3.23.2015

ON FRIENDSHIP: THE RAW, REAL, HONEST & NAKED KIND



To have someone who knows all of my stuff. 
The good, the ugly and the secrets I shared so long ago that I forgot they belonged to me.  
Who knows about the countless times when I had an opportunity to show up as my higher self but chose not to (or didn't know enough to do better).
Who knows all my shadows yet still chooses to love & support me anyhow, it's a kind of love I feel honored to hold. 

Who has witnessed the massive emotional & spiritual shifts in my life and doesn't believe in all of the same things that I do but still tries her best to speak to me in "my language" when I need to hear it most. Someone who, at the same time, doesn't care about my shifts and sees it as her job to give me the truth as she sees it. 

Who always says "we" whenever she's actually referring MY life, MY business or the moves I should make--especially with regard to dating--because she feels like if I do it then she's doing it too, never mind the fact that she's been married for almost 11 years ("No...no...that's what we're NOT gonna do. That's O-U-T.").

The older I get, the more I understand the joy, peace and acknowledgement that comes from having a deep connection with people. To really be seen. And to be around those in whose eyes I'm always reminded that I am enough. I believe that soul connections are an organic thing that can't be fabricated--either they're there or they're not--and as such, that they should be honored. When someone allows me into their life I always see it as an opportunity to learn more about myself in & through them. And when I feel that pull, I will try to get to know you--to understand your life, hear your stories, learn how you process information--because this is how I make sense of my world!  And the older I get, I realize what a blessing it is to have people with whom I can do that. My preference is raw, real, honest & naked relationships--the kind that hold you down & pull you up, ever pushing you towards your best self. I consider myself lucky that I have more than one.

The quality of friendship or intimacy isn't measured solely in years.
I can meet someone new & instantly feel a closeness with them that defies explanation but in a relationship that is intimate and decades old--spanning the crazy high school years, the ignorant college years, the unconscious after-college years and finally the "aware adult years"--I look at my friend's history and see my own. And when I look at the daughter she birthed almost 18 years ago, I see my stories play back before my very eyes. This didn't mean much at 25 but as I've gotten older and been a witness to how difficult it can be to make friends over 30, it's something I appreciate in a brand new way. I have 4 best friends and each of the relationships are so different...but there is only 1 who has known me since 15.

So to my dear friend: I see you, I hear and I love you.
Thank you. 

3.16.2015

DAYKA ROBINSON FEATURED ON BLACK ENTERPRISE.COM!


Anytime I receive press or acknowledgement for my work, I'm humbled, especially now that so much of what I do is starting to become closely intertwined with who I am. 

Being profiled in ANY magazine is exciting, but when it's one that I grew up with, reading the stories of successful businesspeople and seeing the faces of people who look like me grace the pages month after month...well THAT kind of feature is on a whole 'nother level. So when Black Enterprise writer Kandia Johnson reached out to me after reading my story about my experience with Vitiligo and called me a "woman creating success on her own terms", HER words were the biggest honor yet, and I was thrilled to be interviewed. 

 Click the link below to head over to Black Enterprise.com and read all about my road to Interior Design. 


3.09.2015

DESIGNER INSIGHTS WITH TERRY'S FABRICS

Thrilled to be featured on the Terry's Fabrics blog last week!  

Courtesy of: Terrys Fabrics

3.06.2015

36 YEARS OLD.


On February 25th I turned 36 years old.
36!! 

It still sounds so crazy, because I remember being younger and hearing/reading about people being 36 and thinking to myself that they were really old. 

I now know better, of course. ;-)

At the beginning of the month I sent out invitations for a dinner party, to celebrate much the same as last year, only to have a freak 1-day snowstorm hit Atlanta on the same day of my birthday! Luckily the restaurant called to say they were staying open and since there was little to no snow on my side of town, I decided to move forward with my plans and let those who could come, come! So my party of 20 ended up being a party of 12 but we essentially had the space to ourselves which was great. The restaurant ended up closing an hour after we got there (I had to reel myself in on that one), but a few of us ended up going to a nearby bar afterwards and talked & talked until the wee hours of the morning, which made for a very lively finish to my night. And even though nothing went according to plan (including my super cute short jumpsuit I'd planned to wear but had to ditch last minute because snow/freezing weather + shorts= NO) and the vibe was much different than last year, it was good nonetheless. And I was happy.
In recent years I've developed a true fondness for birthday celebrations and have finally woke up to the fact that that there's no shame in organizing your own shindig--the only way to ensure I'll have the birthday I wanna have is to plan it myself!




