Tuesday, January 25, 2011

In 2011 I choose....

In 2009 I initiated Africa 500. An effort to collect 500 books for an impoverished primary school in Zimbabwe. Together with friends and professors I completed this task and was able to ship close to 500 books over to the library of the primary school. After the first shipment of books arrived, the community decided to name the new library after me. Little did I know, but my efforts all the way in Massachusetts sparked a change within the community in Zimbabwe. My seemingly small effort enacted a sense of excitement within the community, and the principal encouraged everyone to learn how to read.
In 2010 I created Mommy Glow. I created Mommy Glow because as a younger minority mom I didn’t hear the voices of other young moms (especially minorities) represented positively in media and print. So I brought my voice into words and have the joy of connecting and collaborating with other moms of various backgrounds and nationalities. And what a wonderful journey it's been.

In 2011 self-love is the journey I’m undertaking. I can honestly say that I don’t have much self-love. My love is showered on my daughter. She is my joy. She is my heart. She is love. I don’t take the time to learn myself and love myself. And, I suppose I don’t know how. I grew up in a household where my Mother wasn’t openly affectionate with me and my siblings. When I was a teenager, she wasn’t around much and I was just sort of wandering. I was lonely. My Father was not a part of my life, and I leeched onto boyfriends to fill the void within my heart. Looking back now I see that I was looking for a cure. A cure for an unfulfilled heart. A heart quenching for love and admiration. A love that I didn’t get from either parent. And when I loved, I loved hard. Too hard. Fell too fast. Hurt so badly I bled. I put up with so much that I shouldn’t have. For what…love? I’m not sure I know what love is.

My solution to the end of a relationship was to fill my time with someone else. I didn’t want to think, I didn’t want to hurt, I just wanted to f-e-e-l. To feel something other than numb. Silly me, huh? I have yet to heal from my past relationships. Left are wounds that still hurt, that still bleed. These wounds are left unattended, because I’m afraid to go back and fix them, to remember the pain. And I hold so much guilt inside. The guilt weighs so heavy on my mind. On my heart. I’ve realized that no one else can remove this weight. Regardless of how much they love me. Because if I don’t love me, no one can ever truly love me. Which begs the question, who am I? I feel that my purpose has been clearer since giving birth to my daughter. But am I just a Mother? I eat, sleep, and bleed for my daughter. And she knows that. People who know ‘me’ know that. I cannot be away from her without having a slight asthma attack. But I’ve gotten to the point where I have too much baggage. I have so much hurt within that it’s starting to seep out of me. I don’t want to feel hurt anymore. I don’t want to lean on relationships to mend my heart. It’s up to me.

So in 2011 my journey is self-love. Self-acceptance. To find out who I am. To find out what makes me happy, because I’m unhappily unhappy, and it's not ok. It’s not ok.


  1. Love this. 2011 is all about meeeeeee. Sometimes we have to be selfish to be giving. That's what one of my girlfriend says. Here's to 2011...

  2. What a beautifully written self-analysis of your self and your emotions. Beign able to admit and comes to terms with why things are the way the are and how you got to a point where you are feeling the way you do can sometimes be the hardest part of taking the next step towards the direction you want to go in. So Bravo on that!!
    The best way for your daughter to learn how to love is from watching how you love yourself.
    Not every incident in our lives needs closure or healing...at least I believe that. You can get past guilt. It is hard, but not everything can be fixed so you have to accept the past and just move forward. Live in the present and sometimes seeking out a social worker rather than a psychologist to talk to is very helpful and can also be self rewarding!
    Good Luck!

  3. Hugs!! I think that it is so brave of you to be so open and put this side of yourself out here for us readers to see and relate to. I completely know all about loving everybody else and not yourself. I feel like I'm still on my journey, but I'm in a much better place than I was.

    We are more than moms, girlfriends, wives, daughters, etc. We have to be careful not to put ourselves in boxes because of these labels. These titles might be what we are but they shouldn't define who we are. We are individuals outside of these things as well.

    Wishing you much success on your journey to self love and discovery.

  4. You are doing such a wonderful job in everything. Keep up the good work!

  5. You are an amazing woman deserving of so much love. I hope you can realize that fully this year! And how awesome are you with a library named after you in Africa?!

