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After my first car accident (2010), my grandma’s pastor told me I needed to watch who I let in my life. I didn’t pay it any mind because I only had like 4 friends anyway. After my second car accident (2012), I thought about what my grandma’s pastor said and thought to myself “okay, maybe I need to change some things up”. I was in a medically induced coma for 8 days, in the hospital for a month, and couldn’t walk for 8 weeks. I used that time to think about who I really wanted in my life, ya know, who I really needed around. I often wonder what was going on in my head during those 8 days. Was God nurturing my unconscious mind during that time? Was He altering my brain chemistry so I would gradually transform into who He created me to be in this world?

I didn’t change anything, though. I just went to college. I didn’t make an effort to make friends because I was still recovering from my car accident and focused on getting acclimated to my new environment. Then, before the end of my freshman year of college (2013), I turned into a recluse. I moved off campus and only stepped outside for class, food, and exercising at Lake Johnson. I think this was the first time in my life that I was REALLY, TRULY comfortable being isolated. I was completely alone. Was this the manifestation of the next phase of my life? I think it was.

As life went on, I focused solely on school – no parties, no boyfriends. Life was great. I was in school, I had a part-time job, and I was exercising regularly. I began dating my best friend when I finished graduate school in 2017. He was the first college friend I made in 2012, and we became besties around 2014. When I finished graduate school, he and I moved to a different city so he could attend graduate school. I honestly didn’t want to move to a new city, but I also didn’t want to be far away from him; he was my best friend and boyfriend. He finished graduate school in 2019; and I decided to change cities again. I knew my relationship was over MONTHS before it actually ended, I just didn’t want to accept it. I settled in my home, began working, and started studying for my clinical social work exam. As mentioned in my book, life really got rocky around March 2020. In addition to me being stressed about taking my exam, the arguments with my boyfriend were increasing. Instead of dealing with my issues head on, I ignored them and hoped things would get better. They didn’t.

September 2020. My boyfriend & I became very distant, I failed my clinical exam, and I cut off everybody in my life who wasn't family. I just didn't wanna deal with people. I mean, my profession requires me to interact with multiple people on a daily basis, so when I'm not working, I'm not tryna communicate with anyone. That's a valid feeling, right? Rhetorical question. I talked to my dad about it. He said “we’re born alone, we’re gonna die alone, you don’t need anybody”, and he was right. My dad actually taught me that lesson when I was a little girl, but that's a conversation for another blog post. Once again, I turned into a recluse. I thought about my alone time in the hospital and at the end of my freshmen year of college. I had been isolated before, so doing it again was no big deal, right?

If I failed the exam a 2nd time, I could’ve lost my job. I was devastated, stressed out, and depressed. But God. God really be coming through when I think my life is over. The social work board changed the clinical exam rules and basically made it to where even if I failed my exam again, I wouldn’t have lost my job. That was great news. I was still nervous about passing the exam, but I wasn’t as stressed out about it. Due to the COVID capacity restrictions, I was unable to find a location to test anywhere in North Carolina in December, so I had to drive to Virginia. I ended my relationship on December 18th and passed my clinical social work exam on December 21st.

I accomplished my professional goal, but I also loss my best friend; I didn’t have the energy to be proud of myself. I was so sad over a relationship that should’ve been over months prior, that I couldn’t even celebrate an accomplishment I had been looking forward to since college. I had to be real with myself. I had to ask myself why. Why was I allowing another human to cause me so much stress, discomfort, and unhappiness like I’m not SiSi????

I had to remind myself who I am. I’m SiSi. SiSi who has wanted to help people for as long as she can remember. SiSi who has been taking pictures since she was a teenager. SiSi who survived two car accidents. SiSi who is beautiful and intelligent. SiSi – God’s child. I pulled myself together. I made myself do the ugly cry a few times and gave myself 4 hours a day to pity myself. I love being alone now. My family understands that I like being alone, and they accept it. Now that I’m older and have once again become a recluse, I’m able to hear God more clearly. I believe I need to be isolated in order to continue to grow and discover my life’s purpose. Now when I pray, I include thanking God for pain, hurt, loss, embarrassments, and lessons. When it seems like life is full of disappointments and there is no end in sight, it could be a sign that God wants us to isolate ourselves from the world, so He can have our full attention.

Life Lesson:

· Spend time alone and wait for God’s guidance.

How I Apply it to My Life:

· I love just being present in the moment - whatever moment that is. I LOVE being alone, I love being with family, & I love being mindful in nature.

"Take a chance, have faith, my lad

You got all of the same tools all the greats have had

Two eyes, two ears, one mouth, two hands

You can watch, listen more than you speak, take advantage" - Skegee by J.I.D.


· Wiz Khalifa – Fly Solo

· Wiz Khalifa – This Plane

SLIDESHOW: Me fake smiling (because I wasn't happy in real life when this picture was taken, me in my happy place (nature), my passing & failing exam scores, & me in the coma (2012).


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