I’d like to preface this post with this: tea is not to be spilled, but sipped slowly. My intention with this platform is always to heal, uplift and inspire. There was no shade intended or baby fathers harmed during the making of this blog.
With that said; we seem to have normalized black mothers being single, miserable and exhausted. I.am.not.here.for.it. (Insert claps where the periods are if you feel me.) Context for those who’ve been following since day uno: My fiancé and I are no longer. And I’m not sad about it cause I’d much rather be someone’s ex fiancé than someone’s ex wife. God be looking out while we miss and ignore the signs. What I am sad about is the family unit I envisioned for my son. The generational curses I aimed to break. Two parent household was the goal. Marrying my child’s father and us growing and flourishing under one roof was the plan. Plans fall apart. Mothers, especially black ones, don’t have much room to. I was deeply wounded by the demise of my family more so than my relationship. My womb, still a wound, barely healed from labor and delivery. My son hadn’t even shined three whole months. I understand the trauma a couple can experience under the weight the responsibility of a new baby holds. We folded under the pressure of that and many other things. I never wanted to be nobody’s baby momma. Waited til my 30’s and thought I picked a partner I could safely plant seeds with. The soil wasn’t deep enough and here we are. I couldn’t have imagined I’d be navigating co-parenting with my infant. It’s hard enough navigating parenting a new baby in a pandemic. 🥴
So boom, I’m back home in Minnesota. My situation becomes evident and I’m continuing to find in conversation with loved ones that I have no room to grieve. It is damn near expected that the father of your child will not fight for his whole family and you should be lucky enough that he puts effort into being active in his child’s life. Black women been left to fend for themselves and their children since forever, they said. You ain’t the first and you won’t be the last, they said. You’re strong, they say. I know these things, but I’m still bleeding out and these bandaids can’t hold me together. I needed to be held. I needed to be told that although we know it’s going to be alright, the shit is not alright. The audacity to not keep your promises to someone who dared to kiss death for your legacy is despicable as fuck. And I’m never condoning staying in a situation that doesn’t serve you, but you move accordingly with those you love. Why we not more delicate with black women? Why do we expect to be deserted? Baby my grandmother told me to move the fuck on, as if that were not the obvious move. As if my life were not ripped from under me with a new baby in my arms. I, as a Capricorn woman, ambitious in my endeavors and firm in my faith after suffering countless heartbreaks, am well aware that business gotta be handled regardless. But sometimes, just sometimes, black mothers need the same tenderness our babies require. Our strength is an obvious given. We endure and still ensure everyone around us is good. Meanwhile we are not. Which brings me to my next point: Depression is a spectrum. It’s 3 am but honey I got time TUHDAY! And I have to work at 6:30 am, which means a 4:30 wake up to feed/pump for my seed, but that’s another story and another example of how we (black mothers) press through. Depression is a spectrum. Same way a person can be a functioning addict, a person can be a functioning depressive. I had someone close to me tell me that I was not depressed because I was able to still care for my baby, create and seek opportunities and go to work. This opinion from someone with a history of depression totally invalidated my experience. I was doing what I had to do but inside I was fucking screaming. I had thoughts of Suicide, days I did not want to live, moments of pure hopelessness. I drew strength from my baby’s smile. That was God. The fact that my emotions and energy affected him drew me back from the deep end. His very life sustained from my body as I nursed him. He deserved the best energy possible from a healed and whole momma. I didn’t have the room to keep crying because he was watching and feeling me. I had to suck that shit up. But often I couldn’t. So I hid my sobs, almost feeling silly for the pain I was in. Also feeling the guilt of having been told I was not depressed when my sadness was swallowing me whole. This is not normal. Your trauma becomes traumatized with no outlet. This is why I write. I want to be clear that I’m not shaming my village. My people been there for me and I have not wanted for much of anything outside of my mental and emotional wellness. But those are my job. I have to advocate for what I need and via this blog, what we need collectively. We have to be able to lean on our village. We have be able to call out shit that is not normal or we’ll just be in our heads going crazy wondering if it is. Fatigue is part of the process, but being exhausted all the time wears on your spirit. Being able to say ‘hold this baby while I shower/eat/rest/blog’ is important. Not having to ask is equally important. I am grateful to my mother and step-father for filling in the gaps and then some. Loving us through the trauma of a family falling apart and creating a new normal. I am forever grateful to them for being my literal and figurative shelter through this storm. I am also grateful to my son for being my peace and my sunshine. We will indeed be alright.