There is so much wrong with America today I have no idea where to begin..
As a young, African American woman, I haven’t lived long enough to see past history happen but it seems like my textbooks are coming to life. The year is 2015 and of all the things people manage to accomplish they still can’t register in their mind that #BlackLivesMatter. Everyday there’s a new hash tag of multiple black men & women slain in cold blood and are unarmed. Police have taken no regards to media or cameras and allow it to be known that they can kill and get away with it. It truly saddens me to write on this subject because there is an ample amount of examples I can choose from.
Recently, Tyshawn Michael Lee, 9 years old, was murdered execution style while on his way home from school. The media had played a big roll in this case, focusing on every other aspect instead of one, finding the murderer. I don’t care what the parents have done, his mother and the money or father in a gang HE WAS NINE! Wake up and see that the media will twist a story to push a certain view on the avid listeners. “His father was in a gang,” okay? Now what does that solve? People are more focused on the superfluous information given then the fact that a nine year old baby has been taken away from his mother. Where is the sympathy? Another recent case involving a young black female student and school officer over a cell phone; I hear so many negative things about this case. As a parent, you should be outraged; as a person, you should be appalled. I DO NOT care what happened before the incident, we all saw what needed to be seen and that was the brutal force of a grown man handling a child. No man should ever handle a female in such a manner as if she were a rag doll. Why weren’t steps taken to call an administrator or social worker to see what the problemwas? The media will report the opinion of others saying students are unruly and unmanageable because they have given up on the youth.
People will constantly preach “Go to school and get an education,” but why when my life & respect as a person could be taken away from me at any moment. There is no faith in black youth or black people in America. Racial tension is at an all time high here in the states and the African American community is the clear target. At University of Missouri, recently a group of students named #ConcernedStudent1950 gained attention after protesting for months about black student’s health and safety among the campus. Previous university president, Tim Wolfe, stepped down this Monday as a demand of the students. For those of you who don’t know, this protest has been ongoing on since September and is now gaining national coverage why? Not because students have over 10,000 tweets concerning their safety, not because faculty have walked out on classes, not because students were commencing a hunger strike; it was because 30 young black men took a stand and hit them where it hurts, their pockets. Athletics are an essential part of funding to public universities, and if enough players won’t play, guess who won’t get a check. Media coverage flew from near and far to record the last speaking of Tin Wolfe, but where are they now?! There has been threats made towards every student on campus, the KKK has made it known that they are on a blood hunt. Where is the coverage now?
So again, ask me how do I feel being young and black in America? I feel used, mocked, unprotected, and blamed. Black people are not here for your entertainment. Black people are more then how we are portrayed on television. There is no sympathy for being black in America and we fight against it everyday. #BlackLivesMatter was created to show the world that we are not your punching bags or gun range targets. We are a people making a stand that we need to be valued; where is our safe haven Our men are slain unprotected, our women are raped and murdered, and our children can’t even feel safe in schools. No, this isn’t the 1950’s this is 2015 and nothing has changed. My people, my beautiful black people are learning to love themselves more each day. We are embracing our heritage and still trying to evolve the ones that haven’t. To Trayvon Martin, Mike Brown, Sandra Bland, Freddy Grey and so many more, we have not forgotten about you. We will fight against brutality and racism until Americans see that we are tired of being the targets.
If I die in police custody, I did not commit suicide,
October 15th is Infancy Loss Awareness
When you find out you’re going to be a mother, it’s the most wonderful feeling ever. The overjoyed feeling that you’ve discovered life blossoming in your belly consumes your spirit & there’s nothing else you would rather speak on. Every day, millions of women are blessed with gifts to cherish for the rest of their lives, and every day millions of lives are lost with what was.
As I write this, I would like to honor every hard working mother out there who continues to strive for their goals & maintain their family; however, this one isn’t for you. No matter what your case may be: miscarriage, abortion, adoption, SIDS, stillbirth whatever, you’re still a mother. You may not have a physical being here to love and hold, but a mothering spirit never leaves. It’s harder to accept, depending on your loss, but the one thing I can tell you is to continue to be strong.
