Six! *EOTMP*

29 January

 

Year 6 (Week 312)[78 Months]

It's incredibly surreal to think it's been six entire years since this journey began, but here we are. Both Zach and I have become wiser, stronger, and definitely happier from where we both were then. An immense amount has changed for the two of us, and we've both grown, not only as adults, but as human beings.

Now...I'm not going to have a stats progression chart with this blog entry, or other photos as you might remember from previous updates charting growth. But with this entry will come a sense of finality of sorts. No no no, I wouldn't dare stop blogging — though, that's definitely become a rarity these days. I just want to take some time to catch everyone up to speed since the last entry, and to just...close out a couple of chapters of my life.

You're looking at Aurora's new merchandising ASM ☺️

So, hey, Zach's an ASM now! (ASM is an acronym for "assistant store manager".) I'm so proud of him, too. He was working as a department supervisor/floater at the Bellevue store just a couple of blocks down from our flat, but now he's the new merchandising ASM for the Aurora store in north Seattle. Zach is such an unbelievably hard worker with a great work ethic, and I told him upon moving to the PNW, that within a year, he would become an ASM. And I was right. ^_^

The South just didn't like us, so we bailed. Sorry, not sorry, I suppose. #SeeYa

I seriously LOVE my new role as a kitchen designer. I've been busting my arse to keep my lead as the number one designer in my district, and I've been fighting every step of the way to keep it. I'm scrappy, yeah. But I love it.

Posing with a Homer Award and Designer of the month badge for October at my desk

See, during my childhood, I was never taught to set my sights on a goal to achieve. As most of you know, I grew up in a stringently uber-religious household of the Pentecostal variety. Because of that, I didn't have proper parenting. I had a figurative pastor as a mother, and an alcoholic as a father. The latter, thankfully, changed around my 17th birthday, but the former always stayed the same, unfortunately. I was never taught to aspire to find talents or to educate myself in worldly functions. The only goals I were taught were to subscribe to the religion I was indoctrinated under and to never veer from that path.

And, of course, this girl didn't apply herself to that plan of action. My mother didn't like that, and my father just didn't give a shit — to the point that he slammed my head into the corner of my mother's piano because I rebelled against his view (on something stupid, I'm sure). But still, you don't violently attack your own child. I was told by my religious mother to lie and say I tripped into the corner of the door frame; I still have a scar above the corner of my right eye from this (and I have never publicly spoken about this.)

Now, I will admit my mother did briefly attempt to get me to learn to play the piano around the age of 10. But that's mainly because she played piano, so why not pass along that trait? I didn't care for piano, though, because it was something she wanted me to do — it wasn't a goal I wanted or liked (my mother's side of the family are all musically inclined people; as am I.)

I had a fight with my father one night during my early 20s when I was trying everything under the sun based on my financial standing and location to become a songwriter/musician. At this point, I had already started going to college (I began the same time as my younger brother), and this fight culminated with my father telling me I'm just average and that I'll never amount to anything (as a singer/songwriter.)

Of course, this pissed me off to the nth degree, and it only fuelled my passion even further. Remember the blog post from way back discussing why I wanted to become a successful singer/songwriter? Yeah, I wasn't about to have someone tell me I couldn't succeed and have my plans thwarted to become my real self. And sure, both of my parents came to all of my music shows I played at, but I never really felt appreciated or urged to do more; to be more. Nor did my older sister, whom I looked up to as a singer, ever encourage or support my abilities.

All of my talents, I taught myself. Be it singing, reading music, playing guitar, mandolin, and yes, piano (LOLs), it was all me. I, of course, thank all of my wonderful college professors and instructors for the creative edge they taught me in design and photography — Curtis and Dr. Z are two really rad people, especially. Thank you for the skills, gentlemen. I'm super appreciative.

Back to my new role as a kitchen designer...I seriously love it. It may seem like gloating when I post the updated metrics when they come out on Monday that show me as the number one designer in my district, but it's not. I was taught I was just average; and at times, below that.

Number 1 overall (and in sales, measures, and leads), and I don't plan to let up. πŸ˜‰

But I'm nowhere near being average. I'm a seriously talented individual who's not going to be held back any longer by the restraints of a family that doesn't care. And that leads me to this next event...

For the past year, I've been reaching out to my mother via text messages to show her all of these wonderful accolades and triumphs I've achieved since becoming a kitchen designer at the Redmond HD. I get silence. I get no response. During September, I finally received a text from my mother, randomly, that stated, "Someone is praying for you." I knew what this message meant, though. It had nothing to do with my achievements, nothing to do with all of these newly acquired goals, but instead, it had to do with 29 January 2015. I was getting preached at again, and I don't care for that nonsense. I ignored it, and kept texting her about all of the positives taking place in my life; wishing for her to be a part of it in the process.

Zach got me this snazzy dress for Christmas; and of course I tried to share the joy with my mother :/

So, fast-forward to exactly two weeks ago, and our store was having a walk with upper management — our regional vice president and district manager were in for a visit. I became my district's December designer of the month (second time in three months, mind you), and I was certain he wanted to speak with me. After all, our D29 kitchen design department is kicking all kinds of arse right now (also due to Aseel and Ruchi's great work). Our RVP, Shawn, awarded me with a RVP medal, gift card, and my SASM and specialty DH presented me with another award as well.

From left: Specialty DH Dave, RVP Shawn, me!, and DM Ken (District 19 is BEST district)

I shared this excitement with my mother, as I've been wont to do, and once more, I get silence. No response. Nothing.

I had enough. This was it. This was the line that finally forced my hand. I responded back:

And that's that. I'm done. I'm not going to let my family hurt me any longer. I'm better than that. I'm moving on.

I even broke a connection with a lifelong, childhood friend recently as well because of similar re-treads. I no longer have room in my life for the negativity or absurdity that surrounds their world views. I can't do it. I refuse to be immersed in it. It's one of the main reasons for moving out of the South and into an area where progressive values flourish.

I have a new family now. I have Zach, his wonderful parents whom I love and adore, his kickass sister, Kristen, and his adorkable brother, Nate. I love them all. And they respect and appreciate me. It's easy for them!

The cool kids.

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This has been a fairly long blog entry, and I apologise for that. But I've just had a lot on my plate lately with my own family being poo poo heads with an insurrection that took place in the midst of a viral pandemic that most Americans won't take seriously (thankfully, most do here in the Seattle area).

Hopefully some more positives will be coming down the pipeline now that we've got some competence in the White House.

Ty being a sleepy head πŸ₯°

As always, be good. Do good. Love. (And happy six years, Anna.) ❤️πŸ§‘πŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œ


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