Career-ish

Career-ish

Heyyy Fam! 

My latest contract has come to an end and I’m truly grateful for the experience. DC has been the inception of my travel career and I’m so blessed for the knowledge, associates, and networking I’ve gained there. Since, I’ve been home, I have been reflecting on the different parts of me that make me, SHON. My career choice has defintely added to my life in so many ways. Keep reading to see how!

My past assignment has been very unique. Before, I dive into the delicate nature of this assignment…I don’t think I’ve given you details of my actual specialty. I’m an oncology nurse. Yes, a nurse who specializes in the care and treatment of cancer patients. This requires caring for people at some of their weakest moments. Moments of discovering the cancer, hearing it came back, being in remission, or going through the motion of treating it. It’s a whirlpool of emotions. Up, down, down, up.  Honestly, I have no special story or reason for choosing this speciality fresh out of nursing school. I browsed some floors that were hiring locally and the peer- interview felt like a match unlike some interviews I had done. Before I could even get settled in after the interview, the manager called and offered me the job. I was sold!

My first big girl job. My first work family. My first time experiencing death so close. Who would have thought I would be thrown into something so serious fresh out of school?!! This is what makes my experiences in the field so unique. Some healthcare workers  go their entire careers without witnessing a death. While on the latter end, an oncology nurse may experience multiple in a month, week, or day. It’s one of those moments that is never the same no matter how many times you’ve seen someone take their last breath. Each time, it’s never easy for me. It’s my Apple Watch constantly telling me to breathe, the knots in my stomach, my constant wondering of what this precious life was like before the cancer.

My latest assignment, I did not want to accept because it was oncology. I needed a break after providing care for some of the weakest patients for almost 2 years in Charleston. The manager was so sweet and accommodating in the interview, I just couldn’t resist. What a sucker right?! Prior to this assignment, my aunt was also diagnosed with cancer. It was like I couldn’t catch a break of the conversation. Cancer at work. Cancer at home. It was sooooo overwhelming watching patients so ill and constantly think about my aunt back home. 

The very last month of my assignment was very taxing physically, mentally, and emotionally. Every week, I had a precious soul leave their physical realm. I would just pray and cross my fingers that it would happen on the next shift and not on mine. It was like a waiting game. Stomach in knots. Covid also restricted visitation so, sometimes family members would not be allowed visitation until those final moments were near. The hospital staff is the family in this case. Doing the best we can to make sure the patients are comfortable through all the pain and stress. In some cases, the family could not make it in time for the final moments. I remember calling a son, informing him that his mother’s vitals were slowly trending downward and the “time” could come at any moment. The family was aware the patient was dying prior to the call and were awaiting transport to bring her home in the morning. The son handled the call so well and I remember asking him if he wanted to say anything to his mom on speaker while she was still breathing. He said his farewells and gave her permission to go. No less than 30 minutes after the call, her suffering was over. She took her last breath in front of me and all I could do was cry. Tears of mixed emotions. She would no longer get to enjoy the simple pleasures of her world but she would no longer suffer by the hands of cancer. Can you imagine being with a stranger while they take their last breath? 

These moments…I will never forget. I always feel them. Who do healthcare  workers talk to about these things? Do we overwhelm our family and friends with this heavy shit? Do we call each other up at home and relive these moments? Therapy? Well, I’ve done a combination. It helps let me get my feelings out so I’m not desensitized by it all. This speciality has indeed molded me into the person I am today. I grant people with more grace and forgiveness than before. I’m always thinking about moments where I probably won’t get to say how I feel. So, I try to express how I feel when I feel it. I’m very tactful with how I express myself sometimes because I never know what others are going through.

To anyone who has experienced death of a loved one, in your profession, or in any capacity…I send you love today. I challenge you to take a deep, full breath and release the tension you may be carrying around. I challenge you to think about happier times to get you through.

Thank you all for joining in on the blog today! Much love xoxo

It’s Ya Birthday, SimplyShon!!

It’s Ya Birthday, SimplyShon!!

 

Y’all, can you believe it’s been a little over 365 days since I’ve started blogging?!! It flew by sooooooo fast! It feels like just yesterday, I was flirting with the idea of creating an outlet to let you guys into my world. I remember gathering all the details together with my logo, my first photoshoot outfits, blog topics, and just the overall vibe of how I wanted to convey my journey.

When is the last time you’ve done something YOU wholeheartedly WANTED to do? Without any consideration of how others thought of your actions..My blog is definitely a platform that I can say I started with myself at the center..THIS IS FOR ME! I didn’t start this because of my mom, friends, family, or anyone else. It’s my baby and I’m so proud to say I have invested into something I genuinely enjoy. By pouring into myself, I get to pour into others. I love it here!

