Assumptions

Fools base their thoughts on foolish assumptions, so their conclusions will be wicked madness.

Ecclesiastes 10:13 NLT

I’ve had two conversations about assumptions one day apart this week, and it’s been a real eye opener for me.

The first was based off what someone felt, and the second based off what someone else had said.

With the first convo, a gentleman thought that he had offended me when he had kindly helped me carry something down the stairs, and assumed that I was annoyed of some sort when he handed the item back to me. Despite me not showing any sign of annoyance, he was apologizing for something that wasn’t even there!

The second convo was in fact a three-way conversation in person, and based off something I was asked by one of the two people, the third person made an assumption of how they felt I may have felt towards them.

What I’ve learnt and taken not only from this week, but past situations is that you should not make assumptions without facts.

Based off these two different scenarios, they would have both felt that there was an issue when their wasn’t an issue at all.

Another thing I’ve learnt is people will always assume what they want, as long as it suits them.

Why make the assumption? Why not just ask? Because the individual chooses to believe what has been said, and it’s sad as this has happened to me with family, and friends, but if they were your real family member/friend, they would know to ask and choose not to assume.

Roz and Friends?

Ironically for the longest, this was going to be the title for a project I was going to launch, but after a while, I didn’t like the sound of it, it began to sound a little bit too cliche, and a matter of fact just plain cheesy!

I’ve had my fair share of friends come in and out of my life for many different reasons, whether due to tension, miscommunication or just growing apart. I’ve had friends blatantly use me, and also take my kindness for weakness, even though there is a different side of me that surprises them that they tend to not like when they realize, the side that is strong and speaks up for myself or others when need be, the side that tells it how it is, the side that basically has known what has been going on for a while, but wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt, and then boom they get caught out!

2018 was a great year for making some amazing new friends! Sometimes I feel with age it’s not possible *cue Drake no new friends!* But there are genuine humans still out there with no ulterior motives.

27 days into 2019 and I’ve gotten to the point where I will no longer allow how people feel about themselves to reflect on me, I’ve learnt that it is actually a reflection of how they are feeling. I will no longer receive third party opinions from people that know nothing about me and my struggle, and how I’ve worked hard all my life to bring me exactly to where I am today. I will no longer allow people to think they’re better than me due to finances or possessions being handed to them to buy their love. I receive so much love from my family, and it doesn’t involve possessions or money, these things are only temporary, and after a while will leave you feeling empty and wanting more to fill that void. My heart is already full because I know I am genuinely loved, and I give that love right back and more!

This may sound very cliche, but I’m definitely ride or die when it comes to my friends, and will always come to their defence when need be, but sometimes I wonder, would they do the same for me?

In October, God sent me an angel in the form of a friend of mine. She did something that I never expected anybody to ever do for me. I cried and I was in total shock, my first and only question to her was why me? She explained, and I accepted her explanation. I then realized that I would do the exact same thing for her, and the rest of my friends, and actually have done, but it’s not something I brag about nor choose to throw in peoples face. The beautiful gesture reminded of who I am, and why I was blessed by this person, it reminds me that I am on the right path of growth and understanding.

Rather than focus on what was, I’ve always believed that every event has a reason behind it, and when the time is right, it shall be revealed.

I interviewed a family friend of mine a week ago and was very bold in asking her about an issue we had where we didn’t speak for 5 years. She was honest and was able to explain why she took a step back from our friendship. I honestly never knew how she felt, and it was a shame that she didn’t feel she could communicate that to me 5 years prior, but as the saying goes, nothing happens before it’s time. Sadly, it was only death that reunited us, but I’m glad that I was able to be there for her during a very difficult time in her life and continue to be as she manoeuvres through life with her loss.

What the conversation with my family friend taught me is that communication is key, and being really honest with yourself, and others about how you feel could help any situation. If not, then it’s a slippery slope, and only a matter of time before things diminish.

And the Church said Amen!

Every Sunday my Mum would drag me to Church with her. We attended a Methodist Church in Edmonton, London England which was local to our home.

I remember always wondering why it was only me that was forced to go to Church with my Mum, and not my older brother or sister?!

Each week that we attended, Mum would send me into Sunday school.

I remember getting to a point where I didn’t mind going each and every Sunday, and I’m not sure if this was because I actually enjoyed Sunday school, making new friends, or if it was for the end of service where we were offered chocolate biscuits and tea (back then chocolate covered biscuits were my absolute favourite!)

