Category Archives: Mind & Body

My Body and Me

by Rose Miyonga

Having a female body is exhausting, and today I feel really tired of being a brown woman.

Of being constantly policed, censored, judged, bullied and excluded – and that’s just what I do to myself.
I’m not talking about what other people out there in the world and on the internet say and think and do to my body, I’m talking about what I do.

Photo by Poppy Miyonga

Photo by Poppy Miyonga

Even though I am aware of the way society controls the images that are sent to me, leaving me with the feeling that I will never be good enough or beautiful enough,  I have internalised the messages so deeply that I can’t help but believe that my body is somehow wrong as it is.… Read more...

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From Mother and Daughter to Sisterhood (via Hair)

Deborah, still smiling one month after 'that haircut..'

Deborah, still smiling one month after ‘that haircut..

By Deborah Johnson

When I was four my mother traumatised me in a way in which I thought I could never forgive her.

Tired of my consistent resistance and whinging whenever she attempted to thread my hair she had, unbeknownst to me, decided to cut it all off.

The morning of a school trip may I add.

Naively I sat in the bath with my eyes closed as instructed and offered no question as to what the sensation of feathers falling over me was.

When I was allowed to open my eyes, I hopped out of the bath innocently and headed over to the sink to brush my teeth as usual.… Read more...

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Mixed Heritage and ‘me’, by Rose Miyonga

by Rose Miyonga

With my father and sister

With my father and sister

Last week, TK was fortunate to have the sparkled voice of Tahmina Beghum of XXY magazine as she shared her experience of dual identity and frustrations with rigid concepts of personhood. This week, we are so excited for Rose Miyonga, one of our contributing editors to share with us her experiences the same subject.

-Oyin Akande

My mother is White British and my father is Black Kenyan.

My sisters, Poppy and Jasmine and I have had to explain what this means to people our whole life, so I have been aware of my racial identities for as long as I can remember.Read more...

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Cultural conundrums and dual fluidity by Tahmina Begum

by Tahmina Begum

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The young, bright and awesome talent Tahmina Begum talks to us about cultural duality and being caught between preconceived identities. Tahmina is a writer and the CEO and Editor-in-Chief of  XXY Magazine, an agender culture, fashion and art magazine and social platform for young emerging creatives, focused on innovation and collaboration.

‘The Chat’

The other day, I was sat down for “the chat”. Not the sex chat, as I’m hoping by the simple notion of being twenty-one, that my mother and I do not need to relive the conversation that never happened, but the one where I was reminded of where I was “from”.… Read more...

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Are You Waiting for It to Be Me? A Meditation on White Silence by Funa Maduka

Are you waiting for it to be me? Funa Maduka thandiekay.com

I ask because I sit stunned by your silence. And now, I am so overwhelmed by yours that I feel the need to break mine.

Do you think that a police officer will take the time to get to know me? That he will take the time to know of my prep school education and Ivy League degrees? That he’ll let me tell him that the first CD we danced to together was Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill? That we’ve vacationed with your family in New England, laughed over high tea in London, traded secrets in French…that I can actually tolerate a couple country songs?… Read more...

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Trump: Our Dark-winged Angel

By Donna Lancaster

If ever there was a time to collectively come together and grieve, it is now.

As the world is reeling from the shock of Donald Trump winning the U.S. presidential elections, now more than ever we are being handed an opportunity to do things differently. The whole experience allows us, individually and collectively, to expand or contract our hearts accordingly. And this I believe will determine the true outcome of these challenging times. More love or more hate, more taking or more giving, more blame or more responsibility, to wake up or to stay asleep.

As I see it , we have two options before us:

OPTION ONE: CLOSED HEART APPROACH (a.k.a.

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Emeline talks to Ibi of The Afro Hair & Skin Co.

I am a sucker for natural skincare so as soon as Ibi of The Afro Hair & Skin Co. reached out to me, I knew I’d want to try her products. Having suffered my own woes of adult acne, I understood the benefits of a natural skincare regime. I was curious to see how her products performed and secretly hoped her hair oil could also sort out my bundle of dry curls.

Ibi has produced three products: a facial oil, hair oil and a hair butter only using ingredients sourced from the UK, making her range organic, natural and sustainable.

So who is Ibi Meier-Oruitemeka?Read more...

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Identity and the archetypal myth of Ophelia by Patricia Ekall

Patricia Ekall is a freelance journalist, editor and blogger based in Bristol, U.K.  She has “shameless curiosity”, is an enthusiastic storyteller and spends the majority of her time contributing to print and digital publications. Welcome to ThandieKay Patricia!

I think about identity a lot.

The word itself implies strength. The notion of an ‘assured sense of self’ is after all an attractive one.

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A young Patricia Ekall

However, for all of it’s clearly defined allure, I think identity, and identifying, can also make a person vulnerable. I’ve come to see how the confusion, curiosity and subsequent projections of others can affect our view of ourselves.… Read more...

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My Year In Kenya

By Rose Miyonga

 Rose Donkey thandiekay.comIt’s the heat that hits you first.

As soon as I step off the plane at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport it envelops me in a familiar embrace and I know that although I am more than 4000 miles away from London, I am home.

It was never my intention to take a year out from my degree at University College London and move to Kenya. It was actually conceived during a conversation with my sister, Poppy, who is a photographer and lives in Nairobi, on the way to Heathrow Airport.

“Why don’t you come to Kenya for a year?”

She suggested.Read more...

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Letter to my daughter by Leyla Hussein #EndFGM

Posted by Kay Letter to my daughter: what is it like to be a girl in 2016?

I happened to glance upon a filmed interview, based on misinterpretations of FGM (female genital mutilation)that was performed (and written, so I later found out) with a total poker face by Psychotherapist and Lead Anti FGM/Gender Rights campaigner Leyla Hussein. The satire (with stand up comedian Bridget Christie watch it here) was based on actual questions Leyla has been asked.  Whether it was her satirical envelope-pushing or her headscarf’s attitude, I knew immediately she had to be on our site.… Read more...

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