Life May Not Always Be Fair But It Can Still Be Great!

There’s a list of 51 Lessons in this article by Regina Brett and here are some of the gems with my thoughts on them:
1. Life Isn’t Fair, But It’s Still Good
Our lives have unique challenges aside from individual upbringing and personal development. Modern black women also have to content with a landscape that is more openly hostile to our fulfillment as individuals and as a group compared to other women. We are collectively on our own if we are relying on getting support from depleted sources (i.e the “black community”). What’s good about this is that we are free to seek resources elsewhere and should do so with haste. We have a purse of more than $750B to spend wherever and however we like. It’s time to stop wasting our thoughts, time, energy and resources in any way that doesn’t benefit us.
2. When In Doubt, Just Take The Next Small Step
Put one foot in front of the other literally and figuratively speaking. Some concepts regarding our free agency may be difficult to grasp even after we think we’ve accepted them. It’s called getting stuck. You know you can’t go back but you’re afraid to make a misstep in going forward. So you stand still. Wrong! You must keep moving. Think of it as being on a conveyer belt. You can’t block the propelling motion but you can trip over yourself up trying to stop it. Resist the urge to go back. Wherever you go next it’s still so much better than where you’ve been. Just keep moving.
3. Make Peace With Your Past So It Won’t Mess Up Your Future
I modified this from the author’s quote of it messing with one’s present. We are in the present right NOW. Or at least we should be. I find myself drifting off into reevaluating my life that I look back at all the mistakes I’ve made as well as how other people have messed me up with their foibles. For some of us it may be even more damaging. We can’t wave a magic wand over it and make it go away. I find doing affirmations and some of these “new age” techniques make me angry because it diminishes my experiences. It doesn’t make it all better. What I have found is that I can think about what I’d like my life to look like for the immediate future. I have created a “Day In My Life” scenario where I think about the life-affirming things I can do for myself. I think about specific activities, what type of relationships I want, how those interactions take shape and what choices will get me there. I am reworking an entire life Vision Board (goal setting) for myself.
4. Don’t Compare Your Life To Others
This stops the what ifs, the if onlys and the could would shoulda urge to kick ourselves.
5. Life Is Too Short For Pity Parties
As we realize certain models no longer have value it’s easy to be tempted to look back and wallow. We have to acknowledge our experiences but keep going forward.
6. No One Is Responsible For Your Happiness But YOU
If we stop looking to external circumstances, relying on others to “act right” or resorting to magical thinking we will realize no career, person, x amount of money or anything temporary will truly satisfy us. Peace of mind is the goal. Which means we have to take care of ourselves first and foremost. 
7. Get Rid Of Anything That Isn’t Useful, Beautiful Or Joyful
That includes deadbeats, negative thought patterns, holding onto the past, having doubts, seeking approval, being accepted by certain people, shifting physicality whatever will be an obstacle to our living our best lives. 
8. Read the Psalms – They Cover Every Human Emotion
I think having a solid spiritual practice is a necessity. Many of us will have to replace the time we’ve spent supporting “religiosity” with something more meaningful. That’s up to us as individuals to determine what works best for us. Exploring this as well as other tenets is a good place to start.
9. If You Don’t Ask, You Don’t Get
We’re not an island. We need help from time to time. We have to build relationships and alliances. We also have to try new things and be bold. Instead of thinking about the obstacles we have to find solutions. That can be more challenging than what is comfortable. So the variation of this theme is: if we don’t go for it, we’ll never get it. We have to try in order to “fail”. Those failures will often lead us to a victory or breakthrough of some sort because we put ourselves out there to begin with. As opposed to hiding under the covers and letting life pass us by.
10. The Best Is Yet To Come
This is my kind of affirmation. Whatever has happened is done. We don’t have to repeat it. Today is a new day. We wipe the slate clean. If we’re still alive this is our “do-over”. This is why we put one foot in front of the other. This is why we look and move forward!

Cinderella: Guerilla Training Manual for African-American Women

I was about to write this post from a completely different perspective but thank goodness for stream of conscious writing. First, I’d like to thank my naiveté. I think this is the first time I actually understand what Neo felt like after he was freed from the Matrix. Although I’ve been reading about the behavior of these DBR (damaged beyond repair) AA males I noted it from afar. Sure I have some male relatives I would say have some of those tendencies but for the most part they’re a good lot.

Yet, I’ve also observed the mating patterns of many of my female relatives and have seen how it’s they who have chosen varying degrees of mediocrity. That would be collectively with particular quality choices made by a few individuals. I think that is representative of the black collective as well. The majority are on a major crash and burn voyage while a few wiser individuals are on the periphery. Some are preparing and others are rolling in the mud trying to get as much on as possible. Well…that’s my observation and I’m still processing this.

