Sept. 6, 2021

Motherhood & Spirituality Episode 14: Interview with Aleia McDaniel

Motherhood & Spirituality Episode 14: Interview with Aleia McDaniel

For this month's episode, I chatted with Aleia McDaniel of Soul Purpose Sisterhood. In this conversation, we explore the need to consistently ask our spiritual team for more ease, her journey from Christianity to Hoodoo, and how her daughter got so free :)

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For this month's episode, I chatted with Aleia McDaniel of Soul Purpose Sisterhood. In this conversation, we explore the need to consistently ask our spiritual team for more ease, her journey from Christianity to Hoodoo, and how her daughter got so free :) 

Aleia offers Spiritual readings and spiritual coaching. As a reader, Aleia utilizes her Hoodoo spiritualism and tools to connect with the clients' ancestors and spiritual team to interpret what is going on in their lives, what messages they have for the client, and what immediate next steps they need to take.

As a Spiritual Coach, Aleia provides readings AND uses her professional coaching expertise to create a comprehensive 90-day plan for healing, authenticity, and alignment for the client.

For more info check out her website: :) Please note that listeners get. 15% off of services with the code JEANNETTE15. 

Also, is there anything in the realm of Spirituality and Motherhood you'd like to hear this podcast tackle?  Hop on in my DMs and let me know. You can find me on Instagram at spirituality_motherhood_pod or on twitter at JLancien77. Hope to chat with you soon!

Immense Blessings




[00:00:00] Jeannette: Peace and innumerable blessings. My name is Jeanette . Thank you for being here. Thank you for clicking. Thank you for listening. Thank you for rolling with me. Welcome to the spirituality and motherhood podcast, where we're going to explore different ways of honoring your spiritual path, your spiritual gifts, your divine connection, all while being a mama. 

[00:00:19] My intention here is to support you by sharing the wisdom and experience of other mothers who are on the path just like you so, you know, you don't have to do it alone. You can know that you're supported. You can know you have people rolling with you and you don't have to be confused and stressed out. We got you. 

[00:00:36] I come to you. I come to this, podcast as a mother of two boys, ages four and seven a psychic a root worker a hoodoo. And a tree talking herbalist yeah!  

[00:00:50] In this episode, Features an interview of the amazing Aleia McDaniel, right. And this interview, I felt touched and guided. It's an amazing interview and I had a lot of fun with it, but one of the things that, tickled me was that, like we close talking a lot about inner child work and in parenting, there's a lot of inner child work. 

[00:01:17] There is, and it was, it was kind of nice to talk to somebody about inner child work in a context of also talking about like ancestral work and being supported by the ancestors in healing. So it was a very interesting conversation, not just around that. Just also talking about her transition from Christianity and do Hoodoo and how she, how she raises. 

[00:01:45] Her daughter, it was an interesting rich conversation. And I pray you enjoy it. Just to let you know a little bit about Aleia she's a coach. She also offers spiritual readings and individual spiritual coaching. Now the spiritual readings is where she uses her, Hoodoo spiritual wisdom and tools to connect with your ancestors, with your spiritual team to interpret what's going on in your life to, to offer you messages from your spiritual team and your helpful ancestors, and to, to offer like guidance around the immediate steps you can take to do whatever you need to do. As a spiritual coach, she provides a reading as well as you know, the use of her professional coaching expertise to create a comprehensive 90 day plan for healing, authenticity, and alignment for you. 

[00:02:36] And like given the conversation that we had around, being able to accept and ask for ease this, you know, I feel like she would have made an amazing coach. So if you're interested in those services, like it resonates with, you know, that you can go over to her website, aliea,ALIEA MCDANIEL 

[00:02:58] dot com and you can use the code Jeanette 15 and receive a 15% discount. Jeanette is spelled JEANNETTE. That's JEANNETTE 15 for a 15% discount on spiritual coaching and spiritual reading. With that being said, let's go ahead and dive into this interview. I'll see you on the other end Peace. 


[00:03:32] Jeannette: Thank you so much for being here and being on this podcast.  

[00:03:37] Aleia: Absolutely. Thank you for having me. I'm very honored to be here.  

[00:03:40] Jeannette: No, it's a blessing that you're here. I'm so excited to talk to you. So, I would really like to start with your journey into Hoodoo and how that correlates, with you being a mom, because I feel like, there's like the sort of something that happens when the baby comes out and you find yourself and there's relationships change and things shift. Would you like to start? 

[00:04:02] Aleia: Sure a long, long, long story I'll give the gist of it. So the gist of it is that I've always been Hoodoo, even when I didn't call it that  

[00:04:12] Jeannette: yeah.  

[00:04:13] Aleia: As black people, as black, as black Americans, we know Hoodoo, and as we know from our African ancestry, religion can't be divorced from culture. 

[00:04:24] It can't be divorced from the lived experience. And so it's always been a part of how I've always navigated in this world. And it's only within the last three years, four years that I called it, I called it what it is. Um, so with that being said, I grew up in an extremely Afrocentric home ,an extremely Afrocentric city. 

[00:04:44] So that, in all of our challenges that we've gone through with, um, the crack epidemic and Reagan years and all of that, even in all of the bad, we always had this place of home in place, a culture in place a community. So as I've gone through my journey and I grew up traditionally, Christian, um, didn't have negative church experiences, but I always felt that it wasn't 

[00:05:11] 100% true. I knew, I always knew that something was missing. And it wasn't, it wasn't accurate in the ways that we were taught it. And some of my, I remember, um, so I went through, um, a rites of passage ritual when I was 12 years old. And it was part of, um, it was part of a group called sisters of tomorrow. And it was about training black girls in womanhood, but not femininity, but in black womanhood and doing it so through an Afrocentric lens. So we had to do a lot of different things and, um, we, we went through a year long rites of passage ceremony. And I remember, um, before my initiation, we were in the woods and because that was part of our, um, our ritual and we're talking, I can't remember the conversation was, and I remember saying that I believe religion is our cultural interpretations of God. 

[00:05:58] And I was afraid to say that because that wasn't a popular belief, you know, in, in black church, in the black community to say, I don't really think that we know what we talking about, but we try to, we try to understand God. And I remember saying and understand nature through our cultural context. 

[00:06:15] And so that was my first glimpse into, something's not quite, quite true about the church fast forward through, um, through college. And I was always a good church girl. Like I was a kid that I went to church voluntarily. I was studying, I had my Bibles out. I was marking it up. Like I wanted to study and learn. 

[00:06:36] And I remember in college making the connection that what was being taught in the pulpit wasn't the same that was in the Bible. And depending on which version of the Bible you got, it meant different things. And particularly around homosexuality, because I'm gay and around temple worship and temple prostitution, that started my whole journey on, well, what are they talking about it, the original word wasn't homosexual, what was the original word? 

[00:07:01] And what is a temple prostitute? Where does that come from? And it, and it took me on this, this journey of learning. Fast forward, you know, I've gone through lots of ebbs and flows, but, but Hoodoo is where I call home. And and and in it, what I have found is really reclaiming all of the practices and the ways that I was taught, even though we didn't have a word for don't come out the house for the first six to eight weeks, always having your grandmother come in and mother, the mother who just gave birth don't let everybody touch your baby and kiss your baby. 

[00:07:35] I didn't, no one knew my child's name before my child knew her name. That was important to me. I wasn't one of those ones on Facebook. My baby's going to be named because I know her and I learned that the baby, the child needs to know their name first before it's in society. And I remember whispering my daughter's name into her ear and choosing a name with purpose and everything that we do is so intentional in not only the conception in the, in the bringing the baby, literally into this world, but also in, in the raising of the child. 

[00:08:04] So those are some of the things that I think has, I don't know if I'm answering your question, but I've kind of mirrored how I've, how I parented. And, um, my, my child is 12 years old right now. So if anybody's a parent of a 12 year old, you know, they know everything, you don't know anything and you just telling them just to be telling them things. 

