How Janelle Monae’s ‘Yoga’ set me free

I have quite literally been given life by Janelle Monae’s newest video for ‘Yoga.’ I’ve been given permission to be intelligent, Afrocentric AND trill which is often made to be an impossible feat. You’re either a Queen or a thot, Afrocentric or a hood rat, and there is absolutely positively NO middle ground. This is infuriating as a woman who is a mother, educator, activist AND artist. You sit there wondering which shoots you ‘should’ and ‘shouldn’t’ do based on how people will perceive you based on a single post or photo. You delay the release of your album repeatedly so as not to lose clients if they deem your content unacceptable. (You can’t tutor my kid talking that Black power crap!) But no more. I’ve been touting this ‘unapologetically multidimensional woman of color’ description of myself for years now but I’ve always secretly felt the need to hide my appreciation for certain things so I don’t appear like a ‘stereotypical’ black woman. Which is of course pure bullshit. Since this is effecting me the way it is I can only imagine how girls younger than myself, coming into their own and trying to get comfortable in their (beautiful, brown) skin are being effected by it. So shout out to Queen Janelle for the gentle reminder that this life is mine and I need to live it fully and unapologetically. ‘You cannot police me so get off my areolaaaa!’ -@janellemonae #JanelleMonae #Yoga #BlackGirlsRock #MusicMonday #SelfReflection #CriticalThinking

  

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