During my first year, I have been blessed to do some dope collabs and even a paid partnership! Just by being my unapologetic self!! How DOPE is that?! Your feedback has been the most rewarding though! I couldn’t have done any of this without my friends and family providing that unconditional love and support during such a stressful and anxiety filled moment. You all have shown me how loved and special I am in your hearts. I’m so blessed that I can receive the love I put out to the universe. 

The goal of my blog has and will always be to share the contents of my life..my heart..and my soul. I have had so many inspiring and in-depth conversations with my subscribers about my blog topics. From the typing my think-pieces to replying back to comments, this journey has been so therapeutic. It’s like I don’t care who reads or who doesn’t, but that my content can resonate with someone that couldn’t articulate their feelings or needed reassurance that they are not alone in their thoughts. 

The pandemic has forced many of us to dig a little deeper within ourselves while quarantining and slowing down our pace. I hope you all are using this time to focus on whatever you would have been otherwise running from. The pandemic has motivated my creative hand and there’s no other place but up for me! 

The best advice I can give to anyone that’s having a hard time finding their own creative space: 

  • DO IT FOR YOU
  • DO IT SCARED
  • ASK FOR HELP
  • RESEARCH 
  • STRIVE FOR PROGRESS NOT PERFECTION

I place my energy into the authenticity of my content rather than views or shares. That may not work for you, but start by identifying your goals and what direction you would love to go with for YOUR platform. 

Moving forward, I will continue to share my real and raw feelings with you all! We in this together! Send me some topics…LESSSSGOOOOOO! Let’s do life together! Thanks for holding ya girl downnnnnn! Special Shoutout to photographers Tyler & Sean, hairstylist Mia, my sisters who made my shoots – Kenya, Dominque, Brittany, and everyone who has commented and shared!!

GROWING PAINS

GROWING PAINS

Hey y’all! It’s been a little min but I write from my soul and I can never put a timing on my blog posts.

If you’ve been following my IG, you know I’m in a space of transitioning through uncomfortable spaces. GROWING. I feel like we always shout about growth and how we all need to do it …but HOW SWAY?

There’s this thing about me where I feel like I’m always right. I feel my actions are always justified and THATS THAT! The gag is …I’m so full of myself and I needed to be humble. I can get defensive when I feel like I’m being called out on my own bullshit. Just typing this seems weird to be honest. However, I need to see this. I need to feel that my words and actions are not the end-all-be-all. 

Recently, I’ve been thinking & moving differently because I want better outcomes for my life. I was different results. A friend invited me to his church revival and everything the pastor said stuck with me. “You can’t get deep water blessings with a shore mentality”! HELLOOOOO SOMEBODY! I got to dig deeper. I have to see that there isn’t just one perspective on life. This is another reason I’m grateful for my platform. I get to engage with so many individuals and see different outcomes and thought processes.

Changing my mentality and being open to growth has placed me in uncomfortable moments and conversations. I get frustrated with myself a lot. I get discouraged when I feel like I’m not understanding the source of my pain. However, I am accepting the challenge. I am learning how to be a better daughter, friend, partner, and woman..I am realizing that my responses and my actions are not a “One Size Fit All” but I can evolve to handle situations as need be.

One of my newer, forming relationships recently challenged my mind on who I thought I was. For now we will call this person a “friend”. They somewhat called out me out for something I wasn’t doing. I became slight upset because again…Ms. Mamas thinks she’s perfect. It was an uncomfortable conversation but my actions from the conversation is what let me knew I have grown! I handled the situation head-on and communicated properly! Some of y’all reading maybe like…Girl that’s it?! That’s big to me! I can shut down or deflect ..and I didn’t do either. I listened for understanding and not just to respond. Whewwww Chile it was HARD ! YA HEAR ME?!!I listened because I cared and I wanted to elevate. It was at this moment ..I knew I am becoming the woman I am destined to be. 

The crazy part is …everything my friend was saying, I could relate to. I was just too into myself and my head to communicate it properly. I’m so grateful for uncomfortable moments because it has been pushing me to step up. Pushing me to not be afraid of voicing my concerns no matter how I perceive it will go. 

I’ve suddenly become the “transparency” friend amongst my friend group and it’s super hilarious. I appreciate you all for rocking with me and along this journey. 

Special thanks to Freedom in Fragility for bringing me into their ranks to dig deep. Check out Casey’s website as she invites black women to cultivate a space of healing and ending silent suffering. 