[00:08:26] And so, so much of it is I can't tell them: do this, do that, do that. I have to lead by example and I have to mirror and I have to model it and say, well, you know, if your tooth hurt and all you gotta do is go home and chew on this clove and I made this little oil, just try it out and see. And no, no, no, no, no. 

[00:08:43] And it, well, I guess it does work in you having a nightmare will be go ahead and put that bay leaf underneath your pillow and put that cinnamon under there. And then next thing you know, they grabbing it for themselves. And so doing so doing so, incorporating it into our every day and teaching them along the way. 

[00:08:59] And, you know, letting them become familiar with it, knowing that they'll choose some things and they won't, but at the end of the day, they'll go back to their roots. So that's how I parent right now in Hoodoo.  

[00:09:12] Jeannette: So that kinda goes into like another question I wanted to ask you about how you make sure your daughter remains liberated and powerful because there's also something special about 12 it's like, it's like a point where like it's easy for young women to kind of lose themselves and forget their power and forget their spiritual connection. 

[00:09:33] Aleia: So parenting and and making sure our child is self-possessed first has always been of extreme value with her, her other parent, her step-parent. My child is lucky to have three moms, um, two moms that, that raised her and then also a bonus mom. Um, and so agency has been extremely important to us from a very, very, very young age. 

[00:09:59] So my child knew from, you know, age two, you don't have to share with everybody if you don't want to, you don't accept people. Don't get to touch your body. Even your parents don't get to touch your body. Like you have permission for everything, even when it's things that bulk up against my, I just want to tell you to do it because I'm your mom. 

[00:10:16] And I just want to get this done and it, but it, I have to, she keeps pushing against that in a good way. So what it is. And she's always been like that. So we've always nurtured that, that selfness from a beginning and not selfishness in the negative sense, but like you, you are in control of your body. 

[00:10:34] You're in control of your choices. You get to have choices, you get to have choices in many things that, you know, when I was your age, I didn't get to choose what I'm going to have for lunch, but like teaching, teaching them choice and power in owning their decisions. And what I've seen that show up for them early on is when they were five years old. 

[00:10:51] When we first moved back to Texas. So we were born in Texas. We met in New York, came back to Texas when they were five. And you know, Texas is a pretty conservative state. And I remember my kid, um, she went to school at this, at the same school where I was a principal, but I was a principal of the high school and she was in the elementary school and they were doing some kind of mother's day. 

[00:11:09] They were doing some activity and she was like I have two moms. Do I get to do two. And the and the teacher just said something at a time, like, you know, go home and tell your mom and dad, I have two moms. So like very clear, like, oh no, you're not going to like erase me from this experience. I'm going to speak up for myself. And she's always, so she's always been taught to have a voice and to nurture that and that this is not me telling her what to do. 

[00:11:29] She's just been very clear. Like no, I'm going to speak up. And so I say all of that to say that teaching children liberation really does start in the home. You can't teach children to be free out in the world. If you can't let them be free in your own home, and it's going to hurt, it's going to be uncomfortable and it's going to push you, push against everything that we were raised to be. 

[00:11:48] But I really believe that when you model it at home and you give them that opportunity, then they can be fierce in the world. They truly can be. Um, and I see the evidence of that. And I always tell my child, if you ever came home now, my caveat is, I'm not a spanking parent. I don't hit. So when I say this, this is in jest. 

[00:12:04] But if you ever came home and said, somebody made you do something, I'm going to know you lying to me. And I'm beat you. I'm not going to beat my child, but I'm like, cause I know you, nobody can make you do anything. I can't make you do anything. I know that will never come out of your mouth. If somebody made you do something because it's simply not true because my child has always been very self-possessed from an early age, but it really does start in in, in how you raise them because, um, that's going to be the behavior that they mimic in the world. 

[00:12:33] It's left to be seen about what these next teen years are going to look like. But I'm seeing that evidence of how my child advocates for themselves, especially during this black lives matter movement and how they've had to, you know, step to their friends and saying, you don't get to say these things to me or in my presence, or even out of my presence. 

[00:12:51] You don't get to joke about that because one I'm gonna let you know you're wrong ,two I'm going to hold you accountable. And three, you don't get to have access to me. And she's, she literally has that kind of language with people. And I'm like taking notes. Like, let me make sure you, I, I wish I had that level of confidence at 12 ---at thirty. 

[00:13:09] Jeannette: To say you don't have access to me. 

[00:13:11] Aleia: She will cut them off too. And be like, like, this is the kind of conversation my child will have with one of their friends. Their friend is from the diaspora is in America, but is is, um, second generation American. Um, so they're not traditionally African-American. And so this child and my daughter were in a group playing roadblocks or whatever, the game, the kids and the kid and the other kids were also black, but they were not African-American they're talking about using the, the, um, the N word and my daughter's like, you don't get to use it. 

[00:13:44] And they're like, but, but like, she's like, no, let me tell you why they kept using it. She was like, look, bloop bloop bloop, delete yanked all of this. I was like, I'm done. Like, I'm educate you, but you're gonna keep going. We're not, I don't need friends that bad. And that's what they told me. I don't need friends. 

[00:13:59] Then I was like, oh, okay. 

[00:14:07] Jeannette: That's such a blessing. Cause her spirit will never abandon her. She will never have to go searching for herself, pull stuff up. Her intuition will always be with her. Because she will not betray herself  

[00:14:20] Aleia: when that not betraying goes against what I want for you. It's hard. It's hard. It's hard, but I'm thankful for the journey because I know exactly that, that my child will, will always be authentic to themselves. 

[00:14:38] Jeannette: That is such a blessing, especially for girls. Okay. So you spoke of like sometimes the challenge of like, when your, your, your child wants to do something, it's, you know, it's pushing. So like, how do you, how do you kind of draw the line and especially around like Hoodoo and protecting your child, but also allowing them free will and finding those sort of spaces where it's like, okay, you free here, but like, you know, 

[00:15:14] Like I'll I'll yeah, I'll put it. Like, I, I, I protect like, um, I woo like oils, candles, everywhere. I'm gonna protect. I'm gonna pray. I'm gonna do, I'm gonna do stuff. I'm gonna lay their hands before you leave the house . But like I also realized like, you know what, once they out, they gotta do what they gotta do. 

[00:15:32] So like, how do you kind of like navigate that balance, for you,  

[00:15:38] Aleia: you know, you have to be the parent sometimes and do what's best. So my child gets so frustrated. And so I don't want you putting them herbs in my bedroom and this and this. We about to sprinkle up this carpet. So you gonna vacuum or I'm going to vacuum, cause this is not an option, I'm not going to force to you to like to have a bath, but I'mma anoint your head. 

[00:15:53] And we going to do these things when we leave the house. Cause it's part of our practice and protocol. So they do it begrudingly . Um, because again, I know that that the way that I train them up right now is how they will be long term and when they do got go out of this world. It's hard, but I have to trust and lean on my spirits. 

[00:16:12] That, that the way that we're raising them is going to be protection. I do my own work for my child. I know that my child is still protected and I call on my ancestors to protect them when they're outside of this house. And then I also, I equip my child with some practical skills. Like I had to make an errand one day and somebody, um, somebody was supposed to be coming to the house. 

[00:16:31] And I was like, you know where the knife is, you know how to work this machete, you know, where it is, come on. We like, and they're confident in that. And they feel confident in protecting themselves, but it's scary. It's scary. So I'm not, and I'm not, I don't believe in just throwing my child to the wolves just because I know that's it either, like, you know, I'm very diligent about all the spaces you go and those kinds of things. 

[00:16:52] But I also know because I'm a girl, child, myself that, you know, girl children are not always safe. And I know boys aren't, but we're talking about, about girl children at this time. And so I have to just equip the best that I can and pray for the best. And do all the protection work that I know how, and also making sure that my village is there to support me. 

