Good Morning! I want to get right into today’s blog post topic because I have been seeing links and posts related to this topic for the past week and it has been on my mind heavy to discuss my personal experiences as it relates to being the fixer in relationships. After going to a men’s only discussion this past Saturday, I realized that when men aren’t ready to be in a committed relationship, they will not put in the time and effort it takes for the relationship to work. Some may stick around for the sex or convenience of the relationship but their actions makes it clear as to what their intentions really are. In the past, instead of paying attention to their actions, (or lack of inaction in many cases) I would try to “fix” whatever I saw that was broken in them or their situation in hopes that they would come to the light and realize that I was the woman of their dreams. Now I don’t need to tell you how that worked out lmao but what I realized that instead of trying to fix someone else, I needed to fix what what broken inside of me.
Growing up, I always had self-esteem issues. I felt inadequate and less than all throughout high school because I was the quintessential geek (had the glasses, braces and awkwardness that goes with it!) even though I thought that I could start fresh by moving to Atlanta for college, those insecurities still lingered and exposed themselves when I entered into a relationship with my first boyfriend while in college. He was my first everything and because I thought that I didn’t deserve because him of his good looks and accomplishments, I ignored the warning signs that he exhibited early on. He had a terrible temper and would get mad at me for the littlest things and would be emotionally manipulative in order to deflect from his is flaws and misgivings. I was young and naive and didn’t realize how he used my inexperience and insecurities to his advantage so instead of speaking up for myself and knowing my worth, I attempted to fix whatever it was that was broken inside of him because I felt responsible for his actions (crazy right!). So when he would get mad at me for getting a flat tire after leaving the movies, (even though he knew the tire was already losing air and the trip to the movies was on my dime) I would accept responsibility and apologize profusely. When he accused me of flirting with another man even though I was having a casual conversation with the husband of one of my friend’s guests, I would get defensive and try to explain myself not realizing that this was his guilt coming out because he was cheating on me. My own brokenness and insecurities blinded me from the truth and when I finally saw the relationship for what it was and decided to leave, the damage had already been done.
In the relationships and situation ships that followed, I excelled at being “Ms. Fix It”. One of the guys I was talking to even nicknamed me “Angel’ because he felt that I was a bright light in his life and someone that he could lean on for support when things weren’t going right. In my last situationship, I desperately tried to get the man I was seeing to open up to me and let me in. He was obviously broken and because I loved him and wanted to see him happy, I settled and put my feelings and needs aside to accommodate him. It became a relationship of convenience because everything was fit around his time and schedule. I felt like an option and an afterthought and the insecurities that continued to linger from all those years ago started to come out and confrontations about why he wasn’t able to fully commit to me went nowhere. This was emotionally draining and went on for years until I finally realized that the only broken person I am responsible for fixing is myself. I cannot control what anyone else says or does but I can control the access I let them have into my life. When I decided to let him go and make myself a priority, a weight was lifted off of me. I was able to start doing the work that was necessary in order to rebuild my life and my self-worth and although I am not where I want to be, I am definitely doing a whole lot better than I used to. Relinquishing the title of “Ms. Fix It” has been liberating and rewarding and unlike the times in the past, I am the one that benefits from putting in the work!
I know that many of you are guilty of being the fixer in your lives. Fixing is not limited to romantic relationships either because so many of us try to fix our family and friends that are broken and we end up losing pieces of ourselves in the process. When your know better, you do better so I hope that anyone who is going through this understands that you should have to break yourself down to build someone else up. Much love to you all and I will be back with a new post next week. Have a great weekend and remember to love and live luxuriously!