Dear 2020,

Dear 2020,

Happy Early New Year Boo Thangsssss! I’m taking this moment to reflect on my many transitions throughout 2020 and I must say (excuse my language) this SHIT has been a lot. I dedicate this post to More life. More love. More laughter. More lessons. 

This is my open letter to 2020.

To: 2020 from ME 

Date : December 31, 2020

Theme: Intentional

Song: Comfortable by H.E.R { For dramatics play song at the bottom of post and THEN start reading} 

*y’all remember writing letters like this in middle school?!! 

2020 I needed you. I needed you to continue to mold me. I needed you to put together pieces I did’t know that were required. Anything that did not work for me …WAS FOR MY GOOD. There were times I said Yes…but 2020 said HELL NO. I may have not understood then..but geesshhh I OVERstand now.

The beginning of this year set the tone for everything I’ve accomplished and managed to pull through. Moving from my comfort zone to a new territory while in a pandemic. Channeling every bit of my emotions to deal with a heartbreak again (we’ll discuss later). Harnessing childhood traumas and realizing how they were triggering my current actions. Carrying burdens that I’m now ready to release. Breaking toxic patterns and becoming more intentional with my moves. It feels good to finally be on the other side of things. I feel like I can finally breathe. I can finally walk up-right. I can finally say ..I’m doing what makes me happy! I have been transparent about a lot of my struggles this year and next year will be no different. I have connected with so many of you that were willing to share your stories, frustrations, fears, and dreams. I’m so blessed and favored to receive the courage to start this platform. I am here to be an example that you can talk about your struggles just how we celebrate our successes. I am by far not perfect but I strive for progress. Progress to be a better version of myself. Looking back on all I’ve been through this year…sometimes I just want to cry (happy and sad tears). Sometimes I do. The way God and the universe has been on my side…I have released the fear that I won’t become everything that I have manifested. I will continue to pour onto everything and anything I touch. What good is potential without action? I challenge you all to do something out of your comfort zone next year…Step up and step out on faith.

Thank you all for riding for me. Most of my posts are unscheduled. Meaning..I do this ish from the heart and straight from the bottom of me!! LOVE YALL ❤️❤️

With the most sincerity I have to offer,

Shon 

Traveling Pants

Traveling Pants

Hey love bugs! It’s been a while and I miss interacting with you all. Before I get deep into my first travel assignment journey. I just want to say – live selflessly! ALWAYS do what’s best for you and pour into yourself unapologetically. For those who have been following this ride, you know that I am currently in Washington D.C. Although Covid has weakened a lot of functionalities of city-life, my family and friends have been 
here every step of the way enjoying what we can together! Making memories OKAYYY! 

Let’s jump into my experiences on my first travel assignment. My orientation was only 2 days. The practice modules to learn the charting system were broken. Soooooooo….basically I was thrown onto the floor not knowing too much of the charting system or where any of the supplies were. I was challenged! You have to move quickly in the travel world to adapt. It was an adrenaline rush for me! I love learning new systems and seeing different ways to do things. It took me about 2 weeks to really get a gist of where everything was and proper protocol channels. Student Shon reporting for class headass LOLLLLLL!!!


So, babygirl got real hip to the lack of southern hospitality here! I will add, my recruiter prepared me before I accepted this assignment that I was stepping into the lion’s den. I appreciate her realness because not everyone knew what they were stepping into and left within a few days. The location and the pay were pretty decent though! So I took my chances. The staff and patients were a tad aggressive and REALLY upfront. The attitude and cattiness hits you at the front door. This was a hospital with a large population of homeless and drug abuser patients. 180 change from my facility South Carolina. I knew which battles to pick and which to let ride out with employees and patients. I never got involved with “house” politics or argued back with patients. I did my damndest to be invisible. This meant no extra comments getting involved with floor and management beef. I would always decline being in a leadership position because of the stress and lack of resources that came with it. I’m here for the MOO-LAAH! DASSIT BABY! It was so many instances that I would be like Lord what did I get myself into?! However, that pay every week motivated me to keep going LOOLLL. I even extended my contract for a few more weeks. Now that I’ve completed my first assignment in the trenches…I can succeed anywhere baby!!!

I’m not going to lie, there were days I missed my old facility and coworkers. I’m a social person at core so taking breaks alone were kinda weird at first. However, with how crazy things were at that hospital…I appreciated my alone time. I didn’t miss the pay back home though. As a staff nurse in South Carolina, I was so overworked and underpaid it was a shame. Being young, single and without kids..I just felt it was the 
perfect time for me. To those with all that you still can travel and even consider traveling locally around your state. Most agencies just require your home address be at least 50 miles away from the facility. 

