Category Archives: Social Media

My Problem With The Body Positive Movement

I’m quickly realizing that I’m not THAT woke. I’m not woke enough to defend grown ass women showing up to their child’s school in bonnets, not woke enough to touch a lawnmower, not woke enough to not laugh at a grown ass man with a yorkie and not woke enough to act like there aren’t health issues associated with being overweight.

I’ve had this blog written for awhile but I knew it’d be controversial and I always lose ‘friends’ when I talk about this topic. My opinions the body positive movement, gender reveals and child support really set people off and to keep it 100, I enjoy getting a reaction out of people. But I’m gonna say this now, I’m not going back and forth with you niggas after I write this as I am too busy living my best life.

Here’s the picture I saw that made me decide to finally post this:

I chose to leave out the @ of the person who posted this because after looking at the rest of their timeline and the thousands of responses under the tweet, I’m not going to add anymore wood to that fire. I quickly realized that this post was a simple projection of their own unhappiness and insecurity and I know how stressful it can be to have your notifications blowing up with people telling you why you’re wrong.

There’s a LOT to unpack here and I feel it necessary to get some precursors outta the way. First of all, the Body Positive Movement centers whiteness. I’d be remiss to not say that out loud. My friend Hess Love wrote a very insightful article addressing White Supremacy, Fatphobia and Colonialism.

Second of all, Fat-Shaming is very real and only one thing on a list of challenges people of a certain size face. Fat-shaming is defined as criticizing people to make them feel ashamed enough to lose weight. It does not work. It actually has quite the opposite affect. Many times critics are people who have never had to struggle with weight and who won’t say anything to their 350 pound momma. If you are not a healthcare professional, you have nWo business addressing someone else’s health. Weight is no measure of character and is no excuse to mistreat someone. It’s none of your business and if you’re doing it to a stranger behind a screen, you’re only doing it to make yourself feel better. Stop offering your unsolicited opinions, especially on people’s bodies. Nobody asked you.

But that’s not why I’m here.

I’m here about the section of the Body Positive Movement that shames people for losing weight.

The Body Positive Movement promotes being happy with your body at any size. From my view, it is largely just a marketing campaign. These days, more women are a size 12+ so (depending where you are and what you’re selling) it isn’t as profitable to JUST make clothing sizes 0-10 anymore. Clothing companies dgaf about you or your health. They only care about your money. If the people with money are a size 22, they’ll make size 22 available so they can get that coin.

I have a T-Shirt company (shameless plug!). When I started out I bought S, M, L, & XL shirts. Since many of my customers are grown ass Black women, I wasn’t moving those Smalls and Mediums at all. XXL and XXXL make up a good number of shirts I sell so those are what I buy first. Capitalism drives all things in this section of the world. The Body Positive Movement wasn’t made for body positivity for real.

As a Black woman that’s size is well into the double digits, I can appreciate the body positive movement. It DOES make me feel good and included to scroll through IG and see more girls that wear my size promoting clothes that will actually fit my body. I know exactly how bad it feels to not be able to find your size in a store. I still rarely go into the fitting room or even shop for clothes. One of my favorite stores, Old Navy just recently started going past size 12 in pants and offering XXL and XXXL shirts. I remember a time when stores like Lane Bryant were the only place I was going to find a pair of pants that fit. (It’s still one of the only places I’m gonna find a bra, pray for me.) Again, this movement in large part was created just to sell clothes and I’m buying them.

While I do believe there are many well-intentioned people behind the movement for Body Positivity and that we should love ourselves regardless of our physical state, I think the movement has the potential to be dangerous and I’ve experienced this potential first hand.

A couple of years ago, I was invited to a community group for fat people by a classmate of mine. I guess I thought eating healthier and physical activity would be involved and when I asked, the response was hostile to say the least. Frankly, it was a group for fat people to meet up… and eat. I always want to support anyone attempting to do something positive but I couldn’t reconcile being part of community of people hostile to weight loss when weight loss was one of my accomplishments and goals. I felt so guilty and shallow.

I ended up in a long unproductive Facebook debate. My fear was that the health implications behind being overweight were being denied and ignored. I talked about how much better I felt because of recent weight loss and them bitches they down played my hard work. They were attempting to gas light me into thinking the improvement in my health had nothing to do with my weight loss.

I had followed a strict diet for a month, dropped 20 lbs and as a result normalized my blood pressure and reversed pre-diabetes. I was proud of myself and they brushed it off. I ended up telling them in so many words they were full of shit and of course, got blocked. That is one of the only times in my life I’ve ever felt bullied.

Now, lets talk about this picture. I looked up the website that created it, and here’s what they have to say about before/after pics. I don’t disagree with most of their views. But the context in which I saw this picture is problematic and becoming a trend so lets address that.

How is shaming people for making a choice about their body ‘Body Positive’? How (in response to abortion legislation) do you scream about a woman’s choice then a week later say ‘fuck her’ for losing weight? In my last blog, I said Pro-Life people weren’t REALLY pro-life, but I’m starting to realize pro-choice people aren’t REALLY Pro-Choice. Many so-called liberals, social justice warriors, and people who fancy themselves ‘conscious’ and ‘woke’ are really pro-you doing only what they agree with or pro-you doing what THEY want to do with THEIR body.

I see this parallel in how women who go on ‘slut-walks’ turn around and shame women who chose to wait until marriage, be stay at home moms or chose not to post their whole birth canal on the ‘gram. That’s why y’all love to hate Ayesha Curry. But that’s a different blog for a different day. The point I’m trying to make is, some pro-choicers are fulla shit too and that there is a Regina George in every group, even those fighting for equality.

Furthermore, if you were that secure and content in your body, seeing someone choosing to lose weight and celebrating it wouldn’t be such a trigger for you. We don’t see things as they are. We see thing as WE are. Nobody posting their fitness journey is thinking about you or trying to offend you. My grandaddy always reminded us “you just aren’t that important”. In many situations, the hostility you feel for others is really the hostility you feel for yourself and your choices. The big mental health challenge of social media is constantly seeing people’s highlight reels and feeling inadequate by comparison. That’s all being mad about somebody’s before/after is. You’re unhappy with your ‘before’, lying to yourself and that has nothing to do with the person on your screen and everything to do with you.

The community and encouragement I’ve received from posting about my weight loss has really benefited both my mental and physical health. I am encouraged and motivated by the fitness journeys I’ve seen and want to provide that same encouragement to someone else.  I’m supposed to not post my journey to make YOU feel better? What about how I feel? This particular section of the movement is narcissistic, insecure, self-centered, projecting and needs to keep that toxic energy over there.

“Posting weight loss shows which bodies you value.”
It absolutely does. Mine is the body that I value, that’s why I’m making healthier choices for it. I am capable of choosing to lose weight and still valuing/fighting for a person who chooses not to.

