Saturday, March 10, 2012

Celebrating my 57th Birthday Day 6

Hi All

Today is day six of my birthday celebration. I've been doing these posts daily as the Creator gives me inspiration. This being the next to last day I want to go into my time here in Arizona. Tomorrow when I wrap this week up I 'm want to express what I'd like for the future to be. 

These last seven years have gone surprisingly fast. I've watched my girls grow up. My eldest Raven has struck out on her on and is in an amazing trajectory to fulfill her lifelong dream. Syeda has grown into a "tweener", with all the joys and exasperation that brings. She will start high school in the fall. For her middle school class trip she's going back to California. Is there a message in this? Smile. For her sixth grade trip she went to Catalina Island Marine Institute ( ) and loved every minute of it.

As I stated earlier we came to Arizona sight unseen. Before we came I took the girls to see our oldest living relatives because I wasn't sure when we would be able to get back to the east coast. Both relatives are in their eighties. Although, I had lived in the South (Atlanta and Washington, DC) and Southwest (Houston) for many years, Arizona was still different. When I got here, I felt like I had been released from prison. You could walk into a restaurant  and not have to be buzzed into use the restroom. You could talk face to a teller and they were not encased in plate glass. The sky was so clear and beautiful. Yes, Arizona still has a long way to go in dealing with Black folks. We are only 17% of the population and it shows. A lot of what they know about Black folks seems to come from MTV, rap videos and OZ.  I had a neighbor who tried everything she could to start a fight with me. When that didn't work she finally asked me, "If I was going to BITCH slap  her". I kid you not. Another Syeda and I visiting in Mesa near the Mormon Temple. We walked a couple of blocks to the store. A little girl about 7or 8 saw us and started, running behind us shouting "Mommy! Mommy! Black People". Mommy got embarrassed and made the kid come back. I always wished Mommy had let her talk to us. The kid had questions she wanted answers to and I would have been more than happy to answer them. Syeda and I are different complexions and some people seem to not be able to understand that I am her biological Mother. Weird. At the same time this is the state that has had five women governors. 

I realize that the Creator guided me to Arizona because I had some hard lessons to learn. My Aries sister always accuses me of looking for the good in people, an accusation I am guilty of. I always have started people at zero. Whether you went up or down in my eyes depended solely on what you did, not on what others said about you.
Arizona taught me to take the rose colored glasses off. I have had more lies and gossip thrown at me in the seven years I have been in Arizona than the first fifty years I have been on the planet. My older brother told me when I was twelve to prepare for this, that people were going to love me or hate me. There would be no middle ground with me. I asked him why, his reply was, "That I was comfortable with myself". He said that was a trait that many grown folks never accomplished. I have lived to see the wisdom of big brother's words. I have had folks who would publicly state they couldn't stand me, defend me in public, while so called friends stood silent. I think its a matter of respect and I'll take that any day. Respect is the one thing I require, if we become friends that's a a bonus. I am respectful and demand it in return. I have been amazed at how folks here will assume that because you are Black you will accept any kind of treatment from them. Its not happening. 

Scottsdale is the fifth whitest City in America and it shows. You will meet some of the most amazing, wonderful, nicest people on the planet here. You will meet some of the most racist people here. I long ago made the statement that I'd rather deal with an avowed Southern  racist than a Northern Liberal. Here's why, the Southern will say, You're a Nigger, I'm a racist and I openly admit it. The Northern will say, You're a Nigger, but I'm NOT a racist. But if I am a racist its your Fault. Big difference. Bottom line there are NO Niggers in my family.

I still like Arizona, there's a different kind of spirit here. A live and let live atmosphere. A lot of the nonsense I spoke of above came from people who are not born or raised here. Remember, I'm originally from Detroit and the racism is a heck of a lot worse in Michigan.

Truth be told there is a very real immigration problem in Arizona. To the Mexican nationals this is Mexico North and they can be way more racist than the Whites here. A fact that is not discussed in the editorials. A lot of Mexicans fly under the radar as whites. They will marry white, anglosize their names and pass. Arizona's and America's immigration problem didn't start with SB1070, it started with dial 1 for English and 2 for Spanish. It will be interesting to see how this saga plays out. 

I am winding down this celebration and will end it tomorrow with what I hope my next 43 years will include. Yes, I am planning on breaking my great grandmother's 98 years record. Inshallah. Smile

So let's keep this party going click on shop or http://wirequeen.etsy .com to use my coupon "Birthday57" at checkout. Today is the last day the coupon is valid.

See you tomorrow.