Still Standing: Reflecting on the Lessons of 2010

traveling back to California via car
my girls presenting their Android App-Technovation Challenge Pitch Night

I cannot believe the Holiday season is almost upon us. It seems like yesterday that I was blogging about putting up my first Christmas tree. 2010 has been a year of ups and downs and many lessons learned. While going through the different trials and tribulations, I have found that I have surrounded myself with an awesome support system. Friendships have been strengthened and encouragement has come from many places.


As I charter in to 2011, I would like you to look with me on the road I have taken, the lessons I’ve learned and great people I have met. I hope that this will help you move forward in your journey and not be shaken by setbacks, stumbling blocks, or any obstacle that may be on your path.


In 2009, right before the Thanksgiving Holiday, I was laid off from my job. It was devastating-not because it was a job I loved but because I had been out of work for a year before getting that job. To tell you the truth, It was a miserable time for me. I was a basket case. It took everything I had in me not to cry everyday. 


My bank account was already questionable and being laid off a second time did not help. I signed up with a credit consolidation company and was looking forward to getting back on track. Then I received a call from my boss informing me that I would be laid off and there was no need to come into work the next shift. It is amazing to sit here and write this when back then I didn’t think I would survive. But I have news for you, I’m here and so are you. There is light at the end of the tunnel and all you have to do is keep walking toward it.



I now work for a company that I love, not to mention, I still run my own business. IsrylDesigns has had more clients and projects in 2010 than we have had in our entire existence! God is good! I’ve learned a lot about what it truly means to be strong. Strong people do have weak moments. What makes them strong is knowing when to call out for help, when to scream, when to pray and sometimes a combination of all three.

My first tree-Christmas 2009

During hard times it is easy to only concentrate on what you lack and I found myself doing this often. Then one day I realized that I do have something to give to the world. In January 2010, I came in contact with a program called, Technovation Challenge. I became a mentor in this program that is geared toward exposing high-school aged girls about opportunities in technology. After the program was over, one of my mentees tweeted that I was one of her heros. I was honored and still am. You never know what impact you can have if you only concentrate on what you do not have.


For years, I have been writing The Diva Diaries and had planned on having it published before Christmas 2010. But God has another plan and I’ve learned that I need to follow this plan. I was pushing to have the book out on a timeline that was not mine. I’m a perfectionist when it comes to my creative projects and I want it to be right. There is so much I want to give to young ladies who are suffering from low self-esteem through this book. But I cannot do that if I rush what God is doing. For all of you who are waiting, The Diva Diaries is coming. Thank you for the encouragement and keep commenting on the blog. Unite with me in prayer that it changes lives and heals people and is published when the time is right.


The relationship with my mother has been strengthened. I’ve learned that parents are not always right and sometimes you will have to go through hardships with family to get to a better place later. While I am sure that I could have handled the situation with my mother better, I did what I thought best in the moment. But praise God that we are not going into 2011 with a broken relationship.


There have been so many Divas that have inspired and encouraged me and instead of listing them now I am going to write about 1 of them each week from now until the first week of 2011. It is my hope that you will be inspired by them too. Stay tuned to see who made the list!


I encourage you to look back into 2010 and find the lessons learned. Bring the lessons learned into 2011 and begin setting your goals. 2011 is the year to make it happen! There are great things in store for you in 2011! 


XOXOXO,




The Diva







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