I learned to roll my eyes in the first grade. A girl with fluffy ponytails that sat at the desk next to me commented on my dark skin not being attractive and she dramatically made her eyes do a loop as she turned her head away. I felt bad about her comment but I was mesmerized by the way that she controlled her eyes. The next time someone said something mean to me I used the technique on them. Over the years and many eye rolls later I realized that women need to celebrate each other and not attack with eyes, words or other gestures. I was reading an article in Essence magazine while I was at the hair salon this weekend and I was encouraged by an article from the editor on making a pledge to be kind to other women. I thought back to a month earlier when I sat in the same salon chair and a lady told me that she noticed that I had gained a lot of weight. The lady offered a satisfied chuckle and quickly went back to her notebook as she sat under her dryer feeling accomplished that she had stung another woman with an insult that made others look in her direction. I tried to understand her mindset and decided not to respond right away when I focused on the fact that I had been running everyday and that I was smaller in size than I had been in a long time. The concept of playing nice is so funny because this basic principal should be common sense. Many people have heard it said when they are very young that we should play nice but somehow even as adults I notice cliques form at certain parties or events. I laughed out loud recently when I realized that I was being excluded from a conversation at a table of women and thought about the lunch table scenario that is present in so many schools around the world.
My books are meant to make people think and to make them embrace unity early in life. If a girl has a different family life from her peers this is not an opportunity for others to berate her but an opportunity for others to find out more about her and understand someone different than them. It is truly an educational moment when we meet someone who has a different background from our own. In this world their are so many problems that do need our attention...I plead with women from young to old to celebrate all women. If you have not read a copy of "Who I Am Not What I Am" it is a must read or a must read to...for all young girls! Janelle is the main character that faces obstacles when other children do not understand her bi-racial heritage. My new book is 100% Real a book that features Janelle's friend Zoey who has been adopted into her family and feels pressure from others who question her because to them she is not the real child of her parents. This book is available for pre-order and also is a must read or a must read to...
Celebrate someone that you know and remember
Read Something great!