To all my staff nurses considering travel nursing in future here’s the steps I took to get me over the ledge to leave my staff position:


-Do you have enough experience? Most assignments take 2 years of experience. However some will take you with less if they are in dire need of help. 
(make sure you research the facility so you know what you are facing!)  


-Decide what’s your reasoning for travel. Is it for location or money. What matters the most to you? This will assist you in picking the right assignment for you! 


-Join facebook travel nurse groups to see current rate trends for different areas, what current travelers (gypsies) are experiencing, reviews on facilities, reviews on travel agencies & recruiters.


-Become familiar with terminology pertaining to your contract
I.E. (overtime rate, taxable hourly rate, holiday rate, per diem,  on-call rate, call-in rate, blended rate)


-Look at housing options in area –  best practice is make  sure you can afford your rent with less than 1 weekly paycheck 

-Create profiles with multiple agencies to compare different rates and price match

 -Get all certifications you get can from your staff job for FREE before leaving 

-Check out independent health insurance, life insurance, 401K plans – you will have to purchase these on your own or go through your agency just be mindful that your coverage will end when you leave that agency after a certain time frame

– If accepting a COVID assignment – will the agency compensate you for quarantine time if you contract the virus? does the facility have adequate PPE?

-TALK to current travelers! Don’t be afraid to ask questions! Scared money don’t make money beloved!


My personal motives: -A location where a friend or family is (I love my support system and wanted a smooth transition into this new world without breaking my neck looking for housing) -No assignment with less than 2K take home weekly -No crazy ratios …1:6 aint for me! -Facility had adequate PPE -8 week assignment – Just incase I did not like the placement -A compact state or area that I did not have to apply for a license -reputable agency/recruiter.


Feel free to reach out to me if I didn’t answer some questions you had. 

THAT’S ALL FOLKS!

LAST CLOCK-OUT VIBES!!!
Faith > Fear

Faith > Fear

Hey Y’all!!! Ya girl is finally settled at my new assignment location in DC! But before I get into all of the excitement of finally stepping into my faith, I want to tell you about the struggles I went through to get here.

The Push

You know the goals you hold at the back of your mind? Those goals you never really think you’ll get to do one day? Those goals that keep you inspired to push everyday? Well, that’s what travel nursing was to me. I didn’t think that I would actually get all my ducks in a row to START. My ideal time-line was possibly the summer of fall. After moving back home and not renewing my lease, I had nothing else to hold me back. If you remember my first blog posts, I spoke about traveling in the future. Listen, commuting back and forth to my job was getting so exhausting! I was hating the drive every single week! I was fighting between being scared of leaving everything I knew and saying F*** this job! During the week I would stay with my friends to avoid having to take the hour drive back after a tiresome shift. So basically I would go from home (after not living there in 8 years) to another place that wasn’t mine. STRESS! Shoutout to my girls Kenya, Steph, Alli, & DeeDee for the support! For 4 months I struggled internally until I reached out to recruiters and everything GOT REAL! I had a job offer in the location I wanted within 2 weeks! Talk about moving fast hell!! My hands were literally shaking as I called my manager to tell her I was leaving.

I had so many elements working against me during this time of deciding to leave. My close aunt was constantly sick. I had people question if I was making the right decision in the midst of a pandemic. Was my life worth leaving everything I had known for the past 2 years? Screw peoples’ opinion on your life!

Now that I look back on everything I experienced in the last 6 months….It was all a TEST! Keep going. Keep swimming. Keep fighting for what rightfully yours!

The Prep

Listen Linda! Once I confirmed with my recruiter that my position was secured, everything was spinning! I spoke to other travel nurses and dug deep into travel nurse groups on facebook to ensure I was being compensated fairly. The stars were aligning soooooo perfectly! I only told a few people that I was leaving. I could not handle the extra opinions and naysayers at this pivotal moment. Me and some close friends had a mini cookout at the crib to send me off and that was all I needed! I was so anxious leading into the days of me leaving that I could not focus on anything really.. I was so ready to just leave! I can not tell you half of the mess I packed because I was just throwing stuff in bins.

Show Time

Sooooooo….ya girl is finally settled and I’m getting through my first week with my assignment. The night before the first day I was shaking like a stripper OKURRRRRR!! My nerves were in knots. I was so anxious that I had to take a Benadryl to sleep.

