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CHAPTER 4 -In my skin (The Fork in the Road)

Updated: Oct 14, 2022

I remember asking myself one day in my mid-thirties after reminiscing about the choices that I made as a child. After being abused at such an early age I realized I was still a good person. Was it by choice or was my heart designed to do what was right by the creator? Being aware that only the creator could judge me; was the actual reason my heart was asking this question. I grew up to be a beautiful woman and as it turns out I wondered why life was so hard for me. Why don't I like fire? Why do I stay so safe? Some people believe that making the right choices will deliver wonderful things. Some are anxious about how others will view them. But what about what is rightfully yours and what your reaction will be once the gift is given to you? No matter how pure the heart is, the question is what will the consequences be once you receive the gift? Will you change for the better or will the gift change you into more of what you already are? As a child, I do remember one specific day as I was walking home, l must have been about 12 or 13 years old. I remember trying to muster up the energy to walk back into the home of my adopted parents. I leaned on a tree across the street from the home where I grew up. I stood there for about 40 minutes, staring angrily. I thought about the abuse that my brothers, sister, and I faced. The only person that genuinely loved me was my great-grandmother who was getting older, and my great-aunt who was diagnosed with breast cancer. At that time while helping to raise my little brother I knew that my childhood was inconsistent with love. Before I walked across the street, I stopped myself to decide if I was going to be filled with light or darkness. What would I choose to feed my body, soul, and mind with? I had to decide at once. You see I had already seen great levels of darkness as early as three years old. I was very aware that I was a powerful being after escaping pedophiles, narcissists, and psychopaths. I became a fearless child.

I remember the conversation I had with myself,

“Okay Ebony! Yes, you have a clear understanding that you can choose to be dark but if I choose to be dark, I will be one of the evilest women in this world.”

Then I remember thinking all of us in this world are broken but we have a choice. I said, to my heart,

“I choose to be beautiful and to forgive.”

“Everything will be okay.”

Then my heart settled peacefully, and I made my way across the street. I knew I made a choice for the rest of my life to always allow my light to shine no matter what. I managed the emotional abuse for three more years to make sure my little brother was strong enough to defend himself. In the future book of my life story. I will tell the world about being locked in basements and how I survived for the world to see me on #1 America's next top model. A couple of years later after asking myself this question and remembering that moment by the tree, l was so angry and never felt that type of anger, but I knew I did not want this feeling in my body. Making myself the promise that it is my responsibility to not allow life circumstances or any human being to steal my beauty. Out of the blue, my cousin reached out to me while he was overseas in the military. I was so happy to hear from my cousin and as we talked about the past, I started to realize he was the only cousin that knew me and my brothers when we were first adopted by my great-aunt at 75 years old. Unexpectedly he paused and said, “do you remember when you were a little girl? you were always...” then he paused again.

Then he continued, “l always felt so bad for you all. Especially you Ebony and I do not know how you did it.”

I said, “well what do you mean?”

He said, “I remember you were…well you could not be more than four years old. We were just getting to know you but what everybody did know was your mother was a little crazy. You see, she would come to the beauty salon looking for her kids. Even though you all were removed from her care. When she would come by your great-grandmother’s beauty salon you would pretend to step out as though you were playing in front of the salon. Your mother would start talking to herself and walk back and forth. It was clear that she was gone mentally but you would sit with her and talk to her. You would tell her that everything is going to be all right! you would not leave her side until she was calm, and you always knew what to say!” As I hung up the phone, I was so thankful for him. I had not heard from my cousin in over 20 years. I do not know if he knew I was crying my eyes out during that conversation. l tried to make sure he did not hear me. You see, I did not have any memories of my mother except for the day we were taken from her. My second memory of my mother was running from her with my brothers and hiding. After hearing from my cousin about my personality as a little girl. It left me with an understanding that every day we have a choice. No matter what we have been through as children we still have choices. See I was afraid that my hardship would hinder me from making good decisions. I want to be good so that allows me to avoid fire at all costs. I recognized at that moment that most of my choices helped me to grow, learn and be the person I am today. Every day is special and that is truly all we really have. I am nowhere near perfect, but I choose to allow my light to shine and the only thing that truly brings me anger is when people do not embrace their truth to make decisions that can affect their lives indefinitely. Everybody's journey is different. I can only share this based on my own life story. How I made the choices and as I walk in my own skin, I do not ask am l a good person. Or am I going to what we call heaven? I believe in love, and I strive to only love with a little extra dash of wisdom. I survived things that many people might not have been able to deal with. I owe all of it to the creator. I have had mystical and magical things happen in my life to remind me that I am not alone. It is all about balance and my heart is truly filled so I give thanks. Every day like many, I pray for grace and do not ignore it.

I have always been thankful, especially when I look in the mirror and see God through my ancestors. I represent beauty today.

I will leave you with this wisdom and advice, the devil is the most honest liar. Every choice I make will be a part of who I am, and it is important to know that it cannot be separated. If I choose tomorrow to become a monster and then the next day, choose to act holier than thou. Both decisions will be a part of who l was, am, and will become. Every day is a choice and through our conflicts, we are an expression of who our spirits and souls truly are. The goal is to continuously grow and become more than your ancestors were. We must continue climbing. It is very rare that some will make it to their higher self. To love your authentic self is the gift that we can all learn to achieve by letting go of fear. You will be able to look in the mirror clearly when you release worry. You can see your true beauty, or you can choose to become the walking blind. Life is not easy, but we all will meet a fork in the road, and it will be up to you to choose which way you will go.

Well, I have to go and walk the runway of life, till the next article beautiful ones!

Ebony Emecca Haith is a featured Affirmation Series writer in Now PR Magazine.

Ebony Haith is a supermodel who walked into our living rooms on the first series of America's next top models. Today Ebony is an up-and-coming actress, comedian, writer, singer, artist, and certified health counselor, but her true passion has always been writing. Recently creating short articles as a beginning intro for her upcoming book called America's next top model (SKIN too rough). Ebony's unique life journey is like no other. This American beauty is using her life experiences and voice to tell her story with wisdom and Grace. “In my skin” are short article on the reality of her living conditions. It highlights how she continues to overcome the false myth that desensitizes so many people about their skin color. It circles around the most beautiful gift she believes is her skin. Her unapologetic, exclusive and authentic way of telling her story is wonderful and unique. In 2013, Ms. Haith had a write-up and featured in the New York Post as one of the upcoming and pronounced storytellers of our time. She is definitely one to look out for in the near future. Ebony is bold and speaks out on topics that many were afraid to say aloud. Her life experiences are unusual, but she is finally ready to reveal them to the world. From 24 Foster Care homes to over 13 schools, that is just the beginning. An American woman, Ebony Haith shares her story in a time that we need it. She shares her story with grace. Ebony's truth and wisdom is not only refreshing and unique, but it is healing.

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