What I'm Talkin' Bout
Womanhood. Blackness. Parenting. Location Independence. Pain. Acquiescence. Spiritual Entrepreneurship. Touchy-feely Shit.
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Yes, this is about the incredibly unjust Mike Brown decision. It is in fact about police officer, Darren Wilson, not being indicted after murdering a young black boy in public. We are angry, and thankfully, we are inspired toward creating a different experience. I’m sharing this recording as a reminder of the importance of self-care and self-love in light of major tragedy.
Your You-ness is divine, and your ability to nurture that You-ness is one that requires attention, intention, and consistency. Self-Love need not be a reaction to a pain point in your life. Choose to pay more attention to yourself and your own needs; Mondays are great for re-setting powerful intentions like these.
If you’re a woman, If you’re a person of color, If you’re gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender,
if you’re a person of size, a person of intelligence, a person of integrity, then you’re considered a minority in this world.
…And it’s gonna be really hard to find messages of self-love and support anywhere.
For us to have self-esteem is truly an act of revolution, and our revolution in long overdue. -Margaret Cho
I had spent so much time fighting for myself that I’d assumed it was because I loved myself, and because I wanted to be happy and to be free. But as my battles continued, whether I won them or lost them, I grew into someone different than the one I was fighting for.
And once that version of me, the survivor, was ready to shift from survivor to Thrivist, she needed distance between herself and the feelings associated with the circumstances that had once held her captive. I needed to stop comparing my current life to my past life and release the tethers, so that I could fully embrace myself in the current moment.
Are you familiar with the term, Ma’at? It’s the name of the Egyptian Goddess who represented truth, order, and balance. Ma’at is also used as a philosophy that carries the same energy as the Goddess. So, one can practice living Ma’at by seeking harmony among all aspects of life.
The term, for me, holds particular significance in my experiences with motherhood, as I believe in harmony over balance, when it comes to work-life flow. For me, the practice of living Ma’at helps me prioritize the role of curiosity in motherhood
I feel that I get better at understanding my daughters when I stop assuming that I know, and start getting curious about what might be. I know it probably sounds more sensible to say that we have to know what our children need, but I caution you against that.
Aamut delivered The Unschooling Entrepreneur’s Guide to Life & Learning to the Afinana community as part of an education workshop series, and emailed me with some questions from her tribe. I’ve responded to her questions (and then some) in this format, and I hope it makes it easier for you engage, explore, and encourage yourself through some untethering and unmuting of your own.
As I matured into adulthood, I would sit quiet in conversations at work or even among my friends afraid to express myself because I might say the “wrong” thing. I was well into my 20’s before I understood that having an opinion did not mean I had to agree with everyone else — that it was ok for me to publicly say “I disagree” though I didn’t do it very often at that time. I disagreed inside.
I share these things not because I believe everyone should unschool, but because I believe everyone should know about this option for themselves and their children. I get that it’s not for everyone, but information offers access to the power of informed decision-making, and that is definitely for everyone.
I’ve been working on a series of essays about the mothers, sisters, and other loved ones of Black boys like Michael Brown, John Crawford, Travyon Martin, Darius Simmons, and girls like Renisha McBride. While I heal from the inside, I feel rage for their Mamas. Women whose journeys toward healing broken may be miles in the making. Let me start with me, and then work my way toward doing what I can for them. And for us.
So, if the one thing I never wanted to do was now being done, what was the point of moving on? How could I not stop and ask myself what to do next? I had to slow everything to a halt. Let myself fall. But I didn’t expect to not be able to get up. I stayed fallen. Broken actually. And I almost stopped trusting my footing. The dreams I had held on my head …
i feel value in looking past the moment these days, because should I stay (t)here—I will die. i will pack my bags, blow out my candles, roll up my mats, tie my locs back, and let my dreams die. should i stay in the moment, the bit of me that still sees the possibility of happiness will drown…
I think Matthew is a brilliant young man, but his perspective on what it means to thrive in America is a lid-on philosophy to which I am vehemently opposed. If we took the stance that certain things are only for certain people, I shudder to think of all the ways that women, immigrants, the elderly, poor people, and all other categories of traditionally marginalized groups would rise out of their situations and into fulfilling lives.