Mom You Lied

This past weekend, Munch and I went out shopping on Saturday for new church clothes. Later that evening Munch came in my room and asked me could he talk to me privately. I said “Sure.” I have to tell you that I was really proud that he closed the door and asked me to talk privately. I eagerly awaited what he had to say.

“Mom, I felt like you lied to me today” he said. I was caught off guard. “About what Munch? Why do you feel like I lied to you today?” He said “About the store earlier. You said it wasn’t going to take long and we waited in line for a long time.” I had to catch myself. I was ready to say something smart, but I’m practicing the behavior that I want him to emulate so I said “Munch, do I work at that store?” He replied “No.” I then asked “How do you define a long time?” He didn’t respond. I continued “I had to wait in the same line and they had every register open. But, I am asking you to remember that God wants us to be patient and what you are exhibiting is your frustration at the fact that we had to wait. Wait in line while picking up clothes for you. Remember that you must have an attitude of gratitude all the time and right now, you’re not being gratuitous. I didn’t lie. You didn’t have a realistic expectation as to the time it would take and neither did I.” I asked him was there anything else and said good night.

I almost lost it. I couldn’t believe that my child was blaming me for the long lines in the store. I didn’t know if I could continue down this positive parenting journey. It was stressful to reign in my emotions and then to try to explain how disappointed that I was without losing my mind. I did it, but sometimes I wonder if I’m even making sense to Munch.

I didn’t lie, but his interpretation of the fact that I said it shouldn’t take long had told his brain that I lied when he had to wait over a certain amount of time. I didn’t know what to do. I was literally making it up as I go along. I thought about it over the next couple of days and expressed to him that we needed to take the time to process what he said and his expectations. I explained that his expectations are his, but he needs to practice reasonableness. I discussed that because he’s in an awkward size in dress clothes that I need him to be present and that I try my best to shop without him, but that may not always be the case. He needs to be prepared that sometimes he will need to be present.

I don’t know if he understands. Talking to other people only increases my anxiety about my choices because they don’t understand what I’m doing on this positive parenting journey. I’m being firm but allowing him to have choices. To openly expresses his feelings, but to level set with him. I pray that I’m not messing him up.

 

 

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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Happy Mother’s Day

Wishing every last mother a big fat happy mother’s day! You are to be honored this day. Your hard work may seem to go unnoticed, but know that you are making a difference in the lives of the children you raise. Stand strong Queens! You got this!

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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/.

The Truth About Parenting

Yesterday when scrolling through Facebook I see this great post that was shared to a group that I’m in:

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The post angered a lot of people. They felt judged. I get it. But, should you feel that way? Yelling at your child early in the morning starts them off on the wrong foot. We’ve got to do better. Speak in normal tones to them. If you set them on edge first thing in the morning, how do you think the rest of their day will go?

I saw this video below a couple of years ago and it really solidified in my mind that I was doing right by Munch.

There were many opportunities to start the child off on the right path and each adult that he encountered was determined to make his day suck. Yep, it was the adults fault. You are the ones that set the tone for how their day should be. Can they have bad days if you do everything right? Yes, absolutely, but how they start their day matters. Just like eating a healthy breakfast in the morning is best, it is also imperative that we put our children in a mindset of success and peace.

I commented on the Facebook post in my group with this…

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This mother commented that compared to you I must be doing something wrong. I laughed and said “No, we do our best. I only have one. I chose to do my best and pour the very best of what I have in raising him. It’s important that I get up each morning and fix him a hot breakfast. That I make sure he is presentable and in a positive mood each day. It’s my job as his parent. I wasn’t raised in the manner I’m choose to raising my son. Not a bad thing. I chose to raise him differently.” I’m not in competition with other parents. I am just choosing to do what I believe is best for Munch. Some days are good. Some days are a struggle. But that’s to be expected, right?

The other day Munch was taking his sweet time eating breakfast (38 minutes) and I was going to be late getting him to Before Care. I calmly called downstairs and asked him was he finished eating? He said he wasn’t. I then told him that I needed him to come upstairs in 7 minutes because we were late. We had to go. He started to talk about how he wasn’t finished. He still had food to eat. I explained that he was being distracted by watching his Ipad and not eating his breakfast. He complained that he was not. He then wanted to argue with me. I calmly replied “This was not a choice. I asked you to follow my instructions because you need to finish so we can get dressed and leave.” He did as instructed and we finished getting dressed and we left.

When I chose to practice positive parenting I knew that there would be days that would be overwhelmingly frustrating, but I’m sticking with it. I’m choosing to teach him positive behaviors and not to mess up his day with my own frustrations. Because that is what it is…my frustrations. I need to learn to control me.

I’m different. I do things differently with him. I trust that he will be grateful for the lessons that I’m teaching him and understand that I only wish him peace knowing that it starts with me.

