But I needed to grow. And I needed to know were there some things inside of me that I needed to show? So I just deaded you. Left you in all black. –Nicki Minaj, “Dear Old Nicki”

      It’s like I have stories to tell but just can’t find the words… I know what I want to talk about, but there are so many questions I need to answer for myself first — before I even figure out where the words go. I’ve been sitting and listening to music all day. Trying to figure out exactly what I’m feeling. Sometimes, I feel like music speaks for me. I mean, someone else has already thought out the words for me…
& I just so happen to land on loves songs.  
         Let me start off by saying that I’ve never been prouder of myself. You know you’ve reached a certain point with yourself when you have the desire to sit back and applaud, but all you can do is sit in silent appreciation of the decisions you’ve made for yourself.  
     So here it goes. I want to talk about things I shouldn’t talk about. & part of the reason I blog is because it’s kind of like talking to myself. I understand me. I know me. But the most dangerous part about this is that I always agree with myself. There’s an ounce of strength in this. It’s the sense that if I make up my mind about something, no one can make me waver. I stand firm in my decision. The only person who can make me change my mind about something is…. I
    This is when I flip to Jay for moral guidance. On Reasonable Doubt, he told me “Never Change”. And I stood by that. I really did. I was afraid to change. In my eighth grade yearbook, Sabrina wrote “Don’t eva change. Your mad chill aight.” Now that might embarrass her a bit, but I know because I made a collage with that cut out in it.  Thing is, I never wanted to change. I loved me. I had no regrets. I made many mistakes but made them all with determination…. But it happened. I changed. And I didn’t know how to deal with it. 
     All of a sudden, I was dealing with comments I had never encountered before. Things along the lines of “You got a little white girl in you,” things like that. Things I didn’t know how to respond to. I mean, it happened for a while. With me going to a private school and all. The topping was me living in the only one-family house on my block. I was one of the only people I knew with an upstairs. Now, I’m not going to get into a sad story about how truly broke we were when I was growing up. Everyone’s tired of the “struggle” story… as am I. So when I got to Loyola, and the kids up the block at Morgan State, an HBCU, commented on how stuck-up and spoiled us Loyola girls were, we capitalized. The Loyola Ladies were born. Our mission: Be pretty. Be classy. Party hard in pretty dresses with pretty drinks. It was beautiful. It was when I first embraced “girly”ness. I went from the tomboy at home to the girly-girl at school. Pink infiltrated its way into my list of favorite colors. I wanted every dress I owned to have sequins on it. The higher the heel, the better. I used to go home and get into fights at the club. Held my own, might I say. Even when the competition was 2 maybe 3 times my size. While I loved that me…. I couldn’t keep it up. My friend Lisa and I almost got into a fight once. In the heart of Baltimore. Now… Baltimore bitches do not play. This I know. & All I could do was grab an empty liquor bottle an brace myself. Luckily, nothing happened… but I didn’t like it… it wasn’t… cute. 
       That was my first change: I was no longer a fighter. I didn’t want to have anybody’s back. Parties were much better when people wanted to take pictures with you… not fight you. So… I kept it moving. Avoided drama. Meanwhile, I perfected my English. I dropped my madd’s, yo’s and a lot of other things. I’m proud of this change. I recommend it.  & felt backed in my decision by my Guru. In Drakes “Light Up” Jay told me “I promised it wouldn’t change me, but I would have went insane had I remained the same me.” And I’ve never vibed with my man Hov more than in this line.

      & I really fucks with Nicki’s “Dear Old Nicki” because it explains this same exact predicament.

I Had To Make Them Changes, I Hope You Understood
You See For Every bad, I Did A Ton Of Good
But You Was Underground, And I Was Mainstream
I Live The Life Now, That We Would Daydream
My Only Wish Is You Come Enjoy It With Me
Get On Them Conference Calls, Go Meet Them Lawyers With Me
The Money Came Yea, Tripled And Quadrupled It
But I Still Miss Us When We Was On Some Stupid Shit

      I felt I had to let go of that edge. I couldn’t be so rough. So… ghetto. IDK how else to explain it, but who I was really doesn’t translate into the office. I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t changed.  But there are parts of who I was that I admire. That I miss. That I hope are still somewhere in me. But just like Jay ends the verse in “Light Up” I gotta say “Fuck Niggas. Bitches, too. All I got is this money. This will do.” I just feel like… you can’t get out the hood if you don’t leave…. at least for a little.

