Too Much? Just in Case You Didn’t Know

I have a pet peeve where when someone tells me something is too much or I’m not good enough, I feel the need to prove them wrong. You can call it an inferiority complex. To me, I’m just really competitive, have a huge heart and hate hearing the word no from folks that don’t know me well.

I will briefly educate anyone on my past experiences of 44 years in case you think I haven’t experienced enough or I can’t handle “too much.”

I maintained good grades all through school, undergrad and grad school. This includes As and Bs in a tough computer science program and a 3.9 GPA in an MBA program. I did much of this without advanced grooming, help and oftentimes very little money. I grinded, studied hard, and simply wanted it.

Physically, I worked my way up the depth chart in football and started my senior at offensive line over folks more talented and athletic than myself. I ran competitively for 4 years and won 2 age groups, ran 9 half marathon and 3 full marathons, one of those being the brutal and hilly Kings Mountain marathon. I have lost and maintained weight many times in my life, losing 100 pounds in my early 30s and 50 in my mid 30s.

I have been involved in trivia, competitive eating, I have successfully climbed the ladder for a major company, all while battling mental illness, obesity, grief, socioeconomic and racists and caring for a physically and mentally ill mother.

I have managed time well enough to excel in school, hold down a job and side hustles consistently for 27 years, be involved in the community, go to social events, handle multiple bank accounts, and train and tutor others. I also have written a book and have two active blogs. I always find ways to succeed and I’m not afraid to ask for help or questions if I’m in a bind.

Basically much of this is how #imjustdrew was created in 2016. Facebook is about to limit my blogs so YouTube and TikTok will be my focus. Obstacles breed creativity and I continue to stay encouraged and know the best is yet to come.

Therefore, before you think something is too much, read this blog first and learn my story!

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine #scaredeyes

What Am I Griping About

I saw this on a FB post the other day. The intent was to gripe about something that wasn’t political, Roe V Wade, gas prices, or Russia/Ukraine. Therefore, here are mine from my latest weekend.

Why in the world didn’t Gray Collegiate have a concession stand at their playoff baseball game the other day?

Why is my uncle so obsessed with baseball? He’s incarcerated and wants all the details, even inning by inning. He will have to be more clear with me when he calls on Sunday.

How can a 14 year old fall through a 50 foot well with concrete? Better yet, why isn’t that well insulated?

What is up with all of the local deaths and earthquakes near Elgin? Mercury being in retrograde does not help.

Why do people STILL not stay through the credits of a Marvel movie. Overall it was better when I saw the new Doctor Strange but you still had some rushing out. SMH 14 years of the MCU and still this nonsense.

When are folks gonna realize UFC is a better product than boxing? Only time I like to watch is connect with some of my circle (non UFC fans, pray for them saints).

It’s not hard right now to get a job or a pet. Problem is neither may not be the one you want.

The days truly fly by as you get older. I swear 12 hours are just gone. Too bad it doesn’t work the same at the JOB.

FB is trying to limit #imjustdrew. I was already ahead of it, learning Tik Tok and focusing on my YouTube channel. Summer is coming (another shout out to David Fink).

Now I’m gonna blog on my original page and get ready for my work week to begin!

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

Being Honest With Ourselves

This isn’t just because as my former trainer David Fink used to say “summer’s coming” or “the beach going to get whatever body I give them.” Now that is the case as it’s harder to camouflage your body for the next few months.

Many folks simply are not honest with themselves or are constantly trying to cover up and hide things. Well let me tell you this. There are instances, such as in business and when building relationships where you need to be genuine and forthcoming regarding shortcomings and things you have and don’t. The truth does come out eventually.

I’m a firm believer of being honest and knowing the rules of any game and engagement. You cannot let others drag you into their mess either. Cover yourself, protect yourself, respect yourself. You have to have integrity at some point or it will cost you.

Also if you can’t be honest and forthright with someone, perhaps you shouldn’t be around them. These aren’t family secrets; it’s common knowledge and need to know stuff. Your word is your bond and building trust is so important in many aspects.

Realize that this may not be the season that you can wear a two piece or get back onto the Fury at Carowinds. Find out where you need to improve, get better and work from there. Please stop cutting corners and rubber stamping your life. Mother’s Day is coming and you want to be prepared there also. Just be you!

