Sometimes I complain about not being born an Angela Simmons, Sarah Jakes, Paris Hilton, or someone of the liking. Man, if I had a brief moment of the opportunities and resources that are available to them, I’d be killing every area of what I’m currently trying to pursue in life.
Now these ladies work hard for what they have. Sarah Jakes may be the daughter of famous pastor T.D. Jakes, but I’m sure she had to work for some of the opportunities she’s been granted. The same can be said for Angela Simmons. Reverend Run may be her father, but she is definitely not living in his shadow. Miss Simmons has been putting in work and can definitely stand alone. However, I can’t help but to sometimes covet the doors that have been opened to them, due to their name alone. The book deals, hair and shoe lines, speaking engagements, and the credibility that comes along by simply being born with a certain last name. If I can be honest, sometimes my thoughts on these things have me going through a “thang”.
But who cares about a name? That can only get you so far anyway. What really opens doors is money. Even the precious word of God confirms my statement:
A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things. Ecclesiastes 10:19
Forget a notable last name, I need money. If my family had “long bread” I wouldn’t be struggling to break into my career, I’d successfully BE in my career. New head shots, money for flights to attend relevant conferences, networking with the best of the best, rubbing shoulders with the creme de la creme, my money would match my hustle, and I’d be set.
But, it’s not that easy for me. It isn’t that easy for a lot of us. So. This post is dedicated to us. To the ones who came from nothing and created something. All we have is a dollar and a dream, but deep down inside, we know we’re going to make it. This is for you. To the ones who don’t have savings account, because their dream deferred is worth saving. To the ones who have monthly breakdowns, with the thoughts of “officially giving up”, but your dreams won’t let you. This is for you.
Remember “Run’s House” that came on MTV? There was one episode that actually helped strengthen my relationship with God, and rest in the promise of him being my Father. Angela Simmons was living with the family in NYC, but really wanted to move to Los Angeles. Angela’s father, Reverend Run, had reservations about her moving, which is expected from a loving father. However, he helped her. I remember watching the episode with tears streaming down my face. Reverend Run made sure Angela had an apartment, a car, and everything else she needed to live a safe and successful life in L.A. As I continued to tearfully watch this episode, I couldn’t help but to think about my current state:
At the time I was living at home with my mum. I wasn’t working, and I wasn’t in school, but everything inside of me wanted to be doing something. I had way too much time on my hands, which resulted in me watching a lot of Oprah and old episodes of A Different World. Lord knows I wanted to be a college student just like Dwayne and Whitley, but I’d recently had to drop out of Columbia College Chicago, because… take a wild guess… I didn’t have any money.
While watching Reverend Run provide for his daughter, Angela Simmons, I told God that that was exactly what I wanted him to do for me. I wanted to have the experience of living on a college campus, without getting kicked out, and I wanted a job that allowed me to work and attend school. If Reverend Run could do it for his daughter, why couldn’t God do it for me?
Well, he did. A few years later I was a full-time student fully enrolled at North Park University, here in Chicago. I had a dorm and even scored a work-study job. For months I never fully unpacked, because I thought I’d had to go home, due to lack of money. But God. When I say he hooked me up, he hooked me ALL THE WAY UP. #GodDidThat
And here we are again. I am doing something HUGE. I’m currently building a brand and preparing to release my first book this August. Can I be honest? It’s hard. It’s a lot of work, time, and money. Some days I realize this is bigger than me and ride on the wave of the fact that God got this. While other days I break down the budget and wonder what have I gotten myself into. But I carry on. I will pray, hustle, cry, pitch, and trust God.
I honestly believe he didn’t grant me the pleasure of easily relying on my family’s name or bank accounts, in order to build up my blind faith of totally relying on him. He is never my last resort. If God doesn’t help me, I won’t receive any help. Period. It’s time I realize the gift that truth has been throughout my life.
“Mama may have, Papa may have, but God bless the child that’s got HER own.” – Billie Holiday-