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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Elle

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 Happy Side (26)

It’s so very unfortunate that people will find any excuse NOT to be happy. I find it hard to believe that, for some, there is NOTHING good found in a day…at any point. I happened to be tweeting about how some would rather focus on jerks who cause them drama; my good friend Cynara replied back “it gives them something to do”. I couldn’t agree w her more…

But something to do? Being miserable, negative, and otherwise petty is some people’s “something to do”? Do you know how much time you have to dedicate to being “messy”? You first really have to #have frequent drama, which (to me) means that in most cases, you’re actually doing something to cause it if you ALWAYS have it. Secondly, you truly have to SEEK to focus on the negative aspects of a situation or of a day, which means you “major in minors”, as my Daddy says (love him!!!!). Thirdly, but not lastly (I’m just stopping at three) you haven’t learned the art of ignoring ignorance. Everything doesn’t require a response or reaction. I’m just saying…

Now…we all have rough times w life, people, jobs, etc.; I just don’t personally want to be subjected to you–the one who doesn’t yet have a handle on how to keep it moving–on a daily basis. Some ppl get muted; some get deleted; some just get all the way blocked.

I will be the FIRST to admit that I have my struggles, my tears fall, and my mood will shift. I just don’t want to be known as a “complainer”…so a lot of things are kept “in house”, if you will. Aaaaaaaaand, the vast majority of my personal life is simply none of anyone’s business.

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The face shown here, is highly indicative of my daily mood…even tempered. I’m more or less just glad to see another day!

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I smile!

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I’m shy!

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I’m silly lol

Buuuuuut I’m genuinely “happy”. I have chosen a happier side of life, even in the midst of a ridiculous moment! I keep pushing until my hardest moments are only a fraction of who I am. Eeeeeeeven in the loss of my Mother, I #chose to be thankful that her pain was gone. I simply choose joy.

Elle

Big Decisions (23)

I have had to make some major decisions in the past year (and an even larger decision will be made in the coming months). But the biggest decision that I have made–outside of starting PRbyELLE77–was to give my heart to another person…who appears to be the #right person.

It was not easy. I was EXTREMELY afraid of a repeat of my past encounters in relationships, but I made a decision to “let someone in”. My heart, as well as yours, is a saaaaaaaaaaacred space…SACRED…

The only being capable of keeping my heart safe is God. I know this for a fact; He gives ALL cares about me, and it’s ever apparent in the fact that He’s allowed me to see the light or gloom of a new day for the past 12,410 days (give or take lol). The only other man who has consistently loved me, and has always been w me, is my Daddy. To this day, I can count on his love and support. However, when I met my love three years ago, it was merely infatuation lol. I didn’t think much of it; I was “dating”. My heart was w me completely, and at that time, there were several men vying for my undivided attention. Whatever; they were “half-assin’ it”, so I played them just as short. It worked bc they eventually realized that I had made the decision to take them w a single grain of salt. Ha! Thinking back, I had a great time playing the field…but…

Let’s fast forward to 2011. Communication became more consistent; my heart would explode every time I would see, or even think of, this person; my smile was uncontrollable; butterflies had permanent residence in my belly! This was different…so I made a HUGE decision to open up to the possibility of “real”. And w that decision, I was deathly afraid. God didn’t give us fear…so I had to let that go…

Welp! We’re in 2012, and we’re happy…loving each other in a way that has never been expressed before for ANY others in our individual pasts. I’m also so in love w ME, that if anything ever happens w us, I’ll be thankful FOR this love. And it all started from a decision to try something new…

All I’m saying is…decisions have to be made everyday. It’s the BIG decisions, though, that require patience w yourself, serious attention to detail, and faith that you are doing the right thing–even if it may hurt. My big decisions speak to how much trust I have in my prayers going up, and how much faith I have in God to lead me down an approved path. I’ve even asked God (early on) to remove this man COMPLETELY, if he meant me no good. One year and 12 days later, he’s still around…I guess he can stay lolbvs…

Elle

Just One Moment (22)

ONE single moment can change your entire outlook on any given day…

July30th may not mean much to anyone–just a random Monday–however that was the day that I fought for my life. The Doctors came out of the operating room, into the waiting area, and told my Daddy “we’re losing her”; I’m NOT supposed to be here, but by God’s grace, I AM here. I will never look at July30th the same EVER again. That “moment” on the morning of July30th changed my life forever.

If a woman’s beau proposes to her on a Tuesday, whatever she experienced earlier that day will no longer matter; that four word question has changed her life, as well as his, and her Tuesdays from now until eternity will all be different.

You get into your car, headed to meet up w friends for a celebration, but you’re thrown off course because of a car accident, due to a driver running a red light. Your survival of/regrouping from that accident will change how you drive…even if you were not the cause of the loss.

We associate our life’s experiences w “moments”. The day you deliver your child will be associated w what you were doing the “moment” prior to labor lol. The day you got “that job” will be associated w what you were doing the “moment” you received the job notification! The smile that you may give a stranger in passing may be the very “moment” that they then made the decision to push through a difficult time, instead of jumping off of a cliff to their death. When “he” or “she” wholeheartedly expresses their love for you, (and you realize what it took for them to open up to you), will be associated w where the two of you were headed, what was on tv, whatever the “moment” may have been.

Moments matter, period. Life is simply a vast array of moments, waiting to be remembered. Creating beautiful moments won’t be just for you though, dearest readers. The smile you randomly give/gave may never reveal what that gesture may have done for someone else’s life, so just do it anyway–that’s creating a beautiful moment. It may be something that you’ve done out of habit; who says that habits can’t be good?

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