All posts by noirdelacreme

black femme mom trying to discover my identity while navigate the complexities of parenting •aspiring poet/historian of local LGBTQ+ stories• she/her/they

The Healing Powers of Bondage and Rope Play

Did you know that masturbation and femme self pleasure does not have to be penetrative?! As obvious as it is I recently came to this realization. Partnered or alone, penerative sex has long been my norm- that is until I challenged my pleasure practice to intergrate new sensations. I used to limit my pleasure to one area of my body, which was limiting myself from feeling the depth of pleasure when I engage my Full body. Now I can bring myself to orgasm without penetration in its place the power of sensation of touch and noticing of my body. I’ve learned how to do this through Bondage and rope play.

At the intersection of my Healing and Pleasure journey exist Bondage. I am in the month nine of practicing this sensual art form. I became interested in BDSM culture by follow Asha, Black Dom on instagram. Her practice is centered on using BDSM as a tool for Healing Trauma while also engaging the body in pleasure primarily on Black Femme bodies. After following her for some months, I paid for a phone consultation that changed my life for the better. Through our conversation we discussed many things – who I am, my interests in kink, and my health both physical and mental. From that information she gathered, she assessed what type of play would be best for me. I was fortunate that my kinky interest for BDSM play aligned with what she believed would fit my personal needs: Rope play and bondage!

Rope play and bondage is soothing for folk that experience anxiety and depression because when tied properly it simulates the same comfort as a newborn being swaddled. Asha explained to me that us humans never grow out of that need of being held to help ourselves calm down and rope play brings about those comforts. She then explained to me steps to follow as I began my journey into Rope play and bondage . First step was learning the Ropes, Literally.

Asha suggested the best rope length to begin with and for me to learn them intimately.First, I had to get used to tying them around my limbs and body (with surgical scissors always handy!) before allowing myself to be anyone’s lil rope bunny. As I tie the ropes she invited me to breathe. I make it a practice to notice my breath with each movement my hands make with the ropes in them. I let my mind focus on what I am doing- how tight or loose I am tying them and any adjustments I need to make, in real time.

Although her suggestion was for me to practice my ropes alone without partnered play for the first three month of play , I am now at nine months of solo play. In this time I have found ropes to be a useful tool for when I feel a range of emotions from anxious, overwhelmed, sad, and sexy. I play music for myself, burn incense and begin my personal session: I mediate in my ropes. I take sexy selfies and videos when the mood strikes me. I feel and touch all over myself and ropes everytime ensuring it is always enjoyable. In those moments I feel deeply powerful to know that I can grant myself both peace and pleasure with my Ropes and my own two hands.

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2019’s Top 10 Femme Rap/ Hip Hop Artists You Need to be Listening to

As many of our’s Hot Girl Summer come to a close, I felt it would be best to recap the music we have been blasting this past season! Here is a countdown of the some of the best femmes that dropped songs within the year. If you missed out on the festivities this summer, don’t even worry – I included dope femmes that give us music for all four seasons !

Pap Chanel

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Rapper Pap Chanel, Instagram

This young lyricist brings the punches on her tracks . On her latest EP released across platforms she unleashes the whiplash crazed tongue of hers in songs like freestyle and more- Listen here!

Sampa the great

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Sampa The Great, Instagram

Feel the gap of the vast Black Diaspora close listening to this rapper. Sampa infuses sounds of her home in Zambia , Africa Traditional Religion , speaking power of matriarchy with a flow that is a modern twist if Erykah Badu was a spokenwordsmith. Listen as she invites listeners to breathe, to dance, and to move into Action.

Desiree Kee

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Desiree Kee, Instagram

she is a personal fave ! this Buffalo Based Rapper lyrics encompasses her journey through mental health , love and navigating life as a Black femme in a male dominated society. Her content isn’t the only thing of value- her artistic take with beats and visuals are an additional treat. Stream her music here!

