Dont be Bitter be Better: 3 Reasons Why I Chose to be Single

Reading the heading of this post, I know you’re wondering why would one choose to be single.-Let me explain.- I found myself in an odd place. I was in a situationship that ended on good terms, we even decided to still remain friends. Even after the romantic phase was over, we would meet up for drinks and still text as friends. One day, I found myself blocked and ignored. This was someone who I had a fifteen year friendship with so to be suddenly cut out of their life was odd. I would speak when I saw them and nothing, not even a hello back. The need to know why I was suddenly being treated this way was growing inside of me. The more it happened the angrier I became. –I know what your thinking why did you continue to speak?- A part of me was all kill them with kindness, but another part felt it was probably agitating them that I did– that was the petty part of me.

Privately, I was very hurt by losing the relationship and the friendship. – I was hurt hurt. Mariah Carey’s breakdown ft Bone-Thugs and Harmony has never made more sense than that moment in time

The guy a dated after that 5months into the dating phase –not relationship but casually dating– he got engaged to someone else. Yes, you read that right, engaged to another girl while we were dating, and to add insult to injury I found about it 2 weeks later from someone who didn’t even know I knew him, let alone was dating him.- the audacity, tuh!-

I felt myself becoming bitter. I didn’t want to shut love out, but at that moment I didn’t know how I could continue to be so open to something that was literally ripping my heart apart. I prayed to ease the pain and bring me understanding. In the past, I had taken a break from dating before and dated myself, but I was still open to invitations. Initially when I took the first break, I was a 20 something year old who was lost. My 20s were rough and flew by. I am now a 30 something who has experience. I’m more settled now, I feel wiser like I have a new lens on life. I don’t feel so desperate to get to a finish line of a goal, until I started comparing my life to where I thought I should be for my age. So this decision didn’t come lightly. This time I decided to decline any interests. No dates. I didn’t entertain someone who was interested in dating. If they weren’t pre-existing non-romantic friendships, I wasn’t available for it. I wanted to completely focus on me and pour into myself. My prayers were eventually answered, but in praying I realized a few things about myself and how I approached dating:

1. Relationships were the goal
My goal was to be in a relationship. That’s it. That’s all I wanted. I had no clue what I was going to do after I got into one, but as someone whos never been in one, that was my goal. Somewhere along the way I began to be desperate to be in one. To be claimed, chosen, picked from the bunch. The older I got the more important it became. Towards the end of my 20s dating began to feel more of a hassle than fun. Dating was supposed to be the time of your life, but for me it felt like a means to an end.

If you listen to society, being single will have you feeling worthless. You cant possibly be anyone of value if you’re not in a relationship or married, your advice is worthless, you don’t understand anything as it relates to relationships and you can’t hang around the couple crowd if you are single. I have lost so called friends for being the single one. To be deemed “worthy” by society, I needed to be in a relationship.

I started to look at every possible love interest as “the one”. After the initial contact, I daydreamed about our life together. -if I really found you attractive.- I had an unrealistic expectation for every man who entered my romantic life. I was never in the present moment. I never saw it for what it was until it was over, and I was heartbroken, more so by the possibilities than by missing out on the person. –cause lets be honest, if relationships weren’t my goal there is no way I would have been with some of the dudes I entertained. They were definitely “what were you thinking?” type of guys, especially the 2 mentioned at the opening- I focused very little on the person and more on the end result.

2. Dating with Intention.
I investigated my dating history and they were all pointless. There were no clear intentions or standards set in the beginning. They were all “I like you, you like me, lets see what happens”. – 4 words no woman should fall for-. There were no clear boundaries. No clear communication. It was all unhealthy. Not only were the relationships not clear, but neither was I. I had no clue what I wanted in a relationship. I didn’t understand the value of what I was bringing to a relationship and what I should be receiving from one. The more I thought about it, the more I realized I had no clue how relationships worked. Sure, I had examples, but they all seemed to be unhappy or settling for things that didn’t align with their morals or values. –and I did not want to be one of those people.- Even though I knew what I didn’t want, I still wasn’t clear on what I did want.

I’m a researcher, I have to have understanding. The “why” must be answered. So, I did what any researcher would do; I read. I read books, 4 specifically; The Conversation– Hill Harper, Relationship Goals– Michael Todd, Judge This Cover-Brittany Renner, and The Game of Desire– Shannon Boodram.

I have read The Conversation many years ago. I remember it being so packed with gems, that I wrote notes in the margins and highlighted sentences throughout the book. I decided to reread it. The gems were still valid. It is, however, geared more toward people already in a relationship, but it gave me insight.

I loved the Youtube series Relationship Goals so much! It was actually the first thing I watched while struggling through the pain of losing the friendship. I learned a lot by watching the series. So, when Michael Todd wrote a book, I brought it on preorder. The book was so different from the series, which I loved, no one wants to read something they’ve already heard verbatim. There were some parts of the book I disagreed with, but he does speak about all kinds of relationships as it relates to God. I had to keep reminding myself that the book isn’t just talking about romantic relationships. Also, every relationship doesn’t have to work according to someone else’s interpretation of the bible. Overall, I enjoyed the book and got a real grasp about faith in relationships.

