Women’s History Month; Cheryl A., an Update

Good day to all.  We have none other than Cheryl A. who is coming back to us with an update.  If you remember we interviewed her on March 3, 2016.  At the time a lot of her goals had not come into fruition.  Let’s see what Cheryl has been up to from 2 years ago.

I wanted to know what she would tell her younger self if she could go back in time:

GO FOR IT..your dreams are never too small.  Take the chance, explore the world, study abroad, go to school in another state or another country.  Be confident, walk with your head high, there is only one you and you are unique. You are not everyone’s cup of tea and that is ok.  Enjoy the people who love you for you.  Failure is a part of life but learn the lesson.   Learn yourself, love yourself, become a whole person.

A recurring theme with all of these blogs are little nuggets on areas such as life, love, and career. These areas are some of the most thought about moments of our lives.  I wanted to know what Cheryl’s take on each:

Life-I could go on and on about this topic! Life has thrown me so many curveballs from death, health issues, relationship drama (friends, family, work, etc..).  Life has taught me to own my stuff.  If you are wrong admit it and resolve it if possible.  However, life has taught me that no matter how much you own your stuff there will always be the naysayers.  Some people just don’t like me and I’ve learned to finally accept that. Gone are the days where I wanted people’s acceptance.  I have learned to live my best life and not live beneath my capabilities to make others comfortable.  I’ve learned to accept the apologies I will never receive.  I’ve learned that verbal abuse and toxic people are real and I will not allow that in my life.  I’ve learned that I do not have to prove my forgiveness.  I’ve learned that no matter what positive changes you make in your life, someone will always hold you to the “I remember when” of your past.  I’ve learned to that people will show you and in my case tell you how they feel about you, through that I’ve learned to be okay with it. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, so I have accepted what I’ve been shown and told and have moved one.  So of course, those relationships ended and some will never start.  I refuse to be in one-sided relationships, so if I’m the one doing all the calling, reaching out, scheduling, etc..that will no longer work for me.  The end of 2017 resonated some things in me and I knew that 2018 had to be different for me. I’m talking different in the way I navigate life and situations.  My circle has always been small, but I am no longer giving front seats to my life nor allowing situations to move me.  I’ve learned to be confident not cocky, humble but not a pushover.  I’ve learned to take my power back. 

So I am sure there were a few things you could have gotten from those words. Think about not giving front seats to those who don’t deserve it.  You go out of your way to be there for others or people have an expectancy that they don’t do in return.  You have to be careful of the energy you give.  You can not operate from an empty cup.  Keep your cup full!

Love-This year will be 10 years of marriage! It’s amazing to even last this long.  My marriage has had its share of troubles over the years and moving 1200 miles within 30 days didn’t make it any easier.  However, I wouldn’t change anything.  Marriage has taught me unconditional love, friendship and compromise.  Yes, marriage takes work but it’s only hard if you make it hard.  I can admit that at times I made things unnecessarily difficult.  See the problem was, I wasn’t my own complete person. I fell into the trap of he has to be this and that to me when reality is I’m responsible for me and my own happiness.  I had the degrees, job, friends, etc…but there was still a void, a void that my husband could not fill nor was it his responsibility to fill.  I had to get real with myself and get to my real issues and deal with them.  The key for me was to take responsibility for myself and God will work everything else out.  Marriage is a commitment, so if you are committed you will face the challenges and do the work to keep that commitment.  Curveballs will be thrown in the form of family, finances, friendships, etc..but you need to pick your battles wisely.  Every battle isn’t worth the fight and some battles are won with silence.  Be mindful of who or what you allow in, everyone or everything doesn’t get an automatic pass because of who are what they are in your life.   There are boundaries that should never be crossed and ultimatums should never be given.

Career-All you need is ONE yes.  It doesn’t matter how many times you hear no, keep on pressing.  If it’s a no, that door is not for you so stop knocking on it.  My journey to a new career took 6 years.  I had faith and I worked my faith, completed many applications, traveled to various cities and states for interviews, did video interviews, essays, tests, etc…and I heard no for 6 years.  Disappointed and frustrated but I pressed on (thanks to the people who supported me and didn’t give up on me when I wanted to give up).  Those 6 years was a process I had to go through, lessons I had to learn.  Relationships that were restored and some that needed to be ended.  I remember my former Pastor, Alex Rivera saying “A blessing too early is a burden.”  I didn’t get it then, but I get it now.  My blessing in my new career was already there and set up by God BUT 6 years ago, I wasn’t mentally, emotionally or spiritually prepared. Being unprepared would have resulted in my blessing being a burden.  So I’m grateful for the journey and the lessons I learned along the way.  I won’t lie and say it’s been smooth sailing, but I will say that when everything is done in order and you embrace the journey and the lessons, it was worth the wait.

She has waited 6 years to step into her dream job.  What will your future look like?

I would like to say retired, but I have 19 years until that happens. I hoping that at least a full girls/my bestie trip will finally happen (YES that was shade)! Seriously, I do plan to work hard to see where this career is going take me. I know I am now in a position with many opportunities and I plan to take advantage of that.  I plan to build both my professional and personal networks. 

As I stated, I was on a new career path that started back in 2011 and didn’t come to fruition until 2017.  You may think the accomplishment is working as a Lancaster County JOP for 12.5 years and now working as a USPO in Miami, Florida is the accomplishment.  In a way it is, but the biggest accomplishment is, that I didn’t give up.  Many times I wanted to throw in the towel and just settle for what was and has been for 12 years.  Comfortability and complacency is easy.  Taking a risk like moving from everything you have always known to a place where you know nothing or no one but your husband.  Not being able to fully embrace the greatness in the career chance because you are questioning is this the right decision? What if it doesn’t work? What if I don’t like it? How do I start over?   Self doubt, fear, worry, etc..starts to creep in…BUT again, I didn’t give up, I just kept pressing through.  So 9 months later, here I am, still pressing through and it has gotten easier with time.

Hubby and I have some business ventures in mind, I won’t go into detail, but they are there and we are committed to seeing them through.  As some know, I am also an Adjunct Professor, I want to get back to as well.  A short term goal I have is to go parasailing and hubby and I are going to concur that on our anniversary trip.

What are your feelings on the #metoo movement?

As a Criminal Justice Professional for almost 14 years, I have been able to provide a non-judgement zone.  I continue to be a listening ear, a liaison and a person of support.

Self love is always my goal for my readers.  How do you practice self love?

Self-love for me is the basics, regular hair appointments, trips to the nail salon, reading to expand my mind and overall enjoying the life that I have been given.  As previously stated, I also avoid drama and toxic people.  It doesn’t matter who you are, if my experience with you has been drama or toxic, you will not be a part of my life. I can be respectful and cordial, but that’s all I have to offer you.  I’ve learned to be okay with whatever is, meaning, if I don’t hear from that person, if I don’t get included, if people talk about me, if people still want to  live in the “I remember when” of my life, I’ve learned to accept it.  Self Love is knowing that I am no longer that person and I love my self enough to know that being tied to the past is contrary to where I am going.  Self Love is embracing those that have shown that despite whatever has transpired they will always be there to support me, lift me up and celebrate me.

Thank you Cheryl for using your voice.  I hope that you are enjoying your new career and I wish you much success!!!

 

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