Quote for Today: We raise girls to cater to the fragile egos of men

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Photo credit:  Rex
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Photo credit: Rex

We raise girls to cater to the fragile  egos of men. We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We tell girls ‘you can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful, otherwise you will threaten the man……

We teach girls shame – close your legs, cover yourself!! We make them feel as though by being born female they’re already guilty of something.  And so girls grow up to be a woman who cannot see they have desire.  They grow up to be women who silence themselves. They grow up to be women who cannot say what they truly think. And they grow up – and this is the worst thing we do to girls – they grow up to be women who turn pretense into an art form.  ~Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Inspirational Fridays: Are You A Carrot, Egg, or Coffee Bean?

Are You A Carrot, Egg, or Coffee Bean

(Author Unknown)

Photo taken from: www.revivedkitchen.com
Photo taken from: http://www.revivedkitchen.com

A young woman told her mother about her life and how things were so hard. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed that as one problem was solved, a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She then pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.

Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me, what do you see?”

“Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” she replied.

She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma.

The daughter then asked, “What does it mean, Mother?”

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity — boiling water — but each reacted differently. The carrot went in

Photo taken from:  www.newhealthguide.org
Photo taken from: http://www.newhealthguide.org

strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

“Which are you?” she asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?”

Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

Photo taken from:  www.treasurecoastcoffeetrader.com
Photo taken from: http://www.treasurecoastcoffeetrader.com

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor of your life. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate to another level?

How do you handle adversity? Are you changed by your surroundings or do you bring life, flavor, to them?

SO…..ARE YOU A CARROT, AN EGG, OR A COFFEE BEAN?

Granny’s Wisdom: Do Not Wear Out Your Welcome

This is my second cousin, Felicia Hayes, and my grandmother, Queen Hayes.
This is my second cousin, Felicia Hayes, and my grandmother, Queen Hayes.

I wonder how many people have heard the phrase “do not wear out your welcome.”  Hum . . . I first heard the expression from my grandmother when I was young.

Back when I was once a kid, and a know-it-all, it seemed my late maternal grandmother would always say those words to my cousins, my siblings and me.  I’m not sure how my family members took her wisdom; but back when I was a child I thought my grandmother was old, uncaring, uneducated, mean-spirited, and truly out of touch with the mental and emotional needs of the young.  [chuckle]

I can remember as if it was yesterday sassing her for this or that.  But nothing stands out more than the time she would not let me go over to my cousin’s house as often as I wanted.   And, sadly, it was late into my adult years before I understood the meaning ‘do not wear out your welcome.’

As I’m looking back on things and reflecting upon how I dismissed her words of caution, I now understand why my life was filled with heartaches.

I hate to admit to myself but I deserved all the bumps I got from being hardheaded; and my self enlightenment really makes me feel foolish about things I had blame on others.

Well, any-who-how . . . It was by divine revelation I found the phrase in the Bible one day.  I was shocked!  It was amazing to read that God gives his children the same warning!

Seldom set foot in your neighbor’s house– too much of you, and they will hate you. Proverbs 25:17

The message I get from this passage is:  don’t be so darn clingy!  Get a life!  Explore parts of your life without others.  Enjoy family when can.  And remember a bit of you goes a long ways.

I’m coming to terms with my granny’s wisdom.  My grandmother has passed but her words live on.  And each day that I live I think about her abrasive and unharness wisdom.  I’m learning she was indeed the smartest woman I will ever know and most of all she loved me.

Inspirational Fridays: Giving Is The Best Communication . . .

The First Thanksgiving, painting by Jean Louis...
The First Thanksgiving, painting by Jean Louis Gerome Ferris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

With Thanksgiving quickly approaching I am at a lost for a dinner menu.

 

Honestly, I am so over turkey and dressing, collard greens, black-eyed peas, mashed potatoes covered in turkey gravy, corn, candy yams and sweet potato-pie with a dollop of cool-whip.  But if I met one person that has never feasted on such a lavish Thanksgiving meal I would find the strength to prepare it and cultivate an appetite to eat it once again.