As tough as you know you are, it isn’t your fault. For years, I beat and blamed myself for my actions and that I figured I could have prevented it, but it was already too late. I had already changed; on the inside I craved the love that once filled me up and the bitter sweetness of pain. Not a day goes by that I don’t consider what my life would be if my angel were here.
Instead of resenting these actions, look at what you’ve been through since. Would you want to bring a blessing into a mess? You were given a chance to make your life better than the situation you were in. It’s hard for me to write this & not be overwhelmed with emotion because I know somewhere, someone is breaking. Every day I see a new mother on my timeline and I congratulate each one and pray for their safe journey through motherhood. Angels come and go and mines watches over me.
I love you, forever and always.
MEN V.s THEIR INSECURITIES
Every man has dealt with insecurities. Period! For those who claim you haven’t, in my eyes, are liars. A man, from childhood, is taught to be a man. Now what does that mean, to be a man? Men are supposed to be the strong, non-emotional, self-driven creatures that can hold the weight of the world on their shoulders. When I see a man, the first thing I’m attracted to is his stature; how he carries himself shows a confidence that others may lack. As a woman there are PLENTY of days I don’t feel like myself. I feel bloated, I may not like what I have on, whatever it is, and we all have those days. Do men have days like that as well, the answer, HELL YEA!
Men have off days just as we do, and there is nothing wrong with that. A quick trip to the gym or a few pushups might settle that ease for most men but what about the ones who don’t? Guys are taught to “suck it up” and deal with your problems as a man would, as if non-existent. A daily battle some men fight leaving them to feel like less of a man. Again “feeling manly” comes to question and confidence drains leaving some men to sulk in the guilt of not being manly. In my personal opinion, men who don’t have the confidence or assurance in themselves, or those lacking personality surround themselves with worldly possessions to make them feel better about life. Not to say a man can’t have nice things, just the ones overcompensating for the lack of manhood. When men express themselves emotionally, it’s taken as a sign of weakness, and it shouldn’t because just like women, we are both human and are born with emotions.
The one problem I have with insecure men is their obsession with women and their weight. Men like this are usually pressed for perfect or the “trophy wife” in example, Kanye West. Take a look back at his high profile relationships: woman of a certain status, body build, fans all that. Basically a woman who you can flaunt, “Yes woman” who don’t mind a man who “leads” them. Now, I can’t place all the blame on men because there are woman out there who pressure men to feel the need to have all these things to define him as a man. In that sense you, as man, feel the need to step yourself up in order to provide the lifestyle you want for your spouse and not being able to provide strikes. How I was raised, you are not allowed to make a man feel any less of himself because of his status, income, whatever! He is still the man.
Society has taken the role of a man as the head of the house and flipped it! Women are able to take on being the bread winners of the household, but that doesn’t mean you diminish your king in his castle. Some women take this as a chance to cheapen a man’s ego and devalue their accomplishments. In every way and form this is WRONG! I was raised old school, and when a man is feeling less of himself, you, as his support, are to pick up the pieces and assure him of his place in life’s path no matter how tough. No man should feel less of himself because he’s having a bad day. You were born a King so rule your kingdom.
Murder She Wrote: Death of the Vision
A Woman is what? A woman is and could be more than she would ever imagine; but in times we struggle to hold ourselves above the standards. But why? Women, of all nations, face social issues and repression because we aren’t seen as equal. From the way we dress, walk and talk, we’re constantly being judged by not just men but other woman as well. Does it really have to be this way?
Some of the questions I’m asking always have a different response: “Well if she wouldn’t dress like a hoe…” or “A woman should know better?” Who’s to say she doesn’t but then again who are you to judge. It’s a new day and with all the social media and technology among us, a female is able to portray herself in any image she pleases. It’s time to sweep the image of a ‘perfect woman’ under the rug. Asking a man to give his opinion of a woman is redundant; all men see is an image. What you have on is the first thing they see, and that’s all they need to determine a set thought about you.
