January 12, 2010- What I learned from it

January 12, 2010 – January 12, 2016

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6 years since the devastating earthquake hit Haiti… since thirty five (35) seconds took away so many lives…so many memories…. so sad feelings….. Here is what I learned from the 2010 Earthquake.

1- Material things are important but not as important as we consider them to be.  Think about the people who lost their cars, their homes and everything they possess in THIRTY FIVE (35) seconds. Some of them spent a lifetime acquiring houses, cars, money and more, they even sacrifice their time, their youth in building their material legacy and within thirty five seconds, either they lost all of it or they lost their own life!   I learned to invest more in things that people or situations cannot take away from me: my knowledge, my qualities, my love of life, my relationship with God.  I also invest more in experience and adventure than in tangible acquisitions.  Possessions are SOMETHING but definitely not THE THING.

2- Life is uncertain and unpredictable, only God is a steady rock.  NOTHING & NOBODY could save the victims. No bank account, no marital or social status, no intelligence could spare their lives.  With God, there is a NOW and a TOMORROW.  If you lose the NOW, there is still hope of the TOMORROW. Without Him, the NOW is all you have.  That’s why I strive even more to draw closer to Jehovah, the Source of Life.  If I ever lose my life, I know he will resurrect me.

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3- Don’t be full of yourself and don’t take yourself too seriously.  As humans, we are frail and life is like a mist.  A humble personality is ideal to a better life.

4- There is nothing as important as our TIME! It’s important because we cannot do anything without it and it is short! Therefore, we ought to use it wisely.  Don’t we lose time worrying about the trivial matters and maintaining the toxic and useless relationships.  Prioritize everything and everyone in your life.

5- Humanity has no race, no social ranking, no skin color, no gender.  We are all humans and in the face of adversity, all we are and all we can be is HUMAN.  We should let our humanity unite us all the time- not just through adversity.

As I go on, my thoughts are with those who lost a dear one six years ago. May Jehovah help you continue to endure your loss(es).  Let’s live up to the time there will be no more death.

 

* In memoriam: Mike Soliman, Tara Boursiquot, Dave Phillipeau, Leensay, Ermanita, Jacques,  Michelle Joinville, Bernard Phillipe, Schemaya Mares, and all my Haitian brothers and sisters who lost their lives on 01-12-2010

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How My Hair Changed My Life…

Almost six years ago, I changed my hair out of boredom- I had experimented many haircuts, colors and looks already- I first got the Surf Up cut, the military cut then cut all of it.  At the time, I was not thinking about returning natural. I was having versatility fun…..

As my hair started to grow again, I started to wonder what I would do with it: cut it again? Keep it “kinky” or texturize it to make a change? I have always liked Tanya Saint Val and Orlane’s curly hair then figured out the texturizer was what I needed to get “the look” I applied the creamy crack and started to make research about “curly hair maintenance”, this lead me to books and videos and articles about natural hair (curly, kinky and coily).

What I discovered about natural hair was GOLD to me! I didnt know my hair liked water, I didnt know I could define its texture, keep it beautiful without chemical transformations. I was in awe!!!!!! I had to experience that myself so I re-big chopped in July 2010 and that was it!

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People started to question my choice to remain natural as soon as my hair grew past three inches. From my household to my workplace, people made fun of me: I was named “Tèt tchong tchong” “Anba bra moun fou” “Sentaniz” “Sè Pwotestan” “tèt boude”. Natural hair was neither appropriate, nor dressy, nor professional, nor elegant.  The more the mockeries and sarcasms about my hair, the more I was determined to both keep my hair natural and prove them wrong.

As my natural hair journey went on, I would spend hours reading blogs and watching vlogs. I’d personally contact some authors/hair gurus/ trichologists to ask questions and explanations on controversial hair matters. Meanwhile, I’d post pictures of my haircare, hairstyles and new findings every single day on my social networks. My hair was grateful to me. It grew beautiful, long and shiny and soon, the people who used to make fun of me started  to compliment me and ask me help them do the same!

By December 2011, I had so many people asking for my help on how to go back natural, take care and style their newly natural hair that I was thinking of creating a Facebook page where I could share the information at once for everybody. What would I call the page? How long would I keep it for? Would it really help my friends and relatives?

On January 1st, 2012, I eventually created Afro Alice : 1) Afro from Africa and Alice from Celtic meaning Noble to honor our noble Heritage from Africa 2) I had an Afro and Alice is my alias. The publications were first made in English only to cater to my close environment needs then were changed to Haitian Creole when the public grew larger six months after. There was more coming…..

Throughout all my personal natural hair journey,  I never had downs or doubts or self confidence issues – I was in an adventure and everyday was different and unique. Yet, to help people, I had to understand them better. Their feelings, realities and views were different than mine. I continued to dig even deeper in my research and really connected to my public to better tailor my writing to their needs. My followers were like babies of mine depending on my expertise, example and guidance to make it through this new and fearful journey they were starting. I never knew hair was related to so many aspects of our lives: our health, our finance, our beauty, our culture! Afro Alice was becoming more than a “just for fun” initiative. …..

