Tag Archives: Keshia Morris Desir

Strategies For Setting Smart Goals Like a Champion

Tom Brady, says, the key to success lies in setting, smart goals, and taking massive action towards the attainment of these goals. Tom says a hundred years of psychological research has taught us that, setting strong, smart goals, matter, if you want to improve your chances of succeeding.

As Millennials graduate from high school, graduate from college, or get engaged to be married, career goals, should be prominent their minds.

In each stage of life, we should have, short term goals, and, long-term goals. Short term goal, are goals you would like to achieve within the year and, long term goals, are goals you would like to achieve in let’s say 10 years.

So if we were to pick up goals at a Millennial graduation from College, we should teach her, how to set smart goals, both  short term goals and, long term goals. Career goals, would probably be  get a job and start supporting herself or enroll in higher education.

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How to Set Smart Goals like a Champion: Tom Brady

Tom Brady says, The key to success lies in, setting goals,  and taking massive action towards the attainment of these, goals.
A hundred years of psychological research has taught us, how to set goals.  If you want to improve your chances of succeeding.

A, goal,  is a map to your destination. It is like a seed!
Plant, smart goals, in your mind and it will be the most important decision you make in your life.
Then Care of your planted seed every day.

Tom Brady’s story.

By the mid-2000s Tom Brady was the undisputed king of the gridiron. In 2002 he became the youngest quarterback in the history of the National Football League (NFL) to lead his team to a Super Bowl victory. Two years later, in 2004, he proved the magic was still strong when he led the New England Patriots to their second Super Bowl title in three years.

In addition, Brady was named the Super Bowl’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) in 2002 and 2004. The dimpled, clean-cut quarterback had reached career heights that most veteran football players envied, and he had done it all before he was thirty years old; But HE ONCE HAD SIMPLE DREAMS

In the pride-swallowing days at the University of Michigan, when he was constantly trying to prove that he deserved to start, Brady used to sit up at night with his good friend Aaron Shea and talk about, goals, what they’d do when they made it big.

Shea, a tight end for the Wolverines, used to rattle off the typical 20-year-old dream purchases. He wanted a Hummer and a Ferrari. Then Shea would ask what Brady wanted.
“‘If I hit it real big,’” Shea recalls Brady telling him, “‘I want to be able to wake up, put a pair of socks on, and at the end of the day, I throw ’em away.’
“I’m like, ‘That’s all you want?’ And he goes, ‘Yeah, that’s what I want. I love new socks!’”
But somewhere along the line, he got big dreams. Dreams of being the best!

How to Set Championship Goals like Tom Brady

Brady was so intent on winning and becoming the very best in history to play his position, that after the Patriot’s lost to the Broncos in the AFC championship game in 2016, he had a countdown clock installed in his home gym. I am sure because he wanted to be the undisputed champion and Peyton Manning had won, this round! Competition bring out the best in us.

Throughout the year the countdown clock served as his constant reminder of his, goal. A countdown clock says to his subconscious mind. I will achieve this, goal, it is mine, it’s just a matter of time so I am counting down! That is, how to set a goal!

The world was the witness at Super Bowl 51 of Tom Brady manifesting of this goal. Down by 25 points at the half, Tom Brady and the New England Patriots came back to win the game in overtime making Brady the best ever at the game!

With his mother in attendance at the NRG Stadium in Houston and millions of fans watching, Brady did not disappoint. In a thrilling game, the first that went into overtime in NFL history, Brady led the Patriots to a 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. With this historic win, Brady became the first quarterback in NFL history to take home five Super Bowl rings.

He surpassed quarterbacks Joe Montana, one of his idols, and Terry Bradshaw, who both have four Super Bowl wins. He also was awarded his fourth Super Bowl MVP for leading a 25-point comeback and throwing a Super Bowl-record 466 passing yards. Super Bowl LI was Brady’s seventh championship, which is also an NFL record for the most Super Bowls played.

Brady failed in his bid to become the best and most decorated quarterback in history when he lost to the Eagles in Super bowl 52; but how many of you know that failure is not final. Brady will be back again and this time he will succeed because when you have a goal and you don’t give up on it, you always win that is why Coach Lombardi advise is “Never, Never give up, Never ever Quit because Quitters never win”

I am sure there will be another count down clock installed in Brady’s locker room for super bowl 53! I am routing for you Tom!

Goals they have a powerful supernatural energy attached to them!
They activate the subconscious to go to work for you.

In the book “As a man thinketh” by James Allen, Allen attaches the energy of thought to goals.