  6. This is such an inspirational post. Thanks for sharing. BTW, I am so impressed with your above mentioned accomplishments. Keep up the awesome work.

  7. YES!!! Girl, I am joining you! I feel the same way about my daughter, and I forget to take care of myself. Looking forward to being inspired by your journey.

  8. You are so awesome!!!!!!! and your daughter is so lucky to have you. God bless you my dear.



  9. Oh Wow how did I miss this in my TL!! I am so glad that you came into my life this year and so happy to watch as you reflect and grow. Few people take the time to work on themself.. im so impressed and proud of you!!

  10. THANK YOU for the comments. This was a hard post to sit down and write. I've dedicated myself to helping others, but I realize I cannot help anyone if I can't help myself.

    @Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher - There does come a time when we have to be selfish, and understand that it's for the best and will only improve ourselves, family, and future!

    @r9sky - Thank You Rachel! Totally agree that my daughter learns how to love from watching me, so I really have to be mindful of that. I never considered that not every incidence in our life needs closure, that makes me think about things alot differently. I know that many issues in my past will never have complete closure. But my being able to talk and reflect on them is progress and a kind of healing that I need.

    @YUMMama - We're in this journey together along with many other people! I'm still in the process of growing and becoming and learning to love myself is all part of the process!

    @Monique - Thank You so much for the support!

    @TheBabyMammaChronicles - Yes the library being named after me is just beyond amazing. I am so glad I was able to help the primary school and so thankful for all the book donations I received.

    @Mrs. K - Thank You! I never feel like I do enough, and I want to make a really really big footprint in my time here, and that means working hard and reaching out! I look forward to my future endeavors and being able to help others!

    @MAMA BRANDI - Thanks! We have to take care of us girl! I get so wrapped up in being a Mom that i forget who I am. That can't happen! There has to be some compromise!

    @Alexandra - Hehe thanks Alex! Means alot to have your support!

    @Ro - Heyyy, I'm so glad our paths crossed too! You've been such a support ever since we "met" lol. Looking forward to bigger and better things for both of our families this year! 30by30! Letssssgo

  11. Wow. Thanks for sharing this with us Alex. I think that's great what you did. Since I've just recently broke up with my boyfriend (for almost 4yrs...yea) I'm going through the process of self-love. I use to be ashame to mention that, but I'm not perfect, and I'm just glad that God has made me aware of so many things so that I can make those changes.

    I'm glad I came across your blog a few months ago. You along with a few others inspire me.

  12. It takes a lot of strength to admit when your are not happy! It takes even more strength to lay out what you plan to do to in order to change yourself. Congrats to you. It's a long road ahead but when you come out at the end you will be a better person for it and you will be teaching your daughter valuable life lessons.

    Too many times we are so focused on the past wrongs and past heartaches to even live our lives. You must focus on healing and saying goodbye. I agree with another commenter that you may not get closure on all your issues but being able to say "that's okay" and get past it will be a great achievement.

    I wish you all the best and hope this is your best year yet!


  13. Girl, this post is so inspirational. Although I'm married now, I was a young single mother to my daughter at 19. It's a struggle to find self-love and I hate to admit that I had my daughter because I was looking for unconditional love that I couldn't get from anyone else... I'm still on the journey to SELF-LOVE but it really is the only love that will truly make us happy.

    I wish you the best in your journey this year and I'll be cheering you on.


    P.S. Are you still doing Africa 500? That's so great that they named that library after you.

  14. YES! And now that you know it is NOT ok and you can focus on all the things that make you loveable, just you by yourself! WONDERFUL! YOU created that little lady that you adore so much God thought YOU to be the PERFECT mom for her. YOU are the GIVING and GENEROUS and AMBITIOUS leader that put together Africa 500 and helped so many learn to read and YOU are so SPECIAL you'll do that and then some with yourself. Keep building, keeping loving, keep getting to happy! Sending good vibes your way

  15. Being willing to stop and take a long, hard look inwards is the first step towards healing and growth. I'm always so impressed and proud of you! This is going to be your year and your daughter is going to benefit so much from you fully coming into your own. :)

  16. Love... you already know how I feel about you and this growth process you're on. I'm so proud of you. It's not easy, but you always keep pushing through. Amazing! Take this time to heal and to work on you. We have to teach our children how we love ourselves and take care of ourselves. Show them that this too, is important.


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