>A few weeks ago, I go into the break room at my job to see this foolishness.
National Library Lovers Month????!!! REALLY??!?!?!
This is the second year in a row, that I’ve seen a calander that recognized February as something other than Black History Month. No mention of it at all. At. All. Of course, I was offended. Highly offended at that. But, I took a minute and thought about it. Why was I upset? Was I doing so much for Black History Month that I had a right to be upset that it was being ignored by someone else? I mean, the last time I remember doing anything to “celebrate” it was in elementary school. In my adult life, all I can remember doing to acknowledge the month is wearing black pride tee’s to work. That’ll show em. *blink*
So last night, I decided what I WOULD do for Black History Month. I took the four steps from my bedroom door to my book shelf, and took down this book I’ve had for years.
I found it at RVO a while back (my Rochdale heads know about there lol), but never really got into it. No reason in particular, I was probablly just distracted by something else. Ultimately, I decided I would observe Black History Month by educating myself. I’m going to venture to say every African American of a certain age (at least over 18), raised by even semi aware parents, has a basic understanding (i.e. has at least heard of) of the black experience in the United States.
From slavery, the great migration, Jim Crow and segregation, the Civil Rights era, the Black Power era, crack in the 80s and early 90s, manditory minimum sentencing, etc., etc., the black history of this country is a colorful, complicated, and diverse one. I can’t imagine anyone, especially a non historian or non history aficionado, knowing all of any culture’s history, let alone one as vast as that of the African American people. I can say, however, that I have been fortunate enough to have been educated in an amazingly beautiful elementary school, where my teachers cared and loved us enough to educate us not only as students, but as human beings. We all knew that no matter how many times we got screamed on, or flicked on the ear, that that teacher did it because she loved us. We knew that the reading assisgnments were given to us because that book had something that we needed to know. Many of these same wonderful educators made it her business to make sure we knew about our black history. I also come from a family that is very aware of its history, and believes in passing its story down. But I digress….. a little. Eh, what’s new?
So. I decided to educate myself. I realized I had no right to be upset at someone else disregarding Black History Month, when in effect, I was doing the exact same thing. There is no reason for me to walk around demanding that everyone wish every passing black person a happy Black History Month and resolve to keep the hope alive. The whole point of Black Hisotry Month is to make sure that the hard work, accomplishments, and sacrifices of our ancestors is not forgotten and lost. I could think of no better way to observe Black History Month than to make sure they weren’t. I always liked history. Just because I’ve graduated, doesn’t mean I have to stop learning. At this point, I can create my own curriculum, if you will. I can delve into the area’s that interest and concern me, focus in on what I don’t understand, and find entirely new pieces of information to feed my mind. The internet is an amazing tool, but there’s nothing like a good book. So far, I’m loving the narratives in When I Was A Slave. It’s been too long since I’ve picked up a new book, and I can’t think of a better reason or time than now.
What’s your “favorite” era of black history? What are YOU doing to observe Black History Month?
>Yup. Valentine’s Day was two days ago. I enjoyed mine, thanks for asking. Wait,what? You’re telling me about yours? No, I didn’t ask. Please, stop explaining. lol I jest. I do hope everyone had a nice day as well. Amidst all the cynicism and negativity about a day centered on love, someones “love” tweets sparked quite the thought process for me. This person, in general, is a positive person, I believe. They post a lot of really great tweets about how beautiful black women are, and all that jazz. Nice right? Yeah….. until it gets a bit self righteous and ethnocentric. I’m all for black love, self love, and bettering “the race”. But, NOT at the detriment of any other. The tweet that started it all was “black men and black women NEED each other… to be whole.” I respectfully disagreed. I replied that I was a whole person, on my own, regardless of whom I chose to be with. I feel that if I’m single, in a relationship, dating or any other possible option, I am still unequivocally me. I’m still in the process of learning who “me” is, but regardless of my total understanding of such, it stands the same, that I enter every situation as such.
I feel that every person should enter a union as a whole person. I know I don’t want “half a man” to try to come into my life, expecting me to “complete” them, the same way no one wants a sloppy me. I’m not expecting everyone to have everthing in their life carefully mapped and/or planned out. I’m just not wanting to hold any adults hand. I’m all for helping, but not for living anyone else’s life FOR them. I’d love for someone to sweep me off my feet, indulge on lavish spending sprees for me, eat at the best restaurants, you know, the Pretty Woman story line (minus the being a prostitute part. TOTALLY minus that part). HOWEVER, I don’t EXPECT someone to do that for me. Would I welcome it if it were offered? Hell yes. But I’m fully capable of surviving if it doesn’t happen. I actually don’t expect it to. And I’m ok with that.
