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This time of year evokes all sorts of opinions about New Year Resolutions and all the blah, blahs. Make them or don’t make them. Do you! However, for me, there is always some degree of anticipation for a brand shiny new year. There is an aliveness in wanting to plan and the anticipation of goodness as we lay out an execution for the resolution.

That is all a goal is, you know – the desire for goodness.

For me, I get into a reflective mode and I reflect back over the year and I do put down plans for the next year. I check on my money and what I earned and what I want to earn. I check on relationships with others and examine if I have shown up the way I want to and I check on my emotional growth. I check in with my physical living space and I check in on my body.

One critical measure for me I learned from my God Mother, Sandra Clements is: Have I kept my word to myself?

In many ways, I kept my word to myself this past year. Of course, I failed woefully in some areas but I am proud of my accomplishments.

As I reflect back over the year, I went through my entire google calendar, the three different planners I used and my various journals. I wanted to share with you some of my highlights.


Too many to mention, but these ones were over the top exceptional and I don’t get to say thank you enough.

My sister – There is a special place in heaven for the sainthood of my sister. She is such an amazing human being. She is my personal cheerleading team and I only wish she knows how much I love AND admire her. She is my friend.

Shonda Jones – One of my mentors and Assistant Dean at Wake Forest School of Divinity who helped me stretch myself by giving me opportunities and believing in me. Superfine Humane Human.

Leanne Rubenstein – The embodiment of compassion and tough love. This house hunting process brought up a lot of demons around place and belonging for me and if not for this friend, I would not be in my own home writing this newsletter today.

North Decatur Presbyterian Church – These folks are some amazing people. I have enjoyed my work with them and I am grateful for the quiet ways in which this community lives out her faith. My goodness! Respect!

Peter Shankman – Solid. Opened up his heart to me and allowed me to crash there when I had to figure out a couple of things. Grateful for his character and his integrity. When someone gives you a soft landing place, please say “Thank you.”

Fabeku Fatumise – A teacher who brings me home to myself. You helped me appreciate the complexities of my own heritage. Thank you. I am especially grateful for meeting “Beloved Goddess” through your work.

Leslie Wright – A neighbor extraordinaire who is a rock star mom. Genius software consultant. I could not have moved out of my old space if not for her help and encouragement. I look forward to many more moments on the sofa in my old neighborhood with Tigger, the dog.
Dee – My friend who keeps me honest, who knocks on my window in the dead of night and hangs up pictures crooked but hangs them up anyway. I love you, friend. And your woman? O boy! Love her too. May I have the love you guys have one day.

Kwavi Agbeyegbe – At first, I felt some shame with working with a health (aka weight loss coach). However, she made me realize why I needed this and with the patience of Job, taught me how to get in my body and stay there. She has been consistent with me and weekly we meet and she takes me through how to challenge my body with movement. Because of her, I lost over 30 lbs in 2017.

Bishop Kirby Clements – My only remaining parent. A surrogate one, but still my father. I love his consistency and I love his love. When I forget to love myself, he shines bright like the sun. I have watched him cope without the physical presence of his wife, my precious God-Mother. I can only tear up in admiration for his courage and his faith in God. I love you, Dad.

Nolan and Gloria McCants – Folks who moved deeper into the friendship zone this year. Thank you for your hospitality, your artistic eye, your phenomenal children, and the opportunity to teach at your wonderful faith community at Harvest Church, Plainfield, Illinois. Love you and enjoyed you folks.

Gregory C. Ellison, II – My mentor. My teacher. My friend. The opportunities I had with Fearless Dialogues continue to influence my work and I will forever be indebted to your creativity and the way you taught me to “see” myself and others around me. “Souls and Roles” helped me tap into my life work. We are on different paths now, yet it is the same path. Grateful for your friendship. Humbled by your genius.

Lisa Marie Hayes – A teacher who introduced me to a truly amazing woman whom I have come to deeply and thoroughly love. Thank you for teaching me tenderness.

Jemiriye Fakunle – My younger brother (aburo mi) but old soul, devoted pastor and homeboy. You held up a mirror this entire year to remind me as often as you could, that I am a precious child of God. Your faithfulness is intoxicating.

Highlights of Other Accomplishments:

  • Certificate in Christian Social Innovation through Centerform and MacAfee School of Theology.
  • Emotional Intelligence coaching certification.
  • More coursework on Leadership.
  • Actually, joined a gym! And I go to classes!
  • Attended the Good X Conference on Social Enterprise.
  • Walked away from toxic situations and people. Kept my dignity.
  • Said “No.”
  • Said “Yes.”
  • Moved to a home in Clarkston where I wanted to live.
  • Improved my credit.
  • Increased my income significantly.
  • Saved money.
  • Wrote this newsletter every single week of the year. 52 times.
  • Did work I am very proud of.
  • Created a rhythm of life that supports and challenges me while stabilizing my life.
  • My last goal for 2017 was to be completely unpacked and settled into my new home and enter the new year fully nested and “at home.” Boom! Did that!

Thank you 2017. I am grateful.

Next Year?

My goal is more of the same yumminess I experienced this year, less heartache, less toxic people, stronger, healthier relationships and more positive, powerful possibilities. O yeah, and I really, really, really want to buy some art (for my new home of course!)

Leave a comment as to what you are thinking of your new year goals.

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