Thank you to the family I’ve never met.
Never been afraid to speak up, until I feared that speaking up could cost me my life.
Sometimes in life we pass our families and the people we love. I mean this with absolutely no arrogance intended.
I have always been a risk taker, a truth seeker, and a believer in love.
I have learned these values through experiences and through losses.
TONS of losses.
I love people with no strings.
Even if something has been done that causes me detriment I’ve found it extremely difficult to NOT care.
I think it’s good to care. WITH BOUNDARIES!
I’m sure a ton of people out there can relate to the idea that outgrowing the people you love is a little lonely even scary.
FaceTime, texting, the internet and social media are my most valuable assets in growth and evolution.
I am comforted, confronted, challenged, taught, loved, and supported by the content of people hundreds and thousands of miles away and although I haven’t ever even met most of them in person, I consider them to be like family.
I’ve been putting off this blog post for a while because I get overwhelmed by the task of listing everyone who has inspired, taught, supported, and enlightened me along my journey but I cannot afford to put it off anymore. Grateful is not a strong enough word to convey the emotion I feel for them...
When I started to realize that I needed more guidance than I could find in my immediate surroundings I began to look for it elsewhere. I am extremely grateful to each of the following people who have been MAJOR in my healing and growth, and whom I will forever feel indebted to.
GaryVee- I have always had the mind of a creator, of a hustler... grinding to make something from nothing... I don’t have anyone in my close family who I can ask questions about business or marketing. I have a lot of people who have been discouraging of my dreams and business endeavors. GaryVee is always putting out content that makes me feel strong enough to be the first one in my family to do it my own way. He reminds me that losing is part of the process and that it’s okay to follow a path that isn’t traditional or something most people chose. He makes me feel supported in my understanding of myself and what works for me as an individual. He proves every day that there is no cookie cutter carbon copy for what a businessman or woman has to be and that authenticity is our greatest asset. I fucking love you bro and Drock and the whole Vayner team. Thank you guys so much!
Kanye West- Kanye has been a muse for me artistically for a long time. Besides finding his lyrics extremely relatable and honest, I also admire his confidence and perseverance. I admire his strength in dealing with mental illness and the ability he has to take a subject that so many associate with weakness and prove it is actually a superpower. He is unapologetic in his existence and reminds me that I don’t have to be sorry for who I am or for those that don’t understand me. I love him because he is bold and fearless and says what others don’t have the courage to say. Kanye thank you for being who you are and fearlessly exposing yourself to the world. You have offered me so much perspective and given me courage to accept my mental health and stability rather than fight it. I love myself more because I followed your lead in accepting all of myself and rejecting the idea that any part of me is unworthy or a stigma and empowered me to create without fear of misinterpretation. Thank you so much!
The Kardashians. Yes all of them. I recently had the opportunity to participate in the filming of a reality show called Love After Lockup. When I was first presented the opportunity I was terrified. I didn’t want to be exposed. I was used to living in a world that allowed me to publicly display all of my greatest moments and hide the uglier parts of me from almost everyone. I was struggling with recurrent episodes of CPTSD, severe depression and CPTSD related anxiety. I was fearful of the potential judgment and condemnation from others if they knew what my life was really like. The Kardashians are loved by millions but also judged and ridiculed by the masses. I found strength in their example. I dreamed of living an equally beautiful life by normalizing the abnormal, showcasing my own insecurities, and using the judgment as fuel to my overcome and share my adversities. They changed my mindset from one of shame to one of pride. Fashion forward, business minded, healthy, balanced, funny, intelligent, beautiful women, sisters, mothers, and friends. I mentally decided they would be my sisters in the absence of my own.
Diddy- is representative of everything I personally think a man should be. An involved father, a leader, an opportunity creator, a relentless go getter, a protector. I find myself feeling mesmerized by the power he has to bring together the collective, empower the disempowered, support women and children, and motivate change in others. I appreciate his willingness to lead by example and encourage growth in others. Sometimes having this kind of support is a complete game changer. Sometimes having this kind of support can bring a lost person back home. This influence has brought me out of some incredibly dark places. There are times when I need to be coddled and then there are times when I need to be told to get over it. I know when I need to be pushed forward I can always count on something Diddy has said to give me the boost of confidence that will take me there.
Ariana Grande- I admire Ariana Grande so much. When you first see her she looks like such an innocent and sweet young lady. While I’m sure she is both of those things what I admire about her most is her strength. The horrific bombing at the Manchester Arena during one of her performances terrified me from home. She went out to those people after that tragic event and WAS strength! She was strength and hope and love. I don’t know if I could have gone back out on that stage and delivered for fans after experiencing such a traumatic event, but she did and I’m sure it meant the world to her fans and inspired people all over the world. Her songs deliver messages of self love and confidence and I can personally relate very deeply with the real life struggle associated with loving someone who fights a battle of addiction. I know so many young women look up to her and I love her and support her so much!
