Understanding God: The Series (Part One)

Understanding God: The Series (Part One)

Have you ever found yourself wondering if God is real?

I think for me, the concept of God being real has always been something I’ve believed in and deeply struggled with.

Do I believe that God is real? Yes.

Have I always believed that? No.

Do I struggle with the concept of God based on religion? All of the time.

For full disclosure, I have always grown up in a world and an environment where God is real. I come from generations of ministers, pastors, deacons, bible believing, praying people. I grew up in church; I know all about the workings of church. Because my mother has a degree in Christian Education, I know the word and can debate you on historical facts.

But have I and do I always believe in the bible? That would be a big fat nope as well.

In this blog series, I want to explore that; and by that I mean the concept and the idea of God being real.

Since I was about 20 years old, I have deeply struggled in my concept of faith, God, religion and Christianity. I grew up in a relatively small, but well known Missionary Baptist Church in my hometown of Mobile, Alabama. My pastor, who was also my great Uncle, THE Rev. Dr. Melvin “Ted” James Perryman (God I miss him, I miss him sooo much!) founded this church called Arlington Street Missionary Baptist Church. Now, if you’re from the 251, that church used to be located in the ‘Maysville’ community at the intersection of Leo and ironically, Arlington Street. The church still sits there, but under a new name and new leadership.

Anyway, I grew up in that church and man, it was EVERYTHING! I remember being about five or so and wanting to get baptized. It’s one of those stories I’ll never forget. We were at this 3:00 program (where all my church folks at? Y’all know about them 3:00’s! haha!) at my granddad (my dad’s godfather’s church)’s church. Now, I slept through church until I was like, 10 or 11, but this day I remember vividly. I remember the point in the service where they asked if anyone wants to give their life to Jesus. I took my shy, quiet, five-year-old self up to the front of the church and sat in one of those cold, metal chairs and said “I want to be baptized”. Everybody then thought it was so cute, but I was serious. I really wanted to be baptized. Anywho, my parents were sooo proud, BUT there was one problem:

I didn’t want my Uncle Ted to baptize me!

Nope, I wanted my Papa, THE Rev. Dr. Nathaniel E. Martin, to do it. I loved my Uncle Ted, but this was one of those times where I wanted my Papa. And he did it; we went over to this church off of Mobile Street, (I can’t remember the name of the church, but I think the Pastor is Levi Summers anybody from Mobile let me know if I’m right) and they baptized me.

It all seemed so simple to me back then; that was 21 years ago. Man, I wish I could go back to the days where understanding God was pure, innocent, and simple.

Now that I’m 26, I still believe in God; but the concept of organized religion and even the concept of God existing is something I wrestle with almost every day.

If you were to ask me who God is I would tell you to look in the sky’ to go to the beach and watch the ocean waves. I would even tell you to study biology, even look at animals. Everything around us is God. Of course that would piss off most Christians but I think that’s the problem: we try and separate God from the world, when God is just that-the world.

The actual idea of God possibly being real didn’t hit me until I was in a Philosophy 101 class and we were ‘debating’ the existence of God. Well, to be fair, we we’re actually ‘debating’ God’s existence; I went to a Christian college. While I’m sure most of my classmates knew God was real, I on the other hand been toying with the idea of his existence for a long time; for me he was a concept, but not truly real. Anywho, there was this really long piece in our book that talked about a watchmaker and how intricate a watch is. Basically, it compared a watch to creation and God’s existence; it seems like a weird concept but go with me you guys.

I want you to think about a watch. Look at the intricate detail and design of that watch. If you’re a person who likes to tinker with watches, I’d tell you to take it apart and examine all its pieces. Now, if you’re not a person who likes to tinker with things, I’d tell you to research how a watch is made. We all understand that a watch is essentially, perfect in its design, right? Like, somebody actually took the time out and sat there and thought about this tiny thing that tells time that you can wear on your arm. Watches (do people even wear watches anymore?) are intricately designed; each part of a watch has a special job and is needed to make sure that watch is in tip top shape, running effectively so that it can be distributed and sold to the masses.

You cannot have a complete watch if one piece is missing or in the wrong place.

A watch cannot exist without a master designer.

Now, I want you to take this concept of a watch and apply it to the universe. I want you to think back to your boring elementary school science classes, if your mind can go back that far. The universe, the world, the human body, they are all meticulous, well designed, well thought out things, right? Well, the human body is flawed but, that’s another topic for another blog post but, just think about the basics of the human body.

The human body has 206 bones (babies are born with more bones that eventually morph into the standard 206); your heart has the ability to pump blood throughout your entire body. Your mouth knows exactly when to start cutting teeth, when to lose your baby teeth, when to grow your adult teeth and when you’re old well, they fall out all over again. When you break a bone, your body knows how to mend those bones back together again. Quick, take a deep breath…now try and hold it as long as you can. Your body knows just how long you can survive without air. Your body knows how to breathe automatically without you consciously thinking about it.

Now, go outside and look up in the sky; the sun knows exactly when to rise and when to set. The moon and the stars know exactly when to come out into the sky. The leaves on trees know exactly when to shed and when to grow again. The universe knows how to keep spinning and revolving without us consciously thinking about it. The world is so delicate and intricately designed that there has to be someone or something that made all of this, right?

If every man made thing has a master designer then why not the world?

No, this piece isn’t to try and convince atheist to believe in God, it’s not to try and convert people into Christianity, but its moreso to explore the concept of God. The watchmaker analogy is what truly cemented the idea of there being a God, not my religion, not growing up in church, not even me getting baptized at the age of five. THIS, knowing that the world, in all of its ugliness, in all of its horrors, was somehow designed and created and it wasn’t by man’s doing is what keeps me believing in God.

What does that say about my faith then?

If it’s not the idea that Jesus was born of a virgin, lived and walked this earth for 33 years, performed many miracles, died on a cross, rose again after 3 days and is set to return isn’t what’s stopped me from becoming an all-out atheist then…there’s a disconnect between God and the church. Why don’t monotheistic (that means one-God believing religions or faiths) religions teach this simple concept of God? Why do we always jump straight to “Well, you have to believe in this being and this set of beliefs?” Why do churches and religion in general make the existence of God so complicated? Now, I’m a Christian, but sometimes, my faith frustrates me. Why is it that this basic concept, which involved ZERO aspects of ANY religion, able to cement my belief that God exists faster than this religion, this Jesus I love and I believe in?

If you go with me on this journey, I’m gonna explore that. I have to tell you now that I don’t have all of the answers, but I do know that God is not that hard to get or understand. I also am aware that this is going to go over SO many people’s heads. I get that I’m going to piss people off because well, when you are presented with something that challenges what you already know, your mind automatically does one of three things-you except this new thing as truth, you outright reject it, clinging all the more to what you already know OR, you find a way to make this new thing work with what you already know to be true. Often times when presented with this concept, most people pick the first and second option but don’t think about the third.

The older I get, the more I realize that life isn’t meant to be all blacks and whites.

This series is for anyone who wants to read it; it’s for the person struggling in their faith, whatever that may be. It’s for the atheist who mocks religious people. It’s for that Black person who thinks that the bible is just a book written to keep Black people enslaved by the White man. It’s for that person who turned away from God and religion, but wants to come back to it.

Most importantly, this is for me; the girl who grew up in a world where God was always real but somewhere during the transition, she lost him.