I’m not qualified or willing to tell you why you should lose weight. That is none of my business. I can only speak for myself. 5’2″ carrying around 310 pounds was one of the most unhealthy points in my life. Granted, a large part of that was my mental health. Stress caused me to develop a very unhealthy relationship with food and I was trapped in a vicious cycle. 40-ish pounds later, my skin is clearer, my hair and nails are growing faster, my period is more bearable, my blood pressure is normal and I’m able to tackle life’s problems with more confidence; not because of my looks but because I set a goal and was able to accomplish it. I am proud and will be on the social medias celebrating and not apologizing.

Which brings me to my next point; your triggers are your responsibility. You have the freedom to choose what you will be exposed to. To protect your energy, you should be very intentional about what comes across your screen. For my sanity, I do not watch videos of cops harassing/killing Black and Brown people. I rarely read stories about children being abused. I took a 5 month break off of Facebook after Surviving R.Kelly. I have my own father blocked. I don’t have the right to tell people what they can and cannot post. I only have the right to refuse to be exposed to it and enthusiastically unfollow, block and delete.

In conclusion, if weight wasn’t a factor in health, we wouldn’t lose it when we started making healthier choices. Our bodies are made to carry a certain amount of weight, period. Our organs struggle to function when surrounded by too much weight. I am an activist passionate about the freedom of my people and that includes our physical health too. I’ve lost many family members to diabetes and heart disease. As long as I’m walking by caskets and visiting hospitals about problems that could be solved with lifestyle changes, I’m not going to be quiet about health to appease anyone. Any movement that makes anyone feel guilty for losing weight is not a movement at all, it’s a group of mean girls.

Fuck my weight loss pictures?
Fuck you.

-C

 

 

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Commentary on Demetra Nyx & Alyssa Milano: White People Don’t Have Enough Problems.

A few weeks ago, my mother and I were on our way home. It was 10pm and cold outside. A white woman was running down the street, presumably for exercise. Of course, we had the ‘white people are white-people-ing’ conversation. Why in hell, are you running in the dark and cold? You’re less than a mile away from a treadmill inside a well-lit gym, Karen.

During undergrad, I remember sitting in a meeting of a certain organization listening to a white woman proclaim how much she enjoyed her period. I thought to myself, hoping it didn’t show on my face, “you’re outta your white ass mind.” 

White people don’t have enough to do.
White people don’t enough problems. As a result, they tend to create dangerous situations and faux-oppression for themselves.

From climbing a mountain with no harness, to bungee jumping, surfing, hang gliding, to running outside in the dark and then crying on 20/20, white people obviously have an adrenaline deficiency they’re trying to fulfill. None of the above activities seem reasonable or fun to my Black ass. My experience is different though. I have no shortage of adrenaline. I know this whole thing could end any time if for no other reason I’m at the intersection of Black, Woman and Queer. I look at every cop with the knowledge he could kill me and get away with it. I look at every white woman wondering if she’s going to call the police on me for exhaling too loud. I have no shortage of fear and problems.

Since the tangerine tyrant won the Presidential election over HRC, social justice is now mainstream. It’s laughable to me as social justice has been at the forefront of my mind since The Jena 6. Activism is my goal and calling. I’m tired of seeing people hopping on the bandwagon for 15 minutes.
 
White people WANT to be oppressed so bad. I do not label myself a feminist in part because at its inception white women were just trying to make sure Black men didn’t have more rights than them. There were no Black women at Seneca Falls. White women remind me every election that feminism is not mine when they put their ‘I voted’ stickers on Susan B. Anthony’s grave. Fuck Susan B. Anthony.
 

 

At the time I’m writing this, I’m 2 months into a Facebook hiatus (for my mental health, weight loss goals and my dislike of people). I peak at Twitter every now and again. But after these posts, I’m considering going back to being blissfully unplugged. The two people in particular facilitating my complete exit from digital civilization are Demetra Nyx and Alyssa Milano.

Let’s talk about Demetra first to get it out of the way cause I’m grossed out. An article entitled ‘Feminist Smears Menstrual Blood on Her Face to Show Periods are Beautiful and Powerful’ scurried across my timeline. Demetra is a 26-year-old Los Angeles sex coach who said, “Sharing pictures of blood on my face and body was just an impulse – I was creating a series to help women connect with their menstrual cycle, and I thought it would be fun.”

Cut the shit, Demetra. Our periods are not fun or beautiful.

As someone with a period, I’m fully ‘connected’ to this 28-ish day cycle. Physically, mentally and emotionally for nearly two decades, I know exactly when and what’s going on concerning my cycle. There is no more intense connection then cramps, bleeding, an irrational chocolate craving, acne, fatigue and a hurricane of a mood. I deserve some type of monthly award for managing to not get pregnant every month instead of this shit.

I realize that not everybody’s period is as bad as mine but I think we do ourselves a disservice when we try to make this cycle something its not. Frankly, it sucks for a lot of women. It is not fun, it is anything but beautiful. We don’t frolic in Lilly fields wearing white pants giving thanks that we get to bleed for a week.

 
The 20 year old me felt very alienated sitting in that circle of white woman gushing over having a period. The (almost) 30 year old me is not going to fake the funk anymore. My period is not fun. It sucks. I do not have to enjoy everything. Somethings in life are bad. I will not want to share everything on Instagram and that’s OK.
 
We also need to address that ‘free bleeding’ (a hoax) , rubbing your Menstrual blood on your body and using it for paint is disgusting, unsanitary and blood STINKS when it hits the air. I’m no expert, but its leaving our bodies for a reason. It is a natural process, yes. Our bodies have many ways to eject what is no longer needed. That is no excuse to rub the results on your face. If we aren’t going to use tampons/cups/pads, what use do we have for band-aids and toilets? Why bathe at all?! Its all natural, ain’t it?
 
*shudder*
 
There IS a conversation that needs to be had around menstruation.
&
 
 

The second white woman we’re going to discuss is Alyssa Milano. This morning, I saw this tweet:

 
Gtfoh. You’re Alyssa fucking Milano. You are a rich, cishet white woman. 
 
I would be lying if I said I was surprised by Alyssa’s latest antics. Two years ago my auntie-in-my-mind Hannah Drake told Milano to stop her performative justice. It seems she still hasn’t learned.

Oppression and identities are not a trendy T-shirt, pink hat or, God forbid blood to put on when it’s convenient. The very fact that your brand of oppression can be taken off, proves that it is not oppression at all. We do not have the option or convenience of taking our identities off. This intersection of identities is not one that we can get on a plane, train or automobile to take a vacation from. Believe me, we would if we could.

In this social justice production, your role as a person of with a certain amount of privilege: a white person in this case is an important one. Justice does not happen without advocates. The progress we have made would not be possible without allies. There are people who will NEVER listen to someone like me. Those same people will definitely listen to the Alyssas and Demetras of the world if for no other reason for the fact that they are pretty white women. Unfortunately, more often than not, those people are the very ones with the power to change. I am not holding my breath waiting on Alyssa or Demetra to be allies or advocates though. Their actions have told me what their true goal is.

