On a late night (meaning early evening but for me, it was late to be running the streets) run for snacks & t-shirts, the wife and I ended up at Kohl’s. I personally find this store hit or miss but occasionally I find some gems that I can rock with. There were these cute (looking) sweatshirts that I was thinking of buying. I tried one on but the fit was off so I put it back. There was another one that felt like a warm hug. I mean y’all it felt warm-blanket-fresh-out-the-dryer-on-a-cold-day good. It was hot-chocolate-in-my-Polar-Express-mug-on-a-cold-day good! It was this mauve color and I just knew it would look great against all this melanin. Then I read the writing… it said, “The Struggle is Real.” *blank stare*. So I folded it back up like a good-former-retail-store-employee and left it on the shelf.
I should’ve known better. It was in the juniors section. These babies don’t REALLY know about the struggle, do they? Not in my opinion or at least not to the extent that I believe older people know about “the struggle” and even then, everyone’s struggle is different so maybe they do know. But I digress… I couldn’t bring myself to try on that shirt or purchase it for two reasons: 1) it probably fits like the other one and that’s a NO so…, and 2) I’m living a very particular kind of struggle that I don’t really want to advertise on my chest (in that way).
Everyday I wake up is a struggle of some sort. I saw a meme or quote that said something like, “the hardest thing a mother has to do is keep living when her child is no longer here.” I know I’m messing that up but you get my point. Waking up, seeing everyday, going on with life when your baby (or in my case, babies) aren’t able to have the same privilege is really challenging some days. I’m not going to say it’s always so tough but it definitely is pretty hard some days. You just want to stay in bed. Being this transparent about my journey and tribulations is a struggle! I’m kind of an oxymoron in that I’m an open-book but also don’t rock with a bunch of people like that so I’m kind of private. Having said all that, it’s a struggle to put my business, my vulnerabilities, some of my private life, etc. out there for the world to see but I try to stay focused on who this may be helping and I’m reminded of my original purpose for BlackAngelMom.com.
Today, I’ve been stuck three times. Yesterday, I was stuck three times. The day before that, I was stuck 4 times. I have had days when I’ve been stuck 6-7 times with needs between bloodwork and injections. I think I mentioned this before but it is NOT fun to get stuck with needles. I mean, I don’t want to yuck anyone’s yum so if you like needle play, go for it, but for me, there is nothing arousing about being poked or injected with burning medications. It’s a struggle to wait. It’s a struggle to be patient while your body gets back on track after having babies when all you want is more babies & to be pregnant again. Like, a month ago! My doc originally told me we’d be able to try again in September but *looks at calendar* it’s October and my body was like “sike!” last month. It’s a struggle to know that your family, partner, friends want to know what’s cooking with the baby-making process but you just don’t have an answer at that time. It’s a struggle to feel like even in your grief, you have also let down or disappointed your people who were happy to have “a baby in the crew” or “grand-babies” or “little cousins”. I know this is a distortion and a product of grief but it’s a real emotion. The struggle is in having that thought & feeling as well as actively working to combat it.
“The Struggle is Real” is indicative of so many things. There’s a struggle to not poison ourselves with foods and pollution, the struggle to support causes you believe in (go donate to your choice of charity btw), it’s a struggle to decide on a trajectory of your life AND operationalize that, it’s a struggle to remain optimistic in a world that is super filled with people doing messed up shit, it’s a struggle to be reminded that things don’t always occur on your timeline or in your time frame, it’s a struggle to continue to grow and change and learn because it’s foreign & uncomfortable, it’s a struggle to be black and a womyn and queer and an academic and a business owner and a blogger and an angel mom and a wife and a daughter and an educator and a friend and a naturalista and a body-positive person and a therapist and many other identities I hold, all at the same time and make this shit look effortless *flips hair* . It’s a struggle to keep trying for something that really has no guarantees but like Walt Disney said, you “keep moving forward”. The cracks start to show and the mask of having it all under control starts to fall away from your face sometimes. I’m choosing not to wear it anymore. It’s exhausting trying to keep it up and I no longer care what others think about that. Their perceptions don’t validate me. Losing children can do that to you… the grief makes you literally have to search around for f*cks to give about nonsense. The “struggleS” are real and I don’t have to buy some shirt to remind me of it.