While I was driving the other day, I came across a construction site. Everything seemed dirtier and dustier than usual—the pavement, the workers, the equipment… As I gazed over the scene, I came across a sign that announced “Wendy’s”—yes, the popular and multi million-dollar fast food chain restaurant. As odd as it may sound, at that moment, I paralleled the symbolism presented in front of me to my life.

No matter how dirty or unappealing a phase of your life may appear at first, you have to keep building towards something greater. You have to keep your eyes on the prize and know that on the other side, there’s physical, mental, and emotional success. Isn’t it crazy how life gives you these signs?

At the beginning of this year, I shared a vulnerable part of myself that many people weren’t used to via my GoFundMe campaign. As an initiative to fund the publishing of my third book in The Kindred Spirits (which I’m still writing) and overall marketing efforts for my brand, I knew I had to share experiences that I kept to myself. I had to touch on my divorce and how the death of my parents and grandfather greatly impact me till this day. Why? Because I knew people would relate to it—and that’s exactly what happened.

Looking back, I’m glad I started the campaign. I was hesitant to appear in need and vulnerable at first and I had to have a chat with my inner ego. But at the end of the day, that campaign was the catalyst to me being more vocal about my experiences and feelings on my social media platforms, interviews and how I connect with people. More importantly, me expressing myself a bit encouraged others to share their experiences (shoutout to those who shared their Resilient Warrior Story) and connect with readers who could relate. I still have work to do and like you, I’m still healing from painful experiences. But while doing so, I’ve made some great accomplishments along the way.

Thank you to every follower, every Resilient Warrior who shared their story, every reader, every like, every music submission on 45 Records Entertainment, every giveaway entry…everyone who has been a part of this new phase of my life in 2017. I want to do and be better in 2018—and I will be.

Looking back on the accomplishments from this year reminds me how far I’ve come and the journey ahead. I hope you all join me, so we can continue on this resilient path together.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all of you!