Reflections on the A-to-Z Challenge

It was my first year doing the challenge. It was hard. I learned a lot about me and my ability to come up with posts for thirty days. Thankfully, it is over. LOL. Here are my reflections:

  • I needed to pre-plan my posts and actually schedule them. I usually had a rough draft and concept done, but I didn’t plan them in advance. That probably would have saved me time when life got in the way and I didn’t post that day.
  • It was hard trying to think of words that matched the alphabet that weren’t always really simple. You know how hard it was coming up with X and Z? Whew!
  • I like the idea of a theme but would probably find a different one next time that was a little easier. I am proud of myself for jumping out there with a difficult theme, but I probably should have picked an easier one for the first time.
  • It was good to be writing consistently. It’s hard to blog some days when you feel like you have nothing to talk about or life gets in the way. Planning what you’re going to post forces you to get comfortable blogging on a consistent basis.

That’s about it. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and I may participate again later this year. If you missed any of my posts you can check them out here:

Anguish

Black

Cleveland

Divorce

Effort

Fear

God

Heavy

Insurance

Jordan

Knowledge

Love

Mom

Nursing

Objective

Perception

Querulous

Responsible

Saved

Trayvon

Unjust

Version

Wise

Xerarch

Yearning

Zappy

 

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

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Zappy

April 30

Today is the last day of the A to Z Challenge. Woohoo. I survived. It was hit or miss some days, but I made it.

Z

More importantly, today is Munch’s 10th birthday. I can’t believe that I have a child in the double digits.

dog-cake-happy-birthday-postcard-greeting-card-send-online-2637_57

It’s been an amazing journey these last few years. This little boy who was determined to survive in my womb regardless of all the things going on around him has proved that his spirit is unbreakable. I remind him of that.

He’s a fighter.

When I thought I had lost him and when I got to sick to continue being pregnant he fought. He was my God send. Ten years later I still feel the same way.

He woke up zappy this morning. I fixed him his birthday breakfast and added a candle to his fruit. He loved that. He asked for breakfast in bed next year. LOL. I’m taking orders now. As we drove to school he asked that I call the school and ask them to make an announcement that today is his birthday. Really?

Only my child. He has to be the center of attention. I am still glowing from birthday kisses and birthday hugs that made my day just as special.

We celebrated all weekend and with each passing moment, I was even more in awe that I am raising an incredible young man. He’s smart. He’s funny. He’s the best thing I ever did. I guess I can’t say he’s still my baby, but he will always be that to me.

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “Z” is for Zappy. My posts were written as a journal style for the challenge on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter@mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram pagehttps://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Xerarch

I remember sitting in church one day and hearing my pastor preach about the Myrtle tree and how strong a tree it was because it could grow in dark and xerarch places. It didn’t need much light. It didn’t need much water. It could grow anywhere. It could bear fruit for sustenance.

The thing is that story just popped into my head as I was searching for a word that would go with the letter ‘X’. I remembered that story and how it inspired me as I sat on the pew thinking about my life and my son’s life. The message was simple – Anyone can grow and shine on the mountain top, but when you’re in the valley will you still be able to grow?

The answer should be yes. Even when you are in a valley situation you need to be like the Myrtle tree and just grow. No matter what is going on around you focus on God and just grow where you are planted. Your tree will sustain the weather and you will bear much fruit.

Life is about sustaining in difficult storms and growing through what you go through.

X

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “X” is for Xerarch. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter@mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram pagehttps://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Wise

April 26, 2018

Dearest Munch:

Sometimes I can’t find the words to impart the wisdom that I want you to have about life. There are not enough words or moments. Our country is in a state of change. But, I believe that it will get better.

I want you to focus on the wise words by these great men in history. These quotes were picked to inspire you to live each day being a better version of yourself. Life won’t be easy. However, you are powerful beyond measure. Trust that. Trust you.

When times get weary or lonesome, reflect on the wise words of your ancestors…

“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.” – Booker T. Washington

“Ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.” –James Baldwin (No Name in the Street)

“There is in this world no such force as the force of a person determined to rise. The human soul cannot be permanently chained.”- W.E.B. Dubois

“Racism is not an excuse to not do the best you can.” —Arthur Ashe

“There are two kinds of worries—those you can do something about and those you can’t. Don’t spend any time on the latter.” —Duke Ellington

 

Love,

Mommy

W

 

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “W” is for Wise. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter@mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Version

March 30, 2018

The version seems to be the same…I was afraid for my life. Another black boy dies. Gun downed. Another acquittal. No charges. The characters may change, but the version remains the same. Different cast. Same roles. More black boys die. It doesn’t matter. Our lives don’t matter.

The sins of the father are visited upon their offspring. What the hell did my ancestors do to make our children a target for violence? Their version always ends in a chalk outline and a community in outrage.

No more tears.

No more.

There should not be separate versions.

Only one.

The truth.