The tweet began a mini debate. It went into interracial dating, and whether or not a black man or woman could exist without the other. I’m all for interracial dating, so it follows I believe I won’t drop off the face of the planet if I don’t marry a black man and procreate “black” babies. I get that to continue the black “race” black men and women need to procreate, the same way Hispanic or Asian couples need to procreate to continue their race. I don’t think there are any extention concerns at this point, so I’ll work on finding love regardless of the color he happens to be. Besides, do we really need to get into the lack of the credibility of “race” in itself? Didn’t think so. Trust we won’t be opening that can in this post.
This whole being single time of my life is suposed to be about me getting to know me. It’s about me living my life and growing into the person that I ultimatly hope to share with my future husband and children. Isn’t the point in being single to be the love you’re looking to attract? Through the little blessing that surprisingly enough is Twitter, I stumbled upon @MastinKipp and The Daily Love . If you don’t receive his emails everyday, or at least get his tweets, you’re missing out. This young man is remarkably inspiring and his daily inspirational emails have spoken to me on numerous occasions. Between Mastin, The Daily Love, and simply growing up and listening to my inner voice, I’ve accepted that there’s nothing wrong with being single. Instead, I’ve started to make sure I make good use of it.
This is the time I’m suposed to use to get my act together. I believe, God hasn’t sent me “Mr. Right” because I’m not ready for him yet. His blessings come in His time. When I’m at the right point in my life, he’ll come. And not before then. Instead of trying to rush the blessing, my time is much better spent preparing for it.
Besides the whole disagreement on who needs whom, the issue of “not understanding someone so thinking they’re wrong” came up. If you’re lucky enough to have had the privilage, you know that I HATE when someone makes assumptions about me and how I feel. For example. Never assume, then tell me, I have an attitude. ESPECIALLY when you don’t even have a tone of voice with which to infer such. THAT will ultimately result in me catching an attitude. Works everytime. I pride myself on being openminded. I’d say I make an effort to
listen, then talk um…. try and be understanding of all situations. Just because I don’t agree with something, doesn’t mean I don’t understand. Just because I understand, doesn’t mean I agree. I’m a fan of being unappolagetically me. I am who I am. I may not share all of who I am with you, not necessarily becaue I am ashamed of something, or because I don’t accept something, but more because it’s none of your business or because I don’t feel the level of our relationship requires full disclosure of my every human truth. With that said, I’m a proud member of team #LetsAgreeToDisagree There is no need for anyone to alter their beliefs to make someone else happy. Neither one of us will implode because we don’t see eye to eye on a matter! It’s the nature of life. Not every shape fits in every hole. That doesn’t change the shape of the shape. Not on any day of the week.
>I’ve been in quite the funk all day. No reason in particular, just not feeling it today. I called my dad this morning, and as he usually does, he brightened my day. So, a special shout out to Senor Padre (that’s honestly how I refer to my dad lol). That good mood didn’t last too long though lol.
The gym wiped me out last night. The whole ride home, all I could think of were a beef patty with cheese and peperoni and a shower. Needless to say, I opted for the food first (as I generally do in life lol) and can’t remember much else after I finished the patty and decided to take a quick “nap” before my shower. One point for exhaustion, zero Dana. Oddly enough, that insane “I can’t think anymore, I’m so tired” feeling felt GREAT. It meant I had accomplished one of my short term goals. This one goal, as it sometimes happens, was comprised of other small goals. Let me break it down……
I joined the gym a few months back, I think around September or so. I joined because I had just recently turned 25, and that came with quite the list of new worries and concerns. I’ve always been fit; I always had a high metabolism. I could eat whatever I wanted, in whatever quantities and have no weight concerns. From what I was hearing, that doesn’t last long past late twenties. I noticed that I was getting out of breath easily and was always tired. The way I saw it, nothing on that list was reason for serious concern at the time, but would only get worse with time. Why not nip it in the bud? An ounce of prevention right?
