This Is NOT An Attack On Momma Bey

 

And I know this disclaimer won’t be enough for some of the Beyhive, but I need you to know, her IMAGE, her immediate look was simply the catalyst for this. NOT her personality, NOT her personal morals and values, NOT her assumed motherhood and/or womanhood.

I saw, I thought, I wrote. So let us begin.

The 2016 VMAs had a lot of ups and downs for us 80s babies. We saw too many people we don’t know, and we saw too many people we know cater to the demographic we kind of know. But what do we know?! Are we not doing the same thing our parents did when Juvenile took over for the nine-nine and the 2000 (you assumed the twerking stance, didn’t you?!)

But like many of all ages, I was holding out for a diva and a queen. And neither of them let me down. Beyonce took the stage in all of her glory. She brought a world tour caliber performance to basic cable (you remember the black box days).

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And I LOVED that. But what caught my attention was who was with her on the red carpet and the correlation of her performance.

Beyonce Knowles rolled in with Blue Ivy, both of them decked out in couture. When the lights went down and the smoked cleared, I was giddy with anticipation. Beyonce, beyonced all over that stage. Pyro, dancers, lights, using the entire space, it was a marvel! But then I saw something peculiar.

For more than 30 seconds, Beyonce used the camera to do this…

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I’m not saying this woman has not always embraced her sexuality, but the most we’ve seen her expose is this…

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After all was sung and done, I wondered, Wasn’t her daughter at the show? Was she watching this in the green room?

Yes, Beyonce is a performer. Yes, this was just a performance. Yes, it’s about costume and props. Yes, raunchier has been seen and done. And yes, Blue Ivy was probably whisked away with the nanny after paparazzi had their fill. But Beyonce sheds more as she gets older (which is usually hand and hand with wiser and maturer)? If not Blue, one of her friends can look up the Queen and say, “Hey, I know what your mom’s cheeks look like.”

My question; where does the buck stop? I am all for women, no matter what’s added to their title, being able to express who they are. But in the age of accessibility, most of us are in agreement for shielding our children from inappropriate content before they can comprehend it. So why throw ass cheeks in the camera that your daughter can see with a click of the mouse? And again, this is on the assumption that Blue Ivy could have been there watching this as opposed to an exclusive tour show where she would be no where near.

If your daughter wants to do the same at an too-early age, how are you going to combat that?

A mother can be sexy, but is there such a thing as being too sexy once you’re a mom? Does motherhood equal conservative/restriction? Does celebrity give a new definition to motherhood? Has social media affected the image of motherhood? At the end of the day, HOW DO YOU WANT YOUR CHILDREN TO VIEW YOU AS A MOM and what will you do to ensure that?

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Her Responsibilty; MY Son.

Lyriq

Everybody is going to sit and tell you, “It’s okay. Baby you’ll get through this. It’s alright” But you do not know that pain.  It’s like my son is dead to me. You have to lose a child in order to know the pain I experienced. I couldn’t even sit on the train and hear a child cry. I would cry. Like that good, hiccup cry, I couldn’t even hear it. I would bust out in tears. I didn’t have faith in anything.

[But] when I rebuilt myself back up,  I got myself together, I said no. God got me. Everything happens for a reason. If I aint never been through the things I’ve been through, I would not be sitting here today.

FULL STORY COMING SOON!

What is your biggest fear for your child?

From Julia Olatunji, PSFM 5

My biggest fear is Trinity growing up in general. She will bump into major obstacles.

First thing is the opposite sex. I don’t want her to fill a space in her heart that her father left there in the opposite sex. I want her to be fully confident in the woman I’m raising her to be.

Second is her gender. I feel as though females are preyed upon. We are seen as sexual objects. The way this generation is going it seems as though it’s getting worse. I want her to feel empowered by who she is as a person, not by the way people see her physically.

Third is her race. As we all know the African American race is preyed upon and belittled. Even our own race is turning our backs on each other.

Lastly is education. The school system is not set up to prepare one for the real world. Yes we get our general education but they leave out what is most important to learn to live and sustain in this life. Learning financial responsibilities can be an elective; sex-ed can be an elective. Do they still teach home economics and shop class?

