Black Man Dreams 2016

In this world of such tribulation and strife,

there seems to be no escape.

We’ve seen and experienced things that our great, great grandfathers prayed, fought and died for so we wouldn’t have to.

Our people are chosen, that’s why we endure,

yet the cost sometimes of our strength comes with a price; our lives.

Being in the wrong place, hanging with the wrong people, doing the wrong thing or even worse, just being Black.

Oh how I wish they understood the power of Black Man Dreams.

 

Dreams that can save a nation,

raise a child right,

uplift a community,

teach our boys how to treat girls,

our girls how to love themselves,

and make it safe to dream out loud again.

 

When a Black man dreams,

The world stands still,

life becomes meaningful,

ancestors look down and smile,

a mother reclaims her child.

 

BUT

Without Black man dreams,

Malcolm and Martin cry,

our families are torn apart,

we continue to wonder why their lives just don’t matter,

and they allow life to go on

With

out

us.

 

NYM

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There is no “I” in struggle

I woke up in a cold sweat at 1:30a.m, and normally I’d blame it on this memory foam mattress (which I don’t endorse at all), but I know that it’s all about my thoughts.  My mind is racing and in overdrive about where I’ve come from, where I am and where I’m going; and how the struggles I’ve endured and overcome, have played a major part in who and where I am in my journey thus far.

I’ve always believed that if you work hard and have Faith, everything You want will fall right into place.   There is no struggle for believers, right? Oh Lord, how wrong I was.  So, this post is dedicated to those who are struggling with understanding your struggle.  The why’s, the how’s and the when is this mess going to be over?   I pray that it motivates you, inspires you and keeps you pushing forward.

I come from a family who lived up in the church.  Ya know, at church 3-4 days out the week, not including Sunday.  From bible study to angelic choir to adult choir to youth choir to usher board to youth bible study, to young warriors for Christ to mother’s board…shall I continue? Yes, it was our second home, and in my mind, all the people that dedicated their time to being in church like that, were living great lives. They had nice cars, beautiful homes, went to good schools etc…  I did wonder why my mama wasn’t privy to those things, but I thought that maybe all that was coming for her soon (which by God’s grace, it did).  As a child, you don’t know what other people go through, because one, you had to leave the room when grown folks were talking; and two, looking on the outside at what people have or what they want you to see, is never a good judge of someone’s character or to determine their struggles.

I had quite a few struggles in college, but I attributed that to my own lack of maybe not being as committed to God as I should’ve been.  I was ashamed because I wasn’t ‘perfect’ Nicki who lived the church. Of course I know there is no human being on this earth that is perfect, but in my young mind, I’d gone so far off the path (now, I have no shame in the experiences nor the mistakes).  I would often beat myself up over the mistakes I made and would go through bouts of depression (something I’ve only shared with my mom until today) over the struggles I faced.  I felt that if I lived better, none of it would’ve happened to me.  I blamed myself, and though I worked hard with God on my side to overcome them, it didn’t cross my mind that it had to happen.  However, it was never meant to break me, but to mold me and make me better.  The struggles I faced are very similar to so many others’, but I know what I learned from them, at that time in my life, was meant solely for me.

The Webster definition for struggle is:   to try very hard to do, achieve, or deal with something that is difficult or that causes problems (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/struggle).  The struggle was never meant to break you. The struggle is not God saying, “You messed up, so you’re fired; you’ve got to suffer on your own, see ya later.”  I believe He’s saying, “This has to happen in order for me to get you to that next opportunity; that healthier relationship; that better connection with family and friends; to restore your Faith in me; to give you a testimony to share with others; to teach you to love yourself more in order set Godly standards for your life, etc..  It is God allowing that rough situation that may seem impossible to overcome, to happen to you, because you can and will get through it.

Listen, he would never put more on us than we can bear, and you must believe that. So the first question of: Why did it happen to you? I say, why not? Because God said this will strengthen you; bring you closer to Him; teach you the lesson, in order to receive the Blessing. The second question: How did it happen, was it avoidable? Maybe it was, or maybe it wasn’t at the time.  Remember, God already knows what we’re going to do before we do it, and no matter what, He still preordains our steps. Fall off the path? Of course we do, often, but He already knew that.  I promise you He did. He’s omnipotent and amazing like that!!😁

Let Him guide you, give you strength, show you the way to overcome. Again, He’s bringing you closer to Him. The last question, for those who are wondering: When will this mess be over? The bible said, “Be still and know that I am God, I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted on earth!”  (Psalm 46:10).  Your belief is half of the overcoming of the struggle. Exalt Him, Acknowledge Him!!  He will see you through!

