Lessons, Love and Laughter

Personal Experiences, Real Issues

girls trip

 

I recently went to the movies with my friends to see “Girls Trip”. And I must say, it was amazing! You know those laughs where you slap your thighs and the little tears come? Yeah, I had some of those. But apart from the laughter it brought, this great production sure helped me to reflect.

Having attended an all-girls high school, the bond shared between the actresses, Ryan (Regina Hall), Sasha (Queen Latifah), Lisa (Jada Pinkett-Smith) and Dina (Tiffany Haddish) was all too familiar. I could easily recall lunch times in sixth form full of “gimmicks” and the sharing of food and speaking of the future ahead of us among other things. We had our quarrels and little fights just like any other group but we always found ways to resolve them.

Now being in university, being away from those girls, I realize I took many of those moments for granted and I do wish I could go back in time and even record them just to have something to watch in my times of missing my girls.

We have all taken different paths and are in different places. But one thing is for sure, just like the girls in the movie, one day, we will be reunited with a million and one stories to tell.

Apart from reflecting on my moments with my girls, the movie taught or better yet reminded me of some lessons, which I want to share with you:

  1. You don’t always have to have it all togetherIn the movie, Ryan Pierce (Regina Hall) promoted the idea of “having it all”, which made me smile because this is a concept that I embrace. However, it got to a point where in order to have it all, or to appear to, she chose to sacrifice her self-worth and accept less than she deserved from her unfaithful husband, so as not to, in her head, “disappoint” people who looked up to her and admired her life. Life is full of obstacles and setbacks. It isn’t perfect. Some things will be out of your control. There are things that you will not be able to fix/repair. Let go off those things. Don’t sacrifice your sanity to promote perfection and bliss.
  2. The best way to inspire is to be your true, authentic selfBelieve it or not, you don’t need airs or a look of perfection to inspire people. When Ryan finally spoke out and showed her supporters her reality, her moments of vulnerability and weakness, they were inspired by her strength to be brave and say it as it was. To say that her life was not perfect but she was doing the best she could. And that reminds me of one of my favourite quotes, “there’s no need to be perfect to inspire others. Let people be inspired by how you deal with your imperfections.”
  3. Keep friends who will call you out on your bsThis is self-explanatory. Don’t keep friends who see you on a path to self-destruction and allow you to go on full speed ahead. Have friends who will let you know straight up that what you are doing with your life is crazy and is not the best thing for you. You need to have people around you who will tell you to your face that you’ve made a big mistake or that you’re making bad moves. And even greater, keep friends who will try their best to help you to fix whatever bad situation you got caught up in. Those are true friends.

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4. Remember to check up on that “strong friend” of yoursIn our friend groups, we all have that “strong friend”. You know that friend who seems to have it all together, who seems to always be on point with his/her life, knows what he/she wants, works hard, and is successful at most things he/she does? The friend that most people turn to when they have problems, or they need support or good advice? Yeah that friend. Often times in our friendships, we are so focused on focusing on our own issues that we forget that maybe, just maybe that strong friend needs a shoulder to cry on or advice themselves. That strong friend will probably not say it outright that life is going haywire. And I can say from experience that maybe that strong friend is the way he/she is because during their lifetime, no one ever reached out to them or showed them that there was someone walking with them so over time, they just grew to depend on themselves, fight their own battles and be very independent. But even the strongest soldier gets tired. Show your strong friend that you got his/her back and you’re in this thing called life together. Ryan, had it not been for her friends, would have probably had a greater meltdown than she did. Don’t forget to check on your strong friend.

5. Don’t settle in your relationshipsDon’t ever settle for something just because it looks good. If it doesn’t feel right, then it isn’t right. Ryan’s relationship with her husband looked great in the public’s eye but behind closed doors, there were way too many arguments and tears. Don’t be afraid to walk away from someone who isn’t treating you as you deserve to be treated. Don’t be afraid to walk away from someone who hurts you over and over and comes back apologizing, promising to be better but never actually changes. Avoid being in relationships with manipulative individuals; those people who mess with your mind and guilt-trip you all the time when really the fault is not with you but with them. You don’t need that in your life.

