Hey Beyonce, maybe not all the single ladies want, need, or should have a ring...

When you get to be a twenty-five year old, single, church-going woman, you hear all kind of things... Mostly those things have to do with your age in correlation to your marital status and how you're lacking offspring. Those things might also include some well-meaning individual(s) boldly proclaiming that he (meaning your one true love) is on his way, searching for you and will rescue you in God's perfect timing. That you must make sure you are ready and waiting around for him, and only when you are right with God, he'll show up to sweep you off your feet. Gag me, please.

While marriage and babies are all good and well, I have a few gripes surrounding the assumption that says that single women should be married. Just call me, Feminist Tasha, for this post. Here are some thoughts I have about asking someone why they aren't married yet.

Maybe I don't want to be married. (Disclaimer: I do want to get married one day. Anyone that knows me knows that. But for argument's sake, let's say I didn't want to get married.) How frustrating would it be having to explain myself over and over and over and over and over again that I don't want to be married? You guessed it: very frustrating. If a woman wants not to get married, then what's it to you? Her lack of interest in marriage doesn't mean she's incomplete or not right with God, it doesn't mean she had a bad childhood, it doesn't mean that something is wrong with her. *it could mean all those things, but it doesn't have to mean that* It's sort of like repeatedly asking couples when they are going to have a baby. Maybe they don't want a baby. Maybe they, as a couple, decided that it's not for them. Leave them alone. Who made you the baby police?

Maybe I want to be married, but it just hasn't happened yet for whatever reason. Believe me, single women that want to get married but are not married yet are well aware of their singleness... even if they have a life and are not consumed by their singleness. They might even hear, though faintly, the biological clock going off somewhere in the distance. What they don't need is a weekly reminder from you that the timer is hastening to an end. To use the aforementioned married couple you keep bugging about the baby as an example, maybe they haven't been able to conceive yet, and your question just reminds them of the fact that her period came again yesterday. Doesn't that make you feel better? Maybe I'm too busy, maybe I'm focusing on my education or my career right now, maybe I'm not ready to be a wife and a mother yet, maybe I haven't found a guy worth marrying yet. When I get married, I want it to be for my whole life, forgive me if I take a while to find someone capable, willing, and worthy. For whatever reason a girl isn't married yet, what's it to you? Again, who made you the marriage police?

And lastly, maybe it's not in God's cards for me. I know, I know... I just heard the collective gasp. How dare I speak such things... But seriously, nowhere in the Bible does God promise that Natasha will have a husband. He surely didn't say she'd have him before she was twenty-five...*and if you see that in your Bible, let me know 'cause Jesus has some 'splainin' to do* He did say that he would give me the desires of my heart... Now, I might be messing that one up because I'm not sure that a husband is my heart's desire. I know, stone me. My heart's desire is to boldly live for Christ. My heart's desire is to introduce people to Jesus. My heart's desire is to spend eternity with my beloved. My parents didn't raise me right if my heart's desire was supposed to be to have a husband (thanks, parents)Jesus also said that he came to give me an abundant life. Maybe you've bought into the lie that society preaches about women needing to get married. Maybe you think a life lived without marriage is not a life at all. Maybe you think because you got married, everyone else should. But the truth is you can have an abundant life without having a spouse... Just ask Jesus (you can argue that he will marry the Church, but you get my drift), The Wright Brothers, Beethoven, Isaac Newton, Joan of Arc, Susan B. Anthony, or Clara Barton. The truth is that a life can have value and be complete without it ever having a husband in it. And the truth is just because it worked for you, doesn't mean that it works for everyone. Sure a spouse can add joy to your life... but it can definitely drain your joy too. Just ask any divorced person. So, while marriage might be great (for you), maybe God has different & better plans (for me). *Not that not marrying is better overall, but that marriage isn't always better for a person*

Please don't take me as a crier in the streets saying that women should never marry, should never shave, and should have lots of cats. Not at all. I believe in the institution and sanctity of marriage (thanks, parents, for holding down that marriage for 29+ years). I believe women have value as wives and mothers, just as they have value as doctors and teachers, and just as they have value if they are both. And besides, I don't even like cats. Although, I would be okay if I never shaved again...

*This is not written with a particular person in mind. Nor is it meant to be encompassing of all women's feelings on the matter. It is, however, written to a collective society that teaches that girls should get married and be wives and that their value is wrapped up in whether or not they have a ring on their finger, instead of teaching them that they should be whole, productive, functioning members of society whether a ring is involved or not.*

Linking up with the Fresh Friday link-up, Annie & Natalie with #ThoughtsforThursdays, Treat yo' self, LYLS Thursday, All Things With Purpose, and No Rules Weekend Party.


My family is my good thing.

Today (and everyday), I am grateful for my family. They are the coolest around. They are my heartbeat, my most prized possession... my precious. They are my biggest supporters in everything I do, but they also pull me back down to Earth when I fly too close to the sun and my head gets too big (which doesn't take much haha).

My family is hilarious. I never laugh more than when I am with my family. I'm talking that good... so good, you can't breathe, you're rolling on the floor hoping you don't pee yourself kind of laughing. The kind that's a remedy for every ailment under the sun. It might not make everything better, but it sure will make you forget about it for awhile.

I'm not so sure that I would be able to maneuver through this messy thing called life without them and I hope I never have to attempt it. I realize that everyone doesn't have a great family like mine and that makes me sad... My family is my saving grace. I thank God he blessed me with a good thing.