Creatrx

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Creatrx, Instagram

self- described as “high priestess of sounds. who create ratchet spiritual, channeling ancestors, fall into some higher spiritual dimensions.” Listen here! !

Megan Thee Stallion

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Megan Thee Stallion , Instagram

Creator of thee Hot Girl Summer Playlist does not shy away from stating her worth is not for negotiation. and that her goals are for her to obtain. She does this all while giving us bops to twerk until our knees give out – give her latest album a Listen here!

Tierra Whack

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Tierra Whack, Instagram

Think Weird kid mixed with mad scientist typa vibe and you get one Whacky World. Tierra’s mastery of lyrics over dizzing beats will have your ears begging for more! Listen to her latest single!

Saweetie

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Saweetie, Instagram

Saweetie channels unapologetic Black Girl vibes as she plays with fun lyrics about what she likes and how she is seen. Give her a Listen!

Oshun

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Oshun, Instagram

This magical duo of conscious rappers focuses on their spiritual path intersecting with the current movement for Black Liberation. Become filled with nostalgia as they mix vibes reminiscent of Lauryn Hill and Erykah Badu with their own unique sound. Listen to their beautiful journey here!

Doja Cat

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Doja Cat, Instagram

Doja playfully dabbles with different beats and her flow giving us new flavors of music to move to. Listen to her latest music here!

Rapsody

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Rapsody, Instagram

I had to give a honourable mention to OG femme rapper Rapsody who released this ode to Black Women.  It would be a great injustice to us if I bypassed her latest star studded album, Eve. Listen to her as she uplifts the memories of famous Black Women with songs like Sojourner and more !

What Mary’s Hands Made

Kelila came to my room for the uptheeth time that night, extra fussy. It was 11:30 pm. I walked her back to her room when I noticed what was on her bed. I looked over at Zaire’s long sleeping body and smiled. Before Zaire drifted off to sleep, he extended the best comfort he knew he could to his baby sister. I felt the warmth of pride from that. I held Kelila’s hand as she climbed back into bed. 

“Do you know who made this?” I asked her.

She shook her head to each side rattling barretts against her pillow case. 

“Grandma Mary ..”  I lay next to her and pull Zaire’s quilt up over us. 

“Grandma Mary is papa’s mom. She’s my g’ma . wanna hear a story about her ?”
Kelila shook her up and down as she cuddled more into me, pulling my arms around her body .

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I told her stories about the Alchemy of Grandma Mary’s hands. How she carried in her muscle memory cultivating the ground to bring forth life from South Carolina  into the backyard of a new northern city. She passed on gardening to her children and grandchildren like me. Grandma Mary raised all seven of her children with those hands and generations followed up after that.

 

. When the majority of us Grand children had children of our own , we gathered at Grandma Mary’s house for a special ceremony .Each family  contributed food that we cooked for this gathering. We stuffed ourselves of dinner and dessert then gathered into the living room.We crowded into the room until our  bodies overflowed onto the stairs and into the dinning room to see the Grand unveiling. Grandma Mary sat in her arm chair placed in front of the television facing everyone with cloth bags stacked beside her. She had been working on quilts for all her Great – Grandchildren and this was the day she gifted those creations to them. She called each Great Grand Child – from oldest to youngest by name up to come sit on her lap. She unfolded each quilt and placed it around their bodies then held it up for everyone to see. Each of us parent snapped photos to capture this special moment. For every child and grandchild that came after she made quilts and afghans for us . All of us in our homes still had our first quilts . We knew that regardless of our beliefs these blankets had powers. The cloth was held in her palms as she wove her love in  with each stitch and thought of us personally. 

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Zaire and I with our Quilts 

 “When you pull this quilt over you, you are covered by Grandma Mary’s protective energy . No harm can find you, nothing scary can come get you. Because what Grandma Mary’s hands makes grows and lives free, as long as it is under her protection, and within reach of her energy.” I told Kelila. I kissed her cheek good night as she relaxed and  drifted off into a sound sleep. 

