Just Who Does SHE Think She Is

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Who IS this chick? This calculatingly cocky, positively presumptuous, seductively savage ball of feminine mystical brilliance!

You’re absolutely tired of her antics and a bit irked by your inner and uncontrollable  desire to remain enthralled within her aura, and see what she’s doing now. You can’t avoid women like this. They’re the movers and the shakers, the power players. They don’t actually create the controversy, but instead plant the seeds to get the harvest growing. You  painstakingly try to figure out how she so gracefully gets away with murder, not ever realizing that she never actually touches the gun…

Seriously though, again, who IS this chick and Just Who Does SHE Think She Is??

  • Who Does She Think She Is…always affirming her strength and aptitude.
  • Who Does She Think She Is…unapologetically going against the grain.
  • Who Does She Think She Is…living the life she was actually destined for.
  • Who Does She Think She Is…challenging the norm.
  • Who Does She Think She Is…rich and well-versed in her cultural identity.
  • Who Does She Think She Is…continuously overcoming adversity.

Who Does She Think She Is…and more importantly, Why Do You Care?

SHE is a Queen. She is unapologetic in her actions and her life choices. While needing no validation from her peers, she thrives in her own confidence and appreciation for every stride she makes. Her perspectives aren’t easily wavered, and her philosophies are usually based on fact rather than popular opinion. She’s regal in her demeanor and often exudes an intimidating disposition. She’s probably the sweetest girl in the room, but your worst nightmare during a questionable encounter. She isn’t afraid to speak her mind and silence your ignorance. Don’t ever misconceive her brief quiet moments for overall weakness. Remember, she is calculated. She’s fierce at chess and knows precisely how to play each move. She’s often even-tempered and indifferent, but never unaware or naive. She’s a force to be reckoned with in her professional endeavors, and makes moves inaudibly, leaving her adversaries in utter unforeseen awe upon each accomplishment. Her explicit personality has no room in her romantic relationship. While she demands the utmost respect from her mate, she’s delicate enough to know when submission is necessary; hence the fact that she actually has a good relationship. Trust is entertained quite loosely with her, as she has lived life enough to know that most hit dogs will holler. She’s mysterious yet colorful, and says the things that most will only think. Her transparency is refreshing and intriguing, as it becomes puzzling to see a woman of her stature not be perfect. Her children are off-limits to egregious nonsense, and violation of this rule is the quickest way to find yourself on the other side of her hell. She welcomes healthy debate and psychotically feeds off of your growing frustration to her lack of surrender. Her beauty is astonishingly exquisite, as she separates herself from norm ideals and probably embraces her natural attributes. She reads more than she watches tv and her man admires her intellect. She isn’t a huge fan of mainstream merriment, and you’ll probably find her on the opposite side of trendy social sensibilities. She’s just different.

You see, SHE is the woman we all strive to be. The woman that is inherently within all of us but only some have successfully mastered her revealing. She isn’t the everyday woman and doesn’t desire to be…So it isn’t about who she Thinks she is. It’s about who she Knows she is; and you presumably want to be just that…

 

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This Is What Black Motherhood Looks Like: Birth After Loss

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Seven months ago I randomly submitted a piece to EBONY.com for a Mother’s Day feature, focusing on extraordinary stories of Black Motherhood and what it meant to me. This movement was categorized as #ThisIsWhatBlackMotherhoodLooksLike.  I literally took one of the most tragic moments of my life and commenced to spilling my pain into 1,000 words or less. I had no idea that the remarkably talented, three-time Black Weblog Awards winner, and culturally-aware Fierce Feminist Femme Fatale would actually pick my little ole essay to post! Jamilah Lemieux, Senior Editor for EBONY Magazine, made my day, my week, and inspired me to continue writing. Today I’m choosing to share again this timeless piece with you all, in hopes that I can encourage another Black Mom to keep believing!

#ThisIsWhatBlackMotherhoodLooksLike

 

This is my story…

At the age of 32, married with a busy body toddler, my wish was to “complete” my family by adding on a bright beautiful bubbling little girl. So my husband and I decided to discontinue using birth control and got to procreating! In September of 2013, I got the beginnings of my wish. After about a week of irritability, an unexplained appetite, and literally falling asleep at my desk, I told hubby to go grab the generic two-pack of pregnancy tests (they work better!), and trickled on a stick. Voilà! There it was! That one little pink line that usually defined the rest of a woman’s life. I was pleasantly surprised but still taken aback at the thought of going through the nine-month stretch again. My husband was happy, my mom was elated, and an unsuspecting only child couldn’t wait to become a big brother.

