Champagne Tastes Better in a Martini Glass and Other Lessons from 2021
As I write this, there are just 28 hours remaining in the year of our Lord 2021. Of the 8,760 hours in a year, less than 30 remain. The chilled Moet & Chandon Champagne Imperial Brut adds a touch of elegance to my end of year reflections.
What a year of joy, grief, wonder, awe…the entire universe of emotions and feelings. From life and death situations (details on that for a future post) to starting a new life chapter as a business owner, God was above, below, and all around me.
In preparation for my vision board extravaganza on January 1, 2022, I’m rewinding the tape on 2021, counting my blessings and sharing three hard won lessons. Let’s go!
Bet on yourself.
My 2021 vision board had the seedlings of what would grow and prosper for me this year. Decorated with the Black beauty and genius of the cast of Girlfriends and Michael B. Jordan, a placeholder for my future husband, were two quotes: “We don’t need a map to find ourselves,” and “Create your own path to power.”
In June, I placed a big bet on myself when I quit a steady gig to launch Kairos & Heart LLC, a boutique consultancy focused on helping mission-minded enterprises enlarge their territories. (Note: I don’t support colonialism. The territories reference is inspired by the Prayer of Jabez in 1 Chronicles 4:10.) I had been saving for a down payment on a house but chose to use most of those funds for a 7-week summer sabbatical to be still. Do you know how many ideas flourish when you are not hustling and chasing, but making time to soak up and savor the days?
Kairos & Heart became official on August 23rd (my 43rd birthday!) and has me living my best life. It’s empowering, invigorating, and confidence-boosting to call the shots on how I spend my time, what projects I agree to, which projects I reject, and all the other small, medium, and large decisions that come with designing the life I want to live. In “Good As Hell,” Lizzo says, “Boss up and change your life.” Check — I did!
God’s love is like the ocean — deep, wide, and expansive.
While on sabbatical, I had the good fortune to kick it with my NOLA bae, Dani, who flew up from Washington, DC. We maximized our New England adventures with time in Rye, NH to see whales in the Gulf of Maine, Portsmouth, Boston, and Martha’s Vineyard. Our shenanigans included lots of motion on the ocean, or other small bodies of water.
Sitting on the bow of the whale watching boat confirmed how small I am in this big world. I took two Dramamine pills before boarding to nip any nausea and vomit in the bud. The rocking of the boat, which was smaller than I expected, eventually felt soothing. Floating in the ocean without any land in sight is a humbling, awe inspiring, and scary experience. My cell phone didn’t work. I had no distractions. My assignment was to soak up the views and be still. Nature is good medicine.
One recurrent thought while waiting for whales to show up and greet me was how powerful, loving, and consistent God is. Grace and mercy. Abundance. Answered prayers. Protection from dangers seen and unseen. The good fortune of friends who love me in all my iterations — the irritable Makiyah, the sarcastic Makiyah, the silly Makiyah, the reflective Makiyah — I am loved beyond. The multitudes I contain are loved beyond.
Trust your Knowing.
History repeats itself, or put another way, I had some patterns I finally broke this year. Familiarity can block welcoming new blessings. A long-time off/on/in between relationship was put to rest this year. Saying goodbye to relationships and friendships that don’t serve me in this season of my life was a gift this year. The transitions and goodbyes didn’t come without a period of grief and lament, but all relationships have seasons and sometimes letting go makes room for something new to blossom.
I am at peace with trusting my Knowing. My intention is magic and for far too long I was lukewarm to it and rather dismissive. I owe my intuition an apology for doubting her genius and wisdom. I’m sorry. Thanks for continuing to show up for me.
My 2020 vision board has this Norwegian Proverb: “In every woman there is a queen. Speak to the queen and the queen will answer.” When I first received this memo, I returned it to sender and failed to act. A year later, Queen Makiyah is ready for all the blessings 2022 has on deck.
Lagniappe: A Closing Gem from 2019 Vision Board
“You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself that you tasted as many as you could.” — Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum