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May 22, 2017

He's White and I'm...ME!

I had a really nice, mushy feelings post about my interracial relationship but I realized that my feelings towards my man has nothing to do with our ethnicities and cultures because that part of our relationship is actually the sucky bit. Leh we talk bout da.


I have had girls point out black men to me even after I've told them that I have absolutely no interest in the blessed chocolate heaven that is the black man. They are beautiful creatures but I just do not wish to be in relationships with them. I like blue eyes, as an island gyal they take me home to the Caribbean and all I think about is diving into the ocean. Yes, blue eyes are that deep for me and I hate that my boyfriend was blessed with them instead of me. Then again God knows that I would probably spend all my time looking into my eyes if He had blessed me. I have also endured the speech of how interracial relationships are a plot to erase the black race. The speeches about me hating myself and my people are the worst. From the black side I live through the questions about the penis size, hygiene and food. Let me address those three quickly no they don't all have small penises, yes they shower as often as you would like them to and I am a better cook than my boyfriend but aren't you better than your too?

The white side is worst, always has but I hope it changes soon. "Wow a black girl, I've never had a black girl." While our skin is chocolate and we look delectable we are not dishes for you to try. Black people are not exotic, people are not countries or places. The questions about my hair, family life, religious convictions and education are all connected to race instead them simply being questions. Then we have the people who just think it is wrong for a Dutch guy to be mixed with a "negerin" (female nigger). Did I leave out the need to make sure that I do not need a passport because you know some of them are only after one thing.

In March my boyfriend and I went to the "mall" in hometown and he remarked that everyone was staring at me. I was probably the only black person there that afternoon and definitely the only one walking hand in hand with a white man. Thankfully we live in Rotterdam where interracial relationships are pretty normal. We don't get outright stares, what we do get are the curious looks. The looks that make me want to scream.

I want to scream because I know that I live in a world that is horrible. One that does not care about my skin or my race for the most part. I live in a country that pretends to be tolerant while discriminating against biracial children. I live in a world in which I have to pray and beg God that my future children look nothing like me and everything like their dad simply because their lives would be better white.  I want to live in a society that will accept that a white man can love a black woman because of who she is and love her even more because she can dance to soca music. The interesting part of all of this is while these awful things happen when I am with my boyfriend we are in a type of bubble. I see the people and I think about how insignificant they are to our happiness. Maybe we balance out each other, I give him street cred and I am not immediately labeled the thief when alarm goes off in a store. Whatever it is does not matter.

I am a black woman with dark skin, brown eyes and relaxed hair. I love a man that makes me laugh, who cares for me in ways I did not know possible. A man who thinks the way I pronounce the word 'day' is the cutest thing and who stays up and argues with me until 3am. He is pale-skinned, blond-haired and has the most beautiful blue eyes. I love the person who love me. Ok world?

XOXO,

IslandGyal

May 17, 2017

Some Info

I took a long break from social media but I am back. Follow me on Instragram at leandra3712.
There you will find all my makeup looks and trust me their is a lot going on when it comes to makeup. I hope to soon start a YouTube channel so let me know what you guys would want you see.

You know how to reach me.

XOXO,

IslandGyal

May 6, 2017

For my Good

Be encouraged.


The people of Israel had been exiled to Babylon and were now stuck. God had left them after many years of disobedience. Were they to be slaves yet again as their ancestors had been? Was this the way things would end for them? In a letter to the exiles God's prophet Jeremiah delivered a message. "Do not try to go back home because I (God) have a plan. People around you will try to tell you otherwise. They will say that they have been shown by Me how you must leave this situation but they are liars. I have put you here and this is what I say to you now. Work in your situation and settle down. Build houses, have children and do not be dismayed. Prosper in Babylon and when your time is over I will bring you back to the place, to the place where you belong." (Jeremiah 29:5-10)
God had brought the Israelites into a bad situation and even those who had been good and loyal to him were made to suffer. If you are going through a rough time understand that it might not be a punishment.

While reading the letter many must have said are you serious God? You want us to find some kind of joy in our pain? You want us to go on as if we are not suffering? God in his wisdom and obvious great writing skills said in verse 11: "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV) You see sometimes in life we just need to hold our tongues and keep reading because with God there is ALWAYS more. The story ends many years later and the Jewish children born in exile make it home.

Fast forward to circa 57 years after Jesus' death and we find our jail-bird apostle Paul writing a letter to the Roman Christians. In his final letter we find Paul summarizing what it means to be a Christian and while he says many things in Romans 8 this part jumps out at me. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28 NIV) Paul did not say that we think that God is working for our good. He did not say that God works for us in some things. We KNOW that God will work in EVERYTHING under the sun for our good. Even when we cannot see it because God is not a human, his ways are not our ways and thoughts not ours. We should not try to understand them.

Today you might be going through some rough times. Your family situation may not be going right or God's plan for your life seems like a complete mystery. Maybe your career just took an unexpected turn and all you want to do is cry out to God and ask him why he has chosen to exile you. I want you to remember that during that exile prophecy was revealed to Daniel, the three Hebrew boys proved to a nation that a god king is a mere mortal and that our God walks through fire. The exile saved an entire race from extinction because in selflessness the most beautiful queen risked her life saying "if I perish, I perish." You do not know what God is writing in the story of your life but you must trust that is all for your good.

XOXO,

IslandGyal

P.S. Check out this song by Tamela Mann it's called For My Good

May 4, 2017

Revealing More Racism with Shea Moisture

If you have not heard about the Shea Moisture controversy you have been living under a rock and you should click here before continuing. Caught up? Ok, let us begin.