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I have always been good at styling hair and I have always been good at empowering people. I loved hair and I loved people.  Afro Alice was my opportunity to make a difference in my own humble ways.  Along with the invaluable and continuing help of friends, advisors and supporters, Afro Alice became formally the Premier natural hair center in Haiti but my work was more virtual and I needed to connect more with the people.

In 2015, after two years of styling and caring for people’s hair at my place, I decided to open a salon for people with natural hair to better educate them and assist them.  I also organized gatherings, tours, workshops, forums and groups to empower more people and it worked well.  I organized and participated in exchange programs to foster an environment of sisterhood and collaboration for the community. People from around the globe contact us to express their appreciation and their gratefulness. The natural hair movement has never reached such a momentum before and I am proud of my contribution to that.

Today, four years later, Afro Alice helps and empowers people through the social media, the educational tours and events, the beauty salon and the blog. Looking back, Afro Alice is worth my sleepless nights, my tears of frustration and all I went through to help my people. Some days, I even felt like giving it all up! But, hey! Here I am! Putting my little bricks to build the Castle.

Can you imagine how joy fills my heart when the eyes of a little girl brighten after I boosted her self esteem! Can you imagine how fulfilled I feel when I realize how my words changed another woman’s life!  My heart bumps when I empower my people!

The respect, the appreciation and the love I get from my people, I earned it with my sweat, my tears and my vision of altruism and love. With Afro Alice, I made connections, discovered lands, improved myself and accomplished things I didnt know I could. I still have a long way to go but I am happy with where I am now with Afro Alice.

I wish you could see my tears and smile of accomplishment and fulfillment as I am concluding.

I never thought my own hair would change my life in such an awesome way.

Happy Anniversary to Afro Alice!!!

 

My Story with “Tribute” by Yanni: Homage to Janice ♥

One year ago, I paid tribute to one of the most wonderful women I have met and today, as she celebrates twenty years of success through sweat and tears, hard work and perseverance, I am reblogging that post. #janiceregis

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Tribute is the fifth track on the album with the same name composed by Yanni, a famous greek composer and pianist in 1997.  The album was written to honor the builders of Taj(an Indian Mausoleum), the Forbidden City (a Chinese Imperial palace) and the people of India and China.

But, my story with this amazing piece is different: it pays tribute to one woman who made a big difference in my childhood and teenage.

Whenever I listen to Tribute, it brings me back to mygraduation day and all of the amazing memories I had during my high school years.  Whenever I think about my high school years, I remember  my teachers, myself at that time and my unique school principal: Janice Regis.  That woman saved me from the highest cliff of my life and I am eternally grateful to her for that.  In the very moment I needed an anchor, she…

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Cinq Ans Après le 12 Janvier 2010….

12 Janvier 2010 – 12 Janvier 2015

Cinq années depuis que l’un des tremblements de terre les plus meurtriers qu’Haiti ait connu a frappé ma terre.

Je l’ai vécu !!! J’ai vu tant de choses !!! Tant de sentiments et d’émotions m’ont traversée ! J’ai perdu un membre de ma famille, des amis et des connaissances.

J’aurais pu pleurer, j’aurais pu me révolter contre la situation de mon pays qui n’a pas réellement changé depuis, j’aurais pu me vexer des leçons que tant de gens ont oublié, j’aurais pu m’apitoyer sur mon sort ou le sort de mon peuple.

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J’y ai survécu, je suis saine et sauve, j’ai encore ce précieux cadeau qu’est la vie et je choisis de la célébrer ! Je choisis de célébrer la vie en révisant mes valeurs, en étant le changement que je veux voir, en valorisant vraiment ce qui est important dans la vie, bien plus important que les biens, les apparences : les relations avec Jéhovah, les relations avec les autres, une bouffée d’air qui libère, des animaux qui jouent ensemble, le rire des enfants, un verre d’eau rafraichissant, un sourire, un compliment sincère, une parole dite en temps approprié, le sentiment d’être et d’accomplir, une accolade! C’est ça, la vie ! Et ça n’a pas de prix !

Je garde dans mes pensées et dans mes prières des amis que ce jour ne cessera jamais d’affliger parce qu’ils ont perdu trop d’étoiles dans leur ciel.  Bon courage, mes amours ! Que Jéhovah continue de vous donner la puissance qui dépasse la normale pour supporter votre joug jusqu’à ce que son royaume vienne ! Je suis impatiente  de vous revoir sourire le jour où vous crierez victoire contre la mort et vos chers disparus seront avec vous de nouveau.

Cette date me rappellera toujours que la vie n’est qu’une vapeur et qu’il est nécessaire de VIVRE et de VIVRE SAGEMENT.

My Philosophy At This Point

As I do it every year since the past years: 23TH Spring, 24TH Spring25TH Spring26TH Spring,  I blog at each new spring.  As I was very busy during the past days, I missed it four days ago.  But, as they say, later is better than never.

How do I start? …  I have been thinking about what my post would be this year since the first day of November, yet, here am I, sitting in front of my screen, hesitant and lost in my thoughts…..

