Rewind to this time year last year, 02/14/14. It was Valentine’s Day, and instead of celebrating and spreading love, I observed Singles Awareness Day. Rather than celebrate self-love, I was the bitter and battered girl behind the screen, posting condescending propaganda to social media. All a facade.

Photography by kellymahoneynyc.wordpress.com

Photography by kellymahoneynyc.wordpress.com

We all desire to love and be loved. I once read somewhere that “God doesn’t give you the people you want. He gives you the people you need. To help you, to hurt you, to leave you, to love you and to make you the person you were meant to be.” And in the process of waiting to be loved, I met “K”.

STUCK.  We’ve all been there- mentally, emotional, finacially, or physically stuck. At the time, I was stuck battling 3 of the 4 of life’s road blocks. I loved how “K” distracted me and made me feel in the beginning. Usually, I always felt unappreciated and undervalued by men. Like a trophy, he was a great reminder of my worth. But just like a temporary finish on an overly polished fixture, that too begin to tarnish.  Once again, like a bad joke, I was left holding the trophy  (on stage, in an empty room) wondering where it all went wrong. Like all bad jokes, it starts off as a good idea with potential. Eventually things just end up spiraling down hill, resulting in an epic fail.



Although there was no fairytale ending, I now understand his purpose. “K”really forced me to rely on myself and seek who I was as an individual; How not to rely on a man for identification or happiness.

Before him, I didn’t really understand who I was or what it meant to be completely happy. I thought a boyfriend would complete me. I thought he could expose me to ME. I never realized that before “K”, I had always been happy and held relentless power and firsthand ability to control that.

My worth assurance and personal development is my job. Ideally, it should have been my father’s to instill that in me; to expose me to what the love of a man feels like; to steer me clear of bad decisions and traumatic male encounters.

Likewise, I could have invested more energy into discovering myself, had I not wasted so much time and energy searching for love and identity in a man. All along, what I was in search of was within me. I possessed that power and the dark periods that “K” and I shared, although secret and separate, gave strength and light to the rebirthing I needed to epiphanize and evolve into myself. As a means of escape and survival, I managed to find my personal passion and identity, through the pain and turmoil associated with “K”.

"Where there is light, thereby is love."

“Where there is light, there is love.”

While physically, I can truly appreciate the exotic, erotica of his love; the result of 2K14 was not about finding Mr. Right, but about finding myself.  2K14 was about the rebirth of me. Meet Zarielle Washington. 😘That’s who I celebrated my eternal love with on Valentines’.

#SoulfulSelfie #ZarielleWashington


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Twenty Something Manifesto

Photography by Kelly Mahoney

Photography by Kelly Mahoney

I used to not like my name-I thought it was ghetto. Now that I think about it, it’s actually a cool name: Zarielle Washington. It’s like the name of cartoon action figure and I’m starring in this cinematic motion picture called life- lets just say I’m finally figuring my role it out, 29 years later. It’s been comical, scene after scene but I think I have it figured out- I know who I am. Unfortunately, it didn’t air on the big screen. My biggest regret to this day is that I didn’t document my adventures. With 4 days left in 2014, I’m declaring its not to late!

Because I know I’m not the only twenty something protagonist, role playing my dreams by day and battling bad guys by night as I transition into the lifestyle I ultimately envision- this virtual space is for us. If you love the idea of a better you, a better bargain and creating beautfiul surroundings with them, then there’s “Something about Zarielle” that you’ll love!