Rebirth: Dancing Out of the Ashes

For most of 2016 I haven’t posted to this blog… Was it that there wasn’t much to say? Or that I had outgrown this venture… No that wouldn’t quite describe my recent activities because while some things have changed, others have remained the same –

I’m still waiting on God to meet my husband and start my biological family…

Having to wait so long was starting to take its toll, hence the gut wrenching tears that found their way from the depths of my soul out of my eyes, at the start of 2016… But then something shifted…

I began school to become a dance minister (November 2015) and it stirred something within me – something that had always been there but had finally made its way to the surface… I really wanted to pursue my passion for dance.

So writing was neglected as I chased my love of dance. 2016 found me studying to become a dance minister, taking dance classes at a local dance studio, and even enrolling as a dance minor student at a local university! There was dance, dance, and MORE DANCE! AND I Loved it! Ballet, Jazz, Modern, and Hip Hop!

I felt invigorated and more alive than I had ever felt!

  • I graduated from dance ministry school in October 2016 (…even completed my dance final on pointe (who would have thought I’d be back in toe shoes! Haven’t danced in toe shoes since the age of 10!!))
  • I have continued with my university dance minor (I’m about half way through!)
  • And at the end of this month I will be performing a ballet piece with my local dance studio

My dance love and purpose have given me inspiration and hope, as I continue to wait for my husband and family… It appears that dance, in many ways, brought me BACK TO LIFE…

And now that I’ve gotten so many things accomplished with dance, I figured it was time to get back to writing – which means blogging more regularly and working on two different book ideas.

I guess that’s all for now. But how serendipitous that I am writing my first entry, in quite some time, on the day that the Savior arose from the dead. Maybe it’s symbolic.

“Sometimes you have to kind of die inside in order to rise from your own ashes and believe in yourself and love yourself to become a new person.”
― Gerard Way

 

“The phoenix must burn to emerge.”
― Janet Fitch

 

“When love awakens in your life, in the night of your heart, it is like the dawn breaking within you. Where before there was anonymity, now there is intimacy; where before there was fear, now there is courage; where before in your life there was awkwardness, now there is a rhythm of grace and gracefulness; where before you used to be jagged, now you are elegant and in rhythm with your self. When love awakens in your life, it is like a rebirth, a new beginning.”
― John O’Donohue

 

 

 

Father Boyle, Anxiety, & Healing Wounds

I sat listening intently as Father Greg Boyle provided his keynote luncheon speech to a captive audience. As he spoke, I jotted notes wanting to capture the nuggets of wisdom woven throughout his humorous and candid talk. However, in the midst of writing down pointers, I began to focus more on his delivery and energy. I took note of tone, pitch, inflection of speech, as well as the spacing of jokes that peppered his lecture. There I was the eager student hanging on to the words of the sage teacher. Absorbing all I could because I have already envisioned the day when I would be the invited keynote speaker…

Yes, that’s my vision and where I am directing my efforts and energies, to be a well-renowned motivational speaker. Though my dream is a tall order, I have lived a life that has taught me that:

It is the impossible that is quite possible!

So I continue to reach for the stars… And for those moments where I begin to doubt myself, I just reflect on how far I’ve already come.

I reflect back on the Donna of my yester-years. Seemingly outspoken and high achieving, yet on the inside I was a worrier, a loner, and a seeker of avoiding any and all the things that drew attention to myself. Any one who knew me when, can attest that I was notorious for burying my head in a book!

Yet, fast forward 25 years, and now I stand before others, providing them with the tools necessary to bring children out of their shell – kids locked inside of themselves, just like I was…

anxiety-quotes1

Father Boyle shared various points that I shall cherish. However, the statement that resonated with me most:

We must heal wounds to heal the wounded

I can attest to that… it was through the process of unleashing my own voice, of learning to get comfortable of being front-and-center, that I can now share that wisdom with others…

We must heal wounds to heal the wounded

I challenge you to pursue your own self-growth. Where are your shortcomings? What’s your Achilles heel? Identify it, accept it, and allow the healing process to happen, for when you do not only will it help you; it will equip you to help others!

As we cherish this time of the holidays where we focus on giving, let’s give to others the greatest gifts possible: the gift of acceptance, the gift of understanding, the gift of hope, and the gift of love.

large

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

I am a Gardener: a planter of greenery, life, and dreams.