James Allen: Setting Goals As A Man Thinketh 

Those who have no central purpose or, goals, in their life fall an easy prey to petty worries, fears, troubles, and self-pityings, all of which are indications of weakness, which lead, just as surely as deliberately planned sins, to failure, unhappiness, and loss, for weakness cannot persist in a power evolving universe.
A man should conceive of a legitimate purpose or, goal, in his heart, and set out to accomplish it.

He should make this, goal, the centralizing point of his thoughts. It may take the form of a spiritual ideal, or it may be a worldly object, according to his nature at the time being; but whichever it is, he should steadily focus his thought-forces upon the object, which he has set before him. He should make this purpose his supreme duty, and should devote himself to its attainment, not allowing his thoughts to wander away into ephemeral fancies, longings, and imaginings.

This is the royal road to self-control and true concentration of thought. Even if he fails again and again to accomplish his goal, the strength of character gained will be the measure of his true success, and this will form a new starting-point for future power and triumph.
What this means is if your only goal as you are starting out in life is to get a job with no thought to what God has placed you on this earth to do, then you will become like a garden full of weeds and wild flowers.

Since no one is tending the garden of your mind then anything will grow. This leads to failure, unhappiness and loss.
On the other hand if you set goals either for spiritual attainment, personal accomplishment, or for contribution even when you fail and you will, you will be like Tom Brady and know that given time, success will be yours.

Having conceived of his purpose, a man should mentally mark out a straight pathway to its achievement, looking neither to the right nor the left. Doubts and fears should be rigorously excluded; they are disintegrating elements, which break up the straight line of effort, rendering it crooked, ineffectual, useless. Thoughts of doubt and fear never accomplished anything, and never can. They always lead to failure. Purpose, energy, power to do, and all strong thoughts cease when doubt and fear creep in.

Amy Purdy:  Setting Goals After NDE

My daughter sent me a text message last week and said mom you have to listen to this. This is important. So, I dropped everything and listened! I was blown away. Oprah was interviewing Amy Purdy.

This is her story:
After losing both her legs at age 19 as a result of bacterial meningitis, Amy Purdy survived to lead a life of extraordinary accomplishments. Amy not only survived losing her legs but at one time all her organs were failing, and she actually died. She tells that when she died, two spirits on the other side offered her a choice of staying dead or coming back to life and she shouted No, I don’t want to die!!

She chose life the same way she chose not to be a disabled person who lives an uninspiring life. She chose to set the goal of snowboarding again. She tells the story of how she visualized in detail her achieving this goal. Amy is a Paralympic bronze medalist in snowboarding, and a finalist on “Dancing with the Stars”. Pick up a copy of her book “On My Own Two Feet: From Losing My Legs to Learning the Dance of Life.” To read about her incredible story

So today, I would like to teach you, How to set smart goals. Smart Goals, that make you want to get up in the morning. Goals, that motivate and inspire you to action.

Do you have a goal to write a book? Is there a testimony that God has purposed you to share?

Goal Setting and Achievement Step # 1
Start with a road-map

He who doesn’t have a map gets lost.
If you don’t know where you are going, then it doesn’t matter where you end up.
Begin with the end in mind e.g.
• I want to have $500,000 in my bank account at the age of 65, so as not to be a burden to my kids.
• I want to leave a legacy and an inheritance for my children and my children’s children.
• I want to have 3 children, a husband, a good job and own my own home by the time I am 35 years old.
• Tom Brady goal is becoming the best at the sport
• Amy’s goal was to continue doing the things she did with legs and then inspire others along the way.

Knowing where you are going allows you to map the route to your destination.

The body is the servant of the mind. It obeys the operations of the mind, whether they be deliberately chosen or automatically expressed. At the bidding of unlawful thoughts, the body sinks rapidly into disease and decay; at the command of glad and beautiful thoughts it becomes clothed with youthfulness and beauty.

How To Set Smart Goals Step 2: Know Your Why?

What was Tom Brady’s Why?
What was Amy’s why?

He who has conquered doubt and fear has conquered failure. His every thought is allied with power, and all difficulties are bravely met and wisely overcome. His purposes are seasonably planted, and they bloom and bring forth fruit, which does not fall prematurely to the ground.

Why do you want to have $500,000 in your bank account at 65?
• Do you want to travel the world?
• Do you want to be sure you have enough income to last for 30 years after retirement? So as not to depend on your kids or the government to take care of you?

Knowing your why will get you through the tough times.