You see, my family knows everything about me. Good. Bad. Ugly. Indifferent. Everything...I can't stress that enough. They know more about me than any other person in this world, guaranteed (Except for maybe my pastor and his wife because they've got the hook up with Jesus). They have seen the intricate (and sometimes, not so intricate) inner workings of my heart. They know what makes it beat and what makes it race. They know my love languages and they know all the things I dislike. They know me. They have seen me on my best days when the sun is shining and the warm breeze is blowing... when goals and dreams have been met, when my smile reaches past my eyes, when I'm on my A game, when I am my funniest, my nicest, my friendliest.

But I can't stop there, because they are also the ones that have seen me at my lowest, my worst, my moodiest, my meanest. They have seen me fall flat on my face, figuratively and literally. They were there when I couldn't get the hang of skipping and when I had that bad mullet haircut (does this sentence even need the word bad in it... a mullet is a bad idea 99% of the time). They were there through every awkward life stage of the past 25+ years... yes, including the one I'm in now. They were there that time I was a jerk and treated most of my friends like crap, and they were still there in the aftermath when I lost those friends because of it. They are the ones that pick me up and help stitch me back together after I have fallen apart. They are the ones that guide me back to the well-beaten path when I go astray. They are the ones that I call to tell my embarrassing TMI stories to, the ones that I would die before I shared with anyone else. They are the ones that I would call if I created a dead body and needed help disposing of it... Well, not my dad, definitely not my dad, because he'd be quick to turn a sister in. Haha. And finally, they are the ones that have permission to speak freely into any area of my life, because I know that they know me.

They know me. They don't just pick and choose parts of me to see. They see it all, without blinders or rose-colored glasses (except my mom, hehe) and they choose to love me anyway. They love me because of me, and sometimes, in spite of me. They love me enough to tell me what I don't want to hear, but what I so desperately need to hear. They correct me when I am wrong. They remind me who I am when I start tripping and lose sight of it. They always have my back. I never enter a room, a job interview, a life decision (sometimes a wardrobe decision), a battle, an adventure in life without their knowledge and their prayers. It is such a comfort to know they are always in my corner.

So this one's for my family, the Hancock bunch and the extendeds too. I love you guys. Thanks for seeing me, knowing me, and loving me. You allow me to be...well, me.

Linking up with Annie & Natalie with #ThoughtsforThursdays, Treat yo' self, LYLS Thursday, and No Rules Weekend Party.


6 things NO does not mean.

This post might make you laugh, so I want to preface the humor with a disclaimer: I am truly frustrated that we live in a world where the word no has no face value. Where a person's words and wishes can be cast to the side and violated all because Mr. (or Ms.) Entitled never learned that you don't always get your way. It is not funny, cute, or acceptable to ignore a person (woman, or otherwise) when they tell you no. EVER. I'll say it again...no person should ever have to be afraid for their safety because they rejected someone's advances.

I'm sorry if you watched too many Hollywood movies growing up, but ignoring the girl's or guy's obvious rejection (whether by words or actions or body language) does not lead to a Happily Ever After kiss in the pouring rain moment like Noah and Allie had in the The Notebook. It's a movie.

Yes, I'm sure you can tell us all about how that happened to your cousin Pookie's best friend's baby daddy's little sister and her creepy, pedophile boyfriend...but that's the exception. Not the rule.

Write this down. It'll come in handy in life: Don't you ever touch a black man's radio or assume that you are the exception. Statistically speaking, life does not work like that...that's why it's called an exception! The odds are NOT in your favor.

You are always, always, always the rule and should live as such, unless the person that said no comes back to you, without a gun to their head and says "Hey, you know what, I changed my mind. I would actually like to give my consent for whatever the aforementioned proposition was." If you don't hear those words come out of their mouth... Forget about it.

I know that there are those of you who still don't get it, so let me try to break it down further with mazes, coloring areas, and pop-up pictures. It'll be fun.

There are at least six things the word no does not ever mean. I promise. You can take these to the bank.

1. No does not mean YES. 

Not in any language and not even on opposite day. Trust me...if I want something, I'll voice it. I would not turn down a "good" "strong" individual like yourself, if I was interested.

2. No does not mean TRY HARDER.

Trying harder will warrant the exact opposite reaction from me that you're thinking... Unless, you think that it will annoy me and cause me to write a blog post... In which case, do proceed... because you're right on the money.

3. No does not mean ASK ME AGAIN.

If I was not impressed by your first attempt, believe me, I will not slowly warm up to the idea just because you say it again.

4. No does not mean ASK ME AGAIN...AT A LATER TIME.


I am not in a funk or a mood. I am not stuck up. I am not a man-hater. I am not PMS'ing. I am not playing hard to get. I am, however, not interested. Asking me on a different day, month, or even year will NOT make me change my decision.

5. No does not mean ASK ME AGAIN. EVER. 


Your persistence will NOT wear me down. I assure you. I will last longer than you can. Save your breath. I'm not listening.

6. No does not mean REWORD THE QUESTION. 

I am an intellectual human being. That's hopefully one of the reasons why you're talking to me. That being said, I understood the request the first time. I said no the first time. It is my final answer. No need to change up the wording in an effort to pull one over on me.


I'm sure there are plenty more... but for the sake of time and space. These will do.

So, to recap what we've learned... if you've already told someone your feelings, intentions, or wants... and if in turn, they have already told you no, negative, heck no, hmm better not...

*Gifs from tumblr and reactiongifs
If you have any more things that NO does not mean, share them in the comments. Gifs optional.
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