I'm Speaking at Creative Mornings in Oakland!

UPDATE: Watch my speech below!

***Listen to my podcast about anxiety***

This Friday, Jan 26th I will be speaking about living with anxiety challenges and mental health for Creative Mornings. I HATE anxiety. Hate it. But my love for stopping mental health stigma by sharing my story is stronger. I'll also talk about facing our normal, everyday anxieties.

Registration opens this Monday at 11am. They go quick so make sure you sign up ASAP.

Cocoa Fly Gets Some Natural Hair Love on Essence.com

 If you told me 15 years ago, when I was daydreaming in my carnation pink bedroom, that my face would land on Essence.com for a natural hair section--I would have called you crazy. Then I would've tuned you out, hit "play" on my walkman and listened to a TLC tape.  Why? Well, I wouldn't buy that the adult-me stopped straightening my hair. I wasn't into Afros back then. Plus, I wouldn't believe that people in the future were reading magazines and newspapers on computers.

The photo was from the Beautiful Textures-sponsored event I covered a few weeks ago in San Francisco. The room was filled with black women who put down the hot comb, got off of the creamy crack and rocked gorgeous hairstyles. Photographer Ashleigh Reddy walked around asking to take people's photos. She approached me. I said sure. Afterward she told me it was for Essence.com

The other day I stepped back and thought about why I was excited to see this photo. One of my childhood dreams was to see my name in Essence, mainly as a writer and editor. Then-editor Susan L. Taylor was (and still is) someone I looked up to.  In my teens, I didn't always love what I saw in the mirror. To reach a place in my life today where I not only love the skin I'm in, but my God-given hair texture is an indescribable joy.  And the fact that my kinks and curls got my picture on Essence.com at this time of my life is no coincidence. God is trying to tell me something.

I heard through my family's grapevine that a relative who saw this picture asked another relative, "So, she likes wearing her like this?" Ha! Years ago I would've felt self-concisous by such a comment but today I find it ridiculous. Obviously I like sporting this style because I've been natural 1 1/2 years. LOL.  My hair is convenient, spa friendly, manageable, affordable (I've saved so much money), liberating and fun. If my relative ever asks me if I like my hair, I'll tell her I don't like it. I'll tell her I love it.