And I am sure there are even more lessons which could be taken from this movie. Finally, I’ll say, cherish the moments you spend with your friends. This life is short. At the end of the day, your happiness will not be found in your loaded bank accounts, or your many cars, flashy clothes and fame but those great moments you spend with your tribe, those people who just get you and love you for you. No add-ons, nothing extra, just plain you. Treasure those moments and treasure those people. Life is good when you have good friends.

“You have to have some bodies to be somebodies/somebody’s”

Personal Experiences, Real Issues

In this age of social media, it is very hard for many females and surprisingly, even males to love themselves, their bodies, as they should. You scroll on Instagram every day and all you see is Big Booty Judy but when you pass the mirror, you spin around a couple times like a dog trying to catch its tail searching for what is supposed to be your butt (speaking from experience here). Or when you look down, you have such a clear view of your toes as your chest doesn’t cause much obstruction (p.s. that means you’re boobless). Or it could be the opposite, you don’t have a good view at all because while others want this “blessing of the boobies”, you feel like you got a tad bit too much and would willingly give them away in a second. Whatever it is, every girl who suffers with accepting her body has a story. Though different in nature, our stories all spring from one focal point.

Society’s definition of beauty and the ideal body.

Society tends to treat bodies like fashion trends. One day, thickness is in. Next week, it’s not. The other week, it’s skinny. (Can’t deal with that, that’s why I say style over fashion LOL). But seriously, many individuals tend to become totally absorbed with what magazine firms like Cosmopolitan, Vogue, Essence etc say so much that if their bodies do not match up with what is stated in these articles or blog posts, they become insecure and begin to dislike themselves.

Disliking one’s image and deciding to make a change isn’t entirely a bad thing. Say for example, if an individual is overweight and he/she decides to start going to the gym to be slimmer, then that’s great! I support working towards positive change. However, many choose to take other routes. Like surgery, breast enlargement, butt enlargement, waist reduction, you name it. Just to fit society’s mole of the ideal body shape.

I remember my days of not liking my body shape/figure. I had a problem with being slim. I tried so hard to gain weight. I tried everything. Even tried eating loads of fast food in hopes that I would gain weight. And maybe I did. For like a day, maybe two. But the weight didn’t stay (which later I found out had to do with my metabolism). A part of my desire to gain weight had a lot to do with what people around me said. There were family members (can I tell you Caribbean family members are the worst? LOL), who when they came to visit would always comment on the fact that I had not gained any weight since they last saw me and would tell me that I need to eat food. Newsflash! I ate food! My lack of weight gain was merely due to my body type.

And I know there are many slim girls like myself who had those issues. They weren’t confident in their bodies. Sadly, some girls still have those issues. Personally, I grew confident in my body by not focusing on my body. What do I mean by that? I stopped giving a lot of my mental space to my body type and my figure. I learnt there was more to life than that. I learnt that there was way more to me than that. I grew to love the girl inside. I grew to appreciate my interior and once I worked on myself internally, I was set externally. I learnt to appreciate my good qualities. I saw myself as more than just what I see in the mirror. “I’m smart.” “I’m kind.” “I’m powerful.” “I have many talents.” “I am helpful.” “I have a great personality.” Etc. Through these positive affirmations, I found my beauty internally and once I found that, no one could tell me anything about me externally.

“Well you don’t have a big butt.” “But I’m no less a woman than you.”

I grew to love myself. My smile. My skin. My legs. My arms. Everything.

Thankfully, I am out of that phase and I am happy with my body. Now when I think about my body, it is not to change but to improve. How to be a healthier me. How to be fit. So I may watch what I eat but no, I’m not a paranoid, healthy lifestyle junkie. I eat everything. The pizza, the fries, the ice-cream (Life is short :D). But I aim to strike a balance. So I’ll also have the broccoli, the cucumbers, drink loads of water and green juice. I try (operative word is try) to be consistent with exercising whether it be going to workout at the gym, working out on my own, doing Zumba classes etc. The focus is not on my body shape but on being healthy. Being the best me.