When Alyssa Milano claims identities that are not her own, when Demtra Nyx… gosh I can’t even say it… uses her menstrual blood as paint, they are doing NOTHING but centering themselves. They are not being revolutionary. They are not cultivating progressive conversations. They are not leading a movement. All they are doing is fighting battles that are only real in their mind and frankly stressing me the fuck out.

I’m offended and baffled by fake outrage and fabricated oppression in a world where there is plenty oppression and a myraid of REAL reasons to be outraged. I’m worried that Demetra’s antics will take attention off of the student whose male-teacher won’t let her go to the bathroom when she starts bleeding, or the inmate or homeless person that has to put their health in jeopardy by using toilet paper as make-shift tampons.

 
I’m worried that Alyssa Milano claiming she’s ‘trans’ will distract from the fact that transwomen of color have a life expectancy of 35, that when she says she’s a ‘person of color’ she’s taking attention from the fact that the cops who murdered Stephon Clark won’t even be charged.
 
Social justice is real. The fight is an uphill battle. We do not need the distractions. Alyssa and Demetra, get out of the way. Wipe your face off and rest those twitter fingers. You look silly.
 

And while your practicing your hush, here’s a Guide to Allyship.

Keep Pushin’

– CAGW

 

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My Heart is Beating Too Fast Because Nobody Cares About Black Women

My heart rate has consistently been on the fast end of normal so my doctor sent me to the cardiologist. The cardiologist checked out my EKG and told me nothing is wrong with my heart, I just need to address my anxiety.

I knew this.

Both my primary doctor and cardiologist are white women so I didn’t feel that explaining to them my heart is beating too rapidly because of how the society I live in treats Black/Woman/Queer bodies would be fruitful. They wouldn’t get it. Maybe I should’ve given them a chance, but with this heart, I can’t afford to give out too many of those.

For nearly 30 years, I’ve been living in a society that not only doesn’t protect me, but will justify why I deserved whatever happens to me. If someone grabs my collar at work, my attitude is bad, if I’m a victim of sexual abuse as a teen, I’m ‘too fast’. 

There is no question social media has turned a mirror on us. Korryn Gaines was one of the first times I realized that we (Black people) weren’t willing to rally around Black-woman victims of police brutality like we are for Black men. The silence and shrugs around Marissa Alexander, Sandra Bland, R. Kelly’s victims and countless Black-woman/girl-victims is telling. The silence is loud. 

Why is my heart beating so fast? 
America doesn’t care about women.
America doesn’t care about Black people.
America doesn’t care about Black women. 
Not enough Black people don’t care about Black women.


As Black women, we’ve rallied around Black men, white women (and everyone in between) without question because we know exactly what it feels like to have NOBODY advocate for you. We’ve done the work because we know that nobody else. We stood up for Stephon Clark despite his misogyny because regardless of the victim’s transgressions, murdering someone because of their race is wrong. The question now is, who is going to have the courage to stand up for us? 

I think I’ve found peace (as much as I can) with the fact white people dgaf about us, but my own people? I’m never going to be able to tolerate it. Judging by my Facebook feed, my heart rate is not going back to normal any time soon. I long for a time before social media, where I had no insight into people’s innermost thoughts and feelings. Ignorance truly is bliss.

The documentary #SurvivingRKelly came on last night. I knew I wouldn’t be able to watch it with everybody. It was the worst day of my period, I had a sinus headache and seasonal depression was winning. Besides, that documentary wasn’t going to tell us anything about R. Kelly we don’t already know. He is a serial rapist. He is a pedophile. R. Kelly is a sick son of a bitch. But, his music sounds good and his victims are Black girls so we aren’t going to do anything about it.

My friends in the group chat were talking about it, I would just experience it vicariously until I was ready to watch for myself. I was NOT ready for the storm on social media. I had fallen asleep last night and completely forgot about the documentary. I just wasn’t thinking about it this morning.

 

Then I signed on Facebook and my heart rate sped up. 

Here we are in 2019 and niggas are still playing logic olympics, to justify R. Kelly (and his enablers) decades of abuse. There is just no music good enough to support somebody who has for YEARS sexually abused and manipulated and paid off multiple Black girls and women.

The problem is men can never be accountable, only victims; and girls can never be victims, only accountable. No child should be ‘too grown’ or ‘too fast’ for an adult not to be able to shut it down. I’m closer to 30 than 20. There have been occasions throughout my 20s, I had teenagers (boys AND girls) pushing up on me, I shut it down because I am an adult. R. Kelly and adults like him are not and cannot be victims of children. They are the ones seeking them out. 

Furthermore, lets shut down the legal argument. Sure, he’s never been convicted, but neither was George Zimmerman, but he’s still guilty right? What if Black women kept that ‘never convicted, we don’t know what really happened’ energy the next time a Black man becomes a hashtag? Maybe you all would begin to understand the fear and hopelessness that comes with watching an R. Kelly fan dig their heels into the ground defending rape. 


I was so angry this morning, I didn’t know what to do. I prayed and was told ‘talk about it’. We cannot solve what we do not address. So many Black girls were victimized by R.Kelly because of cowards who would not say anything. So, I’m saying something. I’m sharing what yall are saying and I’m not blocking out names. If you are bold enough to defend it, I’m bold enough to show it. 


I decided to collect screenshots of the all the comments/posts from people in my network justifying and victim blaming abuse and rape of Black girls. I posted a status letting people know that I would be collecting, and people started sharing screen shots they saw as well. Feel free to contribute your own. I’m going to post a collection on my page as well.

If it is exposed, we cannot ignore it and maybe then we’ll rally around the victims like they deserve. 

I just hope my heart beat will slow down, eventually.

Keep Pushin.

– Carrie

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A Comprehensive List of What I’m Not Discussing in 2019

Happy New Year, friends! First of all, thank you so much for your support. I’m starting a weight loss vlog situation, so follow @carriekeeppushn on instagram, twitter and snapchat for all the fun! Lets get to it!

This year whenever social media would stress me, my mom would say something along the lines of, “there are many things in life you HAVE to do that stress you. This isn’t one of them.” She would always encourage me to simply disconnect with the people that upset me. Unfriend, unfollow, block, whatever.

I’ve made unfriending and unfollowing a habit in the latter part of this year, and it is always a relief reminding myself that I don’t have to do this.

I quickly realized that it wasn’t just people that were the issues, certain conversations were too. So, I started this list formerly known as ‘What I’m not arguing about on Facebook Anymore’ to ‘What I’m not discussing in 2019’ as they cause unnecessary stress and anxiety. This is my final (public) word on these issues.

Vaccination: I don’t even like healthy children. I REALLY don’t like sick ones. This issue doesn’t need any more of my energy because I don’t have children. When I do have children, they will be vaccinated and if you or your children are not vaccinated you can’t come to my house and see my newborn. If you haven’t been to medical school, I’m not taking medical advice from thee.

