Archives for category: Dear Diary

Today is my mommy’s birthday. I must admit that I’ve never called her mommy. Usually, I call her “Ma” when I am calling her to come down the hall to turn off my light (just kidding) or “Rose” when I’m trying to get my point across and let her know who is the boss (I am in case ya’ll were wondering who runs the show). LOL

Today as I celebrate her life, I am grateful that she is here, healthy, and hopeful. I am grateful to have time. Time to learn together and grow together in the good and trying times. When it seems like so many people, young and not so young are leaving this realm of life, I do not take time for granted her little idiosyncrasies that I’ve grown accustomed to, such as:

The fact that she STILL wants me to call her when I get home from a late night at work (mind you, I’m grown) or if she hasn’t heard from me in a few days because I am swamped with deadlines, she will send a message asking to hear my voice (it sounds the same). Or if she knows I have an event coming up, she will specifically request that I send her pictures of myself at the event and she will comment on my outfit, hair, etc. as she usually does (I look the same).  In my teenage years, all of these things were aggravating, but I’ve grown accustomed to her checking in and when she doesn’t I send her a message like, “Hello. I am your daughter. I could have been dead. You would not know. Because you ain’t call me.” (Yeah, I’m that dramatic kid).

When I recently experienced an unexpected loss, unbeknownst to her, she was on the phone before and after doing her usual check-in. While giving her the basic details she listened intently and said, “How are you?”

“I’m fine,” I replied with a steady voice and eyes brimming with tears…hoping that the surety in my voice and the quickness of my response would assure her miles away that I was okay, even when I did not feel that way.

“No, you’re not,” she said. She didn’t explain to me why or how she knew. She didn’t offer words of encouragement. She didn’t ask me to talk about my feelings or ask more details. She didn’t tell me I shouldn’t feel that way. She didn’t try to interject logic into my emotions. She just sat on the phone. Quiet.

And I knew that she felt my pain. And disappointment. And sadness.

And I knew that if she could somehow remove any of those feelings, she would.

After our time on the phone, she sent me a few text messages. Messages of things that she has told me before.

Ones that encouraged me. Ones that reminded me that she is proud of me. That she admires my work ethic and organization. That she is in awe of my determination and follow-through. Ones that let me know that she was here and that all was not lost. And that God would see me through. For that, I am grateful.

In happy times or times that seem to knock the wind out of my sails, she is there. In silence. Or with words. With a phone call or with a text. In person with a hug or across the ocean with facetime (can’t tell her nothing now), she’s there. And I hope that this birthday brings with it a kind of peace that cannot be explained, prosperity that is not limited to money, and joy that bubbles up from her soul. I wish her laughter, love and answers to prayers that reside in her heart and may have never been voiced.

She’ll keep getting those text messages when I get in late, phone calls to hear my voice , and photos at events, because I love her and like Smokey said about Craig, “That’s my dawg!”

Happy Birthday, Rose 🙂


Hey you. Mrs. Know Everything and Mr. I’m Always Right. Have a seat. Let’s chat.

I get it. You’re awesome. You have a long list of accomplishments and accolades. You have more plaques than wall space. You have more degrees than a thermometer. You have more money in the bank than the average. I get it. Congratulations.

You worked hard. You earned it. You deserve it. That’s awesome! There is no problem with your success. The issue arises when you behave as if those accomplishments give you the authority to treat others less than. No, you don’t come out and say, “I’m better than you,” but your behavior speaks louder than any words you utter.

Here’s the truth:


If you do not voluntarily humble yourself, life will do so. Events happen to everyone that knocks us off our proverbial pedestal and cause us to stumble. You won’t be “the big shot in high school” or the “popular girl in college” or the “smartest kid in the classroom” or the “prettiest girl in your circle” or the “CEO of a Fortune 500 Company” or “The holder of the most NFL/NBA rings” forever. If and when that happens, you will need people. Not money. Not degrees. Not awards. But people.

Your lack of humility will make you lose out on relationships and thus opportunities. If you are not humble, you will not recognize when you need help or accept help when offered. Even worse,  based on your prior treatment of them, others may not want to help you.

You have to be humble. You have to know that you are not always right. That you do not always make the best decisions. That you are not perfect.

