I’m so self conscious. I remember the days I was the “thick” little black girl maybe 1 or 2 boys liked. No one ever really made fun of me, though. I was friends with all the cool kids *shrugs* & my best friends were hot. You know how it goes. Only Erik pointed out my stomach once. We were in Mr. Decelle’s class and my tubby tummy was hanging out of my fluorescent pink shirt (the one with the flourescent hearts all over it -_-). Needless to say, I never wore that shirt again. I also transferred to private school. Not due to the joke, but because at 15, I was already 23 and made life choices accordingly.  Luckily, I’ve always been the same ol’ me, so I had  friends for reasons I’m now comfortable –they saw the real me.
     Overall, I’m a good person, it’s just that I see the evil in people. I know that people aren’t typically who they say they are. Similarly, we aren’t exactly who we pretend to be. I don’t necessarily consider this a flaw depending on exactly what it is you aim to change. For example, I’m needy. I try my hardest not to be though, so I dedicate myself to my own life in hopes to allow my partner to enjoy his own. I’m also not the nicest person, so I’ve stopped speaking as much as I used to. Don’t get me wrong, I blog my heart out, but truth is both desired and feared, today. I went shoe shopping today with my co-workers. A girl I worked with asked me about these boots she tried on. Hesitantly, I told her the truth –I didn’t like the bow on the side & there was another pair similar that might look better. She kept on with her tacky-ass choice and asked some other people. I watched them side-eye her feet and stumble over their phony suggestions. Truth is, darling, those are terrible. I tried to help you. That’s why you left there with no shoes. She should have paid me some mind. Instead, I decided I should tell myself the truth. I tried on some high-heels that were decent but didn’t…. do enough for me. In the end I got a pair of ankle black, leather boots and suede.. sneaker… things. As I tried them on, I tried to weigh their “cool” factor and what I’d look like wearing these on the street. There’s no logo. Not check mark. No jumpman. No high-heel. The shoes I bought today are made for walking. (I’ve been doing the androgyny thing for a bit recently). Maybe I am getting old. But… I don’t care about other people anymore. I spent too many years doing that already and I’ll tell, from experience, it’s a waste of time. People aren’t ready for it. They expect you to be fake at this point. They want you to be just like them because they don’t know what else to do.  You’re not going to get far following the blind. 
      The world speaks in subliminal terms, a habit I’m trying my best to avoid.

I want to speak clearer. I want to say exactly what’s on my mind so that there is no confusion in the end. Feelings, though, are difficult to express –especially when they play on how others might perceive you. I for example, have a tough time getting used to my own face.  My body is no longer an issue —I’m fat-phobic.  Sometimes, I want to have bigger breasts (Read “OMG, Boobs“), but then I remind myself that with children comes lactation (gross, right? lol). Either I’ll make them or I’ll fake them. But there are still things about my facethat I don’t like… it’s tough , man. I just et nervous. I begin to pay more mind than necessary to what others might think of what I look like. I don’t know if I look better close up or far away. And which side is my good side? I need someone to let me know. Not that I’m going to walk side-ways for the rest of my life, but sometimes you just want to know. The issue I ran into though is in concerning myself with it too much.

       I want people to think I’m pretty, I can’t lie… but I don’t want to be so concerned about it. Truth is, I’m sure no one escapes the foe in the mirror.I’ve been posting videos daily on JWWWD.com‘s main page and I’m a hot mess. The thought that crosses my mind every time I post a vid is: Will they think I’m pretty? But then I wonder why I even care. It’s my mind that’s on display here. & if a person can’t see past my physical, I’m unsure a discussion with them would be beneficial. Then there’s all the random people I follow on Twitter. Females, especially. That’s when you realize that a face is half the deal. I’m having a conversation about all these designers going into H&M to sell their product. While it’s a “great” idea, it’s getting old. And, in my opinion, has watered down some brands by release subpar product for an audience that can’t afford it. Now you have people walking around in authorized knocks –it’s still not the real thing. That’s why when I look at all these other blogs/Tweeters whatever, I weigh how much sense they are actually putting into the world. What matters more? My cup size or the amount of wisdom hidden in the confines of my mind? You decision on that will help me form my decision on you.