Your Pastor/My Pastor: It just gets too ugly too quickly. Pastors are off limits. We can talk about other people’s pastors though.

Child Support: This conversation is too personal to me, as I’m the child of a mother who received very little financial support from my father. Hearing anyone complain about having to pay child support, twist logic into why its too much or they shouldn’t have to pisses me off as I’m still waiting on my father to be a parent (and will be turning 30 in 2019). I HATE debates about how much celebrities should have to pay because why the hell wouldn’t you want your kids and the person taking care of them to have as comfortable as a lifestyle as you?!

Two conversations in particular that sparked this were a woman helping her fiance get out of paying child support to his baby’s mommas (I can’t find it) and Matt Barnes and Rob Kardashian. I’m pretty sure I lost friends from both conversations. Also, posts like this one.

Wear condoms. Get to know somebody before you have a baby with them.

R. Kelly, Bill Cosby, etc… Basically any Black man who has raped and abused women that yall defend because you like their music/movies/TV show/athleticism. Heathcliff Huxtable does not exist. He is not your father. R. Kelly cannot make music good enough to justify raping dozens of Black girls and women. There is no music good enough. This upsets me as a victim, as a Black woman and a person who loves many Black girls and women. I just wish it would upset you too. No conversation makes me feel more hopeless, fearful and alone.

“People always trying to tear down the Black man!” Bill Cosby wasn’t going to by NBC, CBS, CNN, ABC, or DEF, or GHI. That’s not how networks work and IF he was going to make a purchase, some white person or group of white people with more money would’ve bought it first.

Why you can’t call me a ‘female’ or use the N word (white people): because I said so. Any other conversation is a disregard for my feelings and you aren’t worth the time a conversation will take anyway.

Birth Control/Abortion: I’m pro-choice and pro-mindyabusiness. Women should have access to abortions, birth control and hysterectomies without the approval of any man that may or may not be in their life. They should also have access to free birth control, pap smears/testing, mammograms, a year for maternity leave and paid time off during the worst 2 days of menstruation. Fight me.

Christmas, Halloween, Easter: I’m not arguing with Christians who think they’ll get a better seat in Heaven for not celebrating the aforementioned holidays and for telling us why those of us who choose to shouldn’t EVERY DAMN YEAR as if they are presenting new information or have some special access to the Holy Ghost the rest of us don’t have.

Breast Feeding: Again, it doesn’t need my energy because I don’t have children. Put a blanket over YOUR head if breasts disgust you, but also close that porn hub link with breasts in it before you argue why breasts are inappropriate. I’ll probably breast feed publicly (depending on the opinion of my partner) because people typically know better than to try me.

Gender Reveal Parties: If you want to have a party celebrating your unborn child’s penis or vagina, by all means. I think they are narcissistic and unecessary. You don’t know anyone’s gender until they tell you. Yall real concerned about the ‘gay agenda’ and your children. Gender reveal parties are the ‘straight agenda’. LOL

Transgender People: If I have to convince you why any group of people are human and worthy of respect and protection you, again aren’t worth the time a conversation would take. If you are speculating about someone’s genitals, you probably haven’t even washed your own today. The life expectancy of trans women of color is 35. THIRTY FIVE. Your antagonistic language contributes to their deaths. This isn’t something I’m willing to joke about or hear ‘its not that serious.’ because IT IS THAT SERIOUS. There are transgender people in my life that I love and will protect at all costs. Use the correct pronouns, do not use the wrong pronouns to insult. Do not catch these hands.

Sex Workers: I saw a meme that said ‘Is she a prostitute or a provider?’ Does what she eat make you shit, nigga?

You’re just mad they’re getting paid to do what you give away. They are no less worthy of respect because of their profession. The industry needs to be regulated and protected. If two consensual adults want to engage in a business transaction, they should be able to. You like sex don’t you? You watch porn? You should support sex work.


Mediocrity in Romantic Relationships:
“Should you fix your man’s plate?”
“Who eats first, your husband or your children?”
“If he pays for dinner, do you leave the tip?”
“Is sitting in the park eating sour patch straws a date?”

These are questions broke, mediocre, dumbass, men pose looking for Pick-me Penelopes who think having a penis (that probably can’t give a woman an orgasm) entitles them to being treated like a ‘KANG’.

Translation to all these questions: Since you’re a Black woman, you’ll take the bare minimum, right?

And yes, I know.. ‘not all men’ an ‘choose better men’. I know.



This concludes the list. I’ve had these conversations, these arguments, the ANXIETY. I’ve used all the energy I’m going to use on people who don’t have the maturity to disagree without it getting personal, with people not as informed as I am and with nignogs who insist on gaslighting and being loud and wrong.


I’ve been purging items all day. I’ve purged these discussions. I feel so much better. I feel refreshed and motivated. I got goals, nigga.

Nothing magical is going to happen at midnight. You will be the same person you were at December 1st, 11:59pm as you are January 1st, 12:00am. It is up to you to decide that you’re going to make a change, that you’re tired, that you’re fed the fuck up.

Please follow my weight-loss journey at @CarrieKeepPushn and look out for updates right here.



Thank you so much for your support. Like, comment, and share! What are you leaving in 2018? What are you taking with you to 2019?

Keep Pushin!
– Carrie






“Mouthy Female”

I’ve always been bold. I have moments where I look back and think “I can’t believe I just said that.” More often my thoughtful moments are “Why won’t anybody say anything?” A good friend of mine tells me I have “no filter.” I think he may be right. For me, the need for the truth to be put out there always outweighs the need to keep the peace. Peace is overrated. 

For the sake of my own mental health, I’ve made a conscious effort to stay out of controversy on Facebook. I’ve challenged myself to use that ‘backspace’ on my keyboard and keep on scrolling. I’ve ended arguments with “Be blessed!” and I’ve unfriended and blocked some people. I’ve prayed for people instead of writing a think piece in the ‘reply’. I can’t save everybody. Jesus saved half the people on Calvary, Harriet left plenty of slaves on the plantation. Everybody ain’t going to Canaan. Some will be left behind. 

I think I backslid Wednesday though. There’s one Facebook friend I’ve decided to keep around (against my better judgement). I don’t want to delete everyone I disagree with. One, I’d have no friends and two, I must become mature enough to disagree with people and not ruin the friendship right?

He’s a Black man in his 60s and expresses the vilest opinions on women. He’s one of them ‘lady vs. ho’ niggas. He defended Brett Kavanaugh like he was getting paid. He said Stacey Abrams wasn’t ready. I keep telling him he can use a lot less words to say ‘I hate women, especially Black women.” 

I know I’m supposed to ‘respect my elders’. He’s the same age as my parents. But I believe at times we use that as an excuse to just let old people say anything to us just because they managed not to die yet. At some point, I’m a grown ass woman and adult to adult, you really don’t want this smoke. 

His sentiments on Stacey Abrams, my fierce opposition and his response is what led to this comment.

