Fashion has always been a way for me to express myself. I usually tell people that my line has not only been about the money; it has given me more than that. Everything that I encounter in life as a challenge always sends me back to my creativity, is it a show ?, a shoot ?, or the making of a jewelry ? it always carries a meaning that i don’t usually disclose: family related, love , or maybe an inspiration about what is going on around the world at that particular time.
Starting my jewelry line about two and a half years ago, my Mother was one of my biggest supporter. She encouraged me and told me I should not have any limits. My mother has been the most influential person in my life, and my biggest inspiration, even today in her grave she still is; and in everything I do, I always want to make her proud. As a Christian we usually say let the dead bury themselves and I understand and respect that but the motherly love is still alive and that is what is keeping the inspiration alive.
I heard so often that I am rushing and it made me laugh deep inside, because personally, I didn’t even see that rush. But maybe if I had rushed a little earlier, I wouldn’t be writing this, or maybe the story would have been different. Yes I lost an Angel – a beautiful selfless angel, her smile her personality and her beauty; Gosh everything about her makes her an angel, but I called her my mother. As a Christian, I believe in angels, and I believe my mother is one of them; perhaps that was the only way I found strength …
My God! I lost my mother 6 months ago, and when you check how I have been spending my life daily, you would ask me if I ever loved her. I would smile and if she was around she would smile as well.. My mother knew me better, she knew my flaws and my strength; she knew my taste and she also knew how picky I was; she knew what type of friends I can keep for long and the ones that don’t really suit me. She knew them by their names and how close I was to each and every one of them. She would smile when I said something stupid and just call my big head out, and she always had an issue with my nose and my big Cheeks in a really funny way! She just liked to call them out, and I would tell her I got them from her. I Am not like my mom, she was so peaceful and very calm as a person , I had to shake her sometimes!
When I first heard my mother was sick… She didn’t tell me herself, she said she didn’t want to worry me. Then after a while, she told me she got better and when she was better, I just thanked God because I knew we were still fighting a battle, and we will definitively win.
Losing one of my parents was the worst thing I ever wanted to think about. I planed on going to visit my mother this summer in Togo, West Africa. I had it all planned out: how I was gonna make her laugh and take her shopping and give her hope and pray with her and show her pictures and video of things I’ve been doing in the USA because I haven’t seen her for 8 years.
Usually when I call her, after we talk about everything and I’m ready to hang up the phone I always made her promise she’d wait for me. And when I lost her, that was the only thing that got me really. She promised to wait, but she didn’t keep that promise.. she just didn’t! but funny how that feeling lasted just for a day. Yup I know she loved me and she would have wanted to keep that promise if it was only up to her, but it wasn’t. So I forgave her so she can sleep at peace for me and I moved on after a week just so she could be proud of me and because I wanted her to be happy wherever she was.
Then I look around and think about those kids who never met their parents and were orphans since birth, look at my cousins who lost their mother while she was giving birth to their little sister, and I look at my younger brother who was trying to be stronger for me.. for us… then I realize how blessed I was.
Because of my mother I believe there are angels more than ever; I believe she is with God dressed in all white dancing perhaps when she feels like (maybe when me or brother does something great) because she doesn’t really dance often , eating all kinds of fruits and just looking gorgeous in a beautiful Garden. Yes I lost an angel and I believe I will see her at the right time and we can definitively catch up on so many things.
What it feels like losing somebody? It is painful. just imagine that you will never ever hear from that person again , you can’t call or even text message that person, those warm hugs gone.When you have faith as a Christian you survive it through knowing that you have an angel in heaven.
When I first lost my mom, I just wanted a picture of a beautiful black angel as a profile picture. When I Google it, I couldn’t find a black one so I ended up with one that looked like a cartoon, so I decided to do a shoot. I’ve planned this shoot since last year, but then gave up on it, until a friend that had no idea I wanted to do the shoot, texted me out of no where just to tell me that I should think about it. At that point, I knew it was something I was definitely going to do.
The reason why I chose a Maasai for this is because, a Masaai’s history is really related to a mother-and-daughter love; it is a neck piece passed on from generation to generation. In the culture, a mother would pass it on to her daughter on the wedding day, and this daughter passes it on to her own daughter. This specific recycle Masaai is a 100 years old Masaai I remodeled to my vision. To some, a mother’s love also goes from generation to generation which makes that love unconditional and immortal.
I had the opportunity of working with an amazing model on this project. It was really easy for me working with Amina on this project, because she lost an angel too. A year ago, she lost her closest friend – her brother. During that period, I knew it was hard on her, but I just didn’t know how bad she had it, until my turn; and even though she was out of town when I lost my mother, I felt her love and it is amazing having a friend like her.She knew where I was coming from. She cried with me when my mom was alive at the hospital, and she cheered me up when I was down; so there is nobody that could have played this role better! When I first contacted her for the project, she was really excited giving me all kinds of crazy idea. She actually told me “Dede , we should shoot a scene with tears”, goodness I laughed so hard but the truth is, today looking at the picture with the tears, it is my favorite because the message behind is very deep.
I enjoyed working with Joey on set. We had a lot of fun. He kept telling us how great the idea was and how he loved the introduction of fashion into an angelic shoot, and how different it was. I just wanted both of them being a part of something that meant a lot to me.
Happy early Mother’s Day to anyone reading this and enjoy your mothers while they are still alive because once she s gone, she gone!
Model : Amina Hamza
MUA :Amina Hamza
Creative Director :UniqueByReelia
Photographed By the one and only Joey Rosado
Best Artistic Work: Amina actually cried during this shoot—> She is officially a model / Actress :p
Free yourself <Art is the best therapy 😉
Mom & I 1990 <LOVE YOU MOM> ❤