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Why Knowing Who You Are Is Important

May 28, 2020

Why knowing who you are is important

Have you noticed the weight that other people’s opinions have on us and our self-value? Why do we allow these opinions to affect us so much? Ms Chevious sits with Aaron Yoon to discuss why this happens and how you can empower yourself to live your best life without letting the noise bring you down. Listen to the Podcast.

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Executive Producer: Tamesh Bahadur
Producer: Laura Jattan


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You never have to explain yourself…

Your friends don’t need it, and others will only see from their perspective. When I was younger, I felt I had to justify my actions or my decisions to others. I was always being judged because the steps I chose to take weren’t necessarily easy or favorable. Yet, they were the best actions for me. I felt that if I explained myself, this would make a difference. I can honestly say that I could speak till I was blue in the face and it didn’t matter. I made as many points and explanations as I wanted as to why I chose to act as I did, but it made no difference. In the same instance for those that knew me best, they never once questioned my choices or actions. I never had to answer as to why I am, how I am, or why it is I do what I do.

The older I got, the more I realized there is no need to prove to anyone who I am or what I am about. This is an important lesson to learn, especially in this age of social media. Being home a lot more than I used to be, and social media being the way to network, I’ve been engaging more in groups as well as with people I follow. I’ve learned that even this is not really “fun”… It is effortless for someone to sit behind their computer where they cannot put a face to a name and act high and mighty, judging others by a comment left on a post. Just two seconds and some feel they know another’s entire existence from a speck of interaction. This type of interaction happened to me, and even I almost fell victim to the back and forth monotony.
I responded to a question that asked if a newly found piece of information to an already negative narrative is a game-changer.

I responded by saying, “No, only I can decide what stops me from moving forward. A saying is merely a saying. I do not care about its meaning or its origin. I define it how I choose to.” The author of the group replied with a very snarky, “sometimes I miss the point too.” To which I replied, “I understood the statement, I simply choose not to perpetuate the negative narrative. Thank you for your kindness, Sir.” I was then berated by one of his followers that told me I was answering from a place of privilege. I said, “Yes, me and all my Indian woman privilege. I shouldn’t be positive lest my head gets cut off…..” I unfollowed the post, and over the following hours, my phone had non-stop notifications, all based on an opinion question! I read most of these comments in complete disbelief that people who don’t know me or that I existed more than 5 minutes ago felt that they knew what I was all about. Since most of my pages are public, if they took 30 seconds and clicked on the profile, they would know it was certainly not a game-changer. I am actively trying to make a difference, so to get mad at every new upsetting thing is truly a waste of time. They judged me without even knowing my level in the game.

Then, I began to worry, not for me but for those who don’t think like I do. What about the people who feel they have to explain to the trolls that this is not who they are. What about the people who are thinking, “I cannot let those people think they got the best of me,” or, “They cannot think they won that argument.” What about the person at home who was thinking about ending their life, and a small misunderstanding like this could drive them over the edge. What about the kids that don’t know how to separate the opinions of others from the opinions in their heads and those of their loved ones. What about the people that don’t realize they can turn the toxicity off?

I hope one day we can all realize that we all have common ground as human beings. We can all support one another without agreeing 100% with each other. We can agree to disagree and still be one as a people. We can realize that no one is lesser or greater than the other. We all have strengths and weaknesses alike. You are never lesser simply because of how you are born. Let’s meet each other with open hearts and open minds with understanding, and I promise one by one, this world can be a better place.

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How long do you think it takes to heal…?

The answer is right there in my visual today — there is no timeline on healing. One day you will be telling your story, or you will have a random thought or memory, and you will no longer feel bad, or the tears won’t fall. That is when you’ll know that you’ve truly healed.

From my last post, I told you all that I have gotten engaged, and that usually means planning a wedding!! As someone of you know, that is not the easiest task. Well, have you ever tried to plan a wedding during quarantine and shutdown of all non-essential businesses? It’s about as hard as you can imagine. In true Ms Chevious fashion, I decided to only focus on the things that I can control, so I decided to scope out the traditional Indian outfits and jewelry I need as well as gather addresses and put together a guest list.