And it is my dream that other women will not strive to fit society’s definition of beauty or a particular body shape/figure but will simply strive to be their best self. And that starts with loving you. Not merely for what you see in the mirror but for who you are beyond that image. Don’t define yourself by your butt, breasts etc. Chances are, if you do, others will too. Having “some bodies” won’t make you somebodies. You may get some attention for a while. But looks fade. Wrinkles appear. And one day, procedures like botox will lose their effects. Learn to love yourself for you. What God has given to you. Don’t worry about who won’t love you because you don’t have this or that. Trust me, if their love is dependent on your body, then it’s really not love and you don’t need that negativity in your life. Define who you are by your character. Trust me, that’s way more important.

(Inspired by a conversation with my friend)

  • Nash

 

Her Desire

Poetry, romance

hearttt

 

I’m looking for a complement, not just a compliment,

See, I don’t wish to find someone who is incompetent

of loving me,

who doesn’t understand there’s more than what he sees

Externally

I want someone who believes in honesty

Who won’t switch up and leave,

Real loyalty.

 

I want someone who sees my value and my worth,

Who is willing to be better, to put in the work

Not a fuckboy, a liar or an insensitive jerk.

 

I’m looking for something different in this messed up era,

Just someone who fits this simple criteria,

Someone who knows having feelings doesn’t make him inferior,

Who sees the God in me and not just my exterior,

Who sees me as his equal and not him, my Superior,

‘Cause I’m tired of these guys with the motives, ulterior.

 

As I write these words, I know I need someone who loves my art,

Who is not intimidated or fearful of a girl who is smart,

But believes in my dreams,

in these lyrics and rhyming schemes.

 

I don’t need the world,

Never been that girl,

I have no materialistic demands,

Because I’m a girl who was taught to stand

On her own two feet and never depend on a man.

 

So honey, I’m not here for vanity,

Just someone by my side, who loves my uniqueness when the world screams insanity.

Someone who sees the bigger picture and focuses on clarity.

 

I want a soul connection, not just a monthly fling,

The type that I can learn from and have conversations about anything,

The type who doesn’t hesitate to give because he knows I’ll do all this and more for him.

 

  • Nashelle Hird

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“When man a plan, God a wipe out”

Motivation, Personal Experiences

Sch letter

I didn’t always know where I wanted to study. Growing up, most teenagers after completing high school attended the University of the West Indies Mona (UWI) and so naturally, up to about the 4th year of my high school journey, I thought that would also be my fate. Little did I know that God had other plans for me. “When man a plan, God a wipe out”.

I researched programs offered by UWI and I made a list of my top 3 programs. I had to figure this out from early as my mom would always tell me that she was not with the switching majors on multiple occasions so I really had no choice but to get it together.

At this time, in my head, I would be pursuing either something in Science, Geography or Spanish. Science because well growing up, my house was filled with Science textbooks and my mom was a teacher of the Sciences. Geography because I had a passion for Human Geography and how it dealt with real issues that people around the world face. And Spanish because I loved the language and ever since I began studying it in high school, I performed extremely well in the subject and was always encouraged to pursue it.

Fast forward to sixth form. In Grade 12, I did four CAPE subjects, Geography, Information Technology, Spanish and Communication Studies. Some might say that was a weird combination. And I agree to some extent. But I chose subjects that I liked. This was a whole 360 turn for me because in CSEC, my choice subjects were Biology, Geography and Physics. So really, how did I get here? The answer is pretty simple. Self-discovery.

I sat down and I really assessed everything. Yes, I did Science subjects but I didn’t love them. I did well at them but up to the point of the end of grade 11, my drive was fuelled by 1. my love for learning new things and 2. well, you’re already in too deep. I wanted to study subjects that truly excited me. That I had a passion for and so I chose the above-mentioned subjects. Do I regret it? Not one bit.

By this time, I no longer had only one place for University. I had quite a few. One Jamaican university and a lengthy list of Canadian schools with the programs they offered that sparked my interest. When some of these schools came to do presentations at school, I attended and based on what I heard, I either moved them up the list or I erased them altogether.