Good Afternoon! I watched the “Light Girls” documentary on OWN last night and wanted to express all the things that were running through my mind while watching. I didn’t comment on the “Dark Girls” documentary because I didn’t feel like I could completely relate to what the women on the documentary were saying but after watching the “Light Girls” documentary, I realized that I can’t completely relate to the “light-skinned” women and their experiences either. My mom is a beautiful brown-skinned woman who I’ve been told that I favor on countless occasions but my father was very light-skinned. People used to tell him that he favored Smokey Robinson pretty hazel eyes and all! When I was younger, classmates would ask if he was white because of his light complexion. Most of the relatives on my father’s side of the family were just as light and some could pass for white. I remember one experience when I was with my grandfather at the supermarket and I ran into a coworker of mine who waved when we walked by. When I saw my coworker at work the next day, he asked me who was that “white man” I was with the day before and when I told him that was my grandfather, he didn’t believe me. As a result of growing around people who were considered “light-skinned” in my eyes, I never saw myself as light because many of my family members had a much lighter complexion than me. It wasn’t until my young adult life that I was placed in the light-skinned/redbone/yellow complexion category. When I would wear long weaves, people would ask me if I was mixed and the guy that I am currently seeing jokingly calls me “light brite” and “yellow cake” because he swears that I am of a lighter complexion than he is.
Being “light” was never something that I felt I should be proud of. My mom as I stated before is brown-skinned and my maternal grandmother had the most beautiful chocolate complexion that I’ve ever seen. Beauty, in my eyes was how you carried yourself and skin color had nothing to do with it. It bothers me that we are still having this conversation in 2015. I feel like we can’t even begin to properly deal with racial discrimination until we address the colorism within our own community. Instead of putting people on pedestals or insulting them if they are light or dark, we need to talk about why we are focusing on skin color in the first place. It all stems from racism as far back as slavery and although it has been 150 years since slavery ended, the pain from the emotional wounds still linger. I know it is easier said than done but we must address the real issues that are more than skin deep.
I think we can all start by learning how to truly love ourselves. It is hard to not let appearance be a reason but we need to focus on being the best version of ourselves by changing what is on the inside. Once we learn to love and embrace our differences and accept others’ differences and be happy with what God has blessed us with, we can grow as individuals and as human beings. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. famously said “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” Even though Dr. King was speaking about the judgment outside of the black community, we need to work on the judgment within the black community so we can begin the healing process.
Always remember to love and live luxuriously!
Hey everyone! I didn’t forget to do Day 2 of the 30 days of truth because it is very easy for me to be truthful about what I love about myself. I love that I am driven, passionate and when I set my mind to getting what I want, I give my all. This site is the perfect example of that. It started out as a way to vent but myself and others saw that it could be something greater and 3 years later, I have gotten to meet so many people and interview celebrities and I am not even 30 yet! I am so blessed and thankful for never limiting myself to others’ expectations but to grow and evolve, I need to be honest with myself and let some things in the past go. I had a crazy dream last night about someone from my past and I felt that this would be the perfect story to share and hopefully in sharing it, I could let the situation go and forgive myself in the process.
There was this guy in high school that i had a massive crush on. He seemed to like me but not as strongly as I felt for him but unlike experiences with guys in the past, he always complimented me and encouraged me to believe in myself. A few years later when my ex and I were going through problems, I met up with my former crush when he was doing business in Atlanta and one thing led to another and we slept together. After that, everything changed. We would run into each other at various events through a mutual acquaintance and the guy that I once thought had my back ended up talking about me behind my back. He had this image of me based off of past experiences with this mutual acquaintance as well as the perception that many people saw but I thought he was able to see past those things for the person I really was. I ended up feeling like an idiot and although we hashed things out and made peace, there is something in the back of my mind that makes me feel like I have to prove myself to others to show that I am not the naive, insecure little girl I used to be. Although this guy didn’t have anything to do with my insecurities, thinking about how things ended between us opens up old wounds and after the dream I had with him last night (which felt like high school all over again) I realized that I wasn’t as over the situation as I previously believed. My former crush is a representation of me looking for acceptance and approval in others and when I don’t receive it, I start thinking less of myself. I have to forgive myself for the things that I allowed to happen in the past to grow and move on. Most importantly, I can’t let him or anyone else make me feel inferior. I haven’t seen my former crush in years but if ever we meet again, I will make sure to be unapologetic in my thoughts and actions by being true to myself and if it isn’t seen as “acceptable” to him or anyone else, they all can kick rocks! (that’s the PG version of what I really want to say :p)
Let me know what you think of the questions for the 30 days of truth exercise so far! As always, hit me up on here or on Twitter (@angielala) or Facebook (The Angielala Experience). Talk to you soon!