In the record “Blick Blick” by Nicki Minaj featuring Coi Leray, Nicki has this line, “Step one: cross me/ there won’t be a step two.” Seems like a simple bar, right? Yes, the beat was hard, and yes, Nicki’s flow was crazy. But that line?! It was a ghetto gospel for me. We are not doing second chances after disrespect anymore. Period. Those days are long gone, and there will be consequences for your actions when you try me. Yaassss and thank you to Nicki Minaj! is what I thought at the time. If you’ve been through some things (some real stuff), you have no choice but to feel that bar. Basically, if you stab me in the back once, you will not get the chance to do it again. I was moved by the power, the motivation behind it.
If you log into Facebook right now, I can almost bet my last dime that somebody is ranting about how they are cutting everybody off because people are fakes and phonies. If you don’t come correct the first time, you are subjected to the block button—and not just online but in real life. People aren’t even waiting for the New Year anymore to say “new me.” I read an IG story post this morning talking about, ‘If I cut you off, you handed me the scissors. Therefore, snip-snip.’ This no-nonsense behavior, this cut-off culture is revolutionary. But even through this empowering revolution, I have second thoughts about this narrative.
We will not be able to maintain any relationships by cutting people off soon as they make one mistake. I remember one time my close friend threw an entire event and purposely did not invite me. I was ready to terminate our friendship on the spot. When we spoke about the incident, she told me the reason she did not invite me was because she did not think I would want to come. Now, for me, that was no excuse, but I believed her genuine apology and we were able to move on.
Talking to her about the issue made me realize I didn’t want to lose my close friend and wash our memories down the drain just like that. She may have done something I thought was wrong, but I was also able to reminisce about all that she’s done right. So, I gave grace, forgave her, and we continue to be close friends. Some people may feel like I should’ve cut her off—like the behavior was a red flag and here I was painting it pink. I feel y’all, but I’m just not wired to grab those scissors and snip-snip without hesitation.
Now do not get me wrong, if anybody understands drawing a line in the sand, it would be me. I am extremely sick and tired of low-vibrational experiences, and I will not allow my frequency to be diminished. We have control over what we do and don’t allow into our spaces. We have the power to help people understand that it’s a privilege and a blessing to know us. However, I have come to believe there needs to be a balance between “I’m showing grace to you” and “do not play with me.”
My love, my loyalty, my willingness to forgive and to understand—to work with and to see things through—have been bittersweet. I have won because of these principles, but I have also taken some heavy losses for those same codes of conduct.
But nobody is perfect. We all have flaws in some way, shape, or form, and unfortunately not all flaws—even the ones we’ve worked through—go away overnight. I am so glad I have been given grace and compassion by my family and friends when it comes to my shortcomings, and I am glad God gives me grace when I’m falling short. What I have found to be true is through love many people will give you a second chance. They will give you time to apologize and right your wrongs. I am extremely grateful for that.
We all know the saying, treat others the way you want to be treated. Well, I’ve decided to keep showing compassion and grace because that is how I would like to be handled. Be clear: you should not let people play with you, but sometimes grace is worth it. So, nine times out of ten, I am giving that second chance—especially to the people I love.
Have you extended grace instead of writing someone off—has it been extended to you?