II’e been 26 for a few months now and I’ve already learned some pretty valuable lessons about life and the essence of womanhood, as pertained to the approaching of such a fine year. Ahhh. “26.”

I’m sure many of you can feel me when I say that 2016 was one crazyyyy year. Yes, C-R-A-Z-Y. I can’t lie. I didn’t just stumble. I fell down hard, and I fell plenty of times. (Metaphorically, of course.) I experienced a few disappointments; I lost a few friends; I failed a class in graduate school; I resorted to liquor to help me cope with a stressful job; and I even fell off of my workout routine for a whole six months. (That’s not like me). Simply put, for a segment of 2016, I was an all around mess, and at this point, I refuse to be anything other than transparent about it.  I literally hit rock bottom and started all over again.

One day I sat in my car, reflecting on all that had taken place, and I cried hysterically. I thought to myself, “This is the TWENTY-FIFTH year! This was supposed to be my milestone year! What is happening to me?” Sounds horrible right? But actually, it wasn’t.

Near the end of 2016, I had lots of time to think and reflect and I realized that my 25th year actually wasn’t so bad. The greatest blessings came to me right in the struggle. God humbled me. He gave me a little more patience than what I had before. He stretched my faith. He showed me that I could literally have nothing and still survive if I just gave an ounce of faith to Him. I always thought that the whole “faith the size of a mustard seed” was so extra, but I learned that I was totally wrong! At that point, my twenty-fifth year taught me that falling to a low point in life was actually a beautiful thing, because from then, I could only go up in the twenty-sixth year.

Twenty-six is approaching and I couldn’t be more excited for the joys of elevation that await.

As for you, my friend: if you are struggling..and I mean struggling really really bad…know that you are not alone and that your season is approaching.