Both men and women have a horrible habit of #SlutShaming. Slut Shaming is: the verbal chastising of a woman because of her choices, lifestyle and sexuality. If women treated each other like we do drunk in club bathrooms, a lot of the name calling could be avoided. Raise your hand if you can exclude yourself from “The Walk of Shame”? You can’t, then you’re a hoe, I don’t care if it was only once. You did a “hoe” thing. Now does that sound fair? No it doesn’t and it’s not. Is Ashley a hoe because she’s a stripper paying off student loans? Is Dominique a hoe because her boyfriend is 8 years older than her? How do you define a hoe? Celebrity Amber Rose has started a campaign to end #SlutShaming. She’s one of many to be criticized by the public because of her past and being able to move on with her life. I for one love her, and skimming through her comments, I see more men or should I say BOYS leaving the pathetic “you’re a hoe” comments. Honestly it’s really sad!
So with all that being said cut the BS! I’m pretty sure you’re friends, sisters, and cousins have a past just as filthy as the woman you’re talking about. Put an end to drama and hold off on calling the next girl you see with corn-chips on anything, because I’m sure the next hot day you’ll have yours on as well. As for the men, there’s not much we can do to change their opinions. Next time you hear them calling someone out asking them, “What makes her a hoe?” He’ll probably have some lame excuse, and still would hit. Being open with yourself and mind doesn’t make you a hoe. When you’ve accepted yourself and who you are as a person prepare for the backlash! It’s okay, stay true to you!
Support the Sluts,
Mani Hendrixx Featured Tattoo Artist
A letter to the Male Ego,
When God blesses you, he blesses you with abundance, but one blessing I am truly grateful for is to be born a BLACK woman. Throughout the centuries the black woman has been mistreated and mocked of her beauty. Setting us up on display for the Europeans to mimic our bodies with silhouettes and calling it “fashion;” only to then move on and become the white man’s slave of beatings and torture. Still, through the eras, we grow to love and cherish ourselves. We are taught from young to embrace and love the black man.
The ideal Black Man is supposed to protect and provide for himself and his family; and as his woman we are to encourage him to prosper. We as woman stretch, contour, and work our bodies to perfect them to your liking. We lose ourselves in the changes we make for you, and still it seems you aren’t appreciative of what you have. While most of us find out the hard way that what we did was for nothing, not realizing the trials we faced, are only making us stronger for the future. From gaining and losing weight, childbirth, and life changes our bodies are constantly being molded. With each change, we learn to love a little bit more of who we are. We place our black men on thrones of beings Kings, yet you treat us like rocks instead of the gems we are. More precious than diamonds and gold, we have a power and love that no man can resist or recreate. We Black Women have more than a body to lust over, the depths of our minds flow deeper than our history.
We stand together as a hope of our future. Mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts; we are black women. Generations of grace and beauty flourish through our veins to protect and take care of those places upon us. The disrespect we receive, versus the appreciation we deserve holds some woman back from realizing their true potential. Men, understand the amount of pressure we are put under to protect you because you have lost value of yourself. Greater than what we set our minds to be as people, we as one can bring together a nation. Your pride is your drive; ambitions fuel your soul, stand up and appreciate what God has made you, a Black Man.
With Love from a Black Woman,
MANI SAYS ” GET NAKED”
The most frequently asked question I get is how did I become so confident? It didn’t come overnight, I can tell you that. It’s easier than it seems to break out of that shell & arrive in your comfort zone. He doesn’t like those extra pounds? It’s okay! You fill out clothes faster, but dread buying a bigger size? That’s okay too! When I was feeling bad about myself my grandmother would tell me I’m”Kawtaw Blass” which is Creole for “A little bit of everything!” So when I tried on clothes, or found out I wasn’t well liked, I just reminded myself that everything isn’t for everybody. Anyhow, this article isn’t about feeling good in clothes; it’s about getting naked and feeling good to YOU!