 

Yesterday my cousin Theresa told me I was not the person she once knew.  She said, “You’ve changed.”  She went on to express how she remembered my tearful outbursts and moments later how I would be extremely happy, or short-tempered.  Honestly, I had forgotten those moments and the young woman that felt life was not worth living.  And I find it spiritually amazing how God will allow others to remind you of days gone by.  And how the kindness of others helped transformed your life during difficult moments.  As a result of my transformation I am grateful for all things.

 

So today I am taking the time to search for and post inspiring messages to help someone along the way.  If the message I share is not for you please pass it on.  You never know who will need words of encouragement.  So to kick off my inspirational Friday messages is the below video of a businessman’s compassion for humanity.

 

Happy Friday!

 

 

The Prayers of Black Women: Can You Please Help My Friend

4213264-261659-vector-illustration-of-a-breast-cancer-pink-ribbon-treeLord, I went to sleep way too early yesterday evening.  And when I woke I was at a lost.  I wasn’t sure what to do with my time.  So I began to search for a young man who was on my heart.  When I could not find him I decided to read post on my Facebook account.  And then Lord I came across the below post of a friend that is fighting cancer:

Sometimes I wish I could just close my eyes & disappear….

Lord, I responded with:  “If you could do that then I would miss you; and the world would be minus a remarkable woman. Sending you a hug from the beautiful state of Colorado.”

Lord, I don’t know the ramifications of her health challenge but you do.  I don’t know how strong her emotional and mental support system is, but you do.  And, Lord, I don’t know how supportive her medical team is, but you do.  But I do know Lord, her illness and concerns are bigger than she and I can handle, therefore, I am bringing them to you.

Please Lord, give her your courage.  I’m asking that peace be still in her life.  I’m praying that joy won’t wait to visit but that it will stop by today and continue to visit everyday.  I’m asking Lord that you give her body the strength to fight for wellness.  I’m praying Lord that you will put a joyful song in her heart; and give her unmovable faith in your abilities.  I’m praying for her medical team.  I’m asking Lord that she has the best doctor’s in her state, city, or town giving her medical attention.  I’m asking Lord that she has favor with each medical staff that comes across her path.  I’m asking for emotional blessings for her family, friends, and loved ones.  I’m asking Lord that you please hold her hand and let her know you are walking with her on this journey.  And most of all I’m asking that she no longer wants to close her eyes and disappear.

Love,
Annette

P.S.

Lord, I sharing one of my favorite songs with those that need to hear something spiritually uplifting.

 

The Prayers of Black Women: Low Self-Esteem Prayer

Lord for the past couple of weeks I have notice people searching for prayers on low self-esteem.  So today Lord I bring those that suffer from lack of confidence to you.  Lord I am asking you to help them overcome whatever stole their self-assurance.  Lord I’m asking you to gently speak in their ear that if they had been the only person in the world, you would have come from Heaven and saved them alone.  Lord, I’m praying today that they understand they are special and you love them much more than any mortal man.  I’m asking Lord that you wrap your loving spiritual arms around them.  Allow their wounded souls to nestle in your spiritual being and take comfort in your ability to heal.  I’m asking Lord that you give them hope by affirming them as only you can.  I’m asking Lord that you give them a spirit to forgive the person or persons that have hurt them as they move on with life.

Lord please help them to understand you want us to have good thoughts, and that includes how we feel about ourselves.  For Psalm 19:14 states:

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

And Lord thank you for loving me.

Your daughter,
Annette

The Prayers of Black Women: A Kiss from Heaven

4213264-261659-vector-illustration-of-a-breast-cancer-pink-ribbon-treeYesterday a friend posted on Facebook she had to cut her long beautiful hair.  Apparently this has been a year that has tried her soul.  Medically she has opted for chemo and feels she is hanging onto life as she knows it.

Within her personal message she wrote she didn’t want us to feel sorry for her; but it is hard to be joyful when your friend is fighting to live.  It is even harder to be joyful when the illnesses of others make you question your own mortality.  So today I wrote a prayer for her and it is called “A Kiss from Heaven.”

