2 years ago
3 0
  Black Girl Pain Revisited

Dear Readers,

Two and half years later and I still find myself listening to this song and reading the original to this post! However, I have climbed so many more mountains and still resilient.

My mama said life would be this hard
Growin up days as black girl scarred
In every way still you’ve come so far
They just know the name
They don’t know the pain
***
So please hold your heads up high
Don’t be ashamed of yourself
Know I will carry forth til the day I die
They just know the name
They don’t know the pain
Black Girl

My mom reminded yet again that my name “Nadia” meant “the calling.” She always said “Nadia make this family proud.” While I sometimes wear that message with a heavy backpack, smile, and small discrete cries, I know now more than ever that it is a badge of honor. Knowing that now just shows me how far “We” have come and how far “We” will go.

I am the product of immigrant parents who traveled to America by way of West Africa, leaving behind their Sierra Leonean roots for a better life in the U.S. I have watched my parents evolve over the years from a journey that started with an American dream, to a dream deferred, and now a life of simply finding inner peace. And I have to admit  that, although it has been one of the hardest things to go through it has to be one of the best things I stand to witness.

We have lost it all at one point or another from material things, our home, good health and hindsight. I always thought the answers to our problems would be success and that that success would come through living well, education and dreaming big. Thus, I had to stop for a second and question my pledge of Living Well.

I had mastered the art of valuing education and dreaming big but I hadn’t lived enough to really live well. I didn’t settle for mediocrity when it came to my career and education but I did when it came to my health both physically and mentally as well as my finances. I focused so much of my time on getting ahead in life that I neglected eating right and working out. I would let people live in my head rent-free.  I would take on others problems as if they were mine, especially that of family. Lastly, I would work so hard to be independent, never asking for help not even from my parents, that I have socialized those around to always think that I can handle everything. The dangerous aspect of that is, not only do closed mouths never get fed but also you don’t allow people who want to be there for you to do so. You feel alone when you really are not. Essentially, if you are not in the right frame of mind  there isn’t much you can do for yourself and others.

Until I started surrounding myself with financially responsible individuals, I didn’t realize how irresponsible I was. Being irresponsible doesn’t simply mean buying crazy things at ridiculous prices but for me it meant that I didn’t have a plan. I always knew I wanted generational wealth but how would I attain that if I was not saving, analyzing my spending habits, and investing in things that would bring residual income, income in general, and/or diversifying my investments. Being financially responsible was one thing I was never taught at school or at home.  It has been a process but it is definitely attainable and a work in progress that comes with learning and asking questions.  If you are not financially stable there is no way you can help yourself or others.

Having equipped myself to be a great leader and professional, I realize that the good and bad moments are all teachable moments to be that beacon of hope and shining example for siblings, friends, peers, and all others with whom I interact. No one is perfect, and I cant live my life trying to be perfect for anyone and you shouldn’t either. Now when I take time to internalize and regroup, I also remember to ask myself what makes Nadia happy and listen very closely to my intuition. I firmly believe that Allah will put me where I need to be; whether that is owning successful enterprises or attaining generational wealth. So for now all I can do is prepare by Living Well.

If I was asked what I wanted my legacy to be? —I would like to be remembered as someone who stayed true to self and highly  successful. Success for me would mean inner peace and following one’s inner voice…. A free spirit!

Best selling author Wayne Dyer once said:

“The state of your life is nothing
more than a reflection of your state
of mind.”

First installment of this piece was at 18, then rewritten and titled “Black Girl Pain” at 23 and now  “Black Girl Pain Revisited” at 25 and I can still say this journey is not yet over. But when times are hard I will remember that:

My mama said life would be this hard
Growin up days as black girl scarred
In every way still you’ve come so far
They just know the name
They don’t know the pain
***
So please hold your heads up high
Don’t be ashamed of yourself
Know I will carry forth til the day I die
They just know the name
They don’t know the pain
Black Girl

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