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I just skimmed through a few of my old blogs and it warmed my heart to review the state I was in back when I first began this blog. It is a beautiful thing when you can look back and chart your growth, current and possibly continued struggles from that point in time, but also the success.

Since that initial blog post of me introducing myself, I have basically done all those things and more. It has been quite the thing to keep positive and forward moving with everything this year has birthed. The CV, fires from the Amazon, Australia, Hawaii, and all over California. Locust plagues. A shift in the focus of sex-trafficking, the racial climate (that has been in existence since the founding colonizers took over this land, but people are just now talking about it and its real effects all of the sudden), & holding people and businesses accountable for general NGAF. Dual storms over Texas. Coin shortages. Clorox wipes being wiped off the planet during the time we all need them most. Folks grabbing up all of the toilet paper, baby wipes, bread, and pasta. Many people loosing their jobs and businesses. An election with two candidates with supporters on each side hurling insults and seeming “evidence” of the other candidate having historical ties of various “ist” and “ism” communities. This is about 1/8 of everything that has and is being disrupted right now.

I am doing the very best that I can do to stay focused and doing exactly what I need to do to stay aligned with this forward momentum. I am looking forward to birthing a few of these projects I am working on mentally & in my lab, out into the universe. One hint, several of these have to do with writing ;).

I start another cleanse next week and I look forward to continuing on into our THIRD YEAR of the CHALLENGE page’s monthly exercises. I have also added some weekly cardio, that I plan on turning up this week as well. Looking to pair a cleaning of my internal (fasting/cleanse), physical (upping the CHALLENGE ante), & mental (writing, KonMarie the home, set up home office), for maximum results in them individually, collectively and beyond.

Also, our early start home schooling! 2 years early according to the state I live in, but I think a super slow start, early, makes sense with how my child engages with her world. I am surely looking forward to more art, lesson plans, scaffolding, mini-projects, science and math.

This is reading a bit like a check list of accomplishments, current events, and current projects – but after reviewing my posts from 2 years ago, being able to look back at something like this is very heart warming. And I always, always, think about the fact – that if you do not write your own story, others will. And it is IMPOSSIBLE to write another person’s story FOR them, no matter how well or long you have know them.

Most folks in your life, you simply have a few pictures of moments you recall of them. Others that may have been in your life for longer or more deeply, they may have a commercial or two. Some more inner circle – family, loved ones, siblings, parents, spouses, may have an episode. The only person that can do justice of retelling your motion picture, with behind the scenes footage, biography accuracy, and direct quotes is you. So every word, every click, every utterance via lips or fingertip – is me documenting my journey. It is about time we all told our stories, while we are living them to maintain the accuracy and passion of it all.

So here is to an explosive month and the synergy manifested from each of my concurrent focus areas!

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#Igot5onit99 Day32 | Black Panther Day!



It was amazing on so many levels.   I am not going to go in depth, because I am exhausted (work, cooked, fed & changed her, packed her bag for grandma’s house, got ready, movie, back up, bathed her, fed her again, did work out & now it is 11:45 PM).  

Just came to stay on track with my workout and blogging, but until next time, WAKANDA FOREVER!


Day 32 = Successfully completed!

Totals for day 32/99:

  • 410 push-ups (+2 for the “Level up” #1)
  • 410 squats
    • 60 seconds holding seated squat
  • 240 plank rotations (+20 for the “Level Up #2)
    • 60 seconds holding forearm plank
  • 305+ seconds holding yoga pose (Tittibhasana)
  • 155 minutes of deep breathing (+20 for the “Level Up #3)
  • 60 calf raises

Level Up #1 | Level Up #2 | Level Up #3 | Level Up #4 | Level Up #5 | Level Up #6 |      Level Up #7 | Level Up #8 | 

>Respectfully submitted & Always thankful<<    ~Mai

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#Igot5onit99 Day #29

I definitely felt better today, I think that raw garlic and tea is helping neutralize this disharmony trying to take over my constitution!

As I sit here sweating, it brought me back to those cold track meets in high school (though there were not too many).  Where it was overcast and windy, but we would still sweat competing our hearts out.  I find that these days, I often go back in my mind and recount fond memories of “simpler” times in my journey.  Back when I had no idea how all encompassing “adulting” would be & just how less “free” time we would have because we understand in a capital-driven society, even time not doing work is not free. If I use any electricity, water, or eat food (check on all of those), they all still cost money, whether paid already or soon-to-be. Ahhhh just thinking about the days where I just thought everyone was provided a home, with running water, and the lights stayed on for everyone (military child)… 

Now as a mother, I am thinking years ahead and trying to figure out the most balanced method to prepare my multi-cultural child for a world (that I probably will not even recognize by that time), which will be ever-changing… while not robbing her of a childhood as I attempt forego her blindsiding to the harsh reality of her need to perfect her double-consciousness.  How to teach her to be strong enough to survive in this world, but soft enough to still be human, kind, humble, and eloquently carry her womanly essence.  How to embrace her culture, her family, her neighbors, stringers, and acquaintances with the same love, but a different mind and level of attention. 