So I have to tell you...I'm feeling good about 36!
Good things are popping up around every corner and I'm grateful that I positively feel more comfortable in my skin than I ever have before...and more aware and focused on staying mindful that I am enough, right here & now.
That knowledge is probably the best gift I could ever give myself and really, everyone who comes in contact with me. Knowing that I don't serve anyone, least of all myself, by shrinking who I am.
Accepting that there is always a place for people who confidently speak their minds, stand for their truth, and in general, want more...and not because the place of acceptance is some illusive place "out there", but because it's a place of knowing on the inside, where its been all along.





I had a friend turn 30 this week and I was just telling her, "...get ready because your 30s are really good." And of course there have been some rough patches and moments that really sucked but all-in-all, they have been good. Life will never exist without the sucky times--they make the "perfect times" possible, of course--but the last 6 years have been an incredible ride of which I could never have imagined.
And though the story is still unfolding I have to say...so far, so good. 
I'm now actually closer to 40 than I am to 30!!

2.16.2015

PROJECT HOME MASTER BATHROOM: PROGRESS PICS & BEFORES

 9 years later, my master bathroom renovation project is finally in full effect and I could NOT be happier. 

It's really telling when you walk into your bathroom and see this situation....


 ...yet only feel butterflies in the stomach & pangs of joy.

And even though all of my 200 bracelets, 108 bobby pins, 45 necklaces, 20 rings, 8 empty tubes of MAC lipgloss (gotta turn those in for my free product!), 7 hair brushes, 4 hair scarfs (black women who wear their hair straight must NOT go to sleep without that scarf!), 2 packs of foam rollers, various day/night creams, umpteen bottles of hair gel/leave-in conditioner/dry shampoo/creme, and overflowing basket of body lotions, soaps & oils are now strewn all across the floor of my bedroom....this place still looks the best its ever been. Because it's never about the madness that we DO see of course, but the fact that something is coming together in this space that I've only dreamed about for years. And seeing it finally happen is pretty sweet. This is not your typical $25k renovation--in fact, it's waaayyyyyyyy below that amount (did I mention it is "way below?" Okay, just checking.) But I'm spending what I need to (and saving were I can) to get a bathroom that at the very least, doesn't require me to usher my very own sister out of the space when she comes to visit out of sheer embarrassment.
Not to mention that a clean, updated bathroom will make me feel better and support my life in a more powerful way.
So all in all, it's all money well-spent.

Remember when you were young and got bad grades--or got in trouble--and knew you would have to go home and face some very ugly music?? Remember how that walk/trip/ride home was like, the worst ride EVER because you knew what was coming?
Well that's kinda how I feel about sharing these pics. 
Ugh. 

How it looked upon purchase:




The first thing I did once I moved in was remove those disgusting glass shower doors and replace them with this very high end, beautiful nylon shower liner (joking, people). The bathroom was so bad I refused to even purchase a proper show curtain--ha! And it was so so bad that I stopped using it for showers altogether about 3 years ago. I was just unable to make myself bathe in there--yuck.



After watching a few episodes of some random HGTV show (this was years before I became a designer, remember), I decided to try and strip the wallpaper in the bathroom myself which went really well until I realized that only the top half of the drywall was primed and on the lower half of the wall, the 1984 wallpaper had been applied DIRECTLY to the boards. If you've ever encountered this problem then you're fully aware that the novel idea stripping wallpaper in the entire bathroom quickly became a thing of the past. But instead of just fully pulling the paper off, I left it partially hanging. There's no good reason--sometimes I just do stuff like that. 


OMG and the floor. 
My carpenter's daughter came in the bathroom and was immediately concerned, because she thought the floor & wall coverings were staying...sweet, sweet girl.
Not only was the original vinyl floor 100% gross, but it was lifting all around the toilet, the look of  which used to make my skin crawl. I REFUSE to show you the pictorial evidence until the new one is installed, but...take my word for it. Gross. And the carpet right around the sink?? Jesus, Mary & Joseph.  Let me share this bit about my life with you--I used to dye my own hair jet black AND I did my own waxing for a long time so....having a carpet in this area was absolutely NOT a good look for me. No, no, no.