Characteristics of a Strong Goal: A goal must have 3 characteristics:
It must be specific – $500,000
It must have a date for completion – 65 years old
It must be realistic and achievable – A goal can be just a dream with a date on it

How to Set Smart Goals Step 3: Plan your route

So, you want to have $500,000 in the bank at 65 years old.
If you are 30 years old now and have $10,000 in the bank, what would your route to get you $490,000 in the bank in 35 years?
What kind of investment strategies can get you there?
If you plan to work and get a paycheck then that goal will not realistic or achievable.
There are investment strategies that can get you there.
Buying and selling real estate can get you there.
Speak with a financial planner to put together an investment strategy that will get you to your goal.

Do you want to write a book? If so check out my story in my book Out of the Snares, a story of hope and encouragement

Books: Hope and Encouragement

How to Set Smart Goals Step 4: Measure your progress

If you have a 35-year plan to make $490,000.
You should measure your progress on a yearly basis.
At the end of year one, you should be $14,000 richer by year two $28,000 richer than year one and so on and so on.
If by your 40th year, you have made no progress, then you should take a hard look at your financial situation and make some changes.
You have to make changes to the route.
Are you still working and trying to save? We know that is not going to work.
You may have to use Leverage.
Borrow to invest. Get your credit score in shape and borrow to invest in Real Estate. I was listening to the audio book “Self Made” last week and the author said don’t buy shoes, buy buildings! Great advice.

What you shouldn’t do is worry that you would be broke and penniless at 65 years old and have to be placed in a nursing home. I know where your mind goes when you think of yourself as a failure.

Disease and health, like circumstances, are rooted in thought. Sickly thoughts will express themselves through a sickly body. Thoughts of fear have been known to kill a man as speedily as a bullet, and they are continually killing thousands of people just as surely though less rapidly. The people who live in fear of disease are the people who get it. Anxiety quickly demoralizes the whole body, and lays it open to the entrance of disease; while impure thoughts, even if not physically indulged, will soon shatter the nervous system.

How to Set Smart Goals Step 5: Be prepared for the twists and turns in the road

What skills do you need to acquire to achieve this goal?
What contacts do you need?
What additional knowledge do you need?
What resources do you need to accomplish this goal?

Remember that just because you set a, goal, and a destination don’t expect the weather will cooperate and the sky will be sunny for the entire trip.
No. Expect that there will be circumstances beyond your control that will delay you so build in a buffer. Add a few years to your deadline.

In the 30 years to your goal, you will experience set backs. A job loss, a divorce, health issues etc. Don’t let the twists and turns in the road, derail you from your goals.

I heard a story of a mother of two who was laid off and without income. She decided to start selling the things in her home on eBay to pay the bills. She then started a meet up group for other eBay sellers to learn the business. She got information for sourcing discount items from wholesalers to sell on eBay. Obviously, her household items could only get her so far!
At one of these meetup meetings she met an executive from eBay who encouraged her to become a certified ambassador for eBay. That 10Xd her business. Today she has income of over one million dollars annually from eBay sales.

The lesson, setbacks can push you in the direction of your purpose; so change the way you look at failure.

Suffering is always the effect of wrong thought in some direction. It is an indication that the individual is out of harmony with himself, with the Law of his being. The sole and supreme use of suffering is to purify, to burn out all that is useless and impure. Suffering ceases for him who is pure. There could be no object in burning gold after the dross had been removed, and a perfectly pure and enlightened being could not suffer.

How to Set Smart Goals Step 6: Seeing your path

Use your imagination to visualize the things you want to accomplish
Visualize in color with all the details!

At 65 years old, what will you look like?
What color would be your hair, what are you wearing?
Where will you be living?
Who will be the partner by your side?
What will the house sound like when the grand children come to visit and run and play all over the house?
What countries will you travel to? How long will you stay?

See with your mind’s eye the entire life you want.
See it, touch it, taste it for 15 mins every day.
If you are a visual person you can use a picture to represent your dream and look at it every day.

Only by much searching and mining, are gold and diamonds obtained, and man can find every truth connected with his being, if he will dig deep into the mine of his soul; and that he is the maker of his character, the molder of his life, and the builder of his destiny.

So, live your life on purpose. Set goals,  for achievement, for contribution for fun and play and then go do it!

 

How to Transform your Career with Purpose

For some people their, career, is closely interwoven with their, life purpose. Keshia Morris, is that person, Political Activist and Project Manager with Common Cause.

In this interview on the Transform your Mind radio hour and podcast, Life Coach and Mom Myrna Morris Young, trace the story of, Keshia Morris, as an undocumented alien, to her starting her career as a Psychologist, to getting a tug from God to transform her, career with purpose, to help with our democracy.

