”A Letter to My Exes”

"He loves me, he loves me not. He loves me, he loves me not."
- Malcolm Jones, The Daisy Oracle

Like every other woman, I am perplexed as to why this game, like many others must be played while in a relationship, and why we must engage in game playing at all. We are taught as young girls that when boys are mean to us, make fun of us, and ‘play’ with us in general, this is a sure tell sign that they like us. My question today though is, how do we know when these behaviors are no longer just ‘games’, but acts of immaturity and an apparent character flaw of carelessness and insensitivity? As we internalize these actions  and assign these behaviors to the definition of ‘love’, we begin to accept these ideals, and even worse, we begin to ‘play along’ hoping that one day the childish games will end.

Well, I for one got tired of playing games that I never seemed to win, and furthermore I got tired of the cheaters (figuratively and literally) I was playing with.

So this brings me to the letter that I chose to write to my exes below. No, this letter is not to anyone in particular, and no, this letter is not used to throw shade. This letter is however, written from the heart of girls like me who have redeemed themselves from the worst heartbreaks, and is written to every man who just didn’t know when to throw in the towel and call it quits, as he chose to continually play games.


Dear _______,

If I could go back, I wouldn’t. Yet, I do not regret what we had – I just would never want to go through it again. I would like to say that “without you I wouldn’t be who I am today”, but I do not believe that you deserve that much credit for my success. I would like to say though, without you I would not know what a good man is, nor would I know what it really means to love myself. I understand that we all make mistakes and that no one is perfect, however, I feel like this is where we begin disagree; you blatantly confused innocent mistakes, with blatant wrongdoings. I am no longer upset, and I understand that I cannot make you understand, but I just wanted to clarify.

Over the years I have questioned, reflected, and analyzed everything that took place, as well as my role in it. I have learned that you cannot control how people treat or speak to you initially, but you can control how you respond and how many times you allow those things to occur. I now have a better understanding of choices and consequences. I am fully aware of my worth and how I want to be treated, and what I will not tolerate.

I have learned that there is something about being a woman of my magnitude, something that makes me easy to love, difficult to deal with, but necessary to have. It’s the intensity of my speech and the smoothness of my words that can make a man believe in himself, yet know that I am not one to play with; it’s my intellect that can prompt him to think critically, yet makes him understand that I can stand alone; it’s the demeanor in which I carry myself as a woman that catches his eye, yet makes him see that his presence isn’t needed. See, the woman I have become is not a one that was made over night, nor can she be won over in just one night. I can understand that all of this may be perceived as difficult, but I never promised that it wouldn’t be – I only promised it would worth it.

This is not a letter to beg for your love, or garner your attention, but a letter to offer my forgiveness. I forgive you for all of the foul play, for dropping the ball, calling the wrong plays, and for not knowing the personnel of your team very well (calling in a substitute, when your star player had not missed a shot). I forgive you for wasting my talent and not seeing my potential. And furthermore, I forgive you for wasting my time. I am no longer mad or bitter, but I’d like to think that I am better.

Over the years I have prayed that you are made new and whole, so that the next time you choose to play a pick-up game, you don’t.

-As Told by HER, Hailey Elise

#Hashtag

“My sister text me at 1:44 am on 03/23/17 to share something she had recently written, inspired by the lack of coverage that Black and Latina women have received in the media. Having to create a hashtag to help the world realize that young women are disappearing, it’s beyond infuriating. Young, non-white women, to be more specific. How can a nation see this is happening, repeatedly, and ignore it? Are we that unaware?

As a young, non-white woman, I would hope that if I disappeared, along with 10 or more women, in a very short time frame, that were young and non-white, that my city, my state, my country, would be concerned. I am not naïve enough to even think that I would garner more attention than someone who doesn’t look like me, however, that doesn’t change the fact that this is unacceptable.

I have grown so miserably tired of watching these trends and feeling like I need to create a nationwide movement to get any help on things as simple as this. How difficult is it to find a picture of someone that is missing and use at least 10 seconds of a TV broadcast to alert the public?Am I supposed to believe that society cares that little for the people that are in the minority?