[00:17:16] Jeannette: Yes, yes. Which is something we kind of touched on before we started recording, like making sure that you, you have community and the importance of community, especially in raising children, because we can't do it alone 

[00:17:31] Aleia: cannot, and we shouldn't do it alone. It's not good for children for us to do it. And I understand why, you know, there's so many reasons why people are doing it alone. 

[00:17:39] But I think that a lot of times people don't realize there are other, there are multiple ways to have community . Even if it looks different than how we were raised, you can have community, it might be online. It might be with other people than you might expect. You might have to invite in your friends that you didn't think, well, they don't have children. 

[00:17:56] They don't understand. They could still serve a function in your child's life. They can serve in a function in your life, but you have to be open to that and name what you need. I think, especially as black women, we don't name what we need. We don't think what we need to ourselves. We don't name what we need to our ancestors. 

[00:18:11] And we definitely don't name what we need to our friend group. And when we learn how to speak, actually what we need. We realize that it's really there for us. The abundance is there. We just have to ask for it. We just have to ask for it in all the ways that we have to ask for it. 

[00:18:28] Jeannette: Yes. You mentioned the A word, which is ancestors. And like I wanted to ask, like how, how having a daughter has shifted your relationship with your ancestors.  

[00:18:41] Aleia: It has been, um, I think I'm a lot more humble because I don't know where my child got it from, but maybe I was that person that just knew everything myself. I knew it all. I understood everybody I could tell, you know, I thought I knew it all and I did. 

[00:18:57] I knew a lot. I didn't know at all what I think. So now what has happened is that it's making me reevaluate my relationship with my ancestors, the ones that I knew in particular, and realizing what I thought I was seeing that I understood from a child's mind it looks differently now that I understand as a parent, like, that's why that dynamic probably was there. 

[00:19:19] This is what you were trying to do. This is why you were dealing with guilt and shame. And this is how it showed up. But I didn't know that that's what that was, because it only looked like this to me as, as a child, as a 20 year old something, um, I think it's allowed me a lot more compassion for my ancestors and as a result, um, I don't avoid going to them as much as I used to before, because you know, we see our ancestors as these perfect beings, even when we know they're not perfect. 

[00:19:49] We see them because again, many of us are coming from this Christian background and we see Deities and, and departed people as perfect somehow in death. And then we feel ashamed about going to them when we're not perfect. And so being able to see their full humanity now that their ancestors allows me to be more human. 

[00:20:11] When I go and I say, look, I don't.. I don't know what to do, help me. Cause I don't, I don't even know what I'm asking for, but this shit right here, because I talked to him just like, there's like this, can't be, it can't be like this because, um, I'm stressed. I can see that they can understand and they can, they can, they can pour into me a lot more. 

[00:20:26] Cause that can be a lot more vulnerable with them. Um, it's also being a parent has expanded I want to say my definition of ancestors, but who I've, who I've called in. So I used to only go to like my immediate ancestors that I knew, and now I'm finding myself going to even falling on nothing but their names on a paper. 

[00:20:51] I could feel them a lot more than I knew before. And I know that there are 8 million people that came before them that know none of their names, but they, but that their spirit and their DNA is literally inside of me. So I feel like I have access now. And I think it still goes back to that because I need them, I need them to raise this child. 

[00:21:11] I need them to raise this child and, and so I used to be really private and shy about my practice. Now, when they told me that in my old house, they said I needed to move him to the living room because they need to see out the window. And I was like, okay, like, this is a little different, but then now my child sees me worshiping and sees me praising and seeing it becomes normal. 

[00:21:37] Um, you're going to give grandpa some donuts because I think they need something different on the alter. Okay. Now that happens. And, um, Mama, you need to change the water and I don't know why you using my favorite glass. Cause that's, that's my cup. That's not your ancestor's cup. Okay. But like it becomes part of the regular conversation and it becomes part of the practice because it's integrated into our home. 

[00:22:01] Jeannette: Yes. I'm sorry. I'm laughing about the doughnut. Cause I feel like that was my grandfather being like, I need a donut. It's been too long since you brought me a donut. 

[00:22:12] Aleia: I mean, they mad at me right now, and I say that jokingly, because I haven't put any good food on the alter, but I've been eating. I went on the salad health kick all summer and I know they don't want to no they don't want no salad,  

[00:22:22] Jeannette: no, I can see heads shaking.  

[00:22:25] Aleia: No, they don't want none of that. So I need to, I need to make them something special for themselves because, um, yeah, king Juan lettuce his ain't getting it here. 

[00:22:38] Jeannette: So it feels like they want me to ask you about this sort of transition from like the black church and the Hoodoo, even though there's like this connection, there's still like,  

[00:22:48] Aleia: It's different  

[00:22:49] Jeannette: It's different and how that slide went for you.  

[00:22:57] Aleia: So, so I will say I have not. 

[00:23:08] I have like so many places to go in this. So I'm try to keep it succinct because I can literally talk about this forever. So I stopped identifying as Christian a long time ago. So I would say goodness gracious, probably a good 20 years ago, I had a stint where I went back to church because of the relationship I was in. 

[00:23:29] And I was clear that I wasn't Christian, but I was still trying to find the good in it. You know what I mean? Like trying to find what I can like take from it and really appreciating the community aspect of it. But that was a year and a half process, but it's only been recent since I've when I say recent, probably the last two years that I've put my foot down with my family. 

[00:23:51] And that's been the challenge because they've always known, but it's kinda been like, uh, we don't talk about it. We don't deal with it. Then it's not a big deal. And I don't live geographically close to my family. So it was never a big deal. But recently, especially during COVID, it's come up and, and the ways that it's come up is in I'll give some examples. 

[00:24:13] So my mom just finished seminary. And, um, wanting, and, and my mom's become very active in her church and wanted my child to come to Bible study and I had to be like, very specifically, no, like actually use that to use words. No, they will not be participating and this is why you know that I'm not Christian. 

[00:24:32] So don't find ways to ease to slide it in, because I have to say that that's not cool when you do that. I had another uncle, I had put something on Facebook around like, oh, I've been featured in some, some witch shop for the month or whatever, you know? Yeah. Y'all, ain't gonna send a text message to my mom. 

[00:24:48] This is what your daughter is doing. I'm like, first of all, um, I'm real grown. I'm like over 40 grown. You ain't got to talk to me telling my mama what I'm doing. You got my phone number right here. 1. If you got questions. 2. I don't know what you think tattling to my mom was gone do and 3 don't don't do me Boo, because the funny thing is for all of the people that have something to say, they, the main ones in my box, can you tell me how to do this and what kind of bag I need to do? 

[00:25:17] And can you do some work for me? And so it's really interesting. The people that I have found in my family, particularly who are the most church-a-fied are literally the, the main-- can you do this prayer? And, and they, and they rely on me for it for different things. And so I let him make it because I realize everybody's journey is what it is and people belong to the church for a variety of reasons. 

[00:25:37] But I find it very, very fascinating how, um, how people practice, Hoodoo even when they don't want to call it. And even when they don't practice it, they recognize our power in it. So another funny story I had, um, unfortunately my family went through a death last year, um, and, and I'm a prayer warrior in my family and I have a gift of discernment I can read. 

[00:26:00] I can do all of those things. And, um, A family member asked for guidance on what to do in a certain situation. And this is that same family member that was calling and tattling on me. And I was like, would you like me to pray on it? They say, yes. So I said, this is the message I got and they were mad. 

[00:26:17] That's not going to happen. This is not true. And as the head of this family, I'm going to do this that and the third. I said, okay, I'm just letting you know, because you asked me, I didn't volunteer, volunteer to tell you this, but this is what, this is, what is supposed to happen in this is why told me up and down why that was never going to happen. 

