I can’t tell you how much I hate doing these “tributes”. In my mind they set a tone of regret, like I’m missing my water because I allowed my well to run dry. I will cry for a minute then later go on to other things, which strikes me as not having paid true homage. It’s a difficult and twisted thing in my mind. I always look at what people put up on their blogs and FB pages after they have done a tribute to someone who passed. Within a day or two, many are on to the next thing, because, well, that’s life. It strikes me the wrong way for some reason.
Can I say that I wasn’t a big fan of all of Whitney’s music? Yet I truly loved her from the beginning of her career. How is that possible, especially since I didn’t know her? I dont know. There was something magical and beautiful about the woman that went even beyond her singing voice. I know we love our “stars”, but our stars are more than stars. They are human beings with lives beyond the love we have for their gifts.
She was a real woman, and she fought to continue to be real in a make believe setting. People wanted her to sing on command, and mostly she did. When she tried to live her life, people weren’t too pleased that she was a regular sistergirl. They didn’t like her being a black woman with a black woman’s sensibilities and perspective. I loved how she spoke her mind, whether you liked it or not. They tried to villainize her for the friends she had, for the man she chose. She didnt allow them to. When things got hard for her, many said “I told you so”, then self righteously blamed her for her mistakes. That’s OK, because she remained true to herself. She fought her battle, and won. Then the Lord took her home.
Even though I wasnt a fan of some of Whitney’s songs, the ones I did like, I truly loved. I will Always Love You, Exhale Shoop Shoop, and I’m Every Woman. These songs allowed me to see in her something that I imagined was there anyway. The video to I’m Every Woman was done while she was pregnant with Bobbi Kristina and she was all aglow with the beauty of her pregnancy – her face was rounder and softer and even more beautiful than ever, if that’s possible. She was obviously very happy to be carrying her baby, Bobbi K. If Bobby Brown didn’t give her anything as some like to think, then he did give her Bobbi Kristina.
She was surrounded by other beautiful, strong black women in the video – including Valerie Simpson, TLC, her momma Cissy and Chaka herself as well as others. Now that she has passed on, many will claim to love her and do all kinds of music tributes. Some will be sincere in their love, and some won’t. It’s not right, but its OK.
The heart of the woman was love. She loved her friends and family, Bobby Brown and she loved Jesus too. She was just real, and that’s why I love her.