However, my main determining factor was not the programs they offered. It was never the campus size. It didn’t have one bit to do with the clubs and societies. It was money. Not just the tuition cost but if they had scholarships. And not just any scholarships, full or majority of expenses paid kind of scholarships. So you should know when I decided to finalize my list based on schools, my list really decreased in size. In fact, that’s an understatement. When it all “boil dung” to everything, the program I wanted to do and the scholarships available, I had 4 universities on my list. UWI Mona for my local university and for Canada, Trent University, UOIT and Humber College (P.S. my search was limited to Ontario).

I did my thing and I applied to the schools. My first response was in December of 2015 from UOIT. I believe Trent followed. My Humber College application took a while to be processed and so did my UWI application. In fact, at one point, while I had been accepted to the Canadian schools, I was rather anxious when I didn’t hear from UWI. Because in my head, “foreign was not a sure thing so if you don’t get your UWI acceptance, your case well tight”. All in all, I was accepted to all 4 universities. Thanks be to God!

But here’s where it gets real interesting. Scholarships. I applied for scholarships at the 3 Canadian universities. I was to get a response around March/April from Trent and Humber College and May 30 from UOIT. Around the ending of March, I received an email from Trent. (I hope you know I was checking my email every day. No, EVERY SECOND from March began) The day the email came I paused and I prayed and I remember asking God that when I open the email, I’d see good news. When I opened the email, it was good news. I had received a scholarship from Trent but the scholarship funds were not enough to cover my expenses, namely tuition. So I was rather disappointed but I thanked God nevertheless and hoped that in time to come, I would hear real good news.

Time passed. April passed and I received no word from Humber. I was down to my last cookie. I don’t think I ever prayed as hard as I prayed during that period. Night and day. Day and night. Praying, meditating, checking my email. That was basically my life.

When I thought I would take my last breath, May 30 came. I think my mother knew something was up because I just had this look of someone on edge. Someone nervous to death. I didn’t get an email.

They often say “no news is good news”. That was what comforted me. I told myself that well you did not get an email saying that you received the scholarship and you did not get an email saying that you did not either. That was my thread of hope. That helped me feel that if even just a little flicker, there was a small light in this tunnel. So I pulled out my mustard seed faith.

I contacted my admissions counsellor to enquire what was really going on. I just really needed to know. I needed some peace of mind. It was hard to really have hope when it seemed like nothing was working out for me. I reasoned with God and I questioned him. I prayed. There were days I just could not eat. This was my future and I was worried.

I started really warming up to UWI. Because in my head, this is where I was going. I chose my hall. Started looking at the amenities. Joked around with friends about hall visits and what we would do together. Could you blame me though? I sent in my hall accommodation request etc. Because I was going to UWI.

But again, when man a plan, God a wipe out”. My admissions counsellor, by this time, had responded to me and explained that the committee had not yet come to a decision. I prayed even more. I checked my email even more following that.

There was ONE scholarship. Open to all international students. And this little brown girl from Annotto Bay, St. Mary, Jamaica was going up against all these other students. When I thought about it, I laughed. What had gotten into me? It was really like a gamble. I really critiqued myself. Well, my grades were good but maybe, somewhere out there, there was someone who was smarter. And when I was not evaluating grades, I measured my school involvement. Well you did really well in your school activities, but maybe there was a more rounded student. And really, I was torturing myself. Doubting myself. Comparing myself. Looking at all I was not instead of all that I was.

Every morning, up to when I got a response, I woke up, prayed and checked my email. It was the day of my sixth form school leaving ceremony. June 13, 2016. For some reason, I didn’t check my email that morning. That morning, I just decided that I was going to focus on the 7 great years I spent at the Immaculate Conception High School. Around midday, my phone rang. I noticed it was a strange number calling. In my head, this was either a family member or a scammer. It was neither of the two.

It was my admissions counsellor. He enquired if I had checked my email that morning and I said no. He expressed that that was good because I had been sent a general email that was circulated to the other applicants and I was in fact the recipient of the scholarship.