There is always an “ER” in your life. Someone smartER, fastER, prettiER, strongER, etc. And that does not take away from you. You are amazing. You don’t have to puff yourself up like a blow fish and throw your weight around like a bull in a china shop. We get it. You’re awesome. Be humble. I promise, your light won’t shine any less.

Screen Shot 2014-07-21 at 4.57.00 PM

Definition from

Copyright 2014 by Morgan Smalls of All rights reserved.

I was in a long-term, dead-end relationship with my laptop and dealt with a lot of viruses, malware, fan breaking and keys falling off the keyboard. My computer would work well for a while and then it would randomly shut down; it did not matter if I was in the midst of crafting a very important document- when it shut down I would lose all the data I was in the process of completing. I endured all of this for several reasons: One was because I had invested in my computer. It was mine. I bought it. I didn’t think I could afford a new one. Therefore, I reasoned that I would make the best out of a bad situation. I would always have a flash drive– a backup. I also invested time and money to fix my computer; Selfishly and maybe even unrealistically I wanted a return on my investment.


At my new job, my office did not use PC’s; instead they used the Macintosh operating systems (MAC)–because the prior person who worked there preferred those.  I did not like the MAC; I had never used a MAC. My first day at work, I didn’t even know how to cut the thing on and I was too embarrassed to ask anyone so I called a friend who could aid me.

In frustration, I would leave my office and go into the lobby and use the PC.  But as time passed and I became more comfortable with the features of the MAC, the more I noticed the things I could do with it that I could never do with a PC. Hence, it took a while, but I appreciated the benefits of having a MAC and now I am not too sure if I could go back to a PC.

Often, we treat people in our lives like the PC. We stick with them even though they are toxic; we patch up things we know we should just leave alone. We feel like we have put so much work into a relationship that we want a return on our investment. We selfishly believe that the person owes us something or vice versa. Often, we stay and deal with what we have, and  even if we are introduced to something better- we reject the notion.

Why? Glad you asked.

The Learning Curve:  Like my relationship with the MAC, it’s a lot of work forming  new relationships. It takes mutual time, sacrifice and interest. You have to learn a lot about another person and that can only come through time and effort. It’s easier to go with what you know, but sometimes to get what you need, you have to be willing to learn. You learn through exposure. How do you know what you want or need if you have not exposed yourself to more? That way, you can articulate those sentiments to others.

(Sidenote: I could not ask my MAC to be a PC and I could not turn my PC into a MAC. People are who they are. Take that for what it is.)

The Fear: Many of us leave jobs, situations, relationships willingly, while others of us are forced to do so. No matter the reason for leaving a situation, the thought of giving up what you have (tangible) for something you do not have (intangible) is scary. Particularly, when you do not know when or if that someone/something better will ever surface. It’s hard to give up what you know with the hopes that something better will come along. Do not allow fear to make you settle. Why settle when you do not have to.

The Cost: There is a cost associated with a MAC, that is not associated with a PC. Truthfully, many of us are not willing to pay the cost. And trust, if you think I am speaking in monetary terms,  you probably missed the point of this entire article. There is a cost involved in stepping outside of the familiar and attaining better.  Greater investment. Greater rewards.

I’m not telling you what I think. I’m telling you what I have experienced/ am experiencing.

Love is like a MacBook. Are you settling for a PC?

With Love,


*This article in no way is meant to dissuade from the purchase of any type of computer; it is merely a simile*

Too often, we settle. Women, Men, Young and Not so Young, for whatever reason we do it. We trick ourselves into believing that our current state of unhappiness and displeasure is where we are destined to be. That it’s the best life can offer to us — so we willingly accept it.

Don’t get me wrong– this is not something we say to ourselves as we look in the mirror in the midst of teeth brushing, hair combing, makeup applying, or face shaving. No, we do this way before our feet touch the floor at the dawn of a new day.images-1


Maybe it is because we forget that each day is an unique day. Each day is the most important day in our lives, right here, right now for two very important reasons:

1. Today is a brand new day that we have never seen before. It is unlike any other. It is a time to try again, to use past falls, stumbles, and triumphs as building blocks for the future.

2. Today is a day we won’t ever see again once it is complete. We won’t ever get the chance to experience today again. There is no re-do, no rewind button on time. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.

I’ve learned that time is precious, valuable and we can’t get it back. For that reason, we have to use it wisely–o so wisely.