BUT....
..the ugly days are over. And we are now on the move!
I made a few changes from the original redesign bathroom plan I shared a few weeks ago (I'm always indecisive until the last minute), but you'll see all of the changes soon enough. ;-)
More updates to come! 

2.11.2015

THE IMPORTANCE OF HAVING A PRACTICE

via

In the world of spirituality and metaphysics, there is a lot of talk about having a "practice"--the thing that keeps you connected to your Source, whatever you may consider that to be. 
I whole-heartedly believe in the power of a practice, but I admit that it's an area in which I am still growing (read: not as consistent as I'd like to be). But when life gets a little crazy, like it did last week, I'm reminded why it's a belief that I never stray too far from. 

In my spare time, it's rare that you'll find me watching a ton of TV. I have cable, but the channels are so basic that it's almost like I don't have it. There's only one box and it's downstairs in my Living Room, where I'm more likely to watch it if friends come over and want to tune into something special. 
Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead? Haven't even seen 'em. 
DVR? Don't have it. 

I cut the TV out in 2013 when I realized that going to bed with Law & Order and Dateline on my mind wasn't doing me any good. I actually completely turned the tv off for months and just read, and once I noticed how much better my days were getting, I kept it up, making sure to fill my brain with positive & encouraging things every morning and once I settled into bed at night.

So for me, this is a big part of my practice.

But the importance of having a practice for me is less about the day-to-day and more about having a place to turn when the proverbial shit hits the fan. Because it's never IF it hits the fan but WHEN it hits the fan. Sometimes it hits in my business life and sometimes it hits in my personal life....other times it may be both at the same time. Could be as small as my hot water heater going out (like it did this week!) or as big as....well, big. And I don't just mean praying/meditating about a resolution to whatever your situation is--I mean something that keeps you grounded in the truth of your bigger picture. Something that reminds you to focus on your guiding beliefs. It's always interesting to me when I hear people pray for God's will to be done, because from my perspective, it IS always done....the only thing I pray about is the grace to surrender and let go of my attachment to what I want the outcome to be.
And I do this by reminding myself that there's no place that God is not, and that the Universe is always conspiring in my favor, even when it doesn't look like it. It's what I constantly reiterate to myself (and others!) and what I need/want to be reminded of when chaos appears to be all around. To be reminded in the moment that--as David Ault always says--even in the apparent absence of order, there IS order, to the degree that I believe it to be so. 

So how do you develop a practice?
Well first of all, there is no ONE right way. It's a personal, intimate thing and first requires you to figure out what you believe about life. And it should be a reflection of what you want to see in your world. If you want to see yourself with great relationships & a successful business, speak that!! It's as easy as saying something like, "I know that my business is a success and all of my relationships are moving me towards my highest good." Keep in mind that it's often a journey to our "highest good" but if you continuously remind yourself that everything is working together for your good, after awhile that's all you'll see. And conversely, know that if your narrative about your life is that it's always a challenge, nothing ever works out for you, all men are dogs/women are sluts and you're never gonna get there (wherever "there" is for you), then don't be surprised when that's all you see reflected, because what we focus on grows. Developing a practice is like building a muscle--the more you use it the stronger it gets--so when those moments of pure chaos come, you can choose to teach yourself to be silent in the midst of the storm and know that regardless of what it may look like, all is well right now. 
This is true for your finances. And your business. And your relationships. And everything in between.

Because a practice is a very personal thing it will look different on each of us but I would suggest you start with doing it once a day, maybe even twice a day if that feels right (morning & night) . It could be meditating, reading books that keep your mind/spirit centered, prayer or even something that just makes you feel good and gives you strength to face each day with courage & love. My advice? Don't get caught up in the vehicle, but do find SOMETHING to read/do/say daily that reminds you of the truth who you are. Because there is SO MUCH out here trying to remind us of who we've BEEN, who you SHOULD BE going forward and how to live your life now...and 99.989% of it is BS. Remember that when you change your mind, you change your language. And when you change them both, your whole life will change.
There's no trick or gimmick, just me & you, owning the truth of who we are.
And if having a practice can make you do that, I'd say it's something worth having.

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