As we go on this journey to, not necessarily finding God, but exploring him, I must tell you that my eyes are only going to give you what I know, and that is the Christain experience and concept. I am more than willing to take perspective from all faiths and even non faiths. I can’t say that we’ll always agree, but I wasn’t put here to agree with everyone. However, one thing I’ve learned is that there is common ground in everything. So if we find common ground on the concept of God, let’s keep the conversation going.

My only goal is that we all reach the truth, whatever that may be for you.

Peace, love, and Blessings to all

Xx

Remembering Aaliyah

Remembering Aaliyah

August 25, 2001.

I was 10 years old when my brother came into the room we shared and told me, “Aaliyah’s dead”. I still remember that moment; It was a Sunday morning and we were supposed to be getting ready for church. After he told me, I immediately turned on MTV and there it was in bold headlines:

SINGER AALIYAH KILLED IN PLANE CRASH

I remember the emotions I felt afterwards; I was quiet, I cried a lot, I tried to learn everything I could about her. Back in 2001, there was no Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and we sure as hell didn’t have TMZ giving us every gory and overly personal detail about our favorite celebrity. The internet was less than 10 years old; we were fortunate enough to have AOL dial up. I kept the TV shuffled between MTV, BET, and VH1, because I just had to know how my favorite singer had died and every other detail I could find out. I probably know as much about that accident as someone who was there and witnessed it first hand.

Today, I am 26 years old and have lived four years longer than Aaliyah. Even today, her death still haunts me.

Most people who know I love Aaliyah think I’m just some super stan. But for me, I was a fan of Aaliyah for more than just her music. I grew up in an era where it took more than a pretty face and auto tune to be famous. Sure, people like Britney Spears lip synced when she was on tour, but she made up for it by putting on one hell of a show and making great albums.

The same could be said about Aaliyah; she wasn’t a powerhouse vocalist, but her music is timeless and she definitely was a trendsetter. You see her still reflected in younger artists like Keke Palmer, Zendaya, Sevyn Streeter and even Drake. People are still mentioning her in their songs, her style is suddenly popular again and, her music changed the face of R&B as we know it today. Think about it, without Aaliyah there would be no Missy Elliott, no Timbaland and half of the songs you grew up listening to and even some of your favorite artists today wouldn’t be as popular if not for Missy and Tim, who got their start because of Aaliyah.

I think for me on a deeper level, Aaliyah is special because of what she embodied and how she carried herself. To be just 22 years old at the time of her death, she carried herself with such style, class, and a grace all her own. Looking at 22 year olds today…they seem like such babies! Hell, at 22 I was still awkward as all get out, just starting to find my place in the world. At 22 Aaliyah knew what she wanted and she knew where she was going. The possibilities for her at that time were limitless. Also, I think another reason I liked her so much because she gave you just enough of herself, to the point where if she wasn’t on the scene you missed her, leaving room for other R&B artists to emerge and grow. I think that’s something that’s missing in today’s R&B; there isn’t room for everyone to win. In the 90’s you had a plethora of artists with music that’s still relevant today. I mean, I grew up in an era where you had Michael, Whitney, Janet, and Prince all making music at the same damn time. Not only did we have the OGs, but we also had the baby legends-Aaliyah, Brandy, Monica. And, the 90’s was the peak of R&B singers and R&B groups-Escape, TLC, SWV, EnVogue, Blackstreet, Boyz II Men, Jagged Edge, 112…the list goes on and on.

Even though today marks 16 long, painful years since Aaliyah was taken from us, she leaves a lasting legacy (aside from that shitty ass movie Wendy Williams tried to make; I still wanna fight her for making that atrocity of trash called a biopic); I mean just yesterday, MAC cosmetics announced a new Aaliyah inspired makeup line set to hit shelves in 2018.

How dope is that?!

First they gave me Selena, then they gave me Taraji P Henson’s line and now they’ve got Aaliyah and Nicki Minaj…one time for the #BlackGirlMagic!

While Aaliyah’s career was cut short far too soon, her legacy will last forever.

I wanna end this piece with a quote from babygirl herself:

“It’s hard to say what I want my legacy to be when I’m long gone…I want people to remember me as a full-on entertainer and a good person”

I like to think that she fulfilled this quote; I also like to think that wherever she is that she’s proud of the legacy she left behind…

Now if only we could get her Uncle Barry Hankerson to put her entire musical catalogue online…

What Jay-Z’s 4:44 Taught me About Black Love

What Jay-Z’s 4:44 Taught me About Black Love

I’ve always been a girl who loved words, so it was no surprise to me that I became a Jay Z fan. My brothers and cousins were OBSESSED with his music when I was little. Listening to it on my own, there was something about the way he told a story of being a drug dealer in Marcy Projects to becoming one of the wealthiest Hip Hop moguls EVER that intrigued me.

Again, I have a thing about words; it’s the way words are put together. I’m all about the voice, the tone, the impact, the depth, the emotion, the passion behind the words.

A few days ago, Jay-Z shut the music industry down with the release of his album, 4:44. Now, for most people, Jay’s greatness isn’t anything new. From top to bottom, 4:44 is a literary masterpiece, filled with gems and knowledge about Black supremacy, Black Wealth, sexual liberation (his mother Gloria Carter came out as a lesbian), Black Unity, and so many other things.

Perhaps the most enlightening track on the album (in my opinion) is the very raw, very personal title track. In it he spits mad bars about his relationship with his wife Beyonce. He admits to a shit load of emotional abuse and pain. I think it’s fitting, him releasing this track after Bey dropped Lemonade last year. Jay addresses almost every controversial issue in their marriage and overall relationship.

Needless to say, Black women were NOT here for Jay Z’s year’s too late apology. And Black men well, half of them missed the most important message Hov was dropping, and many felt like it gave them a pass to cheat. I recently saw a post on Tumblr about Jay Z and Beyonce’s relationship based on 4:44. Jay Z has presumably been the only man Beyonce has ever loved and been with intimately since she was about 18; she’ll be 36 in September, Jay Z will be 48 in December. In the song he asked her to “go steady” back in 2002 when she was about 21, which means he had to be at least 32 at the time.

They got married in 2008; he was 39 and she 27. Their daughter Blue was born in 2012; she was about to be 31 and he would turn 42 at the end of the year.

They’ve been married for 9 years, but together practically Beyonce’s entire adult life.

She has been hurt and mistreated by the very man who constantly rapped about having “the hottest chic in the game wearing my chain,” He has been hurting the very woman so many young girls idolize and aspire to be. He is one half of ‘relationship goals’. They are considered a power couple, a symbol of Black love.

Beyonce and Jay Z’s relationship is all of us; their relationship says something about the way we as Black people view, idealize, and understand love and relationships.

We may sit and scrutinize Jay Z and Beyonce for, whatever reason, but we have all been them at some point. If we haven’t been them, we have experienced them through the eyes of someone else.

4:44 and Lemonade go hand-in-hand with one another, exposing a HUGE problem in the Black community.

When I sat and listened to 4:44, I slowly realized that although we idealize and worship Black love, it’s problematic as fuck.

Again, at some point we have all had a Jay Z in our lives. He is no different than the same Black men we cry ‘ain’t shit’ on an everyday basis. Still, though, we criticize Jay Z; but how many of us have had a Jay Z who, in his own way, gave us a 4:44 and we forgave him? How many of us have had a father that was once a Jay Z and he changed by the grace of god and we love him and have somehow found a way to repair that relationship?

