Graduation: The biggest mistake I ever made.


So a lot of you guys know I’m graduating this weekend… and it’s a long time coming. I’ve worked very hard for this, and I will more than like cry after I receive my diploma.

My friends and family have been so encouraging and they have pushed me to this point. They knew what I was capable of and never doubted me. But there are people that did, some people told me that I would never make it. Micah’s (my oldest son) sperm donor told me I was making the biggest mistake of my life by having him, and three months later when I decided not to go back to the army because I was going to school he told me I was making the biggest mistake of my life again.

That stuck with me through this whole journey. He thought this child would ruin my life, then he asked me give him custody so that I would go back to active duty army. NO, just flat out no. How did it make sense to give my child to someone that made it clear they didn’t want him? So I decided to stay at home with my support system and go back to school.

I kept the same mindset that I had throughout basic training, everyday that I went to school was a step closer to my goals. I didn’t always want to go or do homework, but I kept going because failing was not an option. Micah didn’t ruin my life, he gave me life! Micah is the reason I have accomplished all of this.

My friends and family encouraged me and boosted me up but “this is the biggest mistake of your life” that’s what got me through. I had to prove that none of this was a mistake. Micah’s name means prophet, and his birth was like divine intervention. He interrupted my life and gave me a new life, every step I have taken has been me stepping out on faith. I couldn’t fail (no matter what I was told) because God ordered my steps.

The last few weeks I’ve heard people say that they’ve seen my hard work and I inspire them. That’s the craziest thing to me because it was never my intention and you never really know who’s watching you. If you’ve been watching and you’re in similar situation or you’re doubting yourself, follow your instincts and boss up. It doesn’t matter what anyone else says, what’s meant for you cannot be stopped by man.


Graduation Fundraiser!


Hey guys so I’ll be crowdsourcing in order to buy a new computer after graduation! My MacBook has been well loved over the last ten years and now it’s time for an upgrade to go through this next stage of life! It’s key to running my business and continuing my education. So if you were curious on what to get, a contribution would be awesome 😍

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So as a barista I’ve struggled quite a bit with the Starbucks incident in Philadelphia… because it’s hard to be disappointed by something/someone you care about. I’ve been with the company for four years now and I genuinely love the company and culture, and I’ve tried to justify the incident by saying that it’s an isolated event and it couldn’t possibly happen at my store because WE aren’t like that. But sadly we’re just one overzealous partner away from an incident.

I’ve been on the shift where snide comments were made about customers that were different. I’ve felt uncomfortable when my coworkers said customers were ghetto. And I’ve silently suffered through a day where I was already emotional wreck from the latest shooting, then to standby while our shift on duty had the police escort a homeless black person from our store.

All these transgressions big and small build up, you keep sweeping them under the rug and over look them until the mound is too big for you to ignore. I remember when starbucks had a campaign to spark conversations about race, every white person in my store decided not to participate, therefore nobody took part. So as ahead of the curve starbucks pretends to be, we are still very much behind.

And this incident reminded black baristas everywhere that the company we love doesn’t always love us. They only tolerate us because we’re the right kind of black.

One night I had a classmate from high school come in, he was dressed like a small town A$AP Rocky. Gold rings on every finger, a gold chain around his neck, and a grill in his mouth. Before I could even speak to him, I could hear my coworkers laughing over the headset. Calling him ghetto and a drug dealer, saying he even drove a drug dealer car (an impala). My face got hot with embarrassment, because I knew what they were implying. But I didn’t say anything, I was just silently hurt, and when he spoke to me I felt even more embarrassed about not checking them. Then the killer, my husband picked me up later in his Impala.

So all it really takes is one person to reveal the micro aggressions and even blatant racism present in your workplace. This incident revealed what I already knew about a company that I love. That’s why I’ve struggled with this, that’s why I’ve made excuses, and tried to explain how we’re different.

But we’re not unfortunately. So I fully support your boycott, I want you to come sit in my lobby and if you are asked to leave, I will gladly take my apron off and leave with you. Because I don’t want to work for a company that doesn’t want to grow and change.

Day 57


It’s Sunday and I’m exhausted, like every other weekend πŸ€¦πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ I spent Friday and Saturday in a doula workshop that I really enjoyed and benefited from, although I struggled in some areas.

