About Swiss Cheese, Value, Opportunity and Breathing

Enjoy this random FOTD while I go on about something that’s been bugging me lately. Hubby and I are in the process of upgrading the web-series that he co-created, wrote, fotd random 2directed and helped produce. I, along with a host of other talented humans, also pitched in to produce (read: pay money and generally support). I broke out some makeup brushes, rolled up my sleeves and dug in. So the project is close to all of us.

For years I’ve worked with an influential client with makeup, but I’ve never breathed a word about the series or even Habibi, because I find it unethical to exploit opportunities and take advantage of people’s time. It’s taken me a while to find a balance with it, and understand that there is no shame in marketing yourself, and testing waters with people who might be able to help… without exploiting that relationship. In fact, when my client found out that I’d been holding back, she lectured me to that effect. So I listened.

Last year, an opportunity presented itself and I took it. I set up a meeting with a couple of high-powered individuals at their request, and set things in motion on our end with presentation. It took a month for the first response… with promises of a meeting the following month. Then it took another month after the first meeting was cancelled (at the last second), to schedule a second meeting. The second meeting was also cancelled, with a vague promise of maybe a thing (code for ‘nothing’) following month or so, and then THAT thing was further modified. And so it goes… right into 2016.

And now we come to the Swiss Cheese part of our story.

When I was 3 years old, I decided that I HATED Swiss cheese. The fact that I remember this decision so clearly is a trip. I didn’t like the way it looked (like some half done swiss cheesediseased grossness), I didn’t like the way it smelled, and I didn’t like the way it tasted. My mother tried every which way to get me to like it, but it never took. Years later, I decided that my 3 year old self was probably a little quick to rush to judgement, so I tried Swiss Cheese again. Still gross. Years later, I tried it again. Still gross.

Here’s the thing: I’m not an industry person. Never been a fan. I don’t particularly understand it or care for it. But I’m married to an industry person, so I stand beside him with pom poms and yell GO TEAM! whenever the occasion calls for it.  What I’ve come to recognize is that a lot of people who work in the industry do not possess more intelligence or better instincts than the creators they make money off of. They just have more power. And sometimes they (and the many people who speak for them… which is an entirely different conversation) use that power to discourage and dismiss. It’s gross. Like Swiss Cheese.

And just like Swiss Cheese… every few moons I dip my baby toe in the industry waters because you know, second/third/fourth/fifth chances and all that… and NOPE. Still gross.

Now Hubby is taking this a lot better than I am. But he’s the industry person so he gets it. He says he kind of saw it as a practice run anyway. He went into it with more knowledge and experience than me, so he’s cool. But I’m all up in my feelings like Kanye ’cause this is some of the messiest mess… and it’s just so unnecessary. One of my friends always says NO ONE IS EVER THAT BUSY. And she’s right. We spend time, effort, and money on the things that are important to us. Period.

So I’m working on breathing, and putting my energy into things that better serve me. Like taking that very expensive Habibi gift that I had made for these eternally postponed meetings (which was part of some advice offered by an equally powerful industry individual), and sending it to someone else. The products are fresh and carry an expiration date, and they don’t have time to be waiting on anyone to get it together. So it was as much as an emotional decision as a practical one.

That exercise helped me open a window to a new opportunity. One of the people who got a gift is now interested in carrying Habibi in her highly influential place of business. YIPPEE! So that’s my focus of late, as we continue this asinine orbit around an industry that works very hard to determine your value and control your shine. What I know is that you can’t control the actions of others, you can only control your REACTION to them. Sometimes I forget it, and this was a fantastic reminder to stay on my mat, breathe, and clear the pathway for new and better things. The action stands as it is; my reaction is to put energy into people and things who acknowledge… not try to determine… my value.




  1. Goddesslily says:

    Here’s a link that I think you should take into consideration or maybe send some Informational kits out to cause you never know who knows someone that has salons that are looking for product lines to carry in their shop! xoxoxo LIly http://officialblackwallstreet.com/black-owned-beauty-supply-stores/

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