At the age of nine, my Mum and I had suddenly stopped attending Church. Until this day I’m not exactly sure what happened, but without even ever asking her, I think I may have a certain level of understanding as to why. This is due to my own experience.

I always tried to live a Christian life, being kind to all people, having respect, not swearing, the list can go on and on! But as I grew older, people would always ask me if I were a Christian, I’d respond saying yes, but in my heart, I felt like a hypocrite and that I couldn’t call myself one as I wasn’t practising. After a time, this began to really bother me.

After a rough year in 2008, I realized I needed God more than ever, I began to think about Church a lot, and really wanted to find one to attend.

My brother’s then-girlfriend (now wife) was a long-standing member of a Church, and as she knew my interest in finding one, she had invited me to go along with her to hers. I was elated that I had a great recommendation, and that we would be able to attend together, and that I wouldn’t have to go solo. Back then that was my issue, I wanted someone to go with, someone to hold my hand and settle me in, almost like it was my first day of school!

It was the tail end of 2008, and my brother’s partner took me to her Church in Ealing, West London. This wasn’t far from the University I use to attend, so to me, this seemed perfect and somewhat familiar territory for me.

We parked up and proceeded to walk into a hotel where Church took place. My sister in love introduced me to all her Church buddies, they all seemed so friendly, young, and very hospitable, I was almost positive I had now found my new cool Church to attend!

In the first quarter of 2009, my sis in love no longer attended the Church, she never explained why, but I understood as my Mother had done the same thing many years ago, so I assumed it could sometimes be like that, plus she was pregnant with her, and my brothers first child, so I assumed she wanted them to make a fresh new start elsewhere with them as a family.

Despite me taking a short break within the first year of attending this new Church, I returned and had become so frequent that I had now become a full member. I’d even gotten baptized as a born again Christian on July 12th 2009, and had officially become part of the Church’s ‘family’.

Thing’s seemed great, I was finally leading this ‘perfect’ Christian life, attending Church, making new Church friends, going to life groups, serving in all areas possible, flooding my Facebook statuses with scripture, and saying Amen at the end of everything to really try and fit in, but the truth is, I struggled with this new great thing I was experiencing in my life.

Every Sunday was a struggle to go to Church. I grew to realize that the Church was full of cliques that had already been formed long before I began attending, and it seemed there was no new member’s allowed to join, and I definitely felt that no entry sign with each corner I took.

I would walk into the small Church hall with anxiety, not knowing which direction to go to. My fellow Church members had their own little circle, and sometimes wouldn’t even bother to acknowledge your presence too tough.

It bugged me a lot, but I still continued to go as I had to remind myself that I was going for me, and nobody else.

1 Corinthians 1:10 and James 2:1-13 kept me going every time I felt some type of way, it kept me going back week after week after week.

In 2014, after coming back from a 3-month trip abroad, I had the time, and space to reflect and think about things, and where my life was heading, I knew I no longer felt like part of the Church community and had to move on. It was something I had been grappling with for a while, but I knew I finally had to take the plunge and leave the Church that no longer served me and my purpose.

I did inform my pastor at the time, and he was not impressed, but I believe he could tell that it came from a genuine place and that I had tried to push through, but it had been a long time coming, and was not fair on me, my walk, and my fellow Church community.

After 4 and a half years, I saw a few former Church members as we all attended a Wedding of one of our fellow former Church members.

I wasn’t sure how I would feel because initially when I left the Church, I felt angry, hurt, and wondered why certain people at the Church treated me a certain way, and thanked God for saving me to not revert back to that girl prior to July 12th 2009 that would have told each one of these faux Church friends about themselves!

It was great seeing the few that happened to be there, I still felt a little vibe, and even had a long talk with one of the former members to see if she was able to somewhat shed some light on this situation, and she did! She said that I was seen as the quiet one and that she didn’t ‘hear’ anything else about me, my response to her is if people took the time to try and get to know me well enough, they would know that I am far from shy, I can chat for England, America and Canada put together, but nobody took the time out to ever try and get to know Roslyn. I knew loads about these people via talking and trying to get to genuinely know them, but I don’t even think they realized that they already had a nice friendship group set up, so this one girl coming from North London (where a majority of the congregation was from West London) didn’t really matter.

I’m not here to play victim, I am just speaking my truth. I’m thankful for the handful I saw, as some of them were always good to me, hence me being invited to the Wedding, which I thoroughly enjoyed, and I greatly appreciate.