Then, October 6th happened.

Just like any other Sunday, I got up with my little one, made breakfast, and we watched “Elmo’s World.” My husband slept soundly after having worked a hellish 12-hour overnight shift. He had no idea our lives were about to change…as I snuggled into my couch and watched my son play with his toys, I began to mildly cramp up. Nothing extreme. The kind of cramps you have when people reassure you that your uterus is just stretching, so I didn’t worry. The cramps continued on though. A little longer than I had experienced before; and they got more intense. Still not in a panic, I simply got up and went to the bathroom, self-diagnosing myself with “preggo indigestion.” Only, by the time I had finished, I was on all fours in the middle of my bathroom reassuring my two-year-old that “Mommy was ok”, and gently but sternly trying to tell him to go get Daddy.

Mommy wasn’t okay. I was in the type of pain where I couldn’t move from side-to-side. All I could do was lie on the stretcher in the ER and groan sadly that I didn’t want to lose my baby. My husband held my hand tight and whispered to me to try and stay calm and that it would be okay. Again, Mommy wasn’t okay. I watched that ultrasound screen as the doctor poked and prodded earnestly trying to find some evidence of a pregnancy. There was nothing there. All I heard was “This pregnancy will not last. It has not implanted correctly…”

My world caved in and swallowed me whole. I stared up at those offensive fluorescent lights of that ER exam room and hot tears just ran down the sides of my face. I was a mere and fresh 7 weeks pregnant. I didn’t know the gender. I had already picked names though. Just the day before I had gone to Whole Foods and purchased every healthy item that my pregnancy app recommended. But in less than twenty-four hours, I would have a surgery to not only remove my baby, but my entire left fallopian tube. Life re-birthed itself from that point on.

Days were hard and nights were terrible. I boycotted social media indefinitely in the fear of seeing someone’s pregnancy announcement or overly adorable picture of an infant. My Oxycodone numbed me physically but did little to relieve my mental anguish. I didn’t talk about it much and neither did those around me. I cried at night in the living room while my husband slept and thanked God that my little boy didn’t know enough about life to even realize what had happened. I realize now that I probably should have sought out professional help, but I, as many Black women, instead treated myself with journaling, praying, and wine time at noon. After 6 full weeks at home, I realized that life had to go on, my family needed me, my career demanded me, and that I would be Ok.

Mommy was doing better. I finally got life back up and running and moved away from the misery. My husband and I chose to try again for another baby. Low and behold, at the end of January 2014, I got another pink line! A gloomy and strange cloud of uncertainty, doubt, and horror hovered over me, but then I remembered that I was a strong woman, one who needed to become that lost strength for other moms who were afraid to talk about this trauma and ashamed to admit it. So I embraced my pregnancy and celebrated even harder when I passed 7 weeks and we were told that this one had implanted where it should.

On October 9, 2014, Devin Letez Robinson came into this world at 9:01 am, exactly one year and 48 hours to the day that I had gone into surgery to terminate my ectopic pregnancy. My little boy was healthy, happy, and most importantly, alive! He’s 6 months now, and we have an unspoken bond that even I don’t understand at times. I released that hurt the moment he came into this world, and never looked back. I just want to empower other women to know that we can and will survive loss, hurt, and unfortunate circumstance. Black women are often so focused on being the never broken cord, that we forget we are human. I’m here to say…“Mommies, you will be okay!”

 
Read more and see this full article here at EBONY
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Why You’re Really Mad at Ayesha Curry…

 

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“Everyone’s into barely wearing clothes these days huh? Not my style. I like to keep the good stuff covered up for the one who matters…”

Annnnnnd just like that, the World went bananas!

