I did something today, and I couldn’t wait to tell you about it.
I know it’s been a long time since I’ve posted, and for that I apologize. I’ve had a lot to say. I’ve actually been overflowing with words, thoughts and crazy feelings. There’s so much going on, Sweetie Pies. I honestly didn’t know how or when to put this blog back in the mix.
I started working for a newspaper as a copy editor and later as a features writer. I worked there for more than a year. And when they had cutbacks, I got laid off. I didn’t blog about any of it.
That guy I was dating? He’s now my fiancé. We’ve gone through a lot of hurdles over the past year that really have tested our relationship, including the death of his father. Our faith in God has been our foundation, and I am thrilled that He chose this man to be my husband. We’re busy planning our wedding and embarking on the very exciting and scary journey of marriage, and I didn’t blog about any of it.
My son continues to amaze me. He’s grown about six inches and is so mature and matter-of-fact about his purpose and how he will fulfill it. He’s developing his own relationship with God and embracing the call on his life to be a leader. Every single day he makes my heart so full, and I haven’t blogged about any of it.
Here’s what I did today that created a need to come back to this space: I added a new domain name. My last name is changing in a few months, and buying a new domain was on my to-do list. Honestly, I didn’t think it was a big deal. I planned to just add my new last name, but realized that would be far too long. I have a lot of name as is. So, I used the username that I have adopted on all my social media platforms, IAmLaMonique.
I had been concerned about how people would find me online once I got married. I was researching how other women handled it but didn’t come up with any concrete ideas. And honestly, especially since there were so many transitions happening in my life all at once, I started to wonder where God wanted me and if writing was still a part of my purpose. Buying that domain name showed me that all the flux was aligning me more with my writing and art. It continues to be a major part of who I am. Not only that, but using my words to help women merge their creativity, families and faith is more important than ever. Everything I’ve gone through has prepared me for this moment.
Through every transition, every challenge, every triumph, I’ve continued to be me. But I’ve struggled with what it means to be LaMonique. Am I a wandering artist who is always looking for the next adventure? Am I a stay-on-my-grind, Olivia Pope-type entrepreneur? Am I a devoted mother who is dedicated to making sure my child is successful and has every advantage in life? Am I a soon-to-be wife who is committed to being a great partner and homieloverfriend to my husband? Despite it being 2016 and having Michelle Obama, Sheryl Sandberg and Beyoncé tell us we can have it all, these facets of my life do not peacefully coexist. And I don’t think I’m alone. I believe all women struggle with the balance, and women creatives in an especially heartbreaking way. Let’s face it — a woman who decides to go to medical school gets far more societal support than a woman who pursues her purpose as a painter or photographer.
I know it seems small, but making this one change has freed me. It’s brought me back to you, Sweetie Pies, and it’s brought every part of me to the same space. And it only took me 36 years to notice —
I’m a bad chick.