Okay, so maybe Jay Z wasn’t your father, but he could’ve been your granddad, your favorite Uncle, your cousin, your brother…

We as Black women want to be, and to an extent are forced to be, strong, powerful, independent women. We cry the mantra of ‘Black men ain’t shit’, and we write and we post and we say all of these things about how so and so is stupid and deserves better. We cry about how ‘couldn’t be me’ and what we would do if we were in that situation but yet…

We still hold down these very same men, the same ones we bash and claim ain’t shit. We hold them down with each #BlackLivesMatter post, with our protests, with our fight against police brutality.

Yes, Jay Z made that track for Beyonce, as a public apology of sorts, but it’s deeper than that.

4:44 is a reflection of just how warped, distorted, and messed up Black Love really is.

Even our fictional images of Black love are distorted; Cliff Huxtable is a man we all grew up idealizing, but in reality, the man who gave us Cliff Huxtable (Bill Cosby) is inadvertently a sexual predator. However, we cling to the idealization and idolization of Cliff by protecting Bill. Because Bill is Cliff and Cliff is an example of Black Love. In fact, the Huxtable’s are the epitome of Black love. They were our Barack and Michelle before Barack and Michelle so if we convict Bill, we taint the idea of what Black Love truly is.

We see it with other fictional characters too, the way we idealize them, overlooking how problematic their love was; Martin and Gina, Whitley and DeWayne, Florida and James Evans, Ghost and Tasha, Cookie and Luscious.

We idealize and glorify problematic relationships within other celebrity couples as well; look at TI and Tiny. TI basically called his marriage to Tiny “a distraction”, after she held him down (even going to jail for him) taking in his 3 children from previous relationships, as well as giving birth to 4 of his children  (they had a sillborn daughter in the early 2000’s). Our relationship and love for Black men is to painfully intertwined with our identity that we can sometimes be blinded by the problems and pain they cause us.

And yet, while some of us acknowledge the problems and the pain Black men cause us, we do NOT hold them accountable. We blame White supremacy, we blame society, hell, we blame each other, because do we or do we not raise Black men?

As I sit here and write this, I am reminded of the Jay Z’s in my own life, and oh how I love them, how I idealized them and worshipped them. It took Jay Z penning a powerful, emotionally raw, almost too little too late track for me to realize that the cycle of ‘Black love’ is powerful, painful, and deeply problematic.

One of the most powerful things I’ve heard said in response to Jay Z and Beyonce’s relationship is that he ‘groomed Beyonce’ to take what can easily be considered as mental and emotional abuse.

Abuse, that’s a powerful word and a serious accusation to bring up against one of the world’s biggest power couples, or any man in general. We tend to believe that abuse is only abuse if you’ve got a black eye, or you’re in an ER, or in a casket. We as Black people overlook abuse all of the time. But abuse doesn’t always leave a scar that can be seen with the physical eye. No, sometimes abuse comes in the form of habits, of things that we allow ourselves to put up with, things we do, the people we love. Abuse can be pattern forming and if you don’t look past the surface, it can be something we pass on to our children, and their children, creating a never ending cycle of hurt and pain.

We create generational curses by ignoring the non visible scars of abuse.

So, what can we learn from Jay Z’s public apology to Beyonce?

It’s simple; we as Black women must learn to love ourselves FIRST. I’m not saying that we don’t, but we have to reevaluate the way we perceive ourselves. For the most part, who we are is shaped by society and Black men. We unknowingly and sometimes knowingly participate in patriarchy and misogynior. We do NOT hold Black men accountable because we fail to see their privilege. We spend so much time talking about White Privilege that we forget that Black men have privilege too, male privilege.

It’s why we raise our daughters to be good little innocent virgins and to keep a low sexual body count, but scream ‘boys will be boys’ to our sons and will take care of any grandbaby they bring us. We teach our young Black daughters to be strong and fierce and loud and independent, but teach our sons that crying is a sign of weakness or that they’re gay. We refuse to discuss mental health and refuse to participate in family and individual therapy, but wonder why our sons and daughters hate us? We use sex as a weapon and a tool for love, but get mad and refuse to let our baby daddy’s see their children when they don’t want us. Instead of letting our children find out the kind of man their father is, we bash him in front of them, creating a strain in a relationship that is not ours to taint. We create a cycle of bitter, angry, children, under the guise of ‘I’m just protecting them’, when in reality, we are vicariously protecting ourselves from being hurt again.

In order to stop the next generation from repeating the vicious and painful cycle of Black Love, we must reevaluate what we know about love. We must be willing to be open to new ideas, new concepts. We must learn to be loyal to ourselves FIRST, not Black men. Malcolm X said that the Black woman is the most disrespected creature on the planet, and this is so true.

We spend so much time looking out and protecting other people, but who looks out for us Black women?

We have to destroy the seeds of bitter and angry that reside in our hearts. I cannot stress to you enough how important it is to create a culture and environment of love and positivity around your young ones. Stop selling them this shit about “what happens in my house, stays in my house”, be careful who you surround yourself and your babies with. I must add that while Black Love is problematic as fuck it still has the potential to be a beautiful thing. I also have to add that there are good Black men in the world; you just have to look harder for them. Also, you have to realize that you will NEVER find a perfect man; you find a man whom you can help be a better person and vice versa. You want a man that compliments your weaknesses as you compliment his.

We have gotten so far away from it but, looking to and being connected to a higher source of power is important. You must learn that your body is connected with your mind, and your mind is connected with your spirit and or emotions. Those three must be in perfect alignment, which can only come through self discovery and seeking a power outside of your own. If you can love your creator and the universe, self love will come easily and will allow you to have agape love, which will allow you to make connections with people on a deeper level than just physical.

Black Love is twisted and complex, and painful, but not unfixable.

Jay Z’s public apology to Beyonce started a conversation and can be used as the tools to fixing Black Love.

Let’s keep the conversation going y’all!

Xx

 

What Does ‘Woke’ Really Mean?

What Does ‘Woke’ Really Mean?

One word that I am tired of hearing in the Black community is the word ‘woke’.

I used to love that word, because it meant being on a level that no one else was on. It was a symbol, a status if you will, of true Blackness; I used to think that by being ‘woke’ it somehow validated my Blackness. I used to think that being ‘woke’ gave me the Black card that I’d so desperately been searching for; I felt validated by being ‘woke’. Now, I laugh at the concept of wokeness, because nowadays any ole negro can go on Google and find some (mis)information and claim to be ‘woke’. And even that wokeness can come into question when it doesn’t fit a certain standard of wokeness by a group of Black people I didn’t know owned the rights on how to be woke.

‘You ain’t woke if you married to a White person’

‘If your girlfriend don’t have big lips, nappy hair, a wide set nose and she ain’t dark as Gabrielle Union, you ain’t woke’

‘If you believe in ‘White Jesus’ or organized religion, you ain’t woke’

‘If you a Muslim, you ain’t woke’

The list goes on and on.

I have learned that wokeness is a social construct created in order to further keep us entrapped in a war within our community. You see, while we’re sitting around worried about ‘is you woke or nah’, we’re really just sleep with our eyes open.  Because wokeness and consciousness go far beyond the Black definition; to be woke is a spiritual mindset, a state of being if you will. Even on a spiritual level you can only reach a certain level of consciousness, because to obtain full consciousness is to ascribe to a level of spiritual perfection, which is impossible so long as you reside in human flesh.

