Friday, June 8, 2012

Becoming The Real UnHousewife

So, I turned 30. Booo, Hiss But before I turned 30, I had a bit of a revelation. I didn't like the person I was. The person I was, and the person I had hoped to be at this age, were not the same in my psyche. But if you asked me what it was that I wanted, and didn't have, it was all career/success driven. The family, love and health sectors are doing pretty good.

Who can say they actually own a home with a white picket (ok, rot iron) fence, married (some days happily but hey who's counting), wonderful beautiful child, SUV and luxury car in the drive way and every electronic gadget they want? All at the age of 30 and all because they did the work to get it? Not many. 

However, does that define who I am? 
Material things. The roles that I play for other people. Do they make me, well, Me? 
All my life, I lived for other people. I was strong for my mother through her broken relationships and financial troubles. I have worked and saved to pay bills to help my family, since I was 14 years old. 
Until I became a wife, then I was the supportive partner that helped her King build his Empire.
Then, I became a mother and role model for another human being that will one day grow into a woman. For the rest of my family, I am the "smart" one. The first one to got to college in all the generations before me. The "good" girl. The one who at every family function carries a book in her hands and finds a corner. Loves classical music, ballet, dance, and art.
Now, I love these people. More than anything in the world. But I am not happy being defined in the roles, of the play, on the stage, that they have created for me. 

Sure. I am a mother, daughter, wife, niece, scholar and hopefully, future law student. But that doesn't mean I can't curse, love hip hop, want a drink every now and then and have a lot to say that you JUST might not like. When I turned 30, I realized this. I am ALL of these roles. I do LOVE all of those things. But there is more to me. More that everyone does not see. 
What influenced this Jaz'min "The Real UNhousewife" Renaissance?
A Junior High/High School friend of mine has started a wildfire creating a blog around just how different it is to be a mom that JUST MAY HAVE MOMENTS THAT THEY DON'T COMPLETELY love BEING A MOTHER and That's OK. She writes about moving to a new country and joining a tight knit community, but although it may be exciting in EAT. PRAY. LOVE. In reality, you are going to have UPS AND DOWNS, THERE MAY BE PEOPLE THAT DON'T REALLY LIKE YOU and that's OK.
The strength it takes to be unyielding to the main ideas that surround us, the ROLES that people paint for us, and guess the f@ck what? That is F@CKING OK! You can still love, you can still be strong, you can still survive by just being who you are. What the heck? What a thought. She might be on to something, thank you @CrazyBabyMomma. 
A good friend told me I had no filter. I just let what is in my head come out around this person because I am comfortable with them. And I like who I am with this person. I liked who I saw. My husband noticed recently, "Babe, you laugh more. I like that. You don't laugh a lot." That is sad, because I am goofy as hell. Everyone, doesn't see my fun side unless my shell comes down for you. I think a lot of shit is funny but sometimes. I don't laugh out loud. I am conscious that others may not think it is funny, or they may think ill of me for laughing at it. And finally, a dear dear friend of mine that passed away last year told me, days before her tragedy, "You are a good mom, everyone can see that. She will see that. You will never stop being that. You can't let your fears of how others will view you stop you from being you. You have already superseded your [past experiences with your mother] you will be different. You are already different. You have to reach your true potential and make yourself happy before you can make anyone else happy."
I received that message during lunch on a work day, the next day at work, the news was, that she died. I needed to hear that. That was my angel. 

So, this long ass post (you know you were thinking that) is to say, that, I no longer want to be defined as a "Legal Momma" which is my professional industry and my role as a mother. I no longer want to be defined as a "Wife" because I am more than that. I am outgrowing hiding behind the shadow of those roles. I cherish them ALL, but they are not ALL that I am. I am Real. (I used to be only in my head, but now, I am out loud (wooo scary, hide yo kids, hide yo wives....OK back to being serious, eh emmm) 
And I am nobody's housewife, hell, I WORK my ASS off. 
(no offense to housewives, your job is very difficult, caring for others is hard work, which is the reason I can't do it. There is no job as hard as that one.) It's just that, I am me, I love my career (worked hard enough to get it) and my success finale' needs to be  un·a·chiev·a·ble. WHY? So I can always reach to get there. I never want it to be a "there." Because there are no limits to our potential.

WARNING: it will be me Raw and Uncut version.

If you don't like it, don't read it.
If you are interested... come on. 

If I am to share this journey as I have so far with all of you. I am going to do it as the real me. There are some things you may not like, that I will say. There are some things that may be a bit harsh, or peculiar, but that is OK. It's art. My creative outlet. It is supposed to invoke emotion. 

