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I have this awesome neighbor who is always smiling no matter what is going on. She’s so cheerful and happy! I’ve grown to love her so much because she’s infectious, always loving on others.

In the past five years, I have never taken the time to just chill and fellowship because I just work 24/7. She doesn’t know it but she taught me to make time. Use your calendar wisely. Include time for fellowship. Spend time with those you care about.

Between raising a teenager who’s almost 16 with a hectic schedule himself, working a full time career as a project manager, helping to care for a 1 1/2 year old grandson, being an entrepreneur, how will I make time to fellowship?

Make time. Learn to be in the company of others. Embrace those special moments. Life is incredibly short, not to be taken for granted.

Recently, I lost a friend who was only 60 years old. To younger people, that’s old, but to me, being 59, that’s way too young.

I was so happy that I spent time with him a few months ago. He came to my home and laid on my couch because he was sick then. My son eyeballed him like, “Dude, what are you doing, don’t get too comfortable.” But my friend assured him we were just long time friends and he was in pain and needed to lie down. Then it became cool. We laughed, reminisced about the past. I’m so grateful for that special moment we had. I have no regrets except he is gone. Live today for those you love because tomorrow may not happen. He lived by that principle daily. What if I said to him when he called me, “No, I am too busy working on projects?” Then, I would have regrets today. My condolences to his beautiful family.

My neighbor is so special. She introduced me to all of her girlfriends. I was reluctant to meet them initially, because I’ve had bad experiences with girlfriends’ girlfriends. I immediately thought of the snide remarks and competition, to name a few. I said to myself, “Not again.” But she should have been a sales person because she asked me with the most vibrant smile coupled with persistence. I said, “Sure!” I couldn’t tell her, “no.” I did my best to match her enthusiasm and beautiful smile.

I not only fellowshipped with her beautiful friends at her home, but last month they celebrated us (me and one of the others) for our birthdays! They showed up, we embraced, we ate good food with specialty drinks, and we played golf together. We even logged in the next players! It was so much thoughtfulness and kindness that I got tearful. Tears of joy, of course! I even got a special drink and meal as a gift! I wasn’t expecting either, had just enough funds to even be there and tip the awesome waiter.

The Diva Circle of Love at Top Golf in Oxon Hill, MD

I quietly prayed to God and I thanked him for my new friends, their lives, and I said a special prayer for my neighbor who brought us all together. Remember, these were “her” friends that she shared with all of us. Share the love! Make sure you have at least three friends that you can tell anything to without judgement and ridicule.

If you are in circles that don’t edify, embrace, and love you unconditionally, it is time for a change. Release those that no longer treat you as you deserve to be treated. Time is not promised to us. Every day, just love someone by acts of kindness. Share what you have. Someone else may have less and need you. And you may have to ask, “How are things, really, how are things?” That may prompt more than, “I’m fine,” when they really aren’t doing well. Even when you’re down, encourage someone else and I’m sure it will make you feel better.

I am forever grateful for my new circle of friends, the love they share. I only hope and pray I’m reciprocating. Association does bring on assimilation.

Are you in a circle of love? If not, it is time. Don’t put it off. Make time for friends, your circle of love.

Moving beyond……, together,


PS: Want to stay connected? Please text me to join the Rose Community, women and even a few men alike who have gone through something and doing their best to overcome it and start over. We send out weekly encouraging messages to keep you inspired and empowered. Sign up now! 202-518-5430

Find out more about Tonya Barbee, her journey, and her mission to help others through their journey:

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