I'm a trainwreck in the morning and a bitch in the afternoon.
Although I'm intentional about getting my mental health all the way together, I still have moments where I'm triggered without warning. Doing the work doesn't make me impervious to having bad days, and being damaged doesn't make me any less deserving of love, and Taraji P. Henson's testimony in the latest issue of SELF is a testament to this fact. She told the publication:
"I'm a whole black woman, whatever comes with that. All the emotions, all of the rage, the anger, the love, the hurt, the hope, the despair, the strength, the vulnerability. I'm all of that."
Along with menopause, mental health, and dispelling the myth of the "strong black woman", the Empire star opened up about how she, too, had to unlearn her insecurities to ultimately find love.
Last May, Kelvin proposed to Taraji with a Cartier bracelet and one helluva rock, but Taraji revealed that their journey to melanin matrimony has been bumpy at times. The actress explained that early on in their relationship, she believed that their courtship would be short-lived and had fears that her now 36-year-old suitor would move on to a younger woman in time. She explained:
"Whenever he would fall asleep, [I'd think,] 'Oh, you cheating on me?'"
Ultimately, these miscommunications drove the couple apart and they ended their relationship for some time. It wasn't until Kelvin showed up at her condo in an old school gesture of romance and shared his intentions in front of Taraji and the rest of her family and friends that the couple reunited. She explained:
"He had to suck in his pride and he still didn't stop. I said, 'That's my husband.'"
It's said that if you do the work, the man of your dreams will materialize, but Taraji isn't a believer in that theory. According to her, the work is never really finished:
"That's foolish to believe. How do you maneuver and do the work with this other person involved? That's the real work."
Along with healthy communication, Taraji says that therapy has also been instrumental in not only healing the relationship with her man but in helping her mend the relationship with herself as well. She explained:
"I had aligned all my chakras, and I still wanted to headbutt a bitch. The therapy came into play out of necessity. It was [a] time where I was like, 'Oh, I'm just not feeling like myself anymore,' and my son was going through his issues with becoming a young black male in America with no dad and no grandad. It was like, 'Okay, I'm not a professional. We both need help.'"
In an interview with BET, she also reminded us that our homegirls are not our therapists and emphasized the importance of seeking professional help.
@micaiahcarter for SELF
"Your friends are not your therapists. They are very biased, and they have stakes involved in you. So sometimes their opinion can be skewed a bit. So that's why it's important to seek a professional, someone who studies human behavior and the human mind."
While Taraji has still been working to do some "rewiring" and unlearning, the actress says her man is patient AF and she's worth the fight:
"I'm grateful to God that I found a partner that I can work with, and that's what I prayed for. I said, 'I'm not looking for perfection, God. I'm looking for somebody who wants to do the work.'"
To read the full interview, click here!
Featured image by @micaiahcarter for SELF.