Wokeness is a powerful thing and it extends beyond the Black community. Everybody in the damn world been trying to be woke since the beginning of time.

To be woke seeks to answer three of life’s biggest questions:

Why are we here?

What happens when you die?

And my personal favorite,

Why do bad things happen to good people?

It’s why we fight and search so hard to prove God’s existence.  It’s why we fight amongst each other; it’s why wars are started and how greed is created. Basically, wokeness is merely a quest for knowledge. But in the Black community, wokeness is a symbol of validation. Everybody and they mama tryna be woke. When it comes to being woke, we jump through ridiculous hoops to prove a word that holds no true value-we study quantum physics, we deny organized religion, we embrace our African roots, we change our names, we go natural, we become militant, we hate White people…but why?

Because we have learned how to market our Blackness and wish to do as our oppressors and place it (being Black) into this neat, tiny little box that’s perfect and orderly. Blackness is anything BUT orderly. So instead of embracing that, we fight over who’s woke and who’s sleep. And while we’re doing this, the enemy (who is not necessarily White Supremacy or White people) is laughing while applauding us at the same time. We are essentially destroying ourselves, though we have the tools to freedom within our grasp. We bypass knowledge everyday; we know more about New World Order and The Illuminati than we do financial freedom. We trust more in conspiracy theories than we do in each other. The only way we can get free is if we ALL free. Still, though, the Willie Lynch letter is in full effect; we’ve become so engrained in the belief that “I got mine, you better get yours,” that we are FAILING ourselves, our community, and our ancestors every day.

Every other race can come together to fight for what they want; why can’t we?

Now, I am all about placing blame where blame is due socially, economically, and politically, but we as a community need to sit down and have a serious conversation. I studied Sociology in college, and I’ve done my research about the plight of the Black American. I know all about the generational trauma that exists within the Black community. I am all about fighting for the right to not let others diminish that pain by telling us to “get over it” or by rewriting our history. I am all for fighting for the rights of my people and our freedom-mentally, spiritually, economically, socially, and politically…

But I cannot stay silent about the problems that I see within my community.

I can no longer fight for justice while refusing to acknowledge our culpability in what we as a community have become any longer.

Dear Black people, I love y’all I love us, but we gotta get past the symptom stage of our problems and address the root issue. No, it’s not all “The White man” or “The System”. While I believe, based on research and my understanding of how the system works, that those who brought us here in chains 398 years ago are at least, 65 percent responsible for how we as a people turned out, I CANNOT hold them fully culpable any longer.

In the 1960’s, YES, in the 1970’s, 80’s and even some of the 90’s, YES, they were largely and at times, solely responsible for the destruction of perhaps one of the most beautiful, intriguing races of people in the world. Today, in 2017, I cannot and will not hold them fully responsible any longer.

Why?

Two words: Technology. Education.

We have access to vast knowledge, but yet, we choose not to take it and use it to our full advantage. We know the most important thing for the Black community is economic freedom, yet we STILL refuse to bank black. We STILL would rather spend two BILLION dollars on Air Jordan’s than investing two BILLION in stocks, small start up tech companies, or  real estate. We would rather buy a benz to ‘stunt on our haters’ before buying a house, even though that house can be inherited by our children, and their children, setting up wealth for GENERATIONS (fun fact: wealth isn’t always money, it’s moreso assets).

We cry, fight, protest, and complain about how ‘the system’ and ‘the White man’ is unjustly killing and or imprisoning our young Black men, but we refuse to vote. We’re quick to say “Voting is pointless, the system is rigged against us anyways,” So if you know the system is rigged, why complain? That’s like complaining that the sky is blue and water is wet. You can’t change either, so why complain about them? If you know the system is rigged and it’s never going to change, why are we shouting ‘Black Lives Matter’ why do we march, why do we protest and riot? There are AMAZING Black senators, congressmen, congresswomen, and other political pundits who fight EVERY SINGLE DAMN DAY for your rights, but we don’t bother to watch the news, we don’t bother to pick up a newspaper, we won’t watch their podcasts, we won’t subscribe to their YouTube channel, we won’t follow them on social media…but yet we know ALL about what’s happening in the lives of the cast of Love and Hip Hop.

But again, the second a cop kills an unarmed Black man, we’re marching, we’re looking to the NAACP or some other powerful Black figurehead, wanting THEM to fix the problem, but then when the cycle continues, we blame them. We blamed President Obama for doing more for the Latinos and the LGBT community than he did for Blacks. What we FAIL to realize is that those communities MADE OBAMA FIGHT FOR THEM. For most of his presidency, Barack Obama was ambivalent about same sex marriage; he didn’t publicly endorse it until around 2012. The LGBT community was constantly in his face, constantly calling their local senators, calling their elected officials, suing the shit out of people, writing him letters, tweeting him on Twitter, getting funding and endorsements from other companies and organizations, telling and sharing their stories. The same thing with the Latino community; they did the footwork; they put President Obama’s hands to the fire. For Black people, Obama was just a status, a symbol of ‘look mama we made it’. We simply expected him to do for us without us doing any of the work ourselves, because he was one of ‘us’.

We’ve become lazy in the days since Martin Luther King Jr, Malcom X, Medgar Evers, and Hugey P Newton. Albert Einstein once said “to do the same thing over and over but expecting different results is insanity” Black people have been insane for years; we want change but continue to allow the same people to remain in power for years and years, collecting coin after coin (people in congress make almost $200,000 a year) but continue to hope for change and when no change comes, we blame the system, which we refuse to engage in, which we refuse to dismantle, which we refuse to fix.

For me, it’s like this: either fix the system or shut the hell up, plain and simple.

Black unemployment is usually higher than the national average, but instead of raising our children to go and get STEM jobs (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), we would rather teach them to play football, pushing them into dreams of becoming pro athletes or to get them into the NCAA, for whom they make MILLIONS of dollars and yet…you as a parent can’t get time off from your job to watch your baby play. Better yet, your child makes the NCAA MILLIONS of dollars but they have to come home to the projects during breaks for school. Let’s not even begin to talk about how quickly Black athletes who do go pro end up getting injured, spend most of their career being traded or riding the bench, or go broke in less than ten years due to poor financial advisement by White financial investors, oh, and because they don’t read the contracts they sign because most of them read far below their grade levels.

I know I sound like I’m ‘bashing’ Black people but I’m not, I promise I’m not. I’m simply pointing out problems I see within our community.

If we want to do better, to actually be better, we have to be willing to have some tough conversations. We love to say ‘we’re not our ancestors’, no the hell we are not, because unlike them, we rest on our laurels, we look for change to just come, floating out of the sky. We’ve become comfortable with the luxuries and the trappings of freedom. Sadly, we don’t even realize that everything that our ancestors were beaten, raped, killed, and marched for, was slowly dismantled by harsh policies and legislation. The fight for freedom didn’t end in 1965 with the Voting Rights Act, it only begun.

It is 2017 and we are still marching.

Let me say that again:

IT IS TWO THOUSAND FUCKING SEVENTEEN AND WE ARE STILL OUT HERE IN THESE DAMN STREETS MARCHING.