 

Meet Van Life Voyageurs Jennelle Eliana and Alfredo !

Last month I stumbled across the cutest duo:  Jennelle Eliana, an adventurous Woman of Color and her pet snake Alfredo, a spunky black eyed leucistic python. On her nineteenth birthday Jennelle made the decision to pursue van life to avoid the high rental cost in California and live a tiny life style that she had long been envisioning. On her YouTube channel where over 2 million subscribers tune in to watch her videos that last no longer than 20 minutes each Jannelle captures her daily journeys to a dope soundtrack.

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Jennelle and Alfredo on their Birthday

I first came across Jennelle through a Black Girls Who Love Anime Facebook group. When I saw her decked out van equipped with a living space layout, I was intrigued enough to check out her youtube. I quickly became obsessed after watching her first two videos and am now devoted watcher and subscriber.

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Jennelle in her cozy van home

What I love most about Jennelle is her bubbly personality. I enjoy how she opens and closes each video  in her own unique way and the incorporates humor into the climatic moments she encounters. I admire Jennelle’s willingness to be vulnerable and open with us her audience about her past struggles and current triumphs- she doesn’t shy away from being emotional . I was also drawn in by her humility as a young person who is trying to navigate life as an adult with all of it complexities and wonders and opportunities it presents. I find her and her channel an inspiring snapshot of what life has evolved  into for us a People of Color and as Womxn: Exciting and scary. The fact that Jennelle is honest about the time she felt unsafe as a woman traveler and the means she takes to protect herself is a testimony of how Women and Femmes of Color must navigate our lives in this world.

Whenever I need a quick mid-day or night pick me up I turn to Jennelle and Alfredo so, if you haven’t caught on to watching – I invite you to do so Now! Signing off in the words of Jennelle “Toddles!”

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How I Learned to Take Ownership of My Mental Health

This piece will contain explict content about living with mental illness and self harm. This is my warning, to you as a reader, that this content may be triggering.

I have a testimony I want to share with y’all about depression and suicidality.

The week of my 26th birthday, I made the difficult desison to receive a mental health check up that resulted in a 10-day in-patient hospital stay to treat my mental state. It was at this time I was diagnosed with Major Depression Disorder and Suicidality.  Suicidality is a condition that when triggered results in a person having obessive complusive thoughts of self harm and suicide. These are conditions I have lived with for all of my adult life that have gone untreated by medical professionals due to my own fear.

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To understand my fear of medicine and medical facilitates, we have to time travel back to my youth. When I was sixteen healing for the first time from sexual trauma, I made two attempts on my life that resulted in me being heavily medicated for a time on antidepressants. Now, at sixteen my brain was not fully developed. The medication I was being prescribed intended purpose was to stablize my moods, and treat my suicidality. Yet the side effects made me feel numb and like a shell of a person. This experience with medication was traumatizing to me. I developed a fear in my adult life of receiving medical attention for the depression and suicidality. For a long time I self medicated with smoking weed and eating edibles to mellow out my intense mood swings and quiet the thoughts of self harm when they got too loud.

I spent my birthday alone in bed sick with a viral infection trying to get to soothe myself with a blunt when I realized that living in this way did not feel useful or helpful anymore. I am grateful for the relief weed gave me intermediately and for the awareness that I was in need of something more. Getting admitted to the hospital felt scary and embarrassing. I admitted to my mother that I felt weak and incompetent. She, like all great mothers, reminded me there is No Shame in receiving mental health help- in fact it required a considerable amount of strength. She was right. It will be one week since my release and going on three weeks since I have been on mediciation treating my mental state.

Within the first twenty four hours I felt the first wave of mental clarity – it was Ah- Mazing ! The relief of being on antidepressant and antipsychotic does come with a cost. Due to my weight and biological make up I have felt all the the side effects at one time or another intensely. After completing simple task like cooking a meal, washing dishes, or bathing my children I feel completely wiped out physically. I get dizzy and this interferes with daily life as well.

