Monday Motivation Moment: Why We Must Keep Going, No Matter What 

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Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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I woke up Saturday and Sunday morning greeting bleak skies and a thin blanket of ice delicately masking trees and grass. It’s the kind of weather which drives me to retreat under covers (as long as our daughter Nai will let me) and grab hold of leggings and boots.

And, well, friends, these last few years have remained full of challenges and disappointments. I sometimes struggle with gnawing depression and doubt, yet each time these feelings threaten to obscure my vision, God sends a word either through a song, conversation, preached word or a physical sign (mine is deer) I pray to see daily.

Wisdom from an Email 

Yesterday, I heard this message loudly after clicking on a link from an email sent by Jonathan Morrow, renowned blogger and social media strategist: “keep going, pushing, no matter what…”

The longer I ingested his words about following your dreams relentlessly and shutting out negativity, the more determined I became to start blogging again. Yes, school took up lots of time this past month, but let me stand in some truth with y’all. I hit a creative slump.

I could post on Instagram for the blog, but somehow I couldn’t push myself to write here. Frankly, I spread myself thin, and all I craved was sleep or escape in those rare spare moments.

But if this is what I love doing (and I do), being present, communicating and interacting with you all in this space has to become a priority, too.  Writing, for me, is a lifeline. And when I am shut off from it, part of me begins to wither.

Circumstances Do Not Define Us 

Jon has a neuromuscular disorder called Spinal Muscular Atrophy, which makes his body weak; he cannot move from the neck down, and yet, he founded a successful blog (On Moneymaking), sold it for five figures and is an Associate Editor of Problogger, one of the most popular blogs in the world.

Consider this… He speaks his thoughts into a machine because he cannot type them out. This didn’t deter him from excelling in blogging, social media strategy and developing courses to help his fellow writers. And oh how these words resonate deeply:

Because listen … I know it’s horribly cliché, but if I can quit my job, risk the government carting me off to a nursing home because I can’t afford my own healthcare, convince my poor mother to abandon her career and drive my crippled butt 3,000 miles to a foreign country, and then make enough money to support myself, my mother, my father, and an entire nursing staff using nothing but my voice, then what can you accomplish if you really set your mind to it?

My guess: pretty much anything.

No, it won’t be easy. At some point, I guarantee you’ll want to quit. I guarantee people will treat you like you’re insane. I guarantee you’ll cry yourself to sleep, wondering if you made a horrible mistake.

But never stop believing in yourself. The world is full of naysayers, all of them eager to shout you down at the slightest indication you might transcend mediocrity, but the greatest sin you can commit is to yourself become one of them. Our job isn’t to join that group, but to silence it, to accomplish things so great and unimaginable that its members are too awed to speak.

After I reached the end of his article, I thought, what the heck is stopping me? Me. I am! Maybe you are, too? Far too many of us allow fear of failure and suffocating feelings of inadequacy to stifle our dreams.

The good news?

You and I can get out of our own way.

When the negative thoughts and words come (as they will), counter each one with affirmations, begin to speak the language of possibility, call those things not as though they were (Romans 4:17).

Keep pushing. Keep going.

Victory is already yours.

3 Women, 3 Different Lives, With 1 Cause

Follow Me:
Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Valencia, Shannon and I (left to right)
Photo Credit: Keston De Coteau

Valencia (or V as I say), hair stylist and diva for days, is an energetic and loving mother of six beautiful children committed to success. V speaks her truth without apology or a second blink. She’s a pull yourself up by your stilettos kinda lady. Period.

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Beauty / Style Editor, Valencia Pearl
Photo Credit: Keston De Coteau

Shannon (or Shan as I call her) never met a pair of cowboy boots or timberlands she didn’t like; she writes and sings freedom music. Big ideas keep her up at night, and she relentlessly pursues them. Oh, and Shan has some famous big cousins, too. Have you seen Braxton Family Values?

Blog Co-Editor, Shannon-Eli Braxton
Photo Credit: Keston
De Coteau

My roots are spilt between Honduras, the South, and East Baltimore. They call me a workaholic and activist (my husband Kes says I want to save the world), but I am simply committed to the passion of purpose. Heart warrior, poet, standing tall in heels any day of the week (doesn’t every good fashionista?); faith and family nurture my soul.

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Blog Founder / Editor, Emelda De Coteau
Photo Credit: Keston De Coteau

3 women, 3 different lives, with 1 Cause. What’s that? Living life in color and on purpose, while inspiring and empowering you to do the same.

Well, last Sunday, despite frigid chilly November air and relentless winds, we tucked away our insecurities and fatigue. We headed to Baltimore’s Herring Run Park for our fall photo shoot, big girl shoes and all, y’all.  Glamour on an otherwise mundane Sunday afternoon. Check!

Shan and I spent the weekend obsessing about our hair, makeup, and clothes; as we drove over together in the car, we anxiously checked the mirror. Was every hair in place? Eye shadow defined?

Yet in the end, it all comes down to collaboration, those moments of magic when everything coalesces without effort or pretense. Keston (Keystone Productions) my husband and creative partner, shot these photos in under thirty minutes, while our children played, even throwing the leaves you see in these photographs.  This is part of what it means to live in color! You embrace the flow, and let go.

American media deceives us, convinces women jealousy and bickering are second nature. “Reality shows” portray us at one another’s throats for entertainment – particularly women of color. Over and over again, the message repeats: “Women don’t get along.”

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Valencia, Shannon and I
(left to right)
Photo Credit: Keston De Coteau

Well, ultimately, it’s up to us to shut out the noise. Refuse the boxes; their narrow definitions of femininity. We can and do get along, every day. Collaboration is beautiful and liberating! Valencia, Shannon and I dwell in possibility, as poet Emily Dickinson once wrote. Three women, three different lives, with one cause – living fully and color! Come along with us on this journey; you will soar.

Live In Color! – Emelda

Talk to Us
Do you believe the hype that women cannot get along? Why or why not?