I was shocked. I believe I cried. And I ran and shared the news with my grandmother. I thanked God. Imagine if I had checked my email that morning! I would have been so down and disappointed.

Here I am today, a year later, reminiscing on this experience in my life. This life-changing experience. From that point on, I believe it was confirmed that God has a special purpose for my life and I am truly blessed. He tested my faith. Wavering at times but it was still there. Though small as a mustard seed, it was there.

My advice to you is don’t limit yourself. Don’t be like how I was. Thinking of my limitations and what I didn’t have. Think of what you do have. Believe in yourself. And don’t limit yourself. There are many opportunities out there for you. Don’t be afraid to have a heart-to-heart talk with God. You don’t need big words or a fancy prayer. Just reason with Him. Let Him know the desires of your heart. And then take action. Help yourself. Put yourself in a position to win.

It matters not where you are from. It matters not who is your parent. You want better? You have a dream? Go with God and make it happen.

  • Nash

One of Life’s Greatest Treasures

Personal Experiences

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Last night I received some pictures my mom had taken while at a celebration with her colleagues for Teachers’ Day and the first thing I exclaimed was “gee, is my mom getting younger or is it that she stopped aging?” I swiped across photo after photo admiring the beauty of my mother. What stood out for me was her smile. And you’re probably saying “oh lots of people have nice smiles”. True but that’s not even close to it.

My mom’s smile is nice. It’s lovely yes. But it is not merely her perfectly straight row of teeth or her adorable cheeks that make it beautiful for me. It is the story behind it. It is the fact that in spite of all she has been through, she is able to smile. To give a toothy, genuine smile to say to the world, “hey, you’ve knocked me down but not out!”

As a little girl, like most little girls, there were many days I found my mother to be overbearing. My mom was strict. I rarely had my way, if I ever had it at all. I didn’t go out much. Home, school, church and Grandma’s. In my mother’s opinion, there was nothing on the street for me and I didn’t need to go outside because there was food in the house and I had a computer and a TV and toys. (No wonder I was so pale at one point, a girl couldn’t even get some sunlight). As for school, there was no room for slipping. “You slip, you slide” – that’s what I constantly heard. Grades had to be up to par. Behaviour had to be in check. And if I ever fell out of line, she was right there to slap my ass back in while saying “likkle girl, yuh smell yuh arm and think a charm?” or “yuh nah go rule mi in here innuh”. Following this, she would normally tell my father he needs to address me because she’s always the one talking. Probably sounds familiar if you were raised in the Caribbean or by a Caribbean mom.

But to speak only of my mother’s ‘miserableness’ would be a gross injustice. Though miserable, though at times we seemed to have this great personality clash, I can’t help but love this lady. The sacrifices she has made and continues to make for me can never go unnoticed. My mom always saw to it that my sister and I got the best things in life. My books were always bought for school. School fee was always paid and paid on time. My needs were always placed above hers. I know there were many days my mom wanted to buy things for herself and she could have but she didn’t. When my mom got her salary each month, between helping to take care of the household and vehicle expenses, insurance etc and my sister and I, she rarely had much left for herself, yet she never complained. And when I asked her how she would manage, she’d often remind me – “you were where you were and I went and got you, I chose to have you, you’re my responsibility”.

There were many days my mom went without lunch at work, just to save money to ensure that my sister and I never missed out on the opportunities that other children got. I remember at one point she really needed a new car and I would say to her – “Mommy, why don’t you buy a new car if this one is giving you so much trouble?” And she would begin to explain that if she should buy a new car at the time then it would affect me, her words: “right now, I can’t afford to buy a new car. If this finally stop work, well just so it go. But mi prefer walk and know seh you and Nats (my sister) can go school than go buy new car and then inna trouble.”

She has been the backbone of my family, from being in court for over 11 years to being the planner behind funerals and the one everyone calls when they run into trouble. She has been through some even deeper waters, some things a bit more personal that I won’t share here but I know, would have caused many to give up a long time ago. I’ve seen her cry when the storms crashed in on our lives. I’ve heard her voice break when she tried desperately to hold it all together for us. I’ve seen her fall ill when it seemed to be just too much for her to bear.