Ill admit, I was a little reluctant to read Judge This Cover by Brittany Renner. Brittany Renner is a social media star who is best known for her sexy photos and fitness on Instagram. She has made a name for herself by posting workout videos and promoting fitness products. Brittany has been known to date some very famous people. It is said that most of the relationships she refers to in her book are about those famous people, although the names have been changed in the book. I was really shocked by how insightful this book was. I related to her and her struggles with dating. Though she was a little more free in her sexuality, I admired her willingness to bare it all in the book. She also gave a different perspective and some great advice. Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone. Most people I know that did read it, did so to be nosy about her life, but ended up loving the book for her insight. I’m telling you it was a great read!

Lastly, I read The Game of Desire. I was pleasantly surprised by this book. If you’re not familiar with Shannon Boodram, she is a certified intimacy educator who teaches people to be more competent and confident as it relates sexology. My judgement of the book pre-reading it was that it was going to be mostly about sex. While there is, of course, sex talk in the book, the book is mostly about you. Discovering who you are, your love language, your personality traits, your intimacy language etc, and how to use that to be present in your dating life. There is a workbook you can fill out prior to reading which I highly recommend. I learned more about who I am as a person reading this book, than I did about dating. I honestly wished I would have read this book first. This is a book I highly recommend everyone read.

Lord, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change and the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

3. Self-Love
You knew we were going to end up here! I preach this. Every time I think I have finally obtained the highest level of loving yourself, I find something that could use extra work, a little extra love. When it came to intimacy and body positivity, I lacked majorly. I noticed in the bedroom or times of vulnerability; I was very mean to myself. –You know the talk “suck it in don’t let them see you have a gut, eww” “wear something to cover your arms no one needs to see those Hammocks” “ you want to wear shorts, have you seen your thighs??” “Make sure it’s dark when you take your pants off gotta hide those stretch marks, that’ll be a major turn off”.– Being sexual with some one may have felt good, physically, but mentally I was beating myself up with negative talk the entire time and after was worse.

I have struggled with my weight ever since I took the depo shot. My body has been through a lot. I have gotten trainers, changed my diet, taken weight loss pills, different diet fads all to try to lose weight. I cant remember a time in my adult life that I actually loved my body. There were certain things about myself I wanted to change, and I would, only to gain it back. Doctors would tell me to change my diet or to eat smaller meals more frequently and if I got sick they would say it was just a stomach flu. It wasn’t until I landed in the ER twice with the same doctor that pointed out that something wasn’t right; did I really start to find answers.

After getting diagnosed and getting a treatment plan together, I really began to focus on my health as a whole. I began to make the correct changes and my body actually responded. I began to look more and more like the person I saw in my mind. My self-talk became positive. Sure, there are still somethings I’m a little self-conscious about, but the positive outweighs the negative. The negative is what I strive to give the most love to. Constant reminders that we are regular people and look like real people. We don’t have tiny waists and giant asses. Our breast will have a little sag to them. Stretch marks are a part of growth your body is constantly changing, and facial hair is a thing, almost everyone has it. Society and social media will have you out here changing who you are to fit their standards of beauty rather than loving the way God created you. No knock to plastic surgery, if that’s a path you want or need to take to love who you are, more power to you, go forth and do that, but make sure it’s for you and not for the world. “Lord, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change and the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

I have been purposely single for a year. Every now and again I’ll feel alone, but I’m not lonely. I have found less of a desire to be in a relationship and more of a desire to be comfortable with who I am before inviting someone into my space; my peace. I’m more understanding about my love life and what I need and require to continue to flourish and grow. I’m no longer feeling bitter…. I’m better.-does my tagline make more sense to you now?-

Would you take a year off from dating to learn yourself? Let me know in the comments below!

As always, remember,

Don’t be Bitter,

Be Better!!

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Time for a Change

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So lately in my community of people we’ve all had this theme in our lives where we feel lost, but we know where we are going. We arent exactly sure how to get there or if we should keep straight or turn left or right, but we know whatever we choose we’ll be ok. We’ll get to where we need to be.

I’ve been staying that course almost all year.  I’ve been purging. I feel almost like I’m shedding skin. I don’t know if it’s because ya girl is knocking on 30s door or what, but I’ve been in the spirit of “this shit has gotta go” and so it’s been going. However, lately I had been feeling cramped and cluttered even though I had purged everything I thought I possibly could. I just wasn’t happy. Now, as a Libra it’s in our nature to be indecisive, but I literally couldn’t make a damn decision. I was supposed to be finalizing birthday plans that I just couldn’t decide on. I’ve been going back and forth on things that should’ve be a piece of cake to decide on.  I didn’t realize anything was wrong until I was on my way to do something I had absolutely no business doing. As I was driving I just thought “why do I keep allowing this? Why am I acting like a passenger when I’m clearly in the driver’s seat???” -Now I will say what I was on my way to do influence this sudden revelation.- It was my “ah ha” moment. It was the push of anger I needed.

meditate-01-giphy_0I swiftly turned around and went home. While sitting in my driveway –where I do some of my best thinking– I decided to delete social media. Usually when I take a break, I just put the apps in a folder and put them on a page by themselves, but during my break I may cheat and look. This time I straight deleted the apps. No cheating. I honestly was tired of reading y’all opinions and thoughts. It’s some of the best peace I’ve had in a while. I honestly thought I would miss it, but nope. Not at all.

