Hello, It’s Me

I told ya’ll last week that my niece was headed to college. I have to tell you that it was bittersweet. We gave her the graduation party a couple of weeks ago and it was beautiful. It was stressful at first because everything seemed to go wrong.

This was the day of Munch’s guitar lesson. I had a lot of running around after the lesson and my nerves were frazzled. I had to pick up the food, cake and candy cakes. I went to pick up the candy cakes. That went well.

I gave these candies as favors to the guests. Instead of a candy bar, guests could help themselves to a treat. Cute idea right?

Then it was off to BJ’s to pick up the graduation cake and cupcakes. They were late. Something was said about the orders being messed up. They put the cake and cupcakes in my cart and I headed out to pay for them and pick up the platters.

The platters were ordered from a local grocery store called Giant. I ordered them on the Tuesday prior to Saturday’s pick up and got a confirmation email. I’m running late picking up the orders because of delay with picking up the cake. I’m stressed. I’m exhausted. I needed to shower and change my clothes.

I get to Giant and head to the deli to pick up my four party platters. Umm, guess what? No order. The young man behind the counter goes to get the manager and I explain to her what he said. She asks to see my order. I show it to her. She said “Yeah, this is the right store. We never got it.”

I asked her can they make it because I got my order confirmation and she said no. She explained that she had been making platters all morning and she couldn’t make it. My eyes welled as I tried to collect myself. I told her that I had a party in an hour and a half and I needed food for the party.

You know what she does next?

She walks away. Can you believe it? She turns her back to me and walks away.

I walked away and stood in the line for customer service and called my best friend. She was livid. She said “What? Go speak to the manager.” I told her that I was in line. When I get to the front of the line. I ask the woman to please ring the store manager.

She does and he comes out. I said, “Hello, it’s me. I told her to call you.” I told him how the deli said that they didn’t get my orders and they weren’t going to make my platters. I told him that I had a graduation party in an hour and a half and they were waiting on food.

He asked me to follow him. He proceeded to tell the woman that it doesn’t matter that they didn’t get the order. My confirmation statement confirms that the store received the email. He told her that she needed to make the platters and that he would pull more help to the deli, but they needed to get it done.

She looked him and said okay. The woman then turns to me and says “You should have called and confirmed we received the order.” I responded “I don’t have to call anyone else when I place an on-line order to make sure that they got my order. Who is supposed to check behind the computer?”

I left for an hour to go home and shower and get ready for the party. I returned back to the store and picked up the food for the party and arrived 5 minutes prior to start. All in all it was completely stressful, but it turned out well in spite of the drama.

Oh, and BJ’s misspelled the name of her college on the cake. Can you believe it?

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My Commencement to My 18 Year Old Self

It’s funny that at this time right now when people are graduating that I should be re-evaluating or evaluating my life as well. You know, wishing I had known things that I know now. Thankful for the things that I didn’t know then that probably would have scared the heck out of me. So, it got me to thinking about what I would say to myself at 18 at my high school commencement.

Why? Because no one remembers the speech the valedictorian gave. High school (much like college) was filled with papers, my senior thesis, community activism and parties and I really can’t remember what was commenced. But, if I could for just one moment go back and give my younger self a message it would be this…

  • You are bigger than your problem. Sometimes things will happen to you that you are unprepared for. Mountains will seem unmovable and your problems will seem insurmountable, but you should not distress love. You will be okay. Your student loans will be more than your paycheck and you can’t figure out why your boss is a raging lunatic and you want to walk out the door, but don’t fret love. You will get through this.

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  • Love will hurt. You won’t end up with your childhood love, but that is a fairy tale. Life is different. You will fall in love, get married, live in NYC, have a baby, separate and divorce and you won’t even begin to scratch the surface on the issues you both had. Drink lots of wine and understand that this pathetic period of self-pity can only last for two weeks. You have bills to pay, a job to get to and a child to raise. He needs you. Yes, you will lose some friends, some respect for some people and money because everyone knows that divorce is costly, but you will get through it. Love hurts. You will need to remember what your mom said, “Ain’t no shame in starting over.” You can start over. You will start over. You will know your worth.

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  • You will become a mom. I know it is hard to believe that you will become a mother, but it is true. You will be 32 when you feel your beautiful son kick for the first time. He will be born the April after you turn 33. I know you never wanted children, but I promise you that he is awesome. He will bring more smiles than tears and more hugs than heartache. He is perfect. Perfect for you. He will restore your faith in men and you will have the opportunity to raise a beautiful man to become a wonderful husband to a woman someday. But, be careful sis. The war on our black boys takes center stage as your son is growing. He will be feared. He will be hated. He will be despised. He will be labeled. You have to stand up for him. You have to fight for him with all your might because you are the rib of man. You have to teach him how to love in spite of society’s attitudes. He will love you just for you being you.