        How can you trust in someone who doesn’t know when to change when the situation demands? I’m trying to remember where I heard that… if I knew I’d cite it… but I can’t so watev… Sometimes, you have to be okay with change… no matter the backlash. For example, two years  ago, I met my friends in NYC for a day shopping trip. Please believe I copped myself knockoff Damier Louis V bags– Azur and Ebene — and a monagram Speedy for Lisa. I was fake flyy. But as a sophmore in college, at least I had fake fly. While I was in the club, I doubt anyone had a real bag. The white girls I went to class with? Hell yes, their’s were real. That’s why I left my bags in my room & they only came out at night. The other day, I saw some grown bitches Facebook profiles. So… they were partying with “celebs” holding onto what looked with knockoffs. (I’m just sayin… if you can drop 4 digits on the bag, you should be able to drop as much on the outfit no? That’s my telling characteristic). So I posted on FB about how I’d rather have nothing than to front with fakes. Thing is, I’ve never worn a fake anything anywhere I shouldn’t. The girl behind me at work puts her Prada up on her desk every morning.  I can’t embarrass myself. Which is why all my knockoffs were in blue bin on the corner of Lenox & 142nd soon as I got my shit outta storage. (Shoutouts to whoever picked them up. ) My homie caught the post and brought my hypocrisy to my attention [that’s wat friends are for]. She said I was the “first” out there buying them bags. I was. in the 6th grade to be precise. I had the monogram black canvas with the colorful LV’s with a matching watch and bracelet. 6th grade šŸ™‚ lol. So yea… it’s about that time for me to change my mind, if you all don’t mind. I’m officially anti-faux labels. My apologies to all those who new me while I was young, broke and full of aspirations. But I’m here now. Shit changed. Like… I can now afford real bags. (I mean, that was all I had as a response for her. lol)

         Still, I’m trying to not go against my word as much… unless I have to. When it comes to fashion and trends, please allow me to change. For that is the nature and beauty of fashion. Shit comes in. Then it goes out. “Fashionable” just means you can keep track of it all. The one thing I can’t change my mind about is… me. I wrote in “When He Left Me” about how my ex told me I don’t “deserve as much as [I] think [I] do.” Unfortunately, that’s something I simply can’t change my mind about. I think…. No… I know that I deserve everything I dream of. I work fucking hard. I am a damned good woman. So when I say that a man can’t have me, or that he isn’t doing enough for me, I have to stop letting him back in. So…. ______ hit me up this vacation. But not exactly in the way I wanted him to. I don’t know why he hit me. Or what was on his mind…. or if he meant any of the things he was saying to me… Meanwhile, I had been wondering if I should write him a little “Merry Christmas” and remind him of me but luckily fought myself and decided not to. When he finally sent me a message,  my heart beat furiously in my chest… and I responded to each message. Still, I knew I couldn’t let him back in. As I exchanged messages with him, I smiled. I remembered. I reminisced. I missed him. I…. miss him. And I know it. But I can’t let him swoop in last minute and go against everything I’ve had to tell myself simply to get over him. I still have the same complaints. I still feel like he doesn’t deserve my attention. So after I entertained the conversation, I went about my day. If he wants to chase me, he’s welcome to. But I won’t think about him anymore than I should. & I told him that. & I was proud of myself… because unfortunately, I did like him….  But… He’s a couple months too late. He don’t know it but, I am no longer in service.

I can’t turn my back on myself anymore.  One step at a time, y’all… But I’m human. and like Lauryn Hill said… anything that aint changing… that aint growing… is dead. And I have so much life to live. I mean… can I live? I am a Queen, but I am not a God. I’m not perfect. Never said I was. I’m a regular person. I’m human. You gotta let me live.

& I’ll be the judge of me.