I stopped posting again…However; I’d like to think it was for good reason. I looked at the site’s administrative page and realized my next post would be my 600th one. I wasn’t quite sure what to write about. I didn’t want to pen some sort of self-congratulatory victory lap-especially when consistently drawing from within burned me out and somewhat outgrown this medium-even though it is the one that started it all for me; so I didn’t. But I got something, so here it goes:
About four months ago my contract at my day job was terminated-by the same company-right before the holidays for the fourth consecutive year. This particular go-round was done in such a disrespectful and embarrassing fashion, I felt uncharacteristically down about it.
Ever the opportunist, I looked at this as a sign. Days before my last day, I’d told God while I was thankful for my job and willing to work there as long as necessary; but I was over it and needed lifestyle changes and came to Him with what I wanted to do.
He gave me what I asked for and it was time to work. Time to work on all of the things I’d said I would and never get around to due to fatigue from 20-hour days. I hadn’t uploaded an episode of Cydney’s podcast in years, I’d started filming a docu-series and hadn’t edited any of it, I’d written for two books at work but hadn’t fleshed out the details, I said I wanted to create music because I’d felt it was a very important part of myself I’d let go by the wayside. Couldn’t be too mad if God’d answered my prayer.
The first project I threw myself into was my Christmas album. I’d started it with my cousin in the fall of 2010 and abruptly stopped working on it. Timile was pregnant while my cousin David and I worked diligently on it; but I was having a kid. Then the mother of my child got sick, and ever since, life had just begun to happen. In the process of finishing something I’d started eight years earlier, I realized when Timile died, so did the music. To make the experience cathartic and a full-circle one, I let Cydney rap a verse…she killed.
While finishing up the album, Cydney sat in my room and watched me work (read: Cydney asked me a trillion questions and was more of a distraction but she wanted to be around and catch the vibes). That evening, this conversation happened:
Cydney: Daddy, is working at (company redacted) what you wanted to be as a kid when you grew up?
Me: [Hell] No.
Cydney: What did you want to be when you were a kid?
Me: I wanted to be a musician.
Cydney: You are one. But why didn’t you do it?
Me: (Long pause and replaying all of the decisions I made to get where I was) Because I had to make other choices.
Cydney: What do you want to do now?
Me: Everything you’ve been seeing me do. You see all of the writing? Or how we got to go to that Xbox event because of my writing? And the podcast and all of those other things? I’m turning it into something.
In that moment, I realized I had an obligation to really make something out of this. Not just for myself, but for my kid; and I don’t mean that from a financial sense of stability. My daughter asked me if I’d become what I’d always wanted to be and I said no. Many of us watch our parents make sacrifices for their children; I have. Coming from places like I do, you’ve seen so many dreams deferred to the streets, life happening, and the worst of them all: wasted talent.
My parents raised me to believe I could be anything I wanted to be. My mother altered her path in art for stability; but eventually rectified it and became an art teacher. I knew I could be a music producer because I saw my father do it well enough to make a living in it. In a business with a 97% failure rate, even if there were times where he’d been living from gig to gig, he is a music business success story.
Standing on the shoulders of what my parents had done, I have to carry that on. Sometimes children don’t follow through r believe their dreams can come true is because they’ve never seen it actually happen. Fuck that; not over here.
So I restarted the podcast. I’ve been fleshing out these book ideas and at least ONE of them will be released sometime in 2019. I have another podcast coming down the pike shortly. I’ve been making music for the first time in years. I’ve been directing and editing a docu-series that’s also on the way. And my kids are watching. Every once in a while, they get to see some tangible results from it and I tell them where it all came from, so they have to do it too.
I think this was a pretty damn good 600th post.