Skip to main content

Seat Fillers and Taking Back My Fire

We put seat fillers in the places and spaces that God has reserved for someone or something else. Impatiently, we try to fit cubical objects into cylindrical spaces; discontentedly, we clog the arteries of our dreams and desires with fatty waste that is, at minimum, unnecessary, and at most, life-threatening. We are impatient with our dreams and goals, and our seat fillers--the drug abuse, that man or woman that ain't good for us, that career of convenience we chose over a life of passion--set us back instead of pushing us forward. 

God wants to push us forward, to have a faith that is content with the empty seats in our auditoriums--a faith that, in the midst of emptiness, is full and fervent. 

Lately, I've been identifying the seat fillers in my life in a desperate attempt to save myself from myself. I've cried out to God, "forgive me for not waiting for and anticipating the people and the places you have been preparing for me, for not trusting that my gifts will make room for me, for placing my self-inflicted limitations over your infinitude." I've filled those empty seats with red wine and bourbon, obsessive compulsions, boyfriends I didn't need, red flags I didn't heed, and people that didn't serve me. I've played house with the devil and my soul has been evicted from my body. This shell that I'm renting is crumbling under the dilapidated infrastructure of self-doubt and pity, struggling to stand without its soul; and how amazing it is that this heart has survived for so long without its soul-mate; but the air hits her differently now as she pumps blue blood through these veins, giving faint life to the extremities that are searching for her fire. 

I'm here today, with a shortness of breath, frail and faint, stumbling through the wilderness, feet away from the flame that got away. I've emptied my seats of the perpetrators and cleansed my temple of damaging lard. I reach for a flame that I knew well, once. I'm fighting for it now--not to become the person that I used to be, but to rise from the dead with the wounds still fresh and become the person that I am destined to be. 

I release all fears and insecurities. I am no longer grabbing, holding, or squeezing anything and everything that I've falsely convinced myself will connect me to God. I've learned that God, and anything else worth having, doesn't need to be grabbed onto or squeezed tightly--that God is there whether you're holding on or not, and that you can be dead while grabbing on to a life that is toxic. I am steps away from my flame. I feel her fire upon my fingertips as my blood slowly turns from blue to purple, making its way to a deep red. I anticipate a breakthrough...finally.




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

I'm A Quitter...So What!?

When I was 8, I went to a cousin's wedding in Lansing, Michigan. My mom and I stayed after the wedding festivities to sight-see. One afternoon, we were walking to the public bus and it flew passed us to the bus stop, a good distance away. My mom told me to run! I took off jogging, casually. Frustrated and annoyed, I stopped running. I turned around and proclaimed that I was tired and our efforts were futile. She told me to keep running. Rolling my eyes, I took off in a light sprint and the bus driver was gracious enough to wait for us to catch up (this clearly wasn't anything like the brutal NYC transit operators who could care less about you). We winded-ly climbed on the bus and to this day, my mother uses this story to lecture me about the benefits of not giving up--of not quitting.
Although my mother would never want me to stay in a toxic situation, that experience has shaped the narrative around my vigorous fight against being labeled "quitter."

I'm an overa…

For Colored Girls Who Aren't Afraid to Acknowledge Their Therapist, Pt. 2

A lot of people have read my earlier post (For Colored Girls Who Aren't Afraid to Acknowledge Their Therapist, Pt. 1) about being a strong black woman who unashamedly has a therapist. I've gotten a few comments like:
"Mia! You've always seemed like you had it all together! I'm surprised."
"Mia, this is my life! I've had/I'm having trouble finding a therapist too!"
"I had no idea therapy costs that much! Why won't insurance cover mental health care like they cover everything else?"
1.So, let me say this: I'm grateful to know that I am not alone in this process--that there are friends and colleagues who are doing or want to do work on themselves so that they, too, can be healthy. My generation might be deemed selfish or self-absorbed by older onlookers, but many of us are outchea tryna to cultivate the best version of ourselves--the version our families and communities expect from us. We ain't just outchea overachieving for …

Having a Baby, Pt. 2

I've talked previously about Having a Baby on here-

Not just having a baby but not feeling like I need a man to do it. It was a revolutionary act of self-love to declare, this past January, that I wasn't waiting on the perfect partner, the right time, or the best financial situation to have a baby. Black women, in particular, have it hard out here. For those of us who didn't accidentally get pregnant at 17, we were told by many to wait--to wait until we got settled into our careers, to wait until we made partner at the firm and then wait 3 years after that so that we could keep partner...to wait until we made tenure at whatever university...to wait until we got our first church or our first job as pastor...to wait and wait and wait....until our eggs disappear or we can no longer carry a child to term because we've reached advanced maternal age. I've heard the stories--both dictated to me in private and publicly shared in books and interviews [Read Gabrielle Union&#…