Wednesday, April 23, 2008
This weeks events have prompted deep thought. My sister/best-friend is getting married to the man of her dreams. I can remember not too long ago we'd sit around and day dream, fantasize, wish, and hope that we'd find the man of our dreams - or how I like to call it . . . Finding Forever. We'd dream of "when". What he'd look like, how he'd kiss, and what he'd like most about us, what he might like least about us. Naming non-existent children, trying on potential last names. Everything. Her "when" is now, this Saturday, and I couldn't be happier for her. But it doesn't stop Saturday at the altar. When the DJ plays that last song, the cake has been ravaged, and everyone goes to their respective places of rest . . . They are left to deal with each other. Forever. Still young and pretty happy with being "single", this still made me think. Forever. That's a long time. But when you're spending forever with the right person, time flies by. I guess you can say I'm in pursuit of my forever. Or shall I say, I've developed a lofty ambition to make myself a forever for someone else. That's the clincher . . .
Monday, April 21, 2008
Something struck me a few days ago and I decided to use it for today's topic. A very close friend of mine and I have based our relationship on being brutally honest. No holds barred. We tell it like it is, as the saying goes and it's made our bond almost impeccable. But our method of friendship got me thinking even more . . . If only everyone applied that philosophy to all types of close or love relationships. Then I thought a little more and I asked myself this question - "Why is it that strangers have a tendency to be more honest with you than the people closest to you?" The sales woman that tells you those pleated slacks make you look just a little too hippy. The coworker that tells you you're over-bearing and too talkative, or the classmate that tells you she thinks you're distant and aloof. Why do those that don't know us at all fell freer to tell us the truth?
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
A couple of nights ago I sat down to watch a movie called "Something New". If you haven't seen this movie, I'll give you a short synopses. It's about a career driven woman (African-American) who gets set up on a blind date with a free-spirited young man (Caucasian) and she's put off by his race but is intrigued and surprised that she's actually attracted and interested in him. She hires him as her landscaper, allotting for them to spend a good deal of time together. Long story short, they enjoy a quiet meal at her home after he'd worked in her yard all afternoon and they get on the subject of race and dating. He says something to the effect of "So, you don't do white guys, huh?" And she says, "I happen to prefer black men. It's a preference not a prejudice." And of course, it made me think. Preference and not a prejudice. This isn't one of my usual ranting blogs this is actually one that I'd like to generate a discussion about. My question is, is there really a difference? If you prefer one thing over another aren't you displaying a type of bias? And is that really a bad thing? We usually take prejudice to mean something awful and horrid and have a tendency to associate it with segregation and the Civil Rights Movement - and with good reason. But if you prefer one thing or person - in this case - over another for personal reasons are you wrong for that?
My initial intent was to title this blog "Truth and Lies". But then, as always, I thought and thought some more and light bulb! It hit me like a ton of bricks. Truth and lies in regard to the context that is to be introduced shortly is merely a secondary entity or issue regarding a particular society of people. Who? The society I'm referring to is The Society of Black Women or how I've come to refer to it - SBW. So truth and lies and The Society of Black Women - how do the two coincide? Well, that's simple. I can speak candidly about said society because I, myself, am a proud member. It seems to me that we [African American women] have succumb to the smoke and mirrors. The illusion that we are the weaker link (as a sub-society of America as a whole). This is the lie that is in a rigorous and tedious game of tug of war with truth. And truth has to become the deep-seated victor in this "game". Now, truth can only be powerful and triumphant when acknowledged and the TRUTH of the matter is, black women as a society are a force to be reckoned with. We're dangerous and I mean that in every positive way possible. For every video chic there is a black woman ready and willing to take a stand for class and elegance. For every high school and college drop-out there is another black woman ready and willing to implement and instill the power of knowledge and a good education. We're the half of the the "larger" of our society [the amazing African American man] that gives our men that nudge of support. That "Baby, you can do this." We are forces of nature. but it's partly ingrained and partly decided. And the latter carries the most weight. Believe the truth and not a lie. The truth - We're bad! It's more than simply rising above the influence. We have to become the influence. Taking sole responsibility of the power of our minds, regal presence and appearance, and the resilience that was birthed in us. Once again, it's a decision. It's laughable how easy it is to believe a lie and the truth is something that we have to repeat to ourselves over and over. So do that . . . I'm bad, resilient, educated, strong, beautiful, and BLACK. It's your choice.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
I felt it only appropriate to do a continuation of yesterday's blog and yesterday I brought to light a struggle that we all face in our race, truck, or journey to find peace, fulfillment, and freedom in life. I discussed the misunderstanding of fear. FEAR THE FRIEND INEVITABLY MISUNDERSTOOD. My next statement might sound a bit paradoxical but I'll provide an analogy shortly. Our new friend "fear" has a foe by default. Care to take a guess as to who or what? It's courage. Yesterday I mentioned acknowledging our fears. Approaching them. That's where courage comes in. Just like any unhealthy friendship, fear equals paralysis. It keeps us from moving forward and inertia is deadly. Courage is the cure to immobility. Now for the analogy that a million analytical thinkers have pulled from - The Cowardly Lion. Even though this fictional character is a classic, I wouldn't call him a coward. I'd call him REAL (in spite of the overt nature of his fears). Eventually he balanced out the power that he gave his "friends" (fear and courage). He faked it until he got it and eventually courage became the vaccine for his paralysis. Maybe it was bitter medicine but it worked like a charm. Basic, maybe even a little juvenile, but isn't it more than applicable? Now the only way to do this is to be self-supportive. You have to be able to look within. You won't find it in other people - courage lies in YOU. The question of the day . . . which is dormant and which is alive and kicking - FEAR or COURAGE?