I know that in general I can lead her down the correct path in all of those points. The truth is, as a parent, eventually a child will stray. It is my responsibility to make sure she lives well in this life, but I would love for her to learn productivity with and from her peers.

Pregnancy Scare #13; Fearless Mom: Shamirah

Shamirah

PSFM13

Age: 28
Year you graduated high school: 2005
Year you found out you were pregnant: 2009 and 2012
Number of children: 2

The Uh Oh Moment: I was working overnight maintenance at Walmart when I found out I was pregnant; I took a pregnancy test right off the shelf (shh, don’t tell anyone, lol), went in the bathroom, and to my surprise, it was positive. I told my really good friend whom I met while working there. She was way more excited than I was.

I did not want to be pregnant but the worst part is I did not want to be pregnant by my partner at the time; he was supposed to be a Mr. Right Now, not a Mr. Forever. Besides, we were only together for only 7 months when we conceived.

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My mom was so excited that she was telling people I was pregnant before I confirmed it. I got pregnant in February and my dad turned 60 in April. She told my whole family! I was upset because I wanted to get an abortion. How could I have gotten one at this point if she told everyone?! So I guess my mom saved my son’s life and I am now glad she did because my son is literally the best thing that happened to me.

The Mom Moment: To be honest, I was not going to keep the baby, I was thinking about getting an abortion. There was not a maternal bone in me; I was not ready to become a mom just yet. But November 25, 2009 was not waiting. The tears of joy filled my cheeks upon my first sight of him, a feeling that I have never felt before, a feeling that I seem to can’t find any other place.

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad ***

Father/Dad: When we found out I was pregnant, my children’s dad and I had a good relationship. We went out often, rarely had arguments, and he knew my family. The only disagreement we had was the fact that he would not tell his children’s mother about me. Shortly after I found out I was pregnant, it was confirmed that there was no sexual relations between them; what a relief!

He was not excited about the baby. He was nonchalant, pretending as though I was not prego. It took about 3-4 months for me to decide that I was going to keep the baby and he was trying to convince me that I was not ready for a baby. He was not telling me to get an abortion; however, he was not telling me to keep it.

When our son was first born, he was supportive and very hands-on. He ensured that Shakim had everything. He woke up in the middle of the night to feed him, would give him to me to nurse, and he made sure I had my pain meds (I had a C-section). He was a great dad and father…but the worse boyfriend ever!

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I thought our only problem was that he had not introduced me to his family, (he claimed that he told them about me…not good enough). It was a hot August day when my world came crashing down and I was outside with the girls from my block. They were so eager to tell me that my man was cheating with a girl from the projects; apparently she was going around bragging about having my man. So since that day, the relationship was strained. I was celibate my last 3 months of pregnancy, I was depressed and crying every day.  He was not supportive at all; it was the worse feeling in the world! And he kept cheating and lying.

Them vs. You: I parent somewhere in between how my parents raised me and my brother. My parents were total opposites.

My mom was mean as hell and my dad was an angel.

My dad did not yell, scream, or hit us. [He] made my mom stop beating us, except for if we fought each other, which was the rule.

My mom had a little wooden bat that she wrapped in black tape that she used to tear us up with. I remember my mom used to come up to the school with her bat to tear me up. Thank God she never had to use it. See I told the truth before we even got there so the teacher could get in trouble. Oh yes, my mom did not play that. The teachers got cursed out for not having discipline in place and were told not to call her because I was on their time

My children are 2 and 5, so they’re not even beating age, however I pop them when they get out of hand. I put them on time out most of the time though. My parents valued ensuring that we had a fun childhood and tried to shield us from the real world to a degree.

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Fearful Moment: The scariest moment as a parent was when my children’s father was incarcerated. I was in college and he was supporting us financially. I mean this man bought everything for the kids and he looked out for me too. I could have saved my money and spent his money on myself, but I chose not take advantage as he has other children to care for as well. Choosing to continue earning my degree with 3 semesters left over quitting school to find a job to support my minies was a tough decision. I chose to stay in school and allow public assistance to help me. It was so frustrating because they’re not supportive of individuals earning a bachelor’s degree; I had to do extra work to continue getting my benefits.FB_IMG_1434464505368

We never stop to think about how the choices we make will affect others, so this taught me to take every little decision as a big one because one never knows what’s going to happen. I had to make another decision on what I was going to tell my kids about the absence of their dad. I decided to tell the truth. I dreaded taking my children to see him in jail. My daughter does not even know him; she thinks my dad is her dad, although she calls him grandpa. My son misses him so much. Nothing helps me feeling bad that my children have to experience this. This is worse than all the cheating and lying he did to me. I just hope he sees now that everything he does affects the children. Hopefully he comes home and gets himself together, if not for himself, for his children. He’ll be home from doing 3 years in January 2016. I wonder what that will look like…I feel anxious and nervous about that.

