Enter the Portal of Self-Love

Definition of portal
Merriam Webster

1 : door, entrance especially : a grand or imposing one

2 : the whole architectural composition surrounding and including the doorways and porches of a church

3 : the approach or entrance to a bridge or tunnel

Everyone stumbles upon the body positivity movement in their own way. Props to Lizzo for being a modern and hyper-visible voice, but shout-outs go, as well, to the LGBTQQIA umbrella family, tattoo and body art world, and sex workers, who all remind folks about the importance of autonomy and choice in presenting, describing, transforming, sharing, denying, withholding, and protecting our bodies as they are and as we want them to be.

Some people land on body positivity almost effortlessly. There are those that land on it as children – blessed with some kind of self-esteem compass that guides them through the dark times or looks and aesthetics that match the approval of the social norm. Some people find it emerging from the torture chamber many call adolescence. Others find it as intimate encounters turn into better relationships with one’s own body and movement, or as we encounter peers who teach us directly, and indirectly, other definitions of self-love.

For those who grew up watching stars like Jennifer Aniston, Jessica Alba or Halle Berry being praised as curvy, who watched and heard girls in our class participating in rituals associated with anorexia and bulimia at the same time as the rise in the waif aesthetic in Hollywood and Milan, and whose souls were shamed when outsiders commented on certain parts of their (our) bodies or the way clothing fit them (us), today’s era of visibility, as far as different kinds of bodies, is the oxygen mask many of us needed. Yes, there is room for additional representation and subversive attacks on auto-norming “thick/thicc” bodies, – such as only featuring plus-sized models with flat stomachs and round hips despite bellies, guts, and fupas being common in women wearing similar sizes.

I am one of those people who grew up taking in, internally battling, and, to this day, working to fight the demons singing toxic songs about better bodies, inept beauty, acceptability, and respectability. But I scored a victory, recently, when I walked through a digital doorway and entered a new world, from which I haven’t turned back since: The Pink Portal. I think I know the person who posted the first announcement or promotion I saw. I think. Either way, as Merriam Webster describes in one of its definitions, portal means “the approach or entrance to a bridge or tunnel,” and this couldn’t be truer of the black women-owned lingerie shop. From the moment I saw the first graphic, I saw thighs that looked mine – or that of my friends and family members – breasts that fit bras and bodysuits in ways similar to mine – or that of my friends and family members – and intimate-wear outfits, makeup, and styling choices that reflected those I sometimes choose – or those chosen by friends and family members.

Like walking into a family reunion or popping up at a homie’s cookout, arriving at The Pink Portal page has a unique way of hugging you with a sense of familiarity, while also beckoning you to take bigger strides in loving yourself. It is because of this very personal reason that I have decided to use 3 AM IS THE NEW BLACK to highlight the work they’re doing, the product they’re selling, and the event where you can see it all for yourself. Enter the portal, and join the founders, models and supporters for “The Pink Portal Experience,” a gathering that will “showcase pieces and styles from [their] collection as well as other designers and boutique owners.” The event is scheduled for September 24, 2021, from 7:30-10:30pm in Providence. Tickets are available through Eventbrite (https://bit.ly/2WNalXp) or using the attached QR Code.

Browse their merchandise and read testimonials on www.thepinkportal.com. And follow @3amblack on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook all month long to follow our partnership with The Pink Portal, and to catch fun tidbits leading up to their September 24 event.

Sunshine and laughter,

Reza Rites, Publisher/Editor, 3 AM IS THE NEW BLACK

#RezaRites #3AmBlack #ThePinkPortal #SelfLove #BlackGirlMagic #CarefreeBlackGirl #BodyPositivity #fashion #Providence #RhodeIsland #NewEngland