• The Voice of GLee

Sisters. Storms. & Conversations

The sky broke.

Raindrops smacked our skin with the sting of a thousand ice pellets. A river of water rushed the Avenue; together, we splashed through it. It’s springtime. It’s pouring outside.

We didn’t even care.

Elated and tired from my first experience as a customer service consultant at Busboys and Poets, I felt accomplished. Then I faced the uncomfortable reality of stepping into a storm to get home. I felt apprehensive. But my frienemy (at the time) Nar’Dya, snatched my hand as we exited the restaurant, and rushed me up the street, through the driving rain to make sure that I got on my bus safely.

*flashback with me for a minute*

A few hours before during my customer service class, I had a project review with my teacher, Ms. Lee. We were deep into discussion of how to observe restaurant service and *BOOM* in walks Daya. She barged into our space like a happy wet cat! (It was raining earlier in the day, too).

Daya was sooooooo excited to see us, hear our plan and was ready to join in the experience. Hold up, though -- understand this: Nar’Dya had to do the same project BUUUUTTTT she was on another team! Why was she here, in my space, talking about my project with all of her excitement? At the moment, I was slightly annoyed with a competing group member infringing on my project but I didn’t fight against her eagerness to join. In the end, I’m glad that I didn’t.

*let’s go back to Busboys*

On that otherwise dreary springtime afternoon, I spent my time not only enjoying the feel-good finest of Shallal’s newest eatery, but also observing the liveliness of the girl I almost hated. Kinda funny. I had my first taste of super cheesy fusilli while seeing a new side of my super silly sister.

While we were eating and observing, talking and vibing with each other and Busboys’ staff, I noticed the back of the shirt of our young waitress and the other employees:

Tribe /trīb/ - a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect.

Our server explained the culture of the restaurant I was observing for my school project is rooted in a belief that we are of a shared Tribe, even if we haven’t met yet. That made me think: who is in MY tribe? What friends do I have? Who do I reeeaaally share a bond with?

As we left the restaurant, I felt a much deeper connection with Daya than when she plopped down at the table and into the conversation with my teacher and me. Nar’Dya is sweet. She’s funny. She’s VERY similar to me. We like and hate many of the same things. She’s protective. Thinks big. And, has a bigger heart. She’s now my absolute best friend and we continue to splash through life together. I wouldn’t trade her for the world.

Who knows what could have happened if she didn’t leave Busboys with me. Or, if we separated and ran through that storm on our own.

The twists of our relationship with her made me realize that, in the end, women -- specifically Black women -- should spend more time vibing, talking and working TOGETHER, looking out for each other, and holding each other’s hand through life’s storms.

This is why I am elated to work with Courtney Wright at Blissfully You Wellness, producer of a virtual wellness event for women of color called #IncludeHER.

#IncludeHER is a four day event that was created in response to “incidences throughout history where women of color have not been included in the conversation.” #IncludeHER will run from July 28th - 31st with each day open topics of conversation that we feel are needed in our “Tribe:”

  • Mental Health

  • Healthy Relationships

  • Skincare Nutrition

  • Reproductive Health

  • Personal Branding

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Self-Love (Writing Workshop and Sound Bath)

#IncludeHER is open for women 14 years old and over, as each day includes facilitated intergenerational conversations for ALL women of color.

#IncludeHER includes you. The way I included Daya. And the way she included me.

Click here to register. Join the conversation.

- R. Campbell

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