My former writing mentor was right: I am back in school! (I actually heard loud, comical cheers in my head as I typed this). Whenever I would tell Dr. Hart, “I quit school,” she would squint and reply, “You haven’t quit. Perhaps you’re just taking a break.” Then I would roll my eyes in response. Now that I have more of an idea of what I am going to do with my life, it makes sense to go back. Lawyers need law degrees, right?
Very quickly, here is the story of why I quit. When I went to community college right out of high school, I was extremely depressed. I suffered from depression throughout high school and had convinced myself that going away to college would make things better. It was an opportunity to leave the town and the dark clouds behind for a sunnier new beginning. Like the song, “Cranes in the Sky,” by Queen Solange, “thought moving ‘round make me feel better” was something I truly believed.
Unfortunately, that is not the way life works. College tuition does not care about mental health—obviously—and running away from problems does not make them disappear, as we have all heard before. I had to stay. Though it was against my will at the time, it all makes sense now. In order to heal I had to be where it hurt most. It was vital for me to show that atmosphere that it couldn’t bully me away and push me out of my own life. After two years of community college, I called it quits. As an artist I could not understand why I needed it. Plus, I was still very much suffering emotional and it was showing in my work. So I left.
Back to the present.
In the beginning of this past summer, I went to a church that was lead by a prophet. (For any of you who have read my previous work, you know that I am a Born-Again Christian. Do not worry; I am not a part of MOGUL to convert anyone). The prophet called me out and asked if I wanted to be a lawyer. “No…?” I said.
“Really?” he asked. “Because I see lawyer in your future.”
This pissed me off to the Most High-est degree.
Lawyer? I thought. No way. I’m an artist! I act. Write! Create! Why couldn’t he tell me anything about that?! Why didn’t he tell me what I wanted to hear?!
The thing is, if the prophet had told me what I wanted to hear, he would have most likely told me something I already knew, thus defeating the point of a prophet. God was not concerned with what I wanted to hear; He was concerned with what I needed to hear which would then lead me to what I need to do.
This is what we call purpose.
I must clarify that I am still a writer, actress, fashion designer, and a lot of things that I was before hearing from the prophet, but it has not caused me any harm to add lawyer to that list. In fact, going back to school to pursue law has aligned me with the other callings on my life.
Life. That is a short word with a whole lot of (insert what you want here) to it. Life can be long. I will still be a famous writer/actress/model/whatever and become a lawyer at fifty or something. Who knows? I don’t. And I don’t want to because as you have learned from reading this article, me thinking I knew everything about myself was only limiting. There was so much more to me that I had no clue about. And there still is. For you, too. Isn’t that exciting?
I do not have all the pieces to the puzzle because that would mean that I am dead, but a few things are coming together here and there. I will not tell you my entire plan because:
Things don’t always go as planned. In fact, they never go as planned. Therefore, we must chill out and understand that we will eventually find what we are looking for—or not looking for. (Shout out to my peeps who love surprises. I see you!)
I learned that it is best to keep some things hidden, especially on Facebook where people are called “friends” and you never know who is wishing negativity onto your life. Not accusing anybody on the Timeline—mine or yours—but let’s be real: they do not all love us, and why do we want people who will not want the best for us all up in our amazing grill? No, we want those who will sprinkle season, pour sauce on the juicy steak we are making called life.
While I know it will be hard—school, working, side hustles I won’t name because…(see #2 above)—I am really excited and proud of myself. Being a writer, actress, and lawyer for Black rights is just the foundation of it all. Who knows how else I will build on this earth for my people?