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Growing up, getting our hair cut was bonding time for my brothers and my dad. Even though when I was younger I used to hate it. I'm not sure if it's because I wanted to have long hair or I didn't want to stop playing outside. More than anything, I think it might be the times that my dad cut my ears or was rough holding my head. It's where I got my heavy handedness from.

I would always hear about the conversations that ensued in a barbershop, in college, they told me it was some of the best memories that they had. Ever since me trying to transform my life, stopping type in all caps, finding God, and now I go get my hair professionally cut as well as changing how I dress.

Playing basketball all my life I was accustomed to wearing athletic apparel, it was hard to let it go just like my capital letters. This Saturday, as I was getting prepared for my big brother's wedding, I made my way to the barbershop. I got there early hoping that I can get in the chair and get out in time to shower and get breakfast before heading to the hotel.

The guy before me got up and never left, I was tightening up my speech and wasn't paying much attention to the conversation. As I fist pounded my more than adequate barber, I tuned in to the fellas opine over something called the Critical Race Theory.

Critical Race Theory, or CRT, is the idea that race isn't just individual bias or prejudice but sewed into the systematic policies and laws that are in play. Essentially, the truth.

Apparently, Texas has already done away with it in the school system and undoubtedly there will be more to follow. From the time I walked into Amazing Cutz to the time I left we stayed on the same subject. Respecting everyone's thoughts and piggy backing with our own opinions, I had a lot of fun.

There was multiple generations in the room too, which I thought was beautiful because there were so many different perspectives. The sad part is that regardless of the age, we all had similar experiences when it comes to the system that has been put in place for the detriment of the black man.

As I listened to the conversations shouted through mask across the room, I finally understood the gravity of the chair. As always, I got up feeling like a new man and headed back home to get cleaned up for Edmond's big day. Which turned out to be beautiful, it's amazing that he got married when everyone thought he would be the last one.

Not because of his inability to find a women, but his reserved personality we wondered if he would ever summon the confidence to get on one knee. As one of his best men, my younger brother being the other one, I touched on this fact as I wrote the speech. I was hoping that it would suffice, everybody told me that they loved it. My uncle even told me that I should publish it, I'm not sure that I will, but it's a thought.

While at the wedding, Amelia's mom text me a picture of my daughter, and she is so big! I can't even fathom how much she has grown, it's the first time I seen a picture of my baby in two years. She looks like she is already five feet tall, I really hope she plays a sport. It was unexpected but it came at just the time, I was so happy to see her. It was near the end and we had starting cleaning up while a few stragglers still danced, I ran around showing all that knew of the struggle.

Everyone was happy for me, and today, October 3rd is her birthday. I can't believe that I have a five year old, the world keeps on moving regardless of the circumstances in life. I got to talk to her today and she was so ecstatic, just like she has been the last few times she heard my voice. It warms my heart, moves me to tears to know that the angst I've had about her not loving me anymore weren't worth the worry.

When her mother called back I was at a family brunch at my uncles house, we all sang to her loud and proud. It was beautiful, I hope she loved it as much as we did. She still continuously told me that she loved me but was upset that I couldn't make it to her party. I wanted to, but her mother said that I should come next week instead. Hopefully she doesn't renege but it doesn't seem likely since she talked to my parents and letting them come see her tomorrow after school.

One thing my dad told me to be grateful for, is that Amelia's mom kept us alive in my daughter's mind. This is something to celebrate, at first, I didn't want to. I didn't want to give her credit, the pain has been too much these last five years but I'm realizing it's going to be apart of my forgiveness process. Thankfully, I know that God's got me, it's definitely not the easiest thing but it will be worth it.

I started writing and releasing podcast every other week to make room for my short story series and my novel. It seems like it's not working, I still feel busy as usual and can't find the time to settle down and focus on what I need to. It's as if I'm being pulled in various directions more that I chose to take a step back. It's crazy how life works that way, I wonder what I have to do different to stay on top of my game.

It feels as if I'm failing, I hate this sentiment. I want to be better, do better, and finish the scripts that I have swirling around in my head. My uncle is finishing his second book and I hear and see other people doing more than I am, I can't help[ but feeling that I'm falling behind. I'm also not sure who I think I'm racing against, I really just have to focus on myself. I think working on forgiveness will help me keep my mind centered, or getting Amelia back for a fair amount of time will help as well. I just love my daughters.

Amelia and Amara, daddy loves you.



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