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/.

Love

I’m late. This should have gone out on Friday. Please forgive me for just getting out this post. It’s about love…

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April 16, 2018

There are times as a parent when you realize that your job is not to be the parent you always imagined you’d be, the parent you always wished you had. Your job is to be the parent your child needs, given the particulars of his or her own life and nature.

Ayelet Waldman

Love. There is no greater gift than to love the young man that God has blessed me with. He’s pretty amazing. I thank God for him every day. He is a child that challenges me to be better. I’ve grown because of him into someone that finds joy in the everyday simple moments of rushed kisses, determined hugs and high fives. I will support his dreams and help him understand his failures are a part of life. I will encourage him to just be himself because that is what the world loves.

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “L” is for Love. 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.

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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/.

Divorce

March 2013

It’s over. I told him in January that I wanted a divorce. He wanted to take time to think about it. Think about what? We’re not happy. We deserve to be happy. It’s not getting better. I just have to cope with this change. Wake up and repeat.

Some days are better than ever. I’m an emotional wreck. I don’t want Munch living in two separate homes. But, this is what I signed up for when I asked for a divorce. I just have to get used to it.

What about schools?  What kind of school will Munch attend? I don’t really like the public schools in my area. I picked out a great Catholic school. We both went. Munch is allowed to spend a day with them to get used to it. That’s good news despite the stress.

I’m trying not to think about the fact that Munch is now another statistic. A child of divorce. Will he be okay? What have I done? I don’t think I thought about Munch. Am I being selfish?

I pray not.

I have to focus on one thing at a time. This is stressing me out. I need to get my mind right. Focus on the logistics; the parenting plan, finding a school and getting through his day care graduation. I feel like everyone is looking at Munch and I when we go anywhere. Am I wearing a big “D” on my forehead. I’m consumed with thoughts of how Munch will survive and whether or not he will survive this. Truthfully, I wonder if I will survive.

It is as it shall be. Another black boy from a broken home. This was my worst fear realized. I never wanted to raise a child alone.

D

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “D” is for Divorce. 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/.

Cleveland

November 22, 2014

I’m standing in the kitchen trying to prepare dinner. Munch is in his room watching television and waiting for his dinner. I hear the news. A 12 year old boy named Tamir Rice was just gunned down in a park in Cleveland, Ohio by two police officers. The glass I was holding shatters.

He was 12. The picture shows a sweet smiling little boy. I watch the news with tears as I wonder how anyone could kill a 12 year old boy. What has this world come too? A mother burying her son. This isn’t how the world is supposed to work. We are supposed to have our children bury us after many years lived.

He won’t have that opportunity. I wonder is anywhere safe. I wonder if this little boy’s mom thought that the city of Cleveland was safe. If her street or neighborhood was safe. If she thought that those who were supposed to protect and serve would never harm her son.

Another boy dies. Another mother weeps. A life cut short. How can I protect my four year old son? No guns. No play guns. No Nerf guns. I have to keep Munch safe.

I clean up the broken glass and think that this is life. We’re all broken. The police are broken. This family is broken. The justice system is broken.

No rest for mothers tonight.

 

C

 

 

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “C” is for Cleveland. 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/.

Black

May 1, 2008

I held him in my arms. In awe. This little black boy was mine. I couldn’t believe that I did this. That God allowed me to be the vessel for this little prince. My son. I stared in amazement.

His color hadn’t come in. His melanin would be a rich coco brown. A combination between his father and I. I smelled him. I kissed him. I loved him. I couldn’t describe the feelings that I was experiencing. It was surreal.

I created life. A trying delivery and I couldn’t really bond with him. I couldn’t find the strength to hold him yesterday after his birth. The drugs. They were plentiful and being pumped in my IV. I was sore from the C-section and they didn’t even get me up to walk.

“You need to rest mama” the Ethiopian nurse urged. I sighed. I was exhausted. I could barely explain the overwhelmingly feeling of being drugged and unable to lift my arms. Many visitors came to see this beautiful boy. Our joy personified.

He just slept. No worries. No cries. Just sleeping in peace. I couldn’t believe it. I smiled that night that I went to sleep. Times were changing. My son was born at an important time. We had the first real candidate Barack Obama running for President. I prayed that he would win. He was a black man. My son was black. I wanted him to see himself in Barack and I wanted to tell him that he could be anyone or anything in this world and truly mean it. He could be President of the United States. Wouldn’t that be awesome?

I just snuggled more. Kissed more and prayed that his life is as God has planned. I thanked the Almighty for hearing my pleas when his life was in jeopardy. I thanked him for giving me joy. For giving me this black boy that I would love and protect with everything in me. One day.

One day. He was one day old. Would he be safe?