Three minutes later….

Lessons from the past year – I have learned a lot about human nature and people management.

Life with people is beautiful and wouldn’t be as interesting as it is without them but caution and diplomacy should be used when dealing with them.   I am almost giving up my Spontaneous Self to be more the Cautious and Observing Me.  I have learned to decipher wolves hidden behind a sheep mask and I have learned to let go of toxic habits.  I have learned to shut up although I am right, I have learned to apologize although I am right….. I fought for my beliefs and welcomed ennemies I gained because of my principles, my standards, my vision and my dream.  The past year was about my Human Awareness & Management in Life classs.  I struggled but passed the class!

I have also learned about leaving my comfort zone, challenging my fears and working towards my dreams.  It takes guts, resilience and boldness to live your dream.  I now understand why almost everybody has a dream but very few people live their dreams and I am happy, satisfied and proud of myself because I am daring! I am living! I have a vision, I have a dream and everyday of my life, I am working to fulfill it 🙂 Getting married and launching a business were two of my biggest fears but I overcame them both: Here am I happily married since three months and expanding my natural hair center :).

My third lesson is about freedom.  Everybody is RELATIVELY free.  I have longly read about freedom and how free some people are and how freedom is a necessity. I have observed that people are only partially/relatively/questionably free.  No matter how much people claim they are free, they are still enslaved to something, even a little thing: slaves of a habit, slaves of a situation, slaves of their beliefs, slaves of their mind, slaves of society, slaves of Facebook, LOL.  Freedom is relative and once I have realized that, I have chosen what I would be free of and what I would be enslaved to.  Happier and easier life!

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New Spring, New Philosophy– At this point in my life, I have realized how a lot of things are vain and I can concur with King Solomon as stated in Ecclesiastes 1: 2 “The greatest futility! Everything is futile!”.  That’s why I have decided to concentrate on the most vital things and based on my current situation, my health and my peace are the most important things to me

Health: Mental health. Spiritual Health.  Body Health.  IAmness Health.  Less 12-16 hours working in a block, less sleepless nights, less Facebook, less stress, less platonic and toxic friendship, less Ragaman (taurine and gingseng drink made in Haiti) drinking, less emotional eating, less shopping therapy.  More quality time with true friends and family, more reading and writing, more self care, more praying, more rest, more self-building initiative.  I have decided to stop doing weight loss journeys- more about the appearance than the real deal- from now on, I am on a health reclaiming journey.

Peace: Peace with myself, peace with others.

Reviewing and challenging my feelings, my beliefs, myself to build a stronger Me with grounds and anchor.

I have noticed how people like others to nurture their delusion instead of telling them what the reality is and I am NOT getting there! In trying to always be transparent and truthful, I have hurt myself several times and I am determined to be, stay and remain outspoken but ONLY with selected people.

I am grateful for each new day as it is an opportunity for me to do better.  Just like a butterfly or some wine, with age, I shall become better until I reach the best version of myself.

To My Envious, Duncy and Hating Cicadas

Dear Lax Cicadas:

When you were having fun, sleeping, joking and enjoying life effortlessly and restlessly, I was busy working hard, studying, striving, working toward my goals and chasing my dream. When you are chasing dollars of mediocrity to SAVE A LIVING, I am using my passion, my talent and my knowledge to LIVE.

Don’t put the blame of your meagerness on my accomplishments and laboriousness. Stop blaming my sharpness and my uprightness. Wherever you see greener grass, bear in mind the water bill is higher. My success doesn’t come in overnight shipments. I sweat and strive!!!

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When was the last time you read a book?  Or, when was the last time you invest some quality time in becoming a quality person?  When was the last time you removed your mask?  When was the last time you got busy getting and pursuing a dream?!

Use your energy to develop yourself instead of trying to break someone you wish you could be. Spare me your toxic presence and words.  Bury your cowardness and dare be YOU. Challenge the darkness lying in you.  Your bitter venom is not going to stop me from being ME.  Stop letting your tongue blur your brain.

While you are hating, I am going forward….

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Yours truly,
Resilient & Ingenious Ant.

Stil Pou Mwa Septanm – Kwochè ak Alonj Freetress Water Wave

Afro Alice

Gen yon mwa de sa, mwen te anvi mete alonj kwochè sou fom yon koup pou m te pase anvi mwen genyen pou m koupe pwop cheve m nan, mwen te al fe mete l pou mwen men mwen pat renmen cheve yo te itilize a e mwen te retire l.  Yon zanmi m nan travay mwen te vin pote de pakè Freetress Water Wave ki mezire 22″ pou mwen nan koulè 1B apre ke m te di l mwen renmen jan l te penyen avel la.

 Sa te pran  twazèdtan pou tèt mwen fin penyen men m te leve plizye fwa al fè lot bagay.  Tet mwen te pran de pakè cheve a totalman e pou m te ka plis vèsatil ak cheve a, sa vle di gen posibilite pou m fe chou avel si m vle oswa lot penyen, mwen te kite pati kouwon cheve m ni devan, ni…

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