Discomfort with Rage
Injustice in America
As I sit here after several hours of watching white nationalists storm into the nations capitol and create chaos, I realized how uncomfortable I am with rage. I pulled away from the television, prayed, cried and realized there’s no way around these feelings if I want to live.
I am a Biracial Black Woman, Mother to an amazing Black Male Teen. I want the best for him as well as all Black and Brown children in this world. In my 50 years on this planet I have seen countless acts of violence against Black and Brown people. …
Born in the 70’s to a Black Woman and White man, I was the bridge that brought hatred together.
Raised to be Black, after the age of 7 when my father left.
Black family, Black neighborhood, mostly Black friends, Black church, my only touch of Whiteness was from Summers and holidays with my Paternal Grandparents. Plus the occasional visits with my father that diminished over the years.
Never understood the constant stares directed towards the Brown Black Woman and her Pale-skinned daughter. “You’re Black,” is what my family told me.
A Black male relative told me for years, “You Black! …
That 2-week Shelter-in-Place order seemed like it was going to be a welcome break from the everyday tasks of life. Then 2 weeks turned to 4, then 6 then… Before I knew it I was scheduling insanity in order to express myself so that I could stay “sane.”
Having both introverted and extroverted qualities, I thought I would make the best of this time. I had my “homeschooling” time with my son, taking care of minute business tasks while looking for work and then overbooking myself with Zoom meetings to stay “connected.”
Then after I could no longer take looking at my screen, I spent more time staring into space watching my thoughts as if they were a scary, but enlightening suspense thriller. Just as I thought I was going to break, I saw that Tracee Ellis Ross released her debut song “Love Myself,” from her new film “The High Note.” …
I decided to do something different this morning, “I’m going to follow business hours,” I told myself.
I woke up, focused on gratitude, stretched, and facilitated my own yoga practice. I completed 3 rounds of a breathing exercise I learned from a program I took last year.
I made myself a nourishing breakfast of scrambled eggs with rice, raw garlic, sea salt and black pepper. Of course I made myself a pot of tea, licorice root, elecampane, and ginger. I looked outside and noticed how the neighbors trees swayed to the sounds of the winds. …
Self-Care and Shelter-in-Place
It’s been 5 days since the Bay Area was ordered to “Shelter-in-Place” as a measure to stop the spread of the “Corona Virus.” I actually do not mind being at home, on my own or with my son and cats. Something about being ordered to only go out for necessary reasons that’s made this time more of a challenge for me. However, I’ve stayed in to do my part to stay healthy and keep others safe as well. One thing I noticed however, was that I stopped getting dressed in the morning.
I’ve changed my routine for no real reason other than being inside more. I’ve been sleeping in later than usual. I also have been showering in the afternoon rather than first thing in the morning. Instead of wearing regular clothing, I’ve put on a new set of pajamas or sweats. I’ve had online business meetings with a nice top and pajama bottoms, hey, no one can see, is what I’ve told myself. What I’ve noticed is that my spirit has also felt low. …
In a World of Racial Tension, I Taught My Black Son to Love His White Great-Grandfather.
It Was a Natural Union.
I don’t remember the first time I brought my son to meet my Grandparents, but I do remember a welcome reception. I, the oldest granddaughter, was the last of the grandchildren to birth a child.
My Grandparents loved children. I grew up with them loving me, their bi-racial granddaughter born between their White son and my Black mother. I grew up spending countless weekends, holidays and summers with my grandparents. …
I Gave Myself a Year to Eat a What I Wanted and I Went Overboard.
Grief and Emotional Eating
It started innocently enough. I had a very stressful couple of years. My business wasn’t doing well, we were having housing challenges and I could not find a traditional job. I did enjoy a couple of cheat days, but then I decided I would allow myself to eat what I wanted, within reason.
Knowing I spent years recovering from a gluten-induced illness, I knew I would not overload on glutenous foods. However, I did eat more than usual.
At first it started with what I call Ancestral Foods. I would think about my Elders before me as I cooked hearty foods that were traditional to my family during my childhood. I made more Succotash, but dismissed it as making it more “healthy,” which it was. Then for me the unthinkable happened. …
An Inappropriate Union
I was 16-years-old and on a Hawaii trip with the Senior class from my high school. We had very few chaperones, and they’re busy doing their own thing. The main chaperone told us at the meeting prior to leaving, just be careful because, “I don’t want nobody’s mama showing up at my doorstep 9 months later talking about their daughter’s pregnant.” That was that. The party was on.
Going to Hawaii with a bunch of other high school students was great. We drank plenty of alcohol, ate plenty of good food and partied, we had a good time. …
I Tried to Feel Sorry For Myself Today
A Moment of Mindlessness Led Me to Productivity
Last month I experienced a pretty traumatic car accident. The insurance covered the cost of the car and my treatment. Since my car was a large part of my income and I live in a fairly remote area, I felt financially strapped and stuck. Our Christmas was pretty slim and though I felt pretty grateful to be alive, have a warm home, a brilliant son and two amazing cats, I felt resentment over my finances.
The day after Christmas, while my son was at his dad’s, I felt completely unmotivated and fearful about the future. I planned a day in bed with Netflix, but then something amazing happened. …
Cape Verdean Cuisine
The Essence of Soul Food
Imagine walking into a beautifully decorated home and greeted with hugs, happiness and plenty of laughter. Children playing, teens and tweens huddled around each other, elders laughing and talking, some in American English, others in Kriol, the Cape Verdean Language. Everyone else is doing the same. There’s plenty of wine and beverages for those who do not drink alcohol. The table is filling fast with a variety of different traditional holiday foods. Then the moment arrives when someone asks, “ Are we ready to have Cachupa?” “Yes!”
I jumped up and made sure I was the second person in line to have my bowl filled with this hearty stew made with samp, beans, greens, corned beef, love and much more. I was hooked at the first bite. My love deepened as I went on to the second bite and then eventually my second bowl. I would’ve went back for a third when I reminded myself there was a table full of other foods just waiting to be consumed. …