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There are days I’d like to take off being a Black woman. It’s those days when I want to forget that I sometimes wake up and check my phone just to see what I need to be mad about that day.

There are days when the steady flow of information about Black women – unattractive, in debt, obese, unmarried, unlikeable, angry, rachet and superficial is just too much to take. There are days when the endless debate between Black men and women about who supports more, who gives more, who suffers more, is unbearable.

There are days when I want to take off worrying about whether or not me or the another Black woman will be the next Sandra Bland, Lezley McSpadden, Sybrina Fulton or even Faith Green. There are the days when folks like Rachel Dolezal make me question whether or not there’s anything special about Black womanhood or is it just something that can be performed and discarded when it no longer suits your needs.

There are days when the idea that Zendaya, Amandla Stenberg, Yara Shahidi, Halle Berry, Jurnee Smollett or the Mowry sisters should be excluded from Black womanhood because they have one white/non African-American parent is just too exhausting, especially when its other Black women that are perpetuating that nonsense.

But then, there the good days. The days that another Black woman comes to your rescue, your aid, or provides a shoulder for you to cry on because of something only another Black woman can truly understand. There are the days that you swell with pride because of the accomplishment of women you’d never even heard of before.

There are the days when you see another Black woman walking the streets with pride and confidence in an outfit whose alchemy is one only Rihanna could hope to duplicate. Then, of course, Rihanna, not just her fashion or her humor or her cute Bajan accent, or that she’s quietly backing a oncology clinic in her native Barbados, but that she exudes #Blackgirljoy and #Blackgirlmagic and seems humbled and grateful for her success.

There’s your mama, and your favorite cousin and your nieces and sisters, without whom your life would be so less rich, even though at a certain point, you’ve wanted to smack every one of them across the face (except Moms, cause as a Black mom, you’d not just be slapped back, but likely might be forced to dig your own grave in the aftermath).

Friends shopping at a flower market.

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There’s pregnant Beyoncè, putting the entire world on notice that Black women have always had to make lemons out of lemonade and in case you forgot, we are the mothers of civilization as well.


There’s Queen Latifah, who despite rumors about her sexuality has always kept her private life to herself while carrying herself as every Black woman should – with a self-placed figurative crown on her head and the chutzpah to name herself Queen before anyone could even question her royal lineage.

There are the legions of unnamed, unsung, unknown, unappreciated women whose very being makes yours better -whether its the barista at Starbucks who knows your drink, or the woman who cleans the trains you ride to work, or the one over the phone who cleared that overdraft fee, or gave you more time to pay that bill, or simply listened when you broke down explaining why you couldn’t pay that bill.

There’s Michelle Obama. And Oprah.

On those days and really every day, I’m proud to be among the dopest, most fabulous, most creative, most loving, most striving, most hilarious, most regal, most fabulously coiffed community of women on the planet. So to my sistahs worldwide, when you see me in the streets, at the airport, at the mall, just nod, like we do. Nod to my fabulousness, my resilience, my strength and beauty and I’ll nod to yours. It doesn’t have to be International Women’s Day. It can and should be everyday.

But don’t tell anyone. We’ll just keep it between us, OK? But we’ll know. Salute to all the queens, goddesses and fabulous Black women out there, cause queens recognize queens and I see y’all.

I see y’all.

PHOTOS: AP, except where indicated

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12 thoughts on “A Nod To The Queens

  1. Really on said:

    Black is beautiful. Don’t let anyone tell you different. Strong , creative , smart, there’s no one like us. They try to put us down but still we rise.

  2. redbone1954 on said:

    This was on point and I ove the article. You have to believe in yourself and I pratice that everyday because that is what I do. Yes not all women are not queens. But pick a sista up and help her become a queen. Don’t let other people determine your worth because we are priceless!

  3. specialt757 on said:

    It aint what you’re called it’s what you answer to. With that being said, why should we accept anything less? As someone already stated some of us don’t always act like Royalty, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to live up to that honor. I don’t know why anyone acts the way they do, but maybe it’s because there are so many people like you to remind them that they aint shit. So if you want different you have to try something different, try lifting us up instead of tearing us down and maybe we’ll show you a different side. Peace!

  4. specialt757 on said:

    Tonya P did you really write this article? This was a good. Yes and thank you, I’ll wear my crown proudly LOL!

  5. specialt757 on said:

    “…except Moms, cause as a Black mom, you’d not just be slapped back, but likely might be forced to dig your own grave in the aftermath” That was funny,

  6. Mia.P on said:

    Love it and I love being a Black Women and yes we are the Mother’s of all mother no one does it better that is why women are trying to be us. Love the skin your in Ladies and love one another.

  7. S. D on said:

    Why, Yaeger – because we are queens, decedents of royalty and although some of our sisters don’t always act that way, our DNA can never lie. So please, stop with the negativity that is so pervasive within our community and thrown upon us by others because when you do that, if you are a Black sister, you lessen your own worth. In these crazy, chaotic days, now is not the time to deny who we really are as a people. Blessings, love and peace…….

  8. Yaeger on said:

    “To the Queens”, this is a insult at it’s best. These days many terms are used carelessly. Not ever one is a Queen. Not everyone is a diva. Not everyone is a quote unquote “Star” It offends me just how these words are thrown around like used toilet paper, why?

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