Fearless Moment: Now that it is over, it was worth it because now I have a degree and a job that pays decent salary and great benefits. My children have everything they need and want. I had to depend more on my family for support with the kids and that caused friction in my home.

Support System: When I got pregnant, I had no friends, and that was why I was hanging out with the girls from my block.  My family on the other hand was excited, except my dad. My dad was happy that I was having a baby; however he was disappointed that I did not choose a better guy. My children’s father was what they call a ‘hood buggar’ lol. He hung out on the corners and knew everybody; he was not your typical family man.

Final thoughts: I want my kids to look back on their childhood and be able to say that their childhood ROCKED!! Now that I am a parent I learned that you can do something simple for your kids and it means the world to them. I say that to say, my parents made my childhood fun on a budget. I want upward mobility so I could take my children to places my parents could never afford to take me; like Disney World!! My parents have prepared me for parenthood.

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Like I said, there was not a maternal bone in my body until November 25, 2009. My IMG_20150322_143922maternal instinct kicked in spontaneously. I still don’t know where it came from. I am traditional and family oriented and I will carry those values on to my children. I will teach them honesty, loyalty, the value of an education, a righteous way of living, and eating the right foods. I will pass down those family values that were passed to me and continue being the great mom that I know I am.

Pregnancy Scare #10; Fearless Mom: Kimberly Fobbs

Kimberly Fobbs

Name: Kimberly Fobbs
Age: 28
Year you graduated high school: 2004
Year you found out you were pregnant: 2008
Number of children: 2

The Uh Oh Moment: I found out I was pregnant during my third semester at Fulton Montgomery Community College. I remember specifically my roommate told me in March 2008 that she had a dream I had a child. I told her she was tripping and went to visit my family and boyfriend at the time in the city. That weekend I conceived my first born Tyler.

Around May, I started to feel sick every morning. My roommate and best friend, Evana said, “Girlllll, I think you pregnant!” I just looked at her. I paid the morning sickness no mind and just kept going to class. It wasn’t until I craved for green apples and chocolate milk that I really believed I was pregnant. I went home for the summer. Once I was back home I went to St. Luke Roosevelt’s to take a pregnancy test. May 14th, 2008 I found out I was almost two months pregnant!

The moment the nurse confirmed I was pregnant all I could think was…..DAMN (Farooq from WWE 36665voice). See, the relationship between Tyler’s father and I was complicated. He cheated on me previously. We had broken up and didn’t see nor speak to one another for a year. He eventually called me and I decided this is the time to get revenge; make him feel all the pain and frustration I felt. We got back together and I could not pull myself to cheat on him. No matter how much he has put me through or the pain I felt and still was feeling, I just couldn’t do it.

Fast forward to the doctor’s office May 14th, 2008, I knew I didn’t want to be with him. I knew before I left school to come home for the summer that I was going to end the relationship. Now they tell me I’m pregnant by the man I have grown to despise. Do I stay with him and try to make it work? Do I end the relationship amicably and we raise the child together as responsible adults?

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The Mom Moment: The moment I became a mom was when Tyler’s father told me if I am not going to be with him he will not be a part of the child’s life (we didn’t know the sex of the baby yet). This was a week after I found out I was pregnant. I told him “Ok… it’s your decision but if you ever change your mind you can always be a part of the child’s life.” From that moment I knew I had to be a mother for my son. Bad enough he didn’t have his father. I had to be an exceptional mother and father.

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad***

Father/Dad: When Tyler’s sperm donor (that is what I call him because I don’t feel he deserve the title of father or even dad) told me he wouldn’t be a part of Tyler’s life. I took it for face value. I never called him. He was absent for my entire pregnancy. I had my baby shower December 13th, 2008 (Tyler was due December 29th, 2008) he came to the baby shower (he wasn’t invited but my sister told him where I would be having it). I was admitted to the hospital December 29th, 2008. I was not ready to give birth so they induced me (medication to make the cervix open so the baby can exit).