Trevor Noah -I’ve always been a fond admirer of comics and entertainers but I’m totally captivated by the ability Trevor Noah has to shed light on the worlds most serious issues by making them humorous. He is informative and intelligent in conveying real world issues and makes them so much easier to consume. I have anxiety about almost everything at times, watching the news has always been hard for me because I am an empath and I FEEL things very intensely. Offering the undervalued medication of laughter to the masses while continuing to educate us and enlighten us is an art that he masters so gracefully and I am so grateful for the way he delivers. Thank you 🙏 for making the world funnier and easier for me to process!
Colin Kaepernick- The man is an incredibly skilled athlete and had a deal. He was making money and living a dream so many people fantasize about. He fearlessly stood for his beliefs and accepted the criticism that came with doing so. He was not afraid to be the odd man out, he was not afraid to share his voice even before the masses stood behind him in his message. He did not fear being misunderstood or misinterpreted because the belief in the principles and the integrity in his heart were so strong. He took a knee and was condemned by a nation of people that refused to open their minds to the message he was sending rather than the one being portrayed by the media. He made me realize that it’s important to stand in our beliefs and remind each other of right and wrong even if those ideas are unpopular. He gives me courage to disagree with the majority and reminds people everywhere that peaceful protesting and being strong in your power is an effective catalyst for change. Drawing attention to something that should be so obvious... risking the career so many people would die for, being selfless and SPEAKING SO LOUDLY to the masses in such a simple yet effective display of strength with little regard for the possible negative impact to his own life and wellbeing. That’s courage. That’s strength. That’s power.
Jeff Bezos- I don’t know much about him personally, but I went to work at an amazon fulfillment center, and I saw one tiny piece of the GIAGANTIC MACHINE this man has built and anyone who says they aren’t impressed must be speaking from ego because what this man has built is definitely impressive. He took an idea from his brain and developed it and loved it and nurtured it into an exciting new way of living for us all. He creates jobs for almost 1million Americans over the years. The systems he implemented are constantly being refined to offer a better experience for consumers and I don’t personally know anyone who isn’t benefiting from the use of Amazon as a vendor or as a consumer. With all new ideas there will be problems to work out and refinements to make, but overall it astonishes me and motivates me tremendously to see the ability we all have to create something so amazing. There was a time when Amazon didn’t exist. It’s such a beautiful concept to consider that where there was once no way, a way was created. From nothing to something extraordinary. It’s amazing.
Cardi B- I admire the courage and strength it takes to show your true self to the world. To share your true feelings and opinions, to speak in a way that so many can understand without giving a damn if her articulation is “proper” her belief in the message and dedication to the people, to giving a voice to the people who can relate to her, staying tied to the oppression faced by many Americans and speaking on subjects that don’t necessarily even affect her situation anymore. She is rich now, she is blessed, she worked her ass off and grew so large but stayed so true to herself and humble. She is unapologetic for her success but stays grounded and tied to the ones who truly NEED her voice. She uses her platforms and her likeness to help others and to share perspective. She made it but she stays relatable and real and that’s the most beautiful thing about her.
R.M.Drake and Bromsthepoet poets, artists, creators who use words to evoke emotion, offer understanding, and communicate passion. I’m a very poetic soul and I feel the words so deeply. I am so grateful to read them and relate to them and I appreciate them tremendously. Poetry provides the opportunity to reach emotion sometimes buried so deep in my soul. Emotion that I need to feel, emotion that many of us often run away from. I am so grateful for the beautiful words that are written and shared with the world. Art is my favorite form of communication. Art in all mediums is beautiful, but using words to create art is such a gift. Thank you for sharing this gift with us. I don’t know much about R.M. Drake personally, but I do know that Bromsthepoet has been open and vocal in sharing his journey of addiction and sobriety each step of the way. Opening yourself, being so vulnerable and unafraid inspires me to do the same. It is courageous and beneficial and I am so so grateful.
Dan Lok - the Asian dragon 🐉 CLOSER! Talk about creating something from nothing. I have a love hate relationship with this man. If I’m being totally honest I think it’s a little bit of ego because of how entirely effortless he makes success look. Yes I know he came from the mud and made his own way and I have heard him share his stories of failure, but you would never know it if he didn’t share stories because of how effortless he makes success look. English isn’t even his first language yet he was able to develop the high income skill of copywriting and build an empire around it. He educates others to do the same and creates opportunity for people to invest in themselves and develop their own skills. I’m such a sensitive personality and much like GaryVee, DanLok delivers info in a way that doesn’t enable. He pushes me to keep going and removes any and all possibility for excuses. He leaves me feeling like there is no obstacle that cannot be overcome.
There are so many more and I’m so overly concerned with leaving people out or hurting their feelings that I delayed writing this post of gratitude for a long time, there are so many- too many to count, I had to really look at my camera roll and remind the screenshots I have saved that brought me to profound thoughts and realizations, but in truth I have THOUSANDS of people in my heart and mind that deserve to be thanked.
To everyone mentioned and those unmentioned in this post of gratitude thank you so much for lifting me up and teaching me and being there for me when I felt most alone and confused. Thank you 🙏 for sharing your gifts with the world. I could do this all day and night for weeks and not run out of people to thank, I love you guys and I refuse to fail because of each of you.
I am still working.
I am still healing.
The whole world can benefit from the information shared by you all.