Around the 5/6 day of my break I decided to clean my dream/goal journal out and rewrite my notes so they were more organized and I discovered I’ve been writing the same goals/dreams for years. Every year, same.fucking. goal. I went ahead with what I was doing, but this bothered me. That night while surfing YouTube I ran across what I like to call “adulting” videos; Financial and minimalist videos. Your typical ‘things I don’t buy’ or ‘10 ways you’re wasting your money’. All of these videos resonated with me because again I’ve been purging and feeling cluttered. The more I looked around the more I just saw…. stuff. Just a lot of stuff that I really don’t need/don’t use. I hold on to stuff people get me just cause I don’t want to feel bad for letting it go –when in fact they probably don’t remember gifting me it anyway– so the more I watched the more I became invested.

The next day I woke up in what my mom called a “Katie rage”. My grandmother, Katie, will get in these moods where everything has to change and change right then because she’s tired of saying it and she fusses and complains until it’s done. Whether it’s cleaning the house or redecorating it’s getting done TADAY! -yes that’s right, ta-day– Now I must add that I was sick with an upper respiratory infection so I had been off work during this social media break and I had a lot of time to sit with my thoughts. So that day I woke up with a clarity I haven’t had…. possibly ever? My mom and I purged, cleaned, and redecorated which I’m soooooooo happy with. I work from home so I have wanted my space to be nice, ascetically pleasing. I’ve been focusing on just my bedroom for a while, but it was a lot of stuff in my house that had been in my house since I moved out of my mother’s house which was… 7/8 years ago? I was just tired of looking at it. I literally threw what seemed like half the apartment away. Sa la vie! -la vie!-

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I will say my thoughts have been clear and focused, but I can’t seem to shut them off. I feel like I’m on a drug at times, but the results have been good so I’m kind of ok with it –lol-I won’t say I’m a minimalist. I dig the concept. I take some of their lifestyle and apply it to my own because we as Americans do over consume. Families in need probably wouldn’t be if some of us just learned that less is more. We don’t need a lot to survive. While I LOVE my closet –and awesome fashion sense wink wink lol- I don’t need all the clothes in my closet and could probably dress a whole 2/3 people and still be able to dress myself with my entire wardrobe. We really do live in excess. However I can’t let my closet go- even if I can’t wear half of it lol-, but I can control what I buy. Going for the structured quality items vs the fast fashion or getting Pyrex containers that are multipurpose vs. buying Tupperware. -environmentally better too

Maybe it was time for a lifestyle change, No no it was definitely time for a more adult lifestyle change. As I go into my 30s its time to let a lot of my old habits go. Those same habits can no longer serve me where I’m trying to go.

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What are some things you could let go?

Lets talk about it!

XOXO

And remember

Don’t be bitter

Be better!

 

 

Nina B

I wanted to end the month of music with someone I’ve known since I was just in elementary school. Ever since I can remember she’s been doing music. She’s never let “no” stop her and she straight grinds to make her dreams come true. A true definition of “never give up”! This last artist, comes straight out of Murfreesboro, Tn. Nina B has been making impacts in the music industry and is definitely one to watch out for. 

First, I know you by a different name, but I’ve had the pleasure of knowing you since I was just my brother’s annoying little sister -ha!- how did the name Nina B come to be?

Ha! Yes I remember those days, but you weren’t too annoying (just kidding!). But you know that’s a great question. When I first started rapping I used to freestyle and I had a fierce attitude when I spit. One of the older guys that hung around used to call me Nina bc he said I popped off at any given moment and won’t jam under pressure. (Just to clarify, a “Nina” is slang for a 9mm handgun) Honestly, it stuck with me thru my little “rap battles” so I decided to keep the name. The “B” can turn into plenty of meanings but we’ll keep it at Nina lol. 

Ok , that makes sense now! I never knew that. So, you’ve been in the music game for a long time, you’ve done a little bit of everything, but you always come back to being an artist. You have this enormous passion for music. What’s the one thing you love about music?

Wow, I can’t even put that into words! Music is a huge part of my life. I take to music to release any type of emotion towards any situation. I really think that music to me is very therapeutic and that’s the most important aspect of music in my opinion. That and the overall message of a song is key. 

Yes! Music has definitely lost its message to me now its all about being hot for now. Especially,with being a female artist. Speaking of being a female artist, what would you like to see change in that field of the music industry? 

Sis, I don’t think we have enough time in this interview to get my full take on this issue, but I’ll do my best to paraphrase. Honestly, I think that the issue with all females breaking into the industry is the overwhelming need to objectify the woman and the inability for men to value the likes of a woman. Along with a lack of serious artists; not these women who just want to be put out to get on. Period. What I mean is that this need to push the whole “sex sells” agenda is enabling us from our talents. Damn near every female rapper that comes out of the woodworks is nothing more than carbon copy. Either she’s trying to be Nicki [Minaj] or she’s just rapping about what’s in between her thighs rather than between her temples. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good Bad Bi** anthem, but let’s be real with ourselves for once in a while. Put it this way, name one female rapper (besides Lauryn Hill) who at some point in her career didn’t have to be sexy in some type of way in order to keep themselves relevant? 

