I had the chance to see Beyonce´open her Formation World Tour in Miami. It was everything you would imagine. Beautiful outfits, amazing choreography, and an arena that roared with fans singing every lyric to perfection. After the concert was over I was left feeling many different emotions.
Me in Formation
I grew up listening to Beyonce´ before she was BEYONCE´. When she was a quarter of Destiny’s Child (whom she shouted out), I remember singing into my hairbrush in my mirror like I was their fifth member. The thing I loved about Destiny’s Child was that I saw myself within the group because of Kelly, Michelle, and Latavia. They also provided the soundtrack to my pre-teen and teenage years.
Jump to April 27, 2016, I’m boarding my flight to Miami from Atlanta to go see the woman that has been with me through every breakup, every challenge, and now telling me that I matter not just as a woman...but as a black woman. As I was boarding my flight, I overheard other brown girls talking about Lemonade. I got chills because I knew we were all boarding that flight to go support a fellow brown girl that just happens to be arguably the world’s biggest star.
I have had two opportunities to see Beyonce´ throughout her career. Once for Destiny’s Child’s last tour, and at Essence Festival. Both concerts had come at difficult times in my life. I was going through a really tough breakup during the Destiny Fulfilled Tour. I will never forget standing next to two of my best friends singing “Girl”. In that moment, I knew I was going to be okay. I knew that my friends were going to help me through it. I also knew I had a soundtrack that I could belt out every time I needed to be reminded that I deserved better.
The next time I saw her was during Essence Festival. I was going through a life changing personal experience. The great part about this memory is that I’d won the tickets in a raffle. I’d never won anything in my life. When they called my name I was shocked. I know it probably sounds ridiculous, but I felt like that was God’s way of telling me everything was going to be okay. I instantly knew I had to take my co-worker Samora. She and I barely knew each other. We’d worked together each year for Ford at Essence Fest but that year was different. We became friends. We got dressed and headed over to the SuperDome. I knew we were going to have an amazing time. Samora is what I’d call a badass breath of fresh air. She walks into every room like she owns it.
Samora + I at Essence Festival in 2013
Long story short, she got us into VIP and landed us seats on the floor. I would have never been bold enough to do it without her. I remember when Beyonce´ made her entrance to “Run the World” we went CRAZY! In that moment hearing Beyonce´ tell me I ran the world and Samora lifting me up, I was reminded I did run the freakin world! This moment lifted me up so much I nearly fell off of the chair I wasn’t supposed to be standing on.
Now, we’re in the Lemonade era. I was just enjoying my Sunday on February 6, and all of a sudden I saw posts about a new song and video from Beyonce´. Of course, I had to see what everyone was talking about. Child, I was speechless. I was like, “Did she just say she likes her baby heir with baby hair and afros?! That she liked her, “negro nose with Jackson Five nostrils”?! Then you add on the visual with New Orleans as the backdrop, the choreography, and the #blackgirlmagic. I was done. I woke up everyday and listened to that song. I felt like I could do anything for weeks following Formation’s release. I didn’t care if she was “woke” or about the zillions of think piece that flooded the internet that were telling me how I should feel about her new release.
Leading up to the Super Bowl, I kept hearing the rumors that she was going to perform “Formation”. I said “no way”. She can’t. The Super Bowl is too big of a stage for her to perform this song. Welp, I was wrong. Not only did she perform, she came out and slayed it with brown girls of every hue rocking fro’s in Black Panther-esque attire. I couldn’t believe it. To say I was proud is a complete understatement. I knew I had to give her my coins for this tour. I’m not sure what I was expecting from her on this new album, but it sure surpassed anything I’d imagined.
I spent my Saturday excited about her HBO Lemonade special presentation. At 8’o clock, I got my house in order because I knew that I was done doing anything else that night. 9’o clock came and I was so nervous like I was the one releasing Lemonade to the world. I felt so many things watching Lemonade. I was speechless when it was over. It took me a few days and 8 times re-watching it to digest it all. It was emotional, uplifting, beautiful, and for the first time I felt like I saw Beyonce´. I felt like I knew her. I felt like she was human. Of course, I know she’s a human being, but I don’t know that we’ve ever seen the vulnerable side of her. Watching her last night, I had the same experience. I was close enough to see her beautiful skin, and perfect windblown hair. Even while watching the superstar known as Beyonce´ I saw her. I saw her having fun. I saw her owning that stage. I saw her humbled by the love in that arena. I saw her as a full human being. It was beautiful to watch.
I am inspired by her not just because she is a talented and mesmerizing entertainer. I am inspired by her because she makes it her mission to uplift women around her and around the world. She has always made it clear she is a woman for women. I am inspired by Beyonce´ because she reminds me that carrying out my dreams is possible with a lot of hard work, sacrifice, and of course great marketing. She is the ultimate girl boss. As a budding entrepreneur, I am grateful to have the opportunity to learn from her even if it’s from a distance.