This makes ZERO sense to me; we were given the tools to success by our ancestors, they LITERALLY passed us the blueprint to freedom. They gave us EVERYTHING: a foundation of faith and belief in something bigger than ourselves, the education on our history and our culture (HBCUs Black History Month, Juneteenth), the way to gain economic wealth (why we ain’t got a Black Wall Street again?), the talent to attract money (hello Michael, Whitney, Prince, Beyonce) the knowledge (Garvey, DuBois, Douglass) the strength and courage (Tubman, Turner, Truth), the power to lead like warriors, but with enough elegance to terrify and intrigue the White man(Zulu, Kente, King, X, Newton, Assata Shakur, Angela Davis, Tupac, Muhammad Ali, Barack Obama, Colin Kapernick, Jesse Williams), hell we’re a TRILLION dollar spending entity so we ain’t broke. We’ve had it all right here in front of us for the last 52 years and we’ve had our fists closed up like some damn fools. We are setting the next generation up to fail, BIG TIME.

So the time is now to stop asking ‘is you woke or nah’ and just wake the hell up, forreal.

I love my Blackness and yours…even if we too damn stupid to see it.

A Letter to My Future Daughters

A Letter to My Future Daughters

To my darling daughters,

Somedays, I have just one, other days, there are two of you. Most times when I think about having children, I envision two daughters because I wouldn’t want you to grow up being the only girl. My oldest, I’d name you Adisyn and you, my sweet baby girl, I’d name you Eden. I’ve always wanted to be a mom; sometimes, I have two perfect little kiddos, sometimes three, sometimes four, maybe even five kids. I’ll admit, five seems like too many at times, but I then I think five is a good number because that’s how many kids my parents have between the two of them. It’d be crazy, but I feel like I’d enjoy the chaos of having a husband, 5 kids, 2 or 3 dogs, a couple fish and a turtle. I’d love it if you were all by the same man, and I hope that happens. But right now, you’re not born, nowhere near being conceived. So until then, I’m writing this letter to you, my sweet, beautiful, smart little brown girls because I have so much to say to you.

I’m writing this because though I have yet to see your faces, I am already in love with you. You see, I’ve wanted to be a mom since I was about eight. It’s always been on my big check list of life goals. It’s funny that I want little girls when I’m perhaps the most un-girly person there is. Well, I take that back; I’m girly, but I’m also way more comfortable in a pair of sweatpants, a tank top, my hair pulled up into a bun with a comfy sweater or cardigan and some Nike flip flops. There are, however, things I love about being a woman-the high heel shoes, wearing makeup, purses (sometimes), how amazing I look in a dress or a fitted skirt, buying cute bras and panties, getting my hair done (when I’m not the one doing it), drinking wine, taking luxurious showers and bubble baths, good smelling body wash and perfumes, lipstick, pedicures…There are a lot of good things about being a girl, but the thing I think I like the most is being a mom. Sure, it’s not always easy, and you could fuck it up at any time, but the idea that you get to create this tiny little life and raise it from birth to death like you’re God, is pretty cool if you ask me.

Motherhood is hard as hell, but the rewards are beautiful. It’s probably the second most important thing I want to do in life, besides saving the world from crazy ass people of course, and well, pleasing God to the fullest extent of my being.  But again, motherhood is tricky, and it is NOT something you take lightly. You see, there are a million ways to be a mom, though most prefer to carry their children in their womb. I’d like to do that, if my body permits it but, if I can’t, I’ll still love you-whether I give birth to you, or you’re carried inside the womb of another, if you’re made in a test tube, if I adopt you, or if you happen to be a package deal that comes along with the man I marry. No matter what girls, you’re mine.

Speaking of your father…I don’t know who he is or where he is right now but, I can only hope that he is a kind, smart, loving, funny, and an all around good man. I know this guy who I think would be a great dad but, I doubt if he becomes your father. Though if he does, I really hope you get his cute freckles.

As for me? Well, girls, your mommy is quite an interesting lady. Right now I’m 26 years old; I’ve just graduated college but I’m about to go back to school and get another degree. I currently work as a nanny, so I’m getting in lots of practice for when you’re born. When I grow up (because age does not a grown-up make) I want to inspire people. I want to create laws and policies that help make people’s lives better. I want to be a college professor, I want to write books, and educate people, because a mind is a TERRIBLE thing to waste. My life was…it was okay growing up, but I’ve been through some things. I’m a little bit broken and damaged, but I’ve been working on putting myself back together again. Because everything I do, I do it with you and any other siblings you might have in mind. Now, if I could have, I would’ve had you sooner, but God knew I wasn’t ready for children just yet so he put you on hold, just for me. In fact, I’d love to have at least one of you right now, if I were more financially secure and I had a guy who’d I felt was worth having kids with.

There are so many things I want to tell you, so many things I have yet to teach you, but for right now, this letter is full of promises, of hopes and dreams that I have for you, my sweet, beautiful little girls. I want to be the best mom I can be to you both. If I could make life easy for you, if I could make life perfect, I’d do it, no questions asked. Sadly, you have to live your own lives and make your own mistakes, and I have to trust that I will have raised you right so that when you do fall down, you can get back up.

The world we live in is a mean and cruel one. You will face hatred and mistreatment for the color of your skin, because you were born a woman, sometimes because you believe in God. Boys will tell you they love you and won’t mean it. Friends will lie to you, people you love very much will die and you won’t understand why. Some days, I think of all of those things that you might have to face, and I would rather not have you, to protect you from all of that. However, as much as I’d rather not bring you into a world like that, I can’t imagine a world without you in it.

This letter is to give you hope, to give you advice, to make you laugh and smile, to show you that the world is your oyster, that despite all of the shitty things you may face at some point, life is beautiful and good.

Your names are pretty special; I’ve been making lists of little girl names for years, trying to find the perfect ones for you. One thing I knew as I got older was that I didn’t want to give you typical names, ones that have been over used (especially in our family)-Bailey, Chloe, Jasmine, Londyn, Paris, Alexis, Kamryn, Katilyn, McKenzie, Madisyn, Taylor, etc. My mom named me Davia (that’s day-vee-yah); I like it sometimes, but it’s too hard to pronounce and the meaning is something I’ve never quite lived up to. When I thought about your names, I wanted them to be simple, special, and something you could be proud of.

Adisyn, I initially had no intention of naming you that. You were supposed to be named after two very important people, my godmom Lena and my favorite singer Aaliyah; Alena was what I called you for a long time. I loved my godmom so much, but she died when I was about 7; Aaliyah was my favorite singer when I was growing up (she still is). Somehow, the name Adisyn just sort of came to me in the last year or so. Your first name is interesting; I named you after one of my favorite television characters, Addison Montgomery. I changed the spelling because I didn’t the way it was spelled and felt like it wouldn’t suit you. Addison Montgomery was a character on Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. She was a doctor, but, not just any kind of doctor. She was a world class surgeon with like 10 different specialties. She was strong, funny, odd, complex, flawed, confident, all of the things I wished I was. To most people, she was a beautiful woman with a perfect life, but on the inside, she struggled to find her place in the world. In the end, she found it; she got her guy and her kid.

As for your middle name, that’s always been a given; you have my mother’s first name as your middle name, so wear it with pride, because my mother, your grandmother, is an amazing, phenomenal woman. I could go on and on about how she is literally made of magic (all Black women are), but her, she’s a special kind of magic. She has a direct hook up to Jesus, so always be on your best behavior around her!

