All posts for the month March, 2015

This skin I’m in…

Published March 24, 2015 by hrhdana

Lately this skin I’m in is heavy.

I love it,

this skin,

caramel candied perfection

a little lighter now from winter’s lingering presence.

I love the history

attached to my genealogy.

Love my family.

Love being me.

But lately…

Lately this skin is a barrier.

Has me speaking to people who can’t understand my words

even though we speak the same tongue.

Lately my truth about this skin

is uncomfortable

for lifelong friendships.

They implore me to




Stop sharing.

Stop making them


And it hurts.

Hurts to know that

my love

given freely

and honestly

is only palatable

if encased in silence,


hidden cries

late at night.

Unwelcome in the daylight.

That if I stand in public

wear my tears like my tiara,


they look away.

Accuse me of playing card games

laugh privately

and amongst each other call me names.

These friends

wound me


Lately this skin I’m in is heavy.

A wet blanket

dousing conversations

like fires.

And I’m so tired.

The silence

It chokes me.

I can’t breathe.

They can’t see.

And the optimist in me

is languishing

slowly extinguishing

a flame I thought would burn eternally.

If love isn’t all the gas we need

to push past racism and misogyny

then what will propel us towards healing?

Someone tell me.


I’m asking.

I’m dropping friends at an alarming rate

I want to say I’m okay

and I am

but I’m not.

Racism isn’t just wearing hoods anymore.

It’s more subtle

But it hurts just the same.

It’s people whom I considered family

“disgusted” with me

because I fear for my child

and I say so publicly.

They want me to take a seat.

Sit quietly.

Eat the scraps thrown to me


 But THIS skin I’m in ain’t paper thin.

And although goodbyes are hurtful

I have work to do.

They do too.

I can’t force you.

But if you run from the discomfort of a conversation

If my truth “nauseates” you

you are part of the problem too.

If you can forget the ties that bound our friendship for years

the shared tears

the love held dear

because it’s too hard to just hear

then you only reinforce that my fear

is real and clear.

See,  I am them.

I am not different.

That’s the problem.

This skin I’m in is beautiful.

I’ll gladly carry its weight

on its heaviest days.

I have no desire to be your tolkien

Black friend

divorced from a “them”

that you can’t comprehend

my family and friends.

And the thing is

You knew me.

You loved me.

You saw me.

Until I shared with you

the reality of this skin I’m in.

And that is your shame and your sin.

Goodbye “friend.”


Mommying be hard

Published March 19, 2015 by hrhdana

I’m a pretty cerebral person. Anyone who knows me can tell you that I over think things. I often get paralyzed in my own head when given too many options. I can research a topic for months and still come out unsure if I know enough to make a decision. I love information. I adore facts. I crave them. I want to know everything. And even though I know this is impossible, I try.

Enter parenting. LOL Parenting is something that defies research. Parenting happens in the moment and reveals your truest self to a person who barely reaches your waist. I have learned a lot about myself while parenting a toddler and a lot of it ain’t pretty. *hangs head* I have also learned that toddlers care not for logic or research. LOL They are 45% emotion, 45% stubbornness and 10% germs.  True story.

I have found myself attempting to explain myself to a 3 year old on many occasions. I can HEAR you laughing. But it just seems logical that if I can explain WHY I don’t want her to put dirty things in her mouth she won’t. I mean who wants to get germs, get sick and end up in the hospital? Not me. So I explain. Two seconds after the explanation and her declaration that she will, “not do that again Mommy. Only food goes in my mouth Mommy,” I find her licking a yoyo that was in the bottom of her toybox.  “Didn’t we just talk about this?” I ask. “Yes Mommy,” she answers while getting one more lick in. My brain literally wants to weep. How do I reach you little human? I’m literally stuck.

My child is stubborn. She has a will of steel. Lately she has been asserting this will at the strangest and most illogical times. 10 minutes in to our walk to school she declares, “I hate  this hat! I won’t wear it!” But it’s already on her head. It’s the hat she begged me to buy, with tears in her eyes. It’s the hat that is on her head under the hood of her coat. The hat, that she is now frantically trying to rip from her head, confused and enraged that it won’t come off. I watch her…fascinated. What the hell just happened? What am I supposed to do now? Who let ME be in charge?

“Nia, if you take your hat off you are going to be cold.”

Success. She has removed the offensive hat and flung it to the ground. I’m amused by her passion but confused at the same time. I pick up the hat and put it in my bag. I’m not fighting about this one. But she isn’t done.

“Why did you buy me that hat? I want to wear my princess one.”

“The princess one is at home. YOU wanted this hat”

I realize I am traveling down a dead end street with this conversation but it’s like the brakes are gone on my car.

“I want the princess hat NOW!”

“That isn’t happening. We are almost at school.”

She dissolves in to hysterical tears. Snot is running from her nose. Sobs are racking her little body.

I hold her hand and continue walking in silence.

I’m wondering what I should be doing? Should I empathize with her about the hat? Should I tell her to tighten up? Should I ignore her? Should I reprimand her? Force her to put the hat back on? Lost in thought I realize she’s stopped crying and is talking to me again.

“…and I love you Mommy.”

I grab a tissue from my pocket, look down at her small little tear stained face and whisper back, “I love you too little bit.”

No books prepared me for this. I want my money back.


Melee in McDonald’s

Published March 13, 2015 by hrhdana

The recent footage of the melee in a Brooklyn McDonald’s is disturbing. Full stop.

The list of things people do not understand about poverty and poverty mindsets is mind numbing. 99% of the people claiming they would have done something to physically intervene are fooling themselves. The reasons why the victim won’t press charges are plain to all who have any knowledge of what life is like for desperate people who live in poor and violent neighborhoods. The street cred of surviving that beat down AND not snitching is currency. The danger of going to the police is certain death.

The photos plastered all over international media of a 17 year old in her bra are NOT okay. Full stop.

It’s easy to call people animals. It’s easy to wag your finger from the comfort of your home. What isn’t easy is trying to understand the desperation that some people are forced to live with. What isn’t easy is to think about solutions. What isn’t easy is to try some empathy for ALL involved.

“Lock them up and throw away they key!” That doesn’t solve the problem. That doesn’t fix anything. It’s a piece of paper shoved in to the hole of a sinking boat.

Our society has HUGE craters in it. Vast wastelands where people fight every single day to BARELY survive, while surrounded by others born to opulence. There is something so very broken in our society and even when it erupts, mid day in a packed McDonald’s we work hard to miss the point.

*steps down from soapbox…exhausted*


Long time no write

Published March 13, 2015 by hrhdana

I always come here when I’m struggling.

Today I’m reflecting on self sabotage.

I’m GREAT at it.

Seriously, you have never met someone better at blocking their blessings than I am. If someone handed me a winning lottery ticket I would put it through a shredder. I am THAT serious about not being successful. I have talked this out with countless friends, family members, therapists, strangers on public transit, my journal, poetry etc etc.

I still can’t stop doing it.

For the past 9 months opportunity has literally followed me down the street, rang my phone off of the hook, blown up my email and straight harassed me. “No thanks,” I reply. Then I spend my nights dreaming about said opportunities.

I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I seriously don’t.

“Just do it!” I know. I know.

But I don’t.

I am worthy. I am talented. I am good.

And yet..

I wallow in mediocrity.

I wish I had a happy ending for this post. LOL Some story of how I overcame this thing.

I don’t.

That story is still being written…


I hope.