       I stopped being cool a long time ago. I stopped caring about what other people wear/say/do because in following those people, you allow yourself to become a sad parody of the real thing. I simply like to be myself –and I want you all to like me. If not for the shoe-icied I commit, then for the knowledge I write. If not for the beauty of my face (flaws & all) then for the beauty of my mind.  It saddens me sometimes to see “models”(and I work the industry). Some models make it. Some make bread. Others though, just put their asses on their icons and keep it moving–you still need to be a person. Getting comfortable with my has taken a long time and I’m still continuing to befriend myself, but no matter how “pretty” I might feel on any given day, I remember that that’s not all I have. On my walks to & from work (the only time I’m really in public), I enjoy Harlem’s well-mannered men –because even the most original of the gangstas approach you nicely here– as they call me beautiful and tell me to have a nice day. It makes me feel good to get compliments, so I aim for one a day. How you dress is only half the battle. How high your shoes ups your game. But beyond all that, I’m grateful for the sense in my head and my relative security. 
       I like the real me. My hair is mine. My nails, too. So are the eyes. Not to speak badly on anyone who will state otherwise, I’ve just gotten to the point where I like my hair length and couldn’t possibly show up to work with those things on my fingers. Please believe I’ve sewn, glues & bobby-pinned a good 16inch Yaki (or Remy whatever, as long as it was 100% human) to my head. & the nails always impress me on other people, but if I heard them bitches clicking away all day while I was at work, I’d trip. Thing is, you don’t really know what you look like until you really see yourself. If you want you hair & nail to grow… take care of them. You just need to be okay with you -naturally- for a little bit. & I understand if you’re not, but I’m not going to say that’s a good reason. Why don’t you like what you see in the mirror? Instead of going out & getting a substitute, take care of what you already have. Brittle nails? Buy better nail polish. Brittle hair? Buy better product. Maybe a regular manicure? Or a visit to the Dominicans? Or learn to do it all yourself. I know it’s easy to pay to get those things “improved” and they “look real” but the moment your daddy wants to run his fingers through your hair –you’ll remember they’re not. & so will he. 
        I try to shift the focus from my body to my mind whenever I can. Some people can’t see it. They don’t witness the brilliance until they do. At this point, they decide I’m either spoiled, suburban, black girl who can teach them manners, or a smart girl they can live up under. I’m both and neither. I’m a Dominican from the middle of nowhere, Rhode Island. I was just raised well and have always enjoyed reading. I know that I’m not gorgeous, but I also know I’m not ugly. The men I date aren’t terrible looking. But it’s so difficult to separate mental and physical attraction in a relationship –unless you don’t see each other. Distance is the only way I can tell you will help you get to know a person –you need to be unable to do anything else. Still, the distinction needs to be there. I’m unsure we pay as close attention to people’s minds as we should since the physical is also important. I can’t say I can involve myself with a guy I’m not attracted to. I also can’t say I want to just  have conversation. But, as a female, you wonder how long to hold off in order to gain his respect. How long do you wait? At which point can you decide whether or not he’s been lying (or confused) about his emotions? Truth is, you don’t know anything until it’s over –or unless it never ends. That’s why I champion for being exactly who you are from the beginning –both in personality and in the physical. 
        The reason I’m now going for “be natural” is that it’s a conversation less you have to have. It’s one less “issue” to deal with. Not to mention, when you love you natural self, ain’t nothing they can say to you. If they guy I’m involved with doesn’t like my hair, he doesn’t like me. This is me. This  is what you might have to deal with if I have to work & you have to get the girls ready for school (*crosses fingers for boys*) I get self-concious. I get nervous. I wonder if he’ll really like me for me. How about when I look my worst? I tell you,  I’m a train wreck in the morning. But he needs to know that. I’m not going to go from 16 inch to shoulder length. He’s going to sit right next to me and wait for these ends to grow out to were we like it. This is me. I’m a hot mess. I’m not the most beautiful girl in the world and we both know it. That’s why I get nervous. I’m afraid you’ll realize that and move on… but if he does, better for me. See, I stand by what I said earlier in that I’m a wonderful person. I could list off qualities here that would deem me damned near perfect. But I shouldn’t have to. & if he can’t see those already then, hey…*shrugs* What people don’t realize is that I’m still that tubby 8th grader in the fluorescent pink shirt. I’ve just grown up. I’ll always be tubby even if I’m not. I’ll always think my hair is messed up and I’m too short and my nose too big. I’ll always think those things, I’ve just decided not to care anymore. Like I told you all, I eat well, wear heels and tilt my head up and to the right if I can. You can’t change everything about yourself. You shouldn’t have to change anything. It’s all a personal gauge of where you want to be and how happy you are… I’ve found it freeing to just like me for me… since that’s what I expect from others. & if your partner is exactly who they say they are… I foresee an easier path ahead…
Be you.
Be happy.
Eff everyone else & their opinions;) 
xoxo,
Ella