Listen to full interview here:

Introduction to a Career with Purpose

Keshia Morris is  the project manager for the, Census 2020, with Common Cause and is getting a lot of media attention because of the Trump’s administration efforts to add the question “Are you a Citizen” to the, Census 2020.

Keshia Morris, talks about the importance of the Census, the reason the Trump administration was trying to add this question and, Common Cause, fight for a fair democracy.

The media attention started when, Keshia Morris,   wrote an amazing article that was published in the Miami Herald that highlighted her, career, with purpose.  In this article she talked about our personal journey to becoming permanent residents in the United States and why the question on the Census asking “Are you a Citizen?” would have a negative affect on our democracy.

After that article was published, several podcasts and radio personalities wanted to interview her.

Before we could get to what God has done in Keshia’s life as far as her chosen, career, with purpose.  She chose me to be her mother. I knew from the moment she was conceived that she was born to do great things. She was conceived on my honeymoon and was born 9 months later on my 30th birthday. So even without being conscious I knew that she was born with a, life purpose.

Again without being yet conscious; but understanding the principle of generational increase,  I started my journey to becoming an American Citizen.  I believed that there were more opportunities for my children here in the USA.

Both my children are Canadian,  and maybe my  assumption was incorrect, but our perceptions become our reality.

Keshia Morris,  went through high school as an, undocumented alien. The beauty of this country is that children didn’t require papers to go to public school until higher education. Without a vision, I could have sent her back to Canada to go to college; but that was not even a consideration. I paid out of state fees for  her first 2 years of college. I could only afford one class; but she was in College.

I got married again in 2006 and my husband sponsored both of us, and we became  permanent residents or documented immigrants.

Keshia received her BA  and started out on her intended career as a  Psychologist.

How Keshia’s Became On Purpose, career coaching

One day while listening to the audio book “A long walk to Freedom,” by Nelson Mandela, she had what is called a Damascus experience. Everything that was before was no more. So this is where I want to pick up the story.

Setting Goals and purpose for your career?

I want to start off by saying that you tell my story so much better than I do. Just laying out for our listeners how I got to the moment where I decided I wanted to do something new with my career.  I had always thought that I that I was going to be a psychologist.  As a child people kept telling me that oh you know you’re great at giving people advice, so I thought  I might as well make a career out of this and try to achieve the American dream.

Psychologists make a lot of money.  I started getting into listening to audio books in my car and as I listening to Nelson Mandela’s  “A long walk to freedom”  I would say in the very first few chapters of the book,  I feel like it changed me and changed my trajectory of my life almost immediately.  It was also the time of the sequester where the government was shut down.  I interpreted this as wealthy special interests groups were getting in the way of  government and our lawmakers not being able to do their jobs.   I didn’t feel like this was right,  so I felt an extreme tug to try to do something about it.

I had already invested over 4 years as a Psychology major and started with my masters degree credits which were not inexpensive.  I had already amassed about $30,000 in student loans before  listening to Nelson Mandela’s book.  I felt an immense tug from God that becoming a political activist was my, career purpose, I wanted to help change the democracy the United States of America.

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How to look for signs that your, career, is on  Purpose

Question #2: How did you know that this was God. What were the signs?

I knew it was God because it changed the trajectory of my life in seconds.  I was now a new woman and had a firm grasp on what my, career, should be.

Things lined up for you. I was a new Life Coach at the time and you requested a coaching session. I remember it,  like it was yesterday. Because what I said out loud was not what I was thinking. I told you to go for it. To make a plan and pursue this goal.

  • You applied to schools and got into your number 1 choice, American University,
  • Before graduation you got an internship at your number 1 choice for employment, Common Cause,
  • You received a job offer with, Common Cause, immediately after graduation. So we know that you were on, career purpose, because God opened doors.

Why family support and career coaching is so important to your career

Question # 3: What advice would you give our listeners who face obstacles. No family support, not accepted to schools, kids at home etc.

I would tell them to believe in the vision that you can have it all.  Believe in yourself, believe in God and believe in their, career purpose,

Keshia Morris, you are getting National attention now as the Project Manager for  the 2020 Census at Common Cause. The Trump administration has been very unfriendly towards immigrants and, undocumented aliens, and intended to use the question “Are you a Citizen?” on the, Census 2020, to instill fear to the non-Citizens,  so as to set up, Gerrymandering.  Common Cause fought for this question to be removed from the Census and won.

Question # 4 Please explain the importance of having this question removed from the, Census 2020, and what exactly the Census does for our democracy.

Gerrymandering is  manipulating districts to give one party advantage over the other.  We have definitely seen a lot of gerrymandering being done by Republicans;  but we do absolutely know that Democrats do it as well.

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What is the Census 2020?