Monday, April 14, 2008
This morning I sat down to my desk and turned on my iTunes. I decided to listen to John Mayer's second to last album Continuum and the song The Heart of Life began to play. I've heard the song countless times but he said something that really stood out to me. "Fear is a friend that's misunderstood." Being the deep thinker that I am - loving to rip things apart and put them back together, I sat at my desk and kept repeating those words to myself and came to the realization that that is the most amazing truth I've heard in a while. "Fear is a friend that's misunderstood." We often run from our fears due to a misunderstanding that we aren't willing to take the time to grasp a full understanding of. But a friend? How is fear a friend? Well, if we think about it in pretty general terms, our fears come for the simple reason of us facing and conquering them. Once that fear has been looked square in the eyes and you've "taken the bull by the horns" and conquered that fear once and for all it does indeed become a friend. Whether it be the fear of failure, abandonment, or falling in love . . . in all these cases these things have to be faced in order for us to live a semi-sane, semi-normal life. It's a matter of developing a healthy relationship with your fears. Not worshipping them and giving them more power than necessary. It's a matter of acknowledging and then extinguishing them. So maybe I'm reaching . . . but I have a new friend.
Monday, April 7, 2008
It’s ironic how the words of the wise fall on deaf ears. Often times we take for granted or, better still, under estimate the wisdom of our elders. This weekend I attended an event and shortly realized that I was at a seniors home. I happened upon a woman in a wheelchair perched by the elevator. You know, one of those that goes ignored or passers by like to pretend isn’t there and I’m not ashamed to admit that I, in deed, tried my hardest to pretend I didn’t see her. I stood in the area where she was a few feet away from her and she struck up a conversation with me. Mind you my back was turned but she didn’t seem to care. First small talk and then she went deep on me. We somehow got on the subject of relationships and she uttered the most profound thing that I’d heard in a while. She seemed to read into my body language and could tell that I had a lot on my mind. She said, "When you’re eating and you bite your tongue, you don’t cut your tongue out and throw it away do you? No, because you still need it." Often times in relationships we get to a place where the man or the woman may not be "acting right". But that isn’t to say that we need to walk away prematurely or cut that "situation" out of our lives completely. Especially if your heart is in it. This doesn’t mean that staying in an unhealthy relationship is wise. But when a "situation" is pulling at your heart strings it hurts, it stings, and it may be uncomfortable, but the beauty of that is . . . in time it heals.
Friday, April 4, 2008
This is a bit of a paradoxical statement but I've heard several people utter these words and lately they've been making me think . . . a lot. "The only things constant are change and change." Now, if by chance this is true, why are people so put off by the changes that arise in the nature of our loved ones or life in general. I chose to apply this statement to relationships (i.e. friendships, romance, sibling relations, parent/child relations, etc.). Often times, we get annoyed, put off, offended, and are ready to throw in the towel when the people that we are closest to make a change in lifestyle or they have a slight personality shift. If we really love these people we roll with the punches but deep down are still asking ourselves the question, "Why the sudden change?" All the while, not realizing that as ironic as it may sound they are, in fact, showing or displaying an "off-type" of consistency. They're being inconsistently consistent. I'm a camilion and can change with any environment and have caught flack for my ability to be so versatile, if you will. But what I want to know is why the response is negative when change comes? Isn't change the only constant?
Thursday, April 3, 2008
We hear people say all the time, "I’m living in the moment" or "I fly by the seat of my pants" or "I’m not a planner". But what they (or we) don’t understand is that your today is in direct correlation to your tomorrow. What happens today is a format or blueprint for what’s to come. Now, that’s not to put TODAY in a box. I’m speaking figuratively. Today you may misstep, make a wrong turn, or say the "wrong" thing. Lessons learned and those lessons are the formulas that we apply to tomorrows blue print.
In 1965 the Rolling Stones released a song called "(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction". Mick Jagger belts out how he just can’t seem to achieve satisfaction. Initially, the song sounds negative. But I began pondering and listening, reading and re-reading the lyrics to the song and decided to ask myself a very simple (or maybe it’s more profound than I thought) question . . . Is lack of satisfaction really a bad thing? I’m the type of person that enjoys something for a little while and then shortly there after, begins looking for something bigger and better. I’m the never-satisfied, career-driven, Alpha female that knows what she wants and won’t stop until she’s . . . well . . . satisfied. I’ve come to realize that satisfaction in all areas of life is relative. But really, is never being satisfied negative or does it say something positive about your character?
So there’s this movement that is sweeping the planet. Everyone seems to be going green. This phenomenon is for all of those tree huggin’ environmentalists (I try my best) that want to do their best to slow the effects of Global Warming. Me, being the overly analytical thinker that I am, decided to look a little deeper into the GREEN MACHINE that is today’s society. I began to think . . . if only people went green in their personal lives, oh what a difference it would make. Some call it green living, others may refer to it as eco-friendly, my personal favorite is compassionate living. The whole purpose of the movement is to eliminate toxicity and live a more earth friendly life. But what people – myself included – fail to do is to do the same house cleaning with their personal lives. Reducing the use or tolerance of toxic friends and romantic relationships is even more bio-friendly, if you will. I’m just as earth conscious as the next person but what happened to being self-conscious? Something that was made to be looked upon as being negative and a non-necessity is, in fact, imperative. Being self-conscious about our surroundings (i.e. social circles), how these circles permeate and influence our lives is necessary to our happiness, well-being, and most of all, our sanity. If the influence isn’t positive, don’t you think it’s time to GO GREEN and take yourself through a social detox?