The backlash Shea Moisture received from this ad has been great and I want to share my initial reaction. "Umm... so where the black people? This halfie ain guh 4c hair. Show me da den ah gon know dis can wuk for errybody." My problem was not with the caucasian women rather it was with the lack of unambiguously black women. This has not been the case with many members of the black community and that is why we are here today class. We must address the fact that black people have an insane need to own things and have them be black. I wonder how that is different from white people in the Netherlands thinking that they own Hillegersberg and Wassenaar (wealthy neighborhoods in Rotterdam and The Hague).

I read a blog post that shocked me. An educated black woman writes that white women are trying to infiltrate our (black people) culture, hair being a major part of it. Yes cultural appropriation is a real thing and I will thus never buy another Marc Jacobs product. (See Jackie Aina's video on his sins here. If you want to find alternatives, she's got you too.) However, Shea Moisture is not promoting any type of cultural appropriation. They are a brand that wants to expand because there are not enough black people in America to make this brand as successful as Garnier, Pantene and Suave. This is where the problem lies because we want it to be ours. We have this slave mentality that tells us that ownership is power.


My well-loved relaxed hair.
Shea Moisture was created for black people by black people but we have never addressed the fact that the brand only truly caters to naturalistas and not to people who have chosen to relax their hair. The Natural Hair Movement has long morphed into a shaming party. Many bloggers and influencers never come out and say "relaxed hair is means that you don't love skin, hair and ultimately yourself" but when they talk about how much their natural hair is synonymous with self-love what does that say? "I love my body so I stopped putting all those chemicals in my system." Really now? So I don't love mine?

The problem with our hair love is ours. Black women not liking themselves because they are dark is OUR problem. I am aware of implicit bias but that is another problem and not necessarily our own though it affects us. We need to start teaching girls that they are beautiful and that their hair does not define them. We pretend as if this Natural Hair Movement is about hair care when we know that it is not. It is about ethnicity and I am far too comfortable in my chocolatey goodness to give a damn about my hair. If anyone is wondering I have 4c/4z hair and with a full head of hair caring for it is a three person job. I love my relaxed hair and my natural hair was beautiful and still represents a beautiful part of my life, childhood.

This controversy has revealed something very interesting about the black community: privilege is not welcome. "You are white and do not have true struggles with your hair or even makeup because any conditioner will do for you and your foundation shade is in every drugstore so bye." We dismiss them because of their skin color and if that is not racism I do not know what is. Shea Moisture is becoming more inclusive because of business but we need to include white people to survive. Having them care about our brands gives us a platform and broad audience. We want white people to see more fros and if they want to try it? Why should we care? You see I do not seek to normalize dreads or bantu knots on them. I want the world to see it all as normal and not a specifically black thing because hair belongs to us all. Shea Moisture understands something the black community does not. They do not want to simply own the industry and start conversations within it. They want to control it because control is power.

XOXO,

IslandGyal


May 2, 2017

Whose Vagina?

Warning: This will contain actual facts about the human anatomy if you can't read it...? Try really hard because you need this. ALSO this is a rant.

I am 23 years old and as I type this I realize that I am fast approaching the age which will allow me to that I have been having my period for half my life. I am not here to complain about it rather to shed some light on what I have been going through for the past month.

The female body was created, amongst other things to reproduce. Creating human life is truly a blessing but when you are my age having a human seems like a bad idea. So I am on birth control and the reasons I have chosen this method all seem stupid to me now. Unfortunately I am on a medication which cancels out oral birth control. Hooray for epilepsy! The Depo Provera injection is effective for 12-13 weeks meaning that you do not have to think about contraceptives. Over time it may stop your period altogether and that sounds like freedom. What I forgot is that hormones cause mood swings and I have been having the worst of my life. At any given moment I am likely to burst into tears or throw something in a fit of rage. This has yet to happen but what does occur is an inner battle. I find myself constantly talking down a new version of myself from a ledge. "If you throw that cup at your boyfriend's head things will not end well. You should not tell you choir director to go and ********** that behavior would be unacceptable." These conversations go on for quite some time and you begin to feel crazy. I thought that I was insane until I spoke to many other women who have suffered in the same way, but wait, there is more. The emotions were bad enough but my thirteen day period was the worst.

In the past month I have spent at least 50 euros on my uterus from the birth control injection to the feminine hygiene products, including the ones that gave me a rash from hell. Below you can enjoy this list which is most definitely inaccurate because I skipped the food that I paid for in cash.

Product Price
Depo Provera shot € 23.78
o.b. ProComfort normal tampons € 2.19
o.b. ProComfort mini tampons € 2.49
Libresse Ultra Goodnight € 2.39
Sudocreme € 3.15
Always liners € 2.49
Chocolate in many shapes and forms € 20.55
Total: € 57.04
After reading this one may wonder why I chose to go through all of this. I mean is this all really worth it? Do I care about peace of mind that much? Birth control was first seen as a way to give women a choice but today as day four of my period ends I wonder how long it will last this time. Will I continue to bleed for two weeks only to stop and resume two weeks later? Will I want to pull out my hair and scream? Will I feel utterly alone?
 
Alone because while I am doing this for my relationship I am the only one suffering. This is the plight of many women out there. We pay for our birth control, feminine hygiene products and all of the cravings that come along with hormones. The sad thing is that we think it is our duty. I type this knowing that I am hypocrite for never actually discussing this with my partner but he will read this so I guess that it is all out there now. As women we go through more than enough for relationships that are suppose to be 50/50. Every time I hear birth control horror stories I wonder 'whose vagina is it anyway'? Every day when a young woman says that she is unfulfilled in the bedroom, or when another is pressured into an IUD because her husband does not trust the daily pill I think 'is you mek she vagina nuh'. Tonight as I contemplate what the hell I am going to do with this period I am realizing that I should give up now because until my 12 weeks are done I know my vagina is not my own.
 
XOXO,
 
IslandGyal