V

 

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “V” is for Version. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter@mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram pagehttps://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Unjust

April 24, 2018

Dearest Munch,

As you approach your 10th birthday in less than a week, I want to tell you that I love you more than words can ever express. You are an incredible young man with a beautiful spirit. I vow with all that I am and all that I have to always love and support you. But, son, I have to be honest about something…

The world is not as it seems. Life is unjust. Justice is not always given. Life may beat the heck out of you and sometimes it may seem as though you can’t catch a break. The enemies will rise around you at every turn whether it be personal or professional. Expect heartaches and setbacks. They are only temporary son. Don’t dwell in failure or swim in sorrow.

But, be encouraged my beautiful little boy. This life is the only one you’ll get. So, no matter what cherish it. Live each day to the fullest. Bring forth the best of who you are and whose you are to the world. Color outside the lines and always remember like it says in Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

U

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “U” is for Unjust. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Trayvon

February 27, 2012

I couldn’t believe what CNN was reporting. A 17-year old black boy was walking home from the store when he was shot by a neighborhood watch man. What neighborhood watch person carries a gun? Oh, this is Florida. Seriously? Why oh’ why did this boy have to die. His face looks so innocent.

His life. Gunned down. This evil man is claiming self-defense. How? Did he have a gun? He was a kid. You’re a grown man.

A hoodie. The news is trying to make it seem like this fool, this murderer was scared because this little black boy was wearing a hoodie. Are you kidding me? A hoodie.

God, please help me. Why are little black boys viewed as thugs and violent when the biggest terrorists in America are raised in our country? What can I do to keep Munch safe.

Pray.

I shall trust you to protect him. He’s all I have. He’s no thug. He’s no criminal. He’s my Munch.

T

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “T” is for Trayvon. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter@mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram pagehttps://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Saved

May 2015

I sat in church with Munch. It was first Sunday. We baptize on the first Sunday of every month in my church. Much had just turned 7 a few days before. We watched the members of the congregation who had chosen to dedicate their lives to Christ enter the baptismal pool. Munch looks at me and asks “Mommy, why am I not baptized?” I sat there stunned. I assumed that he would make the decision to follow Christ on his own one day.

I replied “Munch, getting baptized is not about getting in a pool and swimming, but agreeing to follow Christ much like you have to follow your parents. God is our heavenly father and you have to agree to follow Him.” He replied “But, I love God and Jesus and I want to follow Him. I will obey.” I sat there overwhelmed with emotion. I didn’t know how to explain this feeling that my child had expressed. Shocked. That sounds about right?

He had just turned 7 a few days before. Who decides at 7 that they want to follow Christ? Apparently Munch. I whispered to my mom and her friend that Munch wanted to follow Christ and get baptized. Mom whispered that we should wait until Youth Sunday. The last Sunday of the month. Her friend said “No, let him go now. He’s made the choice.” I did.

Munch made his choice. I had to listen. He got up and I held his hand as he walked forward and chose to accept Christ as his Savior. It was a feeling like no other that I had ever experienced. The church had been a bedrock to many blacks throughout history. It was still a bedrock to my family and I. Munch had listened and learned that God hears all and will provide. He chose to serve Him.

He got saved. He was baptized the following month. His choice to be a follower of Christ.
Dear God – Let it be you who He follows for the rest of his life. Protect him O’Lord. Let him not be ashamed to tell others that he knows where his help comes from. Be a fence around him all the days of his life.

S

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “S” is for Saved. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Responsible

February 2009

Munch said that he learned about the Civil Rights movement. He was talking and excitedly sharing what he was taught at school. “Mommy, why did white people hate black people?” I didn’t know what to say. His 5 year old eyes waited for an answer. I said “It wasn’t all white people baby. Some people felt that they could speak for others. They liked the way things were. They were wrong. Everyone is entitled to live their best life without other people doing mean things to them or hating them. Times have changed. People are more responsible for their actions.” 

He seemed satisfied with that answer. Started talking about the kids that wouldn’t play with him today. “They were being mean to me mommy” he said. I began to explain that it is okay to not want to play with children that don’t want to play with you. I told him to play with those that wanted to play with him and ignore those that don’t. Everyone is responsible for their own choices.

I don’t think he understood what I was saying. How do I teach my five year old that he can only be responsible for his own actions and not those of others? He needs to know that because it goes hand in hand with the choices he will make. His free will. You must engage and hang out with responsible people. People that will stretch you and make you a better person.

I know he’s still young, but he’s a black boy. The weight of the world will someday be on his shoulders. He will assume responsibilities for a lot of things and a lot of people. But, my prayer is that he knows that he doesn’t have to do so. You are only responsible for yourself.

R

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “R” is for Responsible. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.

Querulous

December 2015

I shall live my life by not being querulous with my lot in life. I have to redirect and remain positive as I have a child looking at me. It is important that he sees the boundaries that I’m creating and enforcing. My attitude will be one of peace and I will not stray from the path laid out before me.

It is interesting that we are so consumed with the negatives from the news, social media and friends that it can distract from our path of patience and peace. It’s time to disconnect. When our attitudes shift due to outside influences we have to get back to the basics. Focus on what you can control. Don’t complain. Just change. I am the change I want to see. No more querulous tones or reminders of things undone. How can I encourage Munch to do the same if I’m not taking my own advice?

Focus is the key.

Q

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “Q” is for Querulous. My posts will be written as a journal style for the challenge and will be on the theme: Mothering While Black. I hope you enjoyed it.

Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.