This Story is Not My Own
I have been surrounded by powerful, strong, dynamic black women for most of my life. I have painstakingly watched my family members, extended family, mentors, and spiritual leaders in hopes of gleaning from them lessons on living. There was something about them that made them unbreakable. I was determined to be like them. I was determined to make sure that I was a help to my family and not a hindrance; that I stood up for what was right; that no one would ever see me as weak, no matter what the cost.
I was, like most girls and young adults, determined to continue the legacy of strength that I inherited and observed. Years later I realized that the idea of maintaining an image of strength was destroying who I was and kept me from really experiencing love. This led me to have an emotional breakdown that nearly destroyed my life. I was so consumed with not allowing myself to feel the hurt, abandonment, grief, and disappointment that it manifested itself in the form of physical disease.
I am not different from most black women in America. Black women are the leading group in America that experience somatization which is physical distress in response to psychosocial stress. That physical distress manifests as high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, high triglyceride levels, stress - which cause heart disease which is the leading cause of death in black women in America.
My journey to wellness has shown me that it is paramount for me to be in touch with my emotions and be able to express them. Not tapping into my emotional state or needs can be the difference between life and death.
I want to use social media to be that voice for black women in America and all over the world. I want to show them that bearing the weight of the world (by taking on the needs of their families, friends, co-workers without boundaries) is killing them. I want to break the cycle for younger women and show them a new example of what womanhood is. I will use my voice to guide women to identifying the areas in their lives that they may need to let go of or redefine and give them a liberated zone by which they can express themselves. I want to give the women an example of the power of unconditional love and vulnerability. Social media is an excellent way for them to be able to test out these skills. I see social media as an outlet to stir up conversation and generate ideas on living a life where women can be intentional about identifying their feelings and shaping their lives.
A high price was paid for who I am
And yet, I am free
Today I fly on lightened wings