Let It Burn, Let It Burn, Let It Burn

*Cue Usher*

I burned my right index finger Monday night attempting to turn chicken with a short fork. I reached into the oven just a little to deep a YOWZAA! My index finger has a grill mark. 

I immediately put a cube of ice on it and the pain subsided but as soon as the thing melted the pain rebounded. I started looking for a quick remedy. I slathered antibiotic ointment on it. That made it worse. I got another cube of ice and the ointment congealed. I was in a bigger mess trying to avoid the pain of my little mistake in judgement. Note to self:  always use a long fork when testing food in the oven. It's like cooking 101. 


Finally, I just lay in bed. I began to try a mind over matter approach. I thought intensely about another part of my hand. It worked temporarily but I kept reverting to my darn finger. It was not the worse pain I had ever felt but geez did it hurt.  Noting the futility of my efforts to minimize my suffering, I had new thought – just ride it out. I reasoned that the pain could only last a few minutes or maybe even an hour. I knew for certain that it would not last forever.

A funny thing happened. I went to sleep. 

The next morning I hardly remembered the burn on my hand. I saw the scar – a reminder not to do something so stupid again – but the pain was gone.

Pain is our body's response to trauma. The nerves fire off intensely warning you to stop what you are doing. As my skin touched the heated metal coil my hand instantaneously jerked back. My body's instinct kicked in to protect me. 

God has equipped us physically to avoid the damaging things that cause us pain. It will come. Loss, heartache and disappointment are a part of life.  Pain is inevitable. You can lament your fate or evaluate the root cause and learn the lesson. Avoidance only leads to chaos.  Numbing it with substance abuse or other quick fixes leads to worsening of the initial condition. Ride the wave.. No matter how high the crest, waves always crash. Pain does not last forever. 

Standing in the sun outside of my office. I realized the heat is necessary. I closed my eyes and let the sun sink into my pores. I needed a vitamin D mood boost. The scar on my finger is shiny and brown. I have learned the lesson and the pain is gone. 

Girl On Fire

The spoken word is a powerful phenomenon. You can think it in your mind, ponder it in your heart but the moment you speak the word, the universe shifts.  

The Bible puts it this way,

"Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark." James 3:5.

Words spark change in the environment.  Fire destroys what cannot hold up to its heat. Fire also rejuvenates. It provides conditions for new terrain and growth. 

I have been having a moment – an extended moment. This typically occurs when I am in the midst change. I wanted to move to a new city. The moment I let the words escape my lips, I was met with such fiery opposition – friends, postponements, rejections. So much so,  I was beginning to doubt my decision.

Fire is hot yo! It changes your surroundings into the unfamiliar. My first instinct is to crawl back into an acceptable space and remain calm. I long for stability again – homeostasis. I am learning that you cannot take back your words just as you cannot undo a spark once the fire has begun. 


In order for a hope to be real, it must be spoken. Once the words escape your lips, watch out! A fire can smolder gently or it can blaze. In the wilderness of transition it is uncomfortable, lonely and confusing at times. But, what else is there to do? I will allow the flames to incinerate doubt, fear, and worry. I will be open to the chances waiting beyond the ash –  a new beginning and a new world of possibilities. 


Goal Accomplished, Now What?

The best thing about a hard fought race is the finish line. It all begins with an idea which leads to developing a plan. Add some hard work and consistency. Eventually you break that tape. 

The worst thing about a hard fought race is the finish line.  Sweat covered brow,  catching one's breath. The endorphin high gradually fades. You are left pondering – now what? 

2014 was a year of completions. I completed my 2nd 5K. Most importantly,  I finished my debut novel, "Ruth's Awakening: A Love Story".  It was such a relief. I felt a huge sense of accomplishment. After the buzz of the initial release, I found myself pondering the question – now what? 

Keep it moving. 

I have to market this baby and grow my platform(s). I have to start book number two. I have to meet Oprah!!! That's what. 

Life is a journey with a a series of land markers. You never really cross a "finish" line. The journey don't stop 'til the casket drop. Even then, I will be forever with my Lord. 

Can the church say, Amen!