…all of these thoughts just from sweat trickling down my arms…

These thoughts alone let me know that I am on the right path with my challenge, and that I have MUCH MORE sweating to come as I navigate this existence as the co-captain of this house with an ever expanding crew.   For today, mission successful.  Over & Out!

Day 29 = Successfully completed!

Totals for day 29/99:

  • 365 push-ups (+2 for the “Level up” #1)
  • 365 squats
    • 45 seconds holding seated squat
  • 230 plank rotations (+20 for the “Level Up #2)
    • 45 seconds holding forearm plank
  • 270+ seconds holding yoga pose (Tittibhasana)
  • 145 minutes of deep breathing (+20 for the “Level Up #3)
  • 15 calf raises (new!)

Level Up #1 | Level Up #2 | Level Up #3 | Level Up #4 | Level Up #5 | Level Up #6 | Level Up #7 | Level Up #8 | 

>Respectfully submitted & Always thankful<<    ~Mai

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Changes.. Growth.. Maturity

[Quick follow-up: work-out completed!]

Paradigm Shift

Something happened to me around my daughter’s first birthday last Fall… I had a very real change of thought process & it forced me to really turn inwards.  Inwards in that I truly broke apart my insecurities, my own perceived shortcomings, my crutches, my dilemmas, my stagnation, and my abandoned goals.

Where was this mother I told myself I would be when I have a child?

Where is this business I told myself I would build years ago?

Who’s body is this and why am I always so tired?

Why do I say the things I say at times?… & oh my goodness, would I even accept the actions I showed to “xxx” if I was in their shoes?!

This was it, the moment that I’d needed to seize & here I am still riding out the energetic push towards my better self.  I am ever engaged in the beautiful struggle that is personal growth and transformation.  I am delicately entwined in a dance between fragile states of breaking & building, seeking a balance that will push me towards the path in which I seek.

What does this look like anyway?

Step 01: Well, it started with cutting my hair.  My baby and I chopped off all our hair and I released 10+ years of weight, emotions, parts of me that I was holding onto.. I chopped my hair off, one.. lock.. at.. a.. time..  I’d been feeling like I NEEDED to do this for months and knew that it was finally the right time.  

Step 02 was completing the yearly 10-day fast during the 2nd week of January.

Step 03 was jumping into the gym to get my feet wet & jump start my next physical challenge.

Step 04 was choosing to read at LEAST a book a month to start off slowly & just get back to my absolute love of reading.

And here I am, simultaneously still on step “0” and step “5.”  Step five is my current #iGot5onit99 challenge of being active & step “0” is Maintenance… through each step and beyond. 

| Current status | 


As I look at the progress I have made, I am thankful for carrying the resolve to do better and sticking with it, even through minor setbacks (like my recent physical challenges & emotional challenge last week).  I look at how the fast reset my diet and reiterated the importance of meal preparation to my family.  Removing my locks has shifted weight off of me and serves as a reminder that I can and will continue to redefine myself no matter how long I have chosen to stay at a particular stage in life. Being physically active is tapping into the muscle memory of what I know I am capable of and allowing my body to better heal itself and communicate imbalances with me.  Reading frequently again has opened my mind back up to the frequency of being a student of life & set the stage for this class I am enrolled in to get my business off the ground.  

Now, I did not plan all of this out from the jump.  I literally just did one and organically, thoughts and paths were presented to me & I listened.  I listened to the whispering in my dreams, the tug at my heart, and the yearnings of my body.  If you could imagine, it was like my ancestors were beckoning me to “get right” and as I began to listen, more breadcrumbs were found.  And the packaging to all of these things, are this blog – something I have been told many, many times – that I need to do & something I have been wanting to do.  To serve as my journal, a release of thought, a blueprint to this path, something I can look back to. 

Well, looking back – I can already see how far I have come & I am looking forward to pushing even further, deeper, higher.



>Respectfully & Humbly Submitted<<    ~Mai


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A book a month… January = Complete!