Ok, so I joined a gym that had yoga class in particular during times that were convenient to me and was midway between my home and work. I bought a bunch of work out outfits and went to the gym maybe ten times before I went on hiatus lol. So fast forward five or six months and here we are (see my previous post The Story Of The Old Man Who Out Pilated Me). I decided. Mentally, put my foot down. I was going to start a regimine, and stick to it. I decided on 30 mins on the elliptical (the treadmill hurts my knees. Never had the best knees), about 20 minuets or so of stretching and then my class (pilates Monday and Wednesday, and yoga Tuesday and Thursday). Well, I’m happy to say I did it. I flippin did it! Funky mood aside, it feels SO good to have reached my goal. I’m proud of me. Nobody being proud of me feels better than ME being proud of ME. I motivated myself everyday (Monday through Thursday) to take my tail to the gym, whether I wanted to or not, regardless of the weather or how I was feeling at the time. I worked through my sore muscles and got done what I needed to get done. SUCCESS. Not only did I go to the gym every day I intended to, I stuck to the plan. I did my class everyday AND my thirty minuets of machine and stretches. Yay, me. I guess the next step should be eating healthier. I’m pretty sure that beef patty with cheese and peperoni at 9:30pm wasn’t the best for me (it was AMAZING though), but it was quick and did the job. There should really be healthy fast food options available late at night (besides a day old salad from Wendy’s or McDonald’s)……
For me, accomplishing that small goal, is somewhat of a spring board. I managed to conquer that, so now, let’s try something else. Of course, the next challange is how long I can keep this up. I did it for one week. Can I do it the whole month? Should I set certain guidelines for acceptable reasons NOT to go? lol I’ll take baby steps for now. I’ll work on just sticking to my current plan, and see what happens. What should I try next? Thinking of a new goal is going to be interesting. But for now, I’ll bask in the rays of my small win.
I love twitter. I’ve met a lot of great people, and picked up a LOT of amazing, and positive inspiration. I’m going to make this a recurring post topic, where I share some great links and introduce you to people I can’t get enough of (via twitter. Real life, yo no se). Obviously, this is new here. I’m really excited about it, because I feel like this adds a really nice element to my blog(affectionately known as “My eWorld”). I’m not 100% sure how I’m going to do this, how many people/sites to feature at a time, or how frequently I will do it, but roll with me as I share with you my first healthy doseage of Link Love.
This morning, Terrance J (106 & Park, now also of The Game) dropped some gems. I’m not a 106 fan anymore (aged out of the “I give a damn” crew on this one), so I didn’t see him as relavent….. until I saw him on The Game. He surprised me with a great performance, so I started to follow him on twitter @TerrenceJ106 . I’m now glad I did. Thanks to @Necolebitchie of Necole Bitchie, here’s the link to his inspirational tweets A Message From Terrence J.
*side note* I also love the Necole Bitchie site. Check her out. It’s mostly about black hollywood, but I’ve yet to come across anything sleezy and trashy. THAT’S why I keep coming back. Great set up, great articles, it’s a #win in my book. Another similar site that I love to check out is The Jasmine Brand. You can follow her on twitter as well @thejasminebrand. I love her site because it’s tasteful and informative. Unlike MTO (whom I WON’T link) these two ladies manage to maintain sites mostly centralized on black celebrities sans the rude and disrespectful slander. Just get to the point and tell me what’s new in pop culture. Job well done ladies.
Can’t say I remember when I started to follow @shaydechelle, but I’m glad I did. She’s freaking hilarious; the intelligent and witty kind of funny. Today, she posted a link to a Front-Free article. Just in time for black history month at that,lol. Utter, insane, comedy. I had to hold the tears back at my desk. You can follow her on twitter or check her out on her blog Miss Dechelle.
Whenever I have a makeup question, I check out this lovely young lady (and currenlty, a lovely young mom to be! congrats!!) @makeupkimporter. She has been maintaining an awesome makeup blog Makeup By Kim Porter, and is a makeup artist available for hire in NYC. I actually know her in real life, and she’s the sweetest. Amazingly (I don’t know how she does it), she also maintains an abso fab pregnancy blog Beauty and the Bump that I can’t get enough of.
I stumbled upon @msgoldiloks through another one of my twitter friends @yoliethejew (’cause I know she’d be mad if I didn’t site her lol). Golidloks is an INSANELY talented new mom (I don’t know how she finds time for it all). I love not only the lay out and general appearance of her blog (which she designed herself *e-high five on that one boo, lol), but she has incredible content as well. One day, I’ll venture to try one of her recipes. I love her posts on fashion, her beautiful daughter, the abso gorge photo quality on the site, and her awesomly creative arts and crafts. I can’t wait to order one of her Junkyard Windows. They are beautiful. Check out her blog at goldiloks, and don’t forget to stop into her Etsy store. She has amazing work.
