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It has been exactly 24 days since my last blog post. Too long for someone who has made a publicized commitment to stay connected with her community. I am her to explain the answer to a question that keeps me up at night. That question is, ” am I good enough to be an influencer and am I ready to give up the life that tempts me to fall short?”

During this long overdue break, I have learned a lot about myself and about society. Due to certain circumstances and the discouragement I allowed to overfill my mind, I lost sight of how god viewed me and began to listen to the stereotypes of how the world viewed me. I lost my strength for a moment fighting for things that are out of my control, I lost hope in a family I prayed so hard for, and finally, I lost myself during this time of tension and confusion.

There are so many things that I have lost. But today, I am here to tell you that what is lost can absolutely most definitely be found. Yes, I am a follower of christ. Yes I serve in my church. Yes I am family oriented. And yes, I choose to be a mentor to kids I come in contact with. By doing so, I now am held with higher expectations to do right and fight a good fight. This month has been a whirlwind, but once again god has made a way. I was one to look at the mess I’ve made and leave it as it was. Dwelling over the spills and clutter I’ve created. Now, it is time for me to start cleaning it up.

I am not who I used to be. The old Marissa would have already deleted United Outkast as if it never existed, hoping that people would forget about it and I would continue living my life selfishly. But that is not who I am today and refuse to ever look back permanently, despite how hard it may be. When I started to realize the impact this blog had on people, it felt so good to know that I was capable of doing so. It motivated me. But what I failed to realize was how much more noticable my actions were going to be to the public eye. Judgement was on the rise, faster than I was able to prepare myself for. When people began to point out my flaws and mistakes, I allowed myself to question my worth. Then “coincidentally”, all that affected me in the past, showed up to my doorstep with full force. As a human being, life tackled me and I allowed it.

I detached myself from this blog, from healthy friendships, healthy coping mechanisms and from all that I had to keep me held stable. But like I said before, god makes a way. A few days ago, I had the honor to be part of a conversation with someone who has been struggling intensely with a situation almost identical to one I’ve been through before. The temptation to fall short was eating this person alive and she was comfortable and vulnerable to speak her mind to me. In this moment, I knew that this journey was not over. At the end of our conversation we made a pact to each other to stand back up, resist what the devil is putting in front of us and come back stronger than we have ever been before.

So to answer the question. Yes , I am enough to be who I want to be; and that is an influencer. Am I ready to give up temptation to fulfill the life that is needed ? That answer is not a yes or no. It isn’t about being ready. I don’t think anyone is ever ready to turn their face to what feels good, even if it is not beneficial. But I can tell you that my intentions are beyond my actions. I am young, with alot of life to live. But with time, I will make a choice to continuously live the life god has put forth, despite my falls. Judgement is produced by the enemy. Without mistakes, there is no room for growth, and growth is what educates me with what I am able to speak on today.

I want to announce a sincere apology to all that view these post. I also want to thank you all for your patience and understanding. With that being said, this website is in the works to move further and deeper in to what United outkast is all about.

-Much love, Riss.

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