I must say that I am sincerely confused by the uproar that the above comment caused. A bit taken aback even. When did our pedigree become so preposterously loose, tacky, and unapologetically disreputable? It took me awhile to even gain interest in this whole fiasco, but after really sitting down and reading some of the backlash that Mrs. Curry received for her statement, I had to regroup. Let me make sure I have the facts straight here. Society got infuriated with a respectable married mother of two young daughters, who felt as though she didn’t need her pocketbook and watermelons hanging out and on display in public?? Matter of fact, she went even further and told you that her pretty vanilla sugar was only for her husband to observe and enjoy. I’m still trying to figure out the problem here. From another married mother of two children with some damn sense…Mrs. Curry, I salute you boo!

Society has flat-out lost its entire mind. In the plight to achieve equal rights, maintain this overly remixed concept of feminism, and flaunt our independent stature, we have lost what it means to have refined class, dignity, and self-worth. I read this article, Here’s What’s Wrong With Ayesha Curry’s Tweet About How Some Women Dress ‘These Days,’ that had all types of fire for Ayesha. The author lashed out that “She’s [Ayesha] insinuating that women who dress more revealingly are showing off their ‘good stuff’ for people who don’t matter.” Hmmmm, that’s Exactly what she was saying! She didn’t insinuate a damn thing. Baby girl made it real plain.

So of course this got my mind pondering on exactly why women got their feelings hurt by one little declaration of her truth . Here’s what I think:

You’re Really Mad at Ayesha Because…

  1. She Can Back Her Statements Up With Her Lifestyle – This seems to piss people off. I think we would’ve taken her statement a bit more lighthearted and accepting if she was in fact a Complete contradiction of what she was portraying. We’re a society of calculated counterfeit bulls*t! How dare this trick actually be the person that she so arrogantly represents?
  2. She Meant Every Single Word She Said – Chile, she read you all for Filth in less than 100 words, and you were left standing in an embarrassed stupor, in your Jordan onesie, talking about being the baddest b*tch.
  3. It Burned You Up That She Does Actually Have a Husband to Show Her Goodies To – In the words of my Granny, “everybody ain’t able.” Let’s just be honest here. The Mrs just shut it down by basically letting you know that she had her forever, she didn’t need to be half-naked to keep him, and that you probably shouldn’t either. Don’t get mad at me! I’m just the messenger. 😉
  4. You Actually Thought That Dressing Scantily Clad Was Liberating – Fail! I’m all for women’s rights and the quest for liberalism. What I’m not about is losing your soul and integrity to try and prove a point. There are other ways to emancipate your womanly essence without your tatas being on display, or in a dress so snug/revealing that absolutely Nothing is left to your partner, nor the whole room’s, imagination.
  5. She Didn’t Go Along With The In-Crowd – So she doesn’t skip around with the rest of the current media mavens who decided to wear $.99 Leda stockings with rhinestones glued on them, as a dress, out to the latest big event. She also didn’t paint absurdities all over her catsuit and march through Magic City talmbout no damn “Slut Shaming”… How mad does that make you?? I can more than attest to this within my own life. Cliques are very much so real. Even as adults. When you don’t play nice with those intertwined in the ‘Moral Majority’ you get excommunicated and ostracized for going against the norm. People need to realize, however, that everybody is not going to ‘agree to disagree’ with you. Some of us are going to flat out come for your head, eat you alive, and spit out your b*llshit. This is precisely what Mrs. Curry did.
  6. Her Husband Defended & Backed Her Statement – This one right here is what made y’all want to rip her edges clean out!! Not only did she very unmercifully shoot fire with her commentary on Twitter, Hubby came through and cleverly clapped back at the naysayers by posting a flawless picture of his fully-dressed Mrs, and affectionately giving her the name “the instigator.” I do believe that unequivocal support of his opinionated boo thang (and the fact that she is gorgeous in her own right) is probably what made y’all panties hot!

At the end of the day, women need to get back to being women! Classy, elegant, posh, chic, grand, regal…These are all things that we have lost. The media tells us that we need to surgically enhance ourselves to be beautiful because the more of our bodies that we show the more attention that we will receive. Society leads you to believe that it’s empowering to be caught out with your mate, or otherwise, with little to nothing covered. Sorry, I don’t agree. Maybe we could get back to the days where we admired women such as Clair Huxtable and those of her caliber, as opposed to the video vixens, and reality show madams. Just a thought; but hey, what do I know???