Another person of interest I’d be amiss if I didn’t mention is @MarvilleAtMe. His tweets are so insanely random. He’s the most sarcastic, funniest, mean, nice guy I think I follow, and I e-adore him (i.e. I love his twitter personality. Don’t know him from a hole in the wall in real life, but on twitter, he’s good people). My timeline would be wackjuice.com without him lol
>Ok. To begin, I had an AWESOME day at the gym last night! All day I had psyched myself out about going to this yoga class at 6:30pm. I purchased my lil yoga mat last week, and told myself it’d be the start of something new. Yesterday seemed to FLY by, and 6:30pm was quickly approaching. The closer the end of my work day came, the greater my impending fear of this class grew! Go figure! I was so nervous!! What was I so afraid of? I’ve taken plenty of dance classes, been the new girl in the dance school a few times before, and was fine. What was the big deal with a yoga class at the gym?? As I began to question why in the world I would be afraid of this class it hit me. I was stepping out of my comfort zone. When I was taking these classes, and starting at new schools, I was in my best shape, like, ever, and dancing regularly. All I had to do show up and execute. Now, being that I haven’t actually taken a class in QUITE some time, I knew I wasn’t “in shape.” Ok, I LOOK in shape, but for those of you who actually ARE in shape, you know that looking it and actually being it are two totally different things. So by 5:55pm, I was at my limit. I think I subconsciously found extra things to do at work, just so I wouldn’t leave in time to make the class on time lol. I sabotaged myself!! Within those last two hours of my work day, I learned two lessons.
1) My fear of yoga class was not so much about the yoga (I’ve sat through a few meditations at home with a dvd I’d purchased before), but about not being good at it. If you don’t know me personally, you don’t know that I’m a brat. I HATE not getting my way. ABHORE it. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve of course learned to mask it when necessary. TRUST I know how to act. But, when I’m with friends and loved ones, you’ll know when I’m not happy lol. I filter myself when I’m on the clock, but in “real life” I know how to “tell em why you mad D!” I was afraid that I would fail. That happens to be one of my biggest fears (and also, I’ve found, one of my biggest barries to success) in life. I just don’t like getting it wrong. For the most part, if I feel like I will mess up, or something won’t work out, I a.) don’t bother doing it, b.) I’ll put less effort into doing it, or c.) begin doing it and not finish. I’ve got to get over this if I’m going to become what I’m supposed to become in life. Whatever that is.
2) Stepping out of my comfort zone is a catalyst for growth. Now, I’ve known this for a while, but I had one of those “Ah haaa!!” moments. It really did hit me. I was sitting at my desk at work, and it was as if a little fairy sat on my shoulder and said, ” You’re never going to grow if you don’t step outside of your comfort zone. Just try it! You’ll be fine.” Well, i heard what she said, let it sink in, and kinda disregarded it lol. I know! I know! But don’t judge me!! Baby steps…..
It turns out, the yoga class had been cancelled. I guess the instructor didn’t show. So, I went through with my normal work out (thirty minuets on what I’m pretty sure is an eliptical, then crunches and stretches). Between the machine and the stretches, I went back to the locker room and ran into someone I know. Now, I have someone to workout with some days. #win. When I got up to the room I use for stretching and such, I realized that a class would be starting in about twenty minuets. Courtesy of my sometimes awesome iPhone, I figured out it was a mat pilates class. I decided I’d redeem myself from the yoga debacle by staying for the class. That was a great idea. I loved the class! I will definitely be there on Wednesday for the next one. Excitement aside, and on to the reason why this post is titled as it is. An older man, who I’d venture to say was easily in in late fifties, early sixties used the mat next to me. I knew he was in shape as soon as he started to stretch out for the class. I figured he’d done a few classes when he asked about who was teaching this class, but kinda disregarded him. Well honey, he showed me. When I was struggling and “resting” he was going on with ease. I think I did fine with the class, considering I’ve never done it before, and it was the first class in anything I’d taken in years. But. Homie is now the competition. There’s no way I’m going to let this guy out pilate me for much longer. I’m making a vow to myself, sans snow days from work, I will be at that blasted gym. I will be able to do ALL the exercises in the class by the end of the month. Also, I will
try to stop being my own worst enemy. I don’t have to be afraid of every new idea I come up with. There’s no need for me to continually doubt myslef; that should be someone else’s job. With these new efforts, I will start what I finish (within reason, let’s be real). I know I’m destined for greatness, I just need to get the ball rolling. Game. On.