Enough is enough!

We have families, lives, ambition, desires, goals. We contribute to this world. We entertain. We work. We create. We are present. We are important. We are someone’s child. We are just like everyone else.
So, why in the world are we being treated as if we are none of those things? Why do we need to create a hashtag to get someone to notice we’re missing? I know why and so does America – because they don’t care.”
Ponder on that.           -As Told by HER, Whitney

 

 

***To learn more about the missing Black and Latinx girls who have gone missing please visit some of the provided links: Washington Post , NY Daily News , The Grio .

“The District of Columbia logged 501 cases of missing juveniles, many of them black or Latino, in the first three months of this year, according to the Metropolitan Police Department, the city’s police force. . .Ten children of color went missing in our nation’s capital in a period of two weeks and at first garnered very little media attention. . . . . When we look at the overall picture of the missing, black people account for nearly 40 percent, while only making up 13 percent of the total population. The media coverage on the missing, however, is quite the opposite. The press is 4 times more likely to report when a white person goes missing vs. someone who is black or brown. These numbers are even more dire when the missing is a black woman.”

Missing Girls of D.C.

***Inspired by the recent and recurring black and brown girls that have gone missing in Washington D.C.

 

“If only the ‘missing girls’ of DC were actually missed. If only they were deemed valuable enough to be taken. If only… they weren’t little black and brown girls.

It’s something about being black and brown that makes you damn near invisible. We were always deemed “colored”, yet even in a world full of white spaces and faces we still cannot be found.

Regarded as “runaways” because they never loved us, and snatched up because they couldn’t admit their longing for us. Black and brown girls have disappeared, yet no one is looking for us.”

As Told by HER, Hailey Elise

To learn more about the missing Black and Latinx girls who have gone missing please visit some of the provided links: Washington Post  , NY Daily News , The Grio

“The District of Columbia logged 501 cases of missing juveniles, many of them black or Latino, in the first three months of this year, according to the Metropolitan Police Department, the city’s police force. . .Ten children of color went missing in our nation’s capital in a period of two weeks and at first garnered very little media attention. . . . . When we look at the overall picture of the missing, black people account for nearly 40 percent, while only making up 13 percent of the total population. The media coverage on the missing, however, is quite the opposite. The press is 4 times more likely to report when a white person goes missing vs. someone who is black or brown. These numbers are even more dire when the missing is a black woman.”

#WorkingWomen Spotlight | Afro Urban Fusion

This week’s #WorkingWomen are : Vivian UmezinwaCEO & Creative Director of AFRO URBAN FUSION

Business:

Afro Urban Fusion is a Print Lover’s Heaven. We offer handmade urban quality clothing and accessories made from the finest of African Prints to little ones from Newborn to 6 years old. Our pieces are timeless and functional. We strongly believe that children can be stylish while promoting their cultural heritage.

Background: 

My name is Vivian Umezinwa (Founder & Creative Director) and I am a print junkie. My childhood dream was to become a fashion designer and I would always make clothes and accessories for my dolls. But as I grew up, I strayed from this dream and got into the IT field. However, when I had my beautiful baby, I started making clothes for her which a lot of people appreciated and made enquiries about. From my love for Print, my heritage and making clothes for my baby, Afro Urban Fusion was born. And I am focusing on the little ones because viewing life from a child’s eyes/perspective makes me fearless and hopeful.

What being a #WorkingWoman means to them:

Two of my favourite quotes are: 1.) “I may not be the strongest, I may not be the fastest, but I’ll be damned if I’m not trying my hardest.” 2.) “There is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise.” These quotes explain everything I believe a working woman is and they are some of the words I live by.

How do you ensure that women know their worth in your area of practice?

love my heritage and it shows in every print I pick out and every item I make and through this I encourage every person to remember and embrace their heritage.

***Pictured below is some of the apparel made by AFRO URBAN FUSION

crop off and maxi slit skirt juliza front

alivia

london cape

AFRO URBAN FUSHION can be contacted and followed at:
IG: www.instagram.com/afrourbanfusion ; FB: www.facebook.com/AfroUrbanFusion