The guest list brought me to the topic of my blog tonight. Growing up, I was quite close with my extended family on my mother’s side. My Mom has eight siblings and all of their kids I considered as my bothers and sisters. For a while, we lived like that, and it was great having so many people around. However, while we were a close-knitted family, everyone cannot be the favorite, and I am very good at justifying things away. But after a while, no matter how good your heart is, eventually you have to start treating people the way they treat you, right?

To make a long story short, I am not inviting all my mother’s side of the family to my wedding. In fact, I no longer consider all of them my family anymore. Here is a quick synopsis as to what happened. There was a fight amongst a set of siblings, and the cops were called to the family party. The situation got to the point where the siblings had to go to court, and I did not want to see anything bad happen to my cousin, someone I consider a brother (and still do). I stepped up and said what I saw to keep the situation from getting out of hand. No one else in the family went to court. I’m not sure what happened after this, but there was a definite divide that I honestly did not expect. I did not say negative towards either sibling. I was no longer invited to events or outings with other cousins, and at the same time, the guy I was seeing was no longer in my life. I was living in Florida while my parents live in North Carolina. So at that time, I was alone. ALONE.

Last December, I found myself in Florida again, nearly four years after moving, and five years after all this occurred. From the moment I landed, I didn’t even leave the airport before I had an ominous feeling throughout my body. Two minutes outside the airport, I was in full-blown tears. I was looking around, and I realized I had this whole life here. I had a great job, a house, a driveway, a washer and dryer (luxuries if you live in the city trust me.) I left because, yes, I had my life here, but I truly felt that it was not a life worth living. I picked up and left, but now looking back, I felt chased… HOW DARE I!! allowed myself to be chased?! All those thoughts brought tears to my eyes. I stopped crying when I began to think of how much I have grown, and I am much stronger. I am such a different person. Perhaps, I needed to move.

That was the first time since I moved I felt the pain. That was for leaving Florida. Now, I feel the pain when I am writing this guest list and it’s, I would say, about maybe only 20 percent of them. The childhood fantasies I’ve had of my cousins and I chatting and getting dressed together. My cousins all meeting my finance’ and giving him the 3rd degree. The endless laughs and music that would go on for all hours of the night and the absolute chaos and madness that is an Indian wedding house. Sure, I will still have all those things but on a smaller scale and with hardly any of the ones that I discussed this day with.

I will say it is easy to stand by and watch and do nothing, but that will only get you so far. There will come the point in your life when you can no longer stand on the sidelines, and you have to take a stand. I do not regret taking the position that I did. I would do it all over again if I had to…In my eyes, I can’t lose what I never had. If something so simple could cause such a big rift, how close were we?

I’m sure you are wondering what about friends or the family I am inviting? I can assure you the people that will be there are extremely, extremely important to me. That means they are friends that have become family. The family that will be there has stuck with me through the hardest times in my life and decided to love me for me. They may not have known me as a child or all my life, but they know me now and accept me now as I am, and I could not ask for anything more.

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End of Q1….

The first quarter of 2020 took us by storm, right?  For some it seemed to go on forever. For me, it seemed I blinked my eyes and it was the end of March; the world was an entirely differently place.

January 2nd is my birthday so I always start the year off in reflection.  This year I decided to create this blog and then the flood gates of life opened up. I took some time to check in with myself.  I am back and I am ready to fill you in on my whirlwind of Q1 2020.