 

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Why I am Not Here For the “Stay-at-Home Girlfriend” Movement

 

 

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Lurking on social media I see all types of preposterous mentions of questionable opinions. Lately there has been one pretty spicy topic to come up that I just can’t keep my big mouth shut about.

So let me paint a quick picture…you and your bestie are lounging in the living room, sipping Pino and talking ish. All of a sudden, she makes a statement and ends it casually identifying herself as a “Stay-at-Home Girlfriend” – PAUSE. Now I have some pretty loose-tongued, low-tolerance, comfortably unapologetic honest friends with overly ‘colorful’ points of view! I can imagine the response to that statement being something in the area of “you’re a WHAT Bish???”, lmbo, I’m just saying…So this now brings me to my controversial question of the day: What in THEE whole hell is a Stay-at-Home Girlfriend???

Let me preface my rant by first saying that I am in No way against girlfriends or women that are not married. Nor do I have any beef with single Moms or honestly secure women who feel as though they just aren’t into marriage. What I do frown upon and act real uncouth about are the many lovely ladies out there lying to kick it and putting up a front about what they know they deserve and want from a man. Our society is all caught up in titles. I get it. If we didn’t have titles we wouldn’t know who actually held some kind of importance, versus who just thought their ass was important and should probably have a seat. You don’t call the Alderman the President of the United States. Feel me?? Anyhow, I believe it is this undying and almost mentally debilitating need to be “Somebody’s Something” in life. People take pride in their roles and hold them with great honor. That being said, all too often we like to be identified with, and put ourselves into, categories of those things we actually aren’t. Traditionally, a Stay-at-Home Wife is one that is married to her mate and usually stays home full-time, at either her own choice or the choice of her spouse…because she can. Let’s go a bit deeper shall we. Wikipedia states the following:

“A housewife is a woman whose main occupation is running or managing her family’s home—caring for and educating her children, cooking and storing food, buying goods the family needs in day-to-day life, cleaning and maintaining the home, making clothes for the family, etc.—and who is generally not employed outside the home.[1] Merriam Webster describes a housewife as a married woman who is in charge of her household. The related term homemaker has almost the same meaning but is not limited to women and does not connote marriage.”

So a Stay-at-Home Girlfriend is actually a homemaker that’s not necessarily a woman??? Sheesh, I’m going to leave that one for another post so let me stay focused!… I also looked up Stay-at-Home Girlfriend and you wanna know what I found besides this cute little newly coined acronym “SAHG”…Comical, cleverly asshole-written SATIRE! And that’s Exactly how I feel about it also! It’s a joke! A punchline! A cunningly cute contrast to a life that you probably want but have settled and convinced yourself that you’re ok without. Yes, I said it. I’ve heard this story WAY too many times of becoming the live-in girlfriend who is still dropping painstakingly awkward hints on the hopeless fact that we “aren’t gonna be Just your girlfriend for too much longer”. Again, if you don’t want to get married, click off of my post now and go sip some tea. However, if you DO, read on and absorb heavily!

If you are single-handedly tending to all of the “duties” mentioned above in the “Housewife” definition, and you are a Girlfriend, YOU my Dear need to re-evaluate your goals in life. Yes, I said it again! Ever heard of the phrase, why would you buy the cow if you’re already getting the milk??? (I think that’s what it says, but you get my point). A HUGE problem women have these days is the fear of standing firm, being aware of their worth, and being afraid to demand what they know they deserve. This has set the pathetic tone of our new age man to not give a damn or have any accountability in long-term relationships! It isn’t all that easy for many men to “be ready” for marriage but I will tell you this…He can be ready all he wants, but if he has someone who happily allows his ass to stay stagnant, he Will! Men need to be challenged! ALL OF THE TIME! Even after you marry them! When you no longer become something he has to work for and continue evolving because of, you become the Sunday paper that he keeps picking up and taking in the house as an habitual gesture; because it’s easier and less messy than leaving them all over the porch every week…Holler when you catch it…

ASK for your damn ring! DEMAND your security! SIT your ass in a house everyday that you also own, and SPEND money from accounts that you have the legal right to as well! Now I know some of that sounds a bit gold-diggerish, but I am being dead serious here! Have some Real life ties to this man! We have TOO many unhappy Black women continuously playing this role instead of getting their shit together! Do you know how many times I’ve gotten the searing glare while out with my children or alone and people (Caucasians) learn that I have a HUSBAND as opposed to a baby daddy or just a boyfriend???? The shit is almost unnerving, but it’s examples such as that which get me so irate at our progressive tendency to just take what we can ’cause at least we got that. FAIL! DO BETTER!