Don’t settle today, tomorrow or any day henceforth because we are not meant to live like zombies in a state of unhappiness and displeasure–and not even know it. We are meant to live full in all areas– so if you have settled in your personal, professional, familial, spiritual, or any aspect of our lives– pursue better, obtain better, and accept better when it’s offered.

I stand in agreement that your life can and will be better.


Happy Monday!

With love,



Have you ever been excited about going to an event? You get dressed, look nice, smell nice and believe it will be a great experience. This event could be a concert, a church event, a forum, a movie, etc. You sit down to prepare yourself for the amazing moment at hand and then recognize your experience has been impeded. Why? Because the person you are sitting beside is one of the 4 people I am about to discuss. These people ruin events and I would like to ask that these types of people are designated to a particular spot in any venue.

1. Talkative Tammy/Thomas-


This person does not know how to enjoy an event without talking. More specifically, he or she tries to converse with you. They tend to ask ridiculous questions such as, “Did you see that?” “What did he say?” “Oh, this reminds me of a time when….” “What’s the scripture?” “Where we at in the program?” Now, I will answer questions but I will not hold an entire conversation with you about the event or any other random tidbit you feel compelled to share. Stop it! Now, we both lost because I was listening to you instead of paying attention. I once was sitting by a friend and just blatantly ignored her throughout the event. I guess she assumed I couldn’t hear her, so she sent me a text message. And she was sitting less than a foot away from me.

2. Eyeing Eunice/Ernest-


This person has a serious eye problem. Or maybe they got the eye..I got the problem (Ya’ll remember that childhood saying) If we are in church and the pastor says turn to your neighbor, WHY am I the only one turning? Oh, that’s because you don’t have to turn because you have been staring all around the church and at my side profile the entire service. I’m going to need you to participate in the service. Look ahead. Look up. But don’t LOOOK at me the entire service. I want your head to swivel when the pastor asks you about turning to your neighbor.

3. Nosey Nancy/ Noah-


Okay, I admit. I check my phone while I’m in church. Yeah, yeah, I know I shouldn’t. I should focus. But what we are not going to do is focus on that. Instead, let’s focus on the fact that you’re in my cell phone every time I check it. (red herring) I mean, you are not an usher, who walked up on my friend like a thug in church and told her, “Shut it down!” in reference to her cell phone… Excuse me, whet? Not what…whet? Now I may not have agreed with the usher’s tactics, but I understood the reasoning. Since you are not an usher (because if you were you would be standing beside the door, handing me a fan, passing me a tissue or something like that) why are you in my cell phone? Why are you not focusing on the service? Mind your business. Geez.

4. Critical Charlene/Charles-


This is the person who always has something to say about the service. They tend to interrupt the flow of service with their mumbles, grumbles, and complaints. “Why they taking up 2 offerings?” “Why the pastor daughter up there singing? You know she can’t sing.” “Why does she have on that club outfit?” I don’t know the answer to any of those questions. I’m watching just like you are. So stop asking!



Have you had the pleasure of sitting by any of the four aforementioned people? Maybe you have sat by one person who has all of those personalities wrapped into one. If that is the case, may the force be with you and may you have the option to change your seat! What other personality types am I missing? Share your story with me.

With love,


Feel free to share, post or comment.

Singer Brandy Norwood in September 16, 2010.

The Angry Black Female

Black Attack: BET’s “THE GAME

For the past four weeks I have been watching “The Game”; however, each episode left me somewhat confused and uncertain as to what the writers had in mind. The first episode made me feel as if I were on mental pop rocks. You know, the candies that kids put in the mouth and it starts popping, making your mouth feel like it is going in a million directions at once? That’s how I felt after watching the first, second, and third episode.

But, as a die-hard “The Game” fan (seriously, I watch YouTube episodes of the show in my spare time) I continued to watch the episodes and despite what I am about to post, I probably will continue to watch the show because there are few and far in between shows that have an all black cast and I’m trying to show my support for black actors.

 BUT, the play on stereotypes has to STOP or at least slow down a bit.

