Going Deeper In…


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Going Deeper Into My Journey

I can’t begin to impress upon you how being a part of Her Nation and reading the book When I Am Her has impacted my life but I am going to try.

I have always been a very shy person and ALWAYS worried about what people thought of me. As a teenager I allowed my insecurities to hold me back. At my heart I wanted to try out for dance team, I wanted to sing a solo in choir, I wanted to try out for the lead role in the school play; but I never did. Every time I thought I had the courage to do it that little voice of negativity would sneak in. Self-hate became my life. That voice always there reminding me that I wasn’t good enough, I was to fat, and everyone would laugh at me.  I spent many days in tears, so confused and feeling alone.

The people I went to school with would probably tell you I was a happy, upbeat person, if not a little irritating with how hyper me and my best friend at the time could be. What they saw though was a first class, A performance on my stage of life. What people didn’t know about me was that I felt so lost and alone that I felt like I was falling deeper and deeper into the darkness and I was scared as hell that I would not find my way out. It was at this time in my life that I started seeing a counselor.

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My counselor saved my life. When I first started going to see her I was in such a state of depression I just didn’t want to be alive anymore and I honestly didn’t think anyone would really notice had I disappeared. But this beautiful woman showed me away out, she listened, she didn’t judge, and she showed me love.

So you can see I was not that stable when it came to my emotions, my self-esteem, or how I handled things. As I got older I went from wanting to kill myself to hiding behind my weight and my children. I hid from life. Actually no I stopped living period. I stopped working, got married, and started having kids. I wrapped myself up in my family so I didn’t have to deal with the outside world.

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I began to avoid anything that involved the possibility of running into people I used to know. I pulled further and further away from the things and people who made me happy. I started wearing frumpy clothes and not really caring what I looked like. I simply was not happy.

At some point in my 30’s I finally started to make little changes. I started wanting to claim my life again but I was still hiding, still not really letting go and living. Then my Mom’s cancer got worse and we were told she only had a couple of months to live. That jogged something inside of me and made me start working just a little harder for me. I wanted her to see I would be okay and she didn’t have to worry about me anymore.

During this time of dealing with my mother’s coming passing, my marriage was also slowly falling apart. I was fighting tooth and nail to keep my head above water but I was slowly drowning again. This time though I had no counselor to turn to and I couldn’t talk to my Mom cause she was already going through so much. So I suffered in silence and prayed that God would light my path and lead me out of this darkness that was encompassing me yet again.

Okay so let’s fast forward to present day. My Mom has now passed away and with that came more change for me. Her passing was an eye opener to me that if I didn’t start living I would die with nothing. I started taking more baby steps to rebuild my life and find myself again. I was on my path, my journey to finding myself again, when I met Chivon Morris. I instantly liked her but it took us awhile to actually build a friendship.

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I remember the first time we actually hung out outside of church, she invited me to lunch and we talked forever. She had all these ideas and dreams and in talking to her I could tell she was going to make something of herself. At the time she hadn’t written a book or started Her Nation, she was working on another business of hers. I will admit, I remember being a little envious of her dreams and passions because at the time I didn’t have any. I didn’t even know what I wanted.

But as we developed a friendship, she began to plant seeds in my life I’m not sure she even realized she was planting. Funny thing is she is younger than me, so really I should have been planting the seeds in her life. But God put Chivon in my life just when I needed her and she poured herself into me without hesitation.

Now this is where you realize that for me Her Nation is Chivon Morris. Our friendship is where it started, her natural desire to build people up wasn’t something she could hide or not do. She did it without thinking. She evoked thought in anyone she talked to, she asked questions, and she showed genuine interest. To me this is a rarity this day and age.

One day we were sitting in a Starbucks talking, we had actually met because we were going to write together, but she started asking me tons of questions about me. How I saw myself, how I envisioned my life, what I looked like when I closed my eyes, what my character was like. One question after another until she had created this vision of the life I dreamed of. Something I had been unable to do all these years, having lost the passion and lacking the desire to really dream. But after one cup of chai tea and a very lengthy sit down talk with my girl Chivon I walked out of Starbucks feeling hope and believing that I could become something more. Okay I might have thought we were a bit crazy at the time too but we all need a little crazy in our lives. J

After that day life changed for both Chivon and I. In that little coffee shop she had created her first exhercise for her book. Now I’m not going to tell you her story or how the book came to be if you want to know that you need to pick up a copy of When I Am Her and read for yourself. What I will tell you though is that the best thing about this journey with Chivon is that we are not alone, we have each other. As we grow, as we become more of our HER we have each other to lean on and to celebrate with, to cry with, to encourage and that my dear friend is what Her Nation is about.

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Since becoming a part of not just Chivon’s life but a part of Her Nation my life has taken unexpected turns. I’ve grown. I’ve shed insecurities. I’ve learned to dream again. I’ve seen what I can be and I’m reaching for it. I invite you to join me. Your first step is to buy the book, read it with an open heart and have a willingness to see a better life for yourself. I believe whole heartedly that together one woman at a time we can become a Her Nation.

If you are interested in knowing more please check out www.chivonmorris.com or www.thehernation.com

I will keep you updated on my journey, I hope to see you there!

Xoxoxo TJ

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4 thoughts on “Going Deeper In…

  1. Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your story. You were always so hard on yourself. When I look at you, I think, “All those pictures in high school and she was full of such self-hate, but she was adorable.” And your hair? What I wouldn’t do for that! I’m happy to hear you’re much happier now. Your mother must be smiling.

    • Thank you so much Jennifer I hope my Mom is smiling down at me. The first picture and the end picture are me now and what I am doing with her nation the two in the middle are highschool.

      • AND you don’t age! 🙂
        You are just beautiful. The pictures of the Her nation are super cool and creative. I especially like the ones with all of you from the back, united. Makes a powerful statement.

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