So we all introduced ourselves on Friday morning, a lot of the ladies already knew each other and everyone expressed what brought them there and initially I felt like my answer and intro seemed a little dry and didn’t really do any true justice to why I was there. Definitely not a reflection of my personality πŸ˜‚ but nonetheless I’m still passionate about my goal which is providing adequate prenatal care to women of color as well as those affected by trauma and making bodily autonomy and respect the baseline of maternal healthcare.

So after that we did what I consider the lecture portion, ironically this is always my favorite part because I love note taking and soaking up knowledge. There were a lot of things that I knew but so much more that I took away from it. Afterwards we talked about our personal birth stories and opened with one another, and for someone like me (I have an analytical mind but I’m also highly sensitive) I was overwhelmed by this wave of emotion and feminine energy! I found myself really doubting my abilities to emotionally support another women and what I could bring to this field. So when I got home I was emotionally exhausted and I had to decompress and really sort through all my feeling before I could go back for part two. I realized that we ALL brought various talents and abilities to the table and there was something about me that allowed me to be in that space at all.

On Saturday I went back for part two where I found myself far more transparent than I had been the day before and everyone was super receptive. I also learned that I wasn’t the only person that had those feelings or doubts. We also got more into the clinical side of things (more notes and lectures 😊) and we did some hands on stuff. We really focused on our roles as doulas and I could start to see how I fit into the bigger picture. What I was lacking in emotional skills I definitely made up for in knowledge. Opening up and being transparent seemed like it was even more exhausting than being overwhelmed with the emotions of others because when I got home later I crashed for hours 😩😩😩 luckily my husband picked up dinner and let me nap.

But I took so much away from the training, and I hope that I was able to leave some things behind for someone else. And I want to continue to build on these relationships and get to know the women I spent the weekend with because they were all truly amazing. That workshop wasn’t the end of our road together we still have so much to do before we are certified doulas and we are working together to meet these milestones and get to this certification.

Look forward to our next step in this process, we will soon have another fundraiser opportunity so if you wanted to give before you will have another chance for sure!

Day 53: getting caught up!


So I know it’s been nearly a week since I last blogged. We had an extremely busy week with Valentine’s Day, the Black Panther premier, my baby shower, and a trip to the hospital. There has literally been something going on everyday, and it’s been tough maintaining. So for this post I just want to touch bases with you guys, let you know what’s been going on and what’s coming up.

So for Valentine’s Day we spent the day as a family and did some shopping then had lunch at Joes Crab Shack. I was disappointed when I found out they no longer have the Orleans steam pot 😩 which is part of my little pregnancy tradition. Once I start getting close to the end, I’ll have crawfish with extra old bay! I like to think it encourages labor, but who really knows πŸ€·πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ.

The next day we went on a double date with our besties and saw Black Panther! Which was amazing and I have a response piece written about it! With everything going on and our political climate we were kind of on edge going to see it on opening night. After we purchased our tickets a guy actually came in wearing a fanny pack, a backpack, and a bandanna, we were pretty clearly disturbed by this and none of the staff said anything unfortunately. So it was a little hard to really enjoy the movie while being on edge like that. And it’s awful that you have to worry about those kinds of things when you’re just trying to enjoy yourself with your family.

The next day (Friday) I woke up at almost 7am to some pretty nasty contractions (36 weeks at this point), I took some Tylenol and tried to sleep through it but I found myself awake every thirty minutes or so. After a while I just got up and told my husband we needed to go to the birthing center. So I took a shower and tried to eat but I was just too uncomfortable. When we left for the birthing center my contractions were five minutes apart and about a minute long. After being checked by the midwife on call she said I was about two centimeters dilated but not effaced at all and baby wasn’t quite in my pelvis yet. So clearly I wasn’t ready to deliver, she started me on fluids and called another midwife at WakeMed who suggested I come over for monitoring. Once there they started me on two more bags of fluids and encouraged me to eat so my husband went out and got lunch/dinner. My contractions started to slow down shortly after and I was checked again. The midwife told me I was 4cm dilated but I could stay that way for weeks because baby wasn’t engaged. So she gave me a shot to slow down the contractions (because I couldn’t imagine feeling this way for weeks) and I finished up the last of my fluids. We discussed nutrition and hydration, areas where I had been clearly lacking because I wasn’t taking care of myself like I should have been especially with the busy week that I had.