It took til nearly the end of the month, but I SUCCESSFULLY started out the year correctly.  I am thankful to again have put forth intentions and completed the same.  I told myself that I wanted to read at least a book a month, and as of a couple of hours ago – I can check off January :).

The book I read is called “Efuru” and it is written by a Nigerian author named Flora Nwapa.  It was such a pleasure reading this book for many reasons, but most vivid is the complete way that it brings me back to my trips in Meritah as she speaks of Kola nut, palm wine, sitting on mats, the mudroom, preparing and taking herbs, the children, pounding out food, the customs, and so much more.  It transports me back to a simpler, but more robust culture and traditions.

I am unsure if any of you have traveled to Meritah (or what people call Africa), but experiencing such a rich culture always leaves me wanting more when I return to the U.S. and deal with the ridiculousness of abject poverty, willful ignorance, avoidable pestilence, prevalent racism, and more ills that should not be present in a so-called first-world country.  It is so curious how 

I will type out part of the book’s synopsis; but it is amazing to see yourself in a character.  I thought I was destined to live a similar life as she until I met my current fiance:

“Efuru is a beautiful, superior woman, who cannot marry or have children successfully.  Her neighbors acknowledge her distinctions, are grateful for her generosity, but cannot intervene in or comprehend her tragedy…”

So Efuru has issues bearing a child with her first husband, but after many consultations and following their instructions, she finally has a child, a little girl.  Unfortunately, her husband runs off to be with another woman and never returns.  Even after their young daughter dies, his face was never seen in his hometown.  Come to find out later, the woman he left his wife for, left him for a wealthier man.  After several years waiting for him to return, she finally moves on & opens herself up to another man.  She agrees to wed him and for years things are good.  But after not conceiving a child in 4 years and people talking, she decides (as is customary in traditional culture) to find her husband a second younger wife. 

The second wife becomes pregnant within the first year of marriage and bears him a son.  She finds out later that he actually had a son out of wedlock with another woman 2 years into their marriage.  She is understanding, continues to support him and their new family arrangement, but the younger wife, newly a mother, was upset and wanted nothing to do with his son.  He ends up getting into some trouble (never mentioned the source) and goes to jail.  He is away for 4 months and misses the death of Efuru’s father.  The gossip around the village, her missing husband, and death of her father could were a huge hit.  He husband comes back with no details on why he had been jailed, but she sticks with him.  It isn’t until she gets extremely ill and gossipers accuse her of adultery, to which her husband feeds into, that she is fed up and makes her exit from the marriage. 

“She is coming, the gossip.  She has never in her life said anything good about anybody.  I wonder who is going to be her next victim.  She is always running people down.”

We all know this person, and sadly, many of us know several people just like this.  I have tried to distance myself from all these types and it is such a challenge, they are as common as sunshine in the summertime.

I was in several … interesting relationships, one of which was a polygamous relationship which ended due to not all parties being able to resolve their psychological hangups.  Another relationship I was in, I became pregnant with twins shortly after my return from Meritah.  The would-be-father, moved out of state & I was left to suffer through a 2-month long miscarriage on my own & later told that I would never be able to have children, but IF so, it would not be naturally.  Found out he was with another woman and had a child not too long after, who knows if the relationship initiated while I was overseas.  Fortunately, mine has a happier ending of finding the man I was supposed to be with and having an amazing daughter who is very healthy.  I am thankful for the difficult relationships I endured which have molded me into the woman that pushes out these strokes to share her stories.

Below are some pictures of my travels to Meritah that this story brought me back to with each turn of the page.



>>Respectfully submitted & Always thankful<<    ~Mai










Some excerpts from the book to mull over…

  1. …and nothing more will connect us with that family…
  2. Don’t they know that a man and a woman should not be seen together often whether they are married or not … She remembered when she was newly married … If they had to go to a place together, she allowed her husband to go in front while she walked behind him.
  3. It was not the thought of another wife for Gilbert that made her heart so heavy.  It was the fact that she was considered barren.  It was a curse not to have children.  Her people did not just take it as one of the numerous accidents of nature.  It was regarded as a failure.
  4. “That is what they learn in school, to disobey their parents.”
  5. “The white slave dealers were the Portuguese, the Dutch, the English, or the French.   The people regarded them as white men, their nationality did not make any difference, their actions were all the same.  The white slave dealers gave them the cannons, the guns, and the hot drinks.  The hot drinks did what the Indian hemp is doing in politics today.  The only difference is that the hot drinks were legal and the Indian hemp is illegal, but both performed the same function.
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End of the Fast | Day#10, made it!

Ten days.  