The Constitution mandates that a Census or accounts of all people that live within these United States be counted for apportionment purposes every ten years.  So every ten years the Census Bureau takes counts of everyone that lives here.  That is including illegal aliens, that is including children and newborns.  Everyone should get counted.

What this count does for our democracy is it apportioned the amount of seats in Congress.

There are 435 seats and the House of Representatives and those 435 seats are distributed based on population size.  Right now about each congressional district has about 700,000 people.

In a State like Florida, for example that has a population of maybe six to nine million people, but say only eight million people were counted in the, 2020 census, that means that Florida would get less congressional representation than it actually truly deserves because one million people were not counted.

The Trump administration wanted to add this last minute question “Are you a Citizen”  to the, Census 2020, I say last minute because usually each question is tested and vetted thoroughly for about three years before a question can be added to the census. It has to go through Congress and an approval processes.  The Trump administration came in and decided they were not gonna do any of that, and just announced that they were going to add this question to the,  Census 2020,

Census Bureau researchers have found that if this question were to be added to the,  Census 2020, about 6.5 million people would not answer the census form and thus insure a fair census.  So advocates like, Common Cause, but really across the board, millions of people stood up and said that this is wrong.  Common Cause, took the case all the way to the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court sided with us.  They said that the Trump administration cannot add this question to the, Census 2020, they called the reason the Trump administration gave to add this question, contrived.

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Myrna: I heard you say in one of your interviews that the data that comes from the, Census 2020, is confidential and  it’s illegal for anybody to use this information for harm to the people. I know you said that if this question was on the, Census 2020, 6.5 million people would not have answered because they might be afraid that someone will come to their door.  But what you said is that information is never presented in such a way that somebody can know who filled out the form, and if they were going to actually use information from the data, they will use the information as a collective.

I am curious as to why research shows that 6.5 million people WOULD NOT  have responded to the, Census 2020, if the question “Are you a Citizen” was on the form?

Keshia Morris: My answer to that question is twofold.

The law states that your responses on the census cannot be used to cause harm to any person.   That means that it can’t be sent to ICE to enforce immigration law.  It can’t even be sent to your landlord if you have too many people living in in your household.  However, what the Trump administration wanted to do, was to create fear.  That information isn’t always communicated correctly and even if it was, people don’t trust that the Trump administration would follow the law.

So it’s better just not to have the question on the, Census 2020, whatsoever.

The Trump administration has given up on their efforts to add the question “Are you a Citizen” on Census 2020, but they are now trying another way to get this information. President Trump has now issued an executive order to get administrative data to be collected for the purpose of redistricting.  Common Cause, is fighting for this not to be the case, and it  absolutely will be challenged through litigation.

Facts about the, Census 2020,

Section 2 of the Constitution requires a count every 10 years of every person residing in the United States—citizens and non-citizens, newborns and seniors, documented and undocumented, homeowners, renters, and the homeless. The, 2020 Census, will be in full swing during the Winter, Spring and Summer of 2020.

Counting hundreds of millions of people is an immense undertaking, and it’s critical for state legislators to start preparing now. Census data determine the allocation of more than $800 billion in annual federal funding and are often used in state and local policy-making, decision- making, and research. An inaccurate census in 2020 would jeopardize state funds for over 300 federal programs and compromise crucial supports for marginalized communities. 

Census data are also used for the reapportionment and redistricting processes and therefore vital to advancing a fair and representative democracy. Ensuring that all residents in your state are counted will require funding, coordination, and commitment from policymakers but will provide your constituents the resources and representation they deserve.

Research shows that if the question “Are you a Citizen” was on the, Census 2020, 6.5 million people would not fill in the Census thereby states would be unrepresented by millions in congress.

Myrna: From listening to all your numerous interviews I will list them. I have learned that the Census data is confidential and it is illegal for anyone to use that data to target aliens.

Unrig the System Podcast with Alex Wardlaw

Podcast Episode for Bipartisan Solutions for Ending the Prison-Industrial Complex Once and For All

Carry On Friends The Caribbean American Podcast

The Real New Network

Myrna: I have had a front row seat to your growth from a Psychology major into a political activist. I have watched you take the mike and rally a crowd. I have listened you spout very technical data about the history of our democracy with names and dates of legal documents.  As your mother, I am impressed by your transformation.

http://blog.myhelps.us/how-to-become-lifted-by-your-purpose/

How to Master career strengths

Question # 6: Take us through how you released your fear of public speaking. What did you do to get yourself from this abstract fear of speaking and communicating to what you do now?