Last night, I was disgusted by Chardonnay’s character (played by Brandy Norwood). Since her introduction to the show, Chardonnay has always been the stereotypical loud, ghetto, no holds barred black female, but this episode took it to another level. Here she is in a movie theatre and not only did she bring in her own food(which is not allowed) but when the movie begins she yells at the screen and seems to have no concern that she is ruining the movie for others. Her justification being (and I paraphrase) “I paid for this movie just like anybody else, so you shhhhhsh!”

Furthermore, let’s even talk about the name “Chardonnay”…really BET?  You couldn’t have given her a less stereotypical name.

I can’t take any more neck rolling, eye rolling, teeth sucking, finger snapping stereotypes of black women. Come on, Tasha Mack’s character (played by Wendy Raquel Robinson ) was enough for one show.

Instead of focusing on the colorism concept (which seems to be the overall theme for Chardonnay and Jason Pitts (played by Coby Bell ) relationship), it becomes diluted when there is a surplus of stereotypes from one character. The newfound understanding that Jason Pitts character has of his own culture becomes lost in the stereotypes. But it is not just that character. Melanie’s (played by Tia Mowry) comment of “I’m all for the ghetto. I buy barbecue once a month” (paraphrase) also irked my nerves, but I digress.

No, all black women are not angry.

No, all black women aren’t named after cars and liquor.

No, all black women don’t wear weave and pat their heads.

No, every black women does not regard Steve Harvey’s book, Act like a lady, think like a man as the gospel.

I know that these realities do exist, but in a world where the representation of black women has, at times, been less than par, having only these representations of black women can be disastrous.

For example, while interning abroad a woman was kind of rude with me over the phone. I told my coworker (a white male) what the woman had said to me and before I could continue the story, his immediate response was, “I know you got all ghetto on her didn’t you, sista girl…” as he snapped his finger and rolled his neck.


CLEARLY, he had me confused and even if I wanted to “get all ghetto” it would not have been with the woman on the phone but with him for having the audacity to act in such a way that showed me his perception of not only me but my race.

Yes, I have my Chardonnay moments but don’t we all? Don’t we all get upset and angry at ceratin situations? And yes, I can take it there but to think that I do not have tact and know what is personally and professionally proper due to your stereotype of a certain race of women is downright rude.

I have been to several movie theatres domestically and internationally and never have I seen anyone act in that behavior—black or White or Spanish or Asian. Just saying.

For reasons that I’m sure are surface and subliminal, I was offended by the movie theatre scene of “The Game.” And although there was another scene of another black female with Jason Pitts’ character at the movie theatre and the women did not bring her own food or yell at the screen, for me, the damage had already been done.

Some people may think, but it’s just a tv show. You are taking it too seriously.

To that I say that the media in general not only reflects but impacts culture as well and sometimes, the tv representations are the only “real” interactions we have with people of a different race/ethnicity.

Some people may think, but other races are stereotyped as well. What about them?

I never said that was appropriate either, but in a world where the minorities are less represented in many forums (particularly media), it is necessary that the representations we do have are positive ones that show the many faces of black women.

Food for thought.

What are your thoughts?

For a while, I had been asking God to give me some sort of guidance and direction in my life. I had been praying about it and seeking the advice of family and friends all to no avail. Each person seemed to have a different opinion about what I should do with my life. Each person gave me their honest opinion, but that still was not enough. Each conversation with one person led me in a different direction than the previous conversation with another and I was done with asking others about my life. After all, it’s my life so whatever decision I do or don’t make should be based on me since I’m the one who has to deal with the repercussions, good or bad.

I had watched enough on-line sermons, read enough passages out the Bible, and  prayed enough, etc.  to satisfy my desire to hear about what the Lord was going to do and I was tired of not having an answer to my question.

So, I had gotten to the place where I decided to just let the chips fall where they may and not really focus on my life after graduation. I was living with the mentality “what will be, will be.”

I heard nothing back from the Lord and figured there was no need to ask anymore because I had already asked for a while. I mean, I seriously asked, dang near pleaded to know what was in store for me. Still I heard nothing, not even a whisper.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I was not expecting God to come down from Heaven to sit in my living room and have a heart to heart session with me. I just figured in some way, shape or form, He would have let me know by now. I mean, time’s ticking. I need to make plans and preparation for my future. I didn’t know what more was expected of me, especially since I had tried the whole “seeking His (God’s) face” part of the scripture so I was waiting on the “all other things should be added” part.  I no longer prayed about it. I no longer asked God for direction. I just was done with the uncertainty and figured I wasn’t about to continue to ask the same question and continue to not get an answer. So maybe I was supposed to not know.

