December Issue: God’s Stopwatch
2019 is creeping up on us and lists are being made for gift giving and goal setting for what to accomplish in the new year. Now note that I said goal setting and not new year resolutions. Resolutions are typically short-lived with minimal success. The best way to accomplish something you want is to do something you have never done. Think not only outside of the box, but outside of yourself. There is a way to get what you want out of life, without having to put a timetable on it. New year Resolutions don’t work because you typically say this year all of these things will happen by this time. It is perfectly fine to state what you want out of life, but do not give God a stopwatch because His timing is always perfect. There is a journey we all go through to get through some tough nooks and crannies in our lives. The way you work through that can surprise you. For instance, Ntozake Shange, born Paulette Williams is a playwright of many beautiful works.
Ntozake means she who has her own things, and Shange means lion’s pride. The most popular world-renowned work from Shange is a choreopoem called For Colored Girls who have considered Suicide: when the rainbow is enuf. This play that premiered on Broadway in 1976 explores relationships, oppression, racism, and sexism in society through monologues, scenes, and dance. The heavy content assists with the real world perspectives of these women. The originality of the piece is how each woman is nameless, but is only identified by their color.
Lady in Red played by Jaeda Smith, Lady in Brown played by Tajianna Okechukwu, Lady in Blue played by Raeya Young, Lady in Green played Grace Pruitt, Lady in Purple played by Ivy Odame, Lady in Orange played by Erika Rose, and lastly Lady in Yellow who I portrayed.
I had the honor to act alongside some talented friends mine at the Boston Court Theatre in Pasadena and we bonded over being black women getting the opportunity to tell this fabulous stories. The theme of this story is revitalizing yourself completely and not letting the ways of the world break you down and always getting back up again. By turning the victim into the victor is what Shange did. She unfortunately passed away this past October but her stories still live on. By do-ing this show, it was a fabulous reminder about being apart of something bigger than yourself. I realized things about myself in that show and was able to have therapeutic moments of coming to terms with certain matters of being a black woman that I never publicly addressed or said out loud. Sometimes we want to tell the truth without revealing too much and what happens is we suppress how we really feel. There is freedom with storytelling. When you let that release begin its process, time seems to stop and its as if God is saying: “I know how you feel, and you are not alone. Your feelings are validated and you are loved.” This show did that for me and if God did use a stopwatch He let time stop for me to experience this.
Jam 4 The Month:
All I Want For Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey
Yes, this month’s Anthem is the JAM! Happy Holidays Everyone!
Post-Script: I wanted to add a little insight into my journey moving forward.This journey does not include the P.R.E.T.T.Y. Pioneer Newsletter beyond May of 2019. This means that this is among the last ﬁve issues left. I am grateful for this platform and hope that I have touched your lives in the same way that you all have touched mine. I also want to pass the baton and I feel that there is a time to hold on to something or let go of something.
If you or someone you know has a topic of interest that could inspire the youth or encourage the masses in some way please feel free to e-mail me your ideas at: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org