I am still working on being an effective communicator and working past my fear.  My fear has lessened a bit,  there was a time where I mean I couldn’t get in front of people and I couldn’t say two words without my voice shaking, without saying um a hundred times, without looking completely lost. So yeah  I definitely think that I have I’ve experienced some growth and really all I can say, well the main thing I can say that got me around the corner is practice.

There’s that Malcolm Gladwell books that says you need like 10,000 hours of practicing something to be an Expert.  You just named a bunch of the interviews that I’ve done; but you know each of those interviews requests, I started off by saying NO.  because the fear is still there.  But I able to overcome the fear by resting in the fact that this is for a, life purpose, and  I am working towards the goal of having this democracy be the best that it can be.

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Transform your Mind Soundcloud podcast

How to Transform your, Career, with  purpose

As we wrap up our show today, I want to leave you with these thoughts.

There is a difference between living an active life and a, purpose driven life. We all lead active lives. To be active does not mean we even have to physically do anything. We could be mentally active and be making plans and, setting goals,  etc. but not going anywhere. But when we are living a, purpose driven life, our energy and activities has a, life purpose, and meaning. Pause to reflect the purpose of your chosen, career. What is the meaning of your, career, purpose.  What is the quality of the energy you are expending. When you have a, career,  of purpose, the more energy you expend, the more renewed you are. On the other hand, when you are not on, life purpose, the energy you expend is not renewed, instead you end your day depleted and diminished.

A, purpose driven life, and, purpose driven career, alters the course of history.  I hope you all find yours.

Transform Your Mind iHeart Radio
iHeart Radio

Keshia Morris, one final question What do you want your contribution to be to God’s Kingdom?

To make this country’s democracy the best it can be, that is my, career purpose,

How can any of our listeners get in contact with common cause to support the organization, volunteer for the census or reach you for speaking engagements or interviews?

Listeners and readers can reach me at

Keshia Morris
Census & Mass Incarceration Project Manager
Common Cause
805 Fifteenth St, NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20005
(o) 202.736.5774 |

 Additional Resources for, Career Purpose, and Census 2020

http://blog.myhelps.us/how-to-become-lifted-by-your-purpose/

http://blog.myhelps.us/how-to-become-a-diamond-by-finding-your-purpose/

http://blog.myhelps.us/program-positive-change/

Today’s Ruling on the Census Citizenship Question Still Leaves Room for Worry

 

Ep. 116 – The Census: All the Facts & Why It is Important

 

 

 

 

The Circle of Life: Embracing Motherhood

Keshia Morris Desir, my daughter and mom to be interviews me on motherhood.  In my book Out of the Snares, a story of hope and encouragement I talk about motherhood and how being a mom is my purpose.

Download the podcast here: 

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Bio

Keshia Morris Desir has a blossoming career in DC. She is an activist working in DC to disrupt the over criminalization of communities of color by investigating and exposing the underlying causes of mass incarceration through a democracy lens.  Getting incarceration money out of politics, and advocating for guaranteed voting rights for everyone, including people serving time in prison. But today she is speaking as my daughter about becoming a mother. She is entering into the second trimester of her first pregnancy.

Keshia: I am super excited to be here with my mother today to interview her on her book, Out of the Snares: A story of hope and encouragement and her chapter on, motherhood.

The very first question I have for you, mom is in your book, you share a bit about the, circle of life, and how your parents were not married when you were born. So, for folks that haven’t yet read the book, can you share a little bit about that experience?

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My circle of life started with poverty and child abuse

Myrna: Yes, I would love to. Out of the Snares, is basically my story. It’s the story of me getting out of the snares of, child sexual abuse, poverty, being born in a third world country. And, of course, being born to parents, or who were not married. My mom and my dad hooked up and had sex and I showed up. They weren’t even really in a committed relationship. It’s one of those things that happened. When I read Oprah’s story I found out that her parents also hooked up just one time and created her.  We were both born for a purpose.

So, I pull that in to my experience, that I was born with a purpose. On that rainy day, all those years ago in Guyana, my mom was alone when I was born because my father was not around. And I feel that coming from that kind of nurturing environment, where my mother was my central figure or my central person. For a long time, it was my mom, it was my grandmother, it was my aunt. These are the people that kind of raised me and as I got a little older, my father came back into my life.

But yes, I learned everything that I know about, motherhood, from my mom and my grandmother and my mom is an amazing mother. She has four children, and she basically single handedly raised them all on her own because the men were not around. She was that unfortunate, the men kept leaving. Your dad and I broke up when you were five years old. So, I have been the most influential person in your life and I took that very seriously.  So, that’s basically my introduction to, motherhood.