The next day came, I wasn’t dilating. New Year’s Eve, I remember lying in the hospital being depressed. Knowing my son is coming into a world to a man that doesn’t and wouldn’t care.

January 1st came and went. At 1:30 am my best friend and former roommate from college entered my hospital room. I was so excited to see her along with my mother and father. I didn’t expect to give birth anytime soon because I still hadn’t dilated. By 1:45 am the doctors came in to inform me Tyler wasn’t getting any air and that he could possibly die. I began to panic. They put an oxygen mask over my face to try to get oxygen to him until my cervix dilated. By 2:05 am the doctors told me they were taking me for an emergency C-section.

At that moment Tyler’s sperm donor walked into the hospital room. I really did not want him to come into the room with me to deliver; I wanted my mom there. When it came down to it I felt like I would regret not allowing him to see his son be born. I am glad I did because he hasn’t seen Tyler since!

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Them vs. You: My parents are the coolest, strictest parents —if that makes sense— ever! They passed on morals and traditions that their parents did and didn’t give them. My parents never believed in hitting their children. They believe children respond better when you talk to them and you both get an understanding of where each one is coming from. My parents taught me patience and understanding when dealing with my children.

At one point in time, my mother and I weren’t seeing eye to eye. I was staying with my parents because I was having a hard time finding a job and keeping an apartment with no income. Although I needed to stay with my parents, I decided to leave with my children. By going through that, I found my strength and my weakness at the same time. Although I proved to myself I can make it, I yearned for my parents. That ordeal made me appreciate my parents and children; they make me who I am today!

The confidence of my parents made me extremely confident that I would be a terrific parent. I was nervous during both pregnancies. I was nervous because this is another life that solely depends on you. These little people are the only people to hear your heart beat from the inside and love you unconditionally; no matter your flaws or how others feel about you. You will always be your child’s hero as long as you do what you’re supposed to do.

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Fearful Moment: I was becoming more and more depressed because I couldn’t find a job. I felt depressed because I would look at my children and I couldn’t provide for them. My children would ask for things and I knew I couldn’t get it for them if their father didn’t have it. I never felt comfortable depending on anyone. It sent me in such a depressing spiral, I began to lose weight, my hair fell out and I was going to the hospital having problems with my blood pressure. After my health was declining I began to think about the moments with my children and then imagining dying by the age of 30 and leaving my children behind at the tender ages of 7(Tyler) and 5 (Sasha).

Fearless Moment: My first born saved my life literally! I was running the streets, fighting, on probation for an attempted murder charge that was reduced to assault, selling drugs, taking trips out of town…a lot of things I shouldn’t have been into. My children made me a better person. They made me want much more out of life. I didn’t care for myself much. Dying wasn’t a fear but a reality. Having children made me value life, family, morals and most importantly ME! I know I have to take care and love myself so I can be here for my children. Before I had children my worst fear was going to jail. Now my worst fear is not being here on this earth to see my children grow and mature.

Support System: I have a great support system, from my parents to my best friends.

When I told my parents I was pregnant with each of my children, they knew I would be a terrific parent. They felt from watching me assist with the raising of my two brothers I would be an exceptional parent. They were totally right!! I went to all my prenatal appointments with my mom, dad, or sister.

Now when I told my closest friends I was pregnant, on both occasions they were sooooooooo excited! My friends have been there throughout both pregnancies; from the cravings to buying any and everything my kids wanted or needed.

God blessed me and I met a man who stepped up as Tyler’s father and gave me a beautiful baby girl, Sasha. Although things did not work out between us, he is constantly around his children never missing a moment with them. My son and daughter have an amazing bond with their FATHER and I wouldn’t change it for the world.

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Final Thoughts: I found my strength in my children. I live for them! Without their love and existence I don’t believe I would be alive. I thank God every day for giving me my angels in human form. No matter how hard it is or if I struggle I appreciate every moment, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year God blesses me to spend with them. All I want is for God to allow me the strength and health to see my children graduate college, get married, and have children (even if it doesn’t happen in that order I will still be happy just to be in their presence) and I pray my children live long after I’m gone. Every night I pray for these two things to come into fruition!