But best of all, I’ve seen her rise above everything. I’ve seen her close her eyes and fall to her knees praying to God for strength and courage. I’ve seen her boldly step up and face challenges head on. And today I still see her fighting in spite of the odds.

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She was never perfect. She was not the perfect parent. There were things that she did as a mother that I will do differently when I have my own children. But she tried her best and that for me, is good enough.

Your mom – she’s not perfect. She’s not the perfect parent. There are things that she may do that you will do differently when you have your own children but if she tries her best to make ends meet, to give you a good life and cater to your wants and needs, salute her. Appreciate her. Make her proud. There are many women who have neglected their responsibilities to be good mothers. Trust me, just as there are negligent or absentee fathers, there are absentee mothers. So if you have been blessed with a real one, a true one, be grateful because a good mother is one of life’s greatest treasures.

“My mother, my hero, I can never repay but I sure will try to make her proud one day”- Natrishae Hird

HAPPY MOTHERS’ DAY!

  • Nashelle Hird

 

 

 

 

To the Man who seeks my heart

romance

girl writinggg

 

Dear Love,

I have no idea who you are right now. I don’t know if I have met you, or simply passed you while crossing the street. Maybe we run in the same circles. Maybe you knew me as a little girl and at this moment, you’re watching me grow. I don’t know. But I feel the need to write to you. Whoever you are.

I’m not here to tell you that I want diamonds and rubies. Neither am I here to say I hope you’re pursuing Medicine or Law or those fancy fields. And I sure as hell don’t care if you’re from a rich family or not.

I want one thing from you. One thing that covers everything. One thing that I am willing to give to you. I want a true, unconditional love. Not the ‘love’ that demands that your entire world must revolve around me. Not the ‘love’ that requires that you take me out to 5-star restaurants every night and give me shiny bracelets and pearl necklaces.

I don’t care for the world. I’m not asking you for that. Because frankly, I’m the girl who has always held her own and will continue to up to the point of marriage and after. I don’t need to be spoiled. I don’t need material things from you. I’ve always been mainly independent and whatever material things you can give to me, I can give to myself.

What I want from you is something real. I want loyalty. I don’t want to be taken for granted. I don’t wish to give 120% while you barely give even half of that.

I don’t wish to play games with you. We’re grown people. Been there, done that. Be straight with me. Tell me whether you are truly interested or not. Life is short and time wasted can never be regained. Do not waste my time.

If I decide to speak to you, moreover, get in a relationship with you, it’s because I can see myself marrying you. If you don’t feel the same way, then tell me from the onset.

See, I’m a woman who believes in all or nothing. If I truly love you, I will move mountains for you. I will give my best and only that. I will invest my everything. But I refuse to give my everything to a man who will take me for a ride. I refuse to give my best to a man who seeks to manipulate my mental and lead me on only to drop me and move on to another woman. Not this woman.

I don’t want you to be perfect because I know I am not. I’m a woman decorated with flaws but still ever so worthy of the purest love. I see that in you too.

I want a partnership. I want us to grow together. I want to celebrate milestones with you. First car. First house. Graduating with a Masters degree. You name it.

I want us to grow together. Physically, spiritually, emotionally. I want to learn from you and I want to teach you too. Let’s talk about the universe. Politics. Food. Animals. Music. Share our personal stories.

I want to raise dogs with you and take them for walks with you on Sunday evenings while we walk and talk about just about anything.

I don’t need you to always fill me with compliments. I want to have little battles of sarcasm every now and then. Roasting you, you roasting me and then laughing and cheering for whoever has the best comeback.

I want us to try new foods and experiment in the kitchen and laugh when the dishes don’t turn out as they should while sitting on the floor eating whatever we can find.

I want to be your biggest fan. Telling the world of your achievements and how proud I am of you. And I want you to do the same.

You don’t ever have to worry about me just getting up and leave. I will give my all and I will fight for us. The only time I will stop is if I see that I am the only one fighting.

I hope you know God and have come to realize his awesome power. I hope you love him and have a true connection with Him.

