What I’ve Learned This Year

Editor’s Note: I wrote this in March 2018. Six month update is in the notes below.

Its been a long year so far, y’all. Is it the first week in March as I write this? Yes. Did the year only start a little over two months ago? Yes? Do I still have nearly ten months to go? Yes. You’re asking a lot of questions. It has been a long year. I said what I said. However, this two month and one week journey into 2018 has taught me a few things or at least reminded me of some lessons I had forgotten. Among other things, I’ve learned that weight loss is not my friend and my favorite black boots won’t make it another winter.

You may not know it, but I just preached a word right there.

The day after Christmas, my boo and I decided to start a weight loss journey. Our goal was to lose ten pounds by Valentine’s Day. The idea was to encourage each other along the way and then celebrate together with a cheat meal. We’re also training for a half marathon (more on this out of character decision later) so it was supposed to be easy peasy. You guys can probably guess what happened. He was nearly at the ten pound goal by V-Day and I had to bring the same big body I had on Christmas to our V-Day date. I’m so over it! For every moment I feel like I could live on quinoa alone, I have three moments of #friedfoodforever. For every new habit I try to implement, there are ten old ones that continue to pop back up in my daily routine. And if I have to keep pretending like I don’t want whatever food item you happen to offer me, I’m going to scream. Yes, I would like some! Of course I want a piece! I have to sit here and act like I don’t though because my midsection is doing her own thing and I have to stop her.

My (failing) weight loss efforts have a lot to do with the way I spend my time. Like Beyonce and everyone else in the world, I have 24 hours in each day. Somehow, Beyonce and the rest of you high performing people seem to get 26 hours of happenings into the day. I don’t know what y’all up to. Don’t know what God y’all serve or what sorcery you practice. I just know I haven’t figured it out. I struggle to fit everything on my to-do list in the day. I started the year thinking that I needed to create some balance. Honestly, I didn’t want balance. I wanted to quit. I kept telling myself that I wanted balance, though, because that’s what you have to tell yourself when you don’t feel like you have the option to quit. I’m involved in a number of valuable, worthwhile projects and organizations. We do great work that fits squarely with my personal values. I. Still. Want. To. Quit.

That’s where the boots come in. I’ve had these particular boots for several years now. They were cute when I bought them and they’re still cute now. Except I’m wearing a hole in the bottom of one and they don’t seem to stay up on my legs the way they used to. Needless to say I wear them often. I wasn’t even considering a new pair until I happened in Macy’s one day and they were having a sale. Boots errrwhere! Discounts galore! I tried on a few pair. One was very similar to the boots I already have. Mannnn, they were so comfy. Like maybe the lining on the inside was made of goat’s fur. The top of the boot stayed at the top of my leg even when I walked around in it. The toes weren’t scuffed. At that moment, I knew the boots in my closet would not make it another winter. Not necessarily because I couldn’t work it out and patch them up to make it. But because . . . why? Why make these boots do something they’re tired of doing? Why not get new boots (if I have the means)?

The thing is, I have to change my life. That’s a little dramatic. I have to change my habits. I can’t claim to want anything new if I’m not prepared to do anything new. I have to change my lifestyle if I want anything in my life to change. I have to change my mind too. Maybe one or maybe both but neither is not an option. I have to let go of things that wear me out and let someone young, excited, and energetic take my place. I have to find ways to get more things done in my day. I have to get rid of these love handles, which I’m convinced are a direct reflection of me overextending myself. I’m not sure what that looks like for me right now but I know it has to get done. Y’all pray my strength.

6 Month Update: First off, reading back through this post was a trip. It’s interesting to read what I was dealing with several months ago and know that, on some level, I’m still dealing with those things. In other ways, I’m starting to figure it out. Ok so:

  • Weight loss has been meh. Not where I was but not where I want to be.
  • My boo and I did that half marathon. I put an impressive dent in his best time. We were slow af. But whatever. He’s my fiance now. Guess he likes it when I slow him up. Idk.
  • Raggedy black boots are still in my closet but will likely be replaced as soon as we are cleared to wear boots again (some of y’all pull em out too early).
  • I quit a few things. It’s tough to tell someone you’ve built a relationship with that you just don’t want to do something worthwhile anymore. It’s absolutely worth disappointing someone else to do what’s best for myself though.
  • I’ve been waking up earlier. Me. Mariah. Ya girl. I’ve been doing it. It hasn’t been horrible. It’s been extremely helpful. I think I know how Beyonce does it all now. Not that I’m on her level. More of a Fantasia over here. Like, I’m a better singer but I don’t do all that dancing.
  • Small changes in my lifestyle like taking a step back from some of my commitments and waking up earlier get me closer to living the kind of life I owe myself. It is still hard though. This is not a fairytale story. Old habits continue to creep up and deter my progress but I’m committed to loving myself enough to do the hard things (more on this later).


I'm Mariah. Jesus is my homie. I live in (and was raised in) the south. I am, as often as possible, actively grateful for my family because I understand their life giving power. Really dislike melodramatics. Really love reading and writing so much so that I aspire to be an author. What else?

4 comments on “What I’ve Learned This Year

  1. Love this! Balance is definitely necessary to function in this thing called life.

  2. Girl, you preached a word in the first paragraph about weight loss not being your friend and the boots not making it to winter. Summer 2018 had to work with the body I gave it. I have no regrets but I didn’t show off. Oh well🤷🏽‍♀️. Maybe 2019? I’m so ready for boot weather and my closet deserves an update. Boots and all! I love your subject matter & writing style. In spite of your “failures”, how about we call them disappointments 😁, you’re still determined to make change your new normal. That’s to be commended! Even got a fiancé now! Get it girl! Keep writing & much love.❤️

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