So long story short I’ve been resting since then, which also accounts for the lack of post. I’ve been working on eating regularly (three meals and two snacks) and hydrating thoroughly.

Saturday I tried to rest as much as possible, and I didn’t do any driving or running around. I had some family and friends arrive from out of town, and my best friend helped me do the remaining things on my to do list.

Sunday was the day of my shower and it started off with a mental breakdown πŸ€¦πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ which is in my nature. And it ended up being amazing, I love being surrounded by love and my loved ones and it makes me feel amazing to shower the new baby in all this love and support.

I went back to work on Monday and it was tough but I made it through. I’m committed to working until the end because I’m a believer in staying active May that be at work everyday or exercising. I also lost my mucus plug on Monday, I know that TMI (sorry πŸ€·πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ) so that means that labor is on the horizon. It’s probably not as soon as I would prefer, but in its own time. We also saw Black Panther for the second time that night! We really wanted to take the kids and my cousin hadn’t seen it yet. I enjoyed it even more the second time especially knowing the boys enjoyed it. My oldest is obsessed now and my youngest enjoyed the music (I’m sure he danced the whole time).

The last two days have been relatively uneventful, I’ve just been resting and getting ahead on school work. I’ve also done some batch work for the next 5-6 days, meaning it’s impossible to get behind on posting daily. So consider this an update on everything going on with me 😊 and look forward to lots of quality work the next few days!

Oh I’m also starting my doula training tomorrow! I’m so excited for this new journey in my life and the next step in jump starting my birthing business. I’ll keep you guys posted on how things go and what I take away from the training. I’ve also picked up some other topics and demographics that I want to focus on in my business, which I’ll be sure to discuss with you guys.

Days 44 & 45: The Mammy Role


Stereotypes are something we frequently discuss in my sociology courses (especially when discussing gender and race). In the black community there are two particular roles that we see pretty frequently, they may seem a bit outdated but they are still present today even if they’re veiled. One being “the Jezabelle” or a promiscuous woman who frequently uses sex to get her way. This is a stereotypes formed as a result of being the masters concubine, and sexually assaulted as a result of the lack of bodily autonomy granted to black folks.

The second stereotype is “The Mammy” typically depicted as an overweight and unattractive matriarch. It’s her job to care for the masters family, this means physically and emotionally. Not only does she cook and clean but she bears the emotional baggage of the family. These stereotypes are dangerous because other races actually begin the perceive us as either hyper sexual animalistic individuals or maternal care takers willing to bare the weight of their emotional baggage.

As a result of these countless conversations I’ve noticed that these stereotypes although very dated are still ever present. One of my favorite writers and producers Shonda Rhimes has committed this very crime. Whether it’s a conscious decision I’m unsure πŸ€·πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ because one of my favorite things about her is that she does “blind casting” meaning she cast her characters without having a particular race in mind and hires the actor that does the best job. This is a great way to avoid the cycle of stereotyping in the media. But I’ve noticed several stereotypes on her shows, such blatant stereotyping that it’s hard to overlook.

For example the Jezabelle: Olivia Pope and Annalise Keating. I know, you want to burn me at the stake for this level of blasphemy and I want you to know that I love them too! But she consistently exploits their sexuality as if they have zero control over it! Feeding into the hyper sexuality of black women (and the exploitation of that at the hands of white men).

And the most problematic of them all: Miranda Bailey as the Mammy. This one truly breaks my heart to say, and I didn’t notice until after I had watch the show in its entirety several times! Bailey frequently comes to the rescue of the interns, cleaning up their messes (some legal matters), and coddling them and their emotions (even with the thin veiled attempt at tough love). Mom black people will see zero issue in this because they frequently turn to black women for the sister girl advice and sympathy while they emotionally dump all over them and believe that it’s been reciprocated. Shonda even played Bailey with the “Im and independent woman, I don’t need a man” bit. I really love Bailey and I can relate to her! But the reasons why are severely problematic! I let people emotionally dump on me, especially white women. I don’t always get the credit I deserve and I chalk it up as needing to work harder. I take care of everyone!!!! How can you truly be the best when you are busy catering to everyone and loving/supporting everyone, and not given consistent character development 😐. We have done Bailey an injustice.