Second, I think it’s important again to make the ethnic distinctions of which majority I’m referring to and ding ding it’s African-Americans. We have to have something else that binds us than admiring the accomplishments of Michael Jackson. We have to have more than fleeting outrage over the latest public spectacle of a rap music artist – or now some swimming pool controversy at a private club in PA. People are praising Al Sharpton for his MJ Memorial speech (which wasn’t bad) yet forget (or never even know about) that he publicly supported the rapists/attempted murderers at Dunbar Village apartment complex in West Palm Beach, FL. I haven’t forgotten. He was more concerned that those DBRs (damaged beyond recognition/repair) black males would potentially be “railroaded” rather than stand with the survivors of the attack, a black woman and child.

I wonder what it will take for some people to wake up – a pound of flesh maybe? Dead body after dead body from the mass black on black crime? The 50% high school drop out rate for black teens? The out of wedlock birth rate for black women was listed at 72% by the CDC in their preliminary report for 2007. The official 2006 report had it listed at 70% but it had jumped 25% in a five year period. So even with a conservative estimate of 2.5-5% growth rate that number has to be somewhere around 76-83%. It’s pretty much over for a particular segment of society. I’m speaking in terms of quality of life and productivity. That’s going to lead to a lot of struggling, abandoned and angry women and children. Some of whom are boys and so the cycle of destruction will continue. *I modified my original 80% OOW birth rate and added in the data instead. You can do the math or dispute it to your heart’s content. It’s a TRAGEDY not to be taken lightly!

I’m not prepared to say this results solely from growing up in all-black (physical) environment. The indoctrination I’m talking about can still occur even if you weren’t physically present. Isn’t that why you’ll get immigrants who move here still practicing things that might run them afoul of cultural norms (or laws) in this country? It’s the mentality behind it and that goes beyond a residential area. You take your thoughts and attitudes with you wherever you go.

Some white feminists have complained about faerie tales like Cinderella saying they set women back and teach women to expect to be rescued. In those books the heroine is always rescued by a man. Where some see oppression I see a man understanding his role and stepping up. They see a woman in distress and they resolve the problem to her advantage! They offer to love and protect her. Also the woman has to let the man rescue her so she is accepting his help. Where’s the weakness in that?

I get the overall ramifications of why some women think being put on a pedestal is sexist and problematic. These women have not had the AA woman experience of being stripped naked and spit on in the public square for hundreds of years. Collectively these groups of non-black women will NEVER know what that’s like because their men will never allow it. If they did their group would have to be in a state of chaos and dysfunction like the AA “community”. It’s not going to happen.

The word “cinderella” has, by analogy, come to mean one whose attributes are unrecognised, or one who unexpectedly achieves recognition or success after a period of obscurity and neglect. Wikipedia

I’m thinking Cinderella is in fact a secret stealth training manual showing women how to get your “fantasy” life become your REAL life. It’s for women who are unappreciated, unloved, used like a mule for all of her resources and cast out when she will no longer play ball. This describes the state of the average AA woman to a tee, doesn’t it?

These phrases should go in the canon of lies/manipulations told to a black woman to keep her down:

  • Help a brotha out
  • I need a place to stay
  • I’m in between jobs
  • I’m hungry
  • I need help
  • You’re being selfish
  • You have to help your family
  • You think you’re too good
  • You’re ugly
  • Don’t go to school
  • You have no credibility
  • The white man keeps me down w/x,y,z that’s why I don’t x,y,z
  • I want a wife who brings in some money
  • You’re supposed to clean, take care of the baby & cater to me
  • Why do you want to hang out with your friends?
  • Are you cheating on me – then prove it by x,y,z
  • If you really loved me you’d do x,y,z,
  • I’m clean baby I swear, we don’t need to use a condom
  • If you get pregnant I’ll be there for you
  • I’m seeing somebody else but…,
  • I’m a man I need to do x,y,z,
  • No dark butts
  • It’s not my fault I sell drugs/went to prison
  • I like light skin/light skin is so pretty
Cinderella is a story of how one woman overcome intense cruelty and oppression. She took help when it was offered. She had one person who believed in her, but she had to believe in herself as well. The ball, the prince and everything was laid out for her but she still had to go after it. The prince was looking for a specific woman & only she could fit the bill. She emerged triumphant because she fought for her freedom! She got away from the indoctrinators and leeches that wanted her to stay subservient because they benefited from her being under their heel. She NEVER needed them. She was always her own powerful woman – she just had to realize it. She had to step into her power in order to access it. The guy was just part of the package. He didn’t want a subservient mule, he wanted the scrappy fighter. These stories are told to a general audience. She didn’t “need” the guy at all. Today she may not even chose a guy, but you get the point.
I think we can revisit this story and reevaluate it for the subversive message it really tells. Black females are literally cinder girls. The next step is to get out of the pit.

Leave ideologies, unsafe residential areas, concepts and people that are of no benefit to you and don’t look back!!!

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