Now in terms of the actual “title”, I won’t be calling you no damn Stay-at-Home Girlfriend! Not solely because I don’t take you seriously, but because when people actually ask ME what I do for a living, I don’t answer them “Oh! I’m a Stay-at-Home Wife!” That’s foolish and nonsensical. I’m a married Mother of two who chooses to stay home and take care of my home and children Full-Time, while I run my own business, as opposed to punching a clock everyday. The value I have within my family cannot be measured by a title, but by what I provide to their lives and well-being. I could care less what you call me, but I won’t ever be downplayed and you will never identify me as a girlfriend. So I ask these girlfriends, why try to appropriate a term essentially originated for a wife’s stature if that truly isn’t what you’re trying to be???…Don’t Worry. I’ll Wait

 

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Still a Black Woman With a Story…Still Not Angry

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One of my readers sent me an article to review and give my personal opinion on. “Why I’m Absolutely an Angry Black Woman” is a post addressing all of the reasons why women of color should be angry. Of course this point of view is completely opposite of that in which I recently wrote about, so I’ve given a short response to how I feel about it. I also posted this on my Facebook page but wanted it to reach a larger audience. This isn’t meant to be an entire blog post, but instead a short narrative on why I Still won’t be angry…

“Alright, here’s my thing with this: I read this piece and it’s very good. However, I can say a lot of the same things and share some horrid stories of racism and prejudice that would make some cringe. I was born and raised in the heart of the notorious West Side of Chicago by an old-school down South feisty Black woman, Ethel Robinson. I was then rapidly thrown into the vicious whirlwind of wealthy Upper-Class Northern Suburbia once my Grandmother died. I was 9. With the same thick kinky hair that I have now. They didn’t like that. They wanted to know why my pony-tail didn’t move. I got called to the front office for having the Poetic Justice braids. They weren’t ‘in the uniform.’ My Mom had fun with That one…They wanted to know why my shoes weren’t Doc Martens and why my mother drove an old Fifth Avenue instead of a Benz. Or how about going to birthday parties at Country Clubs where other Moms giggled when I told them mine actually worked. Now don’t get me wrong, my Mom had money. Good money, and a good job. She was driving that car because it had no car note and my Grandmother would’ve turned in her grave if she knew it had gotten sold. She was working as one of the top execs at one of the top companies in the World and she enjoyed it. She saved our money and put aside to actually do things with me, as opposed to putting me off on a Nanny or sending me away. None of that mattered though. I was weird to them. They were mean. I went through a thing those years I spent out in Glenview at that uppity expensive ass private school. A thing I only Recently told my Mom about.

My first job was at Nordstrom in Skokie. I had no idea how cruel, insensitive and racist older Caucasian women could be. I was only 17. I wasn’t ready for that level of enlightenment just yet.

Then there was working downtown on Michigan Avenue with the city’s elite and fetching size 7 stilettos for Black Card toting socialites who thought it was a compliment to tell you how vibrant your ‘dark skin’ was and that you were ‘such a cute Black girl!’ I wore the weaves and covered up my motionless pony-tail so that I could fit in better.

In ALL of that happening, I never bought into being “angry.” There was no point. I took each one of those circumstances and learned something powerful from it! As an adult, I now know how to play all of the sides. I still know how to walk down my old street without feeling threatened and respond when people call me Tricey. I also know how to put on my game face for a corporate meeting and work the hell out of a presentation. You see, we as people of color have to get away from the resentment and oppression and learn to take our misfortunes and experiences as tools towards building betterment! Anger does no good except build on itself and create deeper chaos and cultural entanglement. Learn to let go! I did…and that’s why I STILL won’t subscribe to the ‘Angry Black Woman’ cliché!”

You can also catch this content Black woman spreading all kinds of Naturally Happy joy to others seeking to beat the odds at www.BeNaturallyHappy.com. Grab a t-shirt or a hair product or Whatever it takes you to aggressively go against the anger!