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That’s a tough one unless I can name Queen Latifa or Erikah Badu –that’s a stretch huh?-Being a female artist is already an up hill battle, its such a hard industry to break into, from your experience why do you think that is?

Well, as far as my experience, I think that it really depends on the way that you try and break into the industry. You really have to find a lane and stick to it. This is a male dominated industry so when you’re trying to break into a rap industry that feeds off objectifying women, You can’t be too hard and intimidate the guys, but you also don’t want to put yourself in a box and only rap about what every other female rapper is [rapping about]. So to put it simply, it will be easier for us to break into the industry when we are comfortable enough to accept that we don’t have to fit in with the norm. 

 

Ooh I like that. A lot of people don’t go in with a plan or mission, like Minaj or Latifa did. What can we look forward to seeing from you in the future?

I actually have a lot planned for the upcoming months and next year. Of course, a lot more music to come with some unexpected featured artists, and also I’m working on some visuals to put a face with the name. I’ve actually ventured out more into the entertainment field and I am working to get my label, Mizfit Muzik, up and running full force. What I’m super excited about is my clothing line, Trillions Supply Co, will be launching this summer/fall season, so definitely put a bolo (be on the look out) on that! 

Oh wow ok, you want your hands in everything possible, I love it! Speaking of labels and putting a face to a name, when can we expect new music, and where can we get your music?

You can expect some new music dropping from me this summer. I’m currently working on a project entitled F.A.M.E that is set to drop this summer as well. I have a single called “Supa Chronic” which is available now via Souncloud along with a group project I did with my team T$MG called “Track Meet” which is on Souncloud too. I already have my sights set on dropping my debut EP which I’ll give you more on as it develops. Until then check out some of my music at Soundcloud.com/ninabmuzik and Reverbnation.com/ninabmuzik

I ask the same question to everyone in my interviews, I’m such a big supporter of following your dreams no matter what, I think following your passion and purpose is one of the hardest, but most rewarding things you can do, what advice would you give to people who are struggling to find follow their dreams?


I would definitely tell other artists to stay true to themselves no matter what. As long as you make the music YOU want to make and hone your craft you will go far. Don’t get caught up in what you think people want to hear and just make music. These days everyone wants to make music so you have to find a way to reinvent your craft in order to stand out. Also, make sure you understand and know the music business. With that being said, I encourage all artists who are serious about their craft just stay focused on turning your dream into a reality. Success is a mindset and I’m the first one to know that life sometimes does set in at the wrong moment and makes it hard to create, but as long as you stay productive and keep your faith everything else will fall into place.

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And fall in to place it will! Huge thank you to NinaB for allowing me the pleasure to interview her! As you read she has big things coming soon so make sure to check her out!

Until Next Time Guys!

XOXO

Skyler Harris

Now for a change of pace, coming from Memphis, Tn, Skyler Harris has been giving us chills with her smooth and silky voice. With covers like Kiss it better, to original work like ‘In your Arms’ to remakes when Beyonce suddenly moves a concert- don’t mess with the beehive, bey- Skyler proves she got what it takes, to take this music industry by storm. I had to take the opportunity to get to know the woman behind the voice.

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First let me say you have an amazingly beautiful voice! I’m sure you’ve heard that a lot, how long have you been singing and when did you start to get serious with it?

Awww, Thanks! I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember, (as cliché as that sounds!) I wrote my very first song, ‘Crush on You (Baby Don’t You Know?)’ when I was in the second grade— and yes, I still remember every word! Recently, I decided to really invest in myself and in my music. I’m always telling other people, other women especially, “invest in yourself, girl!” Now, I’m finally doing it for myself.

You have to take you own advice! You have a big vocal range! With a voice like that who are your musical influences?

Oh my God! Everybody!!! Jazmine Sullivan, definitely though, just because her voice is incredibly raw and she could sing the alphabet and by the time she got to L-M-N, I’d be crying! As far as my songwriting influences, Babyface— He has the ability to write from ANY perspective and create timeless works of art every single time!

I’m glad you said it, your voice outs me in the mind set of Jasmine Sullivan with the runs and range that you have. You do a lot of covers, recently we’ve gotten to hear some original work, is this something you plan to do full time? Where do you see yourself in the music industry?

Every now and then, I hear a song that I absolutely love and that has more emotion than I think the production allows. I love taking songs that you usually dance to or blast without really hearing the words and slowing them down and bringing those words out— sometimes even changing the lyrics to better fit my story, as I did with Rihanna’s “Higher”. For me, it’s always about feelings. The same goes for my original music. I want you to feel something when you hear my songs. What I would like to do as far as the industry goes, is write songs. Not just sending in demos and reference tracks for someone to make a carbon copy of—but really sitting down with an artist and finding out where they are emotionally, what they want the world to hear, coming up with music and a sound based on that!

I like that interaction, you really get a sense of who the person is and what they are actually trying to achieve with their music. I feel like that art has been lost, but real singers are slowly making a comeback in the music industry, which is something I’m all here for! i love me a good ballad, I feel like its been missing for far too long. What would you like to see change within the music industry?

I’d like to see the music at the forefront. There are so many artists whose songs I’ve never heard, but I can tell you who they dated, where they shop, [and] who they are beefing with, all because of  the blogs they’ve been featured in. So many amazing artists are completely unknown because they don’t have a reality show or some type of scandal keeping them in our minds!