“Mouthy Females” sent me. I hollered. That’s what hit dogs do after all.

I HATE being called a female. I hate that people use ‘female’ to describe women. Female is an adjective, not a noun. I am female. I’m not a female. I’m a woman. “Female what? Lizard?” is what I always say. Female is the new ‘bitch’. After you call me a female, I’m done listening. But what good would it have been using my energy telling ‘Shady Pines’ why he shouldn’t call me a female? One, I know a few 60+ year old Black people. They ain’t changing. Two, I knew my Facebook friends would let him have it. 

“MOUTHY FEMALES? REALLY.?!” was the theme of the responses. It was too funny to offend me though. So to calm down my friends (who I so appreciate for defending me) I jokingly commented. “I’m putting ‘mouthy female’ on a shirt. That’s golden.” I was joking. I was jussplayin. But then I kept getting messages asking to buy one.

Here’s where I tell you to like HunnyChile, my (and my mother’s) T-Shirt company on Facebook and visit our website.

I designed a ‘Mouthy Female’ shirt as a reclamation. It was meant to be derogatory, meant to hurt my feelings. But like “Nasty Woman”, like the N word. I’m taking it back.

I wouldn’t be described as ‘mouthy’ if I was a man. In the past I have tried not to be mouthy because I was afraid of what men would think of me. I had to stop auditioning to be the wife of every man I came across. I have to speak up for what is right. I have to tell men why they were wrong or to keep their hands to themselves because no one else would. I had to be mouthy.

I have to be a ‘mouthy female’ for some shy little girl who needs to know that it is OK and necessary that she speak up. 

I was a shy little girl. My mom, aunts, Stacey Abrams, Maxine Waters, April Ryan and countless other women were/are those ‘mouthy females’ for me. In times such as these, it is necessary for females, women, femmes to be Mouthy.

If you want one and to support your favorite mouthy female, order a “Mouthy Female” shirt in white or black, while supplies last. Most importantly, keep being mouthy!

– Carrie 




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What I #AINTGONDO

As humans, we all want to fit in or feel like we belong to something. There are many ways that we attempt to fit in, an activity, gang, church, fraternity, or interest in a TV show, music or fashion. Sometimes fitting in isn’t the answer.
As I get closer to “grown ass woman” status, there’s some stuff I AIN’T GON DO. Social media is good for showing trends, what’s in, the ‘new wave’ as the kids say. I looked at Pinterest for my haircut, Twitter/Youtube for news and Facebook for unhealthy debates on said news… for the culture, you know?
I could get with Dashikis, Scandal, the new black people album or movie but even i have my limits. As humans I believe we’re tempted to like or embrace something that everybody else has liked or embraced so we can fit in but fuck that. The masses do some stupid shit, look at elections. Its Planet of the Apes in Washington, DC cause most people ignant.
The problem with social media is everyone wants to seem better so niggas be like “I’m doing (or not doing) this thing and I’m better than you because of it.”
For example: “While yall watching Empire, I’m building one.” No you not. You work at Toyota and you on schedule Wednesday nights. Yeeen Lucious or Cookie, broke ass.
I had to compile this list for my mental health. I was born nuts. I must take part in the effort not to become more nuts. My momma told me ‘you can’t [always] do what everybody else is doing.’ I’m an expert at tuning her out but that was sound advice. The following is my list of what I #AINTGONDO.
1. Not wear a bra: I came across a post on Facebook of a nice young lady encouraging all of us with breasts to ‘take your bra off, save the money and be free’.  Look, if you got B cups or C cups you can’t give me advice on my bosom. I posted that and my homegirl commented “if I take my bra off, I’ll cause a black out.”
I be in the gym sweating my edges out to get to B cup status (30 lbs down bishes). Hopefully one day I can go braless but as long as I’m teetering betwixt DD and F they gon be strapped tf IN hear me? Your 5th grade ass tiddies don’t pull on your shoulders and back. You don’t wanna wear a bra? Prosper, my sista. As for me and my tiddies… and some of yall sistas that have threw your bras away need to go in the trash can and get ’em
2. Be vegan or vegetarian: ain’t a documentary I can watch that’ll make me not eat the wings off a chicken and sometimes I want a fish sammich. Kale doesn’t taste as good. You vegan with thigh high leather boots on. You ain’t doing no cows any favors. Have a burger. God gave Adam dominion over animals. He said let there be buffalo wings and they were good!
 3. Propose to a man: when it comes to romantic/sexual relationships I’m pretty liberal… i thought. I don’t want a public proposal at all and I’LL BE DAMN if I get on one knee. I’m the prize. I’d rather have a conversation like, ‘we getting married or nah?’ and go down to the court house. Men get on one knee, women get on two.
4. Have a gender reveal party: past year or so everybody done got knocked up. I love babies. i like kids better than adults.
Buuuuuut to me, gender reveal parties are narcissistic and kinda weird. Like, hey we had sex and made a baby. Come and see if the baby has a penis or vagina!
Plus there’s gonna be shower a few months later right? Am i supposed to get 2 gifts? cause I’m not.. then ANOTHER gift for the first birthday. this lil nigga still shits and slobbers on hisself. Why he need all these events? You’re not celebrating the baby, you’re celebrating yourself.
Yall having extravagant ass gender reveals and showers cause aint gon’ be no wedding. Its your prerogative. I’ll be at the house.
Not to mention technically, we know the biological sex of the baby and not necessarily the gender. But this ain’t science class. Use your googles.
5. Eat bacon or potato salad: like I said, we all want to fit in. Everybody loves bacon and niggas love potato salad (do white people eat potato salad?). Bacon and any part of a pig makes me sick and the texture of tayta salad.. I JUST CAINT.
6. Defending R. Kelly or Bill Cosby: There ain’t music or TV good enough to make me defend either one of them nasty muhfuckas and you’re trash if you defend them. tuh-rash. garbage. dumpster contents. We send a very clear message to black girls and young women who’ve been abused when we continue to defend predators. What if black women stopped defending you?
7. Watch Game of Thrones, Power or Queen Sugar: I just have too many shows distracting my life and I’m not adding anymore. Plus, why is everybody always arguing about Power and spoilers online? Quit spoiling the show for everybody, hell. I’m waiting for Empire, Star, Scandal and This is Us.
8. Explaining racism, sexism or any -phobia: People are ignorant and happy about it. I’m not going to spend time or energy explaining to a stranger why they should treat me and/or my loved ones as human. Be respectful or you can get the buy one hand and get two hands special for free.99. If you genuinely want to learn, I’ll educate for $20/hr. My cash app name is $CarrieAmanda
Be it resolved that the above items are what I #AINTGONDO I’m #ReclaimingMyTime. I encourage you all to make your list and share if you are so moved to do so. Forgive me for blogs that are few and far between. I’ve injured my wrist so typing is painful and my laptop has taken flight to the Holy City. Bare (or bear?) with me. Thank you so much for your support. Look out for the T-shirt line this fall!
-CGW
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Lent 3: Just Give Him a Pepsi

I know this is late and everything but I honestly haven’t had anything to say regarding my Lenten experience. Here’s why. I’m supposed to be listening.