And to my darling Eden, your name is just as special. The name Eden comes from the bible, it’s a place where the first man and woman are said to have existed. It means delight; for me, it also represents the beginning, biblically speaking. The Garden of Eden is a beautiful place where man and woman were meant to peacefully coexist and live life with no sickness, no diseases, no famine, poverty, etc. Eden is the place where we as Christians want to get back to. To me, Eden is a state of being, a mindset, a place of serenity. That concept in itself is powerful enough. I’m still deciding on a middle name for you; it’ll come to me soon enough, don’t you worry.

I think about the day I’ll be able to hold either one or both of you in my arms. I think about how soft and tiny and little you’ll be when you’re first born. I can’t wait for that day, because there’s just something about holding your baby for the first time after they’ve spent nine months kicking the crap out of your ribs, forcing you to have to pee all of the time that you cannot explain. I can’t wait to kiss your chubby little cheeks and tell you how much I love you. Because you my darling girls, are so special to me, you really are. I promise that your childhood will be magical and special and as wonderful as I can make it. My parents were unable to protect me from some aspects of grown-up life, but I promise to shield you as best as possible. You are children, so I don’t want you to worry about anything but being children.

One of my mother’s biggest flaws was that she didn’t really let me be me; I promise to let you do that. Of course, every mom’s dream is to see if their child is anything like them. I’ll admit, I’d love it if at least one of you were like me but I promise to let you be you. I intend to be a parent who lets you grow into whoever God wants you to be. So if you want to be a girly girl or a complete tomboy, I’m here to let you do that. Of course, there will be boundaries, but I want your growth to be personal and something that isn’t tainted by certain rules and social norms. Speaking of social norms, I don’t plan on raising you with them. Social norms are these silly things that were created by people to group everyone into neat little boxes. They’re things like ‘boys wear blue’ and ‘girls can’t play football’. If you want to do that, by all means, do it. You are free to like what you want, to wear silly clothes (unless it’s school or church), you’re free to play with dolls or a ball. I want you to be happy, that’s my ultimate goal.

Now, we will have rules and I expect you to follow them. My rules aren’t hard or overbearing, they’re simple things that I think will help you grow up to be wonderful, wonderful young women. My number one rule is to be true to yourself, FIRST. My next rule is to do the very best you can in anything that you do. Be kind to all people, respect others, don’t fight each other or your siblings, be brave, be strong, be proud of who you are. There are other rules but, those are the most important ones for right now. Everything else I will try and guide you into, that’s my job, to guide you through life. I’m not supposed to force or push anything on you, because the more I try and force something on you, the more you’ll resist.

One more thing…you’re Black. I know that seems silly to say but, I feel the need to point this out to you because being Black is part of your identity. It’s what makes you so special. Girls, you will more than likely grow up in a world where Black people in America (that’s where we live) aren’t treated very nicely. Depending on how light or how brown your skin is, people will treat you a certain way. But I want you to rise above that. Yes, you are Black and yes, life will be harder because you are Black, but don’t let the limitations of this country define who you turn out to be. I want you to know, to realize, to engrain into your soul just how beautiful your Black is. I want you to love everything about being Black-your hair, whether it’s curly or super kinky (some people call it nappy), whether you have big lips, a big wide nose, whether you’re as a light as cream in coffee, or as Black as the moon, you are perfect. You are magic, you are God’s most beautiful creation, and don’t you ever forget that.

Speaking of God, because I’ve brought him up a couple of times in this letter, yes, he’s real. I plan to raise you believing that. Now, what you choose to subscribe to when you grow up and when you have kids of your own is totally up to you, but my job as your mom is to give you that solid foundation, to teach you about a God who is loving, and kind, and wants you to love him and to love others. I feel like explaining God and Jesus right now will be complicated, but just know that there is someone, somewhere out there in the universe who put the stars in the sky, who allows the sun to shine, who decided you were so special that he sent you all the way down from heaven to be my little girls. That’s who I want to be your first love, God, not me, not your dad, not some silly little boy, but God, your true creator. You see, if you love him first, then you learn how to love yourself and finally those around you. If you can learn how to love God, really and truthfully love God first, then I’ve done my job as a mom.

Now, we get to the hard stuff: boys.

Girls, I want you to know that you are special; I’ve said this a million times already but you need to hear it. You are special, and you are loved, you are so, so loved by me, by your father, by our parents, and everyone else around you. I need you to get that first; you are loved, no matter what happens, always carry that with you in your heart. I need you to know that because as women, you are the essence of life. Life literally begins with you and through you. Someday, when you’re older, you’ll go through this weird thing called puberty, where your body starts to change from that of a little girl into a grown woman. And with those changes come lots of responsibilities. As your bodies begin to change, I want you to celebrate that, to embrace the newfound womanhood you will grow into.

The one thing I wish I had growing up was someone there to tell me that the strange changes happening to my body were amazing and powerful and wonderful. Instead, I lived with insecurities about myself, and I was left to fend for myself in terms of sexual encounters. These sexual encounters shaped how I saw myself, how I viewed men, and love in general. Perhaps the most important lesson I need you to understand is that your body, it belongs to you. Never, ever, ever, ever, allow anybody-man or woman, to touch you or take from your body. I want us to have such a good relationship that if, in the unfortunate event that something should happen to you, I would hope that you don’t feel afraid to tell me. Keep in mind that no, ALWAYS means no.

We could talk about boys and losing your virginity but, I’ll table that for another day. The only thing I’ll say is again, learn to love yourself, FIRST. Boys can wait, sex can wait, learn to love the hell out of Adisyn and Eden.

I could write to you all day, give you little anecdotes for how to get through certain things, but I’d rather wait to tell you all of those things as I watch you grow up.

So I’ll close my letter with one last affirmation of how much I love you, of how special you are to me, of how I would willingly give my life for you. The love I have for children who have yet to come into existence is one that amazes me every day. Each breath I take, each risk, each time I defy the odds, each time I refuse to do what is considered normal, I do it with you in mind. I live for you, so that my sins, the sins and the mistakes of my parents, and their parents, and their parents before them and so on, do not continue with you.

So I wait, patiently, anxiously, like a child waiting on Christmas morning, for the day that I learn that your existence has finally come to be, for the day I learn that you are girls, to the day that I spend grueling hours in labor, to the moment you take your first breath until your last, I will love you.

Always,

Your mother

Walk Away (Remember Me)

I never thought I’d be doing this,

This thing called casual sex but

Here I am

Doing it over, and over, and over again-with you.

Constantly wondering why the hell you were so special.

I swore I’d never do this, just fuck a guy with no relationship, no future but here I am

Fucking you over, and over and over.

Listening and watching you say how much you want a wife and

Apparently that’s not me.

Yet I’m still here,

Still stupidly hoping that you’ll pick me

That you’ll choose me

That maybe I’m not being stupid after all

Of course I know I’m being stupid

I look at myself every damn day and think about how stupid I am

For allowing you to be the first person that I do this with

The first guy that I had sex with and there was no relationship or commitment involved

I never wanted it to be like this

Never wanted to be sharing myself with some random guy

But see, you’re not just a random guy

You’re sweet and wonderful and God, any girl would kill to have a man like you

But I don’t think you know you or what the hell you want

I’d like to know, what do you want from me?

You say you want friendship but really

Is that really what you want?