Took the words right out of my mouth! We need to get back to letting the music do the talking. You mentioned earlier that you’re always telling girls “invest in yourself girl”, which I think is so important because so often we are told what to do and these expectations are already set and sometimes our dreams and passions can be lost in trying to rise to the expectation. What advice would you give to people who are struggling to follow their dreams and passions?

Don’t think about the recognition. Your gift will always make room for you!! Whether 5 or 500 people hear you, see you, hear about you— just ensure that whatever you’re putting out is an authentic version of yourself! I struggled so hard thinking that I had to sing about what people wanted to hear, but I later realized that my heart wasn’t in it— and although people were paying attention, they weren’t being moved because I forgot that giving myself was the most important.

Can i get an Amen! I loved that, so many people struggle with thinking they have to be this perfect, unreal, or enhanced version of themselves and forget that nobody is really that way. In fact those that make the waves and are are remembered for the work were those that were themselves authentically. So for those that don’t know – and if you don’t you should by now!-Where can we hear your music and when can we expect new music?

I’ve mostly been focusing on pitching songs, but I have decided to release an EP this summer so definitely be on the lookout for that! Until then, you can expect more covers of some of your favorite songs on facebook, youtube, and my sound cloud.

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I will keep my eye on that. Im looking forward to a certain Jasmine Sullivan cover *achem*. Thank you to Skyler Harris for taking the time out to do this interview! You can find her music and new single on Youtube at http://youtube.com/skylerc2008 or on sound cloud at http://soundcloud.com/skylerharris-1 or her website at https://skylerharris.com. Also follow her on IG-@Reaching4Sky

Until next time guys!

XOXO

MissMamaQueen

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First up in my month of music, is MissMamaQueen who hails from Murfreesboro, TN. Starting her rap career as a Femcee at just 13 years old, MissMamaQueen has taken the femcee game by storm. MissMamaQueen has had a long and successful career with around a million in ringtone downloads, being on stage with Femcee Shawnna, and recently adding author to her resume with the book ‘Many Men’, MissMamaQueen has shown me, and others, that there’s nothing a woman can’t do.

You’ve had an amazing career in the hip hop music industry, being able to meet and rap with huge names within the female rap industry, who are your musical influences?

-Of course I have my favorite artist that I love to listen to such as Monica, Beyonce, Whitney, Eve, Shawnna, Lil’ Mo, and others, but they don’t have direct influence on my own music. What I can say, is the artist that I have grown into is the sound of Missy in  90’s. It’s that mixture of Hip-Hop, Rap, Love stories, and ballads. When I first got into music, I did find myself channeling Eve and Mia X, as I was trying to figure out my direction and lane. Being able to perform with Shawnna, and have one on one, heart to hearts about the music industry and being a woman in the industry, was definitely an eye opener for me. I tell her all the time; she taught me so much, specifically the importance of being a woman in the game and standing on your own. The last couple of years, I have found myself being comfortable with creating my own sound, following what my heart says, and not being influenced by what else is going on around the music scene.

Since you’ve been in the game for so long, where do you see your musical career going?

– I honestly have never looked at music as a career. Music has been a part of my life for almost 15 years now. To me music is an outlet and a talent that I have, that I share with the world. I record music all the time, without even releasing it. I know people say it all the time, but it really is a form a therapy for me. A lot of things I bottle up, but then go make a song about it. At the end of the day, regardless of how it plays out, I just want to be able to say I told my story, and people listened. Also, I believe 1000% in God aligning things and situations. I believe it’s going the way God sees fit.

I definitely understand that, blogging for me is the therapy that music is for you. You’re in an industry where it’s already stacked against you being a female rapper, what has been your experience with why it’s so hard to be a female MC?

-I think females make it harder for each other more than anything. You have females sleeping with the producers, engineers, and managers. You have females that don’t want to see another female shine, or they link/click up with who boosts their presence. Also you have females that are intimidated and offended by another woman’s confidence or willingness to stand-alone. I have always been the outsider especially locally. I’m not in to the fake networking and ‘buddy buddy’ system. I have rarely found genuine bonds. I see a lot of chasing other’s fan base. At this point, I don’t think it’s hard to be a female MC. I think it’s hard for women to respect themselves and step outside the local mentality and outside the box. When we realize that there’s more to it than rapping about how good your vagina or head is, or how many b**ches you will slap, it will makes sense. Although it shouldn’t be, I have noticed it’s hard for women to be real and 100 to themselves and the music.

  

I like that you stand by your morals and you don’t compromise yourself. You kind of touch on this with your song ‘Beautiful You’, its probably one of my favorite songs,-aside from ‘Imma Go Hard’- because I relate the most to it being that I never felt beautiful in my chocolate skin until recently, and it sends a positive message about self love and embracing your flaws, what inspired that song?

-‘Beautiful You’ has [got to be] the most genuine feedback from any song that I have ever wrote, from women and men all across the world. It’s one of my favorite and most personal songs. Anyone that has been in the studio with me knows that either I absolutely love a record or I don’t, from the moment the beat is played. A majority of the time, once I hear the first bars of the beat, I already have the title of the record or at least a theme. Every once in a while, I will hear a beat and get [a chill], that’s when I know it’s special. ‘Beautiful You’ was one of those times. My producer looked at me crazy because he had gotten on to me about doing so many slow ballads for the album. The first thing that came out was, “Beautiful You, Beautiful You, You’re Beautiful.”

