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Hi, my name is Chenai Mbanga! Welcome to my blog! I write to encourage, inspire and empower you in growing in your spiritual life through reflections and prose. I have been writing on this blog for 5 years now, and it has been a journey! Join me as I continue my journey toward self-actualizing.❤

CHECK THESE OUT!

  • 1
    HINDSIGHT
    Hindsight is my first book! Read about where the idea came from, why I think it’s important, and how it’s the book that led to self-actualization.♡
    Read more
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    EOCNaturals
    I’m the founder and owner of amazing plant based hair and body butter! Transform your hair and skin with our natural plant butters and oils!♡
    Shop Now!
  • 3
    SPEAK ON IT, SIS!
    My girls and I are podcasters, speaking on life, adulting, and the socio-political challenges that we see and face as young black women in today’s society. Check out our podcast!♡
    Listen now

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Latest Posts

Single Girl Thoughts

 



I don’t talk about my dating life because there isn’t anything to say. I wish I had interesting stories or great insights into love, but I really don’t. One thing I will say is, this year I have been incredibly contente. This year is the first year in memory that I have thoroughly enjoyed being alone. I think it’s because for a while there I was caught up in a terrible situation, and when I came out of it, freedom tasted so sweet, I couldn’t imagine forsaking it. It’s something that I may write about one day, or in bits and pieces here and there, but the point is I have enjoyed. I haven’t done anything significant like a dramatic glow up, but peace in my soul has been the glow I missed.

The longer I am single the more I notice folks around me getting antsy about my singleness. I remember a friend joked that as you get older and are still single, a person’s list of expectations gets shorter and shorter. But I think in this generation, the list you create must be created with wisdom, and courage and fortified by a whole lot of perseverance. In this moment, though, I’ll say I’m over the list thing because God has his own agenda. Just when I think I know where he's leading, he turns my world upside down and does a whole other thing, so I'm going with the flow now. 

 

Anyway, so I’m enjoying peace. That’s not to say I haven’t been looking at the clock and impatiently tapping my fingers, but I’d say I’m not worried because I have a different confidence in God about that area of my life than I’ve had, ever. If he knows my end from the beginning and he orchestrates my paths then I’m sure he knows what’s good in the love department. But I still pray that he is neither slumbering nor sleeping, just in case. But I digress.

 

So as I said, the longer I am single the more I notice folks around me getting antsy about my singleness. It’s the kind of antsy that blurs the lines between my will and autonomy and their will and hopes for my life. Don’t get me wrong: I like helpful suggestions; I appreciate when I’m connected to someone. But I had to stop one day when my own words written in my book Hindsight, came back to me: why do you do things that you don’t want to do? Why do you outwardly say yes, when you’ve inwardly said no?

And various moments of me acquiescing to something, my own mouth surrendering my will and desires so that others may rejoice while I wither and die away made me question the life that I wish for myself and future children. I do not want to sit in regret one day, advising them that I don’t want them to be in a situation that I am in because long before they were born I failed to stand up for myself, and failed to trust the still, small voice that cautioned me that this wasn’t it.

 

 Yes, sometimes we say no to good things because we are afraid. Afraid that the old patterns will haunt us; fearing the unknown of the road we wish to embark on. Unsure if there is someone “better” out there than the one in front of you. Wondering if you even deserve the good you are looking for.

But I no longer have those fears. Over the course of my life, I’ve met people who grew up in extraordinarily abusive, or messed up environments, but they took pride in the fact that they didn’t repeat those patterns. They made different decisions. They went against the grain, subduing what was naturally dysfunctional and familiar, and creating a different reality for themselves and their new families. And when I think back to this, I see God showing me that I need to be brave to have the life that I want. By the testimonies of these people, seeds were planted that if I’m willing, brave and I trust Him, I can have a different life too.


Different requires hard work, and intention, though. And that includes waiting. More than once I’ve thought something was right and I was wrong. More than once I’ve thought something was for me, and I believe(d) it was, but the belief was one-sided. And more than once the resounding voice of God saying no has caused frustration and even greater impatience. I’ve definitely had times where I’ve thought, “You never say yes to anything I like, and when you do say yes it’s either I don’t want it or it’s short-lived.” But being in tune with God is more than just getting the answer. It’s the experience toward the answer, and the learning (and unlearning) in between that I’ve been overlooking. I realize now that I need humility when co-piloting with God in this, rather than be an expert of my heart in its needs and desires. 

It’s been amazing to see God show me what I need, and revealing how some words, beliefs and attitudes of mine are rooted in fear. That fear of what if it’s not what I want or what I expect? What if I’m disappointed?  Seeing the ways in which I seek to control the outcomes of some of these fears has revealed my own faithlessness, even in some of the decisions that I make in my everyday life. It’s a daunting task walking in faith. I often feel myself regressing. It feels burdensome and unnatural swimming against my feelings, let alone the prevailing attitudes of modern-day society. However, this journey is not about denying facts, but it is about pursuing the truth, and allowing the truth to set me free.

 

Outside of the enjoyment of feeling free, it is a season that I’m getting over though. It feels more like carrying a heavy backpack in a desert, with no water or food in sight. And only when you are borderline delirious and ready to collapse and die, you get a burst of energy to keep you going. But that cycle has lost any allure, if it ever had any. 

 

I don’t feel that I have to lower any standards either. I think I’ll know a tree by its fruit. Bad trees produce bad fruits. Good trees produce good fruits. It’s not to say someone is without faults. Even trees need pruning, and water, sometimes fertilizer so they continue to produce good fruit. However, I’ve come to accept some folks do not want to be better people. And that we are not going to agree on the means to that healing and betterment. And that’s cool.

In any case, whatever I can’t see with my eyes, I pray God reveals it, and gives me strength and grace to traverse this season. 


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