2016 was a very emotional year for me. I lost a little, gained a lot, and sacrificed a great deal. It was a year of many lessons, but a good year nonetheless. I lost my long term relationship (which I thought I was going to be in forever). I gained a newfound confidence, an amazing apartment & lifestyle, strength I didn’t know I had, and learned a ton more about myself. I lost fake friends, gained back friends whom really support me, and still struggle to this day with me and my mother’s relationship. There were so many changes, but I have never been afraid of change. I know change is needed in order to grow. I got very busy in my career, worked some good gigs, and became extremely focused on my life goals. 2016 was a year of clarity for me.
I prayed to God for clarity after my relationship ended and concluded that I was with an abusive toxic person who didn’t truly love me. How could I have been so blind? I trusted and loved openheartedly and my greatest fear became true. In the end, however, I gained a lot of knowledge of self from that situation and I am grateful for that. I have never been so sure about who I am.
I continue to struggle with my relationship with my mother because she is not very supportive of my decision to be a serious actor and study my craft. I am crying as I write this because I have been dealing wth this issue for at least 10 years. It hurts so badly that she is not my biggest fan or supporter and she does not understand that. I love her so much and she has sacrificed abundantly for me to be successful while my dad has been virtually absent. So it troubles me that she does not fully show her pride about me, to me. It is a huge self-esteem killer. It’s weird because when she sees me on TV she’ll be my biggest cheerleader for that season, but after a few months she’s pressuring me again to go back to school and choose a more practical life route. I understand her concerns honestly but I am truly happy when I am doing the work I’m passionate about. I refuse to break and go down a path that does not make me happy. I refuse to be anything but myself.
My ex tried to change me as well. He basically wanted me to quit acting and get a more traditional job. I tried to compromise by just working a lot harder to expedite my career results and it worked! At least for me. I made a little more money, booked so much more work, commercials, film, and tv jobs as a result from that pressure. I took it as motivation. However, it just didn’t suffice for him. He gave up on me and I cut him off completely after feeling utterly depleted from the criticism.
Alas I persevered! I bought a new car, signed a new lease to an amazing apartment, and paid down a lot of debt with my own credit and ambition. Throughout it all, I realized that few will truly love me unconditionally and fully understand me. I just ask that everybody respect my life goals, the desires in my heart, and let me deal with my own decisions. I think at the end of the day, I make great decisions based on what I truly want for my life.
I am not the typical pretty Black girl from Texas. I am not a pageant queen. I am not a law student. I am not pre-med. I am not a follower. I am not a hoe. I am not a baby mama. I am not the typical LA girl. I have my own identity. I am very proud of who I am. At the end of the day, I love myself! I have a heap of confidence. I know what I want. I’m doing it differently. I am not worried. I have God in my life and in my corner, always have. I have had a strong relationship with my creator for 10 years (don’t ask questions just know this). I have faith in myself. My faith is unbreakeable. So why is everyone so bothered? Do me a favor and love me or leave me the phuck alone. Let me do me.
If my confidence, talent, and intelligence makes you uncomfortable, I do not apologize. Get used to it because guess what? I’ma only get better with time. I’ma keep doing me. I will not change. I am a triple Lion: Leo. LMU Lion. I have a Lion’s mane. I am a Black Queen. And no matter what I go through, I will not become bitter. I will not become jaded. I will not be ungrateful of my blessings. I will always be proud to be Etalvia.
DeVon Franklin & Meagan Good appear on Oprah’s SuperSoul Sunday discussing their New York Times Best Seller: The Wait. So profound and an amazing testimony. Check it out!
Full Episode: http://www.oprah.com/video_embed.html?article_id=64926
I just wanna say I really admire couples who wait to have sex until marriage. That is pretty much unheard of in this day & age of instant gratification and our sex-saturated world. I am considering being celibate again and waiting for God’s best man to enter my life. I only hope I can be disciplined and patient enough to see that purpose out. It’s hard. But I am considering it with God’s strength. Pray For Me! -Vashé
U betta werk Ciara & Russell! 🙌💍
I’ve been reflecting on so many things lately in the mist of a lot of uncertainty. The past few days I was lacking my normal ambitious determined energy. I thought maybe I didn’t have the same motivation to pursue my passions anymore. I had just driven back from working in Vegas and was feeling unmotivated in general. Then, I got a sore throat, lost my half my voice, and got sick. I’m doing a lil better since I slept longer last night and I’m doing more work now. But I knew something was up. Looking back in hindsight, I think I’m just a little burnt out. I’ve been grinding my ass off for years and never took a real vacation – away from LA, away from my real life, away from my work. I couldn’t have planned this trip to Miami at a more perfect time! I’ve got the next three weeks to wrap some things up I’ve been working on and prepare for tropical beach weather, suntanning, and Caribbean food. I’m so excited! Sometimes your body is tryna tell you something. In my case, my body’s like TAKE A DAMN VACAY! Lol.