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

Surround yourself with love

The Beatles mentioned the word “love” a total of 613 times in their songs. We have an entire holiday dedicated to celebrating love. The word is thrown around like a football. It is a positive, uplifting feeling.

Yet many of us find ourselves in toxic, joyless situations.

One of the solutions is love. We need to cover ourselves with it. Seek out the ones that truly love us and not just like us and tolerate our being. Oh no you need to feel love.

I see many troubled folks on a daily basis. Some simply weren’t shown love enough or at all at key points in their life. They are dismissive, divisive and confrontational. I have found that expressing your love language and showing them that you do care goes a long way.

We can get caught up in the day to day grind and be ruled by routine, numbers and the almighty dollar. What needs to be realized is if we showed love and love more often, more of the stuff we desire will fall into place.

It is about how you feel. I know if I feel I’m in a positive environment where I can relax, smile and have fun, I am an overall better person. Many of us are.

Therefore let’s not complete the process; rather let’s trust it. Show more love to each other. I am going to practice just that in my next #imjustdrew blog.

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

Will Smith: A Lot Of Layers

I have read the stories, seen the live and unedited videos and of course the memes. Chris Rock make jokes towards Jada Pinkett Smith and her condition, alopecia. Will Smith storms the Oscar stage and slaps the taste out of his mouth and then shouts obscenities at Chris from the audience.

The media, especially social, has blown up since. Little to no talk of COVID, high gas prices, Biden, Russia v Ukraine, the Final Four or any other hot topic. This brings up some questions of course.

Was this staged as the Oscars is known for the dramatics and needed ratings? Was Will holding in aggression from past Rock comments or Jada’s indiscretions? Would Will had tried that with a bigger, more physical person? Did anyone see Will laughing and smiling at the joke initially? Why (yes I’m asking this) are folks making this racial? Will Chris Rock be invited back to the Oscars after all of his past controversy? Will security finally beef off?

Either way, the Oscars has the publicity they needed. We also see what many have seen for years: Will has to resolve his inner demons and really talk to his wife. He can still be in the public light but he HAS to keep his private life as such. Also if he wants his marriage to work and be monogamous, he has to take it more seriously and not involve others.

The latter is my biggest take. Will should definitely defend and protect his wife. Just because he’s a celebrity and cameras are rolling doesn’t mean he needs to do it in public. He needs to handle it behind closed doors and to avoid a charge. Also, get on August or any other person that has disrespected Jada. That’s my take.

I welcome any and all feedback.

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

OK is Addiction a Choice?

One of the latest memes to go viral is “Addiction Is A Choice.” Of course I have thoughts on this.

First off, it’s so easy to get addicted to anything, from alcohol to food to that hot show on Netflix. Getting relieved or rehabilitated is another battle. Many do not realize this until it happens to them and/or someone close to them.

Now if you have an addictive personality and you know something could be harmful to you, it likely is a choice. Once you’re addicted, that’s another battle that the individual has to win. They have to win this an an individual. That’s when it’s pretty much not a choice.

I have not only experienced this myself but have watched several succumb to this, my brother included. My brother technically had a choice. He also had peer pressure and wasn’t thinking about anything long term. He wanted to fit in. Psychologically, the average person doesn’t have a choice and may not know they’re getting addicted. Becoming an addict is basically a lifelong fight. That person cannot even be around it and it’s a process to return them to become fully functional.

I ask that you do not pass judgment unless you or a loved one have been succumbed to the dangers of addiction. It’s not always something you choose to do or be. Ignorance isn’t always bliss. Be kind and not so judgmental.

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine #scaredeyes

Winthrop University realtors doing it big!

Many Winthrop University alums have entered the real estate game over the past decade. Home ownership, marketing and entrepreneurship have become a huge for the latest generation of WU graduates. Many alums realize this and have bought in to the real estate game.

They have exceled from simply becoming licensed in North and South Carolina. Many have also won sales honors and started their own real estate companies. All of them have the common goal of helping others achieve the American dream of owning their own home.

