I met Sawkia on a volunteer trip to NOLA with Kaiser Permanente almost four years ago. She said, “That one week spent in NOLA rebuilding changed my mind and life.” I felt the same way. The thing I admire most about Sawkia, besides that she is a strong African American female, is that she wasn’t afraid to follow her dreams.
Here’s what I mean. When I asked her the thing she is most proud of she said, “The fact that I have enough faith and courage to follow my dreams despite the fact that many people, myself included, thought it wasn’t wise to up and quit my job, move without a job, no place to stay and a small amount of savings in comparisons to others and move to the most expensive city in the US all in a name of a dream. However, as I mentioned above this was literally THE BEST decisions I made in the 29th year of my life. However, it should also be noted in this article that I strongly believe that God made this possible for me and without him I am nothing. So to him belongs all the glory for it is him who make all things possible. I was born in the good old state of Oregon but I think God made a mistake because I never felt like much of an Oregonian. I kid. I kid. God doesn’t make mistakes, but I always knew I belonged in New York City and here I am. A lot of sleepless days and nights and many sacrifices went into getting here and I couldn’t be more happy and proud of my journey and decision thus far.” She adds, “(NYC) is only the best place to live on earth. That is unless I was given the opportunity to frolic on the beach every day in the Caribbean then my sentiments may change.”
As with most of the people I’ve met on volunteer trips, Sawkia seems to have the need to help others hardwired in her DNA. When I asked her about what she was most passionate about she said, “1. Helping people. I hope to open up a non-profit one day dedicated to young black girls becoming the best version of themselves through education, self-love and travel. 2. Traveling the world: “if traveling was free you would never see me.” I hope to combine my passion for helping people and traveling the world by doing a volunteer project in Africa. 3. Love because it heals all wounds.”
When asked why people should know about her she said, “I don’t know how to answer this question. I’m really not sure if they should. I am just trying to live my best life possible. Rather people know me or not has never really been a big concerned of mine. Maybe one day they will, but as right now I’m not sure they should.”
I’m sure you will know a lot more about her because I know she will be changing the world wherever she goes.
What advice would you give the teenage you?
See some world while you have no responsibilities and all the time in the world. Never worry about what others think because those who mind don’t mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind. Always follow your heart even If goes against the grain and no while love is the greatest gift of all time it has the possibility to alter your mind and plans so make sure you are ready but make sure to fall in love once or twice and let it change your life.
Who is your favorite artist and what does their work say about the way you think?
Beyonce. What she says about me is I am a woman, I am powerful, and I am unapologetically BLACK. Plus, we could easily get some major twerking done together. LOL. Wait don’t print that oh what the heck print it.
One word to describe politics?
LIES all LIES
What is the number one thing on your bucket list?
Travel the world
How important is music in your life?
It speaks the depths and volumes of my heart and soul when I am unable to utter words.
Give money to the beggar on the street or tell them to “Get a job!”
“Give money for you never know when you could be entreating an angel”
Do you prefer to vacation with the locals or all-inclusive resort.
A “vacation” should always include all-inclusive, white sandy beaches and blue waters. However, a “trip” should always include time with the locals. I classify them as 2 different things.
Do you have any addictions or obsessions?
Traveling, doing brunches and buying shoes. I could easily spend my paycheck on all 3 any day of the week but especially traveling.
Did you have a particular birthday cake you had every year when you were growing up?
White cake with strawberry filling. I still get it every year on my birthday.
What is your passion?
Traveling and helping people. I hope to start my own non-profit one day that caters to young black women teaching them the power of self-love, education, proper etiquette, and the power of what it means to be a Black woman in a society when you are constantly being tore down. It’s coming so just be on the lookout for it one day. “Dipped in Brown Sugar” or something like that.
Do you believe in God?
Do I?? I LOVE GOD. I am nothing without him. I believe he makes the world go around and without him, I am lost unable to do or be anything on my own. I love God and I am ever so grateful for his love, grace and mercy that he has bestowed upon me even when I don’t deserve it. I could literally go on and on but I am not trying to preach up in here lol. Just know if you take nothing else away from this I love God and without him there is no me.
If you could give any gift to any person who and what would it be?
The gift of LOVE
What makes you laugh?
My family, friends, myself. Subway antics. Sex and the city. Being in love.
What makes you cry?
Seeing how black lives in “post-racial society” don’t matter. It’s exhausting being black. Being in love.
What is your favorite accent?
It’s a mix between a southern accent – I love a good southern gentleman and an East Coast one because it’s just effortless but rough at the same time. I love it.
Have you ever cried when a celebrity died?
Came close to when Whitney Houston died but not quite. Went to church the next day and before I got there Grannie had told everyone I was having a rough day. Whitney had just died the night before. So, of course, everyone at church was asking if I was okay. Pure comedy not her death but the need that people felt they needed to console me. I love her (my gran that is) and Whitney of course.
Besides being yourself, what is one thing you do better than anyone else?
Laugh and laugh Very LOUD
What would be your secret power or super talent?
Reading people minds most definitely. People lie too much in today’s time. Just tell me the truth so we can move on. Although the truth can definitely hurt sometimes a lie hurts so much worse.
What is one thing you would like to learn before you die?
Italian – it’s the love language, my guitar, Spanish, and French.
What has been your favorite age so far?
22 – hands down. Such a carefree age. The best year thus far. I lived that year and had the best time doing it. Although 29 is providing some stiff competition. We shall see.
How do you think we got here?
Simple for me, God created the heavens and earth. Then he created Adam and Eve.
Do you think there is life after death?
Yes, heaven or hell. Our choice.
What is one thing that you don’t know how to do, that you wish you did?
Play my guitar and sing.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
Liars – such a waste of my times and others
What three things, would you have on a desert island?
Anything! My phone with everything previously downloaded off-line, My bible and Vaseline because I hate dry lip.
Do you think you think it’s possible to have your dream job?
I think all things are possible according to God. It’s not the dream job that’s hard to obtain its finding the dream that’s the hard part.
What is your biggest turn on?
Mental intellect. A man that can have a good thought the provoking conversation is everything.
What is your favorite time period?
Summer, summer, summertime in my will smith voice. The sun solves all your problems
You can find Sawkia’s blog at: sawkiaandthecity.com