Disclaimer: Don't comment about what I may say about my job, family or if something I say may affect my chances of entry into law school. Thanks for caring, but I don't. My job is fine. They tried to replace me with three people and they all quit. I am good as hell at my job and I love my attorneys like family, so I'm good there. As far as my family, I have blocked the grandmas and underaged ones. The others can learn what they haven't known and enjoy it. As for law school, all of the law schools I have interviewed with have told me that they are looking to increase the diversity of their programs, they are looking for people like me with life experience and interesting discussion and if there is one thing I have, it's interesting discussion. And guess what, if being me and expressing myself means that no law school wants me in their ranks, then maybe that is not my journey. I'm 30 now. So I have to be me. The Real Unhousewife.

Follow: @realunhousewife

Monday, February 27, 2012

Fantastic News Update: Introducing The Honorable Michelle Williams Court!

Fantastic News Update: On December 27, 2011, Governor Edmond "Jerry" Brown, Jr. appointed Michelle Williams Court to Superior Court Judge! 

Some of you may remember my post about The Honorable Michelle Williams Court a few months ago. If not, here is a short reminder: 

My interest peaked when I learned of Court due to her being a fellow African American mother and dweller in the Legal World.  Court worked as Vice President and General Counsel for Bet Tzedek, an organization that provides assistance to all eligible needy residents throughout Los Angeles County.  Court has been a constant giver to our community. Throughout her career, she worked as a Civil Rights Specialist for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Project Attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California

Congratulations Your Honor! Our community is blessed to have women like you. Keep up the good work and good luck in your new position! 

For my previous article, "Finding A Twin, Makes Me Feel Inspired"

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Ode to Granny: Laissez Le Bon Temps Rouler

Grandparents, most of the time, are the most amazing persons that walk the earth.  I remember my mother's mother as if she were only alive yesterday.  For more reasons than one, my granny, was a woman to admire.  She was strong, beautiful and brave.  All traits that I hope to have and if I don't, develop within my lifetime.  

My grandmother was not the type of grandmother that took her grandbabies to church on Sundays, carrying a Bible in one hand, and a swear jar in the other.  No. My Granny was the type of grandmother that wore designer clothes, drove with white leather "driving gloves", and bestowed her grandbabies with gifts of quality time. Time that very often included cooking lessons, dancing and singing to classic jazz and black and white movies, and slumber parties.  
When I am an old woman I shall wear purple. With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me. And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter. 
(excerpt from a poem, "Warning" by Jenny Joseph)

With all her class and grace, My Granny was the type of grandmother that would "cuss a mothafucka out" (excuse my french but My Granny was Creole so sometimes this "cussing" actually came in French so I find it fitting) I loved it! You have to understand, as a kid seeing a woman in her 60s with long silky silver hair walk forcefully back into the store after going to "make grocery," with flowing brightly colored summer dress blazing, just to shake her manicured hand at the butcher behind the counter for improperly cutting her ground beef. You can't help but hide behind her bellowing drappery staring in awe as she tells the unsuspecting gentleman "God don't like ugly, you cooyon muffadie muthafucka you don't gone and shawted me on my meat!" Now, that's what I call a lady. 
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells And run my stick along the public railings And make up for the sobriety of my youth. 

I struggle. I try to hold on to her memory and channel her spirit and spunk. She always seemed like she was in a bad mood toward everyone but me. To me, she never had a bad day and I saw her everyday of the remainding years of her life. It wasn't until I was older that I even knew of the hard life she had when she was young. How she came to California from New Orleans a refugee from an abusive marriage with a YOUNG child with a NEW husband for a FRESH start. I never knew that there had been poverty, violence and death in the midst of her journey through life. Part of me wishes I knew her then, so I could know how to handle the tough situations in my life as she so triumphantly dealt with hers. 
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain And pick flowers in other people's gardens And learn to spit. You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat And eat three pounds of sausages at a go Or only bread and pickle for a week And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes. 

No. I knew her in her golden years. When the past was the past. When what was important was being with her grandbabies, having backyard cookouts, making Gumbo and NOT getting "shawted" on your meat. This is probably best, as I know that there is a life beyond the struggle. She came through strong and fighting for her ability TO BE GOLDEN. This is why I admire her so much, she made being old... look good. 
But now we must have clothes that keep us dry And pay our rent and not swear in the street And set a good example for the children. We must have friends to dinner and read the papers. 

Granted my struggles are nothing compared to hers. For one thing, I am on the other side of the Civil Rights Movement. For another and on a more specific note, I live in the house that she built for me, I have witnessed a healthy marraige between she and my Grandpa, I have seen the DOs and DON'Ts that she has done with her children. But most of all, I have learned that the journey is what is most important, not the destination. (I know it sounds like a bumper sticker, and probably is somewhere, but it's so true when you see it live and in person) In that way, she has given me a kick start and created an avenue for me to have it easier than she. My wish is that when I am old, we could somehow be old together, kickin ass and taking names in the Grocery stores of America.  But I realize that she has given me a legacy to live up to and with that a responsibility to uphold. I must not let her down. 
But maybe I ought to practice a little now? So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Hey It's Valentine's Day, and I Didn't Get Arrested!

