Hello to all of you who joined me last night via USTREAM and those of you at home who watched my show debut.
First, I have to say wow, what an experience the whole ordeal was for me. When I was asked to be a part of the show, my first response was to say no. It’s a challenge to be in an environment where people are so judgmental and every action (whether good, bad, or indifferent) is subject to criticism, mostly negative. After weighing the pros and cons, I began to feel good about having a platform that will allow me to let the passions of my heart help others and decided to give it a go.
I can’t even begin to express the excitement of hosting an event at my late grandfather's (Rev. Hosea Williams) home. I have had so many wonderful memories being in that home with my grandfather, whom I lovingly call Baboo. From the age of 5 until about 13 years old, my siblings and I would visit my Aunt Liz for cozy Sunday dinners.
During my teen years, my grandfather moved to the house directly behind the home featured on the show. My big brother Hosea, younger brother Brenton, and I would listen with amazement as he shared stories of the civil rights struggle. It was important for him to educate us about the struggles and sacrifices so we would know how much we should appreciate those who fought for many of the rights and luxuries we enjoy today.
My grandfather will be forever missed and loved. So for me to decide to have an event at the Hosea Williams House was a complete honor for me and a humbling experience. The focus of the event was to raise funds and collect book bags filled with school supplies for children whose parents were economically challenged. All of the ladies that I invited were held in high regard, but that soon changed… Let me explain.A Meeting with a Former Miss USA
I was so excited and had such high expectations for my lunch date with Ms. Kenya Moore. As a child I looked up to her when she won the title of Miss USA, chosen to represent black women all over the USA. Continuing with the same admiration I previously held for her, I asked her to join me and 30 women. She was joining an impressive guest list of other celebrated women, some of whom have their own respective charities as well as successful business owners.
From the first moment I sat down in front of Kenya I felt a huge rush of negative energy, and it actually stopped me in my tracks for a moment. She who was once a beautiful and admirable lady whom I was anxious to meet had become a cold, bitter shell of a woman. She was so cold to me from the jump! I didn't want to even ask her to join me after meeting her, but I know that I can come across as such a burst of energy. I kept thinking maybe she was having a bad day and the chip on her shoulder isn't about me. I gave her the benefit of the doubt.
I must admit I was shocked at how she took offense to me and my questions about love, marriage, and children. I was simply trying to engage her in conversation in order to get to know her better and break the ice. I mean, hello, if we are two adult women over 30 what would cause me to think a person would be insulted by my asking if she was married and what brought her to Atlanta? However, if you are a completely self-absorbed individual who thinks I was there to kiss your butt and court you to simply join me in supporting a cause, then yes, maybe you would take offense.
After I left from that awkward meal with the Official Ice Queen, I began to put the finishing touches on the event. Initially, my husband was asked not to join us, because it was an event for women of power. Later that night I was pleasantly surprised to see my husband standing there at the event. I completely adore him and I am so thankful that after all the work I had put into the event he decided to surprise me for my birthday and brought me a cake and a gift towards the end. I’m so thankful that he also donated money along with us to support Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless Back to School Jamboree.
OK let’s get back to what you guys saw. Now first of all, Kenya was two hours late and when she came in once again the bad energy that hovers around her entered as well. She came into the event as if we all were supposed to stand and applaud. Note: She was not the honored guest! *singing* “Have several get your life”.My Speech… Oops!
I decided to make a speech and thank all of the women in the room for supporting me and my family’s foundation. During the speech I was overcome with emotion and opened my eyes to discover Kenya texting and rolling her eyes. I thought to myself, it looks like this child just needs some attention…LOL! So I decided to recognize her only to make a fraudulent slip and say Miss America (falls off the tongue so nicely LOL). Anyway, all hell broke loose. She snaps her weave ponytail and corrects me, I then immediately apologize, only to be given a deadly look of despise. I’m thinking, girl, get over yourself! We are at a charity event for children, who don't even have food to eat or sufficient supplies to be successful at school. Why are you about to go H.A.M. over a title that you no longer even hold? Girl, stop!
I felt as if she had been waiting on the perfect moment to create a scene and show out. Well, I wasn’t having it! I wanted to stop any kind of washed up diva antics that she was about to display. So then she leaves and goes outside and tells her friend she is going to meet another guest…a male guest at that. I'm now feeling disrespected 10 times over. How dare you reluctantly come to this event knowing you could care less for any of the children it will support? And now you are outside causing a huge scene! I immediately felt as if I needed to squash the issue so I went to check on her to see if she was OK.
Even after my second apology, she was still mad. At that point, her presence was more a distraction and her negativity was putting a dark cloud over the event. I felt it best she leave. Thank you! She then tells me I’m just waiting on a friend, I’m coming back in. I then let her know she was no longer welcome. I could not believe I would have to resort to kicking out “Miss Whatever She Was a Hundred Years Ago.” I never thought that she would have been so classless as to bring drama to my grandfather’s home and take away the focus from the children.
We have the strength to change the future by putting one foot in the right direction and not looking back. I am so thankful that most of you will really experience who I am and what I stand for. And if you don't, that’s OK, as long as you just take with you that you are not your circumstances. It’s what you do during and after your trials that builds character. Live each day knowing you are blessed and find a way to impart some of what you have been blessed with to others.
P.S. Sorry this was so long and detailed. I’m just very passionate about what my family has accomplished with Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless and I feel I would be remiss not to share with you all my true feelings. Next time, I promise I’ll be back to my funny, bubbly self. When you live in the world, sometimes you become of the world. Not me! I will continue to hold my head high and not let negative, bitter people get me down. Note to Kenya: Sorry you didn't get that to-go plate of food I heard you asked for, I got you next time girl.
Stay tuned! Love you all. I'll chat with you next week. Kisses!
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