A Kiss from Heaven

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
I wanted you to know that God will see you through.
He knew you would lose your hair,
But a kiss from Heaven will show His care.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
I asked for God to kiss you at half-passed two.
God said He has already kissed you
And I know His kiss will heal you too.

A kiss from Heaven is what I ask for God to do,
So you will see His love shining through.
I asked that He give your skin a glow
So you will know He still runs the show.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
When I felt you might become a tad thin too.
I want God to let you know you are going to win,
Because He gives you courage from within.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
So when you feel down with sorrow
I want God to let you know He holds your tomorrows.
A kiss from Heaven is what I’m praying for you.

Black Women Do Contribute to The Rainbow of Love

Photo Taken From:  www.tumblr.com
Photo Taken From: http://www.tumblr.com

About a week ago on a Facebook page I follow titled “White Men Who Love Their Black Women” the administrator posted the following:

I over heard a conversation among several White women today and they were talking about a couple of girls that didn’t seem threatening to them when it came to getting men or their boyfriends. Within the conversation they mentioned some things that they knew these girls possessed that made them seemingly, “less attractive”. The 1st notable remark that was made was the fact that one of the girls was heavy set—that almost automatically took her out of the game (according to these women). The 2nd comment was that another one of the girls was “universally unattractive” (according to them NO ONE would ever deem her pretty under anyone’s microscope). But the grand finale of a statement that was made that the last girl was Black—yes BLACK—that was why she didn’t pose a threat . These White women seemed to think that their White skin ordained them to be a peck above Black women getting White men just because they were White. My thing is this: I’m good as any girl of any color and I’ll be damned to think that a girl just being White and me being Black would take me away from even being considered an option of a White guy or for that, White men! Questions? Comments?

Due to time restraints I could not make a comment.  So today I sit and write my feelings about the brutal honesty of those that publicly spoke on less threatening women when it comes to them dating and them maintaining marital security.

Love comes in multiple colors with surmountable reasons for loving.  Only shallow people with low self-esteem will build outwardly with bitter words for mortar a false wall of security.  The women gathered at this loathing banquet walked away more empty before they sat to fellowship.  It is clear to see these women are not busy living productive lives.  Surely what they say or think about women they consider less than is irrelevant to the cause of women of color progressing in life, personally and professionally.

Let’s speak truth:  It is not women of color that seek tanning salons to darken their skin.  Our skin tone is a birthright given to all colored women by God genetically.   Subjectively, if I had problems with people of African descent I would never tan.  The process of tanning would be in such a situation as hypocritical.  Because to me non-colored people who have problems with Black people due to darker skin pigmentation are jealous, simple-minded, human beings that should have their mouths tape shut.  I am only speaking about non-colored people who dislike for the sake of disliking and using color as a scapegoat.  IT IS NOT LOGICAL TO TAN WHEN YOU DESPISE OTHER PEOPLE FOR NATURALLY HAVING WHAT YOU PAY TO ACQUIRE!  Such actions provoke the question why are you making your skin the color of those you hate for having it!  

As far as I am concern, I feel all people are beautiful . . .

And Black women do give to the rainbow of love.  The only difference between Blacks and non-colored people are skin pigmentation’s.  Outside of that!  Nothing else is different when it comes to being human.

Sad to write, but unfortunately the White woman who made the harsh comment about Black women was correct based upon social stereotype.  Therefore, at this point what is relevant and not irrelevant is how long it will take Black women to realize we must shift the way people think of us.  We must show others as single people and as a group that we are worth dating and marrying (outside of our brown skin tones).

Women of color we need to change the dating and marring game to our home courts!  We need to learn positive ways to effectively market us as people and a gender race group.  We need to help other Black women that slipped through the cracks of life.  We need to create dating and marring game plans that potential mates can understand; and in doing so we will inspire all men from all walks of life to crossover and play on our team as boyfriends and husbands.  In addition, we need to first seek to understand so we will be understood.

I can only end that dating and marrying should be a personal choice.  How a person arrives to dating this person or that person, and, or, marrying this person or that person again is a personal choice.

In my journey I have learned to cross over and date men from other races.  To me the equipment all works the same despite hearsay!  Laughter!

Have a great day!  And remember Black women really do have it going on!