After the experience
I’m flip-flopping this week. Most of the Chicks are writing about their experiences on Iyanla, but for some reason I decided to write about being a cool girl. If you’ve stumbled across my blog today, this is what I owe you . . .
If you follow us, you’ve probably seen the “Fix My Backstabbing” friends episode of “Iyanla Fix My Life” that debuted on the OWN Network on October 6th. If not, and if interested, you can watch enough clips on the website to get a good idea of what you missed.
I have to admit that before the airing I was a tangle of nerves. For several reasons.
First, because I’ve seen people falter in the spotlight. Funny thing, that spotlight. Everyone wants to be the face on which the light shines, but few understand that with the glory comes much scrutiny — which is the piece that gives me anxiety. I am the antithesis of Zondra, who was seemingly born to be there, and shrugs off her criticism with a smile and a shrug. On Fix My Life, all of us had at least a little bit of bad behavior — with the exception of Yanni, probably. While I didn’t love the concept of being made the poster children of mean girls, I remained hopeful that the audience would watch our dysfunctional interactions and like us anyway.
Some did; some didn’t.
Our supporters have been nothing short of amazing, and we are very appreciative of the kind sentiments and well wishes. But I have to admit that I got the biggest kick out of our critics.
I did the thing that you’re not supposed to do when you’ve appeared on TV. I delved into the message boards to see what people were writing. What I learned was that, as mean as we could be? The message board members are far more caustic. There’s a lot of freedom of speech when you’re sitting idly at home, in your PJs, computer in lap, with the ability to espouse your raw opinion.
I loved how our natures could be encapsulated in one (typically poorly constructed and grammatically atrocious) sentence.
For example, I became “The one in orange who thinks she’s better than everyone else and won’t cry.” (That sentence is 2/3 correct. I was indeed wearing orange, and I rarely cry, if ever. It’s just not my tendency. I’m usually too busy analyzing to cry. For the record, I don’t think I’m “better than everyone else,” but there are certain things that I simply refuse to argue about.) I received direct messages from people who felt the need to tell me that I’m emotionless and have “ice in my veins.” (Again, only partially accurate. The BF says that I do have emotion — although it’s usually anger. Also? At least half of my blood is a proprietary blend pinot noir and zinfandel [Red, not white! How dare you?], which has a warming factor and counters the iciness.)
But I digress . . .
All in all, I have to say that the Iyanla experience was a good one. Some of my fellow chicks came away from our show with mantras to live by. While I appreciate the affirmations, my value was in getting to know what makes everyone tick, and learning how to accept my five co-horts for who they are and embrace our individual and collective idiosyncracies.
My second bit of nervousness had to do with timing.
I’ve been working on launching a digital publishing company, Enemy Books, for the better part of a year. Along the way, I decided that Brown Sugar, written by the Six Brown Chicks had to be re-edited and would be the perfect first release on the EB imprint, and could coincide with the air date of Fix My Backstabbing Friends.
Ummm . . . what was I thinking? I don’t think I’ve ever been more of a Murphy’s Law victim. Ever. The fact that I didn’t become addicted to mood-altering drugs is nothing short of amazing. But . . . the book is out as a sneak peek for IPAD USERS ONLY. More formats to be released when the technology decides to cooperate.
In case you missed the last bit of the episode, I will stress that we are still together as a group and moving forward. We’re blogging for the moment, but we’re crossing our fingers that there’s more to come.