Cardi B has been on my mind and has me all in my feelings since “Bodak Yellow” started climbing up the charts (right now she’s number 1 on the Billboard charts – ousting Taylor Swift – and people are mad).
Three years ago, I hesitantly followed her on Instagram. I thought she was loud, vulgar, and ultimately the girl on the block that I was told not to be, but I couldn’t deny that she spoke to me. Despite, not agreeing with her ways, I appreciate her authenticity and familiarity.
I know, now, that my hesitancy to embrace her was because I was told to be the exact opposite of her. Success didn’t look like Cardi B when I was growing up. Talking to a friend about this, she worded it perfectly, “I’m sure many girls are feeling conflicted [ seeing Cardi’s success], like hold up, that’s not what I was taught.”
SN: It didn’t help that she grew up two blocks away from me. So this literally hits close to home for me. Like why is she on TV and I’m not?
When these thoughts crossed my mind, I just reminded myself that everyone has a different path, and ultimately, could I really envision myself following Cardi’s path? No. So I dug deeper and I thought about all my friends from the block who don’t fit the status quo and are denied access and success because they’re not mainstream. We accept the Cardi Bs of the world when they’re famous but not on a day-to-day basis.
I appreciate that Cardi B is herself and I think we need to be equally as open when the girl from the block is applying for an office job as we are when she’s twerking and spitting lyrics. And for us girls who went the traditional route, I don’t think that we need to question our choices but be empowered by Cardi because she is total validation that being original and being yourself is the best recipe for success.
Ultimately, the lesson is – be you. Do you. You don’t have to be Cardi B to make it. It’s not that she did it right or wrong but rather that she keeps it real and is unapologetically her and you should no hold bars, be unapologetically you.