Her Dad Voice

Dad Voice

[I] was just talking about this earlier how voice modulation, presentation of task, and a parent’s consistency in following through in what they say is key . Usually it’s the dad’s voice that kids get up and run to. But women usually are the more babying, nurturing ones and the ones who simply do not follow through because our baby is “just a baby” or because our heart breaks when they cry. Meanwhile daddies know that the child needs discipline, and don’t feel as sensitive and quick to accept disrespect . Not all family dynamics are the same. [For] Some it’s the opposite roles. That’s why sometimes you hear of kids having daddy wrapped around their finger. As a single mom I had to learn how to modulate my voice from caring nurturing protective kisser of boo boos to if you don’t listen there will be consequences . So now where I used to feel the need to ask my ex to “handle” it when I wasn’t being heard, I’m the one they get when they need them to listen.

Jessica Calixto

Mother vs. Mom 2

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I am a mom because nothing gives me more pleasure than watching them sleep so peaceful with not a care in the world. I am a mom because I talk about them the majority of the day, and not even on purpose, but because they are such a big part of my life and I love them more than I think I love myself. I’ve made mistakes. I’m not perfect. But I’ve got perfectly beautiful children out of the “choices” I’ve made in life. To me, That’s more than I could ever ask for.

Pregnancy Scare #1; Fearless Mom: Daneka

Name: Daneka McRae                                                        IMG_20131208_180132 (1)

Age: 29

Graduated high school: 2002

P.S.: August 2003

Number of children: 2

The Uh-Oh Moment: I found out I was pregnant in my freshman year of college. I was 18. My first thoughts were, “My mother is going to kill me and I am not ready to have a baby; and neither is he.”

The Mom Moment: I was a Mom before my time because I raised my little brother. I always had a motherly instinct. When I had my own (in December 2009, then again January 2011) it was just naturally who I was already…a mom.

Meet 4 year old Amare and 2 year old Amir.
Meet 4 year old Amare and 2 year old Amir.

***Any man can be a father. It takes a real man to be a dad.***

 Father/ Dad? He’s a father.

 When we found out we were having our first son he was extremely happy. The pregnancy was great emotionally, yet physically draining, but he was very supportive. With our second son, it was the  complete opposite. I felt like he was very distant and inconsistent and didn’t really want to be around.

We are not together but legally married. I find it very difficult to co-parent with him because of our history.

How far did the apple fall from the tree? I feel like he caught the apple in his hand. Neither his father or mother was around. She dropped him off with his grandmother.

His mother would see him for a few days or weeks. She showed love by saying “I love you” and to her, that was enough. She did not go the extra mile.

Them vs. You: Surprisingly my parents said nothing harsh about the pregnancy, but more so about the father. It hurt my feelings because I was so “in love” at the time. I wanted them to see him like I did. Instead they saw right past that. But their criticism made me stronger. Whenever he slacked off I did double or sometimes triple the efforts for our sons and gave him the credit just to prove them wrong. I became a single, married mother quickly.

I feel like my parents and I have similar parenting styles, but I carry more of how my grandmother raised and took care of my mom,my aunts, and uncles. I get a lot of advice from her.

Fearful Moment Having the boys watch me and their father fight. Having them watch me get physically assaulted by their father and laughing. Moving from NY to Massachusetts.

Fearless Moment Just thinking about how far they have come and grown even in a short period of time.

Family first.
Family first.

Support System Prayer, my family, my best friends, and my children.

My best friend was SUPER EXCITED! My best friend is my children’s Godmother. She is actually helping me in co-parenting my children being that we moved out of state.

Final thoughts The first time I got pregnant I was 18. I was secretly excited but I knew my mother would be extremely disappointed in me which is why I had an abortion (poor excuse). I still think about it everyday. It was scary. If I ever had any regrets in life, that would be the only one. After that experience I said I would focus and graduate college, get a job, get married, and have children. I do think I got married too quickly. We eloped and had a wedding party… long story short my marriage failed. I was in a marriage and relationship filled with Domestic Violence. I am at a loss for words right now. If you have any questions or want to know more in regards to my story feel free to email me mcraedaneka@gmail.com