[00:26:34] And I was wrong. So two weeks later when it happened, the way I, it, and it ended up being the best for the children that were involved, even the children have said like recently I'll have, I was so resistant to this. And now that this has happened, I realized like it's allowed me to heal in all of these ways, I don't even have to say told you so. I'm like you know, And I find that I don't, I there's, yeah. I still feel very conflicted feelings with the black church because there's so many ways that it frustrates me how it disempowers us. And that's really not my portion. Like I can be okay with whatever people's beliefs are. You believe in that fine. 

[00:27:14] But the disempowering of us that is a particular thorn in my side, no pun intended. 

[00:27:25] The other thing I'm like, I could talk the Bible best, but the best of them don't play with me. Don't think because I'm not Christian, I'm not well-versed or knowledgeable. I haven't studied or are coming to the decision to not be Christian because I've been hurt. I actually, haven't been in a lot of ways. 

[00:27:38] I'm just, it ain't for me.  

[00:27:44] Jeannette: Well, you, you did say discernment , I remember sitting in church I remember the preacher was going on about like something about, you know, going to hell and reasons you would go to hell. And I remember reason you can go to hell was eating shrimp. 

[00:28:00] And I was like, how could a God that loves me, toss me on lake fire for eternity, for eating some shrimp. You know, I'm not so sure about this, I was like, I know I'm here, but this don't make no sense to me. I think the lake fire, and then it ended when the congregation turned against the new preacher and left them out with no heat. 

[00:28:21] I was like, I'm good. I've seen enough.  

[00:28:24] Aleia: How people go and be in the pulpit, teaching from the Bible, but they don't even know it themselves and they're contradictory because I remember, I remember specifically they would talk about Leviticus as like, that was their main text for being against homosexuality. 

[00:28:37] But Leviticus also said not to eat shrimp, not to have fibers and not to braid your hair. But those things don't apply because then you'll say, well, in the new Testament, it says that we're saved by grace and we're saved from the law. Okay. So then why are we following the law with this? So I'm confused. 

[00:28:53] And then you say, well, men, and women are supposed to be doing this thing, but Jesus said in Galatians that there's no man, and woman in God, so which one is it?, and then you're following Paul is really what you're doing. But even Paul said yes, in his own chapters, this is my interpretation of what you should do, but this is not coming from God -- so why? Because the problem is most people. 

[00:29:15] And I will say this from my experience, most people who are Christian, have not actually read or studied the Bible for themselves. They're taking they're cherry picking what they're getting from their pastor and they're getting the pastor's interpretation and they're getting the cultural norms of how things are and taking that for truth. 

[00:29:31] I will never forget the first time I declared I wasn't a Christian was when I read the Bible from front to cover with my concordance and my Greek and my Aramaic dictionaries. And I realized what was being taught in church wasn't the same that was in the book. And then I got pissed. Cause I was like, we fighting about Christianity, but it's not even what's in here. 

[00:29:51] Half of what you hear is not even in the bible and so I felt got. I was like, I'll be damn. Everything that I can name is Christian is not even in the Bible. And I felt like, I really felt like, you know, in ice cube, when you look at the camera and Friday, like I was looking for the invisible camera, like, are you serious? How are we all being played? 

[00:30:13] Like I distinctly remember that moment. And I was like, well, I'll be damned. We've been being played with messages that aren't authentic to the source that they claim is the source of the religion. I was done with that. I was just like, I can't, I can't because they don't, it doesn't make sense. It doesn't make sense. 

[00:30:29] It's not, it's not in compliance with. And so for a while, I call myself a follower of Christ, but not a Christian, but then. I moved away from that as I've learned more about religion and even around how this idea and the concept of Christ and how that you find that in so many, um, Kemetic religions and, um, beliefs that are indigenous to, to, um, the Mediterranean area and its own indigenous religion. 

[00:30:55] And they're not feel real pissed. I'm like y'all out here celebrating Easter. You don't even understand where the story of Easter came from. Like, this is just, it's just, it feels like that game of telephone, you tell it and you tell him and you tell him about the time it gets to the 12th person down. It's not even the original story. 

[00:31:10] And like I said, I can talk about this forever... dont, dont..., 

[00:31:17] Jeannette: but it was a blessing though. Cause you, you deep in that Bible so that means, you know, what you need to do when it comes to your practices, you know, your spells, you know what to do. So your ancestors, they, they took care of you.  

[00:31:34] Aleia: They did they have, and they did. And they were definitely Christian. My, my immediate family for the last five, six generation are definitely Christian. 

[00:31:44] Like I got pastors and all of that in my, in my line. But what I've come to know just about black people and black church in particular, is that in the absence of language. And then in the absence of the continuation of our language, we grasp on to things that look similar to what our indigenous practice was. 

[00:32:02] So we say the psalms because it's, it's the same type of, of, of spell work and magic and verse that we used to do in the Homeland. And so we, we anoint things because we don't know, we may not remember where it comes from, but we re, but that comes from how we laid hands and we wear the white because it comes from somewhere. 

[00:32:24] So I take solace in that in Christianity was a place holder for my people. And I don't have to use that anymore. I don't have to use it anymore.  

[00:32:34] Jeannette: Hmm. That's so liberating. You don't have to use that anymore. And you're going to have a deeper connection with your practice and your people  

[00:32:44] Aleia: and not disrespect that, fact, that they were Christian at the same time. 

[00:32:47] Jeannette: Yes, because that seems to be key because we all do what we can with the tools that we're given. We, we just do what we can. So like, how are you, how have you been able to kind of balance and flow through your practice cause you, you have your own spiritual practice and you're a mom, you also coach, right? 

[00:33:10] Aleia: I coach and I have a whole full-time job and I,  

[00:33:13] Jeannette: See see. So like how are you balancing things, especially with, with the excitement that's going on in the streets today 

[00:33:21] Aleia:  I'm going to be real, and this is what I've learned in these 42 and a half years. There's no such thing as balance. So, if you're ever striving for balance, then something is, something is not going to be getting all of you. 

[00:33:37] And oftentimes Black women, we put ourselves as the sacrifice first. So one understand that there's no balance. There will never be balance. You can always be in pursuit of balance, but it's not what life has taught me to this age is that things ebb and flow, they ebb and flow and you have to make space for the things that are important. 

[00:33:58] And sometimes it means something else is going to be in the back burner or just good enough. And I'm saying this as a perfectionist where good enough, you know, it makes my eyes switch. Cause I want to be perfect and good at everything, but I've had to come to the place that something's going to have to be just good enough. 

[00:34:14] And they are. And so would I like to spend my full day in ritual and in parenting? Absolutely. Would I love to spend my full day and, you know, coaching others and doing these things? Absolutely. But I can't because. Because it takes too much of me. So I have to make some choices in how I navigate and sometimes it's just good enough. 

[00:34:37] So for example, the last job I had was extremely draining. I was a school administrator for eight years. I was a whole principal for eight years. I was raising other people's children and it affected my health in many, many, many ways. It affected my wellbeing and affected so many things. And so I've taken the scary step to move away from that. 

[00:34:57] So I'm still working with schools, but in a completely different capacity because it allows me space to breathe. And now there was a ton of guilt associated with leaving. I'm like, my teachers need me, my students need me, you know, these people need me and I had to be like, but I need me. My child needs me. 

[00:35:14] My wife needs me and I can't, I can't do it all. I can't do it all and be good. Um, so I've had to make those changes. Uh, I've actually taken a step back from my coaching because. Not because of time, but I realized I went through a whole lot spiritually in this last year with, um, some, some, some spiritual abuse and all these kinds of things and I  

[00:35:36] and I had to, and I didn't say I had, I'm going to say, I came to this conclusion by myself. My people told me, my ancestors told me I had to take a sit down. I have to take some time away. I can't be good to anybody unless I do some healing work here, unless I get, um, get honest with myself in certain places, unless I do some inner child work, I needed to dedicate my time and space to that over serving other clients. 

