I Stand on the Shoulders of Giants and I’m Blessed For It
I gotta talk about how I’m where I am today.
I’m 5’4 but I always feel tall. It’s not because I put on fierce 4-inch pumps (often red) either. Even in flats, I never feel diminutive. Plus I talk shit like I’m big so there’s that. O_O
But for realsies. I am where I am today, and I’ve grown into the woman I am because of God’s grace and the people who’ve guided me and helped me on this journey. Recently, someone I look up to sent me an email saying how proud he is of me. As one of my mentors and the people who I respect the most, it meant THE WORLD to me. And he ended the email by reminding me to “stand on the shoulders of giants.”
He’s said that to me before but this time, it sank in even more. Stand on the shoulders of giants. And I realized that I know a lot of giants.
All around me are people who live life TALL. Folks who do epic shit. They wake up and create dope things. They write. They act. They produce. They blog. They create the lives they want to live. They are the change they want to see in the world. They work for themselves. They work for others with their own rules. They travel shamelessly. They raise families. They live life like no sky exists.
They’re brilliant, gifted, well-read, hilarious, empathetic, dope, fierce, awesome, amazing, multi-faceted and so much more.
I know SO many giants, and they challenge me to live life just as tall as they do it. They challenge me to break the walls I’ve built for myself. They push me beyond my comfort zone. And I’m taller for it.
I am already standing on their shoulders because I’ve been elevated in my work and life as a result of knowing them. My mentors, friends, family members and associates have been instrumental in any and all success I have today. Their lives are stories worth telling and they are testaments to what it looks like to chase your dreams and realize them. They’re hard work personified, and what they do matters.
I am inspired to be and do better everyday because of my circle of awesome people, and I’m so thankful for them.
I’ve said this before but some of the things I’ve done still feel like dreams. This past year has been beyond amazing for me and has taken me places where I never thought I’d go. I’ve met so many people and I’ve seen my dreams starting to come to fruition. I’ve worked on a TV show, went to the Academy Awards (as press!), been flown to Africa, met and befriended some of my heroes and spoken at the same conferences as people who I could never imagine I’d even MEET.
People have told me their dreams for me and I’ve been shocked at how grand they are. And they’ve offered to help me see them come true. And every single time, I’m humbled by it. If these folks have such strong belief in me, who am I to question myself and my abilities? Every time it happens, I get all verklempt and in my feelings.
When people recognize my accomplishments and tell me they see more happening for me, it’s just like WOW. I don’t take the time to smell the roses of my work often. I’m always on to the next one. But the email I got made me take some time to say “You know what, Luvvie? You’ve done good. A lil bit.” Five minutes later, though, I was on to how to the next task at hand. Gotta keep it moving.
I’m a raging workaholic, which is probably a direct result of my not-so-hidden narcissism which is a consequence of my need to make some impact and leave something that lasts longer than I do on this Earth. I must do epic shit.
I don’t think I’ve accomplished even 10% of what I will, so I gotta keep chugging along. But the little that I have done is due to God’s blessings and the LIFE TALL people I’ve been honored to meet and know and connect with.
The rest of the email from my mentor said:
“I am very proud of what you are doing. You are on your way. But you are not there yet. Dream big and then think even more! Keep striving. Never “settle.” Yet in all of it find satisfaction in where you are – seems contradictory but without it (constantly finding satisfaction) you won’t know to enjoy and be thankful to God for what he’s accomplished in and through you. Your best days are ahead of you.”
Amen. I’ll take that and hold it with me.
I stand on the shoulders of giants and because of them, I can see clearer and farther than I ever thought I could see. I see places I’ve never been and I don’t even have to crane my neck. I see past people who try to make me feel short because they lift me up above them. And I see greatness.
So to all the “giants” in my life, thank you. I will remember to stand even taller and straighter on your shoulders if I ever feel short. You make my life super tall. I look forward to the day I can pay it forward and be someone else’s giant.