I am for relationships in my future.

I want to be able to form and keep friendships I was able to form over the years with friends I have at NAMI Mercer NJ who also struggle with their difficult mental illness. I have been working since January 2016. I am back to work this September 2019. I will be working this semester. I also plan to retest for the Praxis Core Reading test next January 2020. Early in January I plan to retest and take the core reading test for the second time. I may try a third time to see if I pass. I may be able to pass this second time. I’m studying the Barron’s Praxis Core Exams and I will be studying it for the rest of this year. Early January 2020 is retest.

I discovered Alicia Keys in a music therapy group when I was at St. Francis Medical Center on the Psychiatric unit in Trenton, New Jersey back in the 2000s.

I really like Alicia Keys. I am around her age. I’m 38. I love singer/songwriters. I feel like they are cool for singing and especially if they are like Alicia and have fifteen Grammy awards and write their own songs. I like her music. I love how she plays the piano. She is so cool and she seems to be down to earth. I like how in one of her music videos she has on a nice outfit playing the piano. She has a Yamaha piano too. To be a pianist is something very cool and to write your own songs. I just like and admire Alicia Keys so much.

I had a health scare.

I was hospitalized for blood clots in my lungs and I was having anxiety too. I have been up since 7 am. I am going to be working on my writing. I am taking a course with The Institute of Children’s Literature. I am half way through my course. I need to work on my assignments and make them better. I will be in the library from 10 am to noon. Then I’m just going to chill until 12:30 pm a friend is picking me up and we’re going bowling and getting pizza.

I am so happy I am working at my alma mater as a Mentor.

I am happy to be able to help my Mentees. Some of them are African American and I work at Mercer. I try to be helpful to all of my Mentees. Some of them are Caucasian and others are Hispanic. They are all very nice and I have been able to connect with almost all of them. Sometimes when I meet a new Mentee at the beginning of the semester I introduce myself to them to familiarize myself with their names as well.

I like being able to say my blog was nominated for four blogger awards. I appreciate my supporters enough to support them in return. I try to think of how difficult experiences I have had in my life that were hard for me. I purposely focus on the positive aspects of my own situation and this is because I know there is power in positive thinking.

I started liking myself more as I got older. I could tell a difference in the way I felt about myself in my early 30s.

As a little girl, I was often bullied and teased a lot about having dark skin. I was always told I was “too black” or “too dark skin”. I remember being chosen last for a partner in gym class, and a lab partner for science class in high school. I feel good about myself in my early 40s but as a child, I was teased about my skin color mercilessly, and it was stressful for me as a child. I chose how I see myself as an adult. As a child, I was verbally abused a lot. I really like myself. I would not want to be like anyone else. I am really comfortable in my own skin. I like myself a lot. My illness didn’t take my positive self-image away. I try not to be too hard on myself. I was able to get to a good place. I made peace with my illness. I made peace with my past. I see myself as worthy of good things. However, I try not to get carried away with my spending. I am budgeting for my first used SUV. I am doing well. I slept well last night. My sleep is better. God healed me in my early 30s. I know God has good things in store for me.

I feel fabulous at forty-one.

As someone who had an early onset of mental illness, I remember my mental health unraveling during my sophomore year in high school. I thank God I had supportive parents and other people who offered me support. Though I am much older I am seeking more independence for myself. I want to get a used SUV by the end of this year. I want to start to budget more and spend less money. I have a good relationship with my parents. I live with my family. I try to reach out to relatives a few times a month. It was nice when someone suggested sending friend requests to family and people I socialize with in other social settings on Facebook. I am going on a driving lesson this Friday at 2:30 pm. I want my life. I have confidence in myself. I can do things!

I am motivated to spend my time at least doing volunteer work and working toward my goals.

I try to not have a lot of idle time on my hands. There is an expression that goes…Idleness is the devil’s playground. I try to not let too many impure thoughts get the best of me. I took the praxis core reading exam today this is my third attempt. I am praying I pass the exam. However, I will wait the specified amount of time three weeks before I go on ETS webpage. I will try to read a book and get halfway through the book in two or three weeks. I recently read a book by Pastor Joel Osteen’s newest book. You Are Stronger Than You Think. I get a lot of support from my mom, family, and friends. I try to help my mom do laundry and sometimes I cook. I try to let my mom know that she is appreciated. There was this song called Dear Mama that Tupac Shakur wrote that I liked because Tupac wrote a song for his mother Afeni Shakur. I think of how much my mom does for me that I try to show her appreciation and not demand she does more for me. I appreciate all of the kind things she did and she has always been supportive of me. Now that my parents are getting older I try to volunteer to do laundry and occasionally I cook for us.

I am a licensed NJ driver.

