Malia at 11
Try and build a relationship with other black women based on admiration (mutual), approval and acceptance (not the fake kind I love my hair and nose type protestations).
One of the reasons why I feel that black community is now defunct is because you cannot build a healthy and sustainable relationship between people on the basis of ‘Well I guess we are in this S*&t hole together so lets make the best of it’. There is no way you can have that sentiment as the overarching one for your relationship with each other and not begin to have, disrespect and negative attitudes creep in!
Sasha will be 11 in June 2012
I realized the other day that I actually admire black women (a certain crop of them not so much but…). It is not simply about admiring them for climbing mountains etc (strong bw), but I admire an essence of black women that I come across sometimes in certain African women and older school western black women. They seem to have a secret to all this that I am yet to happen upon myself (like if they know something I don’t) and they cast a wise old eye and a wry smile over it all, in a way that makes me feel that they got it all sussed out!
I have the greatest admiration for one of my oldest sisters, my mum-very formidable (but yet undeniable woman)-and wonder how she gave birth to a ‘coward of the first water’ like me lol! There is indeed something about certain black women, something that suggests that they know what womanhood is about, they have cracked the code. These women are sure of their womanhood and the ‘acceptableness’ of this womanhood and what they have to offer.
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Contrast it today with how so many of us black women have a hard time believing we are bringing something valid and acceptable to the table of humanity, how we feel that folk will run away screaming if we are to ever show ourselves without the masks and trappings (and no I don’t mean letting it all hang out or keeping it real!). I think this ‘not knowing if we are acceptable or an error in creation’ fuels a lot of this, ‘is he showing interest’, type confusions many bw have understanding men’s basic attraction to them (read: white men's basic attraction to them). Yes western black womanhood has been grievously attacked and this is one sign of it. Indeed lets face it, the continuation of humanity rests on men and women having the ability to read and pick up signs of attraction in seconds often. Many African women straight of the plane, know when even a man from Nagaland is showing attraction. The less attacked a woman’s female identity is, the more likely she is to pick up on men responding to what she is!
So as an aside, I think there is something to be said for functional womanhood as practiced by many African cultures, that essentially thinks, if you have the basic functions and makeup of a woman, then your womanhood is acceptable, whatever your bodily presentation, full stop. I can see so many modern folk look down on such lowest level determination of womanhood which excludes so many other expressions of what a woman is, however what they dont understand is that this defintion presents the most widely embracing context, within which a wider variety of woman found security and belonging rather than felt excluded because of having a square jaw, gap teeth, short hair and short/long necks, things they had no control over.
Anyway back to the issue of a shared basis for identifying with each other, I came across that ‘I got news for you, we are all seen as black’ statement the other day and it made me think, ‘Wow there is absolutely no ‘hopefulness’ or positivity in that statement.’ There is nothing enjoyable and happy about being black when in this context.
Something else I noticed the other day to, when I sat near three young ladies on a public bus. One of the girls had spilt a drink down her dress and was asking for a tissue. The other girl, girlishly giggling held the tissue out of reach. It seemed all playful but I sensed something sinister like the others were letting the humiliation or discomfort go on that bit longer, while of course pretending to be playing about.
These days, there is so much damage among black people/women and thus so many underhanded and disguised games of black folk using others to, feel good about or amuse themselves, play their internal besting other black games, putting down others and downright nastiness happening within black circles.
This is one of the reasons why I tell black women to dissociate from non evolving, non progressing, disempowered bw. Many are in hell and desperate to see signs that you are in hell alongside them. If they refuse to disconnect from pain, they almost naturally refuse you (sometimes without even being aware) disconnecting to, thus get peturbed with you being happy or they become upset with you not showing signs of distress as well ( you having a smily face, getting on with life). The very fact that you dont look depressed and defeated and beaten and looking downwards, but have upbeat energy is increasinlgy niggling at them, until one day they will erupt. And guess the worst thing? They wont even know why they suddenly feel like sabotaging you or hurting you! They dont even know why they start acting out!
Anyway to leave this on a positive note this IWD, discover why you should admire black women and see if you can possibly ‘hinge’ your desire to associate with and be around them or join up with them in ‘doing something for our general good upon this basis.
So what do you enjoy about being a black woman or what are things you admire about other black women?
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