First of all, thank you so much for stopping by and giving my blog a chance! Your support means so much to me and I am so grateful to be able to do what I am doing, all while hopefully having a positive impact on others. Secondly, hi, I’m Shirley! I’m a twenty-something-year-old lifestyle blogger who just so happens to be a dog-loving, Lululemon addicted, Louis Vuitton obsessed gal living in Missouri.
About five years ago, I started getting into blogs and began reading them religiously. To me, blogs were so much better than books and magazines, because I was getting to read posts written by people who I either a) related to b) had a ton in common with or c) in a way looked up to. In fact, my junior and senior years of high school consisted of me reading post after post after post as quickly as I could as I navigated my way through the hallways. And then one day it dawned on me that I don’t have to just be a blog reader, no. I can be a blogger.
I played around with the idea, which prompted me to start my first ever blog on Weebly.
I started the blog impulsively, of course, coming up with a blog name and not even knowing where, how, or why to even get an official domain name registered so that the URL would look way better than the “https://blahblahblah.weebly.com” that I was working with. That, my friends, is why I only had about 500 readers. And while 500 sounds like a lot, it really isn’t when you’re intent on reaching as many people as possible. But, my short-lived Weebly stint did teach me a lot. I didn’t even know what branding was! Don’t judge me, please. On the plus side, I dunno if I ever would have gotten to where I am now as a blogger had I not started that Weebly blog years ago.
Because let me tell ya, blogging is NOT an easy job. In fact, before I became deadset on actually going about blogging in the right ways that will allow me to benefit from my hard work, I thought bloggers had it easy. But little did I know…
I then convinced myself that because I am fascinated by lingerie and love collecting it, that I should start a lingerie + lifestyle Wordpress blog and be cute and launch it on February 14 of this year (2019). At first, things were fine, but I quickly came to the realization that I wasn’t happy blogging about what I was blogging about. Sure I love lingerie and reading about the various trends out there, but I knew I was not put on this earth to tell people about lingerie and whatever else I planned on doing with that blog. Because it had gotten to the point where I was only even working on the blog, because 1) I didn’t want to let the people down who had constantly been told that the blog was going to launch on Valentines day and 2) I had already put so much time, money, and effort into the blog, so I didn’t want to let myself down + I didn’t want to have wasted all of my energy and resources on something that I was going to throw away.
“And one day she discovered that she was fierce, and strong, and full of fire, and that not even she could hold herself back because her passion burned brighter than her fears.” | mark anthony
That said, when I want something, I get it. Same goes for the things I no longer want to entertain. So goodbye went the lingerie blog and hello Sincerely Shirley. In fact, immediately after I purchased “www.sincerelyshirley.com” my mood had changed for the better. I was so happy and I was so excited. A gigantic weight had been lifted off of my shoulders and I knew I had made the right decision. Not only that, but I knew I was doing this for me. This was what I wanted to do. My mom sat on the couch confused as to why a simple domain name was causing me so much excitement and boosting my confidence, and despite telling her, over and over, that the simple name change had just opened so many doors for me that I didn’t even know existed.
By now, you, too, are probably wondering why I started this blog and what I intend on doing with it. Allow me to explain…
When I was two months old, I was adopted into a transracial family. Transracial meaning that I, an African American, was being adopted by Caucasians; my mom, dad, and my two oldest brothers, who are biological to my parents, are white + my third oldest brother, me, and my younger sister are black! To others, it may seem strange, but my family is the absolute best thing that has ever happened to me. There is nothing but unconditional love in our family and I will always be forever grateful for being a part of such a loving, caring, and amazing family.
Being a black girl in a mostly white and upper-class family was never an issue until I got into high school. There, other black kids were unable (and honestly unwilling) to see me for who I am and what I have to offer Instead, my identity was now:
- black girl who “talks white”
- black girl who really isn’t black because she doesn’t know the struggle
- black girl who acts white
- inauthentic black girl + a black girl trying to be white
- white girl
- “county brownie”
- full of myself
- pretentious and snobby
And trust me, before high school, I never had any issues. But of course in high school, everybody is trying to fit in and figure out who they are while others try to tell them who they are. So, this escalated to the point where I switched schools only to get bullied even worse. And by my senior year of high school, I said enough is enough and went back to the school where I had originally been. My senior year was the best year. But, the reason I give so much background about myself and my struggles with my identity is that it’s a big reason as to why I wanted to start a lifestyle blog. Not to just talk about transracial adoptions, but to be able to have a platform to freely be me and to tell others what I think. I know I offer a unique perspective on life because of my life’s circumstances. And I wholeheartedly embrace all of it.
I would not be where I am today if it was not for my family. I also would not be who I am today if it weren’t for all of the trials and tribulations I have faced. And while I don’t necesarily like dealing with hardships, it’s a part of life and I choose to see them as lessons!
So, Sincerely Shirley is a lifestyle blog where I will be as sincere and honest as humanly possible because that is who I am and who I have always been. I have always lived my truth and I have always spoken my truth, which is why I wanted my blog’s platform to be authentic and genuine just like me. I am so happy to finally reach as many people as possible and hopefully not only “entertain,” but to inspire and empower those around me and those who read what I have to say.
With that being said, welcome to my world. Welcome to Sincerely Shirley.
outfit details coming soon!
Oh, and I’m the one on the right! 😉