Matthew 6:33 says But ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added into you.

CAGW translation, Look for Jesus.

I am just pretty unsure about life now and my prayer is that Jesus reveals His desires and will for me.

Giving up Facebook has surely cleared my head and I don’t think I’m going to go back even after Lent is over.. not the way I was using anyway. I connect with people on Facebook simply because I know them and that ain’t enough. Being connected to errrbody is toxic. FB used to be fun. Seems more like a chore now. idk, I’m still chewing on it. So, all of my thoughts have gone into my personal notebook lately. I ain’t sharing everything with you niggas. Most of yall ain’t praying no how.

Since I’m not on FB my commentary has to go somewhere doesnt it?

This week in whiteness, we’re solving racism with dolls, fake essays and Pepsi. White people’s answers for racism never involve them DOING anything or changing their minds or hearts. Atoning for America’s original sin is impossible, but moving in the right direction is HARD.

Ziad Ahmed got into Stanford and his essay was “#BlackLivesMatter” over 100 times. This is probably the least remarkable thing he’s done. The kid is impressive. Google him. That being said, I’m not impressed. Ahmed would have gotten into Stanford regardless, i’m not arguing that; what he did was creative, but not remarkable or revolutionary.

I want to go easy because he’s still a kid but life ain’t easy. If #BlackLivesMatter to you, Ziad you better have a 3.5 essay to back that thang up. You a Bangladeshi Muslim in America. These white people don’t care what you think for real. You have a unique opportunity as a brown Muslim with a platform. Use that thing. When you get an opportunity to voice your opinion, don’t be lazy, Ziad. You say #BlackLivesMatter but from that essay alone, I do not believe you. Black people are being killed for no reason, slaves to a prison industrial complex and struggle to get clean water to name a few issues. Do not take the movement so lightly.

We’ve got to stop elevating symbolic actions that don’t mean or change anything. Ziad is capable of a thought provoking essay about why he believes #BlackLivesMatter. That’s why I’m not letting him off the hook.

If a black child would have pulled that shit, it would go viral but because we’d be laughing at that nigga. As the profit Khaled said “Congratulations. You played yourself.”

Speaking of played… I’m about to come down Kylie Jenner’s street. Again, I want to be easy on her cause she’s a kid and her daddy is Caitlyn Jenner but… life is hard. Look at this ‘mmercial.

So nobody at Pepsi has any sense huh? I refuse to believe there was NOBODY at the table that said ‘yeeaaa.. better not do this..”

I just… let me collect myself.

Here’s a lesson in white privilege: you get to be this offensive and it’s iight.

Protesting and Marches are what’s hot right now. As someone who has been in the street and faced police, it is SO offensive that Pepsi used that aesthetic to sell pop!  I know you can do better Pepsi, yall had Tori Kelly sing two bars and I wanted to drink a liter of Pepsi and I don’t even drink soda.

My mom and I watched a clip of this commercial and said ‘so all we gotta do is hand the police a Pepsi? THANK YOU KYLIE!”

I don’t march to be cute. I don’t even like leaving the house, quiet as kept. I march for Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice and the Mike Browns of the world. The black boys killed for being black boys and their murderers seeing no justice. I march for Sandra Bland because her life sounded just like mine and I could end up dead in a jail cell. I march because I don’t want my momma to bury me or my brother and then hear ‘not guilty’ in a court room. I march because I’m so familiar with the #BlackWomanatWork experience and nobody is listening to me. Nobody. Is. Listening.

So to see the likes of Kylie Jenner marching anywhere and interacting with police is almost triggering. Kylie and her sisters love having sex with black men. But they and so many other ‘celebrities’ are silent when black men are victims of state sponsored violence. This shows me that you all see us. But you are not listening, don’t care or both.

The climax of the commercial, the cop opening up the can and taking a swig and everybody cheering had me yelling expletives at the TV. So… all these people are marching so a cop will drink a Pepsi (not healthcare, reproductive rights, economic justice, racial inequality)? That was obviously the goal of the commercial. This cop is going to kill somebody later (and get away with it) but thank God he drank a Pepsi first! The Pepsi had to have some Makers in it for them to be cheering so hard.

I’m constantly exhausted by whiteness. Mind your self-care, yall.

Thank you so much for your support. If there’s anything you want me to write about hit up HunnWilliamson@gmail.com

#BlackLivesMatter

 

-CGW

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Don’t wait your turn!

We’ve already established that my Facebook (henceforth FB) News feed gives me the MOST. Part of my self care is ‘unplugging’ especially from FB.

I have a homegirl who checks in on me ever so often. I told her this morning I was super anxious. She said “maybe unplug from FB for today”. That’s EXACTLY what I needed to do.

The FB commentary issues that have got under my eyelashes lately are Karrueche and Chris Brown, the bathroom bill (and many other bills Jesus), immigration and how I’m not ‘woke’ cause I’m Christian.

I have learned valuable lessons in FB debates. It’s usually best to keep right on scrolling. Thoughtful conversation usually happens sans audience and one or one. Anytime we broadcast something, it’s to get a reaction and to show off for our friends. Which is in why my view FB debates go south FAST. I usually want to be real petty by the 3rd exchange and I’m trying to do better so I usually just skip them all together. auntie-max

The second lesson is that a good number of people are not smart or open minded enough to debate with. For example, in order to talk about rights for LGBTQ people, you must understand, sexual preference, gender as a social construct and biology. Lots of people don’t.

For us cisgender folk, being transgender may be a hard concept to grasp (use your Googles) but it shouldn’t be hard to grasp that they are people just like us. I’m more disgusted than surprised that we are having a conversation about public restrooms.

Its hilarious to me that niggas black people scoff at any legislation regarding public accommodations. Ask your granny if she could just go to any bathroom.

AND AND AND Transphobia behind ‘protecting our women’ is disingenuous. The POTUS bragged about grabbing women buy the pussy… The President. Of the United States. Some of our legislatures are trying to defund Planned Parenthood and PP isn’t even funded federally. The government could do a much better job of protecting women. The bathroom bill AIN’T one of ’em.

Lets talk about Chris Brown ole creepy ass for a minute. It doesn’t take much to surprise me but I AM surprised that yall need receipts on Chris’ crazy when we already have them.

I posted the story and people’s comments:

“I need to see pictures.”

“Why is she just now saying something?”

“She’s just doing it for attention.”

AND MOSTLY from WOMEN!

rhianna-faceMeanwhile I’m serving Maxine Waters face. This the same guy that had Rhianna’s face swollen and bloody. Why can’t we believe Karruche? Why are we defending someone we KNOW needs therapy? Cause we enjoy his music? You go on a date with Chris Brown, sis.

