I Am (NOT) A #CarefreeBlackGirl

I'm feeling all sorts pressure to be magical right now.

 Super black, not quite so magical.

 Super black, not quite so magical.

2016 was a year for black women. Like for real. We were excelling, achieving, and just being over all great. Everyone was moisturized and our hair was growing. We were winning gold medals, starting businesses, and being champions of social justice. It was amazing. And just a little overwhelming.

Not because black women were achieving. Not because we were winning. But because all of a sudden there was this immense pressure: to be great, otherworldly, and even carefree. Great, I can do but those other two? Nope. Not I. I don't possess any magical powers and despite waiting for over a decade I still have not received an invitation to Hogwarts. And Carefree? The way these bills are set up? Nah. That's definitely not me. But all of a sudden I found myself pretending to be these things. I could totally be the flower crown wearing, AfroPunk going, highly overachieving, boss ass black chick. Because that's what I was supposed to be.

Numerous think pieces have already been written about how the narrative of the "strong black woman" is problematic. While seeming to be a virtue, this stereotype is dehumanizing and limiting. I can honestly say I feel the same way about #blackgirlmagic and #carefreeblackgirl. Created to empower and encourage these catchphrases completely neglect  all of us who aren't carefree: those of us struggling financially, dealing with depression, going through a rough patch. Where do we fit in? 

I'll go ahead and say I don't fit into this magical and carefree spectrum. I stopped fighting it and just accepted the facts. Sometimes I'm going to be depressed, sometimes I will actually care what people think, and apparently I will never actually have magical powers. So, no, I am NOT a carefree black girl. And I'm completely okay with that.

Five Minute Coils for Your Natural Hair

Can I just be real for a minute? This natural hair thing can be a real bitch. Like seriously. I've been in this game for almost 4 years and I still don't have everything figured out. What I struggle most with is figuring out ways to do my hair in an efficient manner. 

Wash and gos take forever to dry, twist outs take overnight to set, and don't even get me started on flexi rods. This is my current struggle. All I want to do do is wash/refresh and go!

Enter in the brush method. Guys, I'm so upset that I didn't discover the sooner. Watch the video to see how it works!

New Year New Beginnings?

Ankara Print Headwrap and H&M Blazer

I never thought that the Civil Rights Movement would have a sequel. I never thought I would see the police assault peaceful protesters with tear gas. I never thought they would declare war on us.

Express Skirt, Sam and Libby Shoes

I always knew that there were a different set of rules for those who did not fit into the "norm". You can be black but don't be too black. You can be gay but turn down the flamboyance. You can be a feminist but maybe don't talk about the wage gap at dinner parties. We make people uncomfortable by our presence alone. And so we put our heads down and work hard and cling to the hope that if we follow these rules that everything will be okay. Because that's what was promised.

Jeweled shoulder detail

But what we do when the tacit agreement is broken? The injustice is so clear and yet there are still who choose to be blind to it. It's enough to make you want to shake somebody.

On a happier note, hair stuff...


Until Next Time...

Kisses,

Joelle