And I know y’all hate me now, that’s ok πŸ€·πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ I’m mad at myself too because I love all these women (fictional and real). But we have to acknowledge the disservice that we do one another when feeding into these stereotypes and recreating them. We are forcing ourselves into a box of limited roles on the big screen and in real life. We definitely need to stop feeding into these roles when we know that’s what people think of us. We are justifying this physical and emotional abuse, and it’s not ok. There’s so much more to who we are and what we are capable of. We deserve character development.

Mom Monday (on a Tuesday)


I’m exhausted guys… I’m 36 weeks pregnant and I’m still going strong πŸ’ͺ🏾 still going to both jobs and school. Oftentimes when I’m drained I look to other moms for inspiration. I channeled a particular mama today. Serena Williams.

Not only is she super woman on any regular day but she became one of the most iconic mamas to be EVER, who has managed to be half as glamorous and win the Australian Open while pregnant?! Even with all the glamour she was transparent about her journey and the hardships, and she has become an advocate for one of my biggest platforms: healthcare disparities in the black community. Even celebrities of her caliber aren’t exempt from accelerated maternal mortality rates and less than stellar care.

She has become the face of everything we talk about and fight so hard to change. She made it real by telling her story. She had a flawless emergency cesarean section but afterwards she began to feel short of breath. Aware of her medical history of blood clots she alerted a nurse who assumed that she was just confused. She asked for the doctor and a CT scan, they performed a Doppler scan where they saw nothing and she again insisted that she needed a CT where they discovered small clots in her lungs. She also had to undergo a second surgery after opening her incision due to a coughing fit (caused by the clots in her lungs), the heparin she was given via IV to stop the clotting caused a hematoma to form at the site!

We could have easily lost the greatest tennis legend of our time due to negligence. Because our concerns as black women are not taken seriously, especially in terms of health care. Someone like Serena would obviously be in tune with their body but healthcare professionals dismissed her concerns. Luckily she’s the kind of women that would fight for her voice to be heard.

I want to have that level of confidence because I oftentimes find myself second guessing my own intuition. This is something I will never encourage my daughters to do, because a woman’s intuition will/can literally save your life.

So on a day like today when I’m pooped, I summon the work ethic of mamas like Serena to make it through the day.

Day 42: Improving Birth


Today was the last day of our MVF-Doula fundraiser, and I’m so thankful for all the people that contributed in anyway to make this training possible for me. Whether it was sharing the link, purchasing a shirt, or making a donation. I consider that support a direct investment in my future and my business.

I’ve tried to be pretty transparent and on occasion a little explicit about my experiences and why I feel as strongly as I do, especially when it comes to birth experiences. I don’t want you guys to ever feel as though I’m attempting to invalidate your experiences as women if you didn’t have a natural or vaginal birth. I want you to have the experience that is most beneficial and liberating for you. For some women having an unmedicated vaginal birth can be further traumatizing. So the ultimate goal is for you have to have an informed birth with people that support you.

I stumbled upon an organization while I was Pinterest, called Improving Birth. It truly embodies all the work I feel I was called to do and I’m so glad I found them and I’ve followed them on literally every social media network. But just reading the various experiences, it truly reiterated my calling and I feel so much closer to what I’m truly called to do. I can see the path now instead of aimlessly working hard. This feeling makes it easier to eliminate distractions, distractions aren’t always fun and games though. For me distractions are jobs and classes I don’t need, unnecessary ways of filling my time because I’m a workaholic. I truly want to be invested in this therefore I’m going to focus on the things that are important and enhancing the experience (by further educating myself and immersing myself in information).

So I encourage you to cut ties from things, hobbies, and jobs that aren’t bettering you. Pruning is necessary for true growth.

Day 41: part two


So the other point I wanted to touch on yesterday was the difference between the goals of feminism for white women and black Women and how they’re reflected in today’s work place and demographics.

