Friday, January 29, 2010

Grown, Part 4: Hips.

I had every intention of remaining a virgin until my wedding night. Not only because it aligned with my morals, but because it was a dream of mine to save my body for the man that pledges his life, heart, and hand to me in the sacred covenant of marriage. I never really understood why most people (or girls, specifically) treated their sexuality with such thoughtlessness & disrespect. (My wish here is not to be judgmental, by the way.) I had friends who believed that being "free" sexually equated being irresponsible. It wasn't until I'd entered into my first serious relationship when my standards were tested. I never even considered "going all the way" until I fell in love. 

And even though I was full of upright principles, sound Biblical evidence, and a proper upbringing, I still made subtle choices that led me to a series of bad decisions. Regrettably, I am not the young girl I was, on one hand. However, I am a grown woman who still muses over an old dream: to be a precious gift to my future husband. And to be pure in the eyes of God; forgiven and clothed with priceless Grace.

The matriarchs in my family used to be able to tell that a young woman had started to have sex because her hips would start to spread. I'm not sure how accurate that is, but it served as a proper metaphor concerning growing up:

Adult activity matures the infantile body.

God will begin to prepare the expecting mother for birth through all of the changes her body goes through in those 9 months. He is aware that giving birth is the most daunting, necessary task a human body can endure. An important part of this bodily transformation is how the hips spread (which happens in the first stage of childbirth, actually). It's all necessary, but too much if God has not already prepared the body. 

We live in a culture where 11 and 12 year old girls have the bodies of grown women. Wide, voluptuous shapes that confirm that our children are growing up too fast. And when these girls become expectant mothers, it is more likely that the generation to come will be "pre-mature" & impatient in their thinking, maybe because they themselves were birthed by  the premature. But we must have hope. Hope that God will still fulfill His promises & plan for every life.

I have hope. Despite my own premature entrance into the world, I still have opportunity to birth something great. These hips were created to birth greatness. I need only to be patient while God continues to prepare His vessel.
...I am grown, after all.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Interlude: Wants & Needs

  • A $100 to blow @ Forever 21
  • A dope new hairstyle
  • Skinny jeans 
  • A new notebook
  • One really good photo shoot
  • Car (transitioning into a "need")
  • More time on stage performing poetry
  • $ for the pending apartment
  • My apartment to no longer be "pending"
  • The focus/girth to completely fill the notebooks I have
  • My computer to be fixed
  • Emotional fortitude
  • A summer/fall job
  • Clarity with the avenue to expose a hidden talent

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Grown, Part 3: Hair.

To paraphrase scripture: "A woman's hair is her shining glory."

I remember, as a little girl, the harsh, trying feat of my mother doing my hair. Most of the time, I did not like it. The whole process caused tears and plenty of "ow! ma!" 's coming from my lips. I was affectionately labeled "tender headed", because one comb stroke convulsed my limbs more than a seizure would. Usually, I didn't like the end result either. My bangs were too curly. Or my ponytails were too tight.

But the older members of my family raved about how cute I looked. I pouted as they pinched my cheeks, but something makes more sense to me now than it did back then....

My mother was shaping my glory.

One thing I appreciate about being a Black Woman is that hair-care is a form of intimacy. Mother to child. Sister to sister. Woman to man. Other cultures won't quite understand why this can be a sensitive act between two people. My cousin recently put micro-braids in my hair, and it was a nurturing, bonding experience. She was doing more than "hooking me up". She was tending to my glory.

[I am, in no way, trying to disregard the recent anthem of India.Arie. Women ARE more than their hair. However, there is something significant about the covering of a woman's head that shines brightly to the opposite sex. I've been told that it is one of the first things a man notices about a woman's apperance.]

When I was in middle school, I hated doing my hair. Transitioning through my ball-playing, tomboy phase, I rocked t-shirts and wore my hair back in a ponytail. I never brushed it. I seldom combed it. I washed it to keep it from itching, but I could have cared less what my glory was becoming (or not becoming). It wasn't until I started to get it professionally done (at my mother's prompting) that I noticed a difference. I remember my stylist Keisha (who is still my go-to superwoman when I am back in my home state) spinning my chair around to face the big mirror...and asking me what I thought.

It was one of the first times in my adolescence that I'd felt beautiful without someone telling me so. I remember looking down for a moment in shame because I wasn't aware that I could be pleased with my appearance. But then I quickly looked back up, and smiled at my reflection. Keisha nodded and said something to the effect, "I guess that means you like it."

Sometimes we can be afraid of our own God-given glory. Granted, it is a glory that would be non-existent without Him, but it is ours none the less. Other times, we assume that we should possess a certain type of glory. But true glory is unique to its vessel; though it all comes from a singular Source.

I've spent too much of my life being afraid of me. Stifling the glory that so wishes to shine forth.
It is a battle, but I am searching. Digging for the depths of God's glory, and the glory He has destined to rest on my head. Flowing. Lovely. Gorgeous.

...after all, I am grown now.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Friday, January 1, 2010

What Did I Do In 2009?

Inspired by N.Steven...

  • Endured the WORST case of Senior-itis imaginable
  • ...but still graduated from college; getting my Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology
  • Went through my first full year since going natural (hair, that is)
  • ...and I learned to cut my own bangs (Don't smirk, that's an accomplishment.)
  • Completed my first year as a Resident Assistant...working on the second.
  • Burned through over $450 on a birthday shopping spree over the course of a weekend
  • [Speaking of birthdays] I turned 24
  • Had a summer that consisted of writing, sleeping, and talking on the phone. Jealous?
  • Cried on a consistant basis...
  • ...because I fell deeper in Love with my best friend
  • ...whom I was seperated from for 8 agonizing months...
  • ...but we got back together; better and stronger than we were before. 
  • Survived my first semester of graduate school (and with exceptional grades might I add)
  • Messed up...had quite a few "almost's"...but still managed to drag my broken self back towards the Throne of Grace
  • Went caroling for the first time
  • Gained closure for all three of my previous relationships that ended in of which, I took by force)
  • Learned that God IS the God of Second Chances (and third, fourth, etc.)
  • Dance sporatically with friends sitting in a parking lot
  • Banned BET
  • Stood in the cold rain for/during a home football game for 7 hours. Yeah...never doing THAT again.
  • Had a grip of my family in VA with me at the same time (Yeah. Glorious Chaos...)
  • Performed poetry (with the best friend) a few times; including in front of a crowd of about 75 people. 
  • Bought almost 20 books...including Just Some Stuff I Wrote Down
  • Raised a virtual child online
  • Mourned the loss of a Legend
  • Saw a couple great theatre plays & went to The Concert that changed my life
  • Got lost in DC & NJ
  • Was involved in a technical love triangle...and witnessed the woeful formation of another
  • Got lost in beautiful, intimate moments
  • "Chased" a homeless bum to give him some food
  • Fell out of a moving car
  • Acquired a serious love jones for Phonte Coleman of Little Brother/The Foreign Exchange
  • Witnessed two of my closest girlfriends (one of which who swore she'd be a cat lady) fall in love
  • Starred in my first Hawt Sawse video (Sure, you have no idea who I'm talking watch it!)
  • Stole food from my campus' cafeteria for 2 1/2 months straight
  • Lost and found my necklace in over a foot of snow
  • Watched my mom learn to walk again
  • Acquired addictions to Bejeweled, Moe's Southern Hot Wings, and chocolate syrup :)