In February, my boyfriend asked me to marry him and it honestly was the best day of my life.  Like with any big decision there is always a lot of reflecting that goes into a decision like this.  It is important to note I was not questioning who I was marrying. It was more how I was going to marry him and that there were some conversations that he and I needed to have prior to making this life commitment to one another.  That is when I paused and began to check in with myself.  I began thinking that I don’t have too much family and I didn’t really want a big wedding.  I had lived my life with a small group of people and those people were the most important people to me. Those are the ones I wanted around me during the happiest moment in my life.  My fiance´ wants the big traditional ceremony with all of his family in attendance whether they are close or not. I guess it’s more like a family reunion.  I just want him happy and to have the wedding he always wanted and deserves, so I am fine with making this compromise.  Upon soul searching I realized that wasn’t even my issue.  My issue was I also have a big family but we are no longer in communication and when I was younger and dreamed of this day I had once pictured them there ….. unfortunately, they will not be there and that is ok.  The other compromise I had to talk to my now fiance´ about was our relationship.  You see I’ve known him since 2012 but in 2015 he ghosted me and we hadn’t fully discussed those events and what transpired when we found each other again in 2017.  The fact that we didn’t have this conversation was bothering me so much it was affecting every decision I made.  Also, each compromise was harder and harder and harder no matter how small the compromise was.  It came to the point we had to have this conversation.  One day while we were on vacation in Las Vegas we decided to stay in our room and talk, 100% real talk — no subjects were off limits and the other person had to listen.  This helped our relationship tremendously and it helped us both realize what the other person was dealing with and going through.  Best of all we are now committing to each to each other with no secrets or hidden feelings.

Enter March 2020. Life as I knew it would change.  Those worries of the past few months would be minor compared to this pandemic, right?!  When we got back from Vegas I had a fever, my body ached, and my nose was useless!  My  fiance´ took care of me and brought me food and medicine while staying at his place as to not also get sick and was still working. I was working from home as to not get anyone at my job sick.  I was sick for the first week of March and by the time I got better I was at work for one day before we were all ordered to work from home and stay quarantined in our homes.  My fiance´ worked for about two more weeks at his job before he too got the order to stay home. Before we knew it, all of NJ and NY were declared shelter states and everyone who was deemed nonessential were to stay inside.   
By this time we missed not seeing each other and decided we should quarantine together.  I call this time our “test marriage”.  It’s the most time we’ve spent with one another since dating.  We both agreed we should not live with each other before getting married.  However, being quarantined is basically like living together.  We go to bed seeing each other and we wake seeing each other.  While we work, our work stations are facing each other and we are both cooking meals and washing dishes for each other. Sounds like a marriage right?!  It was during this time I remembered a few gems I learned throughout my life.  Recently, my mentor told me always take advice from those who have proven they know what they are talking about.  With that being said years ago I told my cousin Shamee, “you know I think I will be a bad wife.” He looked at me and said, “why?”  I said, “Well I don’t really care to do things for people when they can help themselves…. I don’t think I would cook and clean for someone or take out someone’s food for them….”  He told me, “When it is the right person it’s not so much a chore but something you want to do FOR them.  You want to do anything you can to help them to ease their day or give them something even if it’s a cup to tea it’s something you want to do rather than HAVING to do.”  I can honestly say during this time in my life I now understand what he means.  I’ve realized that I enjoy making meals and endless cups of tea.  I will do anything to make his day easier because that is what his mere existence does for me.

So…. That has been my 1st Quarter.   More to come in Q2 keep following!!


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Level 35


Hi! I decided to start a blog! Exciting Right?! I believe in journaling. I think I’ve been journaling since the 4th grade. The first time I felt something, I had no one to talk to about it. That feeling was solidified when my journal was found and read aloud, and everyone laughed. By everyone, I mean my two brothers (the ones that found it) and my mom (the one that should have spoken to me about what I wrote.) Since then, I have been trying to navigate most things on my own.

As you can guess from the title or maybe not, I am 35 now. I’ve navigated a lot since then. Come along this journey with me in this blog. One of my favorite ways to describe myself is, “I am a masterpiece, yet a work in work progress.”

Growing up, my immediate family consisted of my Mom, Dad, and two older brothers. In the apartment above us lived my mom’s sister and her daughter. My mom’s sister’s daughter (yes, I know she should be addressed as my cousin, however, follow the posts and you will see why she lost that privilege) is a year older than I and we were pretty close, or so I thought. My life since then has been a journey learning and evaluating relationships, determining the best way to carry myself, and how to treat others accordingly. Spoiler!! I can tell you the secret to all this is to love yourself first, and everything else will come so much easier. As we all know, that is easier said than done. In this blog, I will tell you how I came to eventually love myself as well as some new events in my life, as I said, I’m still a work in progress.

Make it a great day!! and Smile ????????????????????????