New Year’s Eve was dicey—delayed flights, missed connections, sleeping in airports and stuck in Rome when I should have been in Malta.

I realize travel is a privilege and there are worse problems than missed flights.

But running through multiple airports coughing, exhausted, and dodging offensive perfume was like being hurled into space without oxygen.

On my fourth connection I had one shot at making it to my hotel before the clock struck 2017. Weaving in and out of travelers, running on moving sidewalks and willing time to slow down, I made it to the gate just before the doors closed.

Relief.

Except the airplane scene I walked into was not the refuge I had hoped for. I quickly realized I had a choice—shrink, or stand tall.

But in order to stand tall, I had to ignore a chorus of voices in my head from the ghosts of my shrunken past:

“Don’t be so uptight—it’s no big deal.”

“Why did I wear that fitted jacket?”

“They’re just having fun; what’s the harm?”

“I’m old enough to be their mother—is this really happening?”

“Don’t wreck their New Year’s Eve—it’s their special night.”

I decided they didn’t get to have a “special night” at my expense.

As 2016 closed its doors, I dug up the courage to turn garbage into gold.

If I can do it—sick, alone, exhausted and zooming over the Mediterranean Sea—you can do it too.

Many of us fight like crazy for the rights of others, but forget to stand up for ourselves. Everyone deserves to be treated with compassion and dignity, including YOU.

When we stand tall, we help everyone.

After you watch the video, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. I’m so grateful we’re in this together.

To love and courage,
Tamika

Comments

Kaitlin says

I love you. So great.

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Tamika says

Sending love back to you Kaitlin!

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gary obermuller says

That was very good and inspiring. We do have a choice in how we behave in every situation. Yours was self empowering

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Brenda says

Thank you for your courage to stand up & not shrink and to remind me of this in myself! Your message was a remembrance of times in my life where 'no' wasn't heard or respected and the ripple effects that had on my ability to speak up. I will use this inspiration to fortify my resolve and dig deep to find the courage to stand in my truth.
I'm very grateful.
love you and the message, B.

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Tamika says

Makes so much sense, Brenda. So many of us (myself included) knew how to say "no" in our youth, but over time found that going silent was easier. The world must be ready for us to step into something more authentic and true now——exciting! Thank you for sharing yourself in all the ways you do. Love you XOXO

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cathy says

Great message and good for you!! and all with just a look and your energy- you were ground and centred- NICE- thanks for sharing! I am going to practice that more too!

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Tamika says

Cathy, thank you for the encouragement. We can all do incredible things under pressure! I hope you never have to use this practice——but if you do, I hope it will make your life that much richer. XOXO

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Kendra says

So important. So hard to do. But so important. Plus - you never now who is watching. A young girl could have seen you do this and feel empowered. :) Plus - you deserve it!

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Donna Hammond says

Tamika .. so good to hear from you with renewed faith and energy in yourself! In the past I have run into this kind of harassment, I was alone on a bus from Edmonton to London. I found myself speaking up and shutting someone down .. it was an empowering feeling believe me.
We are women .. hear us roar!!

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