In my children’s book, “Did My Daddy Leave Me?” little Aubrey wakes up to find that her daddy is not there! She looks all over for him but is unable to find him.
When my son and the mother of his first child, Aubrey went their separate ways, I was reminded of the loss I felt when my father died. It occurred to me that no matter the circumstance, the loss of a parent is painful.
It is important to talk to a child and explain things to them so that they understand that what is happening to them is not their fault and that no matter what, they are always going to be loved.
There are three versions of this story. They cover deployment, death, and divorce. I believe that the lesson a child needs to learn is that even if a parent leaves, the love remains.
Writing my children’s book, “Queenie” was bittersweet. It is a celebration of self-discovery and acceptance. Although Queenie strives to be her best, she is uncelebrated in her home. It isn’t until she stumbles upon the truth of her heritage does she realize just how valuable she is!
As a child, I knew I was different. I didn’t know why. I didn’t understand it and I didn’t want it. I wanted to be just like everyone else. It seemed the more I tried to blend into the background, the more I stood out.
It was a family member who saw my greatness. It intimidated them and instead of encouraging who I was, they attempted to dull my shine.
Has that ever happened to you?
Once I learned ‘whose’ I was, I was able to walk in who I am – unafraid, unashamed, and unapologetic.
When your Father is a King, you’re automatically royalty!
In my children’s book, “Lorenzo The Lizard,” I talk about how sometimes the things we search for are just within our reach. Lorenzo woke up and as he looked around, he realized his family was gone! He searched everywhere for them, but without success. Along the journey, Lorenzo gains valuable insight into his little lizard life.
This book was written in memoriam of my brother Lorenzo. It is a testament to his unyielding faith.
When Lorenzo was diagnosed with cancer, he became reflective over his life. Our conversations were inspirational. He always talked about what he was going to do when God healed him. I walked away from those conversations wondering what things I would talk about if I were faced with my mortality. I realized I wasn’t living. I was existing.
My dear brother eventually succumbed to cancer. However, the things he spoke of and the demonstration of his faith live on.
Because of him, I went in search of what was mine …
In my children’s book, “Latch Key Keesha” I tell a story that resonates with my childhood. Keesha has to stay home in the evenings alone because her parents have to work. Life is challenging, but Keesha endures.
Like little Keesha, I too spent a lot of time home alone and in my own world. While chaos surrounded me, I escaped into the world of literature. I read and wrote stories of a life I imagined.
The thing I’ve learned about challenges is that they really can make us stronger. If I had been told as a young girl that I’d be able to withstand the sucker punches life has thrown at me, I wouldn’t have believed it.
The late Whitney Houston’s song, “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength,” resonates with me.
Lost touch with my soul
I had nowhere to turn
I had nowhere to go
Lost sight of my dream
Thought it would be the end of me
I thought I’d never make it through
I had no hope to hold on to
I thought I would break
I didn’t know my own strength
And I crashed down, and I tumbled
But I did not crumble
I got through all the pain
I didn’t know my own strength
After much prayer and contemplation, I realize that I was built for brilliance. I was saved for success. I was equipped for endurance. I wasn’t built to break, but I was designed to be divine.