Contrary to popular belief, we do hold magical powers, black girls that is. From as young as Leah Still who fought long and hard to kick cancer’s butt, to young girls like Amandla Steinburg whose courage shows us that “you better recognize” who you’re talking to when you step to a black girl. Then you have some of my favs like Gabourey Sidbe who overlooks fat shamers and struts her stuff, and does so fiercely might I add. Women like Viola Davis who speak up on priviledge when no one would,” the only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity.” You have philanthropists old and young like Oprah and Karen Civil. Entrepreneurs, Bloggers, Activists, Teachers, and Doctors, all of who contribute greatly to society while taking care of families. Then you have people like me, 20 something’s after their degree and rushing to the glass ceiling ready to shed blood by any means necessary.
It is magic. Though the aesthetic sometimes put forth can be that of perfection, it serves its purpose well. For so long beauty standards have been taken over by white beauty ideals and black women have been far from the worlds meaning of the word. Black Girl Magic’s meaning in the physical sense has taught me what it means to love and embrace yourself, how could you hate on that? Sure, coconut oil and black soap can’t make your body look like agave….all the time but #blackgirlmagic stands for so much more than that. It recreates “flaws” and gives them a platform. Since the beginning of BlackGirl Magic, movements such as #bodyposi and #skinposi have surfaced and taken over, by whom? Black women.
There’s something empowering about walking into a room, opening a chat or even a social media app and seeing thousands of women embracing what it means to be black and above all how it feels like to be a black girl ( @HIFTBABG) . The ups, the downs, through it all black girls will and can, which is essentially what the movement stands for.
And so, that’s where my disappointment lies, where black apology comes in. Disgusted and confused, I exited the Elle Magazine spread bashing black girl magic. My first thoughts were, “Where does a white owned magazine get the gall to speak on such a thing?”
My second, “How much did they pay this black apologist to victimize herself?”
Elle completely shot and missed with this one.
“SAYING WE'RE SUPERHUMAN IS JUST AS BAD AS SAYING WE'RE ANIMALS, BECAUSE IT IMPLIES THAT WE ARE ORGANICALLY DIFFERENT.”-Linda Chavers
Well in fact, I believe we are, from the melanin in our skin that allows us to sustain to our unwavering ability to withstand adversity. I believe this with my whole heart despite what Dr Chavers has to say, “We woman up. And perhaps black women tend to do it better than most but that's because we have to, not because we're magical. (Most of us fail miserably, by the way; when one of us doesn't, we call them magical.)”
We don’t have to, we can wither and fail. We choose not to, it is that strength...The magical strength that we take pride in that gets us through day by day. I think though, that that is the difference between your thought processes and that of those who embody black girl magic, we don’t let life happen. We make life happen.
That is black girl magic, accepting what is physically, mentally and spiritually. Embracing it. And letting the world know how “lit” we are, leaving glitter as we pass through circumstance.
So, Miss Linda Dear ….