[00:35:58] And so I was serving and just, you know, small ways, like I wasn't taking any coaching clients. I was only taking readings. One woman came to me was like, well, can I sign up to do this? And I told her, sorry, no, I can't. And it's not good for you to be dependent on me. And I can't, I can't put myself out there for that. 

[00:36:14] I'm like, I can do here and there readings, but that's all I can do. And you know, there's guilt involved with that because I want to be serving, I want to be doing these things. I know I can, but my priority at this time, and in this season had to be on, on recalibrating my spiritual practice and, and getting, um, authentic with it. 

[00:36:33] And what's beautiful about that experience for me, you know, there's the easy way and there's the hard way. And I feel, and I think that's one of the beautiful things about Hoodoo is that we don't have this concept of good and bad, you know, hevan and hell sin, and not sin it's a, here's what you can do to have the optimal results. 

[00:36:53] You don't have to do it. Your results might be what it is. It might take you winding paths to get there. You know, there's no, there's no sin in not doing it right. It's just that there's an easier, better, more direct efficient way you can do this. And so what I've realized in this journey of all of the stuff I've been through for the last 6, 7, 8 months, was that. 

[00:37:14] People call themselves teachers to teach me how to do Hoodoo to teach me how to be spiritual, teach me all the things. And I realized through that abusive situation, that all the power and all the magic that I experienced was what I brought. All the work and work that came to fruition was what I did. 

[00:37:34] And so I told myself, so if I was the good thing in this, and I was the one that made that happen, why do I need this person who was false teaching me? And so, while I was upset and angry and pissed and hurting all of the things. It also reminded me who the F I was. And it allows me to stand up in my power and to put a stamp on, I am a child of my ancestors. 

[00:37:59] I am a child of the Orisha. I can do these things. And the proof is in the pudding. And I know that I was able to have a level of confidence. Now had I not taken the step back, I can still be in this, this place of, uh, feeling guilt and shame and anger and all of that. And I couldn't serve people in a whole authentic place. 

[00:38:18] And then I can project those feelings into dealing with them. And it might take me a longer time to get to this place of feeling empowered. But so, so I'll say all of that, say your big question is how do you achieve balance. You don't. You go to what is necessary and where your energy needs to be. You go to your Ori first, your Ori 

[00:38:39] first, you go to your ancestors and you go to your guides and you ask them to literally order the way, order your steps on what you need to be focusing on, because that's going to come and go. What I, what I worry about with, with parents. And I say that because I'm not going to make an assumption off of you as a parent or just parents in general. 

[00:39:00] But I feel like a lot of us, and I'm putting myself in that place. We overcompensate in parenting our children for multiple reasons. We overcompensate because we don't want them to go through the trauma we've gone through. We overcompensate because maybe we have parents who weren't well, when they parented us, we overcompensate because we want to protect them from this world we give and we give and we give, and we also overcompensate because we see the vision of what can be for them. 

[00:39:24] So we want to give them everything. And two things happen. You burn three things happen, you burn yourself out, you burn your children out. And then when they're no longer your babies, then what, what do you have, who you left with? I'm very clear that I'm on assignment with my child for 18 years. And I use that frame, you know, relatively that after 18, they may be with me 

[00:39:53] they may not be, they may be in college. They may be doing something else, but I don't get to parent them in the same kind of way anymore. And so my job is to equip them the best I can right now to let them know this is all what this is. All home is always a safe space. Home is not even just these four walls. 

[00:40:10] Home is a heart connection. It's always going to be a safe. But the way I parent you is going to shift and change. So I got to equip you for that now. And I've got to equip myself with it. And part of that is you might wear some clothes that I think are ugly as I don't know what you're going to make a choices for yourself. 

[00:40:27] And as long as you're not harming yourself, you going to have to just wear that ugly outfit that I don't like, but I'm not gonna, you know what I mean? Like you have to make a decisions for yourself because this is how you're learning, how to make decisions for yourself later. And you also learn how to make consequences. 

[00:40:44] And I'm not good with that. I'm really bad with allowing my child to suffer, natural consequences. Cause that's my baby. But so I'm learning, but we, we've got to realize that our children are just ours on borrowed time.  

[00:40:58] Jeannette: I, yeah, I want to be respectful of your time, but like I has your daughter helped with your own spiritual empowerment? Like you mentioned, like this, like this big lesson you just learned, like, has your daughter kind of just outside of the donuts? 

[00:41:15] Aleia: I, you know, I actually hadn't thought about that before. I don't, I don't know if I would say my daughter has directly taught me a lesson, but what has been clear to me is that my child is watching everything I do. And so how I navigate through this potentially could become her model or their model for how they navigate through things. 

[00:41:39] And so, yeah, that's, I would say I'm very conscious of the choices that I make, because I recognize that I have somebody watching. Even. So when I make mistakes and when I have hiccups or when I have bumps and I do things wrong, I can own that. I can, and I give voice to power. I say, this is what's happening. 

[00:41:59] And this is why it's happening. And this is why we say these prayers, and this is why we do these things. And this is why I used to do this, but I don't do it anymore. Like I have to be very honest. And my wife is Christian. Um, my wife is very open. I would say she's Christian in, in name, but she's very aware. 

[00:42:17] And so things with like, she'll say, why, you know, why do we, why do we say grace then if we're not Christian, I'm like, because we still can have gratitude for our food. We and regardless of what, what Diety you're you're praying to, we are still acknowledging that we don't do anything alone. And then also you're going to be in, in places all the time, where they're going to be people of different religions and backgrounds of you, and we respect each other, regardless, we show respect. 

[00:42:45] So even if you don't say the prayer, you're going to be silent and be still and hold space for them to allow their spiritual practice. I'm not going to force you to go to church or do any of these things like that. But we don't also demonize people that do so. So we have conversations like this, but I would say having a child has taught me to be very transparent about my journey, even when it's ugly and when oftentimes I'm wrong. 

[00:43:11] I got to tell my kid I'm wrong because our kids know when we're wrong, when you don't admit it to them and you act perfect. My child tells me, you just think you're perfect all the time. So I have to be like, let me tell you when I'm not perfect. And let me, let me show you how I made a mistake. And when I make mistakes with them, like we had a huge fight at the beginning of the summer. 

[00:43:30] And I had to say, I was wrong. I was wrong in how I came at you, I was wrong at how we handled this. And I'm sorry, even though, in my mind, it was for legitimate and valid reasons.  

[00:43:42] Jeannette: Yes,  

[00:43:43] Aleia: I was still wrong in how I did. And I said, I can't hold you to an expectation that I'm not even modeling myself and I'm wrong. 

[00:43:51] I shouldn't have yelled and screamed, even though I was really pissed off. Instead, I should have used my words and say, I'm really pissed off and frustrated right now. I'm going to go do this. 

[00:44:03] Jeannette: Yeah. Cause it feels so important that kids know that like we're human and that you're going to make a mistake and it's, it's inevitable and it's okay, but we still love each other and we're still, it's going to be okay. 

[00:44:17] Aleia: But our egos are so involved in and there's nothing wrong with it. It's just like our Egos. Whoo. We don't want to be wrong as a parent, especially when you know we right. We trying to just do this thing and it's hard to admit when you're wrong. Cause then we feel the guilt.. I'll say, I'll say, I feel I everytime I do something wrong are they going to be on the therapist's couch later because of me ooo, you know, you go all down the rabbit hole about how you scarred your child because you yelled that one time. But, and this is again why I say it's important to have a village. And why I talk to my therapist, it, while I'm like in like my therapist affirms, this is the evidence of why you have not scarred your child for life. 