However, after a few days here I see that I have been underestimating my skills. WTF IS WRONG WITH ME?! I can run circles all over this floor! My previous staff position has prepared me for anything…It took me leaving to see it. I’m getting adjusted to all the different personalities here BAYBAYYYYYY! Fortunately, we wear masks 24/7 so my facial expressions are concealed. PRAISE GOD!

Moving Forward

My assignment is 8 weeks and I have no idea if I will extend or where my new spot will be. I honestly don’t care about it exactly at this moment. I’m just basking in the idea that I’m finally in a phase that I was dreaming about. IT FEELS DAMN GOOD!! Maybe I’ll travel for a year. Maybe I’ll travel for 3. IDK! I do know that I will be living my life on my own terms from this point out! I am flexible and willing to do what I need to be sure I am valued. Thank you to everyone who has uplifted me with kind words and gestures. To anyone who feels like they are stuck in your current position, know that you ARE NOT. You have the ability to chance your course at ANY TIME. Make informed decisions and seek guidance if you must. Know that you do not know everything! There is a community of people that need your strengths, talents, and expertise. Do not give up!

Talk to me! What has been a season of growth for you? How are you overcoming? Take me on your journeys!!

Superwomen Cry Too.

Superwomen Cry Too.

Long time no read family! How’s everyone holding up? Hopefully, you all are staying current with everything that’s has been going on in the world! From social injustice to the continuum of the Corona Virus dilemma , I have probably felt every emotion there is to be had. Today, I am taking a slight break from everything else and speaking on vulnerability. 

What’s the first thing you think about when you hear the word vulnerability? Recently, I was called out for requesting vulnerability from someone else but in the same breath not being vulnerable. The HYPOCRISY ! I’m grateful for that moment because I didn’t actually realize what I was doing. I was wanting so much and yet not giving that same energy. Subconsciously, I had been associating vulnerability with weakness. I literally had a family member tell me once upon a time that I was too headstrong and I would need to soften up for a man. The delivery was TRASH but some his key points held some truth. Is Strong Black Woman Syndrome a thing?!  I hate needing other people. I hate having to depend on anyone besides myself. I rather make things harder for me than to extend my arm for help. I’ve watched my mom move mountains for me,  as a single parent. I’m 100% sure this is where I got my independence from. To be honest, it is something I deal with daily in multiple capacities. I’ll describe to you what vulnerability  looks like to me on a daily basis. 

Relationship Vulnerability 

Being in a relationship and being open with your partner can be extremely hard if this is not something you are accustomed to. Everyone wants transparency, honesty, loyalty , and the whole nine. However, If you never witnessed these attributes or were taught….it’s a long road of self-awareness and learning. I was raised in a single parent household, where I didn’t necessarily witness firsthand the true love of a couple. I would experience it here and there with uncles & aunts, read about it in books, and see on television. A relationship has been one of the most humbling experiences of apologizing when I fuck up, not being spiteful, being truthful, and most of all REAL. Your partner sees all sides of you rather you try to conceal or not. My vulnerability has expanded and I feel more free to love unapologetic in these ways: 

  • Expressing my views when I feel uncomfortable/disrespected 
  • Standing firm in my opinions
  • Not always putting my personal needs last 
  • Showing raw emotions 
  • Loving my partner in their love language and not mine 

Friendship Vulnerability 

This is slightly similar to relationship points fore-mentioned but slightly different. The dynamics of my friendships and relationship are special to me. It can be hard being a friend sometimes based on where our personal goals and needs align. Some days or weeks I can go without talking to many of my friends. I think it can be extremely difficult setting boundaries with friends when you always aim to please or just want to have fun. You don’t want to ruin the mood or lose your friend that you have countless memories with. As I grow within myself, I am gaining more of a voice to show my vulnerability in friendships by: 

  • Expressing concerns 
  • Saying “no” 
  • Talking through disagreements directly instead of talking about it to another friend

Workplace Vulnerability 

This one hits hard as I often feel like I’m experiencing imposter syndrome. Imposter syndrome is the internalized feeling of constantly doubting your accomplishments, worth, and experiences. It’s that vibe of not feeling good or smart enough for a position. You often don’t apply for the new position with fear that you are not up to par. You don’t want to be vulnerable by possibility not getting accepted into a new role. I recently took a preceptee (a person that orients to the workplace under your guidance) under my wings and boyyyyyyyyyy! I would get frustrated with myself when she had a question I didn’t know the answer to. I would feel bummed…like I wasn’t suppose to be a mentor. I always wanted to have the answers to be the  primary resource. But, as the weeks passed by my preceptee would tell me how comfortable and how much progress she had gained working with me. I guess I needed her just as much as she needed me. That reassurance was everything to boost my confidence in my skills. This is just one of the ways in which I didn’t want to show my vulnerability. Here’s a few statements  that can assist with my openness as a nurse in the workplace: 

