I'm officially kicking off our black women's collective + photos series on food wellness and heritage with a bit of my story! As the creator of FoodTalksDC, I get the privilege of hearing so many journeys and I consider it an honor!
On the night of the collective, this bright smile disappeared as I watched my mother helplessly stumble out the door and I quickly ran to catch her fall. She was light-headed and had stomach pains. Two amazing women at the event came to her rescue right before my mom ended up passing out. My heart was pounding and I was crying profusely. Afraid that something was seriously attacking my mother’s body – I was totally shook. So much grace was extended by the women that night and thankfully my mother ended up being just fine.
I share this story because it reminds me of my why and my journey. My mother’s health issues surrounding food years ago (unrelated to this recent episode) was the catalyst behind my interest in food and health. We hail from Alabama and Mississippi, where the tradition of large food gatherings with Big Ma's cakes made from scratch are a norm. However, I began to follow my mother’s footsteps on the trail of health when she decided to change her diet. I began reading books, watching documentaries, and then applying the knowledge. After learning so much – I basically felt DUPED by the food system. Thankfully the soil was my savior and eventually FTDC was born. But then I started to question why agriculture was so white. What’s the craze behind a smoothie? Why is growing food a new urban thing? I returned from Mississippi yesterday and my grandmother reminds me that this isn't new. Planting sweet potatoes in her yard isn't planned - she just does it. When I see my grandmother and my mom, I see me (literally). They are my lineage and I honor my heritage thru this work. FTDC wouldn’t exist without them. I am excited to present a platform created for black and brown people to share our food narratives. Many stories exist within us -there isn’t just one.
I hope you enjoy the stories in this collective. Thank you for being a part of this community that will continue to grow.
Photo credit: @larke.pix