I have compiled as many names as I coikd of current WU alums that are realtors. Please tag any others as I want all to be recognized. Lauren Taylor (NorthGroupRealEstate), Tashia George (Costello REI), Roscoe Douglas (Excel Real Estate), Candice Wright McCuein (founded and own Excel Real Estate with her husband, Kenny), James Means IV (Excel Real Estate), Greg Lewis (HK+ Co.), Kawana Wilson (Bloom Realty),  Erica Simpson (EricaHomes, LLD), and Seniqua Breazeale Griffin (Keller Williams Preferred), Tori Robinson (Keller Williams) and Chris Gaynor

Trust me, these names are among the first I mention when someone is in their respective areas and they are looking to sell and/or buy a home. We Winthrop alums look out for each other and support each other. The WU experience extends far beyond our time on campus. I encourage you to support these folks also if not at least by sharing their names, listings and such!

#wuforever #WeAreTheStandard #imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

Simone Winn: Local Actress Showing All How You Can Win!

Spartanburg, SC native Simone Winn is many things. Mother of two sons. Massage school student. Sister, daughter, friend, woman. College graduate. Last but not least: actress. Her new release, which she acted and assisted with casting is “Collateral Damage” The Ambassadors Ball.” is currently the top streaming movie on Tubi.

Simone began her acting from participating in the school play in the 6th grade “The Wizard of Oz”. She auditioned to play Dorothy but was cast as the Wicked Witch of the West. Despite having the smaller role, Winn made the most of her performance. She was good at impersonations and she cemented the role with her signature evil witch laugh. Simone had the long end of the stick with the smaller role but she had fun, scored her first acting win, and it was the start of something great.

Winn also honed her craft by studying it at the University of South Carolina-Upstate, earning a mass communication degree with a concentration in theatre. Her current film is the second time she has appeared on television. She has also acted in several local performances at the Chapman Cultural Center which include A Raisin In The Sun as Miss Johnson and To Kill a Mockingbird as Calpurnia. Simone simply lights up and brings the stage alive. That is apparently by watching any of her performances. Winn has a captivating spirit and dynamic personality that makes acting seem natural for this woman.

Simone’s biggest inspirations have always been her family, but more specifically, nowadays, her two sons.

Winn would feel honored to work with many of the A list actors and actresses. Some of her absolute favorites are Will Smith, Denzel Washington, Tarajii P. Henson, Sanaa Lathan, Regina Hall, and Viola Davis just to name a handful.

Simone’s advice is to go after what you’re passionate about and stick with it! Know that times will be tough, but stay focused, keep God first, and you’ll eventually see the promise.

Simone Winn is living proof of her own words and story. It’s gratifying and inspiring to see a local woman on the larger screen exceling. Acting is a tough profession but Winn is definitely passionate, driven and motivated.

It’s fitting that this is written on International Women’s Day. Women such as Simone win on this day and everyday! I cannot wait to see what is next for this talent.

Spread The Word and the Love

It seems that many of us are so quick to spread hate and criticism, especially when triggered.

What happened to spreading love and happiness?

I have a good friend that’s probably reading this that despite what may not be perfect in her life is always showing love and positivity. She’s in her own garden having fun, hanging with the sunflowers, jumping on trampolines and walking up to 3 miles with her young daughter.

People like her move and inspire me. They make the best parts of themselves open and available without complication. The Russian/Ukraine fracas has really shed light on all of this. This is the time especially while the pandemic is still active to really show that love and affection to all of those around you.

Be sure to really walk that walk, talk that talk. 2021 “action” was my word. This year it’s “consistency”. Love is both an action word and based on consistent and constant actions.

Let’s show consistent love in all we do in our lives, especially in our behavior towards others. Love yourself, respect yourself, and show the same towards others. It sounds simple but others make it hard.

#imjustdrew #fromdarktosunshine

Old Soup is Still Good

Heating up and defrosting certain foods do not diminish the value of the food. Neither does television reboots

We have had two successful TV reboots and both of these are Black History Month appropriate: Bel-Air and The Wonder Years.

I was highly critical and skeptical of both of these as I grew up with both shows and still watch reruns of the originals.

Both shows have delivered and I look forward to each new episode. They are using the formula of showcasing Black excellence and not ruining the originals. Regarding Bel-Air, there are notable differences, specifically with Carlton. It’s still a solid, provoking show.

Therefore it’s showing us that reboots can work and do not have to be corny or clich√©. I still haven’t changed my mind on Back to the Future or Forrest Gump but I am certainly more open.

Some old soup is actually good when reheated.

#imjustdrew #scaredeyes