Before I returned to school, I decided to go to a different church with my Dad. As we sat in the back of a small church with only about twenty people there, I wished I would have just gone to my regular church.

But, as I sat and the youth choir (which was actually five kids) sang the song, “Turn Around,” and “Emmanuel,” I couldn’t help but get a little emotional. I don’t know, I guess the lyrics got to me.

Despite my initial reaction, the church had a good guest speaker. She was a lady I had never seen before. She preached on the topic “In his presence” and the sermon was taken from (I have to find my Bible in my bags that I packed but I will fill it in later).

Near the end of her sermon, she points in my direction and asks me to come to the front of the church because she wanted to speak to me.Hesitant, I went up front as this stranger told me things about myself that no one else in that building would have known but God and my Dad. She talked to me about my fears and my uncertainties and my hopes and my desires. She talked to me about questionable friends and career paths and my finances.

What she told me made me cry. Not because she told me anything bad, but because she identified the specific things I had been dealing with in my life and the answers to specific questions I wanted to know.

As I returned to my seat, I noticed that my Dad was also a little teary eyed.

We left church and road home in silence.

When we made it home, he came into my room and said, “Missy, did you know her?”

“No, I’ve never seen her before.”

“Oh, that’s crazy how she knew all that stuff.”

“Yeah, I know.”

“I mean, Missy, we were just talking about those things she mentioned a few days ago.”

“I know.”

“I don’t know how she knew about that.”

“Must be God.”

As our conversation ended and he left my room, I knew that I had received an answer to some of  my questions and I was filled with a serenity I cannot explain. God is real. Believe what you want, but as for me, “Yes, God is real for I can feel Him in my soul.”


Tuesdays with Morrie

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As I was sorting through files and slips of paper from abroad, I found a quote from a friend of mine. She has posted it on facebook and I  wrote it down because I felt that it was the perfect way to explain how I felt leaving England.

She wrote, “Now that my journey comes to an end..I feel so much that all this was just a dream-like illusion and I’m about to return to the real world.. to bid farewell to people I loved, to places whose beauty my imagination could never create. This was such a fast-paced, frenzy, creative way of living… Adrie, Katerina, Marina, Lorena, Kamal, I can’t think of England, or of a home, without you. “-Dikaia

Looking back as I returned to the fast-paced living of the states, I realize that I will miss the slower, at times,  boring days of no transportation, no television, no cell phone. I have not been back in the United States a month and I already have felt the stress of living—the hustle and bustle that becomes a passenger to success. I have pressing deadlines that won’t wait, bills that I must pay, jobs that I must work, things that I must do.  Back to just doing the hackneyed routine. However, what’s different is…ME.

I’ve learned that deadlines will always be there, bills will always be there, a job will always be there…but I won’t always be here. I won’t always be alive. And because of that, a restructuring of my priorities is much-needed. I will miss living in the moment or better yet, creating the moment in which I want to live while abroad. So, although, I have left England, I have brought the life lessons I have learned the 7,000 plus miles back with me.

In the book, Tuesdays with Morrie, the author notes how Morrie, a dying professor, stated “The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and to let it come in” (pg.52).Although I am unsure if that is the most important thing in life, I do believe it is an important thing. We all need love, in some shape, form or fashion. 2012 will be my year to do just that, love, not just in words, but in actions.

When I left, my Grandmother was in better health and, at times, spirits than she is now. To think, a few days ago she turned 77 and had to be reminded that it was her birthday. That’s scary. My Grandmother’s memory hardly ever fails her, but with old age, I am seeing how things change. She needs help doing things that once were easy for her. Walking, in itself, has become a challenge. Cooking, one of her favorite things to do in the world, has also slowed down tremendously. So with that being said, I am learning how to invest in people and invest in memories. Why?

Because at the end of the day, deadlines, papers, jobs, etc. Will always be here, but those who supported me and encouraged me to meet the deadline, write the paper, or apply for the job may not….A sobering thought. No matter the age, gender, race, demographic, etc. We all are destined to leave this world at sometime. But when I do (hopefully, when I’m well over 100 years old) I’ll be able to say that I invested in people and reaped the reward of joy, happiness, and love…a fulfilling life.

