be focused on woulda, coulda, shoulda's. Most importantly never forget to put God first... in the midst of the storm there isn't anyone who will keep you grounded like the lord.

I love you all and stay encouraged.