Wow, it has been  a couple of years since I fasted and it definitely is more than anything, a mental exercise on various levels.  For me personally, I dream more vividly & am able to focus akin to when I was in peak performance during my years as an athlete and honor student.  I am able to set clear goals and surpass my expectations every time.  Additionally, things are just much clearer for me to see and to understand.  I have also found, that things that I had focused on, thought about, and truly need are always brought to me, like extra bread when the basket is empty.  Well, not quite like that – but I think you understand.

This fast is something that may be part of many cultures, but is attached to the oldest traditional culture that all subsequent variants are derived.  Last year, I was unable to take part, because you do not fast when you are pregnant, sick, breastfeeding, or on your menstrual cycle.   Without getting too deep into the origins (on this post at least…), it is a time of reflection, lamentation, and to focus on cleansing yourself through your thoughts and actions alike. 

This fasting season, I took the opportunity to use it as something like a reset button for myself.  Getting back to a healthier place.  Getting back focused on my goals.  Getting back into better habits over the course of the day.  Getting back to doing things that are going to benefit myself, my family, and those around me.  In that respect, I think that this fasting period served these purposes very well, and I am pleased at how I have made necessary adjustments to orient myself towards these little victories.  

Moving Forwards…

I am now focusing my energies on being consistent with this blog for several reasons.  

  1. The benefit and beauty of being able to transcribe my thoughts is something that has been missed in recent years.  I have always found it very soothing to just memorialize my thoughts, and return on a later date to reflect on where I was at and see if I am still moving in the same directions, if I have fallen off, or if my direction is now more refined.
  2.  In so many ways, it serves as a catalyst to change.  Changing the way I engage in communication with others, meet other, share ideas, learn, and to also track my growth.  As I continue to walk the various legs of my overarching journey; through motherhood, marriage, health, and entrepreneurship, it is a means of keeping me accountable to myself.
  3.  There are a couple of books that I have begun writing over the years, but I have not really been able to completely give myself to the process of writing and I think that is in part due to lack of “exercising” my writing muscles, if that makes sense.  Just like anything – the more often you do it, the more proficient you get, the more you understand it, the more confident you get, the more you engage, the more you grow.  I am here for that growth!

Ah yes… arm day.

Yes, I went to the gym this evening to get on my arms.  I got there pretty late and only had about 35 minutes before it closed for the day so I did not get to do quite as much as I would have liked, but I still did plenty.  Due to the time constraint, I allowed myself much less rest between sets than I normally would have.  So, here is to hoping I am able to function tomorrow with my legs still dead and my arms possibly falling off when I awake.  

I plan on taking before pictures in the next day or two; but I will not be posting them until I have made SOME progress.  I want to be able to say; oh this WAS how I looked and this is now.  Baby steps.  Not that there will be too huge of a transformation, I am already petite.  One thing I have to constantly tell people when they try to tell me I am already in good shape; there is a difference between being thin / skinny and being in shape.  I know how to dress my body and what is flattering to my unique shape – but I am not where I want to be health wise, which is first and foremost.  Secondly, I want to have the confidence of putting on that bathing suit in the summer and knowing I can stand confident in the discipline that etched out the body that is presented.  Yes, of course, I want to look good – but most importantly, I want to feel good.  For me, that comes from the strength of being disciplined & hard-working.

Funny thing happened today at the grocery store

In 2014 – I had a miscarriage (I lost a set of twins), and a few months after that I had a follow-up appointment with a family health doctor.  She reviewed my test results with me and let me know that unfortunately,  I would never be able to have children, and if I did happen to, it would not be naturally & she wanted to send me to a fertility specialist to see if I could be helped.  It was a miserable time for me as I wanted many children and a big family.  To add insult to injury, she was a solid 6-7 months pregnant herself at the time.   Fast forward to today, I had my baby girl shopping with me and I was turning to leave the store and a familiar face caught my eye.  Low and behold, it was the doctor that had given me this news.  I said something along the lines of “Hey… I think you were my doctor a couple years ago?…”  She turned and cocked her head slightly to the side and after a few brief moments she said; “Yeah… oh yea!  You kind of look familiar.”  A few seconds later, it hit her and her eyes got a little bigger, so I just smiled and said, “Yea, I see you had your baby, congratulations!”  She gestured at my baby as if to say you too, to which I replied, “Yea, and here is mine.”  Neither of us had to say anything, we both knew.  I wished her a great remainder of her evening and walked to my car.

It was a great opportunity for me to be thankful in that moment, because for a while, I did not think I would be a mother.  Humbling encounter and I am so thankful baby girl made it through.

>Humbly submitted & Always thankful<<   ~Mai