Why I Won’t Subscribe to Your ‘Angry Black Woman’ Cliché

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My role models are a bit different. They aren’t your typical everyday mainstream media household names. While I do appreciate me some Dangerously in Love, Bey Hive has never quite given me the profound inspiration to do much more than dance around my living room in my boy shorts while I Swiffer. No shade to those that have found a soul mate in her, but I am just not that one. While I commend many of our most celebrated and popular celebrities for their success and community contributions, I sit and enviously gaze at a higher plateau of divine being. I’m talking about the Assata Shakur, Angela Davis, Erykah Badu, Nikki Giovanni, Nina Simone, Folorunsho Alakija, Toni Morrison, Iyanla Vanzant, Fannie Lou Hamer, Gwendolyn Brooks type of woman! There is one common entity that make these women noteworthy to me. They all come from a different breed of Black woman. The Black woman who is strong and intense. The Black woman who is passionately opinionated. The Black woman who is educated. The Black woman who is cultured. The Black woman who knows her rights. The Black woman with a story to tell. The Black woman who will make you know and respect her struggle. The Black woman who speaks her mind and fiercely collides with injustice. The Black woman who goes against the grain. The Black woman whose aura lets you know that she’s not the one to mess with…The Black woman who is totally Unapologetic for it all.

All too often our Black women are placed into quite unattractive categories because of our strength. If we talk too loud, disagree too often, curse more than twice in one sentence, are overly confident, or willing to put someone in their place, we are given that dreaded title as the “Angry Black Woman.” I am not here for that load of crap, nor will I ever be! Society has its very strategically oppressive way of diminishing the Black woman’s power, and we continue to let this fly. Each time you hide in the shadows and allow that Queen to fight alone, or worse, judge her because you don’t think her behavior is “lady like” or “appropriate,” you have further encouraged the propagation of our sisterhood decline.

So what’s your real issue with the women who aren’t afraid to possibly ruffle some feathers? Could it be perhaps that she says all of the magically brilliant notions already floating in your little taboo brain? Or maybe you can’t understand how she’s able to get away with such a defiantly honest temperament. I know what it is. It eats you Up inside that this woman is still able to gracefully coexist in a World that constantly tells her she needs to keep her mouth shut and just go along to get along!! Here’s the thing though: You aren’t getting very far traveling in the same rush hour traffic that everybody else is driving in as well. Get it yet?? Shakur’s publication, Assata: An Autobiography, is a literary masterpiece and pretty much changed my life! Her courage, calculated persistence, and lethal tongue lashings gave me a firm sense of super Black girl self-empowerment! They don’t make women like this anymore, and if they do, we don’t celebrate them as cultural icons. We shun them for stepping out of their place.

Of course I can’t address the issue of the feared and resilient Strong black woman without mentioning her said role in her romantic relationships. Again, the types of women I’m talking about are scarce. The backbone is detached and has been replaced by the pseudo Perfect Patty, love-starved weakling who is simply happy to have a man. You all know who I’m referring to. The girlfriend of yours that you want to back hand because she can’t seem to find her own brain functioning in between his cerebral cogitation. She’s lost without his “insight” and has no clue as to the contents of her own identity. She’s the sister friend that won’t remove her weave or wear her hair in its natural state because her man says he doesn’t like ‘nappy’ hair.  She doesn’t drink more than one glass of wine while at dinner because he thinks she’s had enough. She narrows her list of those she is allowed to befriend because he doesn’t want her hanging around, and being influenced by, us strong ones with a big mouth. 😉 You get where I’m going with this — Just as no life is worth living when you relinquish the innate potential to be yourself, neither is any relationship worth participating in where someone is dangling your puppet strings! Just my opinion, but what do I know?

Last but certainly not least, a huge reason why you won’t catch me buying into society’s Euro-saturated version of what I should be is because of the future! Specifically, the futures of the two little Kings that are from my womb. I owe them, at minimum, that regard of being an image of the formidably grounded, audacious Black woman that they will need to have by their sides one day! With all of the struggles facing our Black men these days, there is nothing more important than the strength and awareness of the woman watching his back!

So remain secure in your impression, purposeful in your efforts, and forthright in your delivery. You never know when you’re being that voice and energy that someone needs. As my Granny always used to say…“Those that mind don’t matter, and those that matter don’t mind!”