These issues don’t necessarily hit home for me. I’ve never been abused by a romantic partner nor have I ever thought about which bathroom to use for my safety. But they still get to me emotionally.

I’m so frustrated that its such a struggle for people to see other people as human that deserve the rights they enjoy. It scares me because I’m very other and I need someone in privilege to see me as human sometimes and I know they don’t have to.

American culture is very much to blame I think. We have plenty of laws on the books that remind the majority that minorities are people too. Also, i think we try to give ourselves moral permission to treat people bad when we “other” them.

Immigration is a good example. You can’t say you don’t want them here because they’re brown (that’s what it REALLY is). That’s too direct. You gotta straight up make shit up. They are terrorist or innately more criminal. So i don’t have to welcome them into the country, so I don’t have to treat them as people. So I CAN treat them badly. Example below:

I’ve been waiting to use this hilarious clip. They was pissed. LOL

But seriously I know what its like to be othered and it doesn’t feel good, it’s scary. That’s why I don’t want to do it to anyone else. I also believe we have a duty to stand up for people. Its way too late to wait your turn. Errrbody is in danger, girl. I have friends that are undocumented, transgender people in my family, I’m a black millennial. I just can’t afford to wait my turn. We gotta fight unjustice for ANYONE because we are ALL image bearers of God.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me. – Martin Niemöller-CGW

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Nobody Cares What You Think

Breaking News! This just in. Nobody cares what you think!

But Carrie, there are people in my life that love me and ask for my opinion/advice. Ok, we not talking about them (they don’t care either quiet as kept).

Social media has us confused. Platforms like Facebook have given everyone, from the informed to the ignant their own personal soap box to stand on. Now regular people (and celebrities) are spitting their personal opinion like it matters or stands to benefit anything.

I wouldn’t know how dumb, ill-informed, ignorant and down-right dreadful some people are had we not gotten connected on Facebook. I want my blissful ignorance back!

There are a few events that led up to this blog entry. In no particular order:

  1. White people figuring out Beyoncé is black
  2. That child from American Idol saying she didn’t agree with the ‘gay lifestyle’
  3. A guy on Facebook ranting about transgender people using the bathroom they want and the ‘gay agenda’.
  4. Two train-wrecks named Iggy Azalea and Azealia Banks
  5. Judge Selfie Olu Stevens’ Facebook posts and everyone’s support despite the fact that what he did was ignant.

If you’re a fat country black woman with a big ole afro that SANGS (not sings) named La’Porsha Renae, you need the geighs on your side, honey. If you’re a white culture vulture that raps, you need the blacks on your side. Iggy, Banks and Porches could come and give a free concert in my back yard and I’m going to be busy that day. Why? ‘cause they didn’t have since enough not to find a HUSH.

You cannot alienate people then expect them to support you in the form of buying tickets to shows and your music. You don’t agree with my “lifestyle”? That’s your prerogative. I’m not buying any tickets though. You hating on Queen Bey?! You outcho natural mind. Where is everybody’s publicist? Does nobody have a friend that says “No girl, don’t say that out loud.” I do. I have a few friends that make me take down various posts. My delete game strong. Get you a friend or 5 that love you enough to tell you that you said something stupid .

Yall know I have an opinion about EVERYTHING but I also have lot of bills. For example, I don’t think people should have babies with more than one person or before they get married. But I host shows, am a spoken word artist and I need those fornicating mofos to buy some tickets so I can pay LG&E. My opinion of their life doesn’t matter.  I am only hurting myself if I get up on my soap box and alienate a group of people because they sin differently than I do.

Judge Olu Stevens has made national news because he dismissed an all white jury from a criminal case. More diverse juries are a worthy cause and certainly something that needs to be addressed. Judge Stevens and his wife got on Facebook talking shit after mediation between them and commonwealth attorney Tom Wine.

Now, if y’all are making progress and have come to some sort of agreement to work together towards more diverse juries, why get on Facebook and accuse the commonwealth attorney of ‘protecting all-white juries’? That is not what Tom Wine was doing. Sometimes, you have to put the cause above yourself. Judge Stevens isn’t hearing any criminal cases and juries are STILL all white. I don’t know Tom Wine. I do know that he is human and so am I. If you get on Facebook talking shit about me, I’m not going to be inclined to cooperate with you.

There is wide support for Judge Stevens in Louisville. I have not jumped on the bandwagon. I support the cause of more diverse juries. But I believe Olu could have acted differently and is more concerned about Olu than he is about more diverse juries or the community. That being said, I still have the utmost respect for my friends and colleagues who have been fighting for Judge Olu Stevens on the front lines. No need for us to argue (again). Let’s use our energy to better our community.

In the past few months, white people have figured out Beyonce was black and are losing their damn minds. Hell, I didn’t know Beyonce was black until Blue Ivy came out with that afro. I think we must realize that Beyonce has been in the spotlight since she was a teenager. She is a grown ass woman now and her art has evolved. I read pieces I wrote at 17 and I was a completely different person. I wouldn’t expect Beyonce to still be singing “Bills Bills Bills” at this point. Her art has become more conscious. She paid homage to the Black Panthers at this year’s Super Bowl. She snatched everyone’s edges off with her new album “Lemonade” (I haven’t watched yet). White people are in an uproar.

I find it interesting that as long as black women are miserable or bent over, nobody has an issue. But a black woman puts out a meaningful thoughtful piece of art and everyone is up in arms. White people, Beyonce is not here for your consumption. Lemonade was not for you. That does not make it racist. That means it is not for you. You may have lost Beyonce but you still have everybody else. Becky and Piers Morgan, sattdown. If celebrating blackness offends you, that is your problem and not Beyonce’s. Nobody cares what you think.

Finally, anytime I give advice, I’m giving it to myself first. I had to realize that nobody cares what I think/feel at my job. It was a hard lesson to learn because they do ask what I think and how I’m doing but they don’t want me to be honest. Last time I was honest at a meeting, my supervisor looked like she wanted to strangle me and didn’t talk to me for 3 days. Honesty is not always the best policy, chile. I’m not telling you to lie. I’m just telling you to learn to put shut and up together every now and again.

You have a strong opinion about something? Before you take to Facebook, ask yourself what that opinion means about you. Are you worried about a transgender person using the bathroom with you? What does that say about your motives when you go to use the bathroom? When you go to post something on social media, ask yourself. Is this empowering? Will it hurt somebody’s feelings? Is it useful? Would I say this to anyone in person? If you answered ‘No.’ more than 2 times, put your phone down and take a deep breath.

Say it with me, “Nobody cares what I think.”

As always, thank you for reading. Don’t hesitate to share and comment.

-CGW

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Self-Care: Benefiting the Activist and The Movement

audre lorde

Activism is a calling. Activism is my calling. My purpose is to fight against white supremacy, racism, classism, homophobia and rape culture (to name a few). I cannot walk in my calling if I am not the best possible Carrie. In order to be the best possible Carrie, I need to sleep, exercise, have me a glass of wine (not in that order) and put my phone on ‘do not disturb’. We must recognize Self-care as caring for the movement. Self-care is a political act.

