I am so happy and proud of the relationship that I have with my daughters; Brittany and Ana. Brittany and I instantly bonded when she was small but Ana was always with my Uncle and Aunt all of the time. Nana had her when she wasn’t at Auntie and Uncle Sonny’s. We later came together and she learned to trust me at around age 2.

            As the girls grew up and into their teen years, my favorite thing about our time together was laying across their bed and just talking to them about their day, Ana’s sports and Brit’s band stuff. When Brit left  for college Ana and I grew closer and really bonded. She was very popular in high school so she would put together cute outfits and I enjoyed doing her hair in cute styles as she talked to me about the thirsty boys who liked her.
              Now that my girls are adults…well Grown-ish, it’s so much fun to talk to them and go back and forth about politics music and pop culture. I so love our connection of love and honesty and they are both blatantly honest. Over the years I have learned to be honest with them because parents lie a LOT.  When we talk on our conference calls we spent so much time laughing and debating that it became a Sunday ritual for a while, but then they got busy. We still stay in contact through text and when I am annoying they ignore me. They agree that I do too much. For instance Ana told me to write a paragraph and I am on my third or fourth one.
              To sum up the relationship I have with my girls I would say I have homies for life. I have someone I can vent to and  they can vent to me. I also love the closeness that the girls share and I hope I had something to do with that. Ana is understanding to my needs and that is why anything I have or can do for her it’s done. Brittany is my boss and helps me make decisions that are hard, she keeps me in check. So I always encourage her and build her self- esteem.
            I love my girlies with all of my heart. I kind of feel like we are pieces of a beautiful mosaic set of tiles wound together through unconditional love.



What’s My Name?

Rasha, Tasha, Ratasha, Russian, Soviet Union, these are all of the names that I have been called over the years. As a child I absolutely hated my name. I would often ask my mom why the heck she named me that and her response was always the same.”Your dad named you, I wanted to name you Ayanna.” I am glad she didn’t because my childhood bully was named Ayanna and that may have made it worse. Anywho that’s another blog for another day.

I was made fun of just as most kids were. I made it easy by walking around as Rhasha Halliburton. So I was Russian Hamburger and in my adult years I was ‘oh like the Texas rich money Halliburtons? ‘No like my daddy and momma are in social work and live in Indiana. As I left high school and started at a local community college kids started to tell me how cool my name was. There was a family friend who said the “S” like a “J” and made it sound really exotic and when I met my friend Mikel ( now husband) he told me how much he loved my name. He said he wanted to name his youngest daughter Rhasha but her mom didn’t like it.

My marriage and travels led me to Columbus, OH where everyone loved my name and always complimented me on it. Then I started getting the question about where my Dad found this name and what did it mean. I started to realize my name was dope as hell! Matter of fact I started realizing my name is just like me, different, uncommon, and my husband’s word exotic. I don’t think like most people. I am kind of weird and strange. My name fits me.

Whenever someone tells me that they love my name I text my dad and tell him thanks. It took me thirty years to appreciate the precious name he gave me as a baby. Now at almost forty my name has been said on the radio; once on a national show. My name is on a published book, and my last daughter was praised on a news show for her name, Ana Hoosier. Just like my dad I think her name fits her. I gave it to her because my Great Grandmothers name was Anabelle and she was so sweet and her skin was beautiful. Ana is not sweet at all but she is proud that her name means something.

It’s funny I always wanted to be named April, or Amber. I am sure there are MANY of those in the world, but so far I have only found two Rhasha’s with the same spelling as mine and I hope they are as proud of their name as I am, thanks Daddy.

     President Elect Donald Trump

I have now had five days to process the results of last Tuesday’s election. It usually takes time for me to fully process anything of this magnitude. For some people, it simply “ Is what it is”. I have never been that type of person. I always ask questions and analyze things. I love to research and find out why things happen the way they do and why people do what they do. I was in shock on Wednesday and most of Thursday. I was sad Friday and went to see a comedy that evening. Saturday I was angry. Sunday;tired. Today I am ready to get busy.

No matter what side you were on you must admit this election was polarizing. Many of us learned the true character of our friends and family and in my case, the pastor of a local church I’ve been attending. For me I really was never with either of the candidates. I would never support a bigot like Trump and it’s hard to support a woman I can’t feel look at directly in the eyes. I never fully trusted her. Still I figured she would win once Bernie was off the table. If I could wave a magic wand he would have been my choice.