In the span of the past few weeks my life has shifted. I learned the importance of priortizing my own care. Being hospitalized I was forced to sit my busy ass down and face the darkness within myself. I have been trying to distract myself with organizing, performing and other community based activities than face the reality that I am lonely.  And that loneliness is a direct result of when I self isolate when sad. I have for a long while found comfort in retreating inward, and for a time that was what was safest to do. At this current moment in my life I have had to sit with how not being expansive, and projecting my fears is actually limiting myself.  I am leaning into challenging myself to expand my comfort zone by sharing my story with y’all.

Healing is messy work. It requires that we be present while doing it. There is no right or wrong way- but there is trial and error to see what is best useful for you. Let my testimony inspire you to take charge of your mental health wellness. I invite you to stop for a moment and Breathe with me. Give yourself a gentle loving touch and say this with me :

(while you breathe in) I am Grateful for the Gift that is this Day .

(while you breathe out) I release all my shame to be transformed into compassion. 

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Remembering Jose

On this day one year ago Jose Hernandez-Rossy was murdered by police officer Tedesco. Jose in death was crucified by media outlets whose platform feed the city lies about who he was and the actions leading to his untimely death. Jose was driving home enjoying the final break in our temper mental Buffalo seasons when he was stopped by the police. The traffic stopped turned violent when one officer reached into Jose’s car causing him to hit a street pole. Jose attempted to leave the scene by getting out of his car to run when he was shot and killed by officer Tedesco. That day and the ones that followed the media reported that he shot a police officer (which was false), that he had a criminal record, that he was smoking weed. The local media’s stance to discredit Jose, the victim of a heinous crime, that by 2017 had played out once in this city before in the case of Meech and dozens of time across this country was an eerie reminder of how American society treats the death of men of color as criminals first before human.

I saw him as human. I saw him in the face of his daughter who still didn’t understand why her father was not returning home as he always did. I saw him as a family man in videos that his cousins’ shared on their social media as they mourned their loss of him. I hear his humanity and his loving kindness in the stories from his brother- in- law of how he helped support him and his sister’s family. I see the strength of him live on in his sister and mother as they fight through a crooked judicial system with lawyers that have other agendas yet they still hold true to their convictions for justice. I have had my heart and soul break open with his family at the place of his death, as we held direct actions and in frustrating meetings.

One particular moment that stays burned in my mind and body’s memory was the day of his memorial at the site of where he was killed. I felt my body shake with sadness, anger, and grief and overwhelmed with hurt when I looked down to see my son crying beside me. Zaire cried because he too felt the overwhelming emotion of when the immediate family came to the pole on the corner of the street where Jose’s car initially crashed and the ground felt radiant of Jose’ blood that was still visible on parts of the street. There was a sad chaos in the street when his mother cried terribly before her body gave way and the male family members had to hold on to her. When the fire department and ambulance pulled up and Zaire began to cry more I decided that it was time for us to go. He asked me why he died and who killed him in the car ride home, I told him because of the color of his skin and by officers that said they were scared of him. My voice trembled as I said this as I felt guilt for exposing this harsh reality to my children. I let it hurt just enough before remembering that taking him and Kelila to Jose’s memorial did not make me a bad parent opening my children up to trauma. I am a parent that is exposing my children to what is happening in our community so that we may heal together and build better sustainable communities for our future.

Now today a year later we will come together once again to remember the life of Jose. We still hold the rage from the not guilty verdict from the Attorney General case in our bones as we reclaim this memorial site. Our emotions are raw on this day and we honor the unspoken power of them that has fueled us this far in our collective journey. My heart is still full despite the pain and I am sending out love in these words, in prayer, and in healing vibes to the survivors of state sanctioned violence.

