Phenomenal Woman: Dr. Maya Angelou

Dr. Maya Angelou

I admired and respected Dr. Maya Angelou, a woman that overcame insurmountable odds: raped as a child and silenced out of fear, a teenage  single mother and a waitress, being a black woman and  discriminated. Nevertheless, she loved the arts and pursued her career in film, dancing, singing,  directing, writing,  and teaching. She was also an activist; Dr. King and Maya were friends and she always stood for justice and equality.

One of her most famous books,written in 1970,  I Know Why the Caged Birds Sings. opened up dialogue and awareness for women who were emotionally and sexually abused. She was (and still is) their voice.

Excerpt from her biography:http://mayaangelou.com/bio/

“Dr. Angelou has served on two presidential committees, was awarded the Presidential Medal of Arts in 2000, the Lincoln Medal in 2008, and has received 3 Grammy Awards. President Clinton requested that she compose a poem to read at his inauguration in 1993. Dr. Angelou’s reading of her poem “On the Pulse of the Morning” was broadcast live around the world. Dr. Angelou has received over 50 honorary degrees and is Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University.”

Maya, a woman of color, raised the bar and demonstrated through her life’s work and experiences that every “sister-friend” can make it!!! Thank you for sharing your life with the world.

Dr. Angelou was on my bucket list. Now, I’ll have to meet you on the other side.

R.I.P. Phenomenal Woman!!!

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Seasons Come and Go…You Are the Only Constant

 

The only person that can make you feel complete is YOU! People will come and go in your life. So, don’t depend on another person to make you happy! Love yourself and understand that you can’t control another person’s right to make their own decisions. Sometimes you will stand alone but it doesn’t mean you are lonely. Remember, you don’t want someone to force you to stay with them when you are ready to walk away.

I went though a painful breakup 16 years ago. Nevertheless, I allowed God to do a complete makeover. I had to learn that sometimes people are with you for a reason and sometimes a season. Now, I know my self-worth;I learned many lessons and I am stronger from the experience!

Gwendolyn Has Grown Up!!!

Happy Mother's Day to Brandi from Mama (Gigi)

Gwendolyn Has Grown Up!!!

In my twenties, I was naive.

In my thirties, I was insecure, broken and bitter.

In my forties, I learned to love myself, forgive and embrace life.

Now, I am fifty and life has just begun!

I am wise, comfortable in my own skin, appreciative, grateful and free!

I learned to live everyday as if it were my last!!!

I wish I knew then what I know now; however, this is my life’s course and I am going to “ride it until the wheels fall off!”

gto

A Year of Reflection:2013

Water

It’s time to reflect on this year’s life experiences. The most important thing I learned is that God NEVER fails. He blessed me with employment and an increase in pay.
During my transition, I had to lean totally on Him. It wasn’t easy but I saw Him bless me in ways that my mind could not fathom. Several doors closed but He needed to seal those chapters in order for me to go forward.
I am still growing and my desire is for Relationships Start With You to become nationally known. I want to see women love themselves, become financially sound and have a solid relationship with God.
God bless each of you for being a part of a movement that is close to my heart! Without you, RSWY would not exist!
Blessings and favor,
Gwendolyn Owens of Relationships Start With You

Emani Moss: The Child Protective System Failed

 

Child Starved to Death; Later Burned and Thrown in a Trash Can Picture: Coutesy of Robin Moss

        Child Starved to Death            Later Burned and Thrown in a Trash Can
Picture: Coutesy of Robin Moss

I am troubled by society and the handling of abusive parents. A beautiful little girl, Emani Moss  (10) was starved and burned at the hands of her father and stepmother in Georgia. What happened to the nosey neighbor that reported everything? Where is our compassion for others; especially, defenseless children? We MUST take a stand and stop the violence against children at the hands of their own relatives and  even strangers.

Children are defenseless! If we do not help them, then shame on us!!!  Her stepmother and father were ordered to attend parenting class . Once they completed the course, Emani was returned to them. Her grandmother fought to keep her but was denied. This little girl will never attend her prom, get married, have children and a career. She was robbed of having a loving home with parents who nutured, loved and protected her. Her life meant nothing to the people who starved, burned and threw her in the trash can like a discarded object.

If you suspect abuse, report it! Call the police; contact the media. Do not stand by and watch a defenseless child have the life literally sucked out of them. There are many others who are abused and no one wants to get involved; thus, it is not reported until it is too late.  People care more about their animals than they do a helpless human being. The court system gives harsher punishment in an animal cruelty case because if the child does not have visible signs (bruising, scars, broken limbs) they find it difficult to prosecute the perpetrator . Laws need to be changed so that senseless killing of children can cease.

 

Rest in peace sweet  baby girl, Emani Moss.

Happy Being Me/Brown Skin

Angie_Stone_-_Stone_Love_album_cover

Indiaarie-brown_skin

 

Take care and love yourself! You cannot expect someone to treat you a certain way and you have absolutely no regard for your own well-being. Stop treating others better than you do yourself! You have to know your worth. Your family and friends can encourage and tell you how wonderful you are but it doesn’t mean anything if YOU don’t believe it!!! Go to counseling! Join a support group! Speak love and life over yourself. Stop believing negative things that other have said about you. They are miserable themselves. Love comes from within; it is not superficial. Words like”I am too fat; I am too dark; my hair is too kinky” are self-defeating. If you are tired of being fat, there is a solution-lose weight. Embrace your beautiful brown skin and natural hair! I wasn’t blessed with a round bottom but I had to learn to accept that there is more to me than my ass! Nobody can say it better than Angie Stone,”Happy Being Me” and India Arie, “Brown Skin.” Listen to these songs!!! I dare you!!!

I AM A WOMAN…

 

 

 

Happy Mother's Day to Brandi from Mama (Gigi)My life’s journey has been described as a series of peaks and valleys. I’ve learned and experienced acceptance, forgiveness, peace, pain, endurance, healing, God’s love, patience, compassion, brokeness, survival, depression, and the lists goes on… I feel for others that have walked in my shoes. I understand doubt, rejection and confusion. I’ve overcome sadness, loneliness, self-hatred and self-pity.

Now, I am a woman with a heart to love, to give my life serving others and appreciating the simple things in life. I wake up every morning with thanksgiving in my heart because I am growing in grace and wisdom everyday. I challenge myself to be a better human being and to live a life that is pleasing to God. I cherish my beautiful, intelligent, loving and compassionate children:Brian and Brandi. I breathe because of them. I learn from them and I see a reflection of myself in their eyes. They are my greatest gift.

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring but I want to leave a legacy of hope and determination to all women. Love and embrace yourself. Be kind to yourself. See beauty in all things and bring another sister closer to God. Treat one another with kindness and be a beacon of light when a sister is in darkness. Yes, I believe we are tied together…helping one sister at a time. Embrace today because tomorrow is not promised.
From the heart,
Gwendolyn