How many times have we heard, “She aint no Beyonce, but she straight!” Society has told us what beautiful should look like.

If she’s dark skinned, she better have a nice body.

If she’s light skinned, she better have nice hair and pretty eyes.

If she’s heavy set, she has to have a cute face.

If she’s skinny, she has to have a big butt.

The inspiration for me was, “Wanting to inspire myself.” It’s okay to hear a man tell you “You are beautiful!” It feels good when you post a picture and people say, “You’re beautiful!”

However, you are the only one in the mirror in the morning and at night in those raw and rare form moments. How beautiful can you really be, if you can’t honestly tell yourself that you are?

You took the words right out of my mouth. I preach this every chance I get because it’s so important to have that self-love. With my blog I push for people to follow their dreams and find their purpose. I feel like many people give up on that dream, because it’s not an easy road, its hard work! What advice would you give to people- especially female MC-who are struggling to follow their passion?

-My biggest motto to live by is, “If it doesn’t feel right. It’s not right.” Remember, once you say something on record, it’s out there forever. Do not listen to the radio. Write and speak from your heart. No matter how twisted your life or situation is, there is someone out there who will relate. Your story is your story for a reason. Inspire yourself to inspire others. The road isn’t easy, and if it is there will be hell on the other side.

I’ve peeped that you’ve been in the studio lately, when can we expect some new music and where can the people who aren’t familiar with you, checkout your music?

-My album is in the production process and anyone who has done an album will tell you it’s the most frustrating and drawn out process you will ever see. I have no release date at this time. I want to make sure it’s done 100% before I set any expectations for myself or for my fans. This will be my first full production album, so I really want to take my time and go down the correct channels. We are looking to have it available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Store, etc. ‘Beautiful You’ is the only full record we have released so far. In the works of revamping my official fan site, but until then I have music on www.Reverbnation.com/MissMamaQueen . I’m in the building stages of getting a video together for ‘Beautiful You’, but it has to be perfect with a story line, so that’s something I’m working on now as well.

 

img_4819Well I for one cannot not wait to hear it! Just for fun, Its no secret that you are a Monica and Beyonce/destiny child fan, but you have to pick just one, who will it be?

-OMG. This isn’t fair at all! I would say Monica! I have had the opportunity to meet her and talk with her, and she’s just amazing all around. I relate so much with her personal story, life tragedies, and triumphs. She is so humble, and to me the underdog, but legend of the R&B world. She is comfortable with what she has meant to the music game, even if they never put her on the Whitney or Bey platform. She knows her crowd and who she inspires. If you have ever seen her perform live, you can see her genuine love for what she does. Yessss Monica! LOL.

 

I would’ve chosen Monica Too! A huge thank you to MissMamaQueen for allowing me the pleasure to interview her! I was very inspired and motivated. I love interviews where I can learn something in the process and this was definitely that for me. Click the link here to check out her music and check out the video below of what’s to come!

Until Next Time Guys!

XOXO

Happy Mother’s Day!

With today being Mother’s day, I wanted to take this time to tell my mother how much I appreciate everything she does.

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BUT, I can tell you better than I can write it , so click the link → HERE ←and check out what I have to say!

Also, I’m curious to see if you guys are interested in seeing more or less videos so comment here, or on Youtube and let me know!

 

Until next time!

XOXO

Compromise.

tumblr_mgoqj0UNbR1r92a16o1_500I’ve never understood how people could always be in a relationship. Don’t get me wrong I used to yearn to be in one, understandably so, who wants to be alone? How could you be in a relationship and never spent time with yourself? The older I get, the time I spend getting to know who I am, what I want , what I like and dislike and being comfortable and loving who I am; I wouldn’t trade for the world.

dfbI won’t compromise who I am for someone else. You cannot ask me to change who I am for you. to love someone is to accept all of them and give the same respect in return. They may not agree with or understand it, but they have to accept me as I am.

A certain maturity level is required. I never understood how you can feel a certain way about your significant others past. Past relationships, past situationships, past jumpoffs, and friendships, if those people are not a threat to your relationship and they were before you, why are you in your feelings about it? Especially if it’s a friendship. If that friend is not being disrespectful to the friendship how can you ask them to drop their friend like a bad habit? And shame to the person that does it. To me that speaks volumes about your insecurities and ya’ll got deeper issues that need to be worked out. Be confident in who your with.

carrie-sex-and-the-cityNow I understand I’m single – thank the lord- because it’s going to take a strong minded man to break this streak! You have to be pretty undeniable for me to lose focus on myself. Let’s be clear, a potential is not competing with other potentials, no no, you are competing with me! I’m focused man!!!!! You got to get me to do a double take at you, and trust me, that’s quite a task.
Now I may be a bit of a late bloomer, but it took me a while to be confident and secure in who I am. To be me; unapologetically. I think that is the MOST important thing to be walking into a relationship. Know you first boo boo, and then go get your man!

Blinx into Mink Lashes and Hair Extensions

I love stories that inspire! Stories that motivate you to go after your passion, after all, the only thing stopping you from your dream, is you! What I love even more are people who all willing to risk everything to see their dreams come to fruition for a cause. I had the pleasure to interview a very driven talented lady, who is working hard to make her dreams come true and build a brand/business.

