I Got Something to Say
Young, black adults have been conditioned to hustle. We’ve been taught that you work and you grind endlessly,tirelessly, and without complaint toward your goals. And when you reach these goals, you don't celebrate, you don't think about what all you went through and had to sacrifice to achieve said goal, you keep your fucking head down and continue on to the next thing on your to do list. Of course Mama’s word is Bible ,so you follow these instructions because celebrating anything means that you’ve made it,not necessarily to your ultimate dream, but that your collecting the checkpoint flags in your marathon. But your checking account says different. Your late rent says different. Your ineligible for anything credit score says different.
That's not hustle. That's survival ,because our single mothers showed us that we can not depend on anything or anyone else. We have been shown and taught that men are useless and misogynistic, women are treacherous and not to be trusted and all you have is yourself. So you better not slip up or you'll be homeless and looking for a hand out from your baby daddy who doesn't give a fuck about you once that post nut clarity hits. Now your psyche is so messed up that you associate your blackness with struggle , but your blackness also holds you back from asking for help, because Mama said “ Don't nobody do nothing for free. Everybody wants something.” And Granny said, “ I’ll go without before I give anybody the power to say I wouldn't have if it wasn't for…” Sound familiar? So what are we to do? How do we learn to relax when our family, our mind ,our peers,social media and that 1% of the world tells us that sleep is for the rich ? Or better yet, stay awake and prepare your questions for your dinner with Jay Z.
Where do we vacate to when we want to book a trip to anywhere but here, but we are plagued with the thoughts of "What are you celebrating? You haven't achieved shit. You can barely afford this trip as is. " You cancel the trip and get back to the grind and tell yourself you'll go another time, when you can afford it, when you can stay at the Hilton instead of the Holiday Inn. When you can buy your clothes upon arrival instead of packing your bags because just like everything else, luggage is ghetto. This sounds like a break down waiting to happen. Who lives like this?
We do. We live like this.
It’s important that we learn to decompress in the midst of the chaos and societal clocks. Stress is the number one killer in the world and We The Depressed (Dj Khaled voice) will be it's next generation of victims if we don't tell ourselves that it's okay to not always have your head in the game. As much as we’d like to believe that we are immortal because of the influx of Red Bull, 5 Hour Energy and kale smoothies we digest, we are not. We deserve to feel what it's like to say, “ I failed, but that's ok, because it means I tried.” It's necessary to take a few days away from the laptop and cry because this shit is hard and you're frustrated. It is perfectly fine to get lonely and want the attention and affection of the opposite sex while in full beast mode. It is also no crime to pat yourself on the back for simply not giving up. Small victories are still victories and they deserve Belaire over a game of Spades too. Unfortunately, our parents,whether single or double occupancy households were incorrect about a lot of things.
My mother says “No child deserves a 20 -something year old parent, we don't know our ass from a hole in the wall.” When you think about life cycles, it's wild how young most of our parents were when they had us. What's even more ludicrous is the turning of the tables when you are doing different things at this age then they were. It really puts things into perspective when you get out of the house and on your feet to blaze your own trail. As your life progresses you’ll begin to see just how unprepared and ignorant your parents were to this thing called adulthood. Struggle, growing pains, financial crisis, losing friends, gaining enemies, love, communication, vulnerability , all of these things that they were not taught so we fail miserably when we attempt and we get angry at them for not being there to catch us.
Then maturity kicks in and we ask ourselves, who was there to catch them? Instantly survivor's remorse taps us on our privileged shoulders and makes you become grateful for what they did school you on. We realize that have a lot more access to resources than they did, so we forgive them because we realize that they were doing their best with the hand they were dealt. I remember telling my mother when she was in a downward spiral about the way our relationship had gone while I was growing up. I had to stop her in her sorrow and express the deepest level of gratitude because she couldn't teach me how to be a child, but if I’ve ever needed her most;it's now, so that she can teach me how to be an adult. As we all come to the middle or close to the end of our 20’s understand something, Beyonce' said “Time really moves fast, you were just 16.” She couldn't have been more right. But we are not supposed to have it all together. We are not expected to make
annually, be married with a house on the hill and this years version of the latest luxury vehicle. This is our time to try things and find our niche. Learn yourself and get familiar with your passion(s), date a lot so that when you do settle into commitment you're sure that's what you want. Travel. If it's solely domestic, go, those expenses will return, that experience you get when you first touch the Jamaican soil is only felt once. Besides, you’ll have bills until you die. And then more.
As hard as it may seem, relax and enjoy your roses while you can still smell them.