I just wanted to drop a quick article about the most successful “diet” I’ve tried (and still currently on). I put diet in “quotations” because I strongly believe in eating healthy as a lifestyle and not depending on different diets here & there to lose weight. In other words, dieting to me suggests an inconsistency in eating habits. So I bring up this “diet” or healthy eating guide because it has been very effective for me. I thought to blog about it in hopes to help someone else looking for a more permanent remedy. This “diet” is great for someone who can’t go or has tried being vegan or vegetarian, but can’t fully live without fish, meat, or dairy (like me lol). Also, I’m not getting paid to blog about this. I’m simply sharing what I genuinely like and use right now.
Introducing Eat Right 4 Your Type by Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo! This “diet” or guide to healthy eating gives food suggestions based on each blood type and how many times per week each food group should be consumed. I have been using this guide for 5 years now and I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been! I just got back from the doctor a few weeks ago and the results from my physical were great! No cholesterol problems, no diabetes, no high blood pressure, and no cancer cells (btw, I’m 26 years old if you were wondering). I believe in taking good care of yourself, your body, hair, skin, nails, and mental health at an early age so your good health can be sustained throughout your life. My family has a long history of diabetes, cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer, and mental health issues so I take health VERY seriously. I’m also from Texas so our past eating habits as a family were filled with heavy meats, spicy foods, lots of dairy, bread, sugar, and high sodium. So that’s where all the poor health came from most likely. These days, my family is a lot more aware of the causes of our health problems and we have improved our eating habits recently. So that’s why I recommend this guide to healthy eating (or “diet,” however you wanna look at it).
I have struggled in the past to keep up with it since the foods I was used to were so dramatically different than what this book was suggesting I eat. But I have gotten back on it and the results are always consistent! I always drop inches (not necessarily weight) on my waist and lower body, my muscles are more defined so I’m leaner, I always have so much more energy, and my skin starts to glow more. I also stay consistent with a cheat day once a week (I choose to cheat on Saturdays) in order to reward myself for a healthy week well done. My cheat days are usually a reminder that I need to go back to my “diet” because my body will react differently to unhealthy foods. So overtime, I have eaten healthier and healthier because my body clearly loves the healthier food better. It’s just my taste buds that wanted the fried chicken, hot cheetos, or fried rice for that moment. That is why I recommend having a cheat day once a week to ween yourself off of unhealthy foods slowly if you are having trouble sticking to healthy eating consistently. As always, discipline and exercise are great supplements to aid in the process. I would recommend working out 3 times a week on average.
A little more about my “diet”: I am type A so my diet is heavily vegetable and fruit based. However, I eat smaller portions of fish, dark chocolate, chicken, and turkey as well throughout the week. There were so many suggestions in the book that opened my mind to different types of vegetables, fruits, condiments, & grains to eat. I don’t have to always eat the same thing over and over. Plus, the book tells you exactly what type of foods are highly beneficial to your body, what’s neutral, and what you should absolutely avoid eating. It is so valuable to know what to avoid eating because you may be allergic to that type of food or your system digests that food slowly which may be why it puts weight on you or makes you bloat. For example, I can eat pineapples all day but I should avoid bananas. Most people would think bananas were harmless but I can’t eat them on the regular. When I cut bananas out of my regimen, I saw results immediately. So it’s helpful to know specifically what is actually good for your body inside out because popular belief may have you thinking it is all healthy and good in general. This guide is more personalized.
Some of the blood types do better with a meatier diet; you just have to find out for yourself (example above). I suggest you call your doctor to find out your blood type, esp. if you’ve done blood work recently as it should be on file. And I highly recommend this Eat Right For Your Type guide to healthy eating because it comes in a small compact book that you can throw in your bag or small purse and use often. It gets straight to the point and is not complicated to follow. I think I got it from Borders or Barnes & Noble, but I’ve seen it on Amazon too. Good luck to you and your healthy lifestyle & nutrition journey! Hope this helps.