It took me seven years to finish this novel. There have been many drafts, rewrites, ending changes, and edits. The finished product is a milestone. A little bump on my road to destiny. I want other dreamers to spy the territory I have marked and, hopefully, it will make their journey that much easier. 

Be blessed. 


Felicia Malone, Author





Forgive and Release, You

The year's end is upon us. Cue the onslaught of reflections and resolutions. I resolve to <insert goal here>. Bring on those rhyming catch phrases, "In 2015, I'm getting in those size 10 jeans." lol

It is what it is.


For many, the New Year inspires hope for the future. For others, it can  spark an onset of the blues. I was speaking with a friend who confided that he felt a bit down. The New Year's Blues, I suggested.  I explained that when we reflect on how we have spent the year, often we focus on what we did not do quite right – the shoulda, coulda and wouldas. I found myself in a similar quagmire last night. In addition, a sand truck was dumping on all of the things I still had to do. 

I inhaled and exhaled. Through the simple act of breathing, I began the process of letting go. The more I focused on the air entering my lungs and escaping my body, I relaxed. Every mistake made is already past. I can only move forward. Trying to relive the past is as futile as trying to recapture yesterday's air. 

It came to me, like an epiphany. *cue Chrisette Michele*. I can let it all go and just breathe. 

2015 Right now, I resolve to forgive myself for bad choices. I release myself to make good choices. I also acknowledge all of the things I have gotten right – 40 lbs gone,  MBA received and first book published! Yeah me!!!!

This encompasses money, healthy, relationships, career, etc.  

I would encourage anyone reading to embark on a journey of self-improvement. Read books, join clubs, expand your circle of friends. Empower yourself, through knowledge and experience, to make better choices. Like the old folk say, "You know better, you do better!"

If you are looking for resources, check out the links below.


Get Fit With Fe

Ruth's Awakening: A Love Story

5 Things I Have Learned About Mother and Daughter Relationships

Halloween was two days ago. I never really dress for the occasion anymore. If pressed, I just go as a gypsy. A little extra makeup, scarf and a long skirt and I have nailed it. No extra money spent, so forethought.  As an adult, I understand that free candy is just an invitation to bloating and additional crunches.


I liked several Facebook photos of little children dressed as their favorite super hero. Apparently, I am old as I did not recognize half of them. I had to google ‘yellow and blue costume’ to know that my friend’s son was The Wolverine. And, who the heck is Elsa? When I was kid, everyone was either Superman or a Ninja Turtle. The 80s rocked, lol.

Back then, I thought my mom was super human. A super woman of sorts who worked two jobs, fed us, and kept a roof over our heads. She did her best to rescue us from mistakes that she knew would take our lives down a hard path. She spoke to God and actually knew what we children were going to do before we could do it. Seemed pretty super human to me.

As I became a young woman, the mother-daughter dynamic became more difficult to manage. I have learned that the complexity of this relationship is standard. The power-dynamic changes as you get older. A mother no longer needs to or can make all of the decisions. I had to move out and grow on my own. As a child becomes a woman, a mother’s role must adapt as well. A daughter no longer needs to be rescued but respected.

1. You cannot be best friends because you are not equal.

Maya Angelou is quoted as saying, “Only equals make friends. Any other relationship is out of order.” I and my mother did not go to school together. We never partied together. We did not raise our children together. Our life experiences are different. We can learn from each other but equal we can never be. She will always be ahead of the game.

2. Acknowledge mistakes but forgive.

Through life’s ups and downs, I began to see the humanity of my own mother. She made mistakes and was sometimes wrong. That is okay. She is still a great mom and did her best with what she knew. We are still finding our balance. It is easier with me allowing my mom to be human and she seeing me as an adult.

3. Establish boundaries.

“Space – the final frontier.” The opening sentence of Star Trek : Enterprise tv series. Exploring the boundaries of relationships is a work always in progress – learning what to discuss and to what extent. My mother remarried and some discussions (sex) still creep me out and are a no-fly zone. Maybe you are more mature than I am. I am okay with that.

4. Communicate

I talk to my mom almost every single day although there are more than 1,000 miles between us. Sometimes the conversation is less than 5 minutes but I make the effort to connect just to see how her day is going. Other times, the conversation is longer and more in depth. The blessing is that she is still around and able to talk to me so I never get to busy for her.