Of course, I want to have babies with you. I want us to have children who are full of life and love to share with the world. I want us to love them unconditionally and never let them feel as if they are unloved. I want to give them all we never had and more. Let’s remind them all the time how amazing they are and how they can do whatever they put their minds to. Let’s teach them to respect God from a tender age. I want us to be at parent-teacher conferences and be at their recitals, games etc. I want us to play with them and turn the house upside-down sometimes. I know they won’t be perfect but when they slip up, I want us to remember that we were once kids and we made lots of mistakes. I want us to discipline them in love.

I want a home. Not just a house. A place where we can entertain friends and family and have the walls echoing excitement and laughter. I want a place with an atmosphere of love.

They say behind every great man is a strong woman. I don’t wish to be behind you. If I’m behind you, chances are when the storms of life come, I can be pushed back. I want to be beside you. Holding your hand each step of the way, reminding you that I’ll always be there and you’re not in anything on your own.

I believe in you. I believe in your dreams and I will work with you to make them a reality. I will give you my support and I expect the same from you.

Let’s save and travel the world together. I want to make memories with you because at the end of the day, I don’t wish to be rich by the world’s definition of wealth but rich in experiences.

I don’t expect a smooth journey. We’ll have disagreements. Possibly moments where we just don’t want to be in each other’s presence. I’m prepared for it all. In those moments, I ask that you find solace, not in another woman but that you will remind yourself that what we have is worth it, worth working on.

Whoever you are, wherever you are, I hope more than all, than our souls will meet and form a true connection. I hope we will have a love that will not only make the ocean jealous of our depth but the Sun, Moon and stars, of how well we shine.

Sincerely,

Nash

 

They lied 

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As little girls we spent hours watching fairytales of princesses finding love and that cliche line, “living happily ever after.” We watched keenly as the Prince would come and perform some great deed, sweep the princess off her feet and ride off in a beautiful carriage as the Sun sets.

We got a little older and then we saw that romance happened not only in castles and love could find anyone, not only princesses. We watched with excitement clips of the socially awkward, nerdy girl being crowned Prom Queen and getting a kiss from the love of her life. We saw the girl everyone shunned become the top Cheerleader and the girlfriend of the Football team captain. Over and over, we absorbed these ideals and wished day in and out that such a love would find us. 

They lied. Sometimes the love of your life never sees you. Most times, you don’t have those happy endings. To be honest, sometimes there’s no phone call at 12 from that guy in Science class. More often than not, it’s you at 12, in the darkness of your bedroom, writhing in pain as you feel a ripping sensation in your heart as your tears run down your cheeks and you squeeze your pillow tightly, willing yourself to stop feeling, to stop caring, to move on. 

They don’t show you those things in the fairytales or those cheesy romance films. They don’t show you that in reality, some girls will never experience such a love. They don’t tell you that in reality, there is no fairytale. 

But can we even blame them? Could we really handle the idea that loving another can sometimes cause the greatest heartbreak? 

Maybe they were just protecting us. Even so, they did us a great injustice. Love is no fairytale. Sometimes it’s just you, your “Prince” and no happy ending. 
– N. S. H

I’ll forever sing their praises

Motivation, Personal Experiences

 

encouragement

 

I think it is safe to say that a lot of things have contributed to the woman I am today. Sad experiences, obstacles, criticism, losses. The list is practically endless. However, the negatives form but a tiny piece of the whole. The woman I am today, the woman I am becoming, though mainly self-made, would not exist had it not been for the people in my life.

Let me firstly say, I’m extremely picky with the people I interact with and allow to hold a place in my life. I wasn’t always this way. At one point, I was “overly friendly”, naïve even and I craved having friends to the extent where I let practically every and anyone who showed some interest or another in me. Thankfully, I saw the light!

I’m now fluent in the language of energy. My spirit now only aligns with those who reflect positivity and I can tell from the get-go, mean me well. You probably say, “how can you tell from the onset?” Trust me, you’ll know. Energy speaks volumes. Energy doesn’t lie. Good people just have that good vibe that reels you in.

