Keep Growing!

“I am the most important person in the world to me. I accept that person, I admire that person and I’ll do everything in my power to see that person’s dreams come true.” ~Ciara Lee (see the full TEDx here)

November has been full of manifestation realization. Come through PopPop and Uncle Donald. November is the month that two of my best friends transitioned. I started the month off with a visit to Yeyeo Botanica to get some goods to help me get connected and stand in my power.  I’ve made moves towards financial freedom and heard the shift in self-awareness in my boys.  I’ve created more space for me to fully accept ME and go hard for me to see all my dreams come true (hence the affirmation above that I’ve been reciting in the mirror EVERY day for the last 2ish months). 

Let’s start with a money celebration. This month I paid my car off. That’s right I paid off my Toyota, $7000 paid. That is 22 months early!! Meaning I’ve saved myself some interest and I no longer have a car payment. Now here’s the thing, I am now left wondering where do I focus now? My ultimate goal is to live freely. To be financially independent in a way that will allow me to be led by my boys and to access the things in life that bring us joy and be able to help others access that as well without having money as a hindrance. And of course build wealth for generations to come all while helping my children have a better relationship with money. So here’s the dilemma. I wanted to buy a house and I’ve been saving up to buy this house but now I feel like I need to put that money towards my $110,000 worth of student loan debt 😳. This debt was driving me crazy but not anymore. I just need to have a plan which starts with making a decision. Do I decide to focus on my debt and continue to rent or do I buy a home and build equity NOW? Decisions decisions…Most of me says that I need to focus on the student loan debt and then save again for a down payment on a house. Another part of me says to get a house. My children (and I) want to live in something that is ours. I’m very proud of what I’ve been through with my financial literacy in a way that has put me in a situation that allows me to be able to choose where I put my money. For a long time I lived paycheck to paycheck and I’m no longer doing that so hooray to me for that🙌🏾‼  What would you do? Buy the house or focus on the student loans and be COMPLETELY debt free first?

Now there is the parenting. For the last couple of years I’ve been being way more intentional about parenting in a more peaceful and kind way. I’ve asked my children how I’m doing as I continue to learn and grow. I read books, have chats and listen to podcasts. And I spent more time with myself to see what were some of the things I experienced growing up and I don’t want my children to experience and what I experienced that I’d love for my children. Focusing on their social and emotional well-being is where I am right now and this is challenging.  I’m often triggered by some of their actions, less now than before but still. Mindfulness is a practice that I’ve been working on as a woman and now it is coming to my being as a parent as well. It was one situation that happened this month that really has me floating still. We had just returned home from the grocery store. There was a lot of energy that had me feeling all kinds of jumpy and out of sorts. I was screaming in the car more than I have been lately. I kind of beat myself up a little bit when I yell at my kids too much these days. We walked in the house and I dropped everything and removed my shoes. As I closed my eyes and put my head back I took a deep inhale. I felt my older son’s arm rub up against mine. Before I could open my eyes I heard him, in a gentle but firm voice, “mommy let’s do 3 x 3.” (3 x 3 is a mindfulness technique we’ve been focusing on). And so I followed his lead. We inhaled and exhaled together as we named 3 items in our space. I wanted to JUMP for joy but instead I stayed in the now. Before I could turn to him and squeeze him and probably do WAY TOO MUCH, he just bumped my arm, quickly blurted “I love you mommy” and ran off. The fact that he saw where I was and knew I needed  something to bring me to the present was the nudge I needed to JUST KEEP GOING.  He just warmed my heart.  It was while I was putting the groceries away that I began to reflect. I’m winning here. I’m winning as a mom. My child is very aware of how to help me regulate using an activity that I thought he was paying no attention to. He brought it to my attention which allowed me to be more patient and trusting of him and myself.

So those are two wins for me this November. I’m sharing these not necessarily to brag, or maybe it is to brag just a little 🤪. I hope you receive this as me encouraging you to trust your children and trust yourself. Keep going, keep growing and keep shining.

Keep Growing - Jennifer Dukes Lee

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