Would You Bet On You: The Pertinence Of Chasing Your Dreams
The Merriam Webster definition of the word ‘Dream‘ reads as follows: A strongly desired goal or purpose
However there are 3 other denotations before one is lead to the breakdown that matters most, the meat and potatoes of the often attributive noun. Just by reading the prior descriptions it is clear that one must travel through several different trial and errors to get to that right place. Further making it apparent that one decision is very likely to lead you into a multitude of consequences. Good and bad the same.
Enough with the $20 words and critical thinking, my Grambling State University vernacular gets the best of me sometimes. I am Storie Stone, the best thing that has ever come out of the still standing Roosevelt and Independence court way project located on Chicago’s west side. Growing up in those crack infested hallways was alarming, the smell of urine waking me up on my way to school to prepare me for what the world had for me was a lifestyle. One that I was determined to get away from. One that I am proud I was strong enough to witness and immediately want better than what I knew. My entire family traveled the levels of maturation in those same hallways.
For whatever reason it wasn’t really enough to make any of them shoot for the stars. But I was different and outcast of many. After losing my biological father to gun violence. I took heavily to education and music because they were a getaway, the only way. My family beat the importance of knowledge into my head so much that I no longer had a choice but to learn to love it. That love followed me through the Martin Luther King Boys & Girls Club, where I gauged my talent as well as my intellect and they helped me fly without turbulence directly into the greatest HBCU that ever stood, THEE Grambling State University.
There I discovered my unmeasured power. The moment my family rode off into the sunset headed back to the hundreds of killings on Chicago’s streets, I knew that if and when I came back, I’d be a different person. Living and breathing on that campus with all of those elites would force me to conform to greatness. Regardless of how unfamiliar it was to me. Don’t mistake it, I adore my family and the lessons I learned from them. Those lessons helped me finesse my way through school. The hustle I saw in my auntie taught me how to get the most from my food stamps and Pell Grants so that I never had to ask a soul for anything. Before my first year was over I was paying in state tuition and traveling for free with the football team. I saw a lot of what the south had to offer because of the smoothness I learned from my family.
All throughout school and even post grad, I developed into this beast that feared nothing and no one. It never occurred to me that there was anything that I was INCAPABLE of. Once I set my mind on it, it was happening, blood, sweat, tears, hungry, tired, and without support, God kept me! Following graduation, I moved back to Chicago after a failed relationship that I thought would last forever, working a dead end job and several failed attempts at exercising my degree. July 3,2016 a light bulb went off; I, Storie Stone am not employee material.
I thought that was a bad thing, that I should be able to tuck my tail and work somewhere at least long enough to where it would hold me until I reached my next phase in life. But I couldn’t, I often found myself over it and the rebel in my spirit caused me to impulsively walk away. But I always came out on top! Why? Because I bet on Me! Every single time! I knew I wouldn’t let myself down so when I was finished with something that was it. I was still living with my mother at the time, ridiculously uncomfortable and not here for it. The night of July 3rd, I cried after leaving my dead end job after almost having a physical altercation with a customer.
I got home and immediately went to lie in my mothers lap like a lost child and told her I was leaving. Her reply of “Where will you go?” was concerned and confused when she saw my tears in my eyes. I told her I didn’t know, but I was leaving. I had my sights set on Atlanta, I always knew I’d be here. Atlanta is the Black Mecca, the music capital and I was positive I could flourish here. Maybe meet Jermaine Dupri and get my Mariah Carey on. I was prepared to leave that night, my step father, who means just as much to me as my real father, halted my impulse and told me to prepare accordingly. Wait two weeks until I get paid again, find a place to stay and look for a job, then leave. I was cool with that until it wasn’t working out for me. My mom called my bluff telling me “You don’t just up and leave with no plan. You don’t know anybody in Atlanta, what about work, how will you eat?” I thought of none of that.
God got me through college He would get me through my dream. I just taught myself to drive the year prior and bought my first car off the lot in January of 2016. Exactly two weeks later, July 17,2016 I was gassing up my Kia Forte to change my life. I drove 10.5 hours off pure adrenaline and Red Bull with no plan. My younger brother came with me and we thugged it out. Floor here, couch there and then the unthinkable happened. Our favorite uncle died in his sleep. Rest In Love Uncle Foo. My brother was weakened by the news and the constant up and down of being away from our loved ones. Me, I knew it would get harder before it got easier.
Bare with me, the good stuff follows this.
Shortly after the woman my brother and I were staying with sat me down and told me she wanted her house back and then my car, our only means of transportation in this foreign city was repossessed. I COULD HAVE GIVEN UP RIGHT THEN! But God said no, watch this. I met two angels during my beautiful struggle, a very talented photographer, Tirell Tippit ( IG: Outtastate_tip) and the coldest MUA I’ve ever known, Timothy Clark ( IG:TLCDivo). After thorough explanation of what I was dealing with they agreed to allowing me to be their third roommate. I worked everyday, sometimes 12 hours a day for $7.30 an hour and got food stamps, so I paid them $325.00 monthly to sleep on their couch. College educated, degree equipped, ME, working for seven dollars and thirty cents an hour. The Lord humbled my heart. For that I am forever grateful.
I lived that routine for a solid 8 months, yet continued to learn myself, perfect my hustle and keep God first. I was very depressed during this time because I felt like I had made a mistake, but I couldn’t go back. I’d feel like I gave up on myself! It was never about anyone else’s approval, I wanted to be proud of me! So I prayed, I asked God to give me something, anything that would show that I haven’t made the biggest mistake of my life by moving away from everything I know. God gave me my talent for word play back. He spoke to me through my own pen. I was able to personally write out my pain and deal with it how I knew best, in a literary fashion. That fashion is entitled N I N E. Written by yours truly, to date it has touched the hearts, eyes and minds of 166,000 people and counting.
Fast forward almost 2 years later, I now have my own apartment, a good running vehicle without a car note and, a book series due to drop this year, a thriving group of supporters, producers ready to work with me on my music and writing for True Star. Living out all of my dreams because I trusted God, but I bet on myself! Constantly. If you’ve taken nothing from my long winded-ness please do whatever it takes to CHASE YOUR DREAMS.