August 13th marked 13 years of Afrobella.com. Back on August 13, 2006, a really good friend encouraged me to consider blogging. We stayed up all night drinking wine and talking about what my site would be. That night, I bought a domain. My first post went live on August 14, 2006. And I’ve been meaning to write a little post to commemorate my anniversary since then, but life has been steadily getting in the way. More about that later. For now, stroll with me down memory lane.
Looking back on the past 13 years, I feel so much amazement and gratitude. My daydream, my hobby, my release became my career. The passion project that swelled within me ignited a spark. It delights me that my efforts inspired anyone else to walk in my footsteps, it’s one of the best compliments that my readers could give me. Hearing that affirmation alone is beautiful and lifts me up on heavy days.
When I started Afrobella.com, I was 27 years old and bubbling over with dreams and inspiration. I saw the world differently and the world WAS different, then. So much has changed in just 13 years, on so many levels. I am in awe of what the natural hair industry, the plus size fashion industry, and the world of diverse beauty have evolved into. I am so proud to have been here as a witness, to have been an early inspiration in these spaces.
I started this site in a time before vloggers and social media influencers. So many of my peers from that time have moved on, deleted their blogs, pivoted into different fields. I am proud to still be here, but there are times where I wonder what the future holds for me.
I started this site in August 2006 with a manifesto and a desire to fill the void that I saw in the media at the time. 2006 was such a different media landscape than today. I look back on some of my old writing and it feels like a different person wrote those words. Which makes sense — a lot has happened over the years! Sometimes I wish I could go back in time to 13 years ago, to give my younger self advice about what’s to come. Some of my old posts feel like clothes I wore back in 2006. Some I would still wear now, but they may not fit anymore or suit the latest style. Some of the posts I want to write now wouldn’t have suited me back then at all. But I’m still so proud of what it all led to. And what I find interesting is now, in my 13th year, I still feel as inspired as ever!
I’ve been asked if I ever plan to quit. I don’t, but I do plan to pursue other dreams simultaneously instead of allowing myself to feel boxed in by self-imposed parameters. I may not be as consistent as I’d like to be, but I’m proud to still be here. The truth is, I have as many ideas for posts and interviews and things I’d like to share on Afrobella.com as I ever have. The topics are just a little different, the perspective has changed as well. I still plan to cover beauty, hair, skincare and style but in the future, expect to see more posts about our health and wellness, and self-care from more introspective angles. I am open to your suggestions and I’d love to know what you’d like to see. Please leave me a note in the comments! And guess what — next week, the friend who encouraged me to buy Afrobella.com and begin this journey will be coming to visit. We’ll have to raise a special toast to the occasion!
If you’re reading this post, I’d like to say thank you. If you’re brand new to Afrobella, then welcome! If you’ve read my blog within the past year, I’d like to say thank you. If you’ve been rocking with me for a while now, thank you. And if you’ve been reading Afrobella.com since the beginning, then I’d love to hug you and say thank you. I appreciate you more than I can say. I wouldn’t be here without you, I would not have had all of these opportunities without your support. I plan to keep giving you what you need, and I hope to keep making myself and my family proud.