Blinx is an upcoming hair and lash line owned by Toya Simmons. What I love about her business is not only does it promote feeling beautiful but a portion of the proceeds go to help fight a major cause! After a little research, I had to hear from the source. So without further delay, catch the interview below

blogger-image-1524985140First, can you explain to people, that may not be familiar with your brand, what it is?
Blinx is a luxury lash and hair extension line that caters to everyone from the everyday workingwoman to the high maintenance housewife.

Blinx is an interesting name, how did you come up with that name?
Well, when I initially decided to venture into the beauty industry I wanted to do Mink lashes only. I played with names that rhymed with Mink and had to do [with] eyes…naturally the first thing that came to mind was blink and I just put my spin on it with the x to replace the k… Surprisingly it has transitioned well with the integration of the hair as well.

That’s actually very creative! Why did you choose hair and lashes? Will you develop more in the beauty avenue?
I spend 90% of my life in weave lol and about 60% in lashes. So this is my passion. I walk, talk, eat, and sleep all things hair and lash so it just made sense. The fact that the hair industry is expected to gross 16 trillion dollars this year didn’t hurt either. I want to get my brand solid, make it a sisterhood name, and once I get this foundation built solid, …the correct way, I most certainly plan to develop more in this stream.

I, for one, will be very interested to see more. More requires help and you have a solid team behind you, which is rare to come by. What do they do and how did you come across such a solid team?
OHHHH MY GOD I do have an amazing team…they aren’t my team they are my family. The REAL kind and they do any and everything I need. There are no set roles amongst us, if it needs to be done, and I cant get to it, I rest assure that somebody is there to help and vice versa. I can’t ever thank them enough or properly convey just how much they mean to me, but I do try. Let me try to give you a quick rundown on everyone though…
Kristy Bowers is my wig maker. Any image you see from our initial shoot is a wig. She also helps me with marketing.
Samone Simon is my on set hairstylist, alongside Kristy.
Trecie Tharpe is my personal makeup artist (she’s retired from makeup now and only does it when I call her) she also helps with my branding and marketing.
Netra Thompson is my other makeup artist and she’s awesome!!!!
Tiffany Johnson is my spiritual advisor and motivator J . She helps me keep my Zen lol.
Oh and the most important part of my team isn’t a lady …he’s a guy and he’s my guy! Lol Chase Carpenter has done allllllllllllll the behind the scenes work from building the website, getting the IG page up and running smoothly, to scheduling the meetings necessary to get the launch campaign up and successful.
The models are called BLINX CHIX and they are Brittany, Mandy, Sharra, Sherria, Dev, & Ri’an and they are amazaeballs…

Everyone I mentioned I met in one form or another on a social media [site].

blogger-image-187133525Speaking of social media, I saw on Instagram, I believe, that a portion of the sales go to help find a cure for lupus, which I think is awesome; this is also something that is personal to you right?
Yes, a portion of the proceeds from every pair of the Butterfly lash will be donated to aid in fnding a cure for Lupus. Its very personal for me because in 2003 I was diagnosed with systemic lupus, and this is something [that] is very prevalent in young black women, yet no one has any real solid answers on it, and for me that’s a problem
I think that’s pretty dope, being that I recently just opened up about PMDD, which I was diagnosed with a few years ago, though not quite as severe as what you deal with, I think important to raise awareness to things that affect us, especially the African American community. My blogs all have a theme about purpose, inspiration, and following your dreams and goals. Was this always a dream or goal and what made you really push to see it to fruition?
My dream has always been to work for myself and be successful enough in that work that I can take the people most important to me and make their situation better. I have tried my hand at several different ventures, but none feel like this, none have come together so effortlessly like this lol, so I think this might just be it!
blogger-image--1449650033Well, I can say that everything I’ve seen looks really nice, so I think you may have stumbled upon something there! I think anything that sends the message that you are beautiful and your dreams matter in a positive way is something that the youth needs to know. What advice would you give to anyone struggling to follow his or her dreams or struggling to feel beautiful?
YOU matter. Don’t let your dreams and aspirations sit stagnant, feed them, nurture them, and watch them grow. GO FOR IT.
And Go for it indeed! I want to give a special thank you to Toya for allowing me the pleasure to feature her business on my blog! I’m excited for you! Good Luck on your launch, it’s going to be amazing I’m sure! Blinx launches on April 15,2016. Follow them on Instagram at @SheBlinx and hit up their website to get best quality of hair and mink lashes at http://www.sheblinx.com

blogger-image-1809092819Need a wig made after you purchase the hair? No worries they got you covered, Kristy is their in house wig maker, as Toya said any wig you see for the promos were made by Kristy, you can see her work below and also follow her on IG @Kustomzbykb

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It’s More Than PMS…

As many of you may have notice there was no video to follow the blog for last week. For that I apologize. I absolutely LOVE making the videos and giving a voice to my blog. However, for the past couple of weeks I had to take a break and for this week’s blog I wanted to shed some light on something that I have been privately dealing with for a few years now. Let me give you a back story.

—————-Disclaimer: males, this is about to get real personal Achem——————-
PMDD It's not Just PMS Orange Image_nAbout 2 years ago I was diagnosed with something called PMDD or Pre-menstrual dysphoric disorder. The best way to describe it is having the usual pms symptoms x10.

