To whom it May Concern:

How many other people’s moms started their notes in school off like this? I bet we can all agree growing up black is no walk in the park, as a matter of fact it’s the complete opposite… but I must say, it builds character. When I was younger, I always thought to myself, “ain’t no way my friends (many of whom weren’t black) went through the things I went through. I mean how many other cultures have unspoken rules… things that just go without saying ? You walk in a black woman’s house …. what’s the first thing you do ? — speak , or my favorite,  “Don’t you touch those pans unless your hands are clean”. Let’s not even talk about how I’d better not go in the store acting up… or asking to sleep over anyone’s house. Growing up black was hard no doubt about it, but I can’t lie there were definitely some laughs along the way. I mean who else’s mom can rap a Slick Rick song from start to finish?

As I’m raising my son I’m starting to see the unspoken flair that black women, that black moms possess… and to be frank, it’s quite amazing. Black mothers are amazing period. It’s funny because on Friday night, I had a rap battle with my son… he’s two, we have concerts all the time. We’ve been having them since he was 13 months, and now that I actually understand him… My baby got some bars. But, I’m sure moms of other races rap with their toddlers all the time.

That was a joke.


It’s so funny and semi annoying because once he find a rap song he loves, it’s the only thing he requests, currently it’s Blockboy JB- “shoot”.

In my house we indulge in trap music —-*insert your unpopular opinion if you must*

Just In case you’ve missed the point, my son has been afforded with the luxury of culture. Another thing I must say as a black mom I’m proud of. I gave life to a black boy who will always be doubted but regardless, still beat the odds. I’m raising a black boy who will one day be a man of greatness, and I say that with the utmost confidence. Black mothers who go onto raise exceptional kids in an environment designed to work against them are everything, ain’t nothing regular about that.

I just hope he has rhythm…

He does a cool two-step now, with little effort required. Hell, he better hope he has rhythm, or I’m going to have jokes for days…remember I said being raised black builds character, he better learn to laugh now because momma got jokes for days. He’s still got a couple more years before he’s being waken up on Saturday mornings by slow jams to clean so he better enjoy his weekends now. I find myself laughing sometimes because in the past two years, I’ve somehow been able to morph into this new role as mom quite easy, I’ve become the disciplinarian, the teacher, the dance partner,  all at the same time… I’ll be sure to remind my son I can be everything to him except “one of his little friends”.—- sound familiar? Yeah, I must say I’m pretty cool… lucky for Carter.— he’s already been dubbed the best dressed at daycare. I told y’all we’ve got a flair about us. As a black woman, style has always come easy… I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to pass on my swag to my son…. at this point he’s better dressed than me. How many other moms can relate?

“One things for sure, my kids will always look better than me”.

All melanin aside

Since becoming a mother I’ve chosen to appreciate the good rather than constantly acknowledging the bad. If I chose to focus on the bad things associated with being a black mother in America then my goodness, I’d be nervous all the time. I don’t want to live like that, I’m aware of the struggles associated with raising children of color in America — who isn’t? Well other than the Trump supporters, but that’s another topic for another time. I know I will have to have the conversations with my son on what to do when he’s being stopped by the police, or how aware he needs to be when he starts interacting with girls, ESPECIALLY girls of other races. I know how hard it’s going to be for me to try and get him to understand why he’s different from the other kids in the neighborhood and all I can say is I’m ready, I was built for this… hell it’s in my DNA. That time will come, but for now I am choosing to enjoy this beautiful black boy I’ve been blessed with, I’m choosing to show him the pros of being a black boy in America, I’m choosing to show my damn self the pros of being a black mother in America. We all know about the struggles, how often do we hear about the good? Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world”. I live by that daily, I want to be the example that you can still be black and happy in America! Even with everything going on. I want my son to know he doesn’t have to be scared in America, I want him to know he should wake up smiling each and every day! At this point, I might have to talk to the beehive because we need positive affirmations for boys of color. “Brown skin girl” is cool and all but I’m raising a brown skin boy and although momma is reminding him how beautiful being black can be, society needs to do the same. I guess being a black mom in America has filled my heart with more love and compassion, it’s taught me to be accepting of others because I want the same for my son… it’s taught me to love more.




So the next time you focus on being a black parent in America, remind your self how extraordinary it is.— literally.

Because like I said before, “I’m not a regular mom, I’m a cool mom”

thank you you for reading,

Mommi Ashley