Since leaving the Church, I haven’t found a new one to attend. The good news is since leaving, my Faith has been tested, but has grown stronger. I’m still on the lookout and know that soon I will find a new Church to call home when the time is right. For now, I am living my life knowing that I am not perfect, and aiming to grow to be a better person as each day comes.

#3BritsInThe6ixForever!

Our Journey was coming to an end. As each day, week, and month had passed, we realized that we were getting closer, and closer to the day that we were all dreading for many reasons.

Our bond was so strong, we had held each other up during tough times, whether it be home sickness, jobs, Toronto life, or men!

Tereska had told us that she had booked her ticket to return home for the first time since moving to Canada, on March 31st, then it all became too real that we would no longer be doing this journey here in Toronto together.

Amy and I had decided to apply for a Permanent Resident card (which is the equivalent of a US Green Card.) Amy always knew that she wanted to stay in Canada, but I was always unsure as my intentions were always to do the two years, and then go ‘home’ back to London, England.

I always battled with what I wanted to do, but would always tell myself ‘just do it and give yourself the option’ and would leave it as that, until something would come up to make me wonder if Canada is where I really want to be?

Amy and I ended up applying for our PR. Amy applied first, and then she and Monique helped me with mine, when I finally made the decision to apply.

The day had come, it was March 31st, the day we had all been dreading, Tereska was leaving for London, England.

Amy, Tereska and I had made a pact to see her off at the airport. We knew it was going to be waterworks, but we had to see this through til the end.

I had spent the day with Tereska watching her clear out and pack up 2 years of items accumulated. Amy then turned up. We held hands whilst I prayed for us and for whats to come, we cried, we hugged and then we made our way to the airport.

We got to Toronto Pearson Airport where Tereska’s check-in was pretty straight forward, and the security line was non existent. This was really it, 3Brits In The Six was about to be no more. It felt weird, it felt like we all should be going home to resume normality and what we know, but this wasn’t our path, we had served our 24 months of time in Canada, now it was time to move on, and put all our experience and what we learnt to play.

I can honestly say that God put both of them in my life because I really did need them on the journey. As many great Canadian friends I had made, these 2 girls stuck by me in all my times of need, as I did them. We travelled together, always checked on one another, was there for one another, would always make time to meet up, and would just have a great level of understanding due to our common interests and where we are from. They were my main homies out there, and I will forever remember the bond we shared, and how we were able to do what not many people can, which is moving abroad to a foreign territory, taking a step back in out careers, but making the very most of it.

I look forward to us hopefully reuniting in March 2019 to serve as a reminder of when we met, what we did, and how we became friends in the first place.

Here’s two beautiful different souls that I met along my journey, that we were all able to bring together on our journey.

Love you bad Girlies!It's a London Ting!

 

 

 

3Brits in The 6ix Pt3!

I had been in Canada for almost 3 months now.

I had signed up to a Toronto Meet-Up group prior to moving to Canada, and had hung out with the leader of this particular meet-up group many a time, but May 2016 was my first meet-up with the group, giving me the chance to meet some more Torontonians!

I had asked Amy if she wanted to join me at the meet-up as she was not part of the group. Amy jumped at the chance! We met up after work at the Eaton Centre before heading down to Jack Astors restaurant and bar (kind of like a TGI’s or Harvester).

Amy had asked me to meet her at the Eaton Centre to kill time, but also as she was meeting 2 friends briefly to catch up.

I got a chance to meet Amy’s 2 friends. One of them was Redmond. Redmond is American. Originally from Detroit, Redmond had moved to Canada a year ago and was living downtown with his grandma. Then there was Monique. Monique was another Brit, but from South London, England (boooooo!) she lived outside of the GTA in Stouffville.

We sat ate, and chatted until it was time for myself and Amy to head to the meet-up event. I invited Redmond and Monique to come alongĀ  as it would also give them a chance to meet some new people as they were fairly new to the city just like me and Amy. Redmond joined us, but due to Monique’s fairly long commute, she decided to head home.

By the time we got to Jack Astors, we had seen that a good few members of the group had already arrived. They had a Raptors game on in the restaurant, and as it was a Friday evening after work, it was pretty much busy and buzzing. More people had started to arrive. Everyone from the meet-up group was so friendly, polite and introduced themselves. Their was one girl that Amy and I had spotted when we arrived as we had seen her get out of a taxi, and we got talking to her.

Her name was Tereska! My first thoughts were that Tereska is such a unique name, especially for a black girl! Would you believe that Tereska was yet another Brit! We were so stoked to have met her. Tereska is from South London, and after chatting to her the entire night, figured out that her and I are the same age (look at God!) that her and Amy literally live a block from one another, and that we all moved to Toronto, Canada on the same IEC visa only a matter of days a part. Amy on March 8th, myself on March 11th and Tereska March 15th. It was all a bit too freaky, but yet so exciting that we had so much in common.