Strip down to the bare nudes and take a look at yourself. Pretty huh? Examine your curves, jiggle those thighs, and figure out where those stretch marks begin & end. THIS IS WHO YOU ARE! If you’ve never been a size 2, then it wasn’t meant for you. I’ve never been under a size 12 coming into my body and once I stopped comparing myself to the girls in the magazines, I embraced who I was. Every morning when I wake up, I get naked and get into the mirror.
If you don’t have time in the morning, when you get home from work, get naked and walk around. Embody your thoughts; speak positively about yourself and love what God has made you, a beautifully bodied queen.
There is no reason you should feel defeated by society or even yourself. Don’t beat yourself up because your thighs rub together, or you have a roll or two more. That is you. Respect your curves boo! Put those hips in a mirror and watch them swirl! Put a pounce in your walk and make them look! As long as you’re healthy and happy nobody can steer you away from your confidence.
“It is confidence in our bodies, minds, and spirits that allows us to keep looking for new adventures.” -Oprah Winfrey
HYDRATED SKIN FOR THE SUMMER
It’s getting hot ladies! Although we may not be considered “Summer time fine,” we still can be just as sexy as the rest! It’s that time of year to hydrate your skin, tan & glow! As the summer approaches we must prepare our bodies to not only look good but to feel good as well. Being healthy is more than being able to maintain your weight, but also skin and hair. I’ll share a few of my favorite tips with you ☺
First let’s start off with the skin. Who doesn’t love a clean fresh face? I have a few choices of skin care I normally use.
The first is all natural African Black Soap. You can never go wrong and for $5 the soap will last you a few weeks. I, in particular, like to use it all over my body because I have ultra-sensitive skin. Body breakouts are the worst and hardest to get rid of. The Black Soap also pairs well with the African Shea Butter. It also gives your skin such a soft feel and so refreshing.
For those who love home remedies; Apple Cider Vinegar works for EVERYTHING, inside and out.
–One tablespoon in a glass of water before bed & in the morning helps refresh your organs, lower blood pressure, and curve your appetite and more!
— You can also use it on your skin as well. Apply a small amount on dark spot to correct pigments and also as a skin toner.
— And yes even your hair! Use as much as you feel to rinse your hair with warm water to remove shampoo build up.
One of my personal favorites and it smells so good is a homemade body scrub: 3/4 coffee grounds, 1/4 brown sugar and a dash of olive oil to bring it into paste form. This remedy exfoliates, fights cellulite, gets rid of the red bumps on the backs of arms and moisturizes.
Mani Hendrixx – Thickly Tat’d
Allow me to introduce myself since I am new to the Thickly Tat’d family. My name is Mani Hendrixx, and I am signing in all the way from New Orleans, Louisiana. Born and raised in the boot, you’ll see more shapes, sizes, colors, creeds, and more! If you know somebody from New Orleans, you know we’re always looking for a good time. Food, fun and festivals are always going on, and did I mention food? Full of flavor and a whole lot of sass, I’m more than sure you all will enjoy reading my post.
Just like most of us, I struggled with my weight and finding comfort in my body. Through my teens, I was always told how pretty and beautiful I was, but I never felt it. Most of my friends were smaller or around the same size as me; as a freshman in high school, I weighed a solid 175 pounds and a size 14, (how I wish I was there now LOL) I thought I was huge! My family never made it easy for me either. Alongside peers and with my confidence torn, it was a rough few years. I tried finding confidence through validation of other people’s opinions, and it only made things worse. By my junior year in high school I was a size 18 and I knew it was time for a change. By graduation I had slimmed back down to a size 16 and I’ve been there for a while.
As I got older I learned to appreciate my body and that everybody isn’t made the same. Guys my age didn’t start to appreciate my body until I learned how to love my body. Fashion became easier and shopping became more fun to do as I learned how to shop for myself. Confidence comes in comfort; and happiness is just a small step towards joy when it comes to inner peace. Let’s get these chakras in line and get in tune with ourselves. This is a non-stop journey of growth for everyone here! I’m here for all your questions and comments! Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Mani Hendrixx –Thickly Tat’d