Dream and Hustle

Recalling the Most Powerful, Profound Article I Written on This Blog

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Years ago, I wrote a series of articles for Black Women's History Month on this blog. I wrote one article that, to this day, people approach me for years and tell me that article changed their life. In addition, when I wrote an offshoot of that article on another platform, I hit critical mass. But most importantly, that article meant a lot to me.

The article was about taking control of your story. It was based on the Mako song “Our Story” that I heard him perform at a music festival.

I lived my whole life with people around me trying to judge, define, limit, and interfere with my inner identity, my purpose, my pursuit, and my passion to drive to something better for myself. Family, friends, people trying to hang around me, people who don’t hang around me but see me doing what I’m doing.

That is when I made the life-changing decision that I’m going to take ownership of and protect the most important thing I realized that mattered to me—my story.

After that moment, anybody who even interfered or tried to interject with my story that I’m living and pursuing was dealt with. No one was safe because I realized my story is what connects me to God, this one life, and whatever I’m looking for as my purpose—my story is everything that was, that is, and what will be.

I wrote this personal self-discovery for the sistas during Black Women's Month because I came to realize that sistas do not get to express her story in our culture. Black women are stereotyped into negative roles or must meet the standards of what men wanted her to be. This happens in misogynistic Black media and the Black church. Most ignored is the path she took to get here, what she can contribute, and any level of depth.

The best experience with a woman I had in my life is those moments when she is out living her truth in places around this world. For example, the coffee shop in Ginza, Tokyo where a sista walked in and I thought I was the only Black person that was there programming alongside Japanese studying or working on their laptops. Meeting sistas who are ashamed to share their business plans to anybody but I watch her quietly buy the shop, order the inventory and open the doors for business.

When I dated a Japanese woman for 5 years (we still together), people don’t realize the depth it takes for a Black man to date an Asian woman, especially one that is actually in Asia. I had to learn Japanese and I did so we can understand each other. Once I understood her Japanese, her voice became beautiful with meaning. She showed me Japanese culture on how to date her properly and I understood what she liked and didn’t like. She became more than a “Japanese chick” – she became a woman of depth and meaning and a major chapter of my life.

There is another woman in my life who is significant as well here in America. I spent my life with her off and on angry at how she was treating me versus other guys not even at my caliber or capable of treating her like I can. What changed everything is the result of dating that Japanese woman – I started to accept her story. That is when I began to start to listen, observe, and accept her life story, her decisions, her path and most important, respect that is the story she has to live with and not mine to judge.

I’m not going to observe Black Women History Month trying to highlight one or two special sistas for you ladies to admire – I’m going to talk directly to you. The best way to honor this month is to take ownership of your story.

Embrace your past as your lived experience. Celebrate today and the journey you plan for the day and accept the result at the end of the day. Find your purpose and start writing new chapters. Be your story and own it as the most important thing to protect, nurture, and cherish. 


Ed Dunn

From Chicago West Side to Worldwide