Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Coloring Outside the Lines

Maybe its because I'm an oldest child, coming from a long line of oldest children (or oldest girl children at the very least), but its hard for me to color outside the lines. My sister pulled out a coloring book and crayons and as I sat trying to color in a picture, I neatly traced the outline of the figures, then carefully colored in the various pictures/shapes/etc. At some point, I thought to myself, why do I feel the need to trace the figure before I color it in, why don't I just color and see where it takes me. I dared myself to color outside the lines, but I couldn't do it. I literally couldn't color outside of the lines in a coloring book, which raises many questions for me about how I can or can't color outside of the lines in a more figurative sense.

As is natural I'm sure, with about two and a half weeks left until our baby is due, questions about motherhood swirl in my brain constantly. At the same time, questions of when and how to pursue a Ph.D. also swirls. I wonder if I want to pursue that degree for the sole purpose of coloring within the lines of some predefined definition of who I am, or if its something I really want. I'm unclear. If its a definition that I've imposed upon myself, can't I just redefine? If its deeper than that, how do I figure out what the root cause is?

Revolutionaries don't color inside the lines. People who actually make a difference, impact other people's lives don't do so by coloring within the lines. Does that mean that I'll have a hard time being consequential? I suppose that's maybe what it all boils down to....

As I finish this post the wind is swirling outside my window, its still dark, early in the morning. The wind doesn't try to be consequential, but is nevertheless. I suppose a fear is that some people are born with the gifts to make a difference, and some other people, no matter how hard they try, aren't.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

To be young, gifted, and Black:

I sit with a swollen belly, before a mountain of housework and I wonder what it means to be young, gifted, woman, and Black.

I contemplate the greatness of motherhood in the shadow of a job I don’t have, and degrees that currently only keep my dusty resume warm at night.

I wonder, if I’ll one day be ready to let the little boy or girl in my womb go to daycare, so that I may resume my quest to be identified as one of the young, gifted, and Black.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


I've been trying to jump back into ancestry research recently. It's hard to look into some things since my big binder of info hasn't made it's to Halifax yet, but it has me in the mood to plan a family reunion.

People pass away, but there are always new people born and a neverending cycle of more and more family members to love and support.

I think as I get older, it occurs to me more and more how important not only the old people are, but the young people as well.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Sight

....from the honeymoon 1 year ago.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

And the earth stood still

It seems strange to me at times how often I have to remind myself to be kind to me. Not being perfect does not disqualify me from being a decent human being. My mistakes also don't erase the good I've tried to do in the world.

The earth won't stop moving. Every decision I make is intertwined with the ones before and ultimately the ones to come. Every couple of months I also have to remind myself to stay positive, driven, and focused.

It occurred to me only recently how big a flaw being afraid to fail is. Having never felt worthy of my ambitions, its much easier to give myself credit for the things I do/did poorly, as opposed to the things I do/did well.

I don't really have a closing for this post, and that's ok today.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I used to talk to my friends. I used to see them, hang out with them. In our current culture it seems like community is in short supply. That makes me a little sad.

p.s. I know that I have the ability to change this, it just feels as if there isn't enough time. And connections like facebook and emails satisfy an instinctive need to connect without actually connecting on a personal level.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


I remember when I had ambitions. I remember when I actually thought through hard work and collaboration I could be part of changing the world. Now I feel as if I have lost that.

What I first thought to say in one of the sentences above was "...through hard work and collaboration I could change the world" (omitting the "being a part of changing the world" portion). For good or for bad I am in the process of accepting my need for personal achievement (and recognition). I know that one can't change the world by her or himself, but different people are motivated by different things.

I think that the only reason I even consider the implications of my personal ambitions (even privately or publicly in this instance) is because of who I am as a Black woman raised in a working class neighborhood, attending a Missionary Baptist Church. Ultimately what I think it boils down to is power.

Do I deserve power?
What does it mean for a poor person, a Black person, a woman, a Christian to have power?
Can you change the world without power?
Is there such a thing as collective power, and how is it exercised?

I honestly feel like I've wasted so much time at my current job, disempowering myself because I'm not perfect. How in the world does one grow up in America, work in the field of education, (at a Charter school no less), after having attended a university that consistently maintains a Black enrollment rate of around 5% feel bad about not being perfect. This country and these systems or institutions move forward regardless. They extol their greatness, barely acknowledge their shortcomings, and keep moving forward as if they are the greatest thing since indoor plumbing.

I've decided to live less afraid, to be reflective of my shortcomings, but not paralyzed by them.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Finding my voice is hard sometimes. Whether silenced by culture, community, or self, I lose the gift of bearing witness to my life as it is at this moment from time to time. Only through the uncomfortable practice of confessing my thoughts, dreams, fears, and scars to others do I relearn and regain my ability to exercise my voice. Today I further that practice by committing to sharing my thoughts again through blogging, even if the loud world doesn't hear these silent reflections.

I value love (the love of my husband, the love of my family, the love of God, the love of friends, the love of people who show kindness, whom I'll never really know)

I value marriage and what marriage teaches you about being a better human being

I value education and the door it should open to the world

I value the Bible and other sacred texts that connect us to God

I value life, my own, that of those I love, and that of those I don't know and will never meet

I value perspective and the richness diversity adds to our lives

I value faith and doubt, and the life events and people that make us question both

And lastly I value diaries/journals/blogs because we all have something to say.