[00:44:57] I'm like, okay. Yeah, 

[00:45:00] We need we deserve that space to be wrong. And to be supported in that and affirm that we're still going down the right path, even when we stumble and we struggle.  

[00:45:12] Jeannette: Yes, yes, yes, yes. Can I ask you about your, your inner child work? Is that okay to ask?  

[00:45:21] Aleia: Yes. And I will say that as, I'm on this journey, I learned over this last, I will say two, three years work in coaching and in, um, and in spiritual work, that, that really is the crux of the work that my clients in that the women in particular that I, that I work with that's, that's the, that's the that's that's the work that's the work is the inner child work. 

[00:45:44] Oftentimes.  

[00:45:47] Jeannette: It feels like you have more to say, feel free to dig. Cause like, I mean just the combination of the inner child, the ancestors and having a daughter and she's like, it's all together.  

[00:45:55] Aleia: I say that is because so often where, you know, the way we show up in the world, now our insecurities, our fears, it comes from somewhere. 

[00:46:07] And a lot of times it comes from things that we've experienced as children and especially as highly functioning and successful adults. Oftentimes we got that way because we've compartmentalized we compartmentalize, and we say, we're not there anymore or we achieve, achieve, achieve, achieve, and we're doing so because we're trying to overcome 

[00:46:28] something that is actually unhealed in us. And I'm not saying achievement is symptomatic of unhealedness. I'm just saying, I noticed that in black women in particular who are overachievers, and I'm saying that for myself too, that we're we're overcompensating. And, and, and I say this, and I've been saying this for years, but what's buried alive, 

[00:46:46] don't stay dead. It don't stay in the ground. And then you bury stuff that you ain't dealt with, it's going to keep coming up. It's going to come up in your anxiety. It's going to come up in your overprotectingness It's going to come up in your reactions. It's going to come up in your food choice. It's going to come up everywhere. 

[00:47:00] And so if we really want to be in a better space, like just really in a better space. And I say a better space. I don't mean just coping differently. I mean, literally being in a different mind, being in a different, experiencing the world differently. We've got to go back, got to go back. So Sankofa, isn't just going back to the path to move forward. 

[00:47:21] It's also going back to our inner child. Healing them understanding and nurturing them and setting them free in order for us to move forward. We have to. 

[00:47:33] Jeannette: In your inner child work, have you done anything with your, your ancestors?  

[00:47:38] Aleia: Yeah. So, so when I say inner child, I think many of us are aware of our inner child inner child work as I define it, I don't know how other people define it, but it's not, it's not just recognizing the inner child and soothing the inner child. It's actually going back and excavating it. So by going through processes, such as when have I seen I'm in, I'll just use an example. 

[00:48:02] Let's say I'll make up something. Um, I'll make a, I'll give you an example about me. It's an easy one. So don't worry. It's not too heavy. Um, I was, I found myself, I just moved into a new home grocery shopping, you know, planning out the weekly food, the meals and starting to grocery shop. And I felt anxious about only buying X amount of things because I'm like, I don't, I know I only need, let's say these 15 groceries, but I need to buy more because that just, that just doesn't feel right to only have 

[00:48:40] one onion, two cucumbers and a bag of carrots, even though I can look on my meal list to see that's all I need. I kept feeling this need to buy more groceries. And I, and I felt really uncomfortable with only buying what I needed. And so I have to do that work and figure out, well, what, where did this feeling come from? 

[00:48:58] Like, where did this? Where is this anxiety coming from? What is the real fear behind it? So that's one of the things, what's the fear. What's the real feeling underneath what were outwardly expressing and I realize I'm feeling scarcity. I'm feeling worried about scarcity and I'm like, yes, because since I've been grown, I've never been without, since I've been grown, I've never been without, I've had, I've been an adult 

[00:49:22] on my own, since I was 18 years old, I'm 42. So there's nothing I can say about like, oh, last month I was broke. Cause that's not true. So where's this coming from? And I realized that I was in this habit of over buying groceries and over cooking food, like making cooking, like I don't have a family of two, some weeks and three, the other weeks cooking. 

[00:49:40] Like I still have a family of 10, and then having all, these leftovers, and still throwing them out. Like it's still going to waste, but why am I doing this? And I realized that that came from a place of, uh, of food insecurity that I had growing up. And it came, uh, uh, feeling scared to be without, and also from this place of wanting to overcompensate for my child. 

[00:50:01] So they got thousands of snacks, even though my kid don't even eat all that stuff. And so that's, that's the surface level of inner child work. It's just recognizing where does it come from? But then the spiritual work in, and the work that I guide my clients on is now that we understand the, where and the why and the, how we actually have to do something with that. 

[00:50:21] Yeah, we actually go on a journey with our inner child, whether that's through journaling, whether that's through using certain substances, whether that's through meditation, through prayer, through ritual, we have to do something to go back and literally speak to that inner child, soothe that inner child, and then release the inner child to be the child that they were. 

[00:50:42] We have, if that specific work that you have to do. So I say all that to say the inner work it's multilayered. And it's, there's, there's a part of it. That's just like the, the rational part and the recognizing. And there's also the work that comes from through ritual. It also comes through inviting your ancestors to guide you on that journey. 

[00:51:01] And this is why this is so key and so important. 

[00:51:07] And I say this because I experienced this myself this year. I didn't realize how many memories of things I had. I had, um, suppressed and suppression memories suppression is a gift, right? It protects you from, from fully remembering trauma on your cognitive level, because it was harmful for you. 

[00:51:27] So it's a protection from your brain. It's also protection from your body because when you don't remember it, you don't often, you know, your cortisol levels, your fight or flight all of those things can be at a functional level. They're not efficient, but they're at a functional level, but the thing is the body remains members. 

[00:51:41] So you may not consciously know why when you go in a certain kind of place your body clenches up? Probably body just reacts. So I had to go on a journey with my ancestors and let them guide me into remembering and in that journey for me, with my ancestors and why it was so key for them to be there with me was because they reveal things to me. 

[00:52:08] That I probably, that I had forgotten. I had just completely forgotten about. I completely, I have a very good memory and I have a very good memory. I remember things since I was two and a half years old. I remember when my sisters, I remember things naturally, but there were whole chunks that are out of my memory that I didn't know, I had forgotten. 

[00:52:24] So my ancestors journeyed with me and reveal things to me, but because they were there, they also let me know I was safe. I was safe. I was safe to remember that trauma because they were literally there holding me through it. So they got to bear witness with me in a safe and in a supportive way. So that's why it's so important to have my ancestors there. 

[00:52:46] And they were also there to guide me through. So now what? Now, what do I do with those things? Now, what do I do with that lesson? Now, what do I do? And sometimes that, that guiding you with through what's next, it can be through ritual. It can be guiding you to the right therapist. It can be guiding you to the right tools, but they're there to support me on this journey because the journey in itself would be too traumatic and scary to do by myself. 

[00:53:10] And that's why often, many of us just kind of dip our toe into inner child. We remember like, oh, things were hard growing up. We don't really want to go all the way there because it's not beautiful. It's hard, it's painful. We don't want to remember all of those things about that relationship because it was painful. 

[00:53:28] It's still makes us cry and hyperventilate and clench our teeth when we think about it. But there are so many modalities that our ancestors have given us access to, to safely be able to travel down that road and not just to relive it, but just to, to heal it to really, to really heal it and let it go. 

[00:53:54] Jeannette: That's beautiful.  

[00:53:57] That is so beautiful that your ancestors have been able to be able to support you in that way and to help others facilitate others being supported in that way, because that's the kind of healing that we need. That's how we'll, we'll, we'll stop with some of the trauma that we inflict on each other that we don't realize that we're inflicting and that there's a different way to be. 

[00:54:26] Aleia: There's the easy way. And there's the hard way. And I've learned that as black women and especially, I think this is one of the things about Christianity that pisses me off. We have created our value in how much we can take. We've created value in suffering. We've created value in how much we can endure. 

