Another Lap Around the Sun


A little over a year ago, I wrote an article titled, "Wait, How Did You End Up in Minnesota?" where I chronicled a life-altering event that adjusted the lenses I use to interact with the world. A major purpose of the piece was to convey some of the emotions I underwent and the realizations I uncovered during my stay in Narnia. Completely unaware of the impact this event would have on my life, I still stumble into the rumination of what life today would look like had I not made such a spirited decision to venture outside of my comfort zone.

This past year has been a new journey in itself. Importantly, I must add that it's been an enriching journey. I've used the time to regain my footing and step into the person I unknowingly set out to be. It's almost as though the series of events leading up to my move stripped me not only of my confidence but a large portion of my previous identity. I assume no shame in saying this because your twenties are the years you undergo significant change. My isolation allowed me to iron out the kinks of my new iOS update - a revamped version of Constantine. I previously mentioned how my alone time enabled me to readjust what I deemed valuable and triage the personal qualities I needed to improve without the background noise. Meaningful conversations and exchanges occured throughout my time in isolation which bolstered a lot of my friendships and relationships. This past year was the launch of my updated interaction with the world. New skills were put into practice, and I saw things from unfamiliar perspectives, which fetched many questions and unexplored ideas, resulting in new conversations. This past year birthed new friendships, disconnected others, and rekindled old ones. And I'm grateful for it all.

As I recently celebrated the completion of another lap around the sun, I spent a lot of time thinking about how I would like my new chapter to commence. While we'll never have complete sovereignty over how our story reads, I stand firm on the belief that we are all authors and possess the penmanship to commit to paper the direction we would like the trajectory of our lives to go. Chapter 28 begins with concious gratitude for me - a life-changing yet straightforward practice I incorporated into my daily routine in Minnesota. I started a gratitude journal out of desperation to shift my mind's focus from the constant negative thoughts to a few things I could and should be thankful for. This practice became a regular mental exercise as it forced me to think through my current situation and see a bigger picture despite my circumstantial vendettas. It also brought value to my reflective moments. There's plenty of power in observing the dwindling control unpleasant moments seem to have over us as time passes. It's easier to see the good they forge in retrospect. As we still seem to be dealing with the ongoing struggles of the emerging variants of COVID, I want to encourage you all to be mindful of the blessings in your life. Write them down. Tell them in person. Let them know they matter to you because life is short. I'm sharing a snippet of my latest gratitude journal entry below. I hope you find a way to express your gratitude as well!

Chapter 28

"To my brothers, Max and Xavier, I love you both tremendously. More than anything in this world. Thank you for such an amazing bond we share. Life could not have provided me with a greater cheat code than a lifetime of shared experience with you two. Mom and dad, y'all really snapped with them. I love you guys.

To my dear friends reading this, new and old, I thank you for your constant love and support. You're appreciated much more than I could ever articulate. The older I get, the more I understand the importance of developing a habit of telling your people you love/appreciate them regularly and how much they mean to you because our days are never promised. So, I promise to continually be mindful at letting you know you matter to me..."

Thank you, everyone, for rocking with me for over a year now. It's been a journey cruising through life's seasonal terrain and an honor to bring you along with me and some of my thoughts. Love is patient, and love is kind. Love is also gentle. Most importantly, love is God's signature on all of creation. So now go love on your people today!

"There are different ways to express that someone matters to you." - Taylor M.