  • “I don’t know the answer, but I can help you find it” 
  • “I’m not sure, but I can ask your doctor for you” 
  • “Let me check our policy to be sure of that statement”
  • “ May you assist me in this procedure, it’s been a while since I’ve done it” 

As I said earlier, these are hard! There’s so many different elements I didn’t touch on such as, family. Being open , honest , and needing assistance, makes you vulnerable and no one wants be a deer in highlights. I’m still learning that there is strength in vulnerability. I don’t have to be strong, a know-it-all, and prideful all the time. I’m taking baby steps not having to be the “strong” girlfriend, family member, or coworker around-the-clock. I CAN BE SOFT!

Do you take your chances to be vulnerable? Talk to me!! Oh yea, BLACK LIVES MATTER. Photos by Sean Taylor.

Heartbreak Hotel

Heartbreak Hotel

Hey Lovelys!!!

I feel May has been dragging forever and everrr. How about you? Anyways, I could not let this month slide by without recognizing the observance of Mental Health month! I’m putting my own 2 cents on dis thangggg and discussing heartbreak along with mental health insight by one of my favorite counselors! Yeaaaaaaaa heartbreak! That ol’ funky dirtbag!

Til this day, I can still pinpoint my first real heartbreak. Who forgets these things?! I was in high school at the time and I was sooooo in love with this guy. We’ll call him Randy LOL. Oh Randy….tough on the exterior but just the right softness with me. We attended different highschools but managed to see each other  every weekend. It was something about that bad boy demeanor that kept me on my little teenage toes. His family was super sweet and welcoming. We bought matching shoes together, gave each other gifts, went on small trips, and whatever else that was permitted by our parents. Things were good until they weren’t…the relationship turned turbulent with petty drama, jealousy, and a lot of outside opinions. I remember holding on just because I felt comfortable even though I knew this wasn’t for me… I remember crying for something that was constantly hurting me..I remember that little relationship controlling how I performed in school and with my friends..Damn I sound like I had it rough in high school huh?! I wish I learned my lesson with this situation, but I didn’t.

Throughout my early 20s til currently, I have experienced heartbreaks again. Each time in a different capacity. Whether it’s being lied to or failed expectations it still did a number on me. That type of feeling where you don’t want to eat, socialize, be happy, or even exist. You want that person to change, be who you need them to be, and choose you on time & time again. Well the gag is that they won’t change on your time..sometimes they won’t change at all. Mentally,  a hard pill to swallow right? A heartbreak, no doubt screws with your mental in a way that is almost inexpressible.. How many of you have gone to therapy for a breakup or situationship (a half-ass relationship)? Oh boyyyyy I wish I did…I wish therapy was a thing back then. Back then and sometimes now depending on the culture, it’s taboo. I wish I could have more insight on my emotions during those times. 

Some emotions I’ve experienced during heartbreak:

  • Feeling inadequate 
  • Incapable of being loved 
  • Difficult 
  • Failure
  • Weak
  • Empty 
  • Betrayed 
  • Alone 

I did makeshift therapy of talking to my friends about the situations for validation, talking to other guys to get my mind off the situation (be careful to not end up in a new relationship while venting 🥴) , exercising, or just keeping busy with a task. Sometimes, I did backslide and went right back to the very person that caused all this mess. It felt so comfortable, so familiar, and so TOXIC. I gained some type of satisfaction knowing I could easily access the guy. Finally breaking those ties lead me to heal in ways I can’t imagine. I look back on those situations now like “Fool why didn’t you leave at the first red flag”?! 

Points I learned from heartbreak:

  • Balance your friendships & relationships (show your friends love even when you have a boo thang) 9x out of 10 they will be there when that clown messes up 
  • Never lose your personal goals while in a relationship 
  • Seek advice from someone with relationship experience -or of sound judgement 
  • It’s okay to NOT be okay 
  • Be patient with your healing 
  • Don’t take old baggage into a new relationship 
  • Don’t take baggage into your new season 
  • Block them if you have to! On Er’thanggg
  • Cry if you need to 

We ignore the signs sometimes. We want to see the good in people. We want to see those promises become reality. We want to see them be good FOR US. Well baby…they maybe good but just not for you. Crazily, I had a young lady maliciously playing on my phone and social media over a guy not too long ago. Of course, I had to be petty because that was my initial reaction. How did she get my number? My social media? The courage to play on my line? Follow me with fake pages? Love. It makes you do crazy shit.. {PS please know fake numbers & IG pages are traceable 🥴} However, I get it. That was me before…maybe in a less extreme capacity LOLL. To her I say, heal. To you, I say heal. To myself, I say heal because healing doesn’t have an expiration date. If another heartbreak comes along, I am definitely more prepared than the last. Not something I look forward to but I understand that life happens and we must adapt and overcome. 