This was the beginning of a very meaningful friendship that would take place.

3Brits In The 6ix

Out for Amy’s Birthday Birthday at Simone’s Restaurant.

3Brits in The 6ix Pt2

13895570_10157256657530296_6649460346301389541_nMe and my new found (fellow North Londoner) friend Amy met up in Kensington Market, which is in the downtown core of Toronto. Kensington Market is like a mini Camden Town (in London, England) people are eccentric, express themselves through fashion, food, are trendy, and have plenty of cool markets, and shops to pop into.

We went to this cool spot called The Burgenator, and the burgers definitely lived up to the name!

We spoke about both being 4 weeks into the journey, and how we felt it was going, and what we had hoped for the future. We spoke of our amazing jobs we had said goodbye to back home. Mine was at the BBC, and for Amy, it was at KPMG.

We had both left them behind to come to Toronto, Canada and try something new, and a change of scenery.

When Amy mentioned her former job, two people came to mind, one of them being my Sister in-love Lynette who was working at KPMG at the time, and also my sister in-loves cousin Antoinette. I mentioned my sister in-love working at KPMG to Amy despite the fact I knew they were both working at different sites.

Me and Amy had connected, and made plans to keep in touch and hang out again soon once we become a little more settled finding jobs, permanent accommodation and so on.

We had both got home, and had sent each other a text to say how great it was to meet up.

When I got home, I had received a message from Antoinette saying that she has a friend that she mentored at KPMG that she would like to put me in touch with, this person had also moved to Toronto, Canada recently, this person was Amy!

Amy had soon after texted me asking if I know Antoinette B, I responded yes, funny enough she just sent me a message.

‘Oh my gosh’ Amy said, Antoinette B was my mentor at KPMG!!

I was gobsmacked! What a small world, and how nice to know that we had a more of a connection then we even thought, and the fact that had we not met, we would have been connected through another way.

That was a great day, but wait, there’s more!

3Brits in the 6ix!

I’d just moved to Toronto, Canada. I felt like I would be the only thirty *mumbles* something* year old woman of colour doing this. I felt like I would just put my head down, get on with things, and my 24 months would be up in no time.

A lot of my friends find this hard to believe, but I consider myself a bit of an introvert. I enjoy my own company, and would prefer spending my days at home rather than socializing, but I was in a new country and environment, so I had to push myself and make it known to Toronto that Roz has arrived!

I was just a week and a half in when I went to a networking event with a woman that I had connected with from a Meet-Up group.

I remember feeling somewhat nervous as I didn’t know what to expect, but also realizing that I had to talk to people, and be prepared for the whole,’oh I love you’re accent’ and for my response each time to be with a smile and to say in my best British accent ‘faaaaaaaanks!’

When we got to the event, it wasn’t too bad an atmosphere nor nerve wracking anymore. Their was a nice amount of people in attendance, and also enough room to maneuver around in.

They made us play an ice breaker game where we had to find 3 people to introduce ourselves to, get their names, and write it on our name badge to prove that we had actually done it. In my head I was like for fuxx sake! But once I got over being slightly annoyed, I went ahead and did it anyway.

I first met a nice older lady. She’d told me she had some connects in Radio and TV, and wanted to connect me to a friend of hers in the industry in Toronto. We exchanged details and went on our way. This was a great start, I was already on a roll, so I went ahead and made my next move.

I saw two people talking in the corner, and straight away was thinking easy! I can now kill two birds with one stone, and my ice breaker mission will be complete.

I went and introduced myself to both quickly, shook hands and all I was trying to hear was both of their names to write on my name badge. At first I thought they were ‘together’ and was being polite and trying to gage them out, the guy was chatty and the girl was smiley!

Whilst in conversation, the girl then said to me, ‘nice accent’ and I of course I replied with a smile and thanks!

15 minutes into our convo, with the music being turned down a little, I could hear the girl more clearly. I thought my ears were deceiving me…. ‘wait’ I said, ‘you’re British too?!’ She replied, ‘yes! That’s why I said to you nice accent!’

I felt so silly for not realizing, and once I’d gotten over that I started to ask a whole bunch of questions to my fellow Brit.

When did you arrive in Toronto? Where are you from in London? Where do you live here? How are you finding it so far? Tell me everything!