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This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “B” is for Black. 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/.

Anguish

July 6, 2016

Today I cried. A silent cry. Tears streamed down my face. I stifled my anguish. I silenced the wail that was building in my throat. Another. Another black man was shot by the police. This time in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He was 37. He had a name. It was Alton Sterling. He had a family.

He was more than the media make him out to be. He is was more. He was a father. He was a son. He wasn’t alone.

Second day of blood shed. I watched the video and tried to rationalize that something must have happened. But, I couldn’t. I couldn’t understand this murder. It was murder right?

Another black man who leaves behind a black son who will always remember that his father was murdered. In cold blood. At a gas station. Who will protect and serve him from this tragedy?

He will grow up. He won’t forget. None of us will. I pray that his anger and rage are used for positive. I pray that he sees that he will be the force of change.

I pray that his mother will get the strength to preach love and peace in a chaotic time to the black boy that she must raise alone. That she knows that heavy the crown she wears now because it is at this point that she must choose love no matter how easy it is to choose hate. I pray that she doesn’t succumb to the pain and leave her son alone to fend for himself because he needs her. He needs everyone. He needs to know that he is not alone.

I stifle my anger and anguish and think of the words of Langston Hughes poem: A Dream Deferred:

What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
Like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?

I shall pray harder tonight. I shall hold my son harder. I shall kiss him longer. I shall pray that this madness stops. I shall pray that no more mothers have to bury their children. I shall try to scrub the bulls eye off his back.

If only for one more night.

A

This post was part of the A2Z challenge and the letter “A” is for anguish. 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/.

Today Parenting Team

As if I don’t have a lot going on already, one of my goals is to really get my name out there and grow my blog. One of the ways that I’m looking to do it is by publishing on different sites with hundreds of thousands of readers. I decided to share what I’ve learned whether from dating, relationships or parenting with others. Check out my cool new badge.

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Check out my latest post and let me know what you think in the comments. You can also vote for my post to be featured on the Today show.

You Lead and They’ll Follow

 

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/.

I Stand United with MOBB

A moment of truth…It was Trayvon Martin’s death that made me scared for my son’s life. I was sitting there watching the news and seeing his mother’s face filled with so much pain and anguish that something broke in me that day. How could someone gun down a child? It wasn’t the first time it happened, but this was a local member of the neighborhood watch.  It left me wondering how had this country changed. What could I do to protect my son?

In reality, it was nothing. I mean the country had elected the first black president in 2008 and we were worse off than I could ever imagine. Racism, hate and anger seemed to be spewing at him. But, I had a black son. I had a son that would grow up knowing that he was born in the year where America made a decision to elect a black man to the highest position in the country. Anything was possible. I believed my son could do anything and be anything at that point.

But, the country seemed to change. The color of his skin made the closet hate mongers realize that we as a people couldn’t be kept down. We could do or be anything. He endured. He endured people trash talking him, his wife and his children. However, something changed when Trayvon died. When he announced in that press conference that Trayvon could have been his son, I realized that he was acknowledging his blackness in a way that was never done. He was a father before he was a president. He was a man.

It was in that moment that I accepted that my son would always have a target on his back. I held him tighter. Many more deaths. Many more boys and men. Tamir Rice was only a few years older than Munch. I couldn’t understand. Philandro Castille and the country was in an uproar. It was a long hot summer. I was angry and wanted to do something. I am a mother to a black son. I had to save him. I proclaimed that I didn’t endure multiple attempts at pregnancy, bed rest and an emergency delivery to let him die on the streets like a dog. I had to stand for something. I had to do something.

View More: http://magnoliastreetphoto.pass.us/tikeetha_2016

But, what? Last year, CNN reported that black men are nearly 3 times as likely to die from police use of force than white men. I was scared. How could I keep my son safe? How could I help him to understand why I don’t let him play with toy guns. Why I advocated for clothing that showed him as an innocent non-threatening black boy.

It was at that time that someone added me to a group on FaceBook called Mothers of Black Boys United (MOBB). This group was amazing. I saw articles on advocacy. I saw support and concern from mothers all over the world. I saw women united for the sole purpose of making sure their black sons had an opportunity to grow up.

So, I joined. Not just the FaceBook group, but the organization. I wanted to make a change. Not just talk about it, but be about it. MOBB advocates to change how young black boys and men are perceived and treated by law enforcement and in society. I was now part of a mission to protect our black boys. It was bigger than me. It was a community of mothers committed to make a difference.

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Yesterday was #givingTuesday all over. Many of you gave back with your charitable donations. It’s still time. Still time to give and help raise funds for a worthy cause. Can you please join me by donating to MOBB? Just click this link: Donate to MOBB

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Your support is invaluable. As little as $1.00 can make a difference. Thank you for supporting.

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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/.