My goal with my blog is to always be transparent and real. Let’s talk about heartbreak today! I love talking to y’all! Follow me on IG @simply_shon 💜 Also Check Out some Mental Health tidbits from one of my fav counselors, Satura Long in our post below!

Therapy is OK, sis.

As we conclude Mental Health Awareness month, I would like to bring in some professional advice to all my gals that are on the fence about attending therapy. Introducing one of the coolest counselors I know on my blog, Satura Long! This post ties in with my heartbreak blog post so be sure to read…Continue reading »

Therapy is OK, sis.

Therapy is OK, sis.

As we conclude Mental Health Awareness month, I would like to bring in some professional advice to all my gals that are on the fence about attending therapy. Introducing one of the coolest counselors I know on my blog, Satura Long! This post ties in with my heartbreak blog post so be sure to read both today!

My name is Satura Long and I work as a Licensed Professional Counselor-Associate at a community outpatient agency.  I received my Master of Education and Education Specialist degrees at Clemson University through their Clinical Mental Health Program. I’ve been working in the mental health field for two years and it has been the most rewarding experience for me thus far.  I went into the field of counseling because I found it to be something that I felt I could have benefitted from as a child and aimed to be the person in which I needed. I feel like as black women we are often seen as these superwomen that are always suppose to have it together and be strong, but this unfair demand leads many of us to feel lost and alone with this unachievable standard.  

One thing I often hear from people is, “counseling isn’t for me” or “I’m not crazy or anything”. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be “crazy” to receive services. Sometimes just having that objective ear to challenge patterns that have been problematic or addressing traumas that may be  unspoken is needed. We are human and share an unique experience in this thing called life and we don’t always get it right. The right counselor for you will focus on building rapport, making you feel comfortable and will assist you with viewing and coping with situations in a healthy and effective manner.  Comfortability is also known to be a hurdle in the African American community when opening up to a counselor.  Though black counselors in the field may be a more rare find, they are out there so don’t give up! The field of counseling is becoming more diverse each year to be able to aid a variety of populations. Lastly, you can still love Jesus and receive counseling services!!!! In the black community, counseling wasn’t (and sometimes still isn’t) something that was promoted or glorified. I feel like this rhetoric in our culture has made it hard for people to feel comfortable with receiving services. Though our gender, race, class, sexual orientation, sexual identity, religion and more often shapes our experiences, there is no discrimination on being able to focus on addressing what’s important to you. 

There are many avenues to try to find the right counselor for you. There are sites like Psychology Today where you can narrow your search by location, speciality, and any other identifiable criteria. Therapy for Black Girls is also another resourceful site that is focused on creating a space to encourage the mental health wellness of black women and girls and also provides you with African American providers in your area. With finding a provider don’t feel bad about being picky. Counselors are humans too, so you’re not always going to mesh with the first one you meet. Don’t feel afraid to “counselor shop” and find the person that makes you feel most comfortable and safe. Also be sure to check in with any specialty they may offer or that you may be looking for and accepted insurance or any sliding scales for individuals without insurance. We have accountants and financial advisors to address our finances. We have doctors, trainers and nutritionist to address our physical health. We have preachers and leaders to address our spiritual health. So why should there be shame for having someone to address our mental health? 

So, I leave you with some helpful activities/tips that I suggest for maintaining your mental health and decompressing from overwhelming moments.

1.) SELF CARE!! We live in such a fast paced society that we become stuck in this everyday looping routine. Finding time to recharge and prioritize yourself is important(and don’t let anyone make you feel bad for doing so).

2.) Mindfulness. Mindfulness is such a effortful task but is so rewarding. The aim of mindfulness is to bringing one’s attention to experiences occurring in the present moment without judgment. A lot of times we worry about the next thing, the next day, and the next interaction but mindfulness allows us to focus and appreciate our present to be able redirect these thoughts. Some activities could be guided meditations, mindfulness walk(walk outside and notice small details about your environment) , and mindfulness breathing(trying a breathing exercise and specifically focus on your breathing; acknowledging wandering thoughts and refocusing )

3.) Acknowledge. Acknowledge your emotions and finding a healthy outlet to process them. We’ve all been there with shoving our emotions away and them ruminating in our minds and in our bodies. Try to focus on identifying your emotions when they come, why you are experiencing that emotions, and finding a healthy outlet to process your emotion (I.e journaling, art, talking to someone, etc).

