Current Events

Beautiful You

Dove soap has done it again! Creating these nail biting, thought-provoking videos that turn women into a puddle of water somewhere in the corner of their bathroom. Walking through the “Average” or “Beautiful” door is the latest experiment. And the introspection that ensues for women interviewed is raw and real. 

Most walk through the “Average” door. One mom has to pull her daughter through the “Beautiful” door. One woman, even up until the end, isn’t quite sure if she will ever walk through the “Beautiful” door. A mom and her son walks through the “Average” door. She’s struggling with whether it’s because she believes she’s average or whether she’s believes the press and what others have categorized her to be. And the saddest by far: the woman who stood there and quickly turned and walked away. She didn’t want to make that choice. 

How many women are locked into this paralyzing fear about our looks, our talents, our being? That we aren’t sure of our self-worth? That we have no clue as to who we are and whose we are? I confess, it took me a very long time to get comfortable in my own skin. I spent my teens years, envious of the friends who seemingly had it all. The parents who let them stay out late, the cool clothes to go to places and stay out late. 

I spent my twenties battling with the single me versus the married me and trying to figure out which was really me. Part of my thirties was in a battle to beat the race towards motherhood. Secretly dreading raising kids alongside people I practically helped raise. I’m not sure when that “aha” moment came. I can’t confess to a “Road To Damascus” moment. It may have been gradual or sudden. Who knows? 

But I know that “Beautiful” door is mine for the taking. It’s yours for the taking. It’s ours for the taking. The Beautiful you who has more mountains on your frame where there should be valleys. The Beautiful you whose hair be it kinky, straight, yours or not, or none doesn’t make or break you. The Beautiful you who may have gotten those two or three degrees or just beginning to figure out what your trajectory in life will be. The Beautiful you who chose to be the CEO of KIDS or the CEO of a business. The Beautiful you who God declared was fearfully and wonderfully made! Whose latter house would be greater than the former house! Whose mind wasn’t fearful but Christ-centered and fearless! 

Be that Beautiful you. Werk it! Own it! One step at a time. 

In love and transparency …

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Current Events

New Year Musings: Your Online Presence

Over dinner with some friends, the subject of one’s privacy on social media came up. Apparently when you opt to not reveal every twist and turn of your personal life you are the one being “extra.” We now live in a society where one’s need for privacy is demeaned and ridiculed. How dare you not show the world your “arse” and #breaktheinternet!

There really is no throwing back the fish once it’s caught but you can certainly stave off any further bloodletting when it comes to your social media presence. I’m a prude by nature and as a blogger, I walk a tight rope of sharing just enough without sharing too much. With one press of the button my blog is sent to three social media outlets and is out there for posterity. I keep telling myself that public office isn’t in my future anyway. Well, after four years of blogging and being an online pundit, it isn’t now, lol!

Our image, our reputation, our character is put to the test each time we share out on the internet. Here are some things to keep in mind for the new year to keep the cops from your door and you gainfully employed.

1. No revealing photos. Kim K gets to go back to her mansion at the end of her photo shoot. You get to go back to your 9-5 where folks know where that paw tattoo is located in your nether regions. #TMI

2. Your personal values will always be on trial. People have lost recommendation letters and didn’t even know it! All because you opted to put some off the wall comment about your boss or how much you don’t like coming into work early. #File13

3. Don’t ask dumb questions. Yes folks. There is such a thing as asking dumb questions. Don’t tell my middle schoolers though. Social media should not be where you get your counseling from. As a licensed clinician, it reads to me as a pattern of attention seeking behavior and unfulfilled relationships. Call or text your real friends for all that. #CallTyrone

4. If you don’t want it mentioned during a job interview, in counseling with your therapist (on second thought, maybe you should) or in front of your pastor, keep it off the airwaves. Facebook is going to pull your photos whether you like it or not and make a “hella” slideshow of your life for all to see. #KeepItKosher

We all enjoy sharing pieces of our lives with our social media “friends.” It’s how we now connect with each other. It’s how some feel they can remain relevant. Let’s just not sacrifice huge chunks of ourselves on the internet altar for 300 likes and side eye glances the next day. #FixTheInternet

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Being Pretty Is A Must

Black female college student is barely in her first month in school when a white classmate reaches over to touch her hair and says “Must you always look so pretty?” A loaded question for any chocolate girl growing up in today’s society. This isn’t going to be a black girls versus white girls blog. So calm your nerves way down.

It’s In Us
Call it a Pan-African thing, but no matter where women of African descent call home today, there is something within each of us that harkens back to our roots. I recall flipping through National Geographic as a child, seeing the women with elongated necks coiled with raw metal; of ears that dropped to shoulders heavy with gold; of clothing that made our skins the perfect backdrop for every color under the skin. Black women have NEVER met a color that didn’t like us. So…yeah we do pretty really well.

It’s Through Us
Today I sat and unabashedly watched an older woman with gray hair. I marveled at her smooth skin. There were no crows feet roosting on her face and no laugh lines renting space. She and so many of her generation make me eager to age–and to age oh so graciously. Her visage tells me that she’s lived a good life, she’s been loved and she has loved well. It speaks of a life that’s been lived in moderation, where excess is a stranger.

It’s About Us
I may not have grown up buying clothes from the top shelf stores but I knew that I couldn’t come out the house looking any kind of way. I had clothes for every occasion and was discouraged from blurring the lines. Clothes were ironed every Sunday of the week before being put in the closet. My first roommate couldn’t understand why I ironed my jeans and t-shirts. She was white. I gave her that. It’s a Black thing.

It’s In Us
My mom was recently hospitalized and was ready for discharge. When I asked if she wanted to wear the clothes she came in, you may as well have stuck a knife in her heart and turned it. No Black woman, no matter how low she has been brought will think to walk out looking less than the best. So your girl had to drive all the way back to the house and actually make sure that I found a skirt and top that “matched”.

It Is Us
I stopped making apologies for being mindful of my appearance a long time ago. There are those who are perfectly comfortable coming out the house looking any kind of way. I was never one of them. I’m mindful not to let it get in the way of living and relating to others, but what I look like is part of who I am. So yes being pretty, looking pretty, feeling pretty is an absolute must.