There is no “I” in struggle for those of us who believe.  You are Not alone, He is there with you and for you.  He did not bring you this far to leave you.  Seek Him, trust in His Will and believe you will come out better at the end of your struggle!  As you endure, please don’t fret; work hard to overcome; be humble; show repentance; and be ready and willing to learn.  Know starting today, that the struggle you’re going through is God saying, “Hold on and be steadfast, for I’m not through with you yet!” 🤗

 

Nym

 

Dedication to Angie

The light from the sun lifts my eyelids and massages my temples,

I know I just closed my eyes

It reminds me that it’s morning, but I’m mourning

the loss

Missing the face, the laugh, the sassiness

That can’t be replaced

She was my blood, my kin,

Yet time went fast, words unsaid, moments not

shared

It’s morning, but I’m mourning

I’m stubborn, yet I tried

But not hard enough, right

It’s a two-way street, but it’s also a right and wrong

Way to love somebody

That somebody, who is no longer a body

But a spirit

Feeling guilt, anger, sadness

I’m strong, but even the strong get weak

How many weeks,

Months, years,

Had it been

I shudder to think

I close my eyes

I’m stubborn

Like daddy

Loving like grandpa

A fighter like Georgia

I’m a fighter

And have fought and won so many battles,

but why didn’t I

Fight

Harder, longer

Guilt

Restlessness

Trying to forget, forgive

Myself

Then,

She talked to me at 3am,

She heard me cry and ask why

And be mad,

She laughed and said I act just like dad

She said sorry, I said sorry

Why does it have to be this way

So many things I wanted to say

She said

 tell me later, but now

Sleep

it’s morning, and I’m mourning

Yes life goes on, but

Missing my big sis

I reminisce

Wasn’t supposed to be like this

She’s at peace

No more pain

More talks, I pray

Tell them I said hi

This is not goodbye

Your spirit is free

I’ll do better

I promise

Love you Angie

My sister

Now my angel

NYM

You are enough!

I have admittedly been a person who is very hard on myself; somewhat of a perfectionist.  I’ve also been my own worst critic when it comes to myself.  I even used to be a card carrying member of the  overthinker’s club (now I just visit every now and then before I catch myself :).  One thing that I was taunted with for years was allowing others views of me to cause me to doubt myself.

Why am I sharing all of this?  Well, first of all, I know myself, and as the saying goes, “To thine own self be true”; and  there’s nothing anybody can say about me to shake me any more (that last word is key), so who cares what they think.   I am enough!  I just wholeheartedly feel it’s so important for me put things out that I know others can relate to.  We all have issues, but I’m here to tell you that how you feel about you is so very important.  It controls what you tell yourself about yourself; how you perceive yourself; and how you allow your own assumption of how others perceive you to consume your thoughts. You have to believe that you are enough. I am proud to say that I’ve laid those burdens I mentioned in the beginning  down.  Yes I call them burdens, because anything that doesn’t allow me to continue to better myself, is in my way and I need to let it go.  Anything that attempts to creep back in, is met with strong opposition, and the will to keep improving.

So how do you recognize when something truly needs to be let go of?  Does it make you doubtful of yourself?  Does it stop you from working to reach your dreams/goals?  Are you concerned about how and what people think about the decisions you make/made?  Does it take you away from what you know God has called you to do?  If any answers to those questions or any other question like that is yes, then it’s time to let it go.  Give it up and turn it a loose.  Lay it on the alter.  Write it down on a piece of paper and then tear it up.  Go seek counseling.  Pray.  Whatever it is you need to do to get back on track,  do it now. You are enough!

Those negative thoughts and feelings are there to distract you, test you, shake you and break you.  Yet, once you realize that you are equipped with the strength to endure and the power to overcome; you can then reach the final level and receive, ‘The Glow.’  Just seeing if y’all were still paying attention Lol.  Seriously though, it’s time for you to accept that You are enough!   All of your flaws, mistakes,  fears, hurts, and doubts have already happened.   Let it go.  It will also happen again (hopefully not the same ones), and that’s due to our own imperfection.  So, accept you aren’t perfect, will never be, and just keep working on you.  My grandma used to say, “If you are Blessed to live long enough, you’ll know that there will be more falls, but the rise is where the lesson and the Blessing begins.”  She also said a hard head leads to a soft butt, but that’s another story altogether.

No matter the circumstance, you must remain positive, yet if you find yourself in a negative head space; slap yourself in the face and say get it together.  Again just making sure you’re paying attention Lol.  There are three things that I’ve been consistent with doing every day and it has made a true difference in my life.   They are to: feed yourself words of encouragement; say affirmations of love dedicated to you; lastly, don’t be afraid to call yourself out for your wrong and at that moment you ask God for forgiveness, forgive yourself.  Continue to trust that God made you in His likeness, for You are enough!  Yes, I’ve said that several times in this post, so hopefully now you actually will start to believe it, live it, and keep pushing to fulfill that dream, that goal, and your Purpose…don’t ever give up!

