“Black Girl Magic is a rallying call of recognition. Embedded in the everyday is a magnificence that is so easy to miss because we’re so mired in the struggle and what society says we are.” – Ava Duvernay
I guess my permanent “resting bitch face” was on hiatus today. This morning as I was leaving the gym (leg day is a bitch, ain’t it?), this handsome black guy held the door for me and told me that I smelled like Black Girl Magic and Misery. He instantly chuckled as I whipped around to call him and his greasy greasy grandmammy (because in my head she instantly became that) some 4-letter words. I’m sure my face was that of a lioness on the prowl because he took a step back and asked if he could explain.
This man proceeded to tell me that black women are the only race of women that will “take a black man to task and call him on his bullshit.” I told him that I know women who are not black who will do that. By then, I’m getting offended because this fine specimen already told me my cocoa butter smells like Black Girl Magic and Misery but now he was feeding into the black women are bitter bitches ideology. He responded by saying that other women may do it but a black woman will break a man down and continue to love and support their men while she prays for God to build him back up.
This man went on to tell me how he admires the strength of black women. He remembers the cocoa butter scent on his mother when she was whopping him which brought him plenty of misery, but how the scent of his wife’s natural hair products (juices and berries is what he called them) reminds him of the magic born into black women. He said that my scent was a perfect mixture of both.
Now at this point, the brother got me cheesing, blushing and sniffing like a cokehead to see what I smelled like but then he walked off on me like he had just dropped the mic!
I’ve been thinking about that 3 minute interaction all day and I must admit that it motivates me to want to be a better woman to our men. It reaffirmed to me that, as a black woman, I should not feel guilty about expecting greatness from our boys and men. Sometimes I wonder if we set unrealistic expectations for black men because they have SOOOOO much to deal with in the world on a daily basis. However, I feel like there is no other race of men that can survive the things black men face and make it look as effortless.
So tomorrow when I put on my cocoa butter (even though I loathe the smell) and spray my juices and berries in my hair I will be reminded that to whom much is given, much is required. I will use my Black Girl Magic and Misery to cultivate some Black Boy Joy and Strength!