We all have unique stories that lead us. I speak to organizations, large and small, sharing unique perspectives and my story of hope, healing, and triumph. Need an engaging, thought-provoking, and transformative speaker? Ping me.
- Top Story - September 2023
The Pastor Needs a PlateTop Story - September 2023
IT WAS THE FIRST FULL DAY of our annual, family, summer vacation on Hilton Head Island – a 69-square mile piece of land that sits in the low-country region of South Carolina. After a long drive from Washington, D.C., the day before, I was looking forward to a recuperative, lazy Sunday morning of sleeping in and lounging poolside, luxuriating in nothingness, not even pretending to read a book. That was my plan.
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
It was March 23, 2023, at 2 pm and I had just finished a midday presentation to a Zoom filled with respected doctors, scientists, researchers, and other stakeholders from the National Institute on Drug Abuse at the National Institutes of Health, one of the world’s foremost research centers. And judging from the feedback, comments, and questions, my talk was a success. How did I, a 65-year Black woman from the small-town south, land in such an esteemed space? A few months ago, I met Dr. Lorenzo Leggio – a Senior Investigator (Clinical) in the NIH Intramural Research Program (IRP) with faculty appointments both at NIDA and NIAAA, and Chief of the Clinical Psychoneuroendocrinology and Neuropsychopharmacology Section, a joint NIDA and NIAAA laboratory – at a health fair. He was intrigued by my new memoir, Leaving Large – The Stories of a Food Addict, interested in my unique perspectives about processed food addiction, and invited me to share my story and insight during Grands Rounds. That’s the obvious conclusion, the simple answer. But the truth is, it’s a bit more circuitous and complex than you might think.
Loving Your Self
Self-love. Three years ago, if anyone asked me, “Do you love yourself?”, I would have answered most certainly, “yes, of course, I love myself!” While thinking, “I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at the absurdity of this question. Why is this even a question? How could anyone possibly not love themselves? Really?”
- Runner-Up in Summer Camp Challenge
Usually when you see images of the first Black children to integrate America’s public schools in the 1950s and 60s, they show the Black kids being escorted by Federal Agents or U.S. soldiers to all-White schools as angry White mobs protest their presence.
Not long before my first day of kindergarten, my grandmother took my measurements. She measured me around my little chest and around my little waist and my little hips. She measured the length from my shoulder to my knees and from shoulder to shoulder.