An Ode to Black Womxn & Reclaiming of our Sexuality

I have been blessed to be able to document and share with y’all my journey of finding and intetgating Pleasure in my life – Especially as we are living in a moment in time where black womxn are defining our own expression of sexuality and dictation of autonomy. For me, Reclaiming my erotic sensual self has been essential in my pursuit for liberation. I understand now, more than ever, that many of my life’s experiences with sex, sexuality and gender are directly linked to the oppression I, as a black womxn feel- and know that this isn’t limited to just Me.

Combahee River Collective 1977, Instagram: @sanyuestelle

For the generations before me, categories for black womxn sex workers and queer folx were crafted in such a way that they carried the brunt of our people’s trauma and abuse. Abuse from white people who hated them because of the color of their skin. Abuse from the black community who hated them because of their queerness and the hatred of both groups for them being women.

Since before my conception, my genders’ expression of sexuality had long been demonized in such a way that when I began to explore those parts of myself in adolence, I became apart of a bastardized group of people in my society: Ones degraded with names such as “fast“, “slut“, “whore“, “hoe“, and “thot“. Ones who can quickly and quietly be disposed of when sex becomes more than an “immorality”, to out right violence (from those who hold measurable power due to white superimist patriarchy) on our bodies.

It’s important to know that when society mastered how to reduce myself and my black femme/ womxn to sexual objects with no agency is when all unjust power dynamics were born. And while learning how to live between the thrawls of being fuckable or not, there is never in a black girl’s childhood, adolence, or budding womxnhood told that sex can be pleasurable for us. That sex can be healing for us. That sex can be integrated in our magic.

Due to that ignorance, some sister womxn go considerable lengths to distance themselves from eroticism, to avoid being outcasted with the other sexual deviants. That fear of embracing one’s sexuality and gender influences them to deaden parts of their bodies and kill off the sacred parts of their souls, in hope that, in this dilapidated state they will attract love and protection from Men. Men who, ironically in the covers of darkness, secretly seek out the womxn called “whore”, the man called “queer” , and the person who’s gender can’t be named in binary terms.

It’s these sister womxn (who have been nicknamed “pickme’s”) when finds out of these other love affairs, becomes aware that deadening herself did not bring what patriarchy promised her- she did not get the abundance of joy, wealth and family or a great man, but a poorly orchestrated facade in addition to her lived experiences from state sanction oppression.

Misogynoir defined, instagram: @iheartericka

Here’s where the cycle of oppression perpetuates itself: Pick me’s, these sisters that find themselves trapped by the lies of patartichy while also feeling into the loss of her erotic self – becomes bitter towards those who haven’t, and blames her sisterfolk for daring to live outside of the great Lie. This is dangerous, because when womxn despise or hate other womxn for exploring their erotic sensual selves, it opens the way for apathy. They become apathetic toward the ostracized girl and womxn who becomes pregnant in need of assistance when the man has gone absent. Apathetic to the survivors of sexual assault and abuse to the point of implying that the punishment to sexual exploration is to be met with Rape and assault. In their apathy they become complicit agents to the same forces that oppress and harm them.

When you support known abusers, when you stay silent when you know abuse is happening, or go as far as finding fault in the survivor’s of Abuse- you are a part of the problem.

I know after generations of being sexual objectified and oppressed by society through a form of osmosis we pass down from one generation to the next how to navigate and adapt to a world that denies us survival and autonomy. In the process of this we internalize a form of self hate so deep that can only be healed with tender love and acceptance. And in this healing, that erotic sensual self that was believed to be dead, is given the opportunity to live within her again.

Be Sex Positive, Instagram: @recipsforselflove

Being a womxn or femme doesn’t mean we all must have the same relationship to sex, sexuality or gender in order to gain our collective liberation. In fact all of these exist not in binary terms, but on a spectrum that grants us freedom to live comfortably wherever we fall in relation to each other.We do however, have to have the same understanding and acceptance to join ourselves in the united efforts to dismantle systems that are in place to oppress us. So that when the dust settles, we may be able to determine our own systems of power and justice for the protection of generations of young black girls and womxn to take and follow when we are long gone.