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The connection between Single mothers and delinquent children

Keshia: As you were speaking, I’m thinking about my work.  And I’m thinking about what usually breeds or is usually the crux of, black families, being involved in the, criminal justice system. Thankfully, none of your brothers and sisters have been involved in the, criminal justice system, and I just want to know, what do you what do you attribute that to? Because often we do hear of, black families, that come from, quote, unquote, broken homes where fathers aren’t in the picture.  They get involved in crime, they go down the wrong path, they get involved in the, criminal justice system, somehow. So, what do you attribute your family success to?

Myrna: Excellent question. And I’ve thought about this a while now, not in Guyana, because we left Guyana as children. So, we weren’t old enough to get into the, criminal justice system, in Guyana. But when we were living in Toronto, Canada, we actually lived in the projects. And I have always wondered why my siblings didn’t get involved with the bad crowd.  I’ve always wondered about that and the only thing that I can come up with was that my mother loved us and we didn’t want to disappoint her. I was speaking to her a couple of weeks back. And it was really interesting what she said. She said to me, you know, I had yawl, and I took any job because I had yawl to feed!

Keshia: Thank you for sharing that mom, it was really helpful to hear that feedback. It was just something that I was thinking about. I’m just gonna turn it back over to you. I think you have something a poem that you’d like to share.

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Motherhood my baby girl is born

Myrna: Yes. Right. So, in my chapter on, motherhood, I start off my book talking about the, circle of life, continues where I was born, and then I dived right into, motherhood, because it was something that was very important to me and made me feel so special. I have two biological children. I was 21 years old when my son was born, and then you my daughter was born on my 30th birthday. So, because she was born on my 30th birthday, she was a girl and a lot of women always want little baby girls. You know, I was tickled pink, in fact, it becomes more special than that. She was conceived for my honeymoon.

So, I came back from my honeymoon, and a couple of weeks later found out that I was pregnant. The immediate response of me learning that I was pregnant was joy. I mean, I didn’t know the sex until she came out. But we had a connection from the very beginning. So, in my book, I actually wrote a poem that I want to read to you guys. It says,

Poem my baby girl is here

My greatest blessing showed up on my 30 birthday,

A bundle of joy for born to this world

Six pounds, seven ounces of joy, my birthday gift. Oh, what a toy.

I little girl with curly brown hair, smooth black skin, with the face of an angel.

I shed a tear it was a love affair at first sight.

She reached through my heart and grabbed my soul forever more.

God had given me the desires of my heart, a daughter to adore.

Bird sang, trees swayed, the sun shone brightly, and the heavens opened up and poured out rain.

My baby girl was here. Keshia, her father whispered welcome to my world.

And her mother answered, Glory be to God, let her light shine brightly.

Let her be a delight.

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Myrna: See, I spoke it into existence, you have been a delight. You have been the gift that keeps on giving. A lot of mothers and daughters have special relationships, but we have a relationship that everybody talks about, and it’s absolutely amazing.

Keshia: Wow. It’s been a while since I’ve heard that poem. I have a jacket on but if you could see my arms, I probably have goosebumps. I just hope to repeat that, I am heading as you said, into my second trimester. And I have a similar due date as our birthday so yeah, we should be hoping for three peat.

Myrna: Yes, yes. From our mouths to God’s ears.

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Motherhood: How to protect your kids from sexual abuse

Keshia: Okay. All right. Well, I’m gonna take this conversation a little bit differently. And I’m going to ask you a question, because at the start of this conversation, you started by saying that Out of the Snares is about you coming out of poverty, sexual abuse, and parents not being in the home. And so, we talked a little bit about the, poverty, we talked a little bit about parents not being in the home. But I’m wanting to hear a bit more about your memories of your, child abuse. And in your book, you also talk about how the memories of that, child abuse, came back to you after I was born.  Can you talk a little bit about that? About that time for you as you had me and those memories of, sexual abuse, came flooding back to you.

And then also maybe you want to give some advice to listeners that have experienced, sexual abuse, and have had daughters and now have to feel like they have to protect their child at all costs.

Myrna: Well, thank you Keshia, it’s a very important conversation to have. So let me start with me and then I will expand it out. I was, sexually abused, by my godfather.  I called him grandfather and I spent a lot of time at his house. So, that is the first problem that contributes to our black and brown babies getting, sexually abused, because apparently in our community it happens a lot. In my experience, it wasn’t a babysitting thing. It was just that, I was always at someone’s house. I was at my aunt’s house, I was at my grandfather’s house and when you’re sleeping over at people’s houses and there is men around, this is basically what happens.