5. Laugh

Proverbs 17:22 states, “A merry heart does good, like medicine,
But a broken spirit dries the bones.” (NKJV).

We make each other laugh. Our relationship is the better for it. It is the one super power we share.

How is your relationship with your mother? How can you make it better? Please share.

The Mirage, Mirror and the Sea

I always meet people who are on a parallel journey. We have such similar experiences, it is as if I am looking at my reflection in a mirror.  I place my face in the cardboard cutout of their lives and it is almost mine – except my right is their left. You get what I mean?

I was talking to that girl in the mirror and she made a statement that resonated with my own situation. When you feel you are over the 'what-ifs' of long lost love, that is the exact moment he/she calls, texts or just shows up. It is never at a moment when everything is rosy in your life, when you are strong and content. It is at the height of the being tossed to and fro on a stormy sea. Here comes that old familiar comfort. You know it is not what you want/need but it provides solace.


As you are on the sea, alone on a boat trying desperately to get to that place of promise – the happily ever after. The sun beats, the waves toss and you have been sailing for what feels like forever. Yet, you keep moving on because you have faith in the One who keeps every promise that your destination will be worth the journey.

A mirage appears. It looks like land, you want it to be land – but is it? The attractiveness of this phantasm is so strong.  

A mirage is a real phenomenon caused by refracting light. "What the image appears to represent, however, is determined by the interpretive faculties of the human mind." Source

Our minds give it power. The more you think about a thing the more 'real' it becomes. The battle starts, is fought, and is won or lost in the mind.

The lesson in all of this:

Keep your mind right. Keep sailing. Stay on track. You will not have to go chasing a fantasy. You will know when you hit land because your boat will stop.


The Life of the Fire Within

There have been brush fires across California incinerating homes, transforming hard-wrought dreams to ashes. It is amazing that such raging infernos can begin from the tiniest spark of carelessly tossed cigarette. Fire warms, burns, consumes. It changes the very nature of all that it touches. We fear it. We need it.

Reminds me of love.

It is funny how you discover you love someone. You can vaguely remember a carelessly tossed thought. I wonder if. . .  Suddenly, you are thinking of that person all of the time – totally consumed. If someone loves you, you will know it. The love they possess will burn for you. You feel it first soft and warm. You are friends. Each person is a safe enough distance to admire the other. What draws them closer? Curiosity? You draw nearer, or rather, the flame grows wider, higher. The heat intensifies. If you linger too long and too close, your heart becomes totally engulfed.

To all of the guys, if a woman loves you, do not take it for granted. Even fire has a life cyle – ignition, growth, flashover, decay. A fire needs only fuel and oxygen to continue to burn. Without either, it dies. Never expect the fire that she holds in her heart to outlive your immaturity, filandering, or fear of committment. You may look around cold and lonely from the storms of life only to find the fire has gone out.  

If you notice a twinkle in the eye blow on it. No, not literally blow in someone's eye. I mean, draw closer. Only two things will happen – the spark will die or a flame will start to burn.

". . . Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!" (James 3:5b)

A Room with a View

Today is a sunny, beautifully clear Friday. I am sitting at my cubicle doing what I love – writing.

Of course, I am at the j-o-b on my lunch break cranking out a post before time to start again. Is not the intro a better opening – more positive? It is all about perspective.

I was at the Kimbell Art Museum with a good friend during the Matisse and Picasso exhibit. I saw the painting below:



If you look at the photo. It may seem skewed or even crooked. That is, until you think of perspective. I relayed my own narrative of this painting to my companion. I explained that the image is from someone – possible a beau – reclining on the bed in the room. He is watching his lady sitting on the balcony. From his perspective, his world is in balance.

I think of this picture sometimes when I assess my view of people, things and situations in my life. My viewpoint is limited. Position, location, emotions, time – all limitations.

I was trying to understand the behavior of someone towards me. I was talking it out with a friend who stated, "God forbid, Felicia, that someone would have a life with priorities and you not be the center of them."