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  • Forgiveness is free. You spend so much time carrying grudges and being mad at those that hurt you that it is literally like putting a band-aid on a wound that needs stitches. Look, you don’t have to ever forget those that hurt you. In fact, I encourage you not to. But, what you need to do is forgive yourself. Forgive yourself of the guilt that you carry because you hate what people have done to you. When you forgive those that have wronged you and when you forgive yourself of the guilt you carry you will realize that your burden seems lighter. You will know the true meaning of “thou I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.” You will be comforted because of your faith and the Comforter hears your cries. He hasn’t forsaken you.

  • Take your time. There is no rush to decide what you want to be when you grow up. Allow yourself the opportunity to discover what makes you happy. Whether it is in law or human resources. You deserve to take your time trying to figure out what you want to do. I mean who really knows what they want to do at 18? You should try different things and just go with what you can make a living at. Remember like mom always says, “You have to be able to support yourself”. Trust me — you will.

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  • You are beautiful. You spend so much time hiding your true you that it is at the end of your marriage that you will truly shed your layers and become comfortable in your skin. This is a good thing. You are beautiful. Intimately created by the man up stairs and you know what? You should rock that short shift dress and show off those honey colored thighs. Your momma gave them to you. Don’t hide behind baggy jeans and big shirts. Love that awkward shaped nose and big arms. Your curves are gorgeous. They tell your story and yes you have a butt that others will try to emulate by taking injections. Keep your head up and rock the skinny jeans sis! You are beautiful.

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All in all, just remember where your help comes from. Don’t allow your pride to stop you from asking for help. Allow others to get close to you. Enjoy the ride baby girl because it will be bumpy!

Being Thankful

So, our beautiful baby boy has finally graduated from day care.  He’s going to be entering kindergarten in the fall and I can’t wait.  Mainly because we have prepared him the best we can and we’re now starting a new chapter in our lives.  We have moved from the toddler stage to little boy stage.  This has been an amazing journey and I couldn’t be more proud of my son and frankly us.  We did it! We didn’t damage him or make him afraid of his own shadow.  We didn’t drop him or lose him and he loves the heck out of us! Can I get an “Amen”? 

Having only one child has really shaped my views about what it is to parent and more importantly…parent a little black boy.  I juggle every day the task of making sure that I’m constantly reinforcing his self-esteem and sharing teachable moments with him.  Yes, I know you’re probably saying he’s only 5, but I want him to know that each and every day we wake up we need to thank God and be appreciative of everything.  I asked him the other day, “Brennan, what are you thankful to God for?”  He responded, “The lightning bugs because I like to play with them.” Wow! What a great answer! My heart was bursting with the feeling of “He’s listening to me.”


So, in the interest of being thankful, we have another milestone that has been achieved… Brennan graduated from his daycare’s pre-k program on June 6, 2013.  There was much back and forth between Lee and I about the importance of the day because I thought it was the best thing ever! Lee on the other hand said, “He’s not really graduating.  He’s aging out of the program.” I told him that he’s not aging out of the program he’s going to kindergarten.  I told him that graduation is the act of graduating.  Moving from one level to the next.  We are celebrating that much anticipated milestone.  However, he didn’t think that was true and it kind of reminded me of that scene in the movie, “The Incredibles” where Helen was talking to her husband about her son’s graduation ceremony:


Helen tells her husband Bob that he cannot miss their son  Dash’s graduation. 

Bob Parr: It’s not a graduation. He’s moving from the 4th grade to the 5th grade.

Helen Parr: It’s a ceremony.

Bob Parr: It’s psychotic! They keep creating new ways to celebrate mediocrity.


At the time, the movie came out I was laughing hysterically because I believed it to be true.  Fast forward 9 years later and I’m a mother and I have changed my mind about people creating new ways to celebrate mediocrity.  Shouldn’t we just be thankful and celebrate everything we can?  I say yes.  I want to celebrate  and give thanks for everything Brennan does with lots of love and cheering from the sidelines.  It’s a big deal for me to have Brennan grow up and know that he is loved and that I always want to celebrate the mediocrity.  That being said, I want to say congratulations to my son on completing his pre-k program and embarking on a new chapter of his educational journey (elementary school).


Check out some of the photos for the class of 2026!