You Wanna Run That By Me Again? (31)

I had a different post that was to go up for the Hump Day Blog, but I HAD to touch on this. And it all stemmed from a photograph on Instagram that I am in TOTAL agreement with.

An absolute truth...

An absolute truth…

For those who may not be familiar w what I actually look like, I am a “dark-skinned” African-American Woman. Yet, in order to be considered “pretty” or “beautiful”, the skin tone that carries the most beauty, stereotypically, is one w a lighter hue. The phrase “you are pretty for a dark skin girl” has been said to me on several occasions, and each time, it was not taken as a compliment…because it’s NOT a compliment. Saying someone is pretty FOR any reason other than just being “pretty” is insulting, rude, offensive, disrespectful and extremely ignorant. It’s the same as saying something like ‘you are very attractive for a business owner’–does that make any sense? Neither does the message in that photo…

When I was a little girl, living in the South, I was often teased FOR my dark skin. I was called all kinds of names, and words do indeed hurt (you can lie to yourself if you want to). I would come home crying to my parents about how I was made fun of, and all because I was usually the child w the darkest skin in my classes. Thankfully, I was blessed w parents and extended family who always encouraged me, loved me, and accepted me w everything that I had. I have always been beautiful to them because I was a part of them. But w them loving and validating me (as parents and family SHOULD do), it’s NOTHING like realizing your worth on your very own. The very first time I heard someone say to me ‘you know, you are pretty for a dark skin girl’, I was angered. I vividly remember saying, in one of those instances, ‘you wanna run that by me again?’–they looked at me as if to say ‘did I say something wrong?’, and I proceeded to explain that I’m not pretty FOR a dark skin girl, but that I am a “pretty girl”. They reluctantly received what I was saying…good…just as long as they “got it”… (sidebar: me being a “pretty girl” has nothing to do w my Sorority lol).

I am a beautiful, dark-skinned woman…not beautiful FOR a dark-skinned woman; there is a difference in the two statements; a very BIG difference. I take great care of my skin (I’m actually pretty anal about it lbs), and it’s blemish free and soft to the touch (thanks to Drop’s skin care secrets). I keep myself together because that’s something that I love to do for me; others just take notice. I have a desire to encourage as many people as I can, and I try to look for ways to constantly improve “me”. Outside of that, I believe that I am beautiful; so that in and of itself MAKES me beautiful.

It’s always a good thing to watch what you say and how you say something. Don’t worry though; if you say this to me, I’ll get you straight!

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(Have you liked this page? Go now!)
Elle

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Enough For Everyone! (27)

One thing I’ve noticed in my adult years, is that kids aren’t the only ones who don’t particularly like to “share”. Big ole grown men and women have a difficult time either sharing the spotlight, acknowledging a milestone in the life of another, or are just down right all about self.

I know I’m not the only one who has experienced some form of “hatred” or pettiness directed at them. In every single situation, everyone has that “thing” which sets them apart from the next person. And that’s ABSOLUTELY the way it should be. For example, I am a singer. God gave me that very sweet gift, and I use it #wisely. However, God also gave Faith Evans, Brandy, Dorinda Clark-Cole, and August NightinGale those very same sweet gifts. My sound is not like theirs; and because I appreciate my own gift over anything, I can celebrate the impact that THEIR gifts have had, and continue to have, on my musical ear. To attempt to chip away at them as artists, downplay their success, or to completely try to copy their styles, means that my focus has shifted away from my own gift. There’s nothing wrong w my gift…and I can celebrate them as well as celebrate my own. Those women mentioned above can straight up and down SING. Period. They have a gift that they work on continuously…and so do I! If there’s enough room for all of those vocal beasts to walk around and ALL be amazing, there’s also room for me to be just as awesome in my own way!

As a community of “people”–not focusing on any specific race (because every race “hates” on another)–we need to do better in learning what our own personal value is FIRST. I said this yesterday in response to a post that I was reading…”so much would NOT take place when a person is secure in themselves; and so much WILL take place when a person is NOT secure in themselves”. Just think: if you are confident in your own abilities, another person’s gifts/talents won’t sideswipe or impact yours at all. Your belief in self HAS to be first priority. No one will be able to do anything in the fashion that YOU do things; focus on that! You are a brand…yes #you…and there is enough room for you to “make it”! The next person is also a brand. If you are lucky enough to experience your neighbor’s blessing/breakthrough, praise God for it; because that means He’s in your neighborhood (My Daddy says this OFTEN…and it’s so true; I’m living this now)! I have met some people in such a short period of time, who have received tremendous blessings in their personal and professional endeavors, and I’m thankful to be able to SEE it!

I MUST thank all of my #true supporters in my business ventures, and the ones close enough to see what I’ve been blessed w in my personal life; I love you and I thank God for all of you. God made enough room for EVERYBODY to get it! Celebrate and be grateful for the space provided to you, and you’ll be able to easily celebrate someone else’s!