Thanks for reading!

Nurse Lifeeeeeeee

Nurse Lifeeeeeeee

Hey Loves! If you’ve been following my IG (@simply_shon), you know I’ve been celebrating Nurses’ Week. This is a week dedicated to all the brave & selfless  individuals that have or currently take of patients in any capacity. This year Nurses’ Week hits a little different. There are thousands of nurses that are currently battling COVID-19 in hospitals with increasing anxiety, stress, and uncertainty as cities open up nationwide. Let’s not forget the nurses that have died on the frontlines as well. Thank a nurse today!

Nurse Shon 

Now on to me! I currently work at a Level 1 Trauma & Magnet hospital as a Medical-Surgical Oncology nurse. My unit specializes in care for ENT (Ear/Nose/Throat) and Gynecological cancer patients. On any given day we can also have general medicine patients, such as, traumas, drug overdoses, falls, hyperglycemia, etc. 

I’m approaching my 2nd year as a nurse and I feel like I’ve seen and experienced sooooo much! It blows my mind how much I’ve grown as a nurse. When applying for units after nursing school, I had no idea where I wanted to be. However, I was very keen on asking my interviewers questions and observing vibes/energies . I did 4 interviews and whewww chileeeee some of the unprofessional behavior I experienced was mind-blowing! My current home unit offered me a position within 30 minutes post interview! I was soooo freaakin’ hyped! 

I had no idea what I was getting into the first day I stepped foot on my floor. My preceptors, Bev & Michelle, were such a high-speed nurses. I learned so much from the both of them. They always made me feel comfortable and I appreciate them for that! Everyone on my floor made me feel so welcomed and I’m grateful to have had this type of experience because not all of my nursing friends have. 

My first year as a new nurse, I struggled with: 

  • delegating
  • advocating 
  • setting boundaries with patients/family members
  • asking for help 

To all my new nurses…these come with time! Find a mentor on your unit and be a sponge! Since then I have become certified nationally to administer chemotherapy and even taken some preceptees under my wing. *dusts shoulders* I’m so ready to expand more!

Day To Day

Being an oncology nurse is something that is difficult for me to describe. Right now I’ll use the words stressful and rewarding. You get attached to your routine cancer patients. Those patients that are confined to the hospital for weeks on end. Those patients that fighting for hope, treatment after treatment. Those patients you see at the most vulnerable points of their life. Some treatments and operations lead to success. While others just grant a little more time here with us. I wasn’t prepared to see death as often as it occurs on my floor. I’m not sure how I could have been prepared anyways. There’s something life-changing about seeing a person you’ve spent weeks-months caring for take their last breaths. Not only are we dealing with critically ill patients but their families as well. Some families that have accepted the outcome and just want the patient to be comfortable. Then you have others that want to keep fighting and won’t take “no” as an answer. Being an empath, these situations can be extremely emotional for me. I remember praying with one of my patients as he was fighting so hard for his life. He always wrote “god bless” on his whiteboard (tracheostomy patient)  when I worked with him and it was all I could do at the moment as he struggled. It’s moments like these that remind of why I do what I do. Sending love to anyone dealing with cancer or sickness in any capacity. 

Some things I learned working with cancer patients:

  • be extremely patient with patient & family members
  • respect patients’ decisions no matter what I feel is personally best
  • explain all options so patients can make educated decisions
  • DO NOT get involved in family drama
  • support patient and family in whatever capacity I can
  • advocate to doctoral team for patients’ wishes
  • take time to breathe alone on emotional shifts
  • be alert of any subtle & major changes in patient’s status
  • death can be beautiful and peaceful experience

I cannot imagine myself in any other profession. I gain a sense of empowerment from helping others in any way I can. Especially during this season of COVID-19. These patients have been without family due to visitor restrictions and we have been their families plus more. 

Currently, I do not have any special tips or tricks on how I decompress besides telling my friends about my nights. Blogging has been very therapeutic for me, but I need something new. Something fresh! Send suggestions plz!

Talk to me! Hit me with your day to day vibes at work! What stressors do you experience? What fulfillment do you get from your profession? How do you decompress? Have any questions about nursing? Holla atcha girl! Below is a Youtube video on my first year of nursing & some flicks of me and my cool ass coworkers!