Sister Sunday: Sharing Stories That Center Blackness, Based In Radical Honesty
Prolific singer-songwriter and producer Victory Boyd declared, “You have to start from a place of, “I AM.” I am already prolific, I am already a genius, I am already masterful, and it has nothing to do with anything I’ve ever done.”
Can I be honest with you?
I’ve digested Ms. Boyd’s words, and they further evoke both excitement and fear. Excitement because I know I am capable and fear because I question if I will live out my full potential. As challenging as 2020 may have been for most of us, it instilled in me an assurance that despite all odds (fears included), I will keep going, keep growing and keep knowing no matter what.
In 2019 I had what I would call a spiritual awakening. I literally woke up on a Sunday morning with a word from God. I knew from how the year had been going that I would soon face a spiritual ultimatum of some sort. I had been experiencing the motions of withdrawal that year. Withdrawal from my career as a makeup artist in New York City, smoking weed, being around energy that no longer served me, and everything that wasn’t supportive of my mental health. There I was, lying in bed motionless, spirit staring me directly in the eyes. “It is time,” she whispered. Like that, I knew: I am more than my job, and my performance doesn’t determine my worth. In 2019 I was releasing, shifting, and transitioning. I was giving birth to my destiny.
Twenty-twenty was the year I took the initiative by confronting one of my most prized fears, relaunching Ambitious Black Girl: The Podcast. I pondered the idea of continuing where I left off before relocating to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, from the United States. I questioned my ability to use my voice and stand in my truth. Yet, while I was experiencing self-doubt, I was reminded daily of the passion and commitment I have for myself and my community: to create a sanctuary for our Black voices and stories to be heard.
Like that Sunday in 2019, I rose with the will to begin writing. From that moment on, I would harbor the idea of community and sisterhood to share stories that centered Blackness based on radical honesty as a driving force to continue on my marathon.
My journey leading to this moment has been a constant push and pull of feelings and emotions ranging from immense faith to fear, doubt, courage, and ambition, to name a few. And while these emotions often take me on a whirlwind, the spirit has a miraculous way of showing up when I need it most. In 2020 I declared, “I AM ENOUGH,” and no longer allowed myself nor anyone else to place me in a box and tell me any different. I used the growth, the light, the pain, the fight, the hurt, and they love to push forward.
And while I struggled emotionally most days, my higher self continued to fight progressively. Each day I was reminded that we hold value and are truly part of something much bigger. The past year’s countless historical events have ignited me to begin from a place of I AM. I will continue to face my fears, feel, process my emotions, celebrate myself and others, grieve, heal, recoil when needed, advocate for myself, and amplify many phenomenal Black womxn’s narratives. I am going to continue to stay true to who I am.
As I reflect on my journey of the past year, the words of Toni Morrison come to mind, “You are not the work you do; you are the person you are.”
So I leave you with this thought in mind: Have you taken time and space to connect to your I AM presence to conjure your value, worth, aspirations, visions, and goals?
YOU matter, and WE need you.