I urge you to do the same.

With love,


Friendship, Göteborg, Sweden

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I am not a fan of packing. I don’t like it. It is the part of traveling that I like the least (although it is one of the most important parts). Thankfully, one of my flatmates has agreed to help me in the process. By help, I mean, I am sitting down writing this as she does some sort of rolling technique to my clothing to save space. Either way, I know I will have to pay the price (literally) for my luggage to return home. I am so grateful that she would help me move out and I have had several friends volunteer to drive me to the airport or pay for my taxi (not a cheap ride) to the airport. What can I say? They are AMAZING!

In fact, while I was saying goodbye to my friend who lives next door to me, I surprisingly got emotional. She was talking about how it’s so sad to say “goodbye” because you honestly don’t know if you will ever see the friends you have made here again. With the economy, life, school and everything else going on, who knows if we will ever see each other or Manchester again.

The reality of her words set in as I sat across from her with a table between us.

This could be the last time. Wow, she is such a sweet and genuine person. I’ll really miss her.

As tears well up in my eyes, one manages to escape as it slides down my cheek in an unguided way.

Don’t you do this! Don’t you cry. This is ridiculous.

But, is it really ridiculous to show emotions? To show sadness? To show appreciation for friendship via tears?

No, it’s not.

So I won’t be ashamed for crying as I say “goodbye” to a friend that I literally may never ever have the opportunity to sit across from in a room, with the only thing separating us is a table. Way may not be in the same continent, country, time zone, etc ever again. I think that says a lot.

Since I’m leaving tomorrow morning, I have been bombarded with hugs and well wishes and gifts from the kind and beautiful people (inside and out) I have met here. I do not like saying “goodbyes.” In fact, I contemplated just leaving without saying anything, but if our friendships ever meant anything to me, I owe them that. I owe them a proper goodbye, full of hugs and smiles and maybe even a few tears.

So as we exchange well wishes and double cheeked kisses, they’ll know that our friendship was real and that even if I never see them again, they have affected my life in immeasurable ways.

For that I am forever grateful for the opportunity to live in Manchester and to meet many wonderful people along the journey.

Until Next Time,


Secrets of Love 01

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Let me begin this by stating that I am not one of those people who believe in love at first sight or first date or first kiss or anything like that. However, I do believe that sometimes we meet people that we are interested in learning more about and certain circumstances impede that process. For example, my friend interested in someone and she think he is a really cool person. However, along with me, she leaves in a few days.

As she discussed how she was smitten with him and keen to get to know him better and go on a few more dates, it inspired a poem. I do know of people who have traveled abroad and met the love of their life and did not return home and have lived “happily ever after.” Or they fought their feelings and returned home and shortly afterwards, returned back to the country they visited to be with their love. In fact,  I met one girl who is actually getting married in a few days before returning home to get the rest of her stuff and move back to be with her husband.

Crazy? Maybe

Spontaneous? Definitely

Exciting? Yes

Is she is love? I don’t know.

But, I have come to the conclusion that even if her marriage does not work out or if others who have done the same do not stay with that person forever, I think it is brave to be led by your heart.

After all, the heart wants what it wants.

If we all want to be loved and we find that love thousands of miles away from our homeland and at that moment, we decide to put caution to the wind and move forward and follow love.

Then so be it.

You only live once.


Love hard.

Love often.

Love without regret.

But if it does not work out, then take the experience for what it was.

And move on.

And love again.

With the same fervor.

It takes boldness to do that and a person has to be brave to do that. I’m not. I’m too much of a skeptic. But for those who don’t mind truly living with the notion of “carpe diem,” by all means, do you. Porque que sera, sera. (What will be, will be)

Below is the poem written as I question the love at first sight notion.

I fell in love

Many times

In the same night

With the same person

Over and Over Again

His gaze

His conversation

His rhythm

I fell in love


What if?

What would it be like?

What would happen?


I fell in love

With him

Over and Over again

Many times

In my lifetime


This moment

Was the only moment

This moment

Was the definitive moment

Of my life


I fell in love

Here is a song talking about the idea of falling in love at the first sight by Mary J. Blige.

Kylie Minogue also has a song titled “Love At First Sight