The key to independence for me is my driver’s license and a nice used car to get around with as my first car. I have been looking at cars and other vehicles online. I am driving my mom’s Honda CR-V once a week. The other day I drive is on Fridays. I pay a driving school to take me out and let me practice driving. I am a good driver. I make a few mistakes but I want to improve my driving a little bit more. I have had my probationary license for a little under two months. I feel like the key to my independence is a nice used car and my upgrade to a basic NJ four-year driver’s (auto) license. I can upgrade after practicing on my own for at least a twelve-month period. Next April I can upgrade to a basic four-year NJ driver’s (auto) license. I hope by the end of the summer I can get a little used Toyota Corolla or Toyota Camry as my first car. I am age 41. Being in my 40s feels good. I feel comfortable in my own skin.

Now Forever can begin.

I have had some tough days but I see the Hope on the horizon. I believe in God. I genuinely feel good about who I am. I try not to get too involved in anyone else’s business. I remember the timid bullied self-conscious child I was who never had a lot of friends and looked forward to seeing the few friends I had at school or in my neighborhood. I like me! For most of my life, I had mental health problems. I could barely keep my eyes open because I was drowsy and felt drugged up on the medications I was being prescribed. Now I have a license. I thank God I was able to make this big step when I did. I may be getting my first vehicle at the end of this month. I am excited. My mom said she will get me help to get a used vehicle for my personal use. I like the used Kia Sportage.

I have started to try to face my fear of driving.

People make excuses for everything. I am going to take life by the horns. I am not going to let anyone intimidate me. I am a good driver. I am a new driver but I drive well. I’m going to get a little help from my mom once a week with driving. My mom supports me by taking me out to practice driving her Honda CR-V. I like Honda. I will be driving twice a week. Some days I will just relax and read in my room. I am reading a new book by Pastor Joel Osteen. I am about a hundred pages into his new book. I like positive ministers. I believe in God. I always have. My faith is what grounds me and carries me through the difficulties I have in my life. I have my mom. my family and my friends. I am forcing myself not to withdraw from life. I try to push myself to socialize more. I got my license. I need a car. My mom said in June I can get a car. I am looking at used cars online. I hope to get a used car by Labor Day weekend. Then I’ll go back to school.

I feel like I can carry on with my life because I like myself a lot and as I aged my self-esteem improved a lot.

As a child, I was bullied a lot. I enjoy writing about my experiences. I wrote poetry from age 9 or age 10 as a way to escape the bullying I experienced. Other children were horrible to me as a child about my skin color and basically, everything I did was criticized. I had hurt feelings. I feel sad sometimes but now that I am older I am glad that I had successes older doing cool things I enjoyed. I love my mom and family, but I make time for myself. I got so comfortable in my own skin as an older person that I am glad about it and I embrace what makes me unique. I try not to compare myself to others. I like myself a lot. I feel good on the inside about myself. I wouldn’t want to be like anyone else. It feels good to make that declaration. I am unique and there’s nobody else like me!

I was able to pass the road test on my fourth attempt.

I got my probationary auto license a week ago. I will get a few more driving lessons and in addition to that I will drive with my mom in the passenger seat to practice driving. I will be going out for a driving lesson this Friday. I want to buy my first vehicle by this summer. I want a used SUV. I like Honda HR-Vs. My mom drives a popular vehicle the Honda CR-V and I have driven my mom’s SUV a few times. I may continue to get some experience driving my mom’s Honda CR-V and then by Labor day weekend this year I hope I can buy my first used vehicle like a Toyota RAV4 or a Honda HR-V. I am glad I am driving. I am age 41 now. I will try to drive three or four days a week but I will not drive every day. I will have at least two or three days to chill out and not drive. I do not want to over-exert myself. I need to take care of myself by making sure I sleep well and I go to bed by 10 pm.

I was able to pass my road test on the fourth attempt.

I am proud of myself that on Friday, April 22, 2022 I was able to pass the road test on my fourth attempt. I am driving. I enjoy driving. I even paid for a few more lessons. Last Saturday I paid for a road refresher. I drove for two hours with a driving school. I enjoy driving a lot. I can’t drive every day. This Sunday is Mother’s day. I got my mom a nice gift and an e-card that will be sent to my mom’s email. I got my mom a nice denim jacket for spring that she can use. My mom’s birthday is two weeks away. I hope she likes the gifts I got her. I try to buy my mom a few nice gifts every year. We may get takeout lunch from a restaurant on Mother’s day for myself, my mom, and my stepfather Neil. I lost like forty pounds on my own. I hope to lose forty or fifty more pounds on my own. I did it on my own. I eliminated meat from my diet. I do a little Yoga. I try to walk a few times a week.