It took a moment for the initial shock to wear off. I took the statement to mean that someone ele's behavior (even when it concerns you) is about them – their perspective in that room. Of course the image looks out of place to me because I thought I was the focal point. In my relationships, I am actively trying to view the world from the other person's perspective. The image is getting clearer.

Someone I love dearly was treating me unkind. Let us call her Belle. I initially started interacting with Belle from a place of defense. This was getting me nowhere except into daily sparring matches.  I started to really considered things from Belle's perspective. I realized the behavior was not about me at all. I was the object of her frustration due to proximity. I was not the cause of it. This epiphany changed my daily interactions. Belle and I started to actually have fun times together instead of the usual battle of wills. My world became balanced.

A Little Story About Boats and Rainbows

There is a story about a man drowning and he asks God to save him. A guy in a raft comes by and tries to help.

The drowning man says, “No. I am waiting for God to save me.”

Another guy in a fishing boat comes buy. The drowning man again refuses help stating that he is waiting on God to help him. This goes on until, tired from swimming, the man drowns.

He gets to heaven as asks God, “God, why didn’t you save me?”

God says, “Why didn’t you get in the raft and the fishing boat I sent you, dummy?”

There is a moral here . . . wait for it . . .

Stop using ‘waiting on God’ as an excuse to not do anything about your own situation. Everyone needs assistance. Sometimes God shows up as someone ordained to aid you on your way to your goal.

Get in the boat.

A few weeks ago, a visiting pastor preached a message entitled, “Finding My Rebekah.” In the biblical story of Jacob (Genesis 27), Rebekah assists him in obtaining the blessing from his father Isaac. She goes as far as to put herself on the line to ensure that he gets the blessing. The point of the sermon is to make us aware of the people in or lives who assist us in reaching or divine destiny.

You can also be someone else’s Rebekah.  

In 2005, I had the privilege of hearing Maya Angelou speak at Tavis Smiley’s SuccesSoul . She spoke of an elder who helped her learn to read. She discussed many instances of people whose assistance edged her along toward success. She called such people, “rainbows in our clouds”.

I love the imagery of a rainbow that extends out of the clouds of life. How do you repay someone whose small but essential contribution to your life helped you on your road to the successful person you are today?

Be a rainbow.  

Growing up, I would tutor children from church, write resumes for my neighbors, produce plays for church. As an adult, I look for ways to use my talents and passions in service to others. If there is someone hurting, I strive to be the person to ease their pain. I write so openly on this blog in the hopes that someone may be inspired by my experiences to love themselves more, be confident to wear their hair natural, to make that big move to a different city, to finish graduate school, to write that novel. These are all small contributions. Not quite sure if I have reached rainbow status. I do see the clouds parting.

Before and Afters

Yesterday, I wore a pair of dark blue jeans that I had purchased years ago. I purchased them based on size alone. I was CERTAIN I could fit that size. I got them home only to realize that they could not go past my thighs.


I passed by a full length mirror yesterday while wearing those dark blue jeans. Initially, I thought to myself, You look good girl. Next, I started to critique myself. I felt like I was not losing weight fast enough. You know how we women are. Then, I stopped and really looked at my self. My face, my arms, my legs – everything looked tighter. I began to audible thank God for the progress. I clearly remember how before those beautiful jeans hung in my closet month after month. My after, I had to wear a belt to keep them up.


It is so easy to overlook the great achievement 'progress' is. It means I had a vision, devised a plan, acted on it and I am seeing results.

If you are unhappy about where you are in life, do not fret. You are stationed at the 'before' stop. You have to decide on your destination. Pay the fare and ride it out until the end. If you start and do not give up, there is always the after.

My first visit to Dallas, I took the Amtrak. Please do not ask me why. That was like the bumpiest, longest train ride ever. There were moments when the train raced across wide expanses rocking to and fro. There were moments the locomotive inched along. There was a moment when the train actually stopped and backed up to yield to the freight trains. I knew no matter what the route, if the train stayed the course, I would reach my destination.

I am not where I want to be but I am now in a pair of jeans that I could not fit. I am jogging on trails 3 miles at a time. I am lifting weights. I spend like 2 plus hours in the gym sometimes. Baby, if that ain't progress. . .