[00:54:47] And it's easy for us to name like, you know, the big thing right now is to talk about how you not gonna take whatever in relationships. It's easy for us to name about how we're not going to endure abusive relationships. We know that we can say we can point a finger on that, but we don't realize how other ways that we do things a hard way, because we think that there's nobility in suffering. 

[00:55:04] Now I'mma give you an example of the first time I realized I'm like, I have been suffering needlessly because I thought I was gonna get a gold star at the end. So a few years ago, I told you I had a lot of, um, you know, my job was stressful and it came to a head in 2018, the spring I started to blackout at work and pass out. 

[00:55:29] My blood pressure was crazy and I couldn't understand why. Went to the doctor. And I had a very good doctor. She was not black, but she was a woman of color. She said, luckily, I'm gonna tell you this. If there were any other doctor that saw your numbers they're just going to give you hypertension medicine and say, you just got high blood pressure. 

[00:55:45] Cause that's what they do to black people. She said, but I'm looking at your, your blood, your red blood count and your white blood count. I'm looking at where there's your diastolic or systolic number, whatever the top of balance. She goes, there's something that's not right. She goes, you're not getting enough oxygen. 

[00:56:00] That's really underneath this hypertension. That, that seems like it's hypertension. You're not getting a, not oxygen. And I think that you might have sleep apnea, but we're going to do some sleep studies. And I'm like, what are you talking about? Like, you know, I'm sleeping fine every night. And she asked me a very simple question. 

[00:56:17] She goes, well, how many times do you wake up? And I'm like, you know, 5, 6, 7. She said, that's not normal. And I said, what do you mean? She goes, it's not normal for you to be waking up that much. And so she gave me this test and she was like, you know, do you fall asleep easily? Like when you go to the movies or watching TV, do you fall asleep? 

[00:56:35] Of course everybody does. When you, you know, do you feel exhausted at certain times of the day where you can just fall asleep? Of course everybody does. Um, have you ever had times where you've gotten really tired at too long of a stoplight? Of course. So I'm taking these things to me. It's normal. It's how, it's how I've always been at this time. 

[00:56:50] I remember my child was 10 years old and I, or nine or 10. And I remember thinking like, that's what mothers do. We're always hyper hypervigilant, waking up all night, checking, making sure, you know, just being on. So she said you have insomnia. So I went to the, I went and got, um, sleep tests and she said, you have insomnia. 

[00:57:06] She goes, this is why it's important. She said, black people oftentimes have obstructed breathing. So it wasn't, it wasn't sleep apnea for me. It was, um, parasympathetic insomnia, basically stress based insomnia where I was falling asleep, but I wasn't getting good quality sleep. 

[00:57:20] You know, I had my little watch and I always thought, I always saw that I had on average two to three hours of restful sleep. But because that was my norm, I didn't think anything of it. She goes, people oftentimes have obstructed sleep. You're not resting when you're sleep. And therefore sleep is when your body heals and repair itself. 

[00:57:38] So when you're not sleeping well and breathing well, then it's going to affect your blood pressure, all of these things. So she goes, and when doctors see this, this is my doctor told me, they're just going to give you something for the symptoms. Oh, you got hypertension, lose weight. Oh, you got hypertension. 

[00:57:52] You're not eating well in reality is you're stressed and you're not sleeping. And that just hit me like a gut. And so what, but what broke me down was I did all of this and she's like, well, here's the medication you can take. And I felt upset about that. I didn't want to take any medication. We know how we feel about medication and I researched the medication style was an anti-anxiety medication. 

[00:58:13] Well, she's trying to say that da, da, da, and I slept through the night. And I realized that I had never slept through the night from, from that. I can remember my adult years and I watched the quality of my life change dramatically, everything from not just fatigue, but for my anxiety. And I didn't realize I was anxious because again, it was my norm. 

[00:58:35] I didn't realize it until it was not there to the quality of my relationships to the ways to, I wasn't so short tempered. And I realized I had been doing this the hard way for so long. I've been doing it so hard and it didn't have to be this hard. Life didn't have to be this hard, but because it was my normal, I never even thought that I had another option. 

[00:59:00] I didn't think to think, to say to my doctor. I'm struggling and I'm short tempered and I'm always falling asleep and it that's just what it is to be a mom and a principal and a wife. And, and this isn't that, and it didn't, I didn't know. And so then I got upset because . So I'm on an antidepressant antianxiety medication and there's so much stigma about it and I'm like, why do we have it? 

[00:59:22] Why do we have some stigma about that? Why do we think that you're better for doing it difficult? So what if somebody, so what, even if you want to say taking medication is the easy way out. So what don't we deserve to have ease in our life. Don't we deserve to have relief in our life. What are we going to get at the end of the day for doing it the hard way? 

[00:59:44] What are you like, honestly, ask yourself if you do it the hard way and then what, for social media to give you a high five, like, we have so much, we've been so programmed to do things the hard way that it doesn't even occur to us. that we don't know to what reward. So what if you do it hard? So, what did you do? So, so because you can't even give a good reason why, why I gotta do it the hard way? 

[01:00:08] There's no real benefit to it. Why not have some ease? And so learning in that real experience that I deserved ease that completely shifted my whole mind. Up until that point, I was doing a lot of coaching around success and achievement and this and this. Yeah. And I was like, what about ease? What about healing? What about wellness? 

[01:00:35] I say that because especially in our practice, a lot of times, because of Christianity, we only go to our ancestors where we are in crisis. Something happened, well, I need to run this spell this money, jar, this, honey jar. I need to burn these candles. I need, I need something right now, which is fine. 

[01:00:50] Not knocking any of that. But what is, what if we went to our people on a regular day to say, I want more ease in my life today. What if we actually went to them with our problems instead of us trying to do it ourselves, and then only asking for help when it got really, really, really hard, if you don't ask for help until it gets real, until we feel like we've done everything we can do. 

[01:01:12] Now I'm gonna ask for help. What if you asked on the front end? What have you don't have to go through that experience of doing everything. You know, how to do by yourself until it's time to ask for help. What if, what have you asked for help on the front end? 

[01:01:23] I promise you won't have to be doing as much work as we're doing. You don't have to. We don't have to wait for crisis. We don't have to wait for crisis. 

[01:01:41] Jeannette: What if we asked for help? I bet you, we have stronger community. I'd bet you we'd have more community. I think it'd be easier for us to connect with each other.  

[01:01:51] Aleia: Yeah, it starts. It starts internally. We got to know how to ask our Ori and our ancestors for help on the the day to day basis. What do I need to know today? Well, how can you guide me and be with me today? 

[01:02:03] How can you help create ease in my life today? What if we ask for ease as a daily practice? 

[01:02:14] Jeannette: Especially as a mom that so powerful, like what you were saying, just this idea of like it's normal for me to be up at 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. Cause like I was thinking in my head, yes, that's normal, but you right. It's not and sleep is helpful for everybody involved.  

[01:02:32] Aleia: And it also teaches your kids something. My daughter, the other day, it was just yesterday, two days ago, I forgot what they were doing in their room. And I have, it was on Sunday. Cause I've been to, I haven't been doing stuff all day and she's like, well, I need to do this. Can you come in my room and watch me do? And I said, you know what? I don't want to right now because I'm tired. 

[01:02:49] And so I just want to sit down on the couch right now and do nothing. I love you. I want to hang out with you, but right now I need to rest.. And that was really hard in the past me to say no to my child. Cause you know, as moms, we got to say yes to everything and be everything. And I said, no, not right now. And you know what they went on and they were fine and we could then, and , it allows me to then authentically connect with them a little bit later. 

[01:03:14] I didn't have to, because if I had said yes at that time I would have been cranky, resentful, pissed off snappy, distracted, mad, grumbly. I can't never have no time for myself. This, that 

[01:03:24] Jeannette: yes, yes, yes. And then they wouldn't internalize that at some point, if you do it enough.  