Elle

The BEST Part (15)

The Best Part

by: Elle

The best part about an apple is the crisp.
The best part about a plum is the juiciness.
The best part about the salon is the SHAMPOO (lil piece of heaven RIGHT there)…
The best part about a “job” is when you’re through.

The best part about not speaking is what can actually be said through your tears.
The best part about a smile is that it can hide your fears.
The best part about a loving “touch” is how secure it can make you feel.
The best part about being a Black woman is that we are symbols of resilience and zeal.
The best part about a bad day, is that the day HAS to come to an end, and the best part about that? God willing, you get another chance to do it all over again…

The best part about a lie is that it still isn’t as beautiful as the truth.
The best part about your feet is that they still can’t fill my shoes.
The best part about your past is that it’s YOUR choice to stay in it; it’s all up to you who you let KEEP you in it.

The best part about God? Before you spoke, He already knew.
The best part about praise is that it’s not about you.

The best part about a trial is the triumph at the end.
The best part about me?

…is my desire to win…

One Final Thing: The best part about “time” is that we all are given the EXACT same amount each and every day of our lives. The difference between you and I is in what I do w mine.

*smoochface*

Elle

How Does This Thing Work?! (13)

Ever wonder how relationships work?

Ever ponder whether or not it’s even worth the risk of heartache?  Or even the potential of having/meeting the one true love of your life?  It’s definitely not an easy task to take on, and you have to be comfortable (or content, if that makes you feel better) w the fact that the RISK is EQUAL TO the potential REWARD…I mean you REALLY have to come to grips w that…

Well…I took a class, back in the Fall of 2010 at my church.  It was the first time that this course was offered for people who may be thinking of (and who had questions regarding) long-term relationships i.e. #MARRIAGE.  Since that is something I am considering in my future, I wanted to know WHY I was even considering such a covenant (even though a healthy marriage was on FULL DISPLAY in my home w my Parents).  The title of the class? “Before We Say I Do”, based off of a book written by Marvin A. McMickle.  This is the book that my Father uses for his couples going thru pre-marital counseling (my Father is a Pastor and a mighty good one).  The book talks about 7 Steps To A Healthy Marriage, and the Chapter Titles are Faith, Friendship, Frankness, Forgiveness, Fidelity, Finance, and Family (even if you do not desire marriage, this book is a GREAT read). The book goes into SERIOUS depth about all of those things, and even shows how all of them are connected.  In the course we watched movie snippets, had class exercises–some were men vs women lol–and we talked openly about our fears and what we were looking forward to in marriage.  There were plenty of single parties in the course…some engaged couples, even some couples ALREADY married, but looking to get a better understanding of how they could be better IN their marriage.  I later came to find out that some of the couples that were in the class parted ways.  And I just wondered if maybe they figured out (for themselves) that it just wasn’t worth the risk…?

One HUGE point that will ALWAYS stick out from that class is the fact that it will always be a challenge bringing two different households together.  Your mate was shaped by their families, or lack thereof, as were you.  However, you should come together and be in agreement on the MAJOR things (refer back to the 7 chapter titles above).  For example, if your significant other prefers to smoke his/her life away and hang out in the streets every chance he/she gets, and you are not interested in those things, problems will arise.  If BOTH of you are “shoppers” vs one being a shopper and one being a saver, or BOTH of you being tight wads w the funds, then oh yes indeedington…problems will arise LMAO.  If you are one w a strong work ethic, realizing the absolute truth of “if you don’t work, you don’t eat”, and your significant other can’t hold a job due to reasons such as “I don’t like people telling me what to do” (yet AINT STARTED ANRA-NARRY BUSINESS TO BRING IN REVENUE, but thinks he/she gives sound advice on HOW to move around in life), problems will arise.  Not saying that the two of you can’t have different views on things, but on the MAJOR things though?  Yeah…you’re gonna have a problem if those don’t mesh.  If you don’t like sports and he/she does, fine.  If you aren’t interested in sushi and he/she is, that’s fine.  If he/she thinks the idea of “money well spent” means how many times you buy up the bar at various clubs though…you get where I’m going w this.

**So how DOES it work?  You have to communicate; LISTEN; be honest about what you want; be straight forward about what you will and will not deal with; learn the definition of the word “compromise”; be supportive; show RESPECT…and while you’re doing all of things, don’t lose yourself during the process and pursuit of a healthy relationship. It’s always been ok to just be YOU…so why change what attracted them to you in the first place?  It’s scary to love someone, and allow yourself to be close to them…risky, yet rewarding; I’m all for it…

**–this paragraph in particular is also relative in platonic/familial relationships, not JUST intimate ones…#CLEVER huh?

*smoochface*

Elle