Because nothing we’ve done is exactly friendly

It’s sinful to say the least

But it’s one damn good sin that’s for sure

I feel so stupid

That’s all I can keep saying

But when I’m with you, I don’t feel stupid

Just confused as hell

Because we both know what this is

Just kidding ourselves that it’s something more

Calling it friendship

When it’s a fuck-ship

A situationship

A ship that I wanna get the fuck off of but

I’m stuck like chuck and I really like to fuck-you.

I think it’s because you’re the first boy I really opened up to

The first boy I actually decided to give a chance

And my heart, my stupid foolish heart

Went and betrayed me and it fell for you

I fell for you

I know that me saying this will probably make you feel weird but I do

I really, really like you.

But you don’t like me, at least I don’t think you do.

You see, I said I wouldn’t come forward with my feelings because I didn’t wanna seem clingy

And I didn’t wanna frighten you like the last time we had this conversation

So I told myself this was cool, and it is, sometimes

But then nights come where I just wanna feel your arms around me and

Those creeping thoughts of my future come in and,

You’re there, you’re always there.

I told myself that the first time I drove to see you that I shouldn’t get attached

That I wouldn’t get attached

That I could totally handle this

And I thought could but I lied to myself because

I was in this, whatever the hell it was

And instead of admitting defeat

I sat and surrendered to the inevitable

The end which I knew was soon to come

One day, you’d bore of me

One day, you’d grow tired of me

One day, some other pretty girl with a ‘dope mind’ would come along and entice you

She’d charm you with her good looks, her wonderful personality

And I, I’d just be a passing thought

Because there’s no way in hell you can stay friends with the girl you constantly fucked.

I’d never admit it to you personally but,

When it finally ended, it hurt like fuck.

But you know what?

I thanked God!

I literally-in the midst of my crying-thanked God

And, I even prayed for you

Because I don’t wanna hate you

Because hating you will only stop me from finding the man God has for me.

Being bitter won’t stop anything but me pursuing my dreams

Being bitter won’t change what happened

That I acted stupidly, that I’d hoped that you would want something more

None of that will change the fact that this is over

It’s so, so over

Nope, not over like last time because God, that great guy, he gave me just what I needed

This time YOU ended things

You might not think you did but you totally did

And what a blessing it was when you ended it!

I thought this was going to be some long, drawn out thing but

You ended things with just a few simple words:

‘Let’s just be friends’

You have NO idea how FREEING that message was

I’ll admit, I cried a bit because it stung

Because you were the first one I’d allowed to cross the threshold

Of my bruised and damaged heart

You were the first one that I was like ‘fuck it’

And dived head first into…whatever the fuck this was.

Like I said I have ZERO regrets

I might have written a poem last time saying ‘fuck you’ but

I immediately took that shit back

Because I didn’t mean to say ‘fuck you’ but I was mad

And writing that poem was the best I had at the time

So this time, I won’t say fuck you

Instead, I’ll say thank you.

I tried walking away

But I came back because I said that I ‘didn’t wanna lose your friendship’

Because deep down I really do value that

I value you.

You see, you weren’t just some boy I liked

But you were a man with an amazing personality

A man who’s going places

A man that can change the world

And I liked that.

I was attracted to that.

You see, I saw parts of myself

Pieces of my own pain within you

I saw the darkness that lies there

Those deep thoughts you have when you’re by yourself

The struggles you’ve faced while chasing your dream

I’ve been there and I’ve done that

I saw that and that, that was what attracted me to you.

Not your game, not your looks but something deeper

I must admit when I first laid eyes on you

It was because you were cute

Now that I’m this so called ‘grown-woman’

I realize that I was attracted to the grown man in you

I liked the fact that I didn’t have to feel bad that I didn’t have it all together

Neither did you and it made me feel okay

You didn’t judge me

And when shared my deepest truth with you, you seemed to respect it

You seemed to respect me

Sometimes though, I wish I hadn’t been willing to fuck so easily but

The timing just felt right and I have no, absolutely no regrets about that

I just wish my heart hadn’t been so willing

I wish my heart had been a little bit smarter when it chose the first guy to break it

I wish it had been some fuck boy but

This heartbreak taught me a lesson

For the first time in my life, I knew what it was like

To feel wanted by a man

Not just because of my body

To be seen as more than just a pair of thighs, tits, and ass

Based on all that, I can’t call you a fuck boy

Because how can I be mad at the boy I let fuck?

Could I have been more cautious? Sure

But that’s what happens when you get sideswiped by love

I feel in love with the idea of you

I fell in love with the fact that you approached me first

I fell in love with the idea that you were honest

That you wanted to know me and fuck me

I just wish I knew which was more important.

You’ve said knowing me was more important but I’m not so sure

Still for me though,

I just wish that I knew which part I enjoyed more

Knowing you or fucking you

The latter is good but I wish that I got to know you more

Because at the least with the former I wouldn’t feel so insecure

I keep wondering what it is you saw in me

But I dare not ask

Because I’m not sure if I’d like the answer

Did I tell you that I was prewarned about you?

I was always scared of the boys who dressed like thugs

When I really should’ve been afraid of good looking men in suits

Still though, this situationship has taught me a lot of things

It’s taught me that it’s okay to fall in love with the wrong people

That sex is totally freeing, when it’s with the right person of course

That this love thing isn’t as bad as I thought

No, I wasn’t in love with you, at least I don’t think I was

I felt like if this had lasted any longer, I would’ve gotten there

And that was the scary part

To know that I could’ve fallen in love with you had this lasted any longer

Now though, the thought is terrifying

Because I wasn’t ready for love and neither are you

You might think you are but dude, you are so not ready

Because if you were, you’d have realized what you had in front of you and not fucked it up

This is a precautionary tale

To warn young girls of the dangers of love

You see, my guard wasn’t completely down when I met you

But it was down enough for visions of a life with you in it go get into my head

Ironically, I was scared of that, of wanting a future with you

I created a million reasons in my head why we wouldn’t work out

Isn’t it sad?

That in the end, I was right

I guess my discernment was blinded by my infatuation with you

I liked you so much that I was afraid of liking you too much

Because I knew that my heart would be broken

And it was

How the hell did we get here?

Can we just go back to almost four-and-a-half months ago when you first slid into my DMs?

If I could go back

I’d totally seek out your true intentions

Because I never figured out what you really wanted from me

Was I just a pretty face?

I mean, you did say that you’d been watching me for a while so…

But no, I won’t go back, won’t try and figure things out

It’s good to make a clean break

I know you said friends but

We both know that this is too damn awkward to remain friends, at least, for me it is

I’ve already deleted your texts

Pretty soon I’ll delete your number

I’m not sure if I’ll unfollow you on social media though

Maybe one day I will just ,not  right now

If you ever read this

Please don’t take this the wrong way

I’m not doing this to bash you

Or to hurt you

But this, this is for me

This is how I heal

How I vent

And as for my last one worded text well

I didn’t know what the hell to say

Your response was cut and dry so

I felt no need to say my piece

Because what the hell could I say?

That I was scared and didn’t know what the hell I was doing

I didn’t know what the hell we were doing

I told you the night before this ended that I didn’t do feelings

I wish you had listened instead of brushing it off and shaking your head

Telling me that I was being ‘extra’ as always

I wish you’d seen the writings on the wall

Because I left plenty of clues

Maybe you did see them and just decided to be like ‘fuck it’, ion know

Do you know how many guys I’ve turned down since we started this little, whatever it was?