NYM

Spread Love

In this world where so many are full of hate,
they’d rather turn away from their neighbor than making just a little time to congregate.
And what about the family who doesn’t even speak,
these are the same people who used to play spades and have dinner at Big mama’s house every week.
It takes a village, that’s what the old folks used to say,
but our kids are out here fighting and shooting one another every day.
And then there are those who are supposed to serve and protect,
but instead act like they’d rather see a noose around our necks.
There was a movie that was supposed to uplift my city,
instead it danced around our affliction like a Shakespearean diddy.
However, even in the midst of all the tragedy and despair,
there are those of us who still believe in the Power of prayer.
We know that only God can send a true healing from above,
so instead of being angry, shutting out the world, turning our backs on the so called lost generation, we focus on spreading more love!!

 

Nym

“White Water”

This poem’s title is inspired by a very good movie I watched last weekend, entitled, “White Water.”  It stars ageless, handsome, Chi-town homie, Larenz Tate (no I don’t know him personally, but a girl can dream); it also stars the beautiful and talented, Sharon Leal.  It’s the story of a young boy in the 60’s who lived in Alabama.  Segregation was alive and real.  He and his mother sat on the back of the bus, she worked cleaning white families’ homes, and they could only drink out of the water fountain marked ‘Colored.’  One day, the adorable little boy watched a young white boy drink of the water marked for Whites only, and he was convinced that that water had to be better.  He spent the rest of the movie with one failed attempt after another trying to drink of the ‘Whites only’ fountain.  The movie had a funny twist at the end that spoke volumes to how senseless segregation truly was (my bad, should’ve said Spoiler alert in the beginning ☺).  But with everything happening in present day, Flint, Michigan, it makes me wonder, “Have the people in Flint truly been  deprived of their access to White Water?”   Here it goes…

This not an issue of black vs. white,

it’s a true issue of why are you not treating ALL people right.

What was it about the town of Flint,

that they had to suffer from the city’s budget deficit.

Why would you tamper with the water,

the most important resource that shouldn’t be bartered.

You say the children are the priority moving ahead,

but you didn’t think of them before you pumped them with lead.

Please tell me why this situation resonates like the ghost of segregation decades past,

Seeping through the cracks, rearing it’s ugly head, and causing parents and grandparents who lived through that time to gasp.

It even feels dignified by being spoken on people’s lips,

the evil step sister of equality and best friend of the racism that still exists.

I close my eyes and dream; and I see the colored fountain, straight ahead, running from the Flint river,

its moving slowly, its brown and murky; and sickness and sadness it will surely deliver.

Then I see Lake Huron’s waters, flowing freely; and bringing imperfectly fulfilling glee,

and I stand in the distance watching those who got to share and benefit from it; for they weren’t a resemblance of me.

Nym

 

*Let’s continue to lift up the people of Flint in prayer, and give back in the form of water, monetary donation, time, or whatever you can give*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back like I never left

So, it’s been a while, so for those who’ve missed me, yes I’m still alive.  For those who are new, welcome.  And for those who just want to be nosy, please stay for a while, I think you’ll find that you might like what you read or even see.

Having a blog is not a hard thing, but maintaining a blog is another story.  I don’t have an excuse, as I have continued to write on Facebook, post pics on IG and peak in and tweet every now and then.  There’s no excuse why I haven’t been on my blog, so I’m not going to give one.

I’m just going to say, sorry I’ve been gone…but Hey Y’all…encourage a sista before you judge her.

Life has been good…the ups, the downs, the twists, the curves…all of it has kept me growing…and I like what I see.

I’ve had the Blessing of reconnecting with people who I truly care for and who have made such a positive impact on my life; I’ve changed jobs; I’ve embraced new surroundings; and I’m now open to whatever is meant to come my way.  No brick walls…maybe plaster, but you can break through that…I’m just saying Lol.  I admit that even in my wrong, I’m able to work on making it right.

Yeah I’m pretty proud of myself.

However, after the passing of dear friends and family members over these past 3 years, I’ve truly realized that tomorrow is not promised.  To leave without reaching my God-given potential and sharing the talents He’s Blessed me with, is truly my biggest fear.  I aim to overcome that fear by going forward and making it happen.

So, get ready to be inspired (gotta keep God in the forefront), entertained (stories on movies, books and music), probed (yeah I’m asking questions and getting nosy) and I might even add in some of my own music (hey now).  Hopefully you’ll read, comment, follow and spread the word that BrownsugaSpeaks is back like she never left!

Be Blessed and thanks in advance for your support 🙂