From the beginning it was super clear the white women needed black women to aid in their movement, in order to truly yield the results they desired. But the two demographics were working in vastly different directions for vastly different goals. A large part of this movement consisted of monopolizing off the work of black women and ignoring their plight. Which still occurs today unfortunately, feminism has been self serving for white women and allowed them to look the other way when other women struggled.

In my sociology course “Black Women in America” we discussed the needs and wants of black women during the era of Women’s Rights (not that it’s ever truly ended). Black women have worked from day one, literally worked their fingers to the bone. They’ve had their own children ripped from them and sold like livestock and were forced to care for the children of white families and even wet nurse (creating a long and difficult relationship with attachment parenting and breastfeeding). Meanwhile white women turned a blind eye, and only acknowledged these atrocities in order to push their own agendas. White women were seeking opportunities to work and fill fulfillment outside of the home, while black women sought out opportunities to stay at home with their children in order to nurture and truly parent, making up for time lost (at no fault of their own).

We seem as though we should be long separated from this painful past but the trends are still the same. I work with primarily white women and they love to work and feel unfulfilled by being stay at home moms (which I understand), but I am also a black woman and I understand what it’s like to work from the time that I was capable of working up until I literally went into labor (and I’m doing it for a third time), and in this day and age we still want the same thing to stay home and truly parent and be connected to our children. I’m not saying that all women have the same ambitions but they are all worthy of the work it takes for us to obtain these goals. Feminism isn’t just white women politics, domestic work is real work. So we live in a day and age where we can truly have it all and if having it all includes being home to truly be present in your child’s life then so be it. That’s what it will take for me to feel fulfilled in my life, which is why I’m working so hard to start my business and jumpstart my blog.

As I quickly approach my due date I realize all the work I have yet to do in order to be prepared to stay at home with my children and still bring in income. I’m still working on self hosting my blog (we ran into some hiccups this week), I’m finishing up my lactation consultation application, and I’ll be attending my doula training next week! All of this will be done before baby number three is here. That way I can truly dedicate myself to recovering, bonding, and elevating my business during my maternity leave.

Day 40


I’m exhausted. I’m getting into the last few weeks of my pregnancy and I feel like I’m falling apart. But fortunately my husband has been letting me rest and enjoy these days, I don’t want to over exert myself and go into labor early (I’m all about letting baby cook for the full 40 weeks).

This week I’ve had a light work load but closing last night was not my cup of tea πŸ˜’. Anyways I want to talk about a few things: one my appointment yesterday and the importance of birth workers of color and the importance of working from home (and how it relates to intersectional feminism).

So pretty frequently Black Women aren’t treated very humanely when receiving medical attention. I know that’s a difficult concept to grasp, as medical staff are committed to providing the best care possible for each patient. Nonetheless they are still human and are still predisposed to making rash judgements and succumbing to stereotypes. This could happen at the expense of someone’s life, especially the lives of black women. We already have soaring rates of maternal and infant mortality, so why wouldn’t health care professionals make a conscious effort to be culturally competent and make fewer decisions based on stereotypes (such as our higher pain thresholds or that we don’t breastfeed).

I discussed my own appointment with my mom and she asked me “well why didn’t you speak up?”. That’s an awesome question, probably because I have a history of trauma and I was paralyzed with fear, I was almost having an out of body experience. Next I felt as though I was in a space where I was protected and I was realizing that, that wasn’t true. By no means is it a problem for me to have a white midwife but having a midwife that looks like you (or any health care provider that looks like you) completely changes your experience because they share similar experiences.

If provided the proper support victims of trauma can have a healing experience during birth. This is as simple as being treated with respect and bodily autonomy. This should be the baseline for all prenatal care and as I’ve described it clearly isn’t. You should also be able to birth in a place where you feel safe and your vision is supported. If you don’t even feel comfortable with the staff, how could you possibly feel safe? All women should receive this level of care with/without disclosing trauma or abuse, but as we’ve seen this is all too often not the case.

Again this is what makes doula care important, it’s important for all women. It creates a thoughtful and caring environment where women feel supported and educated about what’s happening to them and their bodies. So please support local birth workers especially those of color who are doing the hard work in these communities.

I’m going to follow up this post with a part two, I had no intention of making this one this long. But sometimes that happens when you feel passionate about something.