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Transform Your Mind Podcast Addict

Mothers also need to protect boys

I read something from Tyler Perry, that was addressing this issue, and he was talking about our community. Most Black mothers don’t have money for a babysitter, so they always have the kids go and stay at the uncle dem house and this person’s house and all that kind of stuff. And this is basically what happens. Kids are being, sexually abused, by people that come to our homes and even boyfriends.  So, getting back to my, child abuse, I didn’t have any trauma attached to it as it was happening because this person was a loved one and I really loved him.

He showered me with gifts, we were poor, and he was rich. So when this experience was going on, I wasn’t traumatized in any way. I mean, I didn’t understand what was going on because it started when I was very young age. I didn’t understand what was going on until I started having boyfriends at 13 and realized, you’ve already had sex. These guys are gonna think that you’re a tramp.

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Transform Your Mind Podcast Player FM

Past sexual abuse trauma resurfaced after birth of child

That started my whole self-respect phase which worked for me because I was never promiscuous. So, it wasn’t very traumatic. When I recognized that it was wrong, I stopped it. There was no big problem. You know what I mean? But then, when you were born, something that I buried came alive and it was very, traumatic. I stopped wanting to have your dad to touch me, I had bad dreams. And whatever it was, clearly it was coming back up. I mean, and it was really an unusual response. Of course, I never went to therapy or anything. I just worked through it, but it started my vigilance of making sure you were not exposed to, sexual abuse.

And my vigilance came with people in my home and where I sent you to sleep over.  Your father and I split up when you were five years old. I made sure that anybody that I’m bringing to the house that I would, make sure I don’t leave you alone with that person.  At one point in time, my sister was living with me, and her husband started bathing you. And I immediately put a stop to that.

So these are the ways that you protect your girl children and boy children, because it’s not only girls now. But you protect them by knowing who they’re coming into contact with.  Our world is becoming really messed up because women are now molesting boys. Tyler Perry, tells a story of how he was molested by a woman and I think even Terry Crews revealed that he was also, sexually assaulted.

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Google Podcast Transform Your Mind

Motherhood: Be careful your kids are always watching

In my book, I share my views on, motherhood, and I believe that, motherhood, you are a role model for your kids. I remember you were always watching me. It was an incredible thing, you didn’t feel comfortable unless you’re in my presence watching and listening, watching and listening. And mothers or fathers, your kids are always listening. They’re always watching. So, you can’t say “Do as I say it, not as I do.” You’ve got to do it. You’ve got to walk the walk. So, I was a role model to you and I taught you things that my mom taught me. For example, to make decisions for yourself.

What do you feel is the role of a mother and how do you plan to embrace, motherhood?

Keshia: Yeah, I mean we’ve talked a lot about protection, I definitely think that the role of the mom is to protect their cub so to speak. When we watch Animal Planet you always see the mother lion protecting her cub and protecting them from harm.

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The role of a mother

So definitely protection is the, role of a mother, as well as all the other things like:

  • Feed your children not only actual physically feeding, but emotionally feeding, feeding their self-confidence,
  • Teaching them to become contributing members of society
  • Helping them to find their purpose
  • Teaching them to love God
  • And how to survive in life
  • To lead by example, kids are always watching. You want to be able to not only say the important things, but show them the important things as well.

So how am I embracing motherhood? I’m still learning, I am just a few months in but yeah, I have been reading books and I am working towards embracing, motherhood.

It still feels weird. You know, hearing my baby’s heartbeat seeing it via ultrasounds. I mean, it just feels different. I can’t even really grasp the words to say like, how does it feel to know that something is living inside of you and living inside of your belly? Right. Something that you have to care for and nurture and protect and be worried for and scared for and love all at the same time. So, it’s very humbling. Maybe that’s the word.

Circle of life continues connection with baby

Myrna: I didn’t hear the word, connection.  Are you connecting to this baby?

Keshia: Thanks for putting me on the spot mom. I don’t know if I would say I am connecting with the baby yet. I don’t feel connected yet. I did have the feeling that morning that it was a girl even though all along I’ve been saying they think it’s a boy. But that morning I did say yeah, you’re a girl. So maybe. Also, the day before I found out that I was pregnant. I said we need a new car and went out and bought a new car that day. Because I’m like we you know, we need a new car for family planning. So, I guess she is speaking to me.

Myrna: She’s sending you those signals. Yes, yes. Amazing. All right. Well, listen, Keshia Morris Desir. You did not disappoint. We had an incredible conversation. Thank you for sharing your, motherhood experience, with me and my audience.  Wishing you the best pregnancy and delivery.

Additional Resources

How To Protect Your Child from Sexual Abuse