I arose this morning to a blue, cloudless sky. There was a gentle breeze and birds chirping, as the sun kissed my cheeks. Today was Arbor Day, a day of nurturance and promoting the GROWTH of our beloved Earth. This was the first Arbor Day that I decided to take an active part. I participated in a garden project with my beloved sorority Alpha Kappa Alpha, Inc.

Our task for the day was to rake mulch and plant flowers. There I was crouched down, and as I held the soil I felt a sense of PEACE. It felt good to get back to basics and travel back to a simpler time in life when I could just play in the dirt. We each took to our individual activities and when two hours rolled around the project was done. I stepped back to assess what had transpired and was amazed to see that our final product had beautified the area. We were finished. As I walked to my car, I marveled at the awesome morning I had experienced. And it was in that moment I stopped to take stock of things. I felt a sense of pride because I finally created for myself an existence that included taking time to PLANT LIFE.

However, these plants meant more to me than their physical ability to beautify the area. These plants were actually an indication of faith. You may wonder FAITH? How could a simple act of planting, demonstrate faith? Well, because you put the green leaves in the ground expecting them to grow, trusting them to thrive into something bigger and stronger than their humble beginnings. If we can do that with leaves, why can’t we do the same with our own lives?

As I drove home the song Help Me Believe by Kirk Franklin came on the radio. I reflected on those lyrics and thought about how they coincided with my morning’s planting. Kirk sings:

I wanna believe

But I’m having a hard time seeing past what I see right now

His words reminded me that some times when things haven’t YET happened, it’s easy to give up and turn back! It seems so simple to give up on your dreams and walk away from your heart’s desires!

But, just as planting involves faith, having the determination to continue pursuing one’s dreams will also require faith! And that’s exactly what I plan to do, going after EACH and EVERY dream! Will you join me?

Let’s plant in faith and watch a beautiful future, unfold.

Life According to Me,

Dr. Donna

www.donnadoctora.com

Twitter: donnadoctora6

New Beginnings

Have you ever sat on the fringes of a breakthrough? In nervous anticipation of the next step that was on the horizon… Well that is where I am… right now, in this very moment. Looking ahead at a transformation that is sure to come… There is so much in the works, that I’m not even sure where to begin.

1) my memoir that is in progress

2) a budding new relationship

3) a newly born private practice

4) my improved physical health and physique

5) my head full of hair (this was not always the case!)

6) several new part-time contracting opportunities

No matter which aspect of my life that I focus on right now – I see new growth EVERYWHERE! It’s amazing, because I once obsessed over the fact that I desired to be a biological mother, by now… However, though I have not yet had a child, new life is cropping up all around me and that feels wonderful. New life in my career, New life in my relationships, and even New life on my head!

“So I decided to take a moment to appreciate the new life that is taking place all around me. To acknowledge the newness that stands before me. And to be thankful for new beginnings” Dr. Donna

 Although newness is refreshing and desired, it can also be scary because there is so much uncertainty. I believe the fear of the unknown is what keeps so many of us stuck. We are afraid to do a new thing. So we allow the familiar to bring us comfort, even when that familiarity means living a life that is lacking, wanting, and limited.

I finally arrived to a place in my life, where I decided to no longer allow fear to be the determining factor. I have made peace with the unfamiliar, trusting that with it comes the beauty of chance, potential, and newfound possibilities.

So you may wonder what has helped me to gain the courage to step out – to open myself up to new things… There have been many steps I’ve taken over the last few years to arrive at this place. However, the 3 most important things that I did, I will describe using the acronym NEW:

N Never give up – never quit. Being persistent and steadfast was indeed a very crucial part of helping me to shed all of the old dead weight so that I could move into this new phase of life. Never accept never… In other words, even when you hear a no – keep going until you get a yes!

E Energize – finding things to renew my energy and my strength was a pivotal piece. My hobbies, my talents, and my faith in God each have helped to restore me when my energy was depleted.

W Wish and Wait without Worry – This last one was the hardest of them all for me… Getting to a place where I continued to wish (have hope) and wait (have patience) for the things I desired without feeling angst and worry that things had not happened yet, was indeed Tough! However, I have learned that finding that place of peace within is an important step in getting one’s heart’s desires.

So I sit here typing my first blog post and reflecting at all of the other new beginnings in my life. It feels great to be at the starting point of this new phase in my life journey.