I had a very busy work week recently. I had a few days of training that required me to leave the comfort of familiar Connecticut and drive north to rural Hadley, Massachusetts. Although I was going alone into the unknown-I wasn’t fearful.
I looked down on my wrist as I drove northbound. A teal braclet rested gently on my wrist. “Nia; God’s purpose” was engraved in the soft material. Looking down briefly as I drove calmed my spirit. The day before I had just wrapped an intimate interview with the creator of the calming teal bracelet. Lavone Roberson.
Where do I begin about my known truth concerning Lavone? If you read my previous post, “Where There Is No Vision There is No Hope” then you already know we both spent a lot of time at the George Washington Carver Community Center, you also already know we both attended and graduated from Hampton University and you also know we are both educators.
Lavone is not only a daughter, sister, God mother and teacher. She embodies more than those attributes.
Lavone is an activist.
She is a woman that has an electrifying spirit- her aura oozes positivity and love. She greeted me with a large smile that warmed my heart. That’s what I first noticed as we sat down at our local Starbucks (shout out to the employees that waited patiently after they closed before letting us know they were closed!).
If you read my previous post (shameless plug) then you also know that I didn’t expect our interview to last three hours! It was amazing, sitting down with Lavone there were even some times in the interview where she asked me questions and I was being I interviewed!
She asked me questions related to my own struggles with depression and anxiety and I readily shared. Nothing was off limits. The space we created in that moment allowed for us both to discuss past trauma and how we are actively and mindfully living our truth.
Lavone’s truth is directly tied to her commitment to her community. You see dear reader, aside from all the amazing attributes I listed above-at the age of 34 Lavone was diagnosed with cancer in October 2015. At the moment all she knew was “I have to live”.
This statement guided her and grounded her as she had her left ovary and appendix removed. It guided her and grounded her as she started a 3 month round of chemotherapy.
This central theme of wanting to LIVE stayed with her as she battled the resurfacing of ovarian cancer and endometrio cancer that had spread to her one remaining ovary-a cancer that appeared right before being medically cleared to freeze her eggs in the hopes of one day having biological children.
Through her experiences with cancer Lavone asked herself: “Dear God, Why did you save me?”. She concluded “Since I didn’t die, I have to live purposely”. Living with a purpose beyond herself is what brought her to not only create the teal braclet I proudly wear it has influenced her to create #NowIAmNia-. This is a brand that is dedicated to her personal testimony around being a cancer survior and discrimination in healthcare.
“I’m here. I don’t take that for granted. I will try to do what God’s purpose is for me. I will use #NowIAmNia to continue a legacy I thought I had lost”.
How are you, dear reader, living your life in your purpose? Please comment below. Until next time-go forth in love.
Follow her on Twitter @nowiamnia