While in my last blog I made a strong bold statement saying, “If you say nothing, you’ll stand for nothing,” it may not have set well with some people. That’s ok; it was not directed at anyone personally, other than those who chose to wait until it was too late to pay attention. That goes for me as well.
Only God knows what this journey will bring me. But one thing I know for sure is it will be peace of mind knowing I did say something.
Remember I shared with you that when I committed fully to this cause in 2015 I had no idea what my next steps were going to be. I looked into starting my own foundation but quickly learned that not everything is meant for everyone. In this case, starting my own 501(c)(3) was not the answer at this stage my life. Then in October of 2016, I received an email from a friend that would lead me to the answer I was searching for. Or should I say the answer that God was mapping out for me? It was an Eventbrite invitation for Lobby Day Anti-Sex Trafficking on February 28th 2017. I thought, “Perfect, I will go and have all my questions ready and guns blazing.”
Of course when you’re trying to follow God’s will, the devil, who is a liar, will be right there to hold you back any way possible. Well, from November to December my role with L’Oreal was changing, and I had to make some major decisions by January 1st. This ultimately led me to saying goodbye to REDKEN. Actually, while it was hard initially, it was also exhilarating at the same time. Now I could focus on my own brand and ideas, and patch up my own health.
However, January 15th hit, and both my father and soon to be first grandchild were hanging on to dear life. One was fighting to remain here on earth longer, and the other was fighting his way into this world. You would think it would have been somewhat easy to manage since I was now fully self-employed with less time on the road. Unfortunately, since they both needed attention, and with my father in a separate state, that was far from the case.
I remember praying and asking God to see them both through this time of healing. I also promised to keep my end of the bargain to try to bring awareness about the sex-trafficking world.
I first went to take care of my dad’s situation, because I was unsure if he would make it through. Not only did I need to take care of his legal affairs, but also his home, which was, NO LIE, uninhabitable. It’s amazing to see how your life could have ended up if you’re not willing to fight to get out. All I know is that God showed me, right then and there, that regardless of what I’ve been
through, I was one of the lucky ones, and HE spared me for a greater purpose.
After leaving my dad to get back to Georgia, I needed to make sure I was at the hospital as much as possible to see my grandson, who had arrived early, and weighed less than 5 pounds, but was holding onto each breath he could take in the NICU. Then after having event after event of obligations, and trying to prepare for a book launch, it was now “Lobby Day.”
I was far from being prepared for this day. My mind was all over the place. Not to mention, I was dealing with the emotional torture of having to go back to a place where I had NO GOOD memories, to help a father that wasn’t there for me as a child. That may seem selfless on my part, but I give God all the credit because I could feel him working through me. All I knew and could understand was that none of that mattered now. A job needed to be taken care of, and I was the one that could do it. So I did, with the help of my sister and others I had met on the spot who were friends of my father.
On the morning of February 28th, I was emotionally, physically, and spiritually drained, and all I remember thinking to myself was, “Monet, there’s next year. Go when you’re in the right frame of mind. Go when you’re on your ‘A’ game.” Then out of nowhere I heard a voice in my head say, “What did you promise me?” It was beyond anything I could explain or express. But it happened, and so I went.
I had no friends with me. I forgot my trusty notebook. And I was an hour late because I couldn’t find the place. The morning felt
as though everything was getting worse and worse. Who shows up one hour late for something like this? Well, I did. I met a young lady while I was there, and while speaking with her I felt as though Charlie Brown’s teacher was speaking to me. You know, that muffled voice with the words you can’t understand?
This was due to the fact that my autoimmune system and depression were now running on fumes.
She was so sweet. We sat at several different tables, meeting many other organizations fighting the same cause. I had no idea the stories we would hear would have me excusing myself over and over to go wipe away my tears. I was trying to keep my composure, which was not easy.
One thing I had no clue about was that we were rallied there to not just talk about the subject matter but to actually do something about it! The plan was for all of us to actually march into the State Senate offices and demand two bills be passed.
Now I was really feeling stupid because I knew nothing about passing laws or the political leaders I would be trying to hand these forms to so that House Bill 341 and Senate Bill 39 would be changed!
I can only say when I committed to this venture I did it blindly. That was an intentional act on my part. I needed to because, had I not, especially during a time when I was going through so many things for so long, I would have convinced myself the morning of February 28th that there was always next year. Yet in 72 hours, God physically showed me that I truly am one of the lucky ones. Was it a coincidence that I had to go back home to take care of my dad and where my haunting childhood memories would reside? Or was it God making sure he would remind me, “Monet, you may have another year, but that was by MY grace and MY mercy. In fact, you’ve had over 34 years more than these other children will ever have.”
By the end of that day, I felt somewhat inept. I went through every emotion one person could feel in less than six hours. It was near the end of that day that I met Mr. Bob Rodgers from Street Grace. Something about his spirit was gentle and intentional. And it was as if God was saying to me, “He has wings to help you fly, Monet. It’s up to you to see if they will fit.”
I look forward to sharing with you what those wings looked like in my next blog 🙂