The day after I went to a Donald Trump rally, I lashed out at a Facebook Friend. He was being funny. (He’s a comedian in real life). I had just dealt with a very traumatic experience and I took it out on him. I had not processed the trauma properly. What I did was completely out of character for me. It was not fair to my friend and I’m glad he called me out on it.

As a black woman from many generations of black women, the idea that I have to be strong 24/7/365 is normal. But this idea isn’t healthy. I am a black woman so yes, I’m a super hero 🙂 but I’m also human and trying to be strong all of the time is detrimental to my physical, emotional and mental health. I need a ‘woo-sah’ moment every once in a while.

Activism is hard work. Fighting for freedom is draining and at times disappointing and we’re doing it in 2016. I cannot imagine what our ancestors went through in 1916. We have to deliberately proactively practice self-care. Sometimes, we may have to choose our personal well-being over the protest, the panel, the debate and the TV.

Here are some “Self-Care/Care for the movement” tips. These tips are for me and by me so all of them may not help you. I hope you are inclined to develop your own list and share your tips with me.

Know Your Role

nah rosaA body has body parts. Everybody cannot be the head. Everybody cannot be the feet. We need hands, hearts, eyes, lungs, a gallbladder.. all ‘at (I got a C in biology) There are things I’m good at that you are bad at. There are things I can’t do that you can.

Take the Montgomery Bus Boycott of 1955 for example, the only two names most of us know from this movement is Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King, Jr. They have written the history so that we think Rosa just happened to say ‘nah.’ that day because she was tired. What Rosa Parks did was planned and strategic.

In preparation for the boycott, The Women’s Political Counsel had circulated 500 leaflets calling for the boycott of the Montgomery buses. Those boycotting had already arranged the alternatives to using the bus. (They organized a city, and later regional-wide boycott without Facebook or public transportation. Our grandmomma and them was LIT)

You may not be the 2016 MLK or Rosa Parks. You may be Ralph Abernathy, you may be Claudette Colvin, or you may be the one passing out the flyers or driving the church van so your homies can get to work. I would’ve been the one designing the flyers and organizing some kids to pass them out. I certainly would not have been Rosa. I’m not going to jail for you nggas.

Know your role because nobody can do it better than you. There is less anxiety and stress when you’re doing something you do well. Perform in your role even if it means you may not be in front of a camera or publicly recognized. You must love the cause more than you love your fame/reputation. But that’s another blog for a different day.

Take time to grieve

“The condition of black life is mourning.”

In Judaism, Shiva is the seven days after the loved one’s funeral. The family of the deceased gathers at home to mourn and pray. They don’t go to work or participate in normal daily activities for a week.

We forget to mourn. We forget to cry. With so many of our brothers and sisters being murdered and not seeing justice, we do not take the time to mourn before we get angry and political. We don’t even have the time. But ee MUST take the time.

Grieving is a deeply personal and necessary process. Everyone has to do it their own way. In December, 2 of my childhood friends were shot and killed within a week of each other. I beat myself up for still crying and being angry; but it’s only been a matter of months and my feelings are justified. Daniel. Alicia. Jamaal. Gyasi. All murdered childhood friends and nobody has been to jail about it. That pisses me off.

Cry. Scream. Pour out some liquor. Put one in the air in their honor. But do what you must to grieve/mourn.

Choose your battles wisely

You cannot educate everybody all of the time. Sometimes you have to say “God Bless You” and move on. When people disagree on my Facebook posts, it makes me very anxious. At times, it is an instant anxiety attack. For this reason, I cannot always debate/educate or engage. I have to force myself to leave that thing alone sometimes.

Last week I posted an article about Ciara and Russell Wilson getting engaged I (jokingly) said “Ladies, see what ‘click clank’ gets you?” A few of my friends (who are sleeping with men who aren’t going to marry them) got offended. It was Friday night and I was at the bar having a good time. I finally said “No standards. No walls. I love you anyhow.” and left it at that. I basically said that to say I’m not going to change my views, I’m not going to judge you and I’m done arguing about it.

I’m also not going to every protest, every event, and every community meeting or participating on every panel. I’m just not always available. We must learn that ‘No.’ is a complete sentence that needs no further explanation.

Unplug

unpluhFor a couple of weeks, I wouldn’t get on Facebook from 8am-8pm. My mind was clearer and I was less anxious. My jobs require I get on social media, but I think I’m going to start scheduling my social media messages and limiting personal use of FB to an hour a day tops.

Researchers have studies the effects of social media on mental health. Check this article out.

http://psychcentral.com/lib/the-anxiety-of-facebook/

Unplugging also means not checking text messages and emails. The #BusinessHours rule means that if you hit me up before or after a certain time (9am-9pm) it will get handled the following business day.

Self-care means not being available 24/7. If you give people an inch, they will take a mile. I have had to stop people from talking “business” with me while I’m at the bar trying to have a good time. Let’s take a shot (of water, cause my momma reading) instead.

Get your house in order

sarah palinYou cannot change the world if you cannot get a grip on your house! (See: Sarah Palin’s kids) It is my belief that your spouse, children, bills and legal affairs must be in order before you can be an activist. This applies to self-care because you must be able to come home and find solace from this crazy world. If your kids are hungry and you ain’t had sex with your wife/husband in months you cannot do this.

Also, I believe if you don’t have a heart for your loved ones, you don’t have an activist’s heart. Activism is largely fighting for the rights of strangers. How much more should we work for our loved ones? We’ve got to make sure we have the time, money, resources and connections necessary for activism. How you trying fight for our rights without a ride to the revolution? Amen lights.

Go down to the church

(This may not apply to you if you are not religious. I’m an unapologetic every-Sunday-church-going Christian.)

God called me to activism. God has kept me safe in spite of myself. My activism is tied up in my Christianity. I need a weekly reminder that God is still on the throne and to shake my dreads to some gospel music. (*sings and sways* I’m GLAAAD TO BE IN THE SERVICE.) I also need to be around my brothers and sisters in Christ. The sense of community is healing. The hugs and kisses help. Sometimes you just need a church mother to suffocate you with her bosom. More often you need to be reminded of your role in the shadow of the cross and that God is still on the throne. *Runs*

Have Fun

james baldwinIt would behoove you to loosen up, beloved. Take time to chill with your loved ones, go dance. Go to the movies. Do something you like. Unwind. Wind down. Don’t talk about the struggle. No activists allowed. No hotep-ing. Play spades, eat good food. Do it around people you love. I feel much better after I’m with my friends/family. My friends and I like Kart Kountry. Go-karts, arcarde, mini-golf… be the oldest ones in there knocking the kids down. SMH. Find something fun… grab your best friends and do it often.

These are my 7 Self-Care Tips. I hope they help you and again inspire you to develop and share your own list.

-CGW

 

 

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