[01:03:33] Aleia: Absolutely. Absolutely. 

[01:03:38] Jeannette: Just solving problems before they start by asking for support and ease from your spiritual team, your Ori your helpful Ancestors. 

[01:03:49] And it's simple. It's not even hard (laughing)That's powerful. Thank you for the reminder that sleep is necessary and that ease and pleasure is possible in motherhood.  

[01:04:08] Aleia: Absolutely 

[01:04:09] Jeannette: you don't get nothing from suffering except for more suffering, 

[01:04:12] Aleia: You don't get nothing.. nothing.. There's no reward at the end. You might create some entitled children. You might create some children that are not self-sufficient. 

[01:04:28] You might be modeling for your daughters, how to always give up all of themselves. 

[01:04:36] You might be modeling for your boys. How always expect a woman to always give up of themselves. 

[01:04:47] Jeannette: Cause, as you said at the beginning, they learn from what you do. Like your daughter's always watching children are always watching and it's more about what you do than what you say.  

[01:04:57] Aleia: Oh, absolutely. And we know that because you know, the big thing on social media right now, it's talking about why relationships don't last and my grandma made it, you know, we, we, we, we are celebrating how much our grandmother suffered is put up with these relationships. 

[01:05:13] That becomes the thing, because for lots of reasons, I'm not saying as a guilt thing or a shame thing, but when we were just given in, in coddled, in and protected from certain truths, we grew up with a warped sense of what was actually true or not.  

[01:05:34] Jeannette: Yes. Yes. And unless you have a relationship where you're going to the altar and grandma would be like, look, this will really happen 

[01:05:44] Aleia: This is what was really going on. And we can start that. We can cultivate that in our children right now. You know, of course in appropriate ways, like your child doesn't need to know all about your sex life and all these kinds of things. 

[01:05:56] But you can say mommy deserves rest right now because mommy is tired. I've been running around all day, doing things for all of us and I deserve rest. I'll be back with you in an hour 30 minutes. We'll follow up a little bit later. You'll be okay. Now, it's hard. Don't don't get me wrong. I sit there the whole time. 

[01:06:18] Okay. It's fine. It's fine. It's fine. They're not even thinking about me in the first!. 

[01:06:31] Jeannette: No, they're just going about they business. 

[01:06:38] That feels like all I have to ask you. Whew, this is, wow. This has been a blessing. My mind is all open and especially around like the whole, like your ancestors helping you journey and like how important it is to just ask, ask for ease, ask for pleasure and create some space for yourself just to breathe because entitled children, that's not, I don't think that's going to work, especially with World the way it's going,  

[01:07:09] Aleia: yeah. 

[01:07:10] It's setting children up to fail because we can't be together and be entitled. This is what we got now. And it ain't working.  

[01:07:17] And we don't mean to do it, even as I'm saying that even now I'm not a perfect parent. I haven't parented to 18 or anything, but I could see the ramifications of decisions I made. 

[01:07:29] I'm like dang, all of the time I was trying to protect my child and now they have what they need to do chores for themselves. Okay. So I got to go back and fix this because. I see how trying to overcompensate for this led to this. So we got to course correct now.  

[01:07:43] Jeannette: Yeah. Yes. And having also been an administrator and seen all the lots of things, I was a teacher for a short, a short amount of time and it kind of just peeled my wig back of the things that children go through. 

[01:08:04] Aleia: Our children are undergoing so much trauma and because so much of it is normalized we don't even think about it as trauma because we don't think about it as trauma, we don't respond appropriately.  

[01:08:16] Jeannette: Yep. Yup. It's like almost a badge of honor. Like, oh, you went through this good job. 

[01:08:25] Aleia: I'm fine dot dot. 

[01:08:31] Hmm. But  

[01:08:35] Jeannette: I'm glad you're making better decisions for yourself you're supporting yourself because you deserve goodness.  

[01:08:41] Aleia: As do you, you deserve goodness and ease and joy. 

[01:08:50] I just want to say thank you so, so much for this time. I am so thankful for the opportunity for us to just, you know, amplify for, for parents, for black parents, for black women, um, that our spirituality is in everything that we do. It's not divorced. 

[01:09:08] It's not just what we do at the altar. It's the decisions that we make in the ways that we raise our children in the ways that we raise and reparent ourselves as well too. And that, you know, every day is an opportunity to start. And I really appreciate you creating this platform for us to remember.  

[01:09:23] Jeannette: Well, thank you for being here. 

[01:09:24] It's it's a blessing. I love these sort of these conversations. I feel almost greedy about it. Cause I feel like this exchange is so it's like so nurturing to me. Cause I feel like, um, I love to learn. I love to hear what people are like, what they're going through and what they're learning and how they got where they're at. 

[01:09:45] So thank you for teaching me and sharing.  

[01:09:49] Aleia: You're absolutely welcome.  

[01:09:51] Jeannette: I pray that you enjoyed listening. As much as I enjoyed participating in that interview, I felt many times my wig peel all the way back, especially, um, around, um, hearing how she raises her daughter to be so powerfully free and so powerfully in herself. That was very inspiring for me. 

[01:10:15] I also found it awesome talking about that, like slide that's slide from Christianity right on into Hoodoo. It's very timely. Um, since it feels like many of us are coming either back to more ancestral practices or even just more. Uh, earth centered practices in a way from spiritual practices and paths that, uh, keep us disconnected. 

[01:10:53] Yeah, that's all I'm gonna say about that. That is like a juicy, juicy peach to peel and make pie out of. And that's a lot for today, but either way, like I, um, yeah, I love this and I pray it was a blessing for you. Um, if you are interested, you know, just go ahead and go on and head over to Aleia McDaniel's website, ALEIAMCDANIEL.COM and you know, check out. 

[01:11:27] She also has her own podcast where she talks about her journey into Hoodoo, her relationship with the black church, remembering who she is, and she also don't forget offers, um, spiritual readings and individual spiritual coaching. 

[01:11:45] And if you want to. Partake. It resonates with you know, that you enjoy a 15% discount by using the code Jeannette 15 that's JEANNETTE 15. All right. And you know, if you want to hear something like you want to hear me tackle or talk about a topic that pertains to spirituality and motherhood, On this podcast slide on into my DMS. 

[01:12:16] You can find me at Instagram, at, spirituality, underscore motherhood, underscore pod on Instagram. And just slide on into my DMS, say, Hey, follow. I'm not going to fill your timeline with pictures of me and spandex because like, I just, I don't have that energy. I really don't, but you know, I'm friendly. So just slide on in and say, Hey, I'd love to hear this. 

[01:12:51] I'd love it if you discuss that, and you know, we could chat, we could chat. Um, you could also like follow me on Twitter where I'm just at J L 77. That's a capital J you know, the little at sign J capital, J L A N C I E N 77 at Twitter. But I don't, again, like I don't tweet much. 

[01:13:16] I retweet cause Twitter, Twitter, be getting my blood pressure up. And that's just not the way. So come on and slide into my DMS. If you have any questions, anything you would like to see this podcast tackle .For the next episode um, I will be again, telling my business because I moved, but whenever I move, there's always some new juicy spiritual developments, um, and assignments. 

[01:13:47] So, and, and just shenanigans with my ancestors that I would like to share with you. So the next interview, will just be me. Yeah, good to connect. Um, and also like, if you want to support this podcast, please feel free to like, subscribe, leave a review if possible, where you're at and share with your friends, let your friends know what you, you listening to out here in these podcasts screets. 

[01:14:15] All right. So you can also share some money with me, you can share at., you know, listening is support too. So you just being here is supportive, . 

[01:14:28] Anyway. Thank you for being here. I can't wait to talk to you again soon. Stay blessed. Take care. Peace.