I’ve been telling myself I was going to relaunch my Periscope for a while. When I say a while, I actually mean for three months.
I started getting frustrated with having two watchers and the watchers were constantly saying “MEET HOT GIRLS IN RUSSIA!” or something.
Quite frankly, I loved Snapchat because it served a similar purpose. I’ve been attracting more people to my Snapchat for that reason but I decided to give Periscope a chance one more time.
I logged on this past week with the intention to direct people to my new course offering, Create Your Blog: A Beginner’s Blogging Course, so the scope was about how to launch an authentic and laser targeted brand and blog.
I went on and started introducing who I was and what I did before going into the scope’s meat. People would come but as soon as they came, they would leave. I didn’t let it bother me. I knew this would be the game I’d have to play for a while if I wanted it to work.
As I was maybe a third way through, some guy logged onto my scope and promptly said “You look like The Weeknd.”
I ignored him and kept going, speaking about how you need to be unique as a blogger and as a brand.
“How can you be unique? You stole the Weeknd’s hair style.”
I started discussing how you needed to write down a list of some of the tropes and trends you hated, to help with your search for authenticity. This time, let’s call him Matt, decided to cut the bull crap and get straight to the point.
“I hate black people.”
Swiftly without missing a beat speaking I blocked Matt and continued on. I didn’t focus on him or what he said until I ended the Periscope, and after I started laughing.
I found it comical. Here he was trying to roast me but he was really just grasping at straws. I text some friends, cackling at it with some and a little frustrated that some friends did not see the hilarity in this situation. I mean Matt tried it and quite obviously failed at making me feel like shit. That’s hysterical, isn’t it?
I forgot about what happened for a bit. I brushed it off because there are going to be haters in my line of business and the bigger I grow the more I’ll get. However, later in a conversation with my mom about what had happened I realized that this was bigger than I thought.
Something I don’t discuss a lot on my platform is race. It’s not because I don’t have opinions on race/black issues. Quite the contrary. I’m very passionate about social justice and civil rights. My platform is mainly about self care, self expression, self love, and empowerment, and even though I don’t talk about it often, race is a huge part of my identity and my story.
Someone once asked me why I label all my side projects “By Brittany J.” or why I have my face on everything that I do such as my new book, Successfully Unsuccessful’s, cover.
There are two reasons:
- When I was younger, I used to hate my skin and my hair. I thought I was so ugly because of how dark I was and I wished every day that I was lighter skinned or white. I had my grandma perm my hair at age five because all I saw was straight hair and I wanted my hair to be soft and silky like theirs. I wanted “good hair”. I wanted light skin. Later on in life I eventually embraced my melanin. I loved how my skin was baked in earth and honey. I chopped off my permed damaged hair and embraced my newfound kinky coily corkscrew curls that grew from my scalp. My skin glows in the sun and my hair grows towards the sky and that in itself is so magical. I love my skin. I love my hair. I want to show that every chance I get. I used to make self depreciating comments about my skin and hair so often and I used to be so self hating. I want people to know that I’m black, natural, and proud in everything that I do.
- There’s some little dark skin black girl that needs me. It’s that simple. There is some little dark black girl who is growing up to hate her skin. She’s taught by our society that she isn’t as beautiful as her lighter counterparts and that she isn’t as great, smart, or as beautiful as her lighter or white companions. She needs someone like me to stand up, create her own future, build own platform, and rise above the bull shit, haters, and the racists that come with being dark and being black. There is some little black girl that doesn’t think she can rise above and conquer as the queen she was meant to be because God, the universe, or whatever you believe in, graced her with melanin, and a lot of it. She needs to see it done so she can believe it can be done by someone who looks like her. A lot of steps have been made, and black women have been breaking boundaries left and right, but there are still so many boundaries to break and I want to be the iconic black women to break them.
Being a dark black woman with a voice and strength backing it, I know I have that many more people waiting to shit on me and who want me to fail. I know I’m going to battle unholy amounts of racism, sexism, and colorism until the day my work is done and I am no longer on this Earth. I know that people are going to see my skin and my hair as a political and social statement until I die. I know that the moment I’m passionate over something whether it be good or bad or the moment I show something b
others me, I’m going to be labeled angry. I know that I’m going to have people tell me I need to set an example and show I’m “not the stereotype” because “not all black people are…” whatever it is they’re trying to say, that is already ass backwards in itself by the nature of the statement. I know people are going to assume I represent my entire race versus just representing myself and if anything my target market.
In my weaker moments, thoughts reminding me of how hard my journey is going to be seeps into my head. In my stronger moments, thoughts reminding me of how hard my journey is going to be seeps into my head. The only difference is I’m also reminded of how I felt as a little girl, who I needed, and who I didn’t have in the masse media and on television. I’m also reminded that all it takes is one person to make a difference. I’m reminded of my purpose to empower, enlighten, and strengthen all of the #moderndayprincesses out there.
It’s daunting. The journey ahead of me and the social trials and tribulations I know I’m going to continually face make me uncomfortable and scare me if I’m being honest. I worry about whether or not I can succeed this highly ambitious goal, and whether I can be an inspiration to the girls and underdogs out there with dreams and goals.
Growth and success doesn’t come from staying in your comfort zone. So, it’s a good sign I’m a bit intimidated at times. I think that means that I’m meant to do something great and I’m meant to be someone great. Hell, I already am great. Masse media and the world just don’t know it yet.
Typically, I wouldn’t post this, but in my last blog post I promised a true and authentic Brittany J. This is for sure a more vulnerable side of me, and before my revelation last week it’s a side I would have masked with pure unbridled confidence and snark.
There’s strength in vulnerability and in acknowledging our fears, our weaknesses, and the journeys we’ll have to trek.
I’ve had to bite, fight, and scratch my way to where I am now and I’m not done fighting. I’m going to keep fighting for that little girl who needs me until someone has to carry my bruised and battered body off of the battle field. Even then you’ll see me, natural hair waving in the wind and dirtied and tiara caked with mud and dusty with the signs of battle, staggering back out for another round.