 

 

 

images (2)At the age of 18 I was recommended –like all sexually active adults- to take birth control. I hated taking pills so I opted for the Depo shot. While the first shot was pretty breezy, the second shot proved to be the complete opposite.- if you’ve never been on Depo you get a shot once every 3 months – My periods began to be very irregular, and very unpredictable. I gained about 40lbs. By the third shot, I decided to get off the shot the symptoms were too much for me and I was giving Vickie Secrets too much of my money!!!

Untitled-design-7I completely got off the shot and things only got worse. My body didn’t feel like mine anymore, I even sweated differently. About 2 years later, I began to develop cyst on my ovaries- which runs in my family, so we couldn’t be certain if the shot or just my genetics caused this– and my doctor put me back on birth control to help stop the formation of the cyst- because let’s be honest cyst pain is the worst! I wouldn’t wish that on my enemy– I started on the birth control pill Loestrin  – which my doctor said had the lowest dose of hormones in it– about 2 months into taking it I began to experience extreme mood swings, crying spells- yes I would burst into tears for no reason at all– panic attacks, depression/anxiety and extreme pelvic pain- non cyst related. That’s when I got my diagnosis and my doctor then put me on Celexa. I immediately felt relief with the first pill, followed by excessive yawning, muscle spasms and sleep walking. My doctor decided to switch my meds, but I had had enough. I decided to wean myself off and find a better healthier route to dealing with it.

It’s been 2 years since I got off the birth control and Celexa. I still have PMDD and it rears its head every now and then. I usually experience it 2 weeks before my cycle and 2 days after my cycle. I began to watch what I ate, tried to drink plenty of water- work in progress, Jesus make it taste like wine-took up yoga and light exercising. This helps with the cyst pain and the PMDD. If I’m feeling really bad, and I can tell I’m about to have a flare, I try to cry it out before it rears its head- take a hot bath, cry it out, comfy pjs and a classic rom com/drama and cry it out some more with a glass bottle of wine.

thingsnevertosaypmdd2I’ve felt more like myself now than I ever have since I began taking the birth control. When my PMDD does show up, however, it’s extreme. It usually last just a day but, is better with rest. I wake up in a funk –literally the devil reincarnate- and I usually stay to myself, which comes off to others as having an attitude, and I may have a crying spell or two.
I let one of managers know because it was affecting my work. I’m not sure if she was forgetful or just insensitive to it, but she began to make fun of me, call me bipolar or crazy, and tell me I needed to suck it up or get laid. I decided then I would never tell anyone else. I’ve kept this private because I was ashamed of it. I didn’t know anybody who was dealing with it. I didn’t want anybody to know that I suffer from something my own body causes me. And I definitely didn’t want to be labeled as crazy.

images (3)But, it’s ok to be dealing with it. I know people who have gone through depression and didn’t make it out. I know their suffering seems redundant over time, but it’s real to them. If you care about that person no matter how redundant it seems, just be there. I’m thankful I have a mother who will hold the phone and listen to me just cry if I need to. – I mean you the real MVP– never dismiss someone because their pain doesn’t seem real to you. Try to help and if you cant find them help!

Potential is a Killer

blogger-image--617838411I am so quick to meet someone and see all the things that they can become. -I’m sure I’m not alone here- I can see this tiny light burning inside of them just waiting to get some air and really burn. I can see this fire spreading and conquering all that stands in its way. Then I am forced to see that light get dimmer and dimmer. It usually happens tragically-for me anyway-. I always try to see the best in people. And when they fail to live up to my expectation or don’t even try to be more than what they are, it diminishes my light.

With each person you surround yourself with, you tend to see a little of yourself in them. When I look at my close friends, I can see a little of myself in them. I can see all that I can be in them. Let’s be honest, you’re only as strong as your team. That’s why it’s very important to surround yourself with the right people. Your friends say a lot about the person you are and want to be.

UnknownA couple years ago, I couldn’t understand why I was losing certain friendships. I think a small part of me was changing. I would me. Something must be wrong with me if I’m losing all these friends. And something was wrong with me. Where I was headed they couldn’t come. They were holding me back from reaching what was planned for me. When I looked at them I didn’t see me anymore. They were dimming my light. No shade, it just wasn’t me anymore.

Even in relationships, I think it’s very important to see yourself in your partner, and vice versa. You guys should see that potential and each other and push each other, in a healthy way, to go harder! You guys should motivate each other to reach that potential because pushing them
essentially pushes you.

The same goes for friendships. If your team isn’t pushing you to go as hard, if not harder , than they can go, why are ya’ll friends??- I see you questioning friendships right now. And you SHOULD- coming into this new year-we are in March now why you still holding on??- if your still holding on to dead friendships or relationships that aren’t filling you up and pushing you to reach higher, then baby it’s time to reevaluate. Steve Harvey said he looks at his success as if he is pulling a wagon. -its a really good video check that out here -And in this wagon are all the things he has to take care of. And if everybody in that wagon is not helping him pull that wagon up that hill in some way, then somebody in that wagon has got to go!

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So I ask you, is your wagon heavy or is it moving along swiftly??

P.s check out the last video here-Distraction