Being Present

I graduated from the real estate associate program and received a job offer after five interview rounds with a technology firm! I am really excited to start with this new company and my new role. After nine months of job searching, I’ve found a role that aligns with both my career and personal goals.

The last 10 weeks were a whirlwind of evening classes 2-3 nights per week, networking events, in-person and phone informational interviews, multiple video and in-person interviews.

The following week after my program I told myself, “Request more informational interviews, and conduct extensive preparation for my first day at work.” – Self

However, that did not happen.

Instead, I started my Thanksgiving vacation early. I relaxed at home, made a list of holiday films and series to watch for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I went to Walmart, scoured every food aisle to find Pirouette’s cinnamon sticks and found french vanilla, chocolate fudge and chocolate hazelnut flavors much to my chagrin.

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Overcoming My Fear

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was listed in my YouTube feed shortly after Diahann Carroll passed. Initially, I was hesitant to watch the film. I knew it was about Maya Angelou’s childhood and took place in the 1930’s/1940’s. However, I was afraid of witnessing sexual assault and lynchings.

My first thought was, “I don’t want to watch our [Black] trauma. I don’t want to see our [Black] murders or violations.”

I knew both Jim Crow laws and the Ku Klux Klan was alive and well. I knew Black Southerners were living in constant fear. I didn’t want to go to that place mentally or emotionally. 

But I decided to watch because I could learn something. If I acknowledged the challenges the protagonist faced and kept an open mind to identify her triumphs, there was joy to be seen. As an avid reader, writer and public speaker, I wanted to learn how Marguerite found her voice. In addition, I wanted to support Angelou’s literature and legacy.

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The Song That Motivates Me

Last night, I was driving down I-285 West from my commercial real estate course with my SoundCloud playlist on shuffle. After pressing the Forward button on my Honda CR-V sound system, Upgrade by Logic filled my car. Interestingly enough, it reminded me of several phases in my life.

It took me back to January 2016. I was sitting at my desk in my Winston Salem apartment during midnight listening to Logic’s entire The Incredible True Story album. I had written a 9-page poem about family pathologies, how it forms and how it affects current generations.

I listened to Upgrade as a self-affirmation. The song motivated me throughout my Spring semester of graduate school. It highlighted Logic’s rising success monetarily and his new, heightened perspective on his own life.

I’ve upgraded while they’ve waited
Will they love it, will they hate it
Never fade it I evade it
Cause I never really want to complicate it


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