I was texting and on the phone with my children Tuesday night and come 7am Wednesday I finally went to sleep.It was hard to sleep peacefully when the president elect doesn’t like my kind. I mean he doesn’t like any parts of me. He would like to defile my lady parts and he feels I am poor and live in the ghetto. Let’s start with the latter. I don’t feel poor at all. My husband makes good money as an engineer. I work with women and children and have since 2009. We just bought a home and a BMW. We are able to help our children often. We support seven children, five are currently college students. One is a teacher and one is a high school sophomore We are able to travel to France, Mexico and visit our family in the Midwest a few times a year.

He also feels like black people are lazy. This morning I woke up at 4:30am. I started my daily prayer line at 5:30 along with my husband, aunt and mother. I had a quick breakfast and now I am headed to volunteer at my former employer YWCA in Dallas, TX. I will work on a book I’m writing this afternoon. I will attend a support group I attend and a yoga class at the gym this evening and end my night with dinner and a little television. I don’t think I am lazy at all.

Donald Trump has managed to debase and devalue minorities, women, Muslims, homosexuals, veterans and handicapped people. The only group he doesn’t insult are wealthy white men. But last week he won the vote for President of the United States. Many black people want to leave this country and are making plans to do so. I am wondering why we would leave a country that we helped build. Ever researched the institution of slavery? The operating word is institution, money made off the blacks of Afrikan people.

I have always wanted to live in another country but when I decide to do that it will be of my own volition. It won’t be because some racist son of a bitch scared me away. Also where would I go? Where on earth are black people wanted? Where is the place where racism doesn’t exist?

Now that my roller coaster of emotion is complete I can take action. What is my stance. I will continue to love people of all races, all sexual orientations, religions, party affiliations, and classes. I will continue to be vocal when I see injustice and never be silent. I will exercise my right to vote especially on the local level where it counts. I will stay informed on politics secretly hoping we do away with this age old electoral college. I heard someone say that the forefathers started the electoral college, so what. The forefathers also said African Americans and Jews were 3/5 a person. Fuck the forefathers.

The change I want to see starts with me. I am not a protester rally type person. I am not a politician. What I am is a writer. I will write my officials. I will also make phone calls and make them often. I love to research so if there is something to be learned or studied I am all over it. Most of all I am a fighter. I will never stand by and allow people to hurt. The poorest black person is my brother. The pregnant and scared teenaged girl who was raped and is pregnant is my sister. Why she should she be made to have a child that is unwanted? If two men want to get married and experience the horror that is marriage let them have at it.

My opinion on Donald Trump is that he is an evil bigoted scum of the earth man. He is everything that this country was founded on, thievery, hate, and pure evil. When is the last time you saw a Native American? Trump is everything about this country coming to bite us in the ass. So what better choice for a president right? Maybe we are getting exactly what we deserve. Again I don’t know what the future holds for me or where I will end up. But at some point karma must come back to the right people. Then again maybe not, John F. Kennedy was killed and he was said to be one of America’s finest presidents, sure could use him right now.

His Hair Feels Like Mine 

Our time with President Barack Obama as our CEO is coming to an end. After 8 years of seeing a black man and his family in the White House things will now change. We will go from a classy man who seems calm at all times; to a man who seems angry and red in the face ( actually more like orange). President Obama was nowhere near perfect. Matter of fact I didn’t agree with everything he said and certainly not everything he did. But it was great to see a man I was proud to have as a president and a beautiful woman First Lady Michelle who was always by his side. 

This blog is not about politics or the issues it’s about the little boy who wanted to touch Obama’s hair to see if it felt like his. It was wonderful to have a president who reflected my skin color. I was so dang proud. So many of the values shared by the Obama’s where also shared amongst people of color. Lady Michelle’s mom had a spot in the home right there with her family. Our favorite pastime of playing basketball was reflected in our president.. All of the cute hairstyles the Obama girls wear many little black girls wore too. But what touched my heart so much was that little boy. 

His name was Jacob Philadelphia of Maryland. He was at The White House with his father who was leaving the administration as a former marine who was on the national security council. His father asked for a picture with Mr. President. The soft spoken little boy then asked President Obama if he could feel his hair and see if it’s felt like his own. President Obama’s response, “ Go ahead feel it dude.” Jacob felt it and lit up with excitement as he told onlookers that it did feel the same.  

That was one of the sweetest moments for me. Never in a million years would I have thought that one day we would celebrate a black president. Others were angry and enraged. Not those who didn’t like his policy I understand those people. There are those who hated his skin, one of the characteristic that I loved the most. I will miss the Obama’s a lot. I don’t think anyone would ever want to touch Donald Trump’s hair. Not even the kids who would be cursed to have hair like his. 

For another two months I can say my president looks like me. That gives me a good feeling in these depressing times. Salute to little Jacob Philadelphia.