I was loyal to you but, your heart and your feelings weren’t exactly loyal to me

And that kinda hurts

I feel like I got played…

But still

God is good

He will get me through this and you

I wish you no harm

I can only pray that you get your shit together

That next time, you don’t lead girls on

You may not think you did but

You lead me on

If you wanna fuck a girl

Just say so next time

Don’t try and butter her up with fancy words

At least, not the ones who’ve been hurt

Not the ones who are vulnerable

Not the ones who are ready to open their hearts to love

Because I was all of that

I was hurt, vulnerable and ready to open my heart up to love

And you used that

Took advantage of that

And I kinda hate you for that

But still

I’m glad my first heart break was you

Because at least love didn’t leave a bitter taste in my mouth

Well it did but, it’s like taking that nasty cherry flavored medicine

It only tastes bad for a second but then the water washes away the taste

You left a bitter taste but I’ve drank my water and it doesn’t taste so bad

Now it’s time for the healing to start…

 

 

Consistency Breeds Perfection

One of my favorite YouTuber’s is Shannon Boodram, aka Shan BOODY.  Last month, she uploaded a video called, My Career is NOT a Fairytale. When I watched this video (I’ve watched it at least 100 times already) there was this one line that stuck out to me,

“Never stop kicking the ball,”

I’ve always been a kid with a dream; I wanted to be famous. It sounds silly but, I’ve always wanted to be a superstar, though I’m ironically the most introverted person ever. My two career choices in terms of fame? A Musician (preferably a songwriter who sang occasionally), or just someone who got so famous that I ended up on Oprah, Lol. I had people I wanted to meet, fans I knew I had to inspire, but I never let myself be special, because I slowly realized…

I’m not that special, if that makes sense.

Hear me out; most famous people have that special something, that certain spark. They’re either really beautiful, they have these standout personalities, this incredible talent, or they just know somebody who knows somebody.

I don’t have any of that.

I mean, I’m cute, but it’s not this bam, in your face type beauty. I’m soft spoken, I’m really quiet, extremely introverted, I live in Mobile, Alabama, my parents aren’t super famous or super rich and I have no connections to anyone famous.

Still, that dream to be famous just wouldn’t let me go; it won’t let me go.

Of course, I’ve tried to be more practical, but life, or God rather, just won’t let me do that. So, I keep pushing at wherever it is life is leading me. Have you ever been at that point in your life where you KNOW you have a purpose, but you’re unsure as to how in the hell you’re supposed to get there or even what the hell that exact purpose is?

Yeah, that’s so me.

I live in this place where I float between uncertainty, self-revelation, and achievement. Once I reach that point of achievement, I plateau, and then I spiral downward and I’m forced to start the cycle all over again.

Do you know how annoying that is, to have a dream and then get SO close and then…you’re forced to start over again? It’s like, playing a game of monopoly and you’re always getting the ‘go directly to jail, do not pass go, do not collect $200 dollars’ card.

EVERY.SINGLE.FUCKING.TIME.

When life keeps kicking you in the teeth, it changes you and you lose bits and pieces of yourself. I used to have such high hopes in life and now, I’m a little bit tainted; happy people do not make me happy, optimism makes me sick and I do NOT think the world is a bright and shiny place. Still, I keep going, and I can’t stop kicking that stupid metaphorical ball.

When I was 18, I was so sure that my purpose in life was to become a social worker; it made sense to me. I loved kids, I loved being able to help other people; I had a job working with kids; it just made sense. Now at 26, I have no clue what the hell I’m doing, which is scary because again, I’m 26 and I’ll be graduating college in a few weeks. All I know is that I’m passionate about helping people, I really love to write, and I have a weird obsession with politics, namely social issues. That’s all I know and I have NO idea what to do with that. I’ve had several opportunities to move away from home and start a career in New York or LA, and a few years ago, I would’ve jumped at the opportunity.

Now, though, I look at my hometown and see so many possibilities. So many of my friends have the same vision or something along the same lines as me, in terms of wanting to see the city and our community be better. Frustratingly, I see all of my friends getting out there and doing something while I’m…stuck in the same spot, still kicking this stupid metaphorical ball and not seeing any kind of movement. It’s not that I haven’t had opportunities to do things, and it’s not like I don’t know people in high places, but again, I live in this sphere where whenever I make a move, I always get knocked down and I’m forced to start over again.

I’ve come to the realization that I will always be kicking the ball.

I don’t know why nor do I understand it but, there’s just something inside of me that won’t let me quit. Sure, I say that I’m going to quit all of the time but, whenever I reach my lowest point, somehow I manage to get up, gather my bearings and I go back and I keep kicking that damn metaphorical ball. Sometimes, it moves, but it’s not very far and that, that is frustrating as hell.

Slowly, I’m realizing that I am only marginally in control of my destiny, and I must trust in the higher power (God) and his plan for me. I must admit that I have been an idiot lately and I’ve been standing still because I’ve been hoping that this time, the ball will keep rolling. However, standing still won’t help me, so I have to keep moving. I have to believe that no matter what happens, there’s a purpose in my life and I must keep going. So here I am, patiently waiting, hoping that God has something up his sleeve because I know that I have a purpose, I just don’t know exactly what it is.

Because everytime, every single goddamn time I feel like I’ve got it, I find things shifting into a broader sphere, and I’m not sure where to go or what to do.

Take, for instance, my desire to help people. I was once so sure that my purpose was to specifically help children. Now, though, I want to help people of color, I want to help women, I want to help the LGBT community, I want to help inner cities and be involved in education. I also still also want to write, but I don’t just want to write books, I want to blog and possibly create my own screenplays and maybe get involved with music.

Do you see how annoying this is?

I know that my purpose is to inspire people but each time I find this space where I feel like I fit, I lose it and I’m sent back to square one. I used to think that I had to accomplish these goals on based on a certain time scale, which freaked me out. However, now that I’m 26 and it still hasn’t happened, I’m coming to realize that my purpose will happen when it’s time. It’s sooo annoying but, I learn to trust in that, every day. It’s still frustrating as all get out that this dream, this passion that’s stirring inside of me still hasn’t come to fruition yet but, I KNOW it’s there and I know it’s going to happen.

Which brings me back to the video that I mentioned.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned, or rather I’m still learning, is that nothing can get done if I just keep sitting still. I’m starting to learn that I may not change the world on a grand scale, but I know that I’m supposed to change it in some way.  Maybe I’m not a huge Tsunami, maybe I’m just a small wave with an occasional huge wave every now and then. Maybe I’m not even a wave at all; maybe I’m just part of the tide that rolls in and out. Maybe I’m not even a part of the ocean, maybe I’m a river or a stream or hell, maybe I’m even a damn puddle. The point of those analogies is that no matter how I do it, whether it be large scale or small scale, I know that there’s someone somewhere out there in the world who needs to hear my voice, who needs to see my talent.

It sucks but, I’ve just gotta keep at this shit until I figure it out…

I mean, Rome wasn’t built in a day, Barack Obama didn’t become president over night, The Civil Rights Movement didn’t happen in one try and the underground railroad wasn’t smooth sailing.

Things will happen, exactly when they’re supposed to; I just have to be patient and keep kicking the stupid metaphorical ball.

Xx