And so I must laud these people for the light they shine in my life. These people are my greatest teachers. They say the simplest of things that have the greatest effects on me. They encourage me. They see things in me that I sometimes don’t see in myself. They believe in me even when I have lost faith in me.

As humans, we tend to tell our stories a particular way. “Yes, I encountered many obstacles but my fighting spirit, my will to survive…”. Stop. Undoubtedly, your intrinsic motivation and determination propelled you to reach for greatness. But what about that day when you couldn’t find that motivation and that friend said “hey, you’re going to get through this. You are ____ and _____ is a fighter.” Or that dm you got with an encouraging quote. Don’t undervalue those things. Those are some of life’s greatest blessings. To have friends, to have people who care for you, to have people to steer you in the right direction, to have people always cheering on the sidelines.

And this is how I will tell my story. “Yes, I encountered many obstacles, yes, my fighting spirit and will to survive propelled me to reach for greatness, but, oh! The great people I have had in my life gave me true motivation.”

  • N.S.H

“You’re Nash, you can do anything.”

“You can have it all Nash.”

“You never know whose life you’re lowkey affecting positively through those posts.”

“You have such a beautiful smile”

“There are not many women like you out here.”

A Scary Kind of Love

Personal Experiences, romance

reminiscing

 

I don’t think it’s even the fact that you’re gone that makes me so sad. I don’t think it’s who you chose over me. I think it’s the fact that after everything, you chose someone else. After I invested my time, my energy, after being there for you whenever and in any way I could be, you still chose someone else. That hurts you know? Giving your all to someone and watching them walk away as if it’s nothing.

I was so ready to be everything for you. To be your light, to sit with you in your darkness and to help to make you one of the greatest men who ever walked this Earth. But you were ready for a different kind of love or … infatuation. A half love that I do not know how to provide.

There were nights you know where I questioned if I wasn’t doing enough. If I wasn’t enough. If you couldn’t see that I really did love you. That I meant every word I said. That unlike the others, I would be here, through thick and thin.

I know now that I was enough. That I’m more than enough. I wonder though if I scared you with my love. You know, sometimes we’re so used to a thing that when something new and completely different comes we don’t know how to respond to it? Maybe you weren’t used to a love so unconditional. A love that didn’t demand much of you but for you to be you. Maybe that’s why you walked away.

And you know I get that. I do because sometimes I even scare myself with all the love I have to give and how I would do anything for the ones I love.

  • N.S.H

(Animation source: giphy.com)

 

Melanin King

Poetry

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As the Sun struts across the sky in her golden gown adorned with light beams like sequins,

She shines upon you and gives a sparkle to your melanin,

Your skin copies her radiant glow and reflects it to all you meet.

 

The Universe applauds at God’s handiwork in you,

Designed like no other,

Resembling none and yet, everyone.

 

And you show your gratefulness to Earth each time you effortlessly smile,

A smile that brings peace,

Women to their knees,

Pure bliss.

 

Yet, not everyone sings your praises,

And some who do, sing out of tune.

 

But you still thrive,

Strive.

Though many would rather if you weren’t alive.

 

You are a black man,

One of the greatest beings created.

I guess that’s why you are hated,

And feared when you should be revered.

 

The entire system is designed to keep you down,

To suppress your innate power and push you around,

But the Mike Tyson in you fights,

The Martin Luther King protests,

The Nelson Mandela speaks and so does the Malcolm X.

 

The Usain Bolt runs to greatness,

The Bob Marley comforts that every little thing will be alright,

The Barack Obama says yes in spite of everything, we can.

barack-baby

 

 

The Tupac reminds us to keep our head up,

The Cole tells our sideline story,

The Lamar gives us poetic justice,

And West reminds us that though all falls down, we can still have glory.

 

kendrickkanye

 

 

So Melanin King, I hope you never forget,

Within you lies great treasure and that’s why you’re a threat.

 

Your black is beauty.

Your life is worth being spared.

You are a gift to humanity, simply with more colour.

  • N.S.H

*In celebration of black men across the world. You are great and powerful beyond measure!*

(Image from http://www.humanizeblack.org/melaninseries, Animations from giphy.com)