Happy Valentine's Day to all the lovers out there. No matter whether your married, boo'ed up, or supa-fly and single...Happy Valentine's / Single's Awareness Day!!! Make sure to surround yourself with love, wherever you may find it! 

The longer I am married the more I realize that nothing is that serious, time-sensitive or high-pressured anymore when it comes to holidays, especially Valentine's Day. Hubby and I are perfectly happy waiting for the weekend to go to dinner or on any other type of date because we realize that (1) the price mark-up and crowds will no longer be a problem and (2) it will be more convenient for our baby sitter. And let's face it, we are all just overall better people and easier to be around on the weekends. But Guess what? If the weekend comes and goes and we still don't get to it, there will be another Valentine's Day next year. 

MY FAVORITE ROMANCE MOVIES: Love Jones, Lady & The Tramp, (and the new favorite) Wall-E, Titanic & Love Actually

MY FAVORITE ROMANCE STORIES: Memoirs of A Geisha, The Notebook, Romeo & Juliet 

ALL TIME FAVORITE COUPLES: Ruby Dee & Ossie Davis, Barak and Michelle Obama and Cliff and Claire Huxtable (I know they are not real but It's my blog and I can put them if I want) 

This year, so far, we opted to stay in. Nunu and I made Hubby a heart shaped cake. Hubby brought home dinner from one of our fav restaurants and we ate at the dining room table together as a family. Then, we all danced in the living room to Black Eyed Peas, until someone had a tantrum because she ran out of Nerds candies. 

I know this is sort of a boring post given my unexciting romance life, but at least I didn't get arrested for being naked and bound in the back of a Subaru. However, I will end the night tied to something and enjoying it in the comforts of my own bedroom, and that friends would be what we call, "Grown Folks Business" and the content for another type of blog entirely. Have a great night and Happy Valentine's Day! 

Villaraigosa will chair Democratic National Convention!

I love our Mayor. I really do. And I am uber excited about his newest news. Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has been selected chairman of this summer's Democratic National Convention. This will raise his national profile and boost his raining title as a leading member of the Latino Community.
What does a convention chairman do?
Well, hold the gavel, of course. Villaraigosa will also serve as a spokesman for the convention. 
Villaraigosa is one of the nation's most prominent elected Latino officials and envisions an active role in Obama's reelection effort.  He has been frequent defender of the president, using his stature as mayor of the nation's second-largest city and president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors to laud Obama's agenda. On Monday, Villaraigosa hailed Obama's budget proposal for its investment in infrastructure and job training. 
I am really proud of his accomplishment and can't wait to see the convention. Election years are so exciting.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Conrad Murray is Guilty: What do you think?

A verdict has been reached in the involuntary manslaughter trial of Michael Jackson's doctor, Conrad Murray. See the live stream of the verdict reading below. - Courtesy of CNN.COM

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Occupy Wall Street: What's the beef?

Unless you have been under a rock lately, you might have heard a little something about a movement called, "Occupy Wall Street" This movement has shaped itself into a whirlwind of a spectacle around the world.  It began on September 17, 2011 in Liberty Square in Manhattan’s Financial District, and has spread to over 100 cities in the United States and actions in over 1,500 cities globally. 

These protesters are resiliently embarking upon a month of protesting against the "corrosive power of major banks and multinational corporations over the democratic process, and the role of Wall Street in creating an economic collapse that has caused the greatest recession in generations." see Occupy Wall Street Website 

The idea that a group of people are using old school "No Justice, No Peace" style protesting to make a point, is quite frankly refreshing. I'm excited about the aspect that good ole democracy could possibly be back in business.  Fighting the system, not by playing by their rules (which never really works), but by attacking the "Man" with vigilante yummy goodness. Ah....America. 

The movement aims to expose how the "richest 1% of people are writing the rules of an unfair global economy that is foreclosing on our future." see Occupy Wall Street Website
I get it. They are pissed. But what is their agenda? What will get them to stop?  
At least that is what perked my interest to investigate. Here is what I found.

"We have no agenda other than to provide people with information about the events and actions happening in their area in solidarity and support of those that currently Occupy Wall St. Our political and social beliefs will remain neutral for this cause; this is not about us, this is about the movement. The only thing we will promote openly is peaceful demonstrations."

See Occupy Together Website.

What a bummer. No list of demands? No helicopter? No bag of money being dropped at an undisclosed location? What a let down. This is what I thought at first. I was confused. But then I realized, isn't that always how change starts? With a whisper. With acknowledgment. With anger. You have to let people know what your angry about to have a leader take notice and want to grab all those budding followers that are egging for direction and focus. The question is who will take the bate in the 2012 election? Or will anyone? I think all the coverage these protesters are grabbing it is making them very hard to ignore. It will be interesting in the coming months what with the weather getting colder outside and hotter inside the election walls to see how